WNACS Official Rules (2023)
The IFPA Women’s North American Championship Series is an annual pinball competition with players qualifying throughout the entire calendar year. Included in the WNACS are the IFPA Women’s State Championship Series in the United States, IFPA Women’s Provincial Championship Series in Canada and the IFPA Women’s District Championship Series in Washington D.C. At the end of each calendar year, the top 8 ranked players based on women’s events and the top ranked players based on open events from each state will qualify for the playoffs, where they will play for the title of IFPA Women’s State/Province/District Champion within that area.
Any mentions of “state championship” below is intended to include provincial and district championships as well.
- How to qualify
Unlike most tournaments where the qualification process takes place over a couple of days at the tournament site, qualifying for the IFPA Women’s State Championship Series is based on results from all the IFPA endorsed tournaments held throughout the year in each eligible state. Utilizing its World Pinball Player Rankings, the IFPA will be tracking results based on where those IFPA endorsed tournaments are held, maintaining separate state rankings made up of those filtered results. Qualifying will be based on two sets of standings: performance in open events and performance in women’s-only events, with 8 qualifiers coming from each standings. If fewer than two women’s-only events are held in a state in a calendar year, only the top 8 women based on open event performance will qualify for the Women’s State Championship.
For example, the open side of the Oregon State Rankings will be made up of IFPA endorsed tournaments and leagues such as Emerald City Pinball League, Pinball Knights Weeklies, and the Northwest Oh-Pin. The women’s-only side of the Oregon State Rankings will be made up of IFPA endorsed events such as Battle of the Belles, Next Level’s International Women’s Day Tourney, and Women’s Wednesdays. The top 16 players that earn the most WPPR points based only on these subsets of events (8 from each subset of standings) will qualify for the IFPA Oregon Women’s State Championship. Similar to the World Pinball Player Rankings, only a player’s best 20 events of a given type within that state will count towards their standing in each subset.
No player will be eligible to play in more than one IFPA Women’s State Championship, so the IFPA may have to move down the state rankings list to find 16 eligible qualifiers to participate in the State Championship. It is possible to qualify for an IFPA State Championship within a state that player does not live in, and it is even possible for players that live outside of the US to qualify for an IFPA State Championship should they earn enough WPPR points within a state to qualify.
It is the player’s responsibility to make sure they have an email address on file with the IFPA, or they run the risk of not being contacted for participation in any State Championships they are qualified for. Please fill out an IFPA profile to ensure we have a way to contact you. If you see a green check within your profile information on your IFPA profile page, it means we do have a registered email address on file for you.
Unlike the North American State Championship Series, there are no expanded field Super States at this time.
The IFPA does not currently charge an endorsement fee for women’s events. As such, entry into each Women’s State Championship will be $20 per player. Consult the section “Format of Matches: Winners” below for payout structure details.
Format of Matches
- Seeding of finalists
Players who qualify based on their women’s-only event performance will be assigned odd seeds, and players who qualify based on their open event performance will be assigned even seeds. Players who qualify via both types of events will not be locked into a specific side of the rankings until all participants have been finalized, at which point they will be assigned the higher of the seeds they achieved. Seedings should be updated whenever changes to the committed participant field occur up until the event begins.
In the event that any players are tied with the same amount of In-State WPPR points on either side of the standings, we will look at the overall WPPR rank of those players as of the end of that calendar year. Any players tied on the qualifying bubble with the same State ranking position will result in a play-in tiebreaker game to determine who joins the field of finalists for the State Championship. Game and position will be pulled at random by the TD.
In the event that organizers/tournament directors have exhausted all potential qualifiers from one subset of the qualifying standings, they may draw from qualified players on the other set of standings. (Note: This applies only for the regions that are eligible for a 16-player championship. Regions without a sufficient number of women’s events will continue to draw 8 participants from the open rankings.)
- Machines Chosen
With each IFPA State Championship being held at a different location, each will have a different set of games available for the tournament. Please check with your event director for details on the game list once the location has been finalized for that particular IFPA Women’s State Championship.
- Head-to-Head Single Elimination Format
Players will be placed in a single elimination bracket once the seedings have been completed.
First round pairings are as follows:
1 vs. 16, 2 vs. 15, 3 vs. 14, 4 vs. 13,
5 vs. 12, 6 vs. 11, 7 vs. 10, 8 vs. 9
Second round pairings are as follows:
1/16 winner vs. 8/9 winner, 2/15 winner vs. 7/10 winner,
3/14 winner vs. 6/11 winner, 4/13 winner vs. 5/12 winner
Third round pairings are as follows:
1/8/9/16 winner vs. 4/5/12/13 winner,
2/7/10/15 winner vs. 3/6/11/14 winner
Fourth round pairing are as follows:
Two winners of round 3 play for the Women’s State Championship
Two losers of round 3 play in the Consolation Final for 3rd/4th place.
Each match will be a best-of-seven. Each match will be a race to 4 wins (unless a match is tied 3-3 after 6 games where a sudden death tiebreaker will be played – see below). At the start of the match each player will choose an ‘OLD’, ’MID’ and ’NEW’ machine. The lower seeded player will choose the first machine, followed by the higher seeded player choosing the second machine. This picking order will continue until all 6 games have been chosen. A machine may not be picked more than once in the same match. Once a player verbally makes any choice regarding machine or position, they are locked into that decision. Please note that State Reps have the authority to not have an era breakdown for the event, in which case the choices of each player at the start of the match will be from the entire field of available machines. Once a player verbally announces their game choice, or chooses position, that decision will be locked in and cannot be changed.
The higher seed will first choose whether they want to start on one of their own choices, or one of the lower seed’s choices. Position will be based on who originally selected the machine before the match started. The player that did not have the machine as a part of their three choices will have choice of position on that particular machine. The match will alternate between machines chosen by each player, until all 6 games are completed. Should a player reach 4 wins before all 6 games are completed, no further games should be played.
Should the match be tied after these 6 games, the match will move to ‘Sudden Death’. This will be a single game where any of the remaining machines are available to be chosen. The higher seeded player will have choice of machine or position for this ‘Sudden Death’ game.”
Each player will have the opportunity for 30 seconds of practice time before starting every game of every match. This is to ensure that both players have a chance to get familiar with the machine.
The winner of the match advances to the next round, while the loser is eliminated.
The 3rd/4th place Consolation Final will be played as a best-of-three instead of a best-of-seven like all other rounds, using the same rules. It is up to the event director as to whether matches will be played out to determine 5th through 16th place.
Winners will receive prizes during an awards ceremony shortly following the conclusion of all final rounds. Winners need not be present to receive prizes. All decisions by tournament officials regarding winners and prizes are final.
The core prize pool for each state championship is $20 x the number of participants. The core prize pool will be paid out to the top 4 finishers in the following payout structure::
1st place – 40% of the prize pool
2nd place – 30% of the prize pool
3rd place – 20% of the prize pool
4th place – 10% of the prize pool
Additional prizes outside of the core prize pool may be distributed to participants at the event director’s discretion.
First Place will also receive the title “IFPA Women’s State Pinball Champion” for the state being contested. For example, the winner of the IFPA Illinois Women’s State Championship will receive the title of “IFPA Illinois Women’s State Pinball Champion”. This title remains in effect until the next annual Championship Series, or will expire after two years if the Championship Series is discontinued.
Rulings and Malfunctions
All rulings and malfunctions will be based on the rules for the IFPA/PAPA unified ruleset, available HERE.