The Battleforge Tournament scene has a few problems:
1. Low PvP playerbase
Hopefully this will no longer be a problem. With the current hype (and active youtube channels emphasizing PvP) my impression is that we have many new players who are interested to try out the game mode. I personally believe that if BF is to survive again, PvP needs a strong playerbase, so we should encourage it.
Having Tournaments (especially for new players) is a GREAT way to increase PvP participation. So the more tournaments we have (at least geared toward new players), the better the tournament scene will get.
2. Skill barrier to entry
If we don't have PvP players, we need to get them. That means they need to overcome the barrier to entry. In Battleforge, the skill barrier is not that high. Probably because of the (previous?) lack of knowledge about how to play PvP, a week of training on fundamentals and how to play will make a new player (with cards) better than 90% of the playerbase. Perhaps this won't be the case in Skylords Reborn, but I could certainly stand over someone's shoulders and coach him to victory very quickly in the old game.
3. Card barrier to entry
Here is the main problem, as I see it. Grinding needs to happen. Okay, cool. We accept that, and I'm sure the rate of card and upgrade acquisition will be similar. It's no fun if players can buy cards but not upgrade them, or vice versa. The only currency is time and I think that will be reasonable for everyone. Plus, it's nice to see your matchmaking increase as you acquire good cards (assuming that you can have a good deck in <1 month, for instance). But this does constrain players because certain decks are just cheaper than other decks. A clear "price meta" will emerge--not only is such a meta unfun to play and watch (if everyone has the same deck)--but it may skew tournament results (because veterans with more cards can play a more expensive deck that naturally counters the price meta--or maybe if I know that you only have a pure fire deck and I have all decks, then you only have 1 option and I can pick frost the whole time and you can't change).
We already discussed ad nauseam about removing upgrades, or some solutions around that. I'll link @ndclub's classic thread, as well as my suggestion to overcome the main problem he proposed.
Now, I want to discuss a potentially alternative solution. This solution applies ONLY toward tournaments, okay? Let's ignore whether or not upgrades are vital in standard PvP/PvE, and focus on tournaments. Regardless of your opinion on the former option, I hope we can all agree that tournaments will be vitally improved if every player has access to all cards U3 (like in the final days of BF). It puts everyone on the same footing.
So, how can we accomplish this without giving new players all the cards at U3?
I propose a NEW GAME MODE. Let's call it tournament mode or something. [Alternatively, we can skip "tournament mode" and just allow players in the sparring grounds to have access to all cards somehow]
Tournament mode would be set up by some tournament director (TD), and have requirements. For instance, a TD could want a tournament for players with ELO in a certain range, with certain rules for selecting maps and decks, and all players could access certain/all cards at a specified upgrade level. Perhaps I want a tournament open to all players, but you have to use only M units. Tournament mode would also be very fun for having these sorts of silly decks or ideas.
The main idea: in tournament mode, you play who the TD tells you to, and you are provided cards that can only be used in tournament mode. This limits you if the TD wants a silly tournament, and it helps you if you are a new player. Everyone is on equal footing.
What do you think? I know the devs removed tome mode because it was difficult to code and I think this would be coded the exact same way--but tome mode wasn't popular, and this might be worth coding. Even if it's not possible, we can still talk and idealize and maybe brainstorm another way to make it happen (like perhaps some form of account that has all cards and can't trade, and we can loan access to new players for tournaments).
TL;DR: I'm proposing a new game mode (perhaps to replace tome) that allows a tournament director to decide which cards (and upgrades) a player has access to. These cards would only be used in that specific tournament (you can't use my tournament cards in someone else's tournament, or use it for sparring, ranked, PvE, etc.), and will expire at the completion of the tournament.
I want to know your thoughts!