Basic Conjuration | Illustration by Randy Vargas
Wizards has certainly not held back with sealed product in recent years. One development in their quest to double their revenue has been to introduce a series of new booster pack types for various purposes.
While players used to be forced to use draft boosters for just about everything, the introduction of set boosters, collector boosters, and Jumpstart boosters allowed players to buy and open specific packs for specific needs. Today I’ll be covering draft and Jumpstart boosters specifically, including their differences, purposes, which one is right for you, and the best of both worlds.
Let’s get started!
The Difference Between Draft and Jumpstart Boosters
Open the Omenpaths | Illustration by Eric Deschamps
Draft boosters are specifically designed to draft with a group of players, while Jumpstart boosters are meant to be combined to quickly put together 40-card decks you can play with. Both packs are meant to be played with almost immediately after opening, but the formats, style, and requirements of each pack’s format are vastly different.
Jumpstart boosters can be used by just about anyone learning the game while drafting requires you to know the game on top of learning a new style of gameplay.
Draft Booster Contents
Draft boosters are the original booster pack of Magic. They’re made for drafting in a pod of eight players. Instead of offering various special card types, these packs have a specific number of commons, uncommons, and one rare or mythic.
Draft boosters’ specific contents allow for them to be used in 8-player Draft and have everyone be finished with an exact number of cards and relatively even distribution of various card rarities.
Jumpstart Booster Contents
Jumpstart boosters are made to be shuffled together and played with right away as opposed to open for the sake of opening or to collect new cards. This means that each pack comes with 20 specific and guaranteed cards that can be mixed with any other Jumpstart booster to instantly have a ready-to-play 40-card deck.
These are perfect for players who don’t have a collection just yet or can’t afford to buy a brand-new Constructed deck. I’ve used these on numerous occasions to introduce friends and family to the game and they’re an excellent, low-cost way to get somebody playing Magic immediately.
Which is Better? Draft or Jumpstart Boosters?
Draft vs. Jumpstart boosters depends entirely on the type of player you are and what you actually need a pack to do for you.
If you’re looking to quickly put together a deck to start playing or to get adjusted to the game, then Jumpstart boosters are without a doubt the way to go. But if you’re a relatively experienced player who’s looking to draft, then draft boosters are your best bet.
While the draft packs used to be the only type of booster, they’ve since fallen from grace. You’d be better off opening a set or collector booster instead, or just buying specific singles.
Best Draft Boosters
When it comes to deciding on a draft booster to buy, what you should instead be asking is, “what set do I want to draft?”And while only you can answer that question, I can offer some possibilities depending on what kind of experience you’re looking for.
Modern Horizons 2
If you’re looking for a high-power Draft experience that has a bunch of viable archetypes and synergies, then look no further than Modern Horizons 2 draft boosters. This set does cost slightly more than conventional draft boosters, but it’s packed full of expensive (and powerful) rares and mythics to add to your collection.
- 36 Modern Horizons 2 (MH2) Magic: The Gathering Draft Boosters
- 1 New-to-Modern reprint in every pack
- 1–2 Rares and/or Mythic Rares in every pack
- Just add lands and draft with up to 12 players
- Introduces powerful cards and beloved reprints to the Modern format
Commander Legends and Battle for Baldur’s Gate
If Commander is your format of choice then look no further than either the Commander Legends draft boosters or the Battle for Baldur’s Gate draft boosters. These are chock-full of Commander staples like Mana Drain and Jeweled Lotus, but they still offer an excellent Draft experience.
- 3 Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate MTG Draft Boosters
- 20 Magic cards per CLB Draft Booster
- 1–4 cards of rarity Rare or higher in every pack
- At least 2 Legendary cards and 1 Traditional Foil card in every pack
- Grab 3 boosters, pick 2 cards at a time, and build a 60-card Commander deck
Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty
If you’re just looking for a strong Standard-legal set to draft, I’d recommend going with Neon Dynasty draft boosters. The set contains a multitude of Standard staples and has a rich Draft experience with all of the powerful sagas, enchantments, and artifacts.
- 3 Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty MTG Draft Boosters
- 15 Magic cards per booster
- Ukiyo-e Land in 33% of Draft Boosters
- Just draft, add lands, and play
- With cyberpunk cards full of color and chrome—the future is bright in Kamigawa
Best Jumpstart Boosters
While each Jumpstart booster should be chosen based on what cards and style of gameplay you enjoy best, there are some pretty sweet mythic cards in some packs.
Teferi’s Tutelage | Illusrtation by Ilse Gort
That wraps up just about everything you need to know on the differences between draft and Jumpstart boosters. I’m a big fan of the specificity going into sealed product because it helps me save money and crack more packs overall.
What do you think of all these new booster pack types? Are they too much and too confusing for new players, or are they a great way to more efficiently spend your money on sealed product? Let me know what you think down in the comments or over on the official Draftsim Twitter.
Until next time, stay safe and stay healthy!
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