Running a SF4 tourney


#1

Hi, first time running a small tourney here and I just want some tips from people who have done it before.

It will be console tourney, in a small venue w/tube tvs and projectors.

How should I go about seeding matches and rules? should i do single sets or best 2/3? Any advice would be helpful.


#2

Hey man. It’s great that you’re trying to run a tournament! :smile:

I’m trying to throw together some really quick answers for you… might be a little vague or messy, lemme know if it doesn’t quite add up.

The typical format for SF tournaments is something like this:

  • double-elimination bracket
  • best 2/3 rounds per game, best 2/3 games per set
  • random seeding
  • double-blind character selection
  • loser of a game can change their character, winner of a game must keep their same character
  • no turbo functions or programmable controllers or hardware macros are allowed
  • optional rule: (usually used but not always, your choice) all software macros are allowed

Prize money is divided as follows from the total entry fees collected for that game.
1st place - 70%
2nd place - 20%
3rd place - 10%

If you, as the tournament organizer, are paying for use of the venue, it’s reasonable to charge a small “venue fee” to each entrant to recoup that rental cost. (If you have multiple games at your tournament, a player will pay the entry fee for each game he enters but would only pay the venue fee once.) You’re going to want to be very up-front with your math about this, though, so that everyone knows you’re being fair. Tournament organizers should not pocket anything.

The most important piece of advice that I can give you is to be certain that you can do this before you try to do this. Make absolutely sure that the equipment/TV’s/consoles/cables will be there. Make absolutely sure that the venue is secure. If you’ve never used a bracket before, make up sixteen names and fabricate some results and practice filling through the whole thing and determining who places where. It’s easy-peasy once you’ve done it a couple of times but it can really twist your head up if you’ve never done it before. Tournament day is absolutely not the time for you to be figuring it out. For better or for worse, people in this community have a very low tolerance (read: once chance) for failed events and broken promises; if you screw up your first time, expect that nobody will want to attend another tournament held by you for a looong time. I tooootally don’t mean to sound like an ass but if that sounds too intimidating, you really do not want to be running a tournament.

Other things off the top of my head… post your date well in advance. Ask any other, more experienced tournament organizers in your area (or not! message some online!) for input and feedback and advice. Create a time schedule for how you expect to see everything run and be sure to let everyone know what it is. Tournaments never actually run on time so in reality it’s going to be a verrry elastic thing, but just having that intended schedule is pretty key to keeping your shit from descending into a spiral of absolute chaos and disorganization.

Uhhhm, I won’t go too much into details or exceptions or whatever for now. This is more or less what should apply to you. Please please please ask questions if you have any, both for your sake and for the sake of the players that attend your event.

Honestly, good luck with this and good shit for trying!!


#3

If you have a few players coming in from out of town or as a group, you might want to seed those yourself so that they don’t play each other early on (and then proceed to do the rest of the seeding randomly). People don’t like making the effort to go out to a tourney with their friends only to end up playing nobody but the people they came with.

You might also want to separate the top 2/3 from previous tournaments if they show up, so that they don’t knock each other out early on in the tournament.

And I have to emphasize what deadfrog said about being upfront with venue fees and where players’ money is going. Be very clear about it and make sure there is no confusion. If you absolutely have to pocket any money for any reason, make sure people know about it. You don’t want your tournament to end up like this.


#4

Alright thanks.Whats double Blind character selection

Here’s my double-elim bracket (16)

http://img189.imageshack.us/i/bracket.gif/

I have a question what would I do if only 12 or 14 people enter the tourney? It unevens the brackets to the finals.

I’m running this side-by with a Tekken 6 tourney and I know little a/b SF. ALL venue fees and enter the games will be free… small prize will come out of pocket ( like 1st and 2nd only). All I ask id byoc/byos… its more of by a gamer for gamers tourney.


#5

Time is probably the hardest thing to estimate. If your venue needs you out by a certain time, you’ll need to be pretty careful about things to make sure you stick to it. That really depends on the number of entrants of course, along with how many setups you will have, how many games per match etc. Fairly fine balancing act at times.

Other than that, have a read of the Evo rules and whatnot, they cover many things that may have slipped your mind. Also take a gander at http://zachd.com/mvc2/tourney.html - although it’s not entirely applicable it’s still useful.

If 12 people show up to your tourney, use the 16 man bracket, and assign byes with whatever strategy you want - completely randomly, or give the byes to the strongest people if you know who they are. It’s not really a problem, byes are pretty standard.

Double blind goes like this:
player A tells the tourney ref (and ONLY the tourney ref) who they will pick.
player B picks
player A picks the char they told the ref.
This way neither player sees they other’s choice beforehand, hence ‘double blind’

Good luck!


#6

^ 100% what Flux said.

Is this your first time running a tournament? Trying to do two games at the same time is quite ambitious, so make sure you have some help and make sure your help knows what theyre doing too. I would recommend that you seriously consider running only one of the two games for at least just this first time.

Double-blind character selection, a.k.a. blind pick for short (explanation/elaboration/clarification):
For the first game of a set, each player must choose their character before they know who the other player is going to choose. This is designed specifically to stop counter-picking. Of course, both players can see one anothers cursor on the character select screen so an out-of-game solution is needed to ensure this.
Here are the most common methods of doing this:

  • First player whispers their choice of character to an unbiased mediator (usually the bracket judge), second player picks their character in the game, and then the first player picks their said character in the game while the mediator watches.
  • First player writes down their choice of character on a piece of paper, second player picks their character in the game, second player checks the piece of paper, and then first player picks their written character in the game.
    If people are being super paranoid you can have both players tell the mediator, or have both players write down their choices on separate pieces of paper, but this is overkill.
    Note that for 90% of matches (and probably more like 99% at little local tourneys), nobody will enforce blind pick because nobody cares that much… or everyone assumes that everyone else is already doing it via the honour system, haha. It is important, however, to make sure that your players understand that this provision is available to them whenever they would prefer to use it.

I’m not intimately familiar with how Tekken heads like their tournament formats, but I’m pretty sure it’s all the same except for one thing: each game is best 3/5 rounds.


#7

It helps to decide which system is going to be used for your tournament.

If you have 16 players, and 10 own PS3s, I’d go with the PS3.

Keep it simple and stick with one system running both games. If both games are running at the same time, the same system can be used to help the other tourney “catch up” as soon as one is done.

You can’t please all players by deciding one or the other. Most people only own one system and owns only 1 pad or stick.

Lastly, as fun as tourneys are, try and get the event finished as fast as possible. This may allow for some casual play after the main tourney and allow for side events. Some players from out of town might have time restraints as well.

EDIT: You could also take a poll and see what systems are being used in your area.


#8

Good points, yeah. Trying to run a tournament with different systems (with the intention of allowing people to use their own system’s controllers or even worse, pads) is possible, but is also intensely frustrating.

And yes, running multiple games or even multiple setups, while not necessarily being more complicated, is a lot more taxing. It definitely helps having a couple of helpers (aka judges) who can look over the setups while you run the brackets.

Definitely keep it as simple as possible for your first tourney.

I should probably also mention the Tournament Maker software, it’s really pretty awesome for running a tourney off. Take a look here: http://www.shoryuken.com/showthread.php?t=123601
Play around with it and simulate some tourneys, it’ll probably clear a few things up in your mind and make things easier on the day.


#9

It sounds cruel at first, but don’t be afraid to disqualify no-showers. Waiting for people that take way too long to show up for their match usually ends up making the whole thing run longer than it should have. In the long run, it’s worth it to just DQ them.

With that said, make sure that the players know this.