2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

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2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Cody » Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:16 pm

The college season is over and scheduling for next year's high school events will soon be upon us. So, let's get the ball rolling on what college events are happening next year and when they will occur.

Points for discussion
Packet submission events: as far as I remember, there was only 1 non-ACF packet submission event this year. It'd be nice to have a non-ACF packet submission event in the fall, in addition to the usual 1 non-ACF packet submission event in the spring.
What writers want to work on tournaments, but aren't already part of a team? cf. this thread
What tournaments need writers?


A proposed calendar for the 2015-16 school year:

Fall 2015
09/12–10/10: VCU Novice [difficulty: novice]
10/03–10/10:
10/17-10/24: Penn Bowl [difficulty: tick harder than regular]
11/07: ACF Fall [difficulty: Fall]
11/13: Delta Burke [difficulty: regular-minus-minus + some wierd] [later mirrors available]
11/14–11/21: Missouri Open [difficulty: regular plus]
(optional) 12/05–12/12: Oxford Open, possibly [difficulty: regular minus] [UK: ~Jan. 30]

Spring 2016
01/16: MLK XVII [difficulty: tick harder than regular difficulty a la Penn Bowl 2014)]
01/30: ACF Regionals [no details] [difficulty: regular]
02/06: SCT [no details] [difficulty: SCT]
02/13–02/27: Stanford-produced open tournament [difficulty: nationals minus a la CRR/Oppen]
03/05–03/26: Maryland/Yale-produced regular difficulty tournament [difficulty: regular]
04/09: ICT [difficulty: ICT]
04/16-17: ACF Nationals [no details] [difficulty: Nationals]
Last edited by Cody on Thu Aug 13, 2015 10:30 am, edited 13 times in total.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Cody » Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:17 pm

VCU is producing a novice event in the model of EACN for September (or October for certain areas on the quarter system).
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:22 pm

Cody wrote: there was only 1 non-ACF packet submission event this year. It'd be nice to have a non-ACF packet submission event in the fall, in addition to the usual 1 non-ACF packet submission event in the spring.
There were supposed to be two: DEES and STIMPY. Note that both got a relatively low haul of packets (and still might have even controlling for the various flareups affecting those events), and that both had to exempt many sites from the packet submission requirement to be viable. I am in fact curious if any packet submission events outside of ACF are viable at all given how badly things went for these two, and certainly think that if the answer is "yes" (which it may well be), it's incumbent on the editors of such a tournament to beg and plead teams to get their packets in, to be ruthless about establishing all mirror sites before the first submission deadline, and to be constantly beating the drum to get teams to register so they don't run the risk of folding.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:31 pm

Matthew J wrote:
Cody wrote: there was only 1 non-ACF packet submission event this year. It'd be nice to have a non-ACF packet submission event in the fall, in addition to the usual 1 non-ACF packet submission event in the spring.
There were supposed to be two: DEES and STIMPY. Note that both got a relatively low haul of packets (and still might have even controlling for the various flareups affecting those events), and that both had to exempt many sites from the packet submission requirement to be viable. I am in fact curious if any packet submission events outside of ACF are viable at all given how badly things went for these two, and certainly think that if the answer is "yes" (which it may well be), it's incumbent on the editors of such a tournament to beg and plead teams to get their packets in, to be ruthless about establishing all mirror sites before the first submission deadline, and to be constantly beating the drum to get teams to register so they don't run the risk of folding.
It seems strange to me that the two non-Nats ACF events should be inundated with packets and yet non-ACF events go starving. Surely the will and ability to write packets is there?
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Cheynem » Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:43 pm

I think it's unfair to analyze DEES in this way because the utter mismanagement of the project by its namesake probably skewed packet submission results (yes, I'm aware that Charlie disappeared after a few packets were turned in, but the project seemed pretty questionable long before that).
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Ewan MacAulay » Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:48 pm

Oxford Open will happen again next year, probably on the 30th of January. We hope to continue the upward trend of the past two years in question quality.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:53 pm

I know last year, Will Alston brought up the idea of writing an NAQT-style tournament for the regular season. I think it'd be cool to write something along the lines of Fake ICT for the 2015-2016 season and do what George Oppen did of allowing open teams but establishing a nice discount for playing with your college team. I think that would be enjoyable for the Nationals-preparation open this upcoming season.

I'd also love to see something along the lines of PADAWAN return for this upcoming season, as that was a lot of fun to write for and it definitely taught me a lot about writing for regular difficulty.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Banned Tiny Toon Adventures Episode » Fri Apr 24, 2015 2:01 pm

The Two Hearts of Kwasi Boachi wrote: I'd also love to see something along the lines of PADAWAN return for this upcoming season, as that was a lot of fun to write for and it definitely taught me a lot about writing for regular difficulty.
I hope it taught someone not to write a tu on MAP Kinases for regular difficulty!
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Fri Apr 24, 2015 2:38 pm

MUT is tentatively happening again next spring, with even more involvement from the MN team itself this time.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by gyre and gimble » Fri Apr 24, 2015 3:55 pm

Stanford is planning to write a tournament occupying the MO/George Oppen niche in the schedule, for probably around the same time of year (February). We'll confirm once we know how much people are willing to write, but I'll say now that we are looking for collaborative help on chemistry, and need someone to look over the music. Also it will probably not be packet-submission, unless people want(?) it to be.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Auroni » Fri Apr 24, 2015 4:18 pm

Michigan will be housewriting a regular difficulty tournament sometime in the winter (probably for the Jan. 16 slot)
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Fri Apr 24, 2015 5:02 pm

Oh man, Cardinal Classic and MLK -- party like it's 2008!
gyre and gimble wrote:Stanford is planning to write a tournament occupying the MO/George Oppen niche in the schedule, for probably around the same time of year (February). We'll confirm once we know how much people are willing to write, but I'll say now that we are looking for collaborative help on chemistry, and need someone to look over the music. Also it will probably not be packet-submission, unless people want(?) it to be.
Is this also intended to be a/the "Nationals prep" set for the year or would it be more regular in difficulty?
grapesmoker wrote:It seems strange to me that the two non-Nats ACF events should be inundated with packets and yet non-ACF events go starving. Surely the will and ability to write packets is there?
As I implied above, my actual opinion is that I do think (along with Cody in the OP) that there's room for probably one more packet-sub tournament each semester beyond Fall, Regionals, and Nationals, but it's incumbent on the editors/hosts of such events to be EXTREMELY PROACTIVE about hauling in packets and getting host sites set up, since packet sub events are much more vulnerable to any sort of shock (e.g. not enough packets, not enough sites, whatever). Those who do not feel EXTREMELY PROACTIVE (or whose feelings of EXTREME PROACTIVENESS are largely delusional rather than substantiated) should think more carefully about planning before making the attempt.
Last edited by Adventure Temple Trail on Fri Apr 24, 2015 5:06 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Fri Apr 24, 2015 5:04 pm

Oh, one thing I forgot: Is anyone writing a regular-minus tournament for this year? I think it serves a useful niche for the circuit.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by gyre and gimble » Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:56 pm

Matthew J wrote:
gyre and gimble wrote:Stanford is planning to write a tournament occupying the MO/George Oppen niche in the schedule, for probably around the same time of year (February). We'll confirm once we know how much people are willing to write, but I'll say now that we are looking for collaborative help on chemistry, and need someone to look over the music. Also it will probably not be packet-submission, unless people want(?) it to be.
Is this also intended to be a/the "Nationals prep" set for the year or would it be more regular in difficulty?
It'll be Nationals-minus (as opposed to Regionals-plus, if people want to make that distinction).
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by ValenciaQBowl » Fri Apr 24, 2015 7:46 pm

Delta Burke will run at Valencia on November 13-14 and is notably "regular-minus-minus, plus some weird." Also, a possible May mirror for this year fell through, so I'll be sending it to the archive soon and would love for folks to use it in practice and tell me the many ways in which it is terrible (or, one hopes, somewhat less than terrible).
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Fri Apr 24, 2015 9:34 pm

Penn Bowl will be housewritten again, for the fall. Probably the 10/17-24 pair of dates, though I have to talk to the rest of the writers about that.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Florida Gateway » Fri May 08, 2015 9:40 am

Does this mean VCU is taking the place of EACN/ICCS or is proposed as running in addition to the previous event?
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Fri May 08, 2015 11:26 am

Florida Gateway wrote:Does this mean VCU is taking the place of EACN/ICCS or is proposed as running in addition to the previous event?
I can't speak for Fred, Nick, or Andrew Hart, but as far as I know ICCS was very much a one-time thing to make up for the absence of EACN, and EACN has been permanently discontinued. So I doubt there's a rival event seeking to be the "introduction for true novices", and if there is such a writing team building, why not just collaborate with VCU?
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by theMoMA » Fri May 08, 2015 12:56 pm

Matthew J wrote:EACN has been permanently discontinued.
That is not true; unfortunately, it seems that Matt Weiner (without talking with me) began the VCU Novice project to be run in the Collegiate Novice spot. I've been working on plans to get Collegiate Novice back together on a more permanent basis, but they've been on the backburner for various reasons. Nonetheless, I hope that everything will be lined up to announce something in the next month or so.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Fri May 08, 2015 1:19 pm

theMoMA wrote:
Matthew J wrote:EACN has been permanently discontinued.
That is not true; unfortunately, it seems that Matt Weiner (without talking with me) began the VCU Novice project to be run in the Collegiate Novice spot. I've been working on plans to get Collegiate Novice back together on a more permanent basis, but they've been on the backburner for various reasons. Nonetheless, I hope that everything will be lined up to announce something in the next month or so.
Okay. To reiterate, then: Does it make sense to collaborate with VCU? There is no need for more than one event like this at the start of the year, and if they've already started planning, it's probably best to just join forces and direct any new writers towards the combined forces of you, Cody, and Sarah instead of insisting on pushing them off the schedule when you announced second.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by theMoMA » Fri May 08, 2015 1:47 pm

Who said anything about pushing them off the schedule? I've already spoken with Cody and understand that the VCU event will happen in the early fall. Whether I would put together a similar event for that timeframe or another in the 2015-16 season remains to be seen.

As an aside, I was a bit perturbed that someone went ahead and started writing an event for this slot without telling me. It turns out it was a misunderstanding; Cody and others had assumed that Matt discussed his plans with me, but that was not the case. I obviously have no hard feelings with the VCU folks because of this misunderstanding, and Cody and I have already spoken about VCU's plans for this event. But the idea that people should secretly start planning events so they can announce first (despite the fact that someone else has already announced plans to bring back an existing tournament for that timeframe), which you're seemingly endorsing here, does not seem like good policy to me.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Galstaff, Sorceror of Light » Fri May 08, 2015 2:25 pm

I don't think anyone's advocating making secret plans. We were told Andrew Hart, Fred Morlan, and Nick Karas knew we were planning a novice event; apparently we shouldn't have believed that, but we thought everyone with a vested interest in and track record of producing such a tournament knew. We didn't want to publicly announce in the early stages because we wanted to wait and make sure the event was actually viable (i.e. that we could actually write it, which we can. Yay!). Perhaps it's best that all tournament planning be announced without waiting for such verification so as to avoid such miscommunication between parties in the future; it would certainly help with people who might need collaborators. In that case, we just need to make sure as a community that we follow up with letting people know for sure whether or not proposed events are actually happening in a timely enough fashion for plans to be made.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Cheynem » Fri May 08, 2015 2:32 pm

I agree with what Sarah is saying. Contra Matt, I'm not really certain this is anything that requires definite organization now. The kerfluffle appears to have started because Matt Weiner (deliberately?) misrepresented Andrew's intentions about Novice. It is unclear if VCU Novice intends to be a regular thing; if not, there is room for Novice or something else to return. If so, we can discuss that later.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by theMoMA » Fri May 08, 2015 2:33 pm

The Laughing Cavalier wrote:I don't think anyone's advocating making secret plans. We were told Andrew Hart, Fred Morlan, and Nick Karas knew we were planning a novice event; apparently we shouldn't have believed that, but we thought everyone with a vested interest in and track record of producing such a tournament knew.
To clarify, I totally understand that the VCU people were caught off guard by the fact that I didn't know what was going on, and I don't think anyone currently involved with that tournament advocates making secret plans.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Galstaff, Sorceror of Light » Fri May 08, 2015 2:39 pm

theMoMA wrote:
The Laughing Cavalier wrote:I don't think anyone's advocating making secret plans. We were told Andrew Hart, Fred Morlan, and Nick Karas knew we were planning a novice event; apparently we shouldn't have believed that, but we thought everyone with a vested interest in and track record of producing such a tournament knew.
To clarify, I totally understand that the VCU people were caught off guard by the fact that I didn't know what was going on, and I don't think anyone currently involved with that tournament advocates making secret plans.
Oh good. :oops: My larger point is that no one should; we as a community are here to help each other, and I think knowing what projects are coming up is an important part of that process (especially given that miscommunication is clearly very possible). For side events, I agree with not announcing anywhere until your tournament is some arbitrary measure of done if that's how you roll, but we should probably be very transparent about main event plans once they get past the vague rumblings stage (for the most part it seems like this forum is getting some good use in that regard, and I hope it continues to).
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Fri May 08, 2015 2:43 pm

I was unaware of any of the discussions that either did happen (or were slated to have happened) between Andrew, Matt W, and the rest of VCU, and did not realize that any of those people were planning an event until their posts in this thread. As such, the "as far as I know" in my past post was incorrect. I apologize for igniting (and apparently reigniting) a kerfuffle based on incomplete and thereby unintentionally misleading information. I am sure that a good collegiate novice event can come together for the fall from some subset of the various people interested in producing one.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by theMoMA » Fri May 08, 2015 2:48 pm

I agree with Sarah's most recent post. I'll add that, in the rare situations in which a tournament is picking up the mantle of an existing event, I think that people should try to extend the courtesy of contacting the previous editors/writers of that event to see if they plan to return. (For example, even though it's been a while since the last CO trash, I contacted David Seal to make sure he had no plans for a glorious return before announcing the 2016 version.) Obviously, VCU folks were under the impression that Matt Weiner had in fact secured the blessings of the previous writers of fall college novice events before pressing ahead, which was not the case.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Make sure your seatbelt is fastened » Fri May 08, 2015 6:09 pm

Will Alston and I are collaborating on an open set slated for October/November. The target difficulty will be Regionals+, with a distribution and question length limit somewhat similar to NAQT. Shan Kothari has joined the project to work on the Biology + Other Science, but we are still searching for a Chemistry / Physics writer. A more detailed announcement will go up shortly.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Muriel Axon » Fri May 08, 2015 6:27 pm

Make sure your seatbelt is fastened wrote:Shan Kothari has joined the project to work on the Biology + Other Science
I'll note further that I've tied my participation to whether there is demand/support/space for such a tournament, so that's something that I'd like feedback on.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by njsbling » Fri May 08, 2015 6:49 pm

The Laughing Cavalier wrote:I don't think anyone's advocating making secret plans. We were told Andrew Hart, Fred Morlan, and Nick Karas knew we were planning a novice event; apparently we shouldn't have believed that, but we thought everyone with a vested interest in and track record of producing such a tournament knew.
Although I knew nothing about this (who told you? Matt?) I would be happy to help the VCU people and/or Andrew with a novice tournament.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Rococo A Go Go » Fri May 08, 2015 8:10 pm

Make sure your seatbelt is fastened wrote:Will Alston and I are collaborating on an open set slated for October/November. The target difficulty will be Regionals+, with a distribution and question length limit somewhat similar to NAQT. Shan Kothari has joined the project to work on the Biology + Other Science, but we are still searching for a Chemistry / Physics writer. A more detailed announcement will go up shortly.
I think it's a great idea to have an NAQT-style tournament in the fall, but this would probably be more useful as a regular difficulty tournament for college teams, especially considering how difficult it seems for those tournaments to materialize properly as of late.

Also I can't be the only one that really questions the need for "Regionals+" to be an actual difficulty level. "Regular difficulty" ends up being above standard Regionals difficulty half the time, and Regionals+ seems like it can get into Nats territory if editors aren't fully mindful of their difficulty targets.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Fri May 08, 2015 8:40 pm

Yawar Fiesta wrote:
Make sure your seatbelt is fastened wrote:Will Alston and I are collaborating on an open set slated for October/November. The target difficulty will be Regionals+, with a distribution and question length limit somewhat similar to NAQT. Shan Kothari has joined the project to work on the Biology + Other Science, but we are still searching for a Chemistry / Physics writer. A more detailed announcement will go up shortly.
I think it's a great idea to have an NAQT-style tournament in the fall, but this would probably be more useful as a regular difficulty tournament for college teams, especially considering how difficult it seems for those tournaments to materialize properly as of late.

Also I can't be the only one that really questions the need for "Regionals+" to be an actual difficulty level. "Regular difficulty" ends up being above standard Regionals difficulty half the time, and Regionals+ seems like it can get into Nats territory if editors aren't fully mindful of their difficulty targets.
If I may make a suggestion: keep the difficulty very in line with playtesting (which I assume Itamar and Will were going to do anyway) and, if it stays open, do what the fees for Oppen did; allow for a discount for college teams playing a lineup and keep the base fee at $120 for fully open teams (teams with non-students).
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Corry » Fri May 08, 2015 8:49 pm

Make sure your seatbelt is fastened wrote:Will Alston and I are collaborating on an open set slated for October/November. The target difficulty will be Regionals+, with a distribution and question length limit somewhat similar to NAQT. Shan Kothari has joined the project to work on the Biology + Other Science, but we are still searching for a Chemistry / Physics writer. A more detailed announcement will go up shortly.
Ooh, sounds fun.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Fri May 08, 2015 9:49 pm

If people want a few clarifications:

What Itamar and I mean by "Regionals+" is that this tournament is aiming to be at or slightly above the difficulty of 2014 Penn Bowl and will, as a matter of design (not accident) have a number of questions that aren't appropriate for Regionals - ideally around 1/3 of the total tossup answerlines. We plan on playtesting to make sure we've hit this goal, since we want this to be playable (if a challenge) to teams accustomed to regular difficulty.

The general idea of what Itamar and I mean by "NAQT-style" is the following: strict, relatively short caps on question length, 24/24 rounds, at least 1/1 Geo, 1/1 CE, and 1/1 Trash per round, and somewhat more other/mixed academic fare than is typical of mACF tournaments. Specifics will come when the tournament announcement is posted. I think this would also be a good opportunity to find out if an NAQT-like tournament could reasonably be run without a clock, something that seems to be a hot topic of discussion every year.

I don't know if there is any serious nostalgia for NAQT from old players who almost exclusively get to play mACF type tournaments (excluding side events, etc.) but if there is, this tournament offers those folks a chance to stretch their fingers and take a crack at it again, even if the writing style isn't exactly the same as the current batch of (rather excellent) NAQT writers.

Also, frankly, I just want to write a tournament like this. I wrote for three mACF tournaments last year, and now for something completely different! I do want to see if there is demand, though.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by setht » Sat May 09, 2015 12:47 am

Muriel Axon wrote:
Make sure your seatbelt is fastened wrote:Shan Kothari has joined the project to work on the Biology + Other Science
I'll note further that I've tied my participation to whether there is demand/support/space for such a tournament, so that's something that I'd like feedback on.
I demand and support this tournament, but have no space to offer.

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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Sat May 09, 2015 1:06 am

Muriel Axon wrote:
Make sure your seatbelt is fastened wrote:Shan Kothari has joined the project to work on the Biology + Other Science
I'll note further that I've tied my participation to whether there is demand/support/space for such a tournament, so that's something that I'd like feedback on.
Barring conflicts, I'll play this.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Sat May 09, 2015 1:16 am

Historically, we've struggled to fit more than a couple regular difficulty events into the fall semester, given the novice tournaments occurring. It's a bad idea to assign a regular-difficulty slot in that semester to a "regular+" event. Regular difficulty is plenty tough for most teams in the first place, since editors regularly overshoot their targets; explicitly setting the target difficulty higher will just make the set less playable for the inexperienced.

This advice applies not only to Will's planned tournament, but also any other event (Penn Bowl) projected to be above Regionals difficulty. Running these tournaments is a really unsustainable plan.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Sat May 09, 2015 1:39 am

Periplus of the Erythraean Sea wrote:What Itamar and I mean by "Regionals+" is that this tournament is aiming to be at or slightly above the difficulty of 2014 Penn Bowl
I agree with Mattb, Nick, Jacob, and others that it's really not a great idea to intentionally aim for this; better to say "at Regionals on the nose" and see what happens trying to adhere to that than to accidentally fly off the rails and make something quite unplayable for many.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Sat May 09, 2015 1:11 pm

I disagree with the idea that it's particularly difficult to fit multiple regular events in the fall schedule because this past year, we had three nominally regular-difficulty events in the fall in addition to Novice and Fall! Regular difficulty events are great but they shouldn't be the sole thing that's offered - my freshman year had QUARK, for instance (which I sadly didn't get to attend) and that went over fine. As is, there's ACF Fall, Novice, this, and Penn Bowl lined up for the fall - there's definitely room for another regular event!

We're explicitly setting the difficulty target high because we want to be honest about our tournament's difficulty and we want to write questions at that difficulty (having planned out a substantial number of answers for it), but we also want to have plenty of questions that are accessible and playable by weaker teams. Hence, if at all possible we'd like to have an overseeing editor to help ensure our goal that no more than 1/3 of tossup answerlines are really harder than "regular difficulty" and ideally fewer than that, and also to make sure we haven't gone off the rails - said person wouldn't have to write anything unless they wanted to.

We're also expecting open teams to constitute a non-insignificant portion of the field, and we encourage this outcome.

I would also argue that an expanded amount of "NAQT content" makes the set accessible to more teams. Current events, trash, and geography are subjects that a lot of people tend to have "extra-quizbowl" knowledge of in rather large amounts, and attendance at NAQT collegiate events does tend to be higher than at ACF events - though probably for more reasons than just this.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Cheynem » Sat May 09, 2015 1:27 pm

You can write whatever you want, but I also think that "open" tournament doesn't always have to mean "harder than regular."
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Urech hydantoin synthesis » Sat May 09, 2015 1:31 pm

Currently, the schedule for the fall seems to consist of VCU Novice, Penn Bowl, ACF Fall, and your proposed Regionals+ tournament. That's two novice/easy tournaments, and two Regionals+ tournaments. In 2014, the fall consisted of ICCS, PADAWAN, Penn Bowl, ACF Fall, and DEES - that's two novice, two regular, and one Regionals+. In 2013, there was EACN, MFT, Penn Bowl, ACF Fall, and DRAGOON - two novice, 2 regular/regular-minus, and 1 Regionals+. I'd say that the fall schedule in 2013 and 2014 was vastly preferable to the schedule as it is now as regular and regular-minus events have the farthest reach and widest appeal. I wouldn't feel comfortable sending new quizbowl recruits to a lot of these tournaments except for Fall and perhaps Novice; if my first quizbowl tournament ever were to have been run on HFT instead of SCOP Novice, I probably would have had felt quite differently about whether to put time and effort into this activity.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Habitat_Against_Humanity » Sat May 09, 2015 2:59 pm

Cheynem wrote:You can write whatever you want, but I also think that "open" tournament doesn't always have to mean "harder than regular."
I'm a big fan of this idea and would most likely play a nearby regular-ish difficulty open tournament.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Sat May 09, 2015 2:59 pm

Periplus of the Erythraean Sea wrote:Regular difficulty events are great but they shouldn't be the sole thing that's offered - my freshman year had QUARK, for instance (which I sadly didn't get to attend) and that went over fine.
Actually, QUARK was an abysmal tournament that caused multiple 2nd-years to quit UVA quizbowl, either for the semester or permanently. You're envisioning this set as the successor to that? No good.

As for the argument that this is just going to be okay because there's another spot for a regular event: 2 regular difficulty tournaments in a semester isn't really great, and that's your best scenario. More importantly, it leaves little room for error - if Penn Bowl ends up harder than intended, like it always does, suddenly you've got 1 regular difficulty event. If that undisclosed tournament that might appear doesn't appear, you've got none. We have to account for all possible scenarios, not just best case, in planning out this schedule.
We're explicitly setting the difficulty target high because we want to be honest about our tournament's difficulty and we want to write questions at that difficulty (having planned out a substantial number of answers for it), but we also want to have plenty of questions that are accessible and playable by weaker teams.
"Because we want to write questions at that difficulty" isn't really relevant to a scheduling reform discussion...I'm generally okay with the idea of having like, 1 or 2 tossups in a Regionals packet that are above what's considered "Regionals" difficulty, though. It keeps the best players honest and leaves plenty of room for everybody else.
Hence, if at all possible we'd like to have an overseeing editor to help ensure our goal that no more than 1/3 of tossup answerlines are really harder than "regular difficulty" and ideally fewer than that, and also to make sure we haven't gone off the rails - said person wouldn't have to write anything unless they wanted to.
What? So, you intend to have 6-7 tossups in a 20 tossup packet that you wouldn't want to include in Regionals? That's not even Regionals+, that's VCU Open 2011 territory. I don't think you've thought this through.
We're also expecting open teams to constitute a non-insignificant portion of the field, and we encourage this outcome.
...why?
I would also argue that an expanded amount of "NAQT content" makes the set accessible to more teams. Current events, trash, and geography are subjects that a lot of people tend to have "extra-quizbowl" knowledge of in rather large amounts, and attendance at NAQT collegiate events does tend to be higher than at ACF events - though probably for more reasons than just this.
Will, I like you, but that one time you wrote a tournament with lots of current events, trash, and geography, it wasn't especially "accessible." And it's not like those categories are converted at crazy rates in all tournaments, either. I'm a supporter of pop culture content, but it's not like that magically fixes difficulty issues in academic categories.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Muriel Axon » Sat May 09, 2015 3:11 pm

I'd be fine with making this thing regular difficulty, and I can help to play difficulty cop.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Sat May 09, 2015 3:30 pm

After thinking about this a bit more and talking it over with Itamar, I've become a lot more sympathetic to the arguments various people named Matt (among others) have presented in this thread. We're going to shoot for making this a regular difficulty tournament, with target difficulty equal (or easier, even) than PADAWAN or DRAGOON from recent times.

We do, however, still want to keep the tournament open to non-collegiate teams - we've thought of this tournament as an open from Day 1, and I do earnestly want to give veterans who haven't gotten to play NAQT type events in a while a chance to do so.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Sat May 09, 2015 3:50 pm

Periplus of the Erythraean Sea wrote:After thinking about this a bit more and talking it over with Itamar, I've become a lot more sympathetic to the arguments various people named Matt (among others) have presented in this thread. We're going to shoot for making this a regular difficulty tournament, with target difficulty equal (or easier, even) than PADAWAN or DRAGOON from recent times.

We do, however, still want to keep the tournament open to non-collegiate teams - we've thought of this tournament as an open from Day 1, and I do earnestly want to give veterans who haven't gotten to play NAQT type events in a while a chance to do so.
I would like very much to play this tournament. I also think a regular-difficulty fall open is a good idea, as it includes the benefits of the old fall open model (community engagement) while eliminating some of its drawbacks (blowing new players away with superhard questions).
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by ryanrosenberg » Sat May 09, 2015 6:09 pm

I would really enjoy a fake SCT in the fall semester.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by alexdz » Sat May 09, 2015 6:54 pm

Given a reasonably accessible location and date, I would be interested in such a tournament, for the record.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by fett0001 » Sat May 09, 2015 7:28 pm

I am also interested.
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Re: 2015-16 Schedule, Discussion

Post by grapesmoker » Mon May 11, 2015 1:22 pm

I'd play any open tournament in the fall. In a pinch, you can hold it in my apartment in Pittsburgh; I believe we can accommodate up to six teams in my palatial manse.
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