In continuation to the great idea proposed previously, I believe that we should actively work towards running - or at least sponsoring - a StarCraft 2 tournament.

I have already discussed this with Robert, and it is my understanding that it is possible for us to get funding from SE if we propose a solid plan. This question is a request for such a plan.

Answers to this question need to propose a plan where gaming.SE will gain publicity as a sponsor for a SC2 tournament, either by just sponsoring an existing event or by running our own event.

Answer guidelines:

  1. Funding is not final; at the moment please limit your plan to a budget of around 1000$.
  2. If you propose to fund an existing tournament:
    • Provide details about the tournament structure - tournament style, number of games, length, famous players involved, where games are broadcasted, who the casters are.
    • Provide details about the amount of visibility that tournament generates. Information about previous sponsors and the impact on them can be useful (e.g. showing the amount of Google searches or page visits they got during the tournament).
  3. If you propose to run our own event:
    • Provide details about the tournament structure - tournament style, number of games, cash awards involved.
    • Explain how famous players will be drawn.
    • Explain who will cast the tournament and whether it will be broadcasted live.
    • List what sort of positions we will need volunteers for.

Finally, if you can think of any idea that will increase visibility for our site beyond just mentioning our name as sponsors, please share it - add it as an answer even if it's not a complete tournament plan.

Remember, this is a PR event paid for by SE. Our primary goal is to promote our site, to increase its traffic and visibility.

  • 1
    Stupid question: Would we the community of gaming.stackexchange be playing in the tournament, or inviting professionals to compete? Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 14:28
  • 3
    @Raven Not a stupid question. The goal is PR so we should be inviting outside participation. That said, I think the tournament participants and our site should basically be independent entities. Gaming SE will be the sponsor/host (depending on whether it is funding or running we settle on), but as a user you don't have to assert affiliation with the site and therefore should be fine to participate. If we do run it, though, we will obviously need to draw from our community for judges and other positions, and those users will obviously be barred from participation.
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 15:05
  • Why a close note without a comment?
    – ripper234
    Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 16:36
  • 2
    I have run tournaments before, and I would enjoy doing that. I'm not an amazing player, so I don't feel the need to play. So while @Tzenes might do a better job than I would, he probably wants to play. I'd like to help.
    – McKay
    Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 19:32
  • 3
    Should we just rename this site starcraft2.stackexchange.com while we're at it?
    – user2974
    Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 22:33
  • @powerlord, would you like to propose a tournament for another popular game? Another way to get publicity? By all means, you can do it!
    – juan
    Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 22:46
  • @powerlord sc2 is very popular right now, and its tournament generate a lot of publicity. I've tried to check tournaments in other games before proposing this - for example TF2 or MW2 - but it seems they are a lot less popular. Coupled with the fact that we have a lot of sc2 questions and answers right now, I think this is appropriate. This website is susceptible to fads - we should leverage that!
    – Oak
    Commented Sep 9, 2010 at 8:33
  • Are there any events planned for gaming.se members to play against each other in a friendly tournament? Commented Sep 13, 2010 at 19:38

3 Answers 3


So there are a couple different ways we can run a tournament but it should be worth noting they have the following metrics:

  • Management
  • Time (they take, not to manage)
  • Games Casted as VoD
  • Target Gamers
  • Games per Match

Note: I have used terms as follows: Match (a set of games between two players), Game (an individual game as part of a Match)

Double Elimination

So the classic tournament structure for these kinds of things is: Double elimination. This would mean every player must lose to 2 opponents before dropping out. You have a main bracket and a loser bracket. Here is an example:

alt text

The downside is that it takes twice as many matches as a single elimination. The advantage here is that players are less susceptible to fluke loss streaks, and it becomes "more likely" who the winner is. Double elimination has a medium number of matches and is fairly popular.

Season Play

A season is usually a method to distill better players from a wider field. Players are split between divisions where they compete against everyone else in their division. At the end of the "season" (once everyone has played all opponents in their division) the top players from each division are placed in a Single Elimination Bracket. The recent IEM was a great example of this: a good example can be seen here. Season style without a Single Elimination playoff is usually called Swiss Style.


Qualifiers are a series of games played by players to qualify for a tournament. Usually this indicates an open invitation or a hybrid (some spots are closed invite, others are open invite). Qualifiers are used, like Season Play, to whittle down a large field of players to a few players. Additionally, in many qualifiers matches are not managed by the tournament runners and instead players are asked to email in the replays, with failure to do so resulting in disqualification (the hosts do have to make sure that both players are present at the appropriate time though).

Games per Round

The usual standard is Best of 5 games per Match, with Best of 3 in qualifiers and Best of 7 in finals. Usually only one or two matches are casted per round. If we play the games in advance these matches can be selected and then casted as replays.

In our situation I might advocate for a hybrid qualifier approach with Double Elimination starting at Ro8.

  • I think the hybrid approach is good because it motivates high-level players who aren't pros to also notice the tournament. How do we determine who is invited, though? Especially if we have only very few invitees?
    – Oak
    Commented Sep 10, 2010 at 14:53
  • @Oak we'd have to contact people explicitly, explain the nature of the tournament, the date and see if they are interested.
    – tzenes
    Commented Sep 10, 2010 at 16:08
  • who do we invite, then? Should we create a new meta question for people to vote on their favorite pro players?
    – Oak
    Commented Sep 10, 2010 at 22:49

In a typical sc2 tournament, cash prizes are awarded to the 1st, 2nd and 3rd places. One idea I have is to add another award - smaller than the rest - that will be be given to "the most entertaining player" or "the most diverse player" or something like that. And how will that player be chosen? By voting him up in a gaming.SE question, of course!

The benefit is that it can draw many tournaments viewers to our site, if only to see who the highest-voted players were. It will also promote higher involvement in the tournament from our own users,

  • 4
    I love the idea of a prize for most innovative player. It's one thing to win, but it's a thousand times more entertaining to win in new, unique ways. Rewarding risk-taking like this is an excellent idea, and using SE for the voting is a perfect way to integrate this site. Commented Sep 7, 2010 at 21:57
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    The only downside to this idea is that the content of the question isn't appropriate for the site. It even seems a little iffy to me to put it on meta. Do we want all these folks' first experience with the site to be a completely subjective poll question? They might very well click the link and see something like "Who is the most entertaining player in our Starcraft 2 tourny" (Closed as subjective/argumentative).
    – sjohnston
    Commented Sep 7, 2010 at 22:06
  • @sjohnston I think the question can be worded in a way that clarifies it's a special, event-related question. And remember that question will have a lot of good sc2 "related questions", those can draw users.
    – Oak
    Commented Sep 7, 2010 at 22:12
  • 1
    This feels similar of a situation as that sammich contest, albeit with less intent to pollute reputation. Nevertheless, I have difficulty getting behind the idea of promoting the Q&A site in a method that is using it as something other than a Q&A site.
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    Commented Sep 7, 2010 at 23:29
  • 1
    @Grace, I would remove that bit about using the site for those rankings from the idea, but organizing a contest would be a great way to get publicity
    – juan
    Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 1:07

Perhaps there could be some marketing motivation for people to create SE accounts leading up to the event. For example prizes could drawn and award from a pool of the new users who show up at the event. Or if there was some valid reason to have a cover charge (free food and drinks?) then you could give new SE users free entry as an option. You would need some way for them to prove their account, perhaps a pass that they can print out from their user page.

Another idea would be to give away something at the event that requires a SE to be created in order to retrieve it, this is kind of an inverse of the idea above. It may be necessary to find some affiliates who would also benefit as well as provide a product or giveaway.

Obviously the plan must include user adoption of SE if we expect any funding to flow from SE. Though it does seem like with either of the above plans some development will be required, at least a temporary solution.

  • 1
    I'm hesitant about anything that would require users to create accounts just for the sake of creating accounts; that could lead to a lot of users that don't actually participate in anything.
    – Oak
    Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 8:13
  • 1
    I'd imagine we're talking about an online tournament here. I doubt $1000 can buy/rent you much in terms of venue, food, equipment and prizes. Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 10:24
  • Thanks for the feedback, I'll keep these thoughts in mind when considering this type of user adoption strategy in my other realms of influence.
    – MetaGuru
    Commented Sep 8, 2010 at 13:42

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