Hello once again everyone. I hope everyone had a nice and joyful weekend if you attended YCS Miami and even if you did not attend, I still hope you had a great weekend! Speaking of YCS Miami, a special congrats to ARG members Patrick Hoban and Billy Brake for the performances during the event. Make sure to check out their deck profiles on the Alter Reality Games Youtube channel when you get a chance!
During this event, I ran the newly anticipated Fire Fist deck. I was very pleased with the main deck I assembled, but I honestly was not happy with the side deck I constructed. I won most of my game ones but when it came down to games 2 or 3, I simply could not get the job done. My three losses in the tournament: Wind Up (piloted by Tyree Tinsley), Dark World and Chain Burn. I know everyone in the Yugi World, has had a time when you lose during a tournament, your emotions get the best of you and you go on tilt. Your emotions overcome your mind and during a game/match can cause you to make an abnormal play you are simply not use to. During my matchup vs Dark World, I simply did not get a chance to play the game of Yugioh. I got the wrath of Dark World that no duelist should ever encounter. This put me on the biggest tilt ever. Mainly because I was in lack of a better term, "salty" on how I just got destroyed. Two rounds later, I sit down after just winning against Macro Rabbit in a long intensive grind game, lose this dice roll and see my opponent setting 4 backrows off the start. In my head, I automatically assumed I was going against Burn. Something sparked inside of me and just told me this matchup was not going to be easy. Fire Fist have a bad matchup against burn simply because off all the pluses the deck assembles only fuels for cards like Secret Barrel or even a well timed Just Desserts. I slow rolled the power plays during game one and tried to save my Solemn Judgment until I absolutly needed too, but it was irrelevant at the time because I was going to burn to death. During game two, I put myself in a very good position during mid-game and my opponent is under reckless greed for another turn and has had this one backrow sitting there all game. He sets a brand new backrow so I Mystical Space Typhoon during the end phase then draw for my turn. I see Secret Barrel get flipped and knock me right out of contention during the tournament.
Two things instantly starting running through my head once I signed the slip. The first thing was how upset I initially was I played against Dark World and Chain Burn and lost to both of them without really standing any chance. I was more upset at the deck types that I lost to rather then being upset that I lost in general. Losing is apart of the game and there will always be a winner and a loser. Unless you Draw during your match, but thats not the point here! The second thing I had going through my mind was how would I cheer myself up knowing I just flew from Connecticut to Florida, had a nice few days of relaxing and playtesting nights before the tournament started, and then get all my hopes of reaching another top taken away by Dark World and Chain Burn. I walked over to the concession stand, bought myself a ice cold Sprite, sat down and soaked everything in that occured during my matches to find out if I could have done anything differently (I always do this no matter what the calibur of the tournament is, but usually I have a Coke or Water). Looking back at all the rounds I played, I found myself pleased with my performance simply because my losses were out of my control. Wind Ups having their usual combos that most decks cannot handle, Dark Worlds doing what Dark Worlds do, and then Chain Burn.. well.. burning you. Minor things like taking the time to sit down and relax for a few, think back to your rounds is something to help you regain your mental focus. What about after your tournament experience is over though? What do YOU do after your luck runs out and you drop out of the tournament? Comment below to some things you might do and maybe ill try them out for myself!
What I did after my tournament experience was over is extremly simple but yet hard to do. I took my mind away from the tournament. Sounds simple like I mentioned, but yet so difficult you may think its impossible. Taking your mind away is one of the best things you can do after a rough ending to your tournament. Whether it be going for a walk like I mentioned, gathering friends and not talking about Yugioh and talk about sports or something you all have in common, or just playing a sport also helps alot. The latter being something I strongly suggest if you are able too. When playing a sport, your mind is strongly focused on the task at hand. From shooting a basketball or hitting a baseball with a baseball bat, it all serves the same purpose. It takes your mind to another place and keeps it there. This event, I had the pleasure of having a basketball court in the hotel I was staying at. Something I had never really had before. So with my event not going so well in my favor, why not shoot some hoops to take my mind away? I did just that very thing. Joe Giorlando, Johnny Nagel, Austin Kulman, Jonathan Weigle, Steffon Bizzel and Myself all had our fair share of shooting hoops with one another during the weekend. It was the perfect stress reliever for me after my tournament experience. Joe Giorlando and Myself even played a 2 on 2 game vs Austin and Weigle and I will honestly say, we got out played. They opened Magician/Shark and Giorlando and myself drew Maxx C for our 6th card. (How about a thumbs up and high five for the new banlist and not really having to deal with Magician/Shark combos anymore. I mean, without Zenmighty anyways).
Another way to have a little fun after a tournament, Cube! I know this is Yugioh related, but this is far different from the average tournament. This was by far, the part which helped relieve my stress the most. Cube drafting for me is a way to become creative with deck building since you only get 1 of each card. But in the cube we were using (Joe Giorlando's) had the addition of synchros. Which was something I never experienced in a cube before so this was going to be very fun! My first round "cubing" I drafted a Fishborg Blaster/Card of Safe Return combo deck which also included Dark Magician of Chaos, Butterfly Dagger Elma and Gearfried the Iron Knight. This deck was not very good. But in theory, was simply amazing. The combo ability I could pull off with the right hand was magnificent, but luck was yet again on my side. But no being salty this time around, we were all goofing and joking around. Later that night, a second cube draft went on and I drafted an entire Dark World deck. Every Dark World monster in the cube but I could not get Card Destruction of Graceful Charity but managed to get power cards like Painful Choice and Sinister Serpent. I lost in the finals of our little tournament to my good friend Paul Clarke with his "This deck is terrible.dek" which was a zombie varient with Last Will. The final and last draft of the night, I drafted an entire Plant Synchro deck. Lonefire Blossom, Spore, Bulb, Dandy, Debris, One for One, etc etc the list keeps on going! I also drafted every synchro I possibly could make except for T.G Hyper Librarian. I ended up winning this little cube tournament with this deck playing against Austin Kulman in the finals with his Future Fusion Chaos Dragon/Lightsworn deck he drafted. My final play was having Dark Strike Fighter, Goyo Guardian, Red Dragon Archfiend, a Jinzo (which Goyo just took) and a Black Luster Soldier Envoy of the Beginning on my field. Swinging through all his monsters and then launching them all with Dark Strike for game. A perfect way to end the night and a perfect way to end my little YCS vacation.
Next time you feel a little down after a tournament performance, just take a little time to yourself and take your mind away from the tournament. Whether it be going out for a walk, shooting some hoops, or even doing some cube drafting. As long as you can say to yourself that your feeling better mentally, that is all that really matters the end. Losing is never fun in any kind of tournament but there will always be a winner and a loser. Somtimes you have to be a loser to realize what little things can make you feel like a winner. Until next time, Play Hard or Go Home!