2008 Geek Madness Tournament: Round 1
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Welcome to the 5th annual Geek Madness Tournament!

Yeah, I know, tournament geeklists are becoming more common than 'best 2-player?' geeklists. At one point, I was 99.9% sure that I was not going to do Geek Madness this year. But I decided to do it for two reasons: 1. It's fun, 2. We have a history behind it.

I am actually excited about this year because of some of the new BGG features. Also, I have spent a lot of time creating a huge spreadsheet of all the past tournaments, so I have gathered a bit of interesting history.

History:
Inspired by Chuckles', The Friday Night Fights: Game vs Game Geeklist, and since I am a sports nut, I put together a head to head tournament structured like the March Madness NCAA basketball tournament.

2007 http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/28775
2006 http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/14279
2005 http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/7671
2004 http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/4048

The first year included the top 32 games. At the time, expansions were listed in the BGG rankings, so they were included in the tournament. BGG members cast votes by posting comments. I love reading the comments. I had to go through every comment for every game and check for duplicates or incorrect votes and such. It took a massive amount of time. We voted to name the championship award the Aldie Award, in honor of a very, very great man.

The second year we bumped up the tourney to 64 games. The first two years of the tournament, Fawkes ran a Bracketology geeklist coinciding with the Geek Madness Tournament, and users got to fill out prediction brackets. The winners received truckloads of geekgold.

The third year, Friendless, with assistance from mkgray, came to my rescue and created a program that tallied the votes and removed duplicates. It saved me a ton of time. We also decided to roll all of the expansions into the ranking of the base game, so expansions were eliminated from the tournament.

Last year, the new BGG rankings system was in place, omitting expansions. So, I was able to simply include the top 64 ranked games as ranked by BGG. If you remember, the thumbs system was still going through changes. At the start of the tourney, thumbs down icons were still available. I decided to go with comments again as the official voting method.

Now, it seems like the thumbs system is solid, so this year will be a breeze. For the first time, the official voting method will be to give a thumbs up. I am really going to miss the comments, so please, please feel free to leave comments. I will also be able to include all 64 games in the first round into one geeklist. Woo Hoo!

Past Champions:
2007: Power Grid
2006: Power Grid
2005: Puerto Rico
2004: Tigris & Euphrates

Construction:
I grabbed the top 64 games on Friday, February 22, 2008 (I always do it on the last Friday of February, not counting the 29th (leap year)). I seeded the games exactly according to their BGG rankings. Clean and simple. All of the top 64 are stand alone games and they ALL are included in the tournament.

Tournament bracketology 101: It is easy to form seedings throughout a 64 team, single elimination tourney. In the first round, the seeding numbers added together always equal 65 (1 plays 64, 2 plays 63, 32 plays 33…). In the second round of 32 teams, assuming all of the top seeds win, the total of the two seeds will equal 33, and so on. If there is an upset win, then the winner takes over the spot of the higher seeded team it defeated.

Contest: I seriously considered setting up a bracketology contest to go along with the tournament. I even set up the first round of the tournament (titled, '2008 Geek Madness Tournament') at this site: http://www.bracketmaker.com/
The site looks promising. If anyone wants to set up and manage a bracketology contest please go for it! If someone does it, I will donate a free game and geek gold to the winner of the contest.

Interesting tid-bit: Unbelievably, there are no repeat match-ups in this first round. Each game is competing against an opponent that it has never faced before in the tournament.

Rules:
For each match-up, vote for your favorite game by clicking on the thumbs-up icon.
This round ends February 29th, at 7:00pm BGG time.
Please feel free to comment on the games and match-ups, and have fun!

Voting is closed for this round
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1. Board Game: Puerto Rico [Average Rating:8.06 Overall Rank:15]
Dane Peacock
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01 Puerto Rico vs. 64 DVONN

Fun Facts:
Record: 18-3. The losses are to Power Grid in 2007 and 2006, and to El Grande in 2004.
Highest seed: 1
Lowest seed: 1 Puerto Rico has been the #1 seed every year.
Best finish: In 2005, PR beat T&E in the championship (68-68) on a tie-breaker! PR made it to the finals last year and got clobbered by Power Grid 121-89.
Puerto Rico holds many lofty tournament records:
Most total votes: 2033
Most votes per game: 97
Largest Margin of victory per game: +37 votes
Highest single game score: 170
Largest smack down: Beat ASL Starter Kit #1 by 128 votes! 170-42 (2007)
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2. Board Game: DVONN [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:346] [Average Rating:7.44 Unranked]
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64 DVONN vs. 01 Puerto Rico

Fun Facts:
Record: 1-3. The victory came against Roads & Boats in 2005 33-28
Highest seed: 37 (2005)
Lowest seed: 64 (2008)
Best finish: 2nd round in 2005
Rivalry: First meeting between DVONN and Puerto Rico
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3. Board Game: Samurai [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:171]
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32 Samurai vs. 33 Taj Mahal

Fun Facts:
Record: 4-3.
Highest seed: 25 (2007)
Lowest seed: 42 (2006)
Best finish: Sweet 16 in 2005.
Samurai has three underdog victories: Civilization and Wallenstein in 2005, and Twilight Imperium 3rd Edition in 2006. Lost to Amun-Re 64-63 in the 2nd round in 2006.
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4. Board Game: Taj Mahal [Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:306]
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33 Taj Mahal vs. 32 Samurai

Fun Facts:
Record: 1-4. The win came against Up Front in 2006, 54-29. Two of the losses came against powerhouse El Grande in 2004 and 2006.
Highest seed: 23 (2007)
Lowest seed: 39 (2006)
Best finish: 2nd round in 2006.
Taj Mahal was also the 33 seed in 2005 and lost to 32-Carcassonne in the first round 90-81.
Rivalry: First meeting between Taj Mahal and Samurai.
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5. Board Game: Die Macher [Average Rating:7.65 Overall Rank:186]
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16 Die Macher vs. 49 Roads & Boats

Fun Facts:
Record: 3-4. The three wins all came in 2006
Highest seed: 8 (2006)
Lowest seed: 16 (2008)
Best finish: Elite 8 in 2006. Lost to Puerto Rico.
Die Macher has lost three first round games to lower seeded opponents. 2004 20-Maharaja, 2005 50-Battle Cry (46-47), and 2007 56-Tikal (69-69) in a tie-breaker. Ouch.
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6. Board Game: Roads & Boats [Average Rating:7.74 Overall Rank:271]
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49 Roads & Boats vs. 16 Die Macher

Fun Facts:
Record: 0-3.
Highest seed: 28 (2005)
Lowest seed: 49 (2008)
Best finish: Nearly beat DVONN in the first round. Does that count?
Rivalry: First meeting
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7. Board Game: Ra [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:134]
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17 Ra vs. 48 Amun-Re

Fun Facts:
Record: 8-4.
Highest seed: 11 (2007)
Lowest seed: 19 (2004)
Best finish: Final Four in 2004, Sweet 16 in 2005 and 2007.
Ra had three upset victories in 2004 on the way to the final four, including a 58-56 win over Settlers in the elite 8. Settlers got revenge in 2006 with a 81-77 victory over Ra. Ra narrowly lost to El Grande last year in the sweet 16 84-81.
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8. Board Game: Amun-Re [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:260]
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48 Amun-Re vs. 17 Ra

Fun Facts:
Record: 8-3.
Highest seed: 37 (2007)
Lowest seed: 55 (2006)
Best finish: Elite 8 in 2005 and 2007.
Amun-Re wears Cinderella's crown! A record 7 of the 8 victories have come against higher seeded opponents. There have been some close ones: 2005 59-58 against Go, 2006 64-63 against Samurai, 2007 84-80 against Acquire, and a loss last year in the elite 8 to Caylus 91-94.
Rivalry: First meeting between Ra and Amun-Re. Neither game has ever lost in the first round.
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9. Board Game: The Princes of Florence [Average Rating:7.57 Overall Rank:116]
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8 Princes of Florence vs. 57 Ingenious

Fun Facts:
Record: 10-4.
Highest seed: 3 (2005)
Lowest seed: 8 (2008)
Best finish: Final Four in 2005, Elite 8 in 2004 and 2007.
Other than an upset defeat in the 2nd round in 2006 to Ticket to Ride, PoF has pretty much beat the lower seeded opponents and lost to the higher seeded opponents.
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10. Board Game: Ingenious [Average Rating:7.15 Overall Rank:328]
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57 Ingenious vs. 8 Princes of Florence

Fun Facts:
Record: 0-1. Lost to War of the Ring last year 63-81
Highest seed: 52 (2007)
Lowest seed: 57 (2008)
Rivalry: First meeting
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11. Board Game: Go [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:121]
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25 Go vs. 40 Notre Dame

Fun Facts:
Record: 3-4.
Highest seed: 9 (2005)
Lowest seed: 25 (2008)
Best finish: Sweet 16 in 2004.
Not good; Go has four losses against lower ranked opponents.
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12. Board Game: Notre Dame [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:216]
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40 Notre Dame vs. 25 Go

Fun Facts:
Record: Newcomer
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13. Board Game: Age of Steam [Average Rating:7.69 Overall Rank:114]
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9 Age of Steam vs. 56 Battle Line

Fun Facts:
Record: 8-4.
Highest seed: 9 (2004, 2008)
Lowest seed: 12 (2005, 2006)
Best finish: Elite 8 in 2004 and 2006. Sweet 16 in 2007.
Steady as she goes. One upset loss in the 2nd round in 2005 to Hammer of the Scots, besides that, Age of Steam has no upsets for or against. Age of Steam has been in some battles: 2004 21-20 over Hannibal, 2005 lost 47-48 to HotS, 2006 74-71 over Robo Rally, 2007 57-54 over Dune.
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14. Board Game: Battle Line [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:178]
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56 Battle Line vs. 9 Age of Steam

Fun Facts:
Record: 0-1. Lost to Goa last year 83-45.
Highest seed: 51 (2007)
Lowest seed: 56 (2008)
Rivalry: First meeting
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15. Board Game: Imperial [Average Rating:7.62 Overall Rank:140]
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24 Imperial vs. 41 Tide of Iron

Fun Facts:
Record: 0-1. Lost to Shogan last year 42-59.
Highest seed: 24 (2008)
Lowest seed: 47 (2007)
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16. Board Game: Tide of Iron [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:582]
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41 Tide of Iron vs. 24 Imperial

Fun Facts:
Record: Newcomer
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17. Board Game: Caylus [Average Rating:7.83 Overall Rank:45]
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5 Caylus vs. 60 Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation

Fun Facts:
Record: 6-2. The two losses came against Settlers in 2006 and Puerto Rico last year.
Highest seed: 2 (2006)
Lowest seed: 5 (2008)
Best finish: Final Four in 2007, Sweet 16 in 2006.
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18. Board Game: Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:414]
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60 Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation vs. 5 Caylus

Fun Facts:
Record: 2-4 with wins against ASL in 2005 and War of the Ring (71-69) in 2006.
Highest seed: 27 (2004, 2005)
Lowest seed: 60 (2008)
Best finish: 2nd round in 2005 and 2006.
Yep, both this one and the deluxe edition are ranked in the top 64 and both are in the tourney.
Rivalry: First meeting
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19. Board Game: Wallenstein (first edition) [Average Rating:7.51 Overall Rank:342]
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28 Wallenstein vs. 37 Modern Art

Fun Facts:
Record: 3-3.
Highest seed: 7 (2005)
Lowest seed: 28 (2008)
Best finish: Sweet 16 in 2007.
Wally has been upset three times: 2004 Ra, 2005 Samurai, and 2006 Through the Desert.
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20. Board Game: Modern Art [Average Rating:7.34 Overall Rank:227]
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37 Modern Art vs. 28 Wallenstein

Fun Facts:
Record: 5-4.
Highest seed: 18 (2004)
Lowest seed: 37 (2008)
Best finish: Sweet 16 in 2004 and 2005. Modern Art has never lost in the first round.
Rivalry: First meeting
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21. Board Game: Commands & Colors: Ancients [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:98]
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12 Commands & Colors: Ancients vs. 53 Carcassonne

Fun Facts:
Record: 1-2. The victory came against Tichu in 2006, 50-37.
Highest seed: 5 (2006)
Lowest seed: 12 (2007, 2008)
Best finish: 2nd round in 2006. Two upset losses, 2006 37-Robo Rally and 2007 53-Traders of Genoa 56-58.
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22. Board Game: Carcassonne [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:139] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
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53 Carcassonne vs. 12 Commands & Colors: Ancients

Fun Facts:
Record: 5-4
Highest seed: 25 (2004)
Lowest seed: 53 (2008)
Best Finish: Sweet 16 in 2004 and 2006.
Three of the five wins have been against higher seeded opponents, Goa, ASL, and Go. Carcassonne has never lost in the first round.
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23. Board Game: Through the Ages: A Story of Civilization [Average Rating:8.03 Overall Rank:26]
Dane Peacock
United States
Stansbury Park
Utah
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21 Through the Ages vs. 44 Ticket to Ride

Fun Facts:
Record: Newcomer
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24. Board Game: Ticket to Ride [Average Rating:7.46 Overall Rank:124] [Average Rating:7.46 Unranked]
Dane Peacock
United States
Stansbury Park
Utah
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44 Ticket to Ride vs. 21 Through the Ages

Fun Facts:
Record: 8-4.
Highest seed: 10 (2004)
Lowest seed: 44 (2008)
Best finish: Elite 8 in 2006, Sweet 16 in 2004 and 2005. TTR has four upset victories. Beat A Game of Thrones (24-24) in 2004 in a tie-breaker. TTR has never lost in the first round.
Rivalry: First meeting
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25. Board Game: War of the Ring (First Edition) [Average Rating:7.79 Overall Rank:82]
Dane Peacock
United States
Stansbury Park
Utah
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13 War of the Ring vs. 52 Ticket to Ride: Marklin

Fun Facts:
Record: 4-3.
Highest seed: 5 (2005)
Lowest seed: 16 (2006)
Best finish: Sweet 16 in 2005 and 2007. Upset by LotR: The Confrontation in the first round in 2006
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