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Just curious about tips and tricks for maintaining your brain after 6 hours of Netrunning. Yesterday, I managed to get first seed out of swiss at regionals, but tilted so hard in knockouts. Was just brain-fried and unable to make any good decisions, in fact, I only made bad ones (still managed 4th but sigh, wanted the win a lot). Granted the beer didn’t help, but I think it might have been worse without it.

Anybody got any tips or ideas about developing stamina, maintaining your brain? Avoiding tilt, that sorta thing.

Eat a healthy lunch!!! Just a sandwich and carrots or something will do. If you start to feel sleepy/tired (this usually only happens near the end of the elims), start pounding the Red Bull.


Heh, I am really interested in this topic. That always happens to me, i always manage to get into the top but then I am just too tired and brain fart all my games.

Last regional was even worse, I was 1 seed and in the first top game I lost my first game because stupid mistakes. Next game I was so tired and tilted that I just throw the game, I even catched my opponent cheating (first time ever I meet a cheater in NR) and I did not even bothered to call a judge or even complain.

Anyway, In my opinion beer does not help (but I am guilty of that too) and I think the food also is quite important here. I was told to avoid heavy digestions. In my case I think the fact that I only play NR in tournaments makes a lot of difference too as I just do not have the practice I have to think more in my games as I have not tested the matchups beforehand and i get exhausted quickier.

Anyway, I’d love to hear some opinions about this too.

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I usually pack huge amounts of chocolate bars and croissants, a large bottle of water and 1-2 Red Bulls. If the place has coffee you should drink it. Always eat a lunch. Sleep as much as you can before the tournament.

I’m the driver, so I never drink any alcohol.

I’m always with my GF and she’s always great support.

What’d you see him do?

We were both at 6 points, I make a run to R&D with a RDI and facecheck a architect without mimic out. Architect fires and I notice that he moves the cards and I do not hit a agenda. Next turn he fast advances an agenda somehow involving 2 biotics (not sure why) and I am pretty sure he did not had enough money for that, but he does it too fast and he is using dice so it is harder to see. The TO told me that he did indeed moved the cards and that he did not had a a agenda in hand and he did not install the agenda from architect. He did not wanted to get involved as I did not complain, I think he was more pissed about it than me. Anyway, that guy just got elliminated next round and I was playing so bad that I did not had any chance of winning the tourny, I was literally exhausted and just wanted it to end.

I’m sorry, @kovacs, may I ask for a little clarification on that statement?

Are you saying the judge was more pissed about it than you were? Also, are you saying he was more pissed about the incident, or the fact that something happened and he had to intervene since you didn’t complain?

Am I also correct in inferring that the TO did nothing at the time, since “that guy” got eliminated in the next round (as opposed to being DQ’d or something like that)?

Ah, sorry. That is probably confusing. The TO abd the judge were different ppl, the TO was the store owner and the judge was another local player (not playing that day). I guess I should not have call kim the TO, but he is the guy who actually promotes and organizes everything.

He was just watching the game (he was the only one allowed to watch) and noticed it. He did not wanted to get involved as he was not the judge. He said he almost complained when he saw I was going to let it go.

Anyway, the real problem here was exhaustion, I did not complain because I was so tired that I just wanted to drop. Sorry I explained myself poorly there.

What pops to mind for me.

First of all know what you want to get out of the tournament. I assume you’re looking to win it, but some people are just looking to hang out with good friends and play a fun games, and some people are somewhere in the middle. If you’re in it to win it, then remember that and act accordingly and maybe don’t take a shot everytime you lose a psi game or whatever fun stuff is going on.

Know your body. Know what foods you need to eat to keep your energy up, and how much. Know how much sleep you need to get the night before. Know what to do keep the adrenaline going between games, because if that wears off it’ll knock you out.

Play a lot, and practice playing for long stretches. Other GNK tournaments or stores are good for this, go to as many of these as possible. Or OCTGN/Jnet binges on Sat/Sun (or whenever you have a free day).

Know your decks and the matchups thoroughly. If you’re unaware of what your opponent’s deck is doing and what yours can do to counter it 1) You’re going to be burning a lot of mental energy solving problems that you should already know the answer to 2) You’re going to be responding/thinking in broad strokes rather than smaller details. As in if you know what breakers are most important against this type of corp deck, you’ll be thinking about when to get them, rather than what to get.

Automate certain processes and plays. I find it so much easier to track my and my opponent’s clicks using trackers, and it saves mental space (and very often I catch other players forgetting clicks, even good players). Any little mnemonics or actions you can take to keep your thought processes on the board and not taking up space in your head. Have certain lines of plays with certain cards. Like generally with Jackson I want to install, draw 2, draw 2, discard to an ideal hand. Now when I draw Jackson in a game I ask not what should I do with this Jackson, but whether there’s a better line of play than the ideal. I find the second question more specific and easier to answer. Also planning. Take a few seconds at the start of each turn to a) check any start of turn triggers, and b) plan what you’re going to do. Even though the plan might change (drawing an important card, running into an ambush) it’s easier to reformulate a plan than constantly playing hand to mouth.

Also play the game and then move on. If you lose to a stupid mistake don’t dwell on it. This can be difficult to do.


That’s really helpful thanks for taking the time to reply. The idea of banking a set of automated responses to certain situations I would consider a bit risky, but it seems an interesting idea, especially when you know your deck well.


No worries, mate. I was intruding a bit, so there’s no need to apologize. Thank you for taking the time to explain.

Judging in a tournament (honestly, any kind of “referee”-type job) is really interesting to me, so I like to learn about anecdotes like this where I can. Thanks again!

I mean absolutely it can be, but perhaps I explained myself poorly. It’s not merely about coming up with rote plays for cards and then obeying them. It’s about knowing ideal uses for cards and evaluating that ideal use against current needs.

As a simple example Meru Mati, obviously the ideal play is to put this ice in front of HQ. However sometimes the current needs of the match will present tough choices. For example if there’s already 2 early game ice on HQ is it worth throwing Meru in front of them? If I need an etr on a remote or R&D should I use Meru for that? Or even deeper, should I play this 2nd ice on HQ given that I haven’t drawn a Meru yet? These questions are easier to answer if I have a baseline to compare them to.

Most games have similar rote things, standard openings in chess, joseki in Go, standard plays in Backgammon etc. It’s not so much about following the procedure as knowing when, how, and why to deviate from it.


Yeah I got you. It’s like making your dark square bishop work in a closed sicilian. There’s pretty much only a few ways of doing it, and in most situations, it’s beneficial to play that way. You don’t have to think too hard about it. If your opponent give’s you an opportunity to strike with that piece (which really shouldn’t happen) you can keep your eyes open for deviations from strategy, rather than assess each move as though you hadn’t before.

Well correct me if I’m wrong, but that’s what I’m taking from it.

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Treat a tournament like you are going on a hike. Drink plenty of water and don’t eat too high carb foods so your brain doesn’t go into a carb coma. I usually bring cliff bars for when I get hungry.

As for tilt, it’s ok to lose. This game isn’t a social evaluation for executive functioning that will determine your self worth. Learn from your mistake and most importantly learn from the pressure your opponents make. Usually, one will go to a tournament to win or at least make the cut;but, that’s not realistic for everybody so you need to set your expectations and adjust accordingly during the tournament.


Yeah I agree with most of the stuff that’s been said here. Drink lots of water, drink coffee if that’s what you are used to. Make sure to eat a lunch, but also have chocolate or lollies with you or something. Practicing by playing long events also helps with stamina. Being an ex-mtg player who never eats or drinks during events I feel pretty good generally but I also have a habit of chewing gum. Pretty sure that helps me. I also had a bag of skittles with me at our regionals.

Obviously also make the most of the break between swiss and play offs. Walk around between rounds, stretch your legs, yada yada yada

I’ll give it a shot. Liked the line of thinking about spending brain power where necessary, but if it’s as simple, as eating a salad and drinking red bull, I’ll try it out :smile:

Hah! See, we didn’t have one …

great advice!

grain of salt: I can never resist bringing fun-bad decks so even when I do make it to the cut it’s necessarily a short lived run; that said, I tend to play better and better as the day goes along, and I believe in this advice.

It sounds so corny to say, but plenty of sleep, a healthy breakfast (or not so healthy- just avoid sugary shit), healthy and filling snacks (clif bars are great, so are mixed nuts, good sandwiches, etc.) If you do get to the cut and things are going very late and you need caffeine, I strongly recommend black coffee (or a black coffee derivative - I bring cold brew concentrate which is very easy to make and drink) over high-sugar energy drinks. I tend to find that in stressful conditions the type of energy I get from straight sugar (which is basically what most energy drinks are) is not a productive kind.

Basically act like a lame dad on a boy scout trip; your brain will be doing it’s damdest to crawl out of your skull by the end of a long tourney, so making sure your body has no complaints to add is the best thing you can do to help.


Go to Med School. Believe me, after you’ve spent 14 hours on the wards, trying to play in the 9th hour of a netrunner tournament is a piece of cake.


isn’t the second or third ingredient in a cliff bar brown rice syrup? :wink:

don’t sit unless you’re playing and stretch after you’re done.