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Re: Gaming activity

Posted: Sun Feb 14, 2016 2:35 pm
by Sigurd
Proposal for 'Short' Tafl Games

The current 'Quick' game format is a bit clunky. The main concern I have with it is that if something were to happen where the game couldn't be finished in one sitting, the players are locked-in to figuring out how to finish it in the next 3 days. To put it another way, the person who doesn't want to / can't finish in the session isn't the one who gets the consequences. It's whoever is least able to devote attention to the game over the remaining 3 days. As such it seems better to coordinate playing a short game while staying with the 14day buffer, though the process of doing this is also clunky.

I played a coordinated short game against Waegn on Feb 12th. Even though we intended it to be done in about 40 minutes, with the lack of any real time enforcement, it took about 80 minutes for a 51 move game. To keep a game less than 60min, an enforced time limit is needed.

The following is a bit more specific than my last proposal.

Here is how I envision a 'Short' game would work:
Such games would have a 5-10 minute time buffer for each player
Every time a player makes a move 10-30 seconds is added to the time buffer
When an invite (open or player specific) is made for a Short game, the invite would only be valid for 15-30 minutes. Time until invite expires would be listed in the open invite section (instead of age of invite), as well as a player's game list. These short games would also be somehow separated from the regular invites on the open invite page (their own section, etc).
The timing parameters are intended to result in a game that would complete within 20-45 minutes (assuming it's not a quick white win).
Total time investment for game issuer should be 60 minutes or less (includes game time and time waiting for an invite to be accepted)
The above would allow both the issuer and acceptor of the invite to have a good idea of how much time they would be committing to when playing the game.
Ideally the information would be directly displayed on the board instead of going back to 'my current games'. This would require auto-refresh to occur when a player is waiting for their opponent to move.
To address rating concerns for players over game quickness and an increased vulnerability to internet disconnect issues, a lesser rating change for a game could be implemented, anywhere from 1/2-1/4 of what the ratings change is for a regular (14 day time buffer) game.


Re: Gaming activity

Posted: Sun Feb 14, 2016 2:39 pm
by Hagbard
Sigurd wrote:Proposal for 'Short' Tafl Games
Thanks for the draft of a "short game" concept, very good thinking!

The first two years of online-gaming here (2010-11), all games were real time, no correspondence mode available. Sole time limit was that each move must be done within 5 minutes, and by this simple method even long games finished within an hour (Fetlar Hnefatafl 11x11).

Your scheme for short gaming seems more interesting, though.
I imagine as a first try to implement it something like this:
Invite, open or player specific, valid for 15 minutes (unpatient inviters probably waits no more than 15 minutes, otherwise they invite again?).
10 minutes time buffer, 30 seconds added each move, but the buffer grows to no more than 10 minutes (a player supposedly must have time to leave the board for a short while).
A typical game of Fetlar black win 80 moves would then last max. 60 minutes, 30 minutes to each player.
Game start up:
Player A invites and makes his move if black.
Player B accepts and makes his move (within 15 minutes).
Player A discovers the accept and moves (within 5 minutes).
Now the timing begins.

Re: Gaming activity

Posted: Tue Feb 16, 2016 10:39 pm
by Sigurd
Seems good overall.
10 minute buffer, 15 minute expiry, 5 min discover & accept all seem good.
My concern is that the invite issuer would end up with an 80 minute or more time commitment. (60+15+5), or if the game ran 100 moves, would be (70+15+5) for max. Granted, those aren't the most likely outcome, but new causal players running into a 80-90 minute scenario wouldn't be a good thing. I think a 20 second buffer might be better (@80moves - 27minutes + 20buffer + 15issue + 5accept = 67 minutes) but would this run into technical issues of refresh rates too high? For board refreshes while you are waiting for a move 5-10 second intervals seems like the highest reasonable time if one has 20-30 seconds move. Though it might be better to start with the 30 seconds and lower it later if need be.

Then again, maybe just posting the expected time range on the issue/accept dialog might just be the simplest solution to the possible 80-90 minutes.

Re: Gaming activity

Posted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 8:14 am
by Hagbard
Sigurd wrote:Proposal for 'Short' Tafl Games'

Re: Game lengths

Posted: Mon May 16, 2016 9:14 pm
by Hagbard
Game lengths.

Here's a list of game lengths drawn from the statistics.
The table shows for each game variant the geometric average of the number of moves for all games, for games alone where defenders (white) won and games alone where attackers (black) won.

Code: Select all

Average gamelengths                     all              white won             black won            ratio

Ard Ri 7x7 (Scottish Tafl)              16               17                    15                   1,13
Brandubh 7x7 (Irish Tafl)               19               19                    18                   1,06
Tablut 9x9 (Saami Tafl)                 27               26                    28                   1,08
Magpie 7x7                              28               30                    27                   1,11
Sea battle 9x9                          27               23                    35                   1,52
Historical Hnefatafl 15x15              31               27                    35                   1,30
Historical Hnefatafl 13x13              34               30                    41                   1,37
Sea battle 11x11                        37               29                    46                   1,59
Berserk 11x11                           37               32                    44                   1,38
Welsh Tawlbwrdd 11x11 (Bell)            35               29                    42                   1,45
Tawlbwrdd Lewis cross 11x11             40               32                    49                   1,53
Old Hnefatafl 11x11                     42               35                    53                   1,51
Sea battle 13x13                        43               34                    61                   1,79
Copenhagen Hnefatafl 11x11              45               35                    64                   1,83
Fetlar Hnefatafl 11x11                  46               34                    66                   1,94
Some of the tabluts come out very steady, in that it almost doesn't matter to the gamelength whether white or black wins.

Re: Gaming activity

Posted: Thu Sep 22, 2016 12:40 pm
by Hagbard
Altti wrote:(In small forum) perhaps the site features one variant per month for competition?
Altti wrote:(In small forum) To encourage more play on those variants, perhaps Tournaments....☺
Tuireann wrote:(In small forum) I was hoping there would be a Tablut tournament some time after the championship was over. :p
Until now, most of the time, exploring the tafl universe and researching and studying details of variants have been a high priority. The test tournament is a powerful tool for that.
There are now only a few variants left, which are little known and need examining.

Re: Gaming activity

Posted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 5:33 am
by Sigurd
Hagbard wrote: Until now, most of the time, exploring the tafl universe and researching and studying details of variants have been a high priority. The test tournament is a powerful tool for that.
There are now only a few variants left, which are little known and need examining.
Here are avenues I think are worth considering.
Holding a biathlon / triathlon to test these might be useful.

7x7 standard layout, without & with throne (tablut version), edge escape, and unarmed king captured on 2 sides when away from the throne.
Edit: Also mentioned here at bottom of page - ... nless-king

11x11 Tawlbyrdd (Tablut ) Lewis Cross – I think this could benefit from another tournament, it would be a good thing if 11x11 edge had 2 good layouts. Another 100 games would be good for its case.

13x13 Tablut with Nielsen layout – I’ve noticed that of the historical variants 9-15x, it’s the only one that has a balance that is significantly different than the others. The layout looks like it should slow white down by making it harder for the king to get out initially.

Re: Gaming activity

Posted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 7:52 am
by Tuireann
Is the Nielsen layout the one used in old hnefatafl 13x13? The 13x13 and 15x15 HH games could both use some additional test games too.

I was kind of interested in trying out the 11x11 T cross with tablut rules. I've played a bit of the Lewis cross and my only criticism is that it doesn't have the same fast paced tempo fight right away that you get in tablut 9x9 and the 11x11 bell layout. And the opening strategy for black isn't as intuitive as it is with the bell layout. But it seems very balanced between skilled players. Hagbard and I played a few epic games on that layout when he was exploring the idea of using a tawlbwrdd for the qualifier this year.

I kind of like the idea of the 7x7 weak king sea battle game. It sounds interesting. I got my first taste of unarmed king in the last couple sea battle test tournaments and I gained a little appreciation for the strategy.

Re: Gaming activity

Posted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 6:09 pm
by Sigurd
Tuireann wrote:Is the Nielsen layout the one used in old hnefatafl 13x13?
For the white pieces, yes. the black pieces in the Nielsen layout are as in Hist. Hnef. 13x13
Tuireann wrote:I was kind of interested in trying out the 11x11 T cross with tablut rules.
The Tablut T cross 11x11 has been tried, it's listed on the measured balances page with an average of -1.60 (-1.21)

Re: Gaming activity

Posted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 8:39 pm
by Tuireann
I'm aware it's been tried but I've never tried it and it's not available. I'm curious what about it does not work.