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The role of judges at tournaments


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#1 mischraum.de

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Posted 27 May 2012 - 09:39 PM

Since my visit to Gen Con 2011 I was under the impression that "judges do not interfere unless asked" is a official FFG policy for tournaments. I recently had a email exchange with Damon about this and also about the topic of scouting. I have removed some text from the mails since some content is personal but I have taken care as to not alter the meaning of this dialogue. Some examples are coming from the Call of Cthulhu LCG.

 

 

ME:

How should I deal (if I should deal at all) with scouting? Even if players were removed from the gaming area after their matches are done scouting/information advantage is still possible. As a judge I get to see other people's deck. This would put me at an advantage if scouting otherwise was prohibited.

As a former player and now designer what do you think of the matter?


Second topic: How active should a judge be?

Let's say I have to judge the final so I have a good chance to spot most mistakes. Should I interfere? Should I remind people to draw a third card because they have Tragic celebrity in play?

 

 

DAMON:

Scouting is a matter of sportsmanship. Anyone seeking to gain or give an unfair advantage by inquiring or informing or otherwise attempting to observe another players game, without permission, is acting in an unsportsmanlike manner. This should be discouraged. It is completely up to the TO how unsportsmanlike conduct should be handled, a verbal admonishment may be enough to discourage players. I would inform all players before the start of the game that scouting is viewed as unsportsmanlike behavior and everyone is highly discouraged from giving any unfair advantage to another player by discussing deck design of any deck other than your own with out players. People are welcome to watch others play if they have finished their game early, but only if they get approval first from both players (in other words it takes two yeses or one one no).

IF anyone is found to be scouting after that I would give them a single verbal warning. After that I would either deduct points from their standing or eliminate them from the game depending on the severity. Any player eliminated from a game should have all the games they had one turned into wins as a "bye" for the opponent who played them.

As a judge and a player in a tournament you should not look at any decklists. Decklists are there for calculating statistics after a tournament or to be referenced in case their is an accusation of cheating based on cards in the deck (too few cards in the deck, too many instances of a card in a deck, multiple restricted cards in the deck, or it contains one or more banned cards). If such an accusation arises and deck check must be done, you have a choice, have the owner of the venue that you are at check the decklist to the deck. If he or she is unable or unwilling then you will have to do it and if the deck is not in violation then you can either let them examine your deck if you end up facing them or take a loss against them if you face them.

Obviously we want as many people as possible to play in our regionals, but in the end if you are judging that needs to be your priority.

In regards to how active a jude should be they should enforce any and all rules of the game they observe. Players cannot choose to not resolve a Forced Response that the game has triggered. Actions, Responses, and Disrupts must be played within the correct window and resolve in the correct order. Players must draw cards or discard cards in the proper amounts, etc. etc. IF you are observing any round and someone violates the rules in any manner and their opponent does not call them on it, you, as the judge, must enforce the rules. But if you miss it and the other players have missed it you cannot force them to roll back time unless no other player actions have been taken, or if both players agree that the effect is one which can easily be resolved now (in the case of Bay of Ice I would have had you draw a card and knelt the Bay, that you didn't have the card in hand a step or action or two earlier is the "penalty" for having not been aware of the playstate).

In short if you notice a rules violation as a judge you should enforce it. If you don't, you just don't. Then you and the players must determine what is the most fair way of preceding from there.


ME:

Thank you very much for your elaborate answer. Is it okay for you if I post it in the forums as an official answer on the topics?

 

 

DAMON:

These are not "official" the official stance is for each TO to run the tournament in a fashion that fits their group. This is my personal stance and this is officially how I will be running and ruling the tournaments I am TO for. Other TO's may choose to follow this format if they choose.

 

 

Damon was alright with publishing this as his personal stance. 

 


Travelling for LCG tournaments: Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Gen Con, Genoa, Göteborg, Liege, Salzburg
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#2 ktom

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Posted 28 May 2012 - 09:53 AM

As a TO/judge with a lot of experience, I will second Damon's general themes.

On scouting, I tell people to be respectful of those still playing and that if the players don't want you watching and ask you to leave, you are expected to do so.

On "judge involvement," this can be harder. In AGoT, a lot of it comes down to "passive" vs. "active." If I happen to be walking by a table and someone forgets to take Renown, I'd say "he claims renown." Or if someone goes to kill a noble while Power of Blood is out, I'll say "he can't be killed." Things like that. But if someone doesn't trigger a Response (eg, doesn't take power with Taste for Blood), or doesn't use a "pseudo-optional" keyword (like Stealth or Vigilant), I won't say anything. The trick, of course, is that one judge can't be everywhere watching every game - so for the most part, you only make these kind of calls when someone calls your attention to the game.



#3 jimpanda

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Posted 31 May 2012 - 06:06 AM

How there still is no official rules document for judging/ rules enforcement for events is baffling to me. I do agree with most of Damon's comments, and I believe that many of these issues will fall easily into common sense situations. I do wish there was a little more of a standard rules enforcement template beyond the judges discretion, based on what he/ she may or may not see. Just a simple clarification document regarding things like missed triggers/ passives, time limits, etc. would be beneficial to both players and judges, so that all participants know exactly what to expect at an event from the judge, and so that judges have a solid rules set to reference to make their lives a little easier. 



#4 thedaffodilfish

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 12:48 PM

 I'm trying to build a meta with a couple of other keen players in Edinburgh, Scotland and I'd like to start running a league or or tournament. Other than the FFG Game Night kits is there any other support for new judges/TOs? 

 
Is there training/exam like Magic where you need a Level 1 judge, or do I just appoint myself, read the FAQ & hope that players respect my calls? 
 
Other than the rule book, faq and Tourney Rules, is there anything else I should be doing? 
 
Thanks in advance! 


#5 Ratatoskr

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 01:42 AM

thedaffodilfish said:

 I'm trying to build a meta with a couple of other keen players in Edinburgh, Scotland and I'd like to start running a league or or tournament. Other than the FFG Game Night kits is there any other support for new judges/TOs? 

 
Is there training/exam like Magic where you need a Level 1 judge, or do I just appoint myself, read the FAQ & hope that players respect my calls? 
 
Other than the rule book, faq and Tourney Rules, is there anything else I should be doing? 
 
Thanks in advance! 

You just appoint yourself.

If you want to be up to date with rules, you need to read the rules board. If somebody asks a question there, try to find out the answer for yourself and see if you would've gotten it right. If you're fairly certain of the answer, you can also post it yourself.

Also maybe our awesome article series on rules stuff would be helpful?

 



#6 thedaffodilfish

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 02:36 AM

Thanks Ratatoskr, I figured that was the case from what I'd read so far.

And I'm a big fan of the Quill & Tankard!

Maybe catch up with you in Stahleck.



#7 Ratatoskr

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 02:48 AM

thedaffodilfish said:

Thanks Ratatoskr, I figured that was the case from what I'd read so far.

And I'm a big fan of the Quill & Tankard!

Maybe catch up with you in Stahleck.

Totally! Looking forward to it!






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