AT Feeder weekend: expect tears, regrets, recriminationsCallduron
Alliance Tournament Feeder Rounds – they’re this weekend!
On Saturday 10th June the 56 teams who didn’t get into this year’s Alliance Tournament either by finishing in the top 16 last year or else by successful bid in a silent auction will scrap with each other for 32 places in Eve’s prestigious Alliance Tournament.
Make no mistake, this is a high stakes serious contest which really matters to many of the participants. Test began their open practices for the AT back in January, Goon FC and AT captain Asher has moaned for the last two years about their awful luck under the random draw system that was in place before this year’s feeder system.
The AT is very much an E-sport with variance
To add to the fun, the format is close to a best of one. Let me explain just why that’s rough using a concept from another gaming community. In Magic: The Gathering a lot of research and analysis has gone into the concept of variance. The word addresses the luck element to Magic. In Chess against average opponents a Grand Master almost alway wins. In games like Magic or Hearthstone the best players win about 75% against randoms. Sheer luck of the draw can cause top players to lose to average ones.
The AT is very much an E-sport with variance. The higher tier team doesn’t always win. Last year’s finals included a match where two Pandemic Legion pilots lost control of their ships, the key vessels blythely sailing out of the arena, the frantic actions of their pilots completely ignored. Stories of destroyed computer peripherals emerged from the dark gaming dens of Eve’s best players. Their frustration was palpable and they were too tilted to play up to standard in the next match.
The best team doesn’t always win. Shh- shtuff happens.
This weekend will dial that kind of injustice up to 11
This weekend, the feeder rounds, will dial that kind of injustice up to 11 for some unlucky teams because the (almost) best of one format maximises variance. They get one decent shot: if someone’s cat jumps onto a keyboard they face the horror of the losers’ bracket, a bracket which will eliminate 86% of its participants.
And that’s just wonderful for an audience of Eve players because schadenfreude is our mana.
So get in a crate of beer, fire up Eve_NT’s stream at 13.00 Eve time on Saturday and watch other players commit desperate heroics, clowny hail marys and periods of really fine piloting as 56 alliances are dissected into 28 relieved survivors and 28 teams who will enter the even more frantic confines of Sunday’s losers’ brackets.
On Sunday, the 28 teams that lost on Saturday will battle for just 4 spots. That’s about a 14% chance of getting through. It will be brutal. Expect internal drama, furious reddit posts, and maybe even an invasion of Provi as teams are spat out of this year’s AT.
Best of all, they’re all idiots, they could have bought in by bidding 10 (old) PLEX in the silent auction. Hat tip to my old friend Carneros whose alliance The Bastion bid a crafty 10.5 (old) PLEX to get into AT XV ahead of his Goon overlords.
Here are the matches that will be particularly interesting:
13:00 Shadow Cartel v Asteria Concord.
Last year Shadow Cartel were a shadow of the team that took PL to the wire in an earlier tournament, but this would still be a sensation if Asteria can pull something off. Potentially first upset of the day.
13.00 Pen Is Out v Spaceship Bebop.
Galmil v Galmil! Expect a flurry of bad reddit posts after this one, especially as there may be some unresolved bitterness lingering from the galmil civil war last year.
13.30 TEST v Badfellas.
TEST are really good, probably the best team in the feeders. Surely they couldn’t slip up….
14.30 Lowsecnaya v Project Mayhem.
A brawl between two very competent tournament teams with a lot of experience, this will probably be a really intense, high quality match.
16:30 Rote Kapelle v Hole Control.
While Rote are no longer the first rate side that beat PL in AT X, they are still regarded as a solid mid tier team. Hole Control though, pretty reasonable wormhole PvPers. This has upset potential and highlights how brutal this feeder format could be.
18:30 Spectre Fleet v Goons.
This is the match of the day. Goons are the biggest alliance in the game and are captained by genius FC Asher Elias. Spectre however had a fine AT XIV including killing PL’s Etana. Expect a high quality thrilling match between two teams determined not to fall at this hurdle.
(Note: Eve_NT will only be able to stream from one arena which will be assigned by CCP so unfortunately not every match will be broadcast).
Have a good weekend! I’ll be getting drunk at the Villore Accords AT party 😉
Teams and Rules
AT XV Feeder Round schedule