Remarks on the Recent Alliance Tournament 2019 Cancellation

A few hours ago, CCP put out the news that the AT for 2019 had been cancelled, with plans to resume in 2020. This is a deeply unfortunate decision, which I fear may cause the long term drop-off in EVE tournaments. While they do not involve hundreds of players on each side, the competitive scene in EVE still represents one of the most important parts of EVE to me, and likely to much of the population. There’s nothing else like it, in any other game or anywhere in EVE. I personally have had a ton of fun participating in various tournaments, both CCP and player run, and I hope that other people can still do so.

The theorycrafting and metagaming surrounding the AT is the ultimate combination of the sandbox and intrigue of EVE with the rules-based competitive nature of a tournament. Just as much time is spent practicing skills as coming up with fits and comps. And due to the pre-planning, it’s very easy for new players to participate by focus training one particular ship for a comp, often a frigate or destroyer.

It also creates great publicity for EVE, as streams of EVE are not normally that popular outside the AT. I’ve seen quite a number of people who have never played EVE before in Twitch chat. Most people agree, more players is always a good thing for EVE as a whole.

So while it’s pretty known the AT is an anchor of the game, it’s important to also have solutions. In this case, I have two. The first one, is to get on the CSM and then hold CCP to their promise to bring it back in 2020. This went from a mid-tier problem to one of the most important issues I’m looking at virtually overnight, so I’d like to put the appropriate weight behind it.

The other one, is that I’m in the early stages of trying to put together a community run tournament as a direct replacement. It’s uncertain if we’d have Thunderdome access, but I have been putting together a Sisi-Based alternative solution that would allow us to still maintain the rules for implants and drugs, as well as monitoring fittings. There’s a few key things that need to be done here.

The first is updating the rules to 2019, given the changes in the game in the last year. I’ve got a solid set of theorycrafters from AT teams put together that are willing and able to work on these rules, which should turn out nicely. The general base set is good, just needs some adaptations based on meta.

Next is teams. No tournament works without people to actually participate, and I don’t intend to slack there. I’ve been talking to various captains all day and getting tentative commitments of feasibility, so while we likely will not get 64 teams, I think we’d have plenty enough to fill it out. Somewhere around 16-32 is what I’d aim for in an ideal world. One suggestion that’s been mentioned to me is allowing multiple teams from an alliance. If we get to the point of needing those teams, that would be an option, but it runs into the A and B team issues that we’ve seen previously in ATs, so ideally we would be able to avoid that.

The location is another big one. In an ideal world, we’ll be able to access Thunderdome and the tournament tools, as many tournaments have in the past. I’ve been talking to some CCPeople about that. That’s the simple and easy bow on top option. What’s a lot tougher is if we don’t have Thunderdome access. In that case, we’d need to use Singularity. There have always been issues with tournaments on SiSi, especially regarding rules enforcement, but I think with a combination of ideas and the use of citadels, we’d be able to pull it off.

Basically, 30-60 minutes before each match, the banning process will commence. After bans are finalized, teams will have some number of minutes to choose a comp, and provide those fits to the referees. The referees will then fit each ship and place them in a bowhead. Meanwhile, teams will put death clones 2 citadels, each out of dscan range. These citadels will be ACLed to only allow access to the 10 chosen players on each team. Team members will also need to be in a specific corp, to allow monitoring of their item hangars through the security officer roles. The referees will then blow the players up, sending them to these empty citadels. They will then undock and warp to the bowhead, again out of dscan range, where they’ll be be able to pick up their ships with implants inside, ensure the fittings are correct, and then warp to the beacons, at which point the match will commence as normal.

Again, ideally we can just use Thunderdome, but in an emergency, I feel this would be viable. With abuse of my power as Dreddit CEO, as well as other volunteers, we certainly have the manpower to get this done, especially considering how important the AT is.

If you have a team and would be interested in participating, or if you have feedback on the feasibility of this, let me know.