New year, new… Magic? Magic: The Gathering (MTG) is changing its Booster structure, which means that here at Good Games, things are being shaken up too! With the introduction of Play Boosters (which replace the familiar Draft and Set Boosters), there’s been significant discussion in the community about what this means for collecting and playing. So, this article is to help shed light on what exactly Play Boosters bring to the table!

The Shift to Play Boosters – When Does it Start?

Play Boosters are set to debut with the Murders at Karlov Manor set, and will continue with all mainline sets from here on out. This includes future sets like Outlaws of Thunder Junction and Bloomburrow.

What’s in a Booster?

Play Booster Breakdown

Play Boosters are focused on combining the playability and draft-ability of Draft Boosters with the awesome pack-cracking experience of Set Boosters. They are designed to be color-balanced like Draft Boosters, making them ideal for Limited formats such as Draft and Sealed. They contain a mix of commons, uncommons, and a rare or mythic rare, but much like Set Boosters, they also have the possibility of receiving multiple rare or mythic rares.

Here’s a quick comparison:

  • Draft Boosters: Typically used for tournament play, they contain 15 playable cards, with a set structure of commons, uncommons, and one rare or mythic rare.
  • Set Boosters: Aimed at collectors and those who enjoy the thrill of opening packs, they offer a variety of card types and rarities, including multiple rares or mythic rares.
  • Play Boosters: Combines elements of both, offering a balanced mix suitable for gameplay and collection purposes.

This will have a two-fold impact on your MTG experience, changing how you’ll be collecting MTG cards, as well as how your actual gameplay experience will change.

Enhancing Your MTG Experience


In today’s landscape of Draft and Set Boosters, you’d purchase Draft Boosters if you wanted to play the Limited format, or Set Boosters if you’re looking to expand your collection. Set Boosters represent more value-for-money, but you can’t actually play MTG with them. Play Boosters solve this problem, toeing the line between collectability and playability – meaning that every Booster you buy can be used to play Sealed or Draft, and have a chance to contain more value-packed cards.

We did some first hand analysis for what you can expect in a Play Booster.

You should receive 13.4% more Mythics and Rares on average from Play Boosters compared to Draft Boosters, as well as 1.5% more Mythics and Rares on average from Play Boosters compared to Set Boosters.

Our assumptions and calculations are based off:

  • Current data and probabilities for rarities in Draft and Set Boosters.
  • The distribution for a print sheet with respect to Mythics: Rares: Uncommons: Commons is 1:7:24:88.
  • Current special guest rarity distribution from the Lost Caverns of Ixalan with respect to Mythics: Rares: Uncommons is 6:7:5.

We’ll keep you updated on our results when we crack Murders at Karlov Manor for our own collections!

What about buying Play Booster display boxes?

Play Booster Display Box

Play Booster display boxes will have 36 boosters in them, which is the same amount that Draft Booster have (36), and six more than Set Booster display boxes have (30). With the additional boosters, MRSP for a Play Booster display box is higher than a Set Booster display box. Plus, each Play Booster pack has two more playable cards than a Set Booster would. As Play Boosters display boxes have 36 Boosters, you’ll still be able to three eight-player Drafts with two boxes (like you were able to with Draft Booster display boxes)


Play Boosters, compared to Draft Boosters, will provide a richer and more varied limited (Draft and Sealed) experience, with a greater variation of potential rares and mythics being opened. As the opportunity to receive more high-value cards in a single pack increases, each pack becomes more important. Also, The List is an important thing to consider when opening Play Boosters. 

Some Play Boosters will have a card from The List (12.5% of the time according to Wizards of the Coast). Each set will have fifty curated The List cards, which will be playable in the Limited format. For example, Murders at Karlov Manor, the first set to use Play Boosters, will have Crashing Footfalls as a special card players have a chance to get.

Play Booster Breakdown

Some interesting things to note about playing with, well, Play Boosters, is that Draft decks going forward will have a (very slightly) shrunken sideboard, with the total amount of cards you’re taking now being 42 instead of 45. Additionally, in Sealed, the chances for you to get more than the usual six rare/mythic rares is increased. This will mean you’re likely to open more high-impact cards – but so will your opponents. Make sure to value that removal!

How Are We Pricing Play Boosters?

Play Boosters are a hybrid between Draft Boosters, and their cooler older sibling, the Set Booster. We’ve priced Play Boosters similarly to Set Boosters. This adjustment reflects the enhanced value within these boosters compared to Draft Boosters – you’ll be able to get more rares and mythic rares, as well as special cards from The List!

Good Games will continue to host a variety of events and offer a range of products to suit all types of players. From new players to seasoned pros, and limited grinders to avid collectors, the Play Booster offers something for everyone. We can’t wait to see how Play Boosters… play!