More KoWMasters changes! But first!
Rules Remaining The Same
While we’ve changed the formula for determining the number of points available for an event in order to better reflect the UK KoW organised play scene, the rest of the rules for a ranked event are remaining the same. They must have a minimum of 10 players and must have a minimum of 3 rounds.
They must also remain open events and not invitational or qualificational in any way. Tickets for an event must be open to everyone.
Now this isn’t to say that an event must use swiss pairing. An example was given of a weekend event which took a cut of the top half of players after day one. The TO wanted to then run two separate tournaments on day two with the top half of players competing against each other and the bottom half of players competing against each other.
As a single weekend event where there’s a cut after day one, this is fine. The overall event for the whole weekend event will score between 80 and 100 points for the winner.
What isn’t alright is running it as three separate one day singles events (day one, day two upper half, day two lower half) – i.e. having three events each worth 70 to 90 points for the winner. The two events on day two are invitational/qualificational. You could run them as unranked events but they wouldn’t qualify for ranking points.
As I said, you don’t have to use swiss pairing. You can take a cut after day one, you can run random pairing for all that it matters. You just can’t restrict the players who can enter an event.
Note: there is an obvious exception to this of specific players who are banned from an event due to past cheating, aggressive behaviour etc.
There is nothing saying that UK events MUST be ranked. A TO can opt not to have ranking points applied to their results, we just ask that this is advertised up front so people don’t travel to an event only to find out after the fact that it isn’t ranked.
As announced in the previous post, we are allowing doubles events to be ranked next season. A few people voiced understandable and very valid concerns that this could make doubles events more competitive and less newbie friendly.
The Masters Committee did discuss this in depth, alongside the other concerns that a less skilled player could “piggyback” on a higher skilled player in a doubles event. After discussion, we don’t think this will be an issue but do acknowledge that it is a risk. We feel that the benefits of allowing doubles ranking exceeds the potential risk.
If, however, we are wrong and this does negatively impact the doubles scene then the TO can simply opt not to have ranking points applied when the results are submitted (if they submit it at all). We can still score all the other details – army lists, factions used, Win/Loss/Draw etc. – even if the points for the event are set to 0.
Changing The Season
We’re changing the season start and end dates, starting with the next season, so that it runs January to December. Next season will be extended so that it runs from November 2019 through to December 2020.
Currently the UK seasons run from the start of November each year through to the end of October the following year with the Masters event running sometime in January/February (due to the advent of 3rd ed, we decided to bring Masters forward to December this year).
This is so that the Clash of Kings is one of the last (or the last) event of the season. A great big season finale!
This comes with some issues.
Clash has a massive disproportionate effect on the rankings due to the huge number of points available. As noted in the prior writeup, Ed Herzig fell from 4th place all the way down to 11th this year because he wasn’t able to attend. You could very easily be quite high above the cutoff for Masters, at around 12th spot in the rankings, and then fall down to 18th or worse because you weren’t able to go and 6 players leap frogged you with their points from Clash.
While the new formula will reduce the effect, it won’t remove it completely. Here is what the rankings would look like under the new formula before & after the Clash results are applied.
Note that Simon Clifford and Simon Heaney both attended Clash as their 4th event of the year, hence their massive jump in rankings. However, look at Nick Davies – falling 6 places to 20th because he was unable to attend Clash.
So Clash will still have a massive draw and influence on the ranking points regardless.
So our plan is to change the seasons so that they run the whole year from January to December, rather than November to October. This will mean pushing Masters back to around March time, similar to the US Masters.
This will mean several things.
Firstly, Clash will be a major event of the year but it won’t be a player’s last chance to get some points (and knock them out of Masters opportunity if they can’t attend). There will be events running throughout October to December (though they will naturally tail off through December) so if you’re just shy of a Masters place then you can try and bump your score up at these events. Clash isn’t the be-all and end-all.
Secondly, it’s just more logical to run from January to December. We still regularly get asked when the current season ends because many people think it ends after Clash. January to December just makes more sense.
Thirdly, it will tie in quite nicely with the annual Clash of Kings rules update book. With the book being released in December each year, this means that tournaments can start using Clash from day one and we don’t have a little weirdness where the first dozen tournaments are running the old version (though we will actually have that this year with events running 2nd edition…).
Fourthly, it will avoid a “dead month” of October where there are fewer events run (there’s just one event this October) and attendance seems to be lower – presumably at least partly driven by the futility of trying to compete ranking points wise against Clash.
Fifth, we can probably safely lock down the ranking points from mid-December each year anyway since there likely won’t be events run in late December.
We’re effectively moving the “dead month” of events from October to December, where there naturally won’t be as many events – giving us another 2-3 weeks of events in the annual calendar.
We’re changing the season to match the calendar year. The next season starting November 2019 will be extended so that it runs November 2019 to December 2020, with the Masters 2020 being held sometime in or around March 2021.