What does Magic The Gathering (MTG) have in common with Poker? Fear.
For Kar Yung Tom, an expert MTG player, and owner of one of the top online resources for MTG in the world, fear ultimately affects his performance. Specifically, it happens against named players, or players he knows are better than him.
I spoke with Kar today because I was interested in understanding more about MTG and the similarities with it and poker from a performance/mental side of things. It turns out that fear is not the only thing they have in common. As Kar talks about, there’s a lot of variance, and similarly players have a tough time dealing with it, as they do in poker. Below is a link to the end of a game that’s is in poker terms is a crazy one-out suck out. I have no idea what the hell anyone is saying, except watching the last 5 seconds you’ll know exactly what it means.
We chatted for 25 minutes or so. The first half talking generally about MTG, poker, and the mental game. Then, the last 10 minutes our so, I help Kar fix his fear when facing better, well known players.