Howdy Shadowverse Players,

I have had some time to sit and think over the course of the last few days since week one of the NGE Shadowverse Open finals. Throughout the 3 seasons, we have seen some excellent matches between the contestants. (Carepackage vs Botalz still remains one of my favorite matches up of 2017). But this weekend, we got to watch a match that is very different than the other matches we have seen and quite honestly, it is the best example of competitive play I have seen in 2017. That match…is Akamarured vs Kionys!

But Aya! Why in the world would you choose that match above the others as a great example of competitive play?

Akamarured and Kionys are both very outstanding Shadowverse players. Above all else, both of these guys even inspire me to become a better player by watching them play. Their games last weekend showed a different level of Shadowverse and I wanna talk about it more in depth!

Whenever we play a game, whatever the game may be, if we play enough of that game, we become more understanding of the way things are supposed to work. We understand little intricacies that may not be apparent the first or second time through, and with card games this is something that can literally occur every match! In essence, you begin to learn a flow and as you play more you become adjusted to that flow. You understand the moves that you can make in certain situations. Basically, you are following a flowchart.

A flow chart is mechanical by nature. You follow a set amount of rules based on already gained experience. But what happens when something unexpected happens in your developed flow chart? That…is where the man meets the machine. That anything could simply be pilot error (the player made a mistake, misclicked something, etc) Your flowchart is no longer good and now you have to adjust to a new set of variables based on a mistake that in ordinary situations, you wouldn’t have made.

Playing a game with just mechanics is fine and all but there must remain some level of human intuition. Being able to recognize a play that your opponent has available to them in a given matchup is generally intuition based on presented information. You have to be able to play around your opponents options or restrict them to obtain victory. While Kionys was not victorious in his match vs Akamarured, He did force Akamarured into a situation that he is unaccustomed to, being under the gun because he navigated the matches incredibly well.

We generally praise players for not making mistakes. They played a careful and methodical game to help get them where they are. Do we generally praise players for making mistakes though? No, not as much because they are expected to understand the lines of play they need to take going into their matches. Akamarured is a player who knows what he’s doing with the decks he plays. He comes prepared for the matchups that he could face and does an excellent job at playing effectively. Kionys is a player who has varied his style quite a bit but has shown an unbelievable amount of growth during the NGE Season 3. You don’t need to win to show growth and Kionys, if anything, has shown that to me in spades.

Final thoughts

Mofu said it best on the NGE Shadowverse open broadcast. These guys played the most “human” game of Shadowverse we have ever seen. When they made a mistake, they saw it afterwards and we could see their reactions. We could see how upset they were when they messed up because everything was on the line. I hope that the people who read this or saw their match this past weekend truly understand the privilege that was given to us to watch such an amazing set of games. Until next time!