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Subject: Ideas for a home tournament? rss

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Luca Astolfi
Italy
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Hello everyone,

My friends and I like this game a lot and would like to have a small home tournament.

As it's just three friends chilling out while playing the game and drinking beer, we are not looking to make it super-competitive (bidding for factions and whatnot). However, we do want to encourage variety in choosing the factions, so we came up with the following format:

- Tournament consists of seven 3-player games. At the end of each game, every player is awarded 3 tournament points for winning the game, 2 points for achieving 2nd place, or 1 point for 3rd place (no elimination of course, as it will be the same group of 3 playing all the games). Ties are split evenly, so if two players both finish first they each get 2.5 points.

- Once you have played either side of a given board, you can't pick that board for the rest of the tournament. For example, if you choose Terrans for the first game, you won't be allowed to pick the blue board (be it the Terran or Lantid side) for the rest of the tournament. You do, however, get to choose which side to play in every game.

- Usual rules (variable turn order, factions selected in turn order, first BON chosen in reverse turn order. We'll see what to do about the map, though as I mentioned we're not too fussy)

There are two edge cases that we are still unsure about:

- How to break a tie if there is one at the end of the final game? (not breaking it is actually an option, at least in my opinion, but still, we will happily listen to suggestions)

- What to do to keep the whole thing fun if someone takes the lead around 4 or 5 games in? Competing for 2nd place might not be enough to get you through 2 or 3 more games.

If you have any advice for us - or if you have ever organised multiple GP sessions in a similar fashion - we'd be glad to hear about it!
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David Jones
United States
Wilsonville
Oregon
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This came up in another thread that I don't feel like digging up (or it might have been in the TM forum). The main problem you will run into is that you could end up in a situation where there aren't enough races to go around. For example, if all four of you pick the same four colors during the first four games, each player has to pick from the same three races in game five - there aren't enough races to go around. You have to have some other means of race cycling.

The other problem is that when you get down to the latter games in the tournament, how do you build the map? Per the rules, the last player gets to construct the map, but they are supposed to do so before race selection occurs. If you know ahead of time which race(s) each player is restricted to choose from, you can rig the board heavily to your advantage. My group usually builds the map together as the first stage of setup (before seeing scoring or tech tile setup) so that there are at least five viable races. I might suggest that you have seven pre-gen maps made this way before starting the tournament so players can plan ahead regarding which race they want to try to have in later games, but then you still run into the issue above - what if everybody saves a specific race for the last game?

(Sorry for all the edits: having a bad grammar day)
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Space Trucker
Germany
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BabaORiley wrote:

- Tournament consists of seven 3-player games. (...)
- Once you have played either side of a given board, you can't pick that board for the rest of the tournament. For example, if you choose Terrans for the first game, you won't be allowed to pick the blue board (be it the Terran or Lantid side) for the rest of the tournament. You do, however, get to choose which side to play in every game.

This might turn out a bit frustrating in the last 1-2 games if players only have 1-2 colors left and both have a very crappy planet setup. It may also enable players to block pretty nasty.
Personally I'd either shorten the whole thing to maybe 5 games (so there's still colors to chose from in the last game), or allow player to chose each side once (so they can save up the other side for flexibility), or maybe also grant 1-2 "jokers" to pick one backside side.

BabaORiley wrote:

- We'll see what to do about the map, though as I mentioned we're not too fussy)

If you like to you can differ between 8-tile maps, 9-tile maps and 10-tile maps:
https://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/29207751#29207751
(Personally I prefer both the 8- and 9-tile variant over the very large 10-tile map for 3 players)

Map setup is rather tricky. If players only have few colors/factions left, you can hardly use manual rotation, so the last player could rotate the available colors for the other players crappy. But with softer faction selection rules it might work.

BabaORiley wrote:

- How to break a tie if there is one at the end of the final game? (not breaking it is actually an option, at least in my opinion, but still, we will happily listen to suggestions)

Average score could be a tie braker, and/or numbers of victories.

BabaORiley wrote:

- What to do to keep the whole thing fun if someone takes the lead around 4 or 5 games in? Competing for 2nd place might not be enough to get you through 2 or 3 more games.

As you are not looking for a strongly competetetive environment you might solve this the way some tv shows solve this: More points for games that are played later:
- First 3 games: 3-2-1 points
- 4th to 6th game: 6-4-2 points
- last game/final: 9-6-3 points
Early wins give an edge, but catching up is much easier with late victories.



If you are looking for a maximum of fairness (and variability for the individual player), you might want to track the positions and ensure that all players start at 1st, 2nd and 3rd seat at least twich in the 7 games.
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Gene Selfish
Italy
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My solution for the runaway issue: play one last game, let’s call it the Megabowl, or Finalissima, in which factions are reset and the aggregate score of previous games is used as a handicap. I’d give something like 6 pts for 1st place, 3 for 2nd and 0 for 3rd. You could then crown a winner for the round robin tournament and a champion for the final game.
 
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Luca Astolfi
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That's a lot of interesting ideas! We will definitely borrow some of them to make our tournament better.

Thanks guys, we really appreciate the help.
 
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