Magic: The Gathering Arena has some great modes, but it can be a tricky playing in the constructed leagues or doing ranked play to begin without a lot of cards. One of the best, and probably the most fun, ways of building your collection up is by playing Drafts. The thing is, it can feel a bit overwhelming if you jump into one without knowing what they are. Well, that's pretty much what this is for. Welcome to a guide to Drafting in MtG Arena.
Before you do any kind of draft, it is well worth knowing which cards are worth taking no matter what. Even if you don't use the card, having access to one of the best mythic rares or rares in the set will help you when playing in constructed tournaments.
How To Draft
A Draft consists of players opening up a booster pack, picking a card, and then passing the pack along. You then repeat this process three times and build a deck. They are a little more tactical than Sealed events because of how you choose your cards. The best players keep track of which colours are being taken or passed and try to use that knowledge to their advantage.
For example, if you get passed a lot of red cards then red might be open. Moving into red means you might have access to better cards overall at the cost of a single good card. Little things like this are mostly down to practice and experience, but it is worth knowing when going into the format.
Which Cards To Choose
Generally speaking, you want to try and stick to two colours. It makes building your deck far easier because you don't have to stretch for a decent mana base. Unlike in constructed MtG, you're unlikely to have a wealth of dual coloured lands to help you, so two is generally best. It's also best to have between 13 and 18 lands depending on the style of deck you are running. Lower for aggro decks, higher for mid-range or control decks.
In terms of exactly which cards to pick, it does vary somewhat between different sets. However, a good rule of thumb is to keep your eye out for bombs and removal. Bombs are the cards that can run away with a game all on their own, they tend to be big creatures or rare and mythic cards. Removal comes in lots of different forms, white has exile effects, black has kill spells, red does damage, blue can temporarily remove cards or counter them, and green has fight spells. Each of these count as removal to a degree, but generally black, white, and red have the best removal spells. You'll want a lot of removal because you need to be able to answer opposing threats.
Outside of these few tips, the other thing to keep in mind is the mana curve. You need to be able to play your spells, otherwise, you've no hope of actually winning. For this reason, you want to have a mix of card costs in order to allow the best chance of casting them. It is a bit like a bell curve in some cases, with most spells being in the 2-4 mana range. Of course, there are a lot of well-documented cases of people winning tournaments with just a horde of 2 mana creatures too, so knowing the set helps a lot.
That's pretty much it for general drafting rules. If you want any other tips then check out our Hub.