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The Puffing Billy

Creating Your Own Schedule

If you look over the sample schedules and decide to create your own PBT schedule, you need only remember one concern -- please ensure that enough different categories are offered to make your PBT a legitimate one. Following are the category requirements:

One Day PBT: Players must qualify in two categories
Two Day PBT: Players must qualify in three categories
Two and a Half to Three Day PBT: Players must qualify in four categories
Four Day PBT: Players must qualify in four categories

Also, you will notice that in the bigger PBTs that there is a lot of overlap of events so that people essentially have to decide on a track of events in which to participate. Be aware of this arrangement when you create a schedule. Also, try not to schedule finals against each other but if you have to schedule an 18xx game against an EB International final under the premise that there are less people likely to want to participate in or to qualify in both finals.

In the larger PBTs where we run upwards of 200 different people through the PBT, we insist on a strict adherence to the time limits set in the program. This allows for the casual train gamer to attend the tournament he is interested in without being late for it and without the fear that it will run over into another time slot where he has another game scheduled. So, when you create your schedule, be very realistic about the time limits you set, using our time limit suggestions whenever possible. In a small one or two day convention, you can be a lot less worried about time restrictions and allow the players to set their own pace.

One last consideration, if you are scheduling many different train games and are running out of time slots, think about taking some of the shorter games such as Express, Railroad Dynasty, Streetcar and others of that sort and making them official pick-up games. When three or more players finish their game in the present time slot, they may play one of the listed games as a means to qualify in a category. There are no scheduled slots for these games and no finals. The players may only play each of these games once to qualify and there must be at least three players to a game. This format allows players who are faster than some of their competitors to still continue playing PBT events while waiting for the next slot to open. Of course, if your convention charges for events then you must charge an event fee for each pick-up game played by an individual.

This method of "official" pick-up games can be carried to any train game you desire but we do not suggest making it too open-ended or some of your players may wind up badgering you and their fellow players to death to finish scheduled games quickly or in their quest to find enough players to participate in a pick-up game. Be firm about setting limits and don't allow a few players to ruin the enjoyment of the rest of the tournament's players in this manner.


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The contents of this Web Site are copyright © 1998 by The Train Gamers Association, Inc. All rights reserved. Designed by Scott Lininger. Last modified Thursday, 11-Jun-1998 16:34:44 CDT .