Wizards of the Coast gets serious with Magic Arena with massive eSports push


This Steam Vents isn't coming in tapped

Live at The Game Awards, Wizards of the Coast announced that they're expanding Magic's pro scene with a huge eSports push. Arriving in 2019, Wizards is putting at least $10 million into the program with a prize pool centered around Magic Arena.

There's a lot to unpack here. First off, Arena is still in beta but is widely expected to be their only digital format going forward: focusing their previous strategy of random Planeswalker games alongside the aging Magic Online. I repeat, it's still in open beta and Wizards is throwing that much money at it. It could seriously challenge Hearthstone and any other leading digital card game for supremacy with the right backing, which it seemingly has as of today.

The Magic Pro League will now offer $75,000 streaming and play contracts for "top-ranked" players, with weekly match-ups in Arena that lead to "Mythic Championship events." Those will be bundled into tabletop Magic competitions with the first big one taking place at PAX East next year for a $1 million prize pool.

Again, this could herald a huge shakeup for the digital card game space. As Wizards points out (with new numbers) there are "over 35 million Magic players to date across 70 countries," so there's already a baked-in audience.

You are logged out. Login | Sign up



Chris Carter
Chris CarterReviews Director, Co-EIC   gamer profile

Chris has been enjoying Destructoid avidly since 2008. He finally decided to take the next step, make an account, and start blogging in January of 2009. Now, he's staff! ------------------- T... more + disclosures



Also on Destructoid: Magic: The Gathering Arena   (25)   From our database:

  • It's official: Field of the Dead is banned in Magic, ban will happen this week in Arena - Chris Carter
  • Wizards is running a Magic: Arena event to promote the new Brawl format - Chris Carter
  • Magic moves up new ban list announcement, Field of the Dead expected to get hit - Chris Carter
  • PSA Magic: Arena is holding an event this weekend where you can win one copy of every standard card - Chris Carter
  • Review: Magic: The Gathering Arena - Chris Carter
  • Now that Magic: Arena has officially launched, here's an updated list of free promo codes - Chris Carter
  • PSA: Wizards made the final Magic: Arena M20-era XP event a little more forgiving - Chris Carter
  • When does the first Magic: Arena mastery pass end? On September 26 - Chris Carter
  • Check out Magic: The Gathering's Doom Foretold, our exclusive Throne of Eldraine card reveal - Chris Carter
  • More related stories
    Filed under... #Card games #eSports #Magic the Gathering #Wizards of the Coast



    You're not expected to always agree, but do please keep cool and never make it personal. Report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community team. Also, on the right side of a comment you can flag nasty comments anonymously (we ban users dishing bad karma). For everything else, contact us!