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Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 5:57 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Since this thread was last posted in, I think I'm right in saying that all series winners have been Apterites, and I think this pretty much instantly disqualifies them from being "ordinary". If someone had just played a couple of games on Apterous so it hadn't affected their skill level too much, that might be acceptable but I don't think that's been the case.

But there have been some good players who could potentially have been champions in that time who could arguably be described as ordinary. This includes Moose Rosser who got to the final in the last series. And in the series before that we had Andrew McLeod and arguably Jamie Washington. In the series before, Stephen Briggs perhaps. Was John Hardie a Scrabble player? I know he has an Apterous account but I don't think he played much. Then we have good old Carl Williams, who narrowly lost to Graeme Cole in the final.

You might debate the ordinaryness of some of these, and might have some to add yourself, but I think the success of these players shows that under certain circumstances, someone more ordinary than an Apterite could win a series.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:29 pm
by Mark Deeks
I wasn't an Apterite for more than a handful of days when I did my heats, if that lends any credence here.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:36 pm
by JimBentley
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 5:57 pm
Then we have good old Carl Williams, who narrowly lost to Graeme Cole in the final.
I don't know if this is just me misremembering things, but I have this recollection of Carl Williams actually being on apterous shortly after those finals were broadcast. He didn't play any games as far as I know but I've got this unshakeable memory of a Carl Williams logging in after a long aptochat discussion (most of which was about him), staying a short while, posting a smiley face and logging out again.

However, if this really did happen, I can't believe I'd be the only person to notice, so I'm going to have to conclude that it was probably a dream.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 7:09 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Mark Deeks wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:29 pm
I wasn't an Apterite for more than a handful of days when I did my heats, if that lends any credence here.
When you look at yourself in the mirror, does an ordinary person look back at you?

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 7:32 pm
by Elliott Mellor
Possibly not, or at least not without some fairly unlikely circumstances. For a non apterite to win a series they'd have to either be in a very weak series or have some efficient training mechanism that wasn't apterous (eg Julian Fell studied the dictionary and used the handheld Countdown game). One has to remember though that nowadays all the people striving to do well on Countdown are going to search for online ways to play, which will likely lead them to apterous. Therefore it's fairly unlikely a non apterite will win a series any time soon.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 7:51 pm
by Gavin Chipper
This thread is sort of related.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:22 pm
by Mark Deeks
JimBentley wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:36 pm
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 5:57 pm
Then we have good old Carl Williams, who narrowly lost to Graeme Cole in the final.
I don't know if this is just me misremembering things, but I have this recollection of Carl Williams actually being on apterous shortly after those finals were broadcast. He didn't play any games as far as I know but I've got this unshakeable memory of a Carl Williams logging in after a long aptochat discussion (most of which was about him), staying a short while, posting a smiley face and logging out again.
That was Ed McCullagh playing silly buggers

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:23 pm
by Mark Deeks
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 7:09 pm
Mark Deeks wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:29 pm
I wasn't an Apterite for more than a handful of days when I did my heats, if that lends any credence here.
When you look at yourself in the mirror, does an ordinary person look back at you?
No. Shit.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:50 pm
by Ben Wilson
Mark Deeks wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:22 pm
JimBentley wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:36 pm
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 5:57 pm
Then we have good old Carl Williams, who narrowly lost to Graeme Cole in the final.
I don't know if this is just me misremembering things, but I have this recollection of Carl Williams actually being on apterous shortly after those finals were broadcast. He didn't play any games as far as I know but I've got this unshakeable memory of a Carl Williams logging in after a long aptochat discussion (most of which was about him), staying a short while, posting a smiley face and logging out again.
That was Ed McCullagh playing silly buggers
Always wondered who that was.

And back OT... If you define 'ordinary' to mean 'non-apterite' then there's a slim possibility as there are plenty of top Scrabblers who haven't had a crack at the show yet and have the potential to do well (John Hardie is certainly one of the top Scrabblers in the country but not what you'd call 'elite'). None of them would ever apply though, for reasons including a) the significant difference in dictionaries, b) disliking the numbers games and c) not taking Countdown seriously enough to put the effort in to do well. Which is an odd approach for people who will literally pay hundreds of pounds and travel sometimes thousands of miles to play in tournaments, but hey ho. Obviously I'm excluding the likes of Stewart Holden and Craig Beevers from this list as they did put in the time and effort to do well. But you'd really be stretching the definition of 'ordinary' if you included elite-level Scrabble players. So will anyone who's never put in any effort to improve their word knowledge/anagramming skills ever win a series again? I highly doubt it.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:25 pm
by JimBentley
Mark Deeks wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:22 pm
JimBentley wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:36 pm
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 5:57 pm
Then we have good old Carl Williams, who narrowly lost to Graeme Cole in the final.
I don't know if this is just me misremembering things, but I have this recollection of Carl Williams actually being on apterous shortly after those finals were broadcast. He didn't play any games as far as I know but I've got this unshakeable memory of a Carl Williams logging in after a long aptochat discussion (most of which was about him), staying a short while, posting a smiley face and logging out again.
That was Ed McCullagh playing silly buggers
With a duplicate account, presumably, as this long predates the name changer gizmo?

You live and learn (mostly bad things about other people), I guess.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:53 am
by Gavin Chipper
Ben Wilson wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:50 pm

Always wondered who that was.

And back OT... If you define 'ordinary' to mean 'non-apterite' then there's a slim possibility as there are plenty of top Scrabblers who haven't had a crack at the show yet and have the potential to do well (John Hardie is certainly one of the top Scrabblers in the country but not what you'd call 'elite'). None of them would ever apply though, for reasons including a) the significant difference in dictionaries, b) disliking the numbers games and c) not taking Countdown seriously enough to put the effort in to do well. Which is an odd approach for people who will literally pay hundreds of pounds and travel sometimes thousands of miles to play in tournaments, but hey ho. Obviously I'm excluding the likes of Stewart Holden and Craig Beevers from this list as they did put in the time and effort to do well. But you'd really be stretching the definition of 'ordinary' if you included elite-level Scrabble players. So will anyone who's never put in any effort to improve their word knowledge/anagramming skills ever win a series again? I highly doubt it.
I think being ordinary takes more than just being a non-Apterite. Scrabblers are not ordinary. Many obsessive pre-Apterites (e.g. Julian Fell playing the handheld game) were not ordinary. So although I mentioned John Hardie above, he's not ordinary.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:12 am
by Mark Deeks
JimBentley wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:25 pm
Mark Deeks wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:22 pm
JimBentley wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:36 pm


I don't know if this is just me misremembering things, but I have this recollection of Carl Williams actually being on apterous shortly after those finals were broadcast. He didn't play any games as far as I know but I've got this unshakeable memory of a Carl Williams logging in after a long aptochat discussion (most of which was about him), staying a short while, posting a smiley face and logging out again.
That was Ed McCullagh playing silly buggers
With a duplicate account, presumably, as this long predates the name changer gizmo?

You live and learn (mostly bad things about other people), I guess.
Ed had about 30 accounts I think. Two main ones because he forgot the logins to the first one, then multiple new ones under random names when his subscription expired, and then a few others for a laugh. Was pretty open about it. I think I got all those details wrong but it's something like that.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 7:27 pm
by L'oisleatch McGraw
Ben Wilson wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:50 pm
So will anyone who's never put in any effort to improve their word knowledge/anagramming skills ever win a series again? I highly doubt it.
Again?
I doubt anyone who fits that description has ever won a series of Countdown.

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 7:38 pm
by Elliott Mellor
If a non apterite can ever win a series, I reckon today's contestant is one of the best shots assuming he doesn't use a pseudonym....

Re: Will an 'ordinary' person ever win a series again?

Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:33 pm
by Ben Wilson
L'oisleatch McGraw wrote:
Wed Jul 19, 2017 7:27 pm
Ben Wilson wrote:
Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:50 pm
So will anyone who's never put in any effort to improve their word knowledge/anagramming skills ever win a series again? I highly doubt it.
Again?
I doubt anyone who fits that description has ever won a series of Countdown.
:? ;) 8-)