Introducing the New WFTDA Rankings Platform Part 4: The New WFTDA Rankings Website

With great thanks to Michael Watson of Rainy City Roller Derby, the WFTDA has been working to build a new and dynamic system to host rankings and game data, scheduled for initial release June 5, 2019. As we work towards this release date, we wanted to give you access to the new site, previews of the pages and more over the next two weeks. We’ll be releasing a series of five introduction articles highlighting the work and the features we will be debuting in 2019 and beyond. Here’s the fourth article in the series, written by Michael. Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

Now that the central WFTDA Admin Portal is close to completion, we finally have data in a healthy, universal, and dynamic form, ready to create the fan engagement sites for the public.

The public site has been designed to show off stats in the most user friendly, pleasant way. I’ve put a big focus on useful, bitesize information rather than intense, deep dive tables, and as such have created a system that’s light and breezy, telling cool, useful stories to beginners to the sport, as well as providing some deeper information for those that want it.

I have been designing for mobile phones predominantly, as I know what it’s like during a tournament or game. I can see people looking up information on their phones, and I want WFTDA to be a key resource to discover the impact of games, to see the history of the competitors, and bigger storyline of the game at hand. I want people to easily see:

  • Have these teams played each other before?
  • What’s their record against each other?
  • Who’s the highest rank?
  • How is their form?
  • What’s their latest results like?
  • Who do they have coming up?
Introducting the New WFTDA Rankings and Stats Website - Screenshot

These questions really help paint a better picture of the game and the bigger storylines, and to have quick, easy access to this will be huge for fandom. Eventually to be able to look up who the strongest jammers are, or who their best blockers are, will be even more powerful.

Another really important question that comes up during sanctioned games is the age old “but what score do they NEED?” question. Rankings are important, and often in roller derby we have stronger teams playing weaker ones, both with their own goals of expected scores to achieve their rankings goals. This can be confusing to fans, especially if they’re left in the dark, so I’ve created a simple forecast tool that allows fans to understand what score their team will need to maintain ranking position, and to better comprehend “good” or “bad” outcomes.

Some of these stats are great assets for leagues to integrate within their own websites, and we’re looking at creating a series of widgets that’ll allow anyone to tap into this data and bring their websites to life in the near future.

Got more questions about the new WFTDA rankings platform? We’re hosting another Twitter AMA with Michael Today, Wednesday, May 22 at 2:00 p.m. EDT (7:00 p.m. BST, 11:00 a.m. PDT) live on the WFTDA twitter. Follow the hashtag #AskWFTDA to ask questions and join the conversation.