The future of the Ersatz VASLeague

WuWei

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Now that the official part of the Ersatz VASLeague 2020 is over, it's time to think about the future. I'm willing to organize a VASLeague 2021, but what should it be like? My plan so far is to stick with the general format, but I'm unsure about the number and duration of rounds.
This year, the rounds were 2.5 months each, and for my taste, this is a little bit too long. How about 8 weeks, counting from the day the pairings are announced? Since there probably will be a delay of 1-2 weeks between end of a round and the start of the next one, this will be approximately a game every 10 weeks. So theoretically, we could fit 5 rounds into a year, although I prefer sticking to 4 rounds at the moment. What do you think?

We also had a lot of forfeits, especially in the last round, and even in the regional and top leagues where players are usually very reliable. Is there are reason for that?

Are there any other things you would like to change/improve/comment on?
 

Actionjick

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Now that the official part of the Ersatz VASLeague 2020 is over, it's time to think about the future. I'm willing to organize a VASLeague 2021, but what should it be like? My plan so far is to stick with the general format, but I'm unsure about the number and duration of rounds.
This year, the rounds were 2.5 months each, and for my taste, this is a little bit too long. How about 8 weeks, counting from the day the pairings are announced? Since there probably will be a delay of 1-2 weeks between end of a round and the start of the next one, this will be approximately a game every 10 weeks. So theoretically, we could fit 5 rounds into a year, although I prefer sticking to 4 rounds at the moment. What do you think?

We also had a lot of forfeits, especially in the last round, and even in the regional and top leagues where players are usually very reliable. Is there are reason for that?

Are there any other things you would like to change/improve/comment on?
Good luck! Always valuable to do post tournament analysis. Tweak and improve where you can. Hope you get some input.
 

Vinnie

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From a phrely selfish point of view, i find it exceptionslly difficukt yo getva game in duringbtge summer. 14 hour days will do tgat to yoy.
Conversely, at this time of the year, I have plenty of time. If the games coukd all be scheduled in advance, I might be able to play 2 or 3 before the end of March. But that woukd be a totally different format.
 

Tuomo

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First, many thanks for running the league last year.

I'd prefer a rate of 1 game per month. So what if it means that there might be rematches or mis-matches after a few months; the play's the thing.

In fact, I'd rather be in a Monthly Round-Robin League with 7 others than a 6-week league that would only go 5 rounds max. I want to play, not maximize the certainty of having only one undefeated player after N rounds. At the end of 7 months, run a seeded mini tourney or just declare a victor. Or have a single game final. Wouldn't even need to limit it to 7 months; if you had 11 players, make it a 10 month round robin with a single Final game between the people with the two best records. Top player gets his choice of sides.

While I like having a US West League, if we had to combine all the North American players (or even add the Rest of the World) in order to get enough people to do such a round robin league, I'd be up for it. Euros are great players, even if there's some scheduling bumps to overcome.
 

Actionjick

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First, many thanks for running the league last year.

I'd prefer a rate of 1 game per month. So what if it means that there might be rematches or mis-matches after a few months; the play's the thing.

In fact, I'd rather be in a Monthly Round-Robin League with 7 others than a 6-week league that would only go 5 rounds max. I want to play, not maximize the certainty of having only one undefeated player after N rounds. At the end of 7 months, run a seeded mini tourney or just declare a victor. Or have a single game final. Wouldn't even need to limit it to 7 months; if you had 11 players, make it a 10 month round robin with a single Final game between the people with the two best records. Top player gets his choice of sides.

While I like having a US West League, if we had to combine all the North American players (or even add the Rest of the World) in order to get enough people to do such a round robin league, I'd be up for it. Euros are great players, even if there's some scheduling bumps to overcome.
This is the kind of input that is invaluable to a TD looking to improve his event and most importantly give the participants what they want and need.
 

dwardzala

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First, many thanks for running the league last year.

I'd prefer a rate of 1 game per month. So what if it means that there might be rematches or mis-matches after a few months; the play's the thing.

In fact, I'd rather be in a Monthly Round-Robin League with 7 others than a 6-week league that would only go 5 rounds max. I want to play, not maximize the certainty of having only one undefeated player after N rounds. At the end of 7 months, run a seeded mini tourney or just declare a victor. Or have a single game final. Wouldn't even need to limit it to 7 months; if you had 11 players, make it a 10 month round robin with a single Final game between the people with the two best records. Top player gets his choice of sides.

While I like having a US West League, if we had to combine all the North American players (or even add the Rest of the World) in order to get enough people to do such a round robin league, I'd be up for it. Euros are great players, even if there's some scheduling bumps to overcome.
Is this a live or email league? If email, any round robin could take place at the same time. I am interested in possibly joining depending on the format.
 

Tuomo

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Is this a live or email league? If email, any round robin could take place at the same time. I am interested in possibly joining depending on the format.
I am not personally interested in an email league, but that doesn't mean others might not be.
 

dwardzala

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For live you would definitely have to schedule 1 game at a time. I think the 4 week per match round robin is a good idea. Could do a part year round robin and then knockout rounds.
 

MajorDomo

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Thanks for running the Ersatz VASL league.

I think five games per year would be perfect for me.

Summer is a congested, vacation... time. So Jan/Feb, Mar/Apr, May/June/July, Aug/Sept, Oct/ Nov might address summer issues.

I have noticed a higher dropout rate in VASL tourneys. Obviously, attending a FTF tourney is a larger commitment. Dropouts strain any tiebreaker system.

Enrico, would bounce any player with two forfeits.


Rich
 

The Magnus

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This year, the rounds were 2.5 months each, and for my taste, this is a little bit too long. How about 8 weeks, counting from the day the pairings are announced? Since there probably will be a delay of 1-2 weeks between end of a round and the start of the next one, this will be approximately a game every 10 weeks. So theoretically, we could fit 5 rounds into a year, although I prefer sticking to 4 rounds at the moment. What do you think?

We also had a lot of forfeits, especially in the last round, and even in the regional and top leagues where players are usually very reliable. Is there are reason for that?

Are there any other things you would like to change/improve/comment on?
Thanks for organizing this great VASL tournament.

Both 4 and 5 rounds are OK with me. I did see Rich's comment of going light in the summer, and I can follow his thinking. However, during regular non-Covid years the 4th quarter is really the one stretching my availability due to the very high number of high-quality and "must attend" ASL FtF tournaments (ASLOK, Grenadier, Supporting Fire, Albany - and sometimes there is a Friendly Fire Tournament at the end of September as well).
 

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FWIW there is a Combat Commander ladder with monthly live games via VASSAL, and from my experience those scenarios take A LOT longer then a small or even small/medium sized scenario in ASL.
 

Stewart

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Thanks for running the Ersatz VASL league.

I think five games per year would be perfect for me.

Summer is a congested, vacation... time. So Jan/Feb, Mar/Apr, May/June/July, Aug/Sept, Oct/ Nov might address summer issues.

I have noticed a higher dropout rate in VASL tourneys. Obviously, attending a FTF tourney is a larger commitment. Dropouts strain any tiebreaker system.

Enrico, would bounce any player with two forfeits.


Rich
While bouncing players with two forfeits seems appropriate, there would likely be far more participation if players were rewarded for completing their games.

Each round have a draw for a door prize or something outside of just playing a game.
Make incentives to players.
IF you played all 5 games you get boosted to the next level automatically.
Sponsors shouldn't be a problem since the league is annual.
Create some Tshirts by having participants Pay an ENTRY Fee.
many other ideas....

Better yet, along the lines of TUOMO's thoughts.
Since Summer seems to be an issue... Mind you the Southern hemisphere has a different summer.
Create a dual season.
Season 1 in the first 6 mos....Season 2 the other 6 Mos.

Players wouldn't have to commit for a year to participate in the same number of games.
Give incentives for players that play BOTH parts of the year.
Fees to join are psychologically fitting to "tie" players down. A nominal fee to support products as prizes etc...shouldn't be frowned upon.

I think the 6 mos per "season" would get MORE players interested.
I know I'd be more inclined. at least part of the season.
 

WuWei

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Thanks for your thoughts!
I like the idea of rewarding players for completing their games. Automatic promotion from the SLL to the regional leagues if you complete all your games is something I could do.
Adding a financial aspect to the game would complicate things immensely, and I'm not sure if I want this. I would definitely need help.
I'm not sure about doing dual seasons. I will think about this.
 

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I like the current pace: I wouldn't want to go much faster than about 4/5/6 matches in the tournament over the course of a year.

Two benefits about the ~2 month period to play a scenario are:

1) It gives you much more flexibility to complete games, which is especially important for people whose work commitments vary over time (i.e., if you have a 3 week hell period at the end of the fiscal year, that could make it really difficult for you or your opponent to get in a good game if a month is all you have; 2 months is much more forgiving). It is also great for cross-time-zone matches, especially if you both work regular hours and the weekend is the only practical time to meet up.

2) It gives you much more flexibility about what kind of scenario to do. I played one scenario (Finale Onhaye) that I definitely would not have gotten done in a short time period, since it was quite large, but I had a blast playing it. Could some people get Finale Onhaye done in a month? Sure! But I can't. So the longer schedule gives more people more flexibility in what they want to do, and I think that's a good thing.

I would also like to give a +1 for everybody from the SLL who plays all the games getting promoted. I think the more the merrier in the first-line league (which I think I'll be rejoining this year).
 

Houlie

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Thanks for your thoughts!
I like the idea of rewarding players for completing their games. Automatic promotion from the SLL to the regional leagues if you complete all your games is something I could do.
Adding a financial aspect to the game would complicate things immensely, and I'm not sure if I want this. I would definitely need help.
I'm not sure about doing dual seasons. I will think about this.
Personally, "rewarding" players for completing their games seems sort of silly to me. Shouldn't that be a minimum expectation? If you sign up for a tourney, be sure you can commit to play. That's simple decency and respect. Of course, life issues happen, but that is not what I am talking about here. Frankly, the "reward" is the fact someone takes their own personal time to set up and run a tournament and providing a platform for playing other players. That is reward enough for me.
 

JoeArthur

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Many thanks for running the league - I enjoyed the games.

It would be nice to eliminate the top league and put everyone together. Maybe I say that because I'm not in it :) It is good to be beaten by a great player - it gives you a chance to learn. Everyone who joins the league should have that chance. It makes the good players sweat a little as well - will the newbie get hot dice and will I loose a bunch of points?

The length of time to play a game should be reduced. I sometimes got the impression that on selecting the scenario my opponent and I would go and play it with someone else and then sit down and play the match. But then I'm a cynic.......
 

Actionjick

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Personally, "rewarding" players for completing their games seems sort of silly to me. Shouldn't that be a minimum expectation? If you sign up for a tourney, be sure you can commit to play. That's simple decency and respect. Of course, life issues happen, but that is not what I am talking about here. Frankly, the "reward" is the fact someone takes their own personal time to set up and run a tournament and providing a platform for playing other players. That is reward enough for me.
The reward for us as TDs was seeing the attendees enjoying themselves, playing a ton of ASL and making new friends. I assume that was the reward for those who attended Oktoberfest as well.
The commitment to participate in a ftf event is far greater, IMO, than a virtual event. Unless life intervenes to prevent a player from completing a game it is only a matter of respect to the TD and your opponent to finish that game.
 

Paul John

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completing their games
Shouldn't that be a minimum expectation?
As much as I agree with this, there are some considerations here. Enrico used punishment (the stick) to try to get people to finish, but I worried a bit that if chronically inattentive folks were put into the newbie league, then the unreliability could be a disincentive for people learning the game (the last thing we want!).
I also rather like Joe's suggestion of inclusion as my main incentive in tournaments is getting schooled by a shark and thus learning some new tricks.
My 2-bits. Ultimately anyone willing to run a tournament is beyond reproach. I will join next year regardless.
 

Gunner Scott

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Maybe make the league like a baseball league IE you would have the western division and eastern division and the winner of those divisions gets to fight in a world series type of game. You would also have a minor league for new entrants into the league and if they prove reliable then get promoted to one of the divisions. Just my suggestion, as for prizes and monetary compensation, none required for me, happy to be playing is my reward. Anyway great job running the league thus far.
 

Stewart

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In the latest comments, playing is for fun.
If that's the case, what's the point of the different leagues in that case??
Why the exclusion from other leagues?

Are the results posted anywhere?
Area reading changes?
Can we get a repost of the league directives?
 
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