Need Help on Tournament System



I am organizing a tournament of 4 hours in length, 7.30-11.30pm

There will be an estimated 10-15 participants.

The clock will be set on sudden-death mode and time will be 10 minutes

In the previous year, I used the system elimination with repecharge and the player only plays one game (color determined by a coin toss)

I don't think the previous system is very fair. Hence, I am contemplating to use the Swiss-system and each player will play both black and white against everyone.

However, I only have 6 chess sets and I am not sure whether using the Swiss-system will allow the tournament to be completed in time.

Is there any better system that I can use to make sure that it's as fair and punctual as possible?

Any advice appreciated! Many thanks.


You can do it with a Swiss, all you need is four rounds for less than 16 players. That said, you need to start on time, have the scores reported quickly and have the pairings done quickly. You have to keep on the players, they will want to discuss their games after they finish and not start the next one. Keep bugging them to start the next game quickly. And pair the next round as quickly as you can. You may need to borrow a set or two and I hope you have a sufficient number of clocks. Good Luck.


So a swiss with time/round limit.

Thanks for the advice, I use the chess clock in iphone/laptop for the clocks. It's unfortunate but there is insufficient budget to purchase that many clocks.

Shadowknight911 wrote:

if there are wide variances in the ratings of the players, you may want to consider using Quads instead of a Swiss.  The idea is that like-rated players would play each other in groups of 4.  Since everyone in a Quad is playing each other and the order in which they play each other is known, you could start games as soon as the players are ready. A G/10 quad could finish in under 1 hour.

Correct me if I am wrong, quads is equivalent to round-robbin?

In using the quads system you mentioned, is the champion of each group supposed to meet off and battle it off for the top position?

And, what happen if the total number of participants is not divisible by 4?


Shadowknight911 wrote:

I don't think there's any free pairing software for Swiss that can go more than 2 rounds, but with < 20 people it won't be that difficult to do by hand.

Vega is free for less then 30 players and 100% free if run on Linux. I used it for the first 3 or 4 tournaments I ran and it is a decent program. Has some bugs when it comes to generating rating reports for the USCF (easily worked around) but for a use such as this, that won't matter.


Ah, thanks everyone for the insight. 

I think I will use the accelerated Swiss mode limitted to number of rounds or time as adviced by mnag. Probably play as many games as the time allows.

A question I have for mr shadow is that, let's say the game goes by round robin, does each player has to play white and black?

And I am wondering whether there are tournaments that makes players play 2 board against each other at the same time?