The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by paulmcneil » Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:41 pm

phoyle3290 wrote:
Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:34 pm
If we are talking about retaining new players, I'm not fully convinced that new players leave due to RNG issues (maybe more so for veterans, though). As far as the DL is concerned, I believe new players don't stick around due to the high level of competition more than anything . It is very discouraging to lose every or almost every match you play whether it be down to luck or not (I'd argue it's not bad luck causing new players to consistently lose). People are playing this game to have fun, and if they aren't, they'll leave (or if they find new games to play as Pete has mentioned). If anything, changing the RNG would hurt new players more as there would be much less chance of them beating even a slightly more skilled player. The randomness allows a new player to have a chance to beat a slightly better opponent, but it isn't so pronounced that a highly skilled player would lose to a brand new player. I'm sure there are examples of just this happening, but I'd bet it's few and far in between.
So the present system is good because it takes skill out of the game result. What a great argument!
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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by phoyle3290 » Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:00 pm

So the present system is good because it takes skill out of the game result. What a great argument!
No, my argument is in reference to retention of new players only. And I'm arguing that RNG is not the reason people are leaving whether new or old. New people leave (or so it seems) due to never or almost never winning matches making it a lot less likely for them to enjoy their experience. Old players seem to be leaving for political reasons or something other than RNG. Even with the randomness, a skilled player should and most likely will beat an unskilled player every time regardless of bad luck. But if this means that an unskilled player has a chance to win against a slightly better opponent (slightly being the key word here), it will be a much better experience for the new player and therefore it is more likely they will stay. Either way, over the course of a season, the results will even out.

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Details of Themed Event restructure now available!

Post by stockwellpete » Sun Aug 04, 2019 8:55 am

I have decided to alter the format for the Themed Event from Season 6 onwards. The reason for doing this is that the deadlines are very tight and there have been rather too many adjudications this season for my liking.

So, for next season, instead of having 16 players in a pool there will only be 12, organised into 4 groups of 3 players. Only the winner of the group will progress to the knock-out stage, which will consist of semi-finals and finals - there will be no quarter-finals. At the group stage, each player will play 2 paired games against the other players in the group - and this phase of the competition will last 5 weeks. The two KO rounds will also last 5 weeks. So players will be guaranteed 4 group stage battles instead of 3, which might help to attract a few more players.

This change will also affect how recruitment to this section is organised. Initially, just 12 places will be available and brand new players will not be eligible to play in this pool. Once the first 12 places are taken, I will open up recruitment for a second pool if there is enough time, but we will definitely need to get another 12 players for a second pool to be viable. Brand new players will be able to apply for a place in this second pool. If we end up with 24 players entering then the FOG2DL ratings will be used to decide which players go in each pool at the start of the tournament.

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by Morbio » Sun Aug 04, 2019 11:11 am

phoyle3290 wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:00 pm
So the present system is good because it takes skill out of the game result. What a great argument!
No, my argument is in reference to retention of new players only. And I'm arguing that RNG is not the reason people are leaving whether new or old. New people leave (or so it seems) due to never or almost never winning matches making it a lot less likely for them to enjoy their experience. Old players seem to be leaving for political reasons or something other than RNG. Even with the randomness, a skilled player should and most likely will beat an unskilled player every time regardless of bad luck. But if this means that an unskilled player has a chance to win against a slightly better opponent (slightly being the key word here), it will be a much better experience for the new player and therefore it is more likely they will stay. Either way, over the course of a season, the results will even out.
I suspect it will also help keep the interest of the elite players too. They know that even if they are playing a less capable player then they still have to take the game seriously and plan for all eventualities. Personally I like the random element, whether the balance of RNG in all areas is perfect is debatable (and seems endlessly so) but it's still a good and challenging game... with occasionally frustration and some laughs too! :)

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by Geffalrus » Tue Aug 06, 2019 6:25 pm

I, for one, am never ever ever ever picking another army that utilizes massed archers ever again. Just not my cup of tea. I used two separate armies this season that featured masses of massed archers, and that's more than enough of that experience for me. Blech.

Don't know what I'm going to pick since APPARENTLY picking four armies of the type you like is NO BUENO. -__-

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by Cunningcairn » Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:44 pm


So what is the percentage then?
As I say, it is in the eye of the beholder.

In my view (and that of many others) it is extremely small, you and the rest of the "too much RNG" lobby, of course, disagree.

Both these views are of course genuinely held. Someone must be wrong.
I don't see myself as part of any lobby but surely no-one can agree that a steady, superior lancer with general charging a pike block in the rear while both in open terrain should fragment on impact? I would say that should not be allowed to happen no matter what the die result. There is a lobby that supports this type of result?

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by paulmcneil » Wed Aug 07, 2019 6:59 am

Cunningcairn wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:44 pm

So what is the percentage then?
As I say, it is in the eye of the beholder.

In my view (and that of many others) it is extremely small, you and the rest of the "too much RNG" lobby, of course, disagree.

Both these views are of course genuinely held. Someone must be wrong.
I don't see myself as part of any lobby but surely no-one can agree that a steady, superior lancer with general charging a pike block in the rear while both in open terrain should fragment on impact? I would say that should not be allowed to happen no matter what the die result. There is a lobby that supports this type of result?
completely agree, I've seen 2 units with generals fall 2 levels in morale just for SEEING a nearby below average unit break, whilst surrounded by steady units, go figure. Comes back to my core point: "Random chance should work around the edges of the game, not be core to the outcome of the game."
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Re: Themed Event re-structure for Season 6

Post by Triarii » Wed Aug 07, 2019 9:04 am

I think this is a very good, practical solution Pete. Great idea.
The second semi-final between Snuggles and I went to turn 23 and a 60-59 win to him. We would have been out of time anyway on a daily turn-round of one, at best two turns, in this particular epic but the tighter deadline was compounded by a 48 hour break for me and a (different) long weekend for Snuggles. So even with otherwise regular play this one over-ran by a week.

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by rbodleyscott » Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:16 am

Cunningcairn wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:44 pm
I don't see myself as part of any lobby but surely no-one can agree that a steady, superior lancer with general charging a pike block in the rear while both in open terrain should fragment on impact? I would say that should not be allowed to happen no matter what the die result. There is a lobby that supports this type of result?
If only the real world was so predictable. Firstly, such an event will be extremely rare in the game (yes, it will). Secondly, "shit happens". e.g. In this case perhaps the unit commander's horse stumbled on a mole-hill, the commander was thrown and broke his neck, the unit panicked. Such unpredictable events could happen in real warfare, and how else can they be represented in the game? Thirdly, even if such an extremely random event occurs, by itself it is unlikely to decide the game (yes, really).

Anyway, we know that some people think there is too much randomness in the game. Others disagree.

We have no plans to change the amount of randomness in the game.

If this causes some players to stop playing, that is their prerogative.

There are other games. Or you could design your own, more to your liking.
Richard Bodley Scott

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by paulmcneil » Wed Aug 07, 2019 3:13 pm

rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:16 am
Cunningcairn wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:44 pm
I don't see myself as part of any lobby but surely no-one can agree that a steady, superior lancer with general charging a pike block in the rear while both in open terrain should fragment on impact? I would say that should not be allowed to happen no matter what the die result. There is a lobby that supports this type of result?
If only the real world was so predictable. Firstly, such an event will be extremely rare in the game (yes, it will). Secondly, "shit happens". e.g. In this case perhaps the unit commander's horse stumbled on a mole-hill, the commander was thrown and broke his neck, the unit panicked. Such unpredictable events could happen in real warfare, and how else can they be represented in the game? Thirdly, even if such an extremely random event occurs, by itself it is unlikely to decide the game (yes, really).

Anyway, we know that some people think there is too much randomness in the game. Others disagree.

We have no plans to change the amount of randomness in the game.

If this causes some players to stop playing, that is their prerogative.

There are other games. Or you could design your own, more to your liking.
I guess this is what happens when you run out of reasonable arguments, "It's my ball, and I'm going home!"
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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by SnuggleBunnies » Wed Aug 07, 2019 4:16 pm

paulmcneil wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 3:13 pm
rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:16 am
Cunningcairn wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:44 pm
I don't see myself as part of any lobby but surely no-one can agree that a steady, superior lancer with general charging a pike block in the rear while both in open terrain should fragment on impact? I would say that should not be allowed to happen no matter what the die result. There is a lobby that supports this type of result?
If only the real world was so predictable. Firstly, such an event will be extremely rare in the game (yes, it will). Secondly, "shit happens". e.g. In this case perhaps the unit commander's horse stumbled on a mole-hill, the commander was thrown and broke his neck, the unit panicked. Such unpredictable events could happen in real warfare, and how else can they be represented in the game? Thirdly, even if such an extremely random event occurs, by itself it is unlikely to decide the game (yes, really).

Anyway, we know that some people think there is too much randomness in the game. Others disagree.

We have no plans to change the amount of randomness in the game.

If this causes some players to stop playing, that is their prerogative.

There are other games. Or you could design your own, more to your liking.
I guess this is what happens when you run out of reasonable arguments, "It's my ball, and I'm going home!"
Richard's points seemed reasonable to me. In a situation where a game designer can't please everyone, they have to choose the path that fits their vision the most. Just because you're not happy about the end result doesn't make it unreasonable.

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by Cunningcairn » Wed Aug 07, 2019 9:15 pm

rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:16 am
Cunningcairn wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:44 pm
I don't see myself as part of any lobby but surely no-one can agree that a steady, superior lancer with general charging a pike block in the rear while both in open terrain should fragment on impact? I would say that should not be allowed to happen no matter what the die result. There is a lobby that supports this type of result?
If only the real world was so predictable. Firstly, such an event will be extremely rare in the game (yes, it will). Secondly, "shit happens". e.g. In this case perhaps the unit commander's horse stumbled on a mole-hill, the commander was thrown and broke his neck, the unit panicked. Such unpredictable events could happen in real warfare, and how else can they be represented in the game? Thirdly, even if such an extremely random event occurs, by itself it is unlikely to decide the game (yes, really).

Anyway, we know that some people think there is too much randomness in the game. Others disagree.

We have no plans to change the amount of randomness in the game.

If this causes some players to stop playing, that is their prerogative.

There are other games. Or you could design your own, more to your liking.
I think everyone, or at least the vast majority, agrees that there needs to be randomness in the game. There are some results though that just simply should never happen. Richard why don't you do a poll to see how many people support the idea of a superior general fragmenting in combats that have a zero chance of loss? I bet you'll be really surprised about what the majority of players prefer. Yes, really! I'm surprised that no-one has mentioned the chance a single light foot sling armed unit after a single shot causing a steady, superior, heavily armoured, heavy infantry general (maybe champion) to drop 3 cohesion levels. After all this might have actually happened. Could we look forward to more historic randomness like this being incorporated in the rules? Obviously only very rarely though.

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by Cunningcairn » Wed Aug 07, 2019 9:39 pm

SnuggleBunnies wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 4:16 pm
paulmcneil wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 3:13 pm
rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:16 am


If only the real world was so predictable. Firstly, such an event will be extremely rare in the game (yes, it will). Secondly, "shit happens". e.g. In this case perhaps the unit commander's horse stumbled on a mole-hill, the commander was thrown and broke his neck, the unit panicked. Such unpredictable events could happen in real warfare, and how else can they be represented in the game? Thirdly, even if such an extremely random event occurs, by itself it is unlikely to decide the game (yes, really).

Anyway, we know that some people think there is too much randomness in the game. Others disagree.

We have no plans to change the amount of randomness in the game.

If this causes some players to stop playing, that is their prerogative.

There are other games. Or you could design your own, more to your liking.
I guess this is what happens when you run out of reasonable arguments, "It's my ball, and I'm going home!"
Richard's points seemed reasonable to me. In a situation where a game designer can't please everyone, they have to choose the path that fits their vision the most. Just because you're not happy about the end result doesn't make it unreasonable.
Yes you are correct however Richard's last 2 sentences in his response to my post supports the " it's my ball and I'm going home" feeling alluded to by Paul. Everyone appears to be stuck on the RNG randomn factor and will not see beyond it. Without changing the 1 in 6 probability of the game the silliness that "rarely occurs" can still be managed by the cohesion test. A simple line with a modifier should do that. For example not giving a +1 modifier to Raw heavy foot or in this case giving an additional +1 to a Superior, steady general attacking a flank or rear. I think the game is going well but still needs a few tweeks here and there but after the response I've got I will go back to saying nothing.

PS like in earlier posts I'm not talking about you :-)

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by Najanaja » Thu Aug 08, 2019 8:44 am

"We have no plans to change the amount of randomness in the game."

Absolutely agree!!

Having played wargames as long as I have, nothing really surpises me about "dice rolls". Like the time the Gardner gun jammed 3 times in a row and the Dervish...you get the idea. But this kind of thing does happen rarely. The probability model that this game uses is good.

I play a lot of games, and I have never seen a "bad" result that I could not rationalise through some real-world explanation.

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by edb1815 » Thu Aug 08, 2019 4:14 pm

Najanaja wrote:
Thu Aug 08, 2019 8:44 am
"We have no plans to change the amount of randomness in the game."

Absolutely agree!!

Having played wargames as long as I have, nothing really surpises me about "dice rolls". Like the time the Gardner gun jammed 3 times in a row and the Dervish...you get the idea. But this kind of thing does happen rarely. The probability model that this game uses is good.

I play a lot of games, and I have never seen a "bad" result that I could not rationalise through some real-world explanation.
+1

It seems people can get quite touchy about this RNG thing. I guess I am just used to it. Wargaming for 30 years and coming from the tabletop miniatures world I can't help but recall the 1 vs. 6 die roll scenario present in games that predated FOG such as DBM and DBA. That is the TT RNG in the lancer example above. The player with the lancers rolled a 1 and the player with the pikes rolled a 6. But that is a 1 in 36 chance and so does not happen often. Most (99%) miniatures games have RNG, I struggle to think of one that does not. Sure there are some using computerized RNG like PC games but for the most part miniatures gamers are throwing physical dice. The combat system in TT FOG worked well to minimize the odd situations like the 1 v 6 die roll but you could still fail a CT badly and double drop as in FOGII. It was part of the game. IMO FOGII has a really fine grained combat results system that has minimized the effect of RNG in most cases.

I suppose it is easier to take a bad result or blame the dice for a loss when you are physically throwing them vice when the RNG is baked into the system! :lol:

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by Geffalrus » Thu Aug 08, 2019 8:46 pm

Has anyone (MikeC for example) done a big spreadsheet on the relative probabilities of various events?

For example:
- What is the probability of a superior heavy infantry unit passing a cohesion roll vs a superior cavalry or medium foot unit?
- How big is the advantage of having the superior trait or the disadvantage of the raw trait?
- Is a raw heavy infantry unit more likely to survive cohesion tests or an average medium foot unit?

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by Cunningcairn » Thu Aug 08, 2019 8:50 pm

Geffalrus wrote:
Thu Aug 08, 2019 8:46 pm
Has anyone (MikeC for example) done a big spreadsheet on the relative probabilities of various events?

For example:
- What is the probability of a superior heavy infantry unit passing a cohesion roll vs a superior cavalry or medium foot unit?
- How big is the advantage of having the superior trait or the disadvantage of the raw trait?
- Is a raw heavy infantry unit more likely to survive cohesion tests or an average medium foot unit?
How dare you bring logic into an emotive discussion :-)

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by harveylh » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:14 pm

SnuggleBunnies wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 4:16 pm
rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:16 am


If only the real world was so predictable. Firstly, such an event will be extremely rare in the game (yes, it will). Secondly, "shit happens". e.g. In this case perhaps the unit commander's horse stumbled on a mole-hill, the commander was thrown and broke his neck, the unit panicked. Such unpredictable events could happen in real warfare, and how else can they be represented in the game? Thirdly, even if such an extremely random event occurs, by itself it is unlikely to decide the game (yes, really).

Anyway, we know that some people think there is too much randomness in the game. Others disagree.

We have no plans to change the amount of randomness in the game.



Richard's points seemed reasonable to me. In a situation where a game designer can't please everyone, they have to choose the path that fits their vision the most. Just because you're not happy about the end result doesn't make it unreasonable.

Richard's points also seem reasonable to me. I have read many historical accounts and have experienced many tabletop battles where shit happens. I have won and lost WRG Seventh edition and DBM and FOG tournaments on the final roll or two of the dice. Tough to accept sometimes but it is a good excuse to have an adult beverage or two.

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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by paulmcneil » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:19 pm

OK, as we're doing some back in the day stuff on a few of these posts, may as well turn it into the full blown Monty Python Yorkshiremen Sketch; I started wargaming in 1970, was one of the original members of The South London Warlords (or South Bermondsey Military Modelling Society as it was then known) in 1971, so have nearly 50 years under my belt, (although I didn't live in cardboard box at bottom of lake, apologies to non-Python fans) and I still maintain that:

"Random chance should work around the edges of the game, not be core to the outcome of the game."

I still believe that a core problem with the current release is the prevalence of double-drops in morale, they are so frequent for seemingly non-critical circumstances, that they are skewing the game one step too far away from skill and into chance. It's not the fact that morale drops, it's the fact that it drops catastrophically for non-catastrophic reasons. This wasn't as prevalent in other releases of the game, so can't be something that's hugely hard to fix I would've thought?
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Re: The Rally Point (discussion and questions)

Post by Cunningcairn » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:20 pm

paulmcneil wrote:
Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:19 pm
OK, as we're doing some back in the day stuff on a few of these posts, may as well turn it into the full blown Monty Python Yorkshiremen Sketch; I started wargaming in 1970, was one of the original members of The South London Warlords (or South Bermondsey Military Modelling Society as it was then known) in 1971, so have nearly 50 years under my belt, (although I didn't live in cardboard box at bottom of lake, apologies to non-Python fans) and I still maintain that:

"Random chance should work around the edges of the game, not be core to the outcome of the game."

I still believe that a core problem with the current release is the prevalence of double-drops in morale, they are so frequent for seemingly non-critical circumstances, that they are skewing the game one step too far away from skill and into chance. It's not the fact that morale drops, it's the fact that it drops catastrophically for non-catastrophic reasons. This wasn't as prevalent in other releases of the game, so can't be something that's hugely hard to fix I would've thought?
Well said Paul.

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