## Monday, April 05, 2010

### Puzzle Championship Series Season 3: How It Works

Ok, in preparation for tomorrow's PCS Season 3 Opener, let's review the scoring mechanism for new Puzzlers or returning Puzzlers who never quite understood it:

• At the start of PCS Season 3, all Puzzlers start with zero points.
• On every Monday Dodger Off-Day, plus tomorrow, we'll post a new puzzle at 7am PT. All Puzzlers will have until midnight to submit an answer via email.
• With each puzzle, the total number of correctly submitted answers are counted. A correct answer must include not only the correct answer, but the correct reasoning.
• If you are in the 2nd half of all correct solvers, you get 50% of full value, which in most cases is 100 points. For example, if 10 people answer a 100-point puzzle correctly, the sixth through tenth solvers get 50 points.
• The first half of correct solvers will get a linearly graduated point total between 100 and 50. In this same example, the 1st solver gets 100, the second 90, the third 80, the fourth 70, and the fifth 60. As mentioned above the sixth through tenth get 50.
• Thus, it's a self-adjusting scale wherein the more difficult the puzzle, the bigger the reward for the top solvers (relative to the subsequent solvers).
• Those who participate either by commenting or submitting an answer, but do not successfully solve the puzzle, will be awarded 10% of full value for their efforts.
• Puzzlers will accumulate points and retain them from puzzle-to-puzzle, until the eight puzzle. Once we get to the eighth puzzle, however, any points awarded for the first puzzle will be sucked away by the infamous succubus (pictured below). When we get to the ninth puzzle, the points awarded for the 2nd puzzle drop off. And so forth. So it's a rolling 7-puzzle point total. This is to prevent puzzlers from resting on their laurels for too long, or to allow new puzzlers to eventually be on even ground as veteran puzzlers.
• After every puzzle, we'll show the updated PCS Point Rankings. A prize will be awarded after the 7th and after the 13th (and last) puzzle. Here again is how last season ended (and click here for a recap of the puzzles themselves):

(900 possible points)

Current
Rank
Previous
Rank
Puzzler
PCS Tour
Points
1
1
ubragg
667
2
4
josh s
568
3
3
drewdez
550
4
5
j steve
511
5
2
keven c
492
6
8
461
7
6
mr customer
456
8
7
fanerman
431
9
12
dunkhawk
320
10
9
ll cool l
283

That's basically it! All puzzlers new and old are welcome and encouraged to participate. Any questions, let me know here. Otherwise, sharpen your pencils, and see you in 18 hours!

The Succubus patiently waits for July 12
to begin sucking your points away.

Orel said...

Is that an OSHA-approved pitchfork?

Steve Dittmore said...

Can she pitch?

Josh S. said...

@Steve: Fork if I know.

Orel said...

It's tine for you to cut it out.

Mr. Customer said...

Hey, I'm trident to get some work done here!

Josh S. said...

Wow, Orel. You tense. I'll stop.

Mr. Customer said...

I don't know why that makes me feel better after getting plundered by the Bucs, but it does.

Steve Sax said...

That fork's got some fine tuning.

Mr. Customer said...

If I came to that fork in the road, I'd take it!

Orel said...

"Wow, Orel. You tense. I'll stop."

Brilliant or awful, Josh, I can't decide which.

Mr. Customer said...

Yes on both counts.

Josh S. said...

I will accept "awfully brilliant".

Funny, because that joke is flat where I come from.

Dusty Baker said...

You guys stop tine to be funny.