SchemingMind teams let people gather into groups, which either cooperate internally on some subject, or compete with other teams, or both.
- What are the teams for
- Joining the team
- Leaving the team
- Playing many teams at once
- Creating your own team
- Team Competition
- Simple Team Matches
- Team Tournaments (Leagues)
- Other Options
- Teams as working groups or sub-communities
- Changing the team captain
1. What are the teams for
There are two purposes of the SchemingMind teams:
- participation in different forms of team competition,
- organising working/cooperating groups.
Whichever is the main purpose of the team, once created, the team is able to play team matches and leagues, and gets its own internal forum, available only for the team members. Some teams use also team wiki pages.
2. Joining the team
There are two kinds of teams - open, which anybody can join as they wish, and closed, which can be joined only by people from the captains BuddyList (more serious teams are usually of the latter type). If you want to join a team, you can take the following approaches:
you can wait for an invitation - quite a lot of people join teams after being invited by game opponents or other SchemingMind buddies,
- you can send a message to some closed team captain(s), offering your services,
you can check All About Teams forum, where team captains can anounce that they are looking for new members, you can also offer your services there (do not forget to mention your expectations),
- finally, you can simply pick any open team from the team list and join it.
Before you join the team, check whether the team is active (there are some teams created in the past, whose captains are no longer actively managing them). You can easily check for instance whether the team is playing any matches currently, or has played some recently (click the team name, then the Matches tab). It can also make sense to discuss some aspects of your membership with the captain - which kind of games, with what clock are you prefer to play, do you need to be prompted before put in the team lineup, how often do you expect to visit the team forum, ...
Note also, that you can not immediately leave the team.
3. Leaving the team
To leave the team, just click the Leave Team link available in the team Profile.
You can do it whilst playing in a team match - your games still count (and you have to finish them) even though you are no longer in the team. Of course no new team games will be started for you.
You can not leave the team before one month has passed since you joined (the Leave Team link is not available until then). The reason for this restriction is that joining a team should require some committment (also, it makes it impossible to spy on rival team's private forum by joining and leaving again immediately). To leave a team before one month, you can ask the team captain to remove you from the team.
Note also, that the team captain can remove you from the team at any time - if they so wish, and even in case of open teams they can forbid you from joining the team again.
Inactive players are not displayed as team members, and are not available for team matches. They remain the members of the team, though (unless they are removed by the team captain), and become normal members again if they return. Some functions still work for them, in particular, messages sent by the team captain to all the team members are also sent to inactive members.
4. Playing many teams at once
Full members can join more than one team - up to 6 (standard members are restricted to one). There are some restrictions on the multiple team participation:
- you cannot play both sides in the same match,
- you cannot play for two different teams in the same league, even if they play different divisions.
Those restrictions are enforced in a simple way: once the first team captain puts you into a match (or league) lineup, other team captains are not able to do the same. Therefore, if you play for many teams at once, make it clear to your team captains how you want to share your membership (in particular, which of the teams can count on your services in the league games).
5. Creating your own team
Every full member is able to create the team of their own. More detailed information about team creation and management is published as CaptainGuide.
Before creating the team, make sure you have some idea of how to find members.
Note: if the team captain stops being a full member, the team continues to exist, but is no longer able to issue or receive team challenges, or join leagues.
6. Team Competition
So, you've got a team, or have joined one, and wonder what more there is to do now. Well, there are several simple ways for teams to compete:
6.1. Simple Team Matches
Firstly, simple team games are available. These are matches, played on agreement by team captains about the number of boards. They are usually set up so the players of comparable rating meet. Each player plays two games (white and black) against the same opponent. Every win counts as 1, draw as 0.5, defeat as 0 points. The winning team gains more than half of the available points. The list of currently playing and already finished matches is available on the Matches tab on every team page. Also, if you play in or observe a team game, you can always click the 'Team game' link on the top of the moves pane, to go straight to the match state page.
Those matches are usually agreed upon on All About Teams forum. The captain, issuing a challenge, will post there, usually stating the number of boards and estimate rating of players to be included. An opponent will often respond here (it can take a few days, some team captains consult team members before accepting the challenge), and the captains set up the match (for more information see CaptainGuide).
The lineup used in a match is decided by the team captain (they pick the players and assign them to the boards). While assigning players, the captain does not know the opponent's setup.
While mostly standard chess matches are played, organising Chess960 or other variants match is of course also possible. There are teams that specialize in this type of play.
6.2. Team Tournaments (Leagues)
The team leagues are team round-robin tournaments, organised yearly for standard chess and Chess960, and on demand for variant games. See TeamLeagues page for more info.
6.3. Other Options
If these options are not enough within teams to satisfy you, invent a new way to compete. There have been a few consultation games take place between teams, where teams discuss moves (on their forums) and play just the one game. While these are not serious, and are not even officially team games, they are fun and good for teaching and bringing teams together. Some teams organise internal tournaments between the members. Some set up some teaching activities (like analysing finished games of the teammates).
And, do not forget SchemingMind is very open to suggestions, if you think you have the next brilliant idea to improve the site (or even the world generally) then bring it up in the request for features forum. SchemingMind is expanding all the time, so please come up with new ways to test our minds!
7. Teams as working groups or sub-communities
There exist some teams, which do not play team games at all, but exist to organise working groups on some subject, for example Game Explorer team, or Wiki team. If you have an idea which would require creating working group, consider creating a similar team - in particular, this is the simplest way to create closed forum available to the selected group of people.
It's also possible, to create teams oriented mainly/only towards internal competition. For example, this group exists to facilitate organisation of the Class Tournaments.
8. Changing the team captain
It is possible to change the team captain, would such need arise.
This is currently a manual operation, to change the captain, contact Austin. To ensure the change is performed quickly and smoothly, it is helpful to have both old and new captain make such a request.