A (Choose: Great/Pointless/Annoying) Scoring System Thread

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Re: A (Choose: Great/Pointless/Annoying) Scoring System Thre

Postby jay65536 » 14 Jun 2018, 20:55

NoPunIn10Did wrote:I have no idea what they objected to, but having "number of years played" as an absolute measure, rather than a basis of comparison (as in Carnage), is problematic.

Unless they had a year limit in place, getting eliminated late in the game could net more points than losing with one center.


I mean, let me just say...I know what I don't like about this system...just curious if other players had objections I didn't have.

Speaking purely for myself, I actually don't like using those kinds of measures at all, even as a basis of comparison. I like systems where you can compute the scores knowing only the end result. (Obviously I'll still play tournaments that use them--it's just a personal preference.)
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Re: A (Choose: Great/Pointless/Annoying) Scoring System Thre

Postby NoPunIn10Did » 18 Jun 2018, 16:55

jay65536 wrote:
Speaking purely for myself, I actually don't like using those kinds of measures at all, even as a basis of comparison. I like systems where you can compute the scores knowing only the end result. (Obviously I'll still play tournaments that use them--it's just a personal preference.)


You mean only the end result as in the SC ownership on the final map?

Because being eliminated is a sort of "end result" for those players... :D
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Re: A (Choose: Great/Pointless/Annoying) Scoring System Thre

Postby jay65536 » 18 Jun 2018, 17:02

Yeah, I mean the end result of the entire game, meaning the final position when the game end was agreed and, if relevant, what the voted result was.
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Re: A (Choose: Great/Pointless/Annoying) Scoring System Thre

Postby NoPunIn10Did » 18 Jun 2018, 17:10

jay65536 wrote:Yeah, I mean the end result of the entire game, meaning the final position when the game end was agreed and, if relevant, what the voted result was.


Ah, so the final snapshot rather than any event leading to that snapshot.

One can accomplish this with a rank-based system too, by setting all eliminated players as tied for last place.

Assuming you had to pick a fixed-sum system, what would you say your favorite is? Sum-of-squares?
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Re: A (Choose: Great/Pointless/Annoying) Scoring System Thre

Postby DavidMaletsky » 18 Jun 2018, 18:51

Ran Carnage with averaging eliminations for a couple of years, and got feedback that mostly leaned in the direction of ordering eliminations. I am unconvinced either is inherently better or worse, so I’ve agreed to reinstate the ordering; will of the people is as good a reason as any.
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Re: A (Choose: Great/Pointless/Annoying) Scoring System Thre

Postby jay65536 » 18 Jun 2018, 23:27

NoPunIn10Did wrote:One can accomplish this with a rank-based system too, by setting all eliminated players as tied for last place.

Assuming you had to pick a fixed-sum system, what would you say your favorite is? Sum-of-squares?


One can, but it tends not to happen in real life, as Maletsky just said.

I don't really think it matters a whole lot what my favorite system is, for a couple reasons: first, I don't run a tournament of my own (if I ever did, I would probably want to test out my own system); and second, because in keeping with what Maletsky just pointed out, I'm just one person, and if the community as a whole doesn't like my preferences then they (my preferences) shouldn't matter.

But since you're asking, I'll say this. While maybe I don't want to pick one that's "my favorite" out of what currently exists, I do have certain qualities that I like for a scoring system to have. I don't really actually think that it's theoretically possible for any one scoring system to keep all of my ideals; in my head it's like election theory, where Arrow's Theorem says that you take a small list of qualities that a reasonable person would agree are all desirable in a system but somehow it's mathematically impossible to fulfill them all.

I like playing under systems that:

0. Are designed to make sure the game doesn't get less fun. This is what it's all about, right? That's why it's number 0 (it's not because I have a CS mindset about list-making--I'm a mathematician, not a programmer.) I have played under systems where the games become less fun because of how they are being scored. As I think was pointed out above, this is one thing that draw-based systems tend to fail--at least, they do for me.

1. Stays as close to the written rules as possible. I'm old enough (but just barely) to remember a time when some tournaments played using the "29-center rule", which stated that any coalition of 29 centers could force a game end in any result they agreed on. So for example, if the center counts were 9/9/9/5/2, and the 2 was willing to vote himself out, the three 9-center powers could band with the 2-center power to force the game to end in a 3-way draw, and the 5-center power could not veto that result. The same would also have been true for a center split of 7/7/7/5/3/3/2--if the bottom 3 powers were willing to vote for it, a 3-way draw between the top 3 could be forced. I was not a fan.

2. Treats all wins the same, and treats all losses the same. For me personally, I like the idea that losing in 1902 and losing in 1910 are the same. I also like the idea that (in a draw-based system) when you vote yourself out of a draw, you don't get points for it--voting yourself out should be something you do out of courtesy only and not because it's incentivized by the tournament structure. Treating all wins the same, one would assume would be self-evident; but in fact, not every scoring system does this! In the Dixie system, a 19-center win is worth more than an 18-center win. (Of course this doesn't come up much.) Dixie also treats losses differently; the only system that doesn't is SoS, although C-Diplo essentially does too.

3. Properly values a solo win--it should be very hard, if not impossible, to finish ahead of a solo winner without also soloing. Carnage is the best at this. SoS, which I like in many other respects, is actually the worst system I've ever played under in this regard. In SoS, a solo and an elimination can be caught by two results of 50+ points. To get such a result it usually suffices to get 13 centers while second place has 10 and there are multiple small powers still alive. Not only is soloing the object of the game, but it's very hard to solo--I've never done it in a tournament setting--so I think it should be rewarded more than that.

4. Makes all games worth the same total number of points each. In other words, I prefer fixed-sum (i.e. zero-sum) systems. Does that mean that when combined with #1, it means I prefer draw-based scoring? Well, I suppose some part of me does prefer draw-based scoring. But I've also played enough tournaments to know that #0 comes first. I have more fun playing Diplomacy at tournaments that use lead-based scoring than I do playing under the Dixie system. (That's not to impugn DixieCon--I have also had fun when I played there!)

5. Properly values a good result within a draw so that you can achieve "separation" between non-solo results. This one is really hard for me to explain, so let me just say by way of explanation that I think this is what SoS is best at among the systems currently in use. I actually think if you changed SoS so that it scores draws the same as it currently does but made a solo 150 points instead of 100, that would be a really good tournament system, even though it's not zero-sum. Carnage is good at this too. Basically I like lead-based systems for how they evaluate different results in a context where you can't or shouldn't just say "all draws get equal points".

I'm sure there are others I'm forgetting right now but those are a few.
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