Open Tournament, A Division Sponsored by Shorty's and B Division Sponsored by Waterland Arcade.
Northwest Pinball and Arcade Show Open Tournament, Past Champions:
2022: Tim McCool (Seattle)
2019: Raymond Davidson (Seattle)
2018: Keith Elwin (Chicago)
2017: Eden Stamm (Vancouver)
2016: Germain Mariolle (Seattle)
2015: Dave Stewart (Seattle)
2014: Dave Stewart (Seattle)
2013: Robert Gagno (Vancouver)
2012: Dave Stewart (Seattle)
The Northwest Pinball and Arcade Show Open Tournament will now be an “IFPA Certified PLUS” tournament, meaning that its WPPR values will receive a 50% boost over normal points earned. And because the base TGP value of the tournament in 2023 will be 144%, the estimated boosted TGP will be 216%!
Open qualifying begins on Friday at noon until 11:00PM on Friday and Saturday until 7:00PM. Finals will be held on Saturday at 7:00PM, with 32 players qualifying for finals in A division and the next TOP 8 B eligible players (Any player who does not have an Individual Player Rating (IPR) of 6 on the day of the finals) for finals in B (starting during A TOP16 rounds).
The tournament will follow a limited entry, best-game format across 13 machines with 12 scores (up to best 2 per machine count) out of 24 entries. Max 200 players can be registered.
Registration for the Open tournament is $30 then you can purchase your first set of 12 entries for $35 and a 2nd/final set of 12 more entries for $35. Each play is played individually on a pin of the player’s choosing.
Qualifying:Playing an Entry
Players will be added to a digital queue for a pin prior to play by themselves via the neverdrains.com website. If needed, a player may also ask a scorekeeper or the tournament desk to add them to a queue. Each player can only join one pin’s queue at a time regardless of whether the queue is for the Open tournament or the Women's Championships. Please be present and ready when you are “on deck” for a pin. If the pin is open, they must check with a scorekeeper prior to beginning play to verify they are indeed the next player up on the pin. If there is a queue, the scorekeeper will call the player when it’s their turn (if the player is not already present). If the player does not respond and appear promptly, the next player in the queue may go ahead of them as called out by the scorekeeper, and the original player may be skipped or removed from the queue.
Once a player has completed their game, the player will raise their hand to signal a scorekeeper. The player may either choose to have the score recorded or to void the entry. Voiding the entry still counts as one of a player’s limited entries – it simply doesn’t record a score for that entry. If the player chooses to record the score, the scorekeeper will record the score, and the player is responsible for verifying it before the score is finalized. Taking a quick picture of the pin’s score display is highly encouraged to have a back-up reference in case of any scorekeeping errors.
Please do not leave the pin prior to having a score recorded or voided. If a player leaves the pin without waiting for a scorekeeper, the scorekeeper will void the entry, and the player may be warned for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Each player’s best score on a machine will receive a point value based on its rank compared to all other players’ scores. The #1 score earns 200 points, #2 score earns 195 points, #3 earns 190 points, and #4 through #193 earn one less point per position, i.e. 190 points down through 1 point. Ranks below #193 earn no points on that machine. A player’s overall score is the sum of their best ranking scores on any machines with up to best two scores per machine counting, whether or not the player has played all machines in the tournament.
The Open tournament bank will contain multiple games to choose from out of which only the top 12 scores, up to best 2 scores per game, will count towards their qualifying point total. As a result, a player may choose to omit qualifying attempts on multiple machines with no detriment to their qualifying point total. Because the rankings will change as new scores are posted on each machine, the overall score of each player may change as the qualifying rounds progress. In the event of two or more scores on a machine being exactly tied, the highest point value of the tied positions will be awarded for each such score.
Tournament officials will endeavor to provide up-to-date scores and rankings. The overall ranking scores are used to determine which players qualify for the playoff rounds. Ranking scores for the Open Tournament are counted separately from the Women's Championships.
Finals:Open Tournament Finals begin on Saturday at 7:00 PM, and players are required to check-in by 6:45 PM, or they forfeit their Finals spot.
Semi-finals will start on Sunday at 9:00 AM, and players are required to check-in by 8:45 PM.
B Division TOP 8 finals for the Open tournament will start after the first round of the A finals, players are required to check-in by 7:45 PM.
B division TOP 4 finals will start on Sunday at 9:00 AM, and players are required to check-in by 8:45 PM.
Finals will be played using a modified “PAPA style” format. Finalists will be placed into groups of 4 players. They play 3 games. At the beginning of each round, the top seed in each group gets to the pick one of the available bank of 3 games (each bank consist of an OLD/MID/NEW machine). The group highest seed may elect to chose the bank for the round or position for game #1, if they chose position the next highest seed will have the same choices.
Their group will then play the machines in order as show for the bank. Player order for pins #2 and #3 are chosen in reverse finishing order from the prior pin. Once a particular bank has been chosen by a group for a round, that bank may not be selected by another group.
A player cannot select the same bank twice for the duration of the finals, until the player has selected all available banks.
If a pin has a catastrophic malfunction, then any groups assigned to that pin will reach out to a tournament director for a replacement machine. Final round tie-breakers are still settled with one full game played on the OLD game from the bank the group with tied player just played, higher seed player will have a choice of position.
Scoring is 4-2-1-0 for the four finishing positions. After 3 games, the top 2 players from each group advance.
In the event of a tie:
Ties to qualify for finals or for a bye in finals will be broken on a pin selected by tournament officials, while for seeding only will be broken through the highest number of higher scores for each players qualifying standings.
Prize Pool$1000 plus trophy for Winner. $250 plus plaque for winner of B Final.
All 32 players who qualify for A division, as well as all 8 players who qualify in B division Playoffs earn a cash prize.
If players tied, treated as non-significant tie and would split the prize if tie not broken with first tie breaker.
Minimum prize guaranteed for 1st place in A Divisions, final value can be more.
Scoring and General Tournament Rules
Malfunctions and Rulings
Anytime an abnormal circumstance occurs, a tournament official should be notified. To ensure consistency throughout the tournament, PLAYERS SHOULD NOT RESOLVE ISSUES ON THEIR OWN. Except for customized rules explicitly covered on this website, PAPA/IFPA Tournament Rules will be used to address malfunctions and as the basis for rulings. Note also that any rule posted at the event, such as on the backglass of a machine, will override any rule described herein. The rules listed here are generalized for all NWPAS events, and might not apply to some specific formats.
Delay of Game: Due to the tight show schedule, delays due to players not being ready to play are problematic. When a new game is announced, players are expected to immediately proceed to their assigned machine. If a player has not shown up within one minute, please notify a tournament official, who will start a 2-minute timer. Players who have not arrived within 3 minutes of the start of a round may be given an official warning and have their balls plunged by a tournament official. Between balls, players are generally allowed 30 seconds to get to the machine and start their ball. Exceptions could be granted (e.g. player needed restroom; tournament official is involved in game and needed to make a ruling, technician at neighboring machine needs space, etc.), but these are generally expected to be occasional and the player would have informed the other competitors ahead of time of the need. No additional time is provided if previous player tilts, due to use of fast-settling tilt bob. If an opponent regularly takes longer than 30 seconds, please notify a tournament official. Tournament officials will monitor for delay of game. Tournament officials can provide warnings as well as plunging ball on first delay of game offence, and disqualification from game or tournament for repeated offenses.
Machine Setup Changes: Tournament officials reserve the right to modify any machine between games or between rounds, including changing of settings, tilt sensitivity, machine level, or any other adjustment that is deemed desirable to make the tournament run more smoothly and be more fair and fun. Since a player is only competing against the other players in the same game, all players will encounter such changes at the same time, and it is part of pinball to be able to quickly adjust to changing conditions of a machine.
Extra Balls: Extra balls will be disabled whenever possible at the main event, but likely will still be enabled in most satellite tournaments. Any extra ball is to be plunged, unless a note on the backglass says to play it. If an extra ball is to be plunged, then player may NOT touch flipper buttons to setup skill shot, then plunge ball in attempt to get the skill shot. The player may also choose to tilt the machine prior to plunging in lieu of skill shot and end-of-ball bonus, but a tilt anytime after a first plunge attempt will result in disqualification. Once ball is in motion the player must step back and cannot touch the machine, unless the ball returns back to plunger lane and is not auto-plunged, at which time they should plunge again. In the case that a player has a compensation ball awarded due to a major malfunction, and they earn an extra ball, they may choose to play the extra ball in lieu of the compensation ball in a new game.
Bonus Balls: A bonus ball is differentiated from an Extra Ball in that it is timed, and ends when the timer runs out. Space Shuttle and Medusa are examples of two machines with Bonus Balls. Bonus balls CAN be played.
Fast-Settling Tilt Bobs: In the NWPAS show tournaments, machines will be equipped with Fast-Settling Tilt Bobs when possible, using the ear-plug tilt hack, so that even sensitive machines tend to give only one danger warning after a strong nudge or save. With this mechanism, the tilt bob usually settles to a full stop within 15 to 20 seconds, and thus no need to wait longer between players when the prior player ended their ball by tilting. As a result, the delay-of-game rules don't allow for extended waits after a player tilts, as described next. This does not apply to satellite tournaments that are held on location, with most machines as-is.
Machine Availability: In case of machine unavailability, the maximum player count listed for a round could be reduced, or a backup machine from the Expo floor may be selected for use in lieu of the broken main bank machine.
Prize Pools: The advertised prize pools assume attendance on par with previous year, and are subject to reduction in case of major problems that reduce the number of available paid entries in any of the tournaments. This includes but not limited to COVID, power failures, natural disasters, weather-related closures, and significant technical issues.
Tournament Co-Directors: Germain Mariolle, Lonnie Langford, Ashley Weaver, Richie Terry, Neal Joslyn, John Garnett, Eric Morales & Max Stewart.
For questions and inquiries regarding tournaments at NWPAS, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.