The Fincastle Pokemon Gym took a well-deserved break following the Blue Ridge Regional Championships before diving into the task of sorting and putting away materials (which we did not complete until the end of last week). Following that, we did some data collecting from the event that we’d like to share with everyone. The Regional Championships exceeded our expectations and went as smoothly as any event that we’ve ever attended (more so than many). We know that those results would not have been possible without the strong response from players, fans and staff. We hope that all who attended were as satisfied with the weekend as we were. Now, we sit and wait and hope that we are awarded another Regional next year, a decision that is beyond our control. Should we be so lucky, we are already thinking of ways to improve upon and expand what we did this year. Only time will tell. Continue reading
Posted in Blue Ridge Regional Championship
Tagged anime con, Berglund Center, Blue Ridge Regional, comic con, Cosplay, Fincastle Pokemon Gym, Play!Pokemon, pokemon live stream, pokemon trading card game, Pokken, regional championships, video game tournament
One of the first ideas that came to Gym Leader Joel upon learning in July of 2016 that we would host and organize Roanoke’s first-ever Regional Championships event was to develop a program to prepare trainers from our leagues for the tournament. Joel outlined the details for Hee-Haw’s Generals, the Fincastle Pokemon Gym’s juniors team, shortly after and waited for the response. And waited, and waited… and waited. The service that the Gym is offering is the same that many pay-to-view deck sites offer, for a fee of course, with one big difference. Our service does not cost a dime. We have several promising TCG prospects that are perhaps a bit young (5 & 6) for a day-long tournament. However, we did get a video game trainer who wanted to give the Regionals a whirl. While we feared that our first taker jumped in the game a little too late to properly prepare for the event, Gym Leaders Dean, Noah and Joel scrambled to help him gather a team together and then put the rest in his hands. Ridge R, now known to us as “The First General”, showed what a quick study he is. Ridge stepped up, practiced with his team and at the Blue Ridge Regional Video Game Championship, claimed 4th place, falling one match short of potentially winning the whole thing. Continue reading
July 6, 2016. A date that will live in Pokemon lore forever… The day exercise became FUN! If you love catching Pokemon in the real world, we have a fun addition to the Blue Ridge Regional Championships for you: a Pokemon GO Tour around Roanoke!
What could be more fun than exploring this beautiful city with your Pokemon companions, you ask? BINGO! Before you go pack your marking dots and stake out a six-table spread at the local VFW, it’s not that kind of BINGO. It’s Pokemon BinGO!
That’s right – BINGO with Pokemon GO!
As we’ve mentioned here recently, the Fincastle Pokemon Gym and its companion store, Dark Moon Cards and Games, has branched out from our online store to try our hand at local conventions. While we are still learning that side of our business and trying to improve what we have to offer, we have had a great time at these local events. The main reason is the environment. When you are in a building surrounded by people who love the same stuff that you do, its hard not to enjoy yourself. In our planning for the Blue Ridge Regional Championships, we did a lot of brainstorming on how to bottle that environment and bring it to our event. As soon as we started planning, we ran into one slightly monumental hurdle to our plans… licensing from Pokemon. We think we’ve cleared that hurdle, perhaps not in the purtiest fashion ever, and put together a pretty cool group of vendors to supplement this weekend’s event. Continue reading
The next aspect of the Blue Ridge Regional Championships that we are going to look at is the planned TCG and VGC Side Events. Side events have been a staple of the Regional Championship format since we at the Fincastle Pokemon Gym have been playing the game. Typical “sides” have been 8-person, single elimination pods in formats ranging from Standard to Expanded to Theme Deck contests. In more recent Regionals, Day 2 (usually Sunday) has included a League Challenge. While these are great additions to the main events at these weekends, we are looking for (and have found) some great ways to expand those options and, in the process, bring you the 1st event of its kind on the east coast (maybe USA…, 1st that we’ve heard of anyway). The Battle Fiesta events are exciting new events for us to try out. We’ve read some amazing articles from American and European players that have been lucky enough to travel to Japan to compete in the real thing. Their tournament reports make for some fascinating reading. On both Saturday and Sunday, we will hold Japanese-style Battle Fiesta contests. Let us break down some details on all of these events. Continue reading
One of the unique features to Roanoke’s first Regional Championship should be another first in its own right in the Roanoke area. Saturday, during the main event, there is also a Pokemon Costume and Cosplay contest. Now, Roanoke has been developing an ever-growing base of talented cosplayers for a while now… probably longer than we’ve been aware of. The Fincastle Gym Leaders have attended recent events like the Roanoke Anime Convention and Geekmob for the last two years and have been blown away by the outfits that we’ve witnessed at these events. Our love for manga, anime and basically everything else to do with Japan grows larger every day, which means we actually know the anime characters that people dress up as (a pretty amazing feat for some 40-something parents of two, I say). This side event at the Blue Ridge Regional will be the first Pokemon-only contest that we have witnessed in the area. Continue reading
We are just over 2 weeks away from the biggest Pokemon event that Roanoke has ever seen. Roanoke’s first Regional Championship takes place over the weekend of May 6th at the Berglund Center in the heart of the downtown area. Organizers David and Pam Tuskey and our very own gym leader Marthe Honts have been planning for the last year to make this event not only a success, but a unique event that all lovers of Pokemon will be able to enjoy. By combining their collective years of experience, they have put together a schedule of events that take this Regional beyond the standard mold (main event + side events at spare tables w/ 1 card vendor in the corner). From a cosplay contest to Pokemon GO tours to the east coast’s first ever Battle Fiesta, the Blue Ridge Regional will offer more than you have seen at similar Pokemon weekends. Continue reading