Warsaw is one of my favorite cities to play Magic: it’s inexpensive, everyone is welcoming, and the food is great. I would much rather play every GP in Poland than any other country.
On top of that, GP Warsaw was a success because so many people attended that the event capped. That, of course, isn’t a great thing—two of my friends were unable to come because of the cap—but it shows that people love Guilds of Ravnica Limited, and are loving Magic more and more.
ChannelFireball was expecting fewer players. We’ve had some GPs with fewer attendees recently. I remember going to a 700-person GP in Europe this summer, a number we rarely see over here. So 1,836 people enrolled at GP Warsaw was a pleasant surprise.
On my flight from Bologna-Warsaw, we counted 40 people going to play in the GP, and that’s from only one area in Italy!
GP Warsaw was such a success because of Arena, which motivated infrequent players to go to another country and spend their holiday playing Magic. Friends who only played Legacy and Vintage are now playing Standard and interested in Drafting.
In my town, we don’t have a store. I sometimes bring a booster box and organize a Draft, but that only happens on very rare occasions, because despite there being 20 people playing Vintage, no one was drafting. Now thanks to Arena, people are starting to buy decks in Standard, and keeping commons and uncommons from Draft that they were previously throwing away.
A lot of people showed up at GP Warsaw having done all their preparation on Arena, the biggest example of which was winner Eduardo Sajgalik, who said he hadn’t drafted on MTGO a single time and only played on Arena.
Drafting on Arena is different than on MTGO, but I can see a near future where you can Draft on Arena the same way you Draft on MTGO.
In the future, I expect more GPs to be like Warsaw, but I also expect Wizards to understand the trend and change some of those Modern GPs into Limited and Standard ones. That would create a better link between Arena and paper Magic, which would benefit both stores and Arena attendees.
The GP itself was good for me. I started 7-2 with a very strong Sealed pool: Dimir splashing green for Find // Finality.
While I liked how the deck looked, I was missing some expensive creatures to win the game with, and I regretted not picking a Gatekeeper Gargoyle. Since I felt like I needed some expensive creatures and I had enough green fixing, I decided to splash for Kraul Foragers and the decision paid off since it was great throughout the Draft.
I went 3-0 with this and started dreaming about the Top 8.
My second Draft started off again with a powerful Dimir mythic rare, this time Dream Eater. I followed the flow and ended up with this solid Dimir deck.
The deck lacked good removal spells, as well as big finishers. I thought the deck was good overall, but after a round 13 win I lost the next two to finish 61st, good for $250 and 2 precious Pro Points, which puts me at 14 points this cycle. It’s a good number and one I’m proud of, because it’ll mean I get to keep Platinum for longer.
I’m still looking for that first GP Top 8 though, and I’m confident that now that I’m trying harder it’ll happen very soon.
I love how Magic is progressing, and I love that Arena is such a success. I see a bright future for Magic.