An Event to Remember, Stories From One of the Judges of Indonesia Open 2022

Last August 28, 2022 at Plaza Gajah Mada Jakarta, players gathered and sleeved up their Standard decks as participants of Indonesia Open for Cycle 1. Its a big day for the participants. The goal is to earn an invite to the upcoming Regional Championships this November.
Some of our peers from Indonesia were on staff that day. One of them was Arif, who said it was his first time to be part of big events and he also recently got promoted to L2.

Sugeng Hartawan recently had a chat with him about his experience. That being said, folks allow us to introduce everyone to.

Full Name: Arif Fauzi Ardiningrum
Local Game Store: Qube Kelapa Gading, TwoStompass, Monopolis Board Game Store & Cafe
L1 Certification Date: December 28, 2019.
L2 Certification Date: September 04, 2022.

What motivates you as a certified judge?
I love playing Magic: the Gathering because of all the complex interactions. So, I want to learn about all of those interactions. What would happen if certain things are met and what would be the outcome? without waiting for an answer from a judge. While learning and implementing what I have learned, I want to help others who don’t understand when they meet a certain interaction and explain to them while teaching what the outcome is.

Was ID Open, your first big event as a certified MTG Judge? how was the overall experience?
Yes, if I didn’t count the qualifiers, the overall experience is good as expected. Because, I have played in nationals with a larger player count and it still goes smooth with some minor disturbance that didn’t affect the main event as a whole.

I got an appeal request after giving a ruling. The Head Judge corrected my ruling while giving me a good reason so I could learn for future similar cases. The only thing that didn’t go as expected was the side event finals. But, we can’t do anything about it.

Any memorable personal experience from the event you can share?
As explained above, I got an appeal request after giving a ruling. The case was AP(active player) said “declare attacker” then animate their Lair of the Hydra and after that NAP(non-active player) said AP couldn’t do that because AP already said “declare attacker” then they called for a judge and I came to their table. I gave a ruling because AP said specifically “declare attacker” AP couldn’t animate their Lair of the Hydra and AP wanted to make sure that my ruling is correct so AP called an appeal.


I called my team lead while explaining to him what happened and my team lead arrived at the tables. After listening to the players my team lead decided to let AP animate their Lair of the Hydra. NAP then appealed and it goes to the head judge and the head judge decides that AP can still animate their Lair of the Hydra. While all of this was happening I decided to move away from the table a little bit (which you are not supposed to do) and listen the all of those appeals from a distance.
After that, the head judge explained his reasoning. I learned that I should look at player’s intent and don’t be too strict about shortcuts and minor miscommunication.

Major takeaway from the event?
Judging a big event is an endurance test so you need to utilize your breaks as best as you can and don’t be too strict around shortcutting and minor miscommunication.

Your message for aspiring judges/ inactive judges?
Don’t be afraid to become a judge. Because, we are all learning new things everyday too. If you are afraid to give rulings, there are a lot of judges that will help you in case you are not sure. Reach out to them.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. As long as you learn from them. Last but not least, becoming a judge means helping your community to become. A better community by helping players solve certain situation that they don’t have knowledge around it.

This year you advanced to L2, what were your motivations to pursue the advancement?
To be honest, I become an L2 judge because Wendra told me to become one. But if Wendra didn’t tell me to become one, I would still want to be an L2 if I see an opportunity to become one so I can do some judging in big events outside Indonesia.
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That’s it from us, remember to stay safe and stay awesome..

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