Posted by: thederangedbear | September 3, 2008

W’s Day: Michael Jacob’s Reservists

Avengers! A 10k Champion’s Report

Today’s W is ‘writing’ yet again!

While it never resonated with me as much as the Hager or Yapjoco’s tournament reports I put up earlier, Michael Jacob’s Avengers 10k report is definitely up there with them in quality, despite the fact that it’s not a tournament report per say.

One of the commonalities of the three articles I’ve listed is that they break down the testing process of a competitive team. This is one of the things I always look forward to when reading tournament reports by my peers: Why card X was played over card Y.

(For example, TDC chose to play Death Trap instead of Removed from Continuity at PC: Indy because it could hit OMAC Robot 4 and OMAC Robot 5, which was a big deal given the prevalence of Checkmate in that format.)

The sad reality is that more or less with the formation of TDC – a super team – tournament reports just stopped coming. You could scrounge up wisdom if you mined the forums hard or PM’d your butt off but in general, the early days of VS were much better for readers.

I think there is a solid correlation between tournament reports – and just writing in general – and the decline of the VS System. I can’t prove it, but look at how many TRs there were from MXM – DLS, as compared to MOR – DSM. The fact that we are seeing an upswing in writing is hopefully a good omen for the future of our game.

The Man

I know some were really anti MJ, as he more or less exemplified the ‘pro player’ – as evidenced in the discussion of that particular report.

Having reading his report though a few times, and having heard him speak on The Magic Show, I can’t help but disagree; He certainly seems like a very knowledgeable and swell guy. I could very well be wrong, but I don’t think that diminishes the quality of his knowledge.

MJ offered quite a few lessons in his article that are applicable to new players. The biggest one is choosing to build your deck around the concept that breaks the rules. A lot of us build decks that are simply decks to put it simply. Like all things in life I think, anything without a solid fundamental or base is doomed to mediocrity, and deckbuilding is no exceptional.

Another huge lesson I learned from Michael can be seen when I ask him in the forums why he didn’t play Captain America – Super Soldier – we were all young once – the standard he used to critique Captain America is the new standard I use to evaluate all new characters.

– How good is it on the initiative?

– How good is it off the initiative?

– The third, does it’s performance in one area overcome it’s deficit in the other?

Michael Jacob is an incredible player and his success at that other game only proves to demonstrate that and give us good reason to pay attention to the few pieces of literature he left in our game.

Or you could disregard what he said because he was a jerk.

Peace,

-TDB

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