2011 World Championships – A Groundbreaking Weekend

by Pooka ~ August 10th, 2011.

Well folks, we’re just a couple days away from the 2011 World Championships, taking place in beautiful San Diego, CA. Players from all over the world are coming together to compete and share their passion for the game they love – the Pokémon TCG. At the end of the weekend, a new champion will be crowned in each division as usual. However, this year things are going to be much different with the Last Chance Qualifier, Worlds, and more. Are you excited? If you’re not, here’s why you should be!

            To kick things off, we have the LCQ, more commonly referred to as the Grinder. Of course the big change this year is that the tournament format will be single elimination best 2/3 matches, instead of Swiss rounds. Plain and simple, if you lose one match you are eliminated, and you keep playing until there are about eight players remaining. Although there have been some complaints about the change, the best 2/3 format should favor skilled players and reduce the luck factor, so it seems to be a positive change. Most importantly, if you lose a game on the first turn, you still have a chance to win the match; this certainly is welcomed in a format where first turn wins are not uncommon. In addition, the Grinder should be less stressful on the judging staff this year, which is something that most people overlook. When it comes down to it, we’ll have to wait and see how the changes affect things. While the new tournament format is huge news, it’s only the first of many groundbreaking announcements for this year’s World Championship weekend.

            For the first time in the Nintendo era, the format changed completely in the middle of the season. Even though most of the season was played using the MD-On format, Worlds will be played with the HS-On format. While some countries had their Nationals use this format, many countries have not had a tournament using HS-On yet; so it will be interesting to see how everyone adapts. Will players from the US, Canada, and Mexico have an advantage by experiencing the format at Nationals? Or have players from the other countries adapted already? With the amount of coin flips present in HS-On, will we see an established player win? Or will a new face rise to the top? Has someone figured out a rogue deck that can take everyone by surprise? Well, all of those questions will be answered this weekend! Just like at US Nationals, The Top Cut will be providing coverage of the event, so pay attention to Twitter (@topcutpokemon) and the website, http://thetopcut.net/, for updates.

            Speaking of The Top Cut, a truly unique event will take place this weekend – the Top Cut Invitational. What is the Top Cut Invitational? Basically eight National and World Champions have been invited to play in a special tournament with one purpose in mind – showing people what the Pokémon TCG is all about. Unlike a normal tournament where the focus is on the players, this event will cater to the spectators. Throughout the tournament, every game will be recorded with commentary, so you won’t miss anything that happens. Here is your chance to see some of the best players in the world duke it out! For a list of the competitors and for information concerning the tournament, visit http://thetopcut.net/tcinvitational/. If possible, the event also will be streamed live, so you can watch even if you aren’t in San Diego. For those attending Worlds, the event will take place in the Open Gaming Area (Sapphire Ballroom) around 6 PM PST, and all spectators are welcome! Without a doubt, this is the first time an event like this has taken place for the Pokémon TCG, and we are very thrilled to be hosting it.

            Between the LCQ, Worlds, and the Top Cut Invitational, the 2011 World Championship weekend is sure to deliver lots of fun and excitement for the whole community. For updates on the event, be sure to stay posted by checking out The Top Cut’s coverage throughout the weekend. In addition, there is an official site for Worlds updates, http://pokemon.com/worlds/. If you can’t make it to Worlds this year, rest assured there will be information on it one way or another. Now the only question I have left is this: are you excited yet?

-Kyle “Pooka” Sucevich

This article is part of OneHitKO’s Guest Writer Week for August 2011. Please check out all the articles in the series, and please give the authors your feedback in the comment section below.

  1. Michael’s article about upcoming Japanese cards.
  2. Radu’s article about his Mew/Muk/Jumpluff/Vileplume deck and how it can be made better.
  3. Pooka introduces Worlds 2011.
  4. Alan’s article about how to run a Pokemon league.
  5. Jay. H takes a look at past formats of the game.
  6. Jordan’s article about running rogue decks and his worlds decklist.

Be sure to check back throughout the week for more great articles from our friends!

Category: Tourney Report | Tags: , ,