Details on Magic 2014 Sealed Campaign

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Hi! I wanted to provide further explanation on how the Sealed Campaign will work in Magic 2014 – Duels of the Planeswalkers:


The game will come with two available slots for players to start Sealed Campaigns. These slots will keep all the deck edits and additions you make, plus your progress though the Sealed Deck Campaign. If you’d like to save more than two Sealed Decks, additional slots can be purchased for $1.99 each, and each slot will give you access to a different pool of cards and allows you to unlock different boosters. All Booster Packs use cards from a 151 card “set” that’s unique to the game (consisting of 10 mythics, 29 rares, 51 uncommons, and 61 commons). To begin a Campaign, players will pick an open slot and get six 14-card Booster Packs to open. Players are then taken to the Deck Editor so they can create a 40-card Sealed Deck out of the 84 card pool they’ve opened (plus Basic Lands).


When finished creating a deck, players can then battle their way through the Sealed Deck Campaign in order to unlock an additional three Booster Packs along the way. At the end of the Campaign there will be a boss fight where the player will play to defeat another Sealed Deck. You can also use your Sealed Decks to play against other players.



EDIT: There's been a correction on the size of the Sealed card pool (was 180+, is now 151), plus I've added the allocation of the various rarities. Sorry for the confusion.

EDIT AGAIN: Additional details in this response post.


Sean Gibbons

Associate Community Manager

Official MTG Twitter: @Wizards_Magic Official MTGO Twitter: @MagicOnline

Awesome!!!
So decks will actually be build from 9 boosters?

Also dem microtransactions.. In a way I hate it, but will properly end up buying some extra pools in the end, especially if they expand the number of cards you can get with the expansions.
Cool! Thanks for Info
One question: what do you mean by "additional slots can be purchased for $1.99 each, and each slot will give you access to a different pool of cards and allows you to unlock different boosters" ? It means that there are cards beyond this 180+ card “set” or that complete set is not available unless you buy all the slots?
Will it be possible to delete sealed campaign slots and start again to get a new set of boosters? Will players be able to keep deleting and remaking a bunch of times until they get really lucky to make a top deck for multiplayer? Will the sealed set have powerful mythic rares that you should make sure to get in order to do well online?
So one thing is not clear to me.  Once the boosters are open then, is that it unless you buy additional slots?  i.e. what I'm wondering is can you get new boosters from the same starting card pool without buying new "slots"?
Cool, thanks Sean. One question: so every time we want to make a new Sealed deck, we have to play through the Sealed campaign to get all the boosters so the deck is comptetive for online? I can see that getting a bit boring after a while...
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omg hype is of the charts first the bulls beat the heat now new info on my favorite game!! I'm gonna need a k pin 2xanax and possibly a dramamine or else head will explode!!

That did answer my question in the other thread about having to wait for the other dude to build his deck online too so thanks
Cool! Thanks for Info
One question: what do you mean by "additional slots can be purchased for $1.99 each, and each slot will give you access to a different pool of cards and allows you to unlock different boosters" ? It means that there are cards beyond this 180+ card “set” or that complete set is not available unless you buy all the slots?




It means you'll open 6 new Booster Packs and begin a new Sealed Campaign with it. Those cards will be different from your other slot's Sealed pool because of the randomized nature of Booster Packs, but it's all taken from the same 180+ set of cards.


Sean Gibbons

Associate Community Manager

Official MTG Twitter: @Wizards_Magic Official MTGO Twitter: @MagicOnline

can you reset your original 2 slots if you want to start over?
Y'know, this kind of gives me an idea for 2015 - best part is they'd be able to re-use old code. There used to be a casual format (well, probably still is) called "league" where you'd start with basically a sealed deck, and then play a week of games with the other players, keep win/loss records, a ranking system, et cetera. After a week, you add a couple of more boosters to everyone, they restructure their decks, and this goes on for a month, at the end of which there's a winner. Some stores did these with prizes, obviously DotP would use points or rankings or somesuch.

Sounds like the way the single player version will more or less work, so they could toss league play into 2015, re-use quite a bit of the code, and add a new feature while keeping their work load light so they can add more features/fix more bugs and so forth. 

Wizards: If it isn't game design, we can't do it right. Frankly, we're kind of shaky on the game design sometimes too.

Y'know, this kind of gives me an idea for 2015 - best part is they'd be able to re-use old code. There used to be a casual format (well, probably still is) called "league" where you'd start with basically a sealed deck, and then play a week of games with the other players, keep win/loss records, a ranking system, et cetera. After a week, you add a couple of more boosters to everyone, they restructure their decks, and this goes on for a month, at the end of which there's a winner. Some stores did these with prizes, obviously DotP would use points or rankings or somesuch.

Sounds like the way the single player version will more or less work, so they could toss league play into 2015, re-use quite a bit of the code, and add a new feature while keeping their work load light so they can add more features/fix more bugs and so forth. 



League play still exists, and to my knowledge is bigger than ever.  

League play still exists, and to my knowledge is bigger than ever.



Yeah, it's been...ten or more years since I played paper. I couldn't think of a reason League would have died out but I hadn't heard of it recently, so I just decided to play it safe and mention either possibility since I didn't have proof of one over the other.

Wizards: If it isn't game design, we can't do it right. Frankly, we're kind of shaky on the game design sometimes too.

Not to be a prick but this is at some point supposed to represent "The Gathering" right?
As in 8-man (or more) sealed events?
I've enjoyed all 3 games so far on Playstation, but an actual mini tournament would be nice for once, even if a lot of the cards are core set "vanilla" cards.  
can you reset your original 2 slots if you want to start over?


I would also really like to know this.

"People are like sausages: it's what's under the skin that's important... so poke them with a fork periodically."

"Lif is too short."

id probably go up to 3 anyway cause its the "magic" number and all and if can start over would be cool to reset the worst one while still having 2 choices to play against people
omg you mean i can actually make my own deck  wow very cool..

i hope this doesn't kill the main game  with the pre made deck i think is more fun  the classic dotpw way but o well 
can you reset your original 2 slots if you want to start over?


I would also really like to know this.




reset your deck i think  you do but your card pool  no  noo way
Hi Sean, thanks for the awesome update! Just a few quick questions;

1) Can you delete your starting slots and go through the campaign again in an effort to "re-roll" your boosters, or is the only way to get another Sealed deck by buying a slot?
2) Can sealed decks be taken into multiplayer? If so can they be used in standard matchmaking (including 2HG) or are they limited to a Sealed playlist?
3) If so, can you name your deck, choose a thumbnail, etc, and can that information be seen in lobbies?

Thanks for the help, and massive props to whoever came up with this mechanic. It should make 2014 everything a lot of people have been hoping for since the first game came out.
can you reset your original 2 slots if you want to start over?


I would also really like to know this.




reset your deck i think  you do but your card pool  no  noo way


But then there'd be a whole raft of cards in the game that you would never get to see. There would be effort involved with unlocking a new deck with a new card pool because if you wanted the extra boosters you'd have to the campaign again.

"People are like sausages: it's what's under the skin that's important... so poke them with a fork periodically."

"Lif is too short."

Wait so you can't do live sealed events with other players and all battle with the decks you made right there? Sounds kind of lame.
So..... I'm really the only one slightly perturbed that having multiple decks cost $2 a shot past the second?
Does everyone here play Perfect World MMOs and I only thought I was the only one?

Oh well, I guess if you're all cool with it.  
3) If so, can you name your deck, choose a thumbnail, etc, and can that information be seen in lobbies?



I hope not. Last thing I need is to play against fourteen decks named some variation of "z0mg mah cawk is HEUG!" while I quietly weep for humanity's future.

Wizards: If it isn't game design, we can't do it right. Frankly, we're kind of shaky on the game design sometimes too.

So..... I'm really the only one slightly perturbed that having multiple decks cost $2 a shot past the second?
Does everyone here play Perfect World MMOs and I only thought I was the only one?

Oh well, I guess if you're all cool with it.  



For me it depends on whether you can reset the slot.  If you can, then great.  If you can't...well, it depends on how good the sealed mode actually is to entice me to buy extra slots.  I'm still mostly underwhelmed by the cards I've seen so far, so I would need more info to determine how perturbed I'd be.
So..... I'm really the only one slightly perturbed that having multiple decks cost $2 a shot past the second?
Does everyone here play Perfect World MMOs and I only thought I was the only one?

Oh well, I guess if you're all cool with it.  



I'm failing to panic because I'm working under the idea that you can "save" two, and either discard the rest or save a new one over one of the existing ones. If I only get to play twice without paying more, welp, say hello to a feature I will use exactly twice, if I bother at all. It would also be negative points, since I'm already on the fence about getting 2014 at all.

Wizards: If it isn't game design, we can't do it right. Frankly, we're kind of shaky on the game design sometimes too.

3) If so, can you name your deck, choose a thumbnail, etc, and can that information be seen in lobbies?



I hope not. Last thing I need is to play against fourteen decks named some variation of "z0mg mah cawk is HEUG!" while I quietly weep for humanity's future.


That's probably why we won't be able to have such nice things!

Regardless though, I'd possibly buy a slot or two. At 160 points it isn't much, and it adds variety. The only thing that would stop me maybe is if we couldn't take them into non-Sealed playlists. That would limit the appeal, though not destroy it as this is mainly a fature I'd use with and against friends though in FFAs anyway.
So..... I'm really the only one slightly perturbed that having multiple decks cost $2 a shot past the second?
Does everyone here play Perfect World MMOs and I only thought I was the only one?

Oh well, I guess if you're all cool with it.  


I don't like it, that's why I'm wondering about the slot reset deal.

"People are like sausages: it's what's under the skin that's important... so poke them with a fork periodically."

"Lif is too short."

Is there a limit to the number of extra slots fools can buy? I think a lot of us were appreciating the fact Duels was never big on the concept, "money buys wins".

EDIT: Also, better be able to reset my base pools periodically. 
So..... I'm really the only one slightly perturbed that having multiple decks cost $2 a shot past the second?
Does everyone here play Perfect World MMOs and I only thought I was the only one?

Oh well, I guess if you're all cool with it.  



I'm failing to panic because I'm working under the idea that you can "save" two, and either discard the rest or save a new one over one of the existing ones. If I only get to play twice without paying more, welp, say hello to a feature I will use exactly twice, if I bother at all. It would also be negative points, since I'm already on the fence about getting 2014 at all.


I have little doubt that you can delete a saved deck. Anything "saved" is subject to deletion.

Even so... The "pay to win" thing that Brodo mentioned below is setting off a bit of a yellow alert.

From what I'm gettign from Sean:

Start a campaign, get boosters.
Play through campaign get more boosters.
Mod/save your deck how you like.
Play your deck against other players.
You can delete a saved campaign, but you lose your deck and all cards associated with it.
You can only have 2 campaigns saved, then you have to pay for more.

Also, depending on how the save feature works... It's not inconceivable that you could copy/back up your save file to "cheat" multiple decks.
But mentioning that would make me a horrible person, so I won't.

I think a lot of us were appreciating the fact Duels was never big on the concept, "money buys wins".



From what we've been told so far, it doesn't sound like money buys wins here, either. Since the cards in the pack are randomised, there's no guarantee that you'll get better cards in the new slots than what you started with in your two free slots. Theoretically, you could buy fifteen slots and still have your best decks come from the first two.

Only on steam though.

If I just have to delete my file and play a new campaign, I'm cool with that. With the new kid and school, it'd be nice to have a reason to play single player again at my own pace. I already miss playing against people online, but I don't want to be that dink that runs off in the middle of a game to help my wife or kids while leaving some poor bugger on the other end wondering what the heck is going on.

As a matter of fact, that's how I unlocked all my cards in 2012....my first son was born, so I had a ton of time to play games but only one hand to do it with while I held him in the other.
I think a lot of us were appreciating the fact Duels was never big on the concept, "money buys wins".



From what we've been told so far, it doesn't sound like money buys wins here, either. Since the cards in the pack are randomised, there's no guarantee that you'll get better cards in the new slots than what you started with in your two free slots. Theoretically, you could buy fifteen slots and still have your best decks come from the first two.



Yeah, I don't get the "money buys wins" thing either. You only need one good deck to win a lot, if you can delete your save then that is easily done. Just keep the best of the two and keep resetting the other till you get a better deck then repeat. But saying that, I think all decks will be comparible given the so far exposed card pool, assuming of course both players in a match are equally skilled at building a deck. I wonder if there will be a 40 card maximum limit to the decks, or if we will see stupidly large sealed decks online.

"People are like sausages: it's what's under the skin that's important... so poke them with a fork periodically."

"Lif is too short."

Speaking of hacking files and such, I wonder how long it'll be until people are playing with hacked decks in sealed. We know that hacked decks work in multiplayer as long as they use cards that already appear in the game. With a pool of 180 cards, a player could cherry pick their cards and make a dream sealed deck that could work against anyone. The only sign that it'd be a cheat deck is if half the deck is rares, but you might already be deep into the game before you realise that.

Hrm.
can't wait for the sealed decklists threads...I'm calling at least 1 thread will be made with each of the following titles...

Which card should I use? should I splash red for x? My sealed deck has 90percent winrate! Look at teh awesomesauce I made with the fifteenth slot! Guy I played had 6 different sealed decks and I beat him with my original 2 slots...what a scrub!

this is the future I tell you!!
You only need one good deck to win a lot, if you can delete your save then that is easily done. Just keep the best of the two and keep resetting the other till you get a better deck then repeat.



I'd be surprised if slots can be deleted or entirely rebooted. I'm guessing that each slot will have its fixed pool of 84 cards. The deck from that pool can probably be rebuilt as many times as you'd like, but once you have a slot with its pool of cards, that's it for that slot. If you want to see some new packs, you've got to buy a new slot. Otherwise, selling slots for $1.99 each wouldn't make sense.
I got a press pack earlier today, and from what I can see and read, you can definitely name your own deck, there's a nice "search" mechanism, where you can turn on/off different colors, if you know which colors you won't be going with, the lands seem to be at a steady 17, but I'm not sure if you're able to do anything about the ratio directly. Also.. there's a deck strength meter, which I think is kind of hilarious.

All in all, though... it looks really interesting. There's also more news out on the Sliver deck, but I'm not sure if I'm able to spoil it yet.

EDIT: Info is already leaked and shared.. nevermind! 
Among all the cynicism elsewhere, I just have to say personally I am extremely pumped for this.

It allows (a form of) deckediting.
It stops deckediting from creating a stagnant metagame through randomness and card rarity.
It teaches people a tournament legal format.
It creates more variety and unpredictability in matchmaking (if allowed there)

It really is a great solution. I know people are complaining we "only" get two slots, but it could be worse. They could easily have just landed us with one.

Regardless though, the deck packs were $3 for 2 decks, so $1.50 each. Here we're paying $2, so 33% more per deck for relatively unique and personalised ones. I'm content with that.

Another question though is how does Sealed work with DLC? Will you have access to DLC cards when they drop? If so you really would need the ability to delete your original slots otherwise your decks would become obselete once new cards arrive, thus forcing you to buy new slots (unless DLC packs added an extra slot as part of the package?) That would be quite a large oversight if you can't.
Well, your price comparson is fair, Stevo, but I'm such a cheapskate that I am pretty sure I'd always just have one deck which is the "current awesome" one, one which "might or might not be more awesome than #1" that I can test to discover the truth of, and then when I open the next pool, I can decide if #2 becomes the #1 or the new pool becomes the new #2.

Plus, since I'm on the PC version, I'm fairly sure that knowing how the file structures work currently, unless they're doing something vastly different, I can "save scum" - make local backups of the two saved decks, and clear my slots, but have them available to re-apply if I decide I want them back.

Although like Nim said, if the file structure doesn't change, then it would actually be pretty easy to make custom decks in the Sealed slots - but being that this is Sealed and not Draft, there's no reason they shouldn't have put at least a rarity filter in if not some other safeguard(s). At least if people cheat, it would restrict the rarities then. Not to say they couldn't do, say, 6x Nightmare if that's the only safeguard.

This does worry me a bit since it only recently became public knowledge that the current game could have the base decks modded for online play, which makes me think that Stainless has had no time to fix that particular loophole. Which is another reason modding should get official support - if it's officially supported and given a place to be used, anyone modding it in any other fashion is obviously doing a Bad Thing and would have no excuse not to know it, but I digress. Worst case scenario happens and people can blatantly cheat the system? Well, Stainless SHOULD have time to fix that before the expansion by altering how the file structure works, perhaps by including encrypted deck ID codes or something in the deck files.

Wizards: If it isn't game design, we can't do it right. Frankly, we're kind of shaky on the game design sometimes too.

I think a lot of us were appreciating the fact Duels was never big on the concept, "money buys wins".



From what we've been told so far, it doesn't sound like money buys wins here, either. Since the cards in the pack are randomised, there's no guarantee that you'll get better cards in the new slots than what you started with in your two free slots. Theoretically, you could buy fifteen slots and still have your best decks come from the first two.



Yeah, I don't get the "money buys wins" thing either. You only need one good deck to win a lot, if you can delete your save then that is easily done. Just keep the best of the two and keep resetting the other till you get a better deck then repeat. But saying that, I think all decks will be comparible given the so far exposed card pool, assuming of course both players in a match are equally skilled at building a deck. I wonder if there will be a 40 card maximum limit to the decks, or if we will see stupidly large sealed decks online.

Some pools fall towards extremes, such as really bad to booming with quality cards. Being better at deck building can help you out with below average pools, but the few that should literally opens the nuts will generally have easier times if they have pretty basic deck building and playing skills.

Opening such content in the first two slots will be awesome, but what about the players that open pools that leave them feeling unsatisfied or know are full of dreg. That encourages you to buy more or quit without a reset feature, and I'm curious to what's stopping someone from not just constantly dumping money to make attempts at hitting "jackpot" pools dripping with quality.

Part of my response is that some of these details are unclear to me, and that I would like to see something to force people to move on from pools. Getting bored and buying more slots is one thing, but having so many saves seems like it turns this into personal "Greatest Hits" of pools, where people eventually content themselves with their best or favorite pools. I truly wanted something to make people move on, but also in a way where everyone shares in a new pool experience together. A hard reset for everyone at once, such as at a daily or even weekly interval. That way, buying multiple slots is more of a bonus in granting you more pools to work with to help avoid a poor experience in that time, but you'll never be able to cling on to your best stuff either.

I guess what I wanted was essentially unlimited Sealed just for buying the game, and I should've understood how that could be asking a little much. Guess my expectations were a little high on this one assuming pools are set once opened. Didn't feel that way though considering there is no prize support here and these cards aren't going into any collection that I could transfer around for other uses.

A way to reset any saves shuts me up though.
The other issue people need to remember though is that at least on console (where you can't mod or float save states, at least unless you're in the vast minority who hack) the only way to create a new deck looks likely to be to replay campaign all the way through to unlock the boosters.

That by its nature will probably take between 1-2hrs to do. So you can throw as much money as you want at it, but the time intensive nature of building a sealed deck will stop all but the most dedicated/pathetic spamming this feature to get perfect pools.
I think my only concern here is, will we still have modes strictly for prebuilt decks? Or at least the ability to restrict our lobbies to prebuilt, and search for lobbies restricted to prebuilt.

If so, I can see this being a great addition, and would be quite excited for it. Sure would make Thursday Night Throwdowns crazy.
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