WCSTS 2001 Report - Doll

Decisions, decisions…. 
Should Scott and I spend the last 3 days of our honeymoon at the West Coast STS?  After all, it’s been some time since I last picked up a Pokémon deck… over a year since I last played in a sanctioned event.  But I still oversee Pojo’s mIRC chat channel (check it out on our Apprentice League page), and I know a bunch of #pojo people that are going to attend… and I guess I STILL am Clefairy Doll…  

So the answer to all that was, YES!  Scott and I left Las Vegas late Thursday night and drove back to our California home, then left Friday and headed for San Diego, about an hour and a half drive away.  We knew we probably would not get in to play in the main tourneys since we hadn’t registered; we had been too busy with other silly little things like, oh, say… getting married… ;). So we wondered what exactly we could do down there besides being Pojo’s eye on the scene.

Well, we quickly answered that question when we arrived.  From the get-go we had people pointing to our very cool jerseys (thank you, Bill!) with the huge Pojosama patch on the front… “Are you from Pojo?!!” Yup.  “Are you Scott Gerhardt and Clefairy Doll??” Yes, and pleased to meet you. “Can I get a photograph with you?” Love to. “Will you sign my Dark Muk?” HECK yeah!  Dude… you have no idea how cool that is!

Even more 0wnage! We had the honor of meeting a ton of Pojo and other cool people! Satoshi, Ness, ipgeek21, Steve Diamond, rand0m, Spago, GeneralRaikou, BigChuck001, CRIMINAL, snorlaxitive, RS, y2ace, Zappy, GrayFox, croconaw88, pyrotek, strike, str8 rider, kakkarot7, bomiester, gymbo, muk007… I know there were more, but that’s all I can recall off hand.  And to top it all off, Spago took 1st and CRIMINAL (aka Josue Rojano) took 3rd in the 15+ division on Sunday! We had multiple Pojo people make top 16 both days, including double 9th places by Ness. Great showing, guys!

Probably some of the most fun I had was playing in the side events.  Even though I hadn’t seen many of the new cards, I thought I’d throw my hat in the ring and try a few.  My first limited event was the “Theme Deck Challenge.” Everyone that signed up was given a random theme deck and had to use it to play a 6 round pure Swiss tournament. I had the dubious fortune of getting Brain Wave. It’s decks like Brain Wave that make me wonder who in Wizards was smoking crack when they came up with the deck lists. =/ But what the heck, I was there to have fun! I lost miserably the first round. Then by some miracle, I managed to beat out 5 straight wins and take 3rd place! V fun!

Saturday night, Scott and I got to the Regency Plaza late and started a stragglers draft for all the kids that missed out on Professor Maple’s draft. We had just enough packs for 20 players and quickly filled the spots. The draft went smoothly (*pokes the rare-drafting kid next to her*), and we broke off to play 4 rounds of modified swiss. We broke to top 8 as follows: Paul, RS, Ness, ME, Tommy D., Scott, Croconaw88, and Bobby D.  In the end, Scott and I ended up in the finals… No, we didn’t play it off due to the LATE hour of the night. Tons of fun!

Sunday, everyone somehow caught on as to how cool the side events were. Wizards had 3 scheduled sides, and managed to book a whopping 38 unscheduled pick-up events!! Amazing! The line was huge, and when they had to close up the sides at 5pm, there was still line of people hoping to catch the last draft of the day! Nice job getting in as many as you did, Wizards!  

I managed to get into 2 drafts, making finals in both and winning one of them. Dudes, Misty RULES in Gym draft! My first deck was an awesome Poliwrath deck with a line of 5/3/1, and a back-up of the Seaking line 3/2.  

My second deck centered around Starmie 4/2 and Seaking… house! In the finals, I played the cutest, most unassuming looking kid ever. He was a blonde-haired, cherub-faced 9 year-old named Steven Gaede. After I had won my second match, I watched his match. At first I thought this kiddo would be cake to play, but as I watched him, I realized that this kid totally knew his stuff! He had drafted a fire deck that looked more like a constructed deck than a limited deck! And he knew how to play it for all it was worth. When we met in the finals, I was actually a bit afraid of him…but in the end, water and a great draw was just too much for his fire deck, and he took 2nd place well. Steven, I look for you to be an AWESOME Magic player someday, too! 

Sunday night, Scott and I decided we just wanted to get in one last hurrah, and went to the Maple Bar Draft Invitational at the Regency Plaza Hotel. Scott and I were able to add to the boxes of Gym already there, and brought the draft up in size to 56 players. We drafted 2 packs of Heroes and 3 packs of Challenge. After the first round, we began calling the pairings for the second round when the hotel’s fire alarms began blaring. They ended up evacuating us to the cold damp parking lot. My second round opponent and I promptly plopped down on the curb and set up for a couple of games for fun, with the sirens, flashing lights and freezing guests all around us. The other drafters caught on, and before long, many of us were spread across the parking lot playing. Soon, the news crews showed up to cover the hotel fire (no one was hurt, thank goodness). First they interviewed Scott, and soon they came over to find us playing on the ground, and shot some footage of us!  You know, it was cold, damp, and inconvenient, but honestly… it was a blast! Games will come and go, but I guarantee you, every player there will make a memory of Sunday night and playing “Street Pokémon” with the wildness of the whole scene surrounding us.  For me, this was the best STS ever, and one that I will never forget!

Due to that fire, we did not get home till 2 a.m. Monday morning, and now I am woefully behind on my sleep, but I could not let time go by without relating at least some of my story to you. I’ll dig out the rest of my notes over the next couple days, and give you more of the flavor of what we found at Wizard’s awesome San Diego STS!

Until then!

I am forever in my heart:

 ~ Clefairy Doll

(aka: Christine Gerhardt)