Quick Links

Background
- What is Forecaster Challenge?
- Getting Started
- How to make a Prediction?
- AccuDollars Currency
- Challenges
Account
- Account Details
- My Predictions
- Resolved Predictions
- Pending Predictions
Predictions
- What are Predictions?
- Prediction Location
- Location List
- Prediction Depths
- Prediction Payouts
- Prediction FAQ
Misc.
- Rules and Disclaimers
- Contact Us

Background

What is Forecaster Challenge?

Forecaster Challenge is a new weather forecasting game offered by AccuWeather and developed and operated by Cantor Exchange, a division of Cantor Fitzgerald. This educational game exists to increase your weather awareness, both severe and non-severe, within a fun context by making it interesting to follow the weather differently than just looking at what is going on in your own neighborhood.  This game provides users the opportunity to have goals to learn more about the weather, based on virtual currency and other participation incentives.  Users can demonstrate their ability in weather forecasting and gain confidence in their overall situational awareness of upcoming weather events. 

Participants make predictions on the weather and track the results of their predictions within the game – whether they were correct or incorrect. Users are walked through a series of steps: they determine which prediction they would like to make, they confirm their prediction and they return to the site to see if they were correct.

Users receive AccuDollars for making correct predictions, but every prediction also costs AccuDollars to make, so predict wisely! AccuDollars have no intrinsic or other value, they are simply used as a measure of success within the game. Prediction risk/reward AccuDollar pricing is created automatically based on the likelihood that a given prediction will ultimately occur.

Examples of predictions:

  • At Least 2” of snow will fall on December 25th, 2017 in New York City.
  • Less Than 0.25” of rain will fall on November 13th, 2017 in Miami.
  • There will be no rain on December 4th, 2017 in Seattle.

Forecaster Challenge tests your ability to predict the weather at a particular location on a particular day, for which you will be rewarded accordingly with changes in your AccuDollar balance. There are also daily challenges and featured predictions that a user can directly participate in, geared toward presenting a relevant direct question of what will happen for a particular major weather event or how the weather might impact events like an upcoming major sporting event or outdoor entertainment event.

Forecaster Challenge is completely free for users to play. 

Getting Started

Signing up is quick and easy and only requires your name, email address, and password with an optional nickname available.  Click the "Sign Up and get 25,000 Free AccuDollars" button in the upper right corner to begin the sign-up process.  


Please Note: Nicknames may not be vulgar, offensive, or intended to misrepresent your account as someone else's. Any accounts with Nicknames deemed inappropriate may be disabled at the sole discretion of Cantor Exchange.

Once an account is created, simply log in with your provided email address and password and start playing the game!  


To begin, challenges are available on the homepage and also within each game area for you to participate in and take a crack at solving.  

At the top of the homepage, a prediction will be presented for you to evaluate. You can make this prediction or visit the individual weather pages to make a different prediction.

 

Further down the homepage you will find a few featured challenges.  If you have completed all of the Challenges, you may not see any here but check back each day as more are added.

Any time you see one of the blue prediction buttons ("Yes" / "No" or "At Least" / "Less Than") you can click it to pre-configure the full prediction for you!

Snowfall and Rainfall prediction product elements exist within the "Snow" and "Rain" tabs within the top Forecaster Challenge menu.  

You will start by selecting a location that you are interested in playing.  

How to Make a Prediction

  1. Choose 'Snow' or 'Rain' in the top navigation.
  2. Choose a location out of the 55 currently available within the game.
  3. Choose a date within the next 7 days
  4. Decide if you think there will be any snow/rain at that location on that date.
  5. Decide how much snow/rain you think will fall on that day at that location (units of inches).
  6. Choose how much to spend for the prediction.
  7. Confirm & Submit - that's it!

Note: The cost that you declare you are willing to spend for a particular prediction may not be the exact cost that is submitted into the game, due to slight game currency rounding to match to a potential payout that is rounded to the nearest 100 AccuDollars. Don’t worry though, it will always end up being a discount that is equal to or lower than the declared spend.

AccuDollars

Making a prediction is not without risk within Forecaster Challenge.  Users are given a number of FREE AccuDollars when they sign up for the game. AccuDollars have no intrinsic or other value, they cannot be converted to real money or value. Each prediction a user makes costs AccuDollars, but the user decides how many AccuDollars to spend on each prediction.

Players win AccuDollars for making correct predictions, but lose the AccuDollars they spent if they are incorrect.  The number of AccuDollars users win depends on the prediction they choose and the forecast for that prediction.

Users cannot purchase more AccuDollars but they may receive more free AccuDollars each day they login to the game and also may receive bonus AccuDollars by participating in challenges.  It is possible, that in the future, AccuDollars may be available for purchase.  

Challenges

Challenges may provide bonus AccuDollars to a player when a challenge is completed.

Challenges are completed by submitting a prediction matching the challenge.

Each challenge is presented as a question for the user to consider and then make a choice as to what their prediction is.

  1. What are challenges?

Challenges provide additional incentive to make specific types of predictions, which are either tied to an upcoming major event or to locations in the path of a future high impact weather event. When you make a prediction that matches a challenge, you will be rewarded with bonus AccuDollars for your participation – regardless of whether you are correct or not in your prediction!

  1. How often are challenges updated?

New challenges may be added on most days - typically at least 5-10 per week are added. Check back regularly to look for new challenges to complete!

  1. I see a challenge for (date) but I can’t select that date on the predictions page?

You will have to come back to Forecaster Challenge within a week before the date on the Challenge in order to complete it. 

Predictions

What are predictions?

Predictions are the core activity that users participate in on Forecaster Challenge. By making a prediction users either win AccuDollars (if they are correct) or lose the AccuDollars they spent to make the prediction (if they are wrong).

To make a prediction, users must choose:

  • Type of Weather: Users can predict snowfall or rainfall, more weather types coming soon!
  • Location: There are 55 locations available to choose from across the continental United States.
  • Date: The date for which the user would like to make the prediction (e.g. predict the amount of snow/rain that will fall on March 4th). Only today and the next 6 upcoming days are available to choose from.
  • An Amount: How much snow/rain (in inches) will fall on the given date at the given location (based on the 24-hour calendar day of midnight to midnight local standard time at the location)

Predictions: Locations

There are currently 55 locations spread across the continental United States that can be chosen by users to make predictions.  These locations are government controlled weather measuring stations that record specific amounts of snowfall and rainfall. Most of these stations are co-located or in close proximity to a major airport. For the purposes of this game, these key measuring stations have been assigned to the closest major city.

These cities include:

Northwest
Seattle, WA (KSEA)
Spokane, WA (KGEG)
Portland, OR (KPDX)
Helena, MT (KHLN)
Boise, ID (KBOI)
Salt Lake City, UT (KSLC)
Denver, CO (KDEN)

Southwest
San Francisco, CA (KSFO)
Los Angeles, CA (KLAX)
Reno, NV (KRNO)
Las Vegas, NV (KLAS)
Phoenix, AZ (KPHX)
Tucson, AZ (KTUS)
Albuquerque, NM (KABQ)

North Central
Fargo, ND (KFAR)
Minneapolis, MN (KMSP)
Rapid City, SD (KRAP)
Green Bay, WI (KGRB)
Milwaukee, WI (KMKE)
Grand Rapids, MI (KGRR)
Detroit, MI (KDTW)
Chicago, IL (KORD)
Indianapolis, IN (KIND)
Des Moines, IA (KDSM)
Omaha, NE (KOMA)

South Central
Kansas City, MO (KMCI)
Saint Louis, MO (KSTL)
Wichita, KS (KICT)
Memphis, TN (KMEM)
Oklahoma City, OK (KOKC)
Dallas, TX (KDFW)
Austin, TX (KAUS)
San Antonio, TX (KSAT)
Houston, TX (KIAH)
New Orleans, LA (KMSY)

Northeast
Portland, ME (KPWM)
Boston, MA (KBOS)
Hartford, CT (KBDL)
Buffalo, NY (KBUF)
New York, NY (KNYC)
Philadelphia, PA (KPHL)
Pittsburgh, PA (KPIT)
Cleveland, OH (KCLE)
Columbus, OH (KCMH)
Cincinnati, OH (KCMH)
Baltimore, MD (KBWI)
Washington, DC (KDCA)

Southeast
Richmond, VA (KRIC)
Raleigh, NC (KRDU)
Charlotte, NC (KCLT)
Nashville, TN (KBNA)
Atlanta, GA (KATL)
Birmingham, AL (KBHM)
Orlando, FL (KMCO)
Miami, FL (KMIA)

Predictions: Depths

Depths are predicted and observed using the 24-hour calendar day of midnight to midnight local standard time, year-round.  Predictions are validated and settled as correct or incorrect based on official observations by NOAA at a primary observation station within a particular city; using NOAA Preliminary Climatology Reports (CF6). Intraday settlements may occur for rain, if the summation of 1-hour precipitation amounts from the official NOAA observation station confirms settlement can be completed.

Snow is measured to an accuracy of 0.1” and includes ice pellets. Anything less than 0.1” of Snow is reported as trace and considered “no snow has fallen” for a location. Snow predictions can be made at the first 0.5” and then in 1” increments. The maximum depth of snow available to predict is 18”. (0.5, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18)

Rain is measured to an accuracy of 0.01” and is either the exact rainfall total for days with all rain or the liquid equivalent total if there is a mix of rain and snow or all snow. Anything less than 0.01” of Rain is reported as trace and considered “no rain has fallen” for a location. Rain predictions can be made in 0.25” increments up to 3” and then in 1” increments. The maximum depth of rain available to predict in the game is 10”. (0.25, 0.5, 0.75, 1, 1.25, 1.5, 1.75, 2, 2.25, 2.5, 2.75, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)

Note: Not every depth of snow/rain from the minimum to the maximum is made available for players in the game. Each location and day can be different depending on the forecast for that location on that day.

Predictions: Payout Credits

The amount won on a correct prediction is a factor of two things:

  1. The number of AccuDollars spent on the prediction
  2. The forecast probability of that prediction coming true

When a weather forecast is close to the same as the depth a user has chosen to predict for a location on a date, the payout for that prediction will be low.  Choosing to predict a depth that is significantly different than the current forecast will increase the payout if the prediction is correct - but the probability of being correct is likely to be lower.  These payouts will also vary based on whether a user simply states whether it will or will not snow/rain or is willing to select a specific depth value.  Finally, payout will again vary based on whether the user selects that a particular day will get “At Least” or “Less Than” the specified depth of snow/rain. 

Note: once a prediction is made, the payout is set – regardless of any change in the forecast. This can be to the advantage or disadvantage of the player and players are encouraged to act if they think the forecast is wrong as that’s an opportunity to win more! 

Predictions: Errors

There are a variety of conditions which can cause your prediction to be cancelled or for an error to occur when submitting a prediction:

1. Maximum Limit on each Location/Date/Depth

There is a maximum of 100,000 AccuDollar potential payout you can have on a specific Location, Date, and Depth for each product type. If you submit a prediction which, if accepted, would cause you to have > 100,000 AccuDollars potential payout for a specific location & date, your prediction will not be accepted.

For example:

  • You currently have a potential payout of 95,000 AccuDollars for New York City (KNYC) on May 15th 2017 if there is At Least 1" of Rain
  • You try to submit a new prediction for At Least 1" of Rain in New York City (KNYC) on May 15th 2017 with a potential payout of 7,000 AccuDollars
  • You will have a portion of your 7,000 AccuDollars accepted (5,000 AccuDollars) and a portion cancelled (2,000 AccuDollars) so you will end up with 100,000 AccuDollar total potential payout (the original 95,000 AccuDollars you had plus the extra 5,000 AccuDollars)
    • Note: You will NOT be charged for the 2,000 AccuDollars that gets cancelled.

2. Not enough AccuDollars

If you submit a prediction that would cost you more AccuDollars than you have in your account, your prediction will be accepted only up to the amount of AccuDollars you have in your account.

For example:

  • You currently have 3000 AccuDollars in your account
  • You submit a prediction that costs 4000 AccuDollars
  • You will get 3,000 AccuDollars spent on that prediction and the remaining 1,000 AccuDollars will be cancelled (you will see two notifications: one to accept the 3,000 AccuDollars and one to cancel the remaining 1,000 AccuDollars)

 

Predictions FAQ

  1. How many predictions can I make?

You can make as many as you want! As long as you have AccuDollars, you can keep making predictions.

  1. Why am I allowed to predict for “yesterday”?

Predictions are not settled as correct or incorrect until the final weather data for the day arrives.  Often this final data is not available until the following day and in this case, you can make a prediction on the weather for "yesterday" up until the weather measurements for yesterday are finalized – at 12 noon ET "today".

  1. When do predictions for “today” stop being accepted?

Predictions for “today” are accepted until 12 noon ET on the following day. However, once there is accumulation of rain/snow during that day, some of the possible depths are no longer available to predict. For example, if 2” of rain has already fallen at a location, you cannot predict on any depth <= 2”.

  1. Why can’t I make a prediction on _____ city?

Not every city is available to choose, as we currently have 55 major cities in Forecaster Challenge.  We are always mindful of adding new cities though!

  1. Why can I only select from days within the current week?

Only 7 days’ worth of predictions are available at any one time.

  1. Can I make more than one prediction on the same location?

Yes! You can make as many predictions as you want on a location.

  1. Can I make more than one prediction on the same date?

Yes! You can make as many predictions as you want for a date.

  1. When are predictions verified?

At the latest, it takes until 12 noon ET on the date following the prediction to make sure the weather measurements are correct. If you make a prediction for Tuesday December 13th 2017, the prediction will be verified as correct or incorrect at or before 12 noon on Wednesday December 14th, 2017. Some predictions may be verified during the course of the day as final weather measurement data arrives.

  1. How does Forecaster Challenge decide if my prediction is right or wrong?

The weather data recorded for a day is verified by official observations provided by NOAA within the Preliminary Local Climatological Data Report (CF6) and that data is used to determine if your prediction was correct.

  1. I live in <city> and we didn’t get snow/rain today – why didn’t I win my prediction?

The measurements are taken at specific locations near each city listed. The exact weather you experience may not be the same as the weather that occurred at the measuring station.

  1. Why do I need to wait for my prediction to be “accepted” after it is “submitted”?

When your prediction is submitted, the Forecaster Challenge servers log your prediction in a database. Once the prediction is safe and confirmed, it will be accepted and show up on your profile.

  1. What happens if I make a prediction for At Least X” on a date on a location and then make a prediction for Less Than X” on that same date/location?

If you make two exactly opposing predictions, you will, in effect be cancelling all or a portion of your first prediction with the second.  

Account

Account Details

Users are required to register to participant in Forecaster Challenge as that is the only way to track their predictions from day to day.  It also provides them with an account balance of AccuDollars that will persist over time.

Only a name, email address and password are required to register – no additional personal information is required.  In the future, AccuWeather and/or Cantor Exchange may send you promotional emails.  

  1. Why is my email address required?

We need to make sure that every account is unique and to do that we rely on an email address. It also allows AccuWeather and/or Cantor Exchange to reach out if there are any support issues we need to contact you about.

  1. Can I change my email address?

At this time you cannot change your email address after you have initially signed up. If your email address has changed, you can register a new account using the new email address.

  1. I forgot my password, how can I reset it?

You can reset your password by accessing the password reset button on the login page. Once selected follow the steps that will be emailed by Cantor Exchange to the email you set up your account with.

  1. Can I buy more AccuDollars?

No. AccuDollars are not available for purchase.

  1. How do I get more AccuDollars?

Each day, when you log into Forecaster Challenge you will be awarded additional FREE AccuDollars. When you are correct in your predictions you will earn AccuDollars.

My Predictions

This table displays all of the predictions a user has made for dates in the future.

  • Resolved In: The maximum number of days or hours until this prediction is determined to be correct or incorrect.
  • Prediction: The prediction that was made (type, location, date, and depth prediction).
  • Potential Win: The number of AccuDollars that will be won if the prediction is correct.
  • Cost: The number of AccuDollars that were spent to make this prediction.

Resolved Predictions

This table displays recent predictions which have been resolved as correct or incorrect.

  • Result: Indicates whether the prediction was correct or incorrect and displays the actual measured 24-hour snow/rain depth for that location on that date.
  • Prediction: The prediction that was made (type, location, date, and depth prediction).
  • Amount Won: The number of AccuDollars that were awarded to the user (will be 0 for incorrect predictions).
  • Cost: The number of AccuDollars that were spent to make this prediction.

Pending Predictions

When you submit a prediction on Forecaster Challenge, it is “Received” and then “Accepted”. Normally, this process happens almost instantaneously. Occasionally there are small delays that cause predictions to be “Received” but not yet “Accepted” right away.

Any predictions you make that are “Received” but not yet “Accepted” show on your Account page in the “Pending Predictions” table. Normally you will not see this table (when it’s empty), but if you do see it, the predictions should be accepted within a few seconds, so if you reload the page you will likely see them under My Predictions.

If you notice that you have predictions that seem “stuck” in the Pending Predictions table, please contact support.

Note: Your account balance is not charged until a prediction is “Accepted”. Therefore, if you happen to see a lot of Pending Predictions, keep in mind that they are processed in the order you submitted them, and the predictions submitted later may get cancelled if your account balance runs out while processing the predictions submitted earlier.

Rules and Disclaimers

For more information please visit our Rules page.

Contact Us

If you require additional assistance not addressed above, please email our support team at:

Please reference "Forecaster Challenge" within the email subject, and it would be helpful to at least include:

  • First and Last Name
  • Account Email Address
  • Type of Assistance Needed
  • Description of Issue or Feedback