Congrats to all the teams, especially to those I game mastered for (Simple Weapons, Clan Yeoman, Team Gygax, and Smoked). I don't like to disclose tactics and stories, because its not fair to the teams who have hard won experience, but hopefully some of them will share a tidbit or two. Fun was had by *most*, and I won't steal their thunder by disclosing the kill rate, but one of my teams had 3 deaths (-10) and *still* were an alternate to advance to level 2.
I was on team Smoked. I played the Guard and was the only surviving member. After clearing the first room we ran into some trouble with the ooze along with trying to decide which door, of the three, to head towards. We finally ended up at the bronze door where most of the team fell. I made a mad dash for the portal on the left knowing everyone else was going to die. My plan was to score as many points as possible at that point regardless if I died.
I figured out the maze room right from the start and ran through it collecting the key. I spent a LONG time figuring out the spheres since I didn't want to die figuring out a puzzle. I finally placed the spheres and retrieved the key... plenty of time left. I found the book in the library and didn't waste any time stacking the cards and retrieving the key.
I made it to the last room and decided to step in to make the encounter. The DM tried to kill me but a teammate questioned the ability to sit up, jump, run and attack. After some book browsing the attack was negated and I retreated, cowering in the hallway but still alive.
We were the 2nd alternate but would have been short a player had the opportunity arose to play through.
It was a lot of fun, my second year playing the tournament. I hope to advance into round 2 next year!