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Thread: Underdog?

  1. #1
    Senior Member loveboof's Avatar
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    Underdog?

    I'm sure there are lots of people taking about this...

    I just wanted to make a suggestion:

    Make underdog only apply to expert mode?

    _
    I have been really enjoying the game, but since the update the teams are always unbalanced! Balance is essential in a strategy game. This game is boasting of it's tactical gameplay (even with comparisons to chess) - so why force us all into an underdog or overdog scenario?

    It might be fun to occasionally play chess against an opponent without your queen, but that is not the 'normal' way to play the game.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Jorgensager's Avatar
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    Hey,

    Is the suggestion to only allow power differentiated matches when playing in expert mode?

    The underdog mechanic awards you a +1 renown bonus for every 2 power difference in your opponen't favour... consider it compensation for such matchups (presumably) getting you less kills - i.e. it is there to even out the matchmaker's decision. How the matchmaker works is an issue of itself, and one that is currently tweaked to find a good system.

    Finally, expert mode simply shortens your timer [in exchange for +2 renown per game] ~ there is no obvious reason for why people playing in expert mode [myself included] would want uneven matches... ^_^

    Maybe an additional button on the vs banner to allow power difference in matchups (so you have the choice if you're unable to find a battle, or simply enjoy the challenge) could be an idea?

  3. #3
    Senior Member loveboof's Avatar
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    Yes I agree. A separate option altogether would be ideal!

    However, a few people in the game chat seemed to think it would increase wait times for matches if there were too many 'pools' of players waiting with different options. That is why I thought the underdog mechanic would work better in an expert capacity - if you choose to play on expert it should be harder right?

    Personally I think if you're playing someone two whole ranks higher than you, 1 extra renown is not enough to make it worth it... (especially at the lower ranked games)

    If your team is rank 2, playing a rank 4 means they have a serious advantage! This is not at all friendly for newer players.

    [edit: oh yeah, and as you said - you wouldn't want uneven matches! Well that is what we are all facing at the moment. If it was only on Expert mode, you could choose to have 'even' games by playing on normal. It's just about having the choice.]
    Last edited by loveboof; 03-08-2013 at 09:44 PM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Jorgensager's Avatar
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    Which is probably true. I don't know if it's just the matchmaking algorithm being very inefficient right now, or if the new system just doesn't work very well, but it seems to take people very long to get games in general now. Then again, giving the players the choice could be a solution, since all they would have to do is to accept that there are no even matches if they don't find any without the "underdog mode".

    My issue with assigning this to the expert mechanic is that it already does make the game harder (although "expert mode" isn't very descriptive of what it actually does... maybe "blitz" or something would work better... since you don't have to be an expert to play in expert mode.. and then we could label underdog mode "expert mode".. confusion complete ^_^).

    Not only do you have only half the time to make decisions, but you are missing out on the half which is typically used to reflect over your options before you decide. Since you already get matched up with people with 1-minute timers, I don't think it would be a good idea to complicate it further. It gives a +2 boost for a significant challenge ~ the challenge you sign up for... so I'm thinking the underdog mechanic should (possibly) do something similar ~ reward you for choosing to complicate the match in that dimension. (i.e. the "underdog button" would allow you to be the underdog, while you could still be assigned people with team power less than or equal to yours in both game modes).

    Yeah, I agree that +1 renown for 2 power difference doesn't seem very balanced ~ especially when the difference is between level 0 and level 1 units..

    Then again, we did have "even" matches with the previous mechanic, but then they were imbalanced in ELO rating... so I think it would be interesting to allow switching it on and off, or maybe make the power/ELO relationship strong, so that a certain amount of ELO allows a certain power difference (up to a bound.. for example 3) ~ if this is not already the case...

    hmm, I wonder if this strong relationship could help alleviate the long waiting times in the new system for the ELO bounds to open...
    Last edited by Jorgensager; 03-08-2013 at 10:01 PM.

  5. #5
    Senior Member loveboof's Avatar
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    I didn't realise Expert mode only affected your timer... (I'm always happy to just play in normal)

    What exactly is 'ELO'? I assume it's something to do with your wins or maybe the kills of your characters...

    All I'm really saying is that this underdog thing is ruining the balance in the game; a strategy game without balance is not going to work.

    (I'd be fine for them to just take it out, but some people do enjoy it - so making it optional seemed to be the best solution)

  6. #6
    Junior Member Lekkit's Avatar
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    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elo_rating_system

    It's basically a ranking system that only takes into account the win/loss/draw.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Jorgensager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loveboof View Post
    I didn't realise Expert mode only affected your timer... (I'm always happy to just play in normal)

    All I'm really saying is that this underdog thing is ruining the balance in the game; a strategy game without balance is not going to work.

    (I'd be fine for them to just take it out, but some people do enjoy it - so making it optional seemed to be the best solution)
    Yeah, I think we agree, but I'm being picky on the wording; The underdog bonus is there to give you some renown when the matchmaker doesn't give you a fair fight... i.e. there is no "underdog mechanic" which actively looks for uneven fights to give you extra renown. All the current underdog bonus does is to try to balance the renown output for both players when the matchmaker isn't working optimally. So when you say you want them to take out the underdog bonus, it literally reads as if you don't want there to be such a bonus whenever you get unfair fights... although that is not what you mean! (Mhm, I'm a bit pedantic.. can't help it.. ^_^)

    ~> I believe we would both like to see the matchmaker giving fair fights in the first place, but I think it's good that there is an underdog bonus while it doesn't.

  8. #8
    Senior Member loveboof's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lekkit View Post
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elo_rating_system

    It's basically a ranking system that only takes into account the win/loss/draw.
    Ahh ok - thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorgensager View Post
    Yeah, I think we agree, but I'm being picky on the wording; The underdog bonus is there to give you some renown when the matchmaker doesn't give you a fair fight... i.e. there is no "underdog mechanic" which actively looks for uneven fights to give you extra renown. All the current underdog bonus does is to try to balance the renown output for both players when the matchmaker isn't working optimally. So when you say you want them to take out the underdog bonus, it literally reads as if you don't want there to be such a bonus whenever you get unfair fights... although that is not what you mean! (Mhm, I'm a bit pedantic.. can't help it.. ^_^)

    ~> I believe we would both like to see the matchmaker giving fair fights in the first place, but I think it's good that there is an underdog bonus while it doesn't.
    I see what you mean... I suppose I feel the way do because I never had a mismatched game before the update which brought in the underdog mechanic. However, if they have to match up unfair teams, then yes there should definitely be something which makes it somewhat beneficial!

  9. #9
    Senior Member Jorgensager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loveboof View Post
    I see what you mean... I suppose I feel the way do because I never had a mismatched game before the update which brought in the underdog mechanic. However, if they have to match up unfair teams, then yes there should definitely be something which makes it somewhat beneficial!
    Hm, I'm slightly confused... am I missing something important here? The underdog bonus has been there for a long while already... is there anything else that I'm not aware of (making me look like a fool )? But yes, they should definitely try to give balanced games regardless!

  10. #10
    Senior Member loveboof's Avatar
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    I was under the impression that it only came around with the latest update? But it's not really the 'underdog' points I'm talking about!

    More the fact that someone has to be an underdog in the first place. I've found that it isn't so much of an issue if you play with higher ranked teams, so it basically just nails newer players...

  11. #11
    I'm a little confused at this point too. Just to be clear, no one has to be an underdog. The matchmaker will always put priority on matching equal-power teams. Sometimes it can't find an equal match, in which case the lower-power team gets the renown bonus.

  12. #12
    Senior Member loveboof's Avatar
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    That means everyone has to be an underdog at some stage doesn't it.. we don't have a choice about it.

    What I'm saying is that the matchmaking system is not balanced as it is. If I win, I want it to be because I played better and not because I just had better units (and vice versa).

  13. #13
    Senior Member Jorgensager's Avatar
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    Nope, it's been there all along (definitely since the last stage of beta, anyways), but yes, we agree.

    The new matchmaker focuses more on giving even ELO matches, compared to the previous one, which' top priority was equal team power matches. Both these are inherently weak in that they should give (or at least try to give) both even team power and (relatively) even ELO power... obviously, they can't expect the underdog to have a chance to win* if the players are at the same level of play (which is what ELO is meant to describe). Likewise, a fresh player will have no chance against a veteran at equal team power.

    * I realise it's called "underdog" for a reason, but I don't think this is what they intended the matchmaker to do.. ^_^

    Fortunately they should be back from their games conference right about now, so maybe they get around to having a look at the matchmaker algorithm soon!

  14. #14
    Developer raven2134's Avatar
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    Stoic is back and also back to losing sleep over Factions . Alex went to bed at 4am pondering the mysteries of the MM.

  15. #15
    Superbacker netnazgul's Avatar
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    He listened to our chat whining very carefuly (at least it looked so) and promised to carry these thought over to other dev-team
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  16. #16
    Senior Member loveboof's Avatar
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    Well I look forward to seeing their changes to the matchmaking system!

    Talking about 'underdogs' in this thread has confused people because they think my problem is with the underdog-points (I think 1 renown is too low, but that isn't my main issue)...

    I'm perfectly happy to fight the best players in the game and get thrashed every time! I don't care about ELO match ups at all - the better my opponents, the more I'll learn. I just don't want one of us to have an advantage beyond our actual strategy and skill!

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