Although TPA 6.1 is not officially over yet, I'd like to thank everyone for participating. This season had a number of outstanding contestants, many of which are in the top tier of all time TPA competitors. While I was planning to wait until a winner has been declared before posting this, due to delays in judging the final I cannot wait any longer. If there is to be any chance of TPA 7 being held in summer 2015, planning will need to begin ASAP.
After the disaster of TPA 6, there was worry that this competition was dead. However, TPA 6.1 has shown that there is interest in keeping the competition for now, even if that interest has diminished. While the exact details need to be worked out, preliminary discussion about TPA 7 has begun. DPCC has informed me that as he has never competed before, he would prefer to be a competitor next time instead of the host. Who will be hosting, therefore, is still up in the air, but if neither James Koehl or Jeff Elliott are interested in/able to do so, I may be running the competition next time.
It is always wise to accept feedback, and in the case of this competition it will help to improve future seasons. I have compiled a list of questions for specific topics that may require some adjustment, as well as a few new ideas. Feel free to answer as many or as few questions as you wish, and if you have other feedback to offer, go ahead and include that as well.
Questions about TPA 6.1:
1. If this was your first time playing Theme Park Apprentice, how did you enjoy the experience? If you have played before, how did this season compare to others?
2. Did you find the challenges to be too difficult, too easy, or just about right?
3. In your opinion, were the judges fair throughout? If not, describe any specific instances.
4. Based on your experience this season, would you be interested in competing again in future seasons? If not, would you be interested in judging in future seasons? If neither, is there a specific reason why?
Questions about Timing:
5. Theme Park Apprentice is generally hosted in the summer. However, this season was hosted in the winter/spring. Future seasons of the competition will likely be hosted in one of four time slots: Summer (June to September), Fall (September to December), Winter (December to March), and Spring (March to June). Rank these time slots in order of preference.
6. Would you prefer one or two competitions per year? If two competitions were run per year, they would be done in opposite time slots (either Summer/Winter or Spring/Fall).
7. Given that TPA 6.1 is just now ending, would you be interested in a Summer 2015 season?
Questions about Duration:
8. Generally, Theme Park Apprentice lasts approximately three months. Is this a good length, too long, or too short?
9. Except for the final round, challenges are typically one week in duration. In your opinion, is this satisfactory, not enough time, or too much time?
Questions about Format:
10. The previous two Theme Park Apprentice competitions have used a cumulative park format, where every proposal is for a component of one single park. Earlier seasons have had each challenge set at a different park, typically a major park somewhere in the world. Which of these two formats would you prefer for the next competition?
Questions about New Concepts:
11. This season was the first season to feature public voting by the judges and any tracking of cumulative scores. However, the cumulative scores were virtually meaningless. In future competitions, the cumulative scores will be normalized (each round will have the same number of points available) and given a purpose. One idea for the future is to grant immunity to the top competitor(s) in the cumulative standings. This would encourage competitors to win challenges instead of merely avoiding elimination and prevent a consistently good competitor from being eliminated for one off week. Are you in favor of or against this idea?
12. Another idea for cumulative scores is to eliminate based on a competitor's total score instead of their score in any one individual challenge. This elimination method would be used only with the cumulative park format, where proposals build on each other, and not with the independent challenge format. Are you in favor of or against this idea?
13. In order to encourage competitors to remain in the competition, the idea of a free pass has been suggested. This would allow a competitor to pass on one challenge and still remain in the game. The pass is intended to be used in the event that external factors make it difficult or impossible to submit a quality proposal, not to skip a challenge a competitor doesn't want to complete. Therefore, some form of penalty may be associated with the pass (such as a score of 0 for that round). Are you in favor of or against this idea?
14. Due to the number of drops this competition typically has, in lieu of non-elimination rounds it has been suggested to hold redemption rounds allowing eliminated contestants to re-enter the game if openings appear. While the exact details have not been worked out, these rounds would most likely be held concurrently with the regular competition. The round would only be open to eliminated competitors, but competing in a redemption round would be optional. The winner of a redemption round would most likely re-enter one round after the drop occurs and would be given enough points to remain competitive in the standings. This opportunity would only be open to eliminated contestants, not those who chose to drop on their own, and in the event that a redeemed contestant was eliminated a second time they would most likely not be eligible for another redemption. Are you in favor of or against this idea?
15. Lastly, if you have any suggestions for modifications to this competition, please share them. All reasonable ideas will be considered, so don't be shy.
I invite all current competitors to offer their opinions, but there is no obligation to do so and your score will not be affected. I also invite the other judges to share their thoughts if desired. Finally, if you spectated this season and might be interested in future competitions (either as a competitor or spectator), your opinions are welcome as well.
Once again, thanks to everyone for playing. I had a great time judging and look forward to seeing even more outstanding ideas in the future.Tweet
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