Author Topic: SCS rules discussions  (Read 16825 times)

Offline Sir Steffen

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SCS rules discussions
« on: September 06, 2016, 07:25:57 am »
Hello everyone.

For those who don’t know me, my name is Sir Steffen and I’m the current organizer of the Sunday Community Skirmish.

In the past weeks there have been discussions about the rules in SCS:

- About participants swapping ammo and tools during matches.
- About participants listening to the streams during the match.
- About what’s fair in terms of swapping ships in the last seconds before ship lock is announced.
- And in the last SCS the discussion about the coin flip came up as well.

In case of the last one, the whole lobby did not agree whit the outcome and asked for a change in the rules. They said that not a coin flip shout determine the outcome of a match but who managed to cause the most perma hull damage to the enemy.  Your thoughts on that?

Also, any ideas about how to eliminate the problem of unsporting last second ship changes? There’s a fine line between chutzpah and unsporting. And if some people have trouble navigating it, then we should give them some guide lines.

About the changing of loadout mid match: There are rules about this, but they are difficult to enforce. Huskarr and I have been trying to take screenshots of all the teams at the start of the match but this takes time and unnecessary effort. Same goes for the stream watching.
I have seen people complain about participants that are watching the stream during their own matches. If those accusations are true, I have no good words for this, non at all. I know some people follow the stream of course, but if you are playing, log out of the stream. That way we don’t get accusations of participants getting info from the stream. That means don’t run it in the background with the sound muted, because you will still be shown as a watcher. Just close the page and the whole problem is solved.
Surveillance and an atmosphere of distrust can’t be the solution to this problem. That’s when it stops to be fun.

I wanted to remind everyone that the SCS is hosted by players that sacrifice their own free time to set everything up and keep it going. The point where people go too far to win matches and lose the spirit of fairness and sportsmanship is the point where the volunteers - including me - just stop caring about the SCS.

So, if you enjoy the SCS and want it to continue, stick to the rules and play fair. Without trust and mutual respect there can’t be an SCS.
Make up your mind about this and also talk to your team mates. We need an effort from everybody to keep this great, exciting, fun thing working. This is your responsibility as participants just as much as it is ours as hosts.

Yours sincerely,

Sir Steffen

Offline Sir Steffen

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2016, 07:27:41 am »
Btw i hope i pointed everythink out there correctly. if i mist anythink plz let me know

Offline Dementio

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2016, 12:10:34 pm »
Regarding coin flip
I am personally very ok with the coin flip. The coin flip only happens when a match ends in 0-0, right? If neither team managed to get a single kill in the entire match time plus overtime, then in my personal opinion they both lost the game. What I found interesting is that the match that this rule is referred to was not a hardcore long range sniping duel of dunes, but an almost consistent 1v1 battle between the same ships, and I believe the coin flip should teach both teams what they did wrong. A Galleon sniping from 1.5km at a Mobula will only miss, a Mobula not using the Galleon's arming time against it very likely won't kill the Galleon and if you can't kill that Goldfish as a Goldfish after 10min of brawling, why would you expect a kill to magically appear in the next 10? Both teams had time to realise that their tactics won't lead to anything and could have changed it up, neither did, so they both are at the mercy of their own luck.

Giving the win to the team with the most perma hull won't be that much better. It reminds me of the suggestion that if there is no first kill, then the first broken component should determine victory. But that's not quite the same. A ship sitting at 1% perma hull can still wreck a ship that is sitting at 100% perma hull and so victory shouldn't go off from there. My thinking is that it discourages aggressive tactics, where an exchange of a bit of lost perma hull can lead to a kill, the tie breaker. If the timer says 5min remaining and both ships of Team A are sitting pretty at above 80% hull health and know that Team B has got a ship sitting at less than 33% hull health, do you think Team A is going to attack? They are going to get as much distance as possible, unnecessarily drawing out the match, with Team B being forced to siucide charge them, because the rules gave Team A this advantage. Threaten them with a coin flip? Both teams want to secure themselves a victory and continue fighting without any team gaining an invisible advantage during the last few minutes. Also, Squids, touch something the wrong way, suddenly 70% of your health is gone and you lose, now everybody is blaming you for a mistake that wouldn't have happened on any other ship, because no other ship has that low armor and thus wouldn't have taken any perma hull damage at all.

Regarding last second ship swaps
There is no way to prevent it. You can only make it fairer by giving time to respond to it. Instead of locking ships, allow guns to be switched around? If you are a Lumberjack Goldfish and the enemy team last second switched to a Metagalleon, I imagine you don't want your Lumberjack anymore, because that Galleon has more than just a Lumberjack. Increase the lobby timer to 5min and start the lock ships but not guns after 4min and there is enough time for tactics. That doesn't prevent last second gun switches though, so there is that.

Regarding mid-match ammo and tool switches
It was easier back then when the match chat told everybody exactly who left the match and came back again, so nobody could sneak this kind of stuff past the ref. If it happens now, it should lead to instant disqualification. Encourage streamers to press 1, 2, 3 and 4 more often so they and the viewers can help with identifying mid-match tool switches and the refs shouldn't need to make screenshots in addition to everything else. If a stream has a co-caster, then this one can be tasked with trying to keep an eye out for these things, since the audience's camera usually isn't the same as the co-caster's. Casters can coordinate too, after all.

That's about as much input as I have.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2016, 12:12:11 pm by Dementio »

Offline Red-Xiii

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2016, 12:16:03 pm »

1.  I realize last second ship swap has been around forever.  That doesnt make it a proper way to play the game.  If this community was bigger and more popular this would be a non-issue because the masses would be complaining in droves and the rules would be forced to change.  I find the tactic detestable in general and just ruins this type of game that requires proper tactics and setup.  You pull a last second swap ship you throw your planned tactics out the window.  If the arguement is to take something safe to handle any situation you are saying we are pigeon-holed to only a few ships/loadouts and that is not fun for anyone over any length of time invested in the game.  My fix for it would be to do a pick system like they do in other Mobas, One pick at a time.  Determined by a coin flip or pre-determined ranking.  (have not thought this through)

2. Coin flip should not at all be integrated into something you worked hard for week after week and to be just decided by  chance.  In the history of gaming, you end up with a draw at the most.  Perma-hull percentage remaining or first kill if 0-0 after overtime expires.  No matter how long it takes.  You spend the whole time trying to out think, out smart, and out fly the opponent only to be deflated by a coin flip.  I haven't had the experience but I am very empathetic towards anyone who had to have that done.  I would not be happy and able to deal with that quietly.  I understand over time people wanted the match time reduced.  I get that.  However it shouldnt be reduced at the expense of the players.  Some captains play the long chess game.  Others are agressive/reactive.  You would be forcing us all to get aggressive or go home.  I don't agree with that. 

3.  Noone involved with each others clans/ships currently in game should be watching the stream.  Seeing as we all use some form of voice communication it's just a no brainer advantages could be taken especially on speed, distance, and location of enemy not to mention altitude and positioning.  Just shouldnt happen. 

4.  The only one of those bullet points I dont have issue with is in-game switching out loadouts.  I believe if a crew member forgot to get his proper tools or captain was busy talking to his crew and forgot tar he should be allowed to get it.  Those things impact the overall integrity of the game.  Do you really want to lose because the crew forgot to grab the right stuff?  That's no way to win a game.  If I beat someone, and I know they didn't have the proper team or crew tools or something went wrong, I don't take much pride in it.  I wouldnt in SCS either. 

Only my opinions for discussion purposes.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2016, 12:17:50 pm by Red-Xiii »

Offline Huskarr

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2016, 01:34:15 pm »
Regarding midmatch loadout swaps:
As referee I would be ok with allowing midmatch swaps. At the moment controlling the loadouts of 16 people just creates a load of unnescessary work for the referee.
As a player it makes a huge difference if a player has loadout X or loadout Y. And it changes how I play. And to be honest the lobby game is just as important as the actual game.
Personaly I think that the refs just have to keep track of the 16 loadouts and coordinate with casters and co-casters. (And if you slept in lobby too bad.)

Listening to stream in match:
As referee I can not really and do not want to control this.
At the moment I think this problem is adequately addressed by the on minute delay on Lysanya's stream. And I think that we have to trust each other enough to not do this.

Regarding last second ship swaps

There is no way to prevent it. You can only make it fairer by giving time to respond to it. Instead of locking ships, allow guns to be switched around? If you are a Lumberjack Goldfish and the enemy team last second switched to a Metagalleon, I imagine you don't want your Lumberjack anymore, because that Galleon has more than just a Lumberjack. Increase the lobby timer to 5min and start the lock ships but not guns after 4min and there is enough time for tactics. That doesn't prevent last second gun switches though, so there is that.
I'm with Daniel on this one and it allows for some damage control. So I think it is ok if we introduced this.

Coin flip:

I am really torn on this issue, because on the one hand we do not have infinite amounts of time (especially us damned Europeans who have to sleep :P).
But on the other hand coin flips are kinda stupid.
So I don't really have an opinion on this.  :-\

I hope my opinion is worth something.

Offline Dementio

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2016, 02:10:09 pm »
I understand over time people wanted the match time reduced.  I get that.  However it shouldnt be reduced at the expense of the players.  Some captains play the long chess game.  Others are agressive/reactive.  You would be forcing us all to get aggressive or go home.  I don't agree with that.
There are 20min total playtime, plus 3min overtime and primary tactics can be pre-determined in the 4min of lobby and 1min loading into the game. You have to get at least one kill in 23min. How aggressive does a team have to play to get one kill in 23min.

Coin flip should not at all be integrated into something you worked hard for week after week and to be just decided by  chance.
Nobody has worked hard for SCS week after week. It is a completely new event that happens once every week, unless you are aiming for a winning streak, losing one SCS to a coin flip is not going to destroy hard work done week after week. Also, with one loss a team can still always get back to the finals and win it. What is the harm in playing "aggressively" once in 23min to gain another chance of winning the SCS?

Offline Red-Xiii

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2016, 02:43:22 pm »
I understand over time people wanted the match time reduced.  I get that.  However it shouldnt be reduced at the expense of the players.  Some captains play the long chess game.  Others are agressive/reactive.  You would be forcing us all to get aggressive or go home.  I don't agree with that.
There are 20min total playtime, plus 3min overtime and primary tactics can be pre-determined in the 4min of lobby and 1min loading into the game. You have to get at least one kill in 23min. How aggressive does a team have to play to get one kill in 23min.

Coin flip should not at all be integrated into something you worked hard for week after week and to be just decided by  chance.
Nobody has worked hard for SCS week after week. It is a completely new event that happens once every week, unless you are aiming for a winning streak, losing one SCS to a coin flip is not going to destroy hard work done week after week. Also, with one loss a team can still always get back to the finals and win it. What is the harm in playing "aggressively" once in 23min to gain another chance of winning the SCS?

Losing a single ScS to a coin flip is too much.   And playing aggressively in itself is not an issue.  Forcing you to do so is when it may or may not be your style, plan, or choice is.  But that's just my opinion.  With these player counts lately this all may be moot anyway. :'(
« Last Edit: September 06, 2016, 02:46:33 pm by Red-Xiii »

Offline Guagadu

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2016, 02:52:17 pm »
Swapping loadouts mid-match:
It has never occurred to me that people would do this until a discussion about whether or not it happened. Unfortunately, this is very difficult to police, as players can simply hop in and out of a match as they please, with little risk of being noticed. I have not yet had a chance to cast an even since this was pointed out, but when I next cast I will definitely be looking a the ships much more frequently. I think the best solution is to have players leaving a match to show up in text chat, at least to spectators, and maybe even only in custom matches. However, until such a change to the game happens, the only solution is to have casters, co-casters and referees checking through them, if only toward the end of the match. This might not be possible, but my recommendation would be to encourage referees and co-casters to screenshot loadouts toward the end of the match.

Stream-sniping:
I personally have been accused of stream sniping in the past (see SCS 116 Finals #1). I always make sure to keep it muted, paused and in a background tab in a background window. Regardless, I show up as being in twitch chat. The best solution is to add more of a stream delay than default. By default, there is a 10-40 second delay (depending on Internet connections) through Twitch. Adding at least a minute should fix sniping for the most part, but I think the tab with Twitch should be completely closed, so that your username doesn't even show up.

Last Second Swap:
I always hate last second swapping, and unless I am mistaken, part of the reason the 30 second lock is set up is to avoid last second swapping, however it is done so anyways. I would suggest that if the timer is at less than one minute, the timer is reset such that there are still 30 seconds until the loadout lock. This would, however, likely be overly confusing and annoying for the referees, so I do not think this can be implemented. I do, however, like Dementio's suggestion as a solution for now:
Regarding last second ship swaps
Increase the lobby timer to 5min and start the lock ships but not guns after 4min and there is enough time for tactics. That doesn't prevent last second gun switches though, so there is that.

Coin Flip:
I personally hate the coin flip. It is the most anti-climactic way to end a match, especially a tournament. However, the only solution I can think of would be to remove the coin flip and force the teams to fight it out. Deciding winners based on perma wouldn't be fair either, as sometimes it is difficult to judge how much health, and perma often has little effect when entering an engagement. I propose that the rules of overtime be switched. In any matches of the grand final or the lower bracket, overtime continues the entire 3 minutes IF the score is 0-0. I suggest that the overtime timer be increased for these cases as well, I'm just going to arbitrarily say 10 minutes for the finals and 5 minutes for lower bracket and ends for the first kill. Overtime would still be kept the same for anything besides 0-0. When the coin flip does happen, I would like to see it show up on stream, from a randomizer of some kind that simulates coin flips.

Offline sparklerfish

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2016, 03:49:42 pm »
The coin flip is the worst when you are still in combat.  In the case of the SCS that this came up in, the kill came approximately two seconds after time was called, but due to time being called, it went to a coin flip, and the team without the kill was awarded the win.  Neither team was comfortable with that outcome, so the "winning" team conceded to the team that got the kill.  I understand that it is difficult for many players to play indefinitely, and that a time limit is helpful for limiting endless sniping, but when there are ships that are close to death and combat is still actively ongoing, it seems kinda shitty to take a match that was about to come to its natural conclusion and instead predicate the outcome on total chance.

I like the idea of basing the outcome on perma.  It feels much more like the battle is awarded to the team that came closest to winning.  If a match ends 3-2, technically nobody "won" either because nobody got five kills, but we choose to award the win to the team that came closest to winning.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2016, 03:51:41 pm by sparklerfish »

Offline GurasOguras

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2016, 04:24:25 pm »
- And in the last SCS the discussion about the coin flip came up as well.
The coinflip
who managed to cause the most permahull damage to the enemy.
Don't take something analog as something digital. We never know how many permahull our ships have. All we have are just raw assumptions based on what we see on our health bars. Those are always measured on the eye and rounded. The unit to measure our permahull is % instead of actual HP number. 10% on a junker is not the same as 10% on a goldfish. Spectator health icons don't even have bars to count them and assume what is the actual health. It can't be enforced and it's not gonna work. Terrible idea. And even if you ignore everything I said here, then Daniel is still right. If it goes down to the last resort which is the coin flip, then both teams already have lost.

The coin flip is literally the best and most impartial thing we can do. I know some may think it's not good, but it has the one big feature - It is also not bad. It actually, physically CAN NOT BE BAD. It also eliminates human (referee) errors we'd have to suffer from any other rule. Just take a look at how much controversy a single, badly called pause can do.

So...
But on the other hand coin flips are kinda stupid.
It is not stupid. It's fair.

it seems kinda shitty to take a match that was about to come to its natural conclusion and instead predicate the outcome on total chance.
Bullshit. You had entire 20 minutes to plan your moves and engage as you want. And now when it's already too late, NOW you wanna do something? Sorry bro, you're late. Both teams lost. Let the coin decide who is lucky today. We don't have the entire day to wait for one match to conclude. The engagement already had time to come to its natural conclusion during overtime.

Instead, I have an idea. Let's introduce a rule: If you take a Galleon you have no right to whine when you lose due to a coin flip, or because an opponent has timed you out. This actually provokes me to purposely score 1 point and then go into the corner next time I'll play in SCS. I'm serious. If you put everything on one card and choose a ship all of which focus on defense against the first engagement then don't blame your opponent that you've lost your gamble and are not allowed to have the opportunity to retaliate. The galleon is the least mobile ship in the game and relies purely on the defense. Your choice - your call. Just don't weep once you lose the first blood.

- About what’s fair in terms of swapping ships in the last seconds before ship lock is announced.
Last second changes
Double the lobby time so teams can swap their ships back and forth for a longer time. That increases the chance of everyone being happy and finding their sweet spot before the match will start. It won't solve the problem, but might reduce its occurrence. There is currently no solution for this in the current "all pick" format.

Back in 2015, I proposed a draft system, when one side picks 1 ship, then other side picks their 2 and the first team picks their second ship, therefore resulting in each team hardcountering exactly 1 ship. But nobody gave a fuck. Instead, many still today want to turn the game into a gamble with blind picks and decide who won the match before it even started.

If we don't like the last second swapping, then let's introduce the draft system. I'm experienced competitive veteran so I actually benefit from being able to freely swap and counter and I admit that it gives me a bit of advantage over inexperienced in a "lobby game". If you want to make changes then make sure they leave no room for controversy, they're possible to execute and enforce and they're fair to competitors
- About participants swapping ammo and tools during matches.
Prohibited. Keep it like that.
- About participants listening to the streams during the match
Prohibited. Keep it like that.

If any referee will notice it then no hard feelings.

TL;DR
Problem? What problem? Why the heck are we even discussing all of this? Rules are perfect as they are.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2016, 04:28:56 pm by GurasOguras »

Offline Dementio

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2016, 07:33:30 pm »
Losing a single ScS to a coin flip is too much.   And playing aggressively in itself is not an issue.  Forcing you to do so is when it may or may not be your style, plan, or choice is.  But that's just my opinion.  With these player counts lately this all may be moot anyway. :'(

It's not the rules that force you to be aggressive mate, it is the literal gamemode. The mentality of a defense oriented team is that if they let the enemy attack, they are already set in a position to fend of that attack and gain kills in a less "riskier" and less aggressive manner. But the problem is, if the enemy team knows that, then their best call is to not attack at all. You can't win the game if you never attack, and that goes for both teams.

So what will it be, give the victory to the team that sat still for 20min because they played defensively and so shouldn't be forced to be aggressive or give the win to the team that has a more aggressive ship comp, but isn't stupid enough to suicide into the defensive team's setup? I will give you the answer: Nobody deserves to win, because neither actually did anything. If you didn't kill anything, you didn't get any points, that are the rules of deathmatch and the SCS is build on top of that. If you don't like the deathmatch rules, I suggest you look into ways of getting Muse to implement gamemodes that are more defense oriented, but even then it is not guaranteed that you don't have to be aggressive at least once or will never ever have to be on the aggressive side.

tl;dr: Aggressive playing cannot be avoided in deathmatch. It is not a gamemode where sitting still and never attacking will lead to a victory.

The coin flip is the worst when you are still in combat.  In the case of the SCS that this came up in, the kill came approximately two seconds after time was called, but due to time being called, it went to a coin flip, and the team without the kill was awarded the win.

Now I don't know what really happened in the team comms, but from my point of view, what happened was they thought "Oh damn, the time is about to run out, let's quickly try to get this kill before it is too late!" and tunnel visioned on that Goldfish. During that, the blue team's Goldfish was retreating out of instinct, afraid they would die and instead of giving them the red team the kill, they opted a 0-0 coin flip would mean a higher chance of victory. Although to be honest, I don't think any team ever was going for the coin flip, but primarily thought "Don't let the other team win.". Especially in this case I believe it was Blue: "Don't let the other team win!" and Red: "Let's win this!".

Also, fun fact: It was only a kill that "came approximately two seconds after time was called", because of the extra 3 minutes that overtime provided you. Before overtime was implemented, there was only 20 minutes instead of 23. The official time had already been called, but a kill that came 3 minutes after time was called doesn't sound quite as close, does it? Overtime was only implemented to avoid scenarios like these where one more second could have led to a kill and thus to victory and it has a time limit, because it prevents sniping duels to go on forever, which would negate the point of a normal time limit in the first place. If overtime is still not enough time to get a kill for either team, well, who really deserves to win?
« Last Edit: September 06, 2016, 07:40:09 pm by Dementio »

Offline Spud Nick

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2016, 10:17:56 am »
I like all of the rules that are in the SCS right now. I think it's important to understand that the rules are for the viewers as well as the players participating. Keep your matches interesting and entertaining.

Offline Fynx

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #12 on: September 08, 2016, 01:41:09 pm »
I like all of the rules that are in the SCS right now. I think it's important to understand that the rules are for the viewers as well as the players participating. Keep your matches interesting and entertaining.

My thoughts exactly.

People have been playing for a while now, it's not surprising the current rules prevent some bad habits and provide some unpleasant solutions instead.
There are loopholes that cannot be fixed, so playing in a gentelmanly way is the only solution there. Such as people running away until the end of the match, because they're winning 1-1 with kill advantage against slower ship combination. Or ships hiding in some corner nobody will ever look at. Or accessing the stream while playing the match. Why do you even play this match in the first place...

But then, it's impossible to form rules that prevent such situations. That's why it's considered mandatory to play nice and teams may ask for something that is beneficial to the quality of the game. Even if it's against the rules and works in favour of one team.

Offline WATERitsME

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #13 on: September 08, 2016, 02:26:02 pm »
CoinFlippin
I would also have to reinforce the coin flip, although it may not reward the team which played better, 20 minutes is long enough to either get a kill, or accept failure... One could argue that the overtime could be increased by two minutes to give each team a final 1/4 of the match time, but noone wants to see or probobly even play a 25min match with no kills. it becomes boring for the spectators and stressful for crew, knowing first kill is match point.

Stream Snipin
One simple option to this is to have the streamers increas their delay time by 2 or 3 minutes (or even more). There would be little to no disadvantage to this, besides possibly spectators hearing from their friends participating in scs, who won and lost, and than commenting on the stream, possibly spoiling the entertainment. Nevertheless it would eliminate the possibility for tactical advantages though stream sniping... Honestly i think this is a great idea, and will talk to lysanya about this option for next SCS.

On A Different Note
As we saw last SCS (#118) a team had some troubles finding their team mates and substitutions, and i hinted that they should be able to use their team pause time to increase their lobby time, which is not currently permitted. I think this is something we should consider including in the SCS rule set, as not only missing or disconnected members can be recovered, but also disoriented teams will have a chance to go into their game prepared and not immediately lose 'the lobby game'. It will furthermore give newer teams the ability to have a "oh shit" moment to finalize their ship and crew load outs in case their captains were busy discussing tactics and counter picks. I would say it should not be encouraged as it would be a shame to see teams use their pause every single match to increase the lobby time, leaving castors and their spectators twiddling their thumbs... Finally the pause should only be able to be called when ships are still unlocked. Once ships are locked no pause should be able to be called...

Offline WATERitsME

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Re: SCS rules discussions
« Reply #14 on: September 08, 2016, 02:29:42 pm »
also that might help against last minute counter picks, as teams could decide that they have been countered too hard and use their pause to change their ship to something more versitle. It would also provent people from doing last minute picks as they would know that the enemy team might catch on to it in time, and make them look like fools for trying such dirty tricks x)