Arena Cup MTG: Arena Ruleset

1 Eligibility

1.1 Player Eligibility

Each Arena Cups MTGA team must consist of 3  team members.

Players must be at least 16 years of age to be eligible to enter.

1.2 Additional Eligibility

Players must have their own MTGA account - and may only use one account for the duration of the tournament.

Players that have their DCI memberships suspended when the tournament starts may not participate in Arena Cups. A list of suspended DCI memberships is available here.

If a player has their DCI membership suspended during the tournament, or has their MtG: Arena account suspended or banned, that player will not be eligible to play in any Arena Cup matches for the duration of the suspension/ban.

1.3 Minimum Required Teams

If less than 8 teams have registered to play in the tournament by the 1st of October, the tournament will be cancelled. All teams will have entry fees refunded.

2 Format

2.1 MTG Format

The Cup will be played using the Team Standard Constructed Format.

Note this is not the same as Team Unified Standard. Each player submits their own Standard deck, all 3 decks may contain identical cards between them.

Players submit a deck list for each week. Players may change their deck in between weeks.
Players in playoffs must submit a deck list before match one of the playoffs and may not switch decks for the duration of the playoffs.

2.2 Match Format

Each player is assigned a fixed “seat” on the roster form, A, B or C - this seat cannot be changed for the duration of the tournament.

Players each play one best of three (Bo3) match against the opponent in the same seat as them from the opposing team. Team 1, Player A vs Team 2, Player A etc.

The team that has won more individual matches wins the overall fixture.

3 Tournament Stages

3.1 Stage One

Stage one will be a Swiss Tournament with 6 rounds (subject to change based on attendance).
The following score system will be used:

Win - 3 points

Draw - 1 Point

Loss - Points

Bye - 3 Points

3.2 Tiebreakers

If two or more teams are tied for 8th at the end of Stage One the following tiebreakers will be used in this order:

  1. Head to Head Record
  2. Strength of Schedule (Bucholz score)
  3. Points Difference

3.3 Playoff Stage

The top 8 teams from will advance to a single elimination playoff bracket.

The Quarter finals and Semifinals will be Best of Three.

The Grand Finals will be Best of Five.

4 Match setup

4.1 Rosters

Team Admins must submit starting rosters to their opponents via discord 1 hour prior to each match in the following format:

4.2 Decklists

Deck Lists must be submitted to the Google Form 1 hour prior to the first match for each week.
Deck lists can be changed between weeks in Stage One, but cannot be changed during the playoff stage.
Decklists will be made available to all players as soon as all decklists have been submitted. Players may review their opponents decklists before a match starts, and between games while Sideboarding.

Players must export their decklist as text from the client, and paste that list to the form eg.

4 Hydroid Krasis (RNA) 183

2 Forest (RNA) 264

1 Thornwood Falls (M20) 258

4 Scapeshift (M19) 201

4 Arboreal Grazer (WAR) 149


4.3 Online Game Procedure

Each Player on the team challenges the other player in their “seat” eg. Team 1 player in Seat A challenges Team 2 player in Seat A and vice-versa.
Choose the Tournament Match challenge mode.

Players must select the deck they submitted prior to the match.

4.4 Disconnects/Rehosts

If a player disconnects during a match they must attempt to reconnect immediately. If they cannot reconnect the game must be restarted.
Players can only request 1 game restart per match, if a player disconnects and cannot reconnect more than once, they forfeit that match.  

4.5 Sideboarding after a Game restart

If a game is restarted after game 1, or a player is required to correct their deck to match their submitted decklist, players may edit their deck in the deck edit screen prior to sending the challenge request. Players may not edit their decklist. The deck submitted may be any combination of cards from the main deck and sideboard, provided it is still at least 60 cards, and the sideboard contains no more than 15 cards. Players must edit the deck back to match their submitted decklist at the conclusion of the match.

8 Game Specific Infractions

8.1 Illegal Deck list                 Penalty: Game Loss

If a player submits a deck list that contains any of the following:

That player will immediately receive a game loss. That player must remove the illegal cards from their deck, if this would reduce the number of cards in their main deck to below 60, they must choose to add any combination of Basic Lands named Plains, Island, Swamp, Mountain or Forest to reach the minimum number. The decklist will be altered to reflect this.

8.2 Deck Error        Penalty: Game Loss

Players have access to all submitted decklists. If player’s opponent plays a card not on their submitted decklist, the player committing the infraction immediately receives a Game Loss.
They must correct their deck to match the list submitted.
Players challenge each other again and continue to the next game in the series.

If a player plays a card in Game 1 that is listed in their sideboard, they immediately receive a game loss. That player must concede the current game and continue to the next game in the series.

An exception can be made if a player find a card not on their deck list in their opening hand of game 1, before keeping and proceeding to turn 1. They must inform their Arena Admin, who will inform the opposing team’s admin of the error, leave the game, correct their deck and rechallenge their opponent. In this instance the Penalty will be downgraded to a Warning.

8.3 Failure to Attend         Penalty: Game Loss

Teams must be ready to play at the scheduled times on the fixtures master document.

Up to 10 minutes may be used if difficulties occur in regard to getting players in-game. If it is likely a team is either going to be late or miss the scheduled start time, then the team’s coach or arena staff must report the fact to the representative via pre-approved discord channels (DMs or other platforms of communication are not acceptable).

If a fixture has not started 20 minutes after the scheduled start time due to a player not being in attendance on time, then that player will receive a Game Loss. After another 10 minutes that player will receive a further Game Loss.

All other players should continue through their games during this time if able.

In the case of technical issues, the representative will decide and relay the decision to each tribe. Teams will not be forced to forfeit any games due to technical issues.

8.4 Rehosts                Penalty: Game Loss

Giving an invalid reason for a rehost, or leaving the match before having approval to do so will lead to instant game loss to the player that uses it.

8.5 Unlisted Penalties

If an admin or player believes a rule has been broken and there is no assigned punishment for it, they must contact the representative as soon as possible with details and evidence. The representative will judge the case and assign a punishment if required