21 December 2015 | Organized Play

A Step Forward

An Explanation of the New Round Structure for FFG Organized Play Games

#AGoTLCG

Welcome players!

In the newest tournament rules updates there is a change to the number of Swiss rounds and size of the single-elimination cut for competitive tournaments for most of our games. We wanted to take a moment to explain the reasons behind these changes.

First and foremost, we want to stress that the tables for number of Swiss rounds and the ensuing cut to single-elimination that you see in a game’s tournament rules are only required for official competitive-level tournaments, like the upcoming Store Championships. For any unofficial casual or competitive-level tournament, organizers should choose the number of rounds and possible cut to single-elimination, and clearly inform all players before the event begins. However, if these changes have their desired effect, we believe that you will see more and more unofficial competitive-level tournaments utilizing them.

We recently sat down to design some unique special events, and we quickly realized that the structure which was in use was problematic. It was originally conceived for events where matches always have one winner and one loser, and players are ranked and paired only by their number of wins. However, nearly all of our games function differently, awarding points instead of straight wins or losses or as part of a match which cannot conclude in the allotted time.

So, we took a step back and clarified our understanding of the purpose of both Swiss and single-elimination rounds. The number of rounds and ensuing cut to single-elimination is supposed to accomplish a goal: finding the players whose choices before and during the Swiss rounds led to the best performances, then creating exciting, high-stakes games to eliminate all but one overall winner.

After talking with competitive players, consulting the game developers, and running simulations and trial runs, we found that we could meet that goal while creating a better experience for all tournament participants. The changes you see in these updates are modeled to fulfill that philosophy more accurately for each game.

The new design model takes three slightly different approaches for three different attendance sizes at official competitive-level tournaments.

  • Small tournaments offer a number of Swiss rounds that provide a substantial play experience but do not conclude with single-elimination.
  • At tournaments with moderate attendance levels, the number of Swiss rounds and the ensuing cut to single-elimination places a greater emphasis on tiebreakers for players without the maximum amount of tournament points.
  • With large tournaments, we are complimenting a reduced dependance on Swiss rounds with an increased size of cut to single-elimination.

We strongly believe that these changes to the number of Swiss rounds and cut to single-elimination will have a positive impact on every participant’s experience at competitive-level tournaments.

Thank you again for your participation in official Fantasy Flight Game Organized Play. 2016 will be an amazing year of exceptional events, and we look forward to delighting you all year long!

—Fantasy Flight Games Organized Play

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