Jump to content



Photo

Meta-specific netdecking in tournaments


  • Please log in to reply
18 replies to this topic

#1 Saturnine

Saturnine

    Member

  • Members
  • 1,558 posts

Posted 31 October 2012 - 06:46 PM

 As I've been reading and listening to tournament reports over the past few months, I've noticed that some members of some metas are bringing identical or near-identical decks to tournaments, and it strikes me as understandable yet odd at the same time It seems to (want to) effectively turn tournaments into team-based affairs, which the tournament structure itself does not really support. What are your thoughts? Does this negatively affect deck diversity? Does it bring an interesting flavor to the tournament? Would people enjoy a team-based format?



#2 HoyaLawya

HoyaLawya

    Member

  • Members
  • 313 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 12:00 AM

 Instead of it being team based, I think it's more a matter of small groups of people working together on a deck. If you and a 2-3 friends work together to build, playtest, and refine a deck are you then going to say only one person gets to play that deck and everyone else must find something different?

Sure netdecking happens, but I find that at least in our meta whenever multiple people play the same deck, those decks are built here. We have a list of a few decks in development that we test and tweak. In the end, it is usually a deck first built by Corey that rises to the top.



#3 Saturnine

Saturnine

    Member

  • Members
  • 1,558 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 12:42 AM

HoyaLawya said:

 Instead of it being team based, I think it's more a matter of small groups of people working together on a deck. If you and a 2-3 friends work together to build, playtest, and refine a deck are you then going to say only one person gets to play that deck and everyone else must find something different?

Yes, I realize that is what's going on a lot of the time (sorry if that wasn't clear in the original post). I'm just a little surprised by it. As far as I can gauge the situation, this happens more for big events, such as GenCon, and people tend to play more individual decks during the more local events. And think it's great that people are working together to come up with deck solutions. But I'm also surprised people (from within one meta) aren't more individualistic in their deck building, even for big events. Surely they don't all play the same deck off-season, and each must have house/playstyle preferences that are not represented when they choose to collectively all play one deck.



#4 Kennon

Kennon

    Member

  • Members
  • 1,808 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 04:42 AM

*shrug* I don't see anything wrong with it at all. Sure, there would be more deck diversity if we arbitrarily had everyone in the game play different decks, but I think we'd be missing out on the capability for multiple minds working with each other to hone ideas to their finest point. I know the DC crew often plays the same or extremely similar build, and from time to time a couple folks in my meta will take the same or extremely similar similar builds to an event. It just means that those players have decided that they think that particular deck stands the best chance of winning that event in their hands. If anything, I think more people working together on ideas will lead both to those edges being honed, but also to better odds of finding appropriate counters to those decks.



#5 thedaffodilfish

thedaffodilfish

    Member

  • Members
  • 44 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 04:46 AM

Since I've no experience of AGOT organises play, I can only comment from an mtg point of view, but it seems a fairly common phenomena - local pride?

When attending a large tournament I can imagine a group of competitive players who develop & test together want someone from the group to place well, so they'll all play what they believe is the best deck for that event/meta to maximise their chances. I wouldn't have thought it was uncommon.

I'm sure there are other groups who develop a couple of decks and play those equally.

Then there are those who play for the love of the game and the experience of meeting other player, as highlighted in mathletes recent excellent post, and will just play what they enhoy and are comfortable with.

I'm all for variety myself, but I can totally see why high profile tourneys may have a homogenous turnout.

 



#6 BBSB12

BBSB12

    Member

  • Members
  • 167 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 04:56 AM

1. Taking Magic as an example of well-developed and large card game community, it's close to impossible to balance out all the cards in such a way that all decks will be equal. So if meta is competitive enough and plays a lot, I'd expect it to figure out top 3-4 decks pretty fast and if there are let's say 10 people in such meta, decks will start repeating each other pretty fast. Though it's still not at the point when, as in Magic, teams would bring literally the same deck for 5-6 people.

2. Again comparing to Magic, there are team tournaments and they are fun for the whole team and I'd love to see some kind of AGoT team tournament. E.g., 3-person teams where each team member can play any deck he wants, but teams score as whole (so that if 2 members win and 1 loses, the team still wins). Such a format is of interest since it provides what really lacks in AGoT - averaging over probability (it's a problem in Magic, but there it's partially averaged because rounds are played for best 2 out of 3 games). And there is team spirit, team deck building and so forth.=)



#7 Danigral

Danigral

    Member

  • Members
  • 803 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 05:09 AM

BBSB12 said:

2. Again comparing to Magic, there are team tournaments and they are fun for the whole team and I'd love to see some kind of AGoT team tournament. E.g., 3-person teams where each team member can play any deck he wants, but teams score as whole (so that if 2 members win and 1 loses, the team still wins). Such a format is of interest since it provides what really lacks in AGoT - averaging over probability (it's a problem in Magic, but there it's partially averaged because rounds are played for best 2 out of 3 games). And there is team spirit, team deck building and so forth.=)

I like this idea too, and have been an advocate of it for over a year (since last year Worlds). It builds into the format the "help others to help yourself" element of melee, so that players are rewarded for playing melee the way it is supposed to be played rather than punishing those who don't play it "the right way". Teams don't even have to be from the same meta, but can be randomly chosen - like an "alliance" throughout the entire tournament.

(Caveat: This is not a comment on anyone's value judgments, merely a suggestion on incentivizing the melee format.)



#8 thedaffodilfish

thedaffodilfish

    Member

  • Members
  • 44 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 06:00 AM

AGoT DC Meta said:

BBSB12 said:

 

2. Again comparing to Magic, there are team tournaments and they are fun for the whole team and I'd love to see some kind of AGoT team tournament. E.g., 3-person teams where each team member can play any deck he wants, but teams score as whole (so that if 2 members win and 1 loses, the team still wins). Such a format is of interest since it provides what really lacks in AGoT - averaging over probability (it's a problem in Magic, but there it's partially averaged because rounds are played for best 2 out of 3 games). And there is team spirit, team deck building and so forth.=)

 

 

I like this idea too, and have been an advocate of it for over a year (since last year Worlds). It builds into the format the "help others to help yourself" element of melee, so that players are rewarded for playing melee the way it is supposed to be played rather than punishing those who don't play it "the right way". Teams don't even have to be from the same meta, but can be randomly chosen - like an "alliance" throughout the entire tournament.

(Caveat: This is not a comment on anyone's value judgments, merely a suggestion on incentivizing the melee format.)

I always liked team format in mtg. Good suggestions both.



#9 Bomb

Bomb

    Cool Person Club

  • Members
  • 1,758 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 06:27 AM

A possible challenge for a tournament would be to build a single deck that you will use in both Joust and Melee.  The challenge is to try and come up with either a balance between the formats or something that works relatively well in both.  If you make the Melee a 2v2 format, then perhaps it will help keep those decks from being directly complementary off of each other.  Probably not a great idea, but it could "trigger" some interesting and creative deck building that is not as normal as when building a deck that directly plays one format over the other.

I think 2v2 could be an excellent format for tournament play if it is run correctly and maybe has some additional rules involved that keeps 1st and 3rd players from ganging up on the 2nd player.  One rule I believe that should be added is a direct Support rule for teammates as if they had supporting titles.  The whole "Melee" 2v2 format could be given a serious look in making it more viable for competitive play(and maybe overall play) and I think it could fantastic if the rules are written well.



#10 Traitor

Traitor

    Member

  • Members
  • 17 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 11:11 AM

 I play and read quite a bit about Magic, so I guess it just seems normal to me. Why wouldn't people that play and test together often bring the same deck?



#11 mardukch

mardukch

    Member

  • Members
  • 24 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 11:32 AM

I've never faced that kind of problem over here. The Swiss community attends many events in France as well as Stahleck each year but we always play different decks and as far as I know so does the French community. Of course, we help each other deckbuilding, but playing the same deck is a total non-sense in my opinion.
If three or four players play the same deck, chances are that an opponent who played against one of them will be better prepared against a second one. This would be a mistake, I think.

I’ve never witnessed this phenomenon but last year, at the French Championship, I played against three opponents who played decks that had won or came close to winning a Regional. As I had seen and played these decks online, I easily won all of my games against them because none of their moves could surprise me.

My point is that surprise is essential to the success of a deck at a Regional and, if several people play the same deck or a deck that is widely famous, their rounds will become increasingly hard as the Regional goes on.



#12 imrahil327

imrahil327

    Member

  • Members
  • 428 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 02:03 PM

mardukch said:

My point is that surprise is essential to the success of a deck at a Regional and, if several people play the same deck or a deck that is widely famous, their rounds will become increasingly hard as the Regional goes on.

I tend to disagree with this.  If a deck is strong, it will be able to win without surprise. An element of surprise CAN add to the strength of a deck, but I definitely don't think it's anywhere near required for a deck to win.



#13 Kennon

Kennon

    Member

  • Members
  • 1,808 posts

Posted 01 November 2012 - 02:06 PM

I'd say it could even be argued that the stronger decks are those that don't fold without a surprising gimmick. Or at the very least that the stronger players are those that can compensate for this.



#14 finitesquarewell

finitesquarewell

    Member

  • Members
  • 497 posts

Posted 02 November 2012 - 05:12 AM

On the drive back to WI from Days of Ice and Fire last year, Chad Jamnik and I gave some thought to how a championship-style team joust tournament might be structured. Here was the idea we liked most -- something we might try to run on the East Coast at some point now that the player bases out here are large and generally willing to travel.

 

Registration and deckbuilding rules:

  • Teams consist of two players, each of whom must run a different house card.
  • Each team chooses at the time of registration which player will be designated "player 1" and which will be "player 2."

 

Swiss portion of the tournament:

  • Team cumulative points (not individual points) and strength of schedule are tracked on a single command card (or in a single tournament software entry).
  • Teams (not individuals) are paired based on cumulative joust points as per the usual Swiss system.
  • The two players designated "player 1" play against each other; likewise for the "player 2" pair.
  • Individual games are played and scored as per the usual AGOT joust tournament rules.
  • Points scored by each individual player are added to the team total.

 

Elimination portion of the tournament:

  • Teams advance to the elimination portion based on team cumulative points.
  • Each of the two player designation groups ("1/2") is seeded in a separate bracket.
  • If the winners of each bracket are from separate teams, they play a final round to determine the champion and second place teams.
  • If the winners of each bracket are from the same team, that team is the champion team and no final round is played.
  • There are a number of methods for determining the overall placement of each team making it to the elimination round; I'm not sure which I prefer. One method that doesn't simply use initial bracket placement is not to eliminate teams, but to have the players in each bracket continue to play to determine the final bracket ranking. Then players are paired across brackets, and the same methodology is used for the championship game: two equally ranked players from different teams play off; two equally ranked players from the same team don't. Then the final place/rank of the team is the higher place/rank of the two partners (the lower is ignored).

 

Alternative to the "player X always faces player X" method (likely more fun and generally preferable, and little additional effort for the TD):

  • In the Swiss portion, once each team is paired, the TD randomly determines whether "1/2" faces "1/2" or whether "1/2" faces "2/1".
  • In the elimination portion, the TD randomly assigns each player to one of the two brackets.

 

Dealing with players who show up without a partner:

  • Stag players are asked to come with two decks running different house cards if possible, and are encouraged to arrive early to try to pair themselves as best they can. Then, within X minutes of closing registration, the TD pairs the rest of the players randomly obeying the house rule as best the TD can.
  • If an odd number of players show up without partners, the TD should choose at random among the players who do not pair themselves to be a single-person team (designated "1" or "2"). During the Swiss, the single-person team is scored based on individual points, and the unpaired member of a full team facing the-single person team is awarded a bye (full win).

 



#15 mardukch

mardukch

    Member

  • Members
  • 24 posts

Posted 02 November 2012 - 08:04 AM

imrahil327 said:

mardukch said:

My point is that surprise is essential to the success of a deck at a Regional and, if several people play the same deck or a deck that is widely famous, their rounds will become increasingly hard as the Regional goes on.

 

I tend to disagree with this.  If a deck is strong, it will be able to win without surprise. An element of surprise CAN add to the strength of a deck, but I definitely don't think it's anywhere near required for a deck to win.

 

And yet, if you strictly look at Championship results, most of the decks were surprising or were built in a way that was surprising.

 

Here's a list of the last major Championships and Regionals winner decks:

 

Battle for the Wall, Spain: Stark Maester with a combo nobody expected.

GenCon 2012: Stark KoW that nobody predicted to win the tournament

Greek National: Lannister Alliance

Spanish National: Martell Maester when everybody said it was dead

French National: Baratheon Wildling, first time that a Wildling deck won a championship in a year and a half

Czech National: White Book deck (can't remember the house)

 

You will find examples that will contradict this theory, but the majority of 2012's Championships have been won with an element of surprise.

 



#16 BBSB12

BBSB12

    Member

  • Members
  • 167 posts

Posted 02 November 2012 - 08:51 AM

Well, the argument that "people thought that deck was weak/dead, but it actually is strong/good", doesn't prove much. Because it just shows that in AGoT community due its small size, people don't/can't necessarily invest enough time to playtest. So those members of AGoT who do, stumble on the deck that no one expects and that beats everyone and would beat everyone even if all members of same meta would bring it to the tournament.

E.g., the fact that Bara Wildings won French tournament wouldn't really change if 10 people ran it or just 1 (I think I read somewhere that there were a couple of players from same meta playing that deck), 'cause it doesn't rely on any trick at all (not counting Seductive Promise and such, all of which are standard tricks used by all decks in one way or the other). And only information you can gather from playing this deck for a second/third time in a row is the list of plots which are not mind-blowing at all. And you either have an answer to this deck right there or you'll lose no matter what you do even if you know all cards in that deck.



#17 Ratatoskr

Ratatoskr

    Member

  • Members
  • 1,551 posts

Posted 02 November 2012 - 10:32 AM

mardukch said:

Czech National: White Book deck (can't remember the house)

 

Uh, for the record, Štepan's Stark White Book deck came second in Prague, not first. The tourney was won by a Bara Wildlings deck that, while it was certainly not net-decked, was definitely inspired by that deck you built, the one that won the French National a few weeks before.

That said, there is certainly a strong meta element involved in doing well at tournaments. Remember Stahleck last year? The house that was least represented in the overall field, Greyjoy, won the tourney and had more decks in the top 8 than any other house. And of course, a good player with a good deck that does unexpected things has an advantage over a good player with a good deck that is predictable. But that doesn't guarantee a win. Saying that you need an element of surprise to win a tournament is certainly going too far.



#18 mardukch

mardukch

    Member

  • Members
  • 24 posts

Posted 02 November 2012 - 10:58 AM

Sorry, Ratatoskr, I thought you won the Austrian championship with that deck^^



#19 Ratatoskr

Ratatoskr

    Member

  • Members
  • 1,551 posts

Posted 02 November 2012 - 07:30 PM

No, I tanked a the Austrian Championship with that deck. ;)

 






© 2013 Fantasy Flight Publishing, Inc. Fantasy Flight Games and the FFG logo are ® of Fantasy Flight Publishing, Inc.  All rights reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Contact | User Support | Rules Questions | Help | RSS