Prerelease Tournament Protocols question

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Just got out of a midnight prerelease as a player, and had 2 questions.  (The store I attended is less than a year old.)

 

One, on the Wizards Theros prereleasepage it states: 

The prize pool: Each Theros Prerelease Tournament will include two Theros booster packs per player. Contact your local Prerelease tournament organizer for specific entry fee, prize payout, and event information.

 

Store I was at had 28? 29? maybe 30? players enter the pre-release.  For math sake, going with an entry pool of 28, that would be 28 x 2, or 56 packs.  The store capped the total prize pool at 1 box, or 36 packs.  I checked and the prize cap of 1 box was on posted store signage before the tournament.  Is this legitimate?

 

The tournament organizer? officiator? person calling the shots, was insisting that players open their prize packs before leaving the store and saying he would report their DCI numbers to Wizards if they didn't open their prize packs.  Is this a rule?  I've hit prereleases over the years and never ran heard of it before.

 

(Hope the is the right forum for this.  If I got it wrong, please direct me to proper forum.)

 

 

I can't say much about the prize support, because I don't know how well-regulated it is. I will say, the last part about requiring packs to be opened in the store, is absolutely false. And if this is all true, it sounds like this store owner/TO needs a little education. In what area is this store? (If it's the US, the state will be specific enough)

Sean Stackhouse Level Two Judge (Yay!) Maine

Well, I don't know if he can cap the prize support - it sounds like he just wants to pocket the free packs, which is problematic to say the least, but I don't know the full details. Maybe he didn't recieve the prize support from WotC that he was supposed to in a timely fashion. So while that sounds bad, I can imagine extenuating circumstances that would make it okay.

But on having to open the packs on site, the proper response is to laugh in his face and tell him to go ahead and carry out his "threat" to report this to the DCI He's the one unambiguously in the wrong there, and I'm pretty sure that's what the DCI would tell him too (if he wasn't just bluffing). If it's a mistake, it's not a particularly understandable one because it's so weird - literally all it does is inconvenience customers, it has ZERO upside. I don't understand where he would even get that idea from.

Jeff Heikkinen DCI Rules Advisor since Dec 25, 2011

It used to be the case a long time ago when they had the big city-wide type pre-releases instead of store prereleases that you had to crack your prize packs before leaving, but that hasn't been the case for a long, long time now.  You definitely don't need to crack prize packs before leaving.

You should report that store to Wizards. If he had product for a prerelease, it means he agreed to the terms of running that prerelease, and having a fixed prize pool is required.

Rules Advisor

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pookha1 wrote:

It used to be the case a long time ago when they had the big city-wide type pre-releases instead of store prereleases that you had to crack your prize packs before leaving, but that hasn't been the case for a long, long time now.  You definitely don't need to crack prize packs before leaving.

Where, and why? I've never heard of such a rule and I played in a few of those city-wide prereleases, one of which I won a decent sized pile of packs in. And even more importantly, I can't think of a good reason to have a rule like that. All it does is put pointless obstacles in the way of things like drafting those packs later on.
Jeff Heikkinen DCI Rules Advisor since Dec 25, 2011

It was in Georgia, USA to location question.

 

Went back for their daytime (yeah, I know, glutton for punishment, and all that), they did call wizards, and got corrected on the open packs NOW! part.

Asked about the prize cap, got something about didn't receive enough support.  (Their daytime pre-release appeared to be ran on the leftovers from the midnight in color selection options.)  [further note, I know another store nearby was having to IOU on prizes till shipment comes in this week.]

 

But the daytime was 18 people, which works out to 36 packs, or 1 box.  So at least the math was there for that one.

jeff-heikkinen wrote:

 

pookha1 wrote:

It used to be the case a long time ago when they had the big city-wide type pre-releases instead of store prereleases that you had to crack your prize packs before leaving, but that hasn't been the case for a long, long time now.  You definitely don't need to crack prize packs before leaving.

 

Where, and why? I've never heard of such a rule and I played in a few of those city-wide prereleases, one of which I won a decent sized pile of packs in. And even more importantly, I can't think of a good reason to have a rule like that. All it does is put pointless obstacles in the way of things like drafting those packs later on.

 

When I placed in the Alliances pre-release at Wizard's HQ in Renton (before even the gamecenter in Seattle, which is alas, no more) I had to crack my packs.  They didn't have draft events at this.  (Oddly if you look at my dci page it says this was in Denver, but I've never been to Denver).  I played a few pre-releases in Vancouver, BC: I think Urza's Saga and Mirage were the last ones I went to that were big.  I was required to crack prize packs there, as well.  I believe it was so you couldn't sell your packs immediately before the release as 'unopened whatever packs,' but I never got a satisfactory explanation.  I would have saved packs for my wife to open, because she loves to open packs.  I like the current rule where you can take them as is.  I always felt the secondary market thing was bogus.

 

Okay. I wasn't playing at all when Alliances came out (took a break for almost a year, but that was the only set I actually missed thanks to the long gap between Homelands and Alliances), and the one I finished high in was a few years later, presumably after WotC realized that rule was stupid.

Jeff Heikkinen DCI Rules Advisor since Dec 25, 2011

So, since this was in Georgia, you'll want to get in touch with Justin Turner. He's the Regional Coordinator for the Southeast. You can contact him through the Judge Center - http://judge.wizards.com - you don't have to be a Judge to login. You just need your DCI# and a password. Or, you can reach him pretty easily on Facebook.

Sean Stackhouse Level Two Judge (Yay!) Maine

The 'crack before you leave' rule would, I imagine, be to prevent people re-selling sealed product outside of official channels before the normal release date.

Mockingbird_UK wrote:

The 'crack before you leave' rule would, I imagine, be to prevent people re-selling sealed product outside of official channels before the normal release date.

What purpose would that serve, though? Anyone inclined to do that would just sell the singles instead, quite possibly more lucratively.
Jeff Heikkinen DCI Rules Advisor since Dec 25, 2011

Sounds like the store was stealing prize packs from Wizards and the players, and to make it even worse they were bullying the players into opening their prizes too.

~ Tim

I am Blue/White Reached DCI Rating 1800 on 28/10/11. :D
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The tournament organizer? officiator? person calling the shots, was insisting that players open their prize packs before leaving the store and saying he would report their DCI numbers to Wizards if they didn't open their prize packs.  Is this a rule?  I've hit prereleases over the years and never ran heard of it before.

 

As far as Wizards is concerned, no it isn't a rule. However, back in the day, many many places would have you break open the packs to ensure you weren't selling the packs for absurd prices. This was done more to protect the store's sales more than anything. And yes, you could get 10 15 even 20 dollars per pack if they were unopened. I ca't tell you what the current rules are today, but at the time WotC either didn't know about it or didn't care.

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