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Anir’s Guide on Free for All (FFA) – Games

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8 months ago
Anir’s Guide on Free for All (FFA) – Games



A short explanation on why I wrote this guide:

I have played/watched many FFA games in Zero-k and couldn't help but notice that a large number of players don't seem to be able to replicate the success they have in 1v1's or team games. In this guide I would like to share my knowledge of Free for All's and try to help players get a better understanding of the complexities of an FFA game. My goal by writing this guide is to increase the level of knowledge and Understanding of FFA's so that FFA games can be more competitive in the future.


Table of contents
1. Foreword
2. What should be the goal for all the participants in an FFA?
3. Understanding the situation, you are in.
___a. The starting situation
___b. Knowledge is power
___c. Those who have an ace up their sleeve have a clear advantage.
4. Diplomacy, the spoiled part of each FFA.
5. Fight only if it increases your chances of overall victory.
6. Never underestimate your enemy.
7. Comebacks and what you should know about them.

1. Foreword

In this guide, I will only cover games in which no teams are competing. I will eventually expand the guide, but I have not yet planned to do so.
I tried to keep this guide as short as possible, without leaving out anything very important. This text does not include any exact strategies or recipes on how to win an FFA games? In contrast, however, I go into detail about what thought processes you should have during a FFA round. Therefore, this guide can provide useful information to both new players and seasoned veterans. I hope it helps everyone who likes to play FFA games.

I might continue working on this guide, so don’t hold back with feedback/ideas. ;)

2. What should be the goal for all the participants in an FFA?

I feel that it is important to mention this because I often think that many players forget this while playing. There is only one single goal for each player to archive and that is to win. There is no second or third place. There are no infinite alliances. So, when you participate in an FFA, you play it to win. Otherwise you are just destroying the whole philosophy of an FFA game. Moreover, it is very little fun to compete against players who do not follow this principle.

3. Understanding the situation, you are in.

a. The initial situation
At the beginning of every FFA player you should have a look at 3 things: The number of players, the name of the players and on which map you are playing? These 3 factors should at least to some extend determine your initial strategy.

Let’s have a look at the simplest point: The names of the players.
Are there players you know? How are they rated? Do some of the players know you? Do you know if two of the players do not like each other? Are these players likely to target one of them specifically? All of these questions can give you hints on their behavior during the game. Imagine the advantage you receive if you can figure out what most of the players will probably do.

The second factor: The map.
The map can determine the starting strategy very hard? Does every player have one clear starting opponent? Is there a super important reclaim field or a strong supermex? Are the starting positions easy to defend or can an early cloaked army slip past the defenses and do the trick? Annalise the map and play accordingly

The last, most difficult and most important of these three points: The number of players.
Many people play FFA in a similar fashion, regardless if they play with 2 or 15 other players. However, this involves a major risk: You can ruin the balance of the game.
I will explain the balance of the game by a simple mathematical example: 3 players. Each get a score, according to their units, metal and energy production and so on. Player 1 has 500 points, Player 2 has 300 points and Player 3 has 400 Points. In this moment nobody can win the game because the strongest player, player 1, is not capable of taking player 2 and player 3 out. Trying to finish either one would weaken him to much to win against the other player. However if Player 3 looses 201 points, then the balance of the game is broken. Player 1 has now more points then Player 2 and Player 3 combined. He will win the game if he uses the opportunity.
I know this is simplified, but it reflects the FFA situation very well.
What does this mean for the game?
In a 1v1v1 situation, fighting with another player is bringing the third player closer to the win, because you are usually both losing points during that time. I am not saying you can’t or shouldn’t fight anybody. Sometimes it is necessary. But keep an eye on the third player too. Know when you need to stop.
In a 1v1v1v1 situation this problem isn’t as big. Because even if you and another player are having an all-out war. There are still 2 players balancing each other out. Meaning, as long as those two are keeping a close eye on the fight, and everything that is happening around. None of the can try to profit from the situation because it would open him/her up to the remaining player.
Games with 5 or more players are just a multiplication of smaller rounds, and follow the same principles.

b. Knowledge is power
Only if you know what your opponents are planning can you prepare for it. Therefor it is a pure gamble whether an action that is not based on knowledge will ever pay off. Therefor you should use any possible tools to scout your opponents in very regular time intervals.
Some of the most common units/structures to acquire some information: Radar; Advanced Radar; Owl; Swift; Flea; Widow; Scythes; Gremlins;
You might ask yourself what a good time interval would be. Consider this: On most FFA maps, in the endgame the players reach 100, sometimes even 150 metal per second income. With 100 metal per second, it takes 6 minutes to rush a Disco Rave Party. Now is any of the remaining players able to counter a superweapon in this instance? If the answer to this question is no, how long would they need to prepare? How long do they need to scout themselves? How long will it take yourself to convince them? If you can answer all those questions, you can calculate the optional scouting frequency.
Please understand that the superweapon is just an example. If one paladin is enough to take you out for sure. Then you need to scout adapted to that threat. And so on.

c. Those who have an ace up their sleeve have a clear advantage.
Of course, if knowledge is power, then you should do everything you can to keep the other players from acquiring any information about your situation.
Good tools to accomplish this: Some long range Anti-Air to prevent owl and swift scouting; A dense line of defenses; A flea screen line to detect potential intruders; Cloakers! They can’t scout what they can’t see.; Cloaked units.
Ask yourself why the most used strider in FFA is Scorpion. (Ok maybe Funnel is build more?) It is cloaked, that’s it. This factor is important enough for players to get 4, 5, sometimes even 10 of them. This should highlight the importance of this factor.

4. Diplomacy, the spoiled part of each FFA.

Under point 3.a. I explained the importance of the balance of the game. The players who are aware of it will be communicating a lot with other players when they play. Because only then can they guarantee that they can uphold it.
This is why players call out other players for taking a lot of territory, or assembling a big army at their border. They want to let other players know whats going on. So, they hopefully start acting against the player which tries to gain an advantage over the others. However, you should be careful to not trust every information that is shared. People often call out things that are not actually true. Sometimes they hope that you will completely invest yourself on killing that single person, while they build up.
Therefore, if you receive information that is important, try to verify it.
Also sometimes other players are giving away important information without even noticing it. A simple example: The games started 3 minutes ago. And Player 2 writes: “Hi player 3.” It are only 2 words. But it gives you the following information: Most likely these two players are probably neighbors. (People very rarely scout not neighbor players in FFA) So far, one is not rushing the other one. Player 2 now knows which factory Player 3 started with. Player 3 has at least little knowledge about Player 2’s progress. 2 words….
But diplomacy doesn't just happen in chat. The actions of each player will influence the other players opinion about each other. Would you trust an alliance proposal by someone that just tried to sneak an army into your base?
Maybe it is possible for you to even get two other players to fight each other? Imagine if you have three players. Player 1 controls the north, Player 2 controls the mid and Player 3 controls the south. Now player 2 is a very inexperienced player, and will retaliate hard against anyone that attacks him. So, when player 1 manages to slip some units to player 3 and kill a bunch of stuff. In the meantime, now player 2 closes that “hole” in his defenses. Now to get back at back Player 3 needs to go threw Player 2. (Assuming he only has units, no nuke/superweapon)

5. Fight only if it increases your chances of overall victory.

Does this fight get me any closer to victory? You should ask yourself this question before each battle.
Fighting for a single mex can be worth it. Going all out for it however is probably not the right choice. When there are two mexes can’t you ask the other player to each take one, to avoid weakening each other? Is the other player inexperienced and will potentially suicide his whole army into you because you killed a few solars? Think about it.

6. Never underestimate your enemy.

Zero-K has a high rate of unpredictability: cloaked units, nukes, silo, alliances, rushes.
You won’t always be able to predict/counter them all. But you should try to prepare for them. A fight can turn very quickly if your detri suddenly blows up because two ultimatums did their job. How unfortunate that it was also far into enemy territory and you also lost the rest of your army in the explosion. Now the guy you tried to kill is resurrecting your detriment and his army is standing between you and the wreckage… Maybe a screen of fleas could have stopped this from happening.
What I want to say with this is: Do not get sloppy.

7. Comebacks and what you should know about them.

First of all: Comebacks are only possible because players don’t care to kill other players for good. Therefore, if you don’t want to get killed by a guy who had a single constructor at some point. Don’t be too lazy to send a few units to finish the job.
Second: Comebacks can only work if the remaining player highly ignore the map. No matter what you plan to do, if you can not claim any mexes again a comeback won’t work. That is why, it is only really necessary to try it, if you have or will get the opportunity to hold some mexes.
Thrid: A comeback requires an option to suddenly become much stronger then the remaining players. This can be a superweapon wreckage or similar. Or players that have an all out war, which will weaken them as much that you can become stronger then both the “normal way.”
Fourth: Comebacks are to some extend a relic of a former version of Zero-K. Back when constructors and caretakers were still giving income. They became far less common after this change. I think this should be mentioned.
+6 / -0
A few random comments:

quote:
I feel that it is important to mention this because I often think that many players forget this while playing. There is only one single goal for each player to archive and that is to win.

A reasonable proxy for this goal is "aim for the situation where there are two relevant players remaining and you are the stronger of the two". You may still lose the game from that point, but at that stage it is just down to playing ordinary ZK and you no longer need to think much about the FFA aspects.

quote:
Ask yourself why the most used strider in FFA is Scorpion. (Ok maybe Funnel is build more?) It is cloaked, that’s it.

If Scorpion is not appropriate in the current situation, just build some other strider and hide it under an area cloaker instead.
+0 / -0
8 months ago
"I have played/watched many FFA games in Zero-k and couldn't help but notice that a large number of players don't seem to be able to replicate the success they have in 1v1's or team games."

Since it is the other way around for me (im much stronger in FFA then in 1v1 or lobpot) ill add my two cents.

First off, as I have said in a number of games, FFA IS MUCH MORE STRATEGY HEAVY(as opposed to tactical) then 1v1 or even large teams. The number of players, but also the size of the maps/the metal income especially in later stages matters a lot here. Its not that having the right unit counters or proper micro are irrelevant, but if I own a third of ennead/throne/dworld etc and you own a tenth, no matter the unit composition or godlike micro, youre going to loose.

As far a Strategic Thought ist concerned, there is noone better then old master Sun(Chapter 1 Verse 18-24):

"18
All warfare is based on deception. #
19
Hence, when able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must seem inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near. #
20
Hold out baits to entice the enemy. Feign disorder, and crush him. #
21
If he is secure at all points, be prepared for him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. #
22
If your opponent is of choleric temper, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant. #
23
If he is taking his ease, give him no rest. #
If his forces are united, separate them. #
24
Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected. #"


Whenever you can fool your enemy do so.
The obvious ones in ZK are techswitches, or cloaked units but any kind of hidden fighting strength can serve (i.e. scylla! but also simply positioning normal units in the back so enemy has less chance of spotting them).
But in FFA there are many more subtle way to fool enemies, the most important one, especially in beginning of an FFA, is to AVOID ANY KIND OF ATTENTION. FFAs get hectic, loads of enemies in all kinds of directions. In a situation like this the best thing that can happen to you is to be forgotten by the other players.
Its why in the beginnings of an FFA I build my defenses more withdrawn(for example if you have a T shaped exit to your base build llt to block entrance to your base, but do NOT block enemy units wanting to go left to right in front of your base).
Its also why I tend to avoid talking(Aerithlynn says hi to masper and dave...), even friendly chatter leads to attention, which you dont want(if you want to do diplomacy do it in whisper/private chat).
This also includes not sending out raiding parties, scouting is fine so long as you do it quickly and dont annoy the enemy, but attacks are obviously the Nr.1 attentiongrabber.
This also includes giving up space/mexxes if doing so promises less attention (for example in a 3 or 4 player throne game, where everyone starts up top, simply go recon com and build base one level down, there will still be plenty of space to expand to, while the others clash on the upper levels, or consider Ennead, the 2 super mexxes are enticing, but if by not going for them I can get the other 2 players to fight, then not having them is the most profitable option).
Next one would be Radar Coverage> scouting too often (you want real time data anyway plus checking up on 2 enemies fighting each other is best done by radar).
Finally, and this ties in with other points worth considering, WHENEVER YOU DO ATTACK, YOUR AIM SHOULD BE TO KILL NOT TO WOUND. Anir goes into this a bit at the end, but I would add that it is not simply about wanting to avoid comebacks. The problem is once again, attention. If you stage a succesfull campaign to take a position with 3 mexxes from your neighbor, even if you loose almost nothing and gain the mexxes, chances are that if your neighbor wants too attack/scout/build defenses next, he will do so in your direction instead of his other neighbour, classic case of winning the battle but(potentially) loosing the war.

This brings me back to Master Sun (Chapter 2 Verse 5-6 and 4.15):
"5. Thus, though we have heard of stupid haste in war, cleverness has never been seen associated
with long delays.
6. There is no instance of a country having benefited from prolonged warfare."
"15. Thus it is that in war the victorious strategist only seeks battle after the victory has been won,
whereas he who is destined to defeat first fights and afterwards looks for victory."

If you cant defeat your enemy within 3 min(better 1min) dont attack. To much can happen, they might start countering your units, other players might attack you etc..., also you dont simply want to kill that one enemy, you also want to occupy his territory, meaning more time being vulnerable. This is why in middle/later stages of FFA stumpy/ravager ist my favorite unit, simply put nothing beats the classic main battle tank at blitzing, especially not on those huge FFA maps
If you are not sure that you can overrun your enemy and there is no immediate reason why you must attack, then dont, rather build up more forces and/or wait for your enemy to fight with a third party.

Concerning Space&Time

As anyone whos ever played Go or has basic understanding of geometrie will know corner/side positions are more defendable then center locations, so if possible try to creep at the sides of the map when expanding (you want your territory to be defendable more so then added mobility that comes from center locations). This I feel most players in FFA games have realized.
On the other hand many people play like it was a Team or 1v1 concerning timing. As Anir said above, there is no point in playing for 2nd place. Therefore, even bestcase scenario, if I want to win this game ill be in it for at least 30 min more likely 60-80. Therefore almost any Singu with a paybacktime of less then 10 min is a decent investment. Ofc you dont want to be overun right away, but if you are simply in a holding pattern trying too avoid attention building energy is almost always a good choice.

Finally for the later stages of FFA. Chances are that if you are one of the last 2-4 players, that you have quite a lot of territory and metal at hand. At that point the optimal Strategy would be a mix of the classical porcupine and octopus strategies (https://www.tauniverse.com/cavedog-mirror/totala/strat_frame.html advanced/overall strategies)
Aim not to defeat the enemy, but to become undefeatable yourself, by building multiple bases. If you own a third or maybe half of Europe or Dworld or the like, you should have at least 5 factories AT 5 DIFFERENT LOCATIONS, not just for unit variability, but also to have multiple staging areas for your armies and most importantly to be able to afford to loose one or two (same is true for singus, if you get to 200+ metal even if the paybacktime is high it makes sense to build a few more of them som you cant be killed by loosing them). Alternativly start regarding all of your territory as disposable and instead build a single, unkillable location with a starlight.

One last thing, which works for FFA as well as for other games. NO HALF MEASURES!!!
If you want to eco, then eco, try to get as much buildpower for that singu/fusion as you can an finish asap, same is true for any highcost units be it pala/detri or nukes or superweapon.
If you want to fight, then fight too kill.
If you want to prepare an army prepare an army (and dont go for eco and/or superweapon at the same time)
Nothing is more inefficent then splitting ones recources in too many directions.








+4 / -0
8 months ago
FFA is gambling and people rationalize a lot of things.
+3 / -0
8 months ago
"FFA is gambling and people rationalize a lot of things. "

Poker is much more dependent on luck then chess, yet both games have strategy.
Or in other word, just because the standard deviation is higher for a single FFA game then for 1v1 or Teams doesnt mean proper decisionmaking wont infuluence your average rating.

That being said if I were asked to rank players by their ZK ability Id look to the 1v1 ladder first and FFA last.
+3 / -0
8 months ago
quote:
Poker is much more dependent on luck then chess, yet both games have strategy.

Dig hard enough and you'll find out everything has a strategy.

It is attempt to measure organic entity with a ruler: while it will tell something, you always will have only some degree of truth as a result.

But i shall not to push my views, they might be perceived as wild by some/many. For instance: I have learned long time ago from other players that one does not necessarily need any extraordinary talents to play [any] vidya game, and we used to laugh at people who made claims like "I've been reading tutorials". So ... yeah.
+1 / -0
8 months ago
"FFA is gambling"

FFA is more a game of planning than any other gamemode. The person with the best plans for the given situation (which is made of random variables) usually wins. It also involves more luck. But hopefully you keep believing FFA is all luck, it makes you easier to defeat :-).

"Its also why I tend to avoid talking(Aerithlynn says hi to masper and dave...)"

:-(
+1 / -0
8 months ago
Sorry Dave usually not one to rub it in, but its been a while since I was so amused by a ZK game chat.
+2 / -0


8 months ago
What if somebody wants to play a casual FFA and don't care that much about winning?
+2 / -0
40 days ago
Right right, calling bullshit on this:

quote:
I feel that it is important to mention this because I often think that many players forget this while playing. There is only one single goal for each player to archive and that is to win. There is no second or third place. There are no infinite alliances. So, when you participate in an FFA, you play it to win. Otherwise you are just destroying the whole philosophy of an FFA game. Moreover, it is very little fun to compete against players who do not follow this principle.


There is only one purpose when playing pots: TO WIN. The only outcome is a win or a loss, so you should play it to win. Otherwise you're just destroying the whole philosophy of a PvP game. Moreover, it's very little fun playing with people who play incredibly stupidly game after game after game, never changing their ways no matter what you tell them.

Now that we've established that, I should say that what I wrote above goes against the spirit of ZK. I remember discussing/arguing about this issue with at least EErankAdminAnarchid, AUrankAdminGoogleFrog and AUrankAdminAquanim and the answers I got were something like "this goes against the spirit of ZK, the type of game we want ZK to be; a game where everyone has fun".

Now that we've established THIS, it's on YOU to explain why FFA games in your opinion don't seem to fall in the same category as pots or other games? Why are you forcing people to "play seriously" in FFA but not in pots? And I'm very curious if the rest of ZK team sign this take about FFA games being more "serious" and "important" than pot games, to the point where the "spirit of fun" is thrown out the window?
+1 / -0
Okay first things first. We are prepared to look the other way if people who have been absent for a long time want a fresh start but this post isn't really giving me that vibe, so FIrankRemembrance why are you not on your original account?
EDIT: I see this was discussed in another thread.

That having been said...

I think you are misinterpreting LUrankAdminAnir's position. In team games we do not insist that everybody plays 100% tryhard all of the time but we do insist that they make something along the lines of a good-faith attempt to play to their win condition (as opposed to griefing their team and assisting the opposing team's win condition). This is a necessary pre-requisite for the game being fun for all involved, which is our primary motivation.
[Spoiler]

In FFA games LUrankAdminAnir is saying, and I generally agree, that more or less the same thing applies. You don't have to tryhard but you do have to be playing in a way that lines up with making yourself win the current game. The difference is that in FFA it is much easier to talk yourself into thinking assisting one particular opponent to win is OK, because they are not your only opponent. Nevertheless if people routinely do this it makes a mockery of the game and results in less fun for everybody (else) involved.


tl;dr: playing some meme unit composition in FFA is okay, perhaps even more ok than in teams because you're only letting yourself down, but helping specific other players to win at the expense of yourself and the rest of the players is not okay
+2 / -0
40 days ago
1. Before you call me out for being wrong, you should get your facts right.


2. I never said that this does not apply to 1v1s, 5v5s or whatever game size you want.
It is just a lot harder to determine if something is good or bad to do during a teamgame then during an FFA game. Simple fact and argued over and over again within the community.

Example: Troll commanders are a tactic that is often considered useless and a waste of metal by the majority of the community. (At least those with enough skill to build 1 widow or similar) And yet, there is never any modaction taken against the users of trollcoms. This comes from the fact that they, from time to time make cost and help their team to win the game.

However, if you self-d your commander in order to get some reclaim. The general consensus within the community is that you are purposefully weakening your team, even if you claim you have a reason to do so. Therefor, this is a reportable action and is also treated as such by the mod-team.


3. Why should your "fun" stand over someone elses "fun"?
Are you claiming to be better then everyone else here? Because it certainly sounds a lot like it!
If you are ruining the game for someone else, because you want to have fun. Then I am very sorry for you, you will not be welcome in any gaming community anywhere. And that is also a fact.

+0 / -0
quote:
It is just a lot harder to determine if something is good or bad to do during a teamgame then during an FFA game. Simple fact and argued over and over again within the community.

I strongly disagree with this. For example, something like outright walking your units out into the middle of the map and self-destructing them is conceivably valid FFA play. In a lot of cases it's probably not, but in order to judge we would quite probably have to understand the mindset of every player in the game.

That being said, actually moderating FFA is arguably easier because our general policy is "unless you are blatantly helping someone else win or similarly playing against your own win-condition, we'd prefer not to argue about what constitutes good FFA play".

In my mind the point is that "helping a specific opponent to win at the expense of other opponents" is an issue that only applies to FFA, not teams.
+1 / -0
39 days ago
quote:
I think you are misinterpreting LUrankAdminAnir's position. In team games we do not insist that everybody plays 100% tryhard all of the time but we do insist that they make something along the lines of a good-faith attempt to play to their win condition (as opposed to griefing their team and assisting the opposing team's win condition). This is a necessary pre-requisite for the game being fun for all involved, which is our primary motivation.


Correct me if I'm wrong, but storage spamming was never prohibited right? I would say that denying whatever thousands of metal from your team by sitting on them with storages is a pretty easy case for griefing, intentional or not. Yes there are some strats to store metal and then speedbuilding something big, but let's be real here: most storage spammers aren't doing this.

Not very fun for "all involved", right?

quote:
tl;dr: playing some meme unit composition in FFA is okay, perhaps even more ok than in teams because you're only letting yourself down, but helping specific other players to win at the expense of yourself and the rest of the players is not okay


...what an absolutely stupid statement. Let's do a pretend a scenario: there's an FFA game with three parties, A, B and C, left. A and B are very strong, whereas C is noticeably weaker and can't contest either A or B. C can still win if they stick to themselves and have A and B go at each other; C is also strong enough to tip the scales for either player's favor if they were to attack. End scenario.

Based on your bad, imaginary rules, player C is not allowed to attack anyone here, because if he does, he'll be, in your own words, "helping specific other players to win at the expense of yourself and the rest of the players". Nice job.

quote:
3. Why should your "fun" stand over someone elses "fun"?
Are you claiming to be better then everyone else here? Because it certainly sounds a lot like it!
If you are ruining the game for someone else, because you want to have fun. Then I am very sorry for you, you will not be welcome in any gaming community anywhere. And that is also a fact.


How hypocritical. It's not me that is imposing self-made rules on FFA players so that my own ideal of fun would be fulfilled. Or maybe you have illusions of grandeur, thinking your opinion represent the entirety of this community?

Maybe read what you wrote and look into a mirror...

Also; my opinions and my fun are my personal things, I have no interest in superimposing them over the rest of the players like you do with FFA. Furthermore, my takes aren't validated by how popular they are, nor am I afraid to discuss/argue them even if nobody else agrees with me. Using crowd pressure or whatever it is that you're trying to do is pointless.



^As much as I'd like to continue this discussion, and as much as leaving this as my closing post mid-discussion is terrible, that is what I'm doing. Had a fun little while with ZK, mainly observing games. Balance seems weird, though it's probably more that the game is now way slower-paced than it was ~two years ago and that I had a hard time adjusting to the pace. Also, pretty disappointed with the lack of terraforming. Mainly watched 1v1 games, but almost nobody used tf from what I saw. Kinda sad since it was a cool mechanic.

With this, back into obscurity I shall go -->
+1 / -0
I don't really see the point in engaging with your incoherent arguments based on a creative misreading of my posts and whatever grudge you have about how we handled team game moderation when you were an active player, if you're just leaving the community anyway. If somebody else is interested in reading how I would reply to FIrankRemembrance then they can ask.
+1 / -0
39 days ago
I agree with you AUrankAdminAquanim.
With his goal being obviously to waste our time and him taking random examples I never even mentioned in my post, there is no point in answering at all.
+0 / -0


39 days ago
What a confluence of strawmen and ad hominem. FIrankRemembrance you've either completely missed the point or intentionally sucking all the nuance out of things just to write a wall of text.

I see only two things worth saying, to clear up any confusion caused:
  • This thread is about how to win FFA, not about moderation policies to make FFA enjoyable. The two topics but it is important that people don't mix them up. The moderators don't expect everyone to be amazing at FFA. There is a large gap between being amazing and playing so as to make the game intolerably unfair for others.
  • The moderation policies around FFA are actually based around popularity, ie, what sort of game most of the FFA community wants to play.
+0 / -0


39 days ago
AUrankAdminAquanim
quote:
You don't have to tryhard but you do have to be playing in a way that lines up with making yourself win the current game.

To clarify: Can I assume this does NOT mean that if you've promised something like "Let's team on this guy till we've taken out his expansion here" and then later information arrives that makes this a losing play you are obliged to backstab them? e.g. I can value keeping my promises over winning the current game.


Related: one habit I'd like the mod team to take up that I've seen other forums use is to use coloured text to indicate when you're speaking as an admin as opposed to a player. e.g.

You should not discuss X. This an official admin statement
You should not discuss X. This is my personal opinion.
+1 / -0
quote:
an I assume this does NOT mean that if you've promised something like "Let's team on this guy till we've taken out his expansion here" and then later information arrives that makes this a losing play you are obliged to backstab them? e.g. I can value keeping my promises over winning the current game.

In an ideal world where everybody playing FFA actually has some understanding of the game mode, I think that nobody (including yourself) should expect you to keep a promise that is obviously gamelosing, and breaking it should do no harm to your reputation. It helps if you phrase your agreements as "lets not fight for now" as opposed to "peace forever".

If the players in a FFA have mutual respect (i.e. they expect their ally to do the sensible thing and backstab them when it is clearly a good idea to do so, and hence are not offended by it) pretty much any agreement is understood to be temporary by default.

However this is not an ideal world. If it is blindingly obvious that by keeping this promise you are tanking both your own chance to win and that of the person you are attacking in favour of the person you made the promise to, I think playing this way is in pretty poor taste. If it is less than blindingly obvious then it's hard to call it anything worse than a misjudgement. It is hard to imagine the moderators feeling it is their business in either case though.

See for example this article written about FFA in some other game (it is part of a series on FFA diplomacy that is worth reading).

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As for the other, I don't recall handing out a final warning as an immediate prelude to formal modaction that was not clearly signalled in some way or another as a moderator action (depending on your definition of clearly signalled I am sure some example could be found. but moving on...), and getting all formal about warnings earlier than that seems counterproductive a lot of the time. Neither I nor anybody else has to use or even possess moderator powers to remind others not to be a dick.
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