Trading Card Game Tournament Tips (How to have the best time even with an ehh record)

I’ve attended in my short life:

  • 2 Yugioh Regionals
  • 1 MTG PPTQ
  • 1 ARG Tournament
  • 8 MTG Pre-releases
  • 3 Yugioh Tournaments held at Anime Conventions
  • 1 Magic Tournament held at an Anime Convention
  • and more Magic Drafts than I can count…

From these events I have concocted a short list of tips to make the most of your trading card tournament experience. These tips should apply to both Yugioh and Magic venues (and maybe other games too hopefully).

Money

Bring enough money for your tournament entry fee if you haven’t already pre-registered for the event online (if amenable)

In addition to your entry fee, bring extra money for the following:

  • Lunch (FOOD), depending on how long your event is nothing will make you more happy than taking a break to eat after multiple hours of playing. The physical strain you can impose on yourself during these events is absurd.
  • Buying Cards, a tournament is a great time to buy and trade for the cards you’re looking for. Most events will have onsite vendors actively selling cards also. Be weary though as said vendors will  likely mark up the prices of the cards they’re selling.
  • Buying into side events, if you get knocked out of the main event/tournament you can always try to regain your glory in a smaller side event. The larger the tournament venue, the more side events it can hold. These are usually single-elimination mini-tournaments with large prizes (see win-a-box).

However, do not bring too much money to any event as while amused by your hobby you can easily get distracted and spend way too much (this happens to me every time!).

Travel

Leave early and reach the event with time to fill out your deck list, possibly grab food and gauge the area. If you arrive late not only do you risk a potential game loss, but you’ll also be far more flustered going into your first match.

Packing

Bring one bag as some events will only let you enter with a single bag.

My recommendation is pack minimally.

The only items you should definitely bring are your:

  • Deck
  • Deck box
  • Playmat
  • Dice
  • Trade Binder
  • Wallet
  • Phone (And Phone Charger!)
  • Paper/Pencil or Pen (Only if you lack a calculator app somehow)

The less you bring the less you have to carry around all day. You can usually purchase food for a decent price by leaving the actual event venue (which will be selling a $5 hot dog for example) to find cheaper food nearby. Also the less you bring the less you risk potentially losing.

Safety

Always keep a direct eye on your property. If you’re sitting down for a match only take out whatever is needed and keep the rest of your belongings sealed in your bag. Also keep your bag either next to your seat on underneath your chair minimizing the blind-spots where someone can reach for the zipper without you noticing. While playing keep your eyes on your property on the table (i.e. your deck). If you’re trading though, while looking through someone else’s binder glance back at them every now and again to make sure they’re not moving the cards from your binder out of your view (from the binder to their pocket for example).

It goes without saying not to trust strangers with your property or to leave your stuff unattended. If you actually do either of these things I’ve very sorry, but you’re asking to be robbed.

Emotional Support

GO WITH FRIENDS

This is a very biased and demanding tip, but I would honestly never go to a large event alone. In everything you do you should try to find support and trading card games are no exception to this. Whether it’s to celebrate your victory or to give you a shoulder to cry on you’ll be a lot better with a friend by your side.

And that wraps up my tips for “now”. I hope this helps you plan for your upcoming tcg events. I’ll be hopefully practicing said tips at the Yugioh Regional in Philadelphia this weekend (with the likely exception of spending too much). Thanks for reading.

Cranial Plating is fair and balanced, it definitely doesn’t kill people (Magic the Gathering Draft)

I haven’t posted very much lately since I’ve been busy with moving. Today though, I just got back from my new/old locals (Redcap’s Corner in Philadelphia) after attending their Modern Masters 2 draft. I had a blast playing the new set. I didn’t open, see or hear of the elusive $140 Tarmogoyf, but I did get to appreciate a myriad of absurd cards.

The Draft Process:

I knew the basics of each draft archetype (I skimmed this article here) , but I didn’t remember the key cards in each while picking my cards.

My Picks in Order:

Pack 1 Pick 1: Indomitable Archangel

Pack 2 Pick 1: Mana Leak

Pack 3 Pick 1: Court Homunculus

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Rationales: The archangel made me immediately want to draft Metalcraft. However as I went through I kept taking artifacts and blue support cards slowly (one such card was Thoughtcast) eventually building UW Artifacts. My pack 2 and 3 rares were both Horde of Notions. I happily took commons over each 5-color elemental.

My Deck:

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I was running UW Artifact/Metacraft/Affinity. My MVP was Cranial Plating which I was passed 2nd pick pack 2. This card combined with a decent enough chunk of artifacts proved simple, effective and powerful. Anyway, in addition the pictured cards I ran 9 Plains and 7 Islands. Now on to the match-ups!

Match-Ups:

Round 1: Vs Temur Ramp

My round 1 opponent was the guy sitting next to me (who passed me the plating). My initial thought was that he would be playing Elementals, but he was actually just ramping into Pelakka Wurm.

Said Wurm appeared and beat me game 1. I was way too distraught after this loss, but though I sided in the 4/4 5-mana cost flying bomb Hikari, Twilight Guardian. I also switched out a 2nd Wayfarer’s Bauble for another plains (going up to 9).

Game 2 I opened Court Homunculus into Cranial Plating on curb and swung for too much damage on him. He kept a sketchy hand assuming he’d survive long enough to cast the wurm.

Game 3 was literally the same as Game 2 and Plating won me the match.

Won 2-1

Round 2: Vs Blue/Green Graft

My opponent’s only creatures were Green Graft creatures. I didn’t open plating this game, but instead I opened both Sunspear Shikari and Darksteel Axe. This combination led to a 4/2 Lifelink, First Strike creature on turn 3. It also didn’t help that he dropped a Mutagenic Growth from his hand by accident and forgot that the Kitesail I cast on the Sunspear turn 4 gave Flying.

I cast the Indomitable Archangel against him Game 2 and that combined with Cranial Plating won me the game pretty fast.

Won 2-0

Round 3: Vs Jund Technically

So myself and the other 2-0 players agreed to split the $90 of store credit instead of playing round 3 (which would result in a $60 for 1st place and $30 for 2nd place). I played a fun round with the Jund player and he blew me out using burn spells into Necrogenesis.

So that’s how my Modern Master’s draft went. It was a lot of fun and brought a lot of tension. I would recommend the draft to anyone looking for a high risk environment. It’s really nerve racking to play in a format with Eldrazi Titans and cards that cost upwards of $30 a piece.

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While I was hanging out in the store I traded for all of the above cards (except for the Wilt Leaf-Liege which I happened to open in a casually bought MM2 pack). I apologize for the blurry picture, my camera was about to die and I was rushing.

So I will be testing Mono-Red in Standard (what else is new), but I’ll be doing so with higher cost red spells like the Thunderbreak Regent and Flamewake Phoenix. That’s something to figure out over time. However, with a Yugioh regional next week, it’s time to shift gears. Thanks for reading!

Life Recap into a Night of Yugioh into a Day of Wixoss

So despite not posting at all things still happened in the time since I opened that Weiss box.

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I found this Wixoss Lot on Ebay and bought it for $40. As ridiculous as that sounds this was a really good deal since the cards individually are really expensive to import.

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I took apart my Gruul deck. I know this may not seem like much, but my love of trading card games I’ve come to realize is based totally on building as many decks as feasibly possible. Each deck has a story. Each deck or build (bar a direct net-deck) is unique to its creator and in my opinion should be special to its owner. This Gruul deck for example was originally a Gruul EDH with Ruric Thar, the Unbowed as commander. However, Gruul (or aggro) was never my play style in EDH. Instead, I got far more into my Superfriends deck so I downgraded it into a Legacy deck. However, I came to the realization that I had no positive memories of this deck (there is a very distinct chance that I never used it). I might convert it into a RG Tiny Leaders deck (with Radha, Heir to Keld as commander) in the future,  but for now it’s just a source of mountains (I really just wanted to use the foil Savageborn Hydra I was given as a gift by a close friend a year ago in hindsight).

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I’m taking this Theros block Red deck and converting it to a Pauper Red deck. Pauper is a MTGO format where you can construct a deck with only common cards. I think this is amazing as its literally the first thing other than draft/cube that makes any use of cards I literally watch people throw into the trash (commons) regularly. Also while I cut him long ago due to inconsistency Akroan Crusader is still my favorite card in Theros block (right next to Titan’s Strength).

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From that Weiss box I built a Mami Tomoe deck and… begrudgingly a Blue-Red Sayaka Miki deck (I pulled one Kyoko that was too cool to not splash red for). I have enough spare cards for a green Madoka-Homura deck, but I don’t have 50 spare MTG-sized sleeves at the moment (or more likely I haven’t found them in the abyss that is my room yet).

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Moving onto the yugioh tournament from yesterday. Due to train errors I already regret submitting to the internet I only arrived in time for the last 4 rounds of the tourney so to speak. With no chance to place I played fairly casually. This tournament was VERY original in its structure, but to not reveal it’s full mystic the only thing I will mention is that the rounds were 1 game matches (which sounds weird, but let’s move on).

Game 1: Vs Infernoids

I Djinn-locked him and he scooped (surrendered)

Game 2: Vs Ritual Beasts

I somehow forgot how these darn things work outside of their trap card Ritual Beast Steeds (despite having a friend who plays the deck). In my infinite wisdom I tried to force out all of his Steeds until he ran out. Sadly I didn’t think that Ritual Beasts could OTK so I passed without recurring my Valk. My opponent revealed to me that they could OTK and that was that.

Game 3: Vs Infernoids again

We had a rematch…

I Djinn-locked him again…

He scooped again…

Game 4: Vs Yang Zings

He brought out his Baxia, Brightness of the Yang Zing and shuffled away my Nekroz guys, but I won in time somehow after that.

And that was the Yugioh event. I wish I could say more, but there’s not much else to discuss. Oh yeah the cards shown were ones I traded for while at the event.

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This sadly blurry picture shows the Wixoss decks built by myself and my friend Nyan (the one who brought me into Wixoss and also is ironically the friend mentioned quite possibly every time earlier in this post) over the last few months. I visited him today and we exchanged cards from the boxes we opened (more so I traded him the Green Anne cards I had for his Blue Mirurun cards.

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So from Box 4 I pulled Mirurun lv 1-3 and in his box 5 Nyan pulled 3 Mirurun lv 5s. Between the Anne cards I acquired from that Wixoss lot and the box we worked out a massive card exchange that bore each of us a new deck. And thus I’m proud to add Mirurun to the long list of decks I’ve built. I still need to purchase a lv 0 and a lv 4, but those can be acquired at tcgrepublic. I’ve bought from that site before and I’d recommend it for getting Japanese single cards imported to the US.

Nyan and I played out a series of almost matches (due to time constraints). However at the time of writing this I’m fairly exhausted so I’ll just explain each match-up in terms that a Magic player would understand (Wixoss -> Magic is much easier than Wixoss -> Yugioh sadly).

Anne vs Mirurun (Green/White Combo vs Mono Blue Control)

Hanayo vs Red Tama (Mono Red Aggro vs Boros Aggro)

Eldora vs Midoriko (Blue/Black Control vs Green Ramp)

Iona vs Tama (White/Black Combo vs White/Black Aggro)

Ok my eyes hurt. Probably a good time to call it quits. Thanks for reading my bizarre ramble and somehow tolerating my erratic reading schedule. Seriously, you’re awesome. Anyways, later.

Top 5 Random Yugioh Crossover ideas the World isn’t ready For (Also not being dead)

It’s somewhat ironic that the week I’ve been too busy to post is also my school’s finals week. Anyway, here are some name puns I thought might make someone somewhere chuckle guiltily.

#5 The Little Mermail

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#4 Snow Dragon and the 7 Dwarfs

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#3 The Super Noble Knight Brothers

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#2 Five Nights at Frightfur’s

FrightfurBear-NECH-EN-R-1E

#1 The Ghostrick-Busters

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If you have any funny name puns please post them in the comments hehe. I’m going to a Yugioh tournament tonight so hopefully I’ll have that to post about tomorrow. Until then have a good game everyone.

How do you get one Foil in a whole Box?! Abysmal Weiss Schwarz Box Opening!

In lieu of Crossed Souls, I purchased a Weiss Schwarz box this month to supplement the Madoka Trial deck I bought way back in February.

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Madoka is one of my favorite shows. Thus, I couldn’t resist getting the cards when I learned they actually existed. I was buying Yugioh sets so frequently though I completely forgot to look into this game. However, as a break from the typical card games (Yugioh and Magic) this turned out to be really awesome.

The Packs and Extras:

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A lot of things are messed up in this world, but this…

THIS!!!

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This Chibi Sayaka card is adorable and reflects all that is good in the realm of cardboard entertainment. It doesn’t seem viable as a card at all, but I feel I have to play it.

Rares and Uncommons:

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Cards in this game are seemingly split between original art and screenshots from the anime. However, if Yugioh had a lot of “x card” only works with “x card” then this game takes it to another level. Almost every card has an effect triggered only by pairing it up with another specifically named card (that being said the effects are pretty cool).

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For example, because examples are awesome. This Mami card for the cost of 2 stock (See Mana, see Ener) can turn your opponent’s character into stock, but only while paired up with the relevant climax card.

That 1 Foil though

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I pulled a foil and it was this card (shown next to the most relevant of figurines). Coming from Yugioh where there are any number of foils in 1 box it was quite shocking to pull one, BUT this is only foil Madoka card I’ve ever pulled or seen so I’m very happy to have gotten it.

Did this even matter? Why did I read this?!

The only valuable thing I can offer you after this experience is a seal of approval for Weiss Schwarz in general. If you are an anime nerd (don’t take offense) who wants to play a card game and Weiss happens to have your favorite show, then no game will give you as much satisfaction to collect/open. Play is another thing as Weiss has, (in my humble opinion) the most convoluted set of rules ever designed. That being said I always leave a Weiss Game win or lose more confused by what just happened than angry/frustrated.

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For another example (excuse to post more pictures), a Madoka fan will react very differently to these above cards than a normal card gamer (incidentally Kyubey is so great that he’s also a chibi now too).

Moving Forward?!

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Anyway, I’m taking apart this trial deck to build well…

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I just want to take this pile of pictures of Mami Tomoe and make it into a deck. I’m probably doing it wrong, but I don’t really mind that much.

“Says will post on Fridays”

“Posts at complete random about random topics”

Yeah, that’s me.

Thanks for reading (Special thanks to my buddy Nyan for opening the box with me, the new owner of a Mayu Genesis Miko I might add)