if the event is so small that you're only running 3 main rounds probably cut to top 4 rather than top 8. obviously, I'd love to have enough people show up for it to be a 4 or 5 round event with cut to top 8.
prizes cutting off at 3rd is awkward, because 4th is the same record. payout should be top 1/2/4/8, especially if that is standings after elimination rounds.
@blindtherapy My main point for shooting this out there and gathering feed back to prep this the right way is to avoid small turn outs my goal is 16 - 24 players. I would be more than happy to payout top 8 but that totally depends on entry fee. If i can get great turn outs for 2-4 events and grow the community's interest than we can step it up the fee's . but I cant see charging more than $30 for entry fee at this point when i havent proven to the players that my tournaments are worth it. Like I said it totaly depends on the turn out but , my thought :
3rd and 4th returned entry fee or maybe even + $10-$20 more.
events with 20 to 30 buck entry sounds about standard to me, my experience being assorted stores in the northeast having monthly events on the weekends in that range that usually got somewhere between 12 and 30 players. payout was usually to top 4 or 8 depending on event size, with the bottom half of that getting roughly their entry back, or more for the larger events.
I think 1ks at one store were 400/200/100/100/50/50/50/50, but that's at over 30 people with $30 entry. comparably, a 16 man event for 25 bucks paying out to top 4 could be 200/100/50/50 or so; if you hit 24 guys you probably want to payout at least entry fees back to top 8, something like 240/120/60/60/30/30/30/30 for a $25 entry.
payout was credit at almost all stores, which is fine as long as a store has a decent singles case for vintage/legacy purposes and a bit disappointing if not, but I'm sure people will be happy to play for cash. I'm not sure what situation you're coming from with regard to the potential venue, but I think hosting events that pay out in store credit makes it a lot easier for stores to justify scheduling, space, and promotion for events than events that pay out in cash; I've definitely seen stores that have prize pools in credit sometimes larger than the cash received for entry, which is obviously easier to justify when not paying out in cash since you're basically giving a discount in exchange for a decent amount being guaranteed to be spent in the store.
If this is who I think it is (Mike), DM me and I can help you organize and promote. I used to be a regular at CrazyCards for a year or so when I lived in Chicago previously. I'm currently living in Chicago proper, and we have a handful of regulars who play Vintage, plus there's probably a good amount of people isolated in individual suburbs.