Interview w/ Cameron Stewart BSFO 2021

Today we have a Cardfighter Spotlight! I’ll be having the opportunity to interview the Granblue player that recently accomplished 1st place overall in the Bushiroad Spring Fest Online (BSFO) 2021 NA for the V-Premium Format! His name is Cameron Stewart (aka Grim#0405) and is from the United States! Let’s get right into the interview!

Interview

Jaime: First off, congratulations to Cameron Stewart getting 1st place overall in the V-Premium Bushiroad Spring Fest Online (BSFO) 2021 NA! Today I wanted to do an interview with you about your overall experience and even get to know you a little bit for the readers. Sounds good amigo?

Cameron: Thank you and I also like to say, “Win the will in the mind first. If you want to become a Champion must develop a Champion Mindset.”

Jaime: Of course! It’s a pleasure to have you on the blog since you’re a good amigo! Great quote! I do believe mindset is everything when it comes to doing well in events. Tell us a little about yourself. Where are you from? Are you from any specific Vanguard teams/communities? Any other events that you and/or team have done well? Etc.

Cameron: I am someone who has been playing vanguard for a very long time since BT01. I started with Granblue and have stuck with it ever since.

I started online and have committed most of my Vanguard experience there; however, after spending many years on Tradescardsonline.com and CFA, I transitioned to playing in real life. It was around the time V series came to English.

Being from Atlanta, I got involved with the Vanguard scene there and in doing so have become an active goer in the local game stores there. Which are Wasteland Gaming, Super Games, and Win Condition. Those shops are filled with many tough competitors who have multiple Regional tops, Worlds tops, and are on recognized in the Vanguard community like Crow from Triple Sleeve TCG and Outer Orange on YouTube just to give a few examples.

Although despite my commitments there, I am still involved with what’s left of the online scene being the leader of the best team Elemental Spectacles.

Jaime: That’s an impressive story on how you transitioned into an area that has some great competition! With any great player, there’s a start to it! How did you start playing Cardfight Vanguard?

Cameron: I started on a now deceased site called Tradescardsonline.com. I was introduced to this by my older brother. I came a long way as my first deck was 1 of every Granblue card. At the time, I was so young and inexperienced that becoming the fighter I am now is astounding.

Jaime: Oh wow, I think that’s cool that your own brother introduced you into the game! During your preparation, what are some things that you mainly focused on? Certain matchups, deck builds, strategies, etc.

Cameron: I focused on the Prism, Gavrail, and Luard matchups, mainly Gavrail in particular.

Jaime: Those are definitely matchups to consider. What made you decide on Granblue to play with? Why Nightrose?

Cameron: I became a fellow Granblue pirate when I was first introduced to the game it was my first clan. I chose it because my favorite color is blue and I went to the Nation of Blue being Magallanica and thought Granblue was the manliest clan from among them.

I started playing Nightrose as it was the best the clan was to offer without contest. My favorite unit is Lord of the Seven Seas, Nightmist; however, Bushiroad botched the card so badly that if I was even going to think about competing, Nightrose was the only option in Granblue and I was committed to playing it. Not to mention I have always loved the Granblue mechanic, so also given that it was very strong in the meta was a no brainer for me.

Jaime: Yes, competitive wise they did botch Nightmist. It’s definitely a more casual gimmicky type of deck. Awesome, let’s dive into your deck list. I see that you’re playing 4 copies of Nightrose, 3 copies of Skull Dragon, and 2 copies of Beatrice in the G3 lineup. Did you feel that it was too clunky?

Cameron: Not at all, the deck has many ways to get those cards in the Drop Zone and into your hand or field on command. 9 G3s is also a very solid amount to play and each contribute so much to the deck. You want to see Nightrose as much as possible
which is why its at 4. You want to see double Skull Dragon so 3 copies helps, so if one hits the damage zone you can still get it. Same for Beatrice, you need one desperately and would change the game if you could not utilize them because they are in the Damage zone.

Jaime: That makes a lot sense! My concern was the clunky aspect, in face I’ve seen older builds go down to 6 G3s. I also see that you’re playing both Ruin shade and Skeleton Seas Navigator. How did the split ratio work out for you? Any reason for the split ratio?

Cameron: Navigator is a card you only need to see 1 for the whole game. And being the fact the deck’s consistency with getting cards its not a problem, it can run few other cards to help fuel the Drop zone. If needed, it can be fetched with Colombard so I did not feel the need to run so many copies. I would rather run it the way I had it to increase my G2 pool.

This allows me to run Ruin Shade which has been a favorite of mine; but despite that, Ruin Shade can hit over Force Vanguards as well. It makes great numbers early game, it fuels the Drop zone, and it gives you more G2s as well. In addition, it’s not a bad ride target since you don’t want to ride cards like Greed Shade and sometimes Colombard either. It also gives you a failsafe if you do not have damage and didn’t see Navigator nor Colombard. Lastly, it lets you attack your opponent while fueling the Drop zone.

Jaime: I see your points, especially the Force Vanguard one and the increase in your G2 ratios. I see you’re playing Negrobone, Cutlass, and Ripple Banshee in the G1 lineup. Can you elaborate why you came to those choices/ratios? Any other card choices you’d like to point out?

Cameron: Negrobone a 4 of since it gives you the ability to call from Drop zone which combats the retire aspect of Nightrose. And if you hit 10 cards in the Drop zone early, you will get access to a bigger hitter like Ghost Ship, Beatrice, or utility like Greed Shade.

Cutlass is at 4 because you want the RG call on top of the CC. Cutlass unlike the Ghostie G2, gives you access to better attack targets like Ghost Ship and Skull Dragon while giving you the CC. It’s also great at being used to boost up Nightrose and makes your attack overall stronger while still giving you the CC u need.

Banshee is a 2 of because it is a great card to be called off Nightrose to make your Colombard or Beatrice numbers stronger while giving you a draw. It also in niche situations lets you get a big boost behind Nightrose. It refunds a draw if you needed to kill and had plenty of Negrobones. So while its not as crucial as the other 2 its definitely like Navigator nice to see and you only need to see 1 the whole game.

Jaime: Awesome thanks for explaining those card choices. With this build, what was your winning image for most of your games? Like did you have a setup, game state, or strategy that you focused on?

Cameron: 4 Skull Dragon attacks was the ideal finisher. Ghost Ship and Ripple Banshee helped hit the opponent hard while farming cards. Greed Shade was needed in the Gavrail matchup where you needed shield ASAP. This deck lets you hit your opponent very hard out the gate and has a variety of options to fill whatever predicament you may encounter.

Jaime: Yes, Nightrose has a really solid Winning Image and has the ability to react accordingly to certain matchups! During your games, which decks/clans did you face?

Cameron: I fought Chronojet, Overlord, A LOT of Prisms, Valkerion, Luard, Gavrail.

Jaime: Wow, you definitely got a wide variety of strong decks! Was there a game you would like to highlight? Like your toughest matchup, best game, break or deal moments, etc.

Cameron: Derick Dao with his Prisms was definitely a challenge in a lot of ways. So it definitely made the tourney a tough one. Shout out to him both games and it had their own set of challenges I had to overcome.

Jaime: Wow, you got to face Derick Dao as well! He’s definitely a great player and will definitely challenge you! During your games, what is something that you appreciated about your deck from the preparation you’ve done? The strategy of it, consistency, power, plays, etc.

Cameron: I appreciated the versatility and consistency to aid me in any way I needed it. Loved having Skull Dragon for heavy numbers, Ghost Ship for a big hitter and draw, Greed Shade for getting me specific cards I needed for later, Ruin shade for early game setup and pressure, Beatrice and Colombard for being an all rounder, my G1s for efficiency, and Nightrose for being the one to lead the charge.

Jaime: Yes, Granblue is pretty awesome! I love how each card literally contributes to many flexible spots/roles. How many rounds were in the tournament? How was your record throughout? Was there a Top 8?

Cameron: 8 rounds and yes there was a top 8. I lost twice in the preliminary and won the whole tourney in Top 8, not dropping to anyone.

Jaime: Wow that’s awesome that your X-2 record was still good enough to get a spot into Top 8 and then you won the rest. How were your last games?

Cameron: It was against WCC Tobi’s Valkerion deck. My deck just took off faster than his did and I was able to quickly take advantage and didn’t let it go.

Jaime: Tempo is key and I can tell you took advantage during that matchup. After the tournament, did you take some time to reflect? Anything that you learned from your experience?

Cameron: I reflect on all I have been through throughout the time. I’ve been playing the game every step that has lead me to becoming the Champion I am now. I got a better feel of Remote fight and learning what strong opponents exist in Vanguard as I got to play many around the world. I look forward to the next one!

Jaime: Awesome, glad you reflect on everything and you’ve developed into a Champion! Would you like to do any shout outs to people that you know and/or have helped you along your journey?

Cameron: Shout Bushiroad for giving us remote fight. My community at my 3 locals Wasteland, Wincon, Super Games, and my CFA team Elemental Spectacles.

Jaime: That’s great stuff! I’m sure your amigos are happy and excited for your accomplishment! Just one more question and we’ll be done amigo. While preparing with Granblue, did you use/see any social media to help you solidify your build? Such as blogs, YouTube videos/channels, Facebook, Reddit, etc.

Cameron: I didn’t use social media just tested extensively with Vision tourneys, CFA team league, and locals.

Jaime: Awesome! Testing in many different tournaments helps to get well rounded. Thanks again for joining me in this interview!

Cameron: Thank you for the interview invitation. It was a pleasure to do this!

Jaime: I wish you the best and hope to see more from you in the metagame! Till next time amigos!

Takeaways

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this interview! I just wanted to highlight some takeaways that can help Granblue players out!

Exposure To Different Tournaments & Players

Cameron mentioned, “Being from Atlanta, I got involved with the Vanguard scene there and in doing so have become an active goer in the local game stores there. Which are Wasteland Gaming, Super Games, and Win Condition. Those shops are filled with many tough competitors who have multiple Regional tops, Worlds tops, and are on recognized in the Vanguard community like Crow from Triple Sleeve TCG and Outer Orange on YouTube just to give a few examples.

It’s great to hear someone like Cameron mention that they go and participate in multiple tournaments. Furthermore, with facing players that are also in the competitive scene.

Why is this important? Glad you asked! Each tournament brings different experiences that help you learn and grow as a competitive player. Here are some factors that vary:

  • Matchups
  • Game State Scenarios
  • Playstyles
  • Etc.

Furthermore, there are some intangibles that you’re developing as well. Since you’re going from one tournament to another you’re developing:

  • Mental stability
  • Emotional stability
  • Building confidence
  • Etc.

These are some intangibles that are vital for your success in topping!

For myself, I remember early on in my card game career that I mainly went to only 1 game store that hosted the same tournaments with the same players. Then I went to my first regional level tournament and felt a variety of things. I felt a bit nervous because it was my first time of being somewhere else in playing, a lot of new people to interact with, and wasn’t as confident in doing well.

I feel a good portion of us were like that. In order to get over it, you just have to keep going to different tournaments. Rather it be a locals level or a regional level.

I remember years later when I really was in the competitive mode, I went to at least 2 game stores weekly to play in tournaments. Furthermore, I attended other qualifier events or mini-regional events. This was all in preparation for me to do well in the regional level events.

It helped me get much more comfortable at those big events that really mattered to me to do well. You gain a lot of experience and you really learn more about yourself as a player too. So I highly recommend it for any player that really wants to take their competitive level to the next level.

It worked out really well for Cameron in this case too. Great example.

The Importance Of Reflecting Every Tournament

Cameron also mentioned, “I reflect on all I have been through throughout the time. I’ve been playing the game every step that has lead me to becoming the Champion I am now. I got a better feel of Remote fight and learning what strong opponents exist in Vanguard as I got to play many around the world. I look forward to the next one!

It’s very important to remember and reflect of what happened in each tournament you play. There are many lessons that we all can learn from. Things such as, “don’t give CB to a certain deck at a certain game state”, “be more aggressive in these scenarios”, “watch out for unique skills that can restrict your ability to play the game normally”, etc.

Every lesson learned is a brick on a brick wall that you’re building. As you learn those lessons, you’re building a strong foundation of becoming a great player. This is a great example since literally Cameron got 1st place overall and can say he was the Champion.

If you’re getting frustrated that you’re coming up short when it comes to topping, this can be the difference on you breaking through that mental barrier. I know for me it really was that. So I understand your frustration, but ultimately keep pushing and learning. You’ll get your breakthrough and you’ll understand why you were finally able to top.

Final Thoughts

Thanks again for reading this Cardfighter Spotlight article! It’s great to see Granblue take 1st place overall in an event! Thanks again to Champion Cameron for joining us today as well! Till next time amigos!

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