Deadlocked Games Procedure - from 28 April 2015

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Deadlocked Games Procedure - from 28 April 2015

Postby rick.leeds » 27 Apr 2015, 17:54

The following is the new DPG:

Definition of a Deadlocked Game.
A game reaches a deadlock when the players cannot end the game (a solo is effectively blocked permanently and draw proposals are not being accepted) and the situation in the game isn't going to change. The game may or may not be truly in stalemate. A deadlock is when players refuse to end the game.

Criteria for a Deadlock.
1. The game must be a Ranked or No Rank game and must not be a short-handed game.
2. The game must have been deadlocked for at least 3 game years. To qualify, within the last 3 years:
- there has been no change in alliance structure;
- there has been no change in SC ownership across opposing factions;
- at least 2 draw proposals including all surviving players, whether the game is set-up as a DIAS game or not, have been unsuccessful, and
- there is evidence that negotiations to end the game have been seriously tried and failed (NOT APPLICABLE IN GUNBOAT GAMES).
3. There are no live draw proposals in place.

Before going on, I want to discuss some of these. First, I want to add some clarification to (4). If a draw proposal has been made in a non-DIAS game that does not include all the surviving players, this does not qualify. The idea is that players must have tried to end the game before we will consider stepping in and ending the game, which is always a last resort. A draw that does not feature all survivors is, of course, a way to end the game but you cannot expect any excluded survivor to accept this. For the DGP, this will not be considered as a 'serious' attempt to end the game.

Similarly, we expect to see 'serious' attempts to negotiate an ending to the game. This means that all players should have been involved... but it doesn't mean that one player not responding will delay the DGP. In other words, should a player refuse to take part in negotiations, this won't be seen as a failure to negotiate an end of the game. If a player has been included in negotiations but has not responded, this is enough. However, it also means a simple attempt will not be taken as a 'serious' attempt to negotiate; we want to see evidence of repeated attempts that have not been acknowledged or have been re-buffed.


Process for Referring a Deadlocked Game.
1. Referrals must be by Private Message only.
2. Players must provide the game name and number.
3. Players must show that EACH criterion above has been met.

Moderator Procedure.
A. Initial Assessment.
The investigating Mod will check that all the criteria have been met.
1. If the criteria is not met the Mod will reply to the player who referred the game explaining why no action will be taken. The explanation will refer to only the criteria above. No reference will be made to content of messages. The game cannot be referred again for another three game years.
2. If the criteria is met, the Mod will post in the games Public Press advising that the criteria for a deadlock have been met and inviting players to give their opinion on the game being deadlocked by PM. Opinions must be given and received within one whole game year and the Mod will give the date before which opinions must be given.

The focus here is on the players who don't accept that there is a deadlock and wish the game to continue. What we want is a presentation of what these players will do to change the apparent deadlock. We aren't looking to discuss the validity of the DPG or criteria - these are in place. We also won't be accepting reasons such as:
"I'm waiting for a player to NMR or surrender."
"I'm waiting for a mistake."
"I'm not accepting a draw with ..."

These are not valid reasons to prevent a game which is deadlocked from ending. What we want to see are plans to alter the course of the game.


B. Second Assessment.
After the deadline given in (A.2) above, the Mod will:
1. Review the game in light of any discussion between the Mod and any players from the game.
2. Check for live draw proposals.
If the Mod feels the game is NOT deadlocked as a result of (B.1), this will be posted in Public Press and the game will continue. The game cannot be referred again for another 3 years.
If a Live draw proposal is in place, the Mod will allow the game to proceed until THAT proposal has passed. This will be posted in Public Press. If the proposal is not accepted, no subsequent proposals will prevent the Mod ending the game.
If the Mod feels the game is still deadlocked, the game will be ended.

Should the game be referred for the DPG a second time, we will require an explanation of why no change has happened. A second referral, where the criteria are met, will most likely result in the game being ended.

End Game Procedure.
1. The Mod will force the game to end.
2. The game will be ended with a DIAS draw featuring all survivors.
3. If the game was a Ranked game, it will remain a Ranked game.
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Re: Deadlocked Games Procedure - from 28 April 2015

Postby UpsideDownChuck » 27 Apr 2015, 18:21

I'd been thinking about posting something about the old deadlock games procedure and my issues with it but was waiting for my current slate of games to finish so I could use one of them as an example. As it happens I think this change is an excellent as it gets rid of a restriction (4 or fewer players) that seemed largely arbitrary and could lead to unreasonable behavior on the part of the potential soloist. I think the new definition more closely matches people's colloquial understanding of that "deadlocked" means and get's out of the messy business of deciding when a game should be deadlocked. Two quick questions:

1) The restriction that the game not be 2v2 or something similar is conspicuously absent, but the parenthetical

(a solo is effectively blocked permanently and draw proposals are not being accepted)


still metions soloist vs the world type situations. So is it only deadlocked during a stop the solo or is a 2v2 with some kind of quasi-stalemate still considered deadlocked if there have been draw proposals (and accompanying negotiation) for everyone and a certain number of years with no SC-change? The literal reading of the rules seems to indicate the latter, which I think is good imo.


2)Does this apply only to games started after April 28 or does it apply to all current games

Either way I think this is a great change.
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Re: Deadlocked Games Procedure - from 28 April 2015

Postby drnomeansyes » 27 Apr 2015, 18:39

We had a very minor discussion (minor because I was really the only one that posted) on the "soloist v. all" or "alliance v. alliance" scenarios for deadlocks, and one of the restrictions specifically removed here is that the process no longer requires there to be a soloist and an ALA with the soloist creating the deadlock. It now applies to alliances or a member of an alliance creating such a deadlock as well.

The phrase "(a solo is effectively blocked permanently and draw proposals are not being accepted)" simply means that in the state of the game as it stands that a draw is the only feasible way of ending the game barring a mistake (NMR, order error) that is being intentionally sought by one or more players, something not related to their ability to diplomatically or strategically gain the upper hand. This doesn't mean that there is a current potential soloist, it just means that a solo can't be achieved without one of the players either making a mistake/NMR or intentionally breaking the deadlock.

In terms of the date April 28th, I would imagine that this updated policy would apply to all games that are referred to the procedure on or after this date, but Rick can speak more appropriately to that.
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Re: Deadlocked Games Procedure - from 28 April 2015

Postby rick.leeds » 27 Apr 2015, 23:21

What he said ^ ;)

Just to repeat: the line you drew out, UDC, is a definition of a deadlock - a game which can't finish: no-one can solo, draws aren't being accepted. Deadlocked games are now open to draws and to an unlimited number of players. The important thing now is that the situation is deadlocked. Personally, I think this is too wide a definition but I can see the reasons behind it.

And yes, it will be applied from tomorrow for any game. It's the daye of the referral rather than the date the game started which is important.
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Re: Deadlocked Games Procedure - from 28 April 2015

Postby UpsideDownChuck » 28 Apr 2015, 07:08

Thanks for the clarification Rick.
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