Survivor Pool Last Man Standing Scenarios | HelpDesk |

Survivor Pool Last Man Standing Scenarios

The following is an explanation of the options we considered on how to handle the case where all players lose in a 2-bracket survivor league with buybacks. Ultimately we decided on option 1, but in the future may consider option 2. Options 3 and 4 will not be considered, they provide too heavy an advantage to the leader of the pool. 

Two-Bracket League /w Buybacks

Scenario: Every player in brackets one and two lose, and last-man-standing is enabled

Option 1 (current implementation): Advance all remaining players with lives set to 1, including those with a prior loss who bought back in, and allow buyback option into the 1st place round, or option to drop to 2nd place round without a buyback fee. Any subsequent loss eliminates the player.
  • Players who entered the week with no loss are more adversely affected than players who previously bought back in, because while both incur a loss, buyback players are not eliminated with a 2nd loss.  How much this is balanced out due to the buyback players having already paid more to be in the 1st place bracket, and because the pot will likely increase (see bullet item 2) is in the eye of the beholder. The buyback players still sit at a disadvantage since the loss count tie-breaker works against them (see paragraph at the end of this article as to why buyback players should not be eliminated in a wipeout week).
  • Players who entered the week with no loss have the flexibility to decide if they want to drop to the 2nd place bracket where they would likely have an increased chance of winning 2nd place. If they want to compete for 1st place they are required to do the buyback. This becomes an advantage to the top players and consequentially the previous buyback players, since the pot is increased. Its a better advantage to the top players because they are already more likely to win. It is analogous to having pocket aces in Texas Holdem and wanting to see the pot increase as high as possible.
  • Generally consistent with single bracket behavior.
  • Current default behavior, does not require a software change.

Option 2: Advance all remaining players with lives set to 1, including those with a prior loss who bought back in. Everyone stays in the first place bracket and no buybacks are required.
  • Same as option 1, except players are not forced to do a buyback to stay in the 1st place bracket. This is slightly less favorable than option 1 to the pool leaders, since the pot is not increased.
  • This doesn't allow flexibility to stay in the 2nd place bracket, but at the same time doesn't require a buyback to move forward.
  • Requires change in software implementation.

Option 3: Advance all remaining players, except those with a prior loss who bought back in.
  • This heavily favors the leader of the survivor pool, then the 2nd place player, and so on. This is analogous to the 1st place player holding pocket aces in Texas Holdem, the 2nd place player pocket kings, and so on, with the weaker hands folded (prior buyback players). Hence a wipe-out week where everyone loses becomes an increased advantage to those at the top of the pool by removing the buyback players, even though every player lost.
  • Removes players who paid more into the pot for the right to compete in the 1st place bracket.
  • Discourages buybacks, since later weeks the player could lose if both pick the same team and that team loses. 
  • Inconsistent behavior with single bracket leagues under the same scenario. 
  • Requires change in software implementation.

Option 4: Treat week as a null week, as if the week did not occur.
  • Favors the leader of the pool due to attrition of teams available to select. This advantage grows exponentially as the season approaches the end.
  • Inconsistent behavior with single bracket leagues under the same scenario. 
  • Requires a change in software implementation.

Why a wipeout week shout NOT eliminate buyback players

Buyback players paid an additional cost for the right to compete fairly in the 1st place bracket. Also, the Last Man Standing setting seeks an outright winner, not someone backing in with a loss.

Consider the following illustration: Player A loses in week two and buys back in to the 1st place round. By Week 14, Player A and player B, who has 0 losses, are all that remain in 1st place bracket. Last man standing means you need a definitive 1st place winner. If both players A and B pick the same team and that team loses, despite missing the pick B would become the winner. Instead, in this scenario, B would have the option to buy back in, which they of course likely would. If there was a player C or D in the mix, and player B has a lower SoV, they may entertain the more assured 2nd place finish (assuming players C & D choose to buy back in).

It has also been suggested to treat the week as a NULL week, where 1st place bracket players get their life back and still have two lives.  This is an advantage to the leaders because that's one week closer to doomsday, when no teams are left to pick and the winner is decided by SoV. The farther in to the season an SoV leader goes, the odds start increasing exponentially that they win. A NULL week therefore ONLY helps the leaders, and that help increases exponentially as doomsday approaches (which is usually the wildcard week). It typically starts to get real important after week 13. Don't think of just buyback players, also think of the players with 2 lives who are lower in the standings. There's no question that they are adversely affected by a NULL week, and if its week 14 or 15, it becomes a HUGE advantage for the leader, yet they missed their pick like everyone else.
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