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Indy Mon

The First Annual USA vs. Canada Dice Masters Series Tournament Report

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The first annual USA vs. Canada Dice Masters series occurred over the past eight days. The event was hugely successful and was great fun. In late June, Jenna Marion (@RainCityJenna) and I thought of the idea to bring our two vibrant Dice Masters communities together for an international event to make friends, have fun, and celebrate the game that we all love. The fact that Dice Masters was created by an American (Mike Elliott) and a Canadian (Eric Lang) made the idea all the more fitting.

We settled on a two part event. We would hold Age of Ultron rainbow drafts on August 9 and 16 at Gabi's Olympic Cards & Comics (Olympia, WA) and Magic Stronghold (Vancouver, BC), respectively. To make the event more unique, we created some do-it-yourself prize support. With some help from Melissa Turner (http://arogueunderpressure.com/), we created unofficial variant art cards for all participants, highlighting competition between the USA (Captain America) and Canada (Wolverine).

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The Cap card was given to attendees in Olympia and Wolverine to attendees in Vancouver.

Also, Jenna (https://www.etsy.com/shop/RainCityGaming) created Captain America/USA and Wolverine/Canada dice bags to go to the individual winners of the two events.

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Again, the Cap bag went to the winner of the Olympia event and the Wolverine to the Vancouver winner.


And finally, as is often done in college football rivalries (see, e.g., https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanford_Axe) we created the Mukizzy Trophy to symbolize unity, friendship, and domination in Dice Masters.

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For the uninitiated, that is Muk Muk at the top (a mascot for the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games), Izzy on the bottom (the mascot for the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games), and dice in Izzy's hands symbolizing characters from the two countries. The trophy would go to the country whose top three players at each of the two events had the highest point totals (3 for win and 1 for tie). Also, a total of $120 in store credit was awarded between the two events to top finishers.

Round One: Giant Man Must Be Canadian
At the first event we had a total of 20 players, including four Canadians who drove down for the day.

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Passing packs at Gabi's Olympic Cards and Comics.


The individual winner of the event was Canadian Adam MacKay. His victory was truly a testament to the importance of player skill, as several of us, including Adam, commented before any games had been played that he had drafted a pretty poor team (at least compared to the other teams people had drafted). Here it is:
Giant Man - Dr. Henry Pym x2
Beast - Bouncing Blue Beast x2
Gamora - Raised by Thanos x1
Ultron Drone - Swarm of Destruction x1
Starhawk - Stakar Ogord x2
Black Widow - Oktober x1
Hulk - Gamma Powered x1
BACs: Nasty Plot & Rally

Adam went 4-0, beating me in the final game. His path to the top was not easy. He started against Clint Thomas (final day qualifier at the 2015 Dice Masters World Championships), who had drafted a good team, including a Zombie Magneto. Before reaching the finals, he also beat Jenna Marion (top ranked Canadian player on the WES Leaderboards), who had pulled a Super Rare Groot and had also drafted a good team with Rocket Racoon, Ultron Drone, etc. Adam beat me in the final game. I was very pleased with my team with many dice on my common Rocket Racoon, uncommon Ultron Drone, Ultron, Gamora, etc. But Adam's two Giant Man dice dismantled me in no more than six turns. I honestly do not recall him purchasing anything other than those two dice, but that was all he needed to win!

After the first event, although Adam had won the event, the USA was in the lead 27-25, based on the following players' records:
Canada: Adam MacKay (4-0), Jenna Marion (2-1-1), and Michael Glauser (2-2)
USA: Indy Mon (3-1), Seth Suchy (3-1), and Allen Percefull (3-1)

Round Two: Rare Baron Zemo is Broken in Draft
We had 20 players attend for the second event a week later, including seven Americans who had driven up for the event.

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Magic Stronghold. Do you see the coolest playmat ever in this picture?

I was the individual winner. Whereas Adam's victory the week before was a testament to player skill, I will readily admit that my victory was a testament to how broken the rare Baron Zemo is in draft. Players at the event pulled the super rare Jocasta and Thanos with multiple dice, but Baron Zemo is just too good in draft. Here was my team:
Beast - Not Your Average Pretty Face x2
Rocket Racoon - “Blam! Murdered you!” x3
Gamora - Assassin x3
Ultron Drone - 1 of a Million x1
Baron Zemo - Thunderbolt x1
Loki - Trickster God x1
Ultron - New World Order x1
Captain Marvel - Maj. Carol Danvers x1
BACs: Magic Missile & Distraction

I went 3-0 (the second round ended with a ridiculous number of ties, so only three rounds were needed to get to a single, undefeated winner), with each of my games taking no longer than 5-10 minutes (again, Zemo gets the credit for that, not me). I really think that I should not draft Age of Ultron ever again because I know that I will never get as lucky as I did yesterday (even without Zemo, that was easily the best AoU draft team I had ever pulled together). I played against Seth Suchy, an outstanding player, in the final game. He had drafted a nearly identical team to my own, but did not have Zemo, and that made the difference.

After the final event, the USA had clinched the series with a final team score of 49-43 based on the following records:
Canada: Jenna Marion (2-0-1), Eric Mak (2-1), and Adam MacKay (1-0-2)
USA: Indy Mon (3-0), Clint Thomnas (2-0-1), and Seth Suchy (2-1)

On the drive home, I began the Mukizzy Trophy's victory tour with a very important first stop:

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Dice Masters Co-Creator (and American) Mike Elliott

Next Year
Each of the two parts of this series were the largest Dice Masters events that I am aware of that were not sanctioned by WizKids, and came close to the size of Canadian Nationals (21 players) and many WKOs (a majority were 24-25 players). That is a testament to the amazing growth of this game and how focusing on personalized local/regional events can really make all the difference.

We are already planning next year, and Jenna and I would be interested in joining forces with others further east to make this event even bigger (perhaps with other pairings by the Great Lakes and New England?). If you are interested, shoot me a private message.

Thanks to everyone who made this happen. Especially Jenna Marion who was a dream to work with, the stores who were willing to support the events and, most importantly, the players who attended. Not a single bad apple at either event. The people are what make this game so much fun. Thank you!
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Updated 08-17-2015 at 02:03 PM by Indy Mon

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Comments

  1. pk2317's Avatar
    Thank you so much for the reports! I would have loved to come, but my schedule didn't let me this year. Maybe next year!

    Go USA!
  2. Davemented's Avatar
    I believe you meant Jenna was a dream to work WITH.
  3. Indy Mon's Avatar
    Four proofreads weren't enough. Fixed. Thanks!
  4. IsaacBV's Avatar
    Very cool, would have loved to be there. Congrats on putting together such an awesome event guys!