What is the best way to get to know young and talented programmers? Organize interesting competition with high-end gadgets as a prize! At least that’s what we think after carrying out WEBCON ARENA – a tournament inspired by classic movie ‘TRON’ (1982).
The whole idea of the contest was to create an algorithm (in .NET) that would beat the opponents. The core rules of the game have been taken from the light cycle skirmishes. Each of the players moving on an arena leaves an impassable ribbon. The goal is to force enemy to crash with any ribbon or arena wall.
It doesn’t sound complicated but creating an efficient and clever algorithm requires a lot of skills and ability to anticipate enemies’ moves. However our contestants showed their best. The level of the tournament was high and algorithms very creative and sometimes really surprising.
The winning light cycle called ‘Maestro’ was a true masterpiece. Presented great tactic and at the same time very effective, yet unusual field filling algorithm. Suffice to say it hasn’t lost once in the finals! See the clip on WEBCON ARENA YouTube channel.
The winner won a brand new Google Nexus 4 smartphone. We also prepared a surprise contest where contestants had to modify (within 2 hours) their light cycles so they could use ‘portals’ that would transfer them from one edge of the arena to the opposite one. Very demanding task for programmers, and fun to watch for audience. The winner of this contest got Kindle Paperwhite. Also, best participants had a chance to see how we work and were invited for workshops.
We had a lot of fun and met really talented and resourceful young programmers. Time to prepare for next year edition!
See the YouTube clip for further reference: