Two weeks ago in Japan, last week in Italy, and this week in the United States; three weeks, three continents, this is the life of a Magic judge!
Pro Tour MINNEAPOLIS 2018
Pro Tour Minneapolis 2018 was a special event, as it happened on the weekend of the 25th anniversary of the game
There have been several initiatives from Wizards of the Coast for this year of celebration, both at the local level and at the international level (I heard that there was a BETA draft), and this Pro Tour was one of the pinnacles of the celebration, with astounding prizes!
Minneapolis is the largest city in the state of Minnesota, and 45th largest city in the United States
According to Wikipedia:
“the name Minneapolis is attributed to Charles Hoag, the city’s first schoolmaster, who combined mni, a Dakota Sioux word for water, and polis, the Greek word for city.”
City with an elegant skyline and beautiful parks and lakes, the city gifted the world of music with two talented artists: Bob Dylan and Prince.
One of the areas that are quite different between Grand Prix and Pro Tour events is the feature match area.
At the Pro Tour, the attention to the show and to broadcasting the most interesting games, to allow spectators at home to enjoy the competition, is at the highest level.
The backstage area dedicated to studios and equipment is as large as the playing area (restricted access area, no photos, sorry ^__^), spectators at home can watch hours and hours of both game play and dedicated videos and commentary, and the players are surrounded by special lights, silence and a mystic atmosphere.
To assist them, judges have a few extra tools, that vary from tokens to labels (to give the clearest information possible to spectators at home) and live screens and connection to Twitch (note: the broadcasting has some seconds of delay, to prevent that unintentional shouting from spectators in the tournament room give information about topdecking to the opponents).
A special masterpiece in the Minneapolis sculpture garden.
A special (and very expensive) chess set, in a games store in the Mall of America.
One of the gigantic Lego creations (you can see a few people in the photo… and I didn’t make this robot bigger due to perspective), in the Mall of America.
Team Pro Tour = Judge teams
Here you have my two “teammates”: Matteo Callegari and Luca Romano.
Time to go back home
Another travel has ended, and it’s time to go back home, recharge the batteries, do the laundry, cook some Italian dishes, hug my friends and kiss my family.
Next adventure will be Grand Prix Brussels, right next door, at only two hours by plane!