Spirit of the Game
Hello to one and all! My name is Jamie Brian Arthur Turner and today I am writing about a topic that is close to my heart: “The Spirit of the Game”. Undoubtedly, the Pokémon Trading Card Game has become vastly more competitive over recent years with considerably more prizes, points and money on the line at tournaments. For some players, these “prizes” make winning a necessity and lead some people to become so fixated and obsessed with winning that a loss can ruin their tournament experience completely.
Yet, it is important to remember why we started to play Pokémon. Ultimately, the reason I began to play this game was to have fun with my friends and hopefully be lucky enough to travel the world, meet new people, and compete in foreign lands. Of course, it is always a pleasure to win but winning should not detract from your experience in the game and determine whether you are having a good time or not. With this being said, I want to discuss a few points that I think perfectly embody “The Spirit of the Game”.
- The aim is to have fun – As I stated above, the whole reason I started to play Pokémon is to have fun. I truly believe this notion should never be forgotten no matter what level of the game you are competing at or who you are with. My mother always used to say to me that if I approach someone with a smile on my face it will brighten their day and I truly believe this. People feed off your spirit and energy. Who does not want to create a fantastic environment to play Pokémon with a group of friends all smiling, laughing and enjoying themselves whilst playing a game that many find to be nostalgic and beautiful?
- Sportsmanship – In my opinion the most important part of “The Spirit of the Game” is being a good sport. Whether you win or lose, congratulate your opponent with a smile on your face and tell them they played well. Perhaps you got unlucky in draws or one or two things went wrong in the middle of the game for yourself; always in victory or defeat, it is best to remain humble and reflect. Perhaps you learned a thing or two from your loss, so why not offer your opponent a handshake and wish them good luck for the rest of the tournament? Sadly, I have encountered a few people who have been truly angered when, or how, they lost and it created an environment where I was left feeling guilty for winning. At the end of the day, we are playing an inclusive game for not only for children but for adults too. Therefore, I will always strive to set an example for the children around me by demonstrating good sportsmanship, as, for a child, this is a life lesson that will help them at school, on the sports field, or at home. This idea of being a good sport leads me onto my next point of being respectful.
- Respect – Respect your opponents, respect the judges, and respect the game. At the end of the day treat everyone as you would like to be treated. A simple idea but that carries a lot of weight and feeds into the idea of having fun and displaying good sportsmanship. As I will repeat again, we all started this game with the intention of having fun and I will always try to stick to that mantra.
These points are only a brief list of some things that I would classify as being part of “The Spirit of the Game”. Despite the prizes being highly coveted and sought after, winning is not the be-all-end-all. The main reason we play Pokémon is to have fun, travel around the world with our friends and maybe (if we are lucky) win while we do it with a smile on our face, surrounded by good friends in beautiful places.
If you have any further questions you can find me at:
or on Twitter @JBATPokemon
Thanks for reading.
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My name is Jamie Brian Arthur Turner; I have been playing Pokémon competitively for around 2 years. I am the founder of Team MCR a competitive Pokémon team from the UK. My favorite thing about Pokémon is traveling around the world competing in the game I love.