Countdown Aces Trophy

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Name Place held Entrants Winner Final score Runner up Matches played Host Highest score
Countdown Aces Trophy Huddersfield 14 Jack Worsley 11 – 7 Kirk Bevins 10 Jeff Clayton
James Robinson
Anna Woodward
116


The Countdown Aces Trophy was a Countdown tournament run by James Robinson, Jeff Clayton and Anna Woodward on Saturday 23 November 2013. The winner was the Series 66 champion, Jack Worsley.

Contents

Format

The format is partially adapted from the show's French parent, Des chiffres et des lettres, although most of the traditional rounds associated with most CO-events are still in this event.

Heats

There will be 4 heats, which will involve each of Countdown's 4 different formats from its history, the 9 round format, the 14 round format, the "old" 15 round format and the "current" 15 round format, there then follows a 9 round quarter-final, before the new "solo round" semi-finals take place.

Solo Round

The top 4 contestants will each play a special 15 round game (all different to each other) under a time limit of 5 minutes.

Letters

As in the normal game, the contestant is not told the available max beforehand. Each letter appears from left to right, one second at a time. The clock starts as soon as the last letter is in place. Once you buzz, you will be asked to declare how many letters are in your word before offering. Score 10 points for a max word, or 1 point if you come up one short. If there is no buzz then the clock simply runs its course. But if your offer is invalid or you are out of range of the available max, you forfeit 30 seconds in addition to however much time you've used in that round.

Numbers

Each tile appears from right to left, then when CECIL comes up with the target, the clock starts. Buzz in once you can offer a solution – declare your answer before going through your working. Score 10 points for a correct solution, or 1 point if you can get to one away and want to move on. If there is no buzz then the clock simply runs its course. An incorrect answer forfeits 30 seconds.

The numbers get progressively harder and the difficulty ratings have been measured using crosswordtools.com. The first numbers game in R2 is no harder than 50%, whilst the sixth numbers game in R13 is upwards of 80%.

Conundrum

As per the normal game, you get one shot at it. Score 10 points with the correct answer, but forfeit 30 seconds with an incorrect answer.

Round 15

After playing 14 rounds, as long as the contestant has some time remaining, they are allowed to pick any round of their choice for another 10 points.

Grand Final

In the final, the two contenders will go head-to-head in a 20-round match (9 letters rounds, 9 numbers rounds and 2 conundrums).

There are no preset rounds and no time bank, but they will still be on the buzzer in every round and now there is no safety net for falling short of the maximum. Using flat scoring, a max word or a correct solution scores 1 point, but they'll forfeit 1 point with an incorrect buzz. So they'll need confidence and quick thinking in the harder selections, and sheer speed in the easier ones.

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