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Mastering Magic: The Gathering Standard Format

Magic: The Gathering offers a range of formats that cater to different preferences and playing styles. However, Standard is often popular due to its easy accessibility and use of the latest card packs. Here, we explain what you need to know to master this format.

What is Standard Format Magic: The Gathering?

Here, you will bring your own deck built according to a specific card pool. Typically, the pool contains cards from the most recent sets (the last two years). In Standard format, the card pool regularly rotates, and older sets will be removed to make way for fresh new cards. Playing Standard format is never boring as you will be constantly pushed to adapt your approach to deck building and your in-game strategies to outsmart your opponents.

Magic The Gathering - Flare of Denial

Why is Standard popular?

Many Magic: The Gathering players love Standard as it has a unique and exciting format – here are some reasons why:


  • Accessibility – As it is focused more on recent sets, it's easy to get started. You can choose from a smaller array of the newest cards to build your deck.

  • Changing your strategy – Because of the rotation of cards, you can continuously adapt and innovate when it comes to your deck building. You can experiment with new card interactions, and then you can refine your deck easily based on your success.

  • Keeping it fresh - Let’s face it, everybody loves new cards, and the opportunity to upgrade your deck with new packs is something that every fan of strategic card games can get excited about.

  • Variety – compared to a lot of formats, Standard is the most varied. If you play formats where the pool of cards includes older cards. like Modern, Legacy or Vintage, you will find decks tend to stay the same and only a few cards may change over many years as the power level is already high. Because Standard rotates more frequently, it means decks change regularly. New combinations and themes emerge with each new set, keeping things fresh and unique.


Testing your skills

Standard format provides you with a test of your decision-making and deck building process. Just some of the things that you might experience when playing standard format include:


  • Fast gameplay – Compared to other formats, it is likely that gameplay will move quite swiftly in Standard format. You will need to be able to think quickly and make adaptations to your strategy turn by turn.

  • Mind reading – Obviously it’s impossible to read someone’s mind, but you can anticipate an opponent's deck choice. The more you can do this the better success you will have in Standard. This is because you will be able to deploy your own cards strategically to counter any suspected threats.

  • Changing the game - With sets rotating and new sets launching, the Standard game format is ever changing, and the gameplay is ever evolving. This may mean you will have to adapt your style from time to time.


Whether you use Standard format as a stepping stone to other challenges in Magic: The Gathering, or you want to get competitive with your decks, Standard offers a great format for exciting, innovative gameplay. And since major live MTG tournaments often include the Standard format, it’s a way to get involved in the national MTG event community.Check out other formats including Modern, Legacy, Draft, Commander and Sealed.


Axion Now Events organises the biggest live MTG events across the UK . Magic players get together to have fun and play many different formats. We are also the organisers of  LorcanaFest the biggest Lorcana event in the UK.

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