Friday, 18 March 2016

V-Talks: From Player to Orginiser

Yes I mean this.
So over the past few weeks I've played Wiess Schwarz and Magic The Gathering, but not much Vanguard, not on the physical face to face plain at least. I am currently having a little online tournament with a group of fellow Dimension Police players and that is ongoing, but my focus in reality has moved away from "playing" vanguard currently and more towards "organising" it.

I won't be doing a sneak peak this week either as I will not be at HQ to participate. Besides which there's DP in set 7 so I'm dropping all plans for this set, even though I was going to upgrade my Extreme Battler deck  with this set but that got placed on the back burner the moment the G-BT-07 clans were confirmed, which I know you can't really do with this game, not with the market this game has...

Before I continue any further I have to preface the following by saying that I am speaking from my opinion and perspective only, nothing I say up ahead has any reflection on the opinions of the business or employer and I am lending my time and support to.

On to what this post is actually about. I've got that position I was working on, I'm am now volunteer organiser and head judge for Vanguard at a shop not all that far from me, and I've organised the shops first Vanguard event to take place on April 16th before the release of the Gold Paladin Start Deck and Overlord Blaze Legend Deck.
Being the first tournament for the LGS I'll start thing simple with Clan Fight  rules, however I'll be lending out Trial Deck grade decks from my own collection for interested parties to try the game before investing for themselves. This makes up the shop's current lack of stock and the difficulty to acquire the older Trial Decks as the national supplier, Esdevium Games doesn't have these in stock so we'll just have to build up stock by pre-ordering the stuff as it comes. Interestingly the Legend Deck is up for pre-order from the distributor, but the Gold Paladin Start Deck is not in their catalogue yet and that comes out a week earlier. That's frankly concerning.

It has been decided that the entry fee entry fee will be £4.50 with one pack per person and guaranteed prizes for all top 3 players (Unless there was only 3 to start with in which case only first and second will get bonuses, if this happens though then we failed. -_-) This is the model as agreed with between the business owner and myself.
£4.50 is an odd number and risky considering the closest competing store to us does the same events on Sunday's, every week for either £3 or for free depending on the week, but the free locals are offer only old promo packs for playing, however that's still a free card in the colle, while the £3 gives any promo pack/card and 1 booster pack, although I can't remember system for the additional prizing I think only first place gets any extra packs, am I not to be quoted on that though as I may be wrong. What I DO know is that a £3 entry doesn't allow for a strong prize pool, I ran the numbers and calculated cost/pack ratio when deciding on the pricing for the event I would be hosting.

Bottom line though is our event will be more expensive than our competitors events, but that higher entry allows for more generosity in prize support so it's a trade-off but one I believe worth having in place, and it's taking place on a different day so that allows for more chance for players to get to participate in Level 1 Organised Play.

I've played this game for long enough to be happy to take a step back from the front lines and help grow the next generation of players, and that's what this is about for me. It's not about any benefits that I may or may not get overtime. The benefit I care for most is immaterial and that's something called experience of operating in this role in this environment, beyond that this is me giving back to the community in the only way I know I can, by providing Organised Play, and hopefully more if this works out.

This does not affect my plans to go to Cardiff, if anything it may end up being a help as so long as my focus is closer to home I'm not spending as much money going to Birmingham and back. Although I have been called into to go to Birmingham some point in Easter for a group meeting. Attendance by all group members going Cardiff is mandatory to that meeting. It's our big plan meeting for travel, accommodation, and others.

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Brave's Battles: Playing without a clue.

Today's trip to my now main LGS, based much closer to home, I ended up playing Magic: The Gathering in a game of Commander, and a custom draft. I have extremely limited experience playing MTG but the draft was probably the most fun I've had with Magic thus far. Playing with people I don't even know but I was there and there were there and there was seven of them so I was invited to join them in drafting, why not? There's nothing wrong with trying new things.

I pulled my cards, made my choices, then dropped 20 of them and put in 20 Lands in the place of those cards with 4 copies of each land type, this was intentional due to the cards I had kept in the deck itself. I have no idea what I was doing in terms of synergy, I was looking at stand alone cards and deciding if they were good, and then filtered out the ones I deemed less useful after drafting was complete.

What I ended up with was...

21 Land
4x Mountain
4x Plains
4x Island
4x Forest
4x Swamp
1x Reflecting Pool

1 Conspiracy
1x Sentinel Dispatch

9 Creature
2x Pride Guardian
2x Liliana Specter
1x Wakestone Gargoyle
2x Vent Sentinel
1x Sky Spirit
1x Peace Strider

7 Sorcery
2x Extract from Darkness
2x Wrap in Flames
2x Assassinate
1x Stronghold Discipline

4 Instant
2x Respite
1x Valor Made Real
1x Plummet

1 Enancment
1x Fires of Yavimaya

I have no idea if this deck was even an ok build to settle on. I know one key rule for consistent decks is to keep to 2 mana types and I ignored that, but the deck that came from it was unpredictable for the opponents and very enjoyable to me, to use.

My set-up and opening play gave the impression of a focus that wasn't there but it gave my field the sense of being a threat, when my my <
Vent Sentinelwas KO'd whilst I held two other defenders on board I changed play style, going from defensive to agressive playing <Fires of Yavimaya> giving haste to a just summoned <Liliana Specter>. It was a forced action but was probably the smartest play I made in the game, other than another boyah moment that came from playing <Extract from Darkness> after all players boards were collectively nuked and this allowed me to also take a strong creature from an opponents graveyard. The pod was in uproar and hysterics as I got from it a 7/7 trample and had fully recovered my health back to where I'd started, this was partially helped by the same player of the pod who forced me to use <Extract from Darkness>.

Would I be able to go into this in any better detail? Nope. I only clearly remember those two highlights and it was a four way match so I wouldn't be able to keep track of who did what with what and when, especially when I don't know all that much about this game. Ultimately I still lost but I caused damage before going down and I'm pleased with that. :)

This makes two weekly posts without a mention of Vanguard in the main body of the post.
I'm not doing the Sneak Peak for this set, as much I'd like to, I can't afford to.
I will however drop a complaint here, Nubatama's upgrade costs went up and I'm not happy since I was having to slowly work on that due to lack of money, and now it's gotten even more unobtainable. :/

Sunday, 6 March 2016

V-Talks: Fun, Games and Hauls with the Chimera

I said in my last post I was going to a Wiess Tournament. I did. I also got obliterated.
It was fun day and while I scored no points I enjoyed myself, the environment, and the community. Weiss Schwarz isn't a game I have ever invested in. I have a deck available to use but it's my brother's not my own, even that is just 2 Trial Decks of Love Live!! put together and no additional cards. This event was simply to do something different and being mixed language I saw various decks in play, many of which have no English counterpart. It was interesting to see the different card pools side by side. I'm glad I got  to see one deck in action specifically and that is Symphogear. A show I am a huge fan of and is also the one deck I would build for Wiess if I were to invest in the game.

That nicely leads me into what I did buy while at the tournament. I really should have thought to take photos while there now I think about it... amateur mistake, not something I should have made. :/

The host of the event was The Chimera based in Brierley Hill, and they specialise in Japanese card game stocks appealing to a specific niece market and not in the best of locations for it either but it's a set-up that works and has done for several years the shop itself used to be a pub. Point is they have a lot of stock for Japanese language games but an even larger variety of collectables in their range of sleeves decks cases and storage boxes.

I was able to spare £50 to take with me to the tournament and I knew what I wanted to buy from them before even getting there but it was still enjoyable to browse the stock that they'd bought with them to the Thistle Hotel venue. Now if that sounds familiar to anyone that may be because the venue has previously held Bushiroad Spring Fest 2014, which was a poor show due to the venue not being suitable for the crowd that gathered for the event.

As for what £50 will get you in these parts. I spent £46 leaving the left over that was needed for consumables.
With that £46 I got:
!!!WAIFU SLEEVES!!! WHOOOOO!!!! (£10) (Allow me my moment's stupidity without judgement please.)
And clear over sleeves to protect the Waifu... (£6)
I also got a Storage box because Symphogear... and waifu. (£10)
And decks for two games, the first is Luck And Logic for which I picked up Brave Logic (£10)
The second deck and last item on this list is from a game that while I know and can play I'm unsure if I will actually have anyone to play it with but it's there should I ever have the chance. WXD-10 Wixoss Deck Red Hope. (£10)

Oh and there was also a promo storage box for entering. (Which came from a separately allocated £5)

There was a promo card to but I didn't keep that, I gave it to a friend who was more likely to use it.

Hmmm... I think that makes this the first blog post in which I haven't mentioned the game I usually play. And it probably won't be the last.

If I lived closer to the Chimera so frequenting it was viable I'd probably be playing a large variaty of game I don't play currently but at the same time if I were in that position I'd be missing out on something else that I'm hopefully going to be doing over the next several months, something which requires me to drop some projects I had intended to do but this new objective takes higher priority.

Final word on event: 10/10 would do again no questions asked, and hopefully next time this chance roles around I'll have a decent pot to spend and be able to do both days instead of just the one. :3

P.S. Tsubasa is Waifu