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Author Topic: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]  (Read 121011 times)

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theory

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #100 on: July 03, 2012, 10:24:57 am »
+2

I'd like to add one point: WW's withdrawal, to my knowledge was independent of any decision we made.  Our subsequent attempts at compromise attempted to balance the letter of the rules, please everyone, and encourage WW to return to the match.  We were unsuccessful.
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DStu

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #101 on: July 03, 2012, 10:47:36 am »
+1

I continue to be amazed at how not understood this is.
Maybe that's because at least I don't really know what's going on, except point counter discussions...
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Polk5440

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #102 on: July 03, 2012, 10:57:20 am »
+2

Interesting. So now I'm curious -- Did anyone actually use the unofficial point counter during the tournament games (quals/semis)?

If I had seen a player using it (and knew about the one-sided change in display), I would have stopped playing right there and requested a restart without it since it seems to violate the tournament rule "Games must be played with randomly selected cards, no veto mode, identical starting hands, and with the official point counter enabled unless all players agree otherwise." On three of the four tournament days I actually did request restarts when people started games without the official point counter, the wrong seating order, or different starting hands (each time we just restarted with the correct parameters and same kingdom). If people did use the unofficial counter, I am surprised no one was challenged on it before the finals. Although I do see that since the unofficial point counter isn't explicitly mentioned in the rules (like veto mode is) that MAYBE a player can argue that it's not against the rules; however, it certainly seems to violate the spirit of "ex ante identical games for everyone" that the rules were trying to achieve.

Also, shouldn't the tournament admin have final say over how the rules are implemented and their interpretation?
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DStu

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #103 on: July 03, 2012, 11:00:12 am »
0

As in the official inofficial version you can at least allow your opponent to disable the point counter, you could just (try) to disable it. I saw WW doing this in one of the games. No need to restart, just take it away.  But you can disable the option to disable, and then the mess started (to my knowledge...).
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zxcvbn2

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #104 on: July 03, 2012, 11:11:23 am »
+1

Interesting. So now I'm curious -- Did anyone actually use the unofficial point counter during the tournament games (quals/semis)?

If I had seen a player using it (and knew about the one-sided change in display), I would have stopped playing right there and requested a restart without it since it seems to violate the tournament rule "Games must be played with randomly selected cards, no veto mode, identical starting hands, and with the official point counter enabled unless all players agree otherwise." On three of the four tournament days I actually did request restarts when people started games without the official point counter, the wrong seating order, or different starting hands (each time we just restarted with the correct parameters and same kingdom). If people did use the unofficial counter, I am surprised no one was challenged on it before the finals. Although I do see that since the unofficial point counter isn't explicitly mentioned in the rules (like veto mode is) that MAYBE a player can argue that it's not against the rules; however, it certainly seems to violate the spirit of "ex ante identical games for everyone" that the rules were trying to achieve.

Also, shouldn't the tournament admin have final say over how the rules are implemented and their interpretation?

I'll admit, I used it my first day of qualifying (the one I lost).

I do allow users to disable it, however, and the second day of qualifying (where I did qualify for semis) I had it disabled.

After seeing how upset WW got in an earlier thread about the unofficial point counter, I turned off the extension for our semifinal game. Timchen was also using it but WW disabled it for every game and no one got upset.

I think the only reason people do get upset is if someone is not allowing it to be disabled, which is bullshit. It really is an advantage, and helps me keep track of a lot of things and analyze certain things during the game instead of after it. I'll agree that it's a huge advantage to the player using it, and I think it is totally unfair in a tournament format, and if you play for isotropic rank it's also unfair.

But anyway, if you play without allowing it to be disabled, that'd kind of dirty, and shouldn't be allowed. And for tournament play, IMO, it should never be allowed. I'm just shocked that anyone would be upset if another player was going to disable it. WW did say there was more to why he withdrew, but that alone would be a good reason to withdraw, for me. Everyone should be allowed the same information, in an equally readable format. I honestly hadn't thought about it much before this, but that clearly seems to be the right thing to do, and I'm sure it will be done in future tournaments (if they're even held on isotropic).
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rrenaud

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #105 on: July 03, 2012, 11:21:11 am »
+3

I convinced drheld to include a message with an up to date screenshot of the UI in the announcement, so people shouldn't be surprised as to what it does.

Quote
11:10 alarmtopia: ★ Cards counted by Dominion Point Counter ★
11:10 alarmtopia: http://goo.gl/iDihS (screenshot: http://goo.gl/G9BTQ)
11:10 alarmtopia: Type !status to see the current score.
11:10 alarmtopia: Type !details to see deck details for each player.

If anyone with gimp/photoshop skills wants to highlight the additions made by the point counter in some visually pleasing way, he will replace that image with yours.
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Captain_Frisk

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #106 on: July 03, 2012, 11:22:55 am »
+2

Interesting. So now I'm curious -- Did anyone actually use the unofficial point counter during the tournament games (quals/semis)?

If I had seen a player using it (and knew about the one-sided change in display), I would have stopped playing right there and requested a restart without it since it seems to violate the tournament rule "Games must be played with randomly selected cards, no veto mode, identical starting hands, and with the official point counter enabled unless all players agree otherwise." On three of the four tournament days I actually did request restarts when people started games without the official point counter, the wrong seating order, or different starting hands (each time we just restarted with the correct parameters and same kingdom). If people did use the unofficial counter, I am surprised no one was challenged on it before the finals. Although I do see that since the unofficial point counter isn't explicitly mentioned in the rules (like veto mode is) that MAYBE a player can argue that it's not against the rules; however, it certainly seems to violate the spirit of "ex ante identical games for everyone" that the rules were trying to achieve.

Also, shouldn't the tournament admin have final say over how the rules are implemented and their interpretation?

I'll admit, I used it my first day of qualifying (the one I lost).

I do allow users to disable it, however, and the second day of qualifying (where I did qualify for semis) I had it disabled.

After seeing how upset WW got in an earlier thread about the unofficial point counter, I turned off the extension for our semifinal game. Timchen was also using it but WW disabled it for every game and no one got upset.

I think the only reason people do get upset is if someone is not allowing it to be disabled, which is bullshit. It really is an advantage, and helps me keep track of a lot of things and analyze certain things during the game instead of after it. I'll agree that it's a huge advantage to the player using it, and I think it is totally unfair in a tournament format, and if you play for isotropic rank it's also unfair.

But anyway, if you play without allowing it to be disabled, that'd kind of dirty, and shouldn't be allowed. And for tournament play, IMO, it should never be allowed. I'm just shocked that anyone would be upset if another player was going to disable it. WW did say there was more to why he withdrew, but that alone would be a good reason to withdraw, for me. Everyone should be allowed the same information, in an equally readable format. I honestly hadn't thought about it much before this, but that clearly seems to be the right thing to do, and I'm sure it will be done in future tournaments (if they're even held on isotropic).

I don't use the unofficial point counter - primarily because I didn't people to think that my rating was a result of having it on.  I do use the official one - because I'm lazy - and I'd rather play casually (maybe i'm reading point counter debates in the other window) AND play at a high level (not making stupid end game buys because I wasn't aware of game state).

Because of this - I didn't realize that the unofficial counter had added those sweet sweet  deck counting access.  I had seen !details - which was interesting - but I didn't realize that it was actually displaying the details for the other person all the time.

As for tournaments - rather than banning it outright - I would argue the other way - that it should be required... otherwise the people who do want to track information are just going to get out the pen and paper / excel spreadsheet and track it that way.  At least if you mandate the counter - you've got everyone on a level playing field - and hopefully playing dominion at a higher level than if we were all playing blind.
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blueblimp

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Re: Finals order
« Reply #107 on: July 03, 2012, 11:33:45 am »
0

One of the reasons I have tried to avoid having us all get into this ugly debate is that I think it may be mooted by FunSockets.  Drheld is a great guy but maybe even for him the task of OCR'ing all the images moving around is a little much.

I still haven't really found the relevant code in the Funsockets client, but without knowing the exact working of the code, I guess to write the addon you should observe the communication with the server, or at least the functions that communicate with the server, or the functions that display the relevant events on the client. Change these functions to also do the counting for you, and you are done. It's significantly harder than for iso, but significantly easier than OCR.
I'm still quite sure that we won't have such a thing for Funsockets if there was some kind of point counter in the official version, but without it someone will probably do...

Or they do (or have done) some encryption/obfuscation of these functions...

Yep. In fact it may turn out to be easier than for isotropic, if it's possible to hook the animations, since if you have some uniform animation for cards leaving/entering your deck, that's simpler to deal with than parsing every possible log message.

On the other hand, I would be surprised if they chose not to obfuscate their javascript. (Not that obfuscation really stops anyone, though.)
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zxcvbn2

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #108 on: July 03, 2012, 11:40:46 am »
0

If you're keeping track of EVERY card the other player buys, you're either taking a long time every turn, or you set up an extension of your own, which may or may not be visible, which to me is cheating.

Both sides of this argument have been stated and restated and restated again. I think there is some merit to the argument that keeping track of the most important stuff in your head is a part of the game itself. You realistically won't keep track of everything everyone has in their decks, and if you do that's either quite a skill or distracting you from the actual strategy/ tactics within the game itself.

Just because the game isn't about "counting cards" to you, doesn't mean it isn't to someone else, basically. I was reading someone talk about the catan world championships a while ago, and they have a similar thing going on. The player who won the championship was someone who very meticulously kept track (in his head, obviously) of what every player had in his hand. Other players focused on more general strategy, from the gist of the review I read. Was his memorization skill, or just a waste of time? If Catan had a similar card counter that kept track of what was in everyone's hands, would that be fair to you? I imagine your answer would be yes, while mine is no.

And that is the crux of the argument really. Is dominion about card counting, or more general strategy? I would argue both.

This is what I was referencing in regards to Catan: http://www.reddit.com/r/boardgames/comments/uuwhu/final_board_of_a_settlers_of_catan_tournament/
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nightdance

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #109 on: July 03, 2012, 11:53:45 am »
+1

@RisingJaguar, I think if you disable the status message, that means that you cannot see the status message under the person's name in the lobby. When you start a game, it will be obvious that the person is using it and then you can disable it.

My own opinion:

I use the point-counter most of the time, but I sometimes play on other browsers or another computer without it. It is only cheating if there was an intention at securing an advantage that was unknown or not agreed upon by the other player. I have never had this intention. Not allowing it to be disabled seems in my mind to be on the cheating side of the fence, but calling people cheaters is a big accusation. Online dominion ITSELF, is a variant of Dominion. Personally, I also try to play Dominion IRL as much as I can.
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Captain_Frisk

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #110 on: July 03, 2012, 11:57:10 am »
0

I'd argue that online dominion and face to face dominion are different variants of the same game.  In online dominion - since you can't enforce someone tracking all the information (since the cost of doing so is very very low) you might as well make it available.  Fortunately - dominion is a strong enough game that it stands up with the card counting aspects of the game removed.

Think of forum mafia vs. real life mafia.  Same basic game - same basic rules - but the difference in having perfect information and recall makes the games have a very different feel.

As for settlers - I agree - might as well make it public because online someone will track it.  I would fully expect expert level players to do so.
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zxcvbn2

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #111 on: July 03, 2012, 12:15:35 pm »
0

@CF

I totally agree with you. Online dominion should be treated differently than IRL dominion. I've used the point counter, and I see the benefits.

There comes a point, though, when the "it's better for everyone to have it than only a select few" holds no water. If everyone was able to know the order of everyone's cards in their deck (unrealistic, I know, but bear with me), then you are no longer playing dominion. Wishing Well is a Lab, Navigator becomes less useful, courtyard becomes SO much better, the list goes on. It may be "fair" in that no one player is at an advantage, but you can't really say you're playing dominion any more.

So there does need to be a cutoff somewhere, IMO, and a point/ card counter that isn't readily available to everyone through the game is a good place to start.
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Powerman

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #112 on: July 03, 2012, 01:11:49 pm »
+1

The unofficial point tracker is cheating.  Whether or not it is possible to stop, does not change that.  Obviously in online dominion, as in many things in life, cheating will happen no matter what anyone tries to do about it.

Someone brought up liking the point counter because it stops them from ending the game when they are behind.  This is exactly the reason I HATE the point counter.  Knowing when to end the game used to be something that separated a good player from a not so good player, but anyone can see "Hm, I'm down 7.  Buying a 6 point province will still cause me to lose.  I'll buy a duchy!"  To me a good player should AT LEAST be able to know who has bought what victory cards in a 2 player game.  The piles all start with 8... know what you buy and do subtraction.  For the unofficial point counter, knowing other splits is HUGE and having something tells goes against the nature of the game.  Having something tell you "You lost the GM split 6-4 and the Peddler split 7-3 BUT you have a small lead" is huge over thinking "Was it 5-5?  Did I win 6-4?"

Secondly, with the logic of "if it's illegal people will still do it" etc. So what?  If people want to cheat by writing down all the cards on paper, oh well.  If they feel they need to get ahead by cheating good for them, I hope it helps them when they aren't able to do that.  But the point is they are cheating.

I don't like the official point counter, but I don't mind playing with it or without it.  Think of offline dominion where all you see is the board (where you aren't even sure of exactly how many cards are always left in each pile) and your deck/ discard with an unknown # of cards.  Online already has given HUGE advantages to people that can't keep track of things on their own, why should even more be available?

With all that said, I don't consider everyone using it to be "cheaters" looking to get an advantage.  I liken it to the Jeopardy! online qualifying tests.  There is NOTHING to stop you from quickly google searching all the right answers and passing the qualifying test.  Does that mean it's not cheating?  Obviously not, as (I hope) we can all agree.  However at the next level you would be exposed, when you clearly DON'T know much.  Similarly here: There is NOTHING to stop you from quickly seeing the deck contents and using that to pass the "qualifying test"...

I think we all agree that we LIKE dominion.  And probably a majority started out playing IRL.  So in general things should be as close to that as possible.  In a perfect world for me the only info given outside of what each player plays/ buys would be the # of VP chips accumulated.  But, it is what it is.
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timchen

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #113 on: July 03, 2012, 01:32:02 pm »
0

Powerman you are just so horribly wrong. From your point even using the official point counter is cheating. In the strict sense you are saying even playing dominion itself online is cheating. Who knows, maybe without shuffling with your own hands make you have more leisure thinking about other things and give an advantage to you.

But that is not at all the point. What is cheating just depends on the rules. And the rules can change once everyone in the game agrees. So the point is to respect others. And to discuss and find the solution that everyone can accept.

The worst thing one can do is just to outright call the other group of people cheater. What benefit is there?

 
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Powerman

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #114 on: July 03, 2012, 01:44:10 pm »
0

Powerman you are just so horribly wrong. From your point even using the official point counter is cheating. In the strict sense you are saying even playing dominion itself online is cheating. Who knows, maybe without shuffling with your own hands make you have more leisure thinking about other things and give an advantage to you.

But that is not at all the point. What is cheating just depends on the rules. And the rules can change once everyone in the game agrees. So the point is to respect others. And to discuss and find the solution that everyone can accept.

The worst thing one can do is just to outright call the other group of people cheater. What benefit is there?

Well, I do think that the official point tracker is technically cheating, but it is probably necessary due to a few situations on Iso not present IRL so I accept it.  And if somehow a player online could somehow play a player that would be terrible.  But since both players are using a different platform, it provides no competitive advantage (as in there is no alternative).  However, having something tell you the cards bought does provide a competitive advantage and there is an alternative (either figure out the deck composition yourself or just don't know it).

I guess it comes down to whether you think (in general) that knowing what cards are in your deck and what cards are in your opponents deck is an advantage.  Now to me, using an external aid to gain an advantage is cheating.  I'm sorry if people that don't like that get mad.
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HiveMindEmulator

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #115 on: July 03, 2012, 01:47:11 pm »
+2

People are throwing the word "cheat" around a lot. This implies there is some sort of deception going on. I was not aware of what the point counter actually did, but this was not the fault of the people using it. I could have looked it up on my own, the link is right there, so I wouldn't call them "cheaters". They're not trying to cheat anyone. They're just using a tool that is not expressly prohibited by any rules. Now if you ask them to turn it off and they don't, that's a different story. I still don't think it's "cheating" (unless they say it's disabled when it's not), it's just discourteous.

I can see why people use this for casual play. I myself use the official point counter because it allows me to pay less attention during the game, not so that I can devote my brain resources to playing better, but so that I can devote them to doing something else at the same time. In a serious 2-player tournament setting I don't see it really making much of a difference, because you're paying full attention anyway. But as the number of players increases, I can see people having a serious issue with it. Keeping track of stuff in 4 decks is hard. People who are skilled at it want to have that advantage, and people who are not don't want to be disadvantaged. Personally, I don't care, but this kind of thing has to be decided before the start of a tournament (before people even enter) and not on the day of the finals.
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Powerman

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #116 on: July 03, 2012, 01:54:32 pm »
0

People are throwing the word "cheat" around a lot. This implies there is some sort of deception going on. I was not aware of what the point counter actually did, but this was not the fault of the people using it. I could have looked it up on my own, the link is right there, so I wouldn't call them "cheaters". They're not trying to cheat anyone. They're just using a tool that is not expressly prohibited by any rules. Now if you ask them to turn it off and they don't, that's a different story. I still don't think it's "cheating" (unless they say it's disabled when it's not), it's just discourteous.

I can see why people use this for casual play. I myself use the official point counter because it allows me to pay less attention during the game, not so that I can devote my brain resources to playing better, but so that I can devote them to doing something else at the same time. In a serious 2-player tournament setting I don't see it really making much of a difference, because you're paying full attention anyway. But as the number of players increases, I can see people having a serious issue with it. Keeping track of stuff in 4 decks is hard. People who are skilled at it want to have that advantage, and people who are not don't want to be disadvantaged. Personally, I don't care, but this kind of thing has to be decided before the start of a tournament (before people even enter) and not on the day of the finals.

Good post, except I'm not sure I understand the bolded statement.  Shouldn't people who are "skilled" have an advantage over people who aren't "skilled"?  Isn't that why we hold tournaments (to find out who is most "skilled"?)
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Qvist

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #117 on: July 03, 2012, 01:55:56 pm »
+4

I really was confused reading Powerman's posts. For anymore who feels the same:

Personman != Powerman  :o

It took a few minutes until I noticed.  :P

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #118 on: July 03, 2012, 01:56:56 pm »
0

Re: the word "cheat". I use this word to mean "violate the rules of the game". This may or may not be deceptive, may or may not be intentional. Please read any posts wherein I make use of this word, and its derivatives (i.e. cheating, cheater, cheated), with this definition in mind. Thank you.

timchen

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #119 on: July 03, 2012, 02:05:43 pm »
+1

Re: the word "cheat". I use this word to mean "violate the rules of the game". This may or may not be deceptive, may or may not be intentional. Please read any posts wherein I make use of this word, and its derivatives (i.e. cheating, cheater, cheated), with this definition in mind. Thank you.

Then the way you are using is wrong. See
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cheat

No words about violating the rules at all.
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verikt

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #120 on: July 03, 2012, 02:06:18 pm »
0

Funny. I saw the !status thing too and never realized that the other player was getting visuals, or how much of an advantage that is. Now that I know, I'm going to block it every time I see it come up. I wouldn't go so far as to call it cheating but I certainly think that someone using the option to hide it is being deceptive and unfair.
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zxcvbn2

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #121 on: July 03, 2012, 02:09:12 pm »
+2

Re: the word "cheat". I use this word to mean "violate the rules of the game". This may or may not be deceptive, may or may not be intentional. Please read any posts wherein I make use of this word, and its derivatives (i.e. cheating, cheater, cheated), with this definition in mind. Thank you.

Then the way you are using is wrong. See
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cheat

No words about violating the rules at all.

Dude. He told you what he meant. Who cares what the dictionary says?

And besides

"intransitive verb
1
a : to practice fraud or trickery
b : to violate rules dishonestly <cheat at cards> <cheating on a test>"

It pretty clearly does say that. Now let's not all get offended by the word cheating, please.
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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #122 on: July 03, 2012, 02:11:05 pm »
0

People are throwing the word "cheat" around a lot. This implies there is some sort of deception going on. I was not aware of what the point counter actually did, but this was not the fault of the people using it. I could have looked it up on my own, the link is right there, so I wouldn't call them "cheaters". They're not trying to cheat anyone. They're just using a tool that is not expressly prohibited by any rules. Now if you ask them to turn it off and they don't, that's a different story. I still don't think it's "cheating" (unless they say it's disabled when it's not), it's just discourteous.

I can see why people use this for casual play. I myself use the official point counter because it allows me to pay less attention during the game, not so that I can devote my brain resources to playing better, but so that I can devote them to doing something else at the same time. In a serious 2-player tournament setting I don't see it really making much of a difference, because you're paying full attention anyway. But as the number of players increases, I can see people having a serious issue with it. Keeping track of stuff in 4 decks is hard. People who are skilled at it want to have that advantage, and people who are not don't want to be disadvantaged. Personally, I don't care, but this kind of thing has to be decided before the start of a tournament (before people even enter) and not on the day of the finals.

Good post, except I'm not sure I understand the bolded statement.  Shouldn't people who are "skilled" have an advantage over people who aren't "skilled"?  Isn't that why we hold tournaments (to find out who is most "skilled"?)

By "skilled at it", I mean skilled at counting/remembering.
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Powerman

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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #123 on: July 03, 2012, 02:13:27 pm »
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Re: the word "cheat". I use this word to mean "violate the rules of the game". This may or may not be deceptive, may or may not be intentional. Please read any posts wherein I make use of this word, and its derivatives (i.e. cheating, cheater, cheated), with this definition in mind. Thank you.

Then the way you are using is wrong. See
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cheat

No words about violating the rules at all.

There are lots of dictionaries though:

Verb
cheat (third-person singular simple present cheats, present participle cheating, simple past and past participle cheated)
(intransitive) To violate rules in order to gain advantage from a situation.
My brother flunked biology because he cheated on his mid-term.
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Re: Finals order [plus a point/card counter debate]
« Reply #124 on: July 03, 2012, 02:13:41 pm »
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Re: the word "cheat". I use this word to mean "violate the rules of the game". This may or may not be deceptive, may or may not be intentional. Please read any posts wherein I make use of this word, and its derivatives (i.e. cheating, cheater, cheated), with this definition in mind. Thank you.

Then the way you are using is wrong. See
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cheat

No words about violating the rules at all.
Definitions cannot be 'wrong'. They might be not commonly used. The meaning which words have is down to how they are used, and how they are understood, no matter what any given dictionary says. Regardless of how people commonly view things, this is how I use the word, what I have always understood the word to mean in the context of a game, and people should be advised. The important thing with language is that people understand each other, and this is why I posted my clarification.
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