Tuesday, August 25, 2015

One Final Thought Concerning Leagues

As I was preparing my post last time discussing the announcement by Wizards regarding the return of leagues to Magic Online and the reasoning behind beginning with Standard Constructed leagues rather than Sealed, there was one other point I neglected to include. Ever since I discovered Hearthstone, I have urged Wizards of the Coast to study what makes that game so successful and to apply those lessons to Magic Online. Given the massive success that Hearthstone now enjoys, it appears that Wizards has indeed taken notice.

While obviously the exact details have not been disclosed yet, Constructed Leagues will offer the same sort of asynchronous tournament experience that Hearthstone now offers in its Arena game mode. Way back in November I noted that this seemed to be the way that Wizards was taking leagues on Magic Online, and the latest announcements have only confirmed this.

In both Hearthstone Arena and Magic Online Leagues:
  • You practically have no time limits when it comes to deckbuilding.
  • You have the option of playing out your matches over a short or long period of time.
  • For each match, the software attempts to pair you against an opponent with a similar record, but priority is given to getting you a game as quickly as possible.
  • You play a set number of games, with prizes determined solely by your record (without any consideration as to who you played or their respective records).
  • You can enter the tournament as often as you wish.
Obviously, Magic Online ran leagues long before Hearthstone was even in the conceptual stage. But nonetheless, it is interesting to see these similarities.

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