One of the reasons i feel thankful that the Asian format doesnt allow promos, is that it doesnt allow a whole lot of bullshitting with cards like Librarian etc.
Furthermore, i concocted this post after i read Michael Bonacini's post on Yugiohs dwindling skill gap, and that made me even more thankful that im in the OCG and not in the TCG with Tengus.
I like the fact that i'm in Malaysia too, because here, the whole tournament goes down to almost the same winners each time.
This means only the best top, but occasionally you do scrub even if you are good because of bad luck.
Take a look at the recent Nationals. The top 8 are your usual bunch of players with good credentials, and although there are alot of rumours about bribes and how the games in the top 8 played out, i can still say that the top 8 deserved their spots because they played well in the swiss and eliminations to get there. Each top 8 player had to go through weeks of shit, just to win.
Example is Andrew who played in about 4 or 5 qualifiers and didnt get first but he managed to win in the last qualifier.
Or Amir who had to go through the whole tournament on the real Nationals day, and made it to their top 4.
What i'm trying to say that in the OCG, and in the Asian format, skill is not totally gone, since promos are banned and there are no Tengus.
This contributed to the variety of different decks in the 16 decks that qualified for a spot in the top 32 on the real day
Over here, skill is the most important thing to have because it differentiates you from being a person who topped or a person who scrubbed.
I cannot say the same for the people who qualified for the remaining top 16 on Nationals because they could be Randy Savages or they could just have gotten lucky. They did not have to play against the best who have already qualified, so they could have just got there in pure luck. I dont mean to look down on these people as im sure there are a few truly good players, that do not have the chance to play in KL tournaments so they do not have credentials.
Because if you look at each and every tournament, the results are obvious since the same people always top. This means that the skilled always win.
In a retrospective view, this means that if a skilled player with deck X such as BF or Agents could lose the die roll, and play against a scrub player with Samurais who drops shien in turn 1, and still win from there.
That is why if you want to be good in Malaysia, i can safely say that you need to be a KL player who plays with the best. Im talking about people like Zack, Karl, Andrew, Wong Fei Hung (and the list goes on and on) with credentials, or play frequently at Sung Lee's card shop. I strongly advise people to spend time to meet Sung Lee's teammates as all of them are very good, frequent toppers, and skilled players and listen to their advice.
You shouldnt be happy if you play against a scrub, or choose to testdeck, and score x-0 just because you played a whole day's worth of scrubs.
I advise each Malaysian player to save up each year and visit KL at the end of the year to expand your dueling experience. You wont be at a loss, because KL is a big metropolis with awesome girls, good shopping facilities, and there are entertainment resorts like Genting or Sunway too. You can always take a trip down to Kinokuniya to purchase cheap cards as well as spend an hour in manga heaven, before going around shopping in KLCC a fucking big and awesome shopping centre. Of course, the prices of food and clothes there are atrocious but oh what the heck.
If you are fortunate, you could visit Singapore too because Singaporeans are even better players than we are, and the competitiveness there is scary (which is good) and the card prices there are cheap. Beginning of next year, when i'm dead free, i will visit Singapore. Hopefully, i can visit the place with a few friends and teammates, so I'll discuss it with Andrew, or LGQ, Sean or anyone i know.
However, there are players who are also non-KL players who are really good. These are the unfortunate bunch who do not have much chance to show their credentials.
So, aside from that, what do you have to do to be good in Malaysia?
The card prices here are crazily hyped, and i can say for sure with Clarence and Baha telling me that the cards i purchased were expensive by Singapore expectations, while in Malaysia its considered cheap. Thus, one must be able to control his/her budget well to succeed here.
Basically, if you see a good deal that you can profit from, just take it.
You should also have a wide range of contacts, as well as maintain good terms with them, to be able to obtain cheap prices or "friendly" prices, and trade well.
Besides that, i think each player should read blogs. There are so many blogs in the blogosphere right now which are good, or decent, be it TCG or OCG and they are ALL good reading material to expand your knowledge. I wouldnt go into this so much because grading blogs is a sensitive issue, in my opinion, but the usual suspects that people visit are Dueling Days, and Death Aspect
It doesnt take a really long time, maybe 20 minutes a day to catch up on the blog posts? On some days, there are so few updates that it wont even take up your time.
There are many players out there in Malaysia who are ignorant, obnoxious, and although i am not going to point fingers, some people know who i have in mind, and they make loud statements that clearly show only how much they know.
For example, from LGQ's blog post:
i can tell that skill is still intact, especially when he was playing Andrew.
So, conclusion-wise, i'm quite satisfied about Malaysian meta and Yugioh as a whole.
Of course, there are issues like card prices, but we have to accept that card prices will never drop here in Malaysia and its a survival of the fittest situation, whereby, if you are good, the prices affair will not even matter to you.
The second unresolved issue i think is the skill level, but that SHOULD improve as time goes by, provided we dont have stupid formats like Dark Dive Bomber format or Chaos Emperor Dragon-spam Yata decks. Hopefully, by the time Tengu reaches OCG, its craze should die down and plant decks will not be in trend anymore and Formula-Libarian gets fixed.
And from this post, i hope you Malaysians learn something =) (unless you are a player with credentials, and know all this already of course)
Thank you for reading, and since today is Singapore Nationals, i wish them all the best of luck.