Update to Scythe Complete

Completing cubes is an important part of Eyewire gameplay.  When you declare a cube Scythe Complete it means that you believe it is 100% complete and ready to be used as real scientific data.

Because completing is such an important part of the Eyewire process, we have made some changes to Scythe Completing to improve gameplay and data accuracy.
Here is an overview of the changes:

  1. Scythe reap nukes Scythe Complete if there is >2% change
  2. Don’t use “Scythe Complete” in the log unless the cube won’t otherwise be found for a 2nd vote
  3. More points for Scythe Completing!

Change #1: Scythe Reaping after completing nukes Scythe Complete votes

Previously we only nuked Scythe Complete votes after an Admin reaped a cube. However, since we trust Scythes to do a thorough check on cells before Admins make a quick, final check, this system needs an update.

Going forward, any cube that has been reaped after it’s been Scythe Completed will get nuked if there is more than a 2% change to the consensus. All votes on cubes that meet this criteria will get nuked, so if a cube has 2 votes, both will be nuked when the change is made.

We’ve introduced the 2% threshold to account for small amounts of dust that may be added to a cube after it’s declared complete. Because the dust technically belongs, but we also do not require all dust to be added before completing a cell, both players are technically right in these situations. For this reason we allow some margin for error before a cube will get nuked.

We decided on 2% after rounds of internal testing consisting of adding and removing dust and branches from SC cubes. 2% ignores the addition of small amounts of dust, while still accounting for sizable branches.

Here are some examples where you can what percentage of a cube would change when adding or removing dust or nubs.

We will continue to monitor the 2% threshold once this feature is deployed. If we find that we will need to raise or lower it, we will do so at that time.

Change #2: Log as “Good,” not as “Scythe Complete”

Now that we have “Lock at 1,” most cubes do not need to be logged as “Scythe Complete” in the Scouts’ Log.  Instead, please reap your cube, make a log entry detailing your changes, and set the status of the entry to “Good,” or “Watch” depending on your confidence that the changes you made to the cube are correct. Your cube will receive the Scythe Complete(s) it needs during normal branch checks.

You may use the “Scythe Complete” status in SL for cubes that have been reaped, and are surrounded by other cubes at 2 vote Complete status. These cubes may be missed during regular branch checks, so the “Scythe Complete” status is appropriate here.

Change #3: More points!

Because Scythe Completing is so important, we’ve decided it’s time to compensate this activity with more regular gameplay points. You will still receive 1 SC point per cube SCed, and will earn badges in that category accordingly. The new points structure is as follows:

For every cube marked Scythe Complete by you at the time it is taken down from Eyewire you’ll earn:

  • 1 Scythe Complete Point
  • 25 regular points (these contribute to your leaderboard status)

On each cell you’ll also earn a flat bonus of 1000 points every time you reach a new SC milestone. These milestones are 25, 50, 100, and 200 cubes Scythe Completed.


We’ve had a number of questions and concerns about the changes being made to Scythe Complete. We’ll address those now, including improvements we’ve implemented based on your feedback about this feature.

I use Scythe Complete for something other than Scythe Complete. Won’t this negatively impact my Scythe Complete accuracy?

There have been many times in Eyewire where we have had to be creative with our tools to make up for functionality that didn’t yet exist. Scythe Complete was no exception to this rule. In the past, we’ve allowed players to MacGyver Scythe Complete into other tools that didn’t exist at the time. However, after implementing a bunch of new tools, Scythe Complete can finally be used for its intended purpose, and that purpose only. Yay!

  • If you need to freeze a cube, please use Scythe Freeze
  • If you want to mark a cube because you need to look at it later, please use the Custom Highlight tool developed by @KrzysztofKruk
  • If you want to show another Scythe that you’re working in an area, live overview will provide that information
  • If you need to make a change by reaping a cube, and want to lock that cube from gameplay, reaping it will bring it above weight 4 and it will be locked automatically

I always try my best, and this seems like a punishment. Don’t you trust me and other Scythes?

This change is about improving data accuracy and gamifying Scythe Complete. In regular gameplay players are sometimes wrong even though they are trying their best. Even though they are making a positive effort, they still earn larger points awards when they are right than they do when they are wrong. Getting rewarded for being correct is standard across all gaming platforms. In this way Scythe Complete becomes a more game-like feature than it was before.

Now that we are giving out accuracies for Scythe Complete, nuking cubes with erroneous completes will make these accuracies, well, accurate. We believe this will help all players improve their Scythe Completes and make our Eyewire data even better.

But in regular gameplay I’m rewarded based on a variety of metrics. With Scythe Completing it’s all or nothing. How is this fair?

In regular gameplay most cubes require a substantial amount of work. Scythe Completing is a quicker process since many cubes do not require any updating. If you can finish 10 SC cubes in the time it takes to play 2 regular cubes, losing 1 cube is equivalent to losing 20% of your points, not 100%.

If I see a mistake I want to fix it. But I don’t want to negatively impact my fellow Scythes. What should I do?

Whenever you reap a cube it negatively impacts the accuracy of the player who added something erroneously. If you feel that it is fair to reap mistakes, you can apply that same confidence to correcting a wrong Scythe Complete.

If the cube in question isn’t technically wrong but is missing some dust, please still correct it. If it is a negligible amount dust, it will not nuke the cube. If a significant portion of the cube is missing, it should be nuked.

What if I change over 2% of the cube but it’s only dust? What if it’s under 2% but it includes important nubs, boutons or branches?

Eyewire is, as always, a citizen science game. This means that we do not know the correct answers before they are created, and there will be times when we are unable to correctly assess who is right and who is wrong. We are constantly trying to improve our game for accuracy, but it is not fail-proof. There will be times when your SC point will be taken away for dust added, and where your point will remain even though you made a mistake.

We anticipate that these occasional errors will have very little effect on your accuracy scores. If it appears that the penalty is either too harsh or to lenient we will adjust the percentage required for a nuke to something more fair.

What if I declare a cube complete, but it gets changed during regular gameplay?

We have implemented “Lock at 1” which locks cubes from play after 1 vote. Now that this is in place, your Scythe Complete cubes will never be changed unless they are reaped.

Can I Scythe Complete my own reap?

We are continuing to allow Scythes to complete their own reaps on non-Fort cells. If you believe your trace is 100% correct at the time of your reap, you may complete it. If you are unsure about something you added or removed from your cube, set the cube to “Watch” status and do not complete it.

I like to Scythe Complete before I reap. Now my accuracy will suffer.

You should not SC before you reap. A cube is not complete until it has been reaped. Your cube does not benefit from being SCed before it is reaped.

What if someone doesn’t like me and decides to reap my Scythe Completed cubes to punish me?

For this approach to be effective, a player would have to add segments that don’t belong or remove segments that do belong from your cubes. If you notice this behavior let us know and we will make sure it is discontinued.

Will there be consequences for having good or bad Scythe Complete accuracy?

Right now your SC accuracy is just a way to show you how you’re doing, and to help you improve. However, in the future we may consider things like giving out badges for good accuracy or allowing Scythes with very high SC accuracy to complete with only 1 vote.

Thanks for reading! We update our Scouts and Scythes manual regularly, so if you need a refresher on any Scythe-related policies, you can always use it for reference!