Longsword Tournament Structure

We have fielded a few questions around our Longsword Blossfechten tournament for 2019. Will there be tiers? Where is the Women’s event and the Rookie Training Tournament? How will progression work? We are still working out many of the details around this event, but we have a functional plan for the general structure.

The Structure

This coming year’s tournament will function similarly to a swiss pairs tournament, but fairly heavily modified. Everyone will start off in a pool of fighters who are similar to them using an as-yet-to-be-decided combination of height and weight. Each fighter will fight a number of people in this pool equal to half of the total fights we can fit into the schedule. Once this round is complete, the pools will be restructured. Fighters who perform well will be moved into a general pool of fighters who also performed well from across the categories. Fighters who do not meet this threshold will remain in their original category. Every fighter will then complete the rest of their matches in these new pools. We are working on how we will match up fighters within the pools, especially in the second round, to provide meaningful fights.

The Theory

With our move to a focus on meta-events, we wanted to drop the necessity of elimination brackets anywhere we thought it made sense. We no longer need to determine who gets 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in direct fights against other people who battled their way through a bracket. Instead, everyone will be assigned points towards their meta event based on their relative placement after the tournament has finished.

We believe that this pushes us back towards looking at tournaments as training tools. Participants do not need to worry about if they are going to make it out of the pools, or that any given fight in the bracket could end their day. Each fight is individual, and has no effect on how far you get in the tournament. Fighters can then focus on each fight as an opportunity to train.

What about Women’s and the Rookie Training Tournament?

Rookie Training Tournament: Unfortunately, with the changes we have made this year, this type of a tournament is out of scope and we do not have time for it. This tournament model in HEMA was pioneered by Longpoint back in 2015 and was Emma Graf’s baby. We have seen multiple events pop up in the last two years that focus on and follow a similar tournament model, and we hope that these continue and spread.

Women’s Longsword: Due to multiple factors, we decided not to offer Women’s Longsword this year. With the shift to meta events, a discrete women’s event does not fit well into the structure. What we would like to do, however, is allow women to either opt in or opt out of a Women’s category within the overall structure of our main longsword tournament. This means that, alongside the height/weight categories, there would be a Women’s group. However, just like the weight categories, the women who perform well will move into the general category in the second round with the rest of the fighters who perform well. Fighters in this category who do not meet the threshold will remain in the category for Round 2.

Well what about Tiers?

We haven’t decided yet.

More information about the various events will be posted over the next 5 days as we lead up to registration. Follow the Longpoint page to stay updated.