What Have We Learned? – State & Provincial Championship Edition

Pro Dice Circuit | What Have We Learned | 2016 State & Provincial Championships

The PDC State and Provincial Championship Events: What have we learned?


By archivist


Again, we in the PDC Staff extend to those of you who participated in these championship events a heartfelt thank you and to the winners, sincere congratulations!  We continue to be very pleased with the response and enthusiasm all across the United States and Canada.  


The following data is compiled from the results of these events. Several interesting changes occurred, as well as some results occurring as predicted. This information provided insights to the demographics of the DM community and the teams that were being fielded in competition.


The Events

We received results from 23 State and Province Championship events.  The demographic breakdown of these venues and the participants are:

  • There were 288 registered entrants (some played at more than one event): 246 participated in only one event, and 15 in two events, and 4 in three events.  This makes the size of the PDC player pool 265 unique participants.
  • There were events held in 21 states (U.S.) and 2 provinces (Canada). Oklahoma had the most participants (22), followed by California and Wisconsin at 20 apiece.  Ontario had 10 participants.

The Teams

The PDC collected team data from the 1st and 2nd place finishers from the 23 events, for a total of 46 teams.  These teams comprised a total of 368 character/action cards and 92 Basic Action Cards (referred to as instances).  Of this population, there were 114 different character/action cards and 28 different BACs.

  • Character/Action card usage broken down by set and the percentage of the 368 total cards:

Faerun Under Siege 72 instances, 16 different cards (20%)

Yu-Gi-Oh: 54 instances, 11 different cards (15%)

Avengers vs. X-Men: 50 instances, 25 different cards (14%)

War of Light: 43 instances, 12 different cards (12%)

Battle For Faerun: 42 instances, 10 different cards (11%)

Uncanny X-Men: 39 instances, 10 different cards (11%)

Justice League: 31 instances, 8 different cards (8%)

World’s Finest 14 instances, 9 different cards (4%)

Age of Ultron: 13 instances, 8 different cards (4%)

Promo cards: 7 instances, 2 different cards (2%)

Amazing Spider-Man: 3 instances, 3 different cards (1%)


  • Basic Action Card usage by set and the percentage of the 92 total cards:

Battle For Faerun: 38 instances, 5 different cards (41%)

War of Light: 12 instances, 4 different cards (13%)

Uncanny X-Men: 12 instances, 3 different cards (13%)

Avengers vs. X-Men: 9 instances, 3 different cards (10%)

Faerun Under Siege 7 instances, 2 different cards (8%)

Yu-Gi-Oh: 4 instances, 2 different cards (4%)  

Age of Ultron: 3 instances, 2 different cards (3%)

Justice League: 3 instances, 2 different cards (3%)

Amazing Spider-Man: 2 instances, 2 different cards (2%)

World’s Finest 2 instances, 2 different cards (2%)

Promo cards: none used


  • The top 3 Basic Action Cards used were Resurrection (13), Magic Missile and Polymorph ties at 11 apiece.
  • Most popular cards by set and their number of instances (note: those cards with the same Global Ability were combined in this count):
Age of Ultron Magneto Magnetic Monster 5
Amazing Spider-Man 3 tied 1
Avengers vs. X-Men Black Widow / Hulk Tsarina / Green Goliath 7
Battle For Faerun Red Dragon/Prismatic Spray Lesser|Greater|Epic Dragon / Lesser Spell 10
Justice League Constantine Hellblazer 19
Promo Card Iron Fist The Immortal 6
Uncanny X-Men Professor X RYM/Trainer 28
War of Light Parallax / Miri Riam Fear|Source of Terror/Beacon Dark 11
Yu-Gi-Oh Jinzo Trap Destroyer 15


  • The Action Card used the most was Ring – Lesser/Epic Gear (12).
  • Of the 114 different character/action cards, 64 (56%) were only used once (aka “1 ofs”) and 11 (10%) were only used twice (aka “2 ofs”).


  • The Top 10 Character/Action cards used (note: those cards with the same Global Ability were combined in this count):
Rank Instances
1 Professor X Recruiting Young Mutants / Trainer 28
2 Constantine Hellblazer 19
3 Elf Thief Lesser Harper 17
4T Jinzo Trap Destroyer 15
4T Half-Elf Bard Master Lords’ Alliance 15
6 Blue-Eyes White Dragon Monstrous Dragon 14
7 Ring Lesser/Epic Gear 12
8T Miri Raim Beacon in the Dark 11
8T Parallax Fear/Source of Terror 11
10T Red Dragon

Morphing Jar

Prismatic Spray

Dwarf Wizard

Lesser/Greater/Epic Dragon

Canopic Jar

Lesser Spell

Paragon Zhentarium



So, what does all this mean?

Professor X is still the most popular card.  This should not come as any surprise.  The ramp provided by this card’s Global Ability is an integral part of many team builds.  63% of the top 2 teams used this card.  This number was 70% in the PDC Store Championship events.  This means, if this trend holds, in tournament play there’s a good chance you will face several teams using this card.

The Fauren Under Siege set made a BIG SPLASH! Of the top 10 most used cards, 4 were from this set.  Quite a debut on the tournament scene.  Only one of these 4 cards had a Global Ability (Ring – Lesser & Epic Gear), which means the dice on these cards were being purchased and utilized in the player’s strategy.  This set also had the most instances (72) and unique cards (16) used in the top-2 player team builds.  This set is in its ascendency and has changed the meta.  When you combine this set with its companion, Battle for Faerun, they have 5 of the top 10 character/action cards, all top 3 Basic Action Cards and 31% of the character/action cards used in play.

D&D has the most used Basic Action Cards. Out of the 92 BAC instances – making up 5 unique cards), 45 (49%) were from the D&D sets. All of the top 3 BACs were all from the Battle For Faerun set (Magic Missile, Polymorph and Resurrection).  However:

The Relentless BAC was coming on strong.  While only used 9 times, most of these occurrences were in the latter part of the season, after the revelation of the “Bard Blitz” team from the Ottawa WKO.  Had the season gone longer (or starter later), Relentless would most likely be a Top 3 BAC.

The Top 10 List changed significantly. Of the top 10 cards from the PDC Store Championships, only 5 carried over into the PDC State/Province Championship team, and 3 of those were in the bottom half of the list.   While the top 2 cards remained the same, there were some notable changes:

  • AvX dropped completely off of the Top 10 list.  The stalwarts from that set (Black Widow – Tsarina and Hulk – Green Goliath) barely cracked the top 15.  Are we seeing these cards wane in popularity?  Only time will tell.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh made a comeback.  We see Jinzo and Blue-Eyes White Dragon situated nicely in the Top 10.  They just missed the cut in the PDC Store Events. We also see Morphing Jar for the first time.  This shows this set has some popular (and potent) cards for many winning team builds.


The “Bard Blitz” team build is making an impact. Of the 13 cards making up the Top 10 list (due to ties), 7 of them are part of this team build (the one that won the Ottawa WKO).  Of these 7 cards, only 2 were on the previous Top 10 List (Parallax and Miri Riam).  While not every instance of these cards were used on a Bard Blitz team build, there were 4 teams were identical to the Ottawa WKO build, and 2 teams that used 6 out of the 8 cards.  This trend started towards the latter part of the season, and as was stated earlier, had the season gone longer, it is most likely we’d see an increase in the usage of these cards.


Next up are the PDC Regional Events, the locations of which will be announced soon.  We hope you enjoyed participating and appreciate your continued support.