March madness: our first Scythe Marathon!

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March: in like a lion, out like… a lion? That’s right, we think there’s a rather fierce competition coming up. It’s time for a marathon, and we’re putting a wild spin on it by trying out something new: having coordinated with our Scythes, we’re going to put the whole cell in their highly capable hands! That means the cell will be grown through normal play, but the Scythes will be responsible for all reaping and completing.

Signups are open now, and the event starts at 8 AM EDT on 3/29. You’ll have 24 hours to complete a single cell, for bonuses and glory, as detailed below.

Bonuses for Normal Play

Trace 20 cubes – 2,000 point bonus
Trace 50 cubes – 5,000 point bonus
Trace 150 cubes – 20,000 point bonus
Trace 300 cubes – 40,000 point bonus
For every 150 cubes above 300 cubes – 2,500 point bonus

Also, many of you will be eligible to rename the cell afterward, as follows:

  • Each player who traces at least 50 cubes will win the right to vote on a name for the March marathon cell.
  • Each player who traces at least 200 cubes will win the right to nominate a name for that vote.

Special Guidelines for Scythes

Bonus: Instead of offering 5,000 points for SCing 100 cubes, for the marathon we’re doubling the reward to 10,000! To maximize your possible bonus potential, we recommend that you first focus on tracing your fill and then starting your SC mission. That way the cell grows quickly and you hand yourself at least 30k or 50k total. Please note that this bonus only applies to the marathon cell (or cell halves). After everyone finishes the marathon cell(s), normal SC bonuses apply to any SCing you happen to do on other cells within the 24 hour period.

Naming: If you don’t think you can trace enough cubes to nominate or vote on a cell name, and you’d still like a chance, admins will be counting every 3 SC votes as 1 cube added to your cube count for naming eligibility. So, for instance, you can trace 100 cubes, SC 300 cubes, and still earn nominating rights, or achieve the same result by tracing 150 cubes and SCing 150. We’ll do careful math at HQ!

Strategy: As our recommendation about bonuses would imply, we advise not going SCing (or reaping) too early. When admins oversee a marathon, we let the freshly-launched cell grow in peace for an hour. Besides that, as usual please complete from the oldest cubes outward and make sure to leave branch ends alone until they’ve spawned. Please also make sure to communicate with your fellow Scythes about what you intend to do on the cell; if you’d like to self-organize “shifts,” that’s up to you, but the admins’ main concern is not having five Scythes wind up on the same branch. Lastly, please do not reapgrow.

And remember: If you’d rather just trace, or if you’d rather focus just on SCing and reaping, that is entirely your choice! One reason we’re trying a Scythe Marathon is that we think we have a diverse enough array of preferences among the Scythes for all activities to happen efficiently. In any case, if you have an “admin needed” cube or you’d like the cell to be declared complete, we will still have at least one admin watching chat or e-mail throughout the event.

Good luck! For science!

Artwork by Daniela Gamba

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