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ZeManaphy

What are your thoughts about luck in Competitive games?

Should be RNG in Esports?  

18 members have voted

  1. 1. Luck in Esports

    • Yes, all the time
    • No, Skill only
    • Luck and Skill are good.


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With the Hero being banned in an Australian Tournament for his moveset involving item effects like Superstar; which has caused a debate whether over he should be banned for RNG exclusively.  This sparks an interesting field in competitive gaming as a whole, specifically luck. Communities like Smash and Pokemon will try to limit RNG to a minimum, such as banning stages for the former and creating clauses such as evasion and OHKO clauses for the latter. What are your thoughts on this? As someone who plays The Pokemon Company's Official BattleSpotSingles and VGC, I've grown used to gimmicky strategies and figuring out ways to handle them. I myself use certain strategies that are considered "skill-less", such as Moody setup, but I often use strategy before attempting to sweep with Moody, so its not entirely luck-based. Here's a replay on the strategy: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7battlespotsingles-976100168

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I want to say "Skill only" but I don't have a problem if the luck involved is in simple terms like Accuracy in pokemon games. It's when you have the luck and RNG from the likes of Hearthstone where I find luck to be problematic in a competitive setting.

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Kind of encompasses too much.

A turn based competitive game sure - I think most positive in a war-game or maybe RTS context, but even a turn based game RPG or deckbuilder it's beneficial... mostly because I think it de-incenvitizes setting up "engines" with "draw engines" being the most boring and spectator unfriendly example. 

The main competitive thing I care about is puzzle games and it's good to have variation to avoid guaranteed perfect clears lol. I could go on about how block and color generation is beneficial because it makes the timing aspect of VS puzzle games possible as opposed to a raw contest of mechanical skill/speed, but that's something I could go on about forever.

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Some people constantly win at poker for a reason. The concept of luck opposing skill is misguided because working around luck IS a skill. Hell i think a game whit RNG has more room for skill expression. Understanding when to gamble and when to use a more consistent strategy whit less power ceiling for example, or the need to prepare a plan B in case RNG fails you. 

I don't know well heartstone but a key element of card games is consistency. A well made deck is an engine that will produce pretty much always a workable hand and an excellent hand very often. HS also has tons of RNG cards, but high level players would still chose those whit the best ratio of consistency and power ceiling. 

Ultimately, on a game whit rng you may steal a win againist a pro player once every 100 game, but more often than not the better player will win. Most rng games work on Bo3 or Bo5 exactly to make the victory of an unskilled player out of dumb luck very rare.

 

A bad example of RNG is in LoL because you have very litle room to play around it. Carries can't build defensive items and due to how autoattacks works they can't dodge either, and just avoid fighting is not an option because they have to farm, so they are forced into battles decided by who crits first/more. Dota have much more rng but is way more "balanced" due to the "everything is op" nature of that game.

Edited by Flere210

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21 minutes ago, Flere210 said:

Some people constantly win at poker for a reason. The concept of luck opposing skill is misguided because working around luck IS a skill. Hell i think a game whit RNG has more room for skill expression. Understanding when to gamble and when to use a more consistent strategy whit less power ceiling for example, or the need to prepare a plan B in case RNG fails you. 

I don't know well heartstone but a key element of card games is consistency. A well made deck is an engine that will produce pretty much always a workable hand and an excellent hand very often. HS also has tons of RNG cards, but high level players would still chose those whit the best ratio of consistency and power ceiling. 

Ultimately, on a game whit rng you may steal a win againist a pro player once every 100 game, but more often than not the better player will win. Most rng games work on Bo3 or Bo5 exactly to make the victory of an unskilled player out of dumb luck very rare.

 

A bad example of RNG is in LoL because you have very litle room to play around it. Carries can't build defensive items and due to how autoattacks works they can't dodge either, and just avoid fighting is not an option because they have to farm, so they are forced into battles decided by who crits first/more. Dota have much more rng but is way more "balanced" due to the "everything is op" nature of that game.

I can see that. When playing the battle facilities in Pokemon, the key to successful run into minimze the RNG, which involves sticking to moves that have 100% accuracy. 

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Personally, I'm fine with some degree of luck as long as it's not overly blatant like Swagplay in Gen 6, Moody in general, etc. were.

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If a competitive game's outcome was obviously decided by luck, it creates some salt. But professional competitors especially will recognize the amount of luck that goes into whether their decision making works out. Sometimes you make all rational calls and you still end up in a losing situation that you must plan several steps ahead for. While casual competitors are ready to blame outcomes on things that are out of their control, such as lag, or opponents using a "broken" weapon/move, or their opponent scoring a lucky shot that they didn't "earn". In fighting games especially, the guessing of the opponent's behavior and calling their shots with an option that beats them is a very legitimate style of play. This is referred to as "reading" the opponent. In order to get ahead in a losing match you either start taking risks or fall back on fundamentals, but both are going to require skill.

Hero's critical hit smash attacks and instant kill projectiles are dubious, but the only problem with his design I have when it comes to competition is the language barrier. If you're a japanese player and you're coming to EVO, you better have those spell names memorized in English. Because the idea of switching the game language to Japanese on their behalf places their opponent in a disadvantage because now they can't read the choices. 

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The thing about swagplay and moody is that they are not just RNG, they are broken on a fundamental level.

Swagger on it's own is mostly balanced. It can easily backfire and if it would became meta, people would counter it whit no problems. Swafplay remove tge main issue whit swagger, because you can reliably hit the confused pokemon hard. 

Moody would be ok if it was on pokemon whit a different movepool. But some of the moody users can easily stall for as long as they want and snowball into a juggernaut.

Speed boost is balanced because speed is a benchmark stat and you don't have many incentives to stall for it mor than a turn or two. Moody however  allow you to OHKO Blyssey whit a special move if you stall long enought, while sitting on huge boosts to both defenses and evasion. You don't even need to fish for evasion to make it stupid.

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As someone who has played TCGs for most of his life, I can never really consider card games to be an eSport for just having too much luck involved. Just last Friday I played a game of Magic where after my first draw I drew into 8 swamps which just killed my chances of actually doing anything. 

I'm also an avid Charbelcher player, the deck is a glass cannon and can win as early as T1, however if I don't draw any of my pieces I'm just twiddling my thumbs until I get killed.

Yee, I think if luck is involved it shouldn't be considered an esport.

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13 minutes ago, Captain Karnage said:

As someone who has played TCGs for most of his life, I can never really consider card games to be an eSport for just having too much luck involved. Just last Friday I played a game of Magic where after my first draw I drew into 8 swamps which just killed my chances of actually doing anything. 

I'm also an avid Charbelcher player, the deck is a glass cannon and can win as early as T1, however if I don't draw any of my pieces I'm just twiddling my thumbs until I get killed.

Yee, I think if luck is involved it shouldn't be considered an esport.

But card games aren't Esports, which means electronic sports, aka video games.

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you can't rely on pure luck to win a tournament, you have to go and get yourself some if you want to have an advantage, but doing so could make you lose

so a balance between luck and skill is required imo

Edited by Yexin

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7 hours ago, Captain Karnage said:

As someone who has played TCGs for most of his life, I can never really consider card games to be an eSport for just having too much luck involved. Just last Friday I played a game of Magic where after my first draw I drew into 8 swamps which just killed my chances of actually doing anything. 

Do you play whitout mulligan or what?

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11 hours ago, Glennstavos said:

Hero's critical hit smash attacks and instant kill projectiles are dubious, but the only problem with his design I have when it comes to competition is the language barrier. If you're a japanese player and you're coming to EVO, you better have those spell names memorized in English. Because the idea of switching the game language to Japanese on their behalf places their opponent in a disadvantage because now they can't read the choices. 

The language barrier complaint is still a thing? You can always look at the MP costs, if you know which spell costs what. I personally don't think Hero should be banned at all, as I don't think he's that great of a character, really. I understand that luck takes it's place in most games, so it doesn't bother me at all.

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10 hours ago, ZeManaphy said:

But card games aren't Esports, which means electronic sports, aka video games.

Blizzard and Wizzards are really pushing their games to be

3 hours ago, Flere210 said:

Do you play whitout mulligan or what?

I do, I had a great opening hand with 2 lands and 5 spells with a T1 Duress.

___

As for Hero, which I forgot to mention last night, I think another problem with him is that he cannot be played internationally due to his moveset having a literal menu. I'm personally okay, with a tiny amount of luck being involved, but Hero's odds are to high. 

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2 hours ago, lightcosmo said:

The language barrier complaint is still a thing? You can always look at the MP costs, if you know which spell costs what. 

This would work if not for the fact that spells share MP cost. It'd be pretty silly if you saw an 8 MP spell, thought it was Sizz, then zoomed yourself away, giving up stage control. Or you saw the 16 MP Oomph while the other guy is recovering, but you fire off a Snooze instead. Even sillier for the opponent having to guess which is which since they'd respond differently to any of these spells.

And even if the MP costs were completely unique, the character was designed with both players being able to read the command list. So asking players to have to memorize 20 different MP costs just because they're in the wrong country is very much a language barrier.

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I don't really mind "luck", because it still depends on a competent player to use well the hand they're given. A competent player could also use a bad hand well, depending on the situation. Randomness and how you deal with the situation presented to you are factors that positively increase the complexity of games, I think.

DOTA Underlords comes to mind when I think of this - there are meta builds that pretty much guarantee you're going to win, but what if everyone is going for that meta build and you can't pull the necessary Heroes for it? Maybe using another build well, or picking up the right items, will ultimately win the game for you. It's a game that heavily encourages versatility and adaptation to what the game gives you, as well as how your opponent is building up their team, while still being incredibly easy to play but hard to master. It's what I loved the most in auto-battlers.

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11 hours ago, Glennstavos said:

This would work if not for the fact that spells share MP cost. It'd be pretty silly if you saw an 8 MP spell, thought it was Sizz, then zoomed yourself away, giving up stage control. Or you saw the 16 MP Oomph while the other guy is recovering, but you fire off a Snooze instead. Even sillier for the opponent having to guess which is which since they'd respond differently to any of these spells.

And even if the MP costs were completely unique, the character was designed with both players being able to read the command list. So asking players to have to memorize 20 different MP costs just because they're in the wrong country is very much a language barrier.

I guess so, but you cant predict what another player will do either way, so how is it different?

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48 minutes ago, lightcosmo said:

I guess so, but you cant predict what another player will do either way, so how is it different?

I do not know what you are asking.

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8 hours ago, Glennstavos said:

I do not know what you are asking.

Say somebody comes at you with an aerial, how do you know which one? It's luck whether or not you defend against a neutral air or forward aerial, you pick the wrong one, and you could be dead easily, and I don't think Hero's magic is much different. Also he can't move during his, so the opponent can jump out of the way, it's not hard. Most of the reactions to certain things is luck, considering how fast everything is in Ultimate. They aren't different, really, is what I mean.

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3 hours ago, lightcosmo said:

Say somebody comes at you with an aerial, how do you know which one? It's luck whether or not you defend against a neutral air or forward aerial, you pick the wrong one, and you could be dead easily, and I don't think Hero's magic is much different. Also he can't move during his, so the opponent can jump out of the way, it's not hard. Most of the reactions to certain things is luck, considering how fast everything is in Ultimate. They aren't different, really, is what I mean.

That is sort of what I said in my initial post. But with the post you quoted it's...confusing? Nobody performs a neutral air in smash and is surprised to see a side B happen instead because they're playing on a different region of the game.

Edited by Glennstavos

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On 9/14/2019 at 8:57 PM, Flere210 said:

The thing about swagplay and moody is that they are not just RNG, they are broken on a fundamental level.

 Swagger on it's own is mostly balanced. It can easily backfire and if it would became meta, people would counter it whit no problems. Swafplay remove tge main issue whit swagger, because you can reliably hit the confused pokemon hard. 

 Moody would be ok if it was on pokemon whit a different movepool. But some of the moody users can easily stall for as long as they want and snowball into a juggernaut.

Speed boost is balanced because speed is a benchmark stat and you don't have many incentives to stall for it mor than a turn or two. Moody however  allow you to OHKO Blyssey whit a special move if you stall long enought, while sitting on huge boosts to both defenses and evasion. You don't even need to fish for evasion to make it stupid.

It's true that Swagger could backfire on the user, but in general, Swagplay was a braindead strategy where no matter what you faced, you mostly did the same thing (not even Magic Bounce was a good answer because two of the users were weak to Dark, and the other had a sky high attack stat, which meant that Foul Play would hurt pretty bad despite resisting it, aside from the fact that it was a Mega Evolution, meaning that due to mega mechanics at the time, Magic Bounce was only applied the turn after it Mega Evolved, as well as the opportunity cost); it didn't help that most Swagger users also had Prankster, which gives priority to non-attacking moves, and combined it with Thunder Wave to further decrease the odds of a successful attack. Also, Swagger was banned in Gen 7 doubles, albeit for other reasons (those being Marshadow, which was legal at the time, and Tapu Fini).

Exactly - it's not like it takes much thinking to alternate between Protect and Substitute until you had enough boosts to sweep. Which means that "braindead" once again applies.

Edited by Shadow Mir

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6 hours ago, Glennstavos said:

That is sort of what I said in my initial post. But with the post you quoted it's...confusing? Nobody performs a neutral air in smash and is surprised to see a side B happen instead because they're playing on a different region of the game.

What I mean is, how do people react to specific attacks incoming? Say you go for a forward air and I suspect a neutral air, would that be considered luck if I got hit? Low chance to predict that alone punish it. You cant just know what attack is coming 100% of the time, and I think that Heros magic is no different. All I was saying was that I dont think it's a problem, and even if it were, I think Ultimate has much bigger problems.

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4 hours ago, lightcosmo said:

What I mean is, how do people react to specific attacks incoming? Say you go for a forward air and I suspect a neutral air, would that be considered luck if I got hit? Low chance to predict that alone punish it.

If I'm approaching you with a short hop and you respond with shield, you're effectively prepared for any of my aerials. You can also dash back than dash back in for a grab as I land if you have good timing. Or you can challenge my aerials with one of your own or a tilt, which may result in a trade. Many options with varying levels of risk and reward. The "right" one really depends on matchups and also on mindgames/conditioning because relying on the same options, even the safest ones, will get you outplayed eventually. But you're downplaying the importance of players' decision making if you think they get punishes largely on accident. Even average players can recognize patterns on the fly and fluke their way to a solution to a problem.

Quote

You cant just know what attack is coming 100% of the time, and I think that Heros magic is no different. All I was saying was that I dont think it's a problem, and even if it were, I think Ultimate has much bigger problems.

I never had much issue with the spells once I understood how they worked and the RNG was datamined. Some are pretty great, but also rare. And most are filler or unremarkable. A good player can easily steal a glance at the menu to see if something problematic (like Magic Burst or Snooze) is in play. And that information always shifts how I decide to rush him down or zone him out. Like I said in my first post:

Quote
On 9/14/2019 at 6:49 PM, Glennstavos said:

Hero's critical hit smash attacks and instant kill projectiles are dubious, but the only problem with his design I have when it comes to competition is the language barrier.

 

 

Edited by Glennstavos

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8 hours ago, Glennstavos said:

If I'm approaching you with a short hop and you respond with shield, you're effectively prepared for any of my aerials. You can also dash back than dash back in for a grab as I land if you have good timing. Or you can challenge my aerials with one of your own or a tilt, which may result in a trade. Many options with varying levels of risk and reward. The "right" one really depends on matchups and also on mindgames/conditioning because relying on the same options, even the safest ones, will get you outplayed eventually. But you're downplaying the importance of players' decision making if you think they get punishes largely on accident. Even average players can recognize patterns on the fly and fluke their way to a solution to a problem.

I never had much issue with the spells once I understood how they worked and the RNG was datamined. Some are pretty great, but also rare. And most are filler or unremarkable. A good player can easily steal a glance at the menu to see if something problematic (like Magic Burst or Snooze) is in play. And that information always shifts how I decide to rush him down or zone him out. Like I said in my first post:

 

There's a reason attacks like Flip Jump are hated so much, it's not as simple as "challenge it". It's usually lucky if you can knock her out of it, and that's assuming you react at the proper time. And players use it over and over, and the opponent still can't punish it. Sure you can recognize certain things, but with a lot of characters, their attacks have either too much range or not enough end lag to easily punish, it's a lot more noticeable with the better characters, of course. If Hero is in the magic menu, the other player has more than enough time to get away, since he's just... standing there.

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