Steven Simoni

2013 A Game of Thrones: The Card Game North American Champion, Overall and Melee

“Try to learn to let what is unfair teach you.”
    –David Foster Wallace

Who is Steven Simoni?

Steve Simoni began playing A Game of Thrones: The Card Game on August 24th, 2012, just a few months before his first big tournament at the 2012 World Championships, where he took his Stark deck into the Top 16 in Melee and the Top 8 in Joust. Since then, he’s continued to play and test his decks, claiming first place at the North Carolina Regional Championships before moving on to the North American Championships at Gen Con Indy, where his excellent performance in Melee and Joust netted him the title of Melee Champion, and Overall Champion as well.
  • A Game of Thrones: The Card Game North American Overall Champion – 2013
  • A Game of Thrones: The Card Game North American Melee Champion – 2013
  • A Game of Thrones: The Card Game North American Championships 2nd Joust – 2013
  • A Game of Thrones: The Card Game North Carolina Regional 1st – 2013
  • A Game of Thrones: The Card Game Top 8 Worlds Joust – 2012
  • A Game of Thrones: The Card Game Top 16 Worlds Melee – 2012
  • A Game of Thrones: The Card Game Baltimore Top 8 

In His Own Words:

I am 26 years old and a former Naval Officer in the US Navy. I enjoy competition in all forms, from A Game of Thrones: The Card Game to playing pickup sports at the park. I have an older brother, Paul, and an older sister, Stephanie, whom I love deeply. I recently moved to San Francisco to work at a tech company. My favorite books are A Confederacy of Dunces, The Name of the Wind, Atlas Shrugged, and I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell (just kidding, kinda). I love hanging out and talking about the cosmos with friends, or just stargazing.  

I am a part of the DC meta, which means I don't always play this game for fun. I play to win. In fact, anything I play is usually to win, because winning is fun. Even in San Francisco, I will be representing DC's banner.  

On the 2013 North American Championship:

Definitely the highlight for me was playing in the Joust Top 16. It’s great when you make the cut–games become more cutthroat and intense and I really enjoy that. The Top 4 match versus Chris Schoenthal from the South California meta was the most intense match I had all day. We both made some mistakes and missed some triggers, but overall it was a great game. My goal in every tournament is to make the cut–from there anything can happen. My least favorite thing about the championship was playing in all the mirror matches of Quentyn (Valar Dohaeris 30) v. Quentyn. That deck was not meant to play against itself.

On House Stark:

My favorite faction is definitely Stark–I love the Direwolves and Meera Reed (Tourney for the Hand 2) and the winter theme. I just wish they had more card draw opportunities! Also, Stark was the first house I played in my first big tournament at the World Championships in 2012.

Preparing for Tournaments:

To prep for high level events I build what I believe to be the best two or three decks out of every House and then I play them against each other. Many times I just play myself on the kitchen table. I was fortunate enough to be in Washington DC where I can practice against some of the best players in the game–Erick Butzlaff and Corey Faherty. I try to get in as many games with those guys as possible. I select a deck that had a high win percentage against the other decks and then I practice that as many times as I can in preparation for the tournament. 

Steve Simoni's 2013 North American Melee Champion Deck

House: Stark
Agenda: Siege of Winterfell
Restricted Card: Northern Cavalry Flank

Plots (7): Building Season, Counting Favors, Forgotten Plans, Fortified Position, The Power of Blood, Summoning Season, Take Them By Surprise

Characters (34): Bolton Refugee (x3), Carrion Bird (x3), Direwolf Pup (x3), Fanatical Follower (x2), Free Man (x3), Hodor (x2), Hungry Mob (x3), Northern Cavalry Flank (x3), Reek (x2), Ser Jaime Lannister (Lions of the Rock 5) (x3), Shaggydog, Syrio Forel (x3), Vale Refugee (x3).

Locations (12): Flea Bottom (x3), Narrow Sea (x3), Ocean Road, Shadowblack Lane, Street of Silk, Street of Sisters, Street of Steel, Twilight Market.

Attachments (0): None.

Events (15): Battle of the Bay (x3), Battle of the Ruby Ford (x3), Battle for the Shield Islands (x3), The Battle of the Whispering Wood (x3), War of the Five Kings (x3).



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