From the Editor: The State of PlayingPioneer

Things have moved pretty quickly and a lot has changed in the couple of months since we launched Rose-emoji discusses the past, present and future of the site.

Thank you

To those who have been visiting this site since the day we launched on February 1 of this year: first of all, thank you. We are a very small team (especially on the web development side) and I’m sure you’ve felt the bumps along the way as we were coming into our own. Still, you stuck around. You shared the page far and wide; you commented on our articles and gave us feedback on Reddit; some even subscribed to the Patreon before we were ever offering anything in return. We’d like to thank you – truly – for all of that and make sure you know that we will not stop looking for new ways to thank our “Founder’s Tier” going forward.


To those who are visiting in light of the recent Pioneer Pro Tour news: welcome! We’re so glad to have you here and we’re as excited as you are about the return to competitive play. In light of this news, we intend to double down on our original commitment to providing the most up-to-date meta examination, decklists, content and coverage of the format everyone on the team truly loves and has been invested in since its launch: Pioneer.


Our team is dedicated to and passionate about this website, but most of us have full-time jobs outside of content creation and PlayingPioneer. At this point, we are all doing this work on a volunteer basis. As has already been seen, we expect a significant number of Magic: The Gathering Players to visit this website in the months leading up to the Pro Tour, seeking the quality content and competitive analysis that we have become a trusted source for. Ramping up our content creation, web hosting capabilities, data-gathering tools and pool of expertise will cost money. 

We have always been committed to serving this website ad-free, with support from our Patreon subscribers. Even before the Pro Play announcement, we have had to outspend this income by a large margin just to bring our web hosting and security capabilities up to meet the demand of increased traffic. 

While the current team is operating on a volunteer basis right now, we can’t reasonably expect to bring new content creators into the mix on the same basis – nor should we expect to. It is my strong opinion that each of the amazing content creators I’ve had the opportunity to build this site with over the last month should be being paid for their work on this site, as should any new content creator that contributes to the site.

An Ask

In an effort to maintain an ad-free website going forward, support us in ramping our content creation and capabilities, and compensate our current team of content creators, I ask that you check out our Patreon, which offers a few perks currently (such as early access to articles and access to sideboard guides) and will offer more in the near future. 

I also ask that if you are going to purchase cards from TCGPlayer or rent them from Cardhoarder that you please use our affiliate links below or on the homepage (bookmark them if you can). For any tabletop gaming accessories, we have an InkedGaming affiliate link as well.

If it becomes necessary to serve ads on the page to get to where we need to be to meet our (and your) expectations for the caliber and frequency of content on this site, we are committed to having the least intrusive ads you have ever seen, and we will never run ads on the home page. 

The Future

As I know many are, I’m personally very optimistic about the future of Pioneer. I’m looking forward to continuing working with the wonderful people that make up the PlayingPioneer community as it exists today and am excited for how it might look tomorrow.

The comment section below this post is a fairly unique one, as I’d like to invite you to use it to talk about anything related to this website at all. I’ll keep a close eye on it and respond as soon as I can.

  • rose-emoji

    Network Administrator/Publisher

    rose-emoji started playing Magic: The Gathering during Battle for Zendikar, then took a break from the game until Throne of Eldraine. Pioneer got him back into Magic full-force, and the launch of Arena on mobile hooked him in forever. Now that his favorite format is working its way onto Arena, he can be found grinding the format to death. Only ever Grixis colors, but sometimes he can have a little Jund as a treat.

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