Thursday, May 04, 2006

A Little Friendly Competition, Anyone?


Is anyone else interested in joining me in a little friendly running competition? I am proposing a double elimination Twilight Struggle tournament, played hopefully at the pace of roughly one round per week. Hopefully, this could serve as a model for future friendly, spirited competition within the group.

Seeing as this would be our first tournament, I propose a Twilight Struggle competition, a game which we have plenty of copies of and enthusiasm for. Yes, there's plenty of luck involved in the game, but this tournament is just for fun.

The winner will be crowned King Commie or Lord Uncle Sam, depending on their particular preference. Seeds will be randomly drawn. Players will bid victory points for side preference, with first bidder determined by a die roll.

If you have other ideas to make the mini-tournament more fun, just suggest them. The more players the merrier, though I'm shooting for 8 players to fill out a nice full bracket.

If you want to play, just add a comment to the post to indicate you're interested in participating and making this idea a reality.

27 Comments:

At 10:21 PM, May 04, 2006, Blogger Michael said...

Any excuse to play more Twilight Struggle is alright in my book.

 
At 10:23 PM, May 04, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Okay, the brackets are up to two... :)

 
At 11:39 PM, May 04, 2006, Blogger Michael said...

On a related topic there is an extremely buggy and non faithful online version of Twilight Struggle available at http://www.patmedia.net/bmh1980/downloads.htm
It allows live online play as opposed to the pbem variants and is relatively user friendly compared at least with cyberboard and vassal (vassal is one insane memory hog on my 4 year old computer).

The big issues that I've noticed are that the missile envy is shuffled in the early war stack and defectors is a 1 ops card. I'm assuming that they will go beyond version 0.1 at some point and those will be resolved.

 
At 6:27 AM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Very interesting. All the CDG favorites are there. If we didn't live in a town with such a great, fun group of people to play games with face-to-face, this would be a great tool.

San Antonio = The new Columbus, Ohio of Board Gaming!

 
At 6:45 AM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

One additional thought:

Sides in each game would be determined by victory point bidding, with initial bidding player determined by a die roll.

 
At 10:23 AM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Jeff said...

And allowing an initial bid of zero I assume?

 
At 10:39 AM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Dennis Ugolini said...

I'm in. You don't need to have played or know the rules, right?

But while brackets are exciting, with any number of players that is not an exact power of two I prefer double-elimination with random pairing, for several reasons:

(a) Fewer byes
(b) At least two games even if you suck (and by "you", I mean "I")
(c) Not all that much longer (certainly not twice as long, since there are more losses per round after the first than for a bracket)

 
At 12:01 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Yes, bid of zero is certainly allowed.

Random pairing and double elimination is fine with me. I might have to ask you exactly how the brackets work with that sort of system. I mainly proposed single elimination under the "baby steps" theory of getting people to participate. If interest is there for a double elimination set-up, then I'm game.

 
At 12:05 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Oh, and if anyone is interested in participating, but hasn't yet played the game, I'll bring my copy on Monday. You can learn to play in probably 10-15 minutes. The rules are, of course, available on GMT's website as well.

 
At 12:31 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Ah... after refreshing my memory on how double elimination brackets work, I found the following:

http://www.crowsdarts.com/brackets/8bracket.doc

It would be great if we could get 8 people to participate.

 
At 12:40 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Jonathan W. said...

Count me in.

 
At 12:50 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Simon said...

Ah, if only I could get more people to play BaM...

Don't a good number of us own Hammer of the Scots as well?

I'd be interested in a tourney on that when ever this one wraps up. There's also PitchCar and such for league play.

-More food for thought.

 
At 1:02 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Count me in for those others too...

Since not as many copies of block games are floating around the group yet, I recommend a "Block Game Fest" type tournament structured along the lines of a rail game Puffing Billy tournament (example here: http://www.denvergamers.com/tacticon/puffingbilly.asp)

Under this type of tournament structure, games are divided into a number of categories and the person scoring the best score over a range of game categories within the genre is declared the winner.

 
At 1:07 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Jeff said...

If you have exactly eight, you could do three rounds of Swiss pairing. Everybody gets to play three games, and the total number of games played would actually be less. (I count 14 games played in double-elimination and 12 games played in Swiss.)

I have no interest in Twilight Struggle, but tournament mechanics fascinate me.

 
At 2:06 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Ted Kostek said...

I think this kind of meta-gaming is a great idea. I'm in favor of tournaments, leagues, and other similar ideas.

Although I want badly to join this one, to be fair to my opponents I have to pass. The next few weeks will be very hectic for me: moving, travel, cousin's wedding, unpacking, etc

If we could find a shorter game we could have a round robin system. Maybe LotR:Confrontation or Battle Line.

tmk

 
At 3:17 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Ted Kostek said...

Some info on the "swiss tournament"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swiss_system_tournament

 
At 5:43 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Patrick said...

I've been using this website to determine the brackets in my Game Club at the college. Very nice.

http://www.crowsdarts.com/brackets/tourn.html

Looks like the same place Ben found.

 
At 9:01 PM, May 05, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Alright... we're up to four. Darn, I was counting on you, Ted! Jeff, you're a tease!

 
At 9:28 AM, May 06, 2006, Blogger Ted Kostek said...

I'm really sorry to miss out. The upside of a 4 person tournament is that you can do round robin: everyone plays everyone else.

 
At 10:27 AM, May 06, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

I suspect Brian might be interested in joining in on the fun, which would make five.

Rob?

 
At 1:44 PM, May 06, 2006, Blogger Rob said...

I'd love to. Scheduling may be an issue for me though.

 
At 2:14 PM, May 06, 2006, Blogger Michael said...

They have updated that program to version 0.2 to fix some of the obvious bugs.

 
At 3:54 PM, May 06, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

For victory point bidding, I think we should use the official GMT card-driven game tournament rules, as presented in Paths of Glory:

>> 5.6.2 Players in a tournament should bid VP to determine sides. Each player rolls a die. Player with high die declares a side he wishes to play AND the amount of VP he will “cede” to the opposing player—any whole number including a bid of zero. The opposing player either accepts the bid (and thus plays the other side), or bids a higher VP number to play the same side. Bidding ends when one player accepts the opposing player’s bid. At the END of the game, the final VP total is adjusted by the ceded points.

5.6.2.1 The VP bid is not considered when determining Automatic Victory. The final VP total is adjusted for the amount of
the bid only at the end of the game.

 
At 2:55 PM, May 07, 2006, Blogger Brian said...

I have no particular urge to play in a TS tournament. However, if you are allowing bidding for VPs, you may consider having bids of .5, 1.5, etc. (Bids of zero allowed). That way there are no ties (unless you get a zero bid).

 
At 3:33 PM, May 07, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Alrighty then! Assuming there's no other replies, I'll assume we're going to do a five person tournament: Michael, Jon, Dennis, Rob, and myself.

We'll do bracket draws Monday night.

 
At 6:49 AM, May 09, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

Dennis: I'd like to e-mail you the filled in tournament bracket, but I don't have your e-mail address. Could you send me a note at ben.kindt@gmail.com?

Congrats to Michael on his victory last night!

Congrats to Dennis on such strong play in his first game, taking Michael all the way through turn 10 and losing by just three points!

 
At 7:23 PM, May 09, 2006, Blogger Ben said...

An interesting post from the Twilight Struggle designer on Consimworld on Monday:

"All of that said, there are some things I would tweak, a couple of cards I would add to help the US in the early game, and I would probably dig up an event or two for the Soviets in the late war. Perhaps for C3I or a players guide, we will do so."

 

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