At its core, Magic: the Gathering is a competitive game, which takes center stage at tournaments. Once you step away from the kitchen table, you enter a world where take backs go away, friendly mulligans are set aside, and players must hold one another to mistakes and the firm rules of the game in pursuit of victory. This transition can be intimidating, especially when you go from playing strictly with your friends to playing against strangers who are often more focused on winning the match than they are in getting to know you. Whether it’s your local prerelease or a major competitive event, tournaments are a part of the game that bring out the best and worst in us.

For this episode, I’d like to hear stories about your first tournament, your decision to (or not to) push to higher competition, and what you’ve seen that had made the competitive cardboard experience more enjoyable in spite of the stress to secure the win-and-in.

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