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WBC 2018 Mage Wars Arena Tournament Report


Tournament Overview
Player attendance dropped this year from a previous 3-year average of 16 players per round to only 8 per round. We continued with the Swiss style tournament over 5 rounds and two days. Players had the flexibility to drop in and out of the event as their schedule allowed while earning tournament points for each round they won. Players were ranked at the end of 5 rounds based on the total points scored. The tie breaker was the total score of opponents played to represent the toughest schedule. Demo rounds also saw a large drop in the number of players attending with 14 overall compared to an average of 40-50 in previous years.

Results from WBC 2018
Top 6 players for 2018 including their mage selection, win-loss record and number of mages killed.
1. Chris Byrd - Beastmaster (4-1) 4 Kills
2. James Newsome - Wizard (4-1) 3 Kills
3. Vincent Sinigaglio - Wizard (3-2) 3 Kills
4. Brad McCandless - Wizard (3-2) 2 Kills
5. Jack Howell - Warlock (2-3) 2 Kills
6. Alex McNally - Beastmaster (2-3) 2 Kills

Arcane Wonders donated gift cards for use at their online store. We also provided door prizes for each round.

Highlights from 2018 Mage Wars Arena
After 4 years of competition we finally have a repeat champion and his reign is consecutive! Congratulations to Chris Byrd on winning his second Arena championship with his trusted Beastmaster mage. While his 7 consecutive wins over a two year period ended with a loss to Jim Newsome’s Wizard in Round 4 this year, he continued to kill opponents in all the matches he won and this tenacity to finish off his opponent within the 90-minute round limit took him to the top once again in 2018. 2nd place finisher Jim Newsome continues his climb to the top after a 4th place finish in 2015 and two years in the 3rd place spot. His solid second place finish this year with his Wizard including a win by remaining health over Chris’ Beastmaster now positions Jim as a top contender for next year’s championship.

The remaining top 6 players this year includes one new comer to the Hall of Champions, young Alex McNally whose Beastmaster finished in 6th place this year. The other 3 players Vince Sinigaglio, Brad McCandless, and Jack Howell return to the top tier finishing at third, fourth, and fifth places respectively.

While the size of the field dropped this year we did manage to have two father and son combinations enter the tournament. Frank McNally joined his son Alex in first round competition while Aaron Byrd joined his father Chris on Saturday competing in rounds 3 to 5 with his customized Warlock spellbook.

Apprentice rounds on Thursday continue to be dominated by the Warlock with a 4-2 win-loss ratio and 4 total kills. Oddly only 2 of the 7 mages selected for Saturday competition were Warlocks. The Beastmaster was second in wins on Thursday with 2 apprentice mode victories. Across all mages during the two rounds of play on Thursday there were 7 mage kills out of a total 8 wins. On Saturday the number of mage kills rose to 10 across 13 total wins. The Wizard topped the field on Saturday racking up 5 kills followed by 3 for the Beastmaster and 2 for the Warlock. This was partly due to the increased number of Wizards selected by players to use as their custom mage for day two. Mage selection for Saturday mages was 3 Beastmasters, 4 Wizards, 2 Warlocks, and no Priestess’. Only two of the top 6 players were able to improve their win-loss ratio on Saturday relative to Thursday play.

Overall the ability to kill the opponent mage in a match continues to be the strongest indicator to winning the tournament. Chris managed to win all his victories with mage kill while both the 2nd and 3rd place finishers ended the tournament with only 3 overall mage kills. The remaining field of players scored fewer kills.

Changes Planned for 2019
A few major changes to the tournament are planned for next year. One is to drop the Apprentice Mode play from tournament rounds. Second is the inclusion of all Mage Wars Arena expansion spells and mages which should add more variety of match ups and strategies to tournament play. The full range of mages that players can select from may also attract more competitive players to WBC. The demos will also change and feature an overview of the rules plus a preview of two expansion mages to be sure players have an opportunity to learn about the different opponents that they might face in the arena.

Thanks to …
Thanks to Arcane Wonders for their amazing support with sponsorship and additional prizes for players.

Alexander West:
Oh, wow!  I had been considering coming to WBC, but had no idea Mage Wars was on the table!

Which two days is Mage Wars likely to be scheduled on?

We have been scheduling rounds 1 and 2 for Thursday and rounds 3 to 5 on the last Saturday. There is a tournament design discussion on BGG at this link -

I attend all 9 days so I am available for open gaming all week. We typically have some multiplayer Domination style games during open gaming.


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