As someone who is now a certified winner with a certified garbage card (at least that's what everyone else thinks), I feel like it is important to teach others valuable lessons on how to lucksack. The following article will give you a series of tips on how to please the Gods of Eternal, so that you too can have optimal success with suboptimal decks. The article also goes fairly in depth about what it was like to win an ETS after being on pace to be the worst Eternal player of all time (minimum 50 games).
#1 - When you assume, you make an ass out of you and your chances to win an ETS tournament: I don't care if you are up 50-1 with board control in the quarterfinals of the set 2 showcase, if you become arrogant of your situation the Gods will make sure your opponent draws their 2nd J sigil so they can play a killer Oathbreaker
and win the game 50-0 3 turns later. This also goes for the ETS Team League.
“We win now,” “You should BM him.” These are direct quotes from our week 5 team league match (which we didn't win). While I love my team team to death, they clearly don't understand the importance of keeping the wrath of the Gods away from them (so they better read this article). There may be a temptation to celebrate your good fortune early, however doing so will cause your amazing hand to get gifted on 7 or never draw a weapon when you played 4 artisans.
Now this may be tough for some, but the best way to cope with this is to just never assume anything. If you are up 50-1 then you should think that you simply have a solid chance, this will cause your opponent to draw an S sigil instead. If you need to joke about the potential hilarity of being the first person on your team with an ETS win even though you entered the day with a 9-21 record, then use as many ifs, possibilities, and other conditionals as you can fit into 140 characters or less. Also wait until you know you're qualified for the invitational. That way you can at least get a second chance if you in fact angered the Gods.
#2 - If if ain't broke, don't fix it: Some people might call the following a bunch of superstitious bologna, but I'm the one that won an ETS with 2 cards that people think are trash, so you'll have to trust me on this one. The simplest explanation of this strategy is to change nothing unless you lose. It doesn't matter if that thing is playing with your cat on your lap, never cloning your deck for sideboarding, not eating anything, or completely forgetting everything that happened in the past matches because you are too busy trying to make sure you aren't changing any of your routines. If you’re winning, it could be because of any one of those things, so you don't want to change them till you lose.
For those still skeptical, here are direct quotes from myself in my team chat throughout the weekly: “3-1 Kreygasm,” “4-1 Kreygasm,” “5-1 BABY” (explains how I lost to double bloodletter in game 3 of the quarterfinals), “6-1 Kreygasm,” “7-1 Kreygasm.” As you can clearly see, consistency is key. Also notice how the pattern started after my first loss. I never lost afterwards.
#3 - Lighten Up: While the Gods are avid card game spectators, they don't seem to understand why people take it so seriously. Apparently deities seem to think there are more important issues in the world. Thus they like people who don't care much about the outcome and are just there for the ride, whether that be 8-1 or 1-8. The Gods like to be entertained, so those that bring a cheerful mindset will be rewarded.
#4 - Blessed are those who are persecuted: In this case, those who are persecuted are Frontier Jito
. Everyone else thinks these cards are awful. Well these cards have feelings too, and they were simply waiting for their chance to enact revenge. While a card like Scraptank may be a waste of 4 sideboard slots to some, it gets you on the good side of the Gods very quickly. Most of the good fortune I received can be directly traced back to Scraptank (it should be noted that I went 1-2 with the exact same 75 card main board a few weeks earlier, a notable card that was not in that list’s sideboard was, in fact, Scraptank).
Jito was another card that helped immensely. It never came down in a bad scenario and the one time it did, the Gods were nice enough to make sure my opponent forgot to kill it. They did however let me know that I should have brought 4 Jito instead of 3 as I never drew it in the one match I lost. While many people may say that my deck wasn't optimal because it ran Jito and Scraptank, I would argue that this actually improved the deck. While these cards may have made the deck worse, they made the deck far luckier, and as the saying goes: “it's better to be lucky than good.”
#5 - Those who ask for little will receive much: When your entire tournament career is off meme decks, you end up not expecting or hoping much. I thought a good outcome would just be winning a match, so I never wished for any success going into it. I was simply going to take it one minute (also known as a match for any control players out there) at a time and see where I wound up. Unfortunately my entire plan went out the window when I accidentally blinked and missed my first two matches. I frantically checked challonge to see how I was doing and -- much to my surprise -- found out that I was 2-0. At this point my only wish was to manage to get on stream, which I knew had to be now before I plummeted down the leaderboards. Thus I took matters into my own hands by showing the wonderful ExKirby my decklist and undefeated record. The Gods thought this pitiful attempt of pandering was cute enough to actually let me on stream, but made sure I got brutally 2-0d because I was acting too needy. At this point I went on to game 4 in shame, realizing that my one chance to show off the power of Jito was ruined. When I had finally gotten into the big stage, I couldn’t even draw the one card I wanted to prove was for real. Despite my despair the Gods showed that I might end up having a second chance on stream as I managed to pull out the next 2 games. This put me at 4-1 with a win and in game coming against none other than Armory extraordinaire, TonyGeeeee. Game 1 was a slow start for myself which allowed Tony to control me with ease, giving him the quick 1-0 lead. This put my top 8 chances on the brink. While I knew there was a possibility I could still get in at 4-2, I was hoping to avoid the stress of waiting for breakers, so at that point I made 1 more wish. Make top 8. I don't remember much after that but I do know that there were 1 drops, there were Jitos, there were Sanguars, and in the end there was a thoroughly eviscerated TonyGeeeee. Knowing that I had now clinched my first ever top 8 in an ETS weekly, I went to celebrate with my team, who were utterly dismayed at the thought of my jank being good enough to win 1 game, let alone 5. This celebration, along with my aforementioned break of routine displeased the Gods. Thus they made sure I felt their wrath by making the most stressful and intense best of 5 match I had ever endured, and that no one would be there to sympathize. So while everyone else watched Camat0 and Unearthly have a fun game of pin the Falchion on the TavGod, I was losing my mind worrying that every draw might be my last.
As mentioned previously, my most recent memory of being in a top 8 was getting destroyed in game 3 of the set 2 showcase by a killer Oathbreaker
and going on to lose 3-2. So when I found myself again in a 1-1 tie with lethal on board and a massive life lead in game 3 against an Argenport deck with a 5JJSS unit that could (and would) potentially ruin my life, I knew everything would be fine. Then a Bloodletter
came down on the TavGod and the draw whiffed. I thought to myself: Oh how cute, you extended your life for 1 turn, I have a Jito, you have no chance. Then the second bloodletter came down. My face was promptly sent into oblivion and I found myself down 2-1 once again. At that moment I realized that I had fucked up. The thought being on the brink of losing another intense quarterfinals match to lifesteal shenanigans dawned on me. I had come so far just to go out as I had twice before, 3-2 heartbreak that no one would even get to watch. Needing to win 2 straight games to keep my tournament life I began to wonder if I would ever come this far again. However, it turned out the Gods got the memo that I was on a deck that needed it's time to shine (unlike my set 2 showcase of Bart the Interactive). Thus they decided to spare me with some impeccably timed draws, and I needed every single one of them to pull out 2 more nail-biting matches. I understood this as a message that I should never mess with them again.
I took the time before my semifinal match to recover from my previous trauma and prepare myself for the Xenan menace. Given my only prior loss was my one streamed match, I was slightly concerned that the Gods had set it up so I would only do amazing when no one was watching and do awful when everyone was. Despite my concerns I kept most of my confidence in the gods. I also asked for 1 final wish to get into the Invitational, cause I knew there would be no chance in hell of me doing it ever again. Once again it was an intense 3-2 match (although this one thankfully didn't age me by 10 years), as the Gods toyed with my heart a little more. Now finding myself in the finals, I was surprisingly at peace. I had gotten a deck of mine on EternalWarcry (other than MRSB), I had finally come top 8 in a standard tournament (a feat I had never even accomplished in a TCG or SPG weekly), I went into a game 5 and won (something I failed at in both side events I played back in August), and I had actually made it to the Invitational (taking up the spot of some poor deserving soul that actually plays good decks). While I had won all 3 of my prior Argenport matches, I did all I could have asked for. Making one final request to the Gods to give me another improbable win with Frontier Jito
was obviously never going to come true, so I just accepted my fate -- however it may lie -- and decided I should enjoy my finals match, cause it would probably be my last. It turned out that the Gods took great pleasure in seeing that I had accepted their judgements, and decided to give me one final reward in order to show that A: they were real, and B: that I was smart to follow their guidelines. This came in a decisive 3-0 sweep that I am sure most readers saw on stream.
#6 - You can't lose if losing is your goal: This past Saturday, a young man woke up and started to think about what he had done with his life. Over the past few weeks he had been trying to do what no one in their sane mind would ever want. Lose. This goal came about a couple months earlier, when he figured out that he was too trash to actually be good at the game of Eternal (and too lazy to try and change that), so he decided it would be far easier (and less stressful) to be bad at it instead. That way he could have at least accomplished something in his short and pitiful life. This man woke up with a career record of 9-21 in the ETS. He went to sleep that night with a record of 17-22. In the future there may be stories about this man, a player who just wanted to either be historically good or historically bad and ended up tragically in between. What can be learned from his woeful tale is that those who are unlucky should simply wish for the opposite of what they want. Through this method they shall find true success.
I hope everyone enjoyed this article, which took approximately 350,000 average length Jito matches to write (also known as .75 Chalice mirrors for any control players out there). I also hope that this can bring success to others that want have a good time with oddball decks.
Thanks to my team for being awesome people, especially Tatsumaki, who’s even more awesome for proofreading this article that was way too damn long. Thanks to Stevercakes for sponsoring our team, and allowing this article on his beautiful site. He also took way too much time out of his day to make sure this was written well. Thanks to MooToo for posting his Jito Queen
list way back on January 12th of this year. A list I shamelessly stole and took to ETS glory 10 months later (something I'm sure he predicted). Thanks to ExKirby for showing me how Scraptank
improves your luck. Thanks to the (aptly named) RNG team for hosting the tournament, and naively giving me a platform to show my unique skills. Thanks to Gaintmonstr (another player who had their 1st ETS top 8 that day) for nearly ruining my ETS career in the Quarterfinals. Thanks to Thundershot for sparing my lovely Jito. And Finally, thanks most of all to Frontier Jito
. Without these amazing cards I would never be in the spot to write this article.
For those interested in my (slightly) more serious thoughts on my ETS winning list, I did an interview with ClarityGGTV here.
The interview starts at 21:00.
For those who missed the ETS weekly you can find it here.
For those interested in seeing Jito Queen in action, my streamed matches were at 1:56:45, 5:21:00, and 5:57:20 respectively.
Some of you may know me from the meta analysis I've been doing in the past, unfortunately I've been super busy with college, so I can't continue putting that out on a weekly basis, however I do plan to put a longer one out after each ETS season.