Arizona Regionals was held at the Memorial Union at Arizona State University
in the Arizona Grand Ballroom. Total number of players at the tournament were
118 players, including players from Arizona, Texas, California, and Nevada.
The tournament ran 8 rounds of Swiss followed by a top 8 play off for the
trophy. In the end, Shannon Kurick of Las Vegas, Nevada won the tournament
playing a very standard Necro.
Necro was the dominant deck by far, with Oath/Survival/Death variants being a
close second. Many newer players played green, red green, and white green beat
down or lifeline style decks, but none did very well. Regionals were definitely
Necro's last hurrah. A deck breakdown follows.
Five Judges presided over the event. Myself, a level 3, acted as local
Tournament Organizer. Matt Stenger, a level 3, acted as Head Judge. Mike Bahr, a
level 2, our head computer expert, and Mitch Ledford and Mike Clark, both judges
in training, completed the roundup.
Many control deck players complained about the 50 minute rounds, so I took a
sort of informal poll amongst the control players at the tournament.
Some examples from players:
John Meeth went 1-1-3 playing a Draw Go Variant. He feels he would easily
have won two of his three draws if the 50 minute rule were not in effect.
Matt Betrand went 4-1-3 playing a Draw Go Variant. He echoed John Meeth's
Lawrence Chetfield went 3-2-2 playing a u/w control deck. He was the player
most adamantly against the 50 minute rounds. He also did not previously know
about the 50 minute round rule, and said he would have brought a different deck
had he known.
Marcus Santiago took 7th place playing a Draw Go Variant. He felt it was a
problem, but he had a fast enough deck to handle the time change. (His deck
played with Stalking Stones, Faerie Conclaves, Morphlings, and Palinchrons. He
basically got an Ertai/Arcane Lab lock, then beat down his opponent.)
Brandon Gross went 3-2-1 playing Prison. He also felt he had a very hard time
with 50 minute rounds. He was happy that most players were willing to concede,
or he would have had more draws.
In general "6 extra turns" don't mean anything for a Draw Go, or Prison style
deck, where as 10 more minutes could mean a significant difference. I'm not sure
if it's the DCI's intention, but by making 50 minute rounds, they are basically
removing the Draw Go archetype from tournament play.
Here's the deck breakdown:
|Green, GW, GR Lifeline/Beatdown
|(These decks varied greatly in make-up)
|WW (All variants)
|U, U/W Control
Top Eight Decks
Necro took the top two.
The tournament ran smoothly, starting at around 10:15am, and ending at
10:48pm, this included a short lunch break after round four. We had minor issues
with the room, as the building coordinated was told our event ended at 10pm, but
were able to convince them to keep it open for the last hour.
Some of the more interesting judging issues follow.
1. We gave multiple game losses to Necro players for drawing at the wrong
time off of a Urza's Bauble, placing card in their graveyard instead of removed
from game, and visa versa. In general, by using level 5 rules enforcement, we
were encouraging players to rules lawyer their opponent. Hands went up every
time someone untapped, then drew off a Urza's Bauble. Even with us giving leeway
to players, level 5 appeared to be too high a level to run this event.
2. There were a lot of Lifeline questions. The Oath/Survival/Death decks,
ironically enough, generated the least questions.
3. My favorite judge incident of the day went as follows:
Player A: Wasteland your Adakar Wastes
Player B: Tap it for mana in
response. (Player B now has only a Wasteland and a Plains left in
Player A: Cast Drain life for 8
Player B: Attempts to Mana Leak,
stating he had tapped the Adakar Wastes for Blue.
(Judge is called
Me: Player B, did you take a point of damage when you tapped the Adakar
Player B: I just took a point of damage.
Me: Player B, did you
take a point of damage *WHEN* you tapped the Adakar Wastes?
Player B: No.
My final judgement was that, since the player did not take a point of damage
from his Adakar Wastes when he tapped it for mana (although he did "suddenly"
take a point of damage when he cast the Mana Leak), and did not name the type of
mana, the only available option he had for his action (tap for mana, do NOT take
damage) was to have tapped it for colorless.
Finally, we were able to give two more Judge tests to players, followed up by
me reviewing several of the existing questions under 6E rules, and encouraging
them to study 6E. The judge exams went smoothly.
I hope this synopsis was a helpful read for everyone. If you have any
questions, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Level 3 Judge