BADGER

Ideas for Fixing Balance

296 posts in this topic

8 hours ago, dropbear said:

Tell me CRS - WHY WOULD AN ALLIED PLAYER of mostly TZ3 pay $$ to get zero enjoyment, zero chance of winning, indeed feel like crap when they KNOW when they log in they are going to be overrun at every AO.

 

3 hours ago, Quincannon said:

So, of course the Axis side continues to grow, while the Allied side shrinks... because the Z3 issue also disheartens the main Allied pop in other TZs who decide that what they do doesn't matter because it all goes away in TZ3, and we lose players from that player base as well.

 

160 TZ3: Axis overpop

161 TZ3: Balanced 

162 TZ3: Axis overpop

163 TZ3: Balanced

164 TZ3: Allied overpop

165 TZ3: Allied overpop

166 TZ3: Allied overpop

167 TZ3: Axis overpop

168 TZ3: Axis overpop

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1 minute ago, sydspain said:

 

 

160 TZ3: Axis overpop

161 TZ3: Balanced 

162 TZ3: Axis overpop

163 TZ3: Balanced

164 TZ3: Allied overpop

165 TZ3: Allied overpop

166 TZ3: Allied overpop

167 TZ3: Axis overpop

168 TZ3: Axis overpop

I don't know where  you came up with that list... but before you use it for proof that the imbalance doesn't exist, I suggest you look at every time it showed Allied overpop and see if there weren't a significant of people who normally play Axis swapping to the Allied side. You can't use a swapover campaign as proof that the Alllies were overpop. It's a false positive. I personally have been of the belief that there needs to be a moratorium on Axis players coming to the Allied side for at least 6-7 campaigns, so that everyone can clearly see how a purely Allied side performs. Regular side swappers are generally an insignificant percentage, but I would assume that they can affect the  numbers by 10-15%.  It's unfortunate that it's unlikely to happen, when it is so clearly needed to make the issue unquestionable to everyone.

The imbalance is not a joke or conspiracy. It's a fact that has been recognized by folks on both sides. From what i have seen, with a VERY few exceptions, any time the Allies get the better pop is when Axis folks want to "help" or decide that the Allies need to win for the sake of the game.

There have been a few times when the Allies were able to make substantial sacrifices of time that they normally cannot dedicate to the game to help out in TZ3... but it has never been sustainable. People have real lives.  The Allies have to gain real dedicated Allied players who can play during TZ3 on a regular basis, or nothing will be solved.... ever.

 

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7 minutes ago, Quincannon said:

I don't know where  you came up with that list... but before you use it for proof that the imbalance doesn't exist, 

I'm not saying that there isn't inbalance on tz3...I'm saying that the inbalance affects both sides

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20 minutes ago, sydspain said:

I'm not saying that there isn't inbalance on tz3...I'm saying that the inbalance affects both sides

It only affects the Axis side when Axis players swap sides.


I have been playing TZ3 Allied for 7 years. I have missed out on a few campaigns. but in that time I have never played in a campaign where TZ3 Allied was anywhere near equal to the Axis overpop unless Axis groups swapped sides. THAT's what your list is missing... it doesn't take that into account; therefore it is a flawed population model.

Show me more than two or three campaigns that the Allies won purely on their own in the past few years... Then maybe you can convince me that I might be wrong.

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1 hour ago, sydspain said:

The only way to fix balance is to increase population...

That is not necessarily true.
If there is a population imbalance,,, say 60% Axis / 10% swappers/ 30% Allied

The we increase the overall population across the board by 20 %... All ratios remaining equal...

The imbalance will always remain at the same percentage...

The reason some folks think that the imbalance is helped by greater population is because the numbers increase, and the imbalance is not so glaringly obvious..

If we have   60 Axis, 10 swappers, and 30 Allied...  the pop is 2-1, but there are 30 Allies... not necessarily that bad.

if we have 30 Axis, 5 swappers and 15 Allied... the pop is still 2-1, and 15 Allies can still potentially hold out/

But when we drop to 6 Axis, 1 swapper and 3 Allies... things get pretty grim for the Allies...

Unfortunately, it's rarely that specifically even.. when the numbers drop, the ratio tends to get greater in my experience... often putting the axis at  a 3-1 advantage or better during TZ3. This is often because there are TZ3 Squads on the Axis side, and none on the Allied side.

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6 hours ago, ZEBBEEE said:

For example regarding population balance, like you said, it is not just about the number of players online or spawned, it could be visualised I terms of balance of sorties, TOM, k/d, unique players, supply, ranks,...

Yeah, it kind of is the bolded thing, above.

That's the data I'm talking about.

Time averaged actual in game population as a graph, at least hourly. So we could see for some example (typical) campaign that there are 13 Allies in  game, and 21 Axis in one hour, then 17 and 28, etc.

The actual numbers matter. One, to understand the typical magnitudes of imbalance that exists (assuming there is in fact a pattern). Two, the actual number matter because as wel all know, effective CP defense requires some minimum number of players (note here that "CP defense" is something required for both offensive and defensive play, you guard what you own or you lose it, regardless of how you obtained ownership).

If the pop is so low that one side cannot meet the minimum CP defense for 2 towns, then even one AO per side is too many, since they cannot defend one town, and attack another.

It's a non-trivial problem, or this would have been fixed years ago.

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Ok, 2 ideas for helping balance, not sure if mentioned before.

First, TOM % side SD;   This would mean a side with TOM advantage would have permanent SD regardless of op or up.

So, if your side has 10% TOM advantage, you would have 10 sec SD at all times - regardless of pop level.  Because, your side has overall TOM advantage.

 

Second, side behind, no SD.

This is different variation, not sure how would calculate -but prolly from overall map % ownership.

I think map starts allies 55 axis 45.

As long as that ratio maintained, both sides get SD like normal.

But, if one side pulls ahead, say it is now axis 50, allies 50; the 'behind side' would never get hit with SD.

The ahead side would have normal SD, if under pop none, but if over pop they would get SD.

The behind side would never get SD, even if over pop.

 

Ultimately, this needs to be solved with a spawn in queue, that allows no more than a 2 to 1 in game pop advantage; or maybe 3 to 2.

It doesn't need to enforce even sides, just enforce some limit to over pop.

 

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Every other thread becomes a balance thread, lol.

Something occurred to me as a generally useful concept, but it can also be perhaps turned on and off, or otherwise controlled relative to player population, perhaps mitigating balance issues, so I will put it here.

Vehicles are "multicrew," but functionally what this means is that vehicles get multiple lives per spawn, unlike infantry. Spawning a fire team or squad is not very likely, so forget that. What about allowing multiple, simultaneous spawns for a single inf player (infantry, and ATGs/AAA guns)?

Spawn truck in a town likely to be attacked. Make DFMS on an excellent hill for defense. Add some ammo as well, away from the DFMS. Despawn, and respawn as an ATG. Find a good spot, hidden, nearby. That's all normal, here's the new bit: Allow inf players to despawn in a way that does nto remove them from the game world. Maybe it's a "swap avatar" button along with the usual 2 buttons to despawn or cancel. That pops you back out to active missions. Your ATG is right where you left it, as if you were AFK. You'd then maybe head someplace in desperate need of troops, and fight a bit. You'd have a key to swap between units---say 2, 3, 4, etc, as if you were playing a tank where "1" is the inf you are playing right now. If you are an ATG/AAA, it's simply the next number after the crew on the ATG (so 3, 4, etc). You then hot swap between 2 guys (or 3, 4, whatever). When you are not controlling them, they are simply targets, and you might get a message like ATG when a crew member is killed (Crew 2 hit in torso).

This would allow people to set up proactive defenses, but be able to still defend in town. It could be pegged to OP/UP status in some fashion, the more under pop you are, the more of these concurrent avatars you can spawn. While only 1 can fight at a time, it's still a force multiplier. Since the enemy knows there might be units emplaced out around town, they at least might want to guard their FMS, etc, which at least siphons off some of their overpop numbers. The UP side on attack could spawn an inf, advance to a cutting position, then spawn someone to cap. Place the cap guy in the CP, then switch to the cutter. All but the one he controls are sitting ducks, obviously, but it is a force multiplier. You can guard with 1, then go recap, for example (you'll get a message when your guard is killed).

I honestly think this would be better generally in play, but the numbers allowed could easily scale to relative pop, allowing a kind of balance.

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No matter what solution if any is ever enacted. A segment of the population will be upset and maybe unsubscribe. I didn't like the AO system, but I came back and played for years.

S!

Edited by gavalink
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On 9/29/2019 at 5:20 PM, delems said:

Ok, 2 ideas for helping balance, not sure if mentioned before.

First, TOM % side SD;   This would mean a side with TOM advantage would have permanent SD regardless of op or up.

So, if your side has 10% TOM advantage, you would have 10 sec SD at all times - regardless of pop level.  Because, your side has overall TOM advantage.

 

Second, side behind, no SD.

This is different variation, not sure how would calculate -but prolly from overall map % ownership.

I think map starts allies 55 axis 45.

As long as that ratio maintained, both sides get SD like normal.

But, if one side pulls ahead, say it is now axis 50, allies 50; the 'behind side' would never get hit with SD.

The ahead side would have normal SD, if under pop none, but if over pop they would get SD.

The behind side would never get SD, even if over pop.

 

Ultimately, this needs to be solved with a spawn in queue, that allows no more than a 2 to 1 in game pop advantage; or maybe 3 to 2.

It doesn't need to enforce even sides, just enforce some limit to over pop.

 

RLMAO Delmse 

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Gonna harp on this once again. Local imbalance is the only imbalance that matters, and sometimes local imbalance is what SHOULD happen, and sometimes it is a game flaw.

When 3 linked towns attack an enemy town, and if all the towns have the same supply (each has the same number of Brigades and Garrisons), then the attackers SHOULD possibly have 3:1 odds.

If a single town with a Garrison only attacks a large town/city with 4X the supply (say 2 ABs and 2 BDEs), then the attackers in this case should be attacking 1 vs 4 odds in population. Right now, if one side was OP by 4:1, they could do exactly the opposite, and attack at 4:1 odds, even with supply that was 4:1 against them---that is broken.

In the game now, the relative population depends entirely on what AOs players decide to join, and this is of course largely driven by global player population on one side vs another. There are various ways to address this issue, and I have expounded on them before. I'll bullet point a few:

1. Limit spawning from any linked facility/object (depots and mobile spawns) when the local population exceeds the maximum operational odds (Attacking supply vs defending supply). This would be instead of any spawn delay, so there's zero SD in this concept. Everyone can respawn at will, but WHERE is controlled, if your side is OP in a given AO/DO, you can only spawn from the place your Garrison/BDE is based (for the attacker, the attacking town/FB).

2. Change the AO placement rules such that the global imbalance sets what AOs are allowed. Ie: If one side has 40 players on, and the other side has 20, the higher pop side can only set AOs where the local supply is 2:1 vs the defenders. So when supply is identical in every town (as an example), they can only set AOs where 2 towns or more link the target. Ie: If the Germans were 2:1, they could attack Tienen if they had St. Tru and Jodo, but they would not be allowed to AO Aarshot if they only owned Diest right now. This way of doing it might be easier to code (it's just AO rules). No SD, either. The attacked is SUPPOSED to have 2:1 odds, after all.

Both could happen at the same time in some fashion as well, though it seems like the second might be one to try first, it might solve things all by itself. What it's doing is acknowledging the existing imbalance, and driving the FIGHTS such that the imbalance is actually FAIR. What sucks in game is losing a huge city during low pop with pop imbalance, because in "normal" play with a good server pop, those battles are huge things that often come down to supply/attrition. If there's a low pop period with 6:1 odds (tiny numbers of actual players, that could be 12 vs 2, lol), then the attackers would be stuck finding an AO where maybe 3 towns all with Garrisons and a BDE attack a town with just a Garrison. If that doesn't exist, they can't set an AO. The low pop side, OTOH, can AO anything they like, though they just have to eat the odds. Yeah, that OP side gets stuck on defense even though they are OP---but that's the sort of imbalance that is only likely to happen with very, very low population, like the example of 12 vs 2. The reality is that WW2OL has a minimum number of players on a side for it to function at all as a game. My feeling is that that minimum number is to take the smallest town in game, and count the capturable facilities. Add 1-2 to that, and that's the minimum number of players. 6-8? Killing most all AO setting when one side has under 6 people seems entirely reasonable---or a side that routinely has an imbalance that looks like this could drive their play before that tz to set up possible AOs with the right level of imbalance. That is, you pile a few BDEs on the front such that you have an AO that can work at huge odds in your favor. If that can't happen, the OP, low pop side can always bust FBs.

Edited by tater

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PUNT (my last post got buried by someone's credit card post spamming the recently replied frame on the right).

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*** second-third-4th accounts to play on the Under-pop side

That would result in insta bans.

2nd accounts have to play on same side as 1st.

 

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27 minutes ago, nc0gnet0 said:

Only allow FTP players and second-third-4th accounts to play on the Under-pop side. 

That might help, but it depends on the number of FTP people, how effective they actually are, etc.

I think the AO rule change really does have a good shot at making things feel the best in game. One thing I think we all know is true---the game is better at higher player densities. During a lower pop period, it would generally be best for all the players on both sides to be in one AO (gotta have critical mass of players). If you are just at that point where there is a minimal effective defense (guard all the CPs, plus some recappers and maybe extra units (a tank or 2, and maybe even an aircraft)), then at least when the enemy attacks at 4:1 it feels less unfair and "rolled again" when you know that they were attacking you with 4X the supply. Also, it seems like you could immunize certain parts of the front from low-pop rolling by stacking defenses on them.

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4 hours ago, delems said:

*** second-third-4th accounts to play on the Under-pop side

That would result in insta bans.

2nd accounts have to play on same side as 1st.

 

I didn't mean that you would have multiple accounts playing on each side, c'mon man!

if your side is Op you can't play 2nd or third accounts unless you move all of them to the Underpop side (including main account). 

 

 

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1 hour ago, nc0gnet0 said:

I didn't mean that you would have multiple accounts playing on each side, c'mon man!

if your side is Op you can't play 2nd or third accounts unless you move all of them to the Underpop side (including main account).

This is no solution, anyway, it's not like we even want someone with an account open on each side.

Imbalance is part and parcel of the game. People tend to switch sides at the campaign level, generally, right? Or they don't switch sides at all. The "solution" is to steer the fights to the available player population. If the server odds are 2:1, try and set up 2:1 fights (based on Map level units---like you'd say the odds were 2:1 if 2 Divisions attacked 1 Division at some part of the front. Generally, vs any sort of defense, attackers like to have more forces than the defenders. The map tends to move based on side balance anyway (during the different times of day), so the Rats should embrace it. While I still like my ideas about limiting linked facility spawning, let's just look at the AO concept...

 

1. Substantially reduce Garrison size. Instead of being ~BDE size, it needs to be a fraction of that. A company at most, so like 150 men (count ATGs are 2 men each, and count tanks as 3 each, so maybe 2 platoons inf, plus a few tanks)

2. Possibly increase the number of BDEs, as they are going to take longer to resupply when attritted (see #3). Possibly change the time it takes to move them (ideally a time cost per link (town) they move through).

3. Substantially increase resupply time for both BDEs and Garrisons (I want those best tanks you lost 2-3 towns ago to matter, that sort of long resupply). The goal is for logistics to matter more, since breakout will be more of a thing, full BDEs will attrit and move though Garrisons much faster than now---but any damage done against the attackers will also matter more. Rolling a town at the cost of half of your SMGs, when they will not be replaced for a long time might not be desirable.

4. Base allowed AOs on the relative spawn lists between linked, attacking towns and the target. Not the BDE count, the actual spawn lists (total # of inf units, + total vehicles (maybe each vehicle counts as X inf). That way an attritted BDE counts for less. If you are OP, and need 2:1 odds, you might have to move a fresh BDE forward. The idea here is that you need at least the relative supply of your OP level. If you are OP 2:1 in players, you can attack with 10:1 supply if you like, just like the UP side can attack anywhere they like, even though it won't likely work out. If you were 2:1 you could NOT attack 1 BDE with 1 BDE, though, since you can possibly spawn at least 2X as many people as the players in the defensive BDE. Note that if the sides are close to even, the game is identical to what it is now AO wise.

5. Eliminate spawn delay.

How would something like this look in practice? Perhaps (there's been talk of a new UI anyway) the UI for HC peeps could show any town that is ALLOWED to be AOed (for both sides) as a new color (one for Axis, one color for Allied). This makes AO selection easy, and the HC can see how it changes via moving BDEs to the front, when the linked potential target town changes color, you're good to go.  Note that the OP side can likely attack Garrison towns pretty much at will, you could be ridiculously OP, and if a Garrison is only 33% of a BDE, then 1 BDE (town also has a Gar) vs a Garrison is ~4:1 odds---so as long as your OP level is under or equal to 4:1, you are allowed to place the AO. So the OP side can break out in multiple AOs, since they have the pop to do that. Yeah, the UP side will get rolled, just like now, what have I added? The defensive players in those hopeless battles can do real damage, since resupply is much longer. The more important units you knock out, the fewer they have at the next town. If they hit a town with a BDE, the attackers might be in trouble, and since the AO placement rules require they attack where they are locally OP, if they hit an area fortified with BDEs, and they have only a few attritted BDEs, they might not be allowed to advance (place an AO there) until they move fresh units to the front (they've outrun their logistics). Clearly they can then just go around, and pick AOs on the flanks that are vs soft targets (garrisons).

This allows complex "map level" play, and actually allows "blitzkrieg" to be a thing. When the side that had been advancing goes under pop, then they are consolidating, and moving up fresh troops. The other side can then counterattack for a while. Where sides decide to stack BDEs and eliminate possible attacks might be strategically very interesting (likely places with lots of links...). Everyone can play, no SD, and the side getting rolled can at least feel like their fight to the death matters.

Nothing else up to this point has worked, and we ALL hate SD... it's worth trying something novel.

 

On 1/27/2016 at 6:34 AM, B2K said:

Same with resupply. From a HC perspective it would be problematic to not be fairly certain if supply was coming in or not. From a Player side, if there's no units to spawn, I'm just not logging in. Some may swap over, but I'd think most would simply stop playing.

I thought this old comment was worth adding, and it's true. The goal is for people to have fights. People getting rolled is no fun, we've all been there. Spawn in, and even if you kill a couple, "winning" means booting the attacker's AO if you are on the side getting rolled, anything short of that feels like losing all the time. The above system I suggest would result in many of these fights (we have many of these anyway, remember!), but the longer resupply, etc, would mean that you could fight a Garrison vs attacking BDEs, and you KNOW you will lose, just as I know we'll lose when 3-4 defenders spawn into a town already crawling with ei, but you'll also know that they will either advance with fewer forces than you were just attacked with, or if they stick around, the town has a weak BDE in it. Your damage to them should matter more. When the UP side knows that they'll lose this town, then the next, and all with a zillion units in supply... what's the point?

Edited by tater

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