Next up we have a veteran player from Mississippi, Brent Siebenkittel! Brent is a multiple time Worlds competitor, and he made it back this year. Let’s hear what he has to say.
Congratulations on your invite to Worlds! How did you earn so many points?
I’ve played the entire season up to this point. I consistently had solid finishes at Battle Roads, had an outstanding City Championship run, won Winter Regionals, and finished in the Top 8 at States for the remaining points!
For those who may not know you, can you tell us a bit about your history in the game?
I’ve been collecting and playing since Jungle was released in 1999. I didn’t really become competitive until 2003 when I won a Battle Zone in Louisiana; big ups to Rick Langenstein aka Rocketman. He was the PTO then and still is today for that area!
What has been your favorite deck to use this season? What have you been using currently?
This season it has been Blastoise/Keldeo EX/Mewtwo EX. I started playing it the second weekend of Cities and just couldn’t put it down. It carried me through the remaining City events and Winter Regionals! At the moment, I’ve been trying a Victini EX/Lugia EX deck, Darkrai EX/Sableye (like the rest of the world), Blastoise/Keldeo, and a corners Victini EX deck that I ran against at States and lost. I love the variation that seems to be coming back into the game.
What do you attribute your success to this season?
Consistency and practice. Design your deck to flow well and practice until you feel every single card in your deck has earned it’s place. Don’t make last minute adjustments by staying up late the night before an event trying to get it right when you have weeks, possibly even months to prepare.
How do you feel about the current state of the game?
Overall, I’m enjoying it. Plasma Storm brought some change to the game and balanced out the overly strong EX decks with Klinklang. However, Hypnotoxic Laser + Virbank City Gym is an extremely powerful combination that could threaten to make the game bland.
What are your plans now that you have your invite?
Play some local Battle Roads to practice and possibly even try out some different decks. Next, focus on preparing for Nationals.
As a veteran and multiple time Worlds competitor, what advice do you have for new players trying to make it in the competitive scene?
Go to leagues, make as many friends as possible, try out your friend’s decks, read strategy articles online, put in the time to practice, and most importantly stay cool under pressure. Lastly, never give up in-game during Swiss and rarely during top cut, with the only possible exception being scooping Game 1 or 2 in a best of 3 scenario to conserve time for the next game in your match. There is no telling how many times I’ve come back from a multiple prize deficit or a monster early game from my opponent simply because I didn’t scoop and stayed the course. I believe the determination and will to win that many high level players exhibit is what separates them from the average player.
Do you have any hobbies besides Pokémon?
I love to compete in general and I enjoy the outdoors.
What do you enjoy the most about the Pokémon TCG?
The people you meet. Sometimes you make friends with people the first time you encounter them, others might even grow on you. I’ve made some great friends in this game and some of the best are often the ones that rubbed you wrong the first time you met them!
Is there anything else you’d like to say to our viewers?
If you read this far, thanks, thanks to the Top Cut for their time as well. If you are a new player I hope my advice is helpful and if you are an experienced player perhaps you found something of use as well. I hope to see everyone at Nationals!
Thanks, Brent! We wish you the best of luck for the rest of the season!