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About PresidentEden

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    Mercy and empathy are the essence of humanity
  • Birthday 01/18/1992

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    Baton Rouge, LA, USA

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  • Favorite Fire Emblem Game
    Path of Radiance

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  1. If you can, then it clearly wouldn't; the implicit assumption was that the BEXP requirements aren't that trivial. My understanding is that this is the case for most people or most members here. If that understanding is wrong, then yeah, it wouldn't change anything. The idea I was arguing, under that assumption (which again may or may not hold), is that the more lax requirements give you a wider range of options to complete the game, and might lend themselves to a nontrivial shakeup in the list as a result. I want to point out, though, that the tier list operates under the assumption of a certain basic level of competency. I haven't been around long, but my estimation is that dondon-level competency is most certainly not average-player-level competency. So while you might be able to breeze through to max BEXP, if the average player/assumed-competency player can't, then the assumption still holds. For my edification if nothing else (because I don't doubt this), has this specific suggestion been discussed before? Because I'd be interested in seeing any previous discussion on the subject. I plan to make my own tier list based on this criterion (even if I don't end up doing anything with it) because it's a fun exercise, and any input on strengths and flaws of this criterion I'd grant that it's likely not to be as discrete, but I don't innately see this as a problem. We do this on some level already... that's why we have tiers in the first place. Sure, the lowest unit in a tier isn't a perfect substitute for the highest unit in a tier, but then I don't see that happening on this other one either, because I don't see the standard being as generous as you do, I suppose. (That seems to be the root of the disagreement.) If the requirements were lax enough that we ended up with really distorted tiers then sure, I see where you're coming from, but I'm not sure that it happens this way. (Which is why I asked for previous discussion in the response above -- if this already exists to disavail me of this notion, then I'd drop it.) How? Turn count is itself an arbitrary restriction. It's a determinant of skill, but I fail to see how it's any less arbitrary than any other arbitrary determinant of skill, like max-Funds or whatever have you. I think it's a better system, but that doesn't mean it's less arbitrary. Bonus EXP provides a tangible benefit, which makes it less arbitrary than a standard which provides no tangible in-game benefit. It's not absolutely non-arbitrary -- everything is arbitrary to some extent -- but it is certainly less so because we can clearly see how Bonus EXP provides a concrete benefit to the player. It may. I actually expect it would be more similar than it is different. But as I noted originally, even if it came out exactly the same, the less arbitrary, more applicable and more flexible standard would make it a superior list. I didn't. Proposing an alternative requires a demonstration as to why it's superior to the existing system. If your alternative is worse than the existing system, there's no point to proposing it. Therefore, in any thread suggesting an alternative to a standard, you should expect a criticism of the standard, and it's rather unbecoming, thus, to enter one and then start chewing people out for criticizing the standard and accusing them -- falsely, at that -- of lying about the standard to justify their alternative. --- And since it's apparently necessary, I'll go ahead and make the addendum that I don't think the existing system is bad, merely flawed, and that the solution I proposed would improve it. Just so that's clear.
  2. You've gotten bogged down in the example and not responded to the actual point. The major question asked about each character in the tier list at present is "How many turns does this character save us?" I submitted that this focus on lowest turn count (if not in the explicit one-strategy-only LTC most commonly referenced by that phrase) is inherently flawed. One of the arguments I made against it was that it is unduly inflexible, which is contrary to the purpose of a strategy game. To date your response was to handwave the objection altogether, including a specific example of exactly what I'm describing. So what's the problem with what I said, exactly? I submit that common play doesn't ask "How many turns does this character save us?" at all, let alone use it as the criterion for ranking characters. While not everyone will care about BEXP, it is a far more reliable method, because it provides objective, material benefits that turn count does not. You're unintentionally straw-manning my argument at this point (I assume, anyway), so I'll reiterate. I'm not trying to create the everyman's tier list. I'm trying to create a tier list that asks a more proper question. Part of doing this is considering the everyman. It's not diluting the tier list down to your-5-year-old-cousin-can-use-this level. It's simply avoiding diluting the tier list down to the Mia/Zihark type arguments I mentioned earlier. Those specific arguments may be rare, but they are a logical conclusion of the question. That is problematic. If it can be replaced by something that isn't as problematic, then it ought to be. I'm suggesting a way to improve the tier list. It's not based on false information; your accusations of it have completely failed to hold any muster. The question "How many turns does this character save us?" is innately the wrong question for the reasons I stated. "How much will this character help in getting maximum bonus experience?" is a better standard, for the reasons I've already outlined: it maintains turn count as a reasonable objective, while making the game more strategy-oriented, the tiers more accessible, and the definition of efficiency more viable. I'm frankly amazed at your hostility toward a suggestion for improvement... if you find it "extremely annoying" to hear alternative tiering suggestions, why did you click a thread explicitly titled "alternative tiering suggestions"?
  3. My reading of the thread suggests otherwise. There was no change in position, but the argument clearly gained traction (and the lack of change of position was due to inertia instead of a rejection of the argument). I'm reading through the thread again to locate it specifically. Suffice to say that the typical tier debater does not do away with an argument on that basis; the argument went on for a few pages. Again, your response is evidence of a problem and not dismissal of it. Average players don't look at the tier lists because they're not interested in how the tiers are handled. Incidentally, most tier debaters themselves (as far as I can see) openly acknowledge that the style of play assumed in tier debating is not representative of the average player's style of play. From what I can tell, you're concluding that the former results in the latter (that is, average players don't care about tiers, so of course tiers don't represent their style of play, so why bother changing the tier structure?) when it seems rather clear to me that the latter results in the former (that is, the tiers use an unrepresentative style of play which turns off average players). ...which is why I posted it here instead of on the Sacred Stones or Awakening boards. I do think my criticisms still land on the other games, but there's no incentive structure like in Path of Radiance to supply a potentially superior tier criterion, so I didn't bother to raise it there because I don't have a solution for those games. I guess it's #2? Because it certainly isn't #1. I'm not sure what you interpreted it as saying, so I don't know if it's #2 or not, and I feel it would be presumptuous for me to speculate about your thoughts. But I'm well aware that Ch13 can be shortened by three turns. (Ironically, this disappointed me slightly in my last playthrough, because I wanted more EXP from beating up reinforcements instead of having the crows flee. Were it not for a self-imposed pseudo-LTC [that is, LTC with a certain party that isn't designed for real LTC runs like Olwen's 114-turn one], I'd have no incentive to end the chapter early.) I'm not using any false information. With due respect, your posts are coming off slightly condescending and rather unduly defensive, and I feel it's unwarranted. Is there a problem?
  4. Yes, it does. I may not have explained it perfectly, but you're handwaving it for no discernible reason. The last thing on the FE9 tier list thread was a multi-page debate about how Mia > Zihark because she can receive a thousand-odd BEXP to promote early and shove Ike a few times on Ch9, thereby saving a turn. It's that kind of minutia that is only relevant because of the emphasis on turn count above all else. (And yes, I understand the Mia/Zihark comparison is already close enough to warrant looking at the minutia... but would anyone care about this perk of Mia's if not for the a priori definition of efficiency around lower turn count? No.) I never said "casual," I said "average." Factoring out the individuals who don't care about performance at all (maybe they prefer appearance or personality of characters for their 'tiers' -- truly 'casual' play if ever there were such a thing), I would say almost every Fire Emblem player is concerned with sorting the good from the bad... which tiers are designed to do. I would estimate that even if the average player didn't necessarily care about the tiers at present, s/he certainly cares about the function they're supposed to provide -- namely ranking the characters good to bad. In fact, that the average player doesn't care about tier lists at present is evidence of a problem and not dismissal of one. We could even focus this more specifically if you like; it'll probably be useful for this discussion anyway. I'll bet that the average Serenes Forest member/viewer cares about sorting good characters from bad. There are a lot of SF members. The impact of more accessible tiers is certainly appreciable. Sorry if this comes off as rude, but if this is your interpretation of #3, you need to reread it, because you're not following the point. Sure, ultimately, any ranking effort can be rendered absolutely futile by a certain player with a certain disposition on how the game should be played. That doesn't mean that we can't identify relatively superior methods of evaluating character performance in tiers. I happen to think that a method whose criterion is focused on concrete material gains is better than one which does not. It could be argued that it is impossible to solo with Ike in Ch8 and Ch13 and achieve maximum BEXP in other chapters. In fact, I think that's actually pretty likely (though I've never attempted and frankly, wouldn't bother with it). All this means is that the maximum bonus EXP attainable is not the maximum bonus EXP theoretically possible. This would invoke an interesting set of side discussions on whether or not bringing a certain unit into those chapters is worth the sacrifice in BEXP. You'd be attempting to solve the map using a minimal number of units instead of a minimal number of turns. And, once that number is determined, the debate becomes "Who gets the spot in those chapters?" And, again, even if that conclusion is unsatisfying, that's still only an issue for two chapters. The benefits that this system conveys for the other 28 outweigh its issues in 2, in my estimation. EDIT: Missed arguably the most important comment in your last post, sorry. I hate to have to say it, then, but this particular thread is fundamentally a philosophy of tiers thread. The actual tier list thread following this criterion would be separate so as to avoid this "clutter." (It would indeed be clutter in an actual tier list thread, but it's necessary discussion beforehand, so I don't really consider it clutter per se.)
  5. That's a distinction without a difference; whether we're talking absolutely lowest-turn-count or "how low can this character get the turn count," the point is the same; minimal turn count is the criterion. It's still faulty for the reasons I gave, and thus (in my opinion) not worth using. It may or may not look significantly different -- I'd imagine a lot more units become more viable, but whether that changes their relative positioning is indeterminable until we actually do it. And even if the results were the exact same, this would still get us the same results under a better (if for the moment we accepted the premise as true) criterion, which would still be an improvement. Probably the same way the current tier list handles it -- namely, by using a different criterion for evaluating units in those specific chapters. Incidentally, they're both Survive chapters, where your turn count can't actually be reduced beyond a certain point due to game hardcoding. In any case, thanks for pointing this out, I'd forgotten about that specific quirk of those chapters and it is a factor.
  6. Having just finished another run through of this game, and having read the thread on the FE General board about Jeigans (which morphed into a discussion of tier lists), I thought about the possibility of creating a tier list for something that isn't simply focused on a low turn count. Before I start criticizing LTC, I do want to point out that turn count is an important criterion, and one that intuitively makes sense as a criterion to be used in any tiering discussion. A turn count criterion adds challenge to the game that otherwise isn't present while not imposing arbitrary, hard caps on your options (in contrast to, say, a max-Funds run). However, I do think that using a low turn count as the exclusive criterion is misguided. There are three primary concerns I have with using LTC as the basis for a tier list: 1. Strategy games are meant to be non-formulaic, or in other words, meant to be played and beaten with multiple strategies. Games that require a player to use one specific strategy to win may require some original thought to discover the strategy, but once it's found, there is no purpose to continue playing; it's like playing the same Sudoku puzzle over after having already beaten it. By definition, to get the lowest turn count, there is one possible strategy to employ, with immaterial changes in the details. (For instance, if a chapter were to require a 9-move unit to rescue the Lord and carry to the finish, you could use different members of the same 9-move class interchangeably, but the actual strategy is the same -- you're just calling the same variable in the formula by a different name.) In other words, low turn count changes a strategy game, meant to use multiple strategies, into a puzzle game, with only one. There's no problem with that necessarily, but as someone who views the Fire Emblem franchise as a strategy franchise instead of a puzzle franchise, I would personally prefer for a tier list for its games to act upon the former premise. 2. My perception is that the vast majority of Fire Emblem players don't care about LTC. While a majority of them would probably recognize lower turn counts as a measure of higher skill at the game, and perhaps a majority even strive to minimize turn counts in and of themselves, lowest turn count strategies simply lack popular appeal. While it's true that a possible explanation of this phenomenon is that the majority of Fire Emblem players lack the skill to do an LTC, I opt for an alternative explanation that is more charitable to the majority of the player base: the player base probably has views that align with the sentiment I expressed in (1) above. They may never have actively expressed the strategy-to-puzzle concept that I mentioned, but the simple fact is that the FE franchise is billed as a strategy franchise, and so the player base for it plays it as a strategy game. Playing it as a puzzle game may (as I've heard one person put it) seem "gimmicky" or otherwise not how it's "supposed" to be played. (And while I disagree profusely with the notion that there is any set way that a game is "supposed" to be played, I understand the sentiment; I do feel that my moves are gimmicky when I'm focusing primarily on Rescues and Shoves and the actual combat is the side-bar. Understand that this feeling is simply my feeling and not part of my criticism.) I think that a tier list should strive to be accessible and usable for the majority of Fire Emblem players. Hence, a focus on a more strategy-oriented tiering criterion instead of LTC would improve the tier list's applicability to the entire player base. 3. The lowest turn count criterion provides no objective, material benefit to the player. Using Path of Radiance as an example, the actual turn count itself only shows up on a screen during the Epilogue and provides no tangible benefit for a lower count. In fact, the game doesn't even record turn counts, so unless you write it down, keep track mentally or videotape your game as you play, you won't even know what your count is, let alone receive any objectively-measured benefit from it. LTC's biggest benefit in terms of actually rewarding the player is in whatever bragging rights one can get for finishing the game that quickly, whether being able to show off to friends who play FE or being able to get your score recorded on an all-time list on a forum somewhere. It's typically agreed upon that efficiency should be the goal of a tier list, but when we define efficiency in terms which convey no actual innate benefit or loss, the meaning of efficiency itself is lost. If I said I didn't value LTC and elected to play a slower game, then outside of the circular definition of efficiency as LTC, could we actually say I'm playing less efficiently? The answer is no. Hence, I propose an alternative criterion for tiering characters in an effort to maintain turn count as a relevant criterion (due to its undeniable intuitive value) while tying it to a material benefit which appeals to a wider player base and allows for more strategic gameplay. That criterion is maximizing bonus experience. Anyone who cares enough to try to tier characters seriously will already understand BEXP's connection to lower turn counts, so let me instead address how it resolves the other concerns. 1. A player can maximize his or her bonus experience on a given map by completing it in a set number of turns. That set number of turns is, to my knowledge, always less stringent than the LTC requirement. Less stringent turn count requirements allow the player to employ multiple strategies while satisfying the criterion. The core element of strategy gaming -- being able to use your own creative planning to meet your objectives in a set time frame -- returns, and with it, Fire Emblem feels like a strategy franchise again. LTC strategies can still be employed, as a matter of fact, so this shift causes no harm to those who do value LTC as the ultimate end. It may render LTC strategies suboptimal, if we're allowed to use more powerful characters (and thus improve the reliability of our strategies) due to the increased flexibility... but that shouldn't be considered a harm unto itself. If this criterion is indeed adopted as superior, and a previously-optimal strategy is rendered suboptimal, that's the problem of the strategy and not the criterion. 2. The average player likes bonus experience, and will seek to gain more of it than less, ceteris paribus. By centering the tiers on a criterion that the player base at large values, the tier list's relevance to the player base is increased. I'm aware not everyone will value this benefit, but I personally consider it a reasonable goal for the tier list, and so see this as a definite improvement. 3. Aiming for maximum bonus experience provides an objective, material benefit to the player, namely "maximum bonus experience." Gaining as much bonus experience as possible boosts the overall strength of the party. Bonus experience is actually more valuable than normal experience, because it is not locked to a single character. Though the amount of normal experience available in a chapter fluctuates, I believe it can be said that maximizing bonus experience provides the party with more total experience, even though it invariably comes at the price of a reduction in normal experience. Like I said before, if we base efficiency on LTC, we're left with nothing more but a circular definition to defend it as efficient. It's possible to construct strategies which do not result in the lowest possible turn count but which do not incur any material losses. It is definitionally impossible to construct the same for maximum BEXP strategies. We can thus define efficiency in terms of maximum BEXP for non-circular reasons, which must be valuable, if only for purposes of epistemology. For these reasons, I would propose that we attempt to create a tier list that does not rely on LTC, but instead on MBE. tl;dr: 1. LTC, though intuitively useful, is a suboptimal criterion because it removes the strategy aspect of the game, is not widely popular and provides the player no tangible benefit (and thus leads us to define efficiency in a circular manner). 2. "Maximizing BEXP" is a better criterion because it allows for more flexibility in planning (read: strategy, not puzzle), has widespread appeal and provides a tangible benefit and non-circular definition of efficiency. 3. Therefore I propose creating a new tier list based on maximizing BEXP.
  7. heh. WSU, to the contrary, has its spring break ridiculously early - it was something on the order of five weeks ago for me.

  8. It's dying down, no reason to go take a peek, in my opinion. Hope the party was fun. :)

    I'm doing well. On the tail end of spring break since LSU has it really late. Playing far too much Path of Radiance than is healthy for a normal human being

  9. I'm relatively new here, so I'd defer to your greater share of experience on the matter, but I have actually discussed this with him elsewhere, in another thread... I want to say, even, that you participated? I could be misremembering. Anyway, I recall him being opposed to more homosexual/incestuous pairings than the average poster here, but not on the grounds that they were homosexual or incestuous -- rather, on the grounds that they were poorly supported (if supported at all) by story context. I don't know his views on the matter and I'm not going to speculate any further than I have here, but I've never seen an explicit statement on the matter from him, and this observation in this thread, in any case, most certainly doesn't qualify. Notice that you've said that you applaud bravery and consistency in expressing and defending viewpoints that cause no harm to others. You're not actually praising bravery and consistency on their own, just in context of something else. (Which is the logical thing to do, and forgive me if this distinction seems unnecessarily tedious, but I do consider it an important one to make, because it's easy to get carried away with praising consistency to principle without first checking that the principle itself is worth praising.) If you want to praise someone for expressing a popular but not harmful opinion, then that's fine, provided that... ...you're not also bashing people who make an observation you don't like, and do so for fun. Your analogy is faulty to a degree. For one, I only saw Sal actually giving Ana shit for what she said. Integrity made an observation and a couple of people troll-voted or laughed at the situation, but it was two people arguing, not some kind of gang-up mob. More importantly, though, I think the better way to approach the situation would be to try (a), and when that fails, and fighting fire with fire is the only remaining option, then you do it. From the sounds of your post you seem to prefer skipping (a) because it's more enjoyable to you. It's... puzzling, because your previous posts seem to indicate a desire to put the fires out, whereas this one almost seems to imply you like piling onto the fire with your own. In any case this seems to be dying down, and perhaps it ought. I don't really have anything to add beyond what's been said to this point.
  10. i'm wired as hell on sugar right now (my job had an appreciation dessert party thing) and trying to avoid that thread like the plague because i think it miiiiight drive me to temporary ragequit sf if i read it anymore

    how've you been?

  11. 'Fraid so. It's an observation of the conversation; the two were arguing over whether the pairing was incestuous, and both were coming from the position that incest is repugnant, and in the process homosexuality got thrown in with it... implying that homosexuality is as repugnant as incest. It's a humorous observation because of the distinct difference in opinion a lot of people have on their views of the two subjects. But that's all it is... an observation. From a logical standpoint, certainly. Consistency and bravery are naught but descriptors, no more meritorious than color or texture. It is the ideas behind those descriptors that make those descriptors worthy of praise or censure. Say for instance that I believed all children were evil and decided to go kill children to prove it. Incidentally I accidentally impregnate a woman, she bears my children and I kill them. Would you praise my consistent application of my kill-all-children ideology, and my bravery in sticking to those principles despite the heightened censure that would arise from killing my own children? If not, the point is made. If so, I'm afraid we're coming from drastically different and likely irreconcilable perspectives on the matter. Do you not see the innate contradiction in these sentences? How can one have "free discussion of ideas" with a white knight flying around threatening (and carrying out the threat) to attack people for expressing dissent? In this case there wasn't even an expression of dissent, merely an observation, which apparently sufficed to activate your judgment -- how is that free discussion? You're defeating your own end with your methodology. EDIT: oh lol forgot the pertinent-to-topic part I don't think the game explicitly says one way or another if they were ever actually raised together as siblings. That's really the only thing that would prove it's incestuous in nature, too. And it would explicitly have to be as siblings; if Elincia had said at some point that she regards Geoffrey as "like a brother to her," then all that means is the poor sap has no chance. (She never says that to my knowledge, to be clear, I'm just highlighting specifically what would constitute proof.) I'm just not seeing the textual evidence that indicates it's incestuous.
  12. Could not care less about the actual spat b/t Anacybele and Sal, I was just backing what I felt was a correct interpretation on the part of Integrity of a running subthread in the conversation. It was an offhand comment and probably not meritorious of the side discussion. They weren't raised in the same house. Elincia made it clear that she was raised in a country villa somewhere away from court. Meanwhile Geoffrey was being raised at court to become a count (or duke, I don't recall of which he's the son), a general and the commander of the Crimean knights, and Lucia was being raised at court to become a lady of the court (and apparently elected to pick up swordsmanship on the side; dubious, granted, but that's standard fare in the Fire Emblem franchise, so not that dubious). This is not incest; they were neither biological siblings nor raised as siblings. Raised as good friends, absolutely, that's clear from the text, and you can question the pairing's validity on other grounds all you like, but let's call a spade a spade -- or in this case, a not-spade a not-spade. It's not an incestuous pairing. Laying on the white-knighting a little thick, huh? If we presume that tolerance of these relationships is a good thing (a presumption that I'm going to make, and consider not a big leap), then it would be silly to applaud being consistently "bad" on something because it's consistently so, and would be more sensible to defend a so-called "double" standard for at least getting it right half the time, while working to change the other half. (Then again, it's also important to note that it isn't a double standard at all. He never commented on incest, simply observed a consequential implication about homosexuality during the discussion. If you don't want people getting on Anacybele's case for observing that gay/lesbian and incestuous relationships are popular here then it's downright fallacious and hypocritical to do the same when Integrity makes a similar observation.)
  13. No problem dude, happy to be of service! How's everything with you?

  14. i know we've had our spats but, really, ta for the post in serge's pairings thread. it was a good thing to wake up to.

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