Now Live in WER: Pioneer, Magic's New Non-Rotating Format

October 21, 2019 | 1 min to read

Today, we're thrilled to introduce you to Pioneer: a new non-rotating format, using cards from Return to Ravnica forward.

Pioneer launches today with full support at all levels of tabletop Magic, from casual in-store play all the way to the Players Tour Finals, and everything in between.

The format is live right now in Wizards Event Reporter—schedule Magic Weekend: Pioneer along with all your Theros Beyond Death events today. And there's plenty of opportunities coming for high-level Pioneer play, including in-store Players Tour qualifying events (apply here) starting March 2020.

Now let's take a closer look at the format and why we're launching it.

What Modern Was in 2011, Pioneer is in 2019

Back in 2011, Modern was created to fill the gap between Standard and Legacy. It was meant to be an accessible way for players to keep using their collections once their cards rotated out of Standard.

It worked. The Modern community is healthy, the metagame is diverse and dynamic. Meanwhile, Standard play is at an all-time high. But the gap is back.

The oldest Modern-legal set came out in 2003. With such a large card pool, Modern can't play the role of “format where you can use your Standard cards after rotation.” And something's got to play that role. Players need to know they can still play with their favorite cards, even if they fall short of Modern-level power.

Enter Pioneer.

Banned List: Allied Fetch Lands

With Pioneer on your event calendar, you keep your player's cards relevant for longer—especially new players with young collections. Plus, your vets get the chance to revisit cards that once dominated Standard, like Sphinx's Revelation and Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx.

Pioneer use sets from Return to Ravnica forward, with a banned list of just five cards: Bloodstained Mire, Flooded Strand, Polluted Delta, Windswept Heath, and Wooded Foothills. (You can get a quick breakdown of the Banned & Restricted philosophy over on Daily MTG.)

To help welcome Pioneer into the world, Magic Weekend for Theros Beyond Death will be Pioneer! The event is live in Wizards Event Reporter right now, so log in and sign up right away!