Wizards of the Coast have announced a restructuring of their pro-level MTG circuit of tournaments to accommodate Magic: The Gathering Arena esports events and a $10 million prize pool.
“Today is an extremely important day for Magic: The Gathering as we announce our commitment to esports and our Magic players by evolving our tournament structure to include a $10 Million prize pool.” said Chris Cocks, President of Wizards of the Coast.
A set of four Mythic Championships that combine both Magic: The Gathering tabletop tournaments and Magic: The Gathering Arena events will be replacing the previously-announced Pro Tours events in Cleveland, London, Barcelona, and Richmond. Meanwhile, the Dallas-Fort Worth and Sydney stops will be cancelled outright - which will likely be disappointing to local players.
“We are fully embracing esports and affirming Magic as a leader in the collectible card game category while providing lucrative opportunities for pros, players, sponsors, and esports partners.”
Wizards also announced a new The Magic Pro League (MPL) programme that will see 32 of the top ranked Magic players in the world offered play and streaming contracts worth $75,000.
Members of the MPL will play in weekly match-ups on Magic: The Gathering Arena that will lead into newly-introduced Mythic Championship events.
“The past 25 years of Magic competition has led us to design this comprehensive esports program that would support Magic: The Gathering Arena, while increasing our investment in tabletop Magic,” said Elaine Chase, Vice President of Esports at Wizards of the Coast.
“Our investment in esports will catapult the game to new heights while providing support to the players by giving them the platform to build their brand and bring Magic to a broader audience.”
To celebrate the announcement, Wizards is also currently running a promotion that allows MTG: Arena players to receive an 'Esports Starter Pack' of 25 cards by using the code 'GAMEAWARDS' via the in-game store.
After six months in closed beta, Magic: The Gathering Arena entered open beta in September 28.