Neal's Last Words
by Byron "Neal" Massey
What the DCI can do for you
Ever since the original announcement (DCI Field Report), people
have been wondering what DCI sanctioning really means for Netrunner.
This week, TRC President Robert Flack finally went public with the
DCI sanctioning means respect. The TRC has worked hard promoting
Netrunner. WotC now recognizes that there is a dedicated player
base for the game. The DCI is known world-wide as an official body
for organized game play. Theyare willing to work with us and use
some of their budget to rank players. Skip is working closely with
the DCI to put official tournament rules in place. Matthias Nagy's
rankings will be the basis for the ranking system. The DCI is looking
to the TRC for expertise in Netrunner so organized play is implemented
DCI sanctioning means increased promotion. Netrunner promotion
is the cornerstone of the TRC. By working with the DCI, Netrunner
events carry more impact. Players of other games that are sanctioned
by the DCI can see that Netrunner has official support. More importantly,
players of games not sanctioned will see official support.
Yes, these are abstracts. But abstracts are important. Remember,
the check you get is just an abstract for the work you did. ;-)
DCI sanctioning does *not* mean the end of the TRC. The TRC provides
a way for Netrunner players to get together. It also promotes the
game by helping players run demos and organize playgroups. The DCI
will help on the tournament side of this work by providing a cost-free
way of assembling player rankings and promoting tournaments.
Bob "Argi" Flack
It was nice, in a sad sort of way, to see that all the old Magic
players were right. The DCI is not going to do anything for Netrunner.
They are willing to add names to their player-ranking database,
along with Battletech. That's all. Of course, there is no date specified
for the DCI ranking to begin.
"The DCI might walk away at this rejection. They'll be back,
when Netrunner is even stronger."
Which would be fine, if they were not asking anything of the TRC.
Skipper Pickle, the DCI representative on the Netrunner mailing
list, and the sole rules Czar for Netrunner, is not so lucky. He
is under pressure from the DCI to issue an "official"
version of the Netrunner tournament rules that conforms to their
template for the Magic rules.
Pressure is the result of a force. The only force being applied
here is the name of the Duelists' Convocation International. The
rules are not being formed by the force of money, or tournaments,
or new cards. So far, simply adding the DCI name to Netrunner has
been enough force to produce some unuseable rules.
The TRC currently has a "cost-free way of assembling player
rankings". His name is Matthias Nagy, and he is a hero. When
the TRC starts generating income from its meatspace events, I assume
some of it will be given to Matthias. Until then, he is cost-free.
You can guess where I am going with this. The DCI name is anethema
to most experienced players of WotC games. Only those members of
the TRC who do not share a history with the DCI view its contribution
as positive. If the DCI is not willing to bring something to the
table, besides their besmirched name, the TRC should not pay the
slightest attention to their wishes. The hard, volunteer work of
the TRC members is being given away for nothing.
By all accounts, the TRC is growing stronger every day. They are
planning meatspace championships in Europe next year, and new players
are added daily to the membership roles. Giving up control of the
tournament system at this time is a horrible negotiating blunder.
The TRC tournament rules should not be influenced in any way by
the wishes of the DCI.
The DCI might walk away at this rejection. They'll be back, when
Netrunner is even stronger. Perhaps they'll bring some tangible
assets to the table. If Netrunner doesn't grow stronger, what is
the point of following DCI wishes?
The DCI has a long track record of making mistakes. Assuming that
their initials are an asset to Netrunner is yet another. If the
TRC is fooled by the self-aggrandizement of the DCI, they begin
on the slippery slope that made Magic the Medusa it is today. The
rules template is only the first step down that slope.
Karl De Veres spent his last night with the Corvallis City Grid
this week. He is moving to Mississippi, where he and his wife will
pursue their formal education. He left us in fine fashion, winning
a Swiss tournament. The single-starter tournament was proceeded
by ten-mnute trading sessions in a round-robin format. I really,
really liked this format and recommend that you try it. The details
can be found in Beta Testing the Field.
Karl will be sorely missed. He is the author of the ultimate bitless
stack, Bozomatic. He has also created hundreds of other creative,
interesting deck designs, including PurgeTech(tm), which he describes
in Deal with Purgetech(tm). He is the current constructed-deck champion
of the Northwestern United States.
Good luck, Karl. May all your runs be free, and your forts secure.