The Organized Play team is pleased to announce an update to the Competitive Season Status page. The tracker is a valuable resource for tournament organizers who want to keep up to date with the latest kits and plans for the rest of the season. Bookmark the tracker for easy access to the latest plans and announcements!
Feedback from the Organized Play survey and internal Null Signal Games discussion was used to update the Organized Play policy. While most policies remain the same as the 2022 season, the key differences are described below.
Support for Casual Events
One of the main priorities for the team is making more kits available for Casual-tier events, specifically Games Night Kits (GNKs) and Circuit Openers. Our intention is to have a new GNK available each quarter. Various improvements have been made and we are already seeing results – stay tuned for 2023 Q1 GNK!
Survey results demonstrated the popularity of Circuit Opener events. To that end, our first Circuit Opener kit for the year is available now, and sales will be open for two weeks! Moreover, we will be offering a second CO kit in the latter half of the year to provide more support for these widely-run and well-attended events. The new kit will allow organizers to fill the gaps between GNKs and larger limited events like National and World Championships.
The Last Chance Qualifier is a new online event that will occur late in the season after Worlds. The qualifier is an online tournament where Top Cut finishers will secure a spot in the Circuit Breaker Invitational. More details on this event will be available later in the season.
Byes and Tiebreakers
The Organized Play team is implementing two important changes for the 2023 Season:
- No byes will be given for winning events of any tier. Unused, existing byes from the previous 2022 season will only be honored for 2023 events.
- No tiebreaker rounds will be conducted at any Null Signal Games events, specifically Continental and World Championships. The Organized Play Policy will be updated to reflect this in the future. Tiebreaker rounds will remain an optional rule for Casual-tier tournaments.
We will monitor these changes during the 2023 Season and adapt accordingly in the 2024 Season if they don’t accomplish our goals.
Offering byes to National and Continental Championship winners in the 2022 Season was an attempt to increase attendance for those events and build a sense of progression into the tournament track. In practice, neither of these things were entirely successful. Several Nationals level events had low attendance despite having byes available. Therefore, we don’t believe offering byes meaningfully improves the attendance or competitiveness of events.
Tiebreaker rounds have not proven to be worth the logistical cost. They extended tournament run times in both online and physical play, with the tiebreaker round at this year’s in-person Worlds adding over an hour to the schedule. These rounds also have led to very few changes in top cut qualifications, and still end up eliminating players on matched points. Strength of Schedule will be the primary method of resolving ties moving forward.
The date and location of the 2023 World Championship will be announced as soon as details are confirmed, followed by further articles with more information on the venue and prizes. A venue has been selected, a contract is under review, and we intend to further solidify details by the end of month.