To whom it may Concern,
I, like many others, am highly dissatisfied with the procedure used for the 2015 Fantasy Flight Worlds Championships registration. My chief complaints are that the registration process was: overly complicated, slow, and ticket sales opened at the least logical time. The choice to have a player cap on these events, while I understand if to be a necessity of logistical constraints, has also complicated matters of event availability this year; and when coupled with the inefficient process one must complete for registration, has cost many players seats in their game of choice.
Your company has perennially touted this event as a gather of the best of the best to determine which players of you games deserve to hold the title of “World Champion”. I fear this year the championship event will not host ‘the best of the best’; rather it has accidentally catered to the lucky few who were able to login in and complete the unnecessarily complicated process first. With hard caps and reserved seats for events players looking to enter their event of choice are left with extra event tickets they have purchased if that game has sold its all of its open seats, and these players will likely use those tickets to enter other events that they may be less interested in; thus eliminating that seat from someone who truly wishes to compete in their favorite game. The long period between purchasing a badge and event tickets, and receiving the confirmation and coupon code has further exacerbated this issue. Like several other players I have spoken to, I waited nearly half an hour between paying for my badge and receiving my confirmation e-mail and the ability to enroll in events. In the time I had to wait, two of the three events I intended to play in had filled, leaving me with additional tickets with no games to play. In this situation I had one of three choices: to register for another game that I am not overly interested in and thus removing someone else’s ability to enter that championship, to wait and see if a seat opens later in August and go through this atrocious process once again, or to say “forget it” ask for a refund, and not attend an event that I truly enjoy going to. This is unacceptable. Had I known that what I was buying was sold out before I paid for it I would not paid for it; and in doing so saved both parties a lot of time, and your company money. I would feel much less disenfranchised if when I went to pay for my ticket I would have known my events were sold out rather than finding out ex post facto.
The decision to open your ticket sales in the middle of business hours on a Monday is also one that vexes me. The majority of your Worlds participants, me included, are grown adults with jobs. It was impossible for me and many others to be able to login at 12 noon sharp to start the process of registering for events. While there is no single time that would accommodate your entire player base, I feel that a weekday at noon was considerably more inconvenient than midmorning on a weekend.
As I have stated, I do understand the logistical need to cap event seats, however this cap needs to be high enough to accommodate enough of your players. With how fast several of the events have sold out this year I fear this cap was not nearly high enough, which has just added fuel to the fire. I understand the need to hold seats for Regional and National winners, as well as former World Champions; I feel with the limited player space and the desire to find the best of the best these seats need to include Store Champions as well. These players have proven their skill and including them in your reserved seats you would ensure that your best players are able to show up and fight for the title of “World Champion”.
The ubiquitous statement of “If you don’t get in to your main event, don’t worry, there will be side events to play” that has been circulating since the full schedule has been announced is by far the most ludicrous aspect of this fiasco. While we as players do enjoy side events, there is no reason to think that a side event is enough of a replacement to missing out on the main event. I don’t care that there is a two person team tournament for X-Wing, or a winter tournament for Conquest, or a NetRunner draft; while those events are fun, what I care about is the shot at the title of “World Champion”. The whole idea of this statement is like showing up at the World Series of Poker and having the dealer say “Hey little buddy, I’m sorry you can’t play in the big game, but there is a game of Crazy Eights in the corner for you.”
In closing I would like to impart a simple request for next year: fix this.