2015 Texas State Open Airhockey Championships Events Descriptions

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TEXAS LEVEL 7 CHALLENGE: Thursday, March 12 from 8 pm – Midnight

In Houston, Xtreme Airhockey hosts a regular weekly “Leveled” tournament. Xtreme classifies all players from a level 1 (novice) to a level 7 (master). The goal of this event is to create as close to an even opportunity for all players by having higher skilled players awarding points to lower skilled players. In short, a player of a lower skill level will receive points at the start of each game equal to the difference in the skill levels (except for level 7 to 1 which still only awards 5 points). For instance, if a level 7 plays a level 3, the level 3 will start each game leading 4-0. All games are played to 7 points, so the level 3 player only has to score 3 points to win the game. But the level 7 player is very skilled and capable of overcoming that deficit. So the system provides a fair opportunity to both players.

New players typically start at level 1 unless Xtreme management evaluates the player as skilled enough to start as a level 2. For this tournament, matches will either be the best 2 games of 3, or best 3 games of 5 depending on the number of participants. This event is a double elimination tournament, meaning that a player must lose two matches to be eliminated. No spinoffs will be played except possible 5/6 and 7/8 if trophies or awards are at stake. Cash prizes and award will be given to the top finishers based on participation.

PRESS YOUR LUCK- Fri, March 13 from 2-5 pm

Press Your Luck is a risk/reward challenge game. Depending on the number of players, a grouping of 6-9 players will be created. The players are ordered initially by their classification levels (See Mitic rating explanation in the Open Singles Product). The game lasts for 7 rounds. Each round begins with the person at the bottom of the ordered ladder having a turn on offense. This player will face opponents in order of the ladder. When it is your turn on offense, you always start with the puck. You goal is to score on your opponent and not get scored on. If you successfully score, you have the option to take your points and stop or “press Your Luck” with the next opponent. After each competitor completes his/her turn, the next person in the ladder is up on offense and the defenders again line up in order of the ladder except for the player who is on offense.

The game is interesting however because the next opponent in the ladder is of higher skill level (at least initially). And to compensate for this, points are not evenly allocated. Instead the nth term series formula is used. This means that the first player is worth 1 point. The second player is worth 1+2 or 3 points. The third player is worth 1+2+3 or 6 points and so fourth. So scoring on each successive player gets you more points. But there is a catch. If you get scored on at any point, you lose everything you gained plus 1 from your total entering the round. This is why the game is called “Pressing your luck”. If you have earned 6 points, do you stop and keep your points, or do you go against that next player and try to go for 10? It’s risk/reward.

After each round completes, players are reordered based on total. If 2 players have the same total number of points, their order does not change. But players lower in the ladder will shift up above those with fewer points. Then the next round begins. So there are many strategy variations, but typically it’s better to be higher in the ladder, as you know how much you need to maintain a lead. The game ends after the 7th round or when a person has mathematically locked up the most points which can occur in earlier round if his/her number of points exceeds the total of the next player in the ladder plus the maximum that can be gained in the subsequent rounds. If the game is being player to seed a final event with more than 1 player advancing, then the game will complete when all 7 rounds have completed.

Depending on the number of groups, the top 1-3 players from each group could be selected for a final Press Your Luck Champion sequence which would be another 7 round match to determine the champions. Players will be seeded in the Championship match base don points earned in the qualifier match.

OPEN DOUBLES- Friday, March 13 from 7 pm to midnight

Airhockey is a single player game and yet we have a doubles event! In the airhockey format, doubles is more of a “tag team” approach. A player remains active on the table until scored on by his opposition. Then his/her partner takes over and remains until scored on, and the cycle repeats. All matches are the best 3 games of 5 or 4 games of 7 depending on number of teams, and all games are player to 7 points. The tournament is, like singles and the Leveled event, double elimination. Spinoff tournaments are typically not done for doubles, but, if players express an interest before the event begins, spinoffs can be included. Cash prizes and trophies are awarded to top finishing teams. Player select their own partners. However, if a player registers but does not have a partner, Xtreme Airhockey will pair unmatched players. Players are encouraged to register early and wear matching jerseys or team uniforms in the spirit of competition and fun.

THE MAIN EVENT: OPEN SINGLES – Sat, March 14 from 11 am to 10 pm

The Open Singles is our feature event. It is an intense double elimination tournament that requires all day Saturday to complete. All matches in the main tournament are the best 4 games of 7, and there is no leveling – all matches are played straight up. When players are eliminated from the main draw, they qualify for a spin-off tournament with all other players eliminated in the same bracket where they play until they earn their final numerical standing in the overall event. The event plays until 12 players remain who then qualify for the Sunday Texas 12 Challenge Championship. Trophies may be awarded to bracket top finishers pending participation and sponsorship.

OPEN SINGLES — TEXAS 12 CHALLENGE – Sun, March 15 from noon to 8 pm

As specified above, the top 12 finishers from the Open Singles automatically qualify (at no additional cost) to compete in the Texas 12 Challenge. It is a continuation of the Open Singles with the 12 remaining players who then compete to determine the Texas State Champion. Spinoffs are played for the 9-12, 7/8, and 5/6 brackets. Cash and trophies are awarded to the top finishers based on participation.

AWARDS CEREMONY- Sun, March 15 from 8 to 9 pm

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