Wednesday, October 28, 2015


About a year ago, I blogged about an ending involving the snare-like properties of Plants vs. Zombies Winter Melon. Funny enough, a friend who didn't know I like PvZ noticed and we compared notes on the Survival:Endless levels. Here is my setup, which got me to level 1000 before I quit.

Well, I managed to survive some of my own attempts to mentally defeat myself and I won the club championship for a second year in a row. I struggled through the qualifier, grabbing the sixth seed. Funny enough, all four past club champions ended up on one side of the 8-man bracket. I defeated two players that I beat in last year's championship, this time more quickly as they each lasted 3 games each instead of last year's 8- and 6-game matches. But the finals this year took 8 games. Adding in the 9-game qualifier, the road to the championship lasted 23 games this year; last year it took 24 games.

I could complain about the length of the club championship, but perhaps the blame would be misplaced. I lack the stamina to concentrate on chess for a whole weekend swiss. Right now, I'm taking a break from chess, hoping that my natural rhythms will bring me back to it in time for the club championship qualifier after the New Year.

For now, here is the retrospective on 2015's year in chess, especially benchmarked against last year's assessment

    On the positive side:
  • Played 35 rated regular games, about 33% less than last year (54).
  • Had fun for the first 6 months.
  • Pushed my peak rating up to 2133, 1 point higher than last year (2132), but slid back down to 2105.
  • Won the club championship for a second time
  • Contended for the state championship for the second time (semifinalist)
  • Finished the year with a plus score against experts for the second time 8W-8D-6L
  • Five of my games against strong players went into trappy lines I had prepared resulting in 3 wins, 2 draws
    On the negative side:
  • Many of my games - wins, losses, and draws - seemed to be decided on luck as opposed to good technique
  • I didn't win any money, didn't finish at the top of any non-match tournaments, and felt too tired to play in weekend swisses

Fewer positives, but also fewer negatives. I'm debating whether I have enough motivation to contend for the championship again. But Plants versus Zombies also has a Threepeater plant...

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