Ancient Mediterranean map rules

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Ancient Mediterranean map rules

Postby super_dipsy » 15 Jul 2012, 16:57

The new Ancient Med variant is based on the Diplomacy variant invented by Don Hessong. Don's rules can be found at http://www.variantbank.org/results/rules/a/ancient_med.htm, and these are the basic rules we are using here at PlayDiplomacy.

The rules are pretty clear, but it may be useful to have some specific points drawn out for added clarity.

1. The Nile
The Nile delta and Nile regions are covered in the referenced rules, but it can be a bit confusing to first-timers. Basically, what it means is you can travel from Alexandria to Memphis or Thebes, and then on to Bayuda. Also because of the delta and the river, it is worth resstressing that effectively Sinai and Thebes have single coastlines. In this game, there are NO TERRITORIES with multiple coasts. For every coastal territory, the coast is topologically one coast.

2. Balaeres
Is actually implemented on PlayDip as an 'Archipelago' - a mixture of an island and a sea space. Again, this is covered in the rules above, but it is worth restressing. An army cannot move to or from Bal without the help of a convoy, because it is an island. But it is also a sea square, and so a fleet sitting in Bal actually counts as being at Sea AS WELL as on the coast - in other words, it occupies the supply centre but can also be part of a convoy route. However note that it cannot be part of a convoy to Bal because that would put two units in one territory.

3. There are various 'land bridges' indicated on the map. These allow free movement by army or coastal fleet between Mauretania / Saguntum, Sicily / Naples, Corsica / Sardinia and Sparta / Athens. Note that the Sparta/Athens join also allows fleets to go through the 'canal', allowing a fleet to come from Aeg to Athens and on the next turn from Athens to Ion. But remember you can NOT go from Aeg to Ion in one go. Think the Kiel canal in the standard game. Also, Byzantium behaves in exactly the same way as Constantinople in the standard game.

4. The multi-arrows indicate movement possible in all the directions. So to be clear, for the Nile delta for example you can move Gulf of Pelusium - Thebes, GoP - Alex, GoP-Sinaii, Alex - Sinaii etc., and Messenian Sea can move to Gulf of Tacape, Ausonian Sea, Libyan Sea. Note that there is no blockage in the crossing point - so Mess can move to GoT at the same time as Aus moves to Lib Sea, and Alex can move Sinaii while GoP moves to Thebes.

Apart from these rule changes, the game will play with all the variants that the Classic game plays (FoW, Stuff, Chaos etc). The only one that does not work is Fleet Rome. Unlike the referenced rules, which suggest the game should start at AD 01, the PlayDiplomacy Ancient Med variant will start at 400BC.
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Re: Ancient Mediterranean map rules

Postby bluestreaksoccer » 15 Jul 2012, 17:18

every time something like this develops...i get that much closer to wanting premium.
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Re: Ancient Mediterranean map rules

Postby sinnybee » 16 Jul 2012, 01:53

super_dipsy wrote:AM points:
Solo win - 9 points
2-way draw - 4 points
3-way draw - 2 points
4-way draw - 1 point
5-way draw - 0 points

Would not it be more fair to give out 2.5 points to those who are part of an AM 3-way draw?

Standard 7 player Diplomacy rewards a total of 12 points for solos, 2-way draws, 3-way draws, and 4-way draws. So, in these 4 outcomes, the average player is rewarded 12/7 (~1.714) points.
A 4-way draw from an original group of 7 players is ~57.14% of players being rewarded from a full pot of points.
A 3-way draw from an original group of 5 AM players is 60%, basically the same as 57%.
If we reward those 3 players on the same standard, they are given ~1.714 per player * 5 original players / spliting the points between 3 players = about 2.86
Alternatively, 3 points (given to each of the 4-way draw participants of 7 original players) * ~57.14% / 60% also = about 2.86

So, even 2.5 points per player in a 3-way AM draw would be rounding down from 2.86

4 points for a 2-way draw is already a round down (~1.714 per player * 5 original players / spliting the points between 2 players = about 4.29).
Even with 2.5 points per player in a 3-way AM draw, we would still be giving out less points than we would in the rounded down 2-way AM draw (3 players * 2.5 points each < 2 players * 4 points each :arrow: 7.5 < 8)

(The rounded up points for an AM solo help balance out the rounded down points for 2-way and 3-way AM draws. The round up for a solo also makes it a bit less risky than it would otherwise for high ranked players to play AM, as they have a high points per game average.)

(TL;DR) In summary, 2 points to those with a 3-way AM draw rounds down way too much from 2.86, as they have arguably or percentage-wise done practically as well as those in a 4-way draw from a classic 7 player Diplomacy game, who are given 3 points each.

A score value that includes a half point shouldn't be a problem since we already use one decimal point in our scores. Furthermore, the 80%, 60%, 40%, and 20% fading echoes multipliers would still keep the fractions of the 2.5 points to one decimal place.
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Re: Ancient Mediterranean map rules

Postby super_dipsy » 16 Jul 2012, 08:46

Sinny, I did not want to risk having a points score from a game of anything other than a whole number. There are various places it might cause a problem to have a decimal, and without crawling through them all the safe play is to stick with what we have today, which is whole numbers. You mention we do have decimals today, but that is only when the score is calculated. The score from a particular game (which is what is recorded in all the records) is a whole number.

I suppose we could make the 3-way draw 3 points instead of 2, but that feels wrong. If you think about it, how hard is to to make sure 2 other players are eliminated while you have a balance with the other 2 players? When you start with 5? It seems to me it is quite a bit easier than trying to eliminate FOUR other players while maintaining a balance with the other 2?
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Re: Ancient Mediterranean map rules

Postby sinnybee » 16 Jul 2012, 19:27

super_dipsy wrote:Sinny, I did not want to risk having a points score from a game of anything other than a whole number. There are various places it might cause a problem to have a decimal, and without crawling through them all the safe play is to stick with what we have today, which is whole numbers. You mention we do have decimals today, but that is only when the score is calculated. The score from a particular game (which is what is recorded in all the records) is a whole number.
Aww, too bad.

I suppose we could make the 3-way draw 3 points instead of 2, but that feels wrong. If you think about it, how hard is to to make sure 2 other players are eliminated while you have a balance with the other 2 players? When you start with 5? It seems to me it is quite a bit easier than trying to eliminate FOUR other players while maintaining a balance with the other 2?

Of course what you said is quite a bit easier, but I was actually comparing the 3-way AM draw to the 4-way classic 7 player Diplomacy draw, which compares eliminating 2 other players while having a balance with the other 2 players to eliminating 3 other players while having a balance with the other 3 players.

If it would be too difficult to have a half point score, my suggestion won't work.

I'm working on / calculating / thinking about a new (radical) suggestion which I'll post later. It will probably get shot down :(, but it doesn't hurt to try to think of things that could possibly/probably improve the site/scoring, does it? :)
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Re: Ancient Mediterranean map rules

Postby super_dipsy » 16 Jul 2012, 21:31

Ah - the good old, non-controversial site scoring/ranking system.....I can't wait Sinny :D
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Re: Ancient Mediterranean map rules

Postby Jegpeg » 16 Jul 2012, 23:19

If consensus is that 2.5 points should be awarded for a 3 way could we double all the points (ie 24 points for a solo in a standard game, 18 for an AM solo etc) This would then give 5 points for a 3 way in AM.

I've no idea how easy it would be to double all the points in historic games / ranking.
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Re: Ancient Mediterranean map rules

Postby sinnybee » 17 Jul 2012, 04:16

Janepeg wrote:If consensus is that 2.5 points should be awarded for a 3 way could we double all the points (ie 24 points for a solo in a standard game, 18 for an AM solo etc) This would then give 5 points for a 3 way in AM.

I've no idea how easy it would be to double all the points in historic games / ranking.

Sounds good to me, but yeah, probably/possibly not worth the effort for just the one change.
I'm actually 5 steps or so ahead of that, trying to keep improving on scoring ideas that I've been having--ideas mostly with the purpose of making scoring consistent between the two variations and also to avoid possible scoring problems in the future when more variants are added. I see no reason that this website won't be around for many years, so I believe that now is the time for change, to get a scoring system in place that can be a long-term improvement.
I'm trying to finalize (when I have time) a scoring system that I could argue as being worth the changes.
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