Sunday, March 22, 2009

O Buccaneer!

It is with great pleasure I report that Second Life's third Buccaneer Bowl took place this weekend, and was a tremendous success. For readers unfamiliar, the Buccaneer Bowl is a team-based trivia quiz in Second Life organized and run by Lette Ponnier, Lillian Shippe, and Thornton Writer: three big names in the trivia community. And, besides being the only team-based trivia contest in SL, the Buccaneer Bowl also boasts some pretty substantial prize money. The result is that most of the trivia heavyweights take part in the game, there's competitive negotiating and wrangling for team members, and serious bragging rights to the winner! (Or, at least, the winners sure brag about it…which may not quite be the same thing!)

Teams assembled at the third Buccaneer Bowl

The format of the third Buccaneer Bowl closely matched the second one, with the exception that the bonuses for low Avatar Rendering Costs (ARCs) encouraged people to keep their scores below 500 rather than 1,000. (And, again, I didn't have to dress down at all…apparently I'm not fancy enough to be a problem!) The organizers also introduced a new format for the timed bonus questions: teams who won a round got a special question just for themselves, and it required two answers, each of which shared a word. For instance, one pair of answers was the Chaplin film Modern Times and the English new wave band Modern English. I loved the idea—it rewards actual knowledge, since the questions have to be answered in 75 seconds. Not really enough time for Google to come to the rescue.

The Frivolous Corsairs take on the world!

My only hesitation about the Buccaneer Bowl is that I might be holding back my team! This was the third Bowl, but only the second I've attended—a real-life emergency kept me away from the first one. At the first bowl, apparently my gallant team, the Frivolous Corsairs, came in second without me! Since then—with my "help"—we've placed sixth and fifth. Still, a good time was had by all and the event truly seems to be picking up momentum. I look forward to many more!


  1. Hey we haven't bragged yet ;) Did you notice the questions this time seemed considerably harder?

  2. And once again, Lou, thanks for giving us such a wonderful review! All the feedback on the bonus questions seems pretty positive, so we plan to keep that format next time. The next tweak to the system we have lined up involves limiting bonus questions to only one team. The Crew will probably still be discussing it three weeks from now, but right now we're leaning toward a tiebreak-type deal.

    A player suggested that this aspect of the Bowl needed revision, and though we're not using her specific suggestion as to how to revise, we appreciated her calling the issue to our attention. We're likewise happy to hear any other input players send our way.

  3. Josh has appointed himself Braggadacchio In Chief, so he's got your boasting bases covered, Chadd. ;)I didn't notice the questions seemed particularly more or less difficult - they felt about right - but they were very well written. I wasn't puzzling to myself over what a question *meant* at all, but I'll admit to puzzling over whether I knew the answers. And the Bucc Bowl has top players! You guys ought to be able to handle a tough question or two!

  4. Thanks for the awesome Kudos, Lou. Lette and Thorn work amazingly hard at coming up with trivia stumpers for the Bowl, while I simply sit back, test drive the occasional question, and design devilish spreadsheets to track our insanely byzantine scoring system, so that everyone gets paid and all is fair in the game. We are all so glad that the participants enjoy it as much as we all enjoy hosting.

    BTW, I didn't know I was a "big name" in the trivia community...perhaps it is by association.

  5. My standard of "big name in the trivia community" is pretty simple: someone everyone else knew before anyone knew me. :)


Comments are moderated. You can use some HTML tags, such as <b>, <i>, <a>. If you'd like to contact me privately, use a blog comment and say you don't want it published.