This Week in the ITC: Code of Conduct Changes.

Hello, Warhammer 40k players and lurkers! SaltyJohn from TFG Radio and ITC/FLG Judge here bringing you an update on the comings and goings of the ITC.

Before we get too into the weeds on Code of Conduct, here is a nice meme.

This past week the ITC published an updated version of the ITC Code of Conduct. If you’re a competitive player who attends large tournaments then this is important news for you. The ITC Code of Conduct went under a rather significant overhaul in a few areas and I wanted to run through some of the more important changes. There is not a changelog, perhaps that is something we need to do in the future but it wasn’t something we thought of doing this time around, so some of us are working on putting together things like this article, and a video to highlight the changes. If you haven’t already read the new ITC Code of Conduct click the hyperlink to do so now, or have it open while we go through some of the changes.

First, we made the document easier to navigate with the side bar outline and a table of contents at the top of the Doc. So clicking to a section to find it has never been easier for the Code of Conduct. Judges and TOs who use the ITC Code of Conduct will now find it much easier to navigate to the section they are trying to reference which will save everyone involved time.

The biggest change to the Code of Conduct is easily the change to the Yellow/Red Card system. Prior to the current iteration of the CoC the card system was simply an accumulation of fouls that would result in the loss of game or disqualification from the event. While accumulating cards still results in actions like a DQ, also note it takes only 2 Yellows to equal a Red now not 3, the issuing of a Yellow Card is also a penalty to the player in-game itself. Meaning a Yellow Card foul is accompanied by a loss of Victory Points for the offending player. Much in the same way committing a foul in American Football results in a loss of yards for the offending team.

One of the reasons for this change toward more in-game punitive measures is the card system, while functional, was itself being gamed by some players to a certain extent. Knowing you would get a Yellow Card for your list being submitted late was a reason for some to turn them in on time, but for others, it was not as they figured they could simply absorb the single Yellow because they had 2 more to go before a Red and a DQ. In order to change that the Yellow Card for submitting a list late is a Yellow Card with a -20 Victory Points to your first-round game. Combined with a second Yellow now resulting in an automatic Red Card and the deterrent to trying to game the system for list submission is much stronger.

You will notice several places where the Code of Conduct was changed to do something similar. To deter this temptation to try and skirt the rules in order to gain advantages in a way that may not be strictly against the rules, or Code of Conduct, but should be. Another example is a small change to tardiness. A player who is over 15 minutes late to the start of their next round game will now have the amount of time they are late deducted from their clock, in addition to receiving a Yellow Card.

We also added a whole new section to address some of the issues we have had come up regarding teams and clubs. The ITC takes the integrity of the game and events seriously, and we want to make sure that players have the best possible experiences at events while also remaining competitive. We also acknowledge that players for clubs and teams for many reasons, the most important of which is a sense of camaraderie and community. However, we also acknowledge there is a need to make sure that clubs/teams behave according to the Code of Conduct and maintain the spirit of the game and tournaments just like players need to.

Another key addition to the Code of Conduct was the inclusion of “Angle Shooting”. The term is defined in several places in the Code of Conduct and we included it because we felt it filled a small hole in the Code. There are times in the course of running and judging an event where a TO or Judge comes across an issue with a player and they cannot quite put their finger on what it was the player did incorrectly, but it definitely falls into the category of outside the spirit of the game. While we define that things outside the Spirit of the Game are indeed fouls, “angle shooting” provides something specific, with a specific definition, for judges and TOs to point to when issuing a penalty to an offending player. As mentioned above the term “angle shooting” is defined in several places, one of those is the Index of Terms near the end of the Code of Conduct. We also expanded the Index of Terms to give players and judges another place to navigate to quickly to find the information they may need.

Overall the ITC Code of Conduct remains mostly the same as the previous version. The most important additions were all put in with the intent to provide a more strict and impactful Code of Conduct to encourage players to play competitive 40k in an ethical and clean manner. We feel the additional tools provided in the updated Code of Conduct to judges of ITC events will help to further curb the already rare instances of players abusing the system to win games.

Let us know if you find anything in the Code of Conduct that might be a typo, or need clearing up. The document is a living document that is open to being updated or changed at any time if it is necessary.

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About SaltyJohn

John has been playing Warhammer 40k since the 3rd edition box set with Space Marines, Dark Eldar, and weird green palm trees were in the set. He is currently a 40k Head Judge for the Las Vegas Open, the largest 40k tournament in the world. An avid board gamer, a huge fan of video games, and a guest spot on Geek and Sundry as a "Historian" during an episode of "Game the Game" round out his geek credentials. You can catch "Salty" John on TFG Radio's Twitch Show, and Podcast, as well as find him streaming video games on Twitch on the TFG Radio Twitch page from time to time.

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