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Final Results:

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phpbbadmin
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Ok here are the final results, and it looks like we have a tie for first place! The winners can pick up their prize (bragging rights) at any time!

53 Points Gheos by Rene Wiersma (Zaiga)
53 Points Frog God's Pond by Matthew Frederick (Fastlearner)
51 Points Decaying Orbits by Max_Torq
50 Points The Fate of Atlantis by David Brain (Scurra)
48 Points Save the Egg Queen by Johan Forsell (Johan)
45 Points Age of Darkness is by Stephen Harkleroad
42 Island of The Doomed by Verti
41 Points Trenches by Tom Scutt
40 Points The God King by Don Bone (Donb)
39 Points The Last Ships from Atlantis by Torben Mogensen
39 Points Damn You!!! by Ken Maher (Ken)
39 Points Evacuation Earth by Phillip Peterson (Krosse)
38 Points Kaiju by Santiago Eximeno (Qliphoth)
34 Points Bombs Away! by William Kull (Tralfazz)
33 Points Seves by William K. Pashia Jr.
32 Points Children of Frankenstein by Benedek Kovacs

First I want to thank all of you who entered and maintained your patience throughout the whole 'ordeal'. I had hoped the entire process would have gone a little smoother and more as planned, but I guess that was not to be. I also want to thank first and foremost XXOOCC, for his sticktoitness and for his invaluable reviews. Also great kudos go to Alien Menace and Wolf for also pitching in with the judging. Fellows, remind me to give you some free banner ads. I think everyone has learned a lot from the process, including what to do and more importantly, what not to do, for the next contest. If you have any comments or suggestions about the contest, please tack them on to this thread.

Thanks and congrats to all the participants for a job well done!

-Darkehorse

P.S. Some of you have already posted weblinks for others to view your entries, feel free to post a link of your game or let me know if you'd like me to host it.

hpox
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Final Results:

Cool, great contest. It was interesting to read the reviews. It was pretty close for second place too.

FastLearner
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Final Results:

The contest was a lot of fun, and I really enjoyed the process.

Frog God's Pond is currently undergoing revisions, with an eye towards publication. I managed to get rid of the player elimination aspect, created a reasonable scoring system, reduced the randomness a bit, decreased the frequency of auctions so the game plays faster, streamlined the turns (fewer phases), invented a new tile shape that is both pond-like and nifty (and that provides more hopping directions), added some surprises under the mud, etc., making for what will be a little meatier yet still reasonably breezy game, I hope.

The contest -- and most importantly for me, perhaps, the deadline -- really sparked some creativity in me, and helped me to reduce the vagueness of my design process. Thanks to Darke and all the judges, and congrats to Rene and everyone else!

sedjtroll
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Final Results:

Matthew- if I remember correctly, didn't you switch your entry to Frog God Pond at something like the last minute? Congrats on getting it together so quickly! And of course conrats to Rene for the incredible job on Gheos... that deserves a contest win any day.

Looks like all the top scores were tight, reminds me of a good game of Puerto Rico ;) Which brings up the next question- between Zaiga and Fastlearner... who had more Dubloons + Products?

:)

- Seth

Here's hopin' there's a next contest!

zaiga
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Final Results:

FastLearner wrote:
The contest -- and most importantly for me, perhaps, the deadline -- really sparked some creativity in me, and helped me to reduce the vagueness of my design process.

Same here. I love deadlines! :D

Sedjtroll wrote:

Looks like all the top scores were tight, reminds me of a good game of Puerto Rico Which brings up the next question- between Zaiga and Fastlearner... who had more Dubloons + Products?

Yeah, the scores look like they could come from a game of Puerto Rico. In fact, I won my last game of PR with a score of exactly 53 ;) I don't think this contest included a tiebreaker rule, so Matthew and I will have to share the bragging rights.

Congrats to everyone and a great thank you to all of you who made this contest possible. I'm looking forward to the next one!

- René Wiersma

Scurra
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Yeah, my congrats also to Matthew and René, from the lowly depths of fourth-place ;)

Although my minor bragging rights include getting my entry in what felt like about three months before anyone else... :)

It was good fun to read about the other entries (and see a few of them too.)

And extra thanks to Chris and the other judges for their thoughtful comments about all the entries.

(joins crowd) So when's the next one ...?

benedict
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Final Results:

Rene

Congratulations!

Is your game available on the web somewhere? I would be very interested in reading the rules/looking at any pictures of it.

Phillip

Anonymous
An award for Scurra

Say not that ye, those who patronize this noble website, are unappreciated.

Even Scurra shalt have his reward!

Its made from an extremely cheap zinc alloy... after all, third gets bronze...

Scurra
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Final Results:

FOCL.
Thank you so much for that - It's going to get pride of place on the web-page :)

Anonymous
Final Results:

I sent a gold one to Darkehorse for first, but I'm not sure he wants to use it :-).

...This one didn't come out as well because of the 'darker-look' metallic... it swallowed the type a bit.

But whaddya want for a ten-minute quickie graphic ?
:-)
XXOOCC

hpox
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Final Results:

Post them here if you want, personally I'd like to see them.

phpbbadmin
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ewww shiney!

XXOOCC wrote:
I sent a gold one to Darkehorse for first, but I'm not sure he wants to use it :-).

...This one didn't come out as well because of the 'darker-look' metallic... it swallowed the type a bit.

But whaddya want for a ten-minute quickie graphic ?
:-)
XXOOCC

Now Fast and Zaiga both have considerable 'bling bling' factor.

-Darke

jwarrend
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Final Results:

Whoa! Fast and Zaiga each got an Iroc for winning the competition?

-Jeff (ducking the rotten tomatoes...)

Anonymous
Final Results:

Thanks to everyone involved in the competition, particularly Darke for organising the competition and of course his ongoing efforts running the site and to XXOOCC for taking on the gargantuan task of judging and writing some very well thought out assessments of the games. Thanks too to the other designers who put in the effort to produce some very interesting games, many of which will, I'm sure, end up in a store near you!

Designing to a theme and to a deadline proved to be quite challenging (for me anyway). My entry has since evolved into 'Imhotep' and retains very little of the original theme. I am hoping it will see some form of publication in the not too distant future. I am just about to send it out to a few groups for playtesting and depending on the results of that I'll decide how to proceed with publication. If people are interested in looking over the rules I will be posting them on my website in the next week or so.

Cheers

Don

Anonymous
great effort!

Congratulations to the deserved winners; zaiga and fast learner. Personally I am proud that my entry did well among such a creative and perceptive pool of designers.

I appreciate the commitment of time, effort, and maybe stress on the part of the judges and the site administrators that made this possible; this clearly shows a deep and genuine commitment to the designer board-game industry.

Andrew Kelman
Decaying Orbits
http://www.netspeed.com.au/max_torque

Anonymous
Imhotep rules available

As promised earlier, I have posted the rules for the current prototype of 'Imhotep' on my web site. I am in the process fo organising outside playtesting so it may change significantly in the future. If you do download it I'd appreciate any feedback you might have. You can get the rules at

http://sagacity.aires.com.au/Imhotep-Instructions-VIII.6.4.pdf

Cheers

Don

SVan
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Final Results:

Don,

What a beautiful prototype that is! My wife loves Egypt and she was amazed by the quality of it as well. I haven't had the chance to read the rules yet, but will, basically I can get any Egyptian game into the house.

-Steve

SVan
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Have read the rules. This is my first opinion of the game; I like the mechanics a lot and it seems well thought out and balanced.

I think there is a lot going on in the game, and it will take some time to swallow the rules, but after a game or two it will become second nature. One thing that caught my attention was that I don't believe it said anything about during the auction process, if player's bids are tied, how ties are broken, or how to resolve this. This is the only real question I had. The other stuff I feel will be answered by trying the game, and seeing it all in action.

-Steve

Anonymous
Final Results:

Hi Steve,

I've sent you the URL for the artwork for the prototype in a PM. Let me know how you go with it.

Cheers

Don

Triktrak
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When's the next competition?

When might the next competition be?

jwarrend
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Final Results:

Triktrak wrote:
When might the next competition be?

There isn't currently one scheduled, and I wouldn't expect one any time in the near future. Our last competition saw a massive judging bailout, which left our small panel of judges overwhelmed. We haven't really come up with a viable solution for a judging model that will give everyone's game a fair and comprehensive evaluation AND that can plausibly be implemented without overburdening anyone who volunteered to judge. We've talked a bit about trying to develop something, but it will still be a long time coming. Your best bet is to check out the Hippodice competition, or one of the about.com games competitions. Sorry.

-Jeff

sedjtroll
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jwarrend wrote:
We haven't really come up with a viable solution for a judging model that will give everyone's game a fair and comprehensive evaluation AND that can plausibly be implemented without overburdening anyone who volunteered to judge.

What if part of submitting an entry into the competition was that you had to be a judge for the competition?

Each entrant judges all entries but their own, and rates them on a particular scale, with reasoning. Then you count up anyone's score, maybe have one or two unbiased judges go through them all and 'normalize' the results somehow, and see who wins.

Thoughts on that?

- Seth

phpbbadmin
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Final Results:

sedjtroll wrote:
jwarrend wrote:
We haven't really come up with a viable solution for a judging model that will give everyone's game a fair and comprehensive evaluation AND that can plausibly be implemented without overburdening anyone who volunteered to judge.

What if part of submitting an entry into the competition was that you had to be a judge for the competition?

Each entrant judges all entries but their own, and rates them on a particular scale, with reasoning. Then you count up anyone's score, maybe have one or two unbiased judges go through them all and 'normalize' the results somehow, and see who wins.

Thoughts on that?

- Seth

This is a great idea, but it would automatically preclude people who don't have the time to judge X # of entries. A lot of people barely have enough time to get their entry together, much less judge a bunch of entries (especially if it means physically creating each prototype).

Now that I think about it, this is highly unrealistic. If you had 20 entries, you have to wait for all 20 people to judge the other 19 entries. I still think the best idea would be to involve a large game to judge the results. this obviously works for hippodice on the other side of the pond, I don't see why it couldn't work in the US.

-Darke

sedjtroll
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Darkehorse wrote:
Now that I think about it, this is highly unrealistic. If you had 20 entries, you have to wait for all 20 people to judge the other 19 entries.

I sorta figured there'd be fewer entries due to the fact that most people wouldn't have time to judge them.

- Seth

Trickydicky
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Quote:
I sorta figured there'd be fewer entries due to the fact that most people wouldn't have time to judge them.

Doesn't that kind of defeat the purpose of a competition? The only people who can enter are those who have the time to judge as well. This would automatically exclude a number of contestants making the competition less competitive. Which makes winning the competition mean that much less.

sedjtroll
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Trickydicky wrote:
Quote:
I sorta figured there'd be fewer entries due to the fact that most people wouldn't have time to judge them.

Doesn't that kind of defeat the purpose of a competition? The only people who can enter are those who have the time to judge as well. This would automatically exclude a number of contestants making the competition less competitive. Which makes winning the competition mean that much less.
Yes, but for those people it would be better than not having a competition... and for everyone else, they can simply say it's meaningless because some didn't have time to compete.

- Seth

jwarrend
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It depends on how you define the motivation for holding the competition. I think that Darke is looking for an "American Hippodice", and clearly Seth's model wouldn't work for that. For a "just for fun" competition, it might work better, but it's almost guaranteed to be almost meaningless in its outcome -- not a problem in a just for fun competition, but if people are expecting something more, they probably wouldn't enter.

I have previously proposed a "Forum" version of the Game Design Showdown, previously held in Chats, in which a game topic and core mechanic is given and contestants have to come up with a description of a game based on these parameters. It wouldn't be very "serious", and it wouldn't count for anything, but it would be a chance for us to show off our design chops a bit, and to challenge ourselves. And that, really, is what most of these competitions are about; the exception, of course, being Hippodice, which is supposed to be a fast track to publication, and to create something with that goal requires a different scope.

-J

Ken
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Final Results:

Just tossing out an idea here, but why not tie the contest / judging idea with the GDW forum already running?

There seems to be lots of interest in Workshop already, with plenty of posters and comments on each submission.

For a contest, simply have the entries in by a certain date then post them in the Workshop format, with people commenting and suggesting (as per usual). At the end of the evaluation period have each person who commented (excluding the designer) give a rating on the game (not revisions that might come out of the process) using whatever paramaters are decided upon at the outset. Then take an average of all the ratings.

It would be a judging by peers, and a helpful critique all at the same time.

Would this work?

Ken

Ken
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Sorry,

In case this wasn't too clear ... only one game in the forum at a time (1 week evaluation) then the rating, then the next game.

Ken

jwarrend
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Ken,

It's a cute idea, but my feeling is that it doesn't really fit with the philosophy of the GDW, which really is meant to be more of a workshop than a showcase. We get games in all stages of development; some are just first drafts, and I want to encourage this. I don't want people to feel that they're being judged; the point is more to get help with your design, and to offer help with others. I agree that since the GDW is popular, it would be a good tie-in for a contest, but I think that the philosophical aim of the GDW vs that of a contest are just too different for it to work well. Thanks for the thought, though!

-Jeff

Anonymous
Final Results:

I used to be into Interactive Fiction (text adventure games). They have a game design contest every year, and perhaps we could borrow their judging procedure. You can get a glimpse here: http://ifcomp.org/comp04/judge.html.

Essentially, anyone who is not an author of a game may participate as a judge. To judge, you simply play as many of the games as you can, submitting a rating for each game. As long as you play at least five of the entries, your votes are counted. They have a two-hour time limit after which you must submit your vote, but that wouldn't make sense in a boardgame contest.

To make it work as a boardgame contest someone would need to put together a website or even a .zip containing all of the rules to the games. The IF competition includes a program that randomly selects what game you should judge next; we might place such a randomizer on a website and encourage people to use it to guide their play. Otherwise, we could simply post an often-updated tally of how many votes are cast for each entry, so that people would know to play the games that have not been judged as thoroughly. Allow judging to run for six weeks or so.

We'd need to get someone smarter than me to figure out the appropriate way to come up with the final score for each game, taking into account the different number of ratings that each game would receive. (I'm sure Joe Huber could come up with something.)

This system works very well for the IF fans, and I think it could work well for boardgamers, too.

--Randy

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