Guppy or Piranha?
Matching the WBC attendance
totals in a Pre-Con was a good sign. Unfortunately, the Sampler
Showcase it was part of may be cancelled for lack of volunteer
demonstrators - thus ending any Euro Pre-Con.
The huge dropoff in attendance from
its debut year is typical of Euro tournaments in their first
year where many players are trying the games for the first time
in a form of scheduled Open Gaming.
In 2007, the powers that be decided to replace Attika
with San Juan as the first official euro tournament that
was run during the Sampler Showcase pre-con. Last year,
Attika experienced a large decline in attendance
when it was held as a pre-con. So we were very happy that
this year's San Juan attendance was approximately the
same as last years'.
We went with the two-player version and four swiss prelliminary
rounds. We also used the optional rule that the first player
started with five cards and the second player got six.
Both players then discard down to a hand of four cards. Players
were not forced to play all rounds, but at least three wins were
required to advance to a single elimination bracket.
After four one-hour rounds of play, 13 players managed the required
number of wins and the brackets were completed. No one
was too surprised when defending champ Bruce Reiff made it through
one side of the bracket unscathed to the Final. Now we
all just had to find if euro shark David Platnick or fellow Cabbie
Pete Stein would be Bruce's victim, er opponant.
After a well-played game Pete Stein bested David to make
it an all-Cabbie Final. Some people were seen congratulating
Reiff on his impending victory.
The GM placed a call to Columbus, Ohio to inform Pete's WBC trainer,
Mike Zehnal that his pupil was up against the dreaded Reiff.
Pete's Sensei was heard shouting, "Don't look into his eyes,
Pete!" But Pete wasn't worried. He had outlasted
former champ Jeff Mullet as well as well-known sharks Marvin
Birmbaum, Raphael Lerner, Eric Brosius and many others in what
was a pretty strong field.
As play began, Bruce and Pete were playing fairly even the first
couple of turns. But soon there was murmering in
the crowd that Pete was playing some pretty strong cards and
Bruce was not. The crowd began to sense that something
strange and unforeseen was in the offing. Last year was
supposed to be a fluke wasn't it? Could the self-deprecating
Stein win wood twice in the same decade?
When all was said and done, Pete had polished off his master
and claimed the first official wood of WBC. Within an hour,
CABS WBC training fees were doubled for 2008.
Here is a sampling of quotes from BPA members when told of Pete's
win over Bruce.
"Really?!?!?" ( Eight times. Nine if you
count one member who said it twice)
"No, who really won?"
But none more classic than Bruce's own daughter, Nicole.
"Really? Uncle Pete really beat you Daddy? Are
Thanks to everyone who participated in this year's tournament
and to Pete Stein for being a good sport about all the ribbing
he got before the Final and even after winning. Pete got the
last laugh and even changed his Consimworld tagline to "Never
lost a two player final to Bruce Reiff with a plaque on the line".