Ruleset complexity discussion

Planning and discussing Freeciv Longturn gaming
qrtv
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Re: Ruleset complexity discussion

Postby qrtv » Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:17 pm

Well said Lexxie. Reducing the impact of strategic choice is pr. definition "dumbing down".

Corbeau wrote:Please explain what is a "strategic choice"? (No, not what the term means, but how it applies to this situation.)


I mean what strategy one decides to follow, which can be broken down to each single action in the game. Examples of these strategic choices in early game is how fast to settle, where to settle, what tiles to improve, what to research, were to explore. Each action is a choice. Reducing the consequences of these choices "dumbs down" the game. In the extreme case where choices doesn't matter anymore and all choices are equal, we can't talk about strategy anymore, because the essense of strategy is to make decisions that give superior results.

Corbeau wrote:So, "not reading the manual" is the only reason why someone makes early mistakes? Are you saying that early game has an absolutely straightforward winning path and the only way you can diverge from it is because you "haven't read the manual"?


I wrote "reading the manual, reading guides and practicing the start until they nail it.", not only "reading the manual". The serious mistakes comes from lack of knowledge of the game, the minor ones are unavoidable even for experienced players.

In the start there is basically two goals. 1. Getting more cities and 2. getting out of despotism. This can be said to be the "winning path" because if you don't do this, you won't win the game, but that does not mean that there isn't different ways of achieving this goal. I doubt anyone would say it's a bad thing that you have to expand and get more effective goverment to win the game. A very good way at becoming better in the game is to practice alone until one can reach certain measurable goals by a certain turn, and learn how different decisions affect reaching these goals.

Corbeau wrote:
qrtv wrote:Because these pure strategy games aren't made anymore, and freeciv-web and now isotrident being the only online mulitplayer communities for such games, these two communities become special niches that are absolutely needed

I hope you have attached weights to you feet, I'd hate to see you float into stratosphere and suffocate for lack of oxygen. When your self-complacency bloats like that, uplift can become a real problem.


It would be nice if you could do a real argument instead of doing an ad hominem (are you sure you aren't projecting?). If you disagree that the strategy games haven't changed since mid 90s, or that freeciv-web and isotriden aren't needed, please state so and state you reasons for believing so.


I doubt there will come anything good from this thread so I will abandon it, unless you actually contribute to something productive. As I mentioned earlier, "you would be better off to criticize the principles, propose own principles for game (or ruleset) design, criticize the use of design principles for games or explain what is wrong with the strategy vs simulation-dichotomy rather than to just state it annoys you."

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Corbeau
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Re: Ruleset complexity discussion

Postby Corbeau » Fri Sep 14, 2018 7:17 am

You guys keep repeating how qrtv defeated me, I think this is at least the fifth time. If that is your only argument, I rest my case because your whole idea is hanging on repeating how *I* don't have experience and *I* can't play the game properly. Seriously, is that all you can do? Ever heard of the phrase "addressing the topic"? Well, I hope repeating my name gives you some sort of sexual pleasure because if not, you are wasting a lot of time on someone who apparently has no clue and is generally irrelevant.

And I suggest you create a shortcut on your keyboard, have one or two keypresses paste the word "Corbeau", it may save you a lot of typing.

I do admit that the fact that qrtv joined at turn 27 and ended up second is a good indicator, but far, far from proof. Simply because:
1. it was a test game
2. it was a slow start with people trickling in very slowly, with a lot of empty space and many idlers
3. it happened only once, so, the official phrase is "proof is anecdotal"
4. in a game like multiplayer Freeciv the key thing is actually getting good allies and securing your back so that you can defeat your enemies one at a time; starting early is actually secondary

Anyway, after all this calling out, Lexxie managed to make her point clear (I think) with "attempts to eliminate Golden Path by making 'all possible paths more equal' almost always has the effect of reducing 'strategic ceiling'". Unfortunately,
1. I don't think this has any relevance to discussion because no ruleset is trying to "make all possible path more equal"
2. With no real explanation, the claim that "this reduces the strategic ceiling" is just an opinion, everyone has one and we know what other thing everyone has, and in this case I believe this other thing to have more depth than the quoted opinion. Simply, if only one path requires strategic thinking, then I don't see how more available paths can reduce the need for strategic thinkging. On the contrary, you need to adjust it for the given path, meaning, you have to know the path you're travelling just as if there was only now. Only, now you need to know more because your enemies may be using the other paths so it's good taht you know their weaknesses. Sorry if this sounds like explaining things to a four-year-old, it seems to be necessary here.

Now to qrtv's answer, which has slightly more content:

qrtv wrote:Reducing the impact of strategic choice is pr. definition "dumbing down".

And we all agree on that because it's a no-brainer. I'd even call it a truism. Yes. Also in the news: sky is blue. Except when it isn't. Thank you. Can we move forward already?

Corbeau wrote:Please explain what is a "strategic choice"? (No, not what the term means, but how it applies to this situation.)


I mean what strategy one decides to follow, which can be broken down to each single action in the game. Examples of these strategic choices in early game is how fast to settle, where to settle, what tiles to improve, what to research, were to explore.

THANK YOU. Now, how do different rulesets have more or less choice in this regard? Are you saying that civ2civ3 rulesets are reducing options with "how fast to settle, where to settle, what tiles to improve, what to research, were to explore"? How so?

I don't know if "settler cost is 2 population" is core civ2civ3 feature, maybe even not, but it's used in Longturn. I'm not a real fan of it, but my objection is that it actually slows the game donwn, not reduce options. It actually forces you to make another decision, makes more paths equally feasible and actually forces you to make an additional choice, requires additional thinking, so quite the opposite of "dumbing down".

Corbeau wrote:So, "not reading the manual" is the only reason why someone makes early mistakes? Are you saying that early game has an absolutely straightforward winning path and the only way you can diverge from it is because you "haven't read the manual"?


I wrote "reading the manual, reading guides and practicing the start until they nail it.", not only "reading the manual". The serious mistakes comes from lack of knowledge of the game, the minor ones are unavoidable even for experienced players.

Fair enough. But, again, this has the same amount of practical content for the purpose of this discussion as saying "sky is blue". So you either elaborate or... you don't.

In the start there is basically two goals. 1. Getting more cities and 2. getting out of despotism. This can be said to be the "winning path" because if you don't do this, you won't win the game, but that does not mean that there isn't different ways of achieving this goal.

And, again, the LT games have added another path: Despotism -> Pyramids -> Republic, which actually increases the number of choices. And, same as always, once you make the choice about the path, you have to go down that path well. So you'll really need to elaborate a bit more how is this "dumbing down".

Corbeau wrote:
qrtv wrote:Because these pure strategy games aren't made anymore, and freeciv-web and now isotrident being the only online mulitplayer communities for such games, these two communities become special niches that are absolutely needed

I hope you have attached weights to you feet, I'd hate to see you float into stratosphere and suffocate for lack of oxygen. When your self-complacency bloats like that, uplift can become a real problem.


It would be nice if you could do a real argument instead of doing an ad hominem (are you sure you aren't projecting?). If you disagree that the strategy games haven't changed since mid 90s, or that freeciv-web and isotriden aren't needed, please state so and state you reasons for believing so.

I wouldn't dream of performing a full analysis of how a whole game genre changed in 20 years. Also, if you can't read properly, then best if we put this discussion to an end. Projecting? I didn't claim that something I've done is "the only existing X in the world". And I'm on a high horse?

I doubt there will come anything good from this thread so I will abandon it, unless you actually contribute to something productive. As I mentioned earlier, "you would be better off to criticize the principles, propose own principles for game (or ruleset) design, criticize the use of design principles for games or explain what is wrong with the strategy vs simulation-dichotomy rather than to just state it annoys you."

How about "criticising the mental acrobatics performed while trying to use general truisms to prove a particular point"?

Wahazar
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Re: Ruleset complexity discussion

Postby Wahazar » Fri Sep 14, 2018 10:39 am

Overall discussion is very interesting, pity that it is cluttered by personal stuff.
As a newcomer which doesn't know who i who, let me jump into meritum.
qrtv wrote: Each action is a choice. Reducing the consequences of these choices "dumbs down" the game. In the extreme case where choices doesn't matter anymore and all choices are equal, we can't talk about strategy anymore, because the essense of strategy is to make decisions that give superior results.

I think we should distinguish between "any decision is good, thus it is sandbox game" and "there are some alternate routes to superior results, not just one golden path".
The game which force only one obvious decisions path, seems to be boring for me.
Of course, even if all decision routes are equal, some are more equal than others ;)
Albeit it should depend subtle on seed of local conditions, for example given map yield smallpoxing to be more equal than others strategies, whereas other resources distribution induce megacities to be best choice.

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Corbeau
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Re: Ruleset complexity discussion

Postby Corbeau » Fri Sep 14, 2018 10:58 am

Wahazar wrote:I think we should distinguish between "any decision is good, thus it is sandbox game" and "there are some alternate routes to superior results, not just one golden path".
The game which force only one obvious decisions path, seems to be boring for me.
Of course, even if all decision routes are equal, some are more equal than others ;)
Albeit it should depend subtle on seed of local conditions, for example given map yield smallpoxing to be more equal than others strategies, whereas other resources distribution induce megacities to be best choice.


I... Why are you summing up my point of view so perfectly? It is making me look stupid for not being able to do it myself! :shock:

Now go away with your reasonable approach, young one, and let me insult my foes in peace! :D