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  1. Traitor said: Well that sounds fun. Then I could stab my opponents for the win. It's sad to point out, but for any game to be competitive, there must be rules that generate a common and equal playing ground for competitors. Grimwalker said: finitesquarewell said: DCs proposed set of rules for regulating competitive melee behavior: <rules> </rules> Crystal clear, easy to enforce, unlikely to create much controversy once people accept them for what they are, and extremely likely to work out in practice. So in other words, victory to the biggest cities with the largest player bases who can turn out the largest and most interlocking contingents to dominate. If you're from a small town in central Illinois with only 3-4 people who can make the trip, screw you, go play X-Wing. Yeah, you'd like that, wouldn't you? Unacceptable. +1 to both of these; there needs to be as even a playing field as possible for those playing melee. Collusion makes things tough on those without a large or well-organized meta. The fact that it's difficult to enforce the rule against collusion doesn't make it not worth enforcing. Dan, the ruling may have been implemented poorly, but from what I've seen/heard, it was the right ruling, except perhaps on Rick. As far as the act of collusion, I'm with Greg on this one; when 10+ metamates bring the exact same deck; some allegedly admitting their intent to collude, that's pretty clear cut. HoyaLawya (and all the rest of my fellow members of the bar) let's turn back to our first semester of Criminal Law. For a crime, we need both the criminal act and the intent. The act here is the 10+ members of the meta bringing the same deck that interacted with additional copies at the same table so well (even if people want to argue that the metamates weren't actually helping each other during the tourney, this much at least is beyond denial). The intent need not be admitted or even deliberate. Intent can be reckless or even just negligent, and more importantly, intent can be presumed. This seems to be what FFG did, and considering the meta's very public attitude towards collusion, it doesn't seem like much of a stretch. Is comparing collusion within a multiplayer card game to a crime a bit much? Definitely, but it seems to fit the tenor of the conversation. The denials of culpability have been many, vociferous, and often tangential, and that's fine. They've been well matched by those who seem to think this was the right call and that collusion, however difficult to weed out, needs to be eliminated.
  2. I agree with both your definition of collusion and your take on how a group of friends bringing the same deck that way is clearly collusion. For a long time I had exactly one meta-mate, and while I enjoyed seeing him do well at tourneys we both attended, I would (and did) try my best to beat him when we were matched up, either in Joust or Melee. To me, you honor your opponent, close friend or complete stranger, by doing your darndest to defeat him. Doing otherwise cheapens their victory. Yes, part of the fun of a melee table is the deal-making, backstabbing, etc. However, it rises to a different level when you know ahead of time you have an absolute ally at the table. As far as I''m concerned, all alliances, friendships, agreements, etc. need to begin and end at the table. You need to come in and leave the game as an individual looking to win that game. To me, doing anything else taints the competitive spirit of the game and makes it less fun for those who aren't part of a big meta or don't have a lot of friends at the tourney.
  3. What everyone has said in response to the initial post is right on, but I'll also point out that having multiple copies of a unique in your deck is useful for drawing that unique more often. The above issues (drawing a dead card, etc.) still apply, so unless a particular unique is either critical for your deck (like one of the new character agendas) or is just so amazing that you want to have a better chance of drawing it (e.g. The Red Viper from Princes of the Sun) then adding in multiples of a unique is something to think very carefully about.
  4. I don't know about the rest of you, but ktom does pretty regularly facepalm at my stupidity. I get it in person nonetheless! Yes ktom, I know…I could avoid most of your scolding if I actually bothered to read the cards.
  5. Well, are you looking more for play tips or tournament etiquette? I feel qualified to give the latter, not so much the former. - Don't be afraid to ask questions. If this is your first real play experience outside your meta, you're very likely to run into opponents playing cards and decks you haven't seen before. Your opponent might play something and expect you to know what it does, but feel free to ask to read the card (I always ask before touching someone else's cards) or have them explain more exactly what they're doing. I've played in a bunch of tournaments and I still do this. - Try to know how your own deck works. This might seem obvious, but I know I've been guilty of this a number of times. Try to be familiar enough with your cards that you don't delay play too much by reading your own cards. - Be ready for people to be less "casual" in their play style. In any tournament, but especially big ones like GenCon or Worlds, people play to win, so if you forget to trigger a Response or make a play you don't like and ask to take it back, be prepared for your opponent to say no. I don't know how your meta plays, but if you're more casual and allow takebacks, maybe play without them in the weeks leading up to the tournament. Feel free to respond the same way if you're asked. - In a related manner, if you feel like your opponent is rushing things so that you don't have an opportunity to trigger your responses, do call them on it. A lot of regular tournament players will ask if you have responses to something before moving on for this reason. - Call for a judge if you don't understand something. If you just don't get how some card is working against you (or for you for that matter) raise your hand and call for a judge (at Worlds, it will probably be Nate French et al) I don't mean to make this all sound negative, because like you've said, the AGoT community is a great one. The vast majority of players are very cool. Do take the opportunity to socialize and have fun. Don't miss out on going to the bar afterwards, even if you don't drink. Enjoy!
  6. ktom said: ~ Potential, but fragile, card draw for Baratheon that doesn't depend on TLS, requires some thought, and possibly fills a major hole in the House without jumping them immediately into Martell-ian levels of stupidity? What's the issue? The fragility (1 Strength, two vulnerable traits for Ghost, 2 Strength for Watcher) really bugs me, although I also don't care for cards that have a higher gold cost than their Strength unless they have a higher Strength (like 3) and thus less vulnerability, or a more powerful/reliable effect or combination of effects You also mentioned how these cards are potential draw. I much prefer more reliable draw effects, with the gold standard (pun intended) being Golden Tooth Mines. I think these cards are good, potentially excellent in the right deck, but I would like to see them in action.
  7. Is it just me or are you guys just wallowing in your explicit rating lately? Nice episode, although I still don't know how to feel about a lot of the cards in the pack, particularly Ghost of Winterfell and Watcher of the Nightfire.
  8. Ratatoskr said: I also expected Targ to have a stronger showing. So many strong cards coming out recently. Looks like it's hard forging all those great effects into a solid whole. I'm guessing people built decks with Burn in mind. Well Ben Terpstra did make top 4 with a KOTHH Burn deck which was just wickedly good and piloted exceptionally well by him. I played him round 2 (with another burn deck, no less; yeah, characters didn't last very long) and even though I see Ben play and play against him reasonably often, it was impressive to see him at work. I think Dan has the right of it and Ben is a great example. I know Ben's been playing that deck, or at least a version thereof, for months, tweaking and testing all the while. He clearly loves his deck and made some excellent (and unexpected) card choices. Even losing to him was a real blast. I think Dan is also right (he usually is) about the anti-Martell/anti-Maester feel of the field. Even though some did very well, there was a lot of hate out there. As a Stark/Targaryen loyalist (in both the fiction and game) I enjoyed seeing them have three of the top four spots and Martell and Lannister having none of them. I've heard some people refer to the "decline of control" in the game, but I feel it's more along the lines of good control options now being available to more houses.
  9. James, it's always a pleasure to see you at GenCon and I enjoyed meeting more of the SoCal crew. I look forward to seeing you next year!
  10. dcdennis said: Not sure whether to be proud or concerned that nearly every pic contains booze. Both!
  11. Always a pleasure Rings. Thanks for hosting the drunk draft (minus the draft) and for being one of the people my fiance' met who helped convince her there are (relatively) normal people at GenCon. We adopted you? I hope this doesn't end up with me paying some form of child support…
  12. Kennon said: Also, I'm surprised that no-one else is confused about the term "head to head" as used in the tournament rules. No, I agree with you that this is confusing; I just don't expect to do well enough where it will be an issue with me personally. Ktom, I dragged you in kicking and screaming, mostly because i knew you'd extend and clarify my point in an eloquent and learned fashion. I especially like the way you elucidate the point about separating cards that do nothing and cards that still do something. As far as the rest of the episode, I enjoyed nine of the ten GenCon tips immensely, and passed them along to a few folks. I was hoping you'd be able to squeeze in something about sleeping, showering and general hygiene, but goodness knows you have to get in your request for free drinks. Your points about overscheduling and the exhibit hall are particularly good. Other than the tournaments themselves, the most fun I've had at GenCon was definitely wandering around the exhibit hall, demoing new games from small companies, browsing the shinies, and meeting minor nerd celebrities (like Rodney Thompson last year)
  13. Kennon said: Wow, no commentary on what the heck "head to head" actually means in the Tournament rules? Among other issues we had of course…. And here I thought this would be one of our more divisive podcasts this year. You want divisive? Well here goes… So I still have about half an hour of the episode to go, but I did finish listening to the FAQ and Tourney Rules discussion. When it comes to the Thundering Calvary/Thundering Cavalry issue, I think you guys are dead wrong and that any TO who sides with you on the issue is being overly pedantic. As a practicing attorney/pedantic jerk, I understand your reasoning on precedent; it can be downright dangerous when a judge makes a small assumption about legislative intent. However, it happens all the time, by design no less. The law is not such a black-letter prospect as most people think. The judiciary is supposed to interpret the legislature's actions and apply them to the "real world." </civics lesson> Now, I get that applying legal reasoning to a game is not a perfect parallel, subject to the very valid "IT'S JUST A GAME" criticism, but we work with what we have. I think where your use of this reasoning falls short is the leap from "clear typo" to "card not working the way I want it to" (a concept I borrow from ktom.) You guys discuss how in the FAQ announcement Damon and Nate mentioned that certain cards were working as intended, and certain cards were not. They fixed the out on Sorrowful Man and Shield Islands Dromon, but left the out on Penny. You seem to take this "other cards are working as intended" to a greater degree than I think was meant, concluding that if they haven't fixed a card, it must be working exactly as they intended. With cards like Penny, which I think falls into the "card not working the way I want it to" category, I think this reasoning is perfectly valid, especially as it has the choice wording that was specifically changed in Sorrowful Man and Shield Islands Dromon. With cards like Thundering Cavalry/Calvary, I think using this same reasoning is overreaching. When a card is clearly a typo (like Free Man, Core Set Jhogo, Cotter Pyke, Thundering Cavalry) then I find it a bit asinine to rule strictly with that wording. To me, this is a mere scrivener's error, the kind of error that is so plain on its face that it's no big deal for a judge/TO to rule on it. While there is no official direction on the intent until the legislature (Damon and Nate) give some, when there is literally no other reasonable explanation for an error, then ruling with the typo wording strikes me as unwieldy and wrong. Not to get overly preachy, but "the letter kills, but the spirit gives life." Ruling with the typo is with the letter of the card, but is clearly against the spirit (intention). With a card like Penny or (previously) Sorrowful Man, while lots of people might want it to work differently, there are a number of reasonable explanations for why it might be worded that way, the most obvious being "they intended to give an out." Where this argument gets sticky for me is with cards like Castle Battlements. The original wording made it literally useless (except as Intrigue bait I guess) and so I could argue pretty convincingly that they clearly meant it to read "other" (as the FAQ now tells us) but it's not as clear cut as a typo. By the way, the cavalry/Calvary mistake is one of the most irritating errors in the English language, so it upsets me to defend that…thanks guys. As far as collusion, I share your concerns to a point, although I don't think it's going to be as much of a free for all as you conjecture. I think ktom will set a good precedent at GenCon. I would, at some point, like to see them at least give some definitions to scouting, collusion, etc. so there's some firmer guidance for TO's, especially those not as skilled and experienced as ktom..
  14. Looks like Core Set Jhogo and Snakeskin Veil are back in business!
  15. That makes a lot of sense Ktom. I know it would be a bit unwieldy, but I still think a definitions section for the tourney rules would be good, although in the alternative, I do like the "TO has sole discretion" proviso.
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