So I ended up not playing FNM last night after I had an hour and a half conversation with Danny about team dynamics and stuff that had gone down the previous day (Thursday) while everyone was hanging out in Idaho. I'm not gonna air out our dirty laundry for everyone to read, but some of the things I heard were rather surprising; some great, and some disappointing. Danny asked me to write up a "meeting topics/minutes" thing, so I at least did up a rough draft version of it and let him alter it. I was in a weird juggling situation between playing FNM last night, doing my homework, and whether or not I was actually going to play Yugz today. Adrian and Ryan wanted to go and just take 1 car out, so I agreed to drive their car. I wasn't the most enthused since Lightning is still playing old/current format, but figured what the hell, if I'm gonna be there the whole time I might as well play. I also needed to promote the box tourney that's coming up in like 2 weeks. Here's hoping the wife doesn't get naggy and expect me to be home at her whim.
My wife wakes me up really early to kill this little tiny spider, at first I couldn't even see the damn thing. I'm like "what, that spec on the wall?" We're both afraid of spiders but this thing was seriously as small as the write-end of a pen. She hands me a tissue and I perform a Fatality on it lol.
Afterwards I print out a few more box tourney fliers and also write a "letter to the players" to print on the back of the flier. I feel awkward promoting a tourney held by a different store in a different store, if you know what I mean. I felt that I should help explain the reason for why I'm getting the tourney started in the first place and show people I'm not trying to get them to switch to playing at the Haven. A lot of it is stuff I've already mentioned on the blog, but the letter is as follows:
I have done a fair amount of planning and coordination with Bob (one of the owners) from Gamer’s Haven for this event. This is my first gift to the YuGiOh community, as we hardly ever have these kinds of “larger-scale” tournaments. I would say the prize support is good, but there is a strong possibility of there being more if a lot more people show up. In Magic, Bob has the tendency to throw a box worth of prize support for every 10 players. He is very fair in his prize support system. However whether he decides to put more in prize support is his call, not mine. He ordered 7 boxes of ORCS SE, so he will have plenty of product!
As exciting as a box tournament may be, my intention and goal does not stop there. My “big picture” goal is to provide our area with a consistent Regionals. We deserve to have Regionals on “this side of the mountains” and shouldn’t have to drive all the way to Seattle or Portland to play in one. The last Seattle regional had about 270 players. I love Lightning Comics and all, but it can’t hold even half that. I don’t know if you have been to the new Gamer’s Haven, but there is 4000 square feet in gaming area. I’d say it’s the first store I’ve seen in the Spokane area that could realistically hold a Regional. We have already spoken with some of the Seattle-based players, and they said they would come out to a Spokane Regional in a heartbeat. By having a Spokane-based Regional, it also provides an opportunity for guys further out in areas like Boise or even Montana to play in one. We have a lot of great players in our area, so I’d say we deserve a Regional. It’s our time to shine.
I know some of you may not be interested in playing in a Regional even if it was next door to your house, but please understand this is something the player-base as a whole has wanted for more than 6 years. Even if you aren’t interested in playing in the box tournament, it would be a great sign of support to simply come and hang out, trade, or whatnot. I’m not trying to “recruit” or get people to switch to playing at Gamer’s Haven or anything like that. I’m simply asking for the support of the community, for one afternoon, to help me eventually give something great to you all (Regionals) and help “Spokane/Idaho YuGiOh” overall. Bob needs to see that there is a decent amount of local support to start the process of doing a Regional. If the local players aren’t interested/supportive, then what reason does he have that outsiders will?
Our judge for the event will be Joe Lancaster from Yakima Washington, who has judged several Regionals in our area over the years and is also judging for the upcoming YCS Long Beach. He has the experience and knowledge to help make this event fair and fun!
Please help spread the word! Getting a Regionals over here depends on it.
Hopefully that sounds sincere, as I am genuinely a pretty sincere guy.
Hopefully that sounds sincere, as I am genuinely a pretty sincere guy.
My wife texts me and tells me that she's feeling dizzy at work all of a sudden and is like "you may need to take a taxi to come pick me up." I'm just like hell nah, she was perfectly fine this morning and I wasn't gonna take no damn taxi. I text Danny about this since it was gonna be hard for me if I was supposed to drive Ryan's car over. I'm willing to alter our plan so that I just drive my car, and if she ends up needing to get picked up I'd just leave the tourney, pick her up and take her home, then come back out to get everyone. Turns out they bailed out though cuz it was snowing beyond crazy today. I have to go to an ATM since I owe Danny and Kim money, also to cash a check, so I head out around 11:30. The plan was to meet at Danny's at 12:30 since that's when he got off work. When I get outside to my car, I end up knocking off one of my wipers since I'm trying to scrape the snow off. I've never actually put on a wiper blade before, so I'm standing there in the wind and snow, trying to figure out how the hell to put this back on. At one point I get frustrated, throw it against my front window, and say "fuck all this shit!" I regain my composure, mess around with it some more, and finally figure out how to get the damn thing back on lol.
Driving is beyond terrible, as everyone's a shitty driver in the snow. I can't find the Valley location of my bank (STCU), and basically end up wasting half an hour. I ask Danny if the Walgreens has an ATM, he doesn't respond, so I just go in. Turns out they had one so I was able to withdraw money. I get a text from Danny saying they do have one, right as I get back in the car lol. I stop by the Starbucks next door to get a Java Chip as I'm just really tired and frustrated with everything. I get to Danny's around 12:20, tell him I'd just chill in his parking lot, and he gets there around 12:45. We promptly leave to go pick up Zach. Go get him, and we're off to Lightning.
We get there right around 1:30, and thankfully Larson waited for us before starting the tourney. We all pay and register, I go greet some people, but my #1 priority going into the store was to talk to Larson about the box tourney. I ask him if he had heard about it, and he said no, so I took one of the fliers with the letter on the back of it to show him. He's cool with it all, and other people notice the flier and are like "hey what's that?" I have Larson's blessing to distribute information, so I do so, and it seems like people are pretty interested in it. The rest of the team helps spread the word and I'm pretty much out of fliers.
First round pairings get posted, and attendance is 15.
Round 1 vs Ty (Samurai)
Game 1 - All he really does is summon a Kizan with no Uniteds, Gateways or anything, and runs over my Arma Knight. I'm pretty much able to combo off from there and I control his plays.
Game 2 - Same thing as first game. He can't draw United, Gateway, or Dojo to do a damn thing. Tough beats.
I don't remember what I do before now and when round 2 pairings go up, but Larson gets my attention and asks me to come into the back/office room. I pretty much know what's about to go down, but at the same time I just thought maybe Larson had some questions. Turns out my first instinct was right, as the owner/manager is sitting in his chair and gives me the stink eye, holding one of my fliers. Pretty sure someone ratted me out, and pretty sure I know who it was, but I'm willing to let bygones be bygones. I'll always forgive, but I never forget. So the manager chews me out and tells me that I'm promoting another store and a few other things, it was pretty clear that he hadn't read the letter in its entirety as he has to go back to it after I bring up some points from it. I can feel my face be beat red, primarily because the store was hot as hell, but I'm also upset that he's going down this path with me about it when I felt that I was quite clear regarding my intentions via the letter. He tries to intimidate me by ending with "I. AM. PISSED." and I have to admit I was, but at the same time I am more than willing to defend my intentions and stand up for what I'm trying to accomplish. If he kicks me out of the store, then so be it, but there is no ill-will or malice in what I'm trying to do to bring to our area. After he gets done with his initial statement, it was my turn. I don't remember the order of what I said as I'm not a good "on the spot" talker, but here were the major points:
- A regionals is what we've all wanted, but never had, for the past 8 years. If we want to play in one, we gotta drive all the way to the west side. I'm trying to change that.
- I do not represent Gamer's Haven, as I am more than willing to help any other store in the area to set things up. He brings up the point that I'm bringing a flier with their logo on it, yes, but it's beyond just that. It is a means to an end, and quite simply, the Haven is the only place that has the space (or so I thought).
- He brings up the fact that he has the ability to rent out a room or building across the way to hold something like a regionals. That's cool, as I honestly didn't know that. I bring up the fact that they had 55 people at their Magic Sneak and the Yugioh players got kicked out. How was I to think that they'd manage to fit 150+, when this experience tells me otherwise?
- I mention that I promote all the other stores around here on the blog, and state that I get roughly 1000 views a week (depends on how much I post). It's not a whole lot, but it's still a pretty decent amount, realistically.
- I state that the Spokane-based players come out here week after week, driving through a damn blizzard today, and that I was even choosing to come out here today rather than go to the Haven's tourney tomorrow (which I do feel bad about).
- I basically say, "this is about more than just me, more than just the team, more than you, him (Larson), the store. It's about the betterment of Spokane Yugioh because it's honestly going down hill. Our problem is everyone is spread out, and I'm trying to unite everyone for the health of the game."
- I tell him that "I got this event into place in only about a week's worth of work; imagine what I can do in a month. Two months. And I'm willing to work with Lightning, Larson, whoever. I'm a free agent and I'm more than willing to put in the work to help anyone set up anything."
- I bring up the fact that the only reason why I put the box tourney on Sunday is because of respect for Larson and the store. "I could've easily scheduled it for Saturday, but I respect Lightning and you guys too much to do that. All I'm literally asking for is one Sunday afternoon, not for myself, because I'm not getting anything out of this. I just want to help Spokane Yugioh and give back to the community."
- I apologized and admit that I messed up by not coming to him directly, but at this point I can't go back and re-do anything. However I was adamant that I still stand for what I believe in and what I'm trying to do. No one's going to stop me to do my best and deliver, even if it means I'm banned from the store. I'm willing to be a martyr, as long as I can follow through with helping the community.
- Of which, I remind him that me and my team represent half the tournament attendance out there. Without us, they would've had what, 8?
We exchange a few other clarifications and whatnot, but in the end he realized my passion, work ethic, genuineness, and appreciated that. I just should've come to him, and I agree 100%. He shakes my hand as a sign of respect, and I'm grateful that he sees what I'm trying to do and won't hold the game's health back. To be honest I was afraid that he would simply say no to me promoting it; what would be my option then? We need the Idaho players just as much the Spokane ones, as we're all tied into one community.
Larson tells me to not worry about the round, I find my opponent and shuffle up quickly so we can play.
Round 2 vs SorryDunnoYourName (Miracle Heroes)
Game 1 - He goes absolutely nutty with various Miracle Fusion, Parallel World Fusion, Yourmom Fusion, any kind of fusion to continuously bring out Great Tornado and Shining. I try to come back with Inzektor plays but it's just too much for me.
Game 2 - I'm able to play around his Special Summon spams with more removal, Snowman Eater, and timely Warnings. I Giga-Mantis OTK him.
Game 3 - Similar to previous game but I think DAD plays a part too.
Round 3 vs Jeff (Dark World)
Game 1 - I don't get much of a hand and he has Card Destruction. I Maxx C, knowing he's gonna go crazy with Goldd and Sillvas, unfortunately I can't draw into Gorz and I have like a 10-card hand. He OTKs me with Gate-pumped 2 Grapha and a Goldd I believe.
Game 2 - He doesn't draw Card Destruction, so I win. Timely MSTs on his Gates and I get Giga-Mantis OTK (so glad I learned how to actually do this shit! lol).
Game 3 - He's in a losing position and makes an "all-in" gamble by flipping Morphing Jar, hoping to draw into some Goldds and Sillvas to go with his 2 Ceruli. He doesn't draw into anything helpful though and I'm able to take it with 1500 lp remaining.
Round 4 vs Nate (Inzektor)
The Inzektor mirror is actually quite fun and our games were very back-and-forthy. We talk about how we both make top so it doesn't matter too much, find out there's gonna be a top 8 playoff, confirm with Larson that 1st will play against 8th, so we figure at least the winner between us will have an easier match going into top 8.
Game 1 - Don't remember if it was this game or the next, but he goes turn 1 Centipede with Hornet equipped. I Book it and attack over with Tomato. I think I Fiendish Chain the next Centipede, and I do more Inzektor shenanigans than him.
Game 2 - At the end I make a crucial misplay because I didn't keep track of life correctly. I could've finished it with a Giga-Mantis equip boost, but I left him with 50 lp and he was able to take it.
Game 3 - I think I'm able to get off the Giga-Mantis OTK, now Nate knows why the deck runs Giga-Mantis lol. I honestly didn't know why either till I learned that Dragonfly gets to Special for each equip sent off it.
Top 8 vs Colin (Plants)
I wasn't too excited to play against Plants, as I'm just not interested in anything that has to do with the current format.
Game 1 - I set Reaper, Warning, Dustshoot, and turn 1 Dustshoot him and take away his Trooper (the other monster being Ryko), and everything he has does nothing to stop Inzektor pops. He sets Ryko, Call, and Starlight Road. I Inzektor pop his field, go in with Reaper, he tries to Call the Ryko to avoid the discard, so I Warning. In retrospect, I should've just let him do it and let replay occur to get the eventual discard anyway. Pretty much downhill for him from there and he's visibly not happy about playing against Inzektors. Salty.
Game 2 - He keeps bringing out Stardust, which annoys the hell out of me. I have to make Leviathans to ram into it, really wishing I had Acid Golems. In fact all day I was like "damn I want Acid Golem so bad." Woulda been so helpful. He wins this one due to Plant shenanigans and me having a dead DAD and Giga-Mantis in my hand almost the entire game. This game reminds me how happy I am to see Bulb banned lol.
Game 3 - Thunder King and Snowman Eater put work in, and I'm seriously +5 on him with help from Inzektors. He tries to mount a comeback but I'm too up on advantage.
Top 4 is me (Inzektor), Zach (DW), Link (Janky Dino Rabbit), and Jeff (DW). Link and Jeff are already playing.
Top 4 vs Zach (NDMDW - I think that's what he called it)
Funny story, on the car ride over Zach goes thru Danny's bag and pulls out the Darkworld deck that's built for Danny's wife. No extra deck, no side deck, but he's top 4 lol. Awesome.
Game 1 - I have pretty good control until he Deck Devs me, which absolutely cripples me. I think I have a dead DAD or Giga-Mantis in my hand, nothin I can do. Skill Drain also put in work.
Game 2 - He goes through 2 Gates rather quickly and I end up MST'ing the last one after he activates it. Don't remember the rest, Giga-Mantis combo?
Game 3 - The game state is weird, where he ends has a Trance Archfiend on field with a Torrential set. I don't remember what my field is, but he summons another Trance, Torrentials and ends with 1 in hand. I have the ability to summon Reaper and attack, but I sit there for like 5 minutes, thinking what the hell his in-hand card could be. I figure if it was a Darkworld, he would've just pitched it with Trance to attack over whatever I had on the field. In the end I just summon TKing and poke for like 3 turns as he draws into more Goldds and stuff he can't use. I drop a DAD to finish it off.
Link beats Jeff, so Link and I agree to split because we still had to have our team meeting. Jeff and Zach end up splitting too. I save my $16 credit and Link buys some PHSW packs because apparently the Secret hasn't been pulled yet. He pulls Galaxy Queen and more jank. We all go to a table for our meeting and wait for Zach who's buying sleeves for Donut or something.
The meeting went very well, and we all got to talk about other members of the team, our standpoints and personal motivations, what we do for the team, expectations for each other, and all that kinda stuff. Danny and I agreed that an outline helped a lot so we weren't just making shit up to talk about as we went along. Danny and I make a good pair as he likes to talk but isn't good with the paperwork end of things, while I'm the exact opposite way. However when I do talk, I think I always tend to bring up very valid points which make a hell of a lot of sense. I'm probably too logical for my own good sometimes lol.
All in all it was a good day, even if I had that scuffle with Lightning's owner. Glad he was able to see it from my perspective, and conversely I was able to see it from his.
1 Arma Knight
2 Maxx C
1 Utopia Ray
1 Black Rose
1 Mind Control
1 Mirror Force