Team Baba: Shannon Jakul’s Gencon Tournament Report

Baba 1-3
Black Style Mastery CS
Elder Kai Sensei
32 Baba Lv 2
Sensei Deck:
3 Black Scout Maneuver
2 Power of Cookies
2 Showdown
2 Awful Abrasions
2 The Plan
1 Alt. Namek Dragon Ball 7
1 Huh???
1 You’re Invited
1 Piccolo, The Trained
1 Ghost Usher, Attendant
1 Spike, Devil Man
1 Bandages, the Mummy
1 See Through, Invisible Man
1 Grandpa Gohan
1 Fangs, the Vampire
38 Grandpa Gohan
Battleground: 3
3 Gravity Chamber
Non-combat: 31
3 Black Searching Technique
3 Watching From Afar
3 Piccolo and Heroes Gather
3 Krillin’s Concentration
3 Black Thought Focus
2 Hercule’s Dream Sequence
2 Android 20 Absorbing Drill
2 Black Weakness Drill
2 Caught Off Guard Drill
1 Don’t You Just Hate That
1 Victorious Drill
1 Releasing the Sword
1 Hero’s Lucky Break
1 Fatherly Advice
1 Initiative
1 Teaching the Unteachable Forces Observation
1 Expectant Trunks
Combat: 32
3 Aura Clash
3 Oh Hoi Hoi Poi
3 Pan’s Victory
3 Trunks Energy Sphere
3 Stop
3 Ally’s Sacrifice
3 Confrontation
2 Frieza Smiles
2 Land in Pain
2 Dream Fighting
1 Dazed
1 Pure Defense
1 Time is a Warrior’s Tool
1 Super Saiyan Effect
1 Drills are for the Weak
Physical Combat: 8
3 Black Body Destruction
3 Black Buffer Block
1 Nappa’s Physical Resistance
1 Vegeta’s Physical Stance
Energy Combat: 6
3 Black Recovery
1 Nappa’s Energy Aura
1 Frieza’s Force Bubble
1 Black Protection Or
Welcome back from Gencon everyone.  Hopefully you have had time to sober up, get some rest and start saving up for next year.  This was my first Gencon in over a decade and I had a good time.  Some things I’d do different but mostly it was awesome.  Seeing some old faces again and putting a person behind the Facebook picture was fun.  I went with a great group of players and met up with more when I got there.
By now, most everyone knows that the Midwest guys became known as Team Baba.  But how did we get to that point?  Here is a brief history:
In October 2012, Retro DBZ CCG released the main personality for Baba and her minions as a Halloween special.  And boy was she scary alright!  Darryl Fisher suggested we start playing her because he had seen something similar to her before and knew its power.  He and I immediately got to work and quickly found Baba was the most powerful force the game had ever seen.  We went through several renditions of Baba, ranging from typical ally mill with Snake Way all the way down to Stall Ball.  However, we found that she had to be played as her OWN win condition.  She wasn’t a “normal” ally deck, she was Baba.  Much like an Orange Vegeta’s Assault deck isn’t just “an Orange Drill deck”, it is its own deck type.  From there we took an existing Black Control deck and tailored it around Baba’s strength.  It beat everything put in front of it.  It was even smashing Broly Saiyan 1-3 anger with no resistance.  After a lot of debate and providing evidence to Retro of how broken she was, they tested her again and placed up the updated versions of her (you can find the articles if you search).  She was knocked down to “really good” and we were satisfied with her and set her aside and moved on.
Next we fast forward to June 2013 to the Diecon Retro Event in Collinsville, Illinois.  Chris Smith had been one of the folks who faced off quite a bit with Baba in her initial stages and still believed in her power.  He came packing his own version and piloted her to a second place finish that included several winning games against the monster formerly known as Kid Buu.  With this, Chris reignited the interest we had in Baba.  Darryl decided he would dust her off and polish her back up.  I was a little bit on the fence, because I liked Buu more, but once Buu was neutered the choice was clear:  Baba.
Kevin Bock (be sure to read his report) decided he was going to come into town and roll with Darryl and I to Gencon, where we would be meeting up with Chris.  But he had no idea what to play.  What was Darryl’s recommendation?  Baba, of course.  Kevin got down on some playtesting, tossed it together and we filled everyone in on our strategies against all the popular tough guys.  Even though Baba didn’t win Gencon overall, I still like to think she shook up the field and took the world by storm.
Round 1 vs. Namekian Future Gohan (don’t know name)
We had played against Namekian Future Gohan a lot as a member of our group had been piloting it for a while, and I had played against it several times from some of the guys from up North (Robert Turner, I look in your direction).  I wasn’t afraid of it at all.  The scariest proposition it had for me a Namekian Door Explosion on a CIT or World Tournament, but I had so many ways to search for Land in Pain to kill it that the odds were in my favor.  Namekian Gohan can draw lots of cards, but its damage for a physical beats deck leaves a lot to be desired.  Basically the game goes well for me as I use my allies to redirect the little bit of damage that comes at me and I use a combination of Clash and Poi to get to level three.  I start stacking up my buddies, and declaring and milling to my hearts content.  Namekian Gohan at his higher levels can really get some huge eight or more card hands, so I would declare just to make him draw, mill 7-14 (Spike+Usher+and whoever else).  He Namekian Shuto’d me when I had three of em out, which bought him a few turns but ultimately it isn’t enough.  I end up milling him to death with about 40 life cards left.    1-0.
Round 2 vs.  Goku Red TS (Josh Merckle)
This is the first time I have ever played Josh.  Not to be dramatic, but for the most part we’ve never seen eye to eye so this would be interesting.  At the start of the game, he tosses in a Red Dueling Drill which would end up being game breaker.  If I recall, he rolls and goes first.  He powers up and passes.  I grab Fangs to try and hault his anger gain (I’m figuring he would end up just using the anger to feed Red Spopovitch Bane Drill, but if it’s not out I didn’t want him leveling up).  I power up and pass.  Josh draws, powers up and declares.  He draws a card from Goku so he has a five card hand.  He starts his second turn/first combat with a Red Pulverize.  He gets Red Tactical Drill, Red Meditation Drill, Red Dueling Drill and two others.  My internal response is “ugh”.  I have an Aura Clash, which would have been great to kill his drills except for Meditation thwarting that plan (plus a Clash would be feeding in to his plans even if I did).  I obviously can’t attack or use my ally so I pass.  The next course of action for Josh is to:  Red Eye Laser Assault, Red Energy Blast, Battle Pausing, Red Eye Laser Assault to get to level two.  Eye Laser is on the bottom of the Discard Pile, so he uses Goku lv. 2 Cell Saga to draw it again and plays it.  He plays Red Axe Heel Kick to recover it, and then plays the Eye Laser again (obviously I’m passing the whole time since I can only defend basically).  This gets him to level two.  Once more he plays Red Energy Blast followed by his Mastery to sit at level 3 with two anger.  This was a GREAT early hand and I couldn’t do anything about it.  I go on my turn, grab Bandages just because and pass.  Josh Declares again, and hits level 4 but doesn’t really do any damage.  I end up getting a Drills are for the Weak to wipe his drills and slow him down just a teeny bit with Fangs, but he uses the Goku lv. 4 from World Games Saga to shuffle it back in and grab them again with Red Pulverize.  He declares last combat of the game and levels up, just as I drew into an Awful Abrasions that I had sensei’d in.  Good game.  1-1.
Round 3 vs. Red TS Retro Vegeta lv. 1
Another Red deck??? GEEZ.  Oh well.  We go and my opponent passes quit a few turns in a row.  His deck seems to be running very heavy on single blocks.  I’m not getting anything worth while to declare with so I start entering and milling slowly with Ghost Usher and Spike.  However, my opponent on these passing turns is slowly acquiring Earth Dragon Balls.  He’s running a full set and gets four of them out.  I start getting concerned because as he’s being milled, he’s getting closer to them.  Since I don’t run Earth Dragon Ball Capture, I don’t have much of a way to steal them so I have to Grampa Gohan to toss them back in his deck.  However, here’ s the catch:  as I mill him the other three have gone to the bottom of the deck.  If I keep milling, he could pull out the classic “draw into the last of the Earth Balls with 3 and 5” BUT if I Grampa one back in, he gets to shuffle and could bring the rest up to the top.  I keep hoping to hit one with Ghost Usher but no luck.  He holds Gramps off with Red Energy Blast, and keeps me from declaring to get an extra turn of mill with Earth Dragon Ball 4.  I’m able to hold him at level one with Fangs as he doesn’t gain anger very fast, and his attacks do virtually no damage even if they hit.  I start widening our lead and end up milling him.  Scary game though with the Earth Balls hitting the table early.  2-1
Round 4 – Michael Ingersal (winner of the event!) Trunks Freestyle Sword
To be honest, I play tested against Freestyle of all sorts with Buu but didn’t with Baba as I didn’t have one in our stable.  I knew that the biggest thing I had to fear was Gohan Spots the Imposter Drill since the only answer I had for it was Don’t You Just Hate that against Freestyle.  I sensei in Alt. Namek Ball 7 in hopes of shutting down his mastery.  I consider Showdown, but it’s mostly there for the mirror match and I didn’t want to shut myself off and he happen to Gohan’s Sword Sweep.  We go and the game is fairly even for most the game.  He uses Trunks to stack his Sword drills on the table, but I keep him from exploding on me by killing Trunks Finds the Answer and Fatherly Advice with Bandages.  I end up Clashing us twice to get him away from level 1 to slow his drill assault down.  This works and I start getting some allies, but he sends them back to Elder Kai with Gohan’s Sword Sweep.  Our life decks are even with him sneaking through some attacks and me throwing Spike at him, but then late game he gets a Gohan Spots the Imposter Drill.  I need to get it rid of it ASAP.  I get Alt. Namek Dragon Ball 7 to shut off his Mastery, now all I need is Drills are for the Weak.  The bad news is that it is in my discard pile from a beefed up Sword attack earlier.  I get it back with Expectant Trunks, but it is met with a Trunks Energy Sphere.  I then get out a Fatherly Advice to get it back, but it is sent away with a Gohan’s Sword Thrust.  I just can’t get rid of Imposter Drill in time to get my mill going again and I lose.  Close game.  Last combat came down to us having fifteen or so life cards left.  2-2
I’m feeling pretty down so I HAVE to win my next two games.
Round 5 vs. Cell, Android 20’s Legacy Namekian TS
Another Namekian deck?  Cool.  Cell is slightly scarier since Clashing him is a no-no since his level 2 is AMAZING.  And he can Cell’s Instant Transmission for World Tournament or City in Turmoil.  This game is pretty one sided.  I get Piccolo and Heroes Gather for Poi and get to level three.  Between my blocks and See Through, he doesn’t sneak much damage by.  I use Pan’s Victory to make sure he has useless defense on the bottom of his discard pile, and every time Cell’s power hits for a Android Attack Drill, I promptly wrap it up in Bandages.  Being at level three and milling away twenty one cards a combat is too much and it’s over fairly easily.  3-2.
I feel better now and I just have to win one more game to make top cut.  I’m confidant at this point.
Round 6 vs. Chris Duncan Piccolo, the Trained Namekian TS.
I have known Chris for a very long time as we are both Illinois players.  I played him a lot back in the day during the Diecon and Archon regionals and Tuff Enuffs, so I know he is good (along with just being a great guy).  He’s pretty much had this deck for over ten years I think.   It sucks that I have to beat a cool guy to make top cut but it is what it is.
Piccolo ends up being scary because before the event, Garret ruled that The Trained CAN shut off Baba’s text in parentheses so that it will keep Baba’s “you’re allies get this power” text from giving the crew the tool they need to save themselves.  This means if I stack ‘em up and he hits a Shuto or Cell’s Presence, I’m toast.  I HAVE to clash him as fast as I can.  Thankfully I pack three of them, along with seven cards to search for it.  This was done by design as there had been some rumblings ahead of time that this ruling would come out.  I go first and get out a Krillin’s Concentration and See Through (to prevent any energies from hurting me too bad).  He declares and shuts off See Through and tosses a few energies.  I stop all and Krillin’s Concentration for an Aura Clash.  I’m grinning like an idiot in my head, but he has a well timed Trunks Energy Sphere.  BLAH!  I escape combat mostly unharmed and work my way into another Aura Clash that I back up with a Sphere.  I Clash him successfully but eat a few life cards from his level 2 from World Games Saga.  I end up getting a Poi and jump up to level three to really start the party.  Chris actually ends up Aura Clashing as well since I can’t go any higher.  I’m holding off his energy assault so he starts to stop the hemorrhaging with the level four that rejuvenates cards.  It just isn’t enough though as I’m milling him faster than he can put it back in and I end up taking the game.  Namekian just isn’t strong enough against Baba.  4-2.
I end up with a fairly good record so I’m pretty confident I’m going into the top 16 with most of the friends I came with.  After a bit of waiting, the top cut is announced and I’m one of the 4-2 records that don’t make it.  I’m pretty shocked and majorly disappointed.  It turns out Merckle doesn’t make it in either, so he must have had a BAD tie breaker, which in turn gave ME a bad tie breaker.  I feel like a scrub since I didn’t make it but keep trying to tell myself that my record was just as good as half of the other top 8 and higher (like Kevin Bock made top four and was 4-2 in swiss with a nearly identical deck).  My only losses of the day were to the guy who would end up winning the whole shebang and the runner up from last year.  Nothing to be ashamed of I guess (but I’m still crying on the inside 😉  ).
Well hopefully I can do better throughout the year and accomplish enough in the game to make up for this.  I hope that you enjoyed the read and I’ll see you Illinois guys again soon and everyone, I’ll see you next year.

2 Comments to "Team Baba: Shannon Jakul’s Gencon Tournament Report"

  1. allan says:

    Great job, 4-2 is pretty good record and you just caught a tough break. Glad you had fun!

  2. Robbie says:

    I was the Round 3 opponent. I ran Triple Victory Red Vegeta(taking advantage of the new virtual Vegeta Lv 1), My first turn, I drew into all blocks. I could have use my level one Vegeta’s power to still perform attacks, but since I could not gain a level, I decided to hold off. That was a big mistake. My next turn I draw 1 attack and two blocks. Had I declared combat the first turn, would have had at least two anger from my mastery and would have been able to level up this combat. I end up wasting another turn. The next turn I drew into Earth Dragon Balls, which would have normally been an amazing turn, but I looked at my opponents set up, and realize that it would be unwise to go into combat. Sure, I could have forced him to expend some of his non-combats, but I would get punished more than I would have gain. With 4 Earth Dragon Balls out with in the first 5 turns, I decided to try to play it safe and go for Dragon Ball victory. I drew into Earth 4, and got its effect off to buy some time. He still ended up popping it with Grandpa Gohan, despite hitting him previously with Red Energy Blast. Though I had a sizable deck left(as I was running 85), I never was able to draw into the rest.

    I simply played this match much too safe, and should of taken the aggressive approach my first two rounds. My first match I had played that day, I killed myself by declaring combat a few rounds in. I had halved my opponents deck the first two rounds, and was all the way up to level 4. I declared combat, got a horrible draw with level 4 Vegeta’s power(any card in my deck would have been better than Earth Dragon Ball 6). He ended up stealing my Earth Dragon Ball 5, and decking me that turn, with me at 4 anger and at level 4. I should not have let the stigma of that match carry into this one though, as I ended up with 2 loses out of it.

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