koth_clearcut_b13 has been released and will be used in the upcoming season. Please ensure you have it downloaded and added to your servers. You can find the map download link here-

https://tf2maps.net/downloads/clearcut.5682/download?version=20448

Announcing the pilot season for Traditional Sixes

   sigafoo   - 7/1/2019

RGL.gg Traditional Sixes


Update #1


Update #2


Update #3


Update #4


Wow that's a lot of text!


We wanted to be as upfront and as transparent as possible when it came to the Traditional sixes league. We worked together with a team of six different Invite players to form these rulesets. If you are only looking for the basics, check out the registration page for that information.

Need help finding a team?


Finding a team is not hard, but it does require you to put in a little effort.

First, you should make a post in the websites Looking For Team (LFT) section and also post in our discord #na-looking-for-team.

Second, you should contact leaders of teams who need a player. You can find them listed in the Teams Looking for Players (LFP) section and also the LFP section of our discord #na-teams-looking-for-players.



What is talked about in this article below

Schedule - Divisions - Whitelist - Map Rules - Maps - Matches - Money - Why RGL - Invite Rules


RGL Season 1 Rules


These rules and league structure were a mixture of ideas that were inspired by ESEA and from our other successful RGL leagues. Some of them might seem foreign to you, but we've been using variations of them for several seasons now and they've worked well. We hope that you keep an open mind to change, just as we always keep an open mind to listen to our community.

As one of the reasons RGL has been so successful as a league, so quickly, is because of our active admining. We listen and work with our community to create the best experience we can. So with this first season, we are looking to try new ideas and then learn and grow from that. Whether that's to change a little, a lot or stay the course. We are focused on pushing TF2 to be the best it can be and we appreciate you joining us for that.

Season Schedule


2019 Seasons


ESEA Regular Season
April 29 - July 22nd

RGL HL Regular Season
May 27th - July 29th


See Update #3 Article above for dates/times this season

LAN

RGL will announce if we are able to secure the LAN playoffs for our Fall season with the launch of the Fall season (around September.) The LAN Playoffs would be for our Invite division only.

We are hoping for a LAN in 2020.

Divisions


Division Structure

We will start off with 3 divisions (Invite, IM, Open) and expand based off the size of the league.
If we are the size of ESEA or UGC (~60-80 teams) we would have up to six divisions.

Invite (6-8 teams)
Best of the best. We don’t want to have sacrificial teams in Invite who are there just to pay money and lose. We want to make sure that our division size reflects the skill pool and that every team should feel like they have a chance to make playoffs.

Advance (6-8 teams)
This is the stepping stone into Invite.
General talent level: Very bottom teams in ESEA-Invite and the top 4-8 teams in ESEA-IM

Main (10+ teams)
General talent level: Mid ESEA-IM teams

IM (10+ teams)
General talent level: Low ESEA-IM and high-mid ESEA-Open teams, High UGC Silver-Plat teams

Open (10+ teams)
General talent level: Very bottom ESEA-Open teams and UGC-Steel players

Fresh Meat (name TBD) (6+)
This would only exist if we get a bunch of teams who are new to competitive. A very protective division for teams with players who are brand new to comp.

Sandbagging


We do not tolerate it. It does not make your league better. “It’s healthy because it allows teams to play against better players to get better” is bullshit.

When a team registers for Advance, Main, or IM, the player does not select your division, but will be placed in a division based on their team’s skill level.

We move teams based on their best players, not their worst. E.g. Three open players and three Invite players on a roster means that team would be be placed into Advance, as the roster is comprised mostly of Invite players. If we placed that team in lower divs, the good players might be able to carry the bad ones. Or (more likely), the open players would be replaced mid season with better players.

If a player wishes to off-class down multiple divisions or “coach” a team while playing with them, the only way that would be considered is if the player perma-played medic.

A desire to off-class to avoid being called sandbaggers is something players regularly request. However, the thing to remember about the overwhelming majority of teams with off-classing players is that they will only off-class... until they lose. Almost every “off-classing” team will not finish mid-table because they are there “just to have fun;” almost always they either switch back to their mains mid-season once they start to lose, or make playoffs just to switch back to their mains and try hard.

When ranking teams we don’t take “off-classing” into effect very much and rank teams based mostly in what they can do at their full potential.

Move Ups


One thing we don’t want is perennial champions in a division; a player who is on the winning team season after season inside a lower division. The league generally will move up the winning team from a season from a division and/or teams who were very successful throughout the season to the next higher division.

Some teams would avoid move ups by dissolving the team and joining other teams in the division they were just in. If a team does that in RGL, the winning team’s players will be division-restricted for two seasons. Thus if the team does not move up, all players from that team must play inside of the higher division that they should be in based on their results.

E.g. the “sigafools” had a great season and ended up winning IM in Season 1. In Season 2 they are expected to compete in Main. However, they decide to break up the team to avoid this. Now every player from “sigafools” winning team will be division-restricted and cannot register for a team playing in any division lower than Main for two seasons.

If the team does move up and does not have a great season, they could be moved back down the season after (see “Optional Move Downs” below).

For team move ups, the team that is moving up will get a discount on the league fee. So the cost difference should not be the thing holding a team back from registering to be in the division they have shown they deserve to be in. This doesn’t require your full team to move up, just a core of 2-3 players to go into the next division.

Optional Move Downs


Teams will not be forced to stay in a division once they make it there. For instance, if a team plays in Invite and finish in the bottom, they can request to be moved down for the next season. We will not force move downs onto teams however, meaning that if a team has a bad season, they can choose to stay in the higher division to continue to push and challenge themselves inside of that higher division.


Whitelist


Changes


We will be using survey data to decide what whitelist we use for the upcoming season. To take the survey and find out more information, check out the article [url=http://sixes.rgl.gg/Gaben/News/ViewArticle.aspx?a=1250]here,[/u]


Mid-Season Whitelist Changes


We’ve never changed the whitelist mid-season. However, if a weapon we allowed back in is a provable broken state, we would consider banning it during the season. This would only apply in an extreme circumstance, such that it was clearly and presently affecting the league.

Future Whitelist Changes


We would look to host a cup in the offseason between seasons to test out a lowered whitelist, to see if some of the weapons that we’ve previously had banned can be removed without any real issue.

Map Rules


5cp Rules


Matches will be one map, broken into two halves.

1st Half - First team to win 3 rounds or 30 minutes
2nd Half - The first team to a total of 5 round wins or 30 minutes

A team wins the match by winning five rounds in the match, or by having the most rounds won after two halves. If teams are tied after two halves, they will go into the golden cap rules.

5cp Golden Cap Rules


No time limit; first team to win one round wins.

Koth Rules


Best of 7 (first team to win 4 rounds)

Half time is after a team wins two rounds (Bo3)

Maps


Map List

Starting ESEA Map List: Badlands, Granary, Viaduct, Snakewater, Gullywash, Process, Sunshine, Metalworks, Propaganda

For RGL traditional sixes Season One, Badlands and Granary will be removed.

We will be adding one more map into the map list for the first season. We will be choosing that map based on our pre-season survey. You can find out more information [url=http://sixes.rgl.gg/Gaben/News/ViewArticle.aspx?a=1250]here,[/u]

Map List Rotation


In the traditional sixes offseason, we will look at our existing map list and look at the least popular maps. We will then evaluate and consider removing them to bring back an old map or a new map. We will also try to host experimental map cups, during the offseason, to get player feedback on new maps for potential use for the next season or future seasons.

Map Selection During the Regular Season (Invite Only)


Home Ban | Home Ban | Away Ban | Away Ban | Home Pick

We will do a double round robin for these divisions. Each team will thus have a chance to be the home team and choose a map they believe they can win on against the other team.

Map selections will be required to be finished the Saturday night prior to your match. Home bans are required by the Thursday night before, Away bans are required by Friday night and the map selection by Saturday night.

The only rule is that the Away team cannot use both bans on the only two koth maps in the map pool.

For the first season we will see if protected bans will allow more map diversity to happen and possibly help balance the skill level of Invite. This is something that we’ll actively discuss in the off season, going into Season 2. Our concern is giving too many bans to the away team can allow them to dictate too much of which maps can be played.


Maps During the Regular Season (Main, IM, Open)


Maps will be preselected with one map per week.

Tentative Schedule
Week 1 - Process
Week 2 - Gullywash
Week 3 - Viaduct
Week 4 - Snakewater
Week 5 - Sunshine
Week 6 - Clearcut
Week 7 - Propaganda
Week 8 - Metalworks

Maps During Playoffs (IM, Main, Advance, Invite)


Away Ban | Home Ban | Away Pick | Home Pick | Away Ban | Away Ban | Home Pick

Maps During Playoffs (Open)


Away Ban | Home Ban | Away Ban | Home Pick

For open we usually do only one map playoffs for all leagues; as open players tend to be newer, we try to keep the playoffs simpler. Also recall that RGL-Open != ESEA-Open. If you played in ESEA-Open you almost certainly will be playing in IM or above in RGL.

Playoff Styles


Invite - Double Elim - 4 teams
Advance - Double Elim - 4 teams
Main - Single or Double (depends on division size)
IM - Single or Double (depends on division size)
Open - Single Elim - Team Size

Double Elimination Finals


Currently with the structure of double elimination Grand Finals, it doesn’t make the first Bo3 very special. Calling it a finals isn’t really true, since only one team can actually win them. We will take inspiration from The International and other tournaments and change the Grand Finals to be one Bo5 like series.

The Upper Bracket (UB) team will start off with one “map win” in the Bo5. The UB team will also get to choose 3 of the remaining maps, while the Lower Bracket (LB) will only choose one map for the finals.

For the LB team to win, they need to win three maps, whereas the UB only needs to win two maps (since they start with one win already.)

The goal is to create a Grand Finals match with actual stakes: the winning team actually wins, while still giving the team that has not lost in the playoffs advantages in the grand finals.


Matches


Match Days


All paid divisions (Invite, Advance, Main, IM) will have two matches a week.
The Open (free) division will play once a week.

Default Days

Tuesday 10:30pm Eastern - Invite / Advance / Main / IM
Wednesday - Open (9:30pm Eastern) / Invite (10:30pm Eastern)
Thursday 10:30pm Eastern - Advance / Main / IM

Remember teams can reschedule matches very easily (see below.)

Rescheduling


When a team proposes a reschedule, their opponent has 24 hours to agree or counter propose to the reschedule. If teams cannot agree to a reschedule within 24 hours of the default date occurring, then the default date would be used.

Point System


In Season 1 we will have the league use our current point system that has been used in our other leagues as a test run. The way that it works is that for every game, a winning team can earn up to 3 points; a losing team can win up to 1 point. Both teams earn points based on the number of rounds they win in the game. (See examples below)

This means that the winning team has the incentive to win by as much as possible. As in, parking the bus to get a 2-1 victory will get you fewer points than a 5-1 victory. This also incentivizes the losing team to try as hard as they can to win as many rounds as they can, even if they’re going to lose the game.

Calculation -
Loser Points = ((Losing Team Rounds Won)/(Winning team rounds won - 1))
Winner Points = 3 - Loser Points


Example 1 - If the final score was Froyotech 5 - 0 Ascent, Froyotech would get 3 points and Ascent would get zero.
Ascent = (0/4) = 0
Froyotech = 3-0 = 3

Example 2 - If the final score was Froyotech 2 - 0 Ascent, Froyotech would get 3 points and Ascent would get zero.
Ascent = (0/1) = 0
Froyotech = 3-0 = 3

Example 3 - If the final score was Froyotech 2 - 1 Ascent, Froyotech would get 2 points and Ascent would get 1 point.
Ascent = (1/1) = 1
Froyotech = 3-1 = 2

Example 4 - If the final score was Froyotech 5 - 1 Ascent, Froyotech would get 2.75 points and Ascent would get .25 point.
Ascent = (1/4) = .25
Froyotech = 3-.25 = 2.75

Example 5 - If the final score was Froyotech 5 - 4 Ascent, Froyotech would get 2 points and Ascent would get 1 point.
Ascent = (4/4) = 1
Froyotech = 3-1 = 2

Example 6 - If the final score was Froyotech 3 - 1 Ascent, Froyotech would get 2.5 points and Ascent would get .5 point.
Ascent = (1/2) = .5
Froyotech = 3-.5 = 2.5

Winning will always give a team a significant portion of points. Generally these numbers will align with the teams W/L record; the times it does not, is often for mid-table teams. If you have one team who won 1 more game, but all of their losses were rolls, and you have one team that consistently had close games even when losing, then the team with one more loss might be able to make up the point gap.

The point system thus benefits teams that are more consistent over the course of the season across all matches.

Servers


We currently own about 25 servers and can use external services to help scale this up as needed. Currently all RGL servers are Chicago-based.

Our plan is to be able to provide a server for every match. We are actively working on the ability to automatically obtain a server through our website to play on; once we have our system working properly, we can even allow teams to rent servers to scrim on.

Teams who own their own servers can opt to use their own servers for matches in place of renting RGL servers.

Money


Prize Pool Size

For Season 1 (Summer) we are expecting a prize pool of between $6,000 to $8,000 depending on the number of teams that register.

For Season 2 (Fall) we are would expect to see closer to $8,000 - $10,000 prize pool. This would be due to Season 2 likely featuring the LAN and growth due to the established nature of the league.

To be very clear, these are not unrealistic numbers. These are very sustainable numbers with our current player base, the size of our other leagues, and the expected growth we expect to see with bringing sixes into RGL.

Player League Fees


Invite - $40
Advance - $30
Main - $20
IM - $15
Open - Free

All teams in paid divisions will have an option to play in a playoff bracket, even if they finish outside the top playoff bracket.

Only the highest playoff bracket for each paid division will play for a prize pool.

By comparison ESEA fees for players who played in regular and postseason
Invite - $40
IM - $36
Open - $21

Prize pool Payouts


Prize pool size and exact payouts will be released around the first week of each season. Our expected prize pool is $8,000 for Season 1. Below is an estimated payout structure for an $8,000 prize pool. These are not final, but an estimate/eligible for adjustment. During LAN seasons, the prize pool would be more weighted towards Invite.



Why RGL?


The Future of RGL Traditional Sixes


RGL is a fluid organization with one goal in mind: find growth in competitive TF2 and do whatever we need to do to explode that growth.

If the traditional sixes league as proposed is great and crushes it, we’ll see growth, good player retention and new players wanting to join. Why would we change anything major? If we have a large paying playerbase, a successful league, why suddenly do something big that could hurt that? RGL at the base is a business. Why would we want to hurt our business in such a serious way?

In the same vein, we want to find success. If we have a league, any of our leagues, stagnating, we will try to figure out what can we do better: is it the format? Is it the match times? Is it the season? Is it the maps? Do new players find it easy to pick up? Why are we not retaining our existing playerbase? We will evaluate any possible element that could be impacting our success and try to fix them.

RGL has been successful because we’re not afraid of asking these questions to ourselves and pivoting every season in some small or big way.

RGL is very equipped to try new ideas and ask new questions: we can hold an off-season cup or tournament with a new rule set, maps, whitelist, or anything else needed; then we can survey players to get their feedback on it. We could even host an off-season league with the new ruleset to see what it plays like in a more structured way. We are not looking to drop major changes onto this league without first testing out the ideas.

For anyone who believes that leagues should never change, never pivot, and never try to find new ways to grow TF2, then RGL is definitely not the league for them and one the other proposed leagues probably fits you better. However, if you believe that a league’s goal should be to find growth in TF2, whether that’s through small change, big change, etc. then we’re the league for you. We’ll try our best to create something great and we want to continue to explore that with you.

Why Bring All Formats into One League?


When RGL took over Highlander in North America, UGC lost about 70% of it’s Highlander playerbase and about 33% of the sixes player base that season. The player drop for sixes might have happened either way, but I do believe that players are more likely to play in other formats in the same league they already play in. If they left UGC for RGL, they may have stopped playing traditional sixes as well in UGC.

The larger the player base that we bring under one roof, the more RGL can see cross-promotion of our various formats. If someone is playing Highlander with us, it’s easier to promote other formats to them and they’re more likely to sign up for another format inside the league they’re already playing in.

Besides the point of internal/cross-promotion growth, it also allows us to have a better pitch to sponsors. Given that we’d likely have increased viewership on our streams, more players in our league, more people visiting the website and beyond. It gives us more to sell to potential sponsors to help expand and sustain our prize pools.


Invite Specific Information?


Possible LAN


If we hosted a LAN for playoffs it’d be a LAN for the Invite division. Our first LAN would be after Season 2 (fall 2019 season). Our goal would be to host it on an early January weekend. It would preferably be hosted in the midwest somewhere, but the exact location is still being determined.

If we do or do not have a LAN for the fall season, it will be 100% confirmed either way at the announcement of Season 2.

Bounty Prize

If a team wins back-to-back seasons in Invite, we will add $120 into the bounty pool. This money would roll over season after season until that team was defeated and be awarded to the team that unseats the existing champions.

If the bounty was won and any collusion was found between the 1st and 2nd place teams to gain the bounty all players on both teams would receive a 1 year ban and the bounty (a) would either not be paid out or (b) in the case of the bounty being paid out before the collision was discovered, teams would be required to pay it back prior to being able to compete in RGL again.

Streaming Delay


As we’ve done with our other leagues, POV streamers who are streaming a match being officially casted by RGL must use a 3 minute delay. This allows the official match cast and the player’s perspective to be closer to equal footing, by allowing the POV which is ahead of the STV delay to be closer to the STV delay + twitch delay. Per our new rules this year, players cannot stream their POV during the Grand Finals match.

After RGL finishes streaming any match, the winning team can provide a twitch stream of a player from the winning team and we will rehost them after each match, including the Grand Finals

One thing to remember is that when a league is trying to secure sponsorships, it is important to have strong viewership numbers of a stream. Having good numbers is an important selling point to help grow our league and our prize pools for players.


Team Logo


Since Invite will be the main division that we promote and broadcast, RGL will place higher scrutiny of on the quality of team logos that are used for promotion. We want our match cast posters to not have two boxed images of MS Paint style drawings next to each other; it’s not appealing, does not look professional and is not up to the standards of RGL.

If a team wants to have their own custom team logo, they will be expected to provide a high resolution, transparent, team logo that logically fits with the team name with no outside context required. If teams cannot or do not have the capability to provide this, that is fine; the RGL graphics team will put together a logo for the team to use at no charge, with the team able to provide feedback to us during the design process.

Player Names


Consistency is king when it comes to following a division that you do not play in. Allowing players to manually change their names to memes or terms completely different from their actual alias causes broadcasts to look unprofessional.

E.g. if I changed my name to PurplePants, but the broadcasters still called me sigafoo, that can be confusing to a player or fan who’s not part of the Invite scene.

E.g. if there were three different b4nny's who were actively playing inside of NA Invite. How do you know which one you're talking about? Does this make the stream easier to follow for someone who only casually follows the scene?

One thing that RGL currently uses is the concept of “verification.” Players who are paid up in Invite will be Verified forever inside of the website under their given alias. So much so, that other Invite players cannot use that alias in the near future. This allows consistency for viewers of the Invite division as they can now easily track, look at team pages, and more, and recognize players name, season over season.

We do not require players have to alias up correctly for matches that are not being casted.

External Broadcasters


For external casters, for any game that RGL is not broadcasting, you may get the STV and broadcast the match without issue. Default ports for STV are 27020.

For any match that RGL is broadcasting, you will need to work with our production team as our servers cannot handle having a large number of people inside of the STV without creating STV lag. You will have to have a relay setup, so you can fit the 3+ people broadcasting in the STV at the same time as the RGL team.

Are you denying TFTV from casting matches that you’re covering?

No. External broadcasters just have to request access and set up a relay to accommodate them. The only exception to this is the Grand Finals.

Why the Grand Finals?

One thing that RGL has been doing this year is making the Grand Finals cast a big event that is shown through the RGL twitch channel.

This causes a spike in viewership that is more notable and more likely to get the random person to jump in to check out comp. Seeing two streams at 300-400 isn’t as tempting as one which is over 1,000 viewers.

These statistics are also good when we go to sponsors and are able to show large Grand Finals numbers to make the league more appealing to advertise in and help grow our prize pool.

To put some context behind this, the last ESEA grand finals b4nny had around 500 viewers, TFTV had about 100-150 and habib had around 100. Cumulatively, that's about 700-800 viewers.

Before we implemented we would only get about 400-500 viewers, with another 250-350 through players' POV streams, for a total of around 700-800. After we implemented the rule, the No Restriction Sixes Grand Finals had about 1,100 viewers and the Prolander Grand Finals had over 1,000 viewers. We believe that if there was one stream for those ESEA finals, you would likely see numbers similar to these.

With all this in mind, RGL will continue to make the grand finals a big event through the RGL stream, as having these kinds of numbers makes the stream much more appealing both to your average twitch-browser and potential sponsors.