Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Lesson From PAX

I arrived at PAX early on Friday and started to browse the schedule of events. Games, panels, tournaments, hey...WotC has a whole section dedicated to Magic events throughout the day. So let's look at that.

As it turns out, there were Legacy events, both Friday and Saturday, entry cost only $10. I have Legacy decks. AND I have ten dollars! But I wasn't ready to do anything Friday so I figured I'd do something Saturday.

Saturday morning I wake up and Jason comes in from work and I tell him about the event and that I'm thinking I'll give it a go. I don't have a sideboard though, so I'm just planning on winging it.

"So what deck are you going to play?" he asked. I batted around a couple ideas: I'd brought some strong decks to play and I felt pretty good about a few of them, despite having no sideboard.

"Well, dude, you need a sideboard? I can loan you one," he said.

And so we talked about some matchups and made up a sideboard. He looked at my deck suggested a few changes, pulled cards from various decks he had while I made some adjustments to the maindeck. It was great and I felt like I had some good ideas going into the event. No idea how big it was going to be but I had a deck I liked, solid plans for certain matchups and most importantly, the thumbs up from a friend with the chance to try something new.

The event started at 2. At noon, I went to meet another friend for lunch figuring I had plenty of time, right?

Well...we ended up talking a bunch and having a lot of fun. Some little tickle in the back of my brain said: this might be going a little long but I didn't want to feel rushed. I was having a good time.

When I left the pub, it was 2:04. I missed the event.

As I strode back to PAX, determined to at least look in on things and see what was what, I heard my girlfriend's voice in my head, saying, "The thing about you is that you don't care about winning as much as you do about connecting with people when you play."

Though I might try to deny it and I have to admit: if put in a situation where winning matters, I care very much about winning, I really just want to play the best game I can. And I would rather interact with people.

I like games; board games, video games, I even played a little D&D for the first time last weekend and dug that. I like how they can give me an experience to have with other people, one that is usually very positive, gives me insight into the human condition creates opportunities to learn, teach and laugh. Not much in life does this.

I felt good about my chances in the Legacy event because I got to work with a friend and hone an idea that gave me a chance. I felt OK (after a moment of bummer) about missing that event because I got to hang out with a friend. I was a touch conflicted when I got to the event, saw what people were running and thought: I could have totally done this. Such is life.

Victory comes in many forms. Winning is secondary.

This is what I would've run:

10 Swamp
4 Fetid Heath
9 Plains

4 Unmake
4 Dark Ritual
2 Mortify

3 Gerrard's Verdict

4 Edge of the Divinity

4 Deathbringer Liege
4 Nightsky Mimic
4 Nip Gwyllion
3 Tidehollow Sculler
4 Dark Confidant

4 Hymn To Tourach
4 Swords to Plowshares
4 Planar Void
3 Ghostly Prison

PS: Next year, I'm comin' loaded for bear, goddamnit.

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