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Author Topic: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament  (Read 26569 times)

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joel88s

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #50 on: July 06, 2012, 05:03:26 pm »
0

There could be a third option, though this may be like unringing a bell... I still use the Chrome point counter without the recent update, which shows the score, number of cards in the decks, and number of action and victory cards when Vineyard and Silk Road are present respectively. This last already strikes me as a bit TMI, but still seems a lot more reasonable to me than showing every card in the decks. I have no idea of course if it's possible to 'uninstall' the omniscient update and return to a simpler time.
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greatexpectations

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #51 on: July 06, 2012, 07:52:13 pm »
0

i really don't care that much about the counters. if people want them in tournaments then sure, go for it. i'm not at all convinced that the rules defend their existence in any way, but if this is the wave of the future so be it.  but i have two concerns with the present existence of the counter extension. 

first, both players should have the same access and presentation of the information.  as i understand the current extension, the person with the extension gets a cleaner presentation of the information.  i would personally lobby for a return to previous versions of the counter, where all information is displayed equally in the chat window.  alternately, i would suggest that isotropic and/or funsockets implement an easy to access interface for this information so that it is native to the game itself.

second, i don't really like that the extension can currently prevent people from disabling it.  i have played a handful of these games the past week and it just doesn't seem right.  there is no way of knowing who is turning off my option to disable.  people with the extension have an altered status in the lobby, but with the prevalence of automatch i don't think that the presence of the tracker is announced enough. if we can't return to a version which allows opponent disabling, then i think it would at least be nice to see a line in the automatch text referencing the setup. alternately, perhaps isotropic/funsockets can specify games with the extension similar to how you can specify games in veto mode or not.

i'll leave the debate of for/against the extension to you all, but if the extension information is to become standard that is what i would like to see.
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Fabian

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #52 on: July 07, 2012, 07:50:58 pm »
0

"there is no way of knowing who is turning off my option to disable.  people with the extension have an altered status in the lobby,"

These two sentences directly contradict each other.

Now if you're saying it's not enough, then that's fine and I would tend to agree, but there is a way of knowing who is turning off your option to disable; it's always announced in the status message in the lobby, like you say.

Another thing which has probably been mentioned in one of these thread, but I haven't seen it, is that the option of displaying the card counts at all times with the extension is just that, an option. You can uncheck the box "Show every player's card counts for each card" and the extension behaves like it did a few months ago before the change. This isn't announced though, and the only way of "proving" you've unchecked it that I can think of would be to screenshot your game. Still worth mentioning that the option does exist though, imo.

Edit: Sorry I think I might have misread/misunderstood the bit I quoted from you. Not everyone who uses the extension has that lobby message status; only the ones who have turned off your option to !disable are required to have it. This is why "lobby message status = no disabling" is a pretty safe assumption.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2012, 07:56:18 pm by Fabian »
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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #53 on: July 07, 2012, 08:03:42 pm »
0

Another thing which has probably been mentioned in one of these thread, but I haven't seen it, is that the option of displaying the card counts at all times with the extension is just that, an option. You can uncheck the box "Show every player's card counts for each card" and the extension behaves like it did a few months ago before the change. This isn't announced though, and the only way of "proving" you've unchecked it that I can think of would be to screenshot your game. Still worth mentioning that the option does exist though, imo.
I'd also point out that it'd be simple to modify the extension to announce when the card count display is disabled.
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popsofctown

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #54 on: July 07, 2012, 08:34:19 pm »
0

Another thing which has probably been mentioned in one of these thread, but I haven't seen it, is that the option of displaying the card counts at all times with the extension is just that, an option. You can uncheck the box "Show every player's card counts for each card" and the extension behaves like it did a few months ago before the change. This isn't announced though, and the only way of "proving" you've unchecked it that I can think of would be to screenshot your game. Still worth mentioning that the option does exist though, imo.
I'd also point out that it'd be simple to modify the extension to announce when the card count display is disabled.

This sounds like a really good idea. 
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metzgerism

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #55 on: July 09, 2012, 04:57:31 pm »
+2

I'd like to put in my two cents here.

I'm in favor of allowing anything anyone has at their disposal (provided they are unable to cheat with it), for the following reasons:

1) Complete information upfront allows players to more quickly come to the correct decision when considering late game purchases. Personman mentioned something earlier - that it allows players to play better because they have better knowledge. This isn't necessarily true, because all the information is tracked in the log and you can go back and read it.

The problem with that is that it wastes a lot of time, where the point and card counter gets you the information you really want instantly, AND those players who would usually make an educated guess are provided with even more accurate information upfront.

2) It changes the game, for the better in my opinion. Dominion WITH the point counter feels a lot like the administrative scoring aspects of football - the points involved are similar, and you don't want to leave your opponent with a halfway-decent chance at the end of the game. Remember this year's Super Bowl, with Ahmad Bradshaw falling into the end zone for the game winning TD, and looking like an idiot? That's because he took the second to last province, and was playing against Tom Brady. The parallels are not exactly the same, but hopefully you get my point - it's not always about getting the most points, sometimes you just have to manage the clock.

Now, if everyone knows how to do this properly, they will (hopefully) playing appropriately based on the scoreline. Imagine trying to play football without a scoreboard, and with a lot more scoring - I played Aussie Rules for years, and we had this problem (point tallies usually approach or break 100, and there's often about 30 scoring events per team per game, so we just kinda had to guess on the score and the clock as well).

---

The card and point counters do nothing that you couldn't track yourself, with pencil and paper - they just do it faster, which means less in-game delays for those players looking to actually perform well. For that reason alone, I'd allow them, but also it's hard to regulate from an organizational standpoint, so I'd just not regulate it, period.
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greatexpectations

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #56 on: July 09, 2012, 06:47:49 pm »
0

"there is no way of knowing who is turning off my option to disable.  people with the extension have an altered status in the lobby,"

These two sentences directly contradict each other.

Now if you're saying it's not enough, then that's fine and I would tend to agree, but there is a way of knowing who is turning off your option to disable; it's always announced in the status message in the lobby, like you say.

Edit: Sorry I think I might have misread/misunderstood the bit I quoted from you. Not everyone who uses the extension has that lobby message status; only the ones who have turned off your option to !disable are required to have it. This is why "lobby message status = no disabling" is a pretty safe assumption.

i think you covered this in your edit comment, but maybe i just have a misunderstanding of how the PCE worked.  i thought that it would require you to have that AutoCount status, but i did not know of any way to separate a regular PCE player from a PCE player who i can't disable based only on their status.

again, i personally just think that people should have full knowledge of any constraints or variations on the game coming in.  anyone can go ahead and use the PCE. i would just like to know it before i agree to play, and i think that is a reasonable compromise. and for those who do have an issue with it, they can then filter their games accordingly, just as they would with veto or point counters in the current form.
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Varsinor

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #57 on: August 10, 2012, 08:36:23 pm »
+3

I'd like to throw in my couple of cents:

I love the PCE! :) I think it makes Dominion a *much* better game. (Actually the only regret I have about it is that it doesn't also track the cards left in my deck and the cards I know about that my opponent discarded.)

Therefore, any tournament that allows it will be much more attractive to play for me than any tournament that disallows it. (And I really hope that the new official game will eventually get a deck counter so that this question stays relevant after Isotropic goes down.)
But of course I realize that this is a matter of taste and opinions on it differ. I understand that using it is a variant from the official rules (at least since I have recently read postings from Donald X. where he said so). (So obviously if I chose to play a tournament that disallowed the PCE, I would comply with that rule.)

Here are my reasons for why I am so much in favor of the PCE:

1. I don't like the memory aspect of Dominion at all. That aspect is trivial in my opinion. It's not that I am bad at memorizing, in fact I think my memory is quite good. But memorizing cards costs "mental energy" and I would much rather either spend that energy to think about my game strategy or just relax for a casual game and not spend that energy at all.

2. The PCE heightens the level of play. It makes it more likely that the more complicated combos actually work. I love to try to play as optimally as possible - independently of the aspect of winning, just because I like the "perfection" of it, I guess (but don't call me Seven ;)).

3. It also makes it easier to realize why the game turned out in a certain way. It therefore helps people to get better at Domininon. Which should be particularly nice for beginners.

4. If you don't allow the PCE, it makes the game slower when people take their time memorizing things or retroactively thinking about if they can end it now or going through the logs of the previous turns which can still be seen on Isotropic.

5. There is also the issue of enforceability. You obviously can't control if people use an undetectable card counter or just take notes (be it on paper or Excel etc.) in an online game. Don't get me wrong: If we were talking about something game-breaking and/or ethically bad like playing with multiple accounts and masquerading yourself Colonies or something like that, it would of course be horrible cheating and needed to be outlawed even if that is difficult to enforce.
But when there are already good other arguments in favor of allowing the PCE (#1-#4) and no imperative arguments against it, I think the non-enforceability becomes a strong additional argument. I have only read parts of that monster thread, but from what I have read, in my opinion Personman got unfairly bashed for making a similar argument there. I guess this bashing was to some extent a consequence of him wording the argument too absolutely and not emphasizing that this doesn't apply to many other cases of rules which may be difficult to enforce. IMO the important part there is that rules that are imperative to make the game work such as a rule against playing with a secret second account must be upheld even if very difficult to enforce. So here I tried to formulate the argument in a way I think is more precise.
I think there is a good analogy in some Dominion rules about revealing your cards for instance against Cutpurse and Bureaucrat when you don't have a target in hand. These rules obviously exist to prevent an incentive to cheat in offline Dominion. If Dominion had originally been made to be played only online, the cards probably wouldn't have this clause. But it is a sensible clause to prevent a situation of non-enforceability because Dominion is also played offline. It otherwise doesn't hurt the game much. (Only insofar as it gives the cards a little more text to read.)
In analogy, I would argue that allowing point/deck counters is a sensible rule for online Dominion - especially in tournaments. I am certainly aware that the fact that I personally like Dominion much better with a counter has probably helped to come to this conclusion... ;) But well, maybe think about this: If the original offline Dominion would have had some sort of manual point counter (or even an electronic deck counter if that were somehow available cheaply enough), I guess not many people would have complained about that and just not seen memory elements as part of the game.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2012, 09:03:35 am by Varsinor »
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eHalcyon

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #58 on: August 10, 2012, 08:44:23 pm »
0

2. The PCE heightens the level of play. It makes it more likely that the more complicated combos actually work. I love to try to play as optimally as possible - independently of the aspect of winning, just because I like the "perfection" of it, I guess (but don't call me Seven ).

How far do you take this?  I mean, if you want the absolutely highest level of play, what about a variant where you simulate perfect shuffle luck?  That is, you always have full access to your deck, and you can swap cards in and out of your hand at will?  The only restrictions would be that anything in the discard must stay there until a reshuffle, and any cards revealed must remain revealed (e.g. if you pull out a Moat and reveal it to block an attack, that Moat must be part of your hand when your next turn starts).

I actually think it would be a really neat variant.  Not that I'd want to see that in a tournament.
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Varsinor

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #59 on: August 10, 2012, 08:52:49 pm »
+1

How far do you take this?  I mean, if you want the absolutely highest level of play, what about a variant where you simulate perfect shuffle luck?

That would be a very different game. It might still be interesting as you say. I might try it out, but to be honest there are other things I'd rather try... ;) I guess many cards would become too unbalanced, for instance Treasure Map or Baron.

My point about optimal play was about optimal play within the limits of the normal rules with random shuffling - just with the variant of perfect memory of all public information.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2012, 08:56:36 pm by Varsinor »
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eHalcyon

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #60 on: August 10, 2012, 08:56:51 pm »
0

How far do you take this?  I mean, if you want the absolutely highest level of play, what about a variant where you simulate perfect shuffle luck?

That would be a very different game. It might still be interesting as you say. I might try it out, but to be honest there are other things I'd rather try... ;)

My point about optimal play was about optimal play within the limits of the normal rules with random shuffling - just with the variant of perfect memory of all public information.

Well in that case, keep in mind that you can't fully track opponent's discard piles.  That's not public info.
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Varsinor

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #61 on: August 10, 2012, 09:04:49 pm »
0

Well in that case, keep in mind that you can't fully track opponent's discard piles.  That's not public info.

True. (I edited my posting above to a more precise remark about this.)
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greatexpectations

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #62 on: August 11, 2012, 12:15:14 am »
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2. The PCE heightens the level of play. It makes it more likely that the more complicated combos actually work. I love to try to play as optimally as possible - independently of the aspect of winning, just because I like the "perfection" of it, I guess (but don't call me Seven ;)).

until i see some better reasoning behind this im gonna go ahead and call bs. it sounds like the kind of thing a clueless sports broadcaster would say. nice for a soundbite, but lacking in substance. how exactly does it ensure more complicated combos work?

3. It also makes it easier to realize why the game turned out in a certain way. It therefore helps people to get better at Dominion. Which should be particularly nice for beginners.

there are two ways you can view this. if you are looking at it after the fact then well game logs already cover all that.  and if you are looking for this kind of assistance during a game then that strikes me as a bit sketch.  i mean at that point can i just ask a high level friend for input on how to play my current game?

4. If you don't allow the PCE, it makes the game slower when people take their time memorizing things or retroactively thinking about if they can end it now or going through the logs of the previous turns which can still be seen on Isotropic.

meh, i'm gonna call bs again. the PCE will save you very little that the standard point counter would not already do. seeing all of the data the PCE provides can just as easily cause as much AP as it will save time.

But when there are already good other arguments in favor of allowing the PCE...

those all struck me more as either personal opinions or baseless statements passed as facts.

(#1-#4) and no imperative arguments against it,

there were a few arguments against it.  the one where the creator of the game said that any form of notetaking or use of extraneous supplies was against the rules comes to mind. or the fact that the PCE shows information different for users and nonusers and that nonusers should not be forced to use an extension to level the playing field. seriously, if everything available via the PCE was a checkbox option on isotropic this wouldn't be an issue.  but the PCE is a variant, and should require mutual consent for play.

in my opinion Personman got unfairly bashed for making a similar argument there. I guess this bashing was to some extent a consequence of him wording the argument too absolutely and not emphasizing that this doesn't apply to many other cases of rules which may be difficult to enforce.

nah, personman was bashed more for being pretty stubborn about using the extension and seemingly taking advantage of theory's attempts at making peace. that and a couple of contradictory defenses.

man i don't care about this stupid extension. i think that a single set against pops was the only time i've ever disabled anyone, it doesn't matter to me. it strikes me as a bit of a crutch but if thats your thing so be it.  but some of these arguments in favor of it are just completely backwards. if you are going to make a case for it though i would focus on points 1 and 5, eliminating memory and enforcability, and leave it at that.
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Varsinor

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #63 on: August 11, 2012, 09:14:05 am »
0

until i see some better reasoning behind this im gonna go ahead and call bs. it sounds like the kind of thing a clueless sports broadcaster would say. nice for a soundbite, but lacking in substance. how exactly does it ensure more complicated combos work?

I didn't say it ensures them, I said it makes them more likely to work. As in "you have a higher chance to make the best decision in critical moments".
There are several deck types for which it can be important exactly how many cards of each you have. Ambassador and Chapel games for instance or most alternate VP strategies. (How much are your Fairgrounds? Is it safe to buy Silk Roads over Duchies?) In fact, in these cases they are so important that many people will commit "memory efforts" to counting these things in games without an automatic counter. At least I did before I used the PCE. But that is tiring and you can make mistakes.
To play engines optimally it is often important to have the right ratio of terminals and villages, among other things.
Sure, you can go ahead and just wing that, but as I said your engines/combos are somewhat more likely to work with the optimal ratio.
I mean, come on. These should be pretty obvious. If the use of the PCE didn't provide some benefit over pure memory, nobody would complain that an opponent used them.

3. It also makes it easier to realize why the game turned out in a certain way. It therefore helps people to get better at Dominion. Which should be particularly nice for beginners.

there are two ways you can view this. if you are looking at it after the fact then well game logs already cover all that.  and if you are looking for this kind of assistance during a game then that strikes me as a bit sketch.  i mean at that point can i just ask a high level friend for input on how to play my current game?

I was talking about the learning aspect here. Being tutored by a high level friend sure helps loads for learning, quite certainly much more than any counter alone ever could! But most people aren't so fortunate as to have high level friends who tutor them during their games. Yes, you can also go through the log afterwards (and sometimes I do), but you don't do that on most games because it takes a lot of time and isn't very fun.
I often had learning effects during a game sparked by following the PCE output. Such as, "oh, my opponent is probably doing better because he has more Menageries" or Warehouses or whatever.
Actually, I must admit that often I don't even read much of the per-turn-text-output of what my opponent does because I find it too cumbersome to read. I more or less follow what he buys and gains (and swindles me) on the PCE.
Even before I used the PCE I didn't read much of the text output either, so I missed a lot about the strategies of my opponent.
I play a lot of 3 and 4 player games too, the PCE is obviously even more important there to know about the composition of my opponents decks.

4. If you don't allow the PCE, it makes the game slower when people take their time memorizing things or retroactively thinking about if they can end it now or going through the logs of the previous turns which can still be seen on Isotropic.

meh, i'm gonna call bs again. the PCE will save you very little that the standard point counter would not already do.

How can my statement be bullshit? It is a factual statement that is obviously true. You know, "when people" as in "if people". (Or is there some linguistic reason that "when" doesn't imply "if" here? I am pretty sure that there isn't. But if so it was a language problem, English is not my first language.)
If and when people take much time to memorize etc., the game is slower. That is a fact. The question is only how many people take much time to memorize.
It is probably the case that in most casual games, most people don't spend much time on that. But in important tournament games, that might very likely be different.

seeing all of the data the PCE provides can just as easily cause as much AP as it will save time.

I don't know what you mean by "AP", buy I guess something along the lines of "wasting time".
I can't be certain about other people, but using the PCE certainly makes me play faster, not slower.

(#1-#4) and no imperative arguments against it,

there were a few arguments against it.

I don't dispute that, I started my posting by acknowledging that I am aware that this is a matter of taste and personal preferences in the end.
I made my posting to state mine.

the one where the creator of the game said that any form of notetaking or use of extraneous supplies was against the rules comes to mind.

He has also confirmed that of course it can be played as a variant if the opponents agree.
So it obviously wouldn't be against any rules or even against Donald X's wishes if someone organized a tournament with PCE allowed for people who like that. By participating, you would agree to play this variant just as you agreed to other variants like identical starting hands in other tournaments.

or the fact that the PCE shows information different for users and nonusers

I totally agree that this is far from optimal.
Therefore I really hope that the new game will have a solution where all opponents can see the full output if the (hopefully to be programmed) deck counter option gets enabled (when all opponents agreed to it).

seriously, if everything available via the PCE was a checkbox option on isotropic this wouldn't be an issue.  but the PCE is a variant, and should require mutual consent for play.

Well, technically that is the case now because you can either disable the PCE of your opponent or see the auto count message in the lobby and then refuse to play with him or even prohibit all games with point counter automatically.
However, I totally agree that this is an unsatisfactory situation for people who a) don't mind the simple point counter b) don't consent to the PCE and c) find it too cumbersome to check lobby status for auto count before they accept an auto-match.
It is probably too late to advocate any changes on Isotropic now, but I absolutely agree that Funsockets should find a solution that makes is easier for people with preferences a) through c) to get what they want.
The best solution on Isotropic would probably have been to have two checkboxes, one for "point tracker" and one for "deck tracker", both with the three options to require, prohibit or not care (I suppose that is what you meant above).
« Last Edit: August 11, 2012, 09:15:46 am by Varsinor »
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samath

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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #64 on: August 11, 2012, 11:46:15 am »
0

How far do you take this?  I mean, if you want the absolutely highest level of play, what about a variant where you simulate perfect shuffle luck?  That is, you always have full access to your deck, and you can swap cards in and out of your hand at will?  The only restrictions would be that anything in the discard must stay there until a reshuffle, and any cards revealed must remain revealed (e.g. if you pull out a Moat and reveal it to block an attack, that Moat must be part of your hand when your next turn starts).

I actually think it would be a really neat variant.  Not that I'd want to see that in a tournament.

I've actually played this irl. It makes solitaire more fun, definitely, though you need a good way to track turns. You essentially play with your decks face-up and pick up the cards you want each turn like you describe. I haven't entirely worked out how to resolve attacks/reactions without completely gimping Swindler or making Trader/Watchtower/Moat OP, though.
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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #65 on: August 11, 2012, 11:55:26 am »
0

This is all a moot discussion now isn't it?
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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #66 on: August 11, 2012, 12:19:19 pm »
+1

This is all a moot discussion now isn't it?

You hope! ;P
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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #67 on: August 11, 2012, 01:05:27 pm »
0

This is all a moot discussion now isn't it?

You hope! ;P

Nope, i'm putting my foot down and making a decision for everyone. Moot it is!
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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #68 on: August 18, 2012, 01:52:34 am »
0

Well, if we didn't have a point counter, I would just use pen and paper or use Word to keep track of score. So, for that reason, I don't see why it should not be allowed.
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Re: Use of the point- / card-counter extension in an online tournament
« Reply #69 on: August 18, 2012, 11:02:01 am »
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1. I don't like the memory aspect of Dominion at all. That aspect is trivial in my opinion. It's not that I am bad at memorizing, in fact I think my memory is quite good. But memorizing cards costs "mental energy" and I would much rather either spend that energy to think about my game strategy or just relax for a casual game and not spend that energy at all.
I suppose this is a matter of opinion, yes, but to me the mental aspect is what makes this game better than many others.  I mean, I don't like say, Monopoly, because it all relies on Dice-Rolling / Chance Cards / Viewable information.  I like in Dominion that you have to think about what you have before deciding to buy a +Draw or a +Action... if you are told, it's basically following a formula.

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2. The PCE heightens the level of play. It makes it more likely that the more complicated combos actually work. I love to try to play as optimally as possible - independently of the aspect of winning, just because I like the "perfection" of it, I guess (but don't call me Seven ;)).
This might be true on some levels.  For people who are unable to follow their own deck, it certainly does help them not get blown away by the people who can do that.  But... isn't this a "skill" game?

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3. It also makes it easier to realize why the game turned out in a certain way. It therefore helps people to get better at Domininon. Which should be particularly nice for beginners.
The PCE is nice for beginners, certainly, because actually seeing what they have is huge because they will have no idea what to track.  But, the PCE (past very beginner levels) does not improve you any more than the final game logs.

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4. If you don't allow the PCE, it makes the game slower when people take their time memorizing things or retroactively thinking about if they can end it now or going through the logs of the previous turns which can still be seen on Isotropic.
This is the one I have most issue with.  Perhaps this is just me, and other people play differently, but I have found absolutely no difference in game speed based on whether a person has PCE enabled or not.  And I also have found that I am never "slower" than my opponent, and I don't use PCE.  Actually, the only exception I've found is more times than not people with a disabled Auto Count are slow, but I think that might be because they're mad at me for disabling :p

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5. Points #1-#3 above are probably the most important ones, but there is also the question of enforceability. You obviously can't control if people use an undetectable card counter or just take notes in an online game. Don't get me wrong: If we were talking about something game-breaking and/or ethically bad like playing with multiple accounts and masquerading yourself Colonies or something like that, it would of course be horrible cheating and needed to be outlawed even if that is difficult to enforce.
This is the most "valid" reason, as yes, there is absolutely no way to catch uncatchable cheating.  Do I think this is reason enough to allow it?  No, but I definitely do see this as an issue.
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