National Championships (commonly called Nationals) is a series of yearly Magic: The Gathering tournaments held in various countries throughout the world. Prior to 2011, the top finishing players at a country's Nationals got to represent their country at that year's World Championships. It was once discontinued in 2012, due to Premier Event's structural change. Which Team World Championship were replaced by the World Magic Cup Qualifiers and World Magic Cup. However, National Championships will make a return in 2017, replacing World Magic Cup Qualifiers as the tournament deciding the representatives in following World Magic Cup.
In 2011, 69 countries held National Championships.
Qualifying for Nationals[edit | edit source]
Prior to 2011, there were four primary methods of qualifying for the National Championships:
- Winning a National Championships qualifier
- Having a sufficiently high DCI rating (in the case of the United States, for example, the top 100 rated players were invited to Nationals)
- Being a member of the Pro Players Club, Level 2 or higher (10 Pro Points granted Level 2 status)
- Having finished in the top four of the previous year's National Championship
Some National Championships were open events that anyone from that country could enter. These were typically countries with a smaller population of Magic players.
Players with dual citizenship and players living abroad were often in a position to choose which National Championship to participate in. However, players were only allowed to compete in one National Championship per season. If a player competes in a Nationals Qualifier tournament (such as Regional Championships, City Championships, open tournaments, or other tournaments of this nature offering invitations to a National Championship) in one country, he or she could not compete in Nationals Qualifier tournaments or National Championships in another country until the following season.
Qualification for Nationals varies depending on the country. In addition to finishing high enough in a Nationals Qualifier tournament, players can also qualify based on DCI Rating or Pro Players Club level.
Prizes[edit | edit source]
Prior to 2011 events, typically, the top four finishers at Nationals were invited to that year's World Championships, with the top three finishers making up their country's National Team, and the fourth being the reserve. In countries with open Nationals, however, only the winner qualified for the World Championships, and the country could not send a National Team.
In some countries, there were also cash prizes to top finishers; in others, product was awarded as prize. Starting in 2008, Pro Points were also awarded to the top 16 finishers, with 10 points to the winner. An exception to this was open Nationals; these events did not award Pro Points.
In 2017 running, the top two finisher at Nationals, and the National Leader of Pro Points in last season, making up their country's National Team in World Magic Cup.