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CardShark Content - Nathan Aldana (7/26/2004)

Vs from the perspective of a Newbie (a Tournament report and observations)

So, I know I'm not the only one just starting in Vs, it’s the new kid on the proverbial block of tcgs, and has a lot of potential in a lot of peoples eyes. Being curious myself about playing, I'd been trading away some excess MTG rares of mine to gather enough cards for a tournament legal deck. Unfortunately, by the time I had one finished, everyone I knew who played was leaving for a BBQ, and a Vs tourney was mere hours away. so, I said. what the heck,. and decided to learn the nuances by the seat of my pants. Hoo boy, did I learn a lot. So here’s the tale of how I got started in VS.

Round 1 (my budget Gotham Knights beatdown) vs (Brotherhood Sligh)

Sit down, shake hands, draw opening hands, and I got initiative. Though first turn, I was under the impression I passed turn after resource placing before build. Doh. My opponent, being gracious, let it slide, and I dropped a GCPD Officer into play. He responds by dropping a resource . Me being a complete newbie, don’t attack. He then drops toad second turn, and starts firing up the New Brotherhoods. I die promptly.

Game 2, I felt a bit more confident in my ability, and didn’t make quite as many newbie errors early on. Unfortunately, a late start to creature drops makes sure that even without new Brotherhood, he does ample damage. The main point I learned late game . Yes, it DOES matter who you deal stun damage to when team attacked. I unfortunately did not, by stunning Pyro (-_- ) and lost Azrael while barely doing anything to their strategy.

so, 2 losses, 0 points, and at least some vague understanding of why I lost. Mainly. it was my unfamiliarity with basic rules, and with my deck. Armed with this knowledge, and a few tips from my opponent, I sallied forth into.

Round 2: vs Mojo/Unaligned deck

This match also taught me a new lesson. mainly, how reinforcement was helpful, team affiliations were useful, and the importance of the support row. Many times I made an error where I could have prevented breakthrough, but didn’t, But after realizing why my opponent couldn’t (the huge flaw in unaligned decks folks, until you get Deadpool out, you have no reinforcement outside Burn Rubber and the like, which can REALLY hurt when you're against a team as synergetic as Gotham Knights or Sentinels). Also, I learned how to effectively use plot twists using protected characters. More than once, I took down Mojo through rushing him with Azrael and using Spoiler or Tim Drake to pay for Finishing Move. I lose, but barely, both matches went into the negative life totals with a margin of one to two damage. drat.


Round 3 vs Brotherhood

Okay, so I admit, the guy I was facing was one of those crazy types who screams and acts like a WWE announcer when winning, and so, his deck probably wasn’t all that amazing. But it did feel Satisfying to actually get an amazing opening draw against his horrible one. Spoiler and Robin were handed sidearms, and went to town. He recovered, and started screaming out his magical names of characters as they hit the table, but his plans got sidetracked as Cassandra Cain, Shiva, and Batman all came out to play. Two turns later, Azrael hit and strategically KO’D his Pyro, leaving Magneto and the rest in perfect order to make reinforcing impossible. My characters swung in and won me the match.


So, I obviously didn’t make it to finals, but given it was my first tournament and serious experience with VS, that’s to be expected.

So, what did I learn on the day to pass on to others starting on Vs?

1: Team Affiliations do more than define a decktypes name. They usually offer a synergetic strategy, and the ability to reinforce your troops, which plays a crucial and huge part in defenses.

2: Carefully consider your moves, especially in combat situations. Making a wrong decision can cost you valuable tempo or endurance, possibly even characters and equipment.

3: Lady Shiva is a house. (Imo, at least)

4: Playtesting decks is a bigger house

5: is right out. (sorry, couldn’t resist. :) )

6: and finally, don’t be intimidated by the rules. They seem complicated at first, but they aren’t all that hard if you take the time to play a few test games.

That’s all for now. Hope this convinces at least a few people to get into VS. :)

Nathan Aldana, Level 1 Tournament Organizer, Vs Judge, and YGO Judge

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