Hi everyone. As you may know; the Dice Masters Vs Cancer online charity event took place on Saturday 28th November and this post today is going to give you the ins & outs of how the day went, what the teams looked like, the grand total of how much was raised on the day, and a pretty long list of “Thank You’s”
Dice Masters Vs Cancer – What’s That?
If you’re new around these parts then you might not be aware of what Dice Masters Vs Cancer is all about.
Throughout the years there have been tabletop gaming events taking place in the UK, put together by an organisation called “Gaming Vs Cancer”. They are a group of Tabletop Gaming retailers who have come together collaboratively to raise money for Cancer Research UK.
The main event in the calendar for Gaming Vs Cancer is a convention held annually in November in Southampton. All manner of tabletop gamers gather and participate in tournaments and live play events, with all proceeds going to the charity.
The UK Dice Masters community have been involved for many years now. In the early days it was a venue for Winter WKOs, and when they stopped a few years back the MoD stepped in and have been holding player-run MoDPDM’s in place of WKOs instead to keep the contribution from Dice Masters going.
This year, for obvious reasons, two planned Gaming Vs Cancer events (Spring & Winter) had to be cancelled, and when the suggestion of holding some Virtual events was discussed we were set & ready to go with a Dice Masters tournament. Through resourcefulness and ingenuity there has been a fair bit of ground covered in making Dice Masters Online Organised play a thing. Not just a thing, but a smooth and easy process where lots of fun can be had, so with this in mind we decided to do our bit to at least keep the charitable initiative alive & contributing through this unusual year.
The Event Info
You can find all of the pre-event info here if you’re interested; Dice Masters Vs Cancer 2020 Information, but the TL:DR is this – tournament held online using web cams & video conferencing, Swiss rounds, with a Golden Single Affiliation format with a handful of additional restrictions. As an extra twist; prizes were to awarded through a raffle system, and there was a special achievements list that would increase players chances of earning prizes that you can find in the original event info post as well.
There were 30 players in the event, giving us 5 Swiss rounds, and we played head down, hardcore for approx 5 hours. The 30 participants were made up of players from 7 different countries. It was truly amazing to have so many people turn out to play and contribute to the cause, especially from so many different international communities. Some of the players were even trying their hand at playing online for the very first time, in a tremendous show of support that we are ever so grateful for.
Players battled it out with their carefully crafted Single Affiliation teams and the event winner was determined by the Swiss result at the end of play.
A massive “congrats” and “well done” to Balazs, who went undefeated with his “Fiendish Friends” team to take the top spot on the day. Round of applause for Balazs.
The combination of an Achievements List, the Single Affiliation restrictions and the casual tone of the charity event produced an interesting mix of teams.
To see all the player’s team lists you can head to this post from the day, which includes a picture and a Dice Coalition Team Builder link for each build.
Here’s the frequency of teams by Affiliation…
|Yellow Lantern Rings||2|
|Brotherhood of Evil Mutants||1|
Even though there are some small concentrations of chosen affiliations at the event, it is interesting to note the variety within each of the archetypes. For example; across the 5 X-Men teams there was an Awaken list, a Rare Colossus list, a Cyclops board-clear list, a Boom Boom Meltdown list, and an Iceman list.
The Monsters is another great example of the variety on display, with two themes being particularly popular – Dragons and Fiends.
It was fun to see some of the Affiliations with smaller card pools in use, with the Imperium clearly proving to be a popular choice in the lesser used groups. One notable mention has to go to Rob Pettafor’s team – a 3 card build using the only “Hand” affiliated character (Typhoid Mary) and two basic actions. That was a ballsy move, made all the more impressive when you consider that Rob pulled 2 wins with just a single character. Wow!
If you’ve taken a look at the team lists then you might have noticed that there was a number of teams running under 8 characters. This was because the achievements list set a challenge to run 7 or less characters. While this was intended to encourage players to take a closer look at Affiliations with less than 8 characters in their roster there was quite a few individuals who built teams from larger affiliation pools and then just knocked one on the head. I suppose this just goes to show that Dice Masters players know how to find a loop hole LOL.
The sets with the most frequently appearing cards are Battle for Ultramar, War of Light, and Justice League, which is no surprise with several dedicated Imperium teams and two dedicated Yellow Lantern Ring teams that could only be built from War of Light. This is also reflected in the most commonly used cards, with ‘Varro Tigurius – Rod of Tigurius’, ‘Orbital Strike’, and ‘Wolf Guard Terminator – The Mightiest Warrior’ in the top 7 most used cards ( all tied at three appearances each).
Incidentally – in that top 7 most used cards – we also had ‘Professor X – Trainer’, ‘Hawkman – Antigravity Belt’, ‘Aquaman – Arthur Curry’, and ‘Resurrection’, which (with the exception of ‘Hawkman’) are all ramp focussed cards. It seems for the X-Men affiliation and the Justice League affiliation the ramp solutions have some clear front-running choices.
The win condition variety is pretty much a 50/50 split between combat damage-style attacks and direct damage-style approaches. This, again, was likely influenced by the achievements list and the extra tickets awarded for sticking to one particular type of damage.
For a bit more team chat check out the new episode of The Ministry of Dice podcast on Monday, in which we discuss some of the notable affiliations that were absent from the event, to our surprise.
We’d love to know your thoughts on the team lists so let us know in the comments below – what stands out to you? Any surprises? Anything you predicted?
Here’s the final rankings for the event…
The top 4 teams were…
- Balunpanker – Monsters (Fiend Themed)
- Andyinrichfield – X-Men (Cyclops board clear)
- Whipp3t_G00D – Justice League (Green Arrow board clear)
- UndercoverDemon – Avengers (Overcrushing beat sticks)
I can’t write this without pointing out that Andy came 5th, because he’d ant me to make sure you all noticed. ;P
A big “well done” to our top 4 performers. Great job guys – round of applause.
Reports from across the participants are outstandingly positive, with the consensus being that it was a great day’s play but the real win was contributing to the charitable cause. Relentless Nettles wants to “kick Cancer in the nuts” – which it’s our hope the funds raised will help do.
I mentioned earlier that a number of players were giving online play a go for the very first time at this event, and was really encouraged to receive this note from one of the Online newbies, Radek:
“It was my first online event and first international tournament. Wanted to win 2 out of 5, but I won 3 so couldn’t be more happy about it. I wasn’t sure if online playing could be fun, but now I know it can be super-fun :)”
We want to thank all the players for coming out, playing, and supporting the cause. If you want to see some examples of the game play that was live streamed at the event (and see for your own eyes just how much fun everyone was having) then head on over to one of the below channels to check out their vids:
CR Game Room
Friday Night ‘Clix
You can also catch Andy’s games over on our own Ministry of Dice YouTube Channel.
While on the subject of thanking the players – we have sooooo many additional “Thank You” notes to dish out…
First – all the Dice Masters content creator community members who not only came out and played, but who gave us a HUGE amount of support leading up to the event with promotion and coverage – you have all, in no small part, really helped us make this a success. So thanks go to:
CR Game Room – to Ryan for all the technical support, to Rob and Mike for all the Team Building streams in preparation for the event, to Mike for contributing to the Dice Masters Vs Cancer choir, and to Chris for Streaming on the day.
Dice Coalition – specifically to their team member Troy for technical support, contributing to the Dice Masters Vs Cancer choir, and for the signal boost promotion across Discord.
DMNorthTV/A Double,Double & Dice – for all the extensive promoting across your channels, website and the podcast. For the contributions to the Dice Masters Vs Cancer choir, to Jourdo for the help with graphics & overlays (Jourdo made our Dice Masters Vs Cancer logo, don’t you know), and for the live coverage on the day.
Breath Weapon X – for the team testing & coverage on your own channel leading up to the event.
Friday Night Clix – for the promotion leading up the event and the coverage on the day.
Lonni W. – for the outstanding prize play mat design.
I’ve mentioned the “Dice Masters Vs Cancer Choir” a few times there – so will take this opportunity to share that promotional effort one more time – you’re welcome 😉
Next up – the prize contributors, who dipped into their own pockets to help provide prizing for the event…
And finally – our independent donators – who made extra donations or just pitched in despite being unable to play:
- Mike P
- Peter vdV
- Von C
- Stephen S
- Alister C
- Donnie F
- Ryan W
- Nick W
- Arge O
- Andrew M
- Kim T
- Mike W
- Dana P
- Jocelyn B
- Alex D
Mike P and Sut.ART both raised additional funds by auctioning custom made items – so double thanks to those guys.
The Final Total
At this moment in time it looks like the final total is going to be somewhere in the region of £700. We’re still presently waiting for drawn down funds to arrive and there’s some maths I can’t fathom around exchange rates and transfer fee but I’m pretty confident we’re there or there abouts.
That is an incredible achievement for a little community like ours so, once again, a massive thank you to everyone involved in helping make that total such a significant figure. We may not have been able to hold the Gaming Vs Cancer face-to-face conventions & events this year, but we’re really helping to keep it alive through these challenging times.
Following the success of the event we’re considering doing something similar next year – so ideas & suggestions on a postcard folks for how we can beat this total in 2021!