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  • Suggestion on Balance mod?

    So lately I noticed there is a player on the server, I won't mention any names that seems to be on a whole other caliber of playing. I seem to always get pitted against him and I seldom see him on a losing team. Instead of doing an alternating of good players could we try something different? Could we assign points to player based of their stats and balance them in a way that if the #1 player is better than the stats of the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th combined the 2nd, 3rd and 4th, would all be put on the same team? Basically find a way to make the stats/skill points of both teams even. This would give both teams a more balanced/fair fight and give a player like this more of a challenge.

    -Solarity
    Lights Out!

  • #2
    Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

    I’m sure I know who you’re referencing.

    While I understand your suggestion, I'm not sure it would logically be the best way about balancing the teams. Let’s assign a point value to an 8v8 player scenario based on a 100 point structure. We can assign a default point value to new server players a value of 10 since we don’t want to simply devalue a new player.

    Player 1 - 100
    Player 2 - 85
    Player 3 - 81
    Player 4 - 79
    Player 5 - 78
    Player 6 - 62
    Player 7 - 60
    Player 8 - 32
    Player 9 - 20
    Player 10 - 10
    Player 11 - 10
    Player 12 - 10
    Player 13 - 10
    Player 14 - 10
    Player 15 - 10
    Player 16 - 10

    Total of 667 points for this scenario or roughly 333.5 per team.

    Scenario 1 : Alternating players based on highest point value to opposing teams.
    Team 1 would be all odd numbered players and Team 2 would be all even giving the scores of 369 and 298 respectively.

    Scenario 2 : Snake model. Players 1, 4, 5, 8, 9, 12, 13, 16 on Team 1 while the remaining on Team 2.
    Team 1 is 339 vs Team 2 of 328.

    Scenario 3 : Equalization model as you describe. Based on numbers above Team 1 would be players 1, 4, 6, 7, 13-16. Team 2 is 2, 3, 5, 8-12. Team 1 341 points vs Team 2 of 326 points.

    Now in all 3 scenarios you still have Team 1 with more respective skill points over Team 2. While I think you could make an argument for all 3 scenarios as a basis for balancing you’ll never really have a true way of correctly balancing teams unless you have a real point value for every player.

    The 3 scenarios that I see play out most on the server are either:

    1) The mod correctly balances the players across both sides. This rarely happens but still happens. This happens about 5-10% of the time.
    2) The mod incorrectly balances where you have 6 or more members on one team versus 1-2 members on the other. This happens about 30% of the time.
    3) The mod runs its course and only balances about half the players. Teams are then revealed and then stacking occurs. This happens more often than not.

    Now I’m not quite sure of the logarithms the mod has or how long the data is stored for taking into account score per minute but we may want to tweak how it works.
    My suggestion would be to track score per minute on the server for the life of that person’s time played on TG servers if it isn’t already. Plus lengthen the amount of time the balance mod runs; extend the time to 3 minutes so you make sure that people aren’t going AFK between map changes to wait out the mod and stack teams. We may also want to track wins as a commander and apply that in the balance so that each side may have a competent commander.

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    • #3
      Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

      There is one thing you should consider that the #1 player in my example would have a much higher score showing how much more stable my solution is. The other night I was at 9 and 1 when I was playing against this other player. While I view myself as decent. The skill of one really extremly good player can make it harder for me even when I am not facing him on the same side of thr map. There are more aliens on the field as they aren't being killed, less friendlies in range, and more groups of aliens on the field. Given that we are having issues holding res, that only creates a snow ball effect. Higher lvl life forms that keeps getting stronger while we try to keep up. My 9 and 1 starts slipping quick as die more often and find it more difficult to kill higher level life forms with a lmg and little upgrades.

      A little off topic though I think the lack of active TGers as of late doesn't help either
      Lights Out!

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

        Well there really isn't any one solution to curb the skill of the said player unless you place him on a team full of unskilled players while essentially stacking the other team against him, which probably wouldn't be fun for the said skilled player. KPD and to an extent SPM don't accurately reflect the skill of a player, only perceived skill.

        Yes I would admit that someone going 67-5 should have more skill than someone at 24-20; but let's say the player with 67 is on a team where the next highest player's KPD is 8-24 while the other team has 4 players at 24-20. I'd say the teams would be stacked in favor of the team with 4 players at 24 kills over the team with only 1 player in the positive range. Player score can also be inflated by directly or indirectly stealing kills or building destruction; a player could be running around just attacking unused power nodes and not really contribute overall to the well being of the team by score stacking.

        NS2 really requires players to work collectively as a team towards a common goal and really there isn't an accurate way to track that data. I may have the 2nd highest score on a map of 320 but my KPD is 8-24; I may not be the best shot but clearly I've been disruptive to the other team by killing buildings. SPM doesn't really take into account the intangibles of say how well a commander might be able to organize an un-cohesive team or even a player with a low score and KPD that has been harassing the other team by distracting 3-4 members at a time.

        I get what you're saying and understand your frustration, but really the only advice I can offer would be to work with your team more and practice your skills when engaging said skilled player.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

          I remember this being a common discussion/problem in NS1 back in the day. The solution we had is probably the foundation for the system in place today. You're right, there is no very good way to auto balance teams for a 100% balance every time. You're also right in that teams must work together and follow orders to be successful. We all agree that the games we want to play are the ones where both teams are following orders and playing as a team. We should encourage that more in the server to achieve the games we want, first of all.

          A second option would be a two tier balance system. As stated by miragezors, a person can be very productive in the game and not have a huge K/D every game. It's been my experience in NS that the Fade is generally 42-1 because he is smart enough to pick off the dumb marines who roam around alone. Either way, that fade has a high score. We could track the overall score of a player to begin with. Have a cumulative score "pool" per player that takes the score per game and adds it to the pool. If we track that total score pool long enough (assuming we don't already) we will begin to have an idea of who are the best players. Not just K/D but who are the players that are playing strategically.

          At this point, we have two options in the two tier system. This is all assuming these things are possible, btw. We can have a "beginning balance" that happens during the SM only time in the ready room. It will take the top players from the overall pool and put them on teams numerically. For instance, if you get 4 of the "top" players in the server in the ready room, having a total pool of 14,000 points, 12,500 points, 13,000 points, and 11,000 points, it will put 14k on marine, 13k on alien, 12.5k on marine, 11k on alien, so on and so forth. After that, the current autobalance will come into play the same way it already does with the remaining players.

          The second option would be to vote from the ready room which players go where. If we keep the current autobalance in place, and allow players to vote "so and so" onto aliens and "so and so" onto marines (again tracking these players by total score and listing them as "MVPs" or something), it would eliminate any chance of stacking as a person voting has no idea if they will get balanced to alien or marine.

          Basically, the only way I can see to really balance the teams in terms of these awesome K/D players is to separate them from the normal players.

          But, I'd like to reiterate.... I've seen a LOT of NS games in TG. The old game wasn't very different from this one, and the guys who used to play with me will agree... it doesn't matter how awesome a player is with kills. It matters how awesome a team is with each other. I've seen marines turtled in base with one resource node come back against a team of Onos with the entire map because they had the gumption to do it and refused to give up. I've played 4 hour stalemates that I was the guy who got through the vent and solo'd the hive with jetpack shotty. I've seen skulk rushes come back against teams of heavies and kill the comm chair before the marines can get back to base.

          If you ask me, balance isn't the problem. I've only played about 4 full games, and I think I can safely say that it's people's drive to win and team work that is the problem. It doesn't matter how many people you kill, it matters how much of the game you actually play.
          Games lubricate the body and the mind. - Benjamin Franklin
          Ever since the beginning, to keep the world spinning, it takes all kinds of kinds. -Miranda Lambert

          You're a 34, Mom. Thirty. Four.
          Forever Perplexed

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

            if you want the balance to work better, disable team joining during the balance process. People will still hit j1 or j2 thus messing with the balance.
            Kalost_tpf/twitch.tv

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            • #7
              Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

              Originally posted by OscarTheCouch View Post
              if you want the balance to work better, disable team joining during the balance process. People will still hit j1 or j2 thus messing with the balance.
              This would be necessary for the most accurate balance possible, but in the past has resulted in specific players getting stuck on the same team (player and marine/alien) every round.
              |TG-6th|Snooggums

              Just because everyone does something does not mean that it is right to do.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

                then they need to join the team thy want before the balance goes out. And if they cant due to not being a supporting member then get the wallet out.
                Kalost_tpf/twitch.tv

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

                  also i think that the time that members get to join is slightly to long. Being one minute seems to be to long and is often complained about. Even reducing the time to 45 seconds would help.
                  Kalost_tpf/twitch.tv

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

                    Originally posted by OscarTheCouch View Post
                    also i think that the time that members get to join is slightly to long. Being one minute seems to be to long and is often complained about. Even reducing the time to 45 seconds would help.
                    agreed
                    aka Roland tHTG

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

                      Originally posted by OscarTheCouch View Post
                      also i think that the time that members get to join is slightly to long. Being one minute seems to be to long and is often complained about. Even reducing the time to 45 seconds would help.
                      I concur.

                      Mom
                      Games lubricate the body and the mind. - Benjamin Franklin
                      Ever since the beginning, to keep the world spinning, it takes all kinds of kinds. -Miranda Lambert

                      You're a 34, Mom. Thirty. Four.
                      Forever Perplexed

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

                        I've shortened the time a touch. Let's see what we think.
                        Steam Community? Add me. | Free Remote, Encrypted Backup

                        Darkilla: In short, NS is pretty much really fast chess. With guns. Apophis: I haven't seen anyone say that SM's are better than non-SMs. Nordbomber: This is THE first server I've seen where either side can comeback from out of seemingly nowhere with the right teamwork. en4rcment: I have NEVER experienced the type of gameplay that I have found here. Nightly I am amazed at the personalities and gaming talent. Zephyr: Apophis is clearly a highly sophisticated self-aware AI construct that runs on a highly modified toaster oven in Wyzcrak's basement.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

                          Alright. I think what we need to do as a solid first stage test is this (assuming you have the ability to do this):

                          If one of the players in the server has the ability to balance, turn off the ability to join a team at all.
                          Obviously, if no one can balance, allow players to join teams as they choose.

                          Make it mandatory for anyone with the ability to balance to initiate the command once it is safely assumed everyone is in the server after map change.

                          Let's test this out, even if just for one night. I've been paying attention to the balance over the last few days, and I sincerely believe that if a person joins a team before the balance is enacted it causes problems with the algorithm. With that being said, I think that problem is caused even if the person returns to RR before the balance is enacted. I've been trying to witness a control balance that happens before anyone joins a team at all, and I've yet to see one. I'm assuming that we will see a huge difference in balance if we try this.

                          And if we don't see that difference, then we can safely assume that the algorithm is flawed in some way because (as far as I can tell) there is no other variable that could adversely affect the algorithm.

                          Correct me if I'm wrong, please.

                          Mom
                          Games lubricate the body and the mind. - Benjamin Franklin
                          Ever since the beginning, to keep the world spinning, it takes all kinds of kinds. -Miranda Lambert

                          You're a 34, Mom. Thirty. Four.
                          Forever Perplexed

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

                            The balance algorithm does re-calculate in real-time who goes on which team as players join or leave teams.
                            At least this was true for a long time, unless Wyz changed the behavior recently it should still be true.
                            This means whether or not there already exist people on the team before balance, or people drop out of the game (They can't F4 during balance now) the algorithm will recalculate to try and even up the teams again.

                            I believe the latest change to balance was to completely prevent anyone from joining teams during balance as well.

                            Bear in mind that while balanced games are great, in being super strict about controlling the players on each team, some players - especially strangers - lose the freedom in getting to play with their friends, which provides for a wholly negative experience for them. We should strive to provide a balanced game while allowing groups of friends who join our server to play with each other as much as possible. It's not like we as a community can't simply balance ourselves if needed.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Suggestion on Balance mod?

                              Maybe we can get Wyz to have the balance script generate some data for us to compile and see exactly how it's been working?

                              I don't mind hacking away at Excel and a data dump for a while to see what kind of results we get...
                              sigpic

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