@FtXCommando said in Why would you have left FAF?:
Karma system hardly impacts new player experience. For one, new players are hardly going to be doing anything with it unless you obnoxiously put it in their face at the end of a game. Then, most aren't going to know how to check for it in the first place since the way you're describing it sounds like I need to go through every dude's user info tab in order to get any information about it. Then, it's going to take several shit games in order for the system to have any impact at which point the low karma is only really going to influence experienced players that already know what it means.
Well, if you are talking about the possibility to have no "real" rewards/punishments and just a score in the users profile, then yes, the karma score itself wouldn't effect the new player experience all that much directly, but the behavior that it influences might.
We don't want to just ban people after all. Preferably, we can nudge people into behaving better and the "numbers going up" incentive a karma score provides might do that.
Of course, this behavior change could only start to work after getting rated yourself enough, which means after at least a couple dozen games. That too is not a problem though as we don't need to adjust the behavior of new players directly.
Due to the FAF community being relatively small, new players come into contact with experienced players very quickly, and it's their behavior we want to change first and foremost.
I personally could name a couple of <600 ranked players with hundreds or thousands of games that regularly exhibit unwelcoming/bad behavior. It's these people that new players meet first and therefore these people's behavior we want to change.
New players don't even need to be the ones rating them, other experienced players can do that too.
This is besides the point that such systems are going to be easily exploitable by dudes marking people just because of their nationality, inability to speak English, inability to speak Russian, "host stacked game", and any other bogus reason. All the garbage reports the mod team used to get when reporting was more automated would now just be translated into karma downgrades by people that don't understand how the game works ie cloak Cybran laser ACU is an exploit to make an ML invisible.
It is true that most (all?) automated systems are exploitable to some degree, so a karma system would be no exception. A full discussion of countermeasures is outside of the scope of this thread, but here are some quick ideas:
Scale the karma rating given by how much a player uses the system. Somebody that downvotes everyone he sees, should have a much less of impact on the karma of others, than someone that only votes once every dozen games.
Include only automated rewards for good karma (like an emoji or some other swag) and no punishments for a bad score. Then it doesn't negatively impact anyone if the system gets abused.
Maybe even make the karma score positive only, like the upvotes in this forum, so that you can still reward good behavior, without many of the pitfalls of a full karma system.
There are many ways to implement such a system, I'm just spitballing here, but I'm not the first one with the idea for a karma system. Solutions, or at least workarounds, for exploitability do exist out there.
Not to mention this system is going to create absurd alienation in a community with already far too much alienation within its various subcommunities. Why would I as a dual gap player ever want to go into some wonder game? When I go, I will play terribly and likely lose the game. Now my allies are going to take it out on me by lowering my karma rating to turn me into a black sheep and potentially ruin my chance of playing other games. So instead, I will stay in the area of FAF I know well.
This scenario is exactly the type of toxicity players experience regularly, the only thing different is your fear that a karma system would be yet another way such bad behavior could manifest, maybe even be legitimized due to its officiality.
Besides some of the ideas I gave above to counter abuse of the karma system, my hope would be that the opposite happens:
Lets say you move from gaps to setons and immediately get flamed by three guys for "playing like shit". There is also one guy that defends you and tries to give you constructive feedback, but three to one is not a good ratio, so you go back to gaps and never try anything new ever again.
Now with the karma system, instead of just getting flamed by three guys for stepping outside your comfort zone, the one guy that defends you, now has a "trusted community member" (or something) symbol next to his name. So now you know that you should take his opinion more seriously than the opinion of the guys flaming you and wont get as discouraged as you otherwise would, hopefully resulting in you leaving your comfort zone again.