MTG Arena’s December patch brings changes to tokens and a swarm of events

Scute Swarm decks receive a minor nerf.

Image via WOTC

Today’s Magic Arena update marks the beginning of the month’s winter events, a new Arena Open, and a crucial change to token permanents.

The most notable gameplay change in the patch is the cap on how many tokens can be on the battlefield. Now, players can only have up to 250 tokens on their side of the battlefield at a time. This change is clearly targeted at the Scute Swarm combo, which led players to challenge themselves to create as many tokens as possible trying to crash the game. Any tokens that would be created past 250 won’t be created and won’t trigger any effects.

Here are the other gameplay improvements included in the update, according to the patch notes from Wizards of the Coast.

  • Intention lines should no longer subtly flicker when mousing over cards.
  • Players can now correctly attack multiple Planeswalkers tokens.
  • Modal double-faced card labels should now display correctly when being cast/played through some other card effect.
  • Cleaned up code around playing lands! The old version was causing some lands to pause or move very slowly when transitioning from the hand to the battlefield.
  • Rapidly clicking on an opponent’s avatar no longer causes the the mute bottom to appear seemingly at random.

Arena is also including a full slate of events scheduled through January. The next Arena Open is scheduled for Dec. 12 and 13. Day one includes queues for both best-of-one Historic and Traditional Historic. Day two will be exclusively Traditional Historic for players who qualify. Entry is 20,000 Gold or 4,000 Gems. All entrants will receive an exclusive Kaldheim card sleeve for in-game use.

Image via WOTC

Historic Brawl will return from Jan. 2 to 8. This event will be free to enter and will include its own queue. Here’s a list of the full Limited event schedule through early February.

Quick Draft

  • Dec. 11 to 25: Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths
  • Dec. 25 to Jan. 15: Zendikar Rising
  • Jan. 15 to 29: Core Set 2021
  • Jan. 29 to Feb. 12: Zendikar Rising

Premier Draft

  • Dec. 13 to Jan. 1: Arena Cube Draft
  • Jan. 1 to 8: Guilds of Ravnica
  • Jan. 8 to 15: Ravnica Allegiance
  • Jan. 15 to 28: Tinkerer’s Cube Draft
  • Until Jan. 28: Zendikar Rising

Traditional Draft

  • Dec. 13 to 20: Traditional Arena Cube Draft
  • Jan. 15 to 22: Traditional Tinkerer’s Cube Draft
  • Jan. 28: Zendikar Rising

Aside from Limited events, there are five special events scheduled through January. Here are all of the special events featured in the December patch notes.

  • Dec. 19 to 25: Standard Shakeup
  • Dec. 26 to Jan. 1: Historic Shakeup
  • Jan. 9 to 11: Omniscience Draft
  • Jan. 23 to 25: Historic Challenge

Arena is continuing its FNM At Home series of Friday night special queues. Below are all the FNM At Home events scheduled for the next two months.

  • Dec. 11: Historic All Access
  • Dec. 18: Pauper
  • Dec. 25: Treasure Singleton
  • Jan. 1: Historic Brawl Showcase
  • Jan. 8: Standard
  • Jan. 15: Artisan

The patch concludes with several updates to the in-game store. There’s a new holiday card sleeve for the Food Golem. New card styles were added for Journey to Oblivion, Thieving Skydiver, and every Kaladesh Remastered card.