Look, @strop, no need for the passive aggressiveness. I like to believe I’m an open and reasonable person that will answer all questions you have.
I know and appreciate you are a competitive person, who pushes himself to perform the best of his abilities, I admire your driving prowess around the track, you know this as well.
My challenges are meant in good fun, and always follow the same premise. I drive a time trail in Beam, giving each car an honest base line with the same driver and same ability (I train the courses in advance). This base time is modified with penalties based on reliability (and depending on the challenge things like fuel consumption and service costs). The penalties are determined on the basis of the Automation stats, the chances by a simple random 1 to 1000 function in Excel.
You have 660 reliability and roll 659 => penalty. 661 ==> no penalty.
This means there’s a relatively big factor of chance involved, and neither the objectively best car, nor the entry I consider the best subjectively, is guaranteed to win in any way. So in that sense, I understand if that’s a waste of time for you. That’s not a negative thing. I respect that a casual challenge, which isn’t really a challenge, but more of a role playing experience, is not for everyone. I will never blame you for thinking that’s a stupid premise.
As for the car, yes the buggy is more than sufficient (and preferred over that odd-looking off-roader for that matter).
I agree on the nebulous prerequisite, but it’s part of how I want this challenge to leave you expecting and somewhat nervous about what will happen to the team. It’s fully intentional in other words.
As for the rock climbing, 4-minutes is extremely fast - a strop achievement like we know it. But other cars are able to pass it a lot slower. And, yeah, sure, I can record a replay over the weekend, that’s not an issue. It’s not much of skill, just a matter of locking your differential and inching forward, picking your route over some of the toughest rocks (and, yes, there are 3 places that with one wrong move will bottom you out and strand you).
On a side note, if for a challenge like this there would be a track like that, and entries would bottom out, I’d simply give them a penalty and use the node grabber to continue, and role play in the report the event. I have no intention to DNF entries unless the random numbers tell me so or the design is just so bad that the car is useless to begin with.
On a personal side note, but something that I do want to underline. Considering the sizable field in every of my competitions, you can calculate how much time I put into my competitions, knowing that I drive each car for up to an hour, next to processing it.
I gladly take feedback to heart, but there’s a choice between being extremely minituous in all input and output, and being lenient but fair. I chose the latter and having a bigger scope. But that doesn’t mean I don’t spend days on each challenge in my free time - which is mostly fun, but sometimes simply work.