Now Playing: More on Game Balance
Topic: Washington's War
This post was in response to my earlier point that if the best players can win with either side whether a game could be unblanced.
Balance is very dependent on player skill. If a game has a true bias players who can consistently beat anyone with either side would be difficult as luck over a period of time is not a factor. Just because many people play it one way and lose, but the superior player does it another way and wins is indicative that the winning player has discovered a technique that balances the game. Players love to regale me with how luck bit them and they lost. Fact of the matter is over a short period of time this can always happen.
My point is with as many moving parts that a medium complexity game has even tournament results are not necessarily an indication that a game is unbalanced but a reflection of the current state of play. I am not arguing that the statistics are wrong, but they are a course measure without more detail. I think that it is curious that if the game were truly biased that the British side won the final three times in a row. That could be due to luck, but I have to assume that the American opponent was a strong player also and if there were truly a 70-30 bias in favor of the Americans how does that happen? Luck would seem an insufficient answer, so I am asking a deeper question, what happened in those games? There may be a tactic or technique that if more broadly discussed would in it of itself alter the perception of balance.
I can only use FTP as my model as it has had a longer time in tournament play. James was beaten by the way, but not due to poor luck, but s superior strategy delivered by Rikku. At that time everyone bemoaned the loss of balance, but even before the final that James lost I had sat and watched what Rikku was doing and I already knew the counter to his plan. However, the difference between internet play and ftf is surprises have to be solved in real time with only a short time for thought, so it was very effective.
I even discussed this with several players that evening, one of whom was James but he felt that he had it, although it more or less worked in the finals. Immediately the FTP crowd wanted to make changes to the game to 'fix' the problem and all I did was publish the simple counter strategy and the issue dissolved.
That situation is not this situation, but I would like to hear a deeper discussion of the issue via strategy vice rules as rules lock in a new set of variables attempting to shift the balance based on the current state of play. I would prefer to not see that happen as it diminishes the art of the possible.
The two sides are very asymmetric so applying American strategy logic to British strategy is not a simple conversion. My point around American reinforcements was reflecting that asymmetry and a general response of an American weakness to some of the thinking of the British maneuver limitations and not going last. My question is have all strategy concepts been explored? I am not sure that they have...but if people are convinced that all paths have been explored we can always make changes.
Posted by markherman
at 10:17 AM EST