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MajorJuggler

PSA: no public MathWing / ship evaluation for X-wing 2.0

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1 hour ago, AllWingsStandyingBy said:


I mean, no offense but lots of people were able to tell that TLTs, X7s, Crack Shot, Torpedo Scouts, and the like were going to be amazingly influential in the meta-game without needing MathWing's models to tell them such.

Can MathWing's models reveal that certain upgrades or ships are more cost-effective than others in certain circumstances?  Sure, but so can plenty of other means of analyzing and evaluating those upgrades/ships.

That MathWing is sometimes as effective as other means of theory-crafting and evaluating options is hardly a strong argument in defending Juggler's claims about it's privileged insights into the game.  It'd have been more impressive if MathWing's approaches revealed unexpected things, things that weren't commonly held by the community or derivable from other means of evaluation. 

Is Mathwing sufficient for understanding the cost effectiveness of certain options?  Sure, sometimes.  Is Mathwing necessary for understanding the cost effectiveness of certain options?  Nope.

So when MJ goes around acting like he's cracked some sacred code, the only code out there for unlocking THE ONE TRUE BALANCE of the game, forgive those of us that just see it as what a freshly unfrozen Han would call "delusions of grandeur."

 

You are right, there are a lot of other people that have predicted problems with many of the releases. Unfortunately the playtesters and the development team are apparently not among them. I had several playtesters argue with me voraciously in favor of FFG's design decisions about OG Defenders and TLT, for example.

 

1 hour ago, SOTL said:

More damning is the number of things it didn't predict until he retrospectively changed the maths to give the desired outcome.

* Citation required.

 

57 minutes ago, Icelom said:

He was also self admittedly wrong about many things. (Fair ship rebels for instance).

 

49 minutes ago, Icelom said:

Yes he literally explains that his formulas missed it and he went back and tweaked the formulas to match reality.

 

 

In reply to all of the above, I would emphasize that the analysis infrastructure is not an optimal upgrade permutation finder. Each ship + upgrade combination has to be programmed manually. (MathWing 4.0 anyone....?) But once a permutation has been identified by the community I can evaluate it. I miss plenty of stuff because I haven't identified it yet. But once it has been identified it goes into the standard-path meat grinder.

 

 

In regards to Fair Ship Rebels, the Biggs Effect (+Lowhhrick) breaks the fundamental focus fire assumption that I was using to establish the baseline power curve. If you are a game designer then it is very important to be able to quantify this effect. It's also useful as a player to understand how much more efficient you can make your squad by forcing your opponent to make difficult target priority choices. Focus fire vs defocused fire is a very broad concept that has implications for just about any wargame that you could play, but there's very little (if any) information out there in the tabletop gaming world that rigorously deals with this effect. So I derived what the power curve looks like if one side has focus fire and the other side has defocused fire, with a finite number of units on each side. I'm sorry that @SOTL and @Icelom both misunderstood the article and concluded that it was "tweaking the formulas to get a desired result", when in actuality it was making a scholarly contribution to the field of interest*.

 

As I said before, the work is open to peer review, you are free to deconstruct and recreate the analysis. You are also free to use the results which conclude that if you can evenly split fire between your 4 ships that would otherwise be worth 100 points if focused down individually, the efficiency gain is equivalent to playing with a 126 point list. Knowing this as a player, you can now try and determine what tactical tradeoffs are worth it in order to try and achieve this result.

 

MathWing is generally geared for designers not players, but it's also useful information for players as well. Understanding the fundamentals like the above is part of what has helped me make the Top 4 at >50% of the regional-level events (6 rounds + cut) that I have attended. If @SOTL and @Icelom have not achieved similar levels of competitive results then they might be better served checking their assumptions to see if there is something to be learned and help improve their play. [Edit: In my X-wing "career" I have played in 6 large tournaments (6 rounds of Swiss in each, with 8 swiss rounds at worlds 2015 ) and have lost a total of 10 games, including in elimination rounds.] Gauntlet laid down. ?

 

 

* I would assume that some Office of Naval research papers have also already concluded the same thing, but I haven't done a full literature survey.

Edited by MajorJuggler

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8 minutes ago, Boba Rick said:

Which you (and others here) narrow-mindedly state as if there are absolutely no legitimate arguments in favor of intelligent design. 


I will, like @Commander Kaine retire this aspect of the discussion after one important clarification that you seem to be taking as a personal attack, so it's probably worth clarifying:

I certainly never said there were "absolutely no legitimate arguments in favor of intelligent design."  What I did claim was that, with regards to explanations and the nature of science, creationism is neither falsifiable nor can it be used to make predictions about the natural world (the same flaws I personally see with MathWing as a model/explanation of X-Wing).  These features are part of the reason why creationism is not a scientific theory (and these are some of the key reasons why courts have ruled that Intelligent Design creationism is not science and cannot be taught as science in public curriculum, e.g. cases like Kitzmiller vs Dover (2005) and elsewhere).

There are some leaps you are making, Boba Rick:

(1) Creationism = Intelligent Design.  It's worth nothing that back during the Dover trial and elsewhere, most proponents of I.D. maintained the position that it was NOT creationism or a flavor of creationism (because they knew there was no hope for a creationist viewpoint to get recognized as legitimate content in a science class, because creationism is by its very nature non-empirical and non-scientific).  Of course, the experts and the courts came to the same conclusions that you have in viewing Intelligent Design as a newer species of creationism, which is why it's been banned from public science curricula, since it is not scientific.

(2) Whether nor not something is scientific is not necessarily related to its value, usefulness, or truth.  Of course, we may have reasons to think that something that is unscientific is not a great candidate for revealing truths about the empirical natural world, but that is at least a separate question.


My claims have all been limited to the point that creationism as a theory/explanation does not possess certain features that we typically find valuable for our analytic models to possess, and this is not a controversial point.  Most of creationism's staunchest proponents are they themselves adamant that it is not a scientific viewpoint (it's religious, that's the point) and it's inability to be falsified or to make bold predictions are in fact strengths of the viewpoint, not weaknesses (e.g. the role of faith). 

Hopefully this helps clear things up a bit.

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4 minutes ago, MajorJuggler said:

 

You are right, there are a lot of other people that have predicted problems with many of the releases. Unfortunately the playtesters and the development team are apparently not among them. I had several playtesters argue with me voraciously in favor of FFG's design decisions about OG Defenders and TLT, for example.


To this point, I whole-heartedly agree with you.

There have certainly been past-mistakes with the design and evaluation process, and ample room for improvement.

I just don't think MathWing is the silver-bullet solution to these sorts of problems, though it likely could help avoid some of the kinds of imbalance issues we've seen in the past (though so could other inputs upon the design/evaluation process).

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2 minutes ago, Dabirdisdaword said:

Ok so who's next. We got a flat earther coming to get us woke? 

I just wanna see where this roller coaster goes.

this has the potential to get worse than some reddit threads

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The solution to your problem is simple.  Get the players to pay for your service.  Set up a Kickstarter with a $$$$.  Or even a monthly Patreon for people to continue to gain access to your math and notes. 

 

You get paid, players get the information they want.

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23 minutes ago, Evenflow30 said:

Only on the X-wing forums can we go from a discussion on mathematical analysis of ship design to a heated debate on creationism vs darwanism in the blink of an eye. Bravo! Let me go get the popcorn!

 

More like one person who was derided and ridiculed for disagreeing with the status-quo, I offered no substantial debate because I don't really like arguing with randos on the internet.  When I was younger, yes, but I found that it rarely does anything but create more hostility.  Additionally, this is an X-Wing forum, not a place for a debate such as that.   

Howbeit, for what it's worth, if there is anyone out there that actually wants to consider the other side, I would recommend checking out works by Dr. Henry Morris, John Morris, Ken Ham, and plenty of other creation/ID scientists out there.

If you'd like an article to read on the subject, here is one: http://www.icr.edu/scientific-case-against-evolution

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16 minutes ago, MajorJuggler said:

 

You are right, there are a lot of other people that have predicted problems with many of the releases. Unfortunately the playtesters and the development team are apparently not among them. I had several playtesters argue with me voraciously in favor of FFG's design decisions about OG Defenders and TLT, for example.

 

* Citation required.

 

 

 

 

In reply to all of the above, I would emphasize that the analysis infrastructure is not an optimal upgrade permutation finder. Each ship + upgrade combination has to be programmed manually. (MathWing 4.0 anyone....?) But once a permutation has been identified by the community I can evaluate it. I miss plenty of stuff because I haven't identified it yet. But once it has been identified it goes into the standard-path meat grinder.

 

 

In regards to Fair Ship Rebels, the Biggs Effect (+Lowhhrick) breaks the fundamental focus fire assumption that I was using to establish the baseline power curve. If you are a game designer then it is very important to be able to quantify this effect. It's also useful as a player to understand how much more efficient you can make your squad by forcing your opponent to make difficult target priority choices. Focus fire vs defocused fire is a very broad concept that has implications for just about any wargame that you could play, but there's very little (if any) information out there in the tabletop gaming world that rigorously deals with this effect. So I derived what the power curve looks like if one side has focus fire and the other side has defocused fire, with a finite number of units on each side. I'm sorry that @SOTL and @Icelom both misunderstood the article and concluded that it was "tweaking the formulas to get a desired result", when in actuality it was making a scholarly contribution to the field of interest*.

 

As I said before, the work is open to peer review, you are free to deconstruct and recreate the analysis. You are also free to use the results which conclude that if you can evenly split fire between your 4 ships that would otherwise be worth 100 points if focused down individually, the efficiency gain is equivalent to playing with a 126 point list. Knowing this as a player, you can now try and determine what tactical tradeoffs are worth it in order to try and achieve this result.

 

MathWing is generally geared for designers not players, but it's also useful information for players as well. Understanding the fundamentals like the above is part of what has helped me make the Top 4 at >50% of the regional-level events (6 rounds + cut) that I have attended. If @SOTL and @Icelom have not achieved similar levels of competitive results then they might be better served checking their assumptions to see if there is something to be learned and help improve their play. [Edit: In my X-wing "career" I have played in 6 large tournaments (6 rounds of Swiss in each, with 8 swiss rounds at worlds 2015 ) and have lost a total of 10 games, including in elimination rounds.] Gauntlet laid down. ?

 

 

* I would assume that some Office of Naval research papers have also already concluded the same thing, but I haven't done a full literature survey.

Bringing your own play results in to this argument and calling to question the results and skill of someone you have never met is rather vain and childish and speaks volumes of your egotistical and selfish personality.

I have several top 4 and top 2 finishes in regional and store champion (striaght up first place wins at the store championship level) level events. Of the 3x regional level events I have attended *6 round Swiss cuts* i have finished 9th, top 2, and top 4, so I guess my results were better then yours..... 

However this has nothing to do with anything and the fact you felt the need to bring it up says alot about your massive fragile ego. I no longer feel the need to hold back on any of my opinions concerning you.

I don't have to like mathwing and I don't have to like you @MajorJuggler, but I will posty opinions in your posts that are clearly only made to try and show ffg how much the community loves your work (or to stroke your ego with the blind faithfully on these forums) that not all of us do and are perfectly happy having ffg not wasting the money on a flawed mathematical model that world require the same amount of playtesting and rebalance anyways.

 

 

 

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10 minutes ago, emmjay said:

The solution to your problem is simple.  Get the players to pay for your service.  Set up a Kickstarter with a $$$$.  Or even a monthly Patreon for people to continue to gain access to your math and notes. 

 

You get paid, players get the information they want.

It's a perfect solution.

Those who believe the work has value can fund it. 

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So, apparently missed some stuff, and now we need a breakfast order, stat. 

1 hour ago, Icelom said:

Yes he literally explains that his formulas missed it and he went back and tweaked the formulas to match reality.

His math is not perfect and people should stop treating it that way. Add to the fact the man has one of the largest egos I have ever seen and the whole matgwing just starts anoying me.

I disagree with MJ a lot. But, it is more a philosophical difference in design approach, which is perfectly fine. I don't think he intended it to have such a cult following it had on the forums. But as annoying as some of the followers of Mathwing are, it really doesn't justify some of the treatment MajorJuggler is getting in this thread. 

Frankly, how MajorJuggler approached FFG is fine. There is past behavior by FFG that they would buy something valuable to their game. See, www.cardgamedb.com. Though, that was in the past. And he definitely should not be mocked for asking for what he would deserved to be paid. He clearly has some knowledge and degrees to back it up. And all my interactions have been perfectly fine. It helps that I know my limits, and don't challenge his math. 

Hopefully he sticks with the game, and remains active in the forums, even if he doesn't share math. 

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2 minutes ago, Boba Rick said:

 

More like one person who was derided and ridiculed for disagreeing with the status-quo, I offered no substantial debate because I don't really like arguing with randos on the internet.  When I was younger, yes, but I found that it rarely does anything but create more hostility.  Additionally, this is an X-Wing forum, not a place for a debate such as that.   

Howbeit, for what it's worth, if there is anyone out there that actually wants to consider the other side, I would recommend checking out works by Dr. Henry Morris, John Morris, Ken Ham, and plenty of other creation/ID scientists out there.

If you'd like an article to read on the subject, here is one: http://www.icr.edu/scientific-case-against-evolution

Its alright boba rick. We all have different beliefs, different political views, different ways of thinking. We both share a love of x-wing and thats good enough for me!

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I love a good willy-waving contest about how big a fish we are in this tiny insignificant pond.

I took x-wing semi-seriously for about three months and made cut at nationals.  It seemed clear that if I took it fully seriously I could be pretty good at it.  I've proven that many times over the last two decades in pretty much every other game I took halfway seriously, but a physical positioning minis game tested a lot of different skills that my previous games hadn't really tested so it wasn't really a given that I would be able to translate my success this time.

I'm comfortable in the size of my e-peen and dont really feel the need to overcompensate by shoving it into the face of the general public to make them love me more.

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On 7/4/2018 at 2:35 PM, MajorJuggler said:

Greetings all,

A couple months back I had asked Alex, Frank, and Max if FFG would be interested in hiring me as a consultant to do some technical balance analysis for X-wing 2.0. The upshot of the conversation was that FFG management would only be willing to let me work on pre-release material if I joined the general playtest group and signed the standard playtester NDA. The playtester NDA includes an Intellectual Property paragraph which is very broad, and essentially states that any mathematical process I reveal to them becomes their permanent and exclusive property. This would have multiple implications:

  1. As a general playtester I would be unpaid.
  2. I would be unable to later publish the general mathematical theory of how point values can be approximated for any wargame, including posting on forums here, or publishing in academic literature, or using these formulas to playtest for another company, or as a designer for another company. If I signed the NDA and later did any of these at any point in my life, FFG could sue and hold me personally liable. 

 

Neither of these implications were acceptable to me, so I declined. The developers can now change costs post-release, so as a corollary of this decision I have also decided to not make any of my X-wing 2.0 analysis public. FFG has invested many man-years of designer/developer labor into X-wing design and playtesting, but their technical analysis capabilities are significantly less than the infrastructure I have developed. Succinctly stated, I don't feel like giving away that information for free.

 

There is of course considerable debate as to how useful such an analysis toolkit will be now that the developers can change point costs dynamically. I estimate that it would save them 2-6 months of calendar time on getting point costs settled to their "final form". Certain ships and pilots will be easier for them to price correctly on initial launch than others. This is however, largely a theoretical discussion at this point, since I won't be performing this service for them anyway.

 

I know that many of you look forward to my analysis of various pilots and ships as they are previewed, so wanted to make this PSA. I will still be performing the analysis privately for myself, but I will not be sharing the results. Lets hope that the FFG developers can get 2.0's point costs and balance worked out in a timely manner, so we don't end up with the poor balance and powercreep that defined 1.0.

 

Cheers,

-- Bob

Do a Kickstarter or Patreon subscription for your math wing data.  You get paid, people get the data they are looking for.

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23 minutes ago, SOTL said:

I love a good willy-waving contest about how big a fish we are in this tiny insignificant pond.

I took x-wing semi-seriously for about three months and made cut at nationals.  It seemed clear that if I took it fully seriously I could be pretty good at it.  I've proven that many times over the last two decades in pretty much every other game I took halfway seriously, but a physical positioning minis game tested a lot of different skills that my previous games hadn't really tested so it wasn't really a given that I would be able to translate my success this time.

I'm comfortable in the size of my e-peen and dont really feel the need to overcompensate by shoving it into the face of the general public to make them love me more.

You don't see the irony in this post, do you?

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