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Why the Haunted Woods Beat the Darigan Citadel

by lassie_nikki


The most recent and quite shocking turn of events concerning the Altador Cup was the triumph of the Haunted Woods over the minions of the Citadel! This victory has left various members of the Darigan Citadel puzzled over how their beloved fortress of evil could be defeated. However, it’s proved to the many eerie Haunted Woods supporters that quantity matters least and quality matters most. I, being one of the troubled followers of the Darigan Citadel, was just as surprised as the next Gelert to see that the difference of points between the two teams wasn’t in favor of the Citadel.

Once I grasped the fact that we had been beaten, and stopped being depressed, I visited the Altador Cup results page again and realized that the two scores were very close to each other. The Haunted Woods achieved an amazing score of 2,189,644 points and the Citadel had impressed everyone by attaining a score of 2,155,935. That is a difference of a simple 33,709 points! Sure, that seems like a ton of points to one person. But considering each team was home to millions of members, it’s not a bunch if you stop and think about it. I mean, in the first round, Mystery Island crushed Faerieland’s players with a difference of 496,320 points! Compared to that beating, the final round was incredibly close.

After I’d taken in how close the Citadel was to overcoming the Woods, I was very curious as to figure out the cause for our distressing loss. I researched both teams and came up with a few reasons as to why the Haunted Woods had emerged victorious from our battle.

• First, we’ll talk strategies. The Haunted Wood’s main tactic was defense. They centered their playing time on taking out the opposing team’s forwards and creating easier scoring opportunities for them. While the Darigan Citadel has a strong and durable pair of defenders and a gifted goalkeeper, the Citadel’s offense was undeniably weaker than the Woods’ defense. They faced problems when it came to the Haunted Wood’s Krell Vitor. Vitor often aggressively bullies opposing forwards into a corner of the pitch, giving them no choice but to turn the ball over. With Vitor and the other brilliant defenders on the Haunted Woods team, it’s not wonder that the Citadel wasn’t able to score as well and bring themselves to victory!

• One of the Citadel’s major weaknesses (and possibly their worst flaw in this match against the Haunted Woods) is their lack of practice before the tournament season. Before this year’s Altador Cup Tournament Season began, the squad foolishly refused numerous chances at playing games during the regular season. Although they had been criticized for this snubbing by many a commentator, the team didn’t put in a strong enough effort to practice and win during the regular season. This resulted in the squad being, unfortunately, unprepared when the tournament commenced. Sure, the Citadel used their immense talent to get to the finals, but once the finals were underway, they ran out of luck and fell behind as it came to an end.

• One conflict that the Darigan Citadel faced was the fact that one of their players had been through irritating and distressing injuries. Tandrak Shaye, the Citadel’s Right Forward had been victim to some pesky grievances near the end of the regular season. Although he claimed that he was 100% alright and healthy, it might have done the team good to have substituted Shaye for another, more fit forward during their Tournament season.

• Considering the Darigan Citadel has a large and eventful past full of evil betrayal and terrible war, the team may not have seemed quite appealing to many Neopians. Naturally, a sane, pleasant Neopian would immediately join the Citadel’s opposing team. Believe it or not, many Meridellians still have feelings of hate and disgust when it comes to the war they faced against the malevolent Lord Darigan and his minions. Thus, since the Haunted Woods had never been in a war or treated another world of Neopia badly, numerous Neopians sided with the Haunted Woods, so that the Citadel would finally get the punishment they deserve by losing the Cup. I consider this a very common and understandable obstacle that the Citadel faced.

• Reason #5 that I observed is that the Haunted Woods received much more publicity than the Citadel of Darigan. By searching for the Haunted Woods in the search bar, one can see that there is an entire Neopedia article dedicated to this creepy, ghostly world of Neopia. When people attempted to decide on a team between the two, they’d search for information on both worlds and, sadly, would only find information regarding the Haunted Woods.

• Another explanation for the Citadel’s loss is that the Darigan Citadel Team Pennant is simply worse-looking than the Haunted Woods Team Pennant! I mean, come on, TNT! Anyone can see clear as day that the Citadel’s Team Pennant is frayed and tattered around the edges of the flag. An ugly flag obviously scares away the neater Neopians that are obsessed with symmetry in their items. Plus, no one in their right mind wants to be seen waving around something as messy as that. Right?

• My next reason is just a hunch. I heard from a Meepit who heard from a Uni who heard from another Meepit that the Brain Tree in the Haunted Woods was insulting passerby and threatening them with his frightening strength. If what I heard is true, this nasty character has been threatening to hurt any Neopian that doesn’t support his beloved Woods. How rude! Let’s hope the Brain Tree doesn’t read the Neopian Times... for my own safety.

As you can probably tell from my lame Brain Tree excuse, I’ve run out of possible causes for the unfortunate Citadel loss this season. Sure, it was disappointing but I’m very happy for all the Haunted Woods supporters out there at the same time! I wish them all luck with next year’s tournament. However, I doubt they’ll be so lucky next year... Muahahaa! Congratulations to all the ghosties out there!

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