Why is everything so complicated?
The rules for the Arena changed at the Twelfth Annual. As a number of people noted and commented, the purpose of this was to ensure that we do not find ourselves in a "Eurovision Song Contest" position where the winner is clear from halfway through the contest. The new structure also allows for a different definition of "winner" depending on where you are standing, but that's for a different blog post. The new mechanics had a number of unexpected side effects, and based on how things went we are going to refine them a little for event 13.
The point that has been raised by several people in their feedback is that the "winner takes all" aspect of the battles was not to everyone's liking. This mechanic was intended to provide a dramatic finale to the penultimate event. While we believe it achieved this, we will be reviewing how it worked in the field. Changes to that part of the process of the vision defences are likely. Those who gained thereby will, however, enjoy the spoils thereof.
There were a number of occasions where items were invoked or effects utilised and the rules effect of those was not made clear or misunderstood either by players or crew. I am aware of a few knock-on effects from that which left a bad taste in a few mouths. Unfortunately, there isn't anything we can do about that after the fact which would not bring further unfortunate consequences. Expect the wording on items to change to make the effects, and who has to be told about them and when, more explicit from now on.
I would like to remind everyone that, even though feelings run high and the game matters a great deal to players, it matters a great deal to the people running it too. We've had some excellent and useful constructive criticism. A recognition that everyone is human and that in a field mistakes do get made helps everyone.
We are going to try to make the processes for event 13 as explicit as possible with a minimum of "extraneous language".
If you are unclear on how anything works, please send a query in to the Odyssey address and we will endeavour to make things clearer by adding to a list of FAQs. When we get the first query in, we'll publicise that FAQ page as widely as we can, so you can check it before contacting us.
We will be sending out a link to the wiki pages in a pre-event email, and trying to make sure everyone gets access to the IC rules; we will also be issuing a summary with the horoscopes.