The First of its Kind? – CardCon PH 2017!

Hey, it’s an event to make my summer break worthwhile! Let’s check it out! XD

To be honest, I knew of this event ever since it was being hyped up since June because I pre-registered for the tournament. It’s an event dedicated to card gamers of all ages and likenesses.  And it’s the first of its kind! How so? Because this event doesn’t have card game tournaments as side-events just like the Anime Card Game Tournament (or ACGT) Ozine had for years past. As in. It’s an event that only those who play these TCGs can appreciate.

To simplify this post, I’ll quickly go over the pluses and the minuses of this event in its entirety. Keep in mind that this is the first event intended directly for card gamers, so there is obviously a huge room for improvement. Let me take this moment to give my sincerest thanks to Perfect Circle Events for a job well done with the organizing. :bd

Venue

Being held in Megamall is just a personal plus for me who lives near it.

It covered one Megatrade Hall in SM Megamall, and that amount of space was enough to keep the community further engage with the enjoyment of playing TCGs. The booths in the hall were  hobby shops’ stalls, which already cater to the proper demographic. Those that weren’t those were either food stalls (weirdly enough that there were only two of them…) or variety stalls, which sold shirts, fan-made items, or were sponsors.

The stage boasted a two-monitor setup, one for each side facing the audience, many speakers behind those monitors, and an elevation platform you see in usual conventions, with the tech booth left of the stage.

The front corners of the hall stood the tables, and they were allocated for the different TCGs. The left was for players of Magic: The Gathering  while the right was for a moshpit of card games: Pokémon TCG, Yu-Gi-Oh!, WIXOSS, and the Bushiroad card games. There were also test-play card games such as the Final Fantasy card game and Dragoborne, BSR’s new card game.

(fus ro dahahahahahaha)

This, overall, is not a bad lay-out for the event. XD

Activities

Well, it’s a card game event, what else would you expect from it?

Tournaments! They’re the lifeblood of the entire hobby! What made the tournaments appealing in particular is its SUPER GENEROUS ENTRANCE FEE AND PRIZE STRUCTURE. 400 pesos (~$8) for card sleeves and one booster pack of choice per win. It’s INSANE.

Side note: I also checked the prize structure for MtG. THAT’S EVEN HUGER. JUST LOOK AT THIS.

MtG Standard: A sport of its own. Also, for those wondering, Gold Rush is a yearly major event held by Ludus and Neutral Grounds, the main providers of MtG here in the PH.

While card games are the focal point of this event, there are also some side events presented on the stage to keep the general audience’s attention. There were some sponsored events like the eating contest, and the other events in the itinerary such as giveaways, auctions of various items, a cosplay competition, and performances from various groups. All of these were fun in their own rights. XD

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

HOWEVER! Here are my two cents to take home from how the event went down. Please take these opinions as constructive criticisms from a participant, not as a mindless rant.

Schedules (for everything)

Being an event dedicated for card games and the fun of playing them, it is expected that all of the games get to be played out in their entirety. Being the card game scheduled last in the list of events, the BSR games got the short end of the stick when the schedule went haywire. What could have been 6 rounds twiddled down to just 4. How do you even reward the prize if the top player hasn’t been surely decided yet i.e there are still multiple players at X-0? Sure, “it happens” that schedules don’t get followed to the point, but this mishap could have been avoided. An hour of delay could have been acceptable, but two hours getting set back just destroys the affected events altogether.

My suggestion? It’s the easiest out to extend the event to two days, but given just one day, the better solution is to re-arrange the order of the tournaments so that the faster ones to complete get finished. Also, whatever reason for the delay, try to make compromises to mitigate the delays. There has to be strict implementation of schedules especially for an event dictated by such a restrained time limit.

Activities

Yeah, the activities were fun for the general audience, but weirdly enough, it was underappreciated by the main demographic of this event! The comments I have received from some of my card gamer friends regarding the activities were mostly negative. AND THAT’S NOT BECAUSE OF THE QUALITY OF THE PERFORMANCES. The problem lied with the performances in general.

The performances were fun to watch, but the point of playing card games isn’t to watch performances. It’s to play. The most negative point a good ol’ friend of mine (who greeted me a late “Happy Birthday!”) gave is that they were unwanted. The okayest negative point a fellow NOHK gave is that they felt out of place. I had no problem with the loud music and all, until it became so distracting that I had to shout at my opponent to tell him about the effects of my cards. That’s super counter-intuitive for an event dedicated for card gamers.

The solution should sound obvious, then. But I say this again, it’s not the fault of the performers. You guys did a good job, whether they were appreciated or otherwise. Hope to see you in other events, just not ones like this because concentration is a key factor in card games.

The Little Things

Why were there only two food stalls? Sure, participants can just enter and leave freely to buy food, but that reduces the time spent in the premises and presents a lack of convenience.

On that issue, why were there few trash bins? Trash can come from any source, not just the paper used to place the food in. This also causes for the place to look dirty, discipline of the general public aside, simply because where does one even throw the trash?

Another NOHK member even wondered if there was even a need for the stage in the first place. He shares to me pretty much a purist approach when it comes to this event i.e. “This is a Card Convention, so it only has to have card game related things.” While I have many counter-arguments for that (and so do you, PC), I’ll let this comment slide in here uncontested.

Overall

CardCon PH 2017, being the first of its kind, was a huge step forward to getting the card game community to enjoy their hobbies further alongside the further forging of bonds within the members of the said community. While there were some issues of varying degrees, the event was able to fulfill its objective to provide an occasion and a lively atmosphere to enjoy the beauty of all card games with people from various walks of life. Should the organizers get the ample feedback and work upon them, I’m sure this will be a yearly event that even the general public unbeknownst to the hobby will look forward to.


Photos by fellow NOHK member GMZ839:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

(The cover photo was taken from the CardCon PH official Facebook page and the MtG-related photo came from the Neutral Grounds official Facebook page.)

Well, that took a while. Until next time, I’ll be seeing ya’ XD!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s