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Topics - Rav950

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I am going to be discussing future plans for Dominion U.S. National qualifying tournaments in July with Jay Tummelson, and I'd like to solicit some questions, comments and suggestions from the DS community on the tournament plans. This *could* potentially expand to international tournaments, so I don't want to limit the scope of the comments, but understand that my initial priority is to establish a more formal U.S. Tournament structure.

A little backstory:
I have previously run the national Rio Grande Design Contest for Rio Grande in 2009 and 2010 for the Chicago Toy & Game Fair, and I have contacts across the U.S. in retail, conventions and clubs. I only found out about the 2011 qualifiers from a Facebook post from Kublacon, and a little more from Michicon organizers. The FAQ here on DS was the most informative single source I have managed to find regarding the 2012 tournament plans. Since that demonstrates a lot of dedication to the game from the DS community, its only right that I should solicit some comments to help shape the proposal into something the community can get behind.

Current plans:
I can't go in to full detail on the proposal at the moment (its still in draft mode), but the major existing components to the plan are:

- Wide availability on holding a "free" qualifier. (Some promotional support, entitled to a seat at the Nationals, but you're on your own for travel and lodging if you want to participate)

- Limited availability on a Rio Grande sponsored qualifier (ie. prize support etc). This would be based in part on geographic proximity between qualifiers, and in part on ability to promote the qualifier.

Entities eligible to participate (free or sponsored) include:
  - Groups and Clubs (ie. Meetup groups, BGG Guilds, Google Groups, etc). Dominion Strategy Forum as a collective would be considered eligible under this guideline.
  - Retailers (Brick & Mortar only)
  - Small Conventions

Large Conventions (ie. GenCon, ChiTAG, Origins) would be participating locations, but handled in their own classification.

I understand that the community has run tournaments via ISOTropic and possibly other channels as well, this could certainly be considered as an option for participation.

The nature of any prize support for officially sponsored tournaments is unstated at this time, but comments on what you think would spur more participation are encouraged.

Thanks for your interest in this topic, and I am hoping to see some good discussion develop around this.

Disclaimer: I am not an employee of Rio Grande. This posting is an attempt to solicit comments. This post and its responses do not constitute an official statement from myself or Rio Grande Games regarding a U.S. qualifying tournament series. There is no official announced plan regarding the conduct, or even existence, of a 2013 U.S. qualifying tournament series. (Bottom line: don't read into all of this tooooo much since there is no agreement in place yet, but please offer serious opinions. Your feedback will be collated and included as part of the proposal).

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