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Steven Allen Arias Yu-Gi-Oh! Card Game National Champion Interview

Meet Steven Allen Arias - a Yu-Gi-Oh! National Champion and master duelist!
Courtesy of Upper Deck
by: Gary

The Yu-Gi-Oh! National Championship Tournament went down on June 26, 2004 at the Origins game convention in Columbus, Ohio. 230 Yu-Gi-Oh! duelists battled it out to see who would represent North America at the World Championships on July 25 in Anaheim, California. When the dust settled, four Yu-Gi-Oh! duel masters stood above the rest and Kidzworld has an interview with 15 year-old Yu-Gi-Oh! champion Steven Allen Arias!

Gary: So Steven, first question - how did you get started playing Yu-Gi-Oh?
Steven: I started playing when Metal Raiders first came out. My cousin, Alex, bought me my first starter deck and inspired me to play and compete. He's been my inspiration from the beginning.

Gary: Ok, rumor is that you aren't online - how do you get ideas for your decks?
Steven: Yeah, we got internet access once but it messed up our computer so we decided not to get it. For deck ideas, I play a lot and build up my deck. Plus I travel to regional tournaments to watch people play, so I can see what they're doing, and to find ways to beat their deck strategies.

Gary: How often do you test out your deck designs and play Yu-Gi-Oh?
Steven: I play in a tournament at Games Exchange, my local game store, every week. I also play a lot of games with my friends.

Gary: How did you manage to duel your way to the National Championships?
Steven: I traveled to play in the Yu-Gi-Oh! Regional Championships. I've been to about six of them and I've done well in two, even though I've only managed to get as high as second place. This time I managed to get to the National Championships and now I'm on to the World Championships.

Gary: So, what was it like to go to the nationals to compete?
Steven: I got there on Friday and there were 230 hardcore Yu-Gi-Oh! duelists. I spent the first day just watching everybody, seeing what people were playing and tweaking my deck for the competition on Saturday.

On Saturday there was lots of excitement and pressure when the tournament started. All the duelists were spectacular players and great competitors. Every last one of them was great to play against.

Gary: What's it like to go back to duel with your friends at Games Exchange now that you're one of the top four Yu-Gi-Oh! players in North America?
Steven: My friends are great, and so is Games Exchange. They've been there and have been really supportive. Especially Games Exchange and my cousin Alex. I still enter the weekly duels and it's still a challenge. I don't win all the time though, there's a lot of luck involved in the game.

Click Here for the rest of the interview, including info on this champ's deck and strategy!

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