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FFTCG Drafting - a general overview on what to do in a draft.

Introduction: My name’s Peter Wong, I started off as a casual player in Magic the Gathering and Final Fantasy Trading Card Game, is my first competitive entry to competitive TCGs. I am a huge fan of FF and I love all the characters from the game. I really like all the game mechanics in FFTCG and I enjoy playing with all the cards.

Drafting gives me a chance to try out every card, where I might have otherwise overlooked, in my initial assessment, which will help me in my constructed matches and future deck brews. Another advantage of drafting is that it allows me to familiarize myself with certain card combinations and interactions. These combinations and interactions might not become meta, but it does offer me an opportunity to play test it out and wait for a better interaction in a future set release, using a similar pairing of cards. Also, the most important skill set that drafting offers is to familiarize yourself with the cards in a real match against strong players, in a limited format and how it differs from constructed. Some cards can be stronger in limited format. My playing style involves actual playtesting experience to understand how a card works and how to counter against it. I am a hands-on kind of guy. Playing with all the cards allows me to understand their strengths and weakness in advance, so that if I encounter it unexpectedly in the future, I can draw on this experience and know how to counter it.

Because of my casual background, I enjoy brewing non-meta decks and to play with obscure/unpopular cards because it offers a fun interaction. Drafting helps me to obtain extra copies of cards, because I am lazy to switch out cards in multiple decks and don’t think too heavily trying to choose draft cards to tech against everything. Just try to have fun and allow yourself to play outside of your normal constructed comfort zone and enjoy the spontaneity and randomness of the limited format and experience the pleasure of playing with all of the different cards that the designers have made for the set. In this general overview, I will not be going over the actual rules of drafting, so please refer to this link for all the drafting rules before you continue on this article.

Section 1: What cards to draft

As a drafter, you are faced with two initial choices to begin your draft game: do I rare draft( picking the rarest and most valuable card) or do I draft to win(choosing the strongest card that will increase my chances to win)? Sun Tzu first advice in his tactical manual, The Art of War, “Know yourself and know your enemy and you will be always be victorious. Know yourself and not your enemy, you have a 50% chance of success and if you do not know yourself or your enemy, you have a 0% chance of winning.”

To be upfront, I am a rare drafter; my purpose in drafting is to chase after extra cards I want and having fun in the process. More often than not, the rarest card will also happen to be the strongest.

After you have selected your first card, hopefully, you are familiar with that element’s strengths and weakness. Ideally, you want to minimize your element choices down to two colors, but realistically, you will end up drafting three elements. Make sure you are familiar with good complementary element(s), that helps supports your first card choice. Section 2: Choosing your support cards

After you have selected your first card, the next few selections should be a strong beater forward, a backup with a strong utility and/or a card removal summon. A solid beater would an 8k+ Forward, a Backup with a strong utility would be something that is tempo based or can give you card advantage and value and a summon that can break/kill a problematic forward.

When you have reached the halfway mark in round of drafting from the first pack that is passed down to you, start prioritizing backups or start hate drafting (choosing a card that you don’t want your opponent to be used against you).

Here is my suggested card choice when drafting from a 12 card booster pack as a rare drafter for your first two packs:

Card #1: Rarest Card Cards #2 - 6: Huge Forward, Card Removal Summon, Strong utility Backup, that is within your element. Cards #7 – 12: 2CP Backups, Hate draft, EX-Burst cards.

When you have reached your third pack, you should have a better idea what your two or three color elements that you are locked into. At this point, on your third and last pack, try to focus on color fixing your two/three color elements for better consistency and if you have space, you can try to start prioritizing hate drafting and start taking away cards you do not want your other playmates to have access to. Section 3: Ratio for deck building

Hopefully you were successful enough to minimize your element choices down to only two elements, if not three is still workable, as long as you have a good ratio of balance. I prefer to play with 40 cards out of 48 from the draft. My suggested ratios of backups are 12-18. If you are locked down to three elements, you want to make sure you can get all three elements out on the field as consistently as possible. The next portion of your cards should be forwards that makes up the majority of your deck and about 5-10% left for summons, monsters, ex-bursts and fillers (leftover cards that you’ve hate drafted or were passed down to you as the last card that wasn’t by choice). Conclusion:

My write up should be helpful for majority of the players that are looking to have a good time playing with a consistent performing deck and what cards to prioritize in this format.

Drafting helps you develop skill sets that make you grow as a duelist. Drafting can hone your skills at being able to play awkward board setups and forces you to play outside of your comfort zone, to adapt, become flexible and think quicker. The more opportunities for you to experience as many different combinations of awkward board setups, allows the player to try out different lines of plays and playing to your outs, so that you can gain more combat experience for future competitive tournaments.

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