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Caravel Forum : Caravel Boards : Contests : Contest Coordination and General Rules
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icon Contest Coordination and General Rules (+11)  
Hi everyone :) This is the new thread for anyone interested in running their own contest. Erik's Running Your Own Fishbowl thread has a lot of good advice, but some of the information there is out of date. In particular, there hasn't been a Department of Challenges or Contest Coordinator for a while. I'm putting myself forward to fill that role.

This has come about after two discussions in chat. Firstly, in September, we talked about the fact that some really good contests had recently appeared, but weren't being made official because no-one was around who had the authority to do so. I wrote to Mike about this, and he said it was okay for me to designate contests as official, which I did for Kieran's Year of RPG contest. Then, today, it came up that several people have ideas for contests they'd like to run in the future, so it would be good to have a contest queue so that everyone can take their turn in an orderly, Empire-approved fashion.

So, this is how it will work from now on, unless one of the higher authorities steps in and says differently. If you want to run an official contest, send me your contest idea by private message, together with when you would like to run it. If it seems like a good idea, it'll get added to the queue.

Architecture contests should generally have more time allowed than other contests (especially if contestants have to build an entire level). So an architecture contest may step slightly outside the bounds of its month. Ideally, architecture and non-architecture contests would alternate so as to keep things balanced, but we can't always stick to that ideal, so it's okay to propose a contest idea even if it's an architecture contest right after another one.

What about unofficial contests? Those will continue to work in the same way: anyone can make one at any time. However, if you want to coordinate your unofficial contest with the queue, so as to avoid overlapping with a similar contest, that's fine too -- just let me know about your contest and I'll add it here.

* * *

Current contest queue:

March: Custom Element Revival

50th Skywatcher

[Last edited by Nuntar at 03-21-2020 02:57 AM]
12-19-2016 at 10:06 PM
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icon Re: Contest Coordination and General Rules (+1)  
A few people have pointed out that it would be beneficial to have a post explicitly setting out the general rules that apply to all official contests. So, this is a first attempt at setting out those general rules; if anything isn't clear or you can think of anything else that needs a ruling, feel free to post.

Roles of the Contest Coordinator and contest host

* The Contest Coordinator (currently me) is responsible for maintaining the official contest queue, keeping the list of contest participants up to date, and contacting Schik to confirm who receives what prizes.

* The contest host (the person organising the individual contest) is responsible for starting the contest topic, submission topic and voting topic, and announcing results. If it's your first time hosting a contest, ask Schik for the ability to start a submission topic. Announcement of results should include a full list of who made each entry.

* Both the Contest Coordinator and the host are allowed to enter a contest. The host receives a participation credit towards an 8-timer prize regardless of whether they enter.

* For architecture contests, the contest host is responsible either for making a compilation hold, or finding someone else to take charge of this.

Participating in contests

* Two people may submit an entry that is their joint work. In this case, it counts as a full participation credit for both participants, but any prizes are divided between them, and they should decide in advance what to do with the Prize Pile pick in case they win first place.

* Participants may privately show their entries to other people, for example for testing and feedback, before submitting them. However, content that has been publicly released (for example on Architecture, or as part of another hold) may not be submitted for contests.

* Entries should not contain any content that violates copyright; this includes copying of existing DROD rooms without the authors' permission.

* One person may submit up to three entries to any contest. They do not get multiple participation credits for submitting more than one entry.


* When starting the voting topic, the contest host should publish all entries in a form that hides their authors' identities. These will be revealed after the end of the voting period.

* Anonymity is not strict. Some of us will often be able to guess who made some entries, either from architectural style or from remarks in CaravelNet chat. Anyone doing a Let's Play of entries will most likely reveal their own entry and provide some clues to others. There's nothing wrong with this; the contests are fairly informal and we trust each other to vote fairly. Still, it's good to have anonymised entries as some people have said they would be discouraged from participating if we didn't.

Architecture contests

* Entries should always be Anyone Edit. At the discretion of the contest host, entries that are not Anyone Edit may be excluded from voting and prizes.

* Participants should consider the eventual compilation when constructing their entries. For contests that require participants to build an entire level, there will typically be an Advanced Concepts-style hub, so entries should include stairs back to the hub (allowing the player to leave an entry unfinished and look at another) and stairs that are only accessible when an entry is complete.

* All HA rules apply to architecture contest entries, except for contests such as Cheap Trick that have a special rule overriding this. Thus, all entries should be conquerable, all secrets should be completable, all challenges should be attainable, and there should be no backtracking issues.

* At some time after voting, the contest host or their delegate should post the compilation to Architecture, with the aim of eventually promoting it to Holds. While the hold is in Architecture, participants may submit changes such as fixes for unintended solutions or scripting bugs. The hold compiler may make quality-of-life changes such as adding checkpoints to a room completely lacking them, but should not themselves try to fix unintended solutions if the entry's architect declines to do so.

* Participants may ask for individual rooms or their entire entry to be excluded from the compilation, for example if they wish to include it in a hold of their own. The hold compiler should always grant such a request.


* Participants are always encouraged to vote 10 for themselves, but to rate other entries fairly.

* Individual contests may recommend particular schemes for how voters should assign votes to each entry. If there is no particular recommendation, then voters should rate entries for fun or overall quality out of 10, as if rating a hold on the Holds board. Voters should not "stagger" their votes (i.e. give their least favourite entry 1, their second least favourite 2 -- unless those are in fact how they would rate those entries for overall quality).


* All official contests have the following prize scheme:

First place: 100 rank points and a pick from the Prize Pile
Second place: 50 rank points
Third place: 25 rank points
First-time entry: 10 rank points
8-timer prize: For participating in eight contests, one pick from the Prize Pile, but only those prizes specifically designated as available for 8-timers.

In the event of a tie for one of the top three places, both tied participants are awarded that place.

If multiple entries by the same author place in the top three, only the highest-ranked is awarded a place, and other entries are moved up accordingly.

If fewer than five entries are submitted, the contest host should consult the Contest Coordinator and decide between them whether to extend the deadline for submissions, or cancel the contest. In the latter case, everyone who entered still receives a participation credit, but there are no prizes.

* For the Deadlies (annual awards), prizes are lifetime CaravelNet membership for the Erik Hermansen Lifetime Architectural Achievement Award, 10 rank points for each other award. Each award should only have one winner, so if there is a tie, a vote-off is held. If a tie remains, all tied first places receive 10 rank points.

* For the Blind Races, first, second, third and fourth places receive 20, 15, 10, 5 rank points respectively.

50th Skywatcher

[Last edited by Nuntar at 04-16-2019 02:23 AM]
03-02-2017 at 04:50 PM
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