The 1st Annual 'Songcon Scavenger Hunt:
The Official Rules (written by slipjig, the Grand Organizer)
1) The Game: The object of the hunt is for teams of players to accumulate points by finding objects named on the official hunt list around the Boston area, and returning them to Hunt Headquarters [ed. - The Sovereign Nation of Gojirawitziev] within the assigned time limit, all while hopefully accumulating stories to tell the grandkids someday. The team with the highest score at the end wins.
2) Preliminaries: Teams will consist of two to four players each. You may set up your team in advance if you wish, but showing up alone is fine as well, as we can set you up with a team for the day. Each team must choose a name (official team battle cry is optional but handy), and must be equipped with at least one cell phone and at least one digital camera; a laptop with Wi-Fi internet access is also recommended.
The game officially begins when lists are distributed at 9 a.m. sharp on Saturday, March 1, and ends nine hours later at 6 p.m. It is up to you to decide how to spend those nine hours. If you happen to show up late, due to recovering from Friday night or what have you, you will still be eligible to play and receive a hunt list, but your deadline will not be changed under any circumstances. In short, suck it up. Time's a-wastin'.
3) The List: The list contains 100 items of varying difficulty. It is not expected that any team will find all 100 items listed; in fact, if anyone even comes close, the hunt organizers will promptly pass out cold. The items are ranked on a point system, ranging from one point for very easy items (say, a page from the Boston Globe) to 20-ish for very hard items (say, a page from Frank Gorshin's Rolodex). You may choose or ignore whichever items you wish, but remember that the grand prize winners will be determined by total number of points, not total number of items. Thus, if you think you can get a high-scoring item but will need triple the clock time to do so, it might very well be worth your while.
Some items on the list are labeled with a check mark. These items require the use of a digital camera. In some cases, the photo itself is the item being sought, e.g. "a photo of a nun holding a shotgun." In other cases, the camera must be used to record proof that the found item is genuine. For example, if the item "a butter knife from a restaurant at a Hyatt Regency" has a check mark next to it, in addition to the knife itself, you must also present a photo that proves it came from the requested source—say, one showing a team member actually taking the knife from the restaurant in question. If you do not have an accompanying photo for an item that requires one, the item will NOT be accepted, no matter how hard you worked for it. Sorry. (Most items, however, do not require such verification.)
4) How to Acquire the Items: We don't care. Seriously. Search your basement. Search your mom's basement. Call every friend you have. Dumpster-dive. Buy stuff. Beg. It doesn't matter. (If buying, however, please note that the prizes, while nice, aren't THAT nice; please budget accordingly.) All items will be returned to the teams that found them once judging is completed, so borrowing items to be returned later is perfectly acceptable. ("Dad, I swear, I'll return Uncle Fred's ashes just as soon as we're done with them.") Two exceptions to the above:
a) No breaking the law. To the best of the judges' knowledge, every item here can be obtained legally, one way or the other, so please do so. If you can't see any legal way of acquiring an item, simply don't bother with that one. And if you do break down and do Something Bad, we hold no responsibility for your actions, and will not bail you out of prison. We mean it.
b) No alliances with other teams. This includes swapping or sharing found items. This isn't Survivor, and I assure you that you're not Richard Hatch. This is a good thing.
5) Cheating: Don't. Do we really have to say this? No sabotaging other teams' plans, no counterfeiting items, no downloading photos from other sources and passing them off as your own, no doing anything that would make the judges scowl at you in a bad way. Not only will you be disqualified, you'll look like a total douche-nozzle in the process.
6) Communication: Continued and open communication with the judges and other teams is highly encouraged. Any questions or requests for clarification should be directed to the judges, whose phone number will be provided. (Be aware, though, that for items where players are expected to do the research themselves—"What the hell's a siamang?"—the judges will not do the work for you.) If players wish, cell phone numbers between teams may also be exchanged for on-the-fly taunting and commiseration. In addition, if enough teams have internet access, a LiveJournal community will also be created for the posting of pictures and other general humiliation and backstabbing. Go, teams, go.
7) Judging: Only items that have made it inside the doors of hunt HQ by the deadline will be eligible for judging. If you wish to drop off items early and head out again, you may do so. Teams will be asked one at a time to go over their found items and photographs (which do not need to be printed out—flipping through them in-camera is fine) with the judges. The judges' decision on what items are acceptable and valid is final; if you have any doubts during the hunt itself, feel free to call hunt HQ for clarification. For every valid item successfully brought in in time for judging, the attached number of points will be added to the team's score.
The grand prize will be awarded to the team with the highest total number of points. Second prize will go to the team who found the most individual items, if different from the grand prize winner; otherwise, it will go to the team with the second-highest point total. In addition, there will be a special jury prize awarded for the most interesting backstory and/or overall style and cleverness exhibited during the hunt, in the estimation of the judges.
8) Primary Objective, in the End: Have a blast. Live life to make good stories later. If you're stressing over any of this, you're doing it wrong.
So how should we deal with the transportation issue?
teams are divvied up so each one has a car and driver
teams are forbidden from using their own cars entirely, and are limited to using the T
(No, this isn't going to add to my stress, slipjig's running the whole thing!)