The Dark Ascension release events are behind us and there are new booster packs begging to be opened. But why just open a pack, ruffle through the jank, look at the rare, then just toss the pack aside if it sucks, when instead, you can play with every card inside and have a lot of fun?!
Below are three different games you can play while you’re cracking those packs. Trust me, these will be 100 times more fun than just opening a pack and looking at what’s inside.
All of these require another person to play, and you can play just for fun or add a bit of gambling by playing for the contents of the packs.
WARNING: All of these games require you to shuffle the contents of packs without knowing what they are, so be careful when doing so in case you pack a Sorin or other money rare.
This is the simplest of fun ways to crack a pack. Each person takes a pack, removes the token/rules/ad card and shuffles the pack up without looking at its contents. Take out the double sided card, but leave the checklist in to represent it. Then play a regular game of magic (20 life) following these special rules:
1. Start with 3 cards in hand.
2. Each player has 10 total mana to use each turn cycle (your turn and your opponent’s turn). Consider colored mana as colorless mana.
3. Players don’t lose for running out of cards in the library, you just finish the game with what you have.
4. One game per match.
You can play for fun, keeping your own pack, or gamble with winner taking the contents of both packs.
Similar to Pack Wars, each person has one pack and removes the token/rules card, but adds 3 of each basic land to the pack and shuffles up without looking at its contents. Then you play a regular game of Magic (7 cards starting, 20 life, etc.) playing the Mini Master deck just like you would any other constructed deck. Matches are one game, and you don’t lose for running out of cards. Just like Pack Wars you can play for fun or for the contents of both packs.
If you have six packs to crack, you can do a two-player draft known as the Winston Draft. Instead of typing all the info on how Winston Drafts work, I’ll defer to this Youtube Video featuring Mark Rosewater explaining the format.
A great way to Winston Draft is for each player to contribute three packs to the pile, and then you play for either all of the packs or draft the rares afterwards. I usually play this latter way, in which the winner of a best-of-5-games match gets first pick of the rares/cards of worth, and then we alternate in selecting the remaining rares/good cards. That way no matter the outcome each player gets as many rares as they would have opened, so the risk is not as significant as playing for everything.