Sealed (not to be confused with Booster Draft) is a type of event where players are issued unopened product, including a Starter Deck and 1 or more Booster Packs. After opening all sealed product, players then build a deck from the result and compete with other players building under the same restrictions.
Unlike various Draft formats, product is not passed between players, so there is no way to interfere with an opponent's deck before it is complete.
On GEMP, Sealed Leagues will often run for weeks at a time, with more booster packs being offered at regular intervals to keep the deckbuilding experience fresh. The Player's Council also runs monthly Sealed Gala events, where each month a new oddball amount or type of product is opened, facilitating a more casual atmosphere.
At most in-person sealed events, there is little additional strategy beyond the normal deckbuilding rules for the target format. However, in most digital sealed events players will be required to choose which set their boosters are sourced from and/or which starter deck to use as a foundation.
In almost all cases, it is best to open all fixed product first (e.g. the booster packs that are set which you do not choose), then any player choice boosters, and finally select a starter that best fits the resulting cards. Some people prefer to leave a spare booster choice or two for the end as well, to more precisely choose a relevant set to fit the starter.
There are multiple variables to consider when choosing which set to grab boosters from: smaller sets are more reliable than larger sets; later sets (especially 8 and 10 for Movie-era and 15/17/18 for Shadows-era) tend to have a higher power level than earlier sets; various sets tend to focus on or entirely omit certain Cultures. It is almost always folly to choose a set with the intent of drawing a specific rare: your chances will never be better than 1 in 40 per booster, and can be as high as 1 in 121. Still, it might be useful to aim for a particular set due to favorable culture or strategy coverage, with the plan to switch gears if a certain power rare drops in your lap. Even then, however, many of the best cards are the best because they are flexible, so it might be better to not veer course at all and simply splash the power rare in question.
|Historical Decipher Formats||Fellowship Block||Towers Block||King Block||War of the Ring Block||Hunters Block|
|War of the Ring Standard|
|Player's Council Formats (including PC Errata)||1||2||3||V1||4||5||6||7||8||9||10||11||12||13||14||15||16||17||18||19|
|Sealed • Booster Draft • Cube Draft • Culture Shock • Highlander • Poor Man's • PC Errata|