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View Poll Results: Should we redistribute teams in some way?
Yes 3 17.65%
No 14 82.35%
Voters: 17. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-14-2011, 12:12 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Rethinking Team Contests

Participation has been going down. This thread is an attempt to determine why and to try to fix it.

Some possibilities.

  1. Fatigue. Too many contests. Or too intense of contests.
  2. Repetition. Just bored with the whole concept because it is no longer "new".
  3. Intimidation. Competing directly against the 5 or 10 top tier players that we have (many of whom have multiple world records) seems futile and not worth even trying.
  4. Bad contest ideas.
  5. Bad timing - holidays.
  6. Lack of prizes and plunder. We need real cash and loot to give away.
Some of these are fixable if we just figure out what the cause is. Example, if it is fatigue then we have fewer contests. If it is boredom we come up with some better ideas. If it is intimidation we come up with some ideas that are more balanced and fair. Etc.

So what are your thoughts. What do you want to see in future contests - both team and individual. Why do you think fewer people are participating?
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Old 01-14-2011, 12:26 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

1. Generally, contest lengths have been too long
2. As long as we don't repeat contests, I don't see this as a problem.
3. This is the biggest problem, but it is due to contest design. The last several contest have not been true team contests, instead, they have been individual contest that rewards the team with the best individual effort. In Tag Team, we had a player go alone for most of the contest. The outcome of that entire contest was changed because of the individual effort of another player. Nacho Cheese was 100% percent based on individual effort. Therefore, a lot of people mail it in because they don't want to put in the 8-12 hours a day to complete with those who can.
4. You need team contests, not individual contests
5. Holidays are an issue. Tri-annual contests? Or shorter contests.
6. I don't think so. I think the bulk of the players here are in it for the glory and not the payday.
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Old 01-14-2011, 12:30 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

1: I'm good with 4 contests per year
2: I'm still new to team contests. But for those that may be bored...think of a new contest to play.
3: This is probably the biggest problem with the teams as the best players get picked up by one or two teams. Not trying to diss anyone's current skill level, but the top dogs are not evenly balanced. (I don't consider myself to be a top dog)

This is what I suggest.
Bring down the team roster to 6 and create new teams with the extra players. In order to avoid having to pick who leaves, might I recommend to drop volunteers first. If not enough are willing to leave, seniority should kick in. (or we could simply scrap all teams and do a random draw with the luck of the dice roll)

4: I think the contests are good. But if you don't like them, just make one up and submit your idea.
5: That's part of the challenge.
6: Interesting. I'm good with the badge alone, but if people are willing to put some money where their mouth is...

Last edited by joz; 01-14-2011 at 12:45 PM..
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Old 01-14-2011, 01:50 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

  1. I do think there are far too many. Most go 4-8 weeks, and then with one month off (considering the 4/year current plan) there is almost no break. I think 2 per year is maybe the perfect number, and it would probably make each one a more special RU event. 4 is just way way too many.

  2. I don't really think that is the case.

  3. I don't know about intimidation, but I can agree with Jim on the time aspect. On average I have had about 1-2 hours to play in each round of the past contests. Some people have far far more which is okay I suppose, but it can make things very uneven at times.

  4. I wouldn't say bad ideas, but I do think that some types lend themselves more to team play than others.

    For example, I think something like Clash of the Titans was one of the best team contest formats for 2 reasons:

    1) It required the whole team to play. It wasn't about an individual's high score as much as the total combined score from the whole team. This made every person's score important and valuable.

    and most importantly...

    2) The scores were hidden until the round was over. No one knew what anyone else was scoring, so each person just had to do their best. This almost completely negates the "Camper Effect" that benefits people who have enormous amounts of time. I would suggest implementing this for almost every team contest if possible.

  5. Bad timing - holidays.

    This last one was definitely bad timing.


  6. Lack of prizes and plunder. We need real cash and loot to give away.

    I don't know that that should be the case for every contest. I think for the site as a whole it might be cool to do something (maybe an indivdual contest) that might be for plunder and could bring in new people to the site, but not every contest.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kong
So what are your thoughts. What do you want to see in future contests - both team and individual. Why do you think fewer people are participating?
I think for me, and some people on EC who have spoken to me about these types of issues, there are just too many team contests a year. It can lead to burn out for all but the ones who have almost unlimited time on the site.

I think both team and individual contests matter. It shouldn't be one or the other, but having maybe two team contests a year could significantly help lessen the burn out effect.
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Old 01-14-2011, 02:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Individual contests would be cool if it pitted everyone in a free for all. The single winner would be whomever won the most rounds and gets a badge for their victory. We could set up a tournament based on genre like vertical shooters, beat em ups, platforms, puzzles, etc.. So all rounds would be the same genre and you get a cool badge that fits the contest.
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Old 01-14-2011, 02:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kong View Post
Participation has been going down. This thread is an attempt to determine why and to try to fix it.

Some possibilities.

  1. Fatigue. Too many contests. Or too intense of contests.
  2. Repetition. Just bored with the whole concept because it is no longer "new".
  3. Intimidation. Competing directly against the 5 or 10 top tier players that we have (many of whom have multiple world records) seems futile and not worth even trying.
  4. Bad contest ideas.
  5. Bad timing - holidays.
    [*
    +-]Lack of prizes and plunder. We need real cash and loot to give away.
Some of these are fixable if we just figure out what the cause is. Example, if it is fatigue then we have fewer contests. If it is boredom we come up with some better ideas. If it is intimidation we come up with some ideas that are more balanced and fair. Etc.

So what are your thoughts. What do you want to see in future contests - both team and individual. Why do you think fewer people are participating?
1.there definitely isn't too many contests. 4 is fine but I think 1 month should be the maximum length, because, after that, people begin to lose interest it would seem.

2. I agree with others, I love contests.

3. I think I can vouch for this. I know I'm far from the skill level of the likes of the bagels, dojah, etc. for general games. Only time I think I can stand a chance is with my best genre. Even so, I don't think it's so true speaking personally. Using Pururun as an example, I hated that game, I was on my own against Seahawk & Dudebro along with bluej & jojo and elrod too. I still tried for a while to hang in there but I wasn't too good at the game and I was facing tag teams on my own. I think I gave up within the last day. I can't vouch for others, but if people are determined enough, they'll try.

4. I'm sorry to say, but I disliked the last contest. I know it wasn't serious and maybe it was the lack of participation but I just didn't feel motivated. I had a blast in the first few rounds, but it seems everyone lost interest after that almost. I lacked time for the most part as did others but still...

Quote:
For example, I think something like Clash of the Titans was one of the best team contest formats for 2 reasons:

1) It required the whole team to play. It wasn't about an individual's high score as much as the total combined score from the whole team. This made every person's score important and valuable.

and most importantly...

2) The scores were hidden until the round was over. No one knew what anyone else was scoring, so each person just had to do their best. This almost completely negates the "Camper Effect" that benefits people who have enormous amounts of time. I would suggest implementing this for almost every team contest if possible.
Very true, I was hoping we could have another one of these contests.

5. Having a christmas contest seemed alright at the time but now it just shows people didn't have the time or would rather spend time with family and friends, and why wouldn't we want that? Same goes for summer, many go for holidays I believe. I think the June and December contests should be pushed back a month each.

6. If were talking about everyone chipping a few bucks into a pool for the winners then it sounds like it would make it more fun, interesting and worth it but not everyone has that liberty or a credit card, though you can buy pre paid credit cards.
If you mean just RU forming prize money then it would make a difference, but that's up to you.

I am actually quite interested with what joz said. I think team sizes could use a little shifting. I also wish it was more fair, EC seems stacked at the moment if you know what I mean. VB sort of too...
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Old 01-14-2011, 02:39 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Quote:
Originally Posted by jozman3000 View Post
Individual contests would be cool if it pitted everyone in a free for all. The single winner would be whomever won the most rounds and gets a badge for their victory. We could set up a tournament based on genre like vertical shooters, beat em ups, platforms, puzzles, etc.. So all rounds would be the same genre and you get a cool badge that fits the contest.
There have been semi-regular individual contests on RU for some time. Recent ones included Pass the Puck, Defender of the Crown, and now the Game Club.
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Old 01-14-2011, 02:48 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

...you're right.
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Old 01-14-2011, 02:51 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Possible Solutions:

Shorter contests.
Contests that require more team effort.

I think everyone agrees these two are needed. We will keep these in mind when designing future contests.

Uneven time per player
I have some ideas to solve this. I don't think this can be solved in every contest but it can be improved.

I just sent an idea for the next contest to Tenser for review. It would require exactly 1 hour from each person on your team and then be over. The hour could be scheduled by each player any time over a 2 week period. I think that would solve lots of the problems - fatigue, team effort, shorter contests, even time.


Fewer contests.
I think there are lots of different opinions on this one. What ever number we choose, someone will be unsatisfied.


Redistribution of the super star players.
Smaller teams/more teams.

I think these would be best in the long run but finding volunteers to break up their team might not be smooth.

Who is for or against smaller teams and/or redistribution of power?


Prizes
Sounds like most agree this would be a good solution for individual contests, not teams.
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Old 01-14-2011, 02:57 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

A few points from my perspective:
- 24 hours is not enough time for a game, most of VB could only pay the first portion of the games, leaving the last portion for people to beat our scores, while we just watched from work, without a chance to play again.

-People may not have participated because someone else from their team already had first place, it's hard to judge paticipation from this contest because some people wouldnt submit unless they had the new high score, a couple of occassions I had played, but didnt get first so I didnt submit anything, giving the appearance that I didnt play.

-Real life was a huge factor for me this past round, I'm a very busy person and I always have something to do, when I played I was neglecting something else everytime.

-Maybe the amount you can play could be restricted in someway, these contest have a tendency to going to whoever has the most time.

---------- Post added at 07:57 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:54 PM ----------

Also some quality control for the games, I like the randomization thing, but when something like Home Improvement comes up, it should be skipped.

---------- Post added at 07:57 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:57 PM ----------

Also coin op only.
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Old 01-14-2011, 02:57 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kong View Post

Redistribution of the super star players.
Smaller teams/more teams.

I think these would be best in the long run but finding volunteers to break up their team might not be smooth.

Who is for or against smaller teams and/or redistribution of power?
I like the idea of breaking up all teams and rolling a die to make new teams of 6. That way everyone is on equal terms without having to make anyone feel bad for having to get booted out of their team.
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Old 01-14-2011, 03:02 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Quote:
I just sent an idea for the next contest to Tenser for review. It would require exactly 1 hour from each person on your team and then be over. The hour could be scheduled by each player any time over a 2 week period. I think that would solve lots of the problems - fatigue, team effort, shorter contests, even time.
an hour to play? Only problem I have with this is that it would be hard to learn a game in only an hour if you don't know it.

Quote:
Redistribution of the super star players.
Smaller teams/more teams.
I think these would be best in the long run but finding volunteers to break up their team might not be smooth.

Who is for or against smaller teams and/or redistribution of power?
I agree most teams probably don't want to split but I'm for it, things are a bit too one-sided at the moment. I'm also for dropping the teams numbers by 1 or 2 players to possibly remove some of the dead weight.

---------- Post added at 01:00 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:59 PM ----------

Quote:
Also some quality control for the games, I like the randomization thing, but when something like Home Improvement comes up, it should be skipped.
Care to elaborate? Home improvement wasn't so bad, it's games like speed coin that are.

---------- Post added at 01:02 PM ---------- Previous post was at 01:00 PM ----------

Quote:
I like the idea of breaking up all teams and rolling a die to make new teams of 6. That way everyone is on equal terms without having to make anyone feel bad for having to get booted out of their team.
Yeah, unfortunately I think the idea of making all new teams through a draft or an even mixed base would be for the best...
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Old 01-14-2011, 03:57 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

As for breaking up teams, I am not in favor of that. If the majority wants that then that might be the way to go, and I will be happy to withdraw from teams in general.

EC does have some great players without question, but more than that, I believe EC has always done as well as it has because everyone on the team genuinely likes working with each other and we help motivate each other to succeed.

There are great top tier players on each team . Just using the top 25 of the leaderboard as a semi-solid example to locate top tier leaderboard players we have this:

- Mega Men: Jozman, Jable, Kong, Fogelmir, Timh, and Crispy

- GOM: Seahawk, Sabby, and Tanc24

- VB: Dojah, Elrod, Stevencassidy

- EC: Josephjo, Gamenguru, Winnebagel

I would also argue that each team has other epic players not on the leaderboard (i.e. Cam3ron, Agnostic79, Enemy Ace,
Jim5cents, Thunderlips, etc.). In my opinion, much of the problem is not with players being distributed unfairly, it has to do with teams not being able to motivate players to play or players just not having time. If the teams are redistributed, you will probably see the same issue again, only with the players who used to be active becoming inactive because they are not with their team.

I for one am in the above boat. Many of you don't know, and some of you do, but I have as of late have been strongly considering leaving team contests for good, but the thing that has kept me around is the closeness of EC's members. I guess I can't speak for everyone, but I believe all the EC members just enjoy hanging out with each other. I think that is also one of the main reasons the team has done as well as it has. EC is sort of like a team/support group, and I think that has been a major factor.
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Old 01-14-2011, 03:59 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Bad games like Speed Coin have given us some great contest moments. Also "bad" is subjective. I enjoy tons of games most others would consider bad and dislike lots of games that most consider great.

Poll added.
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Old 01-14-2011, 04:18 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tenser View Post
Bad games like Speed Coin have given us some great contest moments. Also "bad" is subjective. I enjoy tons of games most others would consider bad and dislike lots of games that most consider great.

Poll added.
I agree with that. I love a lot of games that people deem bad. True, the Speed Coin round was not only one of Seahawk's finest moments, but in my mind one of RU's greatest moments of competition.
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Old 01-14-2011, 04:24 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

That, and when would anyone have played that game if it weren't for the contest?

---------- Post added at 03:24 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:20 PM ----------

Quote:
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There are great top tier players on each team . Just using the top 25 of the leaderboard as a semi-solid example to locate top tier leaderboard players we have this:

.
I really don't believe that I am the second best player here in RU. I'm only up there because of the sheer number of games I've played and have posted scores for. So that leader board is a bit misleading.
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Old 01-14-2011, 04:28 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

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Originally Posted by jozman3000 View Post
That, and when would anyone have played that game if it weren't for the contest?

---------- Post added at 03:24 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:20 PM ----------



I really don't believe that I am the second best player here in RU. I'm only up there because of the sheer number of games I've played and have posted scores for. So that leader board is a bit misleading.
I don't think you give yourself enough credit especially considering that you play 90% of the games you play on the keyboard.
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Old 01-14-2011, 04:34 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

With WB, I'm against team restructuring, particularly in an automated fashion. The reason for this is because people take pride in their teams. The GOM like being grumpy. VB likes being "vicious" and so on.

If we ever did go to smaller team size, which I am in favor of, then the teams should be allowed to align themselves. Yes, I recognize what would happen is a 6 man super group was formed, but I don't see it happening. The rivalvries already in place would probably prevent that.
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Old 01-14-2011, 04:57 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Quote:
Originally Posted by Winnebagel View Post
I don't think you give yourself enough credit especially considering that you play 90% 100% of the games you play on the keyboard.
As always, your words are too kind. But I know my skills are not that finely honed.

---------- Post added at 03:57 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:49 PM ----------

Sabby has a point...I sort of like your idea.
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Old 01-14-2011, 05:22 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

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Sabby has a point...I sort of like your idea.
I do?!?! I don't remember making one.
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Old 01-14-2011, 05:23 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

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I do?!?! I don't remember making one.
I hate the week before school starts.
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Old 01-14-2011, 05:36 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Quite alright joz.

I guess I could say something about the topic:

My problem with the contests was the constant drama. Kong and Tenser spend countless hours creating what they believe to be fun and creative contests. These guys are smart and I commend them for all their hard work. Even with that, they are not going to have a written answer to every situation that may/may not happen during a contest. If they did, no one would participate because the rules would be pages upon pages long, lawyers would get involved, sucking any remaining fun out of what may be a great contest.
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Old 01-14-2011, 05:40 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

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Quite alright joz.

I guess I could say something about the topic:

My problem with the contests was the constant drama. Kong and Tenser spend countless hours creating what they believe to be fun and creative contests. These guys are smart and I commend them for all their hard work. Even with that, they are not going to have a written answer to every situation that may/may not happen during a contest. If they did, no one would participate because the rules would be pages upon pages long, lawyers would get involved, sucking any remaining fun out of what may be a great contest.
Sabby has a great point. I sort of like your idea.
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Old 01-14-2011, 06:10 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

  1. Fatigue. Too many contests. Or too intense of contests.

    I have no problem with 'intense' contests, but I am having an extremely difficult time keeping up with four team contests a year. I have been getting pretty close to the point of burn out myself. My preference would be two contests per year.


  2. Repetition. Just bored with the whole concept because it is no longer "new".

    Not really an issue for me.


  3. Intimidation. Competing directly against the 5 or 10 top tier players that we have (many of whom have multiple world records) seems futile and not worth even trying.

    I'm not sure if I agree with the player intimidation thing, but what can be intimidating (or frustrating) to me is going up against players who have virtually unlimited time to play, and always feeling like you are trying to accomplish within a couple of hours what someone else took 12 hours to accomplish.


  4. Bad contest ideas.

    WB brought up a good example with the Clash of the Titans contest. That was one of the best team competition ideas I've seen so far, because combining multiple player scores really encouraged whole team participation.

    I would also like to reitterate what was previously stated about 'hiding scores' during team competitions. The issue that was mentioned about players setting scores early on, only to have others come behind and beat them would be a non-issue if all scores were hidden during contests. I think 'hidden scores' would help to even out the playing field in general. It would force players to play solely based on their overall skill from the beginning, instead of just waiting around until someone else posts a score and logs off.


  5. Bad timing - holidays.

    Definitely. I don't think that people should ever have to choose between time with their families during the holidays and duty (for lack of a better word) to their RU team.


  6. Lack of prizes and plunder. We need real cash and loot to give away.

    Tangible awards/prizes sounds like it could be an interesting idea. However, the hope of winning prizes has never been the motivating reason that I compete on RU.

Quote:
So what are your thoughts. What do you want to see in future contests - both team and individual. Why do you think fewer people are participating?
If players are feeling anything like I have been, then they are getting a little burned out from too many competitions. I have been pretty close to stepping back from team play myself recently, but have stayed around so far because I like hanging out with the people on EC. For this reason I am against splitting up the teams.

Do we have some good players on EC, sure, and so do all of the other teams. However, gaming skills have always been a secondary requirement to joining EC. The first requirement (and you can ask anyone on the team) is that you be a cool person to hang with. We've never been interested in just getting players because they are good players. Splitting up the team (in my opinion) is not an option.

Last edited by Gamenguru; 01-14-2011 at 06:13 PM..
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Old 01-14-2011, 06:13 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Re: Rethinking Team Contests

Personally i think 3 contests would be enough for a year. This past contest seemed to come right after the last.
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