Talk about good timing. This Sunday, the Fincastle Pokemon Gym unveiled it own custom-designed gym leader badges. To accompany the new badges, the Gym Leaders also unveiled new Gym Leader decks to go along with the official format shift to Black & White-on. With the new dragon-type cards being released, we now have 9 decks to keep up with. We do not have them all worked out yet, but the majority are up and running. New decks… new badges…. sounds like a good time to take on some challenges.
Gym Leader Joel led the way taking on a challenge for the Steel-type badge from Addison M. The Gym leader was able to set up quickly and take the advantage by using some attacks that Addison was not familiar with, leading to a fairly quick game 1 victory. However, Addison showed his ability to learn quickly and adjust his strategy. Game 2 saw the two competitors exchange KO’s, with Addison taking out two of the Gym Leaders big EX’s. At one prize card each, the Gym Leader was able to snipe a Pokemon off Addison’s bench and “steel” the victory. Great job to Addison…. Gym Leader Joel knows that he’ll be back soon to try to earn that badge.
Next up was Gym Leader Marthe, fielding a challenge for the Lightning-type badge from one of our most skilled trainers, Hunter H. Hunter was looking to move into a class all by himself as he pushed towards his 4th gym badge. Surprisingly, he did not go for the type-advantage against Gym Leader Marthe, which is what we like to see…. just a straight up battle.
Game 1 consisted of the Gym Leader taking some quick prizes while trying to prevent Hunter from setting up. Hunter kept pace, evening the game at three prize cards a piece. From there, Hunter used some well-timed healing to undo any progress made by the Gym Leader. Over three turns, he wore down the Gym Leader’s bench, taking three prizes and the game on that 3rd turn. Game 2 started out in similar fashion and developed as the first game did. While the Gym Leader used up her decks’ resources, Hunter continually wore down her field, healing damage off his own characters at key times. With only 2 prizes to go, Gym Leader Marthe went after Hunter’s EX, while Hunter went after her bench again. Again, Hunter was able to outlast the Gym Leader and take game 2 and the match. A straight game victory over any Gym Leader is rare. Bravo to Hunter for not only earning his 4th badge, but doing it in impressive fashion.
Hunter now stands alone as the only active league trainer to hold four badges. He is tied for the most ever earned by any player at the league. Hunter has taken the step from being able to play one deck well to being able to build and learn different decks and play them all with skill. We have always felt that Pokemon is an easy game to learn, but difficult to become very good at. Like chess, it takes a strong analytical and strategical mind to play. However, there are so many cards and so many different combinations that can be thrown at you in a game, you have to be able to react to something you may have never seen and still make your plan work. It is difficult, if not impossible to master. Hunter may not have mastered it (we’ve been playing for years and are nowhere near mastering it), but he improves ever time we play him. He has definitely become a strong competitor and is developing the versatility necessary to challenge any player on any level. Great job, Hunter! While we don’t look forward to the possibility of losing another of our badges, we love a good game and can’t wait until he is ready for his next challenge!
The Gym Leaders know that the sign-up lists for challenges have gotten a little long while we’ve been preparing for the new season and doing a little traveling. We appreciate everyone’s patience. By our next league day, we will have all of the decks available and plan to make challenges the focus of the next several weeks. Who will be the first to earn all the Gym Badges? Who will get to take on the League Champion? Oooops… I wasn’t supposed to say anything about that yet. Maybe later…….?!?!? See you this Sunday (9/16) at the Community Center for the Battle Roads and the Sunday after at the Gym!
Gym Badges Earned (aka, The Wall of Fame):
- Austin W – Steel, Grass
- Tyler D – Lightning, Steel, Grass
- Chris L – Lightning, Fire
- James H – Psychic, Steel
- Tessa Y – Fire, Psychic, Grass, Lightning
- Angela Y – Lightning, Fighting, Psychic
- Dustin F – Psychic
- Brycen F – Psychic, Lightning, Fire
- Troy B – Lightning
- Jordan L – Grass
- Hunter H – Grass, Darkness, Steel, Lightning
- Kelli B – Fire
- Eli T – Grass