View Full Version : Ticket to ride 10.000$ map competition

02-14-2011, 11:39 AM
Days of wonder are throwing a map competition where you can win 10.000$ if you win. Or as they say themselves:

"To celebrate Days of Wonder's upcoming 10-year anniversary (April 2012), we're holding our biggest contest yet. The $10,000 Ticket to Ride Map Design Contest gives you a chance to become world-famous and put your name on the map!"

Here is the link (http://www.daysofwonder.com/tickettoride/en/contest/)if someone is interested :-)

It would be really cool if someone from here did win it :-)

02-14-2011, 11:47 AM
This got brought up in the CL forum already this morning. It's a fabulous prize. Make sure you read the rules when submitting - there's a clause that says:

"In consideration for reviewing
your submission, you hereby warrant that you hold, and assign and convey, all rights in
the submission (including copyrights, trademark rights, and patent rights) to Sponsor
free and clear of all liens, claims, encumbrances or further payment obligations."

So even if you don't win, you're giving them your work. However, for a chance at $10,000 that might well be a risk worth taking. Let people know if you're participating!

02-14-2011, 12:28 PM
I'm thinking about it but you are right, by submitting you are giving it all away forever.

02-14-2011, 12:33 PM
It also sounds like you would need to be fairly familiar with the game - rules, strategies, etc. since they'll be playtesting with the finalists before determining the winner. I hadn't even heard of the game before today!

02-14-2011, 01:05 PM
This got brought up in the CL forum already this morning.

Whats that?

02-14-2011, 01:12 PM
Community Leader forum. I was throwing the link around with some ideas.

02-14-2011, 01:16 PM
ahh... hidden forum for the elite only.

Idea's as in prize money for the guild? As long as djekspeck doesn't enter ;)

02-14-2011, 02:02 PM
I think the price is great and the competition sounds fun - but I think its important to talk about the copyright issue in competitions like these. I've seen debates about this in especially photographers forums - which can hurt a lot since a photo is easily used for other stuff.
The dilemma is really that even though you don't win you've given up all rights to the artwork you have submitted. (maybe even the right to showcase it yourself - the rules doesn't say you can), and basicly if a company wants to take the moral high ground they pay for the art/maps/photos/texts/etc they use. Therefor the proper rules would be that the WINNERS has to transfer the rights to their artwork and the loosers can keep their art work.
In theory (and I'm not saying they'll do it) they could publish 100 new games from the entries while only paying for a couple. So I'm just saying - if they want to do right by the artist - they should change their rules to reflect that they respect the artist.

02-14-2011, 02:18 PM
I've just re-read the rules again, and I think this condition is a potential rip-off (tilt ignore my comments in the CL forum). I hadn't realised that what they expect you to do is to essentially design a new game based on their engine. For those of you you have not played ticket to ride, the board is a map of a location (I've got the US version, I think there's a Europe version as well). Cities are joined by railroad track and each section of track is split into a number of rectangles. Players have plastic trains of a particular colour (each the size of a rectangle) which through card play, they can place on the rectangles until they connect up cities. At the start of the game players are dealt destination cards (e.g. Chicago to Los Angeles) and if they can connect those destinations, then they get extra points.

This competition is more than just making a map, it's doing all the play testing so that the product stands as a ready to play game, you also have to design the cards. What this means is if you do, say, South America and someone else does Africa, and the Africa player wins there is nothing to stop Days of Wonder from releasing a subsequent South America game based on all of your play testing and the map and cards you've drawn. Not that I stood a ghosts chance of winning this, but I think I'll be passing on this out of principle. I'm going to check out Boardgame Geek and see what they're saying there about it.

02-14-2011, 02:32 PM
I'm amazed (or more likely just blind) but I can't see that anyone at Boardgame Geek has picked this up. I've made a post pointing it out...

02-14-2011, 02:35 PM
I just pointed out that this had turned out and that it was a natural fit for the guild. Then Tilt highlighted that section in the contract so I thought it best to pass it on.

02-14-2011, 03:28 PM
Wow, they're quick at Boardgame geek:

I posted:

The terms and conditions say:

' In consideration for reviewing your submission, you hereby warrant that you hold, and assign and convey, all rights in the submission (including copyrights, trademark rights, and patent rights) to Sponsor free and clear of all liens, claims, encumbrances or further payment obligations.'
So does this mean that if you don't win, Days of Wonder are free to make your version into a game without any payment?
Not sure if this has already been discussed, but if so, my apologies.The replies were (the second from Days of Wonder):

In theory, yes, but that's unlikely to happen. When Days of Wonder held its Small World design contest in 2009, it ended up handing out more awards than originally announced, including a publishing contract for what became the Tales and Legends expansion in 2010. This statement is more of a CYA clause so that if you submit a TtR map of, say, Manhattan, then DoW later releases a TtR: New York expansion, you will have no grounds for suing the publisher.

The short answer: Yes, you're correct (though this would make us look like jerks and hardly qualify as a good PR move then, eh? http://geekdo-images.com/images/whistle.gif) The more detailed explanation, courtesy of our legal friend and counsel: We receive numerous submissions and continue to develop our own ideas internally. Because certain evolutionary concepts in a game are relatively obvious, if we did not have language like this in our agreement, we would subject DOW to spurious claims. We respect that this could make some people decide not to submit their ideas, but I can assure you that DOW conducts itself with the utmost integrity and prides itself on the relationship it maintains with the game development community.
Hope this helps answer your question.
Eric @ DoW I might have a go at this after all! (Although I still don't have a ghost of a chance of winning!).

02-14-2011, 03:56 PM
I do understand their sentiment - but not all companies have their moral compass in order, so it would be nice if the industry leaders would show the way and respect that artist live by their copyright. I'm sure lawyers could find another frasing that don't deprive the artist of the copyright.

02-14-2011, 04:18 PM
Basically, they're keeping the intellectual property as if you were an employee who developed this new killer thing. The language says that you can't sue them but if you were to go and develop your map/board into it's own game then they could turn around and sue you since they have the copyright now. So, if you just want to do this as a fun thing to experiment with and not really ever get anything from it then, by all means, go ahead. If you do win then you get some cash but if you don't win then it's gone baby gone and you have to come up with a whole new idea and map/game. It's a good portfolio-filler, though.

02-15-2011, 01:44 AM
Call me bitter but art competitions of any kind... no matter the prize it still always feels like getting dressed up for a date and then your left standing there in a huge room full of other people while some guy picked based on his personal taste :/

On the other hand they are fun to do and hey if all the work is displayed that free advertising.

02-15-2011, 01:51 AM
To be fair, you probably couldn't publish your game anyway, since the rules are copyrighted. You'd have to rework it considerably in order to make it sufficiently different as to be legal.
I do agree, though; having all rights to non-winning entries convey to Days of Wonder is a little shaky ethically. A better solution would be an indemnification clause: If you submit your work, you agree not to sue if Days of Wonder later produces a similar game. That would protect both parties. It isn't in the interest of the lawyers to protect anybody who hasn't paid them, though.

It is also worth considering that just because a company conducts itself ethically now, that does not necessarily mean that it will continue to do so in the future. Or that Hasbro won't assimilate it.

02-15-2011, 03:26 AM
I think I understand why they put it that way and it does make sense just so they are covered. I'm kind of with Ravells. I am interested in doing it and doubt I'll win anyway. I doubt also that whatever I come up with will be the best idea I will ever have so I'm kind of leaning towards it atm. Of course, the way I'm being crushed for time lately probably means I won't get around to it.

This does bring up something I would like to see however added to our requests forum: I think it would be good to have copyright explanation in the sticky because I think folks who post quite often don't know what they are asking for when they say they want copyright. What most people want is to be able to use it for themselves and do not plan to try selling it. Even if they did they really don't need copyright they need reproduction rights. Anyway, copyright sucks imo. It just goes to show that people can't be trusted.

02-15-2011, 03:44 AM
Good idea, we should have a copyright and creative Commons thread that explains what it's all about. I'll try to cook something up :)

02-15-2011, 04:55 AM
Cool, while you're there, could you amend the Mapping Request sticky to cover of the copyright thing in more detail please, tilt (or if it's very long maybe put it in a separate sticky)?



02-15-2011, 05:41 AM
Good link and post Clercon and I agree with all the sentiments posted here. Its a crowd sourcing map with a generous prize. Its a good and noble offer they are making but one which has the potential to be abused. So yeah, just go into this with your eyes open. I hope they get some good maps out of it but I don't have the game (or time really) to try.

02-16-2011, 12:29 AM
The game's fun - my whole family enjoys it. So a valid outlook for me were I to try the contest map, is I'd get a new playing board for myself :-). Seriously - it's enjoyable enough it'd be worth it just for my fun, let alone the (in my case) miniscule chance at ten kilobucks.

02-16-2011, 12:36 AM
It does look like a good game for the whole family.

02-17-2011, 01:26 PM
Just saw this-

Great game. I own the original and have played two of the others in the series. They all have a very specific Look to them. I havent read all the fine print for the contest, but it doesnt sound like they are actually asking for Artwork. More like they want someone to design a new board (a new timeline, or new country, with perhaps a few new rules), which they would then take and give there own look to. This sounds like the sort of thing a real fan of the game could and probably already has, done.

Personally, I dont know enough about the game Or railways to stand a chance at putting together a map and get it done in less than a month.

02-17-2011, 02:22 PM
There is also no reason why they can't state that the submitted artwork be put into escrow for x time period. In cases where the artwork is not chosen as a prize winner for this contest, if in the future the artwork would like to be used, it can then be negotiated with the sponsor for use in new product X. One the escrow period expires, copyright returns to original artist. This type of thing(well.. something similar) is done all the time in the software industry...

02-17-2011, 03:09 PM
yep, its a question of willingness to respect others.

02-17-2011, 09:53 PM
That still wouldn't protect them from the assertion that they were using a submission without permission if they happened to release TtR: India in the future. In effect, any time they released a new game, they'd be obligated to go back through the submissions to see if someone had already sent in that idea and either abandon the new product or pay off the submitter.

There has been a history of that kind of suit. There was a prominent fantasy author who read a piece of fan fiction, complimented the author, and mentioned that the events that fanfic author had described were coincidentally a part of the next book. The fan responded by suing for rights to the new book. Seems like it might have been Elizabeth Moon, but I don't recall for certain. In any case, that lead to a lot of authors creating very firm policies on fan fiction, ranging from any derivative works becoming the property of the author, to disallowing the publication of fan fiction entirely, to "do what you like, but I'll never read it." That trend has relaxed recently, with at least one author I am aware of (Jim Butcher) permitting derivative works only if they are CC licensed.

Lawyers tend to be surprising uncreative when drafting agreements of this sort, and again, since they're not working for the fans, they don't concern themselves at all with the fans' rights.

Anyway, I'll just echo what was said earlier: Ticket to Ride is an excellent game. If you haven't played it, I recommend you give it a try. Start with the U.S. version, though. The Europe edition has some extra rules that make it a bit confusing. I haven't played the Marklin edition.

03-01-2011, 05:59 PM
They thought about the legal side :

9. Release. By participating in this Contest and/or receipt of any prize, participant agrees
to release and hold harmless Sponsor, Alan R. Moon, and their respective related
companies, franchisees, and each of their respective officers, directors, employees and
agents from and against any claim or cause of action arising out of participation in the
Contest or receipt or use of any prize.

If I understand it correctly, by submitting your work you agree never to sue Days of Wonder or Alan R. Moon if they ever release something that could be related to what you submitted in any way.

03-01-2011, 08:06 PM
It's been raised. Have a look at post #12 in this thread Korrigan.

03-01-2011, 08:09 PM
Oops, sorry ! I missed a page while reading :$

03-22-2011, 03:46 PM
Hello guys. Do you know what kind of map can we design? I mean, can I design something that is already created (a map of US or a Europe map), or I have to make a new one (like Africa or Asia or something imaginary)?

03-22-2011, 04:18 PM
Best to read the rules, petergr, but from what I can see, anything (as long as it's not been done before) is possible. Bear in mind that the map has to be of a game that has been play tested and actually works.

03-22-2011, 09:23 PM
Also, since the stated intent is for them to eventually publish the game, it would be strategically wise to not duplicate a theme they've already covered.