The second phase is unlikely to happen? If you say so...
what is it?
Nobody is unbeatable
you are not participating,
Probably I will participate, probably I will sign up if round 4 will look clear (and fair)...
or you are planning to intentionally lose one game or two?
I'd have to do more playtesting before I find an obvious imbalance. But as I wrote in the other thread: It's complicated to find good positions for the artifacts...
I was thinking to put them halfway between the two players, scattered in all the directions, to encourage growing on all sides
Okay, that would be another possibility. Maybe even fairer and not that complicated. Probably very short matches though.
I think king_of_nowhere has enough experience in organizing this to know how much time we will need to organize an extra round / a second phase. If it takes him a bit longer than expected, the rounds can always be played a week or two later. So, I see no reason why he should do all that work right now if it might not be needed.
It's just nice to know in advance what one is signing up to. During the last tournaments, at least the map of the second phase had been announced before the start.
“It's a threat to our planet to believe that someone else will save it.” - Robert Swan