The role of the state representative is becoming more significant


I spoke with Josh when i heard Trent was coming to NC. I told him im running all EM’s (as a joke) and he told me don’t be a (censored). I respect our participants and by not being a (censored) i hope they respect me. Reputation supersedes all.


“Don’t be a cool guy?” Classics and EMs >>>>>> buggy and unreliable modern games. :wink:




But in that same logic… couldn’t a TD be making these biased choices for another player they favor?

I think you are trying to solve the problem of someone being biased by making up more rules - when the problem is you need to address the bias, not try to build enough walls. They will always find ways around the rules - if the TD isn’t going to be fair and objective, the problem is the TD, not the rules.

This is classic ‘Punish the 99% to catch the 1%’ thinking. Instead of just dealing with the 1%

I think what you maybe leading to is the problem of (or perception of) lack of accountability or ability for participants to challenge the reps choices. This is a difficult area, but best you can do is ensure things are documented, and that there is a well known, easy to use process to get an objective perspective from the parent body.


It seems as though it would be very difficult to find a qualified TD who did not make it into the SCS. At least in CO. It speaks to how difficult it is to learn all of the potential rulings that might need to be made. The more complicated the rules, the more difficult it becomes to correctly interpret and enforce them.


Maybe it’s just Colorado, but I can’t even recall hearing a single sob story from someone about getting screwed by a TD ruling at any point in the last few years.

I’ve played a lot of Ultimate Frisbee over the last 20 years. Leagues, tournaments, club sectionals and nationals, and college sectionals. The entire sport was self officiated by the players on the field. A person calls a foul, and if the other person disagrees, then there is a protocol for what to do depending on the type of foul and the situation.

This should be even more difficult than pinball because the fouls are subjective in ultimate. In pinball, most situations have come up before, so as long as those are laid out clearly in the rules, there shouldn’t be much debate about applying rulings correctly (though I agree it always feels like we’re finding edge cases). You can of course debate the rulebook itself, but that’s not the TD’s problem.

Ultimate Frisbee has begun to implement “Observers” at the highest levels of competition over the last few years. These people are basically mediators who come in to settle something that can’t be agreed upon by the players. I’ve been out of the loop for 5 or 6 years, so it’s possible things have changed a little.


I don’t either. However, I could imagine potential issues at CO SCS if we had a TD that was not 100% versed in the nuances of the rules. In CO, the most competition savvy people (not referring to myself, btw) will always want to be in the tournament.


I just participated in my first SCS. The game list was not published prior to arriving at the venue on the morning of the event. I was expecting to see a well rounded game selection across all eras of machines…a couple of EMs, a couple of SSs and a couple of moderns. I figured playing well across all eras of machines would be the ultimate test and the mark of a true champion. As I walked in, all the games were all modern except for one EM. One of the competetitors, who was one of two that frequents this venue, prefers the modern games by a significant margin. His name was all over all of the games that we played. It really makes you take a step back and think about the possibility of impropriety.

I’m not complaining. The tournament was fair and well run. The player who ultimately won was not the one with the home field advantage and truly deserved the win after 12 hours of competition.

What I am questioning is should there be a requirement as to some sort of balance in game eras that are required to be represented, i.e. 2 EMs, 2 SSs and 3 moderns? I’ve only been playing competitively for a little over a year and this had me wondering as to what other states do and what other players felt.


The problem is many areas don’t have the luxury of this kind of breakdown based on the machines available at the locations available to host.

Enforcing this as an official requirement would be impossible and possibly cost some States the chance to host at all.

I do think it’s preferred all things being equal, and we strive to do that for Nationals and Worlds . . . but again we’ve run into hosts for the IFPA WC where EM’s simply aren’t available. I think for IFPA14 in Denmark they had a total of 2 EM’s even available for us out of the 48 machines. Contrast that to IFPA11 in Denver and they had their entire “OLD” bank of 16 machines as EM’s for the tournament.


What’s the process of switching up the venue for states each year? Is it just between that state rep and the players or if there’s another legit venue do they simply need to just throw their hat in the ring and get in some sort of rotation?


Ideally, the state rep picks the venue they feel is best suited to host the state finals that year. My personal process was just picking different venues with different operators that have put a lot of time and effort into growing the pinball community and then balancing out the eras by bringing in outside games.


Unless the SCS is held in a pop-up venue where the machines are brought in that day by numerous different owners, I find it hard to believe there are many venues anywhere in the world that aren’t going to run into this issue.

In Colorado, it was held at the same venue for many years since it was the one best suited for the SCS. It was absolutely an advantage for certain players…but since it was the de facto venue, everyone had an equal opportunity throughout the year to go play there.

Last year it was in a different place, an hour away. Guess what? Big advantage for the people who lived nearby, one of whom, in a bit of an upset, made it to the finals.

A third venue might (deservedly) get themselves into the mix for next year, which will be an advantage for an entirely different group of people.

Sorry…I already typed out that diatribe above so I’m going to leave it. :slight_smile:

I think this should happen, and I would think it’s perfectly acceptable for you to ask in advance.

Here in Colorado, if you know the venue, then it’s easy enough to find out what games are there ahead of time…though you might arrive the day of to find out that a few of them have been removed from the tournament because they have issues, or play too long. (Things that are fine for standard location play, but not acceptable for an SCS type event).

This would be awesome, but it might be even more fair for the games for in the SCS to reflect the general era mix location games in the area. If all the tournaments leading up to the SCS are on mostly modern machines, then I see no reason to artificially insert older stuff. That would give a big advantage to people who own EMs at home, even though none are being regularly played in the tournaments through which people earn their WPPRs.

Sorry, I’m not really as passionate about this as I might sound. I don’t know why I typed all that out. :slight_smile:


I would argue to mix eras in order to “prepare” whoever wins for the nationals.


I see it was a public location. Were you informed of the location ahead of time? Pretty rare for a public location that size to bring in extra games for an event with only 16 compeititors.

If it was announced early enough, you could’ve scouted the location and got a feel for the games. I’d prefer to compete at a public location any time over someone’s garage. Yes, locals do have somewhat of an advantage, but garage games are an even bigger advantage to the garage owner. Next year, scout that place. Even if you live on the other side of the state, hit it at least once before the event. It will help.

Cal has an agreement to have the state championship in norcal for even years and socal for odd years. Folks definitely alter the number of events they compete in by where the SC is being held.


Thank you for the relies and everyone’s input.

It’s very easy to say, “Well, it’s a public venue, go play there”. We were made aware of the venue in VERY late December. It’s also easier said than done if you’re 4 hours away, work, have a family and are already busy with the state tournament scene. This venue does not regularly host IFPA sanctioned events. This was the second year in a row at this location. Other suitable venues attempted to reach out to the rep and were either not responded or flat out told “never”.

As for game selection, It’s my understanding that one of the owners of the venue has a significant collection to choose from that spans all eras. There was a beautiful, great playing Harlem at the venue, a game you frequently see in tournaments, that could have been chosen and wasn’t. I did speak with the owner about balancing the game selection should this venue be chosen next year.


I wouldn’t have suggested it if I hadn’t done it myself in the past. Granted, four hours each way would be a bit much. Could you have arrived on Friday? They stay open until midnight. I personally wouldn’t drive four hours to an event the same day as the event. Seems like that would put you behind the eight ball before you make your first plunge. Unfamiliar games after a four hour drive doesn’t sound good at all.

Does the state rep live near that location?


When I was participating in state finals two years ago (and as rep) I asked @pinwizj for advice about how to choose what games at the decided venue we should include. He said to avoid any negative feedback that it would be wisest to use every game in the venue.


I held ours in a public venue this year, but we only had dedicated space for about half their games (14 total). I selected for reliability and predictability first, because to me the highest priority should be not having to make potentially event-impacting rulings (and I still ended up making one due to catastrophic malfunction). After that I selected for variety and tries to cross eras. I think the real key was I did this all transparently and with input from the players, which avoids a lot of the bad feelings problems.


I did.

About 2 hours away.

6 of the venue’s 22 games were chosen with the EM being brought in. With only 7 games being used, this led to a VERY long day. Practice was from 11 am until noon with the tournament beginning at noon. Since my bracket was at the bottom, 11 seed versus 6 seed, we didn’t start playing until 4 pm.


Wow sounds like your state championship was zero fun. I’d contact the rep ASAP and beg for them to use a larger bank in the future.