Saturday, February 8, 2014

Bits 4 - Tournaments

As a Tournament Organizer (TO) for Attack Wing and X-Wing, I have a bit of experience running tournaments, albeit rather small ones.  Still, I think there are some valuable lessons that I've learned both in running and playing these that I think are worth sharing.

First, we'll start with advice for running things.

  • Show up early, plan to leave late.
  • Over prepare, meaning, bring pens, paper, copies of any FAQ's/or be able to look things up.
  • Have a timer of some kind.
  • Be flexible. Random stuff happens and it's best to go with the flow rather than impose your will.
  • Encourage having fun.
  • Try to have some random prizes so that everyone walks away with something.
  • Create an environment that people want to come back to.
Now, some advice for playing in a tournament
  • Do not try to win at all costs.  Gaming is about having fun, not necessarily winning.
  • Listen to and respect your TO/Judge.
  • Respect your opponent, say something like good game or well played afterwards, win or lose.
  • Be grateful that you get to spend some time with fellow gamers who enjoy the same thing you do.
  • Bring something to do in case you get a bye match.
  • Bring extra stuff, you never know when you might lose something, or be able to help someone out who forgot something.
  • Be a gracious winner, and a gracious loser.
  • If you don't win, try to find something positive about the experience.
Hopefully none of these things are groundbreaking, but you'd be surprised how much a little bit of common courtesy helps things flow.  I've had a lot of fun winning and losing tournaments.  The only major issue I've had are with some people who don't know the rules/take far too long on their turns.  While I enjoy winning, I've learned that it isn't everything.  I'd rather have a lot of fun and lose than have no fun and win.

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