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Meynolt

New TO seeking advice/help

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Not sure if this is where this goes..

 

 

 

I have been asked to run a seasonal (Spring) tourney at our local hobby shop. I have never ran a tournament (of any kind). The kit does not tell me much. Can any of the experienced TOs on here maybe offer a direction, or perhaps be will ing to chat with me a bit to get the ball rolling?

Edited by Meynolt

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First off, go to X-Wing Product and click on the support link, then get every doc listed there.

Get the latest FAQ, get the tournament stuff, ect... Print them out or put them on a phone/tablet.

Next grab the Cryodex program to help run the tournament itself. It sets up the brackets, tracks MoV, ect...

After that, there's not much more to it really. As the TO you'll also be the judge, so you'll want to make sure you know the rules well and know where to find stuff in the FAQ. You'll also be asked to make judgement calls, like if that shot is range 2 or 3, or if that ship is in arc or not.

Some stuff you can do that day...

Set up the tables with numbers on them, so people can find their table easily, just tell them that Player X and Player Y will be at table 3.

Bring something to track the time, and let everyone know ahead of time how long each round will be. If possible have time to check peoples lists to make sure they're legal. Also it's not a bad idea to have everyone check the other person's damage deck, make sure there's 33 cards and 7 direct damage! cards in each. You can check for the other crits as well, but IME, if they have 33 and 7 direct damage they should have everything else.

Don't plan on playing yourself if you can avoid it, you'll be busy enough as is.

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Bring something to track the time, and let everyone know ahead of time how long each round will be. If possible have time to check peoples lists to make sure they're legal. Also it's not a bad idea to have everyone check the other person's damage deck, make sure there's 33 cards and 7 direct damage! cards in each. You can check for the other crits as well, but IME, if they have 33 and 7 direct damage they should have everything else.

 

Cryodex also has a built-in clock function!

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Cryodex also has a built-in clock function!

I've never actually gotten it to work on my computer. But I don't run tournaments myself, just a league so I've not needed it enough to really spend the time troubleshooting the problem.

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Good Advice ! I have just over a month lead time, which is nice ! I have already downloaded, printed and built a binder of all the updated rules, FAQ/Errata and so on. I will take a look at cryodex tonight. I also downloaded and printed out the list sheets. Now for my dumb questions:

 

1. What is the fair way to divide the prizes? I have two Spring 2015 kits and I am expecting roughly 15-20 players. Obviously every participant will get an Alt Art PTL card...Anyhow, just whats the proper protocol here?

 

2. Once a list is submitted and deemed legal....it doesn't change for the entire tourney? Thats it, thats what you have?

 

If I think of more (which I will) I will post it. Thanks ahead of time for the assist.

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Bring something to track the time, and let everyone know ahead of time how long each round will be. If possible have time to check peoples lists to make sure they're legal. Also it's not a bad idea to have everyone check the other person's damage deck, make sure there's 33 cards and 7 direct damage! cards in each. You can check for the other crits as well, but IME, if they have 33 and 7 direct damage they should have everything else.

 

Cryodex also has a built-in clock function!

 

 

I was just thinking of using a normal digital kitchen timer. But I will look at Cryodex's clock function. Do TOs normally call off time hacks? Like, "30 minutes have elapsed", 10 minute warning...and so on

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1. What is the fair way to divide the prizes?

I don't know that there's any hard and fast rules. But here's what I've seen done...

1st place gets the medal, tokens, dice bag, alt art card, ect...

2nd place gets tokens, dice bag, alt art cards, ect...

3rd place gets dice bag, alt art cards, ect...

4th and on, gets whatever is left over, in order of how they place in the tournament.

So if you have 8 dice bags, the top 8 would each get one. That would apply to things like tokens and the rest. The idea is that 1st place gets 1 of everything and you keep giving out stuff until you run out. Since you have 2 kits, 1st and 2nd could get the same things.

 

If there's card boxes in the kit, you could either give them out to the top players, or you could give them out as consolation prizes starting at the bottom and work your way up. That's they way they do it at one place I play.

2. Once a list is submitted and deemed legal....it doesn't change for the entire tourney?

Correct, you can't change your list once you submit it, depending on how it's done. Some tournaments have the lists submitted ahead of time, others have you submit it when you get there. But either way, once you submit your list to the TO, you can't change anything.

 

Do TOs normally call off time hacks? Like, "30 minutes have elapsed", 10 minute warning...and so on

Yes, you should at least call out a 15 minute warning and every 5 from there, so 10 and 5. You could start as early as 30, but that's the soonest I'd bother myself.

Edited by VanorDM

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I was just thinking of using a normal digital kitchen timer. But I will look at Cryodex's clock function. Do TOs normally call off time hacks? Like, "30 minutes have elapsed", 10 minute warning...and so on

 

Yep! Well, at least I do :P

 

I was looking for a full-screen timer to put up on my laptop, but couldn't find any free apps for OS X that did what I wanted (and were compatible with my old version of the OS). So I ended up using a web based timer, similar to this one: http://timer-timer.com/full-screen-timer.html

 

Just remember to turn off screen savers and prevent your laptop from falling asleep!

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This is all good stuff guys ! Part of what I love about XWing is the community, always helpful ! Like I mentioned before I have a touch over a month before the tourney and time to prepare, so you can bet i will have more questions. I will start playing with cryodex this weekend.

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Also, talk to the players and ask them if they have any preferences about the format (number of Swiss rounds, number of single-elimination rounds) and prize distribution. A good TO will cater to their group's preferences, but will also challenge and surprise them a little. Maybe throw a twist into the format of your second tournament (110 points, no more than one named pilot, Escalation or whatever sounds fun).

The seasonal tournament kits don't come with any requirements for how you run your tournaments, only suggestions. Use them as you see fit. Be generous with the prizes if you can. Getting a small prize even when you're in last place can take the sting out of a rough day.

You're gonna be great at it. You're asking all the right questions.

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Also, talk to the players and ask them if they have any preferences about the format (number of Swiss rounds, number of single-elimination rounds) and prize distribution. A good TO will cater to their group's preferences, but will also challenge and surprise them a little. Maybe throw a twist into the format of your second tournament (110 points, no more than one named pilot, Escalation or whatever sounds fun).

The seasonal tournament kits don't come with any requirements for how you run your tournaments, only suggestions. Use them as you see fit. Be generous with the prizes if you can. Getting a small prize even when you're in last place can take the sting out of a rough day.

You're gonna be great at it. You're asking all the right questions.

 

Just make sure you announce the format well ahead of time, especially if you're doing something non-standard. Include all relevant information:

  • Number of Swiss rounds and championship bracket (does it depend on number of players?)
  • Round lengths
  • Squad points
  • Squad building restrictions
  • Etc...

 

Nothing worse than showing up at a tournament and learning then and there that they're using 110 point squads when you only brought what you needed for your 100 point squad.

Edited by Klutz

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My question is, have they updated Cryodex to include Scum & Villainy?  That is, Meynolt, if you'll allow the new faction, of course.

I may have to update my files, if they already have included Scum & Villainy

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Cryodex is faction-agnostic, really. You can insert a player's squad voidstate ID if you want, but it doesn't help or hinder the process of tracking the tournament scores. Faction and squad IDs are only important if you'll be exporting the tournament results.

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I too will be running my first tourney in about a month, so thanks for the post, Meynolt, and thanks for all the input, fellas.

 

I know I've seen a breakdown of [number of rounds/cut to top X] depending on the number of attendees.  Anyone know where I can find this, or what the suggestion is?  And that wasn't from FFG, was it?

 

Thanks, all!

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It's in the Tournament rules, page 3...

Round Structure

The length and structure of a tournament is determined by the number of players. For casual tournaments, tournament organizers may choose a number of rounds they feel best fits the needs of the tournament and players The suggested number of Swiss rounds and elimination rounds for a competitive or premier-level X-Wing skirmish tournament are outlined below.

8 players get 3 rounds no cut

9-15 gest 4 rounds cut to top 4

17-32 get 5 rounds cut to top 5

32-64 get 5 rounds cut to top 8

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Haha, thanks.  Apparently I haven't printed out the new Tourney Rules for a while, that section wasn't in v2.1.2 that I have.

 

Sigh. My bad.

Edited by jme

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Make yourself familiar how the swiss tournament systems works. At least get an idea how the program does it pairings.

Try to be prepared for some typical incidents: e.g. two players don't show up for the first round in time. Now you have two tables with only 1 Person and no opponent. Solution: let this two waiting players play against each other. If the latecomers do show up, they have now to play against each other. So as TO you have to know how to change pairings by hand.

Does the cryodex program still have the problems with "duplicate pairings" failure? If this happens you also have to correct the pairings by hand.

It's most important that you enter all results correctly. The results sheets should be formatted in a way so that you avoid confusion who get how many points. Also the results sheets should be beginner friendly and spell out that only the ships destroyed are counted, not the ships left etc. Else some players will fill out the sheets wrongly. Sometimes the players themselves mixes the numbers up, so if in doubt ask who has won.

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I tooled around with Cryodex last night. I basically made up a tourney with ten fake names, tossed some scores, generated rounds, and made a cut. Seems pretty straight forward ! So here we go with a new round of questions...

 

1. Voidstate ID, what is it? Not only what is it, but is it necessary (I will not force my players to sign up for something they don't want)

 

2. It's our first tournament at this store (for X-Wing). Our group is small (but growing). I plan on going with just basic swiss style rounds, 100pt. lists. That seems the safest route for a first time TO...agree?

 

3. So, (I am trying to imagine this in my head. "players register, I drop their info into cryodex and generate round 1. Give them a quick briefing treat each other nice, third party gear, points piles, we are here to have fun, etc., etc.,etc. Assign them to tables, hit the timer and say GO. Round 1 completes.... Do I go write the scores down, or should I expect them to turn them into me? Obviously once scores are in, I re-enter into cryodex, wash, rinse, repeat until the final cut. Then a little thank you to our host, hand out awards, slap everyopne on the ass on the way out the door. Go home and upload my data. Is that it in a nutshell? I am starting to think I should have one assistant (judge).

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1. Voidstate ID, what is it? Not only what is it, but is it necessary (I will not force my players to sign up for something they don't want)

 

2. It's our first tournament at this store (for X-Wing). Our group is small (but growing). I plan on going with just basic swiss style rounds, 100pt. lists. That seems the safest route for a first time TO...agree?

 

3. So, (I am trying to imagine this in my head. "players register, I drop their info into cryodex and generate round 1. Give them a quick briefing treat each other nice, third party gear, points piles, we are here to have fun, etc., etc.,etc. Assign them to tables, hit the timer and say GO. Round 1 completes.... Do I go write the scores down, or should I expect them to turn them into me? Obviously once scores are in, I re-enter into cryodex, wash, rinse, repeat until the final cut. Then a little thank you to our host, hand out awards, slap everyopne on the ass on the way out the door. Go home and upload my data. Is that it in a nutshell? I am starting to think I should have one assistant (judge).

 

1. Voidstate is the username of someone who created a squad builder. You can find it here: xwing-builder.co.uk

When you save the squadron you built, you can get a unique ID for it, which can be entered into Cryodex. This doesn't actually do anything within Cryodex, but if (once the tourney is over) you export the tournament and upload it to the XWing Lists Juggler, the site will use the Voidstate IDs you entered to populate the squads for each player.

 

 

2. Yes, keep it simple. A few Swiss rounds, and then a cut to Top 4 or so.

The official tournament rules suggest 3 Swiss rounds and no cut if there are 8 or less players, but I find playing only 3 games is too short. I'd recommend 4 Swiss rounds followed by a cut to Top 2.

 

 

3. Yes, that's about it! If you've got a Facebook event for your tournament, make sure to include all the details in the event description. I'd recommend repeating some of the rules regarding third-party components and proxies, so no one shows up with a proxy for some upgrade card thinking that it'd be OK since this is a casual tournament or something. Unless you want to allow that, which is fine as well, but make sure everyone knows ahead of time! Seriously, that is my #1 recommendation for TOs, make sure everything is perfectly clear on how the tournament will be run at least a week before the tournament itself.

I'd copy-paste the description I've been using on Facebook for the past few tournaments, but it's in french. :P

 

Regarding the scores after rounds, we used to use the official Score Sheets provided by FFG, but I didn't like that it was 1 sheet per person and that the players kept them all day, I wanted something the players could hand in after each game. So I create these sheets, where each round is a pre-cut section that is easy to rip off. That way I end up with a stack of slips after each round and can easily double/triple check the scores I entered into Cryodex.

 

qmVsDnAm.jpg

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1. Voidstate ID, what is it?

Voidstate is a online list builder. Was one of the first ones made if not the first. Voidstate, Yet another, and other builders are working out a way to generate a ID file that you can import into any builder.

That way you can import it, and have the page check to make sure it's a valid list. It seems Voidstate is down at the moment, so I can't give you an example.

It's not necessary by any means, just may make your life easier.

 

2. That seems the safest route for a first time TO...agree?

Yes that seems best.

 

3. [/i]Assign them to tables, hit the timer and say GO.

I'd say you should give them a few minutes to get set up first. Get their squads on the table, cards ready, ect... Once everyone is ready to start setting dials then start the timer.

Do I go write the scores down, or should I expect them to turn them into me?

Either way, you can have them do it, or do it yourself. In a small tournament no one is likely going to try to cheat. If you worry about that because you have more people or something, you can have the loser report the score. Could even have both come to you so they can both check the score.

I am starting to think I should have one assistant (judge).

I think you will find it's not nearly as much work as you think it is. :) But you do have the basics down.

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3. Assign them to tables, hit the timer and say GO.

I'd say you should give them a few minutes to get set up first. Get their squads on the table, cards ready, ect... Once everyone is ready to start setting dials then start the timer.

I generally wait until everyone has at least started setting up asteroids. It's unavoidable that certain tables will be ready before others, so you will have some tables who are just waiting on your "go" to start flipping dials for their first round, while other tables are just starting to lay out the asteroids.

 

The tournament rules regarding Squad Deployment Procedures technically say that setting up your stuff next to the play area, shuffling your damage deck, deploying the asteroids and deploying your ships can happen before or after the official start of the round. I find waiting until everyone has at least started placing asteroids is better to give everyone more or less the same time to actually play the round.

 

 

I had something else I wanted to add, but now I've forgotten...

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One thing that comes up sometimes is how to resolve repeat matchups.

 

Suppose that after 3 rounds, player A is ranked first, B second, C third, etc...

Normally, the matchups would be:

  • A vs B
  • C vs D
  • E vs F

However, let's suppose that, during previous rounds, A has already played B, and B has already D. Cryodex will generate the round with the repeat matchups and flag them as such (it'll be indicated that those match ups have happened before).

 

How do you resolve this? Who should be playing who?

 

The simple, foolproof way I have found to resolve these is to go through the list as such:

  1. Who is the highest ranked player that A hasn't played yet?
    • In this case, that's player C.
    • A will play C
  2. Who is the highest ranked player that B hasn't played yet, and isn't already matched up for round?
    • C is already playing A, B has already played D, therefore...
    • B will play D
  3. C is already matched up
  4. D is already matched up
  5. Who is the highest ranked player that E...
  6. Etc...

I have never had a scenario where this didn't resolve all conflicts.

I am not sure if you can even build a scenario where this doesn't fix all problems.

 

 

 

 

Last tournament, we had player A playing player E, because player A had already played players B, C and D.

Which was kind of sad for player E (my brother), who needed a win to have a chance at Top 4 and ended playing against (and losing to) the #1 player instead of the #6 player...

 

But, since the method for determining match ups was clearly defined and in the open, there was no room for match-up fixing shenanigans or (more importantly) suspicions thereof.

 

 

As a TO, even if you do everything by the letter, if you don't let people see your process or explain (ideally, ahead of time) how you will work through certain scenarios, we might eventually end up with more threads like this one.
 

 

I started a thread similar to this one before I acted as official TO for my first tournament, and got a lot of good advice. You can find it here

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I was thinking on scenarios like this. The way you explained it makes it fair and easy. Personally I WILL NOT play as the TO (i can keep an alternate art card though right? I mean come on, free coca cola isn't enough ;) ). I don't think a TO should play regardless of the size of the tournament. I have spent a a very long career doing some other stuff competitively (not gaming) and I know first hand, a judge that competes, even under the best of intentions, spoils the competition. Pick what you are doing....judging or competing, not both.

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(i can keep an alternate art card though right? I mean come on, free coca cola isn't enough ;) )

If you have an extra sure, but I think they normally include stuff for the TO in the kits.

Edited by VanorDM

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