The new scoring system...

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ChrisTofalos
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The new scoring system...

Post by ChrisTofalos » Sat Jul 07, 2018 12:35 pm

So, we have a new scoring system designed, I am assured, to encourage aggression. Encourage aggression! Is that supposed to be some sort of justification? And will it help improve the dwindling number of FOG-AM players (which should be the main aim of changes)?

Whoever dreamt this one up had little concern for the numbers of players who make up the lower levels of the ranking tables – and without whom the number of players involved would be abysmal. Heaping even more embarrassment on them by widening the scoring gap will not encourage their aggression, but it might well help drive them away.

I’ve organised the FOG competitions at my local club, MAWS for the past four years. I’m pretty sure we lost one player (and possibly two) due to the hammerings he endured whilst getting to grips with the rules. I’m trying to spread the appeal of FOG and gain players, not lose them so, with this in mind, I introduced a handicap system for this year’s comp.

The most experienced/higher ranked players get 800 points, middle experienced 850 and the least experienced 900. It’s in the early stages of the comps (divided into Biblical/Americas; Classical and Medieval periods) and six of the ten games played so far have featured handicaps (five of 50 points and one of 100). The handicap resulted in no change from last year in four games but could have contributed to reversals in two (good/bad army match ups probably also played a part).

I was talked into adopting the new scoring system and, since this is the way external comps are going, went along with it. Wish I hadn’t because it certainly isn’t going to help in my quest to improve numbers.

To give a couple of (personal) examples, I played a dour ‘catch me if you can’ game with my pikemen chasing a mounted army all over the table. One mistake (I keep making them!) cost me a unit and my camp. With the old system I’d have lost 11-9 (a virtual draw) but under the new system the score was 21-7. Looks like a big win, doesn’t it? In the second example I broke through my opponent’s centre/right, he lost five units and his army went home. However, he overpowered my right wing and took out three units. Under the old system it would have been 21-4 but the new one produced a flattering 31-8 win; very flattering when you consider I won 5 units to 3!

What I’m trying to say is that we need to keep people involved, not frighten them away with continued and exaggerated batterings. Handicaps, not aggressive scoring systems should be the order of the day. A closer game is much more fun for both players – or it should be.

The new scoring system supposedly ‘improves’ aggression but frankly, I liken it to encouraging bullying. In the long run, that isn’t going to help anybody.

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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by berthier » Sat Jul 07, 2018 12:49 pm

When I was the coordinator for the Gulf Coast Championship and running tournaments, I tried to break the players into at least two groups (experienced and less experienced) and paired them with opponents in their group for the first (and usually 2nd) round depending on how many players we had. After the 1st round or two, they then played by ranking (without playing someone twice, of course). This seemed to work for us and we continually saw a slow growth in participation until the ADLG invasion. I have not used the new scoring system and not sure I will. There are merits to the ADLG scoring system that seem to reward players for hard fought draws and for fighting aggressively. There is a tremendous gap between scores if a shark is paired with a new player though so it still has its issues. I never thought the scoring system was an issue with FOG, though.
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by ChrisTofalos » Sat Jul 07, 2018 5:53 pm

There are merits to the ADLG scoring system that seem to reward players for hard fought draws and for fighting aggressively.
That sounds interesting. How does it work?

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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by dave_r » Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:00 am

We've had this discussion

viewtopic.php?f=55&t=82431
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by ChrisTofalos » Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:51 am

We've had this discussion
So I see! A lot of comments from experienced and successful players but not much thought about the less experienced and also rans, without whom there wouldn't be much going on...

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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by dave_r » Sun Jul 08, 2018 11:15 am

Well, there was 24 people who voted, which is the size of a usual competition. So that would suggest that everybody voted that this change would impact?
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by berthier » Sun Jul 08, 2018 1:19 pm

Chris in a nutshell here is the ADLG Scoring:

Break your opponent's army: Start with 100 points and subtract 1point per 5% of your own losses (scores range between 81-100 points)

Have your own army broken: Start with 10 points and add 1 point per 5% of losses inflicted on your opener ( scores range between 10 and 29 points)

Draw - neither side breaks: Each player starts with 40 points, add 2 points for every 10% of your opponent's losses and subtract 1 point for every 5% of your own losses (scores range between 31 and 58 points)

Both armies broken: Each player receives 58 points

In each of the above, where you earn points by the percentage, you round down.

For instance, a player breaks his opponent and loses 10 attrition points out of 13. The player receives 100 points minus 15 (10/13 = 76.9%; 77/5 = 15.38 rounded down to 15) equals 85.
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by madaxeman » Sun Jul 08, 2018 4:33 pm

berthier wrote:
Sun Jul 08, 2018 1:19 pm
Chris in a nutshell here is the ADLG Scoring:
Break your opponent's army: Start with 100 points and subtract 1 point per 5% of your own losses (scores range between 81-100 points)
There's also the factor that its quite hard to win in ADLG without taking fairly hefty losses. At the recent Worlds there were only a dozen scores over 90 (ie where the winner suffered fewer than 50% casualties) out of 75 games played. Mid 80s vs mid 20's is a more typical victory margin, so it pans out pretty close to a "3 points for a win".
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by dave_r » Sun Jul 08, 2018 6:07 pm

That sort of scoring system tends to favour element based games as it's easy to work out losses. In FoG would you include base losses from units that are steady?

We did discuss this and we absolutely don't want to have scores based on points values as it means you end up with masses of cheap fodder hoping to get lucky whilst the expensive stuff sits around at the back doing nothing.

I did fairly substantial analysis of the various points scoring systems and it basically means bugger all to the final positions of a tournament, but it does affect _how_ the game is played and what armies are chosen. Most people have fed back that they prefer it.
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by berthier » Sun Jul 08, 2018 8:07 pm

The idea that you would include bases losses from individual battle groups is a bit odd as FOG is based on battlegroups. Just use the attrition points to determine wins and loses and determine percentages. It's no more complicated then using what is already in place.
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by dave_r » Sun Jul 08, 2018 8:59 pm

That's what we do already....
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by ChrisTofalos » Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:09 pm

Chris in a nutshell here is the ADLG Scoring
Thanks Chris. I worked out scores using this for the two games in my OP (using units lost as percentages of total units fielded).

In game one (old system 11 - 9) it came to 42-39 in favour of my opponent. This suggests a close game, which it was, but is hardly much different from the old system. The new FOG system came up with a score of 21-7, which to me looks like a decent win, which it wasn't. In game two (old system 21-4) the ADLG score was 98-12. I thought the new system's 31-8 was ludicrous until I worked this one out!

Basically, the old FOG system seems to come up with more reasonable scores than either the new one or ADLG's. So why change?
I did fairly substantial analysis of the various points scoring systems and it basically means bugger all to the final positions of a tournament, but it does affect _how_ the game is played and what armies are chosen. Most people have fed back that they prefer it.
You're missing the point entirely, Dave. Whilst I am sure you are right about the outcomes being the same, you're not thinking of the players at the lower end of the tables. Does 'most people' include players at the bottom, who got thrashed by even larger scores? I doubt it. Increasing the victory margins just makes it more embarrassing for them, and might lead to them becoming demoralised and dropping out. Is that good? As we're finding at MAWS, some sort of handicap system gives less experienced players a better chance and keep them playing FOG which, I'm sure you will agree, benefits us all.

On the subject of league tables, what's wrong with football's system of three points for a win, one for a draw? It would look better (closer) and points scored/points difference could easily be used to tie-break.
Well, there was 24 people who voted, which is the size of a usual competition. So that would suggest that everybody voted that this change would impact?
No idea who the 24 were but I wouldn't be surprised if they were from the more successful players; certainly the most active. I'm fairly sure it won't include ANY of the players who finished at or near the bottom of the tables but conceded even more points! And did the discussions include any considerations for handicaps or the possible demoralising effects of widening the winner's points gap?

If we want to keep FOG alive we need to keep as many people as happy as possible. I think that's worth due consideration...

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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by petedalby » Mon Jul 09, 2018 6:39 am

You make some valid points Chris but I don't have a solution that will address the problem that an experienced player will usually beat an inexperienced one. The important thing is to learn from those losses and try again.

At Club level we are free to adopt whatever scoring system we wish. Others have raised the concern that 35-0 may be too generous. But we ran the poll and went with the majority. I plan to review this at the end of the ranking year - after Britcon - and run the poll again based upon our collective experience so far.
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by philqw78 » Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:23 am

Increasing the victory margins just makes it more embarrassing for them, and might lead to them becoming demoralised and dropping out
The way of the world.
There are no losers on a school sports day either, lets be more inclusive and every game scores 10 each plus bonus points for being nice.

Somebody nice will always win. Dave will always come second. But so will everybody else
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by vexillia » Mon Jul 09, 2018 9:20 am

In my view the problem comes because the scoring systems put forward are all trying to do two things with one number:
  • Victory points are exclusively for competitions and as such the points awarded should properly reflect the outcome of the game.
  • Apart from deciding the tournament winners they have a role in deciding how the round draws are made.
  • But there is no inherent reason why the above two should be combined in one score.
Now some basic points & assumptions:
  • FOG AM has had an long standing problem with drawn games which v3 (and v2?) was designed, at least in part, to address.
  • There is (large?) group (of average?) players that rely on so called "winning draws" [sic] for their mid table placing.
  • The previous poll attracted 24 votes. It had comments from 7 different people and was open for 5 weeks.
  • With any change the tendency is for people to leave it to others to decide and most dislike change.
  • It is usually the active (and at least competent) players who participate in discussions/developments.
My observations on the current points system:
  • The changes make little difference to the top players.
  • The most active players are never the best to represent the views of the casual or new player.
  • Middling players will continue to acquire points by playing for a draw and the problem will persist.
  • New players are likely to struggle to acquire any points and may just learn not to lose and never learn how to win.
  • New players may be totally disheartened and never return (Chris's point).
  • Saying "get over it" does not address the problem.
Possible solution #1 - 3 points for a win, 1 for a draw.
  • Up side - simple, and easily understood & heavily penalizes playing for a draw by whatever means.
  • Down side - new players may end up with "nul poins" but aggressive play against them may just give them a chance.
  • Down side - makes tournament draws really difficult.
  • Down side - maximum spread is narrow: a typical three game competition would be 9 to 0.
Possible solution #2 - 3 points for a win, 1 for a draw & use battle groups deterioration as tie breaker.
  • Up side - simple, and easily understood & heavily penalizes playing for a draw by whatever means.
  • Up side - battle group deterioration solves the tournament draw problem.
  • Up side - battle group deterioration separates players on equal points in final standing.
  • Down side - new players may still score zero & become disheartened but they will have more experienced company.
In a World Cup summer the parallels are obvious and I leave it to others to decide the best to measure battle group deterioration.

vexillia

Re: The new scoring system...

Post by vexillia » Mon Jul 09, 2018 9:24 am

dave_r wrote:
Sun Jul 08, 2018 6:07 pm
I did fairly substantial analysis of the various points scoring systems and it basically means bugger all to the final positions of a tournament, but it does affect _how_ the game is played and what armies are chosen. Most people have fed back that they prefer it.
I'm confused! If it doesn't change the tournament outcome how does it affect how the game is played etc?

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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by dave_r » Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:13 am

vexillia wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 9:24 am
dave_r wrote:
Sun Jul 08, 2018 6:07 pm
I did fairly substantial analysis of the various points scoring systems and it basically means bugger all to the final positions of a tournament, but it does affect _how_ the game is played and what armies are chosen. Most people have fed back that they prefer it.
I'm confused! If it doesn't change the tournament outcome how does it affect how the game is played etc?
The new scoring system rewards aggressive behaviour - simply playing for a 10-10 draw will mean you will fall behind, whereas in the previous scoring system it meant basically maintaing status quo.

When I transferred the new scoring system into previous tournaments, the order of players didn't change at all. But the key point is that this is due to player behaviour not changing.

When I looked at tournaments played with the new system (and there have been several prior to adoption of this system in the UK) it is the same people that are winning, but the players play is more aggressive with a higher percentage of games getting a result.
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by dave_r » Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:17 am

vexillia wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 9:20 am
Possible solution #1 - 3 points for a win, 1 for a draw.
  • Up side - simple, and easily understood & heavily penalizes playing for a draw by whatever means.
  • Down side - new players may end up with "nul poins" but aggressive play against them may just give them a chance.
  • Down side - makes tournament draws really difficult.
  • Down side - maximum spread is narrow: a typical three game competition would be 9 to 0.
Possible solution #2 - 3 points for a win, 1 for a draw & use battle groups deterioration as tie breaker.
  • Up side - simple, and easily understood & heavily penalizes playing for a draw by whatever means.
  • Up side - battle group deterioration solves the tournament draw problem.
  • Up side - battle group deterioration separates players on equal points in final standing.
  • Down side - new players may still score zero & become disheartened but they will have more experienced company.
In a World Cup summer the parallels are obvious and I leave it to others to decide the best to measure battle group deterioration.
We have tried both of these options and they both result in yet more drawn games. It means that it is more beneficial to play for a draw and is also easier to achieve. You can effectively lose 49% of your army and have no detrimental impact upon your score.

So as an example, I lose 11 out of 12 Attrition Points and my opponent loses nothing. Under both of the scoring systems above, this would result in 1-1 draw insteady of the previous scoring system which would be a 19-1 and the current scoring system which would be a 28-1. I'm sure you would agree that a 1-1 draw is not satisfactory in this situation.
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Re: The new scoring system...

Post by vexillia » Mon Jul 09, 2018 12:00 pm

Hi Dave.
So as an example, I lose 11 out of 12 Attrition Points and my opponent loses nothing. Under both of the scoring systems above, this would result in 1-1 draw instead of the previous scoring system which would be a 19-1 and the current scoring system which would be a 28-1. I'm sure you would agree that a 1-1 draw is not satisfactory in this situation.
Not quite! Always so literal.

With solution #1 both players would be level as you say but with solution #2 you would be level on points but be placed below your opponent on battle group losses. You would also be below others who'd also drawn but had lost fewer battle groups than you.

On the less numerical side: you might have been trying really hard, had a bad run of dice and fought really hard to stop your opponent winning in time. In these circumstances you might have felt that you deserved more than just 1 point out of 25/35 for your efforts.

It's all about numbers and the psychology.

vexillia

Re: The new scoring system...

Post by vexillia » Mon Jul 09, 2018 12:03 pm

dave_r wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:13 am
When I looked at tournaments played with the new system (and there have been several prior to adoption of this system in the UK) it is the same people that are winning, but the players play is more aggressive with a higher percentage of games getting a result.
Ah! So it does change the tournament outcome. More results = broader spread of scores.

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