To All Country Cup Participants: "Avoid Clockblocking Your Team Mates!"

Over the past days we received a couple of questions related to the same problem. In short, users complain that their score is not taking into account for the country average of a specific stage. At first sight it would seem that the HWBOT Competition Engine is making a mistake (or has a bug), but in fact that is not the case. It is simply a matter of "friendly fire" or, the term I prefer, Clock blocking.

As I mentioned when the competition started: the engine is not so smart, and will not do the strategic work for you. What the engine does, is select the best scores for each stage limitation, then filters out the best submission per user. In practical terms, that means you have to decide what setup you contribute with in each stage of the Country Cup! Let's explain this using a concrete and practical example.

For Germany, Saturas wants to contribute in the 3DMark03 stage with a PCI graphics card. The score is 955 marks, and should be accounted for as part of the German average. When we look at the German average for that stage, however, see that neither Saturas nor a PCI score is included. Why? Because Axl is clock blocking Saturas and his score.

When we search for the best German PCI result, we find Axl's 3972 marks with the GeForce 9100M G linked to the Country Cup. This is Germany's best result with a PCI graphics card, and thus the engine considers this the entry for the German team. But Axl is already contributing with a Hybrid card and a score of 29957 points. The engine considers this the best score of Axl, and thus his contribution to the German average. And here we can see the clock block: both Axl's Hybrid and PCI score are being accounted for as the country's best, but of course only one of them is actually contributing to the average!

The solution is simple. Axl and Saturas have to agree on who is going to pull their score from the competition. Is there someone else who can improve the Hybrid submission? Perhaps Axl's PCI score will be the most useful for the country? The Country Cup is not just about finding the right gear to compete with, but also a matter of strategy and tactics.

Good luck all!

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