The diagram is the first practice layout delivered to the public by Sup'Air. The use of the new snake bunkers mirrors the original photos and should be accepted as a reflection of Sup'Air's conception of how the new snake will play generally--although other configurations are possible. My objective isn't to claim the new snake bunkers are unplayable--they aren't--but to clearly demonstrate that the new bunkers are not an improvement--as was predicted here earlier--and also have other drawbacks.
(The issue of how and why this change is being made is a separate issue. Over at PBN AG's U.S. rep has claimed comments made here at VFTD are "allegations and untruths" they will not respond to. When confronted with a Lane Wright quote also on PBN, in a different thread and forum, along with some clarifying questions AG has chosen so far not to respond to those either. Nor has AG commented here at VFTD. Until such time as AG can demonstrate errors of fact VFTD stands by the content of all prior related posts.)
Take a close look at the snake 50--and beyond. Can the opponent's side of the snake be played at all if there is any opposition on the snake side of the field? One other characteristic of the new bunkers is to make them nearly unplayable past the 50 with a risk that so vastly outwieghs any reward that it simply won't happen given this layout. The problem isn't limited to this layout either. It's inherent in the bunker conception. (And, FYI, if the MS field layouts continue to be as compact as the recent ones the new snake will be even worse than in a PSP application.)
The bunkers highlighted in pink can't be targeted from the snake--although Home may be dependent on precise placement of Pins & Can. The D-wire feed MT however will end up being played constantly to contest the D-corner and the feed gap to the wire without any concern from across the field. To a large extent the reverse is true of the bunkers in green given they have been specifically blocked from contesting the designed shooting spots out of the snake which will limit their utility. Given their exposure to cross field angles and inability to battle the snake good teams will have little reason to play them. The overall impact of the effort to make the new snake props playable is a failure and creates an utterly predictable pattern of play on the rest of the field--slow play at that unless multiple bodies drop OTB--and this is the sample Sup'Air put out first to show off their new props!
Looking beyond this single design a couple of other things ought to be apparent. The effort to incorporate the new Adrenaline Games snake concept requires the rest of the field layout to be designed around making the snake playable. This in turn will limit design options until such time some of the traditional snake bunkers are incorporated again at which point AG concedes the new bunkers were unnecessary.
And if we backtrack a year we know that the PSP, with the rules changes of 2010, intended to have field layouts be more inclusive (old, fat & slow) but also encourage aggressive play. Last year's layouts were neither. Why not? In part because the league found using Sup'Air to create field layouts was convenient--and, bottom line, apparently nobody involved in the process knew what the consequences of the designs was going to be. But shouldn't Sup'Air at least understand the consequences of their designs? And if they don't are bunker changes just a crapshoot too?
Whatever else happens the PSP should take this opportunity to take control over a key element of the league's product and identity.