AuthorNicholas Sabin


The Justice League – On The Level

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Friday, February 26th – Readers of my previous article on Pro Tour: Austin are familiar with how important socialization is to the Pro Tour experience – as much so for judges as it is for players. San Diego was exceptionally good, in that many of my favorite judges were on staff. However, this Pro Tour would be slightly different in content and context, as this was the Pro Tour at which I would test for Level Three.

The Justice League – New Year, New Prerelease

Grand Prix: Oakland!

Friday, January 29th – Prereleases tend to hit a sweet spot in terms of the best atmosphere for a tournament: casual players come to crack open new packs and play around with cards they’ve never played with before, experienced players come to trade or draft (in hopes of accumulating packs for later, private drafts), and we judges get to work our way through the wrenches thrown into our rules knowledge by new mechanics and peculiar interactions.

The Justice League – Fun in Elder Dragon Highlander

SCG 10k St. Louis Offers First Chances to Qualify for the 2010 StarCityGames.com Invitational!
Friday, December 4th – Friends, I am happy to state that it is a fantastic time to be an Elder Dragon Highlander enthusiast. Interest in the format is very strong. Wizards actually mentions EDH games as part of the Public Events schedule at Pro Tours – not to mention its inclusion in the Comprehensive Rules – and it’s become more likely that you can find a few one-hundred-card decks in your local playgroup than not.

The Justice League – Justice, Texas-Style

The StarCityGames.com $5,000 Standard Open Series Comes to Nashville!
Friday, October 30th – As the majority of my involvement in Magic these days revolves around tournament organization rather than judging, it was surprisingly relaxing to focus solely on being a judge for four days. I missed getting my hands dirty in giving rulings and answering questions. Even deck checks were fun again.

The Justice League – The Big Show

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Thursday, October 8th – The year is 2006. The location is Charleston, South Carolina. Your humble author, after a couple years of working PTQs and Prereleases in game stores and convention centers throughout New England, steps onto the floor of his first Pro Tour…

The Justice League – Adventures on the Other Side

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Thursday, September 3rd – There’s a fine balance that must be maintained between theory and practice. If you spend too much time doing, then there are many missed opportunities to better understand what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. If you spend too much time thinking, too much time theorizing about your potential actions, then it’s easy to overthink yourself into the trap of doing absolutely nothing and letting all that theory rot from disuse. So it goes with Magic – both in playing, and in judging.

The Justice League – Know Your Enemy

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Friday, July 31st – Magic is a useful game in that it tells us who our opponent is, what we’re fighting against. More often than not, it’s Faeries (or Kithkin, or whatever the Hot New Deck is nowadays). Sometimes it’s the fatigue of staying up until four in the morning playtesting, then waking up at six and driving four hours to a PTQ and getting there just in time to sign up.

The Justice League – Fun Times in Minneapolis

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Thursday, July 2nd – My official job title at Star City Games is Events Coordinator. This typically involves promoting our events, staffing them, and then traveling throughout the Southeast to run them. Although I’ve never actually counted, it’s a safe bet that I run some thirty to forty events every year, everything from Prereleases to PTQs.

The Justice League – Managing Expectations

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Wednesday, June 3rd – When Riki Hayashi introduced me (and the rest of the Justice League) to all you fine StarCityGames.com readers, he mentioned that I am an asker of questions. Now, to be truthful, I ask lots of questions. I like poking and prodding at the assumptions we hold in the DCI as judges. Now that I have an audience, allow me to poke and prod at the assumptions that we – yes, we, even though I don’t think I’ve played FNM in a year – hold as players. So let me ask you this…

The Justice League – Assembling Your Army

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Thursday, May 7th – It’s not very often that a 63/63 Legendary Human Warrior gets shut down by a 1/1 Frog. Yet there I was, staring down David Rappaport (a good friend and a great judge from Michigan), completely cold to his Spore Frog/Volrath’s Stronghold recursion. Meanwhile, Kresh the Bloodbraided glowered at me, craving blood and finding no joy.

The Justice League – Deconstructing Disqualifications

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Thursday, April 9th – A few weeks ago, we held a pair of PTQs at the Star City Game Center in Roanoke. Happily enough, I was able to judge both of them – head judge on Day 1, and then floor judge on Day 2 – and I would like to make particular note of the zero disqualifications issued over the weekend. Of course, there were warnings, and game losses, but no disqualifications.

The Justice League – Intro to Elder Dragon Highlander

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Thursday, March 5th – My name is Nicholas, and I’m an Elder Dragon Highlander junkie. I know that I mentioned an article about making tournaments more fun… but this article is not that article. However, playing EDH at a tournament is guaranteed to make it more fun, so I hope you’ll accept this tangential compromise.

The Justice League – Three Simple Things Judges Wish Players Knew

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Thursday, February 12th – Each tournament is a collaboration between the judges and the players. The players are responsible for competing fairly but competitively, and also responsible for picking up their trash. The judges are responsible for helping out when mistakes – whatever they may be – occur, and for telling players where the bathroom, ATM, and nearest cheap food are located. Seems pretty simple, right?