The Prototype Toronto League (PTL) snuck into the X-wing scene in summer of 2015. Since then it’s grown to over 80 members with about 50 participating in each one of its seasons and improved its structure and prize support.
The League’s seasons run for 7 weeks in which time members play 7 matches against different opponents. Members can schedule matches in advance for a location in the GTA or can drop in and catch a match at one of the League’s regular nights. (Face2 Face on Tuesday nights, 401 Games on Wednesdays and Duelling Grounds on Fridays.) Members either seek out an opponent, or more usually, announce that they are ready for any takers. The innovation of this flexible schedule allows people with a lot of real life commitments to get their matches in when they can, rather than make a commitment to a particular night. It also allows members to throw down against other players whose style they find interesting.
The core rule to the league is that you can’t play the same list twice and you can’t use the same named pilot card twice in a season. So members have to vary their lists, and since everyone has to, it breaks the hold of the 2 or 3 list meta that is sometimes seen in tournament play. In practice, it gives members the opportunity to play lists in a competitive context they wouldn’t have the opportunity to play in big tournament scenes.
It’s been surprising how viable pilots who have been considered B-list become in this context. In effect, The PTL serves as a training school and a laboratory for unlikely powerful lists. For example, Mike P’s ‘Happy Tree Friends’ list that took a store champ this past season looks just about as unlikely as they come:
Kavil w/ Blaster Turret, Opportunist, and R4 Agromech, Serissu w/ Squad Leader, Palob w/ Recon Spec, Bodyguard, Blaster Turret and Moldy Crow and a Binarye Pirate
Finally, we put the larger part of our donations to the league to participation prizes that every member who does at least 4 matches gets, as well as raffles for custom-painted ships painted by our expert painters.
I include the rules we devised here in case you want to take up any or all of them for your local scene. Also, despite other perfidious aspects to Facebook, our FB league page has proved to be an incredible tool to report matches, update standings, post battle reports and schedule dates for matches.
1. The league season is 7 weeks
2. Each player can only play another player once in the the season for league pts
3. Each player can play max 7 league games
4. Each player can play max 3 league games per week (mon-sun)
5. League games, *exact* lists and results must be reported by monday afternoon to count for the week previous
6. A TO or other sufficiently impartial player must be there for adjudications. If there is an unresolved dispute concerning an issue and there was no TO or impartial witness to decide it, then the match does not count for league pts.
7. A player cannot use the same list twice in a season. This means a player may only use a named pilot card *once* per season. In addition, a player may not play a list consisting *only* of the same number of the same generic ships twice.
8. League games must be played at a GTA location. (Many of us favour F2F, but Duelling Grounds, Meeplemart, Hairy T, X-planet and all the others are good).
9. Matches follow standard FFG dogfight tournament rules and 1.15 hour time frame.
10. If you don’t turn up at the time and place pre-arranged with your opponent, without reasonable notice for postponement, you forfeit all pts. Your opponent gets full pts.
11. If you play an illegal list you forfeit. Your opponent gets full pts.
12. A minimum of 4 matches is required to earn participation prizes.
The top 4 highest-ranked players will play off in an elimination mini-tourney to determine the final top rankings.
1. Post exact lists and results here on the FB page.
1. Playing a league match earns 2 pts.
2. a win earns 2 pts.
3. a modified win or a tie game earns 1 pt.
4. Points-killed is recorded and used to settle ties, with # matches won as a second tie-breaker.
The league expects its players not to engage in ‘list switching’ to win games. It up to players to prevent this, but some recommended practices are:
1. Players should plan to match against an opponent’s list that could contain anything.
2. Players should not reveal their lists until they are ready to play and reveal them more or less simultaneously.
3. There should be no alterations to prepared lists after they are revealed.
As we head into the League’s season 4, we welcome new players in the GTA. Fly casual!