Substitute and Replacement Tips

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Forum rules
To join a game listed here (unless it needs a password) just go to "Join Games" and input the information.
If you are advertising any game with Anonymous Players (including Gunboat and PPO) you should use the Dolph Shtoss account using the password anonymous. DO NOT CHANGE THIS PASSWORD.
When advertising for replacement players please make it clear whether permanent replacement or temporary substitute
- adverts should not tell a substitute what actions you want them to take (posts will be subject to editing);
- adverts MUST NOT offer an incentive to join the game (eg. a specific alliance) OR suggest certain actions when joining a game (posts will be subject to editing or removal and posters warned).
These are considered meta-gaming by using the Forum to influence a game.

Substitute and Replacement Tips

Postby rick.leeds » 03 Jun 2015, 09:27

These tips are intended to make life easier for players seeking substitutes or replacements and those acting as substitutes.

1. Remember, the 'Name a Substitute' feature is NOT intended to be used to find a permanent replacement in a game.
Substitutes play for the member they are substituting for. Substitutes DON'T earn or lose ratings points, whether they are in the game at the end or not. If you replace someone permanently using this feature, you'll get nothing from the game and any ratings change will be reflected in the rating of the player you replaced!

2. Using 'Name a Sub' for permanent replacements.
There is an advantage to using the feature to find a permanent replacement. I am thinking of a scenario in which a member is going to be away from the site for some time and she doesn't want to leave games abandoned; if her power in a game has a poor position and is likely to be eliminated, finding someone prepared to play out the position might be more likely if she uses Name a Sub. The replacement doesn't lose anything by taking the position over.

3. Finding a permanent replacement - the BEST way.
At present there is no active feature to find permanent replacements. If you need to go away from the site for a time and you don't expect to be back to pick up a game from a substitute, the suggested process is:
(a) Advertise on the Forum. Provide the game details (see under below substitutes below) and the time when you will need to leave the game, probably as soon as possible.
(b) When you get a reply that someone is prepared to replace you, acknowledge this in either the Forum post or through PM. It might be useful to coordinate when you are going to leave the game.
(c) Surrender from your game(s). Yes, I know - you're trying to do the right thing yet you still get a surrender stat and maybe a ratings hit! But, if you DIDN'T find a replacement and simply left the game anyway, you'd still have to surrender or be auto_surrendered. You've lost nothing.
This allows the replacement to play for himself.

1. Do you NEED a substitute?
If you are going to be away for a defined period, it is possible that you can get the players in a game to agree to a pause. It would work well to discuss the possibility of a pause within games and request a pause, and - at the same time - advertising for a substitute on the Forum. You can always remove the need for subs in games where players agree to a pause.

2. Substitutes are temporary.
If you need to be away from the site for a short period, rather than leaving the game in the lurch, it is more considerate to find people who are prepared to substitute for you in your games. It doesn't have to be the same person in every game; each game could have a different substitute nominated. Use the 'Name a Substitute' feature explained here.

3. Post on the Forum.
Advertise the need for a substitute. There are some details you should include:
- when do you need a substitute for? How long for?
- how many games?
- the details of the games - what type of games are they? Classic? Standard? Variants?
- deadlines in each game.
You should NOT include details about alliances or specifics of the positions in games.
It would be best if you could advertise about a week in advance, giving you both time to swap info and make the transition as smooth as possible.

4. Reply to posts.
Check your Forum topic regularly. Reply to respondents either in the thread or via PM. Keep the topic updated.

5. Check your potential substitutes out.
Don't agree to a non-premium member substituting for you in a Premium game, for instance.
More importantly, though, substitutes are playing FOR you! If you let someone substitute for you who may surrender, YOU will take the Ratings hit!
It's tempting to simply jump at the first person who comes along. After all, you need to get away. If you have sought a sub in advance, you have the time to deal with this in a more organised way.

6. Remember you don't need the same player to substitute in every game.
You nominate substitutes in each game separately. If you can find someone who is experienced at Gunboat, then it may be useful to ask her to substitute for Gunboat games whilst perhaps someone else to sub in Classic games, for instance. More complicated but possibly better for you.

7. Pass on more detailed information by PM.
When you've settled on a sub, pass on the relevant information for the game - alliances, goals, etc. Why bother? Well, it makes it easier for the substitute to fit into the game. It also makes sense to include this information in the game's Notepad. This makes it easier to refer to them for the sub.

8. Being a substitute.
Make sure you take over the position promptly. Remember, you are playing for someone else. You don't have to change your playing style but you should remember that the original player has to come back into the game. Try not to wreck it for her!
Add to or replace the info stored in the game's Notepad. This info was provided for you to help you fit into the game as smoothly as possible; try to do the same for the original player.
If the original player is late getting back, it would be best if you could extend your substituting. However, you are not obligated to take over the position indefinitely nor play the position out. If the original player has broken the agreement, some consideration is good but don't think you need to remain in the game indefinitely.

9. Return to the game promptly.
Many subs will be happy to extend beyond the original return date but you should not expect them to cover forever! If you need longer than expected, check with your substitute to see if he can remain in position.
And don't forget to thank him for helping you out!

1. Advertising Anonymous games.
(This includes Gunboat and PPO.)
In anonymous games, finding a substitute should not affect anonymity. When advertising on the Forum, use one of the two accounts below:
SubSeeker, password: theWho - designed for advertising for Subs specifically.
Dolph Shtoss, password: anonymous - designed to advertise game details when looking for players but could also be used to find a sub.

Both these accounts are Forum-only accounts. You will not be able to access them through the games site. On the Forum, log out of your account and log in to the anonymous account.

There are some rules for using them:
- make sure you don't post for any other reason than the original reason you accessed the account for.
- DON'T change the account password! Other members may need to access the account at the same time!
- DON'T check PMs unless you expect to see them.

2. Substitutes and Ratings
I want to reiterate this: a substitute's rating is not affected by anything that happens in the game!

I am stressing this because some members seem to assume it does.

If a game finishes whilst you are acting as a sub, the ratings change goes to the original player, not you.
If you surrender from a game whilst acting as a sub, the stat and ratings change are credited (debited) to the original player.
If you NMR as a sub, it goes on the original player's stats.
If a substitute surrenders from your game, you will NOT be able to get into the game under your own name.

Substitutes do not replace the original player, they play in her place.
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