QQ: How do you deal with defeats?

Yu-Gi-Oh! is fast, fun and exciting. Part of that excitement is the chance to draw into a game winning card in the very last moment to turn around a Duel that didn’t look winnable a moment before. When you’re on the losing end, you might disappointed a little bit at first. However, some of the most memorable tournament wins were achieved after a very bad start. Just take Vittorio Wiktor’s win at last year’s European Championship where he lost in round 1, only to start an impressive winning streak that safed him a spot in the top 8. Being able to overcome losses is a key quality for any true champion, so let’s ask some of them how they do it.

Rodrigo Togores was playing on the big screen during round 9, giving bystanders a chance to take a closer look at his Frog OTK deck. He didn’t win as his opponent had some good answers, so how does he cope?

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[b]Rodrigo Togores:[/b] I don’t attend tournaments to win, I go there to play! Therefore, I don’t mind if I lose a game, for me it’s all about giving it my all and doing as good as possible.

Further, I love deck building and mastering creative decks. Most of the times, games are decided by skill, so I don’t tend to get mad if I’m not so lucky all the time. It’s all about improving and becoming a better player so I can do better at future tournaments.

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Michel Grüner didn’t make day 2 of the WCQ: European Championship. Still, he seemed to be rather cheerful today, trying his luck in the side events. How did he deal with the defeats?

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[b]Michel Grüner:[/b] For me, the whole game comes down to one big question: How can I improve my deck? If I lose, I try to analyze why and come up with creative solutions against the answers of my opponents. Some players run [ro] to deal with Gottoms’ Emergency Call, so sometimes I then try to include cards that counter [ro] and so on.

Sometimes, when I have troubles clearing my head, I start to tweak weird decks. I took a Frog OTK and changed it to a different OTK deck that relied on [arm] and [colossal fighter]. I learned a lot during the deck building process and did not have troubles coming up with more creative ideas afterwards. So I started to improve other decks in similar ways. One big lesson I learned: Never play very specific cards to try and stop cards of your opponent. You will end up in a lot of situations where you’re holding them and your opponent will just not play the cards you tried to counter.

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Vincent [rala] just lost in the feature match of round 10. Still, he was able to keep his head up and here’s why:

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[b]Vincent [rala]:[/b] As long as I have a chance to make the Top 8, I always focus on this goal. This is enough to keep me motivated and I can continue to play well.

This tournament is even more special as it’s the most important European tournament in the whole year. As there’s still a chance to win a [ded], even if you don’t make Top 8, I will certainly continue until the very end.

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The Austrian Claudio Kirchmair, a former World Championship competitor, went 4 – 4 yesterday and had to overcome a few defeats. Let’s ask him how he tried to motivate himself:

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[b]Claudio Kirchmair:[/b] Even if I lose, I always continue playing. It’s part of the game to lose and more often than not, you will learn more after you’ve lost a match than when you crushed an opponent. So I try to improve my game and learn something out of the mistakes I made when I lost.

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Mathijs Schuurman just lost in round 10, which leaves him with a 7 – 3 record at this point. He still has chances of making top 8, but needs to win the remaining matches.

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[b]Mathijs Schuurman:[/b] I always analyze the losses carefully and try to come up with misplays or bad card choices I made during the deck building process. I’m a rather cheerful person, so it’s hard to bring me down. I love playing and always have a blast, even when I’m losing.

The most fun for me is bringing out cards my opponents don’t know. You can always see what goes on in their heads and that alone is reason enough for me to stay in the competition!

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You can see that some of the most successful players take a completely different approach when it comes to dealing with losses. They try to learn something out of their mistakes instead of calling out their opponents’ lucky draws. This way, they can constantly improve their game and avoid making the same mistakes again.

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