Golly does it feel weird to type the word “semifinals!” At the tail-end of July/beginning of August the Blogger Blitz began, and eight brave bloggers marched into glorious battle alongside their favorite video game characters. There was blood, humiliation, snakes, pyrotechnics, backstabbing, and – romance? Yes, we had it all during the first round of the Blogger Blitz, and if you missed any of it, this is your chance to catch up before you get hit with a big ole round of spoilers!
Week one, Indiana Jones and Lightning Farron battled it out in the Retail Rumble. Then in week two, Guybrush Threepwood raced Claire Redfield (and the demonic three-headed Cerberus!) in the Mail Delivery event. Week three pit Mega Man against the Pokemon Ranger in a music video Dance Off. And finally, week four saw Link and the Joker competing to see who could be the ultimate Match Maker for a malboro from Final Fantasy.
All caught up? Good, because I am now about to post the up-to-date bracket which will show the results of those matches and reveal the matchups for the semifinals! Ready? Last chance for no spoilers!
Actual last chance, right now!
I really mean it this time!
So there it is, folks, the setup for the second round right before your very eyes. Lightning Farron and her sponsor LightningEllen will battle it out against Mega Man and The Well-Red Mage. Meanwhile, Claire Redfield and her sponsor Hundstrasse will duke it out with Link and Sheikah Plate. But in Blogger Blitz, knowing the “who” is only half of the fun – the “what” is a pretty serious factor too. What in the world will these bloggers have to do when they face off? What ridiculous challenges will their characters take on?
This time, the staff here at Adventure Rules (staff = me) decided to do some outsourcing when it came to the events. Specifically, the semifinal round seemed like an appropriate place for the defeated competitors to get a bit of vengeance against their opponents. That’s right, adventurers – the defeated bloggers from round one decided the events that the semifinalists would compete in! Each defeated blogger was given the opportunity to come up with an event, which would then be fused with an event from another competitor in order to create one big crazy anime-style fusion event for the semifinalists to compete in. Ultimately, only three events were submitted. As such, I decided to use a particular event twice, with a bit of a different flavor each time, in order to create an overarching theme for the semifinal round. What is that theme? Well just ask NekoJonez, the defeated competitor who created it!
I really enjoyed this concept and it actually got a second vote from another defeated competitor (who then contributed their own concept as well). I particularly like the idea of ALL the semifinal competitors needing to demonstrate in some way their ability to handle everything their opponent can – this ensures that our two championship contenders will truly be the most capable characters in the competition! Since this recommendation was a bit of a two-parter, each event uses one half while also pulling from the contribution of one of the other defeated competitors. So let’s jump in and see what these events are!
LIGHTNING FARRON VS. MEGA MAN IN…SOCCER SURVIVAL!
Gasp! Who would have thought that the Blogger Blitz would ever turn into an actual sport? This event is built off of NekoJonez’s suggestion along with that of Lodestar_Valor, who recommended:
So thanks to the two of you for your ideas! Out of these two concepts, this is the event I managed to cobble together:
The two competitors in this event are pitted against each other in a Mario Strikers -style soccer match. Each one will be the captain of a soccer team filled with bumbling randoms and compete for victory. All weapons and abilities are totally legal. However, to get to the soccer match, each character must survive for 24 hours in the world of their opponent. Can Mega Man survive wildlands ravaged by massive beasts and the suffering zombie-like cieth? Can Lightning gun down six to eight robot masters corrupted and controlled by the wicked Dr. Wily? There’s no rest period between the survival and the soccer, so resource management will be a huge part of this event. Which competitor will still have the energy and supplies to win the soccer match after a day in their opponent’s world? That’s what LightningEllen and The Well-Red Mage will be trying to prove.
Lightning Farron and Mega Man will face off in the Soccer Survival event on Monday, September 4th. Happy (American) Labor Day to you two! You’ll then be able to see the results of the match on Friday, September 8th.
CLAIRE REDFIELD VS. LINK IN…VILLAIN ESCAPE!
So the concept pitched by NekoJonez has two key parts – surviving in the other character’s world, and filling that character’s shoes within their world. The first event is all about the survival aspect of that suggestion; this event is all about the shoes. Cement shoes, that is, because the other half of Villain Escape was contributed by Kim of Later Levels:
I looked up the Idol of Many Hands to see just how heavy we’re talking here, and apparently that sucker wasn’t “heavy” at all – Guybrush was literally able to just pick it up and carry it while also climbing out of the water! So we definitely need something a little bit more weighty for the characters to Houdini themselves out of. But freedom is just the first step in this event. Let’s discuss it in a bit more detail:
In this event, the two competitors must switch roles for a day – Link must lead the charge against biologically-enhanced zombie warriors (can you tell I’ve totally played Resident Evil before?!) and their leader Wesker, while Claire has to save Hyrule from the mighty sorcerer Ganondorf and his evil hordes. However, before they can do their new jobs, LeChuck interferes, dragging them to the waters of Mêlée Island (which, as we all know, conveniently borders both Hyrule and the United States). Attaching each competitor to a heavy ship anchor, he sends them plummeting into the deep before heading off to capture Elaine Marley. Our competitors must explain how they escape LeChuck’s deadly trap without drowning, make their way back, and defeat a villain they have never faced with abilities foreign to their own world.
Claire Redfield and Link will battle in Villain Escape on Monday, September 11th. The results of their daring escapades will be posted on Friday, September 15th.
A WORDIER ROUND
There’s one change to the semifinals compared to round one when it comes to the rules, and that change is in the appropriate word count. Our valiant competitors handled the word count proudly in the first round of competition, but this time things are a little different. Each event is actually two events mashed together, and it seems a bit unfair to allow only five hundred words to describe such a long and complicated string of actions. So to make sure our competitors can communicate their arguments as clearly as possible, they will now have 800 words for their post. I’ll say it again, just to make sure judges, competitors, and audience all are aware of this rule change: 800 words is now the approved word limit. Take advantage of it, competitors, and use every word to prove your point!
To give our competitors the time to write, this week is a “break week” – there are no matches today and there will be no results on Friday. So I wanted to take this opportunity to do something special for a group of very hardworking bloggers: the judges.
Blogger Blitz is possible in this form because five people volunteered to spend some time each week reading these posts and critiquing them fairly. I think it’s important that the person with ultimate decision making power in this competition ISN’T me. Having a group of people judging facilitates fairness and, from an outside perspective, it just looks better/more professional. But being a judge is kind of a thankless job. Unlike the competitors, the judges don’t get the added bonus of publicity by participating in this competition. They don’t get ideas for posts/content just handed to them on a platter. They are possibly the hardest-working folks in this competition, and it is the least rewarding for them as well.
So this week while they enjoy a well-deserved break from casting judgment, I want to go the extra mile and say thank you to each one of them individually with a Judge Appreciation post. There will be a post of this nature every weekday here on Adventure Rules at 5 PM EST, posted in the order in which the judges volunteered. There, I will talk about how awesome they are as well as share some of the hard work they do on the content for their own blog. The judges are talented writers, but you don’t get to experience their style and voice the way you do with the competitors – so this week, I want to let the light shine on our judges and show off just how great they really are. Thanks again, judges, for all that you do – I know you’ll really miss seeing my needling “have you read the posts yet?” notifications this week. Try to hang in there, they’ll be back next week.
That’s all for now, adventurers! If you’re excited for the semifinals, please go support the bloggers who are competing and the judges who make this competition possible. And be sure to keep your eye on LightningEllen and The Well-Red Mage, as they’ll be posting their arguments on Monday, September 4th. Good luck to all the competitors and thanks to everyone who has read and enjoyed the Blogger Blitz so far. We look forward to your continued support!