Don’t have enough tickets to enter a sealed Daily Event on Magic Online, but don’t feel up to drafting either? Then try something in between – 4-booster sealed! These 8-man mini-sealed events are tucked away in the Limited Queues room, usually at the top. Right now you can do 4-boosters of Innistrad or M12. Tournaments fire whenever 8 people join, and cost 14 Event Tickets or 4 boosters of the appropriate set.
Each tournament runs 3 rounds of swiss, and packs are awarded based on record. 3-0 gets 5 packs, 2-1 gets 3 packs, and 1-2 wins one pack. The prize support isn’t fantastic, but considering you’re having fun for a couple hours with a different limited format and you’ll almost ALWAYS get at least one pack, it’s totally worth checking out. 3-0 also nets you a Qualifying Point toward the Magic Online Championship Series, so here is another way to rack up those 15 points needed to qualify for each season’s championship.
A deck must be at least 30 cards – I usually do 12-13 land, 10-12 creatures, and 6-8 spells, depending on the colors. This format makes some cards much better or worse than draft or 6-booster sealed. Mediocre cards suddenly seem really powerful when decks have little to no removal, and good uncommons suddenly become insane bombs. Also, with only have 12-13 land in a deck, anything costing more than 6 mana is usually an auto-cut, and in a set like Innistrad, any milling is a must take. In fact, I won a game with Trepanation Blade after my opponent flooded through 12 land in play/graveyard, and I was lucky the 13th land was the last card in the deck. I’ve posted the picture here of that moment, just click on the image to see it with better detail.
It’s also difficult to play more than 2 colors, again due to the low quantity of land. Generally the deck colors are chosen for you based on what you open. With your dominating colors selected based purely on the number of playable cards you get, so there is a drawback of good decks being slightly pool dependent. Even so, there is still enough card choices you can make to optimize your deck. Keep in mind that a lot of cards you might play in other formats just won’t get there in the smaller sealed event – Skaab Ruinator is one such card, unless you get lucky and open lots of blue creatures or a second color full of dudes; 3 guys in the bin doesn’t come easily, especially with other cards like corpse lunge and harvest pyre.
Worst case scenario, it is a swiss tournament with 3 rounds, so you can always try new things and swap cards in and out without worrying about losing like in those terrible single-elimination drafts.
I highly recommend trying 4-booster sealed out whenever you have a few hours to kill and wanna try something new. It’s alot of fun, and the queue is generally less than a 20 minute wait when you’re the first to join. Good luck!