Hello everybody! We’ve had lots of people asking questions about exactly how the new StarCityGames.com Players’ Championship system works, and I want to take some time to try to clarify for those who are interested in the details of how it works.
Losing Levels Without Losing Anything
The StarCityGames.com Open Series has been shifting away from a level system for a few years now, so when the 2014 announcement came up and there were no more levels it may not have been surprising. However, many people were confused about what would happen with the benefits that they earned in 2013. The simple answer is you keep them through 2014.
All players who earned a StarCityGames.com Open Points level during the 2013 season (events beginning between December 15th, 2012 and December 13th 2013) will carry their benefits through the end of 2014. A quick refresher:
- Level 1 – 15 Points: One Invitation valid to any 2014 Invitational
- Level 2 – 30 Points: Two Invitations valid to any 2014 Invitationals
- Level 3 – 60 Points: Qualification for all 2014 Invitationals and one bye at each Invitational
- Level 4 – 100 Points: Qualification for all 2014 Invitationals and two byes at each Invitational
These qualifications will be awarded in January, so don’t worry if they aren’t showing up yet.
Invitational “Seasons” Are Longer Than You Think
I also wanted to address some confusion regarding Invitational Seasons and how to qualify for the StarCityGames.com Players’ Championship. There’s a full document on qualification for those who are interested, but here’s a handy visual guide:
At the end of each Invitational Season, we will qualify the winner of the Invitational and then the Seasonal points leader for the StarCityGames.com Players’ Championship. (In the case of a previous qualification, the qualification will pass down.) Additionally, at the end of the Seattle Invitational (what you could best describe as “the 2014 season”), we will qualify the Top 8 unqualified players from the StarCityGames.com Open Series standings.
While this is pretty straightforward, let’s discuss some misconceptions I’ve noticed:
Event Start Dates Matter
An event falls within an Invitational Season only if the event’s starting date falls within that season. Thus since the Las Vegas Invitational, which is a multi-day event, began on December 13th, its results are included in the standings only during the Charlotte, Columbus, and New Jersey Invitational Seasons; when the Seattle Invitational Season begins, the Las Vegas Invitational results fall off the standings.
The Las Vegas Opens held on December 14 and December 15, 2013 do fall within the Seattle Invitational Season, and those results will still be included in the standings. Each Invitational Season is set up so that the Friday of the Invitational for which it is named is the final date in the season, making the Invitational the final event. This structure gives us a clear picture of the race for the coveted top position in that season’s standings and for the slot in the StarCityGames.com Players’ Championship as the players in the Opens look to get a jump on the next season’s standings!
Points Do Not “Reset”—Seasons Shift
Each Invitational Season is approximately one year, covering the time since the 2013 Invitational in the same quarter. The standings for the upcoming Invitational will be displayed on StarCityGames.com and will also be highlighted weekly on SCGLive so that you can follow your favorite players as they vie for a spot in the StarCityGames.com Players’ Championship. With these standings being where we derive our rankings, having them reset each quarter does not make sense. Brian Braun-Duin did not become the worst player on the Open Series just because he didn’t participate in an Open in Las Vegas. In fact, with his Top 8 in the Invitational, you can argue that he should definitely stay up at the top of the leaderboard (which is exactly what he did!).
With the rolling calendar of these standings, we combine the idea of tracking the best player over the past year while limiting the number of times per year that you have to worry about points “dropping off.” In our system, each Invitational will be the exclamation point at the end of that season’s standings, while the Open competitors kick off the next season and start climbing toward the next Invitational.
Yearly Points & Qualifications
Each year we track how many points you have earned and you unlock one slot-based qualification for each 15 points you earn. As noted, yearly points reset each calendar year.
- 15 Points: One Invitation valid to any of the next four following Invitationals
- 30 Points: One additional Invitation valid to any of the next four following Invitationals
- 45 Points: One additional Invitation valid to any of the next four following Invitationals
- 60 Points: One additional Invitation valid to any of the next four following Invitationals
If two people tie for the same amount of Open Points, here is how we break the tie:
- Total StarCityGames.com Open Series Points earned in a StarCityGames.com Invitational during the current Invitational Season
- Total StarCityGames.com Open Series Points earned in a StarCityGames.com Open during the current Invitational Season
- Highest finish in a StarCityGames.com Invitational during the current Invitational Season
- Highest finish in a StarCityGames.com Open during the current Invitational Season
- Second-highest finish in a StarCityGames.com Invitational during the current Invitational Season
- Second-highest finish in a StarCityGames.com Open during the current Invitational Season.
Invitations do pass down if an Invitational winner is qualified or if a Seasonal points leader is qualified at the end of an Invitational.
StarCityGames.com State Championship Open Points Upgrade
As we’ve noticed a firestorm of excitement and activity around our In-Store Programs (whose points help you climb the Leaderboard), we are excited to announce an update to our Invitation Policy document that vastly increases the Open Points provided at StarCityGames.com State Championships (May 17-18) to ensure they’re a can’t-miss event! In addition to qualification for any of the next four StarCityGames.com Invitationals, the winner will now get ten Open Points!
Here’s the new breakdown:
- 1st Place: 10 Open Points
- 2nd Place: 8 Open Points
- 3rd-4th Place: 6 Open Points
- 5th-8th Place: 4 Open Points
- 9th-16th Place: 3 Open Points
- 17th-32nd Place: 2 Open Points
- 33rd+ Place: 1 Open Point
Good luck to all those battling on May 17th-18th!
Whenever you roll out a system of this nature, you can expect a bit of confusion and misconception to occur. I hope this article helps clear that up for those with any questions. If you have any further questions, feel free to leave them in the comments below, and we’ll ensure they get answered.
Thanks for your continued support of StarCityGames.com Organized Play!