Ranking Points

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Ranking Points

Postby SelhurstPark » 02 Jul 2019, 00:55

As someone who is much too soft and gentle ever likely to achieve the lofty heights of even a Top 100 Ranking, can I genuinely make a case for the ratings system to be reconsidered? After all, how many of the more successful players are tempted to commit to games when their status actively works against them? Of course the object of Diplomacy is to solo but it does seem harsh when top ranked players lose points for being in a winning draw. By way of illustration, I have come across someone whose recent record is:
5 for a two way draw
-16 for a three way draw
-9 for a three way draw
-8 for a three way draw
0 for a three way draw
-45 for a four way draw
-12 for a four way draw
In other words, seven consecutive unbeaten games resulting in the loss of 85 ranking points.
Might it not be fairer to have no penalty for being in a winning draw?
Or might this distort things in a way that I have not acknowledged?
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Re: Ranking Points

Postby HunsRus » 02 Jul 2019, 01:37

They used to have a "fading echoes" system where it was 12 for a solo, 6 for a 2 way, etc; but then they changed it to the current system that depends on how well you do in relation to the rankings of the players you play against. That seems as fair as they can get it imo.
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Re: Ranking Points

Postby V » 02 Jul 2019, 01:39

I’d suggest the player who has mislaid these points after getting into reasonably large draw results is entering games in which the opponents are not good enough for that style of play to get a positive result.
If I’m playing top ranked folks I know a 3-way is probably enough for a modest positive score. If not, a solo is probably needed to avoid a negative score. I know this in 1901 so cannot claim to be surprised/disappointed after agreeing a 4-way.
If top ranked players were allowed to enter games with newbies, with in effect no risk if they end up in a bore draw, then it would become a bit too easy. Solo & get plenty, a draw gives a score of zero. Repeat ad nauseam.
The current system is probably fairer & puts reasonable demands on those that should be able to deliver.
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Re: Ranking Points

Postby Oh Cheese » 02 Jul 2019, 02:26

I have a better suggestion: don't give a shit about ranking points on this site.

If you're in the top 100, what's that going to do for you? Confirm something you already knew (that you're a good playdipper)? Make you go to bed with a big smile on your face (you seriously need to get out more...)? Allow you to brag to your pals (they probably don't care)?

The points system is fair. If you're higher ranked you need better results than a 5- or 6-way draw to increase your ranking, thus showing you're a better player. If you're not scoring positively for a draw, then that's the game saying 'you're better than this, and if you want more ranking points you need to prove it!' But you really want to shake the system up just so that you're ranked higher on a list of people who are and will likely forever be anonymous to you??

Next time you play ranked, forget about the ranking points. (Or play unranked.) It makes the whole game a lot less stressful and a lot more enjoyable! And after a month or three, if you're languishing in the bottom 300 in the rankings list all you have to do is either not get upset about it, or if that is beyond you then please, go see a shrink.
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Re: Ranking Points

Postby marotta » 02 Jul 2019, 05:56

I like the ranking system. What would be nice is an addition to game creation that allowed games to be restricted to players of a certain ranking or higher.
It would also be nice to be able to restrict a game to players with NMRs of a certain percentage or lower.
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Re: Ranking Points

Postby super_dipsy » 02 Jul 2019, 07:27

Before I respond on the OP, just to clear one thing up,
marotta wrote:It would also be nice to be able to restrict a game to players with NMRs of a certain percentage or lower.
that is what the Diplomact/Ambassador classes do You can start a game for Ambassadors only, which mean people who hardly ever NMR or surrender.

On the OP, I think the problem is you are looking at it from only a single person's point of view. The whole point about Elo-style rating systems is that in order for them to have any integrity over time, they need to avoid ratings inflation or deflation, meaning they need to end up basically being zero sum. For points that are gained, there has to be a balance of points lost. If I take an example, that -45 you quoted for a 4 way draw was in a game where the player had a rating more than double what all the other players had and was one of the top players on the site. Instead of looking at the result for that player, look at it from the point of view of the other sharers in the 4-way. They all 3 managed to stay in the game and force it into a draw despite the superiority of the other player - so they are recognized with a reasonable return(this probably ranks as one of their best ever results given the opposition). The 3 eliminated players were all very low ranked, so at that level the result is much what they would have expected and as such they get a minimal hit. So you have 3 reasonably positive results in terms of ranking points, 3 fairly minimal negative ones for the players who got the result that was expected given the opposition, and that leaves the top site player who would have expected to do a lot better than a 4-way draw and therefore takes the lion's share of the negative balance to keep the sum level.

Now take another view, this time from the other top-rated players on site. There is often a lot of competition for places in the ranking list. How do you ever climb to a higher rank? You have to keep playing or you drop off the list altogether, so you have to do better than others around you and hope some of the other players do worse. I you are regularly soloing or perhaps getting 2 or 3 wy draws, and another of your level gets a 4-way draw against average competition, you would expect that to give you a chance to climb up. Frankly, players in the top band of site ranking rarely have 4-way draws. When they do, particularly against much weaker players, they would expect to take a hit.
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Re: Ranking Points

Postby Oh Cheese » 05 Jul 2019, 06:08

marotta wrote:I like the ranking system. What would be nice is an addition to game creation that allowed games to be restricted to players of a certain ranking or higher.


This is DEFINITELY something that should see the light of day. While the ranking system is geared towards not only getting results, but for those results to be against a certain calibre of player, there should definitely be a means of me saying "I want to play only against top 100 players," or "I want to play only against top 200 players'. Conversely, if you're a newbie you might want to play only against players in the lower echelons of the ranking list. The only means newbies have of achieving this at the moment is to entitle the game something like 'Newbies Only', but for sure this doesn't restrict better players from joining - and I've certainly been in one such game, while not a newbie, before.

If you are going to go ahead with this though, I would suggest you also need a button available which removes those restrictions, at any given point. New games waiting to start may be sitting at 6 players (out of 7) for some time. A button to remove these restrictions would let the final place be taken by anyone. Still, the majority of the players would be of a certain calibre, and so this would enable you to - if you are geared towards improving your ranking - give you the best shot at doing so.

Currently the only means of doing this is to check each player's stats beforehand, and this is both time consuming and tedious. Furthermore, there is no means for doing this in Anonymous Players games.
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Re: Ranking Points

Postby super_dipsy » 05 Jul 2019, 08:34

Oh Cheese wrote:
marotta wrote:I like the ranking system. What would be nice is an addition to game creation that allowed games to be restricted to players of a certain ranking or higher.


This is DEFINITELY something that should see the light of day. While the ranking system is geared towards not only getting results, but for those results to be against a certain calibre of player, there should definitely be a means of me saying "I want to play only against top 100 players," or "I want to play only against top 200 players'. Conversely, if you're a newbie you might want to play only against players in the lower echelons of the ranking list. The only means newbies have of achieving this at the moment is to entitle the game something like 'Newbies Only', but for sure this doesn't restrict better players from joining - and I've certainly been in one such game, while not a newbie, before.

If you are going to go ahead with this though, I would suggest you also need a button available which removes those restrictions, at any given point. New games waiting to start may be sitting at 6 players (out of 7) for some time. A button to remove these restrictions would let the final place be taken by anyone. Still, the majority of the players would be of a certain calibre, and so this would enable you to - if you are geared towards improving your ranking - give you the best shot at doing so.

Currently the only means of doing this is to check each player's stats beforehand, and this is both time consuming and tedious. Furthermore, there is no means for doing this in Anonymous Players games.

This has been discussed before but so long ago I can't even remember :) . Seems to me it might be time to discuss it again. You might want to open a separate thread for it, rather than have it hide in this one which was not actually about rating-banded games.

One point regarding what you posted though. The 'button' idea would almost certainly not be acceptable. The reason is if you join a game for a rated band, you expect it to be that rating band. If someone can then change it to allow other ratings to join and it starts, the people who joined thinking it was rating banded will not get what they signed up for. The general principle is that you cannot change the characteristics of a (non-Friends) game without the agreement of all the participants, to ensure people do not get caught out.
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Re: Ranking Points

Postby Mr.E » 21 Jul 2019, 12:00

Oh Cheese wrote:
marotta wrote:I like the ranking system. What would be nice is an addition to game creation that allowed games to be restricted to players of a certain ranking or higher.


This is DEFINITELY something that should see the light of day. While the ranking system is geared towards not only getting results, but for those results to be against a certain calibre of player, there should definitely be a means of me saying "I want to play only against top 100 players," or "I want to play only against top 200 players'. Conversely, if you're a newbie you might want to play only against players in the lower echelons of the ranking list. The only means newbies have of achieving this at the moment is to entitle the game something like 'Newbies Only', but for sure this doesn't restrict better players from joining - and I've certainly been in one such game, while not a newbie, before.

If you are going to go ahead with this though, I would suggest you also need a button available which removes those restrictions, at any given point. New games waiting to start may be sitting at 6 players (out of 7) for some time. A button to remove these restrictions would let the final place be taken by anyone. Still, the majority of the players would be of a certain calibre, and so this would enable you to - if you are geared towards improving your ranking - give you the best shot at doing so.

Currently the only means of doing this is to check each player's stats beforehand, and this is both time consuming and tedious. Furthermore, there is no means for doing this in Anonymous Players games.

Dipsy's gone through one of the problems of this. There are others... which is a shame because an Elo-like system is built to reward people for playing against similarly rated players. It should be in place with the site's scoring system.

The problem with your suggestion, Cheese, is that it doesn't matter what place someone has in the rankings - it matters what the ratings of the players involved are. It probably shouldn't make that much of a difference but it might. For instance, an automated system might allow someone who created a game play against anyone within a 250 point variance of them. If I'm on 1000, players could join the game who have ratings between 1250 and 750 points.

The difficulty is in filling games, potentially. For this to mean anything close significant, the range of points allowed has to be fairly narrow. You'd find players in mid-ranking would have a decent choice, but those towards the top and bottom of the ratings would have fewer potential players. This is then exacerbated by the other options on offer. This could be helped by limiting those options for rated games (which would make the ratings as a whole much more reliable as a guide, by the way) but there seems to be no appetite for that.

To make it work to fill games, then, the range of ratings would need to be comparatively wide... which defeats the object.

Another problem is that, for each variant that has it's own ratings list, it would be the ratings for that list which would be involved. That's fine, but what about those games that employ a number of different variants? That would mean defaulting to a general rating, or a broad rating, that might be of little meaning to the game being played. Again, defeating the object to some degree or another.

Finally, there is the Ambassador system. It should be that the top rated players are also Ambassador level, certainly in the Standard ratings. But this isn't true the further down the ratings you go. There will be a number of Ambassador level players who don't have spectacular ratings who, with the imposition of a ratings range may not be able to get the games they want.

It could be that the two systems were used in an either/or game creation option - you choose to create an Ambassador-only game or a game with a ratings range - or neither! - and the game still be rated. But this simply introduces yet another variance between rated games.

This probably means that a ratings range and the Ambassador status don't work well together. So it probably comes down to which you'd rather have: games which are more meaningful to the scoring system or games that increase enjoyability, which is what the Ambassador system must be about. As I don't worry very much about scoring or ratings, I know which I'd choose, frankly.

The ideal would be some sort of ratings-range, but there would need to be a huge change in how the site operates if it was to be introduced, I think, and I'm not sure that change would do much for the site that would improve it.
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