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HeruFeanor Player-Rank: 1
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This was originally posted in the "So what's the point?" thread in the General forum. It was already a bit off-topic for that thread, and was derailed soon after that into a far less productive topic. So, I figured I would repost it here, for further discussion.

quote:
Originally posted by Erwin
We are trying to solve the "fame problem" by changing the way score is calculated (which logically is the first aspect to look at). But maybe it is good enough if we find a reliable way when it is best to end a galaxy. Either by voting, or by having a set of concrete rules that define the end of a galaxy - or by a mixture of the two.


There are a LOT of potential options here...

The one I like is to base it off score discrepancy. So, if the player in the lead has a score, say, 2 times their nearest rival, the galaxy ends. This may sound a little close, until you consider the definition of "rival". A rival could be a single player or an alliance (a group of players who all have military alliances with each other), and does not include players that the lead player has military alliances with.

So for an example, lets look at the current top scores in Galaxy 29.

Gedrin - 1,735,462
uncountednose - 998,539
bob_ninja - 936,654
Azilarir - 535,564

So, assuming nobody is allied with anybody else, this galaxy wouldn't be quite ready to end until Gedrin reached twice uncountednose's score. If uncountednose stayed put, the galaxy would end when Gedrin reached about 2 million.

If Gedrin and uncountednose are allied, then Gedrin need only reach about 1.9 million, because then he just has to beat bob_ninja.

If Gedrin, uncountednose and bon_ninja were all allied, the galaxy would be over, because Gedrin already has well over twice Azilarir's score.

However, if uncountednose and bob_ninja are allied, then things get interesting. Now Gedrin's nearest rival is the alliance, which has a total score of 1,935,193, actually HIGHER then Gedrin's score. The game then won't end until either Gedrin beats them back such that the sum of their scores is less then half of his, or until they beat him back such that his score is less then half of one of their's.

If Azilarir joined this alliance, the discrepancy would be even larger, and things would be looking really bad for Gedrin. :-)

Of course, in order to make sure that the game doesn't end really fast, as soon as the first player manages to take out a neighbor with some rushed troop ships, you'd want to also set a minimum length. So, it doesn't check the score conditions until, say, turn 300 or 400, to make sure everybody has time to build up a bit and fight a couple wars.

This would also mean that military alliances matter a lot more, without adding any of the things that make people squeemish, like too much sharing of resources or stronger enforcement.

What do you all think?
20.07.2007 01:27 HeruFeanor is offline Send an Email to HeruFeanor Search for Posts by HeruFeanor Add HeruFeanor to your Buddy List
BJBest Player-Rank: 1 BJBest is a male
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quote:

However, if uncountednose and bob_ninja are allied, then things get interesting. Now Gedrin's nearest rival is the alliance, which has a total score of 1,935,193, actually HIGHER then Gedrin's score. The game then won't end until either Gedrin beats them back such that the sum of their scores is less then half of his, or until they beat him back such that his score is less then half of one of their's.

If Azilarir joined this alliance, the discrepancy would be even larger, and things would be looking really bad for Gedrin. :-)


If the lead person was only a few points ahead, all the other players could deside to gang up and win the game. Also, the first place person could join with everyone but the last place person,taking away the last place person's protection. Also, what if someone wanted a milatary alliance but didn't want the score feature. Also, this feture favors the top of the high score list. Noobs don't get anything. If you solve these problems, I'll except this idea, untill I come up with more... Evil

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This is a really good idea - however it would have to be time balanced to make sure that (e.g.) a 3-way alliance that exceeded the 1st place score did not disintegrate in 1 turn because 1 person in the alliance did not log-on in time to renew an alliance, and then the game suddenly ended.
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How about making 50% of new galaxies with last turn specified from the start? It would add a lot of diversity and advertise different kinds of playing. One would play differently in a galaxy that ends on turn 500, than in a galaxy that ends on 1000. Of course the game could be ended sooner if all players agree.


As to the other 50%:
I think, that the condition of closing the game should be kept simple and clear to all. So my proposition: the galaxy ends when one of the players reaches a certain score.

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RE: End game condition suggestion Reply to this Post Post Reply with Quote Edit/Delete Posts Report Post to a Moderator       Go to the top of this page

quote:
Originally posted by newguy
This is a really good idea - however it would have to be time balanced to make sure that (e.g.) a 3-way alliance that exceeded the 1st place score did not disintegrate in 1 turn because 1 person in the alliance did not log-on in time to renew an alliance, and then the game suddenly ended.


if the binding time on your alliance expires the alliance does not go away it simply becomes non-binding. this means that you can cancel the alliance without penalty(of course the only way to do that is to declare war) but until you take this active step you are allied with this other person(s).

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Ok I'll take a crack at this.
Since we have this new Inactive Rep bonus
lets say:
Active is defined as a player who still retains planets and has an Inactivity Reputation Modifier == 0
Only Active players factor into this calculation
Leader is defined as the Active player with the highest score

n= sum of leaders score and all the leaders direct allies scores
d = sum of all [active] players score

If n/d > .5 for 100 consecutive turns the game ends.

I would suggest that this value and the timer be displayed on the overview tab or the status bar next to the Turn indicator.

I am undecided if the leaders allies should be only those alliances that remain binding or include those in a non-binding state. I lean strongly toward both.

My belief is that such a system would exhibit the following characteristics.

1. As people are eliminated or go inactive it will become more difficult for a runaway empire to push the game to total genocide.

2. A large alliance could form to assault the leader without themselves triggering the end-game.

3. An alliance of leaders would be shaky indeed if one had long term ambitions that included ultimate betrayal.


Another possibility is to maintain 2 scores: Say Power and Achievements.

Power is calculated from a snapshot of the empire and includes things like planet count, tech, ships, pop, etc...
Achievements is aggregated over time and includes things like points per planet per turn, points from combat, etc...

Er... wait... no this is addressing the "fame" issue by score rather than by end of game conditions... ok well I'll leave it here anyway.



Ah well... that's my attempt Big Grin

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20.07.2007 22:18 Gedrin is offline Send an Email to Gedrin Search for Posts by Gedrin Add Gedrin to your Buddy List
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Thread Starter Thread Started by HeruFeanor
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quote:
Originally posted by BJBest
If the lead person was only a few points ahead, all the other players could deside to gang up and win the game. Also, the first place person could join with everyone but the last place person,taking away the last place person's protection. Also, what if someone wanted a milatary alliance but didn't want the score feature. Also, this feture favors the top of the high score list. Noobs don't get anything. If you solve these problems, I'll except this idea, untill I come up with more... Evil


I think you misunderstood the system a bit.

The game ends when the top PLAYER's score is twice his nearest rival. Not the top ALLIANCE's score. Thus, if all the other players ally, they can prevent the game from ending, by being a rival whose score is more then half of the top player's score. However, they can not CAUSE the game to end, because they aren't the top PLAYER.

The rest of your problems with the system just don't make any sense to me. What is the last place person's protection? The only protection they have now is the reputation and corruption systems, and I didn't propose any change to that. And what do you mean, didn't want the score feature? What score feature, exactly? You mean if they don't WANT to prevent the game from ending by making it so the top player has to beat a higher score to end the game? And how does this make lower ranked players get anything less then they would otherwise get? It doesn't affect in any way, shape or form the formula by which rank is affected at the end of the game.
21.07.2007 07:00 HeruFeanor is offline Send an Email to HeruFeanor Search for Posts by HeruFeanor Add HeruFeanor to your Buddy List
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Thread Starter Thread Started by HeruFeanor
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quote:
Originally posted by Gedrin
2. A large alliance could form to assault the leader without themselves triggering the end-game.


I think a lot of people are misunderstanding my system a bit. This could not occur in my system either, unless one individual in this alliance becomes the leader by a larger enough margin.

The top PLAYER must have twice the score of their nearest RIVAL. The top player's allies are not counted as rivals, but their score is not added to the top player's score. An alliance can't cause the end of the game unless they count the top player among their ranks. Alliance scores are only summed for the purpose of figuring out how powerful they are in relation to the top player, as an individual player.

This is to prevent alliances from being excessively potent. I want to see this continuing to be primarily a game about individual player's achievements, with alliances being primarily a way towards better working towards your own goals of conquest. I do not want to see this turn into a game about alliance victories. The Internet is already full of those. Virtually every multiplayer conquest game I've played is like that, and I'm kind of sick of that.
21.07.2007 07:11 HeruFeanor is offline Send an Email to HeruFeanor Search for Posts by HeruFeanor Add HeruFeanor to your Buddy List
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quote:
Originally posted by Karp Killer
I think, that the condition of closing the game should be kept simple and clear to all. So my proposition: the galaxy ends when one of the players reaches a certain score.


I understand a desire of simplicity. While my system is not quite so simple as that, I think it honestly is pretty simple none-the-less. It's a little complicated to explain, and obviously my explanation was not clear enough, because a couple of people seem to have misread it already. However, once you get it, it's very straight-forward.

Top rival = Highest score of any player that is not the leader, or allied with the leader, or any group of allied players that does not include the leader.
End game condition = Top player's score is twice the top rival's score.

You could set a threshold turn, like I originally proposed, or you could follow with a portion of Gedrin's idea and say that this state has to persist for a certain number of turns. Either way, the data should be clearly displayed in the interface somewhere. Like:

Top player: XXX pts, Top rival: XXX pts

Or, if the top player's score is over twice the top rival's score:

Top player: XXX pts, Top rival: XXX pts, game ends in X turns
21.07.2007 07:18 HeruFeanor is offline Send an Email to HeruFeanor Search for Posts by HeruFeanor Add HeruFeanor to your Buddy List
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quote:
Originally posted by HeruFeanor
quote:
Originally posted by BJBest
If the lead person was only a few points ahead, all the other players could deside to gang up and win the game. Also, the first place person could join with everyone but the last place person,taking away the last place person's protection. Also, what if someone wanted a milatary alliance but didn't want the score feature. Also, this feture favors the top of the high score list. Noobs don't get anything. If you solve these problems, I'll except this idea, untill I come up with more... Evil


I think you misunderstood the system a bit.

The game ends when the top PLAYER's score is twice his nearest rival. Not the top ALLIANCE's score. Thus, if all the other players ally, they can prevent the game from ending, by being a rival whose score is more then half of the top player's score. However, they can not CAUSE the game to end, because they aren't the lead Player.


I do understand the system. Here's what I ment.
There are three players: A, B, and C. A is the lead and B is close (making B the rival). A has twice the amount of score as C (who is a noob). A makes an allignance with B making C the rival and ending the game since A (not A and B) has twice the amount of score than C.

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I think I was not clearly getting your system HF... but now I do and I like it [obviously]. I realize now that my suggestion only differs in one minor way really, so...um... boy, what a great idea. Big Grin Wink

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Don't you think, that a certain score, that is specified from the beginning would make a great and simple ending point? The player that gets it first wins. The "ending" score would be dependent from the size of the galaxy. So if one player is ruling about 30-50% of the galaxy, he wins and the game ends.

I like HeruFeanor's idea, I like mine, I also like diversity. So I propose making some galaxies end HeruFeanor's way and some galaxies end my way and some galaxies end on a specified from the start turn.

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quote:

I do understand the system. Here's what I ment.
There are three players: A, B, and C. A is the lead and B is close (making B the rival). A has twice the amount of score as C (who is a noob). A makes an allignance with B making C the rival and ending the game since A (not A and B) has twice the amount of score than C.


Ah yes, this is possible. However, this isn't necessarily in the best interests of the top player. Remember, their rank gain is based on their percentage of all points scored in the entire galaxy. So, if they can get double the score of the player in second place, they'll be doing better then if they just ally with that player to beat the player in 3rd place.

I used the terminology of "end the game" rather then "win the game" very intentionally. Generally, you can say that the player that is in first place when the galaxy ends "wins", but this is not a system for determining who wins, but just determining when it ends. When that happens, you can use whatever criteria you want to declare a "winner".

quote:
I like HeruFeanor's idea, I like mine, I also like diversity. So I propose making some galaxies end HeruFeanor's way and some galaxies end my way and some galaxies end on a specified from the start turn.


That sounds good to me.

It also provides a test bed to figure out how well different ideas work. After all, that is the point of beta testing, isn't it?

I think ending at a set score will be somewhat frustrating to a lot of people, who will have been about to attack somebody when they just hit the threshold. But then, so long as the threshold is clearly published ahead of time, it's not going to be a surprise, so I don't think anybody will feel it's unfair.

My system, being a bit more complicated, MAY be a bit more exploitable. I don't know, yet. Of course, what counts as an "exploit" is somewhat debatable, but I don't yet see anything I would consider an exploit in the system I proposed.
23.07.2007 00:39 HeruFeanor is offline Send an Email to HeruFeanor Search for Posts by HeruFeanor Add HeruFeanor to your Buddy List
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So in summary what have we got so far:

The Karp Killer method: Game ends at a fixed score or a fixed turn.

The HeruFeanor method: Game ends when n/d > 2 [or other arbitrary ratio]
Where:
n = Score of the first place player
d = Score of the highest rival player [ie the one not involved in an alliance... binding or non-binding state is lest unclear]
[While never stated I presume only active players are considered... I mean who knows, the leader might mysteriously stop playing].

The Gedrin method: Game ends after n/d > .5 [or other arbitrary ratio] persists for 100 turns [or other arbitrary value]
Where:
n = Score of the leader and all his allies [both binding an non-binding state]
d = Score of all active players [including the leader]
active is defined as "still has at least 1 planet" and "has an Inactivity Reputation Modifier == 0"
leader is defined as the active player with the highest score.

The BJBest objection that an allaince of leaders could trigger an early endgame is understood and a desired component of both the HeruFeanor and Gedrin method. We desire a disinsentive for the leader to ally with other high scoring players.

The HeruFeanor and Gedrin methods upon closer scrutiny are essentially the same. The only real difference is the inclusion of the leaders allies in the lead point tally makes an alliance of leaders more likely to trigger an end-game. This it is hoped will be a disinsentive for the leader to ally with other high scoring players.


Does that summarize?

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This post has been edited 1 time(s), it was last edited by Gedrin: 23.07.2007 16:11.

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Good post gedrin! I like summary posts. I don't have time in my comic-making schedule to read all these essay-type posts. Cool

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quote:
Originally posted by quickstrike
Good post gedrin! I like summary posts. Cool


I agree completely!
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I'd be more in favour of a simple system, such as when every planet in the galaxy is coloniseds collonised the game ends X turns later.
That gives everyone X turns for Warring, Conquest, Diplomacy and such.
You could adgust the value of X dependant of the ratio of the top 5 to 10 players or so or just have it as a fixed value like X or even adjust it based on the size of the galaxy, the larger the galaxy the longer it runs for.

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The only issue I have with fixed term or fixed score is that it will cause short term [ie fast start] strategies to be more desirable than the long haul variety.

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quote:
Originally posted by Gedrin
The only issue I have with fixed term or fixed score is that it will cause short term [ie fast start] strategies to be more desirable than the long haul variety.


well one way of playing will always have advantages over another.
If a long haul stratagy means you keep what you have while someone that rushed to grab all they can is picked to bits by a group of smaller players you're onto a winner.

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My method and Gedrin's, as he stated, are very similar. I'm not really sure what is better. In general, I don't want an "allied victory" condition, but considering how rank is distributed, I don't think most of the top players would want to get stuck in an allied victory anyway, given the choice.

My main concern with Gedrin's method is that it makes the game too easy to end, though this might be fixable by adjusting the ratio required for the end game.

The rush strategy, unfortunately, will have a lot of virtue in our systems as well as in a fixed-end system, I think. If you can get a lot of points fast early on, you might be able to trigger the end game much earlier then we'd normally want.

Considering that, and worries about inactivity and a few other concerns that have been raised, I think either system should contain the following conditions:

1) Inactive players (being players with 0 planets and/or 100% inactivity) are not considered.
2) Score ratio must persist for X turns before game ends (so the players have warning and can respond).
3) End game is not considered until all planets are colonized (as suggested by Lost Cause).
4) Military alliances are considered even if they are beyond their binding period (because all of the game effects persist, so otherwise people could intentionally not re-up the alliance in order to get the benefits without accidentally triggering the end-game).

I'm still behind Karp Killer's point, though, that multiple potential end game conditions should be implemented and tested. I don't expect any of them would be terribly difficult to implement. And who knows, maybe we'll want to continue to offer multiple end game options once it goes official.
23.07.2007 21:09 HeruFeanor is offline Send an Email to HeruFeanor Search for Posts by HeruFeanor Add HeruFeanor to your Buddy List
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