Tournament Prep

So, you’ve signed up for your first ITS event.

Feeling nervous? Unsure? Confused?

Eye Tee Es?

Don’t worry! In this article, we’re going to see if we can assuage some of those concerns and get you ready for that event.

First, let’s go through a checklist of things you should bring to the tournament:

  • Models – These are kind of important.
  • Tape Measure – One that is sturdy and can lock is ideal.
  • Dice – You’ll probably want three or four of these, minimum.
  • Tokens – At least markers that cover all that you can do, such as wound/unconscious, suppression fire, prone, and spearhead markers. This includes templates.
  • Water – Mostly anything is fine as long as it hydrates you, but plain water is best.
  • Snacks – A bag of nuts, trail mix, or other quick bite to keep your long term energy levels high.
  • Carrying Tray – You are much quicker if you can set-up and break-down before and after each round without having to deal with foam or whatever other storage means you use.

Got that. Got that. Got that…

Though, these don’t really require all that much preparation. What really matters is in your mental state.

Well, OK. You probably don’t require Zen levels of state of mind.

This may sound cruel, but be prepared to lose. This isn’t to say that you will not win. This is more so that a losing game doesn’t hurt your performance later in the event. Some refer to this frustration at losing as “going on tilt”. When “on tilt”, players will often lose sight of the objectives, make irrational decisions, and generally play much sloppier. These tend to be rather unpleasant experiences for at least the player that is on tilt.

Relax. Seriously, just relax. Take a deep breath and clear your mind. If you start caving into the pressure, you’ll miss things that would otherwise be obvious to you. This also helps you keep your cool and not go on tilt.

Know your rules. If you’re bringing a model, know the special rules and equipment that come with it. It saves a lot of time and stress during the event. Most events have timed rounds, and removing a lot of “lookup” time relieves that concern.

Know the schedule. Often times, TO’s will post their expected schedules publicly. This can include meal times, round start times, and registration times.

Keep your mind on the objectives. No matter what happens, remember that each mission has it’s own set of tasks to accomplish in order to get objective points.

Don’t fret the rankings. For your early tournaments, the objective shouldn’t be to place first, so much as to acclimate yourself to the environment and be able to play during tournaments as you would play during casual pick up games.

Note that these are guidelines from one person’s perspective and not a guarantee for success. If you know something else works for you, go with that.

Best of luck and remember that the main objective is to have fun!

Have fun, like these fine fellows.

Bryant "Claudius Sol"

Aerospace Engineer, Programmer, Gundam enthusiast

7 Responses

  1. Prophet_of_Doom says:

    Very useful information in this article.

    Also makes sense to write the names of the units on the back of your camo tokens. Not only to make sure that you don t forget what each token represents, but also to prove to your opponent that you haven t been cheating if need be.

    Of course, you can also write the numbers of the tokens next to the trooper on your personal list.

    Most tournaments require you to bring 2 copies of each list. Then there is something about bringing an open list to show to your opponent and a personal one for you. The open list does not show camoflaged units and private information. Not so sure whether that concept works.

  2. Errhile says:

    A comment from someone who spends some time outdoors:

    – plain water beats sweetened soft drinks. Always.
    – trail mix (or nuts mix) beats candies, chcolate bars, cookies, chips and the like. Unless, of course, you are allergic to whatever the mix contains. But if you’re allergic to nuts, you probably know about that already.

  3. VisOne says:


    Wow you missed the biggest part of attending ANY stressful event regardless of what it is hobby/business/social.


    Get some sleep the couple of days before it’s the core of being a social well rounded individual on the day because if you’re tired you’re automatically going to be snappier, less tolerant to things you misunderstand/don’t understand and you don’t want to be like that.

    If it means going 75% painted to the tournament just own it don’t trade off sleep for a better paint score or being the cause of someone’s poor game on the day.

    • VisOne says:

      FYI at time of writing I just finished a doubles tournament on Saturday. Today is Sunday so 1 day after the event and I went as well rested as I could and still gave a poor showing 5th team out of 6th but no one at that event is going to turn around and say.

      “Vissy gave us a bad game”


      “Vissy was a total dick”


      “I don’t want to play Vissy again”

      Although I let allot of things slip tactically and myself and my team mate went in under prepared for the skills and lists the others were bringing we gave as good as we got wherever possible and value added to the tournament.

      If nothing else you want to leave saying I/We value added to the tournament. 😉

    • Claudius Sol says:

      That’s true, sleep is important, but I figured that went without saying! Do you think I should spell that one out?

      • VisOne says:

        Yeah it’s easily the boat common mistake.

        Mainly due to the tournament prepping at the last minute. Painting or what have you.

        Better to go without a little extra detail then any amount of rest.

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