Apr 15, 2024 — Outlaws of Thunder Junction, In-Store Play

Top Tips to Run Open House Events with Outlaws of Thunder Junction

Creating a welcoming environment and offering lots of ways to play can be the key to onboarding new players in your Open House events.

Apr 15, 2024 — Outlaws of Thunder Junction, In-Store Play

Top Tips to Run Open House Events with Outlaws of Thunder Junction

Creating a welcoming environment and offering lots of ways to play can be the key to onboarding new players in your Open House events.

All throughout Prerelease week, your community is rustlin' up some trouble on Thunder Junction—soon, it'll be time for your Open House events! Open House is your store's space for new-to-Magic players to come, learn the ropes of the game, and enjoy a friendly social environment.

Your engaged players in the community are encouraged to join the fun, bring their own friends along, or become a mentor to newer players in your community. Use some of the tips below to run the best Open House Thunder Junction has ever seen!

Create a welcoming environment.

When you're growing your gaming community at your store, one of the core principles to keep in mind is inclusivity. While there are numerous ways to accomplish this, your goal should be for new players to feel safe and welcome while learning to play Magic at your store. Magic can be intimidating, and any way you're able to break down those barriers can foster incredible moments and fond memories, which further encourage new players to return to your store again.

Your store's Code of Conduct should reflect your store's rules, giving players a strong impression of what's okay (and what isn't) at your store. Keep your players accountable—if there are individuals who are breaking your store rules, pull them aside for a brief conversation to make sure everyone can feel safe and welcome at your store.

Diversify ways to play—from Starter Kit demo to Two-Headed Giant Jumpstart.

Not every new player is interested in Magic for the same reason—some may be drawn in by fun card combos and deck building, while others may be most compelled by the social aspect of Commander play. Regardless of the reason, have options available for new players to learn.

A one-on-one demo battle with store staff is a great way for a new-to-Magic player to learn the ropes, but our research has shown that the most compelling experience for a new player is to pair up with an experienced player that can provide pointers during play. We recommend offering Two-Headed Giant Jumpstart play (using any Jumpstart product you have on hand) pairing new and experienced players on the same team.

You know your community best, and this is your opportunity to get to know the newbies and figure out what else they may be interested in picking up while they're at your store!

Not enough staff? Consider appointing a community leader.

Your store may not have a Magic expert on-hand during new-player events like Open House—in that case, we encourage you to find mentors in the community, and ask if they might be interested in giving you a hand in tutoring newer players.

Community leaders help further build a sense of camaraderie among your player base and can further set the example to your community for how to treat each other well. You may consider rewarding new mentors for their efforts with an extra promo pack or sticker sheets; use the best method for your store.

Set relevant promos aside to reward players new and experienced.

Outlaws of Thunder Junction has tons of loot for players to score all season long—but for Open House, you'll want to be sure the following promos and promotional materials are set aside:

  • Diabolic Tutor (Open House participation promo)
  • Oltec Matterweaver (Get the Gang Together promo)
  • Transmutation Font (Get the Gang Together promo)
  • Cultivate (Bring-a-Friend promo)
  • Sticker Sheets

Reward participants in your Open House event with the promo Diabolic Tutor; provide a second copy of the promo to players that bring a friend and to the friend they bring.

While Get the Gang Together promos kicked off at Prerelease, you're welcome to use them at Open House to encourage your community to get their friends together for friendly games of Magic at your store!

Players can receive copies of the promos Oltec Matterweaver and Transmutation Font when they bring new players to their first event at your store, and each register for the event with their own Wizards Account for any in-store event together (as long as it is the new player's first event).

Additionally, you can pass out the Bring-a-Friend promo, Cultivate, to new players and their experienced friends who join the event while supplies last.

Lastly, for all interested and participating players, hand them a Sticker Sheet full of Outlaws of Thunder Junction art, while supplies last. You may continue to provide Sticker Sheets at any program event throughout the season.

Outlaws of Thunder Junction Sticker Sheets splayed on colorful playmats with scattered dice and a Magic: The Gathering deck off to the side

Most importantly: have fun!

There are so many ways to enjoy a game of Magic, and at the end of the day, your players (and you!) should be having fun. Creating memorable experiences in your play space will remind every new player how excellent your store is—and maybe they'll come back for more throughout the season.

What are you waiting for? Open House starts April 19—so get your event scheduled, grab some marketing materials and get ready to welcome more players to the brand spankin' new frontier plane of Thunder Junction!

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