From bronze 3 to Champion 1 under 72h with 14$: My first Splinterland story!

in Splinterlands3 months ago (edited)

On my 1st season on Splinterlands I managed to do this: go from bronze 3 to Champion 1 using less than 14$ and under 72h, starting with zero prior knowledge of the game.

Interesting, isn't it? Let's see how this feat was done.

Thanks @neyxirncn for the beautiful banner.


THE BACKGROUND

But first let me introduce this aspect of my person to all of you: I like gaming, a lot. I am a hardcore gamer, whenever I really like a game I become a living encyclopedia married with a lot of time invested in playing. I love getting to really KNOW how a game works, I love understanding, breaking them down and reasembling them. It's also a deep form of meditation for me, whenever I'm in a game my brain is busy with the game and I enter an interesting understanding state that somehow brings me peace.

This started around 1995, I was already playing Advanced Dungeons and Dragons and absolutely loving the mechanics and amazing worlds behind it. Then, in a trip to Caracas to the hobbie store where AD&D was supposedly played I got introduced to a new game that was like AD&D but with collectible cards like the baseball ones. I watched like five games, understood very little of it but I was totally enthralled. The art was so magical and mysterious, the little stories on the cards were really amazing and the rules which I didn't understand seemed a little on the complicated side (Sorceries, instants, interrupts, whoa...) but I did want to learn.

Magic: The Gathering took my life by storm.


I got the visual encyclopedias, read whatever material I could get my hands into, but over everything else I played magic every moment I could. I did teach a lot of my friends in my area to play.


On a trip to Caracas I got into my first tournament with a Blue/black deck with a nice curve and full of cheap critters, removal and discard with the non optimal 63 cards because I didn't know what to cut (an optimal tournament deck is always exactly 60 cards). I overran all my competition, I still remember the finals against a deck full of expensive cards like Shivan Dragons and dual lands but over 200 cards of size! So, I won that tournament with a deck of cheap cards but armed with a deeper knowledge of the game than my opponents.

That way started my career as a professional player of Magic in Venezuela. The high points of it were going to Brussels for the 2000's Magic World Championship as part of the national team and going to Argentina on 2001 for the last Latin American Championship.

After that in my  20's I ran a hobby store and kept supporting the game in a business fashion for a couple more years. One of the last events my store went to organize Magic and Yu-Gi-OH tournaments. There you can see my friend David managing the sales side.


BLOCKCHAIN AND COLLECTIBLE CARD GAMES

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Back to 2020 and Splinterlands. When I got deep into crypto around 2017, Steemit and Splinterlands were hot. A social media that ran over a blockchain with a CCG integrated that used the same tech for the cards. The gamer and crypto fanatic in me was really interested, but my interests on those time were more into the ancient medicine camp and on earning how to build Ethereum mining machines. So my curiosity had to wait three years, a hard fork, a pandemic virus and a lockdown to finally see what the Splinterlands vibe was about.

So before before actually playing I had three main ideas I wanted to prove:

-CCGs knowledge translates from game to game.

-Splinterlands player base is more interested in cashing in that actually playing the game. So the player base must be so casual an no much competition for a person armed with good knowledge and prior gaming skills.

-As renting cards IS an option getting the amazing cards needed to win would be easy and cheaper that buying/trading/opening packs.


PREPARING BEFORE THE BATTLE

So my strategy was to read a couple of strategy articles to understand how the game actually worked. God, that was HARD. See, due to the nature of rewards of HIVE people are encouraged to create content about Splinterlands daily, but almost all this is "Battle of the day", "booster pack openings" and a lot of other content that aren't of any help at all for the new player.

But after a lot of work I found @marianaemilia and her Splinterlands Basic Strategies – Introduction – The Tank #01 the first actually useful, well written strategy post! I learned tons from that article, first that Splinterlands battles are more like Hearthstone: Battlegrounds or Auto-Chess than traditional CCGs.

Learning about tanks with @marianaemilia

First I got the 10$ of the summoner pass, the sacrifice to opt for the ranked rewards. To win something one has to sacrifice something this is a rule of the universe. I know that for some that is spare cash, but for a parent of a one year old, Venezuelan migrant on Colombia in lockdown due our current situation these 10$ were a hard choice. Would I get back that money? Let's see.

Good, I got in, got my basic cards set and started playing to learn the game. Got in a couple of games and even completed the daily quest for a not so amazing reward at Bronze 3. So the conclusion was that the basic cards wouldn't let me ascend the ladder and as the rewards are heavily weighted towards the top leagues, fumbling with sub-optimal cards would only cost me money and time.

So I kept studying and found Steemmonsters | 31W-3L Beginner Deck Guide (Bronze 1 Rank in 70 Minutes) and this one was golden.

This guy gave me a setup, explained why there were in that order and what should I do with the changing rules of the game. Good! And it also was on the water splinter which is the equivalent of Blue in Magic, color that always has been my favorite color. So the next step was actually getting the cards.

It was already decided that I was going to rent the cards, it was really clear to me that the cards one uses as a new player are not the ones one uses when doing serious ranked play, so I didn't want to throw what little money I had on cards that I wouldn't use again.


GOING TO THE CARD MARKET AND THEN INTO THE FRAY!

peakmonsters.PNG

Next surprise, the renting mechanism isn't integrated on the main game, one has to setup a profile on [Peakmonsters](https://peakmonsters.com/) where you can buy/sell and also rent cards. On this step was where I found out that my Splinterlands account was a HIVE account, so now I had to work around another set of keys. After running away from the mobile interface (it IS a pain to use in a cellular tech at the moment) I managed to set up the key with Hivesigner and got into the market. A little more complication, but I did actually rent all the cards I needed for less than 0.5 $ for at least a week.


This team as shown by Constanza Carried me to Gold 1. Source

I rented Alric Stormbringer lvl 1, Sea Monster lvl 1, Goblin Mech lvl 1, Cockatrice lvl 1, Grumpy Dwarf lvl 1, Crustacean King lvl 1, Cyclops lvl 1, Pirate Captain lvl 1 and Water Elemental lvl 1.

With this setup I managed to go in like four hours from bronze 3 to gold 1. Like a hot knife through butter. Also the rewards that day were way better than the bronze 3 ones. By that moment I was starting to grasp the card lvl mechanics and it was clear to me that to advance I had to upgrade the cards I was using. So I went back to Peakmonsters and rented a couple of death and earth cards aside from the higher lvl versions of my water cards to have flexibility because the splinter restrictions were appearing more often and having only blue cards was costing me more losses than in the lower leagues.

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So with my new lvl 3-5 summoners and monsters I managed to get to diamond 1! So seeing the speed this was happening I decided to go all in and try for champion. So I got all my liquid hive and tokens into the account and rent me some max lvl summoners and cards. For a grand total of 4$!. I got my max lvl beloved blue cards and a couple of earth ones because my budget was almost exploding (it did explode tho I lost some rental contracts the next day for not taking the scrows into account).

The Big Leagues baby!

I got to work, I told my wife @neyxirncn what I was trying to do and went all in towards champion with one day and a half left on the season clock! I got to Champion 3 after grinding for three hours with 24 h left on the clock, YEAH. Champion 1 was doable I thought but I was exhausted of learning and playing non-stop all dy, so I laid the game off and went to have some rest until the next day.

THE FINAL STRETCH

Whoa, champion 3 to Champion 1 was gonna be a lot more work than I thought.

First of all the bots are fewer in number in the higher leagues so the auto wins for facing bots were few and far between and also around Champion 2 most people actually know what they are doing with their cards so the competition is real. Also the rules get a lot more restrictive for a very limited card pool like mine, so getting those precious win streaks was hard.

But 19 minutes past midnight i hit champion 1 with more than 12 hours left! YAY I DID IT!!!!

WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS, MY FRIEND!


THE SPOILS OF BATTLE.

So with the sweet scent of victory I went to bed to have well deserved rest to wait for my 150 reward chests opening!

So after my investment and resounding success was it worth it getting to Champion 1? Well my collection went from 2.68$ and 93 DEC to 6.44$ and 3102 DEC, so I'm up aprox. 4$. So even, steven not the resounding riches I was expecting. Still there are some perks, getting all the daily rewards is better if you already start in a high league so the rewards add up during the 15 days the season is going on.

My card collection value at the moment of this article.


So this is my story of how I made it from Zero to Champion.

I liked Splinterlands a lot you can find me there as @infinityx22 and play with me! I'm also still learning, my next objetive is the tournament scene, see how do I do there.


Thanks for reading and please check my curation column for @adiwathrive Acurewa's Monkey Lab Curation where I highlight content about Psychadelic medicine, Do it yourself projects, art, blockchain, finances and videogames!

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Maravilloso hermano jajaja se lo voy a pasar a mi hermano que anda aprendiendo todo esto y justo hoy le estaba hablando de tu experiencia. Adiwa!

Hehe, cualquier ayuda pues que me avise y lesto.

nice, it takes me 5 season to enter champion league and in my 6th season i reach champion II, i only spend 10$ and it's for spellbook only

Hey its a lot of work! But it is a fun game after all.

yes so fun, especially if you don't rush everything

Well, everybody climbs at their own ability and speed right? And "fun" is kinda different for everybody, I had a lot of fun, and my rewards are waaaaaay better than lower leagues.

Excelente José.... gran trabajo

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