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ScottieATF

Tournament Round Times.

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This is something I thought initially when event rules came out, but wanted to get some experience with the game in an event setting to see.

Overall I think the Tournament Round time for Armada is simply just longer then it needs to be for this game.

No game I saw this weekend went anywhere near the 2 hour time limit, and some of the players involved were not those that are known for setting a blistering pace in any game system.

With the 6 Round rule games just end themselves in far less time then FFG has mandated in a given round.

Moving forward with our increase to 400pts we are seeing more time added to the round. But if, as it is being reported on the forums, that Wave 2 is much more lethal overall is that extra time needed? Yes there can possibly be more ships/squadrons on the board at 400 points, but with the large ships and named Rogue/Villain squadrons costing more points then thier Wave 1 counter parts are the activations going to climb that much to require as long of a round time as will be given?

An excessive round time causes two issues with event play for Armada. First, even small events take awhile. 3 rounds is going to be 8 hours minimum. And secondly because of that the tournament structure isn't particularly suited to determining a winner in mid-sized (16-31) or large (Gencon/Worlds) events because due to the round time length the number of rounds is limited to a point where in the above sized events you end the tournament with multiple possibly undefeated players, and no top cuts.

Do you think the round time could be shortened and still allow the vast majority of games to finish?

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Absolutely. At least two stores chose not to run the event due to the sheer time involved with rounds in our area. 

 

Our second round of swiss (and final swiss round as we had 7 players yesterday at the one I ran) was already started when round one time ended. The final game with the new fleets was about 65 minutes. 

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In our Massing at Sullust tournament, only one of my games went past the time limit. We were just starting round six when the timer went off. It was most likely because we unintentionally took longer than normal to set up. But no other game in the tournament went to time, so maybe the time is a little long? Hard to tell.

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I kinda agree. Although it's clear the people with less seat time do take longer. I had a game go 6 rounds in 40 minutes (we basically played keep away, and he won with objectives by a 6-4 or 7-3 margin). I think 2 hrs is good for 400pts. I think 300 would be ok with 90min. You'd cut some people off, but unless it's chock full of squads (they slow things down terribly) most games I've seen only run about that length.

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I had one game go about 125 minutes. Neither one of us were really new. Another went 60 or 70. I dunno.

 

I like inclusion, so I'd hate to see new guys (or the old vets playing them) be dissuaded from playing in tournaments for fear of timing out. Coming from X-Wing I can see how people would think 2.5 was just an insane amount of time. I'm used to big rounds and full-day events so it's not as huge a hit on me.

 

I guess my suggestion would be more complicated and not involve rules so much as a player code:

1) Know ahead of time Armada tournaments can take a long time so play quickly, and dedicate yourselves as players to finishing it as soon as possible.

2) End rounds when all players are done. Start the next round within a few minutes. We don't need 30 minute or longer breaks between rounds.

3) Maintain 2.5 as a firm limit, but any round that finishes before that players should immediately roll into the next round.

 

I think following that can easily shave an hour off of most events. Is that enough in the grand scheme? Probably not, because hardcore gamers enjoying other systems are not looking for reasons to play, they're looking for reasons not to play.

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We had 8 players.  The first Swiss round took a little over 2 hours, I believe that two tables had to complete turn 6 once time had expired.  In the second and third rounds all games were completed in under two hours.  I think the quickest game in the regular competition was about 1 hour.  The final 400-point game with the new models, took just under 2 hours to play, but was proceeded by about an hour of prep time as the two players familiarized themselves with the new units and cards.

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2 Hour time limit is fine.  Its as long as other Miniature games tournament round timers and shorter than others.  I tell players to plan on 2 hour round timers, but I have only ever seen it come up in one event.  A new player came to a tournament never playing the game before and he went to time each round.  

 

Sundays event each round ended roughly 30 minutes early.

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2 Hour time limit is fine.  Its as long as other Miniature games tournament round timers and shorter than others.  I tell players to plan on 2 hour round timers, but I have only ever seen it come up in one event.  A new player came to a tournament never playing the game before and he went to time each round.  

 

Sundays event each round ended roughly 30 minutes early.

My point is that if games are consistently ending 30 minutes ahead of the Round Timer then the Round Timer is likely 15-20 minutes too long for the game. Other systems standards doesn't really effect whether it is appropriate for any other game system.

The Round Timer should only be as long as it needs to be to ensure most games finish before the timer goes off. It doesn't have to be so long as to never come into play. At least in my opinion, especially when it does effect the ability to run tournaments to a satisfactory completion or at all for some venues.

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In my experience with Flames of War games would go anything from 15-30 minutes for a fast game to the full 2:30 hours that was allowed. As a general rule Tank v Tank was fast and Infantry v Infantry could be a slower game. Player temperament also factors in, slower players could manage to time out a tank on tank battle or just finish in the last 5 minutes.

 

That said Armada is essentially a fairly small number of units and thus should be fairly fast to play, as such the main variable in game duration is going to be player temperament. Slow players tend to push into the time limit provided, so if you give them 2.5 hours they will take 2.5 hours. Thus everyone else waits around, change the time to 2 hours and they will finish in 2 hours and everyone else can get a game in.

 

If you don't have any slow players then you may get a round finished in 1.5 hours, in which case the TO can prepare the next round and start a little earlier. I think players should still be given the advertised rest between each round but if you can finish the rounds earlier push the finish time down.

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We had 9 people at my Massing of Sullust tournament. More than half the games all day were in the 6th round when time we called. All games got through 6 rounds, but more than half of them finished after the time limit. My first game started the 6th round about 30 seconds before time was called.

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Two of my rounds ended in turn 5, one because time was called, the other because I tabled my opponent right after time was called. Our atmosphere was pretty relaxed, so set-up time probably took longer than would happen in a championship tourney, but at least 2 of our 6 tables went to time or beyond in each round.

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