MTG Wiki
For the 2019 event, see Mythic Invitational.

The Magic Invitational Tournament used to be an annual Magic: The Gathering tournament where the sixteen best players of the past year are invited to duel in various formats.[1]

Magic Invitational.jpg


The played formats usually were specialty formats which were never played in other officially sanctioned tournaments, e.g. Auction of the People, and sometimes were experimental or specifically created for the tournament. Mark Rosewater also sometimes designed special stickered cards for these formats.[2] Played formats were switched every few rounds. The tournament itself was Round Robin, meaning that every player plays each other at least once.

After the Round Robin portion was completed, the best two players played a finale which usually consisted of an array of formats previously played in the tournament. The winner of the tournament was allowed to design a card which would see print on a later date after Research & Development had its input on it to make it feasible for a Magic set. The artwork of the designed card featured the likeness of the tournament's winner.

The tournament started in 1997 [3] and was held until 2007, but hasn't been held since.[4][5][6] As part of the Organized Play Department's refocusing on grass roots programs, the Invitational was cut from the schedule.[7][8]

Invitationals returned in another form with the 2019 Mythic Invitational, but these didn't feature especially designed cards for the winner. However, 2019 also saw the introduction of Player Spotlight in Throne of Eldraine.[9] These are similar to the Invitational Cards but depict the current World Champion instead.

Magic Invitational winners and their cards[]

Season Winner Card
1996-97 Olle Råde Sylvan Safekeeper (Judgment)[10]
1997-98[11] Darwin Kastle Avalanche Riders (Urza's Legacy)
1998-99 Mike Long Rootwater Thief (Nemesis)
1999-2000[12] Chris Pikula Meddling Mage (Planeshift)
2000-01 Jon Finkel Shadowmage Infiltrator (Odyssey)
2001-02[13] Kai Budde Voidmage Prodigy (Onslaught)
2002-03[14] Jens Thoren Solemn Simulacrum (Mirrodin)[15]
2003-04[16] Bob Maher Dark Confidant (Ravnica: City of Guilds)
2005 Terry Soh[17] Rakdos Augermage (Dissension)
2006 Antoine Ruel Ranger of Eos (Shards of Alara)[18]
2007 Tiago Chan Snapcaster Mage (Innistrad)[19]
  • Note: Even though Olle Rade won the first Invitational, his card is the fifth card by an Invitational winner to be published. This is due to the circumstances that Rade quit Magic rather soon after the tournament without asking for his prize. He later made a comeback and asked Wizards of the Coast if he could still get his prize for this Tournament. Wizards agreed under the condition that Rade, who had since shaven his head, would be depicted in the Art with the long blond hair he had when he won the tournament.

Public voted Invitational cards[]

In addition, during the 2005 Tournament Wizards of the Coast held a public vote among the users of their website for the most popular card among the submissions which would also be printed after going through the usual R&D process but without featuring the winner in the art. The winning card was submitted by Tsuyoshi Fujita and was eventually turned into Gemstone Caverns.


  1. Mark Rosewater (January 31, 2005). "When You Wish Upon an All-Star". Wizards of the Coast.
  2. Wizards of the Coast (February, 2002). "Ask Wizards - February, 2002". Wizards of the Coast.
  3. Mark Rosewater (May 10, 2004). "All-Star Studded". Wizards of the Coast.
  4. Mark Rosewater (April 18, 2005). "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little All-Star". Wizards of the Coast.
  5. Mark Rosewater (January 30, 2006). "Thank Your Lucky All-Stars". Wizards of the Coast.
  6. Mark Rosewater (October 29, 2007). "All-Star Trek". Wizards of the Coast.
  7. Mark Rosewater (August 11, 2008). "In the Mailbag". Wizards of the Coast.
  8. Mark Rosewater (February 11, 2018). "Do you know why the invitational stopped?". Blogatog. Tumblr.
  9. Mark Rosewater (July 21, 2019). "Project Booster Fun". Wizards of the Coast.
  10. Magic Arcana (June 10, 2002). "Five Years in the Making". Wizards of the Coast.
  11. 1998 Duelist Invitational
  12. Magic: The Gathering Invitational 2000
  13. Mark Rosewater (May 7, 2004). "Format of Duelist Invitational". Wizards of the Coast.
  14. Magic Arcana (October 21, 2002). "Thoren wins Invitational". Wizards of the Coast.
  15. Randy Buehler (September 26, 2003). "Post-Development Digest". Wizards of the Coast.
  16. Zvi Mowshowitz (May 31, 2004). "The Future is Bright". Wizards of the Coast.
  17. Magic Arcana (May 23, 2005). "Terry Soh Wins Magic Invitational 2005!". Wizards of the Coast.
  18. Doug Beyer (November 12, 2008). "Topic Explosion". Wizards of the Coast.
  19. Monty Ashley (October 24, 2011). "The Saga of Snapcaster Mage". Wizards of the Coast.