A martini glass in black and white

Astray, Darned Oaf!

2022-12-27 // Contest Overview

NOTE: This is for the 2022 Astray, Darned Oaf contest. For the 2023 sequel, click here.

In winter of 2022, a few anagram-loving ASS folks got together to break bread and run a contest. This contest involved building an entire year of IOTM Make-a-KOLs that were all anagrams of each other. Ha ha, Mark -- what a story! But seriously, though. It was a really fun time.

For posterity, the contest winners were announced on the ASS discord. It was difficult to choose winners, as all of the entries were lovely -- they were incredibly funny, super fun to read, and led to a lot of fun contentious discussion between our four judges. After a lot of debate, we settled on the following winners, and increased the prize pool a little bit to reflect how great of a time we had judging.

Our two runners up were The Erosionseeker (#1937905) with his "brothel california" entry & slifty (#1740367) with his "reusable toilet paper" entry. Both of these entries were beloved by the judges; slifty's concept of IEEE existing in KOL was one of the funniest lore additions among all competing entries, and TES absolutely nailed TPTB's tone and mechanical flourish. Both users received 20 million meat, a yuletide troll chrysalis, and a fun display case gag.

This leaves us with our winner. The winner of the competition (and the new "teen's tin crown" of the ASS discord server) is ...

Purple Shrimp (#1659891) !!!

The Italy-enjoying bridge savant and pyrite master blew our judges away, producing the only entry that made the top 3 of every single competition judge. We were universally in love with CRAFTY REVOKED PEACH, as the idea of an illegal peach that creates free wanderers that steal your peach back is absolutely brilliant and one of the funniest concepts across all IOTM submissions. We also were all dying at an IOTM whose only purpose was to give the Crackpot Mystic a hayfever while it was in standard. Absolutely incredible A+ job, buddy. Shrimp will receive a custom title reflecting his win, a Mr. Accessory, a yuletide troll chrysalis, and an even more fun display case gag than the rest of these folks.

Thanks to all for participating. For more great anagram entries, check out all the final entrants here. And for more information on the contest parameters, read on!

🤖 The following is the unedited original contest summary and rules. 🤖

Ahoy, fellow riders on the train we call life. It's me, your friend and grandmother, Captain Scotch, and I have a very special message to share to you on this fine December day.

With the recent release of OLIVER'S PLACE, we as(s) a community have found that anagrams are actually pretty funny. The venerable VinnyB went so far as to verify this, giving us such treasured phrases as ORACLE PELVIS, ECO-SAVER PILL, and VIPER LOCALES. This raises an important question: would it be funny if there was an entire year of standard where every IotM's name was an anagram?

We hope that you will find that the answer is "yes."

Come up with a short phrase or name that isn't OLIVER'S PLACE, and turn that into twelve IotMs and one IotY. They do not need to be super fleshed out -- we aren't looking for gritty numbers or fully drafted text, just 1-3 sentence elevator pitch for each one. We want to know what it is, what it does, and the general vibe of any in-game text that would be written for it. On the 15th-ish (ideally before Crimbo Town drops), sweaty bill, 3BH, and probably some surprise guests (maybe even me! OK, definitely me) will deliberate, and pick a top 3.

For the winners drop the spoils:

  • For first place, a custom title and a Mr. A
  • For second place, 20 million meat each
  • For third place, also 20 million meat! Wow, this prize table is SIMPLE!

If we receive further contributions to the prize pool we will award them as we see fit, but will likely give all spoils to those top 3.

Haxxi and Sweaty Bill have drawn up two examples to help people put things together: one based on CRUELEST MOTH and one based on FUN DOMINO LORE. These are more detailed than we expect of you, because of Hax's unparalleled commitment to the bit and Sweaty Bill's commitment to a bit that none of us understand.

Wow, great! Do you have any rules clarifications for me?

Why, yes. I do have some rules clarifications specifically for you, indented quote block.

  • It really does not matter, but if you care, the year of standard that you're writing is 2023.
  • Mechanics matter a lot less than names and jokes, but a mechanic that matches the name and joke is lovely
  • Anagram generators are allowed and encouraged. This is not a boggle tournament.
  • I guess, like, don't write anything horribly racist? Or anything like that? Really hoping this rule goes without saying.
  • Please assign months to each IotM pitch -- months lining up thematically with the IotM is bonus points (there are no points)
  • The anagrams should match the unpackaged form of the IotM. For things that don't unpack into a single specific item, listen to your heart. For those of you without a heart, listen to your shin. It generally knows what's going on.
  • The ™️ symbol, and things like that, can count or not count as letters. It's up to you, so long as you are consistent as an individual.
  • You cannot use any existing ASS meme IotMs, unless you created that ASS meme IotM. Even then, consider keeping it fresh?
  • Having fun is mandatory.

Is X allowed?

That's not actually a very helpful question for you to ask. We don't have any rewards for just submitting things into the competition, so a submission being disqualified and a submission not winning are functionally the same. A better question to ask yourself is "is this way of skirting the rules fun?" and the answer is probably going to be something along the lines of "maybe, if exactly one person does it exactly once."

Can I make multiple submissions?

Sure, but limit it to two. Also, you can only win once, and we'll consider your submissions separately, so you are better off putting all of your eggs in one basket.

Does it have to be a spreadsheet?

No, but we have found that the most legible submissions are spreadsheets. While we aren't "grading" on presentation, ultimately we think our ability to read and process your submission will impact our opinion of it.

How much detail should I give?

More is probably better. We're only asking for elevator pitches, but if the elevator stalls and breaks halfway through that can be a lot of information. We will probably not pay a huge amount of attention to balancing numbers--it is extremely okay to say "this gives a little +meat" or "this gives a lot of +ML" or even "this does some sort of queue manipulation." Longer submissions aren't strictly better than shorter submissions, but also including more detail and more writing is generally an opportunity to give us more things to like.

Are there an infinite number of twin primes? Probably

Why don't grownups understand the allure of cinnamon toast crunch? They do. It's just a lie we tell to kids, like "going to college makes financial sense for most people" or "of course we love both of you equally."

We hope you have a happy Crimbo, and an even happier entering-yourself-into-this-competition.

Love, Captain Scotch & the ASS Team

Article contributed by Captain Scotch, Sweaty Bill, Haxxi, & 3BH