Motion: "One-of-a-Kind Proxy" Rule

Frodo
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Motion: "One-of-a-Kind Proxy" Rule

Post by Frodo » Sat Apr 18, 2009 10:45 pm

Dear Fellow Council Members:

As you must know, many members of our community have been clamoring for changes in our tournament structure. Already one significant change has been made: Marc Roca is eliminating the open qualifier round at Worlds 2009. However, I believe there are other ideas for change that have broad popular support from the community, and therefore should be passed by us. It may feel a little strange for our Council to be finally passing such dramatic changes to the game, but we are losing players faster than the United States economy is falling, so I believe we need to take proscriptive action, and try our hands at some solutions.

Therefore, I am making a motion which I call the “One-of-a-kind Proxy Rule”, that if approved should be effective immediately for all COE-sanctioned tournaments:

Motion for One-of-a-kind Proxy Rule: If a player has multiple copies of a card in his deck and sideboard, one of these copies must be original, but all other copies can be a proxy. The proxy card(s) can be any real MECCG card with a burning-eye back, and must legibly indicate the card title it is representing, such as by a piece of paper with the title or via a photocopy of the represented card. The thickness of the proxy card cannot be noticeably increased, nor should any paper stick out beyond the edges of the card, or that will be constituted as cheating. The Tournament Director has the final say in all decisions as to the legality of a proxy card.

Here is an example of the new proxy rule:
For example, if I had three Longbottom Leafs in my deck, one of these must be the original card, and the others may be proxies. If I had a unique card in my deck, it must be the original.

Note that this rule also prevents a difficult situation where one player needs to know the text of the card but the proxy does not have the text (just the title); by my suggested rule, the original card can now always be hunted for. I actually believe this is a pretty conservative solution to the problem (a problem that I’ve outlined extensively elsewhere in my “Saving the Game Letter”; see the end of this email). Wolfgang has offered another great idea—printing COE-sanctioned promo cards of hard to get cards like Longbotom Leaf which would be tournament-legal—but this needs more discussion because of the legal issues.

If you don’t want to vote on this motion immediately, but want to discuss it a little, that’s fine. To give you an idea of how the community feels about this topic, look here:
http://www.councilofelrond.org/forum/vi ... .php?t=976

My vote is: Aye.

Be careful how you vote on this, and the reasons that you give; it might come back to the community!

For those of you who wonder what exact problem my solution is addressing, here is an excerpt from my Saving the Game Letter:

--Frodo (Joe Bisz)

>>
Problem area 2: New players
How do we reach out to them? Next, how do we continue to make them feel invited, and want to remain, so the game can grow?

B- PRODUCT AVAILABLITY, COMMUNITY AND ADVERTISING

Okay, let’s say we explained it well enough to some friends we’ve met, and—wow!—they like the game! Not only that, the rulesbooks have been streamlined and—double wow!—they say they can actually understand them. Now, the players greedily ask us… so where’s the CARDS?

This is probably the single-greatest challenge our game presents us. We can streamline or simplify the rules, we can develop demos all day, we can advertise like professionals—but there’s the product?? How do I play this game?

[…some text edited out]

Even hoarding the prize support will not solve all of our product problems, though it may delay Judgment Day a few more years. Therefore, I ask that we give serious thought to another long-debated solution: reprinting all of the cards (illegally). Or else, provide the knowledge and the methods so that players can print them themselves. Printing technology is getting cheaper and cheaper. Providing such methods—for example, 9 card image sheets hosted on a server—would be legal because we are not printing the cards, we are displaying the images/pieces of this game in order to give a perusable library. Players would be choosing to do the illegal actions.

[…some text edited out]

Proxies: Finally, I offer one other idea that I’m sure will also prove controversial. Current players, but especially new players, will feel a certain unfairness in the difficulty of obtaining particular hard-to-find cards, and this will only add to their frustration with tournament-level play. I believe that the GCCG model, where everyone can play with whatever card they like, has proved to be successful: you don’t see any players anymore claiming that you should actually “own” the GCCG card to be playing in GCCG tournaments, etc. Still some players in the real world (those with the cards, of course) might feel that having the hard-to-find cards should count for some kind of detriment when composing a deck for tournaments, otherwise the whole collecting market could change too much.

Solution: I propose a middle-of-the-road solution, which is thus. All Worlds, nationals, and local tournaments should implement the “at least one-of-a-kind proxy rule.” This rule states that: for any card that you have multiple copies of in deck and sideboard, one of these copies must be original, but all other copies can be proxied. For example, if I had three Longbottom Leafs in my deck, one of these must tbe the original, and the others may be proxied. If I had a unique card in my deck, it would have to be the original. This solution also prevents a negative situation where one player needs to know the text of the card but the proxy does not have the text (just the title); by my suggested rule, the original card can now always be hunted for.

thorondor
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Post by thorondor » Sun Apr 19, 2009 8:50 am

before adding my vote (which is in favour of the motion), i would like to consider a few point:

this rule is helping those, who have one set of balrog to play competitively.
but it makes the gap bigger to those, who do not own one set.

i suggest, that the proxy has good quality. not only title, also picture and complete card text.

Sfan
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Post by Sfan » Sun Apr 19, 2009 9:45 am

The proxy must have the original title and at least the the original text. For both players it would be good to have a errata corrected text, too.
In example, okay it es very common: Muster: Warrior influence check again a faction automatic. Better text would be modified by prowess up to +5.
So maybe people could take the CRTL+H information from GCCG.

My 2 cents on this motion,
Stefan

p.s. I need to think about this motion. No one secunded it so far so voting is not opened, right?

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Shapeshifter
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Post by Shapeshifter » Sun Apr 19, 2009 10:49 am

thorondor wrote:i suggest, that the proxy has good quality. not only title, also picture and complete card text.
That would be my suggestion, too. In that case there is also no need to owe an original copy of the card.

Ringbearer
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Post by Ringbearer » Sun Apr 19, 2009 10:08 pm

I would make it a little different: I would say one must be original, unless the card comes from the balrog set. Other cards arent that hard to find and expensive prices compared to TB cards.
"I used to roll the dice, feel the fear in my enemies eyes."
- Coldplay, Viva la Vida.

Gaming is life, the rest is just dice rolls.
- John Kovalic, Dork Tower

zarathustra
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Post by zarathustra » Mon Apr 20, 2009 1:20 am

I agree (mostly) with the most liberal suggestion: the player need not own the card or have it in his deck. Instead, every copy of the proxy must faithfully represent the card's title, text, and other game-features. Non-game features like the card image and flavor text and background may, but need not, be included.
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Sauron
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Post by Sauron » Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:01 pm

Ringbearer wrote:I would make it a little different: I would say one must be original, unless the card comes from the balrog set. Other cards arent that hard to find and expensive prices compared to TB cards.
I don't think we should restrict it by set, if we're going to do this, then we should do it all the way.

Ringbearer
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Post by Ringbearer » Tue Apr 21, 2009 10:15 pm

THen I go for all the way.
"I used to roll the dice, feel the fear in my enemies eyes."
- Coldplay, Viva la Vida.

Gaming is life, the rest is just dice rolls.
- John Kovalic, Dork Tower

thorondor
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Post by thorondor » Wed Apr 22, 2009 7:44 am

also i prefer a liberal option:
- no set limitation
- no original copy needed
- title and gametext are a must, image is strongly suggested
- good quality

if we want a limitation, maybe this one should be ok:
not more than 10% (?) of the deck may consist of proxies. just to make sure, that an MECCG deck doesn still lokk like an MECCG deck (and not a pile of sleeved paper sheets).

Frodo
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Post by Frodo » Thu Apr 23, 2009 2:51 am

I don’t have a problem with the liberal interpretation offered. Let me just list some potential issues, however:


Issues:
1) (as wolfgang said): If we say no original is needed, technically a player could have a deck that is completely proxied: all print-outs, no originals. This is not necessarily a bad thing, I just want to point that out. If I knew the proxies would be high-quality color copies, I certainly wouldn’t care… but because they are more likely to be black and white, we should probably have some kind of limitation like Wolfgang said. Rather than a percentage, how about simply saying, “No more than 15 cards can be proxied in the deck and sideboard combined.” That’s 5 sets of non-uniques, at three copies of non-unique.
2) If we say no original is needed, and that it need not duplicate the card’s image, then surely the text must be TYPED, correct? And typed in… English? (I would still make a note of saying that the COE would prefer the image being present, if possible, and in color, since the color images are often a shorthand way players have of seeing what cards are on the board.)
3) But if the text must be typed: this prohibits players from making changes to their decks during an event or tournament weekend. Players rarely have access to a printer, so this could create some problems. Still, if this is the only concern, I’d say it’s better than no proxies at all.
4) And if we allow players to input the text themselves, and not relying on an original copy being present, then we are kind of taking it on faith that the card actually SAYS what the player has typed down, correct? Also, must the text typed or handwritten be exactly the same, or can a player abbreviate? E.g., if handwriting is allowed, a player at the last minute might realize he really needs a Ghosts in his deck (god only knows why, but let’s just say). The player scribbles down the title, the prowess, and the number of strikes. He forgets to indicate the MP, the creature type, the fact that it IS a creature, the region/site keyability, and the corruption effect. Should this player be penalized by the tournament director?

Just pointing out that there could be some issues if we expand the proxy rule to :
A) not require originals and, perhaps more importantly
B) not require a photocopy/printout of the original card

But perhaps we can work these out, without making the new rule too complex.

--Frodo

Sauron
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Post by Sauron » Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:32 am

I guess technically we should wait until the new CoE is elected before moving on this issue.

Ringbearer
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Post by Ringbearer » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:05 am

I wouldnt mind to have this settled for Worlds 09 ;)

MY idea is to simply let people use photocopies. Black/white or colour doesnt matter, just an actual image of the card. Those are easily made, by example by using the images in the gccg folder. Text only is more easily cheatable. I mean, I dare to say I know a great deal of cardnames by head but can every player in the world say so?
"I used to roll the dice, feel the fear in my enemies eyes."
- Coldplay, Viva la Vida.

Gaming is life, the rest is just dice rolls.
- John Kovalic, Dork Tower

thorondor
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Post by thorondor » Sat Apr 25, 2009 5:30 am

a card limit (eg 15) is good. better than a percentage - much easier to handle.
agree with bert: photocopies is a good method of making proxies.

i think we should not wait with this motion till the next COE session. there will be other COE members, so the whole discussion will start again.

i suggest to start a motion now and finish it.
joe: its your motion. maybe ou want to rephrase a few things, and then lets get it done.

Sfan
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Post by Sfan » Sat Apr 25, 2009 9:49 am

You are right Wolfgang. Let's get this done as soon as possible.
Photocopies seems the best choice to me, too.

Balin
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Post by Balin » Tue Apr 28, 2009 2:41 pm

Spanish players passed a motion about this subject a few months ago. We (Concilio de Rivendel members) proposed and players decided (around 70% said yes) the following proxies rules:

1. Maximum of 10 proxies per deck (sideboard included)
2. Any expansion, thoug card text must be in Spanish or English.
3. Color photocopies required.

So these are the rules we have about proxies in Spain. Feel free to take it as our proposal too, I'd support it.
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