Oct 16, 2023 — News, Featured

Introducing Play Boosters: The Best of Two Worlds, Combined

Starting with Murders at Karlov Manor, we're changing the product lineup in a big way: combining the best of Draft and Set Boosters into the new Play Booster.

Oct 16, 2023 — News, Featured

Introducing Play Boosters: The Best of Two Worlds, Combined

Starting with Murders at Karlov Manor, we're changing the product lineup in a big way: combining the best of Draft and Set Boosters into the new Play Booster.

Taking feedback into consideration from our community of players and retailers alike, we're making a big change to the Magic product lineup—the Draft Booster and the Set Booster will be combined into a new booster, that we're calling the Play Booster.

Play Boosters have a number of advantages over Draft and Set Boosters, which we'll discuss below. They include:

  • Retaining a fun pack-opening experience
  • Being ideal for a Limited format play environment
  • Reducing player confusion with fewer products to choose from in each set

Let's dive in and discuss more about Play Boosters.

What Is a Play Booster?

Play Booster Breakdown Graphic

The Play Booster combines the best of two worlds: it takes the Set Booster's fun-to-open experience and weaves in the Draft play that is integral to the Magic ecosystem. Play Boosters pack the value players loved from Set Boosters into each set. Plus, it means you have one less Magic product to advertise to your players, further reducing confusion for those new to Magic in your community.

Starting with Murders at Karlov Manor, the Play Booster will replace the Draft and Set Boosters in our overall product lineup. As you begin thinking about how you'll stock Play Boosters, we encourage you to add orders of Draft and Set Boosters together to get an idea of the quantity of Play Boosters you'll need to support your community. Remember, Play Boosters are for both your Draft Booster and Set Booster audiences.

With a change this big coming to the Magic product lineup, we want to equip you to handle questions and conversations from the community. Keep these takeaways in mind as we share more about Play Boosters in the coming weeks.

Opening a Play Booster is just plain fun.

The Play Booster was created to retain the fun experience of opening a Set Booster while weaving in the play experience of the Draft Booster. With up to four rares in each pack, the possibility of booster fun in each slot, and exciting updates to The List, Play Boosters are every bit as fun to open as Set Boosters.

Play Boosters contain 14 cards, with one non-playable card; there are 8 slots in a Play Booster, which are as follows:

  • 6 Commons—There is a possibility of booster fun in this slot.
  • 1 Common or Card from The List—Most of the time this will be the 7th common, but when a card from The List shows up, it shows up here.
  • 3 Uncommons—There is a possibility of booster fun in this slot.
  • 1 Wildcard—This card can be almost anything from the main set. It can be any rarity, and it has the possibility of being Booster Fun. Whatever it is, it will be nonfoil.
  • 1 Main set Rare or Mythic Rare
  • 1 Foil of any rarity—This is just like the Wildcard slot except that the card is guaranteed to be foil.
  • 1 Basic Land
  • 1 Non-Playable card—This can be a token, a play aide, an ad card, or an art card

Some future sets may have small shifts to account for something cool or new in that set. These don’t contain the odds, so if you’re looking for specific odds, please check out Mark Rosewater’s article announcing Play Boosters.

Play Boosters will be available in every language a given set is planned to be printed in. For details regarding language availability, look to our WPN product pages at the First Look for each set.

Play Boosters are ideal for a Limited play environment.

Limited format play, especially Draft, is a huge part of the Magic ecosystem. It's an important part of in-store activity, and a big driver for building community. Prerelease is your players' first place to sample a new set, and our data shows that the longer your community plays Magic, the more likely it is that Limited play is part of their experience.

One of the key strengths of Magic is that there are many ways to enjoy it. Limited play might not be how some players interact with the game, but for the millions of players who play Limited, it's fundamental to their enjoyment—so ensuring that the Play Booster was compatible with the Draft environment was paramount.

As a reminder, you will still be able to purchase Draft and Set Boosters from past sets from your distributor if they are available, and no changes will be made to the current Standard rotation—Play Boosters arrive with Murders at Karlov Manor.

With Play Boosters, new player pathing is simplified.

You may have had players in your community who confused Set and Draft Boosters—buying one when they meant to buy the other. Perhaps your community preferred one booster over another—or maybe you weren't sure how much to order of each for either set.

Play Boosters may ease new player confusion by giving players a clear, direct path to playing the set. If they want to play, they can play. If they're more interested in collecting, the Collector Booster continues to feature incredible treatments and is a great recommendation as the shortcut to the coolest cards in the set.

You're able to save valuable merchandising space in your store, and it reduces the amount of information you're communicating to your players regarding what's in each booster, and how each booster is put together.

What About The List?

In the past, The List has mostly been reprints of older cards. Play Boosters are going to tinker with what exactly can be on The List. For example, when Play Boosters premier, The List will include what we call Special Guests, cards that are exciting reprints that we can give new art and will thematically tie into whatever set they are in.

What we do with the Special Guests will change set to set—and The Lost Caverns of Ixalan gave players a first look at what those will be like.

In addition to the Special Guests, there will be 40 cards that are reprints without new art. Of those, 30 will be common or uncommon and 10 will be rare or mythic rare. This is down from the 300 cards that previous iterations of The List had. In addition, Japanese-language products that include cards from The List will now have The List cards printed in Japanese.

Here is the percentage breakdown for your players' potential to open items from The List slot in the first Play Booster:

  • 87.5% – A common from the main set
  • 9.38% – A common or uncommon normal reprint from The List
  • 1.56% – A rare or mythic rare normal reprint from The List
  • 1.56% – A Special Guests card from The List

We have so much more to share about Play Boosters over the course of the coming weeks; our goal is to help you feel fully equipped for the first set where Play Boosters will be available, Murders at Karlov Manor. Until then, continue to direct your community to Mark Rosewater's announcement on Play Boosters and keep your eyes on this space for additional Play Booster details in the future.

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