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The Gardener's Gazette, edition 26


The Gardener's Gazette
2021 Card Publication of the Year

Welcome to the twenty-sixth edition of the The Gardener's Gazette! Gardeners and guests are both encouraged to keep themselves informed on the happenings within the Card Gardening Society.


Announcements!

  1. The Sub-Administrative Committee is seeking members once more! Join us as the Committee is rebuilt after a year of inactivity.


Garden Insight
by Giovanniland

Welcome to the Garden Insight about July and August 2022! Here you can read all about what has happened in the Gardens recently. In the early part of July, Gardeners celebrated as member New Makasta reached 1 million deck value, a feat reached by fellow Gardener 9003 soon after as well. Another interesting happening was the opening of more giveaways for the Gardens, but not officially hosted with cards from our storage EpLeHo—instead, these concurrent giveaways are organized and funded privately by Fauzjhia, who gifts some cards from farming. Halfway through July, the 25th Gazette was published as well, with Gardeners celebrating two years since the first one was published! This recent edition has some interesting content, including but not limited to an interview of Hustlertwo by Gazette writer Islands Of Ventro.

Another highlight throughout the months are the Card Questions of the Week! The first one of July wasn't really cards themed, but still fairly relevant, asking Gardeners if they appreciated the recent updates to banners and nation names. The opinion was supportive in general, with many desired nation names seeing fierce fighting, as the limit population below which a name can be reclaimed went from 500 million to 1 billion. Following this question, there were some actual card questions, such as interesting themes for future Card Contests—mystery, Pokémon, battleships and boats were all cited—and funniest card or collection to each of the members. In a similar style, Gardeners were also asked about the most underrated cards or collections later on, with Neim answering Kindjal, The United Peoples of Centrism mentioning the Power to the Purple collection of all Season 2 ultra-rares, and Vylixan mentioning the House of Blues collection of Season 1 rares.

Last but not least, one can also mention some more technically-focused questions, for example opinions from Gardeners on bank sinks besides deck upgrade, alongside how one would envision them in-game and if that would make the game more fun or hurt it—answers were mixed for this one, with some members advocating against any kind of bank sink, while others suggested ideas like a "renting" tax for card storage, taxation for all trades, and a way to transfer bank directly but pay a small fee. Another interesting discussion topic happened when Gardeners were asked if TCALS should be readded to the game at some point, or a similar system with some changes. The community focus of TCALS, as present in the large gatherings during pull events, was mentioned as a positive, but a strong counterpoint is how easy the system could be abused. Nevertheless, it was also generally agreed that the lack of some sort of mechanism has also brought side effects like rampant inflation, therefore some Gardeners argue for a progressive tax on trades as a solution.

As for the month of August, besides having a few Card Questions of the Week mentioned above, another highlight was of course the 2nd Card Bracket! A record participation of ten Gardeners happened—Aerilia, Apexiala, Islands Of Ventro, Manuelian Empire, Montrandec, Neim, New Makasta, Panagouge, Polinasia, and Vylixan—all of them submitting one card of each season for two different brackets. Of course, this contest has yet to receive its own article on any Gazette edition, so it's what has been written about later on this edition! Furthermore, other channels like the Toolshed, Farmers' Market and Garden Displays also continued active, with the Displays even receiving another Spotlight this edition.

Last but not least, it is a tradition to mention in this Garden Insight all new members that joined the Gardens recently. Welcome to Mushroom Gorge, New Anarchisticstan, The Orwell Society, Montrandec, Minata, RedBrickLand and Waterfall State, and welcome back to returning member Varanius! Many members have joined us for these past two months, may their harvests give great fruits from now on.


Garden Spotlight
by Giovanniland

Continuing the tradition of releasing one Garden Spotlight every four months, we now have the sixth iteration! Following the other iterations in the 6th, 10th, 14th, 18th and 22nd editions of the Gazette, this spotlight features both newly created and older collections, including those posted in the Garden Displays channel and those submitted as entries in one or more monthly contests.

Every S2 Common Card by 9003: Many people know that 9003 is the nation with the most cards in the world, most being of common rarity. The recent news, however, is that the biggest collection in the game is now present on a Garden Spotlight as well! 9003 has recently organized all common cards in a single collection with the help of technology, and now the collection stands at nearly 95% percent of its goal.

Name Gang by Islands Of Ventro: These cards have unusual custom fields, such as nation names without the required starting capital letter, or too long names and pretitles. Several different themes are shown here, for example the moderator-edited pretitle that many mods give to their nations (with Ventro themselves being one of the few non-moderators to be bestowed this rarity), and more mundane occurences like long names accidentally surpassing the card border.

The Eyes I Seek: Card Circles of Balance and Interest by Ioavollr: This collection was submitted by Ioavollr in the 2nd Collection Bracket, then being barely defeated by Apexiala's submission for one vote. The collection itself contains several interesting cards whose flags feature circles, but the similarity between the cards ends there, as each one will contain an interesting pattern, color, drawing, etc inside the circle.

The Tale of the Time Traveller: Interdimensional Beings, Outer-Space and the Great Unknowns by Polinasia: Here's another collection that was an entry for the same contest mentioned above, with the main difference that Polinasia's display was chosen as the winner by a majority of Gardeners! Despite it being a small collection, the 14 cards contained there have very interesting and ethereal designs as the collection name suggests. Together with the collection a poem of same name was also submitted by Polinasia, which is worth reading.

The world of Fantasy - "Stories of imagination tend to upset those without one" by Vylixan: The collector describes it as a super-collection containing many different themes, for example Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire; Lord of the Rings and other works by Tolkien; Harry Potter; as well as more than 60 other cards related to fantasy and mythology that don't fall under the above categories. Totalling over 700 cards as I speak, the collection certainly has potential to grow even more!


Winners of the Month
by Giovanniland

In this edition, just like for the Garden Insight, we'll be covering two months at once! July and August had together a total of twenty-eight giveaways, with many valuable staff cards among the legendaries gifted, to the example of Kylarnatia, The Free Joy State, Lamoni, Ransium, Luna Amore and Mousebumples.

In regards to the winners, looks like Triseria was very lucky throughout these two months! Three giveaways in July and one in August were won by them, of which two were legendary cards and the other two were Epic Packages. Meanwhile, we can't forget Economichunger, 9003, Laudesia, Indusse, New Anarchisticstan, Vylixan[/td] either, each of them winning two different giveaways. This totals sixteen giveaways won by the lucky Gardeners listed in this paragraph, while the other twelve ones, whether they were a Legendary card or an Epic package, were shared by twelve different Gardeners as you can see below:

Nation

Number of Wins

Triseria

4

Economichunger

2

9003

2

Laudesia

2

Indusse

2

New Anarchisticstan

2

Vylixan

2

Porflox

1

Grand Abaco

1

Manuelian Empire

1

Furballland

1

Seanat

1

Ioavollr

1

The United Peoples of Centrism

1

New Kowloon Bay

1

Apexiala

1

Montrandec

1

RedBrickLand

1

Islands Of Ventro

1


Monthly Contest Results and Update
by Giovanniland

After July's News Collection Contest ended, August saw the 2nd Card Bracket happening, inspired by one of Marxmeans's ideas in response to one of December's Card Questions of the Week. Gardeners had a two-week submission period to link me two cards that they owned either in their main nation or a puppet, one Season 1 and one Season 2 card. After that, the submissions were placed in one of two brackets according to their seasons, with their fate decided by popular vote. Let's see how the event happened, firstly through mentioning all 10 entries, a record of participation.

Gardener

Season 1 Card

Season 2 Card

Aerilia

Potato

Easter Egg

Apexiala

Spotted a Zebra

Spotted a Zebra

Manuelian Empire

Zulankan Outpost 65

The 58th Revolutionary Worker Council

Montrandec

Quack

Quack

Neim

Ethane

Celino and Barnes

New Makasta

9003

Mr Zurkidson

Panagouge

Super Secret Reploid Puppet

Elerian

Polinasia

Caelestius

Divine Cervine

Vylixan

Waterana

Waterana

Islands Of Ventro

carryover

Ameeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeerica

After the submission period ended, the bracket was housed in a Discord channel open only to Gardeners, #card-bracket. The total number of entrants was 10, which is not a power of 2, so a special format was needed—for each bracket, the 10 submissions were divided into two groups of five cards each, and Gardeners then could vote for at most three of them. The placement of each card in the groups was important not only to determine who would continue to the knockout stage of each group, because the bottom collection was to be eliminated, but also because different placements would mean different knockout stage matches. For Season 1, Manuelian Empire and Ventro's cards didn't advance, whereas it was those from Polinasia and Manuelian Empire for Season 2.

After that, the quarterfinals, semifinals, finals and 3rd place matches of each season continued normally, and you can find out the winners and their prizes here if you haven't already! When the bracket concluded, all nations that finished in third place or better were awarded a legendary card. The winners of the Season 1 and 2 brackets were respectively Panagouge and Aerilia, their respective prizes being the legendary cards Season 1 Frisbeeteria and Season 1 Bothia. Meanwhile, Vylixan was the only Gardener to appear in both podiums, a feat repeated from last time! Due to being 3rd place in the Season 1 bracket and 2nd for the Season 2 one, Vylixan was awarded a Season 1 Despoticania card.

Last but not least, Polinasia was placed 2nd in the Season 1 bracket and won Season 2 SalusaSecondus, whereas for Apexiala, 3rd placed in the Season 2 bracket, the prize was Season 2 Tzuland. In summary, we can see bracket-style contests continue to generate great engagement—and I thank all who participated, whether by entering cards to the bracket, voting, or both.

Furthermore, it's also time to announce the next contest, and by suggestion of Panagouge we're having the return of the Card Poetry Contest! Here, participants will have to write some kind of poetry related to cards, which can be haiku, free verse, sonnets, limericks, or any other type of poetry. Our goal is to see how the Gardeners can convey the feeling of cards within the lines of a poem, and also host a contest somewhat different than we have done before, while staying in the broad theme of NS Trading Cards.

The rules of the contest are as following:

1. Only one entry per Gardener is allowed;
2. Participants must submit their entry to Giovanniland by Discord DM or NationStates telegram until 23:59 EST of October 1st, 2022;
3. The winner will receive a Legendary card, and additional rewards may be sent out depending on the number of entrants;
4. Entries must be written in formal and proper English, be related to NationStates Trading Cards, and follow NationStates & Discord rules;
5. Plagiarism is strictly forbidden, resulting in punishment within the Society if found out;


See you all next month for another Gardener's Gazette edition. Credits to Giovanniland for leading the newspaper publication and writing the articles! If you want to contribute to the Society, apply to join the Sub-Administrative Committee, or donate cards to EpLeHo! Feel free to ping @administration on our Discord server for more details.

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