In the last year and a half, Pauper Commander has experienced incredible growth as a format. We’ve seen the start of larger in-person tournaments, proliferation of regular online tournaments, and increasing recognition from multi-format content creators in the greater Magic community, such as Tolarian Community College. PDH Rules Committee members have also had a number of opportunities to talk directly with governing members of larger formats, like the Pauper Format Panel, Commander Rules Committee, and Commander Advisory Group; through podcasts, discord messages, and in person at conventions.

Ultimately, as we move further into 2024, the needs of the format and community are changing. When the PDH RC was originally taking shape between 2019 and 2021, we each had a niche we filled and a different viewpoint that we brought to the table. Public visibility wasn’t as important as ensuring we were hearing viewpoints from all parts of the community. These days, we find that the RC needs to adapt to our rapidly growing format. There’s a need for PDH RC members to be more visible, have broader knowledge of all sides of the format, and be more consistently engaged. There’s also been some discussion about the size of the RC, and whether or not having a 10-person RC is still serving us well when it comes to the speed of reaching our decisions and publishing them. Having a smaller RC also would make it a bit easier for us to not only hold each other accountable, but also to form more close-knit bonds with one another. Ultimately, that would mean more candid conversations between ourselves, and quicker, more effective RC decision making for the format.

After some difficult conversations about how the new Rules Committee should look and function, one former RC member was removed for inactivity. Another was removed for personality conflicts in order to help future RC discussions go more smoothly. After that, three additional RC members began transitioning into other roles so they could focus on community management and play in their local area, instead of getting bogged down by being a more public figure or trudging through organizational discussions. As a result, the current Rules Committee is down to the following 5 members:

  • Paul (Scarecrow1779): Paul has been playing PDH since 2018, writing articles for the format on and off since 2019, and has a decade of experience with Kitchen Table Magic and another decade with casual and high-power Commander. His main focus in-game is brewing a wide variety of high power PDH decks and playing them with a political and competitive mindset, occasionally venturing into the realm of cPDH. Outside of the game, he’s a passionate grass-roots advocate for the format and will talk and type endlessly to anyone interested in the format, especially on the /r/PauperEDH subreddit, which he helps moderate. Paul goes by Scarecrow1779 on Reddit, Twitter, and Discord.
  • Dave (Alkadron): Dave (known unprofessionally as Alkadron on Discord and Reddit) has been playing magic since 1995, and PDH since 2013.  He dabbles in competitive play as a commentator for (and on rare occasions, player in) PDH tournaments, but mostly he enjoys assembling inefficient engines and executing goofy play patterns in casual PDH games with Pals. He used to play EDH many years ago, and tried Standard once in 1998 when it was called Type II, but doesn’t engage with other formats of Magic these days outside of drafts and sealed decks. He’s also a co-host on The PDH Pod.
  • Clay (_clay_): Clay started playing Magic in 1997 and later began playing Standard FNMs and Modern events from Rise of the Eldrazi (2010) to the first Theros Block (2014). For years thereafter, he was heavily engaged in the Competitive Commander world, but changed his focus to developing the Competitive Pauper Commander meta, starting in 2020. Now, Clay manages r/CompetitivePauperEDH subreddit and the website, networks with prominent Magic community members, promotes PDH on Twitter/X (@TheTryhards6), assists with several PDH YouTube ventures, and plays in cPDH tournaments every chance he gets. 
  • Derek (derek): A player of the format going back circa 2014, Derek has contributed significantly to its growth over time, including acting as a founding member and article writer for PDH Home Base in 2017. He was involved with the establishment and adoption of the current official rule set, and provides a measured approach to managing Pauper Commander as it continues to thrive, with an emphasis on stability, accessibility, and mindful stewardship. Outside of his position on the RC, he is also known and recognized in the community for his talents as a brewer and deck builder, with no kernel of an idea too small to spin into a full-fledged 99, casual or competitive. His community engagement is mostly limited to Twitter/X (@derekdearreader), alongside a website of articles, focusing on singleton multiplayer Magic, that is updated somewhat infrequently.
  • Connor (Ruffigan): Connor (known online as Ruffigan) has been playing Magic and PDH since 2013. He started playing 60-card multiplayer in the Ravnica block, quickly moved to EDH, and then came up with a version of Pauper EDH for his playgroup. Since that time he has created the Pauper EDH Primer on TappedOut, helped get PDH recognized as a format on TappedOut, contributed heavily to the MtG Wiki page on Pauper Commander, was a founding member of the PDH Home Base site, became a moderator on /r/PauperEDH and /r/CompetitivePauperEDH, and helps with general outreach and promotion for Pauper Commander.

In addition, we are also working to create an advisory group, so that even as the format grows, the RC is still acting on information from all the diverse corners of the Pauper Commander community around the globe. Though a variety of possible models were discussed, we ended up coming back to the same structure and purpose as the Commander Advisory Group. We’ve got the group together and will have another article soon to introduce them!