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Author Topic: Possible new way for Tie Breakers  (Read 9255 times)

Sailor Vulcan

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #15 on: May 26, 2014, 08:45:06 AM »

There have been many suggestions for tie breakers in the past, including a points system similar to the one you suggest. I was a big fan of the "overtime" rule (as I called it) like Lord0fWinter refers to, at one time. However, I am currently on board with the current tie breaker system, and I'll explain why.

You mention that you don't like that the game turns into a damage race during the final 10 minutes. What you seem to be forgetting is that the ENTIRE game is a damage race. Whether you take the slow and steady approach, or the blazing fast approach, you are trying to kill your opponent faster than they kill you. Ergo, a damage race. A time limit, no matter how strict or relaxed that limit may be, simply defines the pace at which the race can be ran. There's no way around this.

So, the question isn't about whether we want to change the game into a damage race, because it already is. Instead, we have this relevant question:What is a fair way to judge the damage race if time runs out and both parties have failed to complete it? I believe it boils down to three options.

1) Award victory to the person in the lead. This is the current method of judging it solely based upon health remaining and is the simplest method with the least room for controversy. If we compare it to a foot race, whomever is furthest ahead after a set time, wins. Clean, simple, and fair.

2) Award victory to the person most likely to win given an infinite amount of time. This method requires a lot of speculation and calculation, not all of which can be conducted in a completely unbiased manner. It could therefore stir a lot of ill will and controversy. How much controversy is a matter of debate, but I think we can all agree it is not as black and white as the first method.

3) Forget about who would have won the race all together and award victory based upon they way they played the game. This is probably the category that most points systems falls into, although such systems could be in the second category. Again, it is subject to a considerable amount of bias, however, as we determine what is worth points and how many points it's worth. This very noticeably affects game play as many players will then structure their builds to maximize points in addition to, or instead of, focusing solely on killing their opponent. I believe this shift in focus would negatively impact the game.

Thus, I am in favor of the current tie breaker because it is simple, easy to judge, and is the most unbiased. It KEEPS things as a damage race, which is how they begin and how they're meant to end. All it does is look at who's in the lead, who's winning, when time is called. It is true that that guy may have been recently tripped and is currently lying unmoving in the mud, but he's still ahead in the race and that is a lot easier to judge than trying to determine if he'll get back up or not.

In a perfect world you would be right, Zuberi. However, there is only one time limit, not two. If the time limit is too short aggro builds have an advantage. The hare would certainly win against the tortoise if their race was prematurely interrupted before the hare tired out and fell asleep in the middle of the racetrack. It would hardly be fair to declare the hare the winner under those circumstances.
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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #16 on: May 26, 2014, 08:51:35 AM »
I have the perfect solution for the draw problem: Don't set a time limit! Play until the game is over. If you plan a tournament, plan it for several days so there is enough time to finish every game.
Mage Wars is meant to be played until the bitter end.

If both mages die in the same round, just replay the game and you will have winner.

I would never participate in a tournament in my region with a set time limit for games.
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Death-from-above

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #17 on: May 26, 2014, 09:01:37 AM »
I have the perfect solution for the draw problem: Don't set a time limit! Play until the game is over. If you plan a tournament, plan it for several days so there is enough time to finish every game.
Mage Wars is meant to be played until the bitter end.

If both mages die in the same round, just replay the game and you will have winner.

I would never participate in a tournament in my region with a set time limit for games.

I love the long games. That's what makes me keep coming back. The problem is, I have so few opponents who want to play for as long as we can. A lot of the new people I introduce this game to also mention at the end of the game that this game is long and I'm afraid it is turning some of the off to the game.

Apprentic games run about 45 minutes to an hour and a half which is a decent time. But once we break into the advanced deck setups, I 've never had a game last less then 2 and a half hours. Doesn't bother me, but my new mage friends don't like it too much.
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Wildhorn

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #18 on: May 26, 2014, 09:06:28 AM »
Damn.. 2.5 hours? I never had a game lasting that long. My longest game ever was 2 hours and 90% of my games last 60 minutes.

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #19 on: May 26, 2014, 09:13:42 AM »
Damn.. 2.5 hours? I never had a game lasting that long. My longest game ever was 2 hours and 90% of my games last 60 minutes.

Yeah, I'm the extreme case haha. Its a mixture of my turtle play style and the fact that the new mage still has questions throughout the game that makes my games take so long. If there is one thing I know how to do, its last for a while.
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Lord0fWinter

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #20 on: May 26, 2014, 09:17:14 AM »
Damn.. 2.5 hours? I never had a game lasting that long. My longest game ever was 2 hours and 90% of my games last 60 minutes.

Yeah, we tend to have pretty long games when we play. I'm pretty sure the time could be decreased quite a bit if we set a time limit for the planning phase, so let's try that next time Death.
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Zuberi

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #21 on: May 26, 2014, 11:05:47 AM »
Quote from: Imaginator
The hare would certainly win against the tortoise if their race was prematurely interrupted before the hare tired out and fell asleep in the middle of the racetrack. It would hardly be fair to declare the hare the winner under those circumstances.

Why would that be unfair? I think declaring the person who was in fact winning at the time the race ended to BE the winner is the most fair you can get. In your situation, there is no way of predicting that the hare would fall asleep, or that he would stay asleep long enough for the turtle to win. The only thing you know for sure, is he was in the lead.

Quote from: Imaginator
If the time limit is too short aggro builds have an advantage.

That is quite true. As I mentioned, setting a time limit, any time limit, will define what speeds a viable strategy can perform at. The shorter this limit, the fewer viable strategy options are available as players are forced to play quickly and aggressively. But that is a concern over time limits, not over the methods of deciding an unfinished match. If you are concerned about the time limit being unfair and seeking to use the decision method to tip the scales back into balance instead of simply looking for a fair decision method, then we are discussing different agendas entirely. There is nothing biased about looking at who's closest to dying to determine a winner. It can give victory just as easily to a slow mage as to a fast one. The real concern you seem to have is with how much time is granted per match.

Quote from: Death-from-above
Apprentic games run about 45 minutes to an hour and a half which is a decent time. But once we break into the advanced deck setups, I 've never had a game last less then 2 and a half hours. Doesn't bother me, but my new mage friends don't like it too much.

Your experience is most certainly due to your strategy and your friend's inexperience. If your friends are concerned about the game time, perhaps you should try implementing a time limit such as tournaments do? I think 90 minutes should be fine, but you could go for longer (2 hours? 2 and a half?) if you are concerned about your preferred play style remaining viable. Find some balance that works for everyone involved. After they become more experienced and know how to combat your fortress then you should see game time reduced drastically on it's own without the need for a contrived time limit. I'm not certain if this would actually help matters, as I've not encountered time frames such as you describe since I was first teaching myself how to play, but it might be worth a try.

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #22 on: May 26, 2014, 11:12:17 AM »
Damn.. 2.5 hours? I never had a game lasting that long. My longest game ever was 2 hours and 90% of my games last 60 minutes.

Yeah, we tend to have pretty long games when we play. I'm pretty sure the time could be decreased quite a bit if we set a time limit for the planning phase, so let's try that next time Death.

My games last around 10 rounds for 60 minutes of play time. So it gives an average of 6 minutes per round (first and second round of course doesnt last that long, so 8th, 9th and 10th round probably last a little longer). 7-8 rounds game last about 45 minutes and 12-13 rounds game last about 90 minutes, so my average is about right.


So count how many rounds your games last and how long they last. That way you might find out that the probleme is that you play too slowly and not that a game is too short (round-wise). Taking 5 whole minutes to choose your 2 cards might even be considered dragging the game in a tournament (which is anti-sportmanship in most games).
« Last Edit: May 26, 2014, 11:13:58 AM by Wildhorn »

Shad0w

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #23 on: May 26, 2014, 03:33:29 PM »
I have the perfect solution for the draw problem: Don't set a time limit! Play until the game is over. If you plan a tournament, plan it for several days so there is enough time to finish every game.
Mage Wars is meant to be played until the bitter end.

If both mages die in the same round, just replay the game and you will have winner.

I would never participate in a tournament in my region with a set time limit for games.
At any convention or store event time limits have to be used because we are restricted by the venues hours
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Shad0w

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #24 on: May 26, 2014, 03:36:50 PM »
Damn.. 2.5 hours? I never had a game lasting that long. My longest game ever was 2 hours and 90% of my games last 60 minutes.
longest playest game for me was at 4 hours when we quit




Let's get back on topic :P


Remember that the goal of MW is to kill the other mage. Why would the tie breaker of choice not favor aggressive play?
« Last Edit: May 26, 2014, 03:42:42 PM by Shad0w »
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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #25 on: May 26, 2014, 04:22:47 PM »
Remember that the goal of MW is to kill the other mage. Why would the tie breaker of choice not favor aggressive play?

To me, it's almost like you're saying that THE way to play Mage Wars is by being aggressive and other ways are "wrong". That can also turn some people off of the game.

Not that I have a better idea for tie breakers though.

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #26 on: May 26, 2014, 05:01:55 PM »
Remember that the goal of MW is to kill the other mage. Why would the tie breaker of choice not favor aggressive play?

To me, it's almost like you're saying that THE way to play Mage Wars is by being aggressive and other ways are "wrong". That can also turn some people off of the game.

Not that I have a better idea for tie breakers though.

Not wrong but MW is a hp race. You can try to win slowly but it is still a race.

Like F1, going too fast can lead to crash and what not, but go too slow and you are sure to lose.

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #27 on: May 26, 2014, 07:00:41 PM »
Being aggressive is the only way to play Mage Wars. If you never attack or damage your opponent in any way, you will lose every time. If you do damage your opponent, then you are by definition being aggressive :-P

It's possible in the future there might be alternate victory conditions, but until then aggression is the name of the game. The question is rather about your method of aggression. Does it start strong and wind down, or does it start with a whimper and build up? In both cases you want it to be fast enough to win within the time constraints. Wildhorn's comparison to a Formula 1 race is very apt.

Because of this sole focus on killing your opponent and being aggressive that is inherent to the game, Shad0w is correct that any tie breaking method needs to also focus on aggression or risk drastically changing that inherent nature. I do still like the "overtime" method, which only looks at the last few rounds of the game when control mages should be at their strongest and aggro mages should be at their weakest, but it is still a method that focuses on how aggressive the mages are being during that time. However, that method requires extra management and record keeping, with having to announce when overtime begins and then recording how much damage is dealt each round.

It's not overly complicated, but certainly is more so than the current method and I'm not convinced it would be any more fair. If I'm closer to killing my opponent than he is me, but he wins due to some lucky rolls in the last few rounds (even though I still end up ahead overall) then I may be a bit sore at my defeat. It may very well be that he would have won given infinite time because my lead was slipping, or perhaps I could have pulled off the win. Predicting the future is basically guess work and not exact, especially in a game this complex. It's still my favorite alternative, and I wouldn't be upset if some version of it was implemented, but after thinking about it I do think the current method is actually superior for being simpler and less biased.

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #28 on: May 26, 2014, 07:36:49 PM »
Being aggressive is the only way to play Mage Wars. If you never attack or damage your opponent in any way, you will lose every time. If you do damage your opponent, then you are by definition being aggressive :-P

Zuberi, by aggressive I was referring to "aggro" books instead of say, control.

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Re: Possible new way for Tie Breakers
« Reply #29 on: May 26, 2014, 08:03:12 PM »
Being aggressive is the only way to play Mage Wars. If you never attack or damage your opponent in any way, you will lose every time. If you do damage your opponent, then you are by definition being aggressive :-P

Zuberi, by aggressive I was referring to "aggro" books instead of say, control.

Ah. We have different interpretations of what Shad0w meant then. I don't think he was trying to imply that any style of play is wrong or inferior to any other. Simply alluding to the nature of the game in general principal, ie killing your opponent faster than they kill you, as something that should be rewarded rather than trying to change the nature of the game on some fundamental level.