Sunday, January 13, 2013

Tournament Etiquette

You bought some cards, made a deck, bought more cards, made some changes to it a few times or so, and played enough with your friends to the point where you think you are ready for something larger. Well, as eager as you may be to enter your first sanctioned tournament or a local tournament for the 25th time, there are some things to keep in mind. Having participated in several Cardfight!! Vanguard tournaments myself including the World Championship Qualifier in Los Angeles, I can assure you that playing competitively is vastly different from playing with friends. Here are some guidelines on how to conduct yourself in a competitive setting while still enjoying the game.

Please do not upset the store clerks just because you do not know how to properly act in a competitive setting.  Continue reading this article for some quick and easy tips so you can make the game fun and enjoyable for everyone!
Actively engage with your opponent. Do not be that one guy that people will dislike playing with because you are too shy to talk with people you do not get to play on a regular basis. Simply saying "Attack," "Guard," and "Drive Check" when appropriate would suffice. Moving and dropping cards on the table with little to no sound to accompany it can be quite irritating to some and doing so creates a negative image. Also, feel free to ask your opponent questions especially if they are about the current game at hand. On top of that, do not touch your opponent's cards without asking. Do not forget that you have to wait for your opponent to respond to your Vanguard's attack before Drive Checking.

If you are just sitting there shuffling this hand before a
Vanguard hitting for 3 Stages on its own proceeds to attack
you for game, then you might want to stop after a few seconds.
Think quickly, act quickly. Do not take too long when thinking about a move to make. Cardfight!! Vanguard is a relatively simple game in terms of the types of cards available (Trigger Units and Normal Units), so there is no need to sit there for 5 or more minutes thinking about what the most optimal play would be. There are only so many ways to arrange a field and only so many ways to guard against your opponent's attacks that you should not have to waste both your opponent's and your own time. Just because you think there is a way out of an opponent's onslaught of attacks when there obviously is not aside from Damage Checking a Heal Trigger does not mean you should shuffle your hand repeatedly for several minutes. Of course, it is ok to take a bit of time to assess your situation before making a decision. Just be reasonable about it.

That feel when you lose simply because of a
double Critical Trigger Drive Check. Just accept your
loss and move onto improving your game.

"Hahaha! Yes! I finally stole the deck that guy keeps
topping my locals with! Now it is my turn to finally shine!"

Deal with it. You win some and you lose some. That is a rule you cannot deny. Do not be salty/butthurt just because your opponent Drove Checked 2 Critical Triggers when you were at 3 Damage or your opponent managed to get a Heal Trigger on his 6th Damage Check when you thought you had game that turn. This game is full of surprises like that, and there is no need for you to be a sore loser when such unprecedented events happen to you. You may be the victim one day, but your opponent can easily be the next. Learn to accept your losses and think about what you could have done differently to prevent such a situation from occurring in future games. Shake hands with your opponent and acknowledge the good game the two of you had rather than going into table-flip rage mode.

"Do unto others as you would have them unto you." People who participate at a local tournament will usually return for future tournaments regardless of whether they win or lose because they enjoy the environment. Help keep it that way by respecting others. Yes, you are out to win, but you are also out to have fun. Please do not be a jerk and claim something as your own when the original owner is not looking. Instead, be nice and ask for the original owner. You would not like it if someone stole that deck and trade binder that you worked so hard to establish, would you? Besides, this is no play-to-win game. Having a "better" deck does not make you a better player especially in this game. 

Cardfighters at your locals may not be carrying their trades in suitcases,
but you get the idea.
Trades can become new friendships. You may 
not have too many friends who go to the same locals as you do when you start playing there, but simply asking or getting asked "Got any trades?" can lead into a friendly conversation, which may very well become the start of a new friendship. Of course, do not be greedy when it comes to trading. Get familiar with the "local" prices of the cards. For example, just because Wyvern Guard, Barris are worth $20-23 online does not necessarily mean you should value them at that price range in an area where Kagero cards are not highly coveted. Apply basic economics. However, that is not to say that online prices and "local" prices will differ greatly. Do be sure do to your own research as well. The last thing you want to do is find out you traded for a Nightmare Doll, Alice in SP rarity valued at $90 by some prick at your locals only to find that the card is worth $35-40 online.     

"No way! He said I'm worth how much?!"
If there are any more things you think I should address that I missed when it comes to tournament etiquette, feel free to leave it in the comments below!

Rin Dunois

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