Carcosa 40k Challenge League
Fight your way to the top of the ladder in this seasonal challenge league! Each season lasts 12 weeks, during which players advance by winning games against those above them. Season 1 will last from 9/9 to 12/2. Players can schedule games with one another freely, but are encouraged to attend special events near the beginning (9/9), middle (10/14), and end of the season (11/4), at which they can win special short-term bonuses. (Note that the fee for entering the league grants you admission to all three of these events.)
Entry fee covers prize support and acrylic player tags that denote one's name and faction. Yes, this means your primary faction (see the ITC faction rules) is locked for the entire season! Lists must be submitted in advance, will be posted online, and can only be changed every three weeks (on 9/30, 10/21, and 11/11). Each week, new special rules and scenarios will keep players on their toes. How long can YOU stay at the top?!
Note that all dates from 9/9 to 12/1 are effectively “open play”, but the following are noteworthy:
9/9 - League begins with a kick-off event at Carcosa from 10am to 6pm, featuring special scenarios. Come meet other players, complete your weekly challenge game, and win short-term league bonuses.
9/30 - First opportunity to revise your army list. See revision rules, below. New list must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org by 9am on this date. Note that if you play games with a list that is later found to be invalid then you will be penalized retroactively. So please submit early!
10/14 - Second league event at Carcosa from 10am to 6pm, featuring special scenarios. Come meet other players, complete your weekly challenge game, and win short-term league bonuses.
10/21 - Second opportunity to revise your army list. See revision rules, below. New list must be emailed to email@example.com by 9am on this date. Note that if you play games with a list that is later found to be invalid then you will be penalized retroactively. So please submit early!
11/4 - Third and final league event at Carcosa from 10am to 6pm, featuring special scenarios. Come meet other players, complete your weekly challenge game, and win short-term league bonuses.
11/11 - Third and final opportunity to revise your army list. See revision rules, below. New list must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org by 9am on this date. Note that if you play games with a list that is later found to be invalid then you will be penalized retroactively. So please submit early!
12/1 - Last day to complete and report challenge games.
12/2 - Award ceremony. Debrief and prize distribution at Carcosa.
INITIAL ARMY LISTS
Players must email their initial army list to email@example.com by 5:00 PM on 9/6, three days before the kick-off event on 9/9. Your list will be checked for errors and then posted on the event website. You must use exactly this army list until it is revised. See the next section for details about list revisions.
Players may revise their lists after losing a game, or on one of the three revision dates (9/30, 10/21, and 11/11). Players submitting revisions after a loss may begin using their revised list on the following Sunday. Revised lists must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than 9:00 AM on Sunday, after which you must use exactly the revised list until the next revision date or the Sunday after your next loss. Late submissions will not be accepted! Your revised list will be checked for errors and then posted on the event website. Please note that you can submit a revised list as late as you want before the deadline, but if you play games with an invalid list then you will be penalized retroactively - regardless of whether you won or lost. When in doubt, please submit early!
Primary faction is locked. All players must use the same primary faction throughout the tournament. See the Faction Scoring section of the ITC 8th Edition Guidelines for more info.
(Note that despite the use of ITC faction rules, the challenge league is not a sanctioned ITC event.)
The taller they stand, the harder they fall. The challenge board has five tiers, and the higher you climb the less flexibility your army list has. For each tier that a player has advanced, starting with the first, 20% of the points in their army lists are locked. For example, players on Tier 1 (the bottom tier) can revise up to 80% of the points in their army, while those on Tier 2 can revise up to 60% of their army. Yes, this means that the player on Tier 5 (the top tier) cannot revise their army at all! This structure rewards players for building a balanced list that can take all comers.
Please note that Warlord Traits, Relics, and psychic powers cannot be changed except after a loss or on one of the three revision dates!
2. After the juggernaut rule, add a new section titled "PAINTING REQUIREMENTS" that reads:
In addition, any units in a player’s revised list that remain at least partially locked (i.e., that cannot be entirely accommodated by the revision amount on a given tier) must be identical in all respects to how they appeared in the previous list, including number of models, wargear options, warlord status, etc. For example, consider a player whose list consists of four identical Imperial Knights. On Tier 1 of the challenge board, effectively 25% of the points in this army would be locked. Similarly, the same player on Tier 4 would not be able to revise their list at all.
THE CHALLENGE LADDER
The ladder has a pyramid shape with one player slot at Tier 5, two at Tier 4, and so on.
Each slot can accommodate a single player, except for those on Tier 1 which can accommodate any number of players.
All players start on Tier 1.
Each player can issue a single challenge per week.
If you do not play a challenge league game during a given week, either as the issuer or as the receiver of a challenge, then you drop to Tier 1.
You can always issue a challenge to anyone above you on the ladder, no matter their tier.
Any time there is a free slot in the tier immediately above yours, as there will be during the first few weeks, you can also challenge anyone in the same tier as you. In this situation, only the winner counts as having issued a challenge.
Players may receive multiple challenges per week, and must accept a challenge from the highest ranked challenger whenever possible.
You may not play the same person two weeks in a row.
If you beat someone who is on a higher tier, then you switch places with them.
If you beat someone who is on the same tier as you, then you advance to an open slot in the next tier.
If your challenge is rejected and there is another player you could challenge, you may issue one to them instead.
A challenge league week begins on Sunday and ends on Saturday. For scoring purposes, ladder positions will be recorded either last thing on Saturday night or first thing on Sunday morning.
THE “PLOT ARMOR” RULE
Schedules happen, and nobody wants to be knocked down to Tier 1 just because life got in the way. At the same time, regular participation is important to a healthy ladder. This rule allows people to plan ahead and protect their ladder position by making themselves more important to the story. If a player completes at least two challenge games in a given week, regardless of whether they won or lost, then being absent the following week will not cause them to be knocked down to Tier 1. (Note that at least one of these games will have be played as the receiver of a challenge, since you can only issue one challenge per week.)
THE JUGGERNAUT RULE
This rule provides an incentive for playing multiple games each week, even if you're around and available. If you win at least two challenge games as the receiver of a challenge during a given week, then you temporarily gain “Juggernaut” status: the player to whom you next issue a challenge must treat your tier as one higher than it actually is. This status persists until you either lose a game or play one in which you are the issuer of a challenge. Combined with the rule that requires players to accept a challenge from the highest ranked challenger whenever possible, having Juggernaut status will transform your defensive victories into a chance for greater offensive glory. (Note that Juggernaut status can only be gained by winning challenge games against players who are on a lower tier than you.)
There are no painting requirements. However, a player with a fully painted army (at least three colors and based) will receive a single free re-roll if their opponent’s army contains at least one model that is not fully painted. This re-roll cannot be used to affect table sides, first turn, random game length, or anything else that occurs outside of a game turn’s normal phases.
LADDER SCORING & PRIZES
Note that a player cannot win more than one of the following prizes:
King of Carcosa. This prize goes to the player who finished the most weeks on Tier 5. (Ties are broken by ladder points.)
The Carcosan Noble. This prize goes to the player with the most ladder points. At the end of each week, you will gain ladder points equal to your tier on the ladder. For example, if you end the week on Tier 5 then you gain 5 points.
Other prizes will not be revealed until the end of the league!
Unless otherwise noted, players should use the missions from the ITC Champion’s Mission Pack. Many weeks will also feature special rules or altogether new missions that will keep players on their toes. Special rules and missions will be posted no later than Thursday, three days before the start of the week in which they will take effect.
BETA & ITC RULES
All current beta rules (e.g., the Rule of Three, Battle Brothers, Tactical Reserves) are in effect. The ITC rule that makes the first level of ruins block line of sight is also in effect.
Those interested in joining the league should (1) purchase an event ticket, (2) send an email as soon as possible to email@example.com including their name and primary faction so that I can create their acrylic player tag, and (3) send their army list to the same email address (see guidelines, above).
A NOTE ABOUT “OPEN” PLAY
Challenge league participants are always welcome to schedule games on days and times that work best for them and their opponents. However, one of the purposes of this seasonal league is to serve as a medium through which Carcosa’s players can become better acquainted and build a stronger community. With that goal in mind, it is strongly encouraged that participants work together to schedule their respective games on the same day whenever possible, like the already-established “40K Fridays”. The three special events scheduled around the beginning, middle, and end of the challenge league are intended to serve as a model for such communal play, and to accelerate the process of opening lines of communication, so please take advantage!
It is extremely important that all league participants have up-to-date knowledge of the Challenge Ladder for strategic and scheduling purposes. When planning a challenge game, players must post the scheduled date and time on the challenge league Slack channel (https://carcosaclub.slack.com/messages/CCFC37N80/).
In addition, immediately after completing a game and moving any player tags, players must photograph the Challenge Ladder and post it to the same channel, along with a brief description that includes the players’ names, tiers, and the match result. For example, “Player A (Tier 1) challenged Player B (Tier 2) and won.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: What if I’m late to the party - can I still join?
A: Yes! Latecomers are welcome to enter at any time, once they have received their acrylic player tag. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, primary faction, and initial army list, and allow approximately three days for creation of your tag.
Q: I understand that we can challenge people who are on the same tier as us only if there is an empty player slot in the next tier, but imagine if two or more separate challenge games were played between players on Tier 2, vying for a single open slot on Tier 3. They can’t both fit, so which of the two winners gets to advance?
A: Great question! First of all, situations like this will only occur during the very beginning of the season, before the ladder completely fills up as players struggle upwards from Tier 1. Second, special events like the kick-off on 9/9 will be designed to help fill the challenge board as quickly as possible, perhaps by rewarding certain players with the ability to quickly advance multiple tiers. Third, this problem can be solved by organizing with your fellow players: the two winners could play a tie-breaker, three players in a similar situation could play round-robin, etc. Work together and use your best judgment!