The Llanowar Sentinel, Issue 8

All the News That Isn’t

2012 Grand Prix Schedule Expansion Announced

Renton, Wa. – Along with the recently unveiled Planeswalker Points system, Wizards has announced that 2012 will feature a greatly expanded Grand Prix schedule in the United States and abroad. “In order to provide the greatest possible access to premier events,” says Scott Larabee, Organized Play Manager for Magic: The Gathering, “Wizards is greatly increasing the number of Grand Prixes. Of course, that means we’re extending the events into new regions and cities.”

The first thirty Grand Prix event locations have been announced:

  • Lick Skillet, VA
  • Hog Wallow, AR
  • Humptulips, WA
  • Village of Superior, WI
  • Pie Town, NM
  • Sugar Tit, SC
  • Castle Danger, MN
  • Intercourse, PA
  • Bison Bonesteel, SD
  • Gobblers Crossing, AL
  • Bugtussle, KY
  • Coxsackie, NY
  • Peach Bottom, VA
  • Fluffy Landing, FL
  • Goochland, VA
  • Walla Walla, WA
  • Lizard Lick, NC
  • Threeway, VA
  • Frog Eye, AL
  • Pierre’s Hole, WY
  • Idiotville, OR
  • Kickapoo, LA
  • Short Pump, VA
  • Buttzville, NJ
  • Bumpass, VA
  • Muleshoe, TX
  • Knockemstiff, OH
  • Booger Hole, WV
  • Soddy-Daisy, TN
  • Pahrump, NV

Wizards is still scouting locations for Grand Prixes to be held in the last eleven months of 2012, and additional events will be announced as they are scheduled.

Wizards Announces Origami Cards for Innistrad Third Block

Renton, Wa. – After the overwhelmingly positive response to double-faced cards in Innistrad, Wizards has taken the concept even further for the third block of Innistrad. The cards—all with the card type of “creature”—enter the battlefield as normal Magic cards, but trigger upon certain events to transform into new creatures with different P/T and abilities. Sound like double-faced cards? Not quite.

These new cards are transformed by players using the ancient art of origami. “So many players loved Kamigawa block,” says Mark Rosewater, lead developer on the project. “We wanted to bring that Asian influence back.”

The cards transform into such origami creatures as cranes, frogs, turtles, fish, elephants, and snails. When attacking and defending with transformed origami creatures, players are encouraged to enact the battle by smashing the origami figures against one another while squawking, ribbiting, growling, trumpeting, or otherwise making the appropriate animal noises, i.e., whatever noises turtles, fish, and snails make.

Wizards Investigates Kris Kringle in Planeswalker Points Scandal

Contributed by Llanowar Sentinel staff writer Bryan Prillaman

Renton, Wa. – Today, Wizards completed their investigation into alleged tournament fraud committed by Kris Kringle, more commonly known as Santa Claus. The investigation was launched after Mr. Kringle rose rapidly from the rank of Level 22 Spellshaper to become the first player to break the 50,000-point mark in just under two weeks.

“Of course we were concerned,” says Scott Larabee, Organized Play Manager for Magic: The Gathering. “We have methods to detect these kinds of abnormalities, and we immediately launched an investigation.” In the course of their investigation, they found that a person or persons registered with the DCI as “Kris Kringle” was registering in every FNM around the world, and then not showing up for Round 1 of the event.

At first, Wizards was looking into DCI-number fraud, which happens when multiple people register for events using the same DCI number. Andy Heckt, Judge Manager, says, “We were initially concerned that someone was using currently unemployed mall Santas to rake in the participation points from FNMs. However, our investigation showed that we were, in fact, dealing with the Santa Claus.”

The Wizards investigation revealed that Mr. Kringle was employing the same powers that let him travel around the world in a single night, delivering toys to all nice children, to enroll in FNMs. “It’s point-farming. And it isn’t fair,” says Matt Williams, a Level 2 judge from Tampa, Florida. “Just because he has infinite money and can travel faster than the speed of light doesn’t mean he should be able to abuse the system. Wizards needs to step in and stop that kind of thing. You shouldn’t be able to buy levels.”

But Wizards doesn’t agree. “Mr. Kringle is doing nothing wrong in the context of the current policy,” says Larabee. “We allow players to drop from events at any time. We cannot force them to play. We would, however, like to encourage him to actually play a few rounds, as you also accumulate points for winning!”

The Llanowar Sentinel accepts news bulletins from freelance journalists. Send submissions to llanowar@gatheringmagic.com. Pieces will be edited for content and length.