RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

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Blackened
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RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by Blackened » Thu Aug 23, 2018 1:15 am

RAGL Season 5 has come to an end. No spoilers on how the results went down but I trust you can find them through these sources: You can always check on Netnazgul's vod's for the Path of the Hidden Master, Minions and Master's Semi final matches, SoSCared Masters final vod, or Fiveaces shoutcasts as he works through all the Masters playoff matches.



This season has been turbulent to say the least. A lot of unexpected drop outs shaped each division much differently than previous seasons creating a power vacuum as new challengers found themselves in unfamiliar territory. While it was a bit unusual the league itself endured and I dare say had more than enough exciting games. I feel that to say this season was a mistake or otherwise lackluster would be a wrongful assumption. I'll talk more on that later but first I wanted to take you a trip through my experience joining RAGL all the way to the present.



I started in season 2 of RAGL in Recruit A. I'd played plenty of CNC games growing up and spent a long time playing Cnc3/KW competitively as well as Starcraft 1 and 2. OpenRA was of course a very different beast and it took a long time to find the groove. In that season Smitty, Zaqzorn, Naigel, and Raymundo were also in my division. I played Smitty early on and he completely rolled over me. It wasn't even close. Only 2 spots got to minions with a 3rd spot playing in a tiebreaker from the other recruit division. Naigel was the 1st person I saw to really implement pillboxes everywhere (they were only 400$ then!). Lucky for me he forfeited before I had to face that slaughtering. SoScared made a shoutcast of my Raymundo match if you want to see just how bad I was back then. I got a very lucky split.


Fast Forward to the last match of the season against Zaqzorn, who at the time was 1 point behind Smitty and a stronger player than me. 2 Wins would get me the 3rd spot. A home win would give Smitty 1st place and securing a spot in the running for Path of the Hidden Master. Naturally I did the opposite of that, losing my host match and winning my guest match. Perhaps I gave Smitty the mercy of not playing New-to-OpenRA-LorryDriver for path. Regardless I found myself situated in 3rd waiting to face my opponent from the other division. Some of you may be able to guess who that was as back during that time he and I played constantly against each other on SoScared streams. It was Orb of course. He probably doesn't know but back then we were relatively even and once I knew I would have to face him I began training HARD to make sure I could win. Unfortunately someone in Minions dropped out and the one off match up was never to be.


Season 3 was a very off season for me. I started off 0-2 against Orb who had gotten a lot better than I had. I ended the season 0-2 against Smitty who had gotten crazy good. Both of them ended with identical scores securing 1st and 2nd in the division. Overall I was a lucky 7-7 slotting me into 4th and in line for the 2nd leg of PotHM. From the start of the season to the PotHM I think I only played season games. 14 Games over ~3 months does not keep your skills sharp and it showed. But once again when it became clear to me that I would have a post season match up I began practicing again. My opponent was Juicebox who had managed to reverse sweep Happy in a 0-2 comeback to win 3-2, one of the better playoff series I've seen to date. Juicebox became another victim of inactivity and when we finally had our match up. The rust ultimately cost him a promotion into masters. Still as the person who won that series after being behind 0-2 it felt really good especially after the abysmal season I had. I was sad when Juicebox didn't come back as I was sure seeing him in Season 5 Masters for a rematch would have been worthwhile.


Season 4 saw my 1st season in masters, against people like Lorry, Smitty, Orb etc, people who were very much way better than me and I knew it. Unfortunately, Season 4 saw the exit of SoScared as RAGL admin and I took up the mantle. I spent far too much trying to get the league running smoothly (With a huge help from Netnazgul) that I played even worse than in season 3. I ended 1 spot of above relegation which had Han not forfeited, I would undoubtedly been in. I once again lost both my matches against Smitty and Orb, though with the latter was because my spot had already been finalized and less to do with the skill gap :P . Season 4 as a whole though exceeded expectations. We saw a huge jump in skill in all levels and things looked really good going into season 5.


Then comes season 5. It started a bit late, and struggled to fill divisions at all levels. This was a great concern. Further, not only did it have a lot to prove from the previous season but It's easy to forget how good each division was supposed to be at the start. SoScared was back as a Master and had kicked my ass on stream just a few weeks before. Doomsday had graciously accepted a master's spot and was known for stealing games off players. Kazu had won PothM pretty handily and could go toe to toe with anyone. Happy had finally made it to masters. Anjew has literally always been a master, a feat that might often go overshadowed but still highly impressive. FiveAces had been practicing a lot and looked like he might take a shot for the top 4. Gatekeeper is and will always be scary. Then Smitty, who I was still 0-4 against and beat only a handful of times in regular matches, Orb, who had gotten so much better than me since the early days, Barf who I'd lost 0-2 last season and would rarely win against in any match, and lastly LorryDriver who needs no further introduction. I was looking proper screwed. All of these players could beat me.


Minions wasn't looking too much better either. Jvk, Warryker, Bulle, Craig Chirst, MechANIC, Dragunoff, Anykeyich, Netnazgul, Eskimo, Chewey(who also was a season 2 recruit who had gotten so much better), Sotsch, and Unano. All of these players were great in their own right. I knew I would have to play more RA then I ever had just to keep up or possibly fall back to recruit by season 7. I probably played more in 2 months training then I did in the entire previous 3 seasons combined. I Still managed to lose 0-2 against Orb (I'll have my day!) but I split with Barf and Lorry and finally took down the beast that was Smitty. I'm pretty proud that I ended up in the top 4 for playoffs and I personally found the playoffs extremely fun.


The point I wanted to draw from this is that this season was looking to be the best season we've ever seen in the competitive scene. There wasn't a player in Masters that couldn't steal a point from another player. Same with Minions. Recruits are always a slaughtering and I continue to look for ways to alleviate that. But the forfeits rolled in and the strikes were dealt out and in the end we ended with a very estranged group of players. I'll jokingly blame Ganon for this as he seems to be a black hole for forfeits :P. But the fact remains I don't think this season was a failure by any means, just a victim of unfortunate timing.


It seems pretty clear that some overhauls need to be made so that we can keep RAGL going because right now from what I've seen next season looks pretty dire. It takes a lot of effort to remain competitive through 3 months of a season, something both Orb and Gatekeeper professed on occasion and something I've experienced myself. There had to be a lot of lucky moments for me to even get where I am and I'm not sure if I would have the fortitude to battle uphill as much as I did had I not had that luck.


So I'm looking for options and ideas on how to fix this problem. RAGL has always taken so long because we're an international community. It's designed to be a low impact league but competitively we've grown so much from the start that it takes consistent training to keep up. Delays happen frequently because we all have our own lives to live and that doesn't always match up others. At the start of this season I had pneumonia. Having RAGL be a weekend tournament would have been really bad for me if I was sick during the event. Shortening the season might exacerbate scheduling problems but it may help players in that they don't need to devote so much time to training to remain competitive.


Net has suggested lowering the cap of players per division to something like 10 to shorten the season. Another suggestion was to have multiple opponents a week. RAGL could switch to something like a world cup format with group stages and knockout stages but that still relies on everyone being available at regular intervals and is still a lengthy process. SoScared is currently experimenting with a more traditional ladder for URA, if you haven’t already checked it out, do! However, I’m personally not a big fan of that style. You can play 500 matches or 10 and still end up in a similar spot. And without a semi rigid schedule I tend to be lazy in game finding. I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels that way. Lastly, playoff for Minions are going to be dropped. It may make sense to bring them back in some form if there are ever 2+ Minions divisions but currently they just feel unneeded. This of course leads to having playoffs in general. Round 11 saw 1 viable match up besides any delays. It would be a shame for a season to end 1, before the actual season was over because the last match played wouldn't effect the outcome and 2, only 1 match played as the season fizzled out. Playoffs for Masters guarantee 3-5 exciting games per match up at the end of the season.


This postseason discussion will need to be thoroughly vetted before Season 6 rolls around.

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3.Lucian
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by 3.Lucian » Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:38 am

Well, I'll add my 2c.

Ganon falsely claimed a no contact against me, after we had already spoken via email, following this the "powers that be" decided that instead of applying a strike for the games not played(as per the rules), that they would extend the time we had to play the round. Yeah. nah. GF.

That left a terrible taste in my mouth, and probably has something to do with the reason hes the blackhole for forfeits that you describe, if anyone else had a similar experience. Im not interested in playing another season with people like that or under rules which allow that.

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netnazgul
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by netnazgul » Thu Aug 23, 2018 4:23 am

3.Lucian wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:38 am
Ganon falsely claimed a no contact against me, after we had already spoken via email, following this the "powers that be" decided that instead of applying a strike for the games not played(as per the rules), that they would extend the time we had to play the round. Yeah. nah. GF.
Well, you fail to mention that you deliberately not played the mentioned game in the first place (or at least it seemed so). And then
"The league officials reserves the right to make the final call in disputed situations with the health of the league in mind".
We decided to give you both time to get your shit together and play the match eventually. Which you still didn't, so the strikes were applied. In the end the result was the same, so I don't understand what are you even complaining about.

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kyrylo
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by kyrylo » Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am

I have a few things to discuss about RAGL.

Viewer's POV:

1. Separate website is inconvenient.

* the new site can sometimes be down completely or just slow
* it looks abandoned (updates are super rare), and it seems like nobody develops it anymore
* it does not offer anything new. The old style (forum + a doc with game results) used to work just fine. However, I can see how a separate website *can* be better than the old way of doing things. That said, I think it failed to improve on what the forum already offers.

2. Poor advertising.

I haven't followed this season at all (I was occasionally checking results, though, but I am still not sure who won S05). This is partially because of [1] and partially because the season boundaries were unclear to me (when does it end?). It's hard to follow when you are not sure when players play their games. There were no or little insights throughout the season to highlight interesting games or events that occurred. Perhaps, this is because I still consider this forum the main source for OpenRA news (and the official website). Even if I am wrong, some occasional updates with links to some interesting events would've been helpful.

3. Too many drop-outs

Random drop-outs kill the vibe. I'm guilty of this myself, though, but I'm speaking from the viewer's POV here. So, you look forward to some great game and then one of the participants decides to drop-out. For example, the Master's division has been ruined since day 1 because SoS dropped-out without playing any games (or only a few). I remember was looking forward to those. Then it snowballed and many other players left.

4. There are too many divisions/players

It's nice that RAGL welcomes everybody but the problem is that lower divisions are not as interesting as the top ones. There's no intrigue there. I am not saying we should remove those but as a viewer, I don't find anything interesting in them, so maybe we could think of how to spice them up.

Player's POV:

I haven't participated in last 3 seasons, however, I can see the core mechanics seems to be the same up until today.

1. Blackened has rightfully mentioned that it's hard to stay competitive.

RAGL is just too long. I remember I had to wait for my game for 2 weeks or more, because of the delays and drop-outs. It kills my competitive mood. If I have a game, I want to be in form, but if the tournament lasts for months, you will obviously hit your downs, when you don't have time to play according to the round schedule (with me it was always my opponent).

Mapmaker's POV:

1. It's unclear how maps make it into RAGL, and how they drop out.

I have a strong interest in seeing my maps being played in RAGL (that's how selfish I am) but it seems like there are little chances of that because the selection process is a bit subjective. From what I noticed, RAGL maps are formed from those that people play outside RAGL the most. If you hang out on discord and play the game, your map has more chances to be included, too. I don't hang out there and barely play the game so it's hard for me to make people play my maps.

I know that there was community voting for the last map in the map pool last season, but it's just 1 map. The others were picked by the admins, if I am not mistaken. I think there should be some formalised process with regard to the map pool. I don't want to offer anything right off the bat because it's a topic for a separate post. However, my preference was always the same: there should be map rotation, so people don't play Sidestep every time.

The recent map design contest was a right move in my opinion. It sparked my interest in making maps because I saw that some maps could be included into RAGL.

2. Map selection process sucks.

If I am not mistaken, it's like this: player 1 selects their home map, player 2 selects their home map. As result, some maps are played more often than others. You can always select your favourite map for every round.

I would be inclined to change that, so that every round players play some new map. They cannot choose the maps but have to abide to the maps that were pregenerated for the current round. Therefore, Round 1 everybody plays Sidestep & A Nuclear Winter. Round 2 it's Map A & Map B. An alteration could be made to this: only first maps are pregenerated, the winner of the first map gets to pick the next map (or the loser). I feel like the Home and Away pattern works well for football but not for OpenRA.

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3.Lucian
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by 3.Lucian » Thu Aug 23, 2018 10:04 am

to be clear, most of my frustration was about ganon's dishonesty and the lack of anyone managing the league so much as batting a fucking eyelid at it.

Additionally, to add to Kyrylo's point no3.
it doesnt help the league's recruits bracket's in anyway by allowing any old euphoric noob to sign up.
Just cause they beat their younger brother at it every single time they played back in the day, and just discovered OpenRA and are "totally into it!", does not mean they are going to show up game after game when they are getting slaughtered 2/0 every time.
Last edited by 3.Lucian on Thu Aug 23, 2018 10:11 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Happy
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by Happy » Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:05 pm

As a radical suggestion, in my opinion it takes too long for top players to enter the league and get to masters. It took me 2 seasons, two seasons of slaughtering people not on my level and probably leaving a bad taste in their mouth and ruining their fun as it was clearly a miss match. Just look at RAGL S3 Recruit Beta and RAGL S4 minions to see what happens when you put a Happy and OMnom in with no leash and then look at this seasons recruits with ZXGanon and last seasons recruits with Kazu. I propose the opposite to Netnazguls 10 player slot. I think RAGL should have 20 players in each division.
This results in:

2 games a week to match current schedule means you should near enough always have a game each week. This solves Kyrylo's problem of long waits for opponents. If your schedule means throughout the entire season you cannot manage 4 maps a week then RAGL is not the competition for you and everyone else should not have to suffer for it - hence why I quit S5. If you want to seasons to be even shorter then you can bump it to 3 or 4 a week.

20 players has a more league feeling than 10-12 which feels more like an extended group stage. There will now be a clear show of skill between the bottom end, mid table and the top players. You can even keep your playoff (which for the record I think was and still is a terrible idea for example Unano losing a single map to Eskimo in a whole season and coming top but finishes 4th and could potentially miss out on Masters).

Less divisions, with the current player base you could have an invite division where anyone can join and then the main division which is a league for all the players like SoScareds current ladder. This means noob stomping is restricted to a single season. More incentive for new players to sign up because they might not be slaughtered 2-0 every week. As well it is more appealing for the top players just joining, I know personally that the grind through Recruits and Minions was a boring one.

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JOo
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by JOo » Thu Aug 23, 2018 6:16 pm

kyrylos "Viewer's POV" sums it up for me. every point

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FiveAces
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by FiveAces » Thu Aug 23, 2018 6:35 pm

kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
(...) There were no or little insights throughout the season to highlight interesting games or events that occurred. Perhaps, this is because I still consider this forum the main source for OpenRA news (and the official website). Even if I am wrong, some occasional updates with links to some interesting events would've been helpful. (...)
To be fair, NetNazgul went out of his way to provide a frontline report for every single week, effectively delivering on what you asked for while also having to sit through at least ~30 replays a week.
I loved the flair, even though it was limited to the RAGL.com website.
Maybe we could think about better integration of the website for next season, it has lots of potential in my opinion.

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anjew
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by anjew » Thu Aug 23, 2018 6:50 pm

kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
4. There are too many divisions/players

It's nice that RAGL welcomes everybody but the problem is that lower divisions are not as interesting as the top ones. There's no intrigue there. I am not saying we should remove those but as a viewer, I don't find anything interesting in them, so maybe we could think of how to spice them up.
Happy wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:05 pm
Less divisions, with the current player base you could have an invite division where anyone can join and then the main division which is a league for all the players
I agree there should be less divisions and less confusing divisions (aka sub-divisions) but having these separate divisions, at least for some people, gives a goal or an aim to work towards. While people might be less interested in lower divisions, it does create hype for the higher divisions and having one conglomerate may make the league become oversaturated. Instead of waiting 2 weeks for a good match because of delays, you may be waiting 2 weeks because all the top players are matched up against players of much lower skill. It may also be an incentive for the more ambitious player but it can also effect those who don't want to face up against higher tier opponents until they feel they are ready.

I like the idea of an open division (not an invite division) to feed a spot or 2 into Div 2(minions) then it feeds into Div 1 (current masters). Another idea is to still run 2 divisions but instead of a third division, possibly a series of ODCs (one day competitions, like swiss, elim, groups etc) to feed the relegation of these divisions. This is pretty much how things are run in other gaming competitive scenes. The tournaments keep the hype alive, seed the players and feed the divisions with the extra players they need (with possibly more players in the case of drop outs).
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
1. Blackened has rightfully mentioned that it's hard to stay competitive.

RAGL is just too long. I remember I had to wait for my game for 2 weeks or more, because of the delays and drop-outs. It kills my competitive mood. If I have a game, I want to be in form, but if the tournament lasts for months, you will obviously hit your downs, when you don't have time to play according to the round schedule (with me it was always my opponent).
This could be considered a skill in of itself though. If you are unable to remain consistently at a high level do you really deserve to win the competition? I completely understand the sentiment though, the time between each match can vary quite substantially. I think 2 weeks was one of shorter gaps between games this season.
I feel that one of the reasons for the long gaps is that there is no incentive to complete the match on time while the rules almost encourage the delaying of matches. Perhaps one of the ways to nip this is the bud is to have a competitive/community time each week which, as well as giving information of previous matches, could become host to casting matches. This obviously takes a lot of involvement and a bit of a time commitment for the hosts but it could be quite profitable, not only for the league but also for the game as a whole. The only person who has undertaken such a role was SoScared, who held a stream every week. I feel it was some of reason for the original success of Red Alert European League and the first RAGL season.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
2. Map selection process sucks.

If I am not mistaken, it's like this: player 1 selects their home map, player 2 selects their home map. As result, some maps are played more often than others. You can always select your favourite map for every round.

I would be inclined to change that, so that every round players play some new map. They cannot choose the maps but have to abide to the maps that were pregenerated for the current round. Therefore, Round 1 everybody plays Sidestep & A Nuclear Winter. Round 2 it's Map A & Map B. An alteration could be made to this: only first maps are pregenerated, the winner of the first map gets to pick the next map (or the loser). I feel like the Home and Away pattern works well for football but not for OpenRA.
You may, or may not, remember this was kinda of what I did with the first TD league. I have mixed feelings about it. Its great for forcing players to test their skills on all maps, not just pick ones that they want to play. It will mean that every map gets played equally but it takes a lot of the control out of the players hands. I have a fondness for the map picking system that was implemented into the TDGL, primarily because it gives players the power to ban a map that they may know is someones strong suit. I could see it heading down a meta of banning all the shit maps but I feel it would give rise to more interesting matches on interesting maps. The downside is, of course, I could see the start of seasons being very messy with players that dont quite understand and it may be hard to efficiently set this up and not require administration intervention. The only way to do that (without resorting to forcing all players to use discord for the bot or have an admin present) is to have all the coin toss' generated when the fixtures are done up, but this is 1. more work for admin and 2. possibly nontransparent and open to abuse.
Happy wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:05 pm
You can even keep your playoff (which for the record I think was and still is a terrible idea for example Unano losing a single map to Eskimo in a whole season and coming top but finishes 4th and could potentially miss out on Masters)
That's kind of exactly why a playoff is done, 2 matches over 12 weeks is not an accurate show of skill to actually say someone is the best and worthy of the prize money. It does however tend to show clear seedings of roughly where players sit in the mix. It may not be fair to the player who dropped only one game but its equally unfair to the player who drops only 2 but is more skilled.
In proper european leagues, like the Premier League, they usually have cups etc. that run parallel to the league and help it act like a minor and major tournaments, RAGL does not have these benefits.


One of my personal complaints is the forcing of struck matches to be unplayable. This is anti-competitive behaviour, in my opinion, especially when its both the players who receive the strike. If both players agree to play the match, the match should still be considered valid and the player should still have the strike against their name. The intention of the strikes is to, non-verbally, tell a player to kick their arse into gear or face removal from the league. The punishment should be the strike itself (with threat of league removal), not the complete nullification of matches against players wishes.

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netnazgul
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by netnazgul » Thu Aug 23, 2018 7:43 pm

OK, that might be too much to answer on :P
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
Viewer's POV:

1. Separate website is inconvenient.
2. Poor advertising.
Unfortunately I tend to agree on this one. The website could have become an automated league management and advertisement platform, combined with a lot of stuff that is not possible through these forums. But we hit the problem that we needed a dedicated site maintainer for that who actually knows what he's doing there. Corrode filled the role at some point, but somewhat lacked the proper skills to work on the site engine, making what he could; I then had even less than that.

As for the league structure - yes, it tends to be less regular, but there is no other way with the current format, because it is hard to properly fix match dates between 2 players themselves, and then things might change and the match might be postponed, so advertising it long before will fail most of the time. The post-game coverage and occasional streams are the only options available in this regard.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
There were no or little insights throughout the season to highlight interesting games or events that occurred.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
3. Too many drop-outs
Well, nothing much to do with that one - it's just a downwards spiral, everyone leaves due to everyone else leaving. We cannot force people to play in the league, and it turns out they take the participation not serious enough, forfeiting in the process.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
4. There are too many divisions/players
1. Blackened has rightfully mentioned that it's hard to stay competitive.
First one I don't agree with, cause players don't become high tier in a day, it is an ongoing process, and the league structure just goes with that. Though I agree with that it feels too prolonged now, the overall "pace" of players' competitiveness slightly increased since Season1 it seems, so we definitely need to look at shorting the seasons span.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
Mapmaker's POV:
1. It's unclear how maps make it into RAGL, and how they drop out.
Currently it's purely subjective. For the first 3 seasons it was just SoScared's fine choice (sometimes not :lol: ), then it fell for the group of people (Blackened, .1, recently myself).
I too think that we might expand on popular vote for maps. Saying that though, you should take into consideration that RAGL is about players and games between them more than it is about maps. So, certain [subjective] standards are applied on maps, and if we are to just allow players to vote on maps, we quickly lose the map pool integrity. The most recent example is The Great Divide which made it into the map pool of S05, yet it was played only several times, one of them due to predefined pick for the playoff matches. This map wouldn't have made it into the pool through our picking, but made it nevertheless, and made the map pool less played and polarized in the end.
Very nice example for the recent season was Lorrydriver's map selection streamrun, which provided us with as much as 70% of the map pool through a thorough selection process. This year's Map Design Contest will probably help with that as well, and is planned for that, though we haven't run that much proper testing and feedback as we wanted, but I'm hoping on MDC Jury grinding a list on Competitive category.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
2. Map selection process sucks.
I like this idea of one of the maps being fixed, that's something to consider for the future.
3.Lucian wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 10:04 am
to be clear, most of my frustration was about ganon's dishonesty and the lack of anyone managing the league so much as batting a fucking eyelid at it.
The sentence understanding eluded me, but I might agree on the point of some compromised decisions. Though everyone was frustrated with the forfeit count and the slacking behaviour of some of the players. Unano and ZxGanon in particular expressed it several times that their opponents were very uncooperative at times, setting schedule and then not honouring it; your match against Ganon was the last one in that streak, so I somewhat understand his behaviour.
Happy wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:05 pm
As a radical suggestion, in my opinion it takes too long for top players to enter the league and get to masters. It took me 2 seasons, two seasons of slaughtering people not on my level and probably leaving a bad taste in their mouth and ruining their fun as it was clearly a miss match.
Well, in FA structure you don't just pour money into Conference club and expect it to get into the Premier League just because you have a stadium and a pack of world class players, still need to grind through the system ;)
Though doubling down the match count per week might be considered, need also to take into account that any unforseen IRL event will also come as double now. And then it will come down to something of 10 matches per player to be played in the last delay round. So I'd be careful with compressing the schedule too much.
FiveAces wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 6:35 pm
Maybe we could think about better integration of the website for next season, it has lots of potential in my opinion.
It does, but as long as we don't find a php apprentice to work on it, website is to be newsline only for the time being.
anjew wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 6:50 pm
One of my personal complaints is the forcing of struck matches to be unplayable. This is anti-competitive behaviour, in my opinion, especially when its both the players who receive the strike. If both players agree to play the match, the match should still be considered valid and the player should still have the strike against their name. The intention of the strikes is to, non-verbally, tell a player to kick their arse into gear or face removal from the league. The punishment should be the strike itself (with threat of league removal), not the complete nullification of matches against players wishes.
I remember a lot of [internal and external] debates on this matter, but there was a double-edged sword of exploiting other implementations. With possible league restructuring whole delay/strike system might need some overhaul as well.

Blackened
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by Blackened » Thu Aug 23, 2018 8:13 pm

netnazgul already replied and addressed many of the same points but I'll leave mine up just in case they help expound further details.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
1. Separate website is inconvenient.
2. Poor advertising.
I think both of these are the same. The Website was created when it became clear the old forums were going to go down and we weren't sure if any new forums would come up. These forums are here now and I'm fine dismantling RAGL.org in favor of hosting everything here. One thing the website did have going for it was the frontline reports by net which would help with many of your sub points.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
4. There are too many divisions/players
This sounds less like too many divisions and simply not enough interesting divisions. It will always be fact that lesser skilled players will produce less interesting games. Maybe if someone shoutcasted lower division matches as both a caster/coach it could make those individual matches more interesting while also improving player skill? That's kinda what happened to me when SoScared casted my raymundo match. I watched it, listened and learned.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
1. It's unclear how maps make it into RAGL, and how they drop out.
This past season was actually largely influenced by LorryDriver's map contest. The admins discussed which maps we thought were good to make the cut. We even offered on the website anyone who wanted us to check further on different maps. Only Wippie replied, but maybe that was because few used the website. Unano also pushed to have borrowed time back in. Then at the end we gave participants a chance to vote in 2 more maps from a selected pool. The season only had 2 returning maps from the previous, 1 which was borrowed time and that was voted in by participants.
kyrylo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:53 am
2. Map selection process sucks.
I think this deserves more conversation. We talked about TDGL style but that makes the season a possible 33% longer matches wise and disrupts how points are dispensed/tiebreakers.

The downside to not picking your own maps is of course playing maps that turn out bad gameplay, koth2 in previous seasons. Or maps where it becomes apparent there is only 1 real winning strategy, river of gold, Agenda, etc.
anjew wrote: One of my personal complaints is the forcing of struck matches to be unplayable.
I think this could be look into further too, at least for 2 players receiving a strike. Although for 1 player strikes I'd find it unlikely the other side would agree to play. There's a lot of complications with 1 player strikes replaying matches.

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Happy
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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by Happy » Thu Aug 23, 2018 8:37 pm

netnazgul wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 7:43 pm
Well, in FA structure you don't just pour money into Conference club and expect it to get into the Premier League just because you have a stadium and a pack of world class players, still need to grind through the system ;)
Not comparable, firstly this is a single player game not a team game and RAGL hasn't existed since 1888 with an established hierarchy of players. If you had world class players at a conference club then they would get instantly picked up by top flight teams, hence they skip to the top where they belong ;)

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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by Smitty » Thu Aug 23, 2018 11:37 pm

Agree with everyone that says we need a shorter season. I'd like to see something along the lines of what GSL does, which goes from a group play to single elimination rounds. It's not exactly like the world cup as group play is basically a mini best-of-three double elimination bracket. Players aren't guaranteed to play all three other's in their group.

This would likely require players to be able to get everything done in a weekend tournament format for group play. Then switch to weekly matches for the single elimination rounds. RAGL would go from a 4 to 5 month slog to a 3 to 4 week tournament. Would be challenging but I think the hype of playing in a tournament like this would see less people drop.

___

Personally the change I want to see most is for RAGL to take the lead on banning the obvious use of third party macros. Nothing has been more frustrating for me than facing off against players that have jumped from minions level to masters level play without putting in the same amount of work.

This rule would be easy to define and enforce. If someone's APM has obvious spikes, especially when their full time infantry production kicks in, it's clear they're using a third party macro. We're talking APM jumping instantaneously by more than 30 at a time. I'm sure there are ways for these players to muddle the waters and get around rules by toning down their macros, but all of these methods as far as I know involve pressing macro buttons more often ... like the rest of us.

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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by james.bong » Fri Aug 24, 2018 12:21 pm

netnazgul wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 7:43 pm
It does, but as long as we don't find a php apprentice to work on it, website is to be newsline only for the time being.
It would be great to get an idea of what the website wants to achieve - a list of formal requirements. I'm a web developer by profession and specialise in C#.NET and a particular open source content management system. I don't participate in ragl and don't consider myself much of a player either, but do enjoy OpenRA as a viewer of streams and competitions. I did toy around with the idea of creating something off the bat, but then the ragl.org site appeared and I dropped the idea.

I wouldn't personally go down the php and wordpress root as to be honest they don't really interest me, but to get an idea of what is wanted from the website would be good to get an idea of the work required.

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Re: RAGL Season 5 Post Season Discussion

Post by SirCake » Fri Aug 24, 2018 2:59 pm

@blackened @netnazgul @.1 call in a committee and hand the man two lists: one with what you absolutely need, and one ordered wish list :) And do it fast, before he retracts his offer. ;)

bong, maybe you can even work together with the author of the ragl.net site?

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