JagFest UK 2004 Tournament Report

by Stephen Moss


Following the apparent chaos of running tournaments last year a more concerted effort was made to organize things this year but did it work?

Certainly the pre-JagFest side of getting finalized tournament rules and a timetable up on the web in advance of the event worked, however, during the event itself I'm not so sure, although as the overall tournament organizer perhaps looking out from the centre is not the best place from which to judge it. In the end it was nothing like I had expected it to be or planned for, I freely admit that on occasions I have a tendency to over-think things and may have done so in this instance. Considering that there was roughly the same number of attendees on the first day this year as last year it did not feel that way, as tournament sign up was a little slower than anticipated. With 45 minutes of the two and a half hour registration period left the first competitor signed up, although this did galvanize the others into action as they suddenly seemed to remember that registering was necessary.

A combination of the low number of entrants and the ability to match names with faces having got to know people from last year's event resulted in the numbered and colour co-ordinated entrant badges never being used. The only time this appeared to cause a problem was when Ryan could not put a name to the face of an entrant for his Tempest 3000 tournament which ironically was the very thing the system was meant to negate, fortunately I was able to point him in the right direction as Ryan had trawled the area Sunday morning for more entrants, it's difficult to know if the entrant concerned would have ended up with a badge or not had they been used. Perhaps the system will come into its own next year as discussions over breakfast on Sunday morning resulted the effectual formation of a JagFest committee and the decision to hold it later in the year in the hope of getting more visitors.

Worms tournament - run by Stephen Moss
Initially ten people had signed up for Saturday's Jaguar Worms tournament, however as ten does not divide well into groups of four I had to round up a couple more entrants resulting in the first round running after lunch, not before as timetabled. The 12 entrants were separated into four equal groups from which the winners progressed directly to the final.

Groups one, two and four were quickly won by Richard Stevens, Ryan Edwards and Nick Bamji (Stone) respectively in only two games. The third group was much closer as each competitor won a game forcing a fourth game decider which was eventually won by Jan Thomas (Coda).

[Photo: Worms tournament]

As Ryan had won all the tournaments at the first JagFest UK last year the other finalists were apprehensive about having to play him. The final used league mode as in the preliminary round and so would end when one of the competitors won two games, the software would rank the remaining players and therefore determine the final positions itself.

Unlike last year's Jaguar Worms tournament each player was able to have their own controller thanks to the newly developed Multitap device and having become familiar with its usage during the preliminary rounds, the time allocation for the players to make their attacks was reduced from 60 to 40 seconds for the final.

It would have been nice to see the final go to a fifth game decider, however Richard only required four games in which to steal Ryan's crown with Stone and Ryan winning one game each.

Final placings were...

    1st: Richard Stevens, who won a copy of Hoverstrike (Unconqured lands) CD for the Jaguar and a Jag box insert (cut out and assemble replacement inner tray for Jaguar cartridge games).

    2nd: Stone, who won a White Men Can't Jump Jaguar game cartridge and a Jag box insert.

    3rd: Ryan Edwards, who won a copy of the Dragon's Lair game for the Atari ST.

    4th: Coda, who was delighted to walk away with the prize he wanted most, a copy of SpeedBall 2 for the Atari ST.

All finalists also received a laminated certificate featuring an image of the Worms box cover plus the words "Tournament - JagFest UK 2004" and their position. Despite the fact that the first round started an hour late the tournament only overran by half an hour.

[Photo: Richard Stevens, the winner]

Asteroids on the 7800 - run by James Perrow (Thund3r)
This was a straight out high score event in which players had ten minutes, or until they died (which ever came first) during which to score as many points as possible. As only eight people had entered by 12:15 James spent the remaining 15 minutes of the registrations period looking for more entrants. Eventually 12 people took part, the top three were...

    1st: James Barrett (Clock), scoring 19,840 points.

    2nd: Thorsten (Mad Butscher), scoring 19,760 points.

    3rd: Nico Hofer, who amassed 17,570 points, nearly 3,000 points above the rest of the competitors.

No prizes were awarded for this tournament, however those listed above should be receiving a certificate for their efforts.

Tempest 3000 on the Nuon DVD - run by Ryan Edwards
By the end of Saturday's registration period only six people had registered for this tournament, towards the end of Sundays registration period this had risen to eight and so Ryan went looking for more entrants. I found this rather surprising as considering the popularity of Tempest 2000 on the Jaguar I had expected this tournament to fill up quickly.

The first round was run on a high score basis with the four highest scorers progressing to the next round where they would be split into two groups of two players. The winner from each group would then proceed to the final while the losers would enter a 3rd/4th place playoff.

Making it through to the second round were Tyrant (185,258 points), Matt Bacon (194,232 points), Stone (206,887 points) and Pete Muller (Moobaa) scoring 308,553 points, leaving 12 disappointed entrants trailing in their wake.

In round two things were made a little tougher for contestants due to the fact they were starting at level ten. It was during this round that a previously unknown feature was discovered in that those loosing a life on the first web also lost the bonus points for staring at level ten, a factor which significantly affected the round two results.

Round two saw two tense and passionate encounters as Tyrant defeated Matt while Stone prevailed over Moobaa.

Moobaa vanquished Matt during the 3rd/4th place playoff while the seemingly inseparable Stone and Tyrant faced each other yet again (having done so during Worms) in a gripping final starting at level twenty, eventually Stone emerged victorious to claim 1st place.

The final standings were...

    1st: Stone, winning a boxed Atari Lynx 2.

    2nd: Nick Turner (Tyrant), who won a copy of Tempest 3000 for the Nuon.

    3rd: Pete Muller (MooBaa), who won two Atari 2600 VCS game cartridges.

    4th: Matt Bacon, who won an Atari 2600 VCS game cartridge.

As a closet perfectionist I was disappointed that I had not managed to keep things running to my own plan, definitely a case of A for effort and C- for attainment - must try harder. Despite this the general consensus from those who ventured an opinion at the time seemed to be that all the tournaments ran smoothly, so I should be happy. The big problem is knowing if any improvements that there may have been this year were the result of the organizational procedures I had implemented, due to less people being interested in entering this year's tournaments than last year or simply because the formats used last year gave the impression that there were in fact more entrants than had actually existed.

Finally I would like to thank James and Ryan for running the Asteroids and Tempest 3000 tournaments respectively.


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MyAtari magazine - Feature #6, July 2004

Copyright 2004 MyAtari magazine