Monday, April 21, 2014

News: World Champion Almeida Stewart Accused of Cheating

A tremor is running through the professional Cardfight!! Vanguard community as allegations of cheating have surfaced in the aftermath of Team League 2014's Paris regional. Although his team did not make first or second place in the tournament, reigning world champion Almeida Stewart has been accused of stacking his opponents' decks during the elimination rounds and in the top 8. The story has been corroborated both by several of Stewart's opponents in the tournament and by a personal acquaintance of his. On-site judges have allegedly confirmed the story after reviewing a video of his gameplay, but the video has not yet been made public.

Photo of Stewart from January 2014.
According to a source who has requested to remain anonymous, Stewart has been stacking constantly since he began playing, even in non-tournament casual games, and as a result his techniques for stacking decks have become nearly imperceptible. He made a habit of trying to find ways to accuse other players of breaking the rules to put them at an unfair disadvantage, in one example telling them that they could not stand their units after they mistakenly conducted their draw phase before their stand phase. According to our source, the statement "If you cheat, cheat good" attributed to him by those that attended the tournament, has been a common saying from him throughout his career. The allegations disturb the legitimacy of Stewart's title and potentially that of the World Championship, which has experienced problems with its on-site judge training program and spotting cheating from the beginning.

Cheating is a regular hazard in the world of professional play and developing methods to prevent it has been a constant concern, but it has not been seen on such a grand scale since Kanamaru Makoto was issued a two-year ban from playing in tournaments because of marking his cards back in 2012. Kanamaru's sentence expired just last January. The world's eyes are currently on Bushiroad International, waiting for the video evidence to be released, and for a final conclusion to be drawn on his guilt or innocence.

EDIT: A followup story has been published.