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Why My Best Friend Is A Jerk

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Society is a mixed bag when it comes to admitting your faults and mistakes. Even more so when you simply change your mind on something. Let me show you a few examples from the past week:

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ID:	4441Cam Newton. He’s the quarterback for the Carolina Panthers. He just lost the Super Bowl. The Super Bowl this year was a defensive slugfest that saw both teams’ offenses struggle. After the game, Cam Newton walked across the field, shook hands with his opponent, and went in to the locker room. He was very short with the media, and walked out on answering their questions. He’s a self-admitted sore loser, while being a very flamboyant winner. A large portion of the media, and sports fans alike, are ripping him to shreds over being a sore loser. He tries to justify not jumping on a live ball that he had fumbled, by saying, “I didn’t dive on one fumble because the way my leg was (positioned). It could have been contorted in a way. You say my effort? I didn’t dive down. I fumbled—that’s fine. That’s fine. We didn’t lose the game because of that fumble.” Newton is walking a thin and divisive line, between being honest while not outright admitting his faults. Newton added in an interview, “But I know who I am and I'm not about to conform nor bend for anybody's expectations because your or anybody else's expectations will never exceed mine.” Cam doesn’t care what others think, and won’t let it affect his actions, for better or worse. Is Cam Newton a confident competitor or a selfish whiner?

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ID:	4442Daniel Bryan. He’s a former professional wrestler who was WWE World Heavyweight Champion. He captured the adoration of fans everywhere, despite his 5’8”, 190 lb build. He was never going to be the “face of the company”, because of his size, build, and overall “look”. But his talent in the ring, his dedication to his craft, was obvious. And the fans loved him for it. After a series of concussions, Bryan was not fit to perform in the ring. After months off, various tests, and numerous visits with outside doctors, Bryan said he was ready to return to the ring. However WWE doctors would not clear him. Much like the NFL is dealing with lawsuits from past players who suffered from concussions, WWE is as well. Bryan publicly said that if WWE would not clear him to return, he would ask for his release, so he could continue doing what he loved with another company. After further tests, the results were not good. Bryan had suffered seizures years earlier that were now linked to his history of concussions, and liaisons were found on his brain; evidence of the permanent damage that had been done over his 15+ year career. With this new information, Daniel Bryan announced his retirement from professional wrestling. Most fans and media supported this decision, however, there are nay-sayers, who would like to imply Bryan is a quitter, because he’s not sticking to the dedication he proclaimed for so long. Is Daniel Bryan intelligent and receptive to new information, or is he someone who quits in the face of adversity?

Which brings me to WizKids. Last Summer I was ready to quit Dice Masters. When Age of Ultron was released, there were numerous day-one errata and print errors that caused me to lose faith in WizKids’s commitment to quality. There were rulings that seemed to fly in the face of the wording that was actually used on the card. Those combined with some insight in to the inner working of the company, disappointed me. I began selling off my collection. The only reason I didn’t sell more is because I reached the limit that ebay told me I could have for sale at one time. I was prepared to be done with Dice Masters and jump in to other games immediately. (UFS, VS System, MtG EDH, etc.) I wrote a big article, saying as much. Saying that WizKids needs to fix these problems before I think about coming back to the game. (Here is the link.)

Then, my kids happened. They ask me when we’re going to go to the FLGS and play Dice Masters. They loved opening up packs with me. Abigail STILL asks when we are going to do another podcast segment. So, I was torn a bit. I didn’t want my kids to miss out on something they enjoyed because I was being a bitter old grown up. They aren’t quite old enough to actually play the game yet, but they really love the whole Dice Masters experience. Opening up our Battle for Faerun feed at the dining room table was the most fun I’ve had opening packs. (Yes, even more fun that opening up packs on video with JT, Dave, and Isaac). Those of you I met at GenCon last year surely remember Abigail rocking her Dice Masters Thing Necklace. She still wears it once every other week or so. (Here is the link.)

This is where we tie in to the title of my article. JT, or @Jthomash2 as you know him, wasn’t going to let me quit so easily. I got him in to the game, and involved at TRP. So, he wanted to keep me playing. Even after I quit, he would message me, “Hey, can you help me playtest this team I’m working on?” or “What do you think about this combo?” It was all part of his master plan. I kept casually playing with him. But nothing competitive or at a store. Then Rainbow Draft Weekend came along. The War of Light set looked cool from the spoilers I’d seen, and the Lantern mythos might be my favorite part of the DC universe. The Iron Fist and Batmobile promos were announced to only be at Rainbow Draft Weekend events. Well, ok. I’ll come along so that my buddy can get a few extra promo cards from me participating. I took 3rd out of 15 people or so. But still, I intended on selling the rest of my stuff, and just keep playing casually with my friend. But “playing casually” turned in to messaging back and forth about team ideas with him and still being involved in many of the ongoing TRP conversations. And… damnit JT, I’m still involved in Dice Masters conversations daily.

Then, the PDC was announced. I made what I thought was a pretty good team. I decided to tag along with JT, and see how this team did. I mean, he was going regardless of me. It was no big deal for me to hitch a ride. I made Top 8, but was ultimately knocked out of the event by JT himself, who has as much experience playing against my team as I have piloting it. A few weeks later, JT was going to another PDC, this time a bit further from home, up in Isaac’s hometown of Toledo. Isaac wouldn’t be playing in the event, but we planned on all hanging out and grabbing food afterwards. After 5 rounds of swiss, I was in 5th place. I barely missed Top 4. But my team did excellent, and it was my own inexperience, and some extreme unluck on my final turn, playing against a Viscous Struggle team that cost me Top 4. Dinner after the event with our group of Dice Masters players was such a good time, and maybe as much fun as the PDC itself.

Now, D&D Faerun Under Siege is out. I’ve got a feed and starter on the way in the mail. My Battle for Faerun stuff was the only set I didn’t try to sell off, because I feel the quality, wording, and mechanics of that set were worth holding on to, to play stand alone with other gamer friends. I plan on sitting at the dining room table again with the kids, and going through the packs once again. I’ve already registered for the WKO up near Detroit in a couple weeks, because it’s a great chance to hang out with JT, Isaac, and other new friends I’ve made while at the PDC in Toledo. So… I’m playing Dice Masters again?

Did I get over my problems with the game? A little. Part of it was just being too close to everything. Being responsible for multiple articles per week, recording podcast stuff with Dave and Abigail, staying involved with the community. It was getting a bit overwhelming, and when things are going wrong, it didn’t feel like it was worth feeling overwhelmed. Part of it also is that WizKids is actually improving. I know we give them crap about wording issues, and some of the WKRF answers we receive. But the bottom line is that the game is in a better place than it was last summer, and it’s continuing to improve. That’s what I wanted.

Will I ever write on a regular basis for TRP again? Doubtful. Will I ever be as invested monetarily as I was the first half of 2015? Highly unlikely. But I keep making friends through this enjoyable game. So here I am, admitting that my stance has changed. What I said before wasn't wrong, I stand by that. But Those statements don't hold true today. Just wanted you guys to know that when you see me at a WKO or possibly at Origins this year, this is why. Blame JT.
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  1. OddballNarwhal's Avatar
    I WILL blame JT! Also, it hurt to read "former professional wrestler". I imagine it hurt almost as much as it did to type that.
  2. Ressless's Avatar
    I wish i had someone like JT for it. But i think I got the oppisite site, I am JT, but i am missing my Randy for the game :,( . I don't have the problems with Wizkids Rulings or quality issues. But with the advertisement and supporting other countries. Its like i am living in a Dreamworld that can be destroyed any time, because in reality its not so shiny at all.

    I hope this course is a good healthy way for you do be in this game like you want without getting hurt from the Candyfactory WK.
  3. Jwannabe's Avatar
    Good to hear from you Randy! YouR hulk team article series were some of my favorites. I'll be happy to read any of your articles wether they are competitive or more casual. The thought process you and other writers on this site is what really intrigues me.
  4. GRider10's Avatar
    Glad to see you are enjoying and playing the game again. This site has helped me so much over the last year or so. I'll see you at the WKO.
  5. agentj's Avatar
    Glad to see you back Randy. I agree JT is at fault. He is a great friend and person who loves and cares about other people.

    On that note, when we going to get some games in? I only played you once at the draft.
  6. SarkhanMad's Avatar
    I haven't played in months. miss it big time.
    DnD is amazing, and FUS has brought me back to the site...
  7. OnlyRollsEnergy's Avatar
    Great read. It's odd how sometimes your obligations to something you enjoy can drive you away from it. I'm still trying to get over my QC issues as well.