The Trashalanche Pokemon Podcast

Qualifying for Worlds, Baltimore meta, Palkia, Charizard, Brent coughing & more

September 08, 2022 Brent Halliburton Season 1 Episode 100
The Trashalanche Pokemon Podcast
Qualifying for Worlds, Baltimore meta, Palkia, Charizard, Brent coughing & more
Transcript
Brent:

I assume you guys saw Isaiah shovel's treat and the tons of discussion about the number of juniors and seniors.

Brit:

Yeah, yeah. Or even too, like with, uh, Frank also has the, have the tweet about the go numbers in Peoria. Just no one to go. I, I remember this, like even at one point in time, this would've been the 2011 regionals. I think this was at one point in time, TCG and VGC were just entirely separate events. Like I think they would always converge at nationals and worlds, but they were, it, this was, I think the first time they were like at the same event and there was only like 30, 40 people, you know, something like that. And I, I would think go, go has the same problem as VGC, but just like times a hundred, I think. Or at least this is what it seems to me. I don't actually know. I haven't played Pokegear Pokegear Pokegear go since 2016, but seems like the barrier of entry is near impossible, but there might be a black market for accounts.

Brent:

Strange thing to me about Pokegear Pokegear Pokegear go is like. I guess people are aware that they can't just go compete if they're filthy casuals. Like that kind of surprises me a little bit, you know?

Mike:

Yeah. Cause you, you do get some of that in the cards. Right. People just show up with like random Jan mm-hmm yeah. A

Brent:

little bit, but like, like, it seems to me like the barrier for, uh, um, like being a filthy casual and thinking you're pretty good at the game. It would be like even lower if you are a kid with a switch, you know? Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. Like you show me a kid with a switch and I'll show you a kid that thinks he's really good at that game. Right. Doesn't even matter what the game is.

Brit:

I wonder, I wonder if that's something that like, as you know, eSports has become, you know, more of a culturally like mainstream institution or what have you, I wonder if that like. You know, the beginner's like delusion of like, I'm, I'm good amongst my friends. I think I could go compete. I wonder if that's like gone down over time. Like that seems reasonable to me. Like the more you're the more content is available, like broadcast, Twitch, and so on. Like, I, I guess the, the realism of it is like easier to understand in terms of just like, can I show up and do well on my first time? Cause I don't know. Like, I feel like so many of us, like regardless of the hobby card games, fighting games, smash brothers, you know, whatever it may be. I don't know. Maybe Fortnite too. Um, things like that. Like, you know, we all go in at least at a certain point or at least when we young, when we were younger and be like, I think I'm gonna do okay. And just gotten washed in, in whatever it might be. Um, but yeah, it's just like, I guess kind of a random thought my guess would be yes, that there's there there's some correlation between between that. And like, maybe that this is why like numbers sort of are dipping this way and like equally, like we, we talk about this all the time. How. You know, back in the day, you would play four, five rounds before maybe hitting a real Meta deck. And that's just not true anymore. Like you just basically can't, um, you know, you might get one, one tournament, something random, but for the most part at any regionals, you're, you're playing real decks the entire time now. And so that's, you know, definitely just like, you know, all in line with this kind of, um, like progression and evolution and so on in terms of information and content across multi Mew, multiple medias and social medias, and so on. Yeah, it's probably

Brent:

true. I mean, I, I guess kids today, they would be like, I already went on the internet and found out that like I had no, absolutely nothing. Right, right. I mean, even,

Brit:

you know, even, even to use like Walker as an example, I just can't even, you know, of course, as a kid, I had these fantasies, I would've, I would've loved to have been this good at anything at his age, but I, I just, I don't feel like, you know, the, the sort of avenues were there for, you know, a youth prodigy, at least in like video games or something to really just like, I don't know. That would just be so crazy to me. You know, obviously like, I, I would've, I would, you know, have dreams of doing something like that all the time as a kid, but like, yeah. I mean, I guess that's just more, I think, more in line with just how, how eSports and, you know, the, the networks and stuff to get better are just like EX exploded over the past, you know, decade or five years, whatever it may be.

Brent:

Right. Right. I mean, like, like there's that documentary about like the guy that was the best in the world at Pacman or whatever, and it's like, They had no way to really know if they were good. Like, they were like, I'm better than everybody. I know, but like, am I actually good? and even when you watch the documentary, you're like, it seems like a random collection of characters that somehow randomly heard about this thing got together. There could still be like 10 more guys, way better than that guy right

Brit:

now. Like searching for Bobby Fisher or something like that. Like that's why references that I guess data and other people just not understand.

Brent:

All right. Let me do the intro real quick because I know people have been missing it for, uh, two weeks now. Oh, welcome to, uh, the Trashalanche our, our introduction is Chris Webb's Webster's laboratory. We appreciate the fact that he seems cool about such things. Attendance is a hundred. We're sponsored by TCG player, which is now sponsored by or owned by eBay, the ongoing aggregation of, of all card acquisitioning systems that continues. Um, we have a five star review guys,

Brit:

come in, help

Brent:

me do this podcast. Come on, help me. Let's do it. Um, the latest in five star reviews deck and cover wrote five stars, podcast deserves so much more attention. There's a lot of strong and helpful analysis here from three smart and insightful players.

Brit:

Yeah. Well, thank you. Welcome back, Brent. Yeah, I've noticed that our, um, our download numbers seem to sort of be consistently up, which is, which is nice. Um, hopefully, you know, I, new viewers out there,

Brent:

I don't post world's momentum guys. Like. There, there were no other podcasts recording, like the day after world. So you guys, you guys really took the Bulu by

Brit:

the horns there. Oh,

Mike:

that's true. Yeah. Yeah. That was super

Brent:

strong play

Mike:

Azul and chip had to postpone just cuz chip had a kid.

Brit:

That was just literally what I was about to say. We just got lucky chip had a kid they're off the air for a week. great work

Brent:

team. Great work. We love it. Um, uh, and, and great interview with, uh, uh, Liam, uh, last week guys. Uh, uh, mean you guys, you guys turned out the best pods for the last two weeks. Really? Really good stuff.

Brit:

Yeah. Thank you. It was, uh, good to have him. I mean, I'd have him on any times, you're the world champion

Brent:

on the

Brit:

podcast. What

Mike:

up exactly. We couldn't ask for a, a better guest.

Brent:

It was totally crazy. So I, I had, I had one thing that I wanted to talk about. From, um, you guys interview with Liam that I thought was really interesting exactly. And worth, uh, talking about for a second, you guys asked about whether or not he was, uh, happy that he had kind of won in his last year. Mm-hmm like Sebastian still has a whole nother year to go. And Liam had said that he, he wished he'd won and was still a senior. And like I'm allowed to take all that at face value. But I remember, uh, I guess six years ago now he did that at juniors, uh, when he won the national championship. And like we spent all the next year feeling like there was a target on our. Oh,

Mike:

oh, he won. He won in juniors and still had a year in juniors. Yeah. Hmm.

Brit:

That's how I, that's how I thought of it. I think I don't remember how I worded on the podcast, but that's definitely how I would've thought. I just, well, yeah, now, now you don't, you don't have to prove yourself again or something. You, you have like, oh, I think that's what I said. Like, you kind of had this natural excuse. Like if you crush it great. If you don't like understandable kind thing, like, like not to say that I don't expect him to succeed very easily, but, uh,

Brent:

you, I know, I know, uh, uh, who could talk a little about how we had that like curse of second place and, you know, I know, I mean, in seniors, he got second at Collinsville regionals, but in juniors, the following year, he got like second at like three or four regionals. And, and like every time, like almost every regional, it felt like a failure, you know? Like you got to the final one. I was like, I'm better than that kid, man. I pounded that kid 10 times already. Mm-hmm and, and the fact that we could not like, repeat that success in, in the first wave of ICS, uh, cuz obviously like that next year was they introduced ICS and like on the one hand, you know, I mean we got a lot of stipends and the stipends were easy to get and like all that good stuff, but like it was rough. And I remember the, the thing that like the, the like visceral reaction I had when you guys were talking with Liam about that was the first regional after that was Orlando and everybody was playing and we played at two that like fright night Eve deck, that was, that was the season and Liam lost round one. And he like had the win if he had one more turn mm-hmm but uh, Um, uh, loses, oh, like loses on a coin flip. It was like the guy like flips heads on two hammers in a row or something and like that's the game. Um, and he went on the board the next turn, uh, if he had flipped tails on either one and like the kid, the kid has no idea who I am. Parents have no idea who I am, but like the parents are sitting right behind us, like back to back. And the kid like runs over. He's like, I just beat Liam Halliburton. And the parents are like, oh my God, you go kid. Yeah. And I was like, Jesus Christ. It's gonna be like this. All you hear.

Brit:

That's like the most frustrating experience I like have had that happen to me at just various times when I was okay at the game or well ranked or what have you. And it's just like, I don't know. I, I guess you, you know, I don't don't wanna, I guess I'm understand where they're coming from, but it definitely like. Just makes me mad or just like, ah, there's a more graceful way to do this, I guess.

Brent:

Yeah. Like, like I understood and I don't blame him and I don't hold it against him or anything like that. But like, like I was just like, man, we are in for that. Every single loss we have for the rest of the year, it's just gonna be like that. Right. So, so, uh, um, so in that way it's like super stressful, but the other, the other, uh, uh, thing that I wanted to contribute to that discussion from last week, uh, just because when I thought about it, I, I thought, I know Brit feels this too. And Mike you've probably felt it at moments and, and like coming off of the big players cup success, uh, uh, probably turn the tables. Like it was nice to get the win because it's validating, you know, like sometimes you just wonder, uh, you know, is that gonna happen anymore? Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. And. Like I, you know, I know like going into, when he won nationals in 2016, like we felt like he was good. We thought he was, you know, one of the best juniors, but like he'd never had a best junior outcome. You know, like Caden high had one, like three regionals that year, like, uh, landed. Frank had won like seven regionals that year. Like we thought he was good, but he was like, you know, one of those kids that top eights, a lot of 'em, but like loses in top eight every time. And I was like, man, I feel like we're better than that. But like, it's just how I feel. We've never seen that validated. Like, I, I felt like nobody else felt like that, you know, mm-hmm and you, uh, and then I know Liam felt like almost like he was like more accepted by his peer group or viewed the way he wanted to be by his peer group. After he got that win,

Mike:

you know? Yeah. I mean, it's unfortunate that like, he felt that way but I guess it's probably realistic. Right, right. Yeah.

Brent:

Yeah. So, so the, the fact that like, like, you know, I mean, everybody, um, I think feels like they're probably now, you know, I mean everybody's above average, right? everybody probably thinks they're like a little better than their performance, like validates. So, you know, when you get that, uh, um, Ultimate validation, you're like it's about time. Yeah. And, and for like, at least that bright shining moment until he gets absolutely bodied up in masters in Baltimore. He's like, there we go. Right.

Mike:

Well, when we were talking about it last week, I think Brit, you said that in some ways, masters is a little bit easier, you think, right? Because seniors, there's just a, since the age groups are so small, there's a very high concentration of players that are going for the stipends and going for the travel awards. And so, um, in some ways it's, it is, it's much more likely to play against a below average player in masters than seniors.

Brit:

Yeah. Yeah. Just the concentration of stipend, chasers, everyone in everyone in seniors, you know, there's 70 kids or whatever. Most of them are day two worlds, probably masters. You might, you might start hitting Azul. People like that around six, seven, you know, if you're doing really well, but before then, it's probably just a bunch of people like you trying after their big break too.

Brent:

Well, I mean, yes and no, right? Like, uh, um, I mean, people are good, right? You're you're not gonna, you're gonna bump into Meta every round. Like I know like Milwaukee and AIC were hard. Like all those rounds were hard, you know? Yeah. So was hard. Like

Brit:

are hard, players are good. I think, you know, the general play quality has been going up. Like I just, just off the top of my head, I remember just like one of my Milwaukee rounds. Like, I dunno if it was a named player, anyone with an invite, but they played really well. They, they played, you know, I was on Pia and they were on RCS Inteleon and I was very impressed with their play. It's just, again, like, uh, you know, just to compare it to the good old days that, you know, might not have happened at an, for an entire tournament, you know, playing someone like truly capable again. And so much of that has to do how with like less events, how we'd have to split up for everything. Multiple regionals wanting running at once, blah, blah, blah. But yeah, it's hard. It's definitely hard, I think. And um, I guess as we look to, as we wait patiently to hear, uh, what we're playing for this year in terms of, or what we need to be playing for in terms of championship points, I guess, I don't know. It's always good to cash your expectations somewhat, realistically, like, you know, even you might, you're not, you're not Azul, so don't, don't expect Azul Azul results right out the gate. Like top 64 might be really good for where you are in the game.

Brent:

I know it's hard to put a number on it, but like, man, it seems like they could put a number on

Mike:

it. You know what, how many championship points we need. Yeah. Okay. Let's talk, let's talk about this for a few minutes. We can talk about some of the news and lack thereof. Um, so I know people, the big thing people on Twitter seem to be angry about recently is no dates for the Latin American international. Yeah.

Brent:

And that, that one seems unforgivable to me. Yeah. It's in November. That's what they've told us. It's in it's in November.

Mike:

It's like two and a half months away. People need to book flights. Uh,

Brent:

maybe it's two months away. Like we could be beginning of November, they haven't said, right,

Mike:

right, right. Like that's really bad. Um, where less than two weeks away from the start of the season. And we don't know, uh, we don't know days for worlds. We don't know championship point requirements. We don't know. We don't know stuff. People need to make plans and this like, especially this year yeah. Like you guys asked me if I was going to the Peoria and I was like, I'm not going to anything, unless I know besides Baltimore, Baltimore is really close. I got really lucky that that's the first event, but like, I, I kind of have two options. I'm almost certainly going to Japan anyway. So I need to know if. It's realistic that I can go to three or four regionals and get my invite, or if it's not, and if it's not, I'm not gonna go to three or four. I'll probably just go to two, maybe three tops, um, and save my money to go to Japan. Um, if, if I need, if it's kind of like on the border, maybe I need to go to like four or five, I'll consider it. But like, I just need to, I need to know that. And there's probably lots of people that are somewhere on the spectrum of wanting to play, but not sure. And people just gotta make plans. and it's, uh, pretty annoying to not have the full picture, even anything close to a full picture. Yeah. Unless you,

Brit:

unless you're, uh, uh, Gabe smart, he's just like, here's, here's my list. It's everything. Right, right, right. It's everything. It doesn't matter for,

Mike:

it doesn't matter for the people that are like going to everything anyway, you know, and that's maybe 20 people. In north America, 20 people in masters, I should say. And then it doesn't matter for anybody that would just go play like their locals and their local regional either. But there's a, you know, there's a fairly sized chunk of day one-ish type of players that that's, who's kind of like getting screwed right now.

Brent:

And, and I, you know, as I think, uh, the Baltimore signup data indicates, uh, few, you know, there's this implication that there are parents that are willing to fly their kids around everywhere, but like Regan REL just aged up. Yo like there's, there's, uh, I, I guess Benny Bellinger is still a senior. I think like there's only a handful of seniors left that I think people would think of as like super hardcore, you know,

Mike:

Creates openings for anybody that does want to start doing that, right? Yeah.

Brent:

Yeah. I mean, uh, Crobat probably the people that are wanting to do it are people that are gonna get stipends.

Brit:

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Right. I feel like, I feel like this is definitely gonna be the season. Just a ton of people sort of in Mikey's described scenario one where it's just like, I'm just gonna go to Japan. I think, you know, I'm a, I'm a proud and happy member of the PT, CG community. Gonna do my best at what I go to, but nah, it's just, I'd rather, you know, we can just sort of worlds isn't the end all deal. Um, yeah, definitely. Like, that's definitely like, I am similarly like ended up, I did not register was locked out of Baltimore initially, but I I've snuck in on, on the second wave that opened up mostly just sort of to tag in, um, Brent and Mikey, it being a like convenient one and then Peoria is just like. Close enough. So I definitely just like planned to go to the, the Midwest ones, uh, like only, and then like, after that, we'll see. Um, but yeah, and I guess, I guess other sort of newsworthy, uh, topic is confirmation on local stuff coming back next year, which, um, I think that was like, I don't really remember how we framed it. Um, if this was, if we thought this way at all, but it seemed likely, I think that, and people were jumping the gun to sort of being like, cause the initial wording was like, you know, it was just clear that it was on this year. It was not clear that it would be in general. But now this confirmation that I don't know if it necessarily means cups and challenges, but at the very least, uh, just like sanctioned local stuff will be coming back next year.

Brent:

I mean, if they redo cups and challenges, I would be a big fan of that. Cause like cups and C stupid to me today.

Brit:

Agreed.

Brent:

If, if they said we're gonna redo the whole cup and challenge model to like, create more of a like tournaments that only people that haven't been to, that many tournaments can do or something and like, uh, uh, some alternate structure for cups. I have no idea. What, how, how much would you be okay with them saying also we're not gonna announce points until January or is it like,

Brit:

I mean, it's just so asinine. If that's the case, why not? Why not do what they're doing for VGC and just be like, no season until January, you know? Yeah. You know, whatever it is. It's just like, why, why leave us in the dark? Why not just wait for rotation or whatever? I don't know. Um, but yeah, I, I agree. I think, I don't think, I think we've like missed just in the, we had the world's recap in the last week. I don't think we were a little behind the times and the angry discourse on locals. Good locals, bad. Um, but I, I completely agree with Brent. Like I don't, it's not that like they're good or bad. I just, I do think some like restructuring, um, could be very, very beneficial to, um, the more casual side of the competitive scene as well as the stipend grinders. Um, what that might be. I'm not sure, you know, I'm not, I'm not against them, um, giving CP per se, but I, I do think that sort of like a bit of a divide, like, especially with challenges, like I feel like just depending I think some of it, I guess depends on sort of your own scene, like the, the quality of your, your local scene. But speaking personally, my local scenes are, um, I'm or at least historically, I don't really know how times have changed, but like. Generally, like, I was really the only person traveling, like not, um, and I was just like playing against people who only played at that store, like all the time. And I think that's sort of like the negative environment. Like, I don't think you, you don't want your, your gr your stipend grinders, like in that environment every weekend. I think this just kind of like a feels bad for like those sorts of players and things like that. Um, and it just, you, for those super duper grinders, it's just like, no, no days off. It's just like another three weeks, you know, another, another, every weekend. There's just something. And like, I also like the idea that like, cups are fine, just don't don't, um, let them count for the stipends, um, as well. Like, I think that's a fine idea too.

Mike:

Yeah, that seems like the best medium for me. It seems like such a easy solution to include, because you do want. People that are only able to travel a little bit for regionals to have a realistic shot. I think that's to get a day one invite, obviously not a day, two one, but I think that's like a reasonable thing to have within a season. Maybe there's a philosophy that TP C I would wanna make worlds more exclusive if they wanna do that. There's a lot more things that they should be doing than just like getting rid of local CP. But if they wanna keep the same philosophy they have for a long time, there's gotta be some mechanism to gain significant Mew, significant amounts of championship points just from local events. Whether those count for day two and stipend stuff, I'm very okay with that. Not being the case, but, uh, I really do think there has to be some local thing for, for that.

Brent:

So if they announced what if they had like. I mean, this is ridiculous. I mean, I wonder if they could have some sort of like two tier system where they say people who are like, are more on the grind and going to regionals versus like, I feel like one of the problems that they might have when you look at juniors and seniors is, I mean, there might just not be anybody that shows up for locals. Who's gonna qualify for worlds. If you have 48 seniors going to Baltimore regionals. Oh

Mike:

yeah, yeah, yeah. Just in general. Yeah. That's true. Like,

Brent:

like, I feel like they're gonna feel pressure to, like, they're gonna wanna, I mean, maybe this is part of the information that they're looking for when they don't reveal this Unformer information as they, as we go into, uh, um, uh, the start of the season. But like, I mean, they better, they better be just giving away points like candy, if they want kids to qualify for worlds. Cause like no kids are entering, like, but conversely, what are you gonna do? Just invite every kid. And, but like, If you wanna have the representation we've historically had, you're kind of gonna do that, right?

Brit:

Yeah. Weird. Thing's complicated. Just sort of have this like general sense or at least like, just like C practices, just like using their brains. They're like waiting for some like AI algorithm to tell them what's something silly rather than something practical. But I think, and this, this is an idea that I also think like ass, the like local problem, but I don't, it's not something that I think would ever happen, but I just think, I think there just needs to be like one. I think you can, you should award worlds invites a little more generously, like at regionals, like at ICS, like top four are better send them to worlds. Like that seems fine to me. Um, and equally too, I just, I think like, you know, I think like the, the pro tour grant pre sort of dynamic. I don't actually know if that still exists. Like to my knowledge competitive, like physical events in magic is just sort of a horrible mess right now. Um, but in the day I was like, you had your grand PR, which were your big, big open tournaments. And then the pro tour was the hard, hard stuff to qualify for. Um, and, and I think having some sort of middle ground like that is, it would be a good thing insofar as like you incentivize players to qualify for, you know, a tier of tournaments that isn't the world championships, but it, like, it makes locals matter. Say like winning a cup sends you to the grain Prix, you know, to, to the, the regionals plus or something like that. Like, um, if, you know, adding like complicated, you know, another layer to the competitive structure, but I think like state championships, would've like been what this tournament I'm proposing. Like that's what it would be in something like that. And I, I I've missed states, frankly. I think, I think I've thought that was always such a wonderful, uh, middle ground between cities and regionals, but, you know, most states largely existed in that time period when cities were only in the winter, um, when there was no cups year round, it was just the cup equivalent in like November to January or something like that. Um, and then states before regionals and then just kinda like the one regionals in the spring. But yeah, I mean, I think just in general that, you know, all of these things, not, not just locals are not, but just the regionals in general, the ICUs in general, I think the entire circuit really could use a restructuring. Um, and I think there's a lot of very positive directions they can go. Um, and I think just we've been on this current model for, you know, 5, 4, 5 years now. I guess it's hard to count with the COVID years. Um, But I, it is just exhausting. I think like I'm trying to, you know, just ask any of these players who have been top six team a couple years in a row in masters. And, you know, I think they would, they would play less tournaments if it meant they had to do do better at, at more events, like something like that. Like, and I do agree. Like, I, again, like I hear people on, you know, it's a complicated topic talking about like the, you know, you didn't earn your world's invite. You only played at cups kind of thing. And I just like, you know, it should worlds be exclusive or not like it is sort of its own question. Um, but I think that, um, I sort, I lost my train of thought. Um, maybe it'll

Brent:

come back to me. you know, I liked, I liked the point that you're making, uh, Mike would, it would split the difference pretty well. If they said we haven't announced the point targets, there will be point targets, but, uh, um, for like, The next three tournaments, you know, Baltimore Peoria, salt lake city, top eights, get their invite.

Brit:

Yeah, that'd be great.

Brent:

All of a sudden Mike would be like, shit, we're going to Peoria kids. Let's go. Yeah,

Mike:

yeah, yeah. Looking how to fly. Oh man. Flying there. He's miserable. By the way. Like Brent, you Brent, you can drive, I assume. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Looked any flights to

Brent:

that. I looked at a bunch of flights, although I realized that we have a commitment that weekend and cannot go. Oh, okay. Okay. But, but I looked at flights and I was like, I should fly to Chicago and rent the car and drive two more hours. After I fly to Chicago, that's a perfectly logical and reasonable thing people would do.

Mike:

it's so weird. It's such a weird place. Like it's like having to fly to like, uh, Trenton, New Jersey. Trenton has an airport. But you're not gonna fly there, like yeah. Yeah. Come on.

Brent:

How do people get to Fort

Brit:

Wayne? Uh, I was just gonna say Fort Wayne. I was just gonna bring that up. Cause I think that's a similar example of just like, why are we here the one

Brent:

time, the one time we went as a family, we, we flew into indie and drove down and that was like hour and a half. And, and we got to Fort Wayne. Yeah. My wife was like, what are we doing here?

Mike:

the only time I, I went to Fort Wayne, we drove like 10

Brit:

hours. yeah. Yeah. It was always about a drive for Mewtwo. Um, but I don't know. I think a lot of it is just, I guess some of this has come up somewhat. Recently, like in so far as like how much of the tournament organizers making should players be making more? And I think what the answer is like, no, that's why we're here. Um, you know, like that's why we have this convention center and not like the other ones. And I think, well, like the Collinsville dynamic is a really good example of like, I think we would be in St. Louis if it were like cost, cost effective for them to be in. Cause it used to be like in St. Charles and other parts of the city that were much, much more convenient and much more part of Louis, but Collinsville is just in the middle is just, is nothing town it's just close to St. Louis. Um, um, I'm not sure. I like, I guess being optimistic probably is rarely paid off when it comes to T PCI decision making, but I'm hoping I'm hoping something new, especially with, uh, waiting on rotation and everything else too. Um, but it's, it's definitely a, a, a strange time, but I think it's the end of the day, if, um, just forget all the world's point stuff, just, you know, play the game, play your best, go to, go to the tournaments you want, um, and figure it out from there. I think just like the, the important point that you can be like a good player and, you know, even if you and I, that's something I think a lot about too, like I'm, I'm less interested in. Certain, like, I'm not thinking of anyone specifically, but lots of like certain types of stipend chases really never do well. Like they just add everything and it's, it's enough points that they, they, they stay in, in the top 16, the top 22. And like, those players don't interest me, like the players, the players that go the whole season with zero top eights, but stipends the whole time, like I'm much more interested, like show me the, you know, the, the working dad who only plays two tournaments a year and like makes top 16 at both of them. Like that. That's far more interesting to me. Like, I think far more like laudable accomplishment than just like hanging in there on the, just of sort of share Vileplume of tournaments.

Brent:

Yeah. You just wonder how, how, uh, sustainable the, uh, gay, real smart commitment to everything is, right? Yeah.

Mike:

Yeah.

Brent:

Um, so guys, we should, uh, we should talk about the Baltimore metaphor, hot. Um, uh, my, my working assumption is you're gonna play radiant

Brit:

charar

Mike:

I like charar a lot. Um, it's definitely one of my top considerations and it'd be cool to, you know, be able to play the deck in the format that it was designed for. And I got to work on, um, I'm a little hesitant though for a couple reasons. The three main things is, and we talked about it a little bit last week. Um, canceling clone and Paia makes the match up really, really, really, really hard. Uh, it's winnable, but it's much harder. You have to kind of change how you play a little bit. Um, number two is the deck is an Inteleon deck and it's slow. And so it's, you know, you're just more prone to ties if you are not careful, you know, whether that means playing a really long game one, And then game two, doesn't finish or playing really, really, really fast to make sure three games finished, uh, kind of will depend on the situation. Um, but so you're gonna go to time a lot of the rounds, and it's not the easiest deck to play. It's not like a super, it's a pretty, it's a relatively linear deck, right? It's not like this, these other Inteleon toolbox decks where you have all these different attackers, but you have to know like every turn, you know, this is what I wanna do. Can I do it with my resources available? Cuz you know, there's not too much randomness, it's all searching, but you really have to like map out your turns and multiple turns in our, in a row. So it's pretty exhausting. Uh, and doing that for a lot of rounds is gonna be exhausting. Um, and three is that it seems so much more play in these online tournaments like tonight. It's one of the late night tournaments, it's, uh, five or 250 people and it's the third, most popular deck. So that worries me a little bit as well, because do I really wanna be playing the third, most popular deck when part of the draw to it was that it wasn't gonna be that right.

Brent:

The sneaky surprise

Mike:

is gone. Right? Exactly. So, so that's kind of where I'm at. Um, I like it, but I don't love it anymore.

Brent:

Makes sense. Makes sense. What, what else is

Brit:

on the table?

Mike:

Um, I like P a lot. It's just a really good deck. um, boring, but it is,

Brent:

I, I get the feeling. Liam is not gonna play Paia and I'm like, my, my response to him was. Aren't you supposed to play it until you lose

Mike:

Yeah, that seems reasonable.

Brit:

Um,

Brent:

like I remember talking to Isaiah Williams after he won, uh, um, O O C I C with zap and he showed up at St. Louis and he was gonna play like Zoroark rock. And I was like, dude, aren't you supposed to? Just like, I mean, you're, you're the best Arceus player in the world right now. You should just keep playing Zappos. Right. and he was like, nah, you know, I think the Meta games evolved, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And then like five minutes before the tournament starts, he is like, then plays Z

Mike:

Yeah. Yeah. Like, and that's why, like, I think a lot of the people that have been playing PA will just continue to play it because it's just so good. Yeah. And I think it's just, it it's like not the most consistent deck in the format, but it's the most, um, Like when it goes, it goes, and there's really not much that can beat it. Like if you go first and get a good start, even the hardest counters to the deck will not beat you, which is really appealing.

Brent:

Yeah. Yeah. Although I recognize there's gonna be a lot more, uh, of this new ADP. I love the people call it ADP. So, but, and, and like, obviously that, that makes it much tougher.

Mike:

Yeah. But like the matchup is not that bad. I mean, the Jolteon version's bad, but even though like you go first, it's

Brit:

fine.

Brent:

Right, right. I mean, if you, if you just like rating Gria, I mean, once again, the canceling cologne play is a super strong play. If you just B double, like, okay, you got there. Good job. Yeah. How about you, Brit? What are you testing?

Brit:

Uh, I've tested a lot or I would say I've definitely tested. Arceus like Melmetal in things the most of anything, um, started with Aron initially and kind moved on to like an old deck, basically in like RCS, Carbonite. Um, I actually went on a 13 game, win streak with it this morning, which was really cool. Um, but it, it still in the same way that I, like, I like Aron a lot. It just like never, I'm never very convinced that it's good playing it. And I like feel much more STR much strongly Mew. I don't know what I'm trying to say. I feel better about the core Aite version, but it still like, just doesn't feel like a lot of agency sometimes in the matchups. Like it's still the SLS to Mew sometimes. And so I'm, I guess to be clear, I'm talking about like, Arceus, it's basically Frank perk and Zacian S deck from Vancouver with KO. I, and Crobat. VMax and so on. Um, and you still can just like lose a Mew even with like a lot of stuff, which is very frustrating. Um, and yeah, I just sort of in this weird position, RCS, where I just, just kind bad going second, most of the time, like, and somewhat similarly, like, I don't think they really have all that much come potential. Like once you fall behind with RCS, it just feels like you're dead. Um, because like, you know, the, the water versions are different. I don't know, like if RCS Inteleon still exists, but when you have the Melony, you, you have a little, you know, that's your way back into the game. If you miss an attachment or you need, you need an attack out of nowhere. Um, but it just, it feels bad. I feel, I feel like a lot of ways. If you don't just have a very, very powerful start with RCS and just like, it feels so hard to win almost anything like you're not playing Roxanne. You do obviously play path and Marnie and things like that. But, um, struggle. Um, so in terms, that's what I played the most. I, I do really like am considering the deck for sure. I'd like to get more games with it, but I, my, my main thoughts are exactly the same as Mikey, like, and like, is like, to me, that seems like it has the most comeback potential kind of on that same complaint that I'm talking about RCS. Like you can still win games if you fall behind. And it just, it doesn't feel that way with, with certain decks, like. You just, you know, against Mew, like, and they get the, like the Mewtwo atta knockout, like you just lose, I think too, because in a lot of, in a lot of matchups against Mew, like you have to play such, such a particular prize game against them that like, once their foot's on the gas, you just, there's so little, you can do, it's just, it's just half and pre. And that again, there's the, the lack of agency, which doesn't feel very good, um, to play against. Um, and charar, we talked about it a little bit last week. Charar has a really good Mew Mew match up and that's because it can come back that's because it can, you know, it it's prize game is just, is just so much is so good. And it, it doesn't matter, you know, sort of getting your, your, your face stomped in the first couple turns. And I just, I just really don't think that's true for RCS stack in a lot of ways. Um, and Pia PS, just Pia, I think it's the most consistent deck. Um, it's very, it has room for textable, stormy cologne, you know, handful of handful of interesting choices to round out those last five cards or so. Um, but I guess on, on the other hand, I have been testing a lot of, um, Arceus Pika versus Paia, and at least in the games I've been playing it, it was not Arceus Pika was winning way more than I thought it would be. Like, I thought it would maybe be pretty even. I think it, it feels about like six, four for Arceus Pika. Um, I don't know. I don't know if there's really any cards Pia can play that can change that. And again, this is just like going back to, I think a lot of these matchups just aren't all that dynamic or at least they don't, they don't feel like. They have all that much agency to them. And that that's how bad this matter feels to Mewtwo in that like, as the P player, if, if they just like fumble in benching their Pikachu, it's, it's an auto win. Like they just can't do anything against you. Uh, but then they have those games where they, they go first and bench to Pikachu and like knock out Pia or something. And then it's just like, there's nothing you can do. Um, and so, yeah, like I think there's a lot of like interesting matchups, but a lot of times it's just, I think always circling back to kind of the core problem in the game is that, um, just there in a lot of interaction between players, it's just two players, soaring against each other. You look up once, once every other turn to see if you've got a boss KO. Um, and that's just kind of it, but yeah, just, I feel like Def feel, I guess I'll probably be surprised not to just play like. Vanilla Pia, but I'm basically testing everything else. But if I, if I don't feel good, um, about any of them, I think I'll definitely play Pia.

Brent:

So did you test, have you tested ice Rider at all? Like, I feel like that's the, uh, um, like watery twin of, of these like RCS cite, RCS Aron. Um,

Brit:

no, I haven't. And I, I haven't heard, heard of, you know, a little, a little word, you know, whispers of it potentially being a very popular play. Um, and for me, I just feel like HAkia has a very, has a, not very, um, but has a very, has a clear, favorable matchup against ice Rider and like, again, so in my head, I'm probably playing Pia. I don't mind playing against ice Rider Pia. Cause I feel like it's that one is also probably six, four. 55 45, like somewhere in there, I feel like P should have the advantage, um, compared to the ice Rider version. But no, I, I haven't tested it, um, seems pretty easy to play. Um, it's, you know, less sequencing than assuming we're playing, you know, grant man leafing BI engine, that just seems easier to play than doing all these like triple shady dealing turns. Inteleon so that's my mind's been more on like that, that kind of sequencing. Um, but it should be on the table, I suppose. And I guess equally that's part of why I'm like, like the Melmetal friends, because I feel like that will just be like a huge, a very easy matchup for me. Um, I feel like I can stomp two Pia and ice Rider. Either Aron or Carbonite um, so yeah, I think that's part of it too, but no, I haven't tested it. It's very, it's very plainly a good deck. Um,

Mike:

yeah, I've played it a bit. I played it more leading up to worlds since worlds and the list that I was playing was very similar to one that grant and Azul ended up playing ended up playing. So I feel like I have a pretty good understanding of, of the deck and to call it this kind of the same thing. The equivalent, the water equivalent of Arceus is pretty accurate in that when you draw pretty well and you get ahead, you're a bit stronger of a deck than like hockey Inteleon Inteleon because you don't have, you have a little bit more tools in the different attacking. You're not quite as weak to something like Marnie and Roxanne. But you just don't have access to the things that you need at any given time. And so you just end up running into a lot of awkward situations where you're like, I need to BI into one of the cards so that I can ARITA for the other card. And if you don't hit one of them off the BI, then it's not great. The thing also about it for me. And I've also found this playing Arceus flying Pikachu is that there's lots of matchups where you can't even really bench. Bidoo for BI, because then it throws off your prize game too much. So like, versus Pia, both of those decks really don't wanna bench Bidoo for BI, if they can avoid it, because then Pia, it makes the game play much easier for Pia to go like 3, 2, 1 on the prizes, the Gria, the Bidoo and hit, uh, the ice Rider or flying Pikachu. They finish the KO on the VMax and they KO a two Prizer. And if they're able to do that, the match ups almost always quite favorable for, uh, for Paia. So you're playing these spots for consistency, but you don't always really get a benefit for them. And then you don't have a way to recover from, uh, Mew, uh, Roxanne, Marty type of stuff. So it's really, it's a little awkward. I, I, I do agree. The deck is definitely good. Um, and. I am. It is probably like my third choice after ARD and PO Inteleon, but I just don't feel as much. Uh, what was the word you were saying? Brit? I don't feel as much agency agency. Yeah. In, in your game plan. Now on the flip side, though, you don't have to worry about Jolteon, which is something that we haven't really mentioned as we were talking about wanting to play Inteleon decks. Um, Jolteon, hasn't been super popular on the online events since worlds. And I think that kind of makes a little bit of sense. We, I think we talked about it last week or the week before, uh, the Jolteon version of any of these decks is much worse against just the straight Viv versions of like Arceus Pika. Um, it's worse against Mew. Uh, it's worse against anything else. That's not Inteleon. And so. I don't know, but that is something for the Inteleon index. I'm not expecting to hear you say that because

Brent:

I, I feel like, I feel like the, maybe the conventional wisdom is that it does a pretty favorable Paia match because you have this like big ice Rider. That's gonna swing into him and kill,

Mike:

oh, the ice Rider. Uh, that's not, I think that's also the conventional wisdom potentially, but I just don't think it really plays out like that. That often, every,

Brit:

every, every time I play the match, it's just like, uh, I, they, they go, you know, I have my, my nice little turn with IP passes, get nice and set up everything I need. And they just like, they go and get like a P one Pia down and one ice Rider down and I just kill the ice Rider. And they're just a bad Pia. Yeah. Another thing another like the ice Rider, matchup, ice Rider have a pretty bad Mew matchup too. Yeah. Which, um, I think, I don't know. I think Mew Mew is just like, doesn't, can't always beat everything running well enough. And so I, I expect a good amount of Mew for sure. I mean, that's why I'm trying dark, you know, crazy dark stuff again in RCS, because I, I would like to have a reliable Mew matchup sort of, regardless of how hot they're running. Um, I don't know if I, I don't think you can get there, like, and that that's the magic of, of how, you know, the Mew deck works, but that's, I think, I think that's something I failed to mention talking about. That's also why probably why I haven't tested it.

Mike:

So I wanna get back to the Mew stuff in a second, cuz there's some stuff I talk about and generally I agree with you Brit, but I wanna. I've thought about the Pia Inteleon versus Pia ice Rider matchup quite a bit. And I haven't played it like a ton, a ton of games, so I could be a little off, but here's where my theory is. So if Pia Inteleon goes first, it kind of plays out like Brit said, uh, the Pia player just usually is able to gust up one of the V Pokegear, knock it out, go up to prizes, and then usually is able to stay ahead in the prize trade, regardless of, even if ice Rider gets a one shot. At some point, if Paul ice Rider goes first, it's interesting because I think Paul Inteleon still has a lot of lines to win the game. Um, because like I said, if they bench like, uh, a Mew, a pump Cabo, uh, a Bidoo and it doesn't evolve into BI on the second turn, then. Here's how it goes. Right? So P ice Rider goes first. They attach, they play some stuff. PO Inteleon goes, they get some stuff out. Maybe Pia ice Rider gets a KO on Azul on their second turn. Now it's four, six, Paul Inteleon goes, they get to Greninja play onto an ice Rider and they kill a one prize. So now they're at five Pia ice Rider at four Paul GE Rider goes, let's say they get another KO. Now it's two to five. Now the P Pokegear Inteleon player can finish the knockout on the ice Rider, Roxanne. They don't have BI. And now what they have to draw out of a Roxanne with no BI. And if they don't play the, if they do get the BI out, then, okay, they won, they went first, they gotta turn two knockout. They gotta turn three knockout and they got the BI down. Okay. You can win those games, but like not all of that is gonna happen super consistently for that deck. Um, So I just, yeah, I just think Paul Inteleon is, uh, a little bit more consistent in that. Um, going back to Mew, I really respect Mew for this event a lot. I am really interested to see how many Mew players play the pram Mew list. Cuz I think that's like a pretty sweet deck and is it's like it has a better matchup for sure than regular Mew does. Cuz it's faster. It's more aggressive. Can gust easier. Um, yeah, I don't know. I haven't played that many games with it, but it just seems really cool. And it seems some decent success online that I think there's one person that has been doing really well with it. Evan Campbell. I think his name is, uh, and he's been iterating on the deck a bit, uh, and. I'm really interested to see what the split of like fusion, energy Mew versus pre Mew is gonna look like at Baltimore. Cause I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of players played the pre Mew

Brit:

You think the PR Mew is good? I'm I'm not sure if I like really believe that it is like, I just, I guess I'm really just a little skeptical just without Mewtwo. I just feel like, obviously I think this version can blow you out the water, but I, I just feel less threatened, I guess for me. So much of the fear of playing you is just like, are they gonna blow me out of the water with Mewtwo or not? Mm-hmm and like, and you get these really good, like feels good moments when they, they miss the Mewtwo, you know, say they, they start to go for it. Like they, they, they open like Mewtwo attached fusion. Let's let's start digging and then they just don't get it. Like, that always feels strong. Um, yeah, I mean, not a whole lot other decks worth mentioning, like I think Reggie's is a very good deck. It just doesn't beat Pikachu. Um, so yeah,

Mike:

you can't, you can't beat. Pikachu is so bad. Grant played Reggie's in an event last weekend or last week with four escape, rope and lost a plant ChuChu in top. Cut you just never have you just can't rope boss that the deck

Brit:

is like, Yeah, the deck is not built to boss. It's built to Turbo and just trade trade with whatever's in the active. Yeah. Um, I think rents will still make day too. They have enough good matchups, um, where certainly some of them will squeak by. Um, no, I mean, I feel like that's about it in terms of the, I don't think, like, I don't know, I've thought about this and just haven't felt like making a list. I could make it work in any of these weird RCS I've been testing, but when the Pokegear Pokegear Pokegear at first came out, we're seeing a lot more like a tell ARD and char ARD and other various things. And I think that could perhaps be something still and, but yeah, expecting a lot else. I don't really think anyone's playing Vic Azul type stuff. Um, and I'm not sure. Definitely feel like this is maybe the only tournament I can think of where I'm playing. Just like, what is clearly like the paper, the like in I'm never that type of player. I don't, I'm usually always like playing a bad, that's supposed to this kind of deck. Um, but it's just, it's just so consistent and has good turns from either end. And like I said before, the, the RCS RCS is like, good turn too, is a little tough. Sometimes you basically have to see double Turbo energy for it to be a fruitful first turn going second. And that's hard. And like, I play a lot of games today where, um, I dig for it and miss, and just be like, I don't, I lose like what on what on earth can I do now? I have one energy attachment, then it's going down. And just, just scoop. Cause I have to turn and charge next, her and then I'm gonna be even further behind.

Brent:

Do you feel like there's a lot of enthusiasm for people to try to get an invite to Japan? Like, is that gonna draw more people in, even though obviously how you get the world is totally unclear.

Mike:

I think even if people are not going to end up going for their invite, I do think it incentivizes people to understand the game. And if there is a local regional. To come to it, to just be like, oh, I wanna see these people. Cause I wanna plan to go to Japan with them and, you know, make plans with them. And I wanna like kind of understand where the game's at so I can, you know, converse with them and maybe help them prepare. And like, even if they're not going for it, they just wanna be, you know, two, two more steps involved than they were before. And I think that's kind of what's happening with some of my friends.

Brent:

Yeah, man. I'm hoping when they bring local leagues back, they, they have some incredible like blow without marketing strap plan to like really rebuild awareness with juniors and seniors. And like if they do something like that, that would be absolutely amazing, but it is crazy how we already have regional selling out and like, you'd think people would know what they're getting into like tos. I mean, I wonder, I wonder if you are like the people who are doing like. San Diego, if you're thinking I gotta have room for 2000. Yeah. Right. you know, like, uh, like the Dallas regional, I mean, they must think if they don't think an army is gonna descend on Dallas, they don't know what's

Mike:

up. Right. Well, but it's not Dallas. Right. It's Arlington. So

Brent:

Arlington's code for Dallas,

Mike:

right? I don't know. Part of the reason the Dallas one was so heavily attended is cuz it was in the airport.

Brent:

oh, I but, but it it's all, I mean, I think part of it being in the airport was like convenient for west coast people convenient, free coast people. Yeah. Yeah.

Mike:

That's true.

Brent:

They're gonna recreate that same energy, but make it more practical to fly Southwest to get.

Mike:

Hmm. Oh, is Arlington and

Brent:

Southwest. And I have no idea where love field is, but I recognize like you couldn't fly Southwest cause it went to the other airport. Right, right. And you were like, man, you know, I mean, my working assumption is they were like that hotel's not big enough for the kind of crowds that wanna come to Pokegear right now.

Mike:

Right? Yeah. That could be, I mean, the hotel itself wasn't huge, but the con uh, I guess they did have to do multiple rooms, so maybe they don't wanna do that.

Brent:

Yeah. Yeah. Like, I guess the question is, could they, could they, um, you know, increase the number of players, 75% double the amount of space for like COVID protocols and, and still do what they were doing. I just can't imagine they could have done that there. Yeah. I mean, there was not enough food in that place. All right guys. Let's uh, let's call it a app.

Mike:

Yeah, let's do it. Good job.

Brent:

The Jon Pauls are our outro music. I know, uh, the team fish, uncles crew has been missing that.