All posts in Patrick Hoban

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Hey everybody! Last week I talked about the contradictions that Djinn created in terms of deckbuilding and technical play for Nekroz. This week I’m back with the other half of the problem; the contradictions created from the various other floodgates present in the current format.   These are cards like Mistake, Anti-Spell Fragrance, Vanity’s Emptiness, and Lose 1 Turn. All of these cards are exceptional against Nekroz, but they come with their own set of problems when using them and building to get around them.   If you’re not playing Nekroz, it may seem very obvious that you want to Read more


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Hello duelists and welcome back! The most successful strategies in this game have proven to be ones that establish a semi-soft lock, in which you play your cards and then make it so that your opponent cannot play their cards. While there is a rewarding feeling that comes with attrition wars and an exchange of cards with your opponent, it has been proven time and time again that the semi-soft lock is superior in terms of achieving results.   The first reminisces of this appeared in Tele-DAD with Royal Oppression and reemerged in Dragon Rulers with Vanity’s Emptiness. Since that time, Read more


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Hey everybody and welcome back for the conclusion of my “Origins” article mini-series, where I share with you how I got to where I am today and the lessons I’ve learned along the way. I originally talked about my early years in the game, which you can read by clicking here if you missed it. The second part of this mini-series was spent talking about the role that the online community played, which you can read about by clicking here. Today I’m going to talk about what caused my transition from online player to top-ranked duelist.   When we last Read more


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Hello everybody! After a little delay, I’m back this week with the second Origins article in my three-part mini-series, where I share with you my story and some of the lessons I’ve learned along the way. In the first part, I talked about how I got started and my early years in the game. If you missed the first part of this article series, you can check it out by clicking here. Today I’m going to pick up where I left off with the discovery of online Yu-Gi-Oh and how it played a key roll in developing me into the Read more


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A little over two years ago when Frazier Smith wrote his Origins article series, I was still a relatively unknown player in the community. At that point I had spent over a decade playing this game and only had a handful of premier event tops and no rings to show for it. The transition to becoming a seven-time champion with the most tops ever is a change no one could have seen coming, but you can be certain it didn’t happen overnight. I would like to share with you my personal story and some of the lessons I learned along Read more


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Hey everybody! I hope you guys are as excited for the Forbidden and Limited List as I am! This is perhaps the most important list of the year as it is the list that will be used to qualify duelists for the 2015 World Championship!   I hope we can all rejoice in the limitation of certain floodgates; specifically Vanity’s Emptiness, a card that has consistently been thought would surely be hit on the next list, only to consistently remain untouched. Combine this with the hit on Skill Drain and I predict the result is that Nekroz will become even Read more


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Hey everybody, I’m back with the final article on my mini-series that investigates whether or not “old school” Yu-Gi-Oh is more skillful than “new school” Yu-Gi-Oh. In the first article, we discovered that this was actually a question of whether or not archetypes produce skillful formats. In the second article, we defined what we meant when we talk about skill. We discovered that skill was not as straightforward as someone might originally think and that there were actually three different layers to it; technical play, deckbuilding, and the mental game. Each of these layers is characterized by two categories. The Read more


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How could he do this? That’s so dishonest! That’s cheating! Unethical and morally wrong! Scummy! Why would one of the best need to resort to this? Lacks integrity. Awful character. Unfair advantage.   Hey everybody. I intended this week’s article to be the conclusion to my article mini-series that investigated whether or not archetypes produce skillful competition, but in light of recent events I have decided to postpone that until next week in order to have a discussion on ethics. This past weekend at the ARGCS in Fort Lauderdale I played Nekroz with the intention of gaining an advantage in Read more


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Last week I posted a discussion on “old school” vs. “new school” Yu-Gi-Oh. It was the result of my friend and I trying to figure out which created more skillful formats. We concluded last week that asking whether “old school” or “new school” Yu-Gi-Oh was better was really a question of whether or not archetypes produced skillful formats. This week we’re going to continue that discussion. Before we can figure out whether or not archetypes produce skillful formats, we have to define what we actually mean when we say that a format is skillful. It seems like such a straightforward Read more


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I was recently debating the comparative skill of “old school” Yu-Gi-Oh and “new school” Yu-Gi-Oh with a friend of mine at locals. The topic came about from a broader discussion on the best formats in the history of the game. Because we had both experienced the two different kinds of Yu-Gi-Oh first hand, we had plenty of insight on the subject. The product of this debate was an excellent discussion that delved into multiple layers of the game’s culture. This discussion is going to be the basis for the first three articles in a new mini-series that will explore and Read more