[Discus] Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

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[Discus] Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby MikZZ » 25 Oct 2019, 15:03

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Russian version here http://top-supreme-commander.ru/novosti ... a-kratere/

Probably many of you have already heard about the growing and already becoming a hot topic in the FAF community - banning (ban) maps like Astro Crater. Of course, much remains behind the curtain of secrecy, but one thing is clear, this topic has already divided the entire community into two camps: those who enjoy playing the Astro Crater and see no reason for concern, and the second camp - those who want to ban maps like Astro Crater and remove them from the map store. I propose together to understand the details of what is happening: to consider the background, the current situation and try to predict its further development. Let`s start?

Many times community problems related of the current Global rating system discussed, in particular the problem of players, who play most games on one map.


In recent years, a generation of players has grown that cannot play outside of one map. In particular, Astro Crater was named as an example of such maps. It is worth mentioning the indignation of diverse (playing on different maps) players when meeting with Crater players on the battlefield of regular maps - where crater players look like very inept players.

Therefore, returning to the topic of discussion, we can already understand that the problem is not new at all and has a great background, and together we have to try to figure it out.

It will be appropriate to mention here that I personally came to the FAF around 2015. Remembering those times, I can confidently say that the set of maps that were played in public lobbies was no longer diverse: “Gaps” (first was Gap of Rohan, then Dual Gap appeared), “Passes” (The Pass, Battle of Thermopylae) . Sometimes, when you wanted to play and opened the list of current games, you could see an impressive picture - “Passes” and “Gaps” are all that users created in lobby hall and were waiting to gather the teams.

And therefore, the fact that with the advent of the Astro Crater maps with a simplified design and game ideology, many players began to see an abundance of created games on this map, since this simplified variation essentially replaced the Passes and Gaps . Sometimes, in addition to a few "craters" in public lobby hall, it was impossible to find any other games open for connection. This is where the story begins under the name “Ban Craters”.

It is time to study the position of the opponents of Atro Crater. What are the most common arguments you can get from them:


    horrible design - no textures, the landscape does not correspond to the aesthetic idea of ​​beautiful
    terrible gameplay - players do not learn to play and sit at their bases for hours
    lack of growth in the level of players - they play the same boring games (tactics and strategies)
    and other smaller claims

Among the best-known ideas proposed by the initiative group are the following:

    ban “craters” and similar maps and delete existing maps from the storage
    assessment of the appearance (design) and "correctness" of the gameplay of the map based on the opinion of the "appraiser"
    moderation of downloaded maps in the repository by an "appraiser" according to a list of criteria
    prohibition of loading maps into storage without pre-moderation


In response, fans of the Astro Crater maps and just ordinary players make comments and ask questions:

    the maps offered for replacement are not different from typical "Astro Craters", i.e. at the starting position is the bulk of resources
    the gameplay on many other maps is not much different - the first 10 minutes collecting resources in the center of the map and then creating “bunkers” and confronting “bunkers”
    The "meta-game" on a "astro crater" skips only the "spamming" stage of the T1 tanks and shootings by commanders, the remaining aspects are identical on each map: economy, "cheeses", "experimental rush" or other technological solutions to complete the game
    ascetic design does not distract from the game process and does not irritate the eyes
    many maps that are popular today for team games are no different from typical "Astro Craters", i.e. at the starting position is the bulk of the resources and it is assumed the "bunker" type of game

By reading both sets of arguments, we can find some truth in the words of both sides. But a reasonable question arises: do prohibitive measures and a rigid framework be needed for the open community like FAF?
If someone has forgotten or does not know, then since its inception, the community has grown and developed, based on the principles of voluntary and free participation of everyone who wants to make a feasible contribution.

Some of my interlocutors have enormous doubts about the benefits of prohibited measures and the penalties for free contributors. And also do not forget that people choose how to play and what to play on their own, and you need to respect the right of each member of a large community to play the way he wants. Even greater concerns are caused by the fact that after the punishment of map makers, a system of penalties for the players of the “wrong” maps can be announced. After all, deleting a maps from the vault does not prohibit players from continuing to play on the “wrong” maps they had previously downloaded. Similarly, players can distribute "wrong" maps through third-party sites and forums.

And then a completely harmless undertaking to ban “wrong” maps can result in the persecution of players or entire groups of players who are doing something wrong in someone’s opinion or taste. Disappointing forecast, agree?

At one time, great hopes were placed on moving the server from old technologies to new ones, as well as the use of a new client promised a lot of pleasant bonuses. To be precise, with the transition to a new server and client, which happened in January 2019, they promised to introduce a multi-player game system with a rating based on automatic selection of maps and teams, or pre-formed teams (2 by 2 players, 3 by 3, 4 by 4, etc.). And then the rating in the public game lobby could die out as a rudiment. For the assessment and distribution of the teams, one could use the number of games and the history of matches played on maps. Then the issue of rating inflation would disappear by itself.

But so far no news has been heard from the FAF development fields, nor has such an automatic team game system been implemented yet. The reader of these lines may have another question, why not send energy and petitions to the developers with the desire to introduce such a system in the near future and thereby make the rating a single and universal currency, thereby avoiding unnecessary innovations with persecution, banning and others "Joys" of prohibitive policies. I admit, I, like my reader, also ask this question.

What is this phenomenon and what can these events lead to in your opinion? Feel free to leave your comments and share your thoughts!
Last edited by MikZZ on 25 Oct 2019, 15:42, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby biass » 25 Oct 2019, 15:22

MikZZ wrote: it was impossible to find any other games open for connection.


>not hosting your own games
never gonna make it

Most teamgame maps are absolute garbage, if you want Astro Crater to die, it is not hard to make a better casual map.
Players will not break 100s of games worth of inertia to play "what you like" after "what they like" is banned, they'll just leave.
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Re: [Discus] Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby FtXCommando » 25 Oct 2019, 15:28

All the king’s petitions and all the king’s forum likes could not put a team matchmaker together.

If you want to get the actual solution to astro sooner, go on a hunt for volunteer python devs that can help the dev team implement the solution on zulip.

I’ve explained several times on several platforms why banning or unranking does, in the long term, nothing while increasing the duties and responsibilities of several different people in the community so that this punishment doesn’t get circumvented. I am absolutely unwilling to consider it as a solution until someone can apply a reasoning for why this map deserves this categorization and other maps do not.
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Re: [Discus] Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby Voodoo » 25 Oct 2019, 15:29

The map was banned? First time I heard of it. It’s an old map and lot of players like it. I can understand that we delete some map version. No need to have 100 times the same map but I wouldn’t ban such a map. People like simple maps as the gameplay is easier.
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Re: Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby MikZZ » 25 Oct 2019, 15:30

biass wrote:
MikZZ wrote: it was impossible to find any other games open for connection.


>not hosting your own games
never gonna make it


Thx for your opinion.
And ofcourse I tried to host myself but failed to fill it :)
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Re: [Discus] Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby Geosearchef » 25 Oct 2019, 16:42

Want to add my opinion as well as a kind of status report on team matchmaking (I'm the dev that started the implementation and debate this year) here.

Status report here: https://forums.faforever.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=18301#p179173

Astro Crater Ban:
First of all, I want to say that you cannot ban astro crater. FAF is an open source community. The moment anyone attempts to even do that, I'm off setting up a fork which doesn't limit players choices in what they can do. This is a game, people are playing it in their free time, so if the majority of them wants to play such maps and has fun doing so, who are you to tell them otherwise. Apparently, if you can't fill other lobbies, there's not a lot of interest in that and therefore the majority of players doesn't support a crater / gap ban.

Alternatives
While banning is not an option for me, I strongly agree though that an attempt to diversify the map landscape of FAF (what people actually play, not what's available) by dropping them into balanced games on preselected maps is a really good idea and could benefit FAF a lot.

Team matchmaking (TMM)
I started implementing a party (=team/grouping) system for team matchmaking in the python server in April 2019 after finishing and deploying the ICE adapter. I just wrote a post about the status on TMM here: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=18301#p179173 (was getting to long for this post)

Replies
To be precise, with the transition to a new server and client, which happened in January 2019

Nothing change about the server.

But so far no news has been heard from the FAF development fields, nor has such an automatic team game system been implemented yet.
I was very busy and couldn't spent as much time on implementing it as I would have liked. For a status report see the link above.

The reader of these lines may have another question, why not send energy and petitions to the developers with the desire to introduce such a system in the near future

Stop suggesting anything developement related. FAF is not out of suggestions (we're drowning in them), FAF is out of developers (/developer time).

If you want to get the actual solution to astro sooner, go on a hunt for volunteer python devs that can help the dev team implement the solution on zulip.

We need java devs, the work on python server is done.
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Re: [Discus] Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby FtXCommando » 25 Oct 2019, 16:57

I’m just always wrong smh
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Re: [Discus] Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby Morax » 25 Oct 2019, 18:52

Geosearchef wrote:
Alternatives
While banning is not an option for me, I strongly agree though that an attempt to diversify the map landscape of FAF (what people actually play, not what's available) by dropping them into balanced games on preselected maps is a really good idea and could benefit FAF a lot.



Just going to leave this here: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=17820
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Re: [Discus] Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby Steel_Panther » 25 Oct 2019, 22:59

I think one of the biggest things we could do to help is just have an additional ranking. We have ladder, global, and all we need to add is a map specific rating. If they are all displayed instead of just global, you won't be surprised when the 1200 crater player plays like a 400 ladder player on a standard team game map. Sure let people play whatever they want, but it is very obvious that certain strategies are map dependent and ratings can be a bit misleading then.

Then the question is just what rank to use for balancing, and It's harder to say what the solution there is. Maybe just global? Or some combination of global and map specific?

Anyway, I think it would just give very useful information to everyone to know what a player's rating on that map is (and maybe ladder rating too). And this shouldn't be too difficult to implement.
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Re: [Discus] Asto Craters Ban? Ban players on the craters?

Postby keyser » 25 Oct 2019, 23:24

Steel_Panther wrote:And this shouldn't be too difficult to implement.


i'm curious how you would implement it. Would you give specific rating for each map ? (so you have several thousand possible rating) and in this case if someone get high rating on thermo then join a "the pass" for the first time he won't be rated properly.

Or you want to group the rating of all gap together ? How do you achieve this ? by adding a tag on maps ? it would then require to review maps to be able to add the labels to the new one. And what are your groups of maps ? gap and dual gap together ? the pass and thermo together ? or astro craters likes + gaps likes + thermo likes are grouped together for a "turtle map rating" ?


I can go even more on this, this is far more difficult to implement than at first thought. The closest idea to something achievable was the trueskill 2 integration by sheeo. But i've no idea if it would fix the issue entirely, and the workload it would require.
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