This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...

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23 days, 10 hours, 56 minutes ago
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gnerphk
This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only it's a tangent and I don't want to derail the main thread.

They say 'crime doesn't pay', but in the worst neighborhoods, the only way up and out is perceived to be crime. A little dealing, a little hustling, a bit here and a bit there, and soon you've got enough cash you can maybe escape. Of course, we all know street dealers have a very short life expectancy, but it's the unreasoning hope that keeps people going into the business. It's like buying lottery tickets or playing in high school or college sports; you know you won't win, but there's always that chance, and the little wins keep you going even when you're losing overall.

Every casino manager knows that.

The thing I like about the Random Queue is that it gives hope to a player in a hopeless position. This is important because, in a Standard game, unless you die early to a headshot, you're either going to be the player that wins or one of the many that doesn't. (Or, sure, you might team up.) Point is, most games go on for quite a while after everyone already knows they're over.

Lots of players have gotten a lot of grief over quitting from a doomed position; one of the best known was @Ville+Kauppinen in the Leo War. He drew so much ire that he left the game.

And yet: when a position is without hope, can we really blame someone for walking away?

There was a time not long ago when the cry was that droppers were spoiling the game, and a lot of effort was put into fixing that. I think a little hope, even if it's false hope, is a great help in that particular fight.

Having said that, I've got nothing against making the linear queue optional in Standard, which is why I'm posting this off to the side.
23 days, 10 hours, 47 minutes ago
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robobob
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
I actually think we should be more willing to call games early.

In all my won games I've reached critical mass where there was really no way to stop the juggernaught. Yet those last few turns before victory can be the most time consuming because that is the peak of ship, planet and starbase numbers. Its not fun, you know you've won, but you have to put the time in to cross the finish line or risk a reversal.

I know this isnt directly related to ship queues so please forgive the tangent, but could we introduce a voting system to end a game early? Maybe its unnecessary since you can achieve something similar via diplomacy, unless you are playing Lone Wolf, which I am..
23 days, 10 hours, 29 minutes ago
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gnerphk
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
There's a long tradition of ending games by acclamation.
20 days, 13 hours, 34 minutes ago
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robodoc
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
>And yet: when a position is without hope, can we really blame someone for walking away?

I suppose I'm in the minority, but rather than playing to WIN, I play to play WELL (that's the perfectionist in me). Winning is a side effect of playing well.

If the object is to play well, then it is better in some ways to play from a losing position than from a winning position. The losing position gives you fewer ships and planets to manage, which allows you to play more optimally. This is why I tend to pick up replacement games with "hopeless" positions: there is less chance of the game turning into a real life time suck (although if you play well enough, it could turn into one anyway).
20 days, 12 hours, 8 minutes ago
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mursu
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
One of the problems with losing positions is that this site really only cares who wins. All other placements are worthless. It really doesn't matter pretty much at all if you are 3rd or dead.

The best way to fix this would be to grant a decisive amount of points to everyone who finishes a game. This would inflate the ranks so to compensate there should be more badges and more difficult badges needed to get higher ranks.

So when there's something worth fighting for, it is easier to motivate itself to play to play well.
20 days, 11 hours, 59 minutes ago
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mursu
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
Another thing is should the current victory conditions be considered sacred and untouchable? Yes there are games where someone has made a huge comeback, but the truth is that even in these games the player previously in lead had got the position by playing and the others didn't interfere sooner.

What if the normal solo victory condition was 150 planets and 2-player win condition 200 planets?
20 days, 11 hours, 55 minutes ago
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gnerphk
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
In that case, @Mursu, there'd be an awful lot of early Priv/Borg wins.
20 days, 11 hours, 44 minutes ago
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mursu
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
Would there? What's "awful lot" or "early"? 10% more? In less than 100 turns?

I think the games where the player skill has a large variance would be most effected, but is that a bad thing?
20 days, 10 hours, 35 minutes ago
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chanain
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
Gnerphk: Don't forget about the Wasps.

Mursu: Yes, it's a bad thing. The point of the 200/250 thresholds are that it's reasonably a point at which it's hard to imagine a turnaround. Even that's not always true: I've seen games that arguably ended two early even with those thresholds - where one player or team achieves the requisite planet-count, but with a competitive player or team on the other side of the equation who would have pretty good odds against them head-to-head. When you can win by *avoiding* a direct conflict with your biggest rivals, I'm not sure that's a healthy game mechanic.

If you lowered the thresholds, that gets worse. Privateers and Borg can hit 150 early without that really being an indicator of 'strength'. We're not even talking 'less than 100 turns', but probably 'less than 50' in many cases. Rapid weak expansion to pull off a quick victory would become *the* strategy for certain races in certain sectors.

But, perhaps most importantly, where it IS possible to turn around a game, that's one of the best mechanics you can encourage. I played a sector where the Wasps were within about 10 planets of winning, at one point. And while a war against the Wasps is an intolerable grind for reasons unrelated to this discussion, being able to stop them, contain them, and win...well, that's kind of the point, no?
20 days, 8 hours, 12 minutes ago
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gnerphk
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
I guess I just try hard to not think about them. I figure, if there are fewer Horwasp games, there's fewer Horwasp, which means we're winning. If nobody played Horwasp games, we'd defeat them hands down.

...it's not logical, but in game mechanics it works...

Agreed RE 50 turns. It'd be a race between the HYP and Priv, with Cyborg holding a major advantage as per usual.
20 days, 5 hours, 31 minutes ago
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robodoc
RE: This is sort of about the Random Queue discussion, only...Write Reply
@Mursu Yeah, I wonder too if the metagame at this site places too much emphasis on winning.