One Big Weekend – Calgary, Alberta

This past Saturday (March 9), the Calgary Dice Masters Group participated in the the Global One Big Weekend Event.  Our event was held at Metal Galaxy Social Games and Bistro.  If you are ever in the Calgary area, I highly recommend checking this place out.

Gord has already given his Report on the Event, but I wanted to share mine as well.  We decided to run our event as an old school draft.  Now the big problem is that the new Justice Campaign Box does not really lend itself to this Format due to the dice distribution issues (we won’t get into that here).  The details of the Draft Packs will be in the next section.  If you are interested in the specifics, read on… if not, you might want to skip to the next section.

Draft Pack Construction (aka Dice Maths)

Our area enjoys Draft.  It gives you a chance to mess around with cards and combos that you might not normally give a second look to.  However, with the current Wizkids release model, this is not really possible “as is”.  In order to make this set draftable, we needed to do a few things:

  1. We combined the Campaign Box and one of each Team Pack into a pool to be used in Draft Packs.
  2. We used proxy dice where possible.  All of the actions had their dice substituted into one with the same energy.  Bifrost became Atlantis, Lantern Ring became Yellow Lantern Ring, Hellfire Club became Hall of Doom, and Mjolnir became The Watchtower.  Any character die that had an exact match from another set had that die thrown into the pool.  Anything left without a matching die was tossed out of the selection pool.  We ended up losing a Metallo and Parasite from the Campaign Box.  An Elastigirl, Negative Man, Plastic Man, and Robotman from the Doom Patrol Team Pack.  Finally, a Mary Marvel and Phantom Stranger from the Mystics Team Pack.  I had to get creative with Freddy Freeman’s proxy, so I painted the Shazam symbol with blue nail polish.
  3. We supplemented the Draft Packs with Justice League/Legion of Doom characters from Green Arrow/Flash and Batman Sets, and the Justice League Starter Set so that each pack had 16 characters to choose from.

What we ended up with were these, little home made souvenirs:

We made 10 packs total.  Each pack contained 1 BAC from the Justice Campaign Box and 1 BAC from the Justice League Starter Set.  With the distribution of cards, I made sure that the new stuff was the bulk of the packs (each had a minimum of 10 cards from the Campaign Box and Team Packs in them).  We topped up the cards with the Starter Set next and followed up with the random insert of Green Arrow/Flash and Batman Justice League/Legion of Doom members.

** We did exclude the cards that would not play well with the Campaign Box.  Anything referring to Crossover characters was not included.

On top of the custom Draft Packs, we also had 6 Booster Packs from Justice League to pick from.  More than enough cards to play around with.

If you want to print out your own version of the box, the template can be found below.  Feel free to use it for personal use only.  These are not for commercial purposes.

On to the Draft…

As Gord explained in his article, the way we do Draft Packs is we select one of the BAC’s and pass the other one on.  I drew Save Civilians and Doom Lance in my Pack.  Since this Draft was all about Justice, I decided to keep Doom Lance and received Fist of Fury as my second BAC.  No real strategy has hit me yet.

In my pack, I had quite a few options, but I decided to take Atlantis: Wealthy Kingdom as my first overall pick.  Ramp was going to be hard to come by and this seemed like a solid choice to try and get a few extra dice.

I then received my second group of cards from and looky-looky what I found…

I think I have my strategy now.  From here on out, it was take any and every Justice League character that came my way.

I took as many cheap characters as I could.  Katana and Black Canary were the best I could find.  Black Canary also happened to be the one that prevented Villains from blocking, which is not too bad.  She gave me a secondary win condition as there were sure to be Villain based Teams in this Draft.

I rounded out my Team with the classic Firestorm Bolt Burn, along with Green Arrow and Hawkman to power that if needed.  Green Arrow and Hawkman also served as removal options with their abilities.

My final spot went to the new Flash initially.  I could get him cheaper at the beginning of the game, and maybe he could be a decent body through the rest of it.  He only remained on the Team for one game.  I subbed him out for the OG Arthur Curry in subsequent games. 

SPOILER:  In case you were wondering, we still don’t have a good Flash.

My BAC’s did not really synergize well with my Team build, but that is sometimes what you get with Draft Packs.  We will see if it panned out.

So, the pseudo-Lantern Ring Team was in place.  Without Static Field, this would not be the best version of this Team.  It also didn’t help that my excess energy options were a little limited.

What Did You Play?

The Team:  OBW – Green Lantern Ring/Justice League Team.

This is the Team I started the day out with.  Strategy is pretty simple, get Green Lantern out with some other Justice League characters and swing while I have energy in the Reserve Pool.  Nothing fancy here.  The challenge would be to see if Atlantis could supply me with some ramp/churn to get the energy I needed to pull this off.

I did manage to record some of the matches during the day.  Check out our YouTube Channel for the videos soon.

Game 1:

My first match was up against the eventually winner of the day… only he didn’t know what he had at first.  He was running the new Poison Ivy: Criminal Because of Love, who paired very nicely with his Zatanna: Being of Magic.  Every time he would field Poison Ivy with Zatanna present, she would spin up and cause some serious board wipe.  KO her with her own ability and repeat the process next turn.  This match did get recorded, so I won’t go into the details.  

The long and the short of it was that Atlantis didn’t work so well for me.  The Flash still stinks.  Lantern Ring damage is good, but needs something to bounce the characters back to be really effective.  I got some licks in, but Poison Ivy just destroyed me.

0-1

Game 2:

Two things in this match of note:  1.  Villains!  Black Canary would be big here.  2.  Negative Man: Phasing.  He will get good use out of my Doom Lance.  Oh yeah, and he had Betrayal.

After my first game, I realized that The Flash was not good on this build.  I dropped him and subbed in Arthur Curry to get a little better bang for my buck here.  So, the new Team looked like this.  The plan was pretty much the same, but I also wanted to get Black Canary out to be able to swing through.

As I struck out hard with Atlantis last game, I skipped it completely in this one.  I only kept it on the Team to act as Lantern Ring fodder if I had Aquaman out.

The game went similar to the last one, but I did add in the Canary and Green Arrow purchase this time around.  Green Arrow helped with removal when I drew a nice fat Green Lantern from my bag.  He did take advantage of my Doom Lance to clear the board multiple times with Negative Man (stupid Deadly).  However, I took advantage of his Villains by punching through with Canary and Friends a couple of times.

I ended up finishing him off with his own Betrayal as he was keeping a fairly decent sized Field.

1-1

Game 3:

The final game of the day was up against another Justice League Team.  She had the GAF Superman that got buffed by other Justice League member, as well as the new Green Arrow: No Fancy Ring that dealt damage to my characters for each JL member out.  This could hurt.  She also had Investigation, which would be super helpful to finally get some extra dice to roll.

Since I did not want to be helpful in this game, I decided to skip on Aquaman.  No way was I going to make it easier for her to buy some really big beat sticks.  Canary would not be super helpful either here.  I still went for an early Green Lantern, but one of those non-ideal rolls showed my what my Team actually was.

I ended up purchasing Green Arrow and Hawkman (for the first time).  Intimidate would give me a chance to hopefully sneak around the big boys… and it sure did.  

Green Arrow drew a Green Lantern out which allowed me to KO one of her blockers, while Hawkman removed the other.  An early burst of damage went through.  Green Arrow also cost me pretty much every use of the lone Investigation die I managed to buy.

Once I saw the effectiveness of these two, I kept things as lean as I could so that they would keep coming out as much as possible.  I repeated the double fielding a few times to punch through for lethal.  It was nice asking Superman to step aside for a turn while I did that each time.

Funny enough, in this game, I finally started rolling a significant number of Sidekicks.  The game where I didn’t buy Atlantis… D’oh.

2-1

Post-Mortem (The Team):

The Team itself was a pretty decent Draft Team.  Getting handed a potentially great win condition early on is about all you can ask for.  Unfortunately, it was just not as effective as it could have been.

Canary is super strong against Villains.  I will not be surprised to see her as a part of some competitive builds going forward.

Green Arrow/Hawkman were my underappreciated MVP’s of the Team.  I didn’t realize at first how good they would be to deal with removing blockers.  If I had gone more aggro with them in the first game, I may have had a little better luck (but maybe not… Poison Ivy was THAT awesome).  Intimidate is one of those Keywords that I tend to (wrongly) overlook.  It is nice to see it back on a character that does not have any limitations on it.

With a better mix of BAC’s, I am sure Green Lantern could have shone.  Today was not really his day though.

Overall, this was a fun way to draft this set.  I don’t think you could do it as well without the supplemental cards.  They made that much of a difference in balancing out the character pool.  You definitely could not do it without adding in proxy dice.

Post-Mortem (One Big Weekend Event):

It was a great afternoon of Dice Masters with a great group of people.  5/6 of our core group was able to make it (damn you Pokemon Go!) to the event.  We also had 2 returning players (along with the most well behaved baby I think I have ever seen), and a new face to the Dice Masters scene.  8 people in total took part in the Calgary One Big Weekend.

First Place:  Rob

The day belonged to Poison Ivy.  The above image was the winning Team Build (minus the dice counts).  Zatanna is a force on any Team.  Immediately getting your characters on a higher level is never a bad thing.  However, when she is paired with Ivy… watch out.  With these two out, you will be dealing a minimum of 2 damage across the board and to your Opponent.  The best part of the combo is you can KO Ivy with her own ability to do it all again next turn.  Field multiple Ivy’s in a single turn and watch your Opponent cry.  The damage output of this combo was insane.  As long as Zatanna was protected, it was pretty much impossible to deal with Ivy.  

Congrats to Rob for a triumphant return to the Calgary Dice Masters scene… and for earning the One Big Weekend crown!

Second Place:  Allan

Third Place:  Matt (me)

Fourth Place:  Gord

Now, what would an Event be without prizing?

For our scene, each participant got these goodies:

The Top 4 received these Indicator Cards instead:

And, the champion of the day received this:

The backs of all of these cards have been customized for the local events.  A kind of unique souvenir for showing up to your local scene.  This was ours:

All venues participating in the One Big Weekend will be receiving a set of these cards to hand out to their participants.  Unfortunately, due to some logistics, these may not have arrived in time for some of the events.  Fear not though, as they are on the way… even if they are a little late.

These were nice participation prizes, but I wanted this Event to live up to the One Big Weekend name.  Arge O’Neal was kind enough to donate some prize support, including what turned out to be one of the top prizes… the legendary extra-super-duper-rare Rigorous Training Card.  The store donated a Doom Patrol and Mystics Team Pack for their prize support contribution.  We had two left over Draft Packs, which we opened up and threw the new cards into the prize pool.  I also dug into the Dice Masters North Binder of Prizes and added a lot of my own prize support.

In the end, this is what we had out on the Table:

We snaked our way through the prizing until there was nothing left.

I focused on grabbing dice myself, as I have most of the cards and tokens.  This was my personal haul from the day:

The other prize was for the Top 2 finishers (Rob and Allan) who get qualifications for the upcoming Online One Big Weekend, where Arge has put his World’s Factory Set up as the Top Prize.  Details on that to follow.

The One Big Weekend was a great Event here in Calgary.  Hopefully yours is too.  I want to thank all of the people who helped out with this event both locally and globally:

To the local guys (Allan, Jason, Gord, Mike, Quade) who helped with dice/card donations, and the DIY craft items:  Thank you!

To Reg, for giving me enough materials to make some spare Shriek Tokens:  Thank you!

To Metal Galaxy, for giving us a place to play and hang out for the afternoon:  Thank you.

To my One Big Weekend Crew (Arge, Lucan, Zack, Troy, Jo, and Laurier):  Thank you for jumping on the Dice Masters train and getting it back on the tracks.

To the local One Big Weekend organizers (Chris, James, Peter, Trubie, Michaela, Stephen, Kim, Arge, Eduardo, Troy, Peter 2, TJ, Patrick, Dan, Jazz, Anthony, Ross, and Marvin):  Thank you.  This would not be possible without you.  A huge thank you for taking the initiative to bring this event into your local stores.

If I have forgotten anyone, I apologize.  Something like this cannot work without the hard work of the Community.  Thank you to all of you in the Dice Masters Community for being as awesome as you are.

I look forward to seeing this type of thing grow for future events.

Thank you for reading!

– jourdo

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