Change format for '2018 Finale' from single elimination to double elimination?


So the prize for the 2018 Finale is actually quite large… would it be possible to make the format of the tournament slightly less luck based this time? My suggestion would be a double elimination format, as this requires a minimal amount of extra investment. The only drawback is that the winner of the winners bracket has no advantage against the winner of the losers bracket, but I think it is still quite a large improvement and overall more exciting. I think most players would like to see a change like this. What do you think?


In general, we plan on making our top 8 streams for a majority of our competitions single-round eliminations because we feel that this format is best suited for streaming for a number of reasons. We have a few plans for implementing competitions with variations of group stages in Season 2, which will make the top 8 selection more fair.

I think double elimination is poorly suited for terminal for a number of reasons, including rematches being fairly common. Rematches are essentially a ‘bye’ as it is unlikely for the match have different results the second time around. Someone in the losers bracket who also gets a rematch-win essentially has to win 2 less games than the winner of the winners bracket, which makes them about 4x more likely to win 1st place according to some napkin math. If they got a bye in the first round, this could exponentiate 8x more likely. I could be wrong on this, but it seems to me like access to more byes after the first round would likely have a higher impact on luck determining a winner than unlucky matchups. I would suspect that if we ran a large number of double elim competitions, we may see a disproportionately large number of the winners coming from algos with these ‘byes’.

A better solution to make things more fair is less top-heavy distributions. I don’t think we explicitly announced it would be winner take all, just that the prize pool was 500$. Since people universally like more fair distributions in my experience, I would be happy to see if we could spread the prize across the top 4. I’ll talk to the events team right now.

We are doing 200/150/100/50 to 1st 2nd 3rd and 4th. We will either play an extra game between the two losing semi-finalists to to determine 3rd and 4th place, or give both of them 75 instead of the 100/50 if for any reason we decide against playing the extra game.

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I am fine with the top 8 being single eliminations. I just would like some of the randomness of who gets to top 8 to be decreased. An example I still have nightmares about is the code bullet challenge where I had the top algo, but lost in the second round to a 1500 ELO algo due to an extremely specific flaw in my dynamic algo… :face_with_head_bandage:

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Ya, we don’t have infrastructure for it in place for this competition but I have been doing a decent amount of work redesigning our competition infrastructure to be more modular, scalable, and robust so we can support more things like group stages. These sorts of competitions will appear in 2019.