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Inca Religious Victory Games Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Hall of Fame Discussion' started by Firmlife, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Deity Supporter

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    Frankly, I don't need to twist anything you do around. Anything to the contrary was simply a misunderstanding on my part. I agree that you do use the Tribal Villages setting in the exploitative manner you described earlier in this thread. I would definitely _not_ say it's "evil". That's word you chose to use for reasons I will not speculate on.

    I'm just trying understand what you were doing. Its a bit hard to do that with just the game info from the HoF database. And frankly, I don't recall ever downloading any of your game saves; I'm just not that interested in going through the trouble you did and I'm certainly not much interested in taking Deity RLDV #1 games from you, if that means starting large numbers (~30) of Inca games and continue only that one that gets a directly useful techology and then possibly need to redo the whole process, because The Oracle was lost, issues with the map, or Civs are settling where their not wanted.

    The fact that you were able win so many Deity RLDV so quickly has more to do with the facts that you rarely played out games without getting 1-2 technologies from Tribal Villages and you often utilized Quechua units to Worker steal and capture AI cities, except from your ally of course.

    I'm just considering the facts. Another fact is very few players other than yourself have played the Inca Civ and Tribal Villages anywhere near as exploitatively as you have. Firmlife is learning though and may even end up doing it better than you.

    While I'd prefer you didn't play in the manner you yourself described, as long as you abide by all HoF rules, I have no issue with it. My issues are with the HoF Rules that allow "exploits and skill" to win over just skill.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  2. neilmeister

    neilmeister Lentils have feelings too GOTM Staff

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    In other words, if you refute my arguments, then my arguments change...

    Or i can snidely suggest everything WT does is exploitative, and feign ignorance when i am called on it.
     
  3. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Personally, I don't have any problem with WT taking full use/abuse of what's 100% legal in order to score/place well. That's the whole intent of a competitive format.

    There are just things allowed that shouldn't be that make the process more annoying than is necessary. Take his huts example; he basically admits this adds a couple extra restarts typically. However, he still does it consistently even though he claims it's not a big deal (odd, no?). However, if it weren't allowed he wouldn't have to do it every time, and neither would anybody else. What *strategy* is restarting for huts adding to the process of RLDV? How is the receipt of mining/masonry from a lucky hut skill-based? IE: What does adding early-game user-inputted repetitions add in terms of competitive value? I have never seen anyone come up with something...so why are we forcing people to use settings that add even small amounts of extra tedium without adding competitive value?

    So while I don't fault WT for using tedious methods allowed within the rules to do well, I have major issue with said rules. Huts are only one setting among many, but they do appear to be particularly relevant in this case.
     
  4. Manco Capac

    Manco Capac Friday,13 June,I Collapse

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    Such a discussion over the victory considered the most broken in the game...
     
  5. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    It's a simple concept. Luck needs to be reduced (and is reduced) as much as possible, letting skill shine through. The repetition of mapfinder, for example, exists to allow everyone to get a start they desire...a start that they determine thru skill and experience is an appropriate start for their victory goal. Reduces the luck of one player not getting any commerce in their start for example. Why bother playing that start if you're going for the best game off all time?

    As Firmlife explained, the minor extra repetition to get a hut for RLDV games is just an extension of mapfinder. Since RLDV are affected more by one free tech, this is one small area of the HoF where one would want to add this repetition to compete for the top spots. So anyone whose strategy tells them (corn, gold, gold, mining) is great start, gets that start.

    For this small area of the HoF, I think this amount of repetition is not burdensome or tedious, but that's a matter of opinion. You could, of course take it to an extreme. Someone could repeat openings 100's of times to, for example, rush the neighbor with the first warrior until they take the capital's both archers with it. That would take a lot of repetition but it could be done. But scenarios like this in reality just don't happen, or don't happen enough to ruin the integrity of 1000's of games in the HoF.

    Summary : Repetition changes everything. There is no such thing as a 'lucky hut'. Civ is filled with RNG. Repetition, probability, and statistics are what make all the massive RNG a non-issue for the competitive nature of the HoF.
     
  6. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    No, it isn't. That is your assumption, but the reality is that while map generation is a required part of the game engine in this format, huts absolutely are not and can be easily disabled.

    Of course it is, but I'm still waiting to hear how spamming maps for hut luck is indicative of skill, strategic depth, or anything that provides differential value in competition. So far, you and everybody else has failed that challenge.

    You still haven't justified why HoF would retain a controllable element that adds repetition without adding value. I'm waiting to hear that.

    Put another way: If everyone had to play games with huts off, would this have a serious impact on you? Would you use less strategy in any significant way? Would your games be less competitive? Would you lose #1 slots because you didn't get hut luck and had to win games without it?

    My guess is that your answer is "no", and that you'd still play and win RLDV games all the same, but with less total #attempts. That being the case, it's very questionable to include an added repetition factor that involves almost 0 strategy/variable choice whatsoever.
     
  7. Firmlife

    Firmlife Chieftain

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    That's your opinion. The HoF is filled with Conquest and Domination victories far earlier than any Religious victory. I'd nominate those for most broken.

    Regardless, this is a serious issue for all game types. I'll tell you that from now on, I won't consider playing a map seriously if I'm not abusing huts. In some cases, it'll be for tech, in others for gold.
     
  8. Firmlife

    Firmlife Chieftain

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    This is the jist of it. Huts add NOTHING to the game. Nothing. I'm not going to say this often, but TheMeInTeam is right. There has not been one argument anywhere in this thread to counter that assertion. That said, I don't think they're going anywhere in the HoF, and we have no choice but to accept that and adjust. I think it's moronic, but it's the state of the world. I'd rather enjoy the world as it exists today than waste a lifetime wishing it would change to suit me.

    But I ask you, WastinTime, why are you so invested in trying to hide what you've done, putting forth arguments that sometimes are just silly? Trying to argue that huts even out the luck in a game? Really? Citing an instance where you popped some good techs but then played a less than perfect game? No one anywhere has said popping a tech guarantees you a HoF #1 spot. But only playing games where you get the best hut pops available gives you an undeniable advantage over people who aren't doing that.

    You've used the rules to your advantage, and there's nothing to be ashamed of in that. Yes, the rule is absolutely atrocious, yes it disadvantages those who aren't willing or don't have the time to take advantage of it. But the rule is there and it's foolish and illogical to ignore it. You need no other defense. And no one anywhere in this thread is questioning the quality of your play. Without huts that 2090 win might become a 2040 or so win. It's still eleven turns better than Sun Tzu's victory with a leader he claims has a 4-8 turn advantage.
     
  9. Manco Capac

    Manco Capac Friday,13 June,I Collapse

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    And that's why I almost has no more interest in them. Space games, for the moment, are best because the long term investments include of a vast panoply of skills. Still, that's my opinion.
     
  10. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    I didn't say huts even out the luck. I said repetition and probability reduce the hut effect, so luck is not a significant factor. I'm saying exactly what you said. Huts add NOTHING.

    Let me clear up another thing. I'd have been fine with no huts in the HoF. but they're there. There inconsequential in the majority of games. I'm with you. People should enjoy the HoF the way it was designed.
     
  11. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    Agree. They can be disabled, and I'm fine if they are. But they are not disabled for this competition. And I've detailed why I feel that it doesn't matter either way. It doesn't invalidate the competition.


    I imagine this has been explained many times to you, but you choose not to listen. I just spelled it out for you. "spamming" as you call it (showing your negative bias) is repetition. This reduces luck allowing skill and strategy to control the outcome of a game! Example: Two players of comparable skill play one game (something you think is set up properly with no huts, etc.) In one game the AI gets the Oracle 2000BC. In the other, 1500BC, allowing that player to get the CS slingshot and win the competition. Who has more skill? We don't really know because the game was won by 90% luck. Allowing repeated attempts like the HoF does virtually eliminates this kind of luck. If players decide that a CS slingshot is the right strategy, they can play a game that includes that.

    allow me to paraphrase:
    "...element that adds repetition without adding or taking away value"

    Wait no longer. The HoF went through a beta period to determine what options to use before locking them in. The goal being to then stick with that definition for the duration of the HoF. As you well know, huts could not be disabled. So for something like 3 years it was a non-issue. Now you're asking why retain it.

    - the HoF was defined years ago. To change the rules after ~3 years into a computer game would take a serious need. Huts do not qualify for serious.

    - As I've explained, huts are a minor factor, but I still agree, they will likely give equal or better dates than 'no huts'. This is a great reason to retain them. It's frustrating to think that you have to play/compete for slots under restrictions that were not in place for 3 years. Perfect example: Space colony category. This entire thing was added because Space games now required a 10 turn (30 on marathon) waiting period. The thinking was that no one would be able to or want to compete for space games if they have to have this restriction added.
    (Aside: Turns out the power of corps made up for the extra turns and we didn't really need Space Colony, but that's not important to this discussion).

    Hut are so minor though, that I would agree with you that they could be removed even after all this time. We've seen many bugs/exploits get patched (unlimited execs, 45-turn golden ages, and--to stay on topic for RLDV: self-voting.) Games that use those bugs aren't kicked out of the HoF and tend to get beaten eventually. So, the HoF could probably absorb the change to no huts, but think that ship has sailed.

    Instead of trying to re-define a competition that has been around for 7+ years. Maybe it's time to create a new Hall similar to how eQM was a more restricted set of rules than QM. An eHoF if you will. This would give a fresh new board to fill with spectacular games, put new names up, draw in new players, etc. After all, vanilla Civ still holds a lot of the conquest slots. I have a ton of ideas for this, but that's another thread.

    True. My answer is 'no' as you said. I would love the game either way. I'm just not going to complain that it is how it is when it is irrelevant either way!
     
  12. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    +1. The only thing I find ridiculous in this discussion is his defending it as a good mechanic in this format :).

    I don't believe I've claimed otherwise. It's a barrier to competition, but that doesn't mean it invalidates competition! Consider how many barriers there are to entry into a given line of business...yet people still enter and do well.

    And at this point, probably a more useful one. I'd be happy to help/participate, to the less-psychotically frequent extent that I play civ these days (I used to burn 8+ games/week weekly at one point).

    BTW "switching cost" is a valid defense of retaining the setting. I had forgotten that vanilla allowed huts by force, as I joined this community after BTS release and only got serious in civ play around that time.

    This, of course, does not justify some of the other settings bans/allowances that never made sense at all (balanced resources for example, is strictly an example of a human guaranteeing a decent map at the arguably high price of nerfing away the chance of a potential great map for himself. NTT is a setting that strictly slows times too in the vast majority of cases including *all* standard front-table cases I can imagine), but it does explain why huts are still allowed in the front tables and arguably should be, even if a sound argument can be made for pulling them from challenger/majors/minors (though they often have been).
     
  13. Firmlife

    Firmlife Chieftain

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    Seems to me that everyone in this thread is largely on the same page here, even if the words sound slightly different and have a lot of emotion behind them. I'm done with this topic.

    Been working on the Tiny Marathon Immortal game. I had ~40 maps that I played through quickly, discarding many if I didn't pop Masonry/Mining. I only ended up popping Mining once, no Masonry. (And of course the Mining game was a poor setup, so I scrapped it.) I seem to pop ~1.5 huts a game, so a bit of poor luck popping 60 huts but only getting one solid tech. I've also been trying to optimize a couple things, most notably chops and my map selection. I played two games to the AP, one a 2070 finish, and the other looked like ~2110 finish but I screwed up chops and was on track for 2070 again when I quit.

    Going to widen my map criteria so I get more playable maps and give a solid go for this particular type at a really solid time, say 2150 or better.
     
  14. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Me too, though opening new/different kinds of comp is intriguing.
     
  15. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    Whew. It does look like we've come to an agreement. I'd also discuss/defend the "other HoF bans/allowances" in an appropriate thread.
     
  16. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Deity Supporter

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    Ignore what others have said about RLDV, when they either never played to win RLDV or never bothered to win a really early RLDV win. Winning a very early RLDV is not as easy as it may seem, unless one plays Inca. :)

    Sounds like someone else (not you) doesn't like it when the AI wins RLDV. I've seen that complaint a lot.

    What is important is what you really think about RLDV. You would not make such a comment here, unless you believe there is something more. Something we know, but perhaps you don't. Like maybe RLDV isn't broken at all.

    Since you seem to be curious (you bothered to post the comment quoted above), look at the RLDV code to see whether there is any evidence that the victory condition is broken in anyway.

    Also, this discussion is far more than just about RLDV. Its also about how the the HoF rules affect the competition for #1 HoF slots (not just RLDV slots, but all slots).

    Good luck!
     
  17. Firmlife

    Firmlife Chieftain

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    Just finished 2130 Immortal Tiny Marathon, no techs from huts. Everything was set up close to perfectly. I'll try a bit more to pop techs before moving on.

    I've been thinking, since I'm working on Marathon, about that 2300 Deity Duel game WastinTime has. Past needing 2-Commerce resources, there are a myriad of tiny map-based things that can add up to ~12 turns total on Marathon that have nothing to do with huts. Then, if I had to guess, I'd guess Masonry is worth 6 turns and Mining somewhere between 5-8 depending on worker access. On my map I only had about 5 of those 12 turns of advantage, plus popping a useful tech might get me to ~2260 under similar conditions. Perhaps running Deity instead of Immortal might get the rest, perhaps not because of the more expensive techs.

    Anyway, Sun Tzu Wu, the point is if you want a few pointers on things that are about as valuable as Masonry in a game, let me know. I'm not really of a mind to share this publicly. I gather these advantages may be one thing WastinTime is talking about when he says huts aren't as valuable as some people say. That said, in that 2300 game not only did he have almost every advantage, he ALSO popped Mining.

    Huts can make a map without these advantage competitive, but they can also take an already great map and make it crazy good.
     
  18. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Deity Supporter

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    These are your words; I have no idea what you hope to achieve by saying them.

    When someone makes an argument that I consider valid, I will and have changed my opinion on an issue. I did have a misunderstanding on how WastinTime played his recent Deity Inca RLDV #1 games and WastinTime helped clear that up and I acknowleged my misconception.

    I never said everything WastinTime does is exploitative. I still maintain that playing with Tribal Villages on and continuing only games that get a free technology from entering a Tribal Village is exploitative use of the Tribal Village. It is a system of starting enough games such that all/majority of games continued have the unfair benefit of a free technology from a Tribal Village. It is fair to criticize a player for doing this. It is not fair to expect him to stop doing it, because the HoF rules implicitly allows such exploitative play by allowing the Tribal Village setting. The blame for this explotative setting lies with the HoF's Rules. The HoF could have required the No Tribal Villages option when Warlords was released, but it did not.

    Have I responded to your concerns adequately? I ask that because I really do respect you as a fellow player.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  19. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Deity Supporter

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    Yes, the vast majority of my RLDV games did not pop a valid a free technology from a Tribal Village, because I rarely abandoned RLDV games, except when I lost The Oracle and often finished them even when I knew they would not beat the #1 game. I played for the fun of playing almost as much for beating a #1 game. Beating a #1 game is great, but it has to be fun and challenging too.

    Of course you are welcome to PM me anything you don't want to share publicly.

    I agree that a flawly flawlessly played game on a great map with a free directly useful technology from a Tribal Village is extremely hard to beat.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  20. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    Smaller maps will make it harder to get more huts. But also one disadvantage of Inca strategy is that you tend to put 4 opponents on tiny instead of 2 (like I did with Qin). This also reduces your hut/game average. And look at that. We've found another possible reason to support huts. They give a small advantage to non-Inca style of play.
     

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