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Please Read: Welcome to the Civ-V GOTM

Discussion in 'Civ5 - Game Of The Month' started by AlanH, Sep 18, 2010.

  1. AlanH

    AlanH Mac addict, php monkey Moderator Supporter GOTM Staff

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    Welcome to the Civilization 5 Game of the Month forum

    This forum is dedicated to the Game of the Month competition, where players compete against each other by playing the same save, and then compare the results. Some of you may already be familiar to the concept since the GOTM competition started 2001, beginning with Civilization 2 GOTM. Then came Civilization 3 GOTM and the Civ3 Conquests version, and Civ4 included the vanilla version, the warlords version and the BtS version. In this tradition, we're now running a Civ5 version.

    The Game Of The Month is a friendly single-player competition. A starting save file is posted, and players download and play it. Each player then uploads their final save, hopefully a victory, and at the end of the month, the results are compared. Meanwhile, they post write-ups describing how their games progressed, the strategies they used, what they experienced and what they felt they did well. This is a great way for new players to ask questions and learn strategies to improve their games, and for veteran players to further improve their skills. Everyone is welcome to join, both those new to the game and those who think they're experts :D

    How to join
    You need a copy of Civ5 and a Civilization Fanatics Center membership account, which will enable you to write posts and upload your save. Once the competition is up-and-running, save files will be made available on or around the first of each month. Download it, play it, and be sure to submit it before the end of the month.

    The rules
    There are two simple rules: Once you play the save, you don't replay any moves. And you don't reveal any information to other players who have not played the save.

    This means that you play within the spirit of the competition and abide to the unofficial honor system. As it is a friendly competition, we like to believe that there is no real incentive to cheat - but unfortunately, people do. Any persons found to be cheating will be disqualified and repeated cheating will lead to a permanent ban.

    Cheating includes (and is not limited to):
    1. Playing the game multiple times and submitting the best effort (or even playing to get knowledge of the map, then replaying, then starting the game again).
    2. Using any sort of programs to edit the game or save files.
    3. Altering any XML file in any way.
    4. Using other mods that give you an unfair advantage.
    5. Reloading an earlier save-file and replaying turns in a different way. The only time you may reload a save file is to start a new play session, and you must use the save file from the end of your previous session. Please contact us if your game crashes and you need to reload from an autosave.
    Please note that some people believe that reloading (in particular) isn't serious cheating. We, however, consider it to be and have zero tolerance on it. Please also be aware that if you do it, we can detect it, and we will act on it. The reason for this intolerance is that the GOTM competition is based on the no-reload rule. It's a fundamental part of the challenge and the prerequisite for results comparison.

    Also, if in doubt, ask. If you think you have found a new loop-hole or exploit, then we strongly suggest that you ask as to its legality before you use it. The aim of the competition is not to see who can exploit the rules, and as such, we reserve the right to disqualify submissions based on exploits that are discovered later.

    How GOTM is run
    The actual format will vary over time as we get feedback from the players. But the basic format is as follows:
    1. Pre-game Discussion: A few days before the start of a new month, the starting screenshot is posted, along with the map script details, difficulty etc. This allows people to discuss strategies based on the initial information.
    2. Game release: On or around the first of the month, the game is released. At this point, people are allowed to download and play it, but once they've started playing it, they must not post any info on it, apart from the:
    3. Spoiler Threads: A number of spoiler threads are normally opened in which people discuss what happened in their games - strategies, other civs, resources, game play and the like. The spoilers are spread to cover different periods of the game. The reason for this is so that people can contribute throughout the month - people who have completed the early part of the game can still contribute without having to worry that in reading the thread they'll see where the modern-age resources are (for example). The first spoiler is normally opened a few days after game is released. Please post all contributions concerning active games only in spoiler threads. Please do not post anything elsewhere on the site during the month the game is active.
    4. Results: We aim to have the results posted within 7-10 days following the completion of the game (the end of the month).
    What we're playing for
    Generally, you are playing for your own enjoyment, and perhaps to improve your game. Some players find entertainment in performing better than their competitors and we will offer medals/awards to those worthy of special recognition.

    We also maintain a 'global ranking'. This is effectively a ranking over a number of games, with a decay figure so that your most recent games count for more - its similar to rankings in tennis or golf.

    Excellent, but when does this all start?
    Well, we're not yet set for the actual competition. First we need to develop a security mod that detects if the game has been modified. Hopefully we can reuse the mod developed for the Hall of Fame competition. Then we need to learn how to extract the information from the saves, and update the current submission system to support Civ5. With a bit of luck and lots of hard work, we could start before Christmas (this year), but we'll return with a target date once we know the amount of work that needs to be done. There are still a lot of uncertainties. Meanwhile, the Civ4 GOTM will continue. However, since we're all eager to play Civ5, we're happy to announce:

    The Civ5 GOTM Training Series
    Once the game is released (and the staff has learned the basic routines), we will start hosting training games. This training series will run until we have a security mod (a variant of HOF/BUFFY) that enables us to run the proper competition. The purpose is for Civ5-fanatics to try out the new features, share experiences, and informally compare games in a friendly environment based on the no-reload concept. The staff will propose objectives related to the new features to allow a more focused discussion, and the games will be provided twice a month.

    Once the submission website and the security mod are in place, we will start the actual competition. The award system will be designed once we understand the scoring mechanics of the game, and the players will have an important role in this process. We will use the experience from the training series to devise an award system that is fair and encourages players to perform at their best. We will also decide later if we will use adventurer/challenger saves, or if there are other ways to allow for a variety of playing skills.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2016
  2. bluexmas

    bluexmas Chieftain

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    I just discovered this site looking for info on CIV V (been playing religiously since CIV II) and am so excited to find others out there dedicated to games where you don't just re-do something once your majestic civilization crashes and burns. I can't claim to be a world-beating player, but I can't wait until the GOTM gets started so I can learn from all y'all. Hurry up, tomorrow!
     
  3. Thrallia

    Thrallia Prodigal Staffer GOTM Staff

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    welcome to the GOTM! That's actually how I found this site, way back when Civ IV was getting started.
     
  4. remconius

    remconius Chieftain

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    Sounds like fun!

    I will be looking for the GOTMs and SGOTMs!
     
  5. Balkor

    Balkor Chieftain

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    Im a little unsure about one of the rules, Are we allowed to post stories of our growing civilization or not? You how some people just playing a normal game (Oftenly called AAR (after action report)) they will document everything that happens throughout their game
     
  6. Thrallia

    Thrallia Prodigal Staffer GOTM Staff

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    Welcome to the GOTM! You are allowed to post stories, AARs, or whatever you want to share, in the designated spoiler threads while the game is active. This allows you to share with others how your game is unfolding or your civilization is growing without worrying about spoiling the competition through people clicking on your thread before they've reached a point it will not spoil their games.

    Often there will be limits as to what type of information can be shared in a spoiler thread(ie. no posting where modern resources are, no posting events after X date in the game), simply to attempt to prevent less advanced players from gaining an unfair advantage from reading a thread that they are otherwise entitled to read and share in.
     
  7. Balkor

    Balkor Chieftain

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    Alright that makes sense ^^ Not been around the forums all too long however with Civ 5 coming along im thinking of having a go with GOTM and the HOF, its competitions like this (Even if it is friendly) That really help me learn, similar to how in Civ that times of war is when my technology and military strength get much better than usual.
     
  8. Erkon

    Erkon Chieftain Retired Moderator GOTM Staff

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    Balkor - we will clarify the posting rules in the first Training Series game. The Training Series will have a somewhat relaxed posting guide, since these will not be competitive games as such, meaning that players may get a glance of what to expect in the rest of the game. Later on, when the competition starts, we'll constrain the posting and reading restrictions to maintain the competitive part of the game.

    The staff will open threads where players posts their stories, questions, advice, and strategies.

    We will also arrange for a proper guideline and FAQ regarding Civilization V - Game of the Month competition.
     
  9. General_CFR

    General_CFR Chieftain

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    Just a thought: like BOTM, WOTM, COTM, etc. Civ-V GOTM could be called VOTM :)

    Just now I only have a demo, but as soon as I buy a full version, I'll definitely join.

    By the way, what if start one testing competition in demo version? Its objective can be, for example, to get the highest score after 100 turns.
     
  10. steel.stiletto

    steel.stiletto Chieftain

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    Any idea if there are plans to do Succession games like there are for Civ IV?
     
  11. leif erikson

    leif erikson Game of the Month Fanatic Administrator Supporter GOTM Staff

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    Yes, we are planning for them, once we have a HoF type Mod and a submission system in place. :)
     
  12. AlanH

    AlanH Mac addict, php monkey Moderator Supporter GOTM Staff

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    A SGOTM typically lasts three or four months. In view of the auto-update Steam system, and the fact that you can only have one Civ5 version on your hard disk at a time (as far as I know), I don't think we want to start one of those in Civ5 until there is some reasonable stability in the software. Otherwise we would have team members trying to exchange files played with different versions; people trying to play monthly GOTMs in new versions and unable to play SGOTMs in older versions ....

    My current feeling is that stability is not going to happen for a month or three. But maybe I'm a pessimist.
     
  13. DaviddesJ

    DaviddesJ Chieftain

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    Because of autoupdate, the game has to let you load old saves in the new version. So I don't see a problem. If vie gotten the new version, then everyone on my team should have too.
     
  14. Ribannah

    Ribannah Fighter Druid

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    The problem arrives when different teams (or individuals in the normal 5OTM, for that matter) are playing the same game with different versions.
     
  15. AlanH

    AlanH Mac addict, php monkey Moderator Supporter GOTM Staff

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    I doubt if Firaxis can guarantee that old saves will always run in new versions ... or that old HoF Mods will run in new versions.

    It depends who's playing online. And if major game play changes are released they will affect different teams or individual players in different ways depending on where they are in the game.
     
  16. DaviddesJ

    DaviddesJ Chieftain

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    That's not a problem unless you care. At some point, you have to accept this is the way it is, and it's just a game, IMO, of course.
     
  17. Erkon

    Erkon Chieftain Retired Moderator GOTM Staff

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    One thing is for sure: we will have to adopt both the GOTM and the SGOTM competition due to Steam and how updates are handled. Unless there is a way to have multiple versions active at the same time, then I think we will have to accept patches/updates while a competition is running (based on the assumption that a security mod can cope with that). Certain teams/players will be lucky and have an advantage, while others will be at a disadvantage. As long as the changes are not too drastic, then the impact could perhaps be acceptable. If players find this to be a real concern, then we can reduce the risk with checkpoints for SGOTM (e.g. reach 1 AD within a month). I'm not sure though that this will be necessary. (This post is my own personal reflection, not the opinion of all staff)
     
  18. leif erikson

    leif erikson Game of the Month Fanatic Administrator Supporter GOTM Staff

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    As Erkon says, we shall have to see how it goes. We may have to have everyone turn off auto updates, providing that really works, while a game is running. This will probably create problems with SGOTM's that run over several months. :hmm:
     
  19. da_Vinci

    da_Vinci Gypsy Prince

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    How about creating a thread (or even a subforum, if the list is too long :lol:) devoted to fixes, workarounds, and general troubleshooting in Civ 5 and Steam. Not one that has long discussions of them, but one with effective solutions. Kind of an executive summary of what works from the unfortunately huge bug forum. So our VOTMers can find that stuff quickly and easily.

    For example one post (or thread) could be "Screenshot resources". Part 1 would be "to read the files the game makes, infranview and gimp do this pretty simply (add others known to work). Part 2 would be "to take and manage shots with a different program outside of Civ, the following work ... (list from someone who knows)

    Other topics could include "Getting Saves to Work" and "Viewing Your Replays" (if we ever get a solution to that). Hopefully that illustrates the idea.

    dV
     
  20. socratease

    socratease Chieftain

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    Hi, I am wondering if it's possible to download a winning result file and, more importantly, to be able to replay it? I suck at the game and I am amazed how good you folks here are, I'd like to watch and learn from the masters!
     

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