Competitive Insight Article #2 Body language, and reading it in competitive play



Hello everyone, BurnedByKevin here! And today I wanted to talk about body language, and how this can give you or your opponent info, even if you think you are not. 

Facial expression/Comments 

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve played competitive games, and I see opposing casters shaking their legs, or side smirk when they draw their first opening hand. I think some people forget this reveals information on how playable your hand actually is. For example, we die roll, you get the higher roll and choose to go first. You draw 7, maybe shake your head, or even say you probably can’t keep that hand, but decide to keep it. This gives me decent enough information to either be aggressive, or possibly hold off on new year's new beginnings to not give you the cards you need. The point is I can start to have control of the game before it even starts.


Now don’t be fooled, I’ve seen my fair share of bluffs, instant keeping an unplayable hand, and too nervous to mulligan with the hope of consistent aura draws. 

Or leaving aura open to bluff a counter when in reality nothing is there. Always look at what powerful cards you have resolved and pay attention to what open aura they have as well. In some cases, if most of your powerful spells have resolved, we can assume they don’t have the counter. Better to dish it out, rather than keep it in hand waiting for them to tap out, you may never get that chance to contract it. 


Pressure on board states 

There will be times where board states come to a stall, and both players may be top decking for a page that can change the course of the game. However, there are instances where the opposing caster may not have any board state and you do mid to late game, I see a lot of people tend to shake their leg when put under pressure, or mid game where things get technical, now I know a lot of us are natural fidgeters, but this can also indicate that your opponent is antsy for an answer/praying on a top deck. I would take advantage of that and put as much pressure on the board as possible, (as long as you know there aren’t any board wipes in their deck). Now on the receiving end, your opponent can also fidget when they know they are close to winning, so this could indicate more power in their chapter, or their board is strong enough to finish the game. These are all important little things that really do add up that I think a handful of people may not know. For all my top tier players out there, we can all agree when we play one another, it’s quiet and cards are flicking, and we point with our cards, we mean business ha-ha! I appreciate anyone who took the time to read! What are your thoughts on body language and how it ties to the game? 



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