By Niels Viaene

There are a lot of things about to happen in the wondrous world of Gentry and just to make sure nobody is missing any of it, lets put everything down in an easy to refer to article. In order to have things making sense, we will work backwards from what is furthers to happen to what is going to happen soon.

The Gentry Open

On September 2nd the next installment of the Gentry Open. This leaderboard closing event is the only Competitive event that is hosted by the league of new and beginning Magic players and will feature a crazy goodie bag, random give-aways and an impressive prize pool. Currently we have confirmed Ultimate Guard as a sponsor, so you may expect some of their goodies already. As usual, Outpost is helping with the location and some of the gear needed for the stream. We are currently talking to Channel Fireball and some other smaller partners to see if extra sponsoring is possible. Look for updates about this and an announcement about the goodie bag soon.

The leaderboards will give a single bye to people in their tops. How many people? 1 for every increment of 32 players total. That is 1 for a leaderboard between 1 and 32, 2 for 33 to 64, and so on. There is another way to secure a bye without needing to play in a leaderboard at all, but that is for later…

The Gentry Invitational

The Invitational is an Invitation only, 8 player, single elimination tournament that will have all 7 matches streamed and commentated separately. The players will be welcomed on August 19th at around 11:00 CET for a shared meal and a chat. At 13:00 the first round will start and will be streamed here. There is, besides the honor and glory, nothing to win at the Invitational, though there are plans to make something akin to a trophy for it.

But how do you get invited? There are three ways:
1. Win the previous Open, that is Peter Steenbeke.
2. take top of a leaderboard with 32 or more players, Sander De Quick and Sander De Rudder.
3. Win a vote for Open End Boss, Open Rookie, Pro Player or Most creative deckbuilder
4. Get the Overlord Wild card

To vote for any of the categories, or to suggest someone for the Wild Card, a Google form was made. Important here is that you can go back to it and edit your answers if you so desire. But why would you want to do that? Well, at this point a lot of people are throwing away their votes on people that are not eligible for certain slots.

The Open Rookie is currently lead by Anouk Burny. Unfortunately Anouk has played in the earlier editions of the Open, so she is not eligible for this slot. But do not fret, she will be at the Invitational regardless of the outcome of this vote as host and judge. Currently the list of Rookies is limited to somneone called David vs Ice, Joris Verhelst, Jelle Lauwers and Sean Snel. Do you know anyone that should get a shot for this category, suggest them on facebook or lead people to the form.

The Open End Boss has developed into quite an interesting category, with Lars Meeussen, Thijs Weytens, Ian Ide, Tom De Wael, Tom Vandevelde, Sander De Canck, Sander De Graeve, Mats Clays, Michael Milis and Niels Vandevelde appearing in the list as eligible candidates. If you voted for someone else then I am afraid your vote is going to waste. Have you reconsidered after reading this list, go change your answer. And in case you feel someone belongs in there yet is not featured yet, go to facebook and make a case for them.

The Pro Player category is defined as anyone that has made top 8 of a Pro Tour of Grand Prix, or has been National Champion. People that voted for me, while technically possible, will be disappointed. In case I get most votes I will still pass the slot on to the next highest votee for many reasons that I would rather not all disclose here. Being an organiser of all this is challenging enough as it is. But still thank you for all the support. People currently eligible and having votes are Branco Neirynck, Pascal Vieren, Mats Clays, Kristof Holsbeek, Michael Milis and Reid Duke. While the latter is definitely elligible, please realise it is highly unlikely people like that will show up. Not sure if someone is in this category? This list shows you if they top 8’ed a GP, the list of National Champions is here and the list of Pro Tour top 8 Competitors is here.

The creative deckbuilder category currently has Jelle Gyselinck in place 3, 2 and 1. Apparently it is hard to get people’s names correct. Of course this will be collated. People that thing someone else deserves this title can join the support for Ian Ide, Mats Clays, Aron Fonteyne, Boyan Bosschem, Frederik Mortier, Lars Meeussen, Pascal Vieren, Pepijn Degryse, Ammaury Hennaux or Tom De Wael.

And finally, the Open category. I should explain that this is not in fact a voting system. This is only a suggestion system. I will personally choose who gets this slot based on who I think would be an interesting addition to the Invitational.

The Invitational viewing party

During the Invitational there will be a viewing party in Outpost Gent. Everybody is welcome to come and watch the coverage together. There will also be 4 player Gentry Round Robin events and draft that fire on demand. This will also be the first event on which the playmats will be available for purchase. They are 25 euros each and will help support the league while giving you ultimate swag points.

The GP Brussels side events

On Saturday at 17:00 and on Sunday at 14:00 there will be a Gentry event at GP Brussels, more information here. In addition to the prizes that Channel Fireball is giving away I will be giving a bye to up to 4 players that go 3-0 at these events. In case there are more than 4, I will host a mini play-off to decide who gets the byes.

Multiple byes or passing byes

A player could in theory win multiple byes, but that is not possible to give out at the Open. For that reason, if you win a bye at the GP, it will cause your leaderboard bye to be passed to the next person. If you win on multiple leaderboards, your bye will count on the smallest leaderboard, passing to the next person on the largest.

As you can see, there is a lot happening right now, add to that GP Brussels, GP Prague and the Belgian National Championships and we have a stocked up calendar incoming. I hope you chose wisely.

Niels Viaene came into contact with Magic first through the Kazz & Zakk starter set in 1996, but it wouldn’t be until 2000, around the time Prophecy came out that he actually started playing magic thanks to his nephew. Niels’ Magic career has been a roller coaster up to now, including Grand Prix Paris 2009 top 8, Pro Tour San Diego 2010 top 8, becoming a L3 Magic Judge in 2015 and managing the community effort that is the League of New and Beginning Magic: the Gathering Players, the birthing ground for Gentry since 2012. All this comes from a deep love for the game that is far from diminishing.

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