Magic: The Gathering Arena's Best Mode Just Got Better

Magic: The Gathering Arena is making a fan-favorite play mode even better. Last year, Arena introduced Brawl. At first, it was Wednesday's only. It later added Brawler's Guildhall, where players could play every day of the week for a limited time. With the coronavirus keeping folks at home, Brawler's Guildhall became available more often and for free. Now Brawler's Guildhall is going away forever because Brawl will be playable for everyone all the time. The news comes from today's State of the Game update ahead of Thursday's launch of the new Core Set 2021 game update and MacOS game client.

"When we first introduced Constructed Brawl as a format back in October, it was the first time we planned to support something other than Standard or Limited events on a regular, albeit rotating, schedule. Up until this point, MTG Arena had been almost exclusively Standard-focused, and this was one of our first forays into expanding our formats beyond your typical 60-card Constructed deck or Limited events on a regular cadence.

It proved popular enough that we began to explore ways we could support the format more often, without undermining the Standard-focused experience that MTG Arena was originally designed to provide. We had to make certain assumptions using the data we had based on player behavior up until this point, which is why we initially charged an entry fee for Brawlidays and the subsequent Brawlers' Guildhall events.

Well, as COVID-19 changed the daily lives of many of us, one of our initiatives was to offer more ways to play Magic from the comfort and safety of our homes. One of the ways we did that was by removing this entry fee for the March Guildhall. Then we did it again in April, and then we did it again in May.

. . . And as it turns out, having supported Brawlers' Guildhall without an entry fee for several months now, a lot of our concerns over having a permanent Brawl queue never really manifested. Brawl continues to be a popular "sometimes" food for most of our players, who enjoy playing it in between drafts or other Constructed formats.

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So, starting on July 1, the Brawlers' Guildhall will be no more. Instead, Wednesday Brawl will just become . . . Brawl. All day, every day, no entry fee, earn daily wins and quest progress, no takesies backsies. It will be a queue alongside Play, Standard Ranked, etc. starting in July and into the foreseeable future."

That leaves the dangling question about Historic Brawl, which has been an occasional event format. For now, it remains occasional while the Arena team evaluates the effect a permanent playable Standard Brawl mode means for the game. A decision about whether Historic Brawl could become a continuous mode will come closer to the release of the Zendikar Rising set in the fall.

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