'Smurfing' on the ladder... very un sporting!

Discussion in 'Planetary Annihilation General Discussion' started by cdrkf, December 29, 2014.

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  1. cdrkf

    cdrkf Post Master General

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    I'm annoyed by the number of smurfs playing on the ladder currently, especially from the top 10.

    It's legitimate as far as the rules go, however it's also quite harmful especially at the top ranks due to how the ladder works and here's why:

    Points are given based on rank of the player in question. I played @elodea's smurf losing 2 games and winning the third. If I was playing his real account, the losses would have been small and the win larger, probably leaving me at #25 on the ladder where I started (fair enough imo). However as he was playing on a different account with a much much lower rank, I was dropped 25 places on the ladder despite getting a win against #3 (as the system doesn't know that). After 5 consecutive wins I'm still only back to #40.

    I honestly don't think this is intentional on his part, but top players (anyone in uber imo) masquerading as low ranking players by using second accounts creates an artificial barrier to other players moving up the rankings as wins are devalued and losses made more severe.

    Edit: this is also made worse by the fact that inactivity doesn't cost points (though you can get overtaken), so players can get an account to a high rank, and safely leave it there whilst focusing on their other account.
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  2. cptconundrum

    cptconundrum Post Master General

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    There is only one person with two accounts in the top 10 as far as I know. I have two accounts, but they are both in the top half of the uber league and my second one was just meant to be a way to play when I'm half asleep without feeling guilty.
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  3. cdrkf

    cdrkf Post Master General

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    This wasn't leveled at you particularly, and it isn't such an issue where the ranks of the two accounts are similar....

    The issue is where you have an uber player with an account in gold.

    I still have pa stats and the points in the ladder highlight just what happens in that case (essentially I got -17, -16, +10 so seriously worse off). I know it's a different scoring system but the basic principal is the same.

    Edit: Checked the actual points, amended.
    Last edited: December 29, 2014
  4. cptconundrum

    cptconundrum Post Master General

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    Yes I do agree that it is a problem when good players are intentionally losing points against low ranked people and then beating good ones. I'm not sure how that can be stopped though since it is a problem that every rts before this has always had too.
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  5. cdrkf

    cdrkf Post Master General

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    Yeah I know, I don't think there is a way to stop it and I'm not really asking for one.

    I'm saying this is 'un sporting' and asking that higher ranked players think twice about doing this. I understand that when your high up some players will avoid playing you (although the ladder Uber have implemented does discourage that), so its nice to be anonymous sometimes. However there are other ways to do this- namely use the option to change your *display name* on your current account. That way you can play as an unknown without artificially skewing the point system.

    Edit: Also, if you want to try out some whacky new ideas that you don't want to risk your ladder rank on, why not host a custom 1 v 1 game. If I'm on pm me I'll give you a game to test stuff- and no need to effect ladder ranking for either player.
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  6. elodea

    elodea Post Master General

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    Well, few things
    1. 3 games really should not, and do not matter. We don't know how uber is calculating private mmr, rankings, and points. At the end of the day, the system will push you towards 50% winrate and that is all that matters, not the extremely short term volatility.
    2. PA stats will have drastically different scoring to official ladder. I could be rank 1 and turn on pa stats for the very first time and the pa stat point change would not be anywhere representative of reality.
    3. A handful of smurf accounts out of 2000 unique players do not create walls, and are inconsequential for the large majority of people. If i'm rank 200 instead of rank 199, do I really care?
    4. What matters is how the games are played, and not the players who play them.
    5. To consistently play a smurf account and lose against it, that smurf would need to be losing games in order to match his ranking drops to yours. The level at which he chooses to play will settle at a ranking skill level that matches that play. There is nothing skewed here.
    6. Arguing that smurfs purposely lose against people in order to specifically target certain other people is just silly talk. It's impossible to do since I will never know when you are searching, what your past results are, what your current mmr is, and even what your rank is if you arn't top 10. I don't know if you changed your name between games, whether you went to bed. I don't even know what my own mmr is, let alone someone elses, so let's not throw around these accusations so lightly...
    7. It's so much easier to find games from a lower ranked account. There is only a limited ammount of time and top uber level is pretty inactive.
    People want to have some anonymous fun doing stupid crap without any intention of grinding for uber. If there was unranked matchmaking you might see me playing there instead.

    Alternate accounts allow one to try crazy risky things like t2 navy rushing. This obviously didn't work when i used it against you. I beat you twice with other types of cheese, and lost the third with another type. This is exactly why i don't do stupid risky cheese on a main account, because the play taken in isolation will not accurately reflect the total point changes. Don't see what the big deal is regarding 'unsportsmanship' behaviour - it's really a bit of a stretch..

    What is a more real problem is people clogging up top 10 with alts(2 people right now). The way uber deals with inactivity contributes to this issue as well such that PA should use a bonus points system like in SC2 where active players are favoured over inactive players. Unlike another certain person you won't find me using an alternate account to advertise websites rofl, but thankfully these things literally only affect 0.6% of all players (top 12 uber).

    TL;DR
    Not only is it practically impossible to use smurfs in an unsportsmanlike manner to materially skew points by specifically targeting someone, the only real skewing it does affects less than 1% of players (whether they show in top 10 or not)
    Last edited: December 29, 2014
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  7. cdrkf

    cdrkf Post Master General

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    I have no issues with you trying out your random moves on me. However why should I lose so many ranks for it? If you were playing on your rank 3 account, the result to me would have been far less. I stand by my statement that in light of how points are calculated and the fact that due to relatively small number if players top players often play lower ranks after a wait, that it is unfair.

    If the strategy you want to try is unproven, test it out in unranked games. I'm always happy to play things like that. Don't penalise other players trying to build up their ladder ranks, you are effectively preventing players approaching the top 10. I was dropped from 25th to 55th after our games, that isn't insignificant especially given how many games it takes to build back up again.
  8. mered4

    mered4 Post Master General

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    If you play on the ranked matches, they should be ranked for reals. If you dont want to play a serious ranked match, don't play ranked. Using smurfs, in my opinion, is scooting around the rules and completely unnecessary. Why do you feel the need to hide who you are to have a good fight? I play differently against certain players - I need to know who they are to do that. After all, they know who I am.
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  9. lizard771

    lizard771 Well-Known Member

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    I got ranked in Silver (not intentionally!) and then it felt like I was a smurf. Of course I won every match and quickly became Gold, and probably can reach Platinum, too.

    Silver matches are worse than high ranked matches 'cause Silver players always turtle and never surrender. It's just weird.
  10. cdrkf

    cdrkf Post Master General

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    Nothing wrong with being ranked lower and working up.

    The issue I have is that players *already at the top* shouldn't be creating *new accounts* to artificially become lower.

    @elodea I agree your smurf account will rise up as you win, however whats to stop you getting *another* new account?

    As I mentioned if you want anonymity then rename your account on a regular basis. Renaming your high ranked account *doesn't* change the way ranks are calculated, although as @mered4 says I don't really get why you want to hide yourself.

    I also agree it's not really very sporting for one player to fill up the top ranks with multiple accounts. The main thing is your denying yourself opponents doing that, as well as preventing other people competing for the top spots.

    None of this is against the rules, and I don't want Uber to have to intervene and put in some heavy handed measures to prevent it. We're a small and friendly community, I'm certain we can play fair ourselves.
  11. lizard771

    lizard771 Well-Known Member

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    Nah, it just felt weird to play in Silver.
  12. cptconundrum

    cptconundrum Post Master General

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    If elodea wants to buy 20 accounts and personally fund Uber's development of this game, I'm not going to stop him. :D
  13. thetrophysystem

    thetrophysystem Post Master General

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    I personally don't care, just because he could literally just feel like starting over and over again, and being split personality. Creating 50 different personalities, all hell bent on being OP at that rank and trashing people, until he gets too high and gets bored, isn't a problem. It screws with you, sure, but that just means you should win. Can't be helped.
  14. zihuatanejo

    zihuatanejo Well-Known Member

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    What are you, a robot?! :p
  15. elodea

    elodea Post Master General

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    Maybe I am ranked lower and amworking up? Who are you to say?

    You need to stop repeating arguements that have been rebutted in the hopes that people will forget that they're wrong. I've already explained to you how being lower doesn't materially skew anything, and how it's impossible to target specific players. If i really found a way to do that, I don't need a smurf to do it.

    You're being butthurt over a couple of points that no-one can even quantify. The only thing i regret now is letting you win a game at all, because now all you can think about is that you've been 'cheated' out of a handful of imaginary points that you think you actually deserve simply by looking at half the picture. If internet points justice is all you're after, tell me when you're going to go searching on the ladder and i'll throw how ever many games you want.

    What's stopping me from continuing to buy accounts? Don't be ridiculous, i've been decent enough to explain my reasons to you why i smurf, as opposed to others who will not even identify themselves. The reasons stopping me from buying new smurfs are the same reasons stopping you, oh i guess except for my lack of 'sportsmanship'.

    Why do i want to smurf? Everything you needed to figure that one out is in this thread. You're unhappy about losing more points than winning against a low ranked player, but you can't seem to ask why that same motive might be why other people do things. There is a reason why I can't easily just have fun (it's a game and all you know) and purposely do bad cheese game after game.

    Why do i want anonymity? Because of witch hunt threads exactly like this one.
    Last edited: December 30, 2014
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  16. reptarking

    reptarking Post Master General

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    My surf names for ladder on my main account are gandalf_sux, elodea_sux, PA-NOOB, and my other account which I'm working on is called AIxSkYNeT. Just letting yall know. I have 2 other accounts also but I have not ranked on those at all and will not say there names because sometimes I like to see how a person who treats other high level players treats noobs. Because if your a decent person to me for being uber but treat me like crap when I fake being bronze or wanting to learn the game then I'm no longer going to show you respect as a fellow high skill player. I'm elitest in the way I like practicing only vs Uber people but I love teaching beginners. And I don't ever like bashing on people for being worse then me at this game. I expect the best people of a game to want the the best opponents and that won't happen if we all treat new players like crap
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  17. icycalm

    icycalm Post Master General

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    Don't you people believe that wiggling a mouse around is a sport? Very well, then. What sport allows the same person to occupy more than one position on a scoreboard at the same time?

    /thread
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  18. Killerkiwijuice

    Killerkiwijuice Post Master General

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    Agreed, although honestly there's nothing the devs can do about it and they get payed in the process.

    I don't really care about smurf names since I don't care about a ladder position (even though I might care about the ranks in IRL sports)
  19. icycalm

    icycalm Post Master General

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    I don't care about alt accounts either. All I did was point out the logical inconsistency in the behavior of "competitive" players, who on the one hand want to be recognized as athletes, but on the other hand engage in ludicrous behavior such as we've been seeing in this thread. If elodea wants to buy 52 accounts and occupy the entire Uber rank all by himself, I am all for it. And that's the reason the developers will not prevent anyone from doing so: we all want to see this game being indefinitely developed, and every last dollar helps. No one gives a toss about what happens on the ladder other than the few dozen people who are utterly obsessed with it. Top ranked 1v1s are some of the most boring games being played today. Even a 2v2 between novices is more interesting. I even object to having the top 1v1 players shoved in our faces on the game's main menu. These people are by no means the best players in the game today, and the matches they play are by no means the best matches.
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  20. Killerkiwijuice

    Killerkiwijuice Post Master General

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    I'm definitely not the kind of person that thinks of gamers as athletes, unless your definition of athlete is merely someone who engages in competitive sporting events.

    But to get more on-topic, the reason why no one watches novice players is the same reason why people don't watch high school sports compared to the NFL or MLS. Games will be more interesting when balanced is sorted out and expansion becomes viable again.
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