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Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 13:42:32


Beren • apex 
Level 63
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I have been working with Fizzer and a few other people to draft a set of potential official rules for Warlight ladders. Also, there will now be a point of emphasis to enforce these rules more strongly than has happened in the past. This is an announcement of the direction the ladders will be moving in. A formal announcement of the rules will come when the rules are officially put in place. Violations of the following rules should be reported once the rules have been officially put in place.

1.) A player can't start playing on the 1v1 ladder with an account if they have another account with unexpired games. Games expire after 5 months. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.

2.) A player may only play on the Seasonal Ladder with one account per season. Violations will be punished with a warning or ban on all implicated accounts.

3.) A player may not play on the Real Time ladder with an account if they have another account which is currently ranked. Accounts become unranked after 3 days of inactivity on the ladder. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.

4.) A player may only play on a team ladder if there is no team consisting of the same players (not accounts) with unexpired games. They may join the ladder on a new team if at least one of their teammates is a new different player or if one or more of the players on the old team is not on the new team. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.

5.) Egregious stalling can be reported and the game will be reviewed by Fizzer and the mods to see if it is a blatant attempt to thwart fair-play by stalling a loss. Automated tools will be used when possible to confirm stalling. Enforcement will err on the side of caution to result in the fewest amount of false positives. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.

6.) Manipulation of the force-finish in the Seasonal Ladder is not allowed, and the use of vacations towards the end of a season leading to force-finish will be considered especially suspicious. Violations will be punished with a ban. Fizzer retains the right modify results in egregious cases as has been done in the past possibly resulting in the loss of games and/or trophies.

In addition, each season of the Seasonal Ladder will be extended from 60 days to 75 days since the next season rarely starts immediately, in order to cut down on force-finishes unless there are reasonable objections.

Rules 2, 3, 5, and 6 will go into effect immediately after the rules are officially announced. There will be a grace period of 5 months before Rules 1 and 4 are enforced in order to allow all games that are unexpired at the time of the rule announcement to expire.

Edited 9/2/2017 17:38:39
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 13:46:03


ps 
Level 60
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all seems good to me!
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 13:54:22


Min34 
Level 59
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Good to see some rules that enforce fairplay and make the competitive scene more fun!

Thanks for working on this, can't wait till they are officially announced!
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 14:02:01


Edge
Level 61
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I like this announcement. It's great that those rules will be put in place and that the official Warlight rules will be enforced more strictly. It was never great that people switched accounts on the ladders from one day to another. I also like, that stalling will now be under review more strictfully. Stallers should be punished and i'm happy to see, that they might receive a ban now if anyone caught them and reports them. Together with the change of the seasonal ladder it makes all sense to enfore more fairplay on the ladders and to give them a higher competitiveness again.

Edited 9/2/2017 14:03:46
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 18:35:50


SuperGamerz 
Level 58
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1.) A player can't start playing on the 1v1 ladder with an account if they have another account with unexpired games. Games expire after 5 months. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.


I'm ok with a waiting period between runs, but 5 months is a long time. Maybe 2-3 months would be better.

2.) A player may only play on the Seasonal Ladder with one account per season. Violations will be punished with a warning or ban on all implicated accounts.


100% agree

3.) A player may not play on the Real Time ladder with an account if they have another account which is currently ranked. Accounts become unranked after 3 days of inactivity on the ladder. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.


Good rule, please make a side note though, I have seen people have an account ranked and play with another new account, under the guise that technically neither account is ranked at the same time. This should be banned too imo. Also note that accidents happen on this ladder. Not all who do this do it with bad intent.

4.) A player may only play on a team ladder if there is no team consisting of the same players (not accounts) with unexpired games. They may join the ladder on a new team if at least one of their teammates is a new different player or if one or more of the players on the old team is not on the new team. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.


This is fair, one question though. If I play the ladder with someone else and that run ends, am I allowed to have a ladder run with just myself?

5.) Egregious stalling can be reported and the game will be reviewed by Fizzer and the mods to see if it is a blatant attempt to thwart fair-play by stalling a loss. Automated tools will be used when possible to confirm stalling. Enforcement will err on the side of caution to result in the fewest amount of false positives. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.


Still don't like vague rules. Can we at least get the presets for what the tools will look for? Also will there be an appeal process?

6.) Manipulation of the force-finish in the Seasonal Ladder is not allowed, and the use of vacations towards the end of a season leading to force-finish will be considered especially suspicious. Violations will be punished with a ban. Fizzer retains the right modify results in egregious cases as has been done in the past possibly resulting in the loss of games and/or trophies.


Good rule. Is it an immediate ban or a warning though? I mean, a bit harsh don't you think. How about a ban from the next seasonal, then an account ban if the person persists in future seasons.

In addition, each season of the Seasonal Ladder will be extended from 60 days to 75 days since the next season rarely starts immediately, in order to cut down on force-finishes unless there are reasonable objections.


Again, good rule.

Rules 2, 3, 5, and 6 will go into effect immediately after the rules are officially announced. There will be a grace period of 5 months before Rules 1 and 4 are enforced in order to allow all games that are unexpired at the time of the rule announcement to expire.


I'm a bit confused about 1 and 4. Why wait to enact this rule. I understand implementing the system that detects it until all these games expire, but if people read this as "so I can keep doing this for 5 months" it defeats the purpose, no?

Last question.
How do we plan on informing people about this? Most people don't check the forums (and I don't blame them).
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 19:01:50


Cata Cauda
Level 58
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Still don't like vague rules. Can we at least get the presets for what the tools will look for? Also will there be an appeal process?
I agree with this. Sometimes what is perceived as stalling is simply someone playing very slowly. I dont want people to be punished for playing slow. We have the boottime for that.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 19:12:01


Rikku 
Level 61
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"I'm ok with a waiting period between runs, but 5 months is a long time. Maybe 2-3 months would be better."

Runs aren't essential with these rules the numbers of the will decrease , after all they are just an unintended result of the rating system.


"How do we plan on informing people about this? Most people don't check the forums (and I don't blame them)."

Maybe a popup such as one when there are sale but only for people who have participated in the ladder before , it should also show when people join a ladder (everytime you join a non RTL I guess since you don't join those that often).

1st time warning + 1 day ban from Warlight
2nd time six month ban from all ladders
3rd time Perm banned from all ladders (but not normal Warlight games)

I think removing people from ladders for a set time is better than removing people from all warlight for a set time since they are only damaging the integrity of the ladder. Since they play the ladder they are obviously invested in the game so completely removing them from site is unnecessary.

Just a few cents , it's nice to see it being discussed.

Only slight worry is if the rules will be too complex for newer players and perturb them from participation.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 19:24:04


Math Wolf 
Level 63
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I like these ideas.
I'm really a fan of 60 -> 75 days for seasonal as well, great for someone like me to end all games in a fair way!

Still don't like vague rules. Can we at least get the presets for what the tools will look for? Also will there be an appeal process?

I agree with this. Sometimes what is perceived as stalling is simply someone playing very slowly. I dont want people to be punished for playing slow. We have the boottime for that.

Agree on not wanting people punished for playing slow. But there is an obvious difference between me and some others who take 2d20 for every (other) turn, and stallers who do so in a few games often while still playing fast in a bunch of others (and/or used to play fast until a certain moment in time). Depending on what data Beren thinks can be gathered, I figure a tool should be able to pick up that behaviour rather than just playing slow. I can think of a few statistical methods that would work.
I also agree that the general criterion should be clear to everyone, but if it's too detailed, stallers might just adapt their stalling based on the tool? There are way too many smart people here, so some would do this. (WL has a problem with the things Beren describes basically because there are too many people who see and understand these loopholes).
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 19:33:24


Beren • apex 
Level 63
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I'm a bit confused about 1 and 4. Why wait to enact this rule
This is to avoid punishing people for actions committed before the rules are in effect. The games they played prior to the announcement were played under the old rules.

I'm ok with a waiting period between runs, but 5 months is a long time. Maybe 2-3 months would be better
5 months is so that the results of games you played on another account won't be able to have any effect on your current account. It also has the effect of removing any competitive advantage you can gain on the ladders using alts. It is already an official rule that you may not use alt accounts in any way that gives you an advantage in game or on a ladder. This is not really a new rule, as Fizzer has said in the past. It's merely a codification of an existing rule that had not been enforced.

Good rule, please make a side note though, I have seen people have an account ranked and play with another new account, under the guise that technically neither account is ranked at the same time. This should be banned too imo
Ideally this would also be banned, but we couldn't find a practical way of determining which account is legal, since ratings never expire.
If I play the ladder with someone else and that run ends, am I allowed to have a ladder run with just myself?
Yes, this is allowed.

Can we at least get the presets for what the tools will look for?
We haven't finalized any implementation details here, so that won't be possible.

Good rule. Is it an immediate ban or a warning though?
If Fizzer and the mods agree that the player was intentionally subverting the force finish mechanism, there will be severe punishments, not just a warning. This is already a rule, it just hasn't been regularly enforced.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 19:35:32


Жұқтыру
Level 55
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Egregious stalling can be reported and the game will be reviewed by Fizzer and the mods to see if it is a blatant attempt to thwart fair-play by stalling a loss. Automated tools will be used when possible to confirm stalling. Enforcement will err on the side of caution to result in the fewest amount of false positives. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.


It's hard to explicate, but I agree with Supergamerz in that the vagueness of this rule really irks the _ out of me. Stalling is just how the game works, if you don't want the game to work like that then change the rules, instead of Christ and co. deciding who gets smited. Same with rule #6.

Perhaps make a rule where you always have to take double turns though (if you're the last player to go, you must take your next turn within 2 hours)

I'm not sure why any of this needs to be punished by bans. Just forbid that player from the ladder for a while. To choose that time you can use some formula like

2*(x-0.5a) = t

x = how many times this player broke the rules
a = time (months) since the player last broke the rules
t = time (months) of ladder kicking

Edited 9/2/2017 19:37:03
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 20:59:53

TBest 
Level 60
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Potential New Official Ladder Rules


Had to lol a little bit xD

None of the rules here are 'new'. Well, except extending the 60 days to 75 days. I know people have been warned for all of thees behaviors before. In other words, all the rules are already in effect? At least I am enforcing them, to the extent that I am able to. So not there is not a 5 months grace period in effect? More like enforcement is being stepped up soonTM.


Speaking of enforcement, that is the real issue. The way I see it there are two major problems with the ladder rules/enforcment today.

1. Random players don't know about the no-alt rules, 5 months waiting etc.
2. Detecting violators of several of the rules is very hard. How are you going to know if a player suddenly breaks the 5 months rule? (Not to mention that waiting 5 months is a bad experiences)

In my view this all boils down to one big problem. Alts. They are too easy to hide/to hard to detect. Rule 1-4 is the same rule imh. Alts are not allowed on ladders. If you can't detect them, how are you going to enforce it? {Particularly if the aggressive approach of 1 warning, banned, is followed, we should be 100% sure that an alt is the same person and not a family member.}

We need a way to police alts, not "new" ladder rules.


Optimistic about the Seasonal ladder through. 60-75 should make it way easier to see what is stalling intentionally and what is legitimately slow playing.

5.) Egregious stalling can be reported and the game will be reviewed by Fizzer and the mods to see if it is a blatant attempt to thwart fair-play by stalling a loss. Automated tools will be used when possible to confirm stalling. Enforcement will err on the side of caution to result in the fewest amount of false positives. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.


As have been said by other commentators, this rule needs work. Stalling is a broad definition that varies greatly from individual to individual. In order to eliminate stalling you would have to eliminate the ability for players to wait 3 days every turn.

Mathwolf
But there is an obvious difference between me and some others who take 2d20 for every (other) turn, and stallers who do so in a few games often while still playing fast in a bunch of others (and/or used to play fast until a certain moment in time


Curious what that obvious difference is? Can easily see a scenario where someone plays fast in won games, but slow in complicated games that they are worse in, but have just the smallest chance of a comeback. In fact even in completely lost games I have made comebacks and ended up winning after going 2d20~ for like 5 turns. Through most of those games I loose.

Consider chess, even in a position that can not possibly be won (say I only have my King left) I still have the right to play until checkmate. Ay, on quite a wide range of levels you could get lucky and get a stalemate. Through stalemate is not possible, the same principle is there. You should be allowed to play in a 100% lost position, since your opponent could still make a mistake.

Of course running around with 1 territory in WL is quite clearly stalling, that is not the stalling we are having issues with. It is all the grey edge cases. Say a top10 player lost on picks. Is it stalling for him to play 10 turns with 2d20?

Maybe you could define stalling as playing on while opponent has 10 plus more extra income over X turns? However, such a rule also has issues as WL is fogged. Quite a few games where a player expands and gets to 35 income, while another is using his 20 income to fight, not aware that he has a lost game.

Final note,
A player may only play on a team ladder if there is no team consisting of the same players (not accounts) with unexpired games

This wording makes it sound like I can be on more then one team in a team ladder at one time, as long as the team don't have the exact same players in it (which is impossible anyway). I presume it is just the wording, and that the intention is a no-alt rule.

Edited 9/2/2017 21:01:01
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 21:31:32


Timinator • apex 
Level 63
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This wording makes it sound like I can be on more then one team in a team ladder at one time, as long as the team don't have the exact same players in it (which is impossible anyway)


it's not impossible :P

Team 1 of A, B, C
Team 2 of Alt of A, Alt of B, Alt of C


The rules are trying to say you can exchange a teammate if he retires from the ladder and you don't have to wait 5 Month until your old games are expired to join with a new team.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 22:33:09

Fizzer 
Level 58

Warzone Creator
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Can easily see a scenario where someone plays fast in won games, but slow in complicated games that they are worse in, but have just the smallest chance of a comeback. In fact even in completely lost games I have made comebacks and ended up winning after going 2d20~ for like 5 turns. Through most of those games I loose.

Of course running around with 1 territory in WL is quite clearly stalling, that is not the stalling we are having issues with. It is all the grey edge cases. Say a top10 player lost on picks. Is it stalling for him to play 10 turns with 2d20?

You're right this is the hardest part in coming up with these rules. Before these rules are accepted, I suggest that we should try as hard as possible to define what is considered stalling and what isn't. I know it's a difficult task, but we should try as much as possible to outline it. This is especially important since you can't rely on one person to do all of the enforcing, so everyone that enforces it need an established guideline that's as specific as possible. The guideline can be changed over time, if needed to combat abuse, but there should always be a guideline.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/2/2017 22:41:27


Cata Cauda
Level 58
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TL DR: The rules need to be worded simple and known to EVRERYONE on the ladders. As you can clearly see, even experienced players have problems here.
If you cant explain a rules in a way even a newbie understands it, dont implement it.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 07:42:21


Holdway
Level 62
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For me stalling becomes something that needs to be punished when a player stops trying to win the game and is simply running away from an opponent to make the game go on as many extra turns as possible. It can be a little subjective, but there are examples where it is very clear cut and obvious as to the intent.

If a player goes from being consistently quick (turns all made under a day) to slow (2 days 23 hours) they probably are attempting to subvert the ladder but it's impossible to really know that. If you start punishing people for going from quick to slow, you are in effect saying, it is against the rules to play a 3 day boot game, once every 3 days, if at some point you played faster. That isn't in my opinion a fair or good consequence of the rule, especially when the definition of "you played faster at some point" isn't clear.

By weakening the ability to have runs, you also weaken the power of stalling, since it is at it's most effective when being used on a run to push all your defeats to the end of that run. So it's possible that a stricter interpretation of stalling is less important.

One thing that could be done that would be less punishing; is that players who have been flagged as stalling could be forced into an anti stall setting for ladder games. This would work whereby the player can only commit in the game that is closest to the boot. This would mean that in order to slow down a defeat, a player is forced to also slow down their wins, and so gain much less advantage from stalling. The benefit of this is that due to the inherent subjectivity any system is going to create false positives, and those players aren't being punished, but forced into a play style where they can't accidentally game the system.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 09:24:54


Buns157 
Level 67
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Not that it helps, but a good way to view stalling is if the losing player could still win if they had full intel on what their opponents moves are.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 10:50:17

Mike
Level 59
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As Tbest said, wording of rule 4 could be better, as someone totally unfamiliar with team ladders can not understand (well, or i'm just stupid :-) ).

Regarding stalling, I don't know what the problem is to it, as everybody can do it, and the delayed loss is coming either way, so not sure what difference it makes (but i'm not that familiar with 1v1 ladder either).
Since I understand the trouble to recognise stallers, Why not simply reduce the incentive to stall. Make a win when you are lower ranked worth more than a win when you are higher ranked. It doesn't have to be a massive difference, but then it would matter to take a loss before a win. I don't think it's possible to stall wins with opponents pushed to take their loss.
Edit : or if it's difficult to implement in a formula, give a tiny "bonus" in points for a win coming right after a loss.

Edited 9/3/2017 10:58:51
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 11:15:09


Master Farah♦ 
Level 59
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Regarding stalling, I don't know what the problem is to it, as everybody can do it, and the delayed loss is coming either way, so not sure what difference it makes
1) Stalling one or more games means you can win other games while not losing your stalled games. This will boost your rating and ranking higher than deserved. It also hurts the players getting stalled, since their rating is kept lower than deserved.
2) 'Everyone can do it' doesn't imply that everyone should. Anyone can use a chessbot in chess, not everybody does for very good reasons.
Make a win when you are lower ranked worth more than a win when you are higher ranked.
This would hurt the ladder as well. Your rating estimates how good you are at a given time. So if you improve, your rating increases; if you get worse, your rating decreases. That is the core principle of the rating. So getting less reward when you're already high means you take away the fairness of the estimate. A ladder system that starts to get less rewarding if you are ranked higher would also take away the incentive to stay on one account on the ladder i think. Every time you get a high rank through a run, do a new run, since the ladder starts to punish you for being ranked high.

Edit: a tiny bonus in points for a win coming right after a loss would make it possible to make stalling rewarding in a different way: let's say you have 3 games which you are losing. Surrender one, stall the other two. Now win a game. Then surrender one of your stalled losses and keep stalling your last game, etc. to maximize bonus points

Edited 9/3/2017 11:17:40
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 11:26:06


Sephiroth 
Level 60
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Rule 5: very vague. The goal of this game is to eliminate your opponent, and a player has the right to use all the time he's been given to commit his orders. One way to account for what you call "stalling" would be, for example, a proper use of banked boot time.

Rule 6: even more vague than rule 5. Increasing the duration of the season by 15 days seems like a good first step towards the solution, if vacations were not honored for those last 15 days it would be impossible to manipulate the force finish at all.

All the others could be solved implementing a better rating system

Edited 9/3/2017 11:30:20
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 11:54:45

Mike
Level 59
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Edit: a tiny bonus in points for a win coming right after a loss would make it possible to make stalling rewarding in a different way: let's say you have 3 games which you are losing. Surrender one, stall the other two. Now win a game. Then surrender one of your stalled losses and keep stalling your last game, etc. to maximize bonus points

True, but may be worth a try IMO : stalling remains a minority in general (I think), and with so many losses, players get discouraged and leave, or have no hope to get very high in rank so need to benefit from stalling is low.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 17:15:55

smileyleg 
Level 61
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Sometimes when I'm losing I "stall" but not in a way to manipulate the ladder.

What happens is I realize I'm behind, but think there's probably still a chance, so I don't surrender yet. But I delay taking my turn because I know it's going to require more thought and effort to keep up the fight.

This is a bad habit obviously--it often results in needing to play a turn to avoid a boot which rarely improves my position.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 17:56:34


Timinator • apex 
Level 63
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being behind encourages procrastionation, i agree smileyleg. i've pulled back a notable amount of games after getting behind by actually thinking about the game for 2d+
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 18:04:42


Krzysztof 
Level 66
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i remember Math Wolf did some calculation a while ago and noticed there is visible difference between turn time in won and lost games.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 18:16:27


Cata Cauda
Level 58
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One thing that could be done that would be less punishing; is that players who have been flagged as stalling could be forced into an anti stall setting for ladder games. This would work whereby the player can only commit in the game that is closest to the boot. This would mean that in order to slow down a defeat, a player is forced to also slow down their wins, and so gain much less advantage from stalling. The benefit of this is that due to the inherent subjectivity any system is going to create false positives, and those players aren't being punished, but forced into a play style where they can't accidentally game the system.
Please no, this punishes people who stall games they think they are losing, because they need more time to think. I do that very often. I take easy turns during breaks or even loading screens of other games, while more difficult games are stalled until I find the time to really think out all possible moves. This often results in 2d+ turns. Why shouldnt I be able to make use of all 3 days? Afterall this is the point of MD.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/3/2017 18:31:06

DanWL 
Level 62
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4.) A player may only play on a team ladder if there is no team consisting of the same players (not accounts) with unexpired games. They may join the ladder on a new team if at least one of their teammates is a new different player or if one or more of the players on the old team is not on the new team. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.

5.) Egregious stalling can be reported and the game will be reviewed by Fizzer and the mods to see if it is a blatant attempt to thwart fair-play by stalling a loss. Automated tools will be used when possible to confirm stalling. Enforcement will err on the side of caution to result in the fewest amount of false positives. Violations will be punished with a warning and then bans.

These rules need more clarity.
It wouldn't be easy to detect if or when a play is stalling based on the duration that it takes for players to take their turn as they would have a reason for taking a long or short amount of time to take their turns such as not having internet access, having the weekend off or having the time to play.


6.) Manipulation of the force-finish in the Seasonal Ladder is not allowed, and the use of vacations towards the end of a season leading to force-finish will be considered especially suspicious. Violations will be punished with a ban.

What if a player wanted to or planned in advance to go on vacation though? If the length of seasons are extended, then it's likely for more players to go on vacation during a season. I dislike the idea of banning or warning someone for just going on vacations. If people who took a 'long' amount of time to do their moves in games, then about 4 or 5 accounts would be banned per month (going by the amount of reports that I've seen for players to warn or ban a another player for this reason within the last couple of months). This may discourage player to take part in the ladder or quit the game completely.

Rules 1 to 4 are fair, breaking rule 5 shouldn't result in a ban and rule 6 should be removed, in my opinion.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/4/2017 13:03:56


TeamGuns 
Level 59
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I really like these potential new rules, my only problem with those being again the definitions and clarity of some that could be worked out.

One thing that could be done that would be less punishing; is that players who have been flagged as stalling could be forced into an anti stall setting for ladder games. This would work whereby the player can only commit in the game that is closest to the boot. This would mean that in order to slow down a defeat, a player is forced to also slow down their wins, and so gain much less advantage from stalling. The benefit of this is that due to the inherent subjectivity any system is going to create false positives, and those players aren't being punished, but forced into a play style where they can't accidentally game the system.


I like this as a solution for when you're not entirely sure someone is staling, as a mean of giving a punishment that isn't too bad in case it was non-proposital staling but still prevents stalers from doing it again without punishment or correction to their actions.

Edited 9/4/2017 13:05:08
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/4/2017 15:30:23


Beren • apex 
Level 63
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All the others could be solved implementing a better rating system
Agreed, a better rating system would certainly help, and hopefully that will come in the future. However, I should have mentioned in my first post that one of the constraints on the rules we are allowed to draft is that they would not entail any code changes. Fizzer is completely tied up with the Unity launch and won't be able to commit to any code changes until that happens.

Sometimes when I'm losing I "stall" but not in a way to manipulate the ladder.

What happens is I realize I'm behind, but think there's probably still a chance, so I don't surrender yet. But I delay taking my turn because I know it's going to require more thought and effort to keep up the fight.

This is a bad habit obviously--it often results in needing to play a turn to avoid a boot which rarely improves my position.
I think everyone tends to do this to some extent, so any consideration of stalling will definitely have to take this into account. As I said before, while our official guidelines for determining stalling are still being developed, they will be heavily biased against false positives.
I dislike the idea of banning or warning someone for just going on vacations.
People wouldn't be banned for going on vacation during a season. They would be banned for going on vacation in order to manipulate the force finish and get a free win.

As many people have said, the wording of some of these rules could still use some work, especially the team ladder one, and they will be made clearer.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/4/2017 16:12:22

rakleader
Level 62
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@DanWL: Rule 6 should definitely be there. This rule isn't about vacations, it's about players taking advantage of those vacations to win on force-finish.
With this rule, we can avoid games like these:
https://www.warlight.net/MultiPlayer?GameID=13878244
https://www.warlight.net/MultiPlayer?GameID=13893060

If a player has a vacation planned during the last week of the seasonal, that's fine, he can take it. But he has to be fair-play about it. He needs to warn his remaining opponents at least a week before he goes on that vacation, and see if they can find a way to finish the game before he leaves, RT or MD.


On rule 5), I'm fine with the vagueness of the rule. It should stay this way in my opinion.
First, because the moment you give a precise definition of stalling, you can be sure that some players will find a new way to stall by circumventing this definition.
And second, because stalling depends on a lot of things, and not only income and armies. Is the staller active on other ladder games? Has he been asked to play faster in the team chat? Does he have a bad income but a good position that still gives him hope?

When we see stalling, we know it. We don't need a mathematical definition for it.
And if we're worried about false positives, let's have a second or a third pair of eyes check the game. It should be enough.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/4/2017 22:06:00


Master of the Dead 
Level 63
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When we see stalling, we know it. We don't need a mathematical definition for it.
And if we're worried about false positives, let's have a second or a third pair of eyes check the game. It should be enough.
This!

If you showed a game to 10 people and 9 or 10 of them said it was a stalled game, I don't think you need metrics to define it. If it's split 7-3, just ignore the report. Or use Buns' metric - If you can show your opponent the entire board and still win easily, you know the game is done.
Potential New Official Ladder Rules: 9/4/2017 23:07:59


Sephiroth 
Level 60
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Not the entire board, but all the moves from that turn on
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