Introducing Team Face to Face Games
Formerly operating under the moniker Mana Deprived, our Canadian-based professional team is now bearing the name of its corporate sponsor and our partner in crime, Face to Face Games. The team, through past challenges and victories (hallelujah!), has matured over the course of a few Pro Tours and has reformed itself with a renewed focus on success. With this renewed focus comes a roster sculpted specifically to fill the roles required by the team to operate efficiently and to master both Theros booster draft and post-Theros Standard constructed in the weeks before the Pro Tour.
At the center of the team we have Alexander Hayne, David Caplan, and Jon Stern who are responsible for much of the organization and decision-making. The rest of Team Face to Face Games is rounded out with a cast of players from across Canada and the United States, including perennial PTQ-winner Pascal Maynard, repeat offenders Matthias Hunt and (GP Detroit winner) Josh McClain, control specialist David Shiels, and Channel Fireball-affiliates Jacob Wilson and Sam Pardee. For a more well-rounded look at each of our pro team’s new members see their detailed profiles below.
Introducing Team Face to Face Games!
Hometown: Toronto, Ontario
Current Residence: Toronto, Ontario
Occupation: Project Coordinator for ABI Research
Magic Online Account: goobafish
Invitation Source: MOCS Championship
Pro Level: N/A
Lifetime Pro Points: 38
Lifetime Winnings: $35,000 from WotC
Top 4 Legacy World Championships 2007
Top 4 Legacy World Championships 2009
Top 8 Grand Prix Chicago 2009 – Legacy
4th World Championships 2011
4th MTGO World Championships
MOCS 2011 Season 6 Champion – Limited
MOCS 2012 Season 3 Champion – Standard
Toronto PTQ San Diego Winner – Modern
Top 8 MOCS 2013 Season 8 – Modern
Top 16 Grand Prix Detroit – Modern
Favorite card: Nimble Mongoose
Favorite deck: Splinter Twin
Favorite format, and why: Vintage. It’s where it all started for me. It’s incredibly powerful and teaches you the game from a different perspective which I think is incredibly valuable.
Favorite draft format, and why: Scars of Mirrodin Block. It was my first MOCS win and it’s a format that rewards creativity more than most.
Memorable Magic moment: HALLELUJAH!
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: I was first really taught at summer camp by my close friend Jason Pilarski. We spent far too much time inside playing cards, and far too little time outside doing the activities our parents paid for.
First competitive tournament: After playing many Vintage and Legacy cash events I finally took the plunge and travelled to GP Columbus (GP Flash), playing Canadian Threshold with Werebears and Nimble Mongeese. I finished 67th.
Favorite cuisine: Everything
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: Being There, Margret Weis and Tracy Hickmann’s Dragonlance Series, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Lyon and Annecy, France
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: The awesome places and awesome people
Team Role: I am a deck “tweaker” for the most part. I am really focused on making sure a deck is absolutely perfect; I am obsessed with having what I believe is the correct 75, and will test as much as I need to in order to answer questions about matchups. I am also willing to play literally any type of deck, so I will give anything a fair chance in testing, leading the team to play and play against a wide variety of decks.
Hometown: Montreal, Canada
Current Residence: Montreal, Canada (Westmount)
Occupation: Pro Magic Player
Invitation Source: GP Calgary, GP Strasbourg, Pro Level
Pro Level: Gold
Lifetime Pro Points: 94
Lifetime Winnings: $69 990
1st PT Avacyn Restored
1st GP Calgary 2013
2nd GP Montreal 2011
3rd GP Strasbourg 2013
Canadian WMC Team Captain 2012
Rookie of the Year 2012
Top 8 Player’s Championship 2012
Favorite card: Gifts Ungiven (before Unburial Rites was printed, when the card was interesting to play)
Favorite deck: Previous Level Blue (extended)
Favorite format, and why: Legacy, because it rewards correctly making small decisions and it’s fun.
Favorite draft format, and why: Cube. It is like drafting a constructed deck on the fly, and it is never the same so I don’t get bored.
Memorable Magic moment: None really comes to mind. (Hallelujah!)
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: I learned from a friend of mine who I previously played both Poker and Chess with at school, a bit before Ravnica came out. He thought I would like the game, and I got hooked.
What was the first competitive tournament you played in: I played in a sealed PTQ for fun, without knowing the prize structure. I got rules-lawyered by someone who apparently did and came 9th on tiebreaks.
Favorite cuisine: Indian
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: Hard to pick just one, but Breaking Bad is definitely making a case for itself.
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Japan
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: The mental challenge, both of defeating your opponent, and of surpassing your past self.
Team Role: I guess I am both a bit of a brewer and ideas man, and also often am looked to in a leadership role. People value my opinion and often I have to make difficult decisions on behalf of the team. But mainly I’m the figurehead.
Hometown: Saint Paul, MN
Current Residence: Saint Paul, MN
Occupation: Math Tutor, SCGLive Commentator
Magic Online Account: MtGMatthias
Invitation Source: PTQ Winner
Pro Level: Silver
Lifetime Pro Points: 65
Lifetime Winnings: about $17,000 from WotC
Rookie of the Year 2011
Top 8 GP Indianapolis 2012
11th World Championships 2011
Favorite Card: Zebra Unicorn
Favorite Deck: Curio Elf Combo (Old Extended)
Favorite format, and why: Modern. I think it’s the only format where true combo decks can still be played.
Favorite draft format, and why: DII. Innistrad had enough viable archetypes that I never felt bored drafting the format. Dark Ascension helped to balance the archetypes as well as introduce even more.
Memorable Magic Moment: Defeating Fabian Thiele in a feature match at Worlds that more or less decided Rookie of the Year.
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: Grade school I suppose. I picked up the game again right after college and stuck with it since.
What was the first competitive tournament you played in: Regionals 2008. I played a ramp deck where I basically ramped into whatever rares I owned. I was fortunate enough to top 4 and make Nationals that year which started getting me into competitive magic.
Favorite cuisine: Pastries & Breads
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: House of Cards
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Singapore
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: The number of rounds and number of players. It’s the only tournament that feels like a marathon instead of a sprint.
Team Role: This is only my second Pro Tour with Team F2F but I have fallen into a familiar role where I tend to help keep the team organized in a non-magic sense. I keep track of data during testing, make sure ideas are getting communicated between players, and keep us working on the things that need to get done before the Pro Tour. I also cook. On the magic side of things I usually come up with a lot of ideas for decks that other people either turn into real decks or tell me don’t work as hoped.
Hometown: Saint-Georges-de-Beauce, Canada
Current Residence: Quebec, Canada
Occupation: MTG Manager at Boutique Donjon and full time card player.
Magic Online Account: PascalMaynard
Invitation Source: PTQ
Pro Level: N/A
Lifetime Pro Points: 53
Canadian National Team 2010
Top 50 World Championships in Japan 2010
1st Canadian Magic Tour 2011
Top 50 Pro Tour Nagoya, Japan 2011
Top 32 Grand Prix Pittsburgh 2011
Top 8 Grand Prix Indianapolis 2012
Top 8 Grand Prix Mexico City 2012
Top 8 Grand Prix Costa Rica 2012
1st TCGPlayer 5k: Montreal
Favorite card: Brainstorm/Ponder/Preordain/Thought Scour/Serum Visions … You get it ?
Favorite deck: Delver of Secrets decks
Favorite format, and why: Sealed. I really like having a 65+ card sideboard.
Favorite draft format, and why: Scars of Mirrodin block. So many things you could do.
Memorable Magic moment: My first Pro Tour (Worlds).
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: 2004, learnt by playing at Boutique Donjon, mostly from the guy who worked there at the time.
What was the first competitive tournament you played in: Kamigawa block constructed PTQ.
Favorite cuisine: McDonald’s
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: Movie: Prometheus; TV series: Breaking Bad
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Japan
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: The fame, the coverage, the teams, the money on the line and seriousness of the competition.
Team Role: I’m always trying to get everything coordinated. I like thinking up and trying (most of the time bad) brews so I can stop thinking about them.
Hometown: Johnston, Iowa, USA
Current Residence: Iowa City, Iowa, USA
Magic Online Account: Good_Game
Invitation Source: Second place at Grand Prix Miami
Pro Level: Locked for silver this year
Lifetime Pro Points: 36
Lifetime Winnings: $8,900
2nd GP Miami
1st GP Detroit
Favorite card: Solitary Confinement
Favorite deck: Melira Pod
Favorite format, and why: I’ve loved the modern format ever since I played in the first PQ of the format. I was always a big fan of extended before this; standard is a bit too small of a card pool, and legacy too big.
Favorite draft format, and why: I would say my favorite 8-man draft format is RoEx3 draft, I really like all of the different archetypes. My favorite 3v3 format though is definitely DGR, which really rewarded you for being able to figure out what the next three people were drafting.
Memorable Magic moment: Probably winning my first ptq. I had been trying to get onto the Pro Tour for a while, and it felt really good to finally make it.
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: I learned to play magic in middle school with friends. We moved from Pokemon to Yugioh to Magic in the span of 2-3 years, and haven’t moved on to anything else since :p
What was the first competitive tournament you played in: The first real competetive event I played in(not counting a few ptqs when I was 13 and had no clue what I was doing) was an extended ptq in 2007. I played dredge and in the last round unintentionally drew after going to game 4 against BG deathcloud, which put me in 9th place.
Favorite cuisine: Pizza, obv.
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: I really like the Sword of Ice and Fire book (which Game of Thrones is based on.)
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Barcelona, Spain or Calgary, Canada
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: The community, not close.
Team Role: I am good at putting in a lot of games and tuning already made decks.
Hometown: Edmonton, Canada
Current Residence: Edmonton, Canada
Occupation: Secret Agent Man
Invitation Source: MOCS
Pro Level: Bronze
Lifetime Pro Points: 10ish
Lifetime Winnings: $5,000
2nd Canadian Nationals 2007
Top 16 2013 MOCS Championship
Favorite card: Wall of Omens
Favorite deck: Super Friends
Favorite format, and why: Block. it’s slow and constructed.
Favorite draft format, and why: Cube. It’s skill testing and control decks are usually viable.
Memorable Magic moment: Tried streaming Magic Online for the first time and won an online PTQ (beating superstar Jon Stern in the finals.)
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: Learned to play as a wee lad during Ice Age with my brother and my Dad.
What was the first competitive tournament you played in: 2005 Canadian Nationals in Calgary
Favorite cuisine: Chips.
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: Movie: Memento; Book: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality; TV: Game Of Thrones.
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Honolulu
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: Friendship and trolling
Team Role: Theorycrafter. I enjoy trying to figure out what the metagame will look like and coming up with strategies that should beat it.
Hometown: Berkeley, CA, USA
Current Residence: Berkeley, CA, USA
Occupation: Web Designer
Invitation Source: GP Portland win, MOCS season 6 2012 win
Pro Level: Silver
Lifetime Pro Points: 30
Lifetime Winnings: Uncertain.
Finals GP Toronto 2012
1st GP Portland 2013
Top 4, MOCS Championship 2012
Favorite card: Gideon Jura
Favorite deck: UW Delverless Delver
Favorite format, and why: Modern. The format is really diverse and it always feels like you are in control of your own destiny
Favorite draft format, and why: Full block Scars of Mirrodin. It was the first draft format I really felt like I knew exactly what I was doing in, and my opponents generally didn’t
Memorable Magic moment: Winning round 11 of the first team GP in San Jose to make day 2.
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: When I was around 4 or 5, my dad played and I really liked the art on the cards so I taught myself to read so I could play with him.
What was the first competitive tournament you played in: A Lorwyn block PTQ in 2008
Favorite cuisine: Thai Food
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: Sherlock on BBC
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Nagoya, Japan
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: Getting to play very high level magic with the best competition.
Hometown: Boston, MA
Current Residence: Natick, MA
Invitation Source: Pro Level
Pro Level: Gold
Lifetime Pro Points: 72
10th Pro Tour Montreal 2013
1st GP Dallas 2011
2nd GP Baltimore 2012
4th GP Charlotte 2005
Favorite card: Consecrated Sphinx
Favorite deck: Cawblade pre-Batterskull
Favorite format, and why: Block Constructed. With such a small card pool to build from you have to get very creative to gain an edge.
Favorite draft format, and why: Original Ravnica block. Slow format with very good lands so you could play lots of colors.
Memorable Magic moment: Going undefeated at GP Dallas with Cawblade, beating the mirror 10 times.
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: With my brother and sister during summer vacation in 2001.
What was the first competitive tournament you played in: A JSS side event during GP Boston in 2003.
Favorite cuisine: A good cheeseburger and a beer.
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: Game of Thrones and The Newsroom.
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Japan was amazing.
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: The competition; playing with and against the best in the world.
Team Role: Constructed, more specifically as a control specialist. I play grindy blue decks in almost every format. I do not deviate very far from what are considered the best decks and instead focus on tuning my list.
Hometown: Montreal, Canada
Current Residence: Montreal, Canada
Occupation: Professional Magic Player, Software Developer on hiatus
Magic Online: JonStern
Invitation Source: Pro Level
Pro Level: Gold
Lifetime Pro Points: 84
13th Pro Tour Montreal 2013
18th Pro Tour Yokohama 2003
1st GP Atlantic City 2013
7th GP Toronto 2012
2nd Canadian Nationals 2002
Canadian WMC Team Captain 2013
Favorite card: Standstill
Favorite deck: UG Madness
Favorite format, and why: Team Rochester Draft. Rochester Draft, in general, has a lot more strategic depth than people think, and team draft offers a more pure experience with less reliance on table politics.
Favorite draft format, and why: Invasion Block. I still have a soft spot for older formats with less powerful creatures. And the first multicolor block forced us to think about draft in a completely different way.
Memorable Magic moment: Defeating David Rood in the semifinals of Canadian Nationals, and knowing I would be flying to Australia to represent Canada at Worlds.
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: My brother showed up with a Revised Starter back in 1994. We fumbled through the rules and quickly became addicted.
What was the first competitive tournament you played in: All tournaments are competitive to an extent, but from an organized play perspective the first competitive tournament was probably a PTQ in Quebec City I drove to with my brother after a summer playing casually at a local store in Ottawa. The format was Masques Block Constructed. I researched decks online, spent three days running around Montreal trying to trade for cards, tweaked the sideboard, and somehow won an invitation to Pro Tour Chicago.
Favorite cuisine: pretty much any type of Asian food
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: right now, probably Game of Thrones / A Song of Ice and Fire
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Tokyo, Japan
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: Walking into a tournament hall where the best players in the world are all vying for a single title, and the opportunity to compete against them for the chance to walk out as the sole victor.
Team Role: After a long hiatus from the game, I returned to the Pro Tour via a PTQ win and was immediately brought into the team for my past experience, organizational skills, and penchant for hard work. In addition to helping to build a capable and well-rounded team for the Pro Tour my main strengths are in deck selection, metagame analysis, and decision-making.
Name: Jacob Wilson
Hometown: San Francisco, CA
Current Residence: Vancouver, CA
Occupation: Student / Card Player
Magic Online Account: FeeFyFohFum
Invitation Source: GP Strasbourg
Pro Level: Gold
Lifetime Pro Points: 48
Lifetime Winnings: $15,000
1st GP Chicago
2nd GP Strasbourg
Top 8 GP Calgary
4 GP Top 16s
Favorite card: Complicate
Favorite deck: Delver (All Formats)
Favorite format, and why: Legacy: least amount of variance and the most play.
Favorite draft format, and why: Zendikar: Durdles get punished.
Memorable Magic moment: My first GP: GP Portland. I was in 1st place after 13 rounds and lost 3 consecutive win-&-ins for top 8. It was pretty disheartening but motivated me to pursue competitive Magic further.
When and how did you learn how to play Magic: 2010 I started drafting at FNM and started playing MTGO nonstop soon after.
What was the first competitive tournament you played in: GP Portland
Favorite cuisine: Mexican
Favorite movie, book, and/or TV series: Water Bo
Favorite place Magic has taken you: Barcelona/Philadelphia
Favorite aspect of the Pro Tour: Cordiality amongst most players
Team Role: I am willing to play any deck in testing sessions with full concentration regardless of my faith or interest in a deck. I like to tune established decks and identify strengths/weaknesses. At the beginning of a draft format I like to identify viable archetypes.