Casual refers to playing Magic: The Gathering without an attempt to enter a DCI-sanctioned tournament. Casual players, making up a significant majority of the customer base for the game, are generally more concerned about having fun than winning. Casual games are often played with theme decks that possess a unifying idea, image, or motif, repeated or developed throughout. Kitchen table or “cards I own” is the most popular way to play the game.
Casual formats or variants are mostly invented by players. Some of them, like Commander, have been endorsed by Wizards of the Coast and received official rules and ban lists. Others like Conspiracy Draft were conceived by Wizards to mix up the gaming experience.
While some casual formats are sanctioned for Magic Online, people have started playing these formats with real cards (e.g., Pauper). Like the DCI-sanctioned formats, most casual variants are Constructed, Limited, and Multiplayer formats.
There are a few casual variants which are described in the comprehensive rules:
- 900. General
- 900.1. This section contains additional optional rules that can be used for certain casual game variants. It is by no means comprehensive.
- 900.2. The casual variants detailed here use supplemental zones, rules, cards, and other game implements not used in traditional Magic games.
- Mark Rosewater (May 4, 2021). "In terms of popularity or volume of play is the...". Blogatog. Tumblr.
- Wizards of the Coast (August 11, 2008). "Casual Formats". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- Adam Styborski (January 03, 2012). "The Compendium of Casual Magic, Part 1". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- Adam Styborski (February 12, 2013). "The Compendium of Casual Magic, Part 2". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater (November 16, 2020). "Casual Play". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.