CASUAL FRIDAYS #70: Challenge In The City Of Angels

Anthony challenges The Ferrett to a multiplayer duel at PT:LA! Can a city so small contain the Twin Titans of Multiplayer? Well, probably.

Just a short one here this week, folks; it’s the holidays and I have children to spoil.

I am in the process of negotiating another reporting engagement with the Sideboard for Pro Tour: Los Angeles. (I know it is unusual to talk about such things during the actual negotiation stage; but I think Omeed Dariani and I have worked through the initial details and I’m pretty sure it’s going to happen again. I’m a weak-ass negotiator and he’ll get me for a song.) While I am out there, I would like to take the time to do some things that I didn’t get the chance to do while I was all breathless and new for my first gig in Chicago.

Well, actually, just one thing. I want to get a multiplayer game going.

It would be unofficial, of course. Off regular Pro Tour hours, probably at midnight or 5 a.m. or some other intellectually trying time. Many details to be worked out.

But seeing The Ferrett report on his Alaskan multiplayer challenge with Sheldon, Dave, and others, I think the time has come for us to try and do something high-profile, extremely low-stakes, that’s just done for the fun of it and follows some pretty basic rules.

I have not checked in with The Ferrett on this. (It’s way more fun to announce this as a surprise to him.) But I do know he will be in town. Nor have I checked in with Sheldon, who I hope will be at PT: LA judging again. He should be in it, too. (To which I reply, and I quote myself from a prior email to Anthony from 12/13: "If we’re both in LA, I’m gonna demand they back up two of the Feature Match tables and hold a Feature Multiplayer tourney with you, me, Sheldon, and whatever other StarCity writer is there." – The Ferrett)

Nor have I checked in with any number of people whom I’d love to see as part of it. Maybe it’s an invitation thing with all the players/writers you would love to see do this sort of thing. (We’d have to count out most Pros who are there to play, since one presumes they’d be resting up while we’re doing this. But I’ve already got some ideas here.) Maybe it’s not a single game; maybe it’s a bunch of games in different formats and whoever wants to do it, does it, whenever. I don’t know.

But I DO know that if I end up in Los Angeles that weekend, I will be seeking The Ferrett out. (Cue Yosemite Sam voice: "Ferrett!…Ferrett! I’m a callin’ yoo out, Ferrett!") (Cue Ferrett-as-Bugs-Bunny voice: "Eh, what’s up, doc?") And at some point, the two of us are going to try to find at least one other poor slob to play chaos with. It might be you, if you’re there.

If you’re interested in being part of this, and you’ll be in Los Angeles the first weekend of February, drop the Ferrett and/or me a line and let us know. We’ll probably set up SOME method of bringing in potential participants. (My vote for an entry criterion: You have to have sent in a deck for this month’s Break this Card contest. Neat segue, eh? I haven’t done an official tally yet, but we’re already cruising at about fifty entries. Not at all bad, given that it’s Christmas week! I feel really bad about banning Shyft late; I will still absolutely count those entries toward the total, since it benefits readers to have them counted and increase the chances that I’ll give out five prizes instead of one or two. I will also probably still feature a deck or two that uses Shyft, IF I already received it before the banning and IF it’s incredibly well-done. In any event, send in your Sliver-Queen-free, Shyft-free deck right away! The Coalition, whoever the heck they are, is counting on YOU.)

I will spend the next two weeks confirming my presence in Los Angeles, setting up rules with Sheldon, and working basic thoughts out with The Ferrett. I hope this will work out. If not, there will be other Pro Tour events where we can do something on the side that’s nifty and group-oriented. Either The Ferrett or I will update you on this whole mess.

Okay, I promised myself I would keep it short this week. Back to my holiday plans! COMING SOON: I infiltrate a new group of players, back in my home town. And a funky casual duel showdown…

Anthony Alongi