Let’s talk about Play!

Let’s talk about Play!

Jan 26, 2023

OK, you’re going to MagicCon: Philadelphia and you’ve bought your badge, you’ve booked your flight, you know where you’re staying - so now what? It’s time to figure out your play schedule!

One of the cool things about MagicCon is that you get to decide exactly what to do with your time, whether you want to play Magic from doors open to close, take time to walk through The Art of Magic,  watch a panel on the Main Stage, visit our Exhibitor and Vendor area, shop some show-exclusive merch or step into the Multiverse in our immersive Planeswalker Lairs.

When it comes to the play portion of your MagicCon experience, the fun starts now! There are a wide variety of tournaments to choose from and register for ahead of the show. Now is the time to make those final changes to your Commander Deck, to select the sleeves that show your personality or to build a brand-new Pioneer deck to bring with you.


Trust us when we say there are a LOT of casual play events  to choose from in the tournament schedule. We’ve picked out some of our favorites to give you an example of what’s available:

  • Commander Boss Monster 
    • Do you have the PERFECT Commander-legal deck? Bring it. In this fun Commander variant, players will battle against a powerful monster! On the Boss Monster’s turn, roll a six-sided die and the raging Boss Monster casts a powerful spell. Will you defeat the Boss Monster or watch your cards be utterly destroyed? This Commander Constructed Event consists of 2, 90-minute Swiss rounds with Pods made up of 3 or 4 players. Estimated event length is 3 to 4 hours. Entry is $20. For full event and prize information please click here.
  • Jumpstart 2022 2x2x2
    • Get ready, shuffle, GO! This sealed Jumpstart 2022 event costs $35 and consists of 3, 50-minute Swiss rounds and will take an estimated 4 to 5 hours. Product will be provided, no supplies needed. As this is a Jumpstart 2022 2x2x2 event, players will receive two new packs for a total of six packs and play with a new deck every round. Learn more about 2x2x2 event here.
  • 3 Packs from 12 Sets Sealed 
    • Everyone in this event will receive 36 packs (3 packs each from 12 different sets)! Build your deck from over 500 cards and enjoy a great selection of Magic's 30-year history! Players will have 90 minutes to build their decks and then play 3, 50-minute Swiss rounds. Estimated event length is 5 to 6 hours. Entry is $125. For full event information please click here.
  • 30 Packs for 30 Years Sealed Celebration 
    • Players will crack 30 packs and have 90 minutes to build their decks in this huge, sealed celebration event! If you want to take a trip down memory lane, the packs for this event include the last 30 standard sets of Magic. After building their decks players will participate in 3, 50-minute Swiss rounds. Estimated event length is 5 to 6 hours. Entry is $200. For full event information please click here.
  • 2 Headed Giant Events
    • Bring a friend to these fun 2 player team events! The format is sealed, so you don’t need to bring anything with you other than your teammate and be ready to have a great time! There are plenty of 2 Headed Giant (2HG) events to choose from, and each will take between 2 – 4 hours. Check out our full 2HG schedule here.
  • Trio Events (3 Player Teams)
    • Can’t decide on a partner? Bring two! There are Sealed and Constructed options available for when you don't want to leave your friends behind! Check out the full list of available Trio events here.
  • The Un-Known Event
    • Boosters, fun, chaos, and unique gameplay are at the heart of the Unknown experience! Enjoy the event that is never the same twice as Gavin Verhey leads everyone down a Magical path of extraordinary gameplay mixed with a variety of Magic card goodness. All proceeds from the Saturday night Unknown event go Black Girls CODE!


For players who are looking for a play experience with a more competitive edge, there are some great options to choose from:

  •  Pro Tour Qualifiers
    • The most direct way to the Pro Tour! Do you want to battle against the best players from every region at Pro Tour 2? There are two Pro Tour Qualifiers (PTQs) being held at MagicCon: Philadelphia, one on Friday and one on Saturday. Each PTQ will award 4 slots to Pro Tour 2 taking place at MagicCon: Minneapolis. These are sealed events, and the provided product will be Phyrexia: All Will Be One Draft Boosters. Entry is $100 and the estimated event length is 9 to 11 hours Swiss rounds based on attendance. Learn more about the PTQs (and the prizes!) at MagicCon: Philadelphia here
  • Secret Lair Showdown
    • The Secret Lair Showdown is making its debut at MagicCon: Philadelphia and features some incredible prizes. Bring your best Pioneer-legal deck to MagicCon and get ready to battle it out in a Secret Lair Showdown Qualifier to earn your place in the Secret Lair Showdown Championship!  There are four (4) Secret Lair Showdown Qualifier events taking place over Friday and Saturday. The top 8 from each event will be invited to participate in the Championship on Sunday.
    • Players who register and play in one of the Secret Lair Showdown Qualifiers will receive a Fatal Push promo. The 32 players who earn a place in the Secret Lair Showdown Championship will each receive a Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer prize card. The winner of the Showdown Championship will receive a Brainstorm prize card, one of only four that can be won at a MagicCon events in 2023! There are also draft booster displays, oversized prize cards AND Secret Lairs to be won. Entry is $150. Swiss rounds based on attendance. Max of 8 rounds. Estimated Event Length: 9 to 11 Hours. Learn more about the Secret Lair Showdown here


  • There will be On Demand Events (ODE’s) available at MagicCon. ODE’s are small and quick tournaments that launch every time a certain number of players register for that tournament. These are perfect for players who don’t have time to commit to a scheduled event but still want to play for prizes. All ODE’s are first come, first served and subject to space, time, and product availability. Learn more about the ODE’s here


  • Black Lotus VIP badge holders can enjoy this exclusive Dominaria Remastered Sealed event on Sunday at 11 AM where special prizes, surprises and fun await! The estimated event length is 4 – 5 hours. Make sure you don’t register for other events in this time frame if you plan to participate. Product is 6 Dominaria Remastered Draft Boosters. Prizes are per player and depend on Match Points. No supplies/cards needed to participate. Learn more about the Black Lotus VIP event here


  • We are now sold out of Command Zone Access add-on passes. Commander VIP and Black Lotus badges come with weekend-long Command Zone access, however there are limited quantities of these badges remaining. If you have yet to buy your badge for MagicCon: Philadelphia and want to be in the Command Zone, consider a Commander VIP or Black Lotus badge today! Learn more about the badges available here.  


  • You’ll also find designated free play areas at MagicCon that can be used for any Magic play at any time as long as there is space available!

Each play event has a capacity limit, and once it’s full there will no longer be an opportunity to register and participate. We strongly recommend you pre-register for events ahead of time before they sell out!

Whether you want to crack open some packs and draft with friends (old or new!), play sealed, standard constructed, two-headed giant and more, go head-to-head with other players or compete for some spicy prizes, there are play events for everyone taking place at the show! So what are you waiting for?! Check out the full play schedule and start planning your perfect MagicCon weekend today.

See you in three weeks!

- The MagicCon Crew