The pairings for the first round in the KARDS World Championship are ready!
During the past three weeks we have seen amazing qualification matches. More than 300 KARDS players fought hard to reach the top 64 spots and to proceed to the tournament round.
Congratulations to these 64 players! They, together with the top 64 players of Season 6, are set to compete in the KARDS World Championship Tournament during the first three weekends of November. The semi-finalists will then continue the fight for the World Championship title in Iceland in December.
Round 1 of the tournament takes place on November 2 & 3 at 7pm GMT. Here is the pairing of round 1:
Stage 4 (upcoming, Dec 7 & 8). The Final of the World Championship. The top four players from Stage 3 will be flown to Iceland to battle for the title of KARDS World Champion 2019!
Stage 2 is still ongoing. This weekend (October 19/20) is the final chance to qualify for the Championship Tournament (stage 3).
What is Championship Tournament? Let’s get into the details!
Championship Tournament overview
The KARDS World Championship Tournament is a 128-player, single-elimination tournament with best-of-three matches in the first round, then best-of-five in the following rounds.
Contestants play with their own decks that are fixed per weekend and made public beforehand.
At the tournament day(s) at the given time, you will be able to start the match with your opponent in the World Championship menu and play the best-of-three series (in the later stages: best-of-five).
If you win that series, you continue to the next round of the tournament. If you lose, you are out.
The tournament matches are played during the first three weekends in November, they’ll start at 7 pm GMT.
November 2 & 3: First round of the tournament with a total of 64 matches, best-of-three
November 9 & 10: Second and third round, best-of-five
November 16 & 17: Fourth and final round, best-of-five
The first round is spread over two days (the full first weekend). One half of the field will play on Saturday, the other half will play on Sunday.
Have a look at the relevant days:
October 28th (Monday): Tournament pairing. Stage 2 is completed. The pairing for round 1 is available. Contestants will know if they start competing on Nov 2 or Nov 3.
October 31st (Thursday), 11:59 pm GMT: Deadline for players to select their decks for round 1.
November 2nd (Saturday), 7 pm GMT: Playing matches: Best-of-three. Tournament starts with the first half of the field playing (64 players).
November 3rd (Sunday), 7 pm GMT: Playing matches: Best-of-three. Second half of the field is playing (64 players).
November 7th (Thursday), 11:59 pm GMT: Deadline for players to select their decks for round 2 and 3
November 9th (Saturday), 7 pm GMT: Playing matches: Best-f-five. Second weekend of the tournament (64 players left).
November 10th (Sunday), 7 pm GMT: Playing matches: Best-of-five. Second day of the weekend (32 players left)
November 14th (Thursday), 11:59 pm GMT: Deadline for players to select their decks for round 4 and 5.
November 16th (Saturday), 7 pm GMT: Playing matches: Best-of-five. Final weekend of the Tournament (16 players left)
November 17th (Sunday), 7 pm GMT: Playing matches: Best-of-five. Final day and fight for the Finals in Iceland (8 players left)
A word about the time. KARDS has top players all around the globe. We believe that the selected time (7 pm GMT) suits everyone in this tournament as best as possible. However, we are looking into options for future tournaments and would love to hear from you in the comments.
We will contact every participant per email with details and the exact schedule. Please make sure that your email is up to date in KARDS and that it is verified!
Decks and deck submission
The Championship is played with decks that players created beforehand and which are locked down during each tournament weekend. All tournament decks will be made public beforehand.
Let’s go over the details!
The Championship tournament players will create their own decks for each tournament weekend. These decks will be locked down (decks can’t be changed while they are locked) and made public.
Decks are based on the cards the player owns, no other restrictions apply.
Up to three different decks per weekend per player, a minimum of one deck is required.
Deadline for choosing the decks is the Thursday before each tournament weekend.
All tournament decks will be made public before each weekend.
If you are participating in the Championship tournament, you must have at least one tournament deck. Playing with other decks than the chosen tournament decks will lead to disqualification.
You have to choose your tournament decks before the deadline. You do that by simply changing its name to one of the three following names: Tournament deck 1 Tournament deck 2 Tournament deck 3
Decks with above names will be locked down during the tournament weekends.
After the weekend and before the next deadline, you can change the decks again as much as you want, or simply create new decks from scratch. Just make sure that you name the decks correctly with Tournament deck 1, Tournament deck 2, or Tournament deck 3.
The deadline to choose the tournament decks is the Thursday (before the end of the day at 11:59 pm GMT to be precise).
October 31: Deadline for decks to be used in round 1
November 7: Deadline for decks to be used in round 2 & 3
November 14: Deadline for decks to be used in round 4 & 5
A word of warning: Once the decks are locked down after the deadline, you cannot change them until after the weekend. If the deck is invalid (e.g. too few cards) and locked down, you simply won’t be able to use it (it cannot be changed because it is locked). So, pay attention!
Playing the Tournament matches
Here is how you start playing the tournament matches.
As outlined above, when you are scheduled to play your series of matches, a button in the World Championship menu becomes available.
Go to the World Championship menu (click the goblet on the main UI)
There, at the designated time, click the battle button and select one of your tournament decks.
When you are done with selecting your deck, you are ready for the match.
When both opponents are ready, the match will begin.
When the match is over, you have a short break to recover.
If the series is not complete, the next match will be ready to start (step 2).
If you do not start the match within the given time, it will count as a no-show and the match is marked as loss for you. If both players have a no-show, the match is marked as loss for both parties. If the whole series consists of no-shows, then the opponent in the next round will auto-win that series.
Repeat this until you have either won or lost the series of matches against your opponent.
The series of matches consists of up to three matches in the first round (best of three) and then up to five matches (best of five).
Following the tournament, the decks and the results
While participating in the tournament is exciting and fun (and challenging!), following the tournament, peeking at the decks from our top players, and rooting for your champion is at least equally thrilling and rewarding.
There are several ways how you should follow the KARDS World Championship Tournament.
Watch the tournament in live play. This is a super exciting way to get the latest news and insight into top-level playstyles.
Root for your champion on social media. This is a great way to support your favourite player(s).
Follow the tournament results, interesting stats, deck discussions and hints from the top players. Improve your play!
Last but not least, check the decks of the top players! Adjust your decks and boost your matches with superior info!
Stay tuned for more info and especially the decks of the champions!
The KARDS Contributor Program (KCP) enables enthusiasts to share their passion for KARDS and, supported by 1939 Games, to create fun and engagements that have an impact on the community and beyond.
While community contributions are welcome in any shape or form, having a (more or less) formal framework benefits both the contributors and the community:
The community benefits from content that is easy to find and to follow, and from standardized service
Contributors can take advantage of resources, promotions, a wide range of support, and in some circumstances also pursue business opportunities.
We have seen fantastic community contributions from the beginning of KARDS (essentially starting with Alpha players and their dedication).
With the constant growth of the community, now is the time to provide additional structure and improved support for passionate players and contributors.
Structure of the KCP
The KARDS Contributor Program (KCP) is structured in two tiers and several categories. Each category has its specific demand, support, perks and benefits. Currently, we have the following categories in the KCP:
Live broadcasts (e.g. streaming KARDS on Twitch)
Recorded content (e.g. static videos on YouTube)
Blogs and fansites
Live service (e.g. Tournament organization)
Let’s pause here for a moment and clarify that we don’t have a category lock-in. Everyone is welcome to do everything at any time! These categories simply help to provide better support and to allow for faster access to relevant information (e.g. bloggers might be less interested to find a Twitch overlay, but for streamers on Twitch this is highly relevant).
The two tiers differentiate between the designated target: Tier 1 contributions are aimed at the general public and directly at KARDS players, Tier 2 contributions are aimed at the members of the contributor program itself.
Are there any requirements?
There are only a few requirements to become and stay a KCP member (and as such an official KARDS Contributor):
Upon applying, have some content ready
Your content needs to be related to KARDS and of value
As KCP member, we expect you to be active within reason
We require you to be respectful as you will be one of the faces of KARDS
These few requirements are on purpose a bit vague and not enforced with strict numbers and a list of behavioral patterns. We want to foster a friendly and creative environment and don’t want to be a rule-laden camp.
We have only a few rules to follow (after all, we want this to be fun and exciting), but those few rules are important. After all, contributors enjoy official approval (and often promotion) from 1939 Games. Have a look at the KCP Contributor License.
Benefits and Perks
One of the biggest benefits upon joining the KCP is gaining access to a dedicated and well-supported community of mind-like enthusiasts.
Whether you are at the beginning of your contributor career, or if you are already a veteran, the KCP community and the support from 1939 Games are invaluable. You can rely on assistance in any case, for example, if you want to get up to speed fast or if need to solve some unique challenge that requires extra care.
There are, of course, also practical and hands-on benefits.
Do you need codes for card pack giveaways on your stream?
Do you want some artwork or a media pack to polish your posts?
Maybe a boost of your streams and videos?
Do you want to receive suggestions and tips for growing your audience?
Would you like to have an "Official Contributor" stamp on your content?
[/i] [/list] The KCP community and 1939 Games are here for you!
We encourage contributors to grow together with KARDS, and if so desired, also assist on the path to a professional career.
How do you join the KCP?
Joining the KCP is easy! We welcome everyone to join the KARDS Contributor Program. There are only a few requirements as listed above.
To ensure the continued high quality of community contributions, the integrity of the program, and to avoid misunderstandings or frustration, we reserve the right to decline applications.
Once again, we want to say a huge thank you to all of you for the continuous excellent feedback you give us, it helps us immensely in discovering bugs and balance issues. Plus, all the positive words work wonders for the self esteem.
Here the most important changes.
42nd Rifles - Full repair at the start of your turn (was: at the end of each turn)
USACE - Buff change to +1 attack, and+1 defense (was +1 attack and +2 defense)
Sendai Regiment - Damage increase to 2 (was 1)
Unity is Strength - Cost increase to 2 (was 1)
Land of the Free - Cost decrease to 1 (was 2)
Burning Sun - Cost increase to 3 (was 2)
Tactical Strike - Cost decrease to 3 (was 4)
Let’s take a look at the cards that are changing in more detail!
The current ability of 42nd Rifles lends itself well to both offensive and defensive operations, making it great in almost all situations and a tough cookie to deal with. We like strong cards to have some weaknesses and with this change you now have a tough choice - if you use it to attack it means it will be weaker during the enemy turn, so the days of freely attacking with the 42nd Rifles without a worry in the world are over.
What you’re seeing here is mostly just a bit cleaner templating of the wording of the ability, which is staying the same. What is changing, as is more strongly implied with the new wording, is that the ability now only applies when you have 35th Rifle Regiment in hand and ready to be deployed. What this means is that while it is on the battlefield, the unit will always have a cost of 3. So there is no longer the uncertainty we currently have of what you’ll get out of cards like Ural Factories, or whether Sudden Strike can target it or not. So this change is mostly for clarification and ease of play.
We’re seeing Sendai Regiment being played a bit more today than previously, which we can understand as it is quite good. But what is lacking a bit is stronger tension to shed the Smokescreen and go on the march. We want that dilemma to come up more often, so we are giving the unit a bit more incentive to attack.
We want there to be a 0-cost buff card in the game - it gives a great baseline to compare other buffer cards against and it fits the inherent risky nature of buff cards of leading to card disadvantage if they can trade with the buffed unit with a single card. USACE has been on our radar for quite awhile and we now feel confident in making this change. There are two main reasons, one is that it can make it a bit too hard for aggressive decks to deal with a cheap unit buffed with USACE in the early stages of the game, which can lead to quick snowballing that is difficult to deal with. The second reason is that we have been taking a general look at buff cards in the game and the current stats on USACE create a bit too much inflation for other buff cards higher in the food chain.
As mentioned above, we are doing a pass on buff cards in the game and Unity Is Strength was another one that came up as requiring our attention. We want to keep the potentiality for a super-buff because we want infantry-centric decks to be a thing in the game. But at a cost of 1 it was a bit too easy to get a strong unit going very early in the game, so we are increasing the cost slightly.
Land of the Free is a different type of buff card that can be very strong in the right deck. Unfortunately, that deck hasn’t really materialized in the metagame despite several valiant efforts, so we feel it is fine to reduce the cost slightly to broaden the appeal of the card.
Again, this change is part of our overhaul of buff cards. +3 for long range units is very strong, especially when you have many small, cheap planes on the battlefield. We are fine with those kinds of decks, looking to deploy small air units early and then finish in one big turn, but want to reduce the speed of them slightly, hence this change.
When we changed Tactical Strike a couple of months back we were on a warpath to reduce the effectiveness of removal over the board. At the time we debated this change, but decided to wait on it as we wanted to get a better sense of the overall impact our removal card adjustments would have. Now that we have a clearer picture we are confident that this is a fine change to make.
That’s it for now, keep the good feedback coming, please, we really appreciate it. For those of you participating in the Stage 2 qualifiers, good luck. For the rest, slightly above average luck.
Stage 1 is the qualification and currently under way. The top 64 from that stage go directly to Stage 3, the tournament. Everyone else who qualified will go to Stage 2.
Stage 2, which is upcoming, is the Challenger stage. Here, the bulk of the qualified players from Stage 1 will compete for the top 64 spots which then proceed to Stage 3.
Stage 3 is the 128 person single-elimination tournament. The top-4 of that tournament will qualify for the Finals 2019. Matches here can be best of 3 or best of 5 in higher stages.
Stage 4 are the Finals. The top four players from Stage 3 will be flown to Iceland to battle for the title of KARDS World Champion 2019!
Without further ado, let's dive right into the details about Stage 2!
How to qualify for Stage 2
The most important question first: How do you qualify for Stage 2? The answer: Reach the Officer Club before the end of September (September 30, 23-59-59 GMT)! That is all you need to do to be able to compete in Stage 2.
You reach the Officer Club by climbing the ranks and become Field Marshal in at least three nations.
Furthermore, if you finish in the top 64 in the Officer Club you qualify directly for Stage 3.
What to expect in Stage 2
In Stage 2, you will compete with your chosen constructed decks in a special Qualifier queue to score points. At the end of Stage 2, the 64 players with the most points will advance to Stage 3.
When to play in Stage 2
Stage 2 will be fought over a period of three weekends.
October 5th and 6th
October 12th and 13th
October 19th and 20th
On each of these three Saturdays and three Sundays the Qualifier queues will be open between 16:00 and 20:00 GMT time.
These form six distinct sessions for you to play in. The Qualifier queue contains only people competing in Stage 2.
How to start a match in Stage 2
During the dates and times mentioned above:
Click on the World Championship icon on the main screen. This leads you to the World Championship menu.
Click on the battle button in the World Championship menu. This leads you to your deck selection.
Select a deck that you want to play with in this match.
Play, have fun, and win! But even if you lose, you get points (check below).
How to score points
In each session, your first 9 games score you points. You can play more than 9 games if you want, those games give you stronger tiebreakers. For those first 9 games, a win gives you 5 points, a loss gives you 1 point.
So it is always best to try to complete all your games - finishing a session with 2 wins and 7 losses gives you more points for instance than just winning 3 and skipping the other six games. For each match, you get to select a deck to use same as when entering a Battle currently. So you can use the same deck throughout a session, or choose a different one every time, as you wish.
A leaderboard shows the points of participants. This leaderboard is visible to all players, even those not qualified for Stage 2. You can also view a list of the 64 players already qualified for Stage 3 from finishing in the top 64 in the current Stage 1.
Here is a work-in-progress screenshot of the leaderboard screen (it is empty because no sessions have been played so far). At the top you can see the time until the next sessions start. Hovering over the info button at the top of the screen (beside the timer) will give you a quick overview of the rules for Stage 2), similar to what this dev blog is doing. At the bottom you can select which stage to view, it allows you to see which 64 players qualified automatically for Stage 3 in Stage 1.
Here we see a similar screenshot where a session is in progress. You see an overview of your 9 scoring match and your total score for the session. The Battle button allows you to select a deck and then puts you in the Qualifier queue. When a session has started, you see how much time remains. You can still finish (and score) a game that ends after the session ends, as long the game started before the session expired. In this special case, you have 30 minutes to finish the game.
You score points for all the sessions you participate in, but for the leaderboard (and hence the competition for being in the top 64) only your best three sessions count. This means having a bad session is not the end of the world as you can always make up in another session, plus if you are limited on time you can simply play in three sessions and call it quits.
Hovering over the info button beside your name will give you an overview of your sessions so far, and the dates of upcoming sessions. For completed sessions you can see what score you achieved and whether the session counts as one of your three best ones.
If players end up with the same score, a tiebreaker system is used to order them. Tiebreakers are based on several things, the most important being the strength of your opponents. So being matched against a very strong player might make for a difficult match, but at the very least your tiebreakers will improve regardless of the result. For further info, check out the rules (Challenger Stage - Tiebraker Score)
The World Championship is entering more serious stages soon, so in accordance it is important for us to lay down the law on the rules of engagement. All kinds of issues and disputes can arise and we want to have some framework on how to tackle these. So we’ve put together a document on the matter, take a look for more details if you are interested.
That’s it for now, we will bring you more information on Stage 3 as that draws closer. If you are not yet in the Officer Club, or if you are fighting for a chance at the top 64, the next few days will be hectic.
Extra rewards for everyone
To sweeten the deal a little bit we will have extra rewards over the weekend for first wins of the day - on both Saturday and Sunday you will get an extra draft ticket as a reward for your first win of the day. This is on top of the extra season rewards this month, plus the extra card back you get for finishing in the Officer Club.
The five promo cards were given out last month as special First Win of the Day rewards. During the previous month, these cards have been exclusive to those that acquired them then.
With the update tomorrow, you will be able to craft all the promo cards you’re missing.
Card balance changes
We’re doing a balance update on six cards this time around. We’re continuing our overhaul of removal, including removal effects on units. Three cards fall into this category this time around:
Despite the cost increase, this is a boost for Annihilation, as it can now go for many more important targets. There are a couple of reasons for this change, one is to widen the net of potential targets, the other is to break up the cluster of cost-6 removal orders and units in the game. Speaking of a cost-6 removal unit...
A 5/5 tank is a formidable threat, so any kind of a removal tacked on is always going to be super strong. The Panzer IV F2 is stable in the environment for a reason and it makes us slightly sad to have to nerf it, but we feel it is best for the good of the game.
Removing the destroy clause makes it much weaker against aggressive decks, but the retreat ability can still be a huge tempo-swing against mid-range and control decks, so we expect this card to continue to see plenty of play.
Naval Bombardment is a cheap answer to a myriad of threats, but in its current incarnation it is a bit too narrow against a diverse field. The US already have conditional frontline removal in Awoken Giant and Torpedo Attack, Naval Bombardment being in the same boat seemed a bit too much.
After the change, Naval Bombardment will retain its former ability, but you can now spend 4 to bounce a unit from anywhere. You can even spend 2 to bounce from the support line with the enemy controlling the frontline, if you so choose, making this card much more versatile than previously. Bouncing units with strong deployment effects is not much fun, but bouncing units with adverse effects, like a certain Soviet tank, is so much fun.
Speaking of the devil, here it is in all its glory. It actually surprised us how long it took the SU-76M to grab the limelight, as it is such a strong unit.
The fall of Sudden Strike and the rise of Encirclement finally allowed the SU-76M to shine. We’ve analyzed the data on SU-76M decks a lot and while it is putting up decent numbers (and is much more popular now than a couple of months ago), it is still not dominating the format. This leads us to believe that to some extent a new type of a deck in a metagame that was becoming slightly stale created a little bit of a Flavor of the Month phenomena.
Still, facing a 5/5 tank on turn 1 and losing quickly with a hand full of answers can be frustrating. With that in mind, and representing the historical performance of the unit better, we feel reducing the defense is the right way to go.
We did consider several other adjustments, but feel this is the best one as it keeps the unit as a dangerous threat, which is exactly what we want to keep this deck archetype alive and kicking. We’ll continue to monitor the performance of the Into the North + SU-76M + Encirclement decks, in all their varied versions, to see if further actions are required in the future.
The SU 152 is feeling a bit jealous of all the success of it’s little brother and petitioned for a face lift or all hell would break loose. We felt obliged to agree, as 4/4 in fury is a sight to behold and not something we wanted to face. So the new cost is 5. Perhaps you will face it more often now.
The Lancaster B.III is an excellent finisher for control decks, but it can be a bit oppressive with its ability, effectively shutting people out of the game. It is still a dangerous unit, but now people can hope for a bit more counterplay.
Card text adjustments
One thing to mention is that we’ve edited the text on a bunch of cards, making the wording more consistent and streamlined over the line. Note that there is no functional change here, just cleaning up some texts that were unclear or grammatically incorrect.
Feel free to point out any errors you find in these or other cards.