Illustrations by Spencer Afonso.
This weekend, professional Magic: The Gathering returns to Portland for the first time since 2014. About 2,000 people will battle it out for a $10,000 grand prize, while hundreds more will visit to hang out, trade cards and party. Here are six people you can expect to see at the Oregon Convention Center this weekend.
Identify her by: Her extraordinarily elaborate costume, whether it be an archangel with blood-soaked wings or a snake-haired wizard.
Where to find her: Outside the event hall, swarmed by adoring onlookers asking for selfies.
Chance of winning: The hearts and minds of attendees? 100 percent.
Identify him by: Basketball shorts, small-market NBA team cap, wispy facial hair, calm and cool demeanor.
Where to find him: Near the top tables deep into the tournament with his teammates cheering him on.
Chance of winning: Way better than he thought.
The MTG Bro
Identify him by: Black hoodie, flat-brim hat, sleeve tattoos, vape pen.
Where to find him: Outside the event center complaining, between vape hits, to friends that his opponents "got so fuckin' lucky" to beat him in several avoidable losses.
Chance of winning: In his mind: 90 percent. In reality: 0 percent.
The Harried Judge
Identify him by: Black button-up shirt with sweat-soaked armpits, black dress pants, ponytail.
Where to find him: Running across the event hall, trying to figure out which one of the 300 people screaming "JUDGE!!!" he should help.
Chance of winning: Those who cannot do, judge.
Identify him by: Above-average physical fitness, T-shirt emblazoned with team logo.
Where to find him: In the event hall, either at a table surrounded by people wearing the same shirt or in the tournament semifinals.
Chance of winning: Actually 90 percent.
The Classic Gamer
Identify her by: Brightly colored hair, Doctor Who or zombie T-shirt, general level of excitement.
Where to find her: Having a good time playing Magic, having a good time with her friends, having a good time in general.
Chance of winning: Who cares? Magic is about having fun.
GO: Grand Prix Portland 2016 is at the Oregon Convention Center, gppdx.com, on Friday-Sunday, Aug. 12-14.