Council of Five Nations XXXIII, October 8-10, 2010, and beyond

Council of Five Nations is always on Columbus Day weekend. This is usually the second weekend in October, but not always. Whenever you buy a new calendar, we suggest you open it up to October and immediately write "Council of Five Nations" on the Friday-Saturday-Sunday before the official Columbus Day national holiday. And write it in pen, not pencil!

If you'd like to plan far ahead, here are the dates for Councils several years into the future:
Oct 8-10, 2010
Oct 7-9, 2011
Oct 5-7, 2012
Oct 11-13, 2013
Oct 10-12, 2014
Oct 9-11, 2015

We hope to see you at all of them!

You can always get the most up-to-date info about the Star Fleet Battles tournament at Council of Five Nations here:

You can also get the most up-to-date general Council information here:

Dave, any news on Council,

Dave, any news on Council, since we are just three months away? Are the hotel arrangements set up? I like to make my reservations early, so I was just curious. Looking forward to another great convention

Council Hotels

Our hotel guy is actively meeting with the hotel reps. He gave a report just last week. Since there seems to be very high turnover in that industry, we have to start from scratch every year with a new person.

We will be publicizing hotel rates very soon.


Council gaming

I should be able to go!

the wife says ..."go"

money is tight for us....

Counci = better gaming experience than Orgins

I hope to play SFB, BAttlegounds, and Titan


Your wish is our command!


I will practically guarantee that Council will offer all that you request!

There is a 90% chance that the manufacturers of Battleground: Fantasy & Historical Warfare will be present to run demos, run tournaments & to sell.

Titan is also very popular in these parts. We had a multi-week Titan Tournament a few months ago, and I suspect it will build momentum for this classic game. You can read up on the tournament here:

Heh. Titan.

Yeah, Rob, there will certainly be Titan. Team Ithaca is very Titan enthusiastic, and Andy Koch (aka Droid) just drove down on Friday from Rochester to play Titan with us, swearing to get revenge at Council. So there will certainly be no lack of Titan sets and/or games :-)

Hey Pete! Yeah... Titan is

Hey Pete!

Yeah... Titan is the ultimate monster mash. It gets a little boring , but then gets exciting as you see Titan stacks get ambushed hehe

Yes, I am familiar with the ambush scenario!

I drove down and played some Titan with the Ithaca folks. We played a 6 player game and I actually was a factor, taking down three Titans before my big, burly, teleporty, lone Titan stack got whacked by Peter's jungle stack .
I had alot of fun and learned some stuff. Foremost was don't kill Mrs. Wampler (Amanda?), as you will spend the rest of the game getting hunted down like a dog :-).
Another important lesson was DO NOT bring your reprint set to a game with old school players. Oh they were polite enough about it, but I'm sure they were like, smack talking after I left. Heh.

Anyway Rob it would be great to see you there! I hope it works out and you're not just teasing us :)

Rob Bassett

I think he's comitted to coming again this year. I may also bring a couple of others. They say they want to come, but they always back out at the last moment. But Rob is 80% I would say.

Heh heh.

Yeah, that was an impressive Titan game. A full 6 player game that was decisively over in 3.5 hours. Andy killed 3 players (Proper should have won the game, but he forgot to Protect the Queen) and then I whacked him, as he had a single stack wandering the board killing stuff, but he couldn't survive against multiple serpents. And once Andy was dead, it was me (3 or 4 stacks with maybe 3 serpents total) vs Courtenay (7 or 8 stacks with, like, 8-10 Hydras total). So I surrendered, as I wasn't getting out of that alive.

Squad Leader, Rail Baron/1830, Diplomacy, Empires in Arms

all of these are other games that I used to love to play.

Really anything Napoleonic ( Clash of Arms series)

Squad Leader...argulably the only game more complicated than SFB

Rail Baron/1830 Very good Railroad empire games

Diplomacy the backstabbing can be classic



Good ol Courtenay didn't really do much except advise my opponents. And breed Hydras. And win.

That is His Way.

Ya know. He is consistent.

Discussion - Swiss instead of Patrol for Council Tournament


Last year, Ken Burnside floated a proposal that we could run the Council SFB tournament in a Swiss scoring style, rather than the traditional Patrol-then-single-elimination-finals.

A few of us discussed it and decided not to go that way, but part of it was because we didn't get around to really looking at the idea until a bit too late in the process.

If we start now, the whole community can pitch in and examine the pros and cons together.

Here is the text of the document Ken prepared:

= = = = = = = =

Swiss Format SFB Tournament Proposal:
Council of Five Nations

To remedy a number of the time constraint and scheduling issues for SFB tournaments, I propose a change from the Patrol Format (where each player has to play 3 games to get either a win loss record or a net kills record to be seeded to a 3 or 4 round finals match) to one modeled off of the way that Swiss scoring is used in Chess or Bridge tournaments. I used this format on two tournaments in the early '90s; these later had their sanction revoked.
As the primary reason for sticking with Patrol format tournaments is that they allow for Sanctioning and the award of a Rated Ace pin, and Council has already decided that this wasn't worth the hassle, an alternate tournament format can at least be considered.

Drawbacks of Patrol Format:
The Patrol format allows players to play 'as much SFB as they want', which usually translates into a pool of 6-12 good players desperately hoping that enough people sign up to 'play one for the team' to pad the numbers sufficient to get an Ace card. In theory, it rewards players who play a lot of SFB at a convention; in practice, it results in players trying for a perfect 3-0 record and then hiding, or, if a loss is accrued, hanging around to find a duffer to play to pad the record and get into the finals.

I contend that this format is indirectly responsible for many of the declines we've seen in tournament attendance, because it relies on there being enough players willing to 'play one for the team' to fill out the roster. For the serious players, it means that once you're in the SFB tournament, you can't really afford to leave the tournament area to do anything else; you have no idea how many games you need to play, when they'll start, or when they'll end, meaning that if you want to do SFB and something else, you're out of luck…and for the people who come in and 'play one for the team', they're going to sit down and get their head handed to them. Nothing is in greater demand in a Patrol tournament than a guy who flies the Seltorian and loses quickly.

For the players who do make it all the way through, it results in somewhere between five and seven (and possibly as many as ten) games of SFB played, which is something that lends SFB some of its hardcore mystique - and keeps casual players well away. SFB should not be as grueling as running a marathon. Really. None of us are in our 20s anymore.

Explanation of Swiss Scoring Events
In a Swiss Scoring event, there are a fixed number of rounds that all participants may play in; for SFB with 20-40 players, I'd recommend three rounds. At the end of each game in the round, the performance of the players in a given match is used to generate a point total for each player

The point totals in each round are generated by the following method:
Add one to the percentage of the enemy's ship you destroyed, and subtract the percentage of your own ship that was destroyed in the process. Count 30% of each ship's shield damage as internals for the purpose of this scoring. Boxes that have been repaired (even hastily repaired as something else) don't count as destroyed. Multiply the result by 100. This gives your raw point total.

I also propose extra points be awarded for completing games quickly; every 3 minutes left on the clock when the game ends adds 2 points to a pool. The winner of the match gets 2/3 of the 'time points', the loser gets 1/3 of the 'time points'; fractional time points are rounded normally.

Example: Dave's Hydran and Ken's WYN AuxTC fight a tournament battle; at the time that Dave concedes, his Hydran has taken 73 internals of 95 (74.7%), and Ken's AuxTC has taken 39 of 91 internals (42.8%). Ken scores (1.747-0.428)*100 = 131.9 points. Dave scores (1.428-0.747)*100=68.1 points. If Dave conceded with an hour left to play, both players score an additional four points on the total, for 135.9 and 72.1

This will require that a table be made up of all the internal counts of every tournament ship; I know of a few online. I can build a spreadsheet that does the math for the judges in about 15 minutes, including letting them select ships for players, and enter the number of internals done, and having it pull the total number of internals.

Round 1 is randomly seeded. The tournament director just pairs people who want to play, notes their start time and their end time. The last game of Round 1 should be done in early afternoon on Saturday.

After Round 1 is completed, all the players who show up to play in round 2 are seeded in order by point total, with the player ranked #1 playing #2, player ranked #3 playing the player ranked #4, and so on. After Round 2, scores from Round 1 and Round 2 are added together, and that cumulative total is used to seed Round 3.

Example: Ken's Wyn AuxTC goes up against Paul's ATC, and Ken loses, taking 71 internals and dishing 33 to Paul, with 1.5 hours on the clock (+6 to both players). Dave's Hydran defeats Bakija's Gorn with 10 minutes left, taking 22 internals and delivering 89. Ken gets 37.9+6 points (adding to the 135.9 he got last time), and Dave gets 169.2 added to the 72.1 he got last time. Ken is now at 179.8, and Dave is at 241.3.

At the end of Round 3, if the two players with the top scores have not faced each other before, they can play a single elimination final to determine first and second place. Otherwise, prizes go in the order of most points to least.
As can be seen from the examples, it's possible to claw your way back out of a hole in scoring, and it puts an emphasis on relative performance in each round.

Benefits of Swiss Scoring
Swiss Scoring has the following benefits:
1) For people who want to do SFB and something else, Swiss format is much better. While Round 1 is at large, it can be any four hour block of time that you have a game. Round 2 and 3 will have a dedicated start time and end time that can be scheduled around, not provisionally scheduled "If I make the finals".
2) For players of differing skill levels, Round 2 and Round 3 will result in them playing someone with a comparable score; it's not perfect, but it's better than being the guy who has the 1-2 record and is the designated speed bump for Paul Scott in the finals.
3) The tournament can run with any even number of people. It is not limited to a magical power of 2.
4) Because of how rounds are scored, non-aggression will be rare. It's better to lose quickly (and get the points for early completion) than to play a passive aggressive game and pray for a friendly judge.
5) A large chunk of the field remains in contention until Round 3 ends and the final tally is done; this causes a lot more interest in the Round 2 and Round 3 games, rather than three fourths of the field, getting eliminated and heading out for a beer.
6) The points for early completion, while small, make it less likely that a judge will have to break up games.
7) If a judge has to break up a game, the procedure is simple: Calculate points as if the game had run to completion using the internals already done.

Drawbacks of Swiss Scoring
Swiss Scoring has the following drawbacks
1) It's different. We're talking about a target audience that has been playing the same tourney format with some variations on it for nearly 20 years. Expect there to be "but, but, but…" as people try to figure out how this alters what and how they'd play.
2) It does give a benefit to destroying your opponent's ship. A hypercompetitive player is has an incentive to be a jerk because he gets points for blowing someone up rather than accepting a concession. A proposed fix is that concessions are not allowed before turn 4, impulse 32 of a game. If you concede before you're crippled, you're assumed to have taken 51% of your internals for points.
3) The Orion is marginally weaker in Swiss format than it is in a standard Patrol format tourney; it has the fewest internals (72) of any tourney ship. Each box damaged from engine doubling is 1.3 points conceded to its opponent. A proposed fix is that engine doubling damage disables an engine box (circle the box), while damage to the engine destroys the box. This means a disabled engine box can still absorb a damage point.
4) The TKE, even more than the Orion, tends to suffer in this format.
5) While not a drawback per se, there is a point where it's probably better for your point total to concede rather than play on, and there are players who consider that to be metagaming.
6) There is a bit more data entry involved on the part of the judge; he has to enter the number of internals each player did and took when a result is turned in into a spreadsheet. (I've created this spreadsheet and attached it.)

Excel Workbook
I've included an Excel workbook with this document - the Data Entry tab allows you to enter the player's name and select their ship from a drop down; from there it automatically pulls the internal count of each TC from a hidden table. Each round, select the player's opponent, which will pull up their ship automatically, then enter the number of internals done and the number of internals received, and the number of 15 minute 'blocks of time' they have left over when their game is done. (I tried to figure out how to put in start time and entry time in Excel to calculate how much time was left, then divide by 15 minute intervals, but it proved to be unfeasible.)

It will automatically calculate their point totals for each round - you will have to do the data entry for both players.
On the Rankings tab, you can select column B and sort by point totals to build the next round matchup.

= = = = = = = =

Here is some supplementary text from the email that contained the attached document (above):

Paul has one recommended modification:

That in addition to internals done, that a percentage of the shield boxes be counted towards the 'damage total done', so that big plasma ships using the ballet don't get hosed on standings.  He did some statistical regressions and determined that the number needed was somewhere between 20% and 30%, and I'm recommending we treat it as 30%.

It's worked into the document I've attached, but I've been too busy to rewrite the examples to show scoring.

Until you have an odd number of players, drop outs are easy.  You just don't seed them into the next Swiss round.

When there is an odd number of players, the best method is to find someone who finished early and ask them if they'd like to 'play the bye', or have a non-playing judge who plays the odd person out.

= = = = = = = = =

There you go.

As the Mike Meyers character from SNL used to say: "Discuss!"


Having set start/end times is

Having set start/end times is a large plus to this system. It allows you to schedule other non-SFB games, without worrying you won't get enough games in.


Good work Dave!

You may want to consider adding the championship game, winner take all, even if it's a rematch. I think that would put a bow on it. I would also put the 4 turn concession rule in. That seems reasonable.

One other problem we may want to address, is that we have a few, in particular the potential long distance travellers, who may not be satisfied with three possibly four games. Do any of these people want to weigh in? Just pick-up sfb in between rounds maybe? A patrol event? Or are we all good with it?

My opinion is that this is great, as it allows you to go play Titan, or drink beer, take meal breaks, drink beer, etc between rounds. It gives weaker and middle tier players a chance to be a factor because they who can still rack up points due to the seeding system. I am sure that any drawbacks inherent to Swiss format, like people gaming the system, will not be as bad as what we have been experiencing for years with the other formats.

Titan and Beer

Great combo!

love it!

Can't wait to seeing human gamers again!


Ken gets the credit!

I just copied-and-pasted his work into the post here. Ken Burnside did all the heavy lifting!

Scheduling around the Patrol Finals

Here's a log for the fire...

With the Patrol format, you know that a big bunch of the SFB players will be free for the 7pm session on Saturday, as they will not have made the finals. And then four more will be free Sunday morning, as they will not have advanced. We've used this knowledge to plan other complimentary events.

For example, I've already emailed the Your Move Games guys (the makers of Battleground: Fantasy/Historical Warfare). I suggested they plan for some kind of tournament event for Saturday at 7pm, and again on Sunday, to potentially capture the SFB players who will be freed up.

(For those of you who haven't been there, B:FW and B:HW have really caught on with the SFB crowd at Council).

Also, given all the talk about Titan here in this thread, I was also going to make sure there was a Titan game scheduled for the Saturday 7pm slot.

It seems to me that if we go Swiss, a lot of the SFB action will be Saturday-only, with the potential for players to play their first round sooner. But, with set start times, Round 2 really needs to be Saturday at 2pm and Round 3 = Saturday at 7pm. The championship game between the top two players, if we go that way, would be Sunday 9am.

So, for each of you, how do you like/not like this change in the dynamics?


Titan, SFB and learning how to play BAttleground = Fun!

great job Dave!

I'm Totally Ok With a New Format

But when reading the Swiss format suggested above, I kind of gave up half way through the scoring procedure. I mean, in theory, it is probably a fine idea. But the concept that someone is going to have to be doing all that counting and math at the end of each game seems *really* like a not great plan. Especially when you factor in points for playing fast, at which point you end up with people being irritated that their opponent isn't just resigning when they are clearly defeated rather than fighting it out to the bitter, bitter end.

Also, as noted, I'm driving to Council and staying over night for 2 days to play SFB, and if I'm only playing 3-4 games, tops, I'm kind of less excited. I mean, yeah, I generally play 3 or 4 games in the preliminaries, but if I do well, I keep playing games, which is fun. With the presented Swiss system, you play 3 games, maybe 4. Tops. Which isn't enough games for a whole weekend.


I understood it, which means it's not overly complicated. You always say you're bad at math, but I have noticed you've got pretty good math skills.
Yes the fact that we are limited to 3 maybe 4 games kinda concerns me too but I think it's a good alternative to what we have now, which is people(like alot of people) playing 2-3 games and stopping because their record is good enough to get them into the elim round and they don't want to risk a loss. OR playing 2 games and giving up because once you're 0-2 it's a done deal, you might as well go play something else. I think ultimately this format will have minimal impact on the average number of games played per person. I think it WILL impact those of us who like to "play as much SFB as you can stand". One could always play some jff pickup games,or maybe we could start a patrol event on Friday that runs right through the weekend where we could play a few stray games between our scheduled Council Cup games. Or we could do something else like play Titan. But I will defer to anyone who has strong feelings, particularly out of staters or out of continent-ers.

Oh, it isn't the Math

The math isn't the problem I'm seeing. It is the making sure to spend the time counting and inputting and checking the clock and whatever. It seems like there is an awful lot of opportunity for error and an awful lot of opportunity for things not happening how they should (not due to negligence, but due to people not being around and people wandering off and SSDs going missing and computers crashing and whatever). And the math/total damage/percentage damage system allows for all sorts of wonky, yet unintentional results--if I'm flying against a Hydran say, and in a matter of 2 impulses and 2 small volleys of internals I manage to shoot off both the HBs, and my opponent wisely resigns as a result, how many points do I get for doing, like, 5 internals and my opponent resigning in a short game as opposed to us mangling each other in a long, much more exciting game? And there is, as noted, an issue that comes from ships with a small number of internals having a disadvantage--I'm not at all opposed to intentionally giving, like, the Orion, the TKE, and the ATC a numerical disadvantage, but does the LDR need to get hamstrung, and the Kzinti need the extra edge that comes from having the most (or close to it) internals

And assuming the format is play 3 games on Saturday (at 9, 1, and 5, for example) and then the best records go for a final on Sunday, you still have the problem of people who only want to play, say, 1 or 2 games dropping out, or people missing a round, and having an odd number at the exact wrong time. With the "just play games and have a record" system, even when there are an odd number of folks, you can usually wait around for one of the currently staggered games to end and get an opponent within an hour at most.

Again, I'm in no way opposed to a different format. But I'd like to see one that doesn't limit folks to 3-4 games max, doesn't dissuade folks from showing up on Friday to play if they can do that, and doesn't involve complicated math and record keeping to figure out who has what score.

Sanction this year?

So from what I'm seeing here, we're still not going for the sanction this year?

The record keeping is comparatively simple.

1) Record start time. "OK, this round started at 10"
2) Record end time. "Pete, I'm logging your game in as done at 11:37."
3) Input internals done into spreadsheet provided. "Total internals? Quick count." "Shield Strengths." "Done."
4) Input internals taken into spreadsheet provided. "Total internals taken? Quick count." "Shield Strengths." "Done."

Yes, this means someone has to actually 'man the desk' with a laptop...but I built a version of the sheet last year for this, and I can build a better version of the sheet now.

Start Times of Round 1 Swiss Games

I discussed this on the phone with Ken last year, pre-Council. If my ever-more-senile memory serves me...

We have the most flexibility with Round 1 games. We could have set start times of Friday 10am (1a), Friday 2pm (1b), Friday 7pm (1c) and Saturday 9am (1d). Whoever shows up at each starting time gets paired for their round 1 game.

Let's say guys like the Jersey Boys (Brook, Chris & Marcus, who always get to Council early on Friday) all play in round 1a. They could play non-tourney games in the other round 1 time slots, preferably against other folks who have already played a round 1 game. Or they could play other stuff.

People are allowed to drop out and not play rounds 2 and 3, but we would not encourage that. We take who we can and pair them according to their cumulative scores.

Personally, I'm on the fence about whether I like this format or not. But we have time to have the SFB community weigh in, so I want to hear the opinions from the community.

Don't be bashful - everyone chime in. Don't let Peter dominate the discussion. He has an unfair advantage - he has the whole summer off!



If ADB would like to formally request that our tournament be sanctioned, they can request it of us. But as of today, I think it's unlikely that we will seek the sanction from ADB.



>>Don't be bashful - everyone chime in. Don't let Peter dominate the discussion. He has an unfair advantage - he has the whole summer off!>>

Yeah. There is that. I'm kind of a menace on the interwebs over the summer. Heh.

In any case, I'll continue to dominate the discussion. Again, I'm totally ok with, if not in favor of, a new format. But the one presented seems a little, I dunno, too fiddly. A little too much opportunity/incentive for gaming the system (resigning to deny your opponent more points, taking as long as possible to lose to deny your opponent points, etc.) should someone be inclined, and a little too much opportunity for unintended side effects that no one thought about up front (i.e. Orion being disadvantaged, Kzinti being advantaged just due to their internal numbers; something else someone hasn't thought of already :-)

I mean, like, a swiss system that was far simpler could work too--have people pair off for round 1. For round 2, you match people who won round 1 vs other people who won round 1, and people who lost round 1 vs other people who lost round 1. Round 3 you match the 2-0s vs the 2-0s, the 1-1s vs the 1-1s, and then the 0-2s vs the 0-2s. Most of the same effect as the internal/percentage/total damage/time system, but with far less counting and fiddling about.

Make a small single elimination tree out of the top 4 or the top 8 and go from there. Or whatever. You can still have the 3 fixed, specific time preliminary rounds, still have a final (either just the top 2 or the top 4 or the top 8 if you are feeling super inspired).

In terms of sanction, I'm goo either way, but if we are sanctioned, we might get a few more people. And certainly get more press from the company. Heck, I'm pretty sure we could have a 3 round swiss preliminary system, and as long as we had 3 rounds of single elim for the finals, we could be sanctioned. But if not, no big deal.

The reason for the record keeping, Peter...

Is so that, as the example above gives, someone who loses their first round, but does really well in their second round, can vault ahead in the standings. It also rewards a particular style of play - one that's more aggressive.

Insofar as 'gaming the system' by 'dragging out a concession' - let's run a number or three.

Two people in 100 box TCs fight it out. Player A guessed wrong on the pseudo and ate 80 in, Player B took 30 in. We'll assume shield damage is identical for now. They've played 2 hours, and have 2 hours left to go in the slot.

Player A is getting 130-80 = 50 points.
Player B is getting 180-30 = 150 points.

The total number of points being split here will always be 200.

For every 15 minutes left on the clock when the result is turned in, BOTH players get 1 point added to their totals.

By quitting now, player A gets 58 points. Player B gets 158 points.
By saying "No, I'm going to TAC for 2 hours..." player A can deny himself AND his opponent up to 8 points (there are two hours left). So at the end, it's 50 to 150.

Now, during those two hours, if player B does two phaser 3 shots for 8 internals through a down shield, and takes no internals himself in the result, the points look like this:

Player A is getting 130-88=42 points
Player B is getting 188-30=158 points.

Player B gets the same number of points. Player A gets 16 points less than he otherwise would have.

To me, this is a problem that corrects itself. If you're beaten up badly, you are always better off conceding if you don't think you can score a single internal in the next 15 minutes.

Clock and stuff.

I think we could dispense with the clock aspect of scoring. Or simplify it and say so many bonus points awarded to the winner and so many to the loser for getting a game done in 3 hrs or less.

As far as concessions, a 4 turn minimum for concessions has been proposed. This could be tweaked to 5 turns, or whatever. There could be penalties for conceding or bonus points awarded for drawing a concession.

As far as the limit to games played, couldn't we have a patrol tourney starting Friday? That would seem not too tough to pull off.

As far as the sanction goes, I couldn't care less either way.
And again I'll say: no matter what system you use, people will game it. I'm all for something different.

In addition to that...

Beyond being able to remedy a loss by having a lopsided win in your favor int he next round, this also gives us more finely tuned data on specific matches.

Do enough matches with this scoring system, and in addition to saying "Yeah, I think the ATC is 70% advantaged against the Gorn", you'll be able to say "Over a statistically large sample of these games, at resolution, the average number of internals done to each side is X and Y with shield strengths of..."

The way this format gets gamed is that it's ALWAYS advantageous to try and play until your opponent's ship is destroyed utterly. It rewards doing damage, rather than "OK, I'm ahead by 3 internals, so I'm going to retrograde with cloak mostly armed..."

If you think you can get 4 internals on the other guy in the next hour (4.08 against a Kzinti, ceding its awesomeness. Though the Selt's 4.12 threshold is even awesomer), it's worth it to continue fighting. If you can't get a frickin' phaser 3 in on someone in the next 60 minutes, it's better for you to concede now.

Don't Get Me Wrong Here

I think the system as presented is certainly clever for what it is. And probably does a reasonably good job of making rankings. But it still seems overly complicated such that in the face of an actual tournament (as opposed to in the hypothetical discussion about it), it will prove to be far more of a pain in the ass than hoped.

Yes, I realize that with lovely Excel sheets and laptops and attentive judges, it can probably work fine. But I suspect that, as these sorts of things tend to go, some sort of simpler, less fiddly system would work better.

My $0.02

Dave- I think it would be an added incentive for folks to attend if the tournament were sanctioned. Are there still issues hanging over from last year that would predispose you to avoid sanction? Just curious, and feelfree to say nunya business!

Regarding the Swiss style format, we used it for the first RUT and it seemed to work fairly well, although it did not have the complexities of Ken's system. Essentially you just got matched with other players who had similar records. The theory being you are less likely to get an opponent much better, or much worse, than you making the games more balanced.

As for Peter dominating the conversation, I've been doing my best to keep him occupied playing NK games but my rating (and my ships) are taking a beating! Not sure how long I can keep this up..... :)

I admit I have not read all

I admit I have not read all of the above...
But think the idea of basing points based on internals and / or time is a bad idea.
What if someone has to play me! (I understand I am notoriously slow) so my opponenet is penalized.
Are you willing to start enforcing the EA must be completed in x mins rule?

Also the ships are balanced based on wins, but they are not balanced based on ability to do shield hits.

So, in summary, I would be willing to try a swiss system. But, don't think I would like it if it had the complicated scoring procedure.


Swiss miss

Ok. I would take a normal Swiss style format with no scoring. But it seems it will still present the problem of the "Main Event" only having 3 games for most people. How do we work around that? Dave? Patrol event? seems there are a few folks who would prefer getting this sanctioned to go for an Ace pin, get Council advertised and supported on the other BBS etc. Several people attending have many Ace pins and getting another doesn't really matter much, but the rest of us wouldn't mind getting one. As I have stated, I don't think I care one way or the other, but I certainly understand if other guys do.

So how strong is the sentiment out there to get the sanction? Would ADB accept the Swiss style format and still bless the event?
And I really think the guys traveling the farthest should weigh in because I am sure we all want to show them the best time possible. So New Jersey? California? Washington State? Austrailia? Ohio? Missouri?

I Don't Think it is the Ace Pin So Much

Well, to be fair, I'm not one to pooh-pooh the idea of an Ace Pin, but I think the main advantage to having a sanctioned event is publicity and visibility.

Being in the good graces of the Powers That Be means that we get to talk up the event on the main site, get write ups in Captain's Log (heck--Jason got a whole Victory At article, and they don't even like him...) as well as getting some people who might be more inclined to show up if it is an officially sanctioned event (which may or may not be anyone--we got, like, what, 26-27 last year without sanction, and I don't know if anyone specifically *didn't* come due to lack of sanction).

The downside to being officially sanctioned is that the con needs to be in the good graces of the Powers That Be. And Dave doesn't get to play, which is a drag for him.

We could still do a swiss style preliminary of 3 games, and then take the top 8 out of that and feed them into a single elim tree for Saturday night and Sunday and be sanctioned.

A matter of principle

Short answer for why Council will probably not offer an Ace Card: it's a matter of principle.

I want to resist the desire to write a long explanation about it, as I have a lot of more important things to do. So let me bullet-point it.

* ADB has a clearly stated policy that postings about Council of Five Nations on their BBS cannot contain links to the Council of Five Nations web site, (because that site mentions this site, which they find offensive). That is such a joke that it hurts when I try to laugh about it.

* When I surveyed the field of likely attendees last year, only one person said he would not attend if we did not offer an Ace Card... and then he attended anyway. All other respondents said it would not deter them from attending.

* There were seven Council first-timers at last year's SFB tournament. More people drove in from further away. We are already seeing interest and commitment building among even more potential Council SFB first-timers (Schoeller, Estrada, etc). One might hypothesize that not having the ADB sanction conferred a positive effect on our promotional efforts.

* The more we overlook/forgive ADB from acting in customer-unfriendly ways, the more permission they have to continue doing it.

Unless and until ADB changes some of their customer-unfriendly policies and positions, I just don't see us actively pursuing ADB's sanction to offer an official Ace Card. I'm confident we'll do just fine without it.


My opinion (FWIW)

Usually I try to play a bunch of SFB matches at Council. Last year was an anomaly, as I played only a couple of games since I was playing in Paul Scott's Fed Com game and just hanging out with everyone. I don't mind the idea of a swiss style tournament however and will go along with what the majority decide. I will be there either way.

As far as the scoring system goes, it does seem a bit complicated to me. Is it necessary is my question?


Dave it's your show, do as you see fit. You have my support either way.

Our three choices

1) Swiss with internal counting (something I prefer)
2) Swiss with 'just wins, baby'
3) Patrol

These, not coincidentally, are ranked in the order I'd prefer them - and I'm willing to decouple with internal tracking from Swiss format. I think it adds something, and it encourages playing games more quickly.

Well, from California...

Well, from California...

Won't be able to attend this year, but am hoping to make 2011. In any case, whatever format you guys are using will be fine with me. If Swiss means I only play 3 SFB games, then I'll play some pickup SFB. Who knows, if I can figure out a way to do it, I'd love to do a minis SFB game/event. Just hard to get my ships from Cali to NY with airline paranoia being what it is.

Load them on your Harley Dale....

And see the country!

A matter of principle

Hey Dave

Ace card non-withstanding ( but still the goal~ as I have not earned one in a long, long time)

Seeing all these great SFB'ers I see online is worth the money to come out to Council. Good chance I can still go, though i will need to juggle finances with my wife a bit! She knows I really want to go! Want..hehe

I don't want to go to Orgins anymore....why? nobody shows up anymore....too political....hmmm too mnay little kids in weird star wars gear running around hovering around a soccer mom! Hehe LOL j/k


Probably going to get whipped in a bunch of what! The face to face experiece and commradie and small tactical talk will raise my game! Its all good!

Going (GBS) per Andy Kochs nudgings


Robert, come on.

Great, another drone ship. You know you want to play plasma at council. The shark? I saw you play it online last night and now it's gonna be your ship at council? Please tell me that is not the case....:)

What are you going to play Brook?

TFH? you know my feelings on that

I'm Going To Vote For

So assuming no sanction, which I'm fine with (if for not other reason that it let's Dave play too), I'm going to vote for not using any wacky playtest ships this time--while I have no reason to believe that Paul winning last year had anything to do with the Fed having the extra G-rack in it (it certainly made little to no difference in my game vs him), we just don't actually know one way or the other. So wacky format, whatever it is (although I also vote for a simpler wacky format instead of a complicated wacky format), is fine, but I'll vote for only official ships. Maybe official playtest ships so we can generate some playtest info (whatever the good playtest Andro is, for example--maybe the 3xTRL/6xP2/28 power Andro?)

Yeah sounds good

I'll vote for that too.

My votes:

Full Monty Swiss
Win/Loss Swiss

In that order.

Concession rule?

I have not read this thread 100% of the way through because it's freaking long. Can somebody clarify the 4 turn concession rule being discussed? I have played in dozens of games where it made perfect sense for a player to concede within the first or second turn. Would this rule force players to drag a game out that should have been over?

I realize reading is difficult and all.

But... The 4 turn concession rule is to prevent a different abuse. You can always concede if you're crippled.

The change to the Orion is that engine boxes that are disabled by engine doubling are circled, and can still absorb a point of damage, which helps solve its issue with the complex scoring.

That being said, I'll take Swiss with win-loss over Patrol, even if I'd rather have Swiss with differences of percentage ship destroyed over both.

I obviously need to buy a

I obviously need to buy a Harley.


You've been slammed Marcus.

Actually, I like it alot. I am with Ken on this one. Read it through, as hard as it apparently is for you. I think the objections to the scoring system are based on ingrained attitudes from years past where an opponent would try to job you in order to reach The Ultimate Prize. Not happening anymore.

Not neccessarily

"I think the objections to the scoring system are based on ingrained attitudes from years past"

I disagree with you on this. I have several objections to the proposed scoring system that have ittle to nothing to do with the past.

1. The proposal for the Orion's engines is insane in my opinion. It pretty much eliminates any penalty for engine doubling, since the Orion can just score any engine hits on disabled engines. The Orion is a very good ship, it does not need that kind of help. It is supposed to have a penalty for having the most power of any ship available to it; that penalty is engine damage.

2. The system is overly complicated. I know Ken has a spreadsheet program that he says will simplify it, but imo it is still more complicated than is neccessary. With a dwindling SFB player base is this really the time to introduce a radical new scoring system, which people may not like or agree with, and has the potential to alienate the people who do play?

3. I don't like the shield damage counting for points either (yes, I know it is only 30% of the damage). This imo tends to help ships with enveloping weapons. Shields are there to be used. Why should a ship that scores little to no internals against me, but destroys 150 shield boxes, be rewarded for my smart use of my shields?

I am fine with using a swiss system if everyone else wants to, but I am adamantly opposed to the current proposal for a scoring system. If it is used I am sure we will see a lot of Orions, as they have a huge advantage with it.


OK. good points. I think there is little danger at this point of the scoring system being used anyway. I really don't care if we play tiddly winks, I will be there regardless. No offense to the tiddly wink fanatics out there

Orion, Shields & Scoring



Find me a better solution than "Every time you lose an engine box, you hand your opponent 1.3 points" that still allows margin of victory to matter. I can think of three:

1) Damage done by engine doubling doesn't count - it's only internals done by your opponent. Only now, it's impossible to actually get full value for blowing up an Orion.
2) Damage done by engine doubling disables a box, but it's still there to absorb a point of damage. It isn't there for energy generation.
3) Tell the Orions that they're very lightly screwed by this format, and they'd better win quick to make up for it.


Here's why the shielding system scores at 30% of boxes: Plasma ship does a ballet. Ballet runs 12 turns. At the end of the ballet, one ship has about 10 internals and 10 shield boxes left, the other ship has about 6 internals and 30 shield boxes left.

Assuming shield boxes aren't scored for points, this turns into a draw. Now, I personally don't care if it scores as a draw, but it will cause people who do the ballet to scream bloody murder about how the scoring is horribly unfair to them. Which it is. More so than it is to the Orion.

Even worse - ballet player takes 20 internals, opponent has taken 5, but opponent is out of weasels, ballet player is going to lob two EPTs at him that he can't outrun. Opponent concedes - and by the scoring mechanism, screws the ballet player by conceding early, rather than letting the game go that one more turn to be decisive.

This is why the shield scoring is in there, so that it doesn't change the EPT strategy too much.

Record Keeping:

You go up to judge's desk. Judge says "How many internals did you take?" (Quick, count, or, gosh, write them down before you show up). Judge says "Shield strengths, 1 through 6, in order." Enter into spreadsheet. Judge asks the same thing of your opponent. Enter into spreadsheet. Done.

Benevolent Dictatorship

I like the discussion here. Thank you to everyone who has given their input. Please continue to do so.

I'd just like to remind everyone that this will not be decided by a democratic vote. I'm empowering myself to make the final call on what the scoring system will be for the Council SFB tournament. I do appreciate seeing different people's positions on this. I strive to be an informed, benevolent dictator.

As things go right now, I don't think the "count internals" system is too complex at all, and I'm the guy who would be doing all the record keeping and math. If we do this, I definitely see me adding a formal record sheet for each match. You start a match, I give the two of you a prepared form. It lists things like:
* Name of each player
* Ship each person is flying
* Start time of game
* End time of game
* Internals scored on each ship
* Shield damage scored on each ship.
You turn this sheet in to me at the end of the match.

Here is where I still need to be convinced:
* I'm not sure I see the need/value of the 15-minute intervals for deciding extra points for a "fast" victory.
* Do we want to commit to a Round 1a/1b/1c, Round 2, Round 3, Final Two format? Is this structured format the best for the integrative aspects of the con?
* How many folks will play just a single Round 1 game and then not continue? Is this good/bad/neutral?
* How many folks want to commit to SFB in the Sat 2pm (Round 2) and Sat 7pm (Round 3) time slots? Cuz if you're playing with any level of seriousness about winning, you gotta play in all 3 rounds.

Please keep the discussion going! I'm reading every word.

The Benevolent Dictator

Invincible Orions

"Find me a better solution than "Every time you lose an engine box, you hand your opponent 1.3 points" that still allows margin of victory to matter. I can think of three:

1) Damage done by engine doubling doesn't count - it's only internals done by your opponent. Only now, it's impossible to actually get full value for blowing up an Orion.
2) Damage done by engine doubling disables a box, but it's still there to absorb a point of damage. It isn't there for energy generation.
3) Tell the Orions that they're very lightly screwed by this format, and they'd better win quick to make up for it."

I am less worried about scoring than I am about invincible Orions winning every match they play. With your system as an Orion I am doubling both warp on turn 1 and turn 2, knowing that when we have our exchange on turn 2 the first 4 warp hits I take won't count, since I can score them on engines boxes disabled by doubling.

That makes the Orion far more survivable than it should be. If this system is used I predict 60-70 percent of the players will be in Orions. I know I will be since your proposal favors them immensely.

My two cents

For the record, I am putting in my vote for keeping the tournament format the way it is. It seems to work fine to me. Most games are finished in due time and a four hour time limit that is strictly adhered to will stop some really good games IMHO. Some of the best and most fun games I have ever played have been long ones. It would be a shame to set up a scenario where that wouldn't or couldn't happen. Also, sometimes people come back in a game where everybody assumed they would lose. I've done it quite a few times. Let the games be played out. That's what I say. If a certain game is causing a problem or is excessively long to the point of being silly, then of course the judge must intervene.

P.S. Heh, I think it's funny that their is once again ANOTHER scenario where the Orion ship is causing problems. LOL...can we just nerf that ship already.. sheesh...:)

Orions can take their lumps

I'm not sure I see the need for any kind of "Orions disable an engine box, but can still take a later internal on the box" provision.

I think it's entirely reasonable to say that if you want to fly Orion, you'd better know how to use your engine doubling effectively, so you can score lots of internals on your opponent, because you know you'll be inflicting some on yourself. ... Which will be like handing a few victory points to your opponent.

If this makes people less inclined to fly Orion, that's perfectly OK by me.

Not a final ruling, but that's how I'm leaning if we go with the full "Swiss counting internals" system.


>>The change to the Orion is that engine boxes that are disabled by engine doubling are circled, and can still absorb a point of damage, which helps solve its issue with the complex scoring.>>

So to make the complex scoring system work, you need to make the Orion stronger than it already is? Yeah. That seems like a really bad idea.

Ken Wrote:

>>Find me a better solution than "Every time you lose an engine box, you hand your opponent 1.3 points" that still allows margin of victory to matter. I can think of three:>>

I think if the proposed scoring system requires convoluted gymnastics that fundamentally change the way parts of the game plays, it probably falls under the rubric of "too complicated to be worth it".

Dave - I'm fine with that.

I put the 'disables rather than destroyed' bit in there after two Orion players whined that this scoring system hurt them.

I'm also willing to remove the "30% of shield damage" aspect. If you're flying the ballet, you need to fly it until the enemy ship is gone, not just out of shields. Paul Scott and I ran the numbers a couple of times; 30% seems like it doesn't penalize the ISC and plasma ballet too much, but I'd be willing to chuck it if it got this tested with SFB beyond my local group.

I do think incentivizing 'finish early' is a good thing in general for SFB. The points are pretty minor - 1 point per 15 minutes left for both players is, at most, going to be a third or fourth tier tie breaker.


To give the community more insight into my decision-making process, I'd like to confess that I'm pro-experimentation.

Last year, we took the big step of voluntarily not pursuing the ADB sanction. This gave us freedom to do things differently. One little change we implemented was allowing one non-sanctioned ship into the tournament (the G-Rack Fed). Even though a G-Fed won the tournament, my sense of the reaction from the field was that it wasn't a big deal; Paul Scott's skill and generally-lucky dice were more the deciding factors.

However, what really makes me happy is how our actions seemed to cascade into encouraging others to experiment. We stopped waiting for Cole & Petrick to give their blessing on changes, and we just started doing things ourselves:
* Barry Kirk pushed to get the Omega tournament ships up onto SFBOL and into play. There was a whole tournament with dozens of games played.
* Brook Villa put a lot of work into getting his vision of a Fast Fed up onto SFBOL and into play. Numerous games have been played, and the community is still debating and tweaking the design.

So, while in many cases I'm not in favor of change just for the sake of change, this might be one case where I am.

My biggest concern about a different scoring system is how it will affect our attendees and their enjoyment of the con as a whole.
* Do people enjoy the con more with the very flexible Patrol format, where only the top 8 will still be in the tournament as of 7pm on Saturday?
* Or, would they like to feel like there is value in playing all three rounds, and be committed to SFB through 11pm on Saturday?... with ~perhaps~ the top 2 (4?) playing a finals game(s) on Sunday?

I don't think anyone likely to attend will say "This Swiss scoring system really screws my Orion's chance of winning, so I'm just not going to attend."

If history has shown that it can take _literally_ years for Cole & Petrick to officially bless some kind of change, then let's just try things out ourselves.

My suggestion...

Give points not for ints, but for completing games faster (IE, based on time played). Obviously No points for voluntary draws (to prevent a lophole).

Council Hotel Info Available

The Council hotel page has been freshly updated:

Please note there are good deals (at least compared to last year).

If you want to go nice, the Parker Inn is directly connected to Proctors - no walking outside. And only $114 per night (plus taxes & fees). Not too bad. Only 8 rooms available at this rate - book soon.

If you want to go economy, the good old reliable Days Inn is about $15 cheaper than last year (currently $64 per night), at least if you book now.

More info coming soon.


An example for the Pussy Whipped:

Did I ever just fend off the wolves. My wife hatched a plan with her sister to have her come from Maine and visit with her husband and kids Columbus Day weekend. I just manned up, put the foot down, and regained control of the situation. All is well.

Also an example of bad sentence structure

It should read.... "with her sister to come down from Maine with her husband and kids to visit on Columbus Day weekend..."
But the example for the Pussy Whipped is still a good one

Saving Throw:


Excellent Smithers!!!

I applaud you Andy. In a marriage, the man has to get his way 1% of the time. You pick and choose your battles. In this case, the time was right, and you held firm. Now you just have to pick the right ship to play........:)

You know, I never think of

You know, I never think of myself as a dominant, wife-beater kind of guy. And yet, compared to some of the SFB players I've met, I seem to be the guy who sets aside time to game when he wants, as opposed to the guy who tells all his buddies he can't make it because his wife has his balls in a bag somewhere.

Seriously, guys, there should be give and take, yo?

Classic Federation Automobile

A photo from the archives (I'm clearing out my old phone), for the amusement of the community.

This was taken at Total Confusion in 2009.

Federation Automobile

Sounds like fun. Too bad I'm

Sounds like fun. Too bad I'm on the opposite side of the country, I haven't played a game of Titan in close to 10 years!

Post of the week

From Peter "saving throw: made!"

This is the post of the week folks!


I am making a reservation at the Hampton today. I may have an open bed if Rob japs, which seems likely given his recent track record. I'll keep you posted

Day's Inn

I just got a room at the Day's Inn for Friday and Saturday for $160.00 (~71.00 a night plus taxes with a pre-paid reservation).

First Roll Call for Council 33

I have updated the SFB page on the Council web site. It lists all our "Committed/Probable/Maybe" lists, and more. You can find it here:

I would post the whole thing here, but for some strange reason, it is not reading the HTML code the same. Pages posted on the SWA site look fine, but the same pages posted here have screwy HTML. Odd...

Look for frequent updates on the SFBatCouncil page.

Bumped or something.

Apparently I screwed up the reservation somehow, or the Hampton did, but I am out either way. I have a reservation at Holiday Inn now, up in the slums of Schenectady.

Do you want us to get involved?

Andy, would you like one of us to make a phone call on your behalf? If you would _prefer_ the Hampton Inn, we can get involved and try to work this out. We have a block of rooms reserved.

Did you reserve at the Council rate of $144, or a lower internet rate?

If you would rather just go to the Holiday Inn and spend less, that's OK too. Our relationship with the Hampton has been... disappointing.


Patrol, not Swiss

Now that the pre-registration material is out, I can make the following Imperial Decree:

The Council SFB tournament will keep the usual Patrol format. We will not try the Swiss system. There just didn't seem to be a whole lot of enthusiasm for it. I base this on reading the posts here, and from our group discussion at the Ithaca Cup (where perhaps 25-35% of the expected SFB tournament attendees were present).

Also, even if we get over 32 players (a real possibility), the finals will only be the Top 8 in three rounds of single elimination. Let's just get that out there now.

I will update the special SFB page in a day or so.

Watch your email box and this forum for more news.

p.s. 144 SFB postcards just went out today, so most, if not all, of you ought to be receiving one soon. If you don't, and you'd like to be on our contact list, please send your postal address to: sfb /at/

Signed up today

Using the online registration form. Can't wait to see everybody.

Thanks, Dave

I appreciate you considering the Swiss format.

Two prominent Council First-Timers


Just got word that Bill Schoeller and Ed Slusarek are both Committed for Council. Both are illustrious Council first-timers.

Most of you know that Bill is currently one of the best SFB players in the world - almost certainly Top 5.

Many of you will remember that Ed Slusarek terrorized SFB players at Origins back in the heyday. He was a top player then, and is looking forward to coming to Council to shake off large chunks of rust.

We're happy to have both these guys coming.

Who else might we expect?

Please post here, or email your RSVP to us at sfb /at/

Council SFB page Updated

We're up to 24 committed. Besides Bill & Ed mentioned above, Barry Kirk is coming, and Tos has already pre-reg'd (with kids in tow for the first time!).

We would love to see more names on the Committed list. How about you?

Check out the updates here:

I want to see...

Tim Linden, Jude Hornborg, and Chris freaking Proper moved up to committed....common guys!

Jason Gray I know is at least a maybe. Unless something has changed since we last talked.

I am getting mostly sure that I will be sharing a room with you, as Rob is the waffling waffler. I will let you know early next week

Sorry guys, wish I could make

Sorry guys, wish I could make it this year, but it ain't in the cards. Just treading water in this lovely economy.

Hopefully 2011. Who knows, Jeremy should be back stateside by then too.

Less Sauce...

Dale's absence will surely deflate our sauce supply.

Sauce Trophy

I will bring it this year. So the sauce will be there.
Oh yes.


If the offer is still open, I would like to room with you, as Rob is not coming.

Sure thing Andy. I will

Sure thing Andy. I will e-mail you with details.

Andy......I'm hungry....

Steelers are 3-0. Let's celebrate with a really expensive dinner.......(I know, they are only 3-0, but after three games, can't be any better.) What was the name of that Steakhouse? :)

Team Ithaca!

Sent in pre-reg. Me, Courtenay, Sackett, Ben Kalb.

You better be....

I now owe you three meals. Parisi's is the steakhouse. I'm thinking Friday night

I'm in

I didn't make it to Parisi's last year. Hopefully we will be celebrating a 4-0 record by then :)

Edit: This is assuming that they are still open, as I cannot find a web site for them, nor are they mentioned on the Proctor's restaurant page.

I am pretty sure

Parisi's is still open. But even if they aren't, I doubt we'll starve :)


I like food. Sure, we'll find a place if Parisi's is closed.

Team North Jersey...

...has registered. We'll see you Friday afternoon!


The Rochester Army of One!

See you guys Friday early afternoon.
Moose, can you e-mail me your cell #?

Parisi's is closed

Did some asking around to make sure you guys are well fed.
Another SWA officer sent this link:


Council Parking Update

We have an update to share with you regarding the parking situation in and around Proctors on Council of Five Nations weekend (coming next week, Oct 8-10).

After consulting with LAZ Parking (the company that manages the city's parking lots), we're recommending that Council attendees use the parking garage on Broadway, just south of State Street, [the garage is in cell D4 on the map, Proctors is highlighted in red in cell E4]. The parking garage on Broadway is ALWAYS FREE on weekends and evenings.

You can park in the Broadway parking garage for free during the day on Friday if you have a Council parking permit. Just print it out and display it in the front window of your car.

Click here to download one:

Ordinarily the ground level parking lots in downtown Schenectady are free on evenings and weekends. But when there is a show at Proctors, the parking lots charge a $5 fee. Monty Python's SPAMALOT will be showing at Proctor's on Friday and Saturday. Proctor's will also be hosting Proctoberfest, an annual 24-hour movie marathon, from noon on Saturday till noon on Sunday. So expect to get charged for ground level parking most of the weekend.

If you’re staying at the Hampton Inn, they have a private lot for their guests. That’s the best option for you. The Hampton Inn is also in cell E4.

If you're staying at the Parker Inn, they have a part of the Clinton Street parking lot set aside for their guests.

The information listed here also appears on the updated Council Parking Page on the SWA web site:

Traffic around Proctor's

Monty Python's SPAMALOT will be showing at Proctor's at 8-10:30pm on Friday and at 2-4:30pm and 8-10:30pm on Saturday. Traffic into the parking areas near Proctor's will start to get busy 1-2 hours before the show begins, so if you plan to go out for lunch or dinner on Saturday, you should consider the places within walking distance of the convention site.


If you need to unload a lot of stuff for your game (like for GMs running a miniatures game), there are access doors directly off the convention area. Park temporarily, come to the registration desk, and we’ll help get you situated.

Please email us at Council /at/ if you've got questions.


How far a walk is it from the Days Inn to Proctors? The last time I stayed at Days Inn the con was at the Studio of Games :)

5-10 Minutes

I'm guessing a 5-10 minute walk.

I have to cancel on Council.

But I'm sadly going to have to cancel this year for Co5N and TravellerCon. The two week project that was supposed to be easy is now at 10 weeks, and still isn't done, and I cannot justify a 10 day road trip in October.

I hope to see you folks next year.

Dave, if I find someone reliable to run my events for me, can tables still be made available? I consider it low odds, and I will completely understand if you give those table and time slots to someone who's there.

Not good news Ken

Sorry to hear it

Tables are yours

Tables are already allocated. You were/are scheduled to have the same table as last year, right outside the SFB room, all weekend long.

If you find someone, please let me know ASAP. We did not print any tickets for your 'canceled' events.

Have fun guys!

I'd love to make a repeat appearance this year but have to attend a business conference. On the flip side the conference is in VEGAS BABY!

Have fun and blow stuff up!


Since this is an even number council year, I think I'll be going like 1-9!!

What kind of Andro ship available?

Entertainment Options for Council Weekend

As you know, Council of Five Nations XXXIII is this coming weekend, October 8-10.

Not only do we have over 150 gaming events scheduled, but we want you to be aware of other entertainment options at Proctor's theatre, our host facility.

The touring company of the Broadway show _Monty Python's Spamalot_ will be performing on Council weekend. There is one show on Friday night (8:00-10:30pm), and two shows on Saturday (2:00-4:40pm) and (8:00-10:30pm). You can click here to go to the Spamalot page on Proctor's web site, and can also purchase tickets online. It looks like most tickets available are in the $60 range.

Please also check out the Council Parking page to see how these shows will affect our parking situation.

The Proctoberfest 24-hour Movie Marathon

Described as "a cinema smorgasbord of the very best and worst of movies from SciFi, horror, fantasy and comedy." This marathon event begins at 12 noon on Saturday the 9th and runs continuously until 12 noon on Sunday the 10th.

Please click here to go to the Proctoberfest page on Proctor's web site. You can see highlights of the movies offered, and also download a PDF with the entire schedule.

Ticket prices are normally $40 in advance, $50 at the door, and $25 for an 8-hour pass. BUT, we have arranged for a special Council of Five Nations discount. Show your Council badge when buying and you can get in to the whole marathon for only $20.

Reminder: You have only two more days to get the lower pre-registration entry rate for Council. Pre-reg will close at midnight on Wednesday night. Pre-registrations are still coming in at a healthy rate, so we're expecting an excellent crowd this year.

We hope to see you all at Council of Five Nations XXXIII this weekend!


Is that some kind of physician's gathering?


One can only hope Andy, one can only hope.

Which Andro

Good question by Tim. Which Andro will be used?

Council Weather Forecast

Council Weekend Weather Forecast

It's gray and raining now, but the forecast calls for a perfect Council weekend.
Sunny and seasonably cool for all of Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
You can click here to see the weekend forecast for Schenectady, NY:

Team, Ithaca: Go!

So Team Ithaca is Go!

Courtenay, Sackett, Ben Kalb and I are leaving Ithaca at, like, 3:30 on Friday. We should be at the Con by about 7:00-7:30.

Wampler might be showing up, but he is an unknown quantity. I'm pretty sure that Ken Stuart will be there and play some games too.

Wish I could be there this

Wish I could be there this weekend... stupid job :(


About to leave for Council. Shoud be up there by 6pm or so. See you all tomorrow, or if anyone is around tonight and wants to get together shoot me an e-mail.

Who won?

Enquiring Minds Want To Know.

The Tree:

-Peter Bakija (GRN) vs Andy Koch (LYR)
-Marcus Geigerich (HYD) vs Ed Slusarek (FED)
-Courtenay Footman (GBS bb) vs Andrew Sackett (SEL)
-Ben Kalb (HYD) vs Bill Schoeller (KLI)

Top 4:

-Peter Bakija (GRN) vs Ed Slusarek (FED)
-Courtenay Footman (GBS bb) vs Bill Schoeller (KLI)

-Ed Slusarek (FED) vs Bill Schoeller (KLI)

I don't know who won, but based on where the game was when I left, I'd put money on Bill.

Bill Schoeller Wins the Council Cup 2010

Congrats to Bill for being the second seed in the Quarterfinals and climbing the tree to the top branch.

For me, the more interesting story is not Bill winning (probably the odds-on favorite going in to the weekend), but Ed Slusarek doing so well after his (10+)-year hiatus from the game. It looks like Ed's Council experience has brought back the SFB fever; I personally witnessed him buying every issue of Captain's Log that our dealer had at the booth (at least eight issues, and maybe more). Ed says he's coming back next year for sure.

We had twenty-seven players this year, and filled-up the SFB room very nicely.

Hopefully we'll see more posts from other attendees, with their thoughts, observations, and game reports.


Back, sort of

I had no idea what would be entailed in having a kid. Anyway, I am back, as I said, sort of. I just don't have the time I used to. I am going to play in some of the online events and start posting here again. Missed going to Co5N this year, so going to make every effort to show up again for 2011. Grats Bill on taking it this year! Really nice to see Ed coming back to the game too.

Sauron Speaks!

What's that I hear?

A voice, coming from the darkness of Cali-Mordor-ia, stirring once again after aeons of quiet. Threatening to have his forces terrorize the landscape once again...

Welcome back, Paul!


Cngrats on the addition to our family, and welcome back here also!


your family. not our family :)