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Masques Block BD-Victoria, BC

Bill Krauss

On June 20th I judged a Masques Block booster draft at Yellowjacket Comics in Victoria, BC, Canada. We had an optimal turn out of 16 players, so we were able to draft in two pods of eight. Five of the players were new DCI players, which was nice, and they had all played in booster drafts for fun before so everyone was familiar with the way the tournament would work.

Drafting went smoothly. Victoria has an interesting mix of players, with a top echelon of players who often do well in Pro Tour qualifiers held in Vancouver, a good core of players who play well, and a nice influx of new players to keep everyone from getting stale. Due to the influence of the qualifiers, players drafted seriously, calmly and quietly. After the tournament, players requested that some future tournaments be held at a higher REL, to keep in practice for the qualifiers. The actions of the players in this tournament certainly justify this request, and I'm sure that some future tournaments will be held at REL 2.

The only unfortunate occurrence at this tournament was the loss of a sideboard by a player after deck construction but before the tournament started. I asked all the players at the table to check their cards and together we counted their main decks and sideboards, but the cards were nowhere to be found. Perhaps they ended up by mistake in a backpack or in one of the commons card boxes around the playing area. In any case, I kept an eye out for some of the distinctive cards that were lost in this sideboard, and they never surfaced during the tournament. The player played without a sideboard and finished in the top four, a testament to his skills!

The main judging questions were simple to answer this tournament. This was close enough after the release of Prophecy that the questions were mainly regarding when payments were made, when lands had to be tapped, and what the new cards really did. The Prophecy FAQ covered all this nicely-kudos for the people who put this together!

At the end of the night, the winner of the tournament was Chris Sutherland. Congratulations to him and all the other players who made this tournament a pleasure to judge.

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