Greetings, judges! This week’s rock star is known for the amount of preparation he pours into events. Congratulations to Alejandro Raggio!
Name: Alejandro Raggio
Location: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Judge start date: August 1999
Why did you become a Judge?
The Magic tournaments I started playing at my local store were poorly run and there were always rules discussions. There was no judge there, so when I saw the opportunity of becoming a judge I thought, “I’ll fix these tournaments. Even if I can’t play in them, other people will enjoy tournaments being run properly.”
Occupation: I run a Magic website.
Favourite card: Enter the Dungeon
Least favourite card: Spitting Image (I hated that card in Cube)
Favourite format: Booster draft (I still miss Rochester draft though).
Commander General: Currently none. 🙁
Favourite non-Magic Game: Mansions of Madness.
Best tournament result: I won an old PTQ in Mirrodin Block playing Krark-Clan Ironworks.
How did you get involved in Magic in the first place?
I saw some friends playing it in high school. It seemed interesting, they let me play a game to see if I liked it. The very first thing I did the following day was to go to a game store and buy an Ice Age Tournament Pack.
What motivates you to continue being a judge?
The main reason for me to stay active after so many years is the people. I’ve met amazing colleagues and friends over the years and I still enjoy flying thousands of miles to another continent and realizing that I already know 90% of the judges attending.
What is one tip you have for other judges?
Find the right spot for you in the program, find something that you like and enjoy doing. Do not get pressured into leveling up or doing things you don’t like.
What’s the best part about your local Magic community?
The best part is that we do not only play Magic but we enjoyed the company of each other in different settings, be it a BBQ or going to watch a movie.
What is your favourite non-Magic hobby?
Board games! Besides Mansions of Madness, I find Sid Meier’s Civilization great (especially because I’m a fan of the PC series as well).
What is your favourite non-judging moment that happened with other judges?
At GP Orlando 2014, we spent a full week of theme parks after the GP. It was one of the best trips I’ve ever done.
What’s the biggest rule-breaking play you’ve ever made as a player?
Playing both Primeval Titan and Summoning Trap in the same deck I once cast Summoning Trap and just grabbed my library to start searching for the card I wanted, as if it were Primeval Titan mixed with Tooth and Nail. I got a Warning for that. And a few turns later, I just did it again. It was funny that I just called a judge on myself before my opponent realized what was happening. “Yes, I did it again,” I told the judge.
What has been your favourite Magic event that you’ve judged?
Worlds 2009 in Rome. It was the first Worlds I attended, and the biggest and longest event I had attended so far. Visiting Italy for the first time and meeting many European judges in an environment full of people from all over the world really opened up my mind to new possibilities.
What positive aspects has the Judge Program contributed to your everyday life?
I learned many things, how to deal with people, Logistics of big and smaller events. I just noticed that I’ve learned many things over the years by participating in different events and Projects and having interacted with many different people.
What would you be doing now if Magic no longer existed?
Most likely doing translations.
What is your favorite “after event” story?
Rome 2009, dinner at a place called “FUTURARTE“. Anyone present there may or may not remember the ordeal of getting food there and the hilarious aftermath at that crazy Italian restaurant.
How do you have fun during events?
I try to share funny stories with other judges and ask them to share their own funny stories with me.
If you were a creature what would be your creature type?
Definitely Human, the second one could vary, anything inside the Azorius faction.
What hobbies do you have outside of Magic?
Board Games, PC Games, TV Series, PC Hardware enthusiast.
Proudest moment of your Judge life?
Head Judging GP Santiago 2016, my first time as Head Judge of a Grand Prix.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
I’ve a degree in English to Spanish Translation. But almost everything I have translated so far has been Magic-related.
Two Truths and a Lie
Two of the following statements are true and one is false. Figure out which!
- I’ve considered an offer to move to another country mainly based on the fact flights to most GPs are much cheaper there.
- When I was 5 years old, I decided to run my own experiment with electricity, I jabbed a fully metal silverware knife into the mains socket and left it there until half of it had melted.
- I’ve climbed on an elephant’s bare back.
If there is a judge who is also doing something exemplary, please nominate a judge TODAY!