Feeling very fresh today and considering there is a lot of pressure is on, many of the teams here feel quite relaxed. The refs are smiling and the grumpy organiser even has the ability to ‘smile’ this too. I am surprised really, but I am hoping this will make a less ‘gamey’/ ‘sneaky’ kind of game playing.
Yesterday was renowned for red and yellow cards given to players, as well as point penalties. Some penalties were given due to not finishing games within the allotted time and although it wont matter in the grand scheme of things, when it gets it final scores and teams are up to the capped figure (100 points) then every point counts. France are currently the leaders with two penalties. Red cards that were issued yesterday (one to Italy against the English) meant that they lost 20 points for that game. The yellow cards (some unofficial) were seen as slaps on the wrists, with no point deductions. Most of these were for bad communication. I struggle with this, as language is certainly a barrier here, at times, and the ‘warnings’ are issued to both parties, no matter who was in the metaphorical ‘right’. Mad. But it was a busy day yesterday with questions and rules and proper game faces.
There was also a meeting of the ‘men in the know’ last night, where question about the running of the event were discussed. But many points, such as where the money goes and how much is made, were not really answered. It doesn’t really matter I suppose, but still I find it odd that food is not included in the price, especially when the hall was given for free. I hope that the UK can stake a claim and host it, as I would love to be involved and feel we could run a pretty decent tourney, give food and give good fun! ‘you like’.
Most of the teams today are bright eyed and bushy tailed, but some (any guesses) are still sloshed, but who knows, it may help them.
Today, I hooked up with the captains of team GB to get their thoughts. (England, Scotland, Wales, NI and RI).
GD: Team NI Barry is here with me, how do you think your performance in the ET has been?
NI: The team have done their best. Some newer players have struggled with the Etc style, but all in all I think we are improving. But all in all I think we are improving. We are still quite low down in the tables but we are within range of people. We have reached the points cap in three of the rounds, which is important. And we are going to get a win this morning, hopefully and we’d like one more win today, and leave on a winning note.
GD: And where would like to be in the rankings?
NI: Well better than last year. We came fifth last year but we’d like to get out of the bottom ten.
GD: So I just jumped over the border to sunny Wales. Matt how do you think team Wales has done generally in this tourney?
W: We have done quite well so far. We’ve won our first two rounds of the tournament ever, and we are actually above where I thought we would be right now.
GD: Do you think you will get the correct match’s up today?
W: We will get the correct matchups. How it goes is a bit random as we have Scotland, we’ve played them many times before and have beaten us.
GD: Are you confident to day, to beat them?
W: Yeah, we will be fine. For me, Skaven would be good.
GD: Where would you like to finish?
W: Above England would be funny. We had a bad round in the fist game against Poland. The points scores for everyone isn’t as hoped, as we only got 18 points in that game, but we are totally 340, two big wins and two big losses basically.
GD: Woody, team RI. Final day, are you confident?
RI: No, Simple answer, no way. We might come 20th if we are lucky. We are all too drunk and hung over.
GD: What do you reckon to you performances before today?
RI: It was good up until we played Austria, and then they single handily fisted us. They fisted pretty bad so we are on table eight. We’ve had three wins one loss.
GD: Can you turn it around with the luck of the Irish?
RI: Fingers crosses, if we can do the same thing as last year then we should be ok. We would like to b anywhere in the top ten.
GD: team England Bryan, how do you think England is doing?
E: Obviously we are a bit disappointed against the result with the Polish, but I think they had better lists and had a little bit of luck. This morning we have the Austrians, and we think we have done well in the match ups, but then they probably think they have done well also. Slow and steady start and maybe power through in the end. We are happy with where we are, we are still in contention to be on table two, so its good.
GD: What are England’s results so far?
E: A max point win against the Australians, then against the New Zealand team. The best result so far was the complete destruction of the Italians, they are historically a team we have struggled against, but that was really good. Then a big loss against the Polish. We would like a win against the Austrians and hope the Germany draws against the Polish, then draw then and maybe be in with a shout.
GD: Where would you like to be?
E: We could take a podium. We’ve never taken a podium. We are in a good position, two games to go, upwards from here. We would like to win, but we didn’t beat the Polish, so second or third would be fantastic.
GD: Tim, team Scotland, how do you think your team has done?
S: The first day was pretty poor, we lost both rounds. Yesterday we won both rounds, picking up 181 points so we are on table ten today. We have Wales, think it will be a fairly even match, it could go either way. We have beaten them four times so far but they may hammer us today. Be nice to finish with at least another win. But if we do win one, it would still be our bets ETC performance. We’d like to rank top half.
GD: Do you think the team have done well at the event?
S: A lack of preparation and practice is maybe showing, getting the match up rights against certain lists too is tricky. So we could have done better. I think we are wining games as we are playing well and just having a go
GD: You enjoying this as an event?
S: Yes, ETC is probably the best event like this. Meeting people from different countries. And playing games with people like the Wealsh is really fun.
GD: Can you get the correct matches?
S: I think their lists are tougher than ours and a lot more focused, quite a few armies with light spam that pick up a lot of points. Hopefully we can get some good match up for a few wins. Who knows.
So, I have been seeing lots of the ‘pairing’ process over the weekend and thought I would share this with you. Its mathematical and technical but very important and every nation does it in a different way. Hope my images help you understand.
Team England estimate what every possible combination would be and then rank them in traffic light order (red for bad, amber for draw and green for awesome.) They then use it as a matrix to decide who they could put forward against, starting with matches they know are dead certs. With the colour coding they can see who is the biggest risk and who its beneficial to be against. England does it on a fancy computer spread sheet, where as Wales has good old paper. The scots have top trump card and the ROI use a spread sheet variant also. Every team does it in a different way, but essentially they are using players as scapegoats to divert certain armies so better match up cane be found. It’s very clever and does not always work, but I suppose the process should be called ‘risk management’. Hopefully my pictures help you see, but please notice the Aussie use of models and block to do their fantasy matching.
Hot Boy Count: medium. So many young looking dudes and I question if I should be cheeking them out. Like it when guys take their ops off, but that isn’t happening much yet.
Food: Tried steak tartar last night…lush. Great duck with dumplings also. And it’s so cheap out here. Missing my baking though as I didn’t stay with the Aussies last night and so didn’t make me cakes.
Alcohol: Only had two beers last night and was not drunk, good thing really as I would probably been violated by Leggy and Goodwin as I crashed in their room. I intend to get slaughtered tonight and increase the amount of str8 gamers I’ve ‘played with’.