2006 Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game World Champion
“To be bitter is to attribute intent and personality to the formless, infinite, unchanging and unchangeable void. We drift on a chartless, resistless sea. Let us sing when we can, and forget the rest...”
Who is Chris Long?
One of the game’s original playtesters, Chris Long’s participation in Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game actually predates the earliest release of its collectible era.
His comprehensive and intentional approach to tournament preparation paid dividends in 2006 when his Cthulhu-Hastur deck kept him a step ahead of the competition and earned him the title of World Champion.
- Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game World Champion – 2006
- Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game Regional Championship (PA), 1st – 2008
In His Own Words:
I'm a ColdFusion programmer for a “small” company which provides job listings for positions in the field of Higher Education, both administrative and faculty. I'm the lead developer and Project Manager and essentially oversee most of the changes that occur on our flagship website, HigherEdJobs.com.
I got heavily into CCGs when they first came out in the early 90s, mostly because of the idea of customizing a deck of cards. The concept was so rich with possibility that it just amazed me (and still does). I played Magic every Tuesday at my local comic book store and asked for nothing but cards for Christmas and my birthday.
By the time college rolled around, I had long since stopped playing and left my Magic and Netrunner cards in my closet. I also promised myself that I would never get back into another CCG. But then the Lord of the Rings movie came out and Decipher produced a CCG for it and sucked me back in – mostly with the awesome mechanic of the twilight pool. When that game was running out of steam, I signed up to be a play-tester for Call of Cthulhu, and the rest is history.
I still play Tichu over lunch at work almost daily and meet weekly to play Call of Cthulhu and Android: Netrunner, with the same group of people that I’ve been playing with since 2005.
On Preparing for Tournaments:
I would typically build all of the top-tier decks and then play them against each other to determine their various weaknesses and how I should best play my deck against various opponents. That way, when I came up against a deck in the actual event, I knew what cards I was likely to see and what its weaknesses were.
On the 2006 World Championship:
We began the tournament with Swiss pairings, and in round two, I played what I consider to be my favorite Cthulhu game ever. I was paired against Kenneth, the winner of the Finnish and Swedish National Championships, who had a nasty Nyarlathotep deck that shut down your domains with Itinerant Scholar and Fungal Colony. For the first four turns he shut me down, and I didn’t play any cards. He had won two stories and was ready to win his last, but I finally had the cards ready to make my move. I killed the Scholar at the end of his turn, so I got to use my domains for the first time in the game. I then killed all of his remaining characters, brought in several on my side, and proceeded to win the game in the next two turns.
In the fourth round I played against my friend Mike, with whom I had driven to Gen Con, and I just barely beat his Investigator rush. Then, in a bit of a fluke, I wound up playing against mono-Cthulhu decks in all three rounds of elimination play. I felt validated by my deck choice. My Cthulhu-Hastur build was specifically designed to do well against mono-Cthulhu, essentially using the best pieces of the Cthulhu deck with a bunch of fun Hastur surprises, which gave me the edge in those match-ups.
The final round was played against Jim Black, who would go on to win the Championship the next year. He had been seeded 7th, but managed to beat out 2005 World Champion Greg Gan to get to the finals. That final game went much like the previous two, with Ravagers slowing everyone down to a crawl, and my Pulp Writers giving me the edge to win.
Chris also wrote a Lang Codex at the time, which detailed his whole World Championship experience.
With his World Championship victory in 2006, Chris earned the right to design a Champion Card, Mentor to Vaughn (Kingsport Dreams, 35).