Real answers from administrators needed

  • @administrators

    Dear administrators,

    I watched the forum and noticed that you avoid answering the questions that really need answered, not trivial questions that you provide answers.

    As has been mentioned many times there are problems that make the game to be an unpleasant experience. So in the lines below I will address a few questions, but also some suggestions, which we kindly ask you to provide timely responses, that I think the whole community wants to hear.

    1. The biggest issue is that of quitters. Are you going to do something about this and what? But something that it would actually work and discourage quitting. Right now the only thing to do is to finish the game with the AI and then block that person because I don't think reporting them solves anything. But blocking all those people, I am afraid at some point I would have so many blocked that it would be hard to find people to play with.
      The solution is very simple and I don't get how it was not done from the begining:
    • cut ELO from QUITTERS
    • give ELO to those who finnish the game ... how can you punish those who are not quitting and not the quitters???
    • block the quitter to play another game for 1,2,3,4 hours ... you decide!
    • I do not agree with banning someone for quitting. But the ones above are sure enough reasons to discourage quitters.
    1. ELO system. I have mentioned this in another post, but in short: in any given case, if you win 4 games out of 5, so you have 80% win ratio, and your ELO after those 5 games is not + ELO, then the formula you are using is just plain wrong! (4 games won with 3 ELO and 1 game lost with -12 ELO = 0 ELO). Are you going to do something about this? If there is an auto-match I don't get to pick whom I am playing against, and why lose ELO gained in 4 games, for 1 game maybe lost on the last turn on a bad dice??? Does that reflect my skill as a player? I think not. A much better ranking would be on a win ratio or just number of games won.

    2. Improved statistics. In Play Catan there is a whole menu where you can see your whole history. All the games played and scores, the players you played against, etc. Will you do something like that here? Right now we have just a rudimentary ELO list.

    3. In game statistics. We are asking for this for a while now. It is helpful late in the game to see what numbers come up more often, and what is most effective to block ... for example.
      Will there be any?

    4. In Play Catan the game ends when the winning player ends his turn. That means that you can finish a game with 14 pts (take army, longest road and 1 settlement gets you from 9 pts to 14 pts). Why end the game when you use 3'rd robber, if there is more you can do? A 14 pts win is rare and should be allowed if you can get it. Maybe + ELO for something like this, because this actually reflects skill, not the formula you have.

    5. The blank wooden table bug. We have no choice but to quit the game and start a new one, but I think that cuts Karma, because is taken as quitting the game. Are you going to fix this?

    It is important for me to have answers to this questions. If you solve this issues, then the whole experience would be a fun one. If things go on like this, let us know, so we can have no further expectations from you and find something better to do in our spare time.

    Thank you in advance for your much needed answers!

  • I agree that these problems are very serious. Admin is ignoring most of the things that are not game-bug related.

    ELO should be removed overall. A win rate would be much better indeed. Actually there is no good way to rate players reliably because sometimes players have bad dice luck or they just get blocked by other players. There is actually no need to rank players at all in this game. This only increases the amount of players who want to climb a meaningless ranking ladder. A skilled Catan player wins maybe 30% of the games against similarly skilled players. This means that there will be very huge ELO hell problem in this game - the math just does not check out.

    In any way they should lose something. Karma is the thing that is being used now. In PlayCatan it was stars. The karma should be used by matchmaker when placing people in games with other players. This way non-quitters don't have to play with quitters. And if a player chooses to limit players by karma, then the matchmaker should never select players who have less karma than what is indicated. Currently the only option seems to be playing with anyone. No-one is using the custom game filtering.

    Seriously, anyone who opposes this is just making excuses to the laziness of the developers. This info would be super easy to write down.

    Winning the game is triggered before player ends his turn:
    I find that stupid too. A player should be able to do all the actions he can. In some tournament settings, the amount of points you get can influence your overall score. So, taking the longest road, largest army and spending everything to get as many points as possible should be allowed. I would not consider the player to be more skilled if he can pull off a move of getting loads of points in one turn. Just lucky that he got the correct resources in time and he saw that it allows him to win with a huge combo.

    Bugs overall:
    I guess some kind of negative-penalty-redeem system should be in place if the developers can not fix game breaking bugs.

  • @inadad102 and all who think alike regarding banning people will cut them short on games:

    As admins said there are 4000?+ registered users in this community - hardly doubt that you will even get to ban/block half of them.

    Adding to that A FACT - I have 80+ people in my blocklist, still getting a game within 1 MAX 2 min time.

    In short - dont be lazy and think only about yourself, provide your input by reporting and blocking people to make this feature work, quitters pay and make this community better.

  • @mrolimpia112 you are giving wrong numbers. Or maybe you know something I don't.

    "We are hosting (depending on the weekday) about 7K to 9K useres per day.

    Our users play about 3700 to 4200 multiplayer matches excluding the custom matches (because they don´t use the matchmaker). This means that every 2,5 - 3 minutes a multiplayer games is started."

    Still, if you block enough "right" people you will damage your chances of finding a (good) game. People spend on average 1 hour playing on CU. These players would also mostly play in the same time-frame each day. If you block everyone who play during the same hours than you it is enough to effectively block yourself out of the games. The administrator also said the block list wasn't meant to be used to block a lot of players.

    Note: This is a very rough approximation since the numbers are about daily players - most players likely play only once or twice a week. Overall it is a worst-case scenario.
    8000/24 ~ 333 - this many people would be online at the same time as you. If you block 80 of them... About 20% of the available players (at the time) are blocked.

    I don't think blocking players should be the filter for making fair games. The karma system should be enough. If the administrators could get their stats systems working it would help a lot.

    Quitters will never learn. Creating a new account takes only 5 minutes. The only way to benefit good players is to give them a private-ish queue. Everyone starts at 3 karma stars. Finishing games gives points. Enough points, you get another star. People at 5 karma stars never play with anyone who has less than 4 stars. Even if you make a new account, you can not play with players who never quit (5 stars).
    But since using the matchmaker is so messed up, everyone currently has to choose the quick match option which means that the matchmaker still decides and can eventually choose to place you in a game with quitters.

  • I was lazy enough to check that post.

    Still what I said is true to me - blocked and will keep blocking quitters and so far it has not affected my games in a bad way. On contrary I am getting less games which ends by quitting.

    Now the only issue I am facing is before mentioned players who have high ELO due to abusing the system at the same time no adequate skill.

    So you can do all the bickering or math in the world but what I say is true for me.

  • @ mrolimpia

    To report a quitter I have to finish that game playing against AI. Also I am deprived of gaining ELO points. Say what you want but the current system is crafted perfectly for quitters not for fair players. We can argue between ourselves for as long as we want, and get nothing out of it. This is why I want the administrators to answer those simple questions and suggestions.

  • @inadad102

    Well no... finishing the game vs AI is your choice. Pretty much only thing which changes if you will choose to do so is gain in experience other parameters are not affected either you finish the game after quitter or leave.

    As soon as you get to the main menu you can use friends section to report and block the quitter.

    So it is not all that bad.

  • Are you sure you don't lose karma when you quit after someone else has quit?

  • Yeah I guess admins mentioned that one. Karma and ELO are affected only if game is human players only.

  • "Karma and ELO are affected only if game is human players only" - well, the game started as human players only. After seeing how bad the development has been then I would imagine that it would be the case that you quitting still counts as quitting an all human players game. When it comes to karma, ELO and other live statistics, I do not trust the current system at all. Probably not tested enough, won't work reliably.

    The turn timer does not start for every player - why would the similar event based effects work either?

  • administrators

    Mostly all of the points you mentioned have been discussed here in the forums in one way or another:

    1. We are currently implementing automated punishments for leaver and staller (these implementations are rather complex and we need to test them in great detail to know they work properly).
      The punishments include:

    ELO deduction when leaving the game (it will be as if the player lost the game)

    Remaining players will gain ELO as if they had finished with all remaining players

    We rework the Timer so it won´t be possible to stall a game

    If reported intentional quitters will be banned from the game depending on the number of violations (the same as it is now)

    1. It seems like there is an misunderstanding on how ELO works. You won’t gain/loose the same amount of ELO points every time you loose or win a game. It always depends on the opponents (and their ELO).The example you mentioned is possible but only if you loose against opponents with a significant lower ELO. Other games (e.g. competetive Multiplayer games) also use ELO-systems to rank their users. Some of them hide them behind ranks like (silver, gold, platinum and so on) but they are all based on ELO rankings. We are confident that this is the right way to rank players in Catan.

    2. We have plans for further and more in-depth statistics but we also found that these statistics are mostly used by a small fraction of users. None the less it is our gal to provide them. But as for now we are focussing on more relevant parts of the development.

    3. Live in game statistics are a more complex issue. When you are saying that you can adapt your strategy based on that info, i would say that this only partly makes sense. Since you can´t tell what is rolled next the knowledge of past rolls isn´t really that useful. Don´t forget the past rolls don´t affect the future rolls!

    4. We clearly stated that the game ends when you reached enough VPs in your turn. You can´t win “bigger” by obtaining more VPs. Also most other users feel like it is a bit of a show off when players drag out their victory by making moves even though they already won. That is why we are sticking to the way it is now.

    5. The upcoming Update includes a lot of fixes and reworks of the code. Therefore we are confident that this bug is gone for good.

  • @Administrator

    1. I suppose Karma is also affected if you quit a game.

    2. If ELO is the right way to rank players... How do you comment on a situations where all players sit at 9 points and they just wait until one of them gets the lucky roll to build the last VP. Is that really showing skill or just luck? Why do you potentially lose a lot of ELO when the end of the game is based on luck? There really is no need to rank players based on ELO. Or there should not be a public ranking since it would cause bad blood between players or encourage some to abuse the system and climb the ranking by any means necessary - playing with friends to boost each other.

    3. Good, please fix the bugs with actual gameplay. Although a win/lose or completed/left games percentage would be a much better statistic about players than ELO/karma.

    4. Live in-game statistics were a part of PlayCatan. There were 2 views - one about dice statistics (yes, I know it does not really matter) and the other one about how many resources each player has received/lost/used up to this point. This statistic could very well be used to have an educated guess about how well each player is doing. Also having that is a really good bonus.

    5. I guess this is OK. But I have seen some posts about how your game logic can not count the VPs at the end of your turn all the time. Someone cut off the longest road and you now have the longest road. The game won't count that as a win until you build another road. Probably there can be other cases as well. You really have to add a check in the end turn button to check whether the player satisfies the win condition. In that case, why not remove all other win-check events and make one check which would only work when you hit the end turn button? Much simpler. And is that really such a huge problem that a few players intentionally spend all their resources during their last turn? You have much larger problems with quitters.

    6. I hope so.

  • @Stroom on point 5 - yep I actually have seen people do that.
    For example had a case where person could have build a settlement but player choose to build a longest road so 2 points are awarded to him not 1, which affected me and placed in 3rd not in the 2nd I was at that point.

    Similar thing happened when person decided to trade all resources for 5th level development and again made me deconstruct mine - +2 to him, -2 to me, again dropped a place.

    So I would actually suggest that given ELO system is not affected to automatically end game if it is player's turn WHO ALREADY has enough VP to win the game.

  • In addition to the follow up questions:

    About 1.: That goes without saying Karma is the metric we use to determine if a layer is reliable in regards of finishing games. That’s why the value will be decreased if a plyer doesn´t finish a game.

    About 2.: Every system can be abused in one way or another and there will potentially be players that will use "unfair" methods to rank up. But we will watch the situation closely and react to irregular practices if we see them.

    The edge case mentioned here with 3 players sitting at 9 VPs waiting for the one roll to win the game isn´t really that common of a situation that it would have a great influence on an overall leader board on which thousands of players are listed on. The higher skilled players will maybe loose in this situation based on luck (or the lack of it) but he/she should be capable to win other games to make up for this one unlucky roll.

    You can´t eradicate the influence of luck from a game like Catan but neither is it possible to eradicate luck from almost every other game. Ask the Falcons about a catch of a certain guy called Edelman ;)

  • Stroom's comment about in-game statistics and how knowing " how many resources each player has received/lost/used up to this point" would be uber useful.

    I played a game this weekend where I had 22 pips to start (4, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11) and my opponent who ended up royally, and I mean royally, kicking our butts only had 17 (I think she slapped down 10 points before either one of us got to 4). She was out of the gait like a bat out of hell, and their seemed to have been nothing we could do to slow her down). It would have been great to see in-game whether we were playing a shitty game and re-evaluate from the thrashing live or whether her numbers were just repeating themselves like a broken Justin Bieber record.

  • 3-player games very often end in a one-sided fashion. I'd suggest playing with 4 players - it is more challenging.

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