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VanorDM

Email from Alex Davy about TL's regarding Competitive rules from FAQ.

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Thought I'd post this here as well. Since not everyone may see it in the discussion that was happening on the general forums... 

Rules Question:
We're having a rousing debate on the forms about Target Locks and the Competitive Rules section in the FAQ. In the FAQ on page 9 it says... "After declaring the intended target of a target lock action, the active player may measure range to the intended target, and only to the intended target."

The debate in part revolves around that last part, the 'only to the intended target' part. Lets say I have a YT-2400 and I'm checking the Target Lock to a tie fighter that looks to be about range 3. There happens to be another Tie Fighter directly in front of the YT at what looks like range 1 and between the YT and the Tie Fighter. When I measure the Target Lock to the Tie Fighter at range 3, I have to place the ruler over the range 1 tie fighter.

Would this be a violation of the rule from page 9? Because in the process of measuring to the range 3 Tie Fighter, I'm also effectively measuring the range to the range 1 tie fighter.
 

No, that would be fine. The rule is not meant to be extremely restrictive, it’s just meant to discourage players from checking range to every target on the board. Simply choosing a target and measuring range to it is fine, no matter what other information might be inadvertently gleaned.

Cheers,
Alex Davy
Creative Content Developer
Fantasy Flight Games


Just for reference here's a image that better shows what I was talking about.
 

TL1_zpsttgmsjpk.jpg

 

Edit: I'm not really looking for a discussion.  Just wanted to make sure the rules form had a record of the email from Alex.

Edited by VanorDM

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Should have inquired as to the protocols of a player declaring indisputably out of range targets.

I thought about that. But the rules really can't account for something as subjective as 'clearly out of range'. Because then you start to get into arguments about what is clearly out of range and what isn't.

I think most reasonable people would be able to agree on what is or isn't clearly out of range, but rules aren't generally written with reasonable people in mind, they're written to be the objective guide you use.

There's no good way to have rules that say "you can measure but only if you reasonably think you are in range anyway." Because you start to get into debates on what is reasonable. Better to simply say yes you can or no you can not.

Which I think is what Alex was saying. It's sorta up to the TO to decide this way if someone is abusing the rules or not.

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Which I think is what Alex was saying. It's sorta up to the TO to decide this way if someone is abusing the rules or not.

 

The problem is that at this point there is a solid contingent of people who believe there is no such thing as abusing the rule, and that TOs have no recourse to do anything to stop them.

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There's no good way to have rules that say "you can measure but only if you reasonably think you are in range anyway." Because you start to get into debates on what is reasonable. Better to simply say yes you can or no you can not.

Which I think is what Alex was saying. It's sorta up to the TO to decide this way if someone is abusing the rules or not.

 

 

You shouldn't assume that there is no good rule to address the situation.

 

Here's an example: If you declare a target lock attempt you only may measure for range IF the opponent challenges it and only IF. That allows you to cede any obvious locks for players who might take advantage of it that way. AND add an official tournament rule that the opponent can choose to declare the lock is clearly too far away and that a judge must come over and decide if it should be measured and if it is erroneously far the judge can issue a warning. That adds in a buffer to deter players from trying the long distance ones instead of just heaping too much pressure on a TO in the moment who has to deal with a volatile situation. Now this is just an idea, but there may be several ways that this situation can be addressed that FFG could explore and might already have in the works.

 

Also it is always up to the TO to watch for and deal with anyone who is abusing the rules, not just sorta.

 

And only Alex Davey can know what he is saying. You shouldn't assume and interpret anything he says, nor is it law until it is in an official FAQ or Tourney Doc, as we found with mixing dials that things they say, even directly in a ruling e-mail, can change.

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That's good Tuls! That made me realize they could also just make it so that you lose your action if it's out of range 3 in tourneys. It seems way more hardcore, but it could work that way...

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That's good Tuls! That made me realize they could also just make it so that you lose your action if it's out of range 3 in tourneys. It seems way more hardcore, but it could work that way...

 

But they've already stated (Alex even included it in his e-mail) that they don't want to be overly punitive, so you shouldn't be punishing people if it's just out of range. I would also support that you lose your action if it's outside range 4.

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I would also support that you lose your action if it's outside range 4.

 

Unless you start requiring that people bring their Epic ship range rulers with them to all tournaments, we're not going to have a way to determine "outside range 4".

 

 

 

Which I think is what Alex was saying. It's sorta up to the TO to decide this way if someone is abusing the rules or not.

 

The problem is that at this point there is a solid contingent of people who believe there is no such thing as abusing the rule, and that TOs have no recourse to do anything to stop them.

 

 

As you pointed out in the other thread, the Tournament Rules make the TO the final authority on these things. If he makes a call on the matter, then that's the end of it.

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I would also support that you lose your action if it's outside range 4.

 

Unless you start requiring that people bring their Epic ship range rulers with them to all tournaments, we're not going to have a way to determine "outside range 4".

 

 

Only the TO would need to have one. Then if you feel your opponent is abusing TL measurements the TO comes over and checks.

 

I just think if you know your in a Tourney and someone has a reputation for doing it this will be your way to slow down the abuse. Also as I stated the TO needs to announce from the start this will be the case. That alone should stop most abuse.

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What is the value of Frank's response?

That email barely reflects the recent discussion in any way. It is either very poorly thought out or extremely biased. I mean honestly, the only other answer to the question presented would be that other ships being on the board prevents measuring to aquire a target locks.

How about asking about the real issues? Can I measure for a target lock if the other ship is in the opposite corner? Can I check arc when measuring for a target lock? Can I measure for a target lock if the target ship is a half inch away from the ship aquiring the target lock? These are the ways that some people use the target lock rules and these are the things that, going by recent discussions, other players take issue with.

Edited by Rapture

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I don't understand these kinds of threads to be honest. It seems very simple to me.

If you declare ship A as the target of your target lock with the intent to measure something else, you are cheating.

If while meassuring for a taget lock on ship A you intentionaly look at other things to get more information, you are cheating.

If while meassuring for a taget lock on ship A you unintentionaly happen to gance at an other ship and there by get more information, that's fine by me.

It all comes down to intent.

 

Now I understand that it can be dificult for any one to determine some one elses intent, but are you guys realy playing with people out to cheat often enough for this to even be an issue? From my (admitedly limited) experiance, most (if not all), players I've meet just wants to play by the rules and have fun doing it.

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Now I understand that it can be dificult for any one to determine some one elses intent, but are you guys realy playing with people out to cheat often enough for this to even be an issue? From my (admitedly limited) experiance, most (if not all), players I've meet just wants to play by the rules and have fun doing it.

 

Had something come up in a game last night, I had Kath with K4 and Expert Handling - she'd taken a green maneuver and TL-ed a ship in her rear arc using K4. It was obviously within range 3, it looked like it might be range 1, but it was marginal.

 

Naturally I wanted the R1 shot, and ideally I wanted it with TL and focus - but it looked like I was going to have to take the barrel roll backwards to make absolutely certain of it.

I dithered for a while, explaining my dilemma to my opponent.

My opponent pointed out that I hadn't measured range for the TL - and while it was obviously within R3, I would have been perfectly entitled to do so - and going by the rules, I was in fact obliged to do so - so this being a friendly game, he allowed it.

But as a result of this I gained additional information about how to proceed with my action which resulted in me blowing his ship to smithereens.

Is that cheating?

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Most people, whether the seek additional information through target lock measurements or not, don't consider themselves cheater. They have an opinion on the rules and they try to follow it. One of the locals here regularly checks arcs when "measuring for target locks." He probably doesn't think that he is doing anything wrong and no one calls him on it because, I assume, that no one really cares in a casual setting.

That is why the question presented was a missed opportunity. Instead of presenting the conflicts that different opinions on measuring target locks creates, it give a simple example of the most basic, and generally uncontested, effect of the target lock measuring rule. It does not even directly raise the issue of incidental information, intentionally gathered or otherwise.

 

 

Is that cheating?

The rules for measuring for a target lock exist to allow you to see if you are in range for a target lock. Is that what you did, or did you do something else?

 

Your opponent was right, you are free to, and probably should check to see if you are within range 3 of your target. Checking to see if you are within range 1 of your target is unnecessary.

Edited by Rapture

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If you both agrea about something, after you have explained your intent, I see no problem. Your intent was not to decive your opponent.

 

[Edit - Just to avoid any confusion, this was in responce to Funkleton]

Edited by Smuggler

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Here's an example: If you declare a target lock attempt you only may measure for range IF the opponent challenges it and only IF. That allows you to cede any obvious locks for players who might take advantage of it that way.

And in the above image, if the other person challenges it because he doesn't want you to get a TL on that ship? Then the TO has to check every questionable TL action made in a tournament.

That wouldn't cause an event to grind to a halt at all...

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What is the value of Frank's response?

It was Alex, not Frank, and its value is that it indicates the FFG's intention in implementing that rule. It's meant to discourage players from measuring multiple times to multiple ships before making a decision, not to be "overly restrictive" about the information you get from measuring. That seems both straightforward and valuable to me.

How about asking about the real issues?

It addresses them perfectly: none of those things violate the intention of the rule. If your opponent is repeatedly measuring to targets he can't possibly lock, that may be an indication of deliberate stalling or some other attempt to manipulate the game, and you're free to call over a TO. Otherwise, just play the game.

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For Tourney you could make a rule that if the range is greater than 4 then you loose your action. But the TO would need to announce at the start.

FFG has made a point of setting up the rules so you never lose your action. They are unlikely to change that stance now.

 

What is the value of Frank's response?

The value of Alex's response was that the rules don't prevent you from taking a TL if doing so gives you information about other ships. Which was the crux of the debate in the other thread.

That you can measure only to the other ship, and any time you measure to other ships you're breaking the rules. Which is clearly not the case.

The rules are the rules, period. If you can measure in the above case you can measure in any case. Because there is no where that the rules state you can only measure 'if it looks like it may be in range already'.

If you don't like Alex's answer or my question feel free to email him yourself, I wanted to address a single issue and did so.

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What is the value of Frank's response?

The value of Alex's response was that the rules don't prevent you from taking a TL if doing so gives you information about other ships. Which was the crux of the debate in the other thread.

 

That is a pretty hefty conclusion to draw from such a light question and correspondingly light response. He answered your question about one very specific instance. You asked if you can measure range for a target lock and he said yes. Any other conclusion is an inference and the value of that inference is very small considering that you did not raise the actual issue, which is incidental information. 

Edited by Rapture

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That is a pretty hefty conclusion to draw from such a light question and correspondingly light response.

No, it's a direct answer from a direct question.

I asked quite clearly, if it was breaking the rules if you measure a TL to a ship and as part of that process measure the distance to other ships.

He said no. He also said what the point of the rule was.

 

that you did not raise the actual issue, which is incidental information.

Really? Then why did he say this? "no matter what other information might be inadvertently gleaned." Seems pretty clear that incidental information is not an issue.

I made a special point of creating the most egregious example of incidental information I could, by knowing exactly what the range of another ship was, as part of the process. If they're ok with knowing something exactly, then it's not exactly a leap to say that they're ok with gaining partial information in other situations.

I don't know if you don't understand the answer or just don't like it. But the answer is quite clear. You can measure for a TL even if doing so gains you additional information. There's simply no other way to read his answer and that does not require any sort of interpretation or twisting words.

Edited by VanorDM

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Your example is probably the least egregious example of incidental information that I have ever see. Measuring a target lock to a ship on the edge of range 3 when there is a second enemy ship directly between the ship taking the action and the target of the attempted target lock? No reasonable player cares about situations like that.

 

How about measuring a target lock to a ship in the opposite corner of the table and also checking the firing arc of another enemy ship that is within range 1 of the ship taking the action? That is egregious.

 

How about using the action taking ship's advanced sensors to measure a target to a ship that just bumped into the action taking ship in order to see if the action taking ship should barrel roll to avoid bumping into a 3rd ship in its flight path. That is egregious.

 

How about measuring for a target lock and taking a measurement that is more precise and time consuming than is necessary to also check to see if a third ship is in range 1? This is at least a real disagreement that the average player might encounter and, not unreasonable, take issue with.

 

I don't know that these egregious situations really occur (from my own experience, only to a lesser degree) and I don't mean to sound confrontational, but why ask a question that you know the vast majority of the community would respond affirmatively to when there are closely related questions where legitimate disagreement exists?

Edited by Rapture

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and that TOs have no recourse to do anything to stop them.

The TO has all the authority he or she needs to stop them. If someone is checking for TL's and they're clearly out of range, the TO can give them a warning based on either stalling, or poor sportsmanship. Because either case would cover that kind of behavior.

But this does leave it in the hands of the TO where it should be, and doesn't try to create rules that are even more ripe for abuse than what we already have. We are after all talking about the Competitive rules here, not the Standard rules.

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What you got an answer for was never what was being disputed.

If you read the thread on the main page you would see that it was in fact being disputed.

Because a number of people said that if you measure a TL and gain additional information from doing so, it's against the rules.

So please explain how my example wasn't being disputed...

Trying to say anything that involves something clearly being out of range, quite simply isn't supported by the rules. You can not add additional criteria to the rules just because you don't like the way the rules work.

The rules quite clearly state that you can measure to any ship you wish to TL, and make no mention of "but only if you resonally think it's in range."

The whole argument being made was that TL'ing something that is clearly out of range is illegal because it gains you additional information. But that isn't how the rules work based on Alex's response.

But again if you don't like the question or answer I got then email FFG yourself, and post the response here.

Edited by VanorDM

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