When expensive cards are features of a sealed deck environment, players inevitably drop to keep their pool to avoid the dreaded deck swap. Today, a new procedure was announced to allow players to keep the cards they open AND play in the tournament.
Each player is distributed six booster packs. The boosters will be marked in a way that distinguishes they came from the tournament organizer for that event.
Players on one side of each table open their boosters (Player A). The player directly across (Player B) observes this. Both players will observe and verify the contents of those boosters. After this process, the opened cards are stacked face down in a single pile and placed near Player B.
Player B will now open their boosters. Player A observes. Both players will observe and verify the contents. After this process, the opened cards are stacked face down in a single pile and placed near Player A.
Player A then registers the contents of Player B's pool, and vice versa.
After registration, each player returns the registered card pool to the player who originally opened the pool.
Players build and record decks as normal.
Two players seated near me at a PPTQ last weekend dropped to keep their pools, and they were definitely bummed about missing the tournament. I think this change is great, and really any change that encourages players to play more Magic is definitely a good one.