It's finally here! Theme Park Apprentice 6.1: Audition round goes up next saturday. The other judges and myself are very excited to resurrect this game, and hopefully make it better than ever.
What is Theme Park Apprentice? I'm glad you asked! In the words of Tim W., "Theme Park Apprentice, or TPA as we often to refer to it, is a takeoff on the Apprentice show for amateur theme park and ride designers. Every week you are given a challenge that requires you to design an attraction, hotel, restaurant, land, or entire park. The ideas are reviewed, and every week one [person is] eliminated until we have a champion."
This version of the game will run similarly to Theme Park Apprentice 5, in that all ideas will be put together in the end for a cumulative theme park. There will be some changes, however.
First, in an effort to lessen bias, this year we have a panel of 5 judges. These five judges will be solely responsible for the cuts that are made. There will be no arguing. If you are cut, you are cut! One contestant will be eliminated each week after the audition, and the judges will vote on who they think should be eliminated. The proposal with the most votes will be eliminated.
Second, the Audition round will have a slightly different purpose this year. As many people as wish to may enter the audition round and the contest. By posting your Audition, you enter the contest. However, unlike TPA 5, only 10 contestants will survive the audition rounds. The judges will decide together which 10 those will be.
Third, At the time when Auditions end, I will post all of the challenges for the entire competition, which gives you a little more flexibility to work with.
Finally, Independent Properties (IP) will be allowed, as long as it is not already utilized in a Theme Park. Therefore, you are welcome to use The Jungle Book in an attraction, but Harry Potter is a no-go. Also, if you choose to create a Disney or Universal Theme Park, or a Theme Park owned by a larger company, you can use their IP that is already in a park, but not the IP of any other companies.
The standard rules will be the same as the unfinished TPA 6, which are as follows:
1. Grammar counts. If we can’t read what you have written, it becomes next to impossible to get a good idea of what the attraction is about. We all understand that misspelling crop up (I’m sure there are several in this introduction article) but please do your best to make it as readable as possible. It is a shame for a really good idea to be hidden under an avalanche of fragmented sentences, bad grammar, bad spelling, and fragmented ideas. Use a spell checker and a grammar checker.
2. Deadlines count. If you can’t get something in on time, please let us know and we will attempt to work with you. The extra time to work on each idea should make this less of an issue, but we all understand that nothing squeezes creativity out of a brain like a looming deadline. While the judges are allow to make the determination of what kind of penalty is assessed based on circumstances, think of it as the old school model of losing a letter grade or more for late work.
3. Creativity counts. The challenges have been designed to give you a wide variety of directions to go with a challenge. If we get three attractions that use the same characters and one that doesn’t, the one odd duck will be much more memorable when it comes time to vote. If you come up with an idea so obvious that you think everyone else probably will to, you are probably correct. In such a case it might be a good idea to see if you can come up with a second theme. Although we also understand that a spectacular attraction is going to be spectacular even if it uses the most obvious theme.
4. The judges' rulings are final, and since they make the determination of who moves on and who is dropped from the competition, it might not be a good idea to argue with or upset them. We are not total jerks, though, so if you feel that we have misinterpreted something you have presented we will listen to your explanations privately, not on-site. Explaining is one thing, arguing is another.
5. The judges will be casting all of the votes this season. This should make the criteria of a good proposal a little more clear since the popularity of, say, Black Caldron instead of Frozen, will not have nearly as much of an effect on the judges as it will with a popular front page vote. There have also been too many instances of vote manipulation, either actual or perceived, when a public vote was held, so we have decided to have the judges make the decisions as to who moves on and who is dropped from the competition. We assure you that we are going to base our votes on the quality of the proposals, their originality, creativity, professional presentation, etc. and not on anything else.
6a. Add-Ons: Pictures. Pictures are a handy way of saving you a thousand words in your proposal. Pictures are not an official requirement, and last year, one of the finalists made it without posting a single picture, but many competitors utilize them. We will be posting some documentation talking about the best way to go about posting pictures, so don’t worry too much about the mechanics of it. Most people don’t create the images themselves and merely find images on the internet through various search engines. I would ask people to not post stick figures or anything other than images of the highest quality as they may negatively impact the rest of your posting. There is a limit of 5 pictures per post, unless otherwise noted. Pictures need to be limited down to a 500 width in order to keep it within the column structure of TPI. You will be allowed to substitute one (1) video for one of your pictures, but no more than one video. If you are doing a video, keep in mind that Jeff has an extremely short attention span and won’t watch more than about 3-4 minutes of video.
6b. Add-Ons: Title Logo and Footer. This is not an official requirement, much like putting any pictures into your post is not a requirement, but it is something that many contestants like to do to further fill out their idea. You are allowed a title picture before your posting and a footer picture after your posting in addition to the 5 pictures (or 4 pictures and 1 video) in the middle of the post. All pictures need to be limited down to a 500 width to keep in the column structure of TPI.
6c. Add-Ons: Music cannot be added onto a proposal unless it is part of the single video allowed. No back-ground music, please!
6d. Add-on pictures, videos, etc. are NOT a requirement, and a competitor should feel free to present their proposal with no added visual enhancement if they so choose. A poor picture can do as much harm to a proposal as a good one can benefit it.
7. If you need help, please ask for it. The judges should be able to respond very quickly to any inquiries, issues, problems, or calls for assistance. There have been problems in the past with posting lengthy proposals, but those seem to have been resolved. If you need help with creating logos or posting pictures, please ask.
8. Under no circumstances will we tolerate criticism, attacks, bad mouthing, or chaos in general. If any behavior is deemed detrimental to the game or the spirit of the game, such people will be dismissed from the competition without reason or recourse. We hate to have to include a rule like this, but trust us, this protects you as much as it protects us and the integrity of the game.
9. There have been situations come where a competitor was unable to post due to circumstances beyond their control (power failure, death in the family, etc.) but they wished to continue in the competition. We hope that nothing like this happens again, but if it does, contact any of the judges as soon as possible and we will do all we can to be fair to all competitors, including the one with the situation. But we have to be informed about it- we can't help if we don't know.
10. These rules are subject to change. If something is not working we are going to fix it so it does.
I would also like to note that it is very common for rookies to do extremely well, and often win, so don't be afraid to sign up.
The Sacred Helm de Minionis will be the winner's prize. For an image of this, see Signup and Rules for Theme Park Apprentice 6.
Each round will last one week, with the exception of the audition and final rounds, each of which will be two weeks long.
The Audition round will require you to give a general overview of your theme park. Remember, that regardless of how many people sign up, only 10 people will go on to the competition. Because of this, this proposal should be very good. I would go as far as describing different lands, but not specific attractions, although an example or two from each land couldn't hurt.
Good Luck everybody, and Happy Designing!Tweet
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