Obviously, there are some rumours about how the GMs deal with the scoring for the Heirs, and more important for our interests, how either Heir will reshape the Empire. That's how the GM team addresses the issue. The world won't end with Seiken as an Empire, nor our clan; and with Shibatsu on the throne, it won't be a golden era of the Spider Clan.
Okay, folks, I have to speak up here about something that's staring to get me kind of perturbed. There are rumors going around that the GMs are somehow "fiddling with the numbers" here at the end of WC, in order to try to achieve some particular outcome regarding the Heir.
First--no. AEG frankly has no particular preference regarding which Heir is selected. There will be interesting story-telling challenges and opportunities related to both. And while they will obviously govern differently, neither is going to radically overhaul the Empire. I've heard it suggested that Seiken will disband the Spider; correspondingly, I've heard it said that Shibatsu will treat the Spider as something special and make them into what effectively amounts as an Imperial family. Neither is even remotely close to true. The Spider were decreed a Great Clan by their mother, and neither of them is going to be interested in overturning their mother's decrees. Moreover, the brothers are clearly very close, so no matter which one takes the Throne, the other is almost certainly going to have a prominent advisory position to the new Emperor. So let me state this clearly and emphatically--THERE'S NO PREFERENCE BY AEG REGARDING WHICH BROTHER TAKES THE THRONE. In fact, the future story is largely going to be driven by forces external to the new Emperor, which are going to severely challenge him and the entire Empire.
More egregiously is the suggestion that the GMs are somehow distorting the data. I've already encountered one such rumor that is manifestly untrue; I was told that at least one clan was having an arbitrary split, in favor of one Heir, imposed on its players' scoring. We have a spreadsheet listing every player and that player's chosen split of support, and the spreadsheet shows that there are no such "impositions" by the GMs. But you won't have to take my word for it; once the Heir is announced, we'll be publishing the information on this spreadsheet so you'll be able to see the scoring for yourselves. Such unfounded rumors are a damaging distraction from our being able to wind up this event successfully. Moreover, it's insulting to the GMs, who have worked hard to make this event successful. I would REALLY appreciate no further such rumormongering; just wait until the data is published and you'll be able to see the ACTUAL scores, not what rumors are suggesting to be "true".
Okay, now...have we been perfect? No. Has there been NO GM bias in the scoring? Maybe there has. GMs have awarded points for role playing outcomes, which is highly subjective; what may have prompted one GM to award X in a given situation might have seen another GM award Y, or even nothing. Given that there were literally several thousand little gains and losses implemented over the course of WC4, it's impossible to go back and review them all...even more, it would be an utter dog's breakfast trying to judge if some gains or losses were justified, or should have been larger or smaller than they were. In the end, there were some things we probably should have done differently--this was the first WC event in which we tried to institute a system of broad "scoring" to measure a particular outcome, after all. On the whole, though, I think the GMs did a pretty good job of reflecting player inputs with the scoring outputs...and the result is actually very close. The difference between the overall score of the "Progressives" vs the "Traditionalists" was very small, considering the fact we're dealing with more than 2000 points overall on each side. Now, there WAS an outcome, and it did end up effectively deciding who the next Heir will be. Unless there were instances in which literally hundreds of points were misallocated, small differences, even amounting to tens of points either way, will not result in the overall outcome being different.
So...PLEASE stop the rumor-milling, wait for the result to be announced, then wait for us to publish the numeric results, and then--PLEASE--take them for what they are i.e. the best possible scoring outcome your hardworking GMs could manage, to reflect the awesome role playing you guys put into this event.