NESFA Magic League Home Page

Welcome to the NESFA Magic League home page. The NESFA Magic League plays on Wednesday nights at the NESFA Clubhouse, 504 Medford Street, Somerville MA. All NESFA members are welcome to join at any time. We play in 2-3 month seasons, with the format varying for each season. Most of the time we use a NESFA-style Sealed Deck format. We occasionally use a Continuous Draft format.

Sometimes people bring Type II decks with proxies to play informal games, and now and then we do a booster draft.

The league maintains a mailing list to which we send notices relevant to Magic or the league. If you'd like to join the list, contact Mike Benveniste. Click here if you'd like to send a message to the list.

If you have suggestions for improving this page, contact Leslie Turek.

See below for:

And here are links to some of the better Magic resources on the web: Return to the NESFA Home Page

Rules for NESFA Sealed Deck

The fee to join this type of league is about $16. Each person starts with a starter deck and a minimum of 4 booster packs. People who have not placed highly in previous leagues may start with 1 or 2 additional booster packs, at their option (and the pay the additional cost of these cards). In addition, a set of booster packs are opened and sorted into 3-card bonus packs, with the identity of the cards hidden. (The bonus packs are organized so there won't be more than 1 rare or uncommon each each pack.)

From their starting cards, everyone builds a minimum 40-card deck and 15-card sideboard. You can add whatever basic land you choose. Players are free to change their decks around any way they please in between matches. In fact, they are encouraged to experiment and try out different colors and strategies.

Each player may play any other league player at any time. During the first part of the season, we don't keep score, but the loser of each match is allowed to take 1 bonus pack to add to their set of cards.

At the end of the season, playoffs are held. Anyone can enter the playoffs for an additional small fee, which pays for the prizes. The playoffs are Swiss format and may last a couple of weeks. Losers do not get extra cards during the playoffs.

Rules for NESFA Continuous Draft

The fee to join the league is $10. For this, you get 3 booster packs. You remove one card to keep, and use the remaining 44 cards in the continuous draft.

Each player may play any other league player at any time, and record the results of their match on the score sheets posted in the clubhouse. Ratings are computed using the standard DCI ratings system, where each player begins at 1600 and gains and loses points based on the comparative ratings of the two opponents. Matches are best of 3 games. If one person wins two games, the third game is not played.

The top 4 players (who have played at least 4 matches each) at the end of the league enter a playoff. The first and fourth play, and the second and third play. The winners and losers of each semi-final match play to determine the final ordering. Prizes are usually packs of the current release - the number depends on the number of players in the league. Typical prizes are 8 packs for first place, 6 packs for second place, 4 packs for third place, and 2 packs for fourth place.

To play continuous draft, each player first lets the other player review their cards.  Toss a coin or die to determine which player has the choice. The choosing player can choose to either "draft first, play second", or "draft second, play first".

To draft, shuffle the entire set of cards together, then deal them out, face up, 4 at a time. The first player drafting picks one of the cards, the other player picks two of the cards, and the first player gets the remaining card. Repeat with the next 4 cards, this time with the other player drafting first. Continue until all the cards are drafted.

When drafting is complete, each player builds a minimum 40-card deck from the cards they have selected. They may add any number of lands of their choice. While playing, the entire set of cards remaining serves as the sideboard. Sideboard substitutions do not have to be 1-for-1, and any amount of land may be substituted.

Extra packs

Players whose rating drops below 1560 will be award extra cards to help even out the scores.  For each 40 points below 1600 a player drops, they get 8 extra cards selected at random from booster packs opened for this purpose (and pay an extra fee of $1 to cover the cost of the cards).

If a player has extra cards, they get mixed in with the basic 44 cards for purposes of drafting. The player with the lower number of cards can determine at which order the player with the extra cards can draw those cards at random: either at the beginning of the draft, as part of the draft (as an extra 5th card during some of the draft rounds), or at the end of the draft. The extra cards will be displayed to both players as drawn.

Players who get extra 8-card packs during the league season will get n-1 extra packs at the start of the next league season whose format is continuous draft.

Past NESFA League Winners

Tempest/Stronghold Booster Draft (June 1998)

  1. Kelly Persons

Tempest/Stronghold Sealed Deck (March - June 1998)

  1. Kelly Persons
  2. Leslie Turek
  3. Rick Katze
  4. Steven Lee

Tempest Continuous Draft (Dec 1997 - Feb 1998)

  1. Steven Lee
  2. Rick Katze
  3. Kelly Persons and Leslie Turek

Tempest Booster Draft

  1. Joe Rico, Leslie Turek, and Steven Lee tied for first.

Mirage/Visions/Weatherlight Sealed Deck (Sep - Nov 1997):

  1. Steven Lee
  2. Joe Rico
  3. Kelly Persons
  4. Leslie Turek

Mirage/Visions/Weatherlight Continuous Draft (May - Aug, 1997):

  1. Leslie Turek
  2. Kelly Persons
  3. Steven Lee
  4. Ted Atwood

Mirage/Visions Sealed Deck (Mar - May, 1997)

  1. Leslie Turek
  2. Joe Rico
  3. Priscilla Olson
  4. Mike Benveniste

Mirage/Visions Continuous Draft (Dec 96 - Mar 97)

  1. Rick Katze
  2. Leslie Turek
  3. Kelly Persons and Joe Rico

Mirage Sealed Deck (Oct - Dec 1996)

  1. Tim Szczesuil or Kelly Persons
  2. Steven Lee and Priscilla Olson

Highlander Tournament

  1. Steven Lee

Commons Tournament

  1. Leslie Turek

Alliances League

  1. Kelly Persons

Homelands #2

  1. Tim Szczesuil
  2. Kelly Persons and Steven Lee

Homelands #1

  1. Joe Rico

Ice Age #2

  1. Steven Lee
  2. Tim Szczesuil and Kelly Persons

Ice Age #1

  1. Kelly Persons

Other places to play Magic in the Boston area

Your Move Games in Davis Square, Somerville, sponsors sanctioned tournaments almost every weekday night and unsanctioned Tempest/Stronghold Constructed tournaments on Sunday afternoons. Their current schedule is:
Day Registration time Format Entry fee
Mondays 7:00-7:30 Extended $10
Tuesdays 6:00-6:30 Sealed deck $16 (includes cards)
Thursdays 6:00-6:30 Booster draft $12 (includes cards)
Fridays 7:00-7:30 Type 2 $10

Your Move also runs occasional weekend tournaments, usually at the John Hancock Conference Center, 40 Trinity Place, Boston. For more info call 617-572-7700.

Nat Fairbanks produces a weekly e-mail list of all tournaments in the New England area. If you would like to receive it, send e-mail to Nat with your e-mail address and the words "subscribe New England Tournament Schedule".

"Hugo Award", "Worldcon", and "NASFiC" are service marks of the World Science Fiction Society, an unincorporated literary association. "NESFA" and "Boskone" are service marks of the New England Science Fiction Association, Inc.
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