Looking at Things from Other People’s Perspectives

Recently it was announced that the former Team Star City Games (the professional MtG team sponsored by the largest reseller of MtG-related stuff in the world) had switched to being sponsored by Channel Fireball, which already had its own team. One of the results of this change was that the team no longer had a name and this age of social media, they went out and asked people what name they should use. They got some fairly good answers, such as ProsBloom, which I would have enjoyed (it being another iconic combo from the early days of magic, just like Channel and Fireball).

Then there were answer like City of Traitors, Act of Treason and Dark Betrayal.

That was pretty unnecessary and actually completely stupid. You don’t know why they did the switch. If it was just for better deal, I can’t fault them. Most people would take the exact same job they have now with a better pay. However, the two reasons I’ve heard for the switch are the following (and I must stress that these are rumors, so take it with a grain of salt or two):

1) SCG just felt they didn’t have enough to gain from supporting a team of professionals, so they decided to not renew the deal and put their energy into their Open Series, with which they can foster their own stars.

2) When the team was preparing for the last Pro Tour (and again, this is just a rumor), the SCG coverage team at the site they were using to prepare for the tournament used their insider information to hoard certain cards they believed would gain value because big name professionals were playing them. This would have compromised their secret tech, so obviously the team couldn’t let this stand.

Neither of these reasons would make the team traitors in any way.

The thing is, one of the skills playing games should give you is being able to put yourself into other people’s shoes. To be a good player, you need to be able to read your opponents. You have to be able to look at the situation and think about what your opponent wants to do and what is able to do. Of course there’s going to be hidden information or luck involved, but you should still have some idea.

This is an important skill. It will help you negotiate, because by understanding what the other side wants, you can come to a better agreement for both. If certain people had this skill, such events as the Vietnam War could have been avoided, because as McNamara says, the US went there to stop Vietnam from falling under the influence of China, but since Vietnamese didn’t have interest in becoming a satellite state of the Chinese, they would have fought the Chinese just as hard.

Apparently the people who called these players traitors had none of this skill. Any amount would have given them enough insight to realize that they can’t put any blame on these players, who are just looking out for themselves. Of course, we need to be able to be able to have some insight on these people too. They are just fans of SCG for whatever reason. However, we don’t need to symphasize with their thoughts. Basically, they are just idiots.

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