Pandemic Rules

For the 2020-2021 battle season, Battle of the Books Grand Traverse will be using the Pandemic Rules below and not the Official Rules.

Rules of Play

Team members read from a list of nine books chosen to appeal to a variety of interests and introduce young readers to a wide range of books. During battle season, readers discuss the books with their teammates. Reading is a shared activity that culminates in three events: Mock Battles, Team Battle Day, and the Championship & All-Team Finale.

Participants will:

• Read from the selected book list

• Become experts on the books they read

• Answer questions about the books as a team

• Compete against other teams

Mock Battles

Mock Battles give each team the chance to see how the competition works. This is a fun event to practice with your team in competition format for the first time. Questions will be drawn from one of the nine battle books as announced in advance.

Team Battle Day Rules

1. Each team is assigned by random draw to one of two battle groups. Each team will compete during a single assigned battle time slot with 30 standard questions and 5 challenge questions.

2. During the battle, a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 6 team members may participate. One member acts as captain to answer each question. Teams may not add members to a battle once it has begun.

3. The judge will read each question twice. The team may confer up to 20 seconds after the question is read. The team captain will hold up a green card to indicate he/she is ready to answer. The team captain will state the author’s last name and the answer to the question. Other team members may not talk to the captain or to each other after the captain holds up the green card. If team members talk to the captain or to each other after the captain holds up the green card, the judge will stop the captain from answering any further and not award points for that question.

4. The judge will award points for each correct author (1 point) and each correct answer (5 points) for the standard questions.

5. At the conclusion of the 30 standard questions, the judge will ask five challenge questions worth 1 point each. The judge will award one point if answered correctly. For challenge questions, no author names are required, nor are points awarded for naming the author.

Team Battle Scoring

Correct Author: 1 point

Correct Answer: 5 points

Challenge Question: 1 point, maximum of 5

6. The decision of the judge is final.

7. Once the battle is over, the judge will record each team’s score out of a maximum score of 185 points.

8. The ten teams with the highest points in each of the two battle groups will advance to the Semi-Finals. Thus, twenty teams will advance to the Semi-Finals.

9. If there is a tie among teams for the top ten positions, additional challenge questions will be used to break the tie.

10. Spectators are welcome; however, team members, coaches, and their friends and family members may only watch the battle in which their team is participating, or the team risks being disqualified.

11. Battle participants, coaches, and spectators are not to discuss questions with other teams. If found to be sharing information from their battles with other teams, or gathering information about other battles to benefit their team, or any similar activity, a team will be disqualified.

Semi-Finals Rules

1. The twenty teams advancing from the first round will stay in their designated battle group for the Semi-Finals. Each team will compete in one assigned battle time slot with 30 semi-finals questions and 5 challenge questions.

2. Rules 2-7 of Team Battle Day apply to the Semi-Finals.

3. At the end of the Semi-Finals, the team with the highest points in each battle group will advance to the Championship. Thus, two teams will advance.

If there is a tie between teams for the top position, additional challenge questions will be used to break the tie.

4. Rules 10-11 of Team Battle Day apply to the Semi-Finals.

Championship Battle Rules

1. A minimum of 2 and a maximum of 6 team members may participate in the Championship Battle.

2. A coin will be flipped to see which team will go first. In advance of the battle, 15 questions out of 30 will be randomly drawn for each team.

3. The announcer will read each question twice. Each team may confer up to 20 seconds after the question is read. The captain will display a green card and state the author and the answer to the question. Other team members may not talk to the captain or to each other after the captain holds up the green card.

4. The judge(s) will award points for each correct author (1 point) and for each correct answer (5 points). If the judge determines the answer to be incorrect, the judge will repeat the question for the opposing team.* That team will then have 20 seconds to decide on an answer. Two points will be awarded if the opposing team answers it correctly.

Scoring for Championship Battle

Correct Author: 1 point

Correct Answer: 5 points

Correct Answer Missed by Opposing Team: 2 points

5. If the battle is tied at the end of the 30 questions, the teams will participate in a sudden death tie-breaker battle. The judge will read a question, and the teams will have 20 seconds to confer. If both teams answer correctly or if both teams answer incorrectly, another question will be read until a winner emerges.

6. The decision of the judges is final.

*If technology limitations or similar conditions prevent the use of the opposing teams format, then the Team Battle Day format will be used: Team A will respond to 15 championship questions and 5 challenge questions and then Team B will respond to 15 championship questions and 5 challenge questions with the highest scoring team named as the champion.

* Pandemic Rules updated 11/5/2020.