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Road of the King by Patrick Hoban

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+mmf    23484
On 8/9/2016 at 4:57 PM, TRUMPOLOGIST said:

 

 

Patrick wrote that mostly to jack himself off. He thinks he's the greatest, he's friends with and taught this Ben guy some stuff, therefore he thinks this Ben guy will be the greatest because of Patrick's mentoring and Patrick can take some credit for it. 

 

My point is that no one would've been disappointed that they watched your video and didn't get to hear your thoughts on Ben or Jonny. 

quoting just 2 let u know i changed to the white background forum skin just 2 make ur sig look dum

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Patrick Hoban    6363

It seemed like your main critique of the Circle section was that I just happened to find people that were good in my area, and that doesn't do anything if you live in an area where people aren't good. When I met Ben he was 12 years old. When I met Desmond he was playing Karakuri Wind Ups. Do you think I really just stumbled into good players, or do you think we created a culture from scratch that valued the things I described in the book?

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»ACP    33416
4 hours ago, Patrick Hoban said:

It seemed like your main critique of the Circle section was that I just happened to find people that were good in my area, and that doesn't do anything if you live in an area where people aren't good. When I met Ben he was 12 years old. When I met Desmond he was playing Karakuri Wind Ups. Do you think I really just stumbled into good players, or do you think we created a culture from scratch that valued the things I described in the book?

It certainly occurred to me that that was part of what happened, but regardless, in the book, you did not give the readers a viable way to replicate your success. You should have focused less on what happened and more on how it happened. The chapter basically read: met some guys -> started testing 20 hours a week -> went and crushed events. How does that help anyone?

 

Like all aspects of competitive Yugioh, the quality of players who are around you is something that you have limited control over. Most of these players simply don't care about Yugioh that much, and telling them that we should all start testing even as little as 5 hours a week together would seem like such a ridiculous proposition to them. On the one hand, it makes for a good local atmosphere, since no one gets salty after they lose, but on the other hand if you're trying to put a group of people together who want to start going to YCSs and taking them seriously, good fucking luck. I mean even just finding someone who's even been to a YCS before is already like finding a fucking unicorn over here. Last YCS I went to was in Atlanta, 6 months ago. Atlanta is about a 7 hour drive from my area. Do you know how many people from my locals went to Atlanta? Absolutely none. The idea of driving 7 hours to play Yugioh is completely foreign to them. The only people from my area who even travel to any kind of YCS at all are people like Jake Mattern, who basically pick up a Yugioh deck once a year with absolutely no testing just for old times to see how they do. These are not people who are "dedicated to the cause" so to speak. And with most of these people, it would be pretty hard to convince them otherwise. These people have jobs, college, kids, and other hobbies or obligations.

 

Say what you will about what happened to you, but look at someone like the Leveretts for example. Now I'm sure you recognized some potential there that others might have missed, and good for you. But there's a huge luck element there in just happening to run into some kids who are homeschooled, clearly have parents who are well off, and are willing to support their kids hobby and take them all over the country to play in Yugioh tournaments. Do you know what the chances of running into kids in that situation are? Probably not even 1 in 10,000. Most parents are actively trying to discourage their kids from playing Yugioh. I have never had that kind of opportunity to just take on a Yugioh apprentice who had nearly infinite time to dedicate to the game, and it would be nothing short of a miracle if I ever did in the future.

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Joe.    4932

Good length. You have totally valid reasons to want to be detailed - but certainly did a better job of being more concise. Now you know how I feel as a teacher when I have to cover topics I'd love to spend 3 months on in 30 minutes =(

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»ACP    33416

Don't worry, I'm already well aware that being a teacher sucks balls.

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+Silver    1008

Remember when Allen made reviews of Mango's? Pepperidge farm remembers

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»ACP    33416

Part 4 of my review is up. It's another mixed mag of hits and misses for Hoban

 

 

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Mr Dragon    312

I think you somewhat underestimate how much tempo and the Philosophy Of Fire apply to YGO right now. Tempo in YGO is mostly tied to a deck's individual turn ceiling, rather than to just its normal summon, to the point where in this game those two things are different ways at looking at the same concept (how much you can do in how much time). 'Once Per Turn' effects are really the way that tempo tends to be quantified now, well, that and Pendulum summons (both of which I think are covered in the book, briefly).

 

Interestingly I think Hoban's book has already been somewhat dated by the way tempo has developed in the game in the very short time since the book's publication, since an important aspect of decks at this moment in time tends to be how much they can play during the opponent's turn, not just necessarily to defend your own setup but also to advance your own gamestate. Looking at the current format for example, Monarchs and BA can effectively time walk opponents out of the game by playing on the opponent's turn and preventing the opponent's plays defensively at the same time.

 

I the real issue with regards to measuring progress in terms of tempo might be that unlike Magic the ways in which each deck generate tempo can be much more drastically different, since it's sometimes hard to gauge how impactful it is to prevent 2 of your opponents Nekroz ritual spells from resolving in comparison to preventing your opponent from tribute summoning for the second time on their own turn in Monarchs. Preventing both of those things have tangible effects on the outcome of the game, but it could be much harder to quantify the effects when comparing them to each other, so the concept of tempo in this game tends to be a lot more tangible in mirror matches.

 

I think the Philosophy Of Fire is also quite important, given that it deals with the depletion and management of resources. While we don't get many 'Sligh' style aggro burn decks, this concept does apply a lot more in application to the management of resources in deck. The late game in the Monarch mirror emphasizes this a lot, since the player's longevity in the game relies on their ability to recycle Monarch Spells/Traps over and over in order to continue to play the game, with denying the opponent this option being a viable way of winning. matchups involving Nekroz also tended to see this be particularly important, Nekroz plays had a set number of ritual Spells and monsters with which to summon with them, and occasionally the best way of winning games tended to be forcing out the use of all of the opponent's ritual spells then denying the opponent the opportunity to recycle them. 

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»ACP    33416

Yeah, you do make a point that tempo will always exist in some form in Yugioh, since you won't just be able to put your entire deck into play t1 (I'd hope anyways). You can't make a tempo-oriented deck though like you can in Magic. When you can't really base your deck construction or any decisions off of this word "tempo" it just becomes a useless word. Understanding the concept is tempo is helpful to winning your Goat Control matches, but not so much to winning your modern Yugioh matches.

 

The Philosophy of Fire is just a small subsection of resource management as a whole and generally is a strategy about valuing lifepoints over card advantage and thus playing the game on a different axis than your opponent. See The Theory of Everything for more detail on this subject. How to avoid losing and knowing which resoruces are most important at any given time (whether they be deck, graveyard, etc) is not the Philosophy of Fire. Which is why I mentioned in my review that I think he could've completely redone this section and made it flow a lot more logically. Focus on resource management in general, talk about playing to win vs to playing to not lose, and risk assessment.

 

But yeah, these technical play theory articles are very hard to write. I just wished he had borrowed from Magic a little less and tried to flesh out these ideas a bit more. Developing these heuristics is hard, but I think just trying to port over everything from Magic is a bit intellectually lazy.

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»ACP    33416
On 4/4/2016 at 2:46 PM, ACP said:

Ok, I'll try to keep this brief. My previous posts were a bit vague. When I talking about how his scummy deals hurt his reputation, I'm just reflecting what I've seen people say in the community. To state that it hasn't hurt his reputation is to just be ignorant or in denial. Now let's look at the Djinn dilemma for a second. When it actually happened, I posted my somewhat unpopular opinion that siding a 2nd Djinn while getting the opponent to side out theirs was actually brilliant. Frankly, I never would have thought of doing something like that to gain an edge. And yes, competitive gaming is all about finding new edges, which Hoban did. And yes, there is nothing morally wrong with what Hoban did there (in my opinion at least). Well then why am I advocating the general strategy of refraining from these deals? It's complicated.

 

TL;DR: Being known for this kind of thing creates distrust. I'm shocked that anyone would consider accepting any kind of deal that Hoban offers, no matter how tempting it may seem. Just look at his reputation. Hoban only offers deals that he knows give himself an edge. Why, with that knowledge, would anyone then accept any kind of deal that Hoban offers, unless you think he's gone crazy? I don't care if Hoban said, "I'll side out all of my Wavering Eyes out in a pendulum mirror as long as you shake my hand." I would assume that this plays into some plan that he has. Maybe he has poison on his hands. I don't fucking know. The safest strategy is to always assume that your opponent does not have your best interests at heart.

 

I'll actually give a great example. Last time Kris and I played goats, he offered that we could both play without our Delinquent Duos. At the time, neither of us knew the contents of each others goat decks. He only offered so because he was not playing Sinister Serpent. So while on the surface, he seemed like an equal deal, it was actually one that favored himself. Like in real life, if someone walked up to you and said, "Hey, want to swap twenty dollar bills?" you would be immediately suspicious of the person's motives. Why is it that we just assume that our opponents aren't pulling a fast one on us as well?

 

Ok, so then you might say, well then why not offer unequal deals myself, and hope that my opponent is an idiot and accepts? Well that's easy. As soon as you become known for taking advantage of people with deals, no one is going to make deals with you anymore. So in the long run, eventually you won't be able to make deals anyways. Ok, so then why not make favorable deals in the short run until everyone figures out what you're doing? Because people are going to fucking hate you for it, that's why. Hoban is in a very privileged position, in that he doesn't need to make people like him. He's the consensus best player in the game currently and he has a sick sponsorship by a store with virtually no moral code to begin with. He doesn't need to be on his best behavior.

 

Hoban's advice, while possibly having no downsides for himself, does have downsides for the average Joe however. In his own book, Hoban writes about how important it is to become part of a circle of competitive players, and in that same book argues for potentially alienating these good players by trying to piss them off with silly deals. The best long term strategy is to keep your friends and not try to angle-shoot people.

 

My perspeptive is somewhat different due to talking with platinum level Magic pros, one of whom said to me (and I'm paraphrasing here) that, "The goal of professional Magic isn't to win games. It's to get people to like you. It's just that one of the ways that you do that is by winning games." Sponsorships, article writing gigs, etc pay more than prizes at these tournaments ever will. This is why pissing people off (even within the rules of the game) is just a bad strategy. Some magic professionals have taken it so far that they remind their opponents about their game loss triggers from Pack of Negation. They are all on their best behavior at all times. This actually partially led to my decision to quit Magic (not wanting to be part of a community where if anyone caught me saying the word "faggot" I could never get any kind of sponsorship for the rest of my life), but that's a discussion for a different time.

 

Here's another non-Magic example. In 2010, The Game Academy was starting up it's Yugioh writing project, with myself at its head. We were getting all kinds of people applying to be writers, and I had most of the say in who got picked and who didn't. One of the first people to apply was Josh Graham. On paper, he was a great candidate. He had tangible credentials and a better writing ability than most. I said there was absolutely no way that we were hiring him. At the time, Josh Graham had never been DQed from a tournament, but nonetheless he still had a terrible reputation. I didn't know that he was a scummy individual, but there was enough anecdotal evidence that I didn't want to take my chances. I picked what I thought at the time were solid upstanding members of the community (including Patrick Hoban), and we never had any kind of controversies with our writers. So in hindsight, I think I made some good choices. Had Patrick Hoban been doing the kind of stuff that he was doing today though, I perhaps would've given it a second thought. Given that Hoban got noticed by ARG for his work at TGA, it's possible that had Hoban been doing these kinds of deals in 2010, he might have never gotten these gigs that allowed him to become such a figurehead and never even gotten to publish the book that we're arguing about right now. Just food for thought.

 

There's the other issue that these deals are still in a legal grey area, and all it takes is for the judge that day to decide that that specific deal that you offered was over the line. Imagine if Hoban actually did his sideboarding/letting the opponent decide who goes first deal in tournament instead of in his book. Then right now we'd all be arguing about whether or not Hoban deserved to be DQed instead of whatever the fuck we're arguing about now. Sure, you can ask the head judge first. But maybe after talking to him you think that a certain deal is ok (like mutual sideboarding) and therefore falsely conclude that a slightly different deal must also be ok (like mutual sideboarding in exchange for letting the opponent go second). All it takes is one miscommunication, and you could land yourself in hot water. Ask yourself, is it really worth the trouble? The advantages, as discussed before, are not really present in the long run anyways. Imagine if Hoban never made a single sideboarding deal in his life. Do any of us really believe that his results would be that different?

 

If, after reading all of this, you still think that I'm an idiot and clearly a huge part of winning Yugioh is to make advantageous sideboarding deals, then you know what, your strategy still sucks. Since the rules as they are currently state that neither player is bound to uphold their part of the bargain in any sideboarding agreement, it's pretty undeniable that the "optimal strategy" if you take this route is to learn sleight of hand tactics from card magicians. Offer to your opponent, "Hey I'll side out my Wavering Eyes if you side out yours," and then use sleight of hand to make it look like you're siding out your Wavering Eyes when you're actually not doing so. It's perfectly within the rules of the game and it provides you with the largest advantage in the matchup. Why do you think Hoban didn't put that strategy in his book then? Oh, that's right, because there would've been a community outcry, and it would've destroyed his reputation. Which is exactly my fucking point.

I'm going to revisit a lot of these points today when I review Hoban's section on The Mental Game. A lot of this is chapter is about deal-making. I'm going to talk about some of the practical issues and moral issues with the deal-making strategy that he proposes. I will say that in the ebook, he did remove the part about siding out Vanity in exchange for letting your opponent go first, which is good.

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»ACP    33416

Mostly a discussion of ethics, including if one should manipulate his opponent into losing RPS at a YCS:

 

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Patrick Hoban    6363

I would argue that your thought experiment to make them choose rock isn't just unethical, it's illegal. The rules specifically say that who decides who goes first must be random and in that scenario you're attempting to make it not random. 

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»ACP    33416
3 minutes ago, Patrick Hoban said:

I would argue that your thought experiment to make them choose rock isn't just unethical, it's illegal. The rules specifically say that who decides who goes first must be random and in that scenario you're attempting to make it not random. 

No, that is not what the rules say.  "Play rock-paper-scissors or flip a coin. The winner decides to go first or second in the Duel." Which part of what I suggested is illegal?

- Insisting that a die roll not be used to determine who starts the first game is not illegal. In fact, quite the opposite. Everytime you do use a die to decide who goes first, you are the one who is breaking the rules.

- Carrying a coin that you believe it is unlikely that your opponent will want to use is also not illegal.

- Believing that opponent is more likely to throw rock at the start of an RPS game and thus throwing paper is also not illegal. It's well-known that RPS has a degree of psychological strategy to it, as human brains cannot generate random numbers, and thus all RPS strategies are exploitable.

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Patrick Hoban    6363
5 minutes ago, ACP said:

No, that is not what the rules say.  "Play rock-paper-scissors or flip a coin. The winner decides to go first or second in the Duel." Which part of what I suggested is illegal?

- Insisting that a die roll not be used to determine who starts the first game is not illegal. In fact, quite the opposite. Everytime you do use a die to decide who goes first, you are the one who is breaking the rules.

- Carrying a coin that you believe it is unlikely that your opponent will want to use is also not illegal.

- Believing that opponent is more likely to throw rock at the start of an RPS game and thus throwing paper is also not illegal. It's well-known that RPS has a degree of psychological strategy to it, as human brains cannot generate random numbers, and thus all RPS strategies are exploitable.

 

 

In the policy documents it says, "At the beginning of the Match, Duelists should use a random method to decide who chooses to go first."

 

http://www.yugioh-card.com/en/gameplay/penalty_guide/Yu-Gi-Oh! Tournament Policy v1.4 2013November14.pdf

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»ACP    33416

The policy documents also says that rock paper scissors is allowed to be used. It also says that any method must be agreed upon. Note that: The rule book says that ONLY rock papers and a coin flip may be used. The policy documents do not state that if my opponent offers to die roll that I am required to consent. Saying, "I'm willing to use any other method than a die roll" is well within my rights as a player. You're basically telling me that playing a game of RPS with my opponent to decide who goes first is illegal, despite all other sources indicating precisely the opposite.

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Patrick Hoban    6363

I'm not saying playing rock, paper, scissors is illegal, I'm saying I think doing it with the intention of making it less random is illegal because then it was your intention to do what the policy documents explicitly say not to do. Aren't penalties always a matter of intention? If a player draws an extra card and shuffles their hand, the difference between a game loss and a dq is intention. Unintentionally doing it would just be an irreparable game state, but intentionally doing it would be cheating. It's always the role of the judge to determine intention and that's exactly how they assign a penalty. If you went up to the judge after the round and said you were trying to get him to play rock, paper, scissors to gain an advantage, then I think it'd be completely reasonable for them to give you a penalty. 

 

It's not like I don't see what you're saying, but I'm sure you see what I'm saying too.

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Mr Dragon    312

Imagine going through all of that hassle of insisting you decide who goes first using a coin flip or RPS, then after a period of waiting for 15 minutes when the judge eventually tells you to decide who goes first via Rock Paper Scissors it turns out your opponent has also seen Allen's video and he levels you by picking scissors. 

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»ACP    33416

But regardless, you're missing my point. Who are you to oppose arbitrary rules upon the community regarding what is ethical? You say that one of these things is ethical and the other is not (despite both being legal), there is very little distinction between the two of them:

- Making a deal to side out a lone copy of Djinn, then breaking it by siding another one in.

- Making a deal to side out a lone copy of Djinn, then breaking it by using sleight of hand to put that Djinn back into the deck before the decks are presented for the next game.

 

Your credentials as player allow you to say many things with authority, like which deck would be good for me to use at the next event. Telling people what is in the "spirit of competition" is something that is not appropriate given the nature of the book. We can debate whether or not the short term gains in prize support from using tricky deals to your advantage outweigh the damage that you deal to your reputation in the long term by being known as a trickster. That's at least something that is tangible. But trying to draw arbitrary lines within the rules and say "do this, but not this" is just that, arbitrary.

 

Regardless of whether or not you agree on what's ethical, I think in writing the book, you should have at least considered the cons to attempting certain mental tactics, rather than purely focusing on the pros. Because there definitely are cons. If everyone refuses to playtest with someone that they view as a scumbag, and those people also view your Djinn shenanigans as scumbaggery, well then, there are clearly some compelling reasons not to try to "get" people with the 2nd Djinn trick.

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»ACP    33416
8 minutes ago, Patrick Hoban said:

I'm not saying playing rock, paper, scissors is illegal, I'm saying I think doing it with the intention of making it less random is illegal because then it was your intention to do what the policy documents explicitly say not to do. Aren't penalties always a matter of intention? If a player draws an extra card and shuffles their hand, the difference between a game loss and a dq is intention. Unintentionally doing it would just be an irreparable game state, but intentionally doing it would be cheating. It's always the role of the judge to determine intention and that's exactly how they assign a penalty. If you went up to the judge after the round and said you were trying to get him to play rock, paper, scissors to gain an advantage, then I think it'd be completely reasonable for them to give you a penalty. 

 

It's not like I don't see what you're saying, but I'm sure you see what I'm saying too.

I'd have to ask Atem to be sure. Imagine for a second that you're a judge. A table calls you over. One player would like to use a die roll to determine who goes first, and the other would like to use RPS. You ask the player who'd like to use RPS why. He says, "I don't trust dice." Then you ask him, "Well do you think RPS is truly random?" He responds, "Of course it's not truly random. There's a large degree of psychology." As a judge, are you telling me that you're seriously considering applying a penalty there?

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Patrick Hoban    6363
12 minutes ago, ACP said:

I'd have to ask Atem to be sure. Imagine for a second that you're a judge. A table calls you over. One player would like to use a die roll to determine who goes first, and the other would like to use RPS. You ask the player who'd like to use RPS why. He says, "I don't trust dice." Then you ask him, "Well do you think RPS is truly random?" He responds, "Of course it's not truly random. There's a large degree of psychology." As a judge, are you telling me that you're seriously considering applying a penalty there?

 

No, of course not. But I think there's a difference between acknowledging there's psychology involved and stating to a judge you intend to gain an advantage over something the policy document says should be random. 

 

I think this debate isn't resolvable. We're arguing about which makes the most logical sense, while Konami put "must be random" and rock, paper, scissors (something not random) as the right way to go about it when logically speaking they can't both be true. 

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+mmf    23484

the main point allen's made against "deals" is that they hurt your reputation in the long run which is very valid but i also think there's something possibly bigger thats being missed

 

until very recently, there was a gentlemans agreement to not chaingrab in sheik dittos that was not only standard but near-ubiquitous at high levels of play. it works pretty much exactly like the standard examples of ygo gentlemans agreements like side out djinn, emptiness or whatever: the chaingrab is so good that the better player (usually mew2king) believes that it's the only conceivable way the opponent of lesser skill could score the upset, so why not try to get them not to do it?

 

the reason people have had to stop doing this, beginning with sometime early last year, isn't really because of any reputation tied to specific sheik players, though. the newer generation of sheiks basically just doesn't give a shit about the stigma of variance associated with chaingrabbing; they don't view it as uniquely random, they practice it like they practice anything else, and they want to try to be better than the top sheiks in chaingrabbing dittos

 

turns out a lot of the top sheiks had gotten stagnant in their chaingrabs leading to things like kira over kirbykaze at INY. i realize the analogy doesn't carry over perfectly to card games, but in general, if you try to play as many games as you can in a tournament setting while just str8 up excluding a certain card or option, how can you expect to outplay the person you meet in top 4 that's been outplaying people with it all weekend when they force you to play without that exclusion?

 

cards like sixth sense might be outliers, but i don't think anyone would deny that adding or removing oppression from teledad format drastically changes the way the mirror is played and i would assume the same would go for most emptiness mirrors. if teledad format continued on for a year after sjc houston, would/could it have gotten far enough to where people would gentleman to side it out? could the format continue forever in such an equilibrium? i have to think that eventually someone would have to pop up that would just force everyone to play with oppression and beat their asses with it because he's the only one that still bothers to playtest with it

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Ynusgridorh    142
10 hours ago, Patrick Hoban said:

Aren't penalties always a matter of intention? If a player draws an extra card and shuffles their hand, the difference between a game loss and a dq is intention. Unintentionally doing it would just be an irreparable game state, but intentionally doing it would be cheating. It's always the role of the judge to determine intention and that's exactly how they assign a penalty. If you went up to the judge after the round and said you were trying to get him to play rock, paper, scissors to gain an advantage, then I think it'd be completely reasonable for them to give you a penalty.

Doing something intentionally means doing it consciously. The reason why you're doing it doesn't make it more or less intentional. If you draw 2 cards by accident when you were only trying to draw 1, you're doing it unintentionally. If you choose to use rock-paper-scissors knowing you're using it, you're doing it intentionally. Whether you're using it to gain an advantage or just for fun doesn't matter.

 

10 hours ago, Patrick Hoban said:

I think there's a difference between acknowledging there's psychology involved and stating to a judge you intend to gain an advantage over something the policy document says should be random.

If you're allowed to pick a method to decide who goes first that involves elements of psychology then you're allowed to pick such method because it involves elements of psychology.

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Blacklisted    1329
29 minutes ago, Ynusgridorh said:

 If you draw 2 cards by accident when you were only trying to draw 1, you're doing it intentionally.

 

 

 

What? Think we have different definitions of the word 'intentionally'

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