How To Win This Weekend’s Alchemy Arena Open

With an Alchemy-format Arena Open this weekend, what is the deck to play? Former MTG World Champion PVDDR shares his strategies for success.

Discover the Formula, illustrated by Joshua Cairos

On Saturday, January 15th, we'll have the first Alchemy rendition of the Arena Open. For those who don't know, the Arena Opens are tournaments that happen over two days on Magic Arena and that can result in winning prizes of up to $2,500 (in USD). In this COVID-19, Organized Play-less world, this is probably as good as it'll get for most people in terms of competitive tournaments that do not require an invitation.

Personally I love these tournaments and I've played every single one of them that I could, so if you haven't tried them yet, I recommend that you do so. In today's article, I'll break down everything you need to know to maximize your chances of winning that $2,500, including the decks I would play.


You can find all the information on the tournament above, but the main points are:

  • The tournament is open to everybody; no qualification is required.
  • They are "asynchronous" in the sense that there aren't any rounds or pairings. You can play your matches whenever you want inside the given time window. This is very helpful for people who cannot dedicate a whole uninterrupted day to a tournament.
  • You can play Day 1 as many times as you want until you qualify. The limiting factors are, of course, the entry fee (it's not a cheap tournament) and your time and desire to keep playing. Given unlimited resources, you're basically guaranteed to make Day 2.
  • There are two different ways to play Day 1; you can play Best-of-One or Best-of-Three. Day 2 is always Best-of-Three.

Best-of-One VS Best-of-Three

The first question people ask is whether they should play Best-of-One (Bo1) or Best-of-Three (Bo3).

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