This year's tournament features a preview of the soon-to-be published Battle Above the Clouds, the eighth and latest game in the Great Campaigns series. The action shifts now from the Eastern Theater to the mountains, rivers and political infighting that dominated the campaign for Chattanooga and points beyond. We have shortened the preliminary rounds to just four, and we'll strive to have six players advancing to Thursday's single-elimination play.
For each of Wednesday's preliminary rounds, we'll offer opponents a choice between a "classic" or BATC scenario (with the classic scenario serving as the default, when two players can't agree).
Also this year, our multi-player campaign game returns. We'll be setting up in Laurel Grove on Thursday (alongside the eliminationo-round games) and players can jump in and out of Scenario 8 from BATC, the 32-turn campaign game which covers Rosecrans' crossing of the Tennessee River in the fall of 1863.
For game-packing purposes, players need only bring Grant Takes Command and the necessary pieces for "South Mountain," from Here Comes the Rebels. We'll have copies of On To Richmond (for the elimination round) and Battle Above the Clouds for prelims, semifinals and the final.
Swiss Elimination Qualifying Day
Demo - 9 am
Learn the mechanics of the system from some of the best players. Try out a brief scenario: Crossing the Chickamauga, from Battle Above the Clouds.
South Mountain (HCR) or Crossing the Chickamauga (BATC) 11 am (played twice, with opponents switch sides)
Wilderness (GTC) or McLemore's Cove (BATC) 1 p.m.
Bethesda Church (GTC) or Chickamauga (BATC) 5 p.m.
Sheridan Rides South (GTC) or Ringold Gap (BATC) 9 p.m.
This year the playoffs and companion demonstration Campaign Game will move off the beaten path of Lampeter to the Laurel Grove room on Thursday.
Quarterfinal: Seven Pines (OTR) 9 a.m. (our top two players will have quarterfinal-byes)
Semi-final: Wilderness (GTC) noon
Final: Chickamauga (BATC) 9 a.m.
Games not completed by the start time of the next round are subject to adjudication by the GM and his assistants.
Bidding for sides: Players must bid for sides. First, players secretly select what side they want by placing a Confederate or Union counter in their hand. If players pick opposite sides play proceeds with no VP modifier. If players pick the same side, roll dice to determine the first bidder. Players then bid VPs until a player passes. That bid becomes the VP modifier for the game.
This year we again use "parity scheduling", along the lines of that used by the National Football League. We will divide the players into four groups:
-- Group 1: top third of the players by AREA rating
-- Group 2: middle third of the players by AREA rating
-- Group 3: bottom third of the players by AREA rating
-- Group 4: newcomers
We will set up the pairings for the Swiss rounds with the following goals (obviously we won't be able to hit these numbers exactly):
-- Group 1: plays 75% of their matches against Groups 1 and 2
-- Group 2: plays 67% of their matches against Groups 1 and 2
-- Group 3: plays 67% of their matches against Groups 3 and 4
-- Group 4: plays 75% of their matches against Groups 3 and 4
This schedule will do two things. First, experienced players will get more close, competitive matches. And newcomers will have an enhanced chance of winning their matches, encouraging them to play longer.
Advancement: Based on BEST record with non-participation in a round counting as a LOSS. Points will be used as the tiebreaker.
Points: Players receive points each time they win. No points are awarded for a loss. Points are given to the winner by taking the loser's AREA rating and multiplying by the scenario multiplier (longer scenarios have higher multipliers)
Crossing Chickamauga/South Mountain 0.5 (note we're playing this one twice - two wins is an effective 1.0 for the scenario)
McLemore's Cove/Wilderness 1.3
Sheridan Rides South/Ringold 1.1