How To Run A Magic The Gathering Booster Draft

Tired of playing the same Magic The Gathering decks against each other, over and over again? Booster drafting might just be the cure for your Magic boredom. All you need is three Magic booster packs per person (Magic repacks work fine, too!) some basic land cards, and a few friends. Drafting is a great way to test your skill as a Magic player, as you get to play with Magic cards you wouldn’t normally use in constructed decks! Here’s how to hold your very own MTG booster draft:

1. Draft Your Magic Cards

Each participant gets three packs of Magic. Usually sets from the same block are used (i.e. one pack each of Zendikar, Worldwake, and Rise of the Eldrazi), but any Magic booster packs or Magic repacks can be used. Everyone opens their first pack, takes one card and passes the rest to the left. After all cards from the first pack have been drafted, everyone opens their second pack, picks a card and passes to the right. The third pack works the same way, with cards passed to the left again.

2. Build Your Magic Deck

After all the Magic cards have been drafted off, it’s time to build your deck. The minimum draft deck is 40 cards, and usually it’s a good idea to stay as close to this number as possible. You want to pick your strongest cards. Creatures with flying, or any other form of evasion are good picks. Removal spells are golden. Depending on how mana-heavy your deck is, you will have about 24 spells and 16 land (any number of basic land cards from outside the draft can be added to your drafting deck.) Anything that’s not in your deck can be used as a sideboard.

3. Duel Your Friends

Depending on how many people you are drafting with, and how familiar you are with running a Magic tournament, this can be done many ways:

  • Round-robin: Everyone plays a match against everyone else.
  • Swiss: 3 or 4 rounds, with players paired against those with similar win records.
  • Single-elimination: Once you lose a match you are eliminated from the tournament.
  • Double-elimination: You are not out of the tournament until losing two matches.
  • Minimaster: When you beat someone, you get their Magic cards and can use them to improve your deck!
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