Balance

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-Nick-
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Joined: Wed 27. Nov 2013, 01:08

Balance

Postby -Nick- » Sat 8. Apr 2017, 16:34

Hello all,

I wanted to start a topic on 'balance' to see some views on this whilst expressing my own opinions. Some players are obsessed with it and shame others for it. In my experience players will shame if you don't and shame if you do. Today i played spankjox and already changed once for balance, and then a player in disguise leaves to spec because their team is winning then says 'teams' when numbers went uneven. All of a sudden I’m expected to change by a different player and get called out for it by the player who left, 'Nick don't care' even though i already changed beforehand and meanwhile they're sitting in spec and then inevitably leave the game all together.

I just want to say that these are my opinions and i do not expect players to agree or feel like I’m telling you how to balance. Players should balance by management’s guidelines, not mine. Anyway,

What baffles me is players expect a game to be balanced right down the last second, If the numbers are even why? Why is this encouraged or preferred? In my opinion if a game is coming into its last minutes no one should be balancing and switching teams, if a team is winning then they deserve to be after 25 minutes of playing. Not to introduce other players to the teams and tamper with it, or postpone a lost. It's detrimental to the flow of the game, which in the last few minutes should not be hampered with. Not every game should be the full time length and perfectly balanced with a number of nodes, that's boring. That seems to be what players and management want and i do not understand it. Shit happens, if the team you’re on gets whipped then look at your playing and see how you can improve, Why was it so quick? Where did they attack from? Which nodes did they attack? You will not become a better player or provide a learning experience if everything is balanced.

Everybody seems to forget that we have a balancer to do a few things for us, and it's pretty good. If teams are uneven by 2 then it will change a player, might take a minute but it will change. It changes players based on 'skill' i don't know what it bases skill on but it works. For instance if a quick round happens then the balancer will change a player or 2 the next round. Players forget about this. Also, If you shout 'Teams' maybe you should change (if you can) seeing as though you've spotted it. If you're not willing to balance yourself then do not expect others to.

In my opinion players should not balance for the following reasons:

If there is not an obvious stack of experienced players on one team and your team is losing. This is especially true for when the game is near an end; deal with it your team lost.
You’re personally having a hard time against the other team. That is not a balance issue.

By all means if you think that balance is needed then try to do it yourself, but please do not expect me or any other player to do it for you.

I used to balance frequently and just because. Trust me when i say that when i switch or other certain players switch, and depending on the map it can cause way more imbalance than what is already present. That’s why in my opinion i think in most cases it's best to let a game run its course with no interference apart from the balancer in place. That’s what it's there for.

I care about this server and the games played here, I do not want to be labeled otherwise. As I’ve said before I will balance but only when I feel I need to and not because you think I should.

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Miauz55555
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Balance

Postby Miauz55555 » Sat 8. Apr 2017, 18:53

Thanks for your post.

There are always some players which will wine and don't do the thinks they pray themselve. But overall the players on CEONSS are doing a nice job when it comes to balance a game.

The team balancer after a quick round is doing a very good job. And as long no one left or joins after a quick round it's really fine.

I also think that the players which are on the top of the list shouldn't change the team bacause it will unbalance thinks extreamly. On some maps it is enough to have one player more to change the game. Also a bot can be helpfull, when you command it to "cover me" it will link you when you use the link gun and it has enough amo.

You are doing fine Nick, thank you.
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EmanReleipS
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Balance

Postby EmanReleipS » Sun 9. Apr 2017, 10:58

I will drop my 2 cents here. Btw, this is not an official admin position, just my personal observations/ideas.

Balance really is a complicated issue. I often get flak for it when I switch to the losing team and manage to turn the game. Sometimes I've helped turn a game and then another admin joins the other team to help it against my team and it looks as if I joined the winning team. :dunnosoz:

The issue with balancing is that we want balanced games that are enjoyable instead of balanced games that are stalemates. For me what makes a balanced game enjoyable is when the game goes back and forth between the two teams, i.e. red will be in the lead, then blue, then red again. This is especially the case when both cores are open and there is a race between the teams for who can destroy the enemy's core first.
I like those kind of matches the most, but they are rare. I think what is necessary for them to be able to happen in the first place is having a node layout with at least two separate paths to the other team's core so that in theory both cores can be under attack at the same time. I've tried to implement this in all of my edits.

I have discussed balancing with some seasoned players on teamspeak before and we thought of some balancing "guidelines" for ourselves:
Minutes 0-10: We should always balance
Minutes 10-20: We can balance, but don't need to
Overtime: No balancing
Basically that way we would avoid having a game end too early but also prevent it from dragging on for too long or snatching the victory from the team that clearly deserved it (esp if said team had been losing all match and had finally turned it). I think an exception to the "no balancing during overtime" should be if many players have left the losing team and the balancer is slow to switch players.

I haven't managed to keep to this guideline but I think we should consider something like this. I think it is hard to find the right balance (pun intended) when it comes to balancing, so I hope this topic can spark a healthy discussion. :thumbup: Thanks for bringing it up, Nick!
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Dalyup!
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Balance

Postby Dalyup! » Sun 9. Apr 2017, 12:58

I mostly agree with you, Nick. No one is under any obligation to balance if they do not want to. I think we have this rule and these guidelines as a means of encouraging competitive and, ultimately, enjoyable games. A one-sided stomp is rarely entertaining for either side. You could make the argument that an endless stalemate is hardly exciting either, but I believe that is more due to map issues.

But I digress, the aim is to have matches everyone can enjoy. When a game is "unbalanced", it is usually because of two issues:

1) One team has more players than the other;
2) One team has a greater number of skilled players than the other;

For #1, it's fairly simple. If one team has 2+ players than the other, switch the most recently joined player to the other team. I think no one has a problem with this process as it seems fair enough on the whole.

For #2, it becomes more subjective. What makes a "skilled" player, after all? I think it's obvious that some players are better than others at various aspects of the game, but the game's scoring system seems to do a roughly good job of scoring players on how helpful they have been in securing the objective of the game-mode (destroying the core). I imagine the EvenMatch mod uses this scoring system (the PPH, presumably) to balance the teams at the start of a game. We have a pretty good tool in making in creating balanced teams at the start of the game and I think we do not need to change anything there. Of course, players join and leave as the game progresses, it does not actively balance the teams during the game, no doubt because there would be balancing all over the place. That's when a player's discretion comes into play.

I think Ema's balancing guidelines are a good start for how things should be done. I do not think the last third/quarter of the game should have any balancing except in exceptional circumstances. I think if a team, whose players have been there the whole game, is winning (or about to win), then they should be allowed their victory. This is not to stop players who just to wish play - they should play if they want to, regardless of the conditions - it's more towards those who are trying to balance.

Perhaps as an optional addition to the guideline, a balancing-conscious player could initially spectate a game that is in its second half, rather than outright join, to see how the match is going and which team to join. This was suggested by Heinz many orbits ago and I agree it's a good idea.

I must admit, I rarely balance myself unless the other team is obviously getting crushed. I do this rarely because I know (not to sound arrogant) that I am one of those players who is capable of turning a game around, and/or I am somehow important in ensuring my team is winning at all (by constantly harassing a primary or whatever). I also only really do this at the start of first half of the game because I feel I have invested effort (sometimes significant effort) to make my team win. I think it would be unfair to me, and anyone else who put effort in the whole game to help their team win, to be expected to switch because they are "good". If they were to follow this religiously, they could be ping-ponged between each team the whole game as one team starts to lose. Indeed, on some maps, with certain player counts, or just in certain conditions, being "good" does not mean you can single-handedly turn a game. So, I agree with you, sometimes a skilled player switching can do more harm then good.
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widurr
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Re: Balance

Postby widurr » Fri 14. Apr 2017, 11:31

Fully agree with Dally here. It's exceptionally frustrating when your team was loosing the whole time, but somehow been able to push back an enemy and perhaps even gain control over one or two more nodes than the opponent, and THEN some skilled player joins the supposedly "loosing" team and crushes you all over again. Such a match usually drains my will to play for (at least) the rest of the day.
When I join a game, I always go as spectator first and then after getting to know the situation, I make the decision which team to join, or not join at all, cause at certain circumstances I (and all the other medium skill players) could be a game changer too (low player count, low skill players only, etc).

My thought was to prohibit new players joining in last half or third of a match. I personally wouldn't mind spending few minutes spectating (I already sometimes do by choice).

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GLoups!
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Balance

Postby GLoups! » Fri 14. Apr 2017, 17:10

widurr wrote:Fully agree with Dally here. It's exceptionally frustrating when your team was loosing the whole time, but somehow been able to push back an enemy and perhaps even gain control over one or two more nodes than the opponent, and THEN some skilled player joins the supposedly "loosing" team and crushes you all over again. Such a match usually drains my will to play for (at least) the rest of the day.
When I join a game, I always go as spectator first and then after getting to know the situation, I make the decision which team to join, or not join at all, cause at certain circumstances I (and all the other medium skill players) could be a game changer too (low player count, low skill players only, etc).

My thought was to prohibit new players joining in last half or third of a match. I personally wouldn't mind spending few minutes spectating (I already sometimes do by choice).


You think about the same thing as me, it reminds me -in additions- than a lot of matches are screwed up successively when a skilled player leave the match just after the message of the balancer right before the start (hope that's not intentionally).


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