FAF League Invitational Series

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This is evidently false just by the example of ThomasHiatt who has won a huge portion of league months (and you only need to get into the top 8 in the first place) while being 2100-2300 at nearly all times.

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Well, Thomas is the exception that proves the rule. Idk how, but the man must have hardcoded his search button to always being on.

And while I agree with FTX that it is for sure possible to get enough games for top 8 at 2k+, the fact remains that when you only have 3-5 people in your skill range to play with you are entirely dependent on them for matches. I have, conservatively, 85% of my 40 matches or so are against the same 4 people. Last month it was 85% with the same 3 people. If in one month 2 of the three people I play a majority of my games with (swkoll, Thomas, or Espi) were to take a break, it would completely destroy ladder at 2k+.

Again, I don’t think this will be too much of an issue for a 2k+ player to make top 8, but it is worth keeping in mind in case ladder does die for a few weeks. Burgerzone can have a real problem with getting matches sometimes.

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Just imagine not being a burger and not having swkoll thomas raider and you in your timezone ... Imagine being arch 😄

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Yeah lol, most ladder matches happen starting 2am my time and ladder basically stops 11am. This is an issue when I must work starting 8am on weekdays...

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Perhaps you could include top 5 during ladder league + 3 active highest rated guys in the 1800+? as a 2.3k it's kind of hard to get games cause I can get matched with legit 3 people and I don't have time to spend so much time queueing and playing ladder., while having to prepare and participate in big tourneys like spring Inv. There is right now no incentive to having "high" ladder rating, it only matters in some qualification tourneys in which the highest rated players don't participate anyways most of the time. So right now or rather during next ladder league it would make the most sense for me to drop to 2.1k rating before the league starts and then farm 2k rated players to get enough league points.
I understand that the league is supposed to promote activity and I agree with that, but I think there is a balance between rewarding activity and achievements eg. highest ladder rating. The current system is heavily stacked against me and unless I am prepared to invest 15-20 + hours into ladder I won't be able to get top 8 in the league despite being currently #1 on ladder which is pretty absurd.

On another note while there is some improvement to the system with the number of LoTS spots granted by the league reduced to 8 from 10 I think it's still too high. Considering the top 16 1vs1 players only 5 of them plays ladder consistently, subtract two invites going to Nexus and BH and we have 9 players remaining that need to qualify within 2 qualifiers granting 6 slots total, so yeah, something is quite wrong here. I understand that you want to promote activity but then you either need to make the Ladder league events more about skill and less about spamming games or grant fewer spots based on league performance.
LoTS is supposed to feature the best players, not some of the best + the ones that had the most time to spam games.

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From reading this post and the big discussion on the FAF discord you seem to think getting experience versus the top players to improve is something people want. Not everyone plays the game only to improve and tryhard to be the absolute best. I had plenty of experience playing versus the top players and it just led me to stop playing in tournaments because it is not fun. They are just better than everyone and spend weeks prepping build orders on top of that. If you or Nexus were invited to this league tourney I would just drop out. I only choose to participate in it because I get to play against normal opponents who play the game for enjoyment and not money (maybe Esperanto is the exception but that's 1/8). The system is good precisely because it is stacked against you.

That being said I don't see why the league tourneys need to be tied to world championship invites. Even if I play in all the league tourneys and win it is very unlikely I would choose to participate in LotS unless I accidentally improve to the level of a pro player.

I think the balance between awarding achievement and activity is fine because there are Swkoll's invitational tourneys and still LotS invites for top players and other random tourneys which crop up occasionally to reward the best, most tryhard players with money. The ladder league tourneys exist to reward the other people who aren't sickened by the idea of "having to play" 10 hours of ladder a month for only $100. It is good to divide the prize money up between different players and type of players instead of giving it all to the very best. I probably have more of my games casted per year than some of the top players even play in a year, giving me the opportunity to win a small prize now and then encourages things like that to happen.

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It’s tied to LotS because points for a major tournament is about the only way you can incentivize a round-robin format to actually be played out. LotS and the seasonal invitationals are the only tournaments that could be considered major for FAF.

There is the option to create a 2nd tournament for ladder invitationals that functions as their version of LotS, however, I do not have the funds to support two different large tournaments. This is going to come down to two relatively minor prizepools or me favoring one over the other. And if it comes down to it, I would favor the one focused on player activity because I see it as more important for the long term health of high level FAF. And then when new LotS has a prize of $500 or $600 total, suddenly the “old inactive pro side” of FAF won’t really bother playing it because of the low prize and now it’s back to basically having an activity based version of LotS. So, the two isolated tournaments idea had to be thrown out unless I get more funds.

Maybe the solution is doing a point system based on both activity and tournament performance, maybe I need to remove qualifiers entirely if I do it that way. I’ll look into it.

Also about the "only 5 high level dudes play ladder" stuff. Yeah, I know? That's literally what I want to move away from? Some high level dudes say ladder is pointless because no one plays as there is no point to play. Some say ladder is cringe and not fun. Some just don't want to play FAF unless they're paid.

The first is what I want to solve here, the second I investigate to improve ladder, and the third I don't really have any sympathy or care for.

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I have no problem with rewarding activity and making tourneys with money that target that player base. However if you make one that favours that group over the other while at the same tying it to LoTS which is the exact opposite of the idea of playing just for fun and not try harding.
In my opinion LoTS should consist of 8 people that get invited based on tourney performance (previous LoTS and major tourney performance (Swkoll's Invitationals), badically just inviting the best players) 2-4 based on the results of ladder league tourneys, 4-6 based on qualifiers. This way you avoid people like Petric, Nexus, BH not caring about Qual. Tourneys and throwing games, forfeiting etc., you reward activity of ladder players who get 5 tourneys with money in a year and a spot in LoTS if they wish to participate. And you also get a Qualifier tourney/s that are more close and competitive cause people actually try to get in instead of just playing w/e to get the 4th spot.

On another note I am really amazed at this stance where people talk about eg. Me or Nexus as we would only win because of our BO's and spend insane amounts of time on them while that's absolute bullshit. Most of my BO's are generic ones where i optimize a bit the amount pegens so I don't stall or overflow. If I would have played 30+ hours of 1vs1 during the month I wouldn't need to spend more then few minutes or any at all on a BO for a map. In contrast when I come back after a 2 month break and I have only played around 10 games before the tourney ofc I will need to sandbox on maps like Ditch to get back the feel for macro and eco control.

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Idk what nexus is doing lumped in with Petric and BH there. Afaik, the dude hasn't dropped a series since he first learned to hold a mouse.

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Nexus during the last couple of years got to the level of Petric and BH (that right now are just not active anymore).

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Ahhh, I thought you meant that nexus was throwing games and bullshitting on tournament games like Petric does.

Also, you and nexus are too good, we need to say you win by build order whoring to save face otherwise it makes us feel bad 😞

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As said earlier, if I wanted to “invite the best players” I’d be inviting 14 of the 16 slots. Then if I wanted a competitive tournament between these “best players” I wouldn’t even be doing a 16 player tournament but more like a 5 or 6 player tournament at max, some would say I should lower it even further. If you want this pure, brutal concentration focused entirely on the top tier of FAF that could win 1st, at least argue for the proper tournament for it. The fact you aren’t already shows this isn’t some pure skill based shit but that there are other elements to major events like LotS BEYOND this skill calculus.

I’ve no interest in inviting just 2 or 4 people from the league tournaments.

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@Sinforosa said in FAF League Invitational Series:

From reading this post and the big discussion on the FAF discord you seem to think getting experience versus the top players to improve is something people want. Not everyone plays the game only to improve and tryhard to be the absolute best. (...)

I have nothing against such people and I think there should be some sort of tourneys for them eg. The League Invitational Series.

That being said I don't see why the league tourneys need to be tied to world championship invites. Even if I play in all the league tourneys and win it is very unlikely I would choose to participate in LotS unless I accidentally improve to the level of a pro player.

Exactly this, if those players don't want to tryhard, improve and try to be the best then there is 0 zero reason to tie this League Series to LoTS

I think the balance between awarding achievement and activity is fine because there are Swkoll's invitational tourneys and still LotS invites for top players and other random tourneys which crop up occasionally to reward the best, most tryhard players with money. The ladder league tourneys exist to reward the other people who aren't sickened by the idea of "having to play" 10 hours of ladder a month for only $100. It is good to divide the prize money up between different players and type of players instead of giving it all to the very best. (...)

I agree.

@FtXCommando said in FAF League Invitational Series:

It’s tied to LotS because points for a major tournament is about the only way you can incentivize a round-robin format to actually be played out. LotS and the seasonal invitationals are the only tournaments that could be considered major for FAF.

This is a bad solution to an unnecessary problem. Ask players that actually participate in the league series what kind of format they think would best suit such a tourney, eg. for many I would imagine 7 BO3 over 2 days that kill the whole weekend might be a bit much (eg. for Tex). Maybe it would be better to use a different format that results in less series over all.

There is the option to create a 2nd tournament for ladder invitationals that functions as their version of LotS, however, I do not have the funds to support two different large tournaments. This is going to come down to two relatively minor prizepools or me favoring one over the other. And if it comes down to it, I would favor the one focused on player activity because I see it as more important for the long term health of high level FAF. And then when new LotS has a prize of $500 or $600 total, suddenly the “old inactive pro side” of FAF won’t really bother playing it because of the low prize and now it’s back to basically having an activity based version of LotS. So, the two isolated tournaments idea had to be thrown out unless I get more funds.

I think that you should just leave the League Invitational series as it is more or less and have it be it's own thing about Ladder.

Maybe the solution is doing a point system based on both activity and tournament performance, maybe I need to remove qualifiers entirely if I do it that way. I’ll look into it.

If you look back on previous LoTS and major 1vs1 tournies it's mostly the same 10-12 or so people playing over and over with 4-6 different ones rotating between tourney so why not just give out invites based on tourney performance for 8-10 slots and divide the rest between qualifiers 4 - 6 spots and things based on activity eg. 2 - 4 spots for ladder league.

Also about the "only 5 high level dudes play ladder" stuff. Yeah, I know? That's literally what I want to move away from? Some high level dudes say ladder is pointless because no one plays as there is no point to play. Some say ladder is cringe and not fun. Some just don't want to play FAF unless they're paid.

You don't incentivize the best people to play ladder by forcing it down their throats with a system that's biassed against them where instead of playing a few games they need to spam them.

The first is what I want to solve here, the second I investigate to improve ladder, and the third I don't really have any sympathy or care for.

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@FtXCommando said in FAF League Invitational Series:

As said earlier, if I wanted to “invite the best players” I’d be inviting 14 of the 16 slots. Then if I wanted a competitive tournament between these “best players” I wouldn’t even be doing a 16 player tournament but more like a 5 or 6 player tournament at max, some would say I should lower it even further. If you want this pure, brutal concentration focused entirely on the top tier of FAF that could win 1st, at least argue for the proper tournament for it. The fact you aren’t already shows this isn’t some pure skill based shit but that there are other elements to major events like LotS BEYOND this skill calculus.

I don't understand why do you need this to be so black and white. LoTS is primarily about best players competing between each other but it also allows others a bit lower to compete as well, they don't have a realistic chance to get top 4 but just getting out of group stage is an achievement. It also creates a lot more games for streams and casts to cover as well as reaching out to a bigger part of a community.

I’ve no interest in inviting just 2 or 4 people from the league tournaments.

I think there should be a balance between the Invites and other types of qualification and for a tournament as LoTS I don't think you should be required to play ladder or be the absolute best and get invited. In my opinion splitting the remaining spots between ladder league and a qualifier is the friendliest solution to players. What if you are a good player eg. Blodir or Turin so in top 16 but you haven't been as active in the past year nor are you in the very top to get invited straight away, if you don't host a qualifier how are they supposed to get into LoTS? How are players that play seasonally and mostly custom 1vs1 a lesser asset to the community or create worse matches for the viewers then people that spam ladder and thus should not be able to participate at all or have a smaller chance at doing so even if they are arguably better players?

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I like the idea that FTX has, with trying to bring focus to ladder as well as rewarding ladder players a little bit. I also like incorporating it into the LOTS system. I just think there is some polish that needs to be applied to the idea to make it really work well. The problem is, as always, we are talking about a system for only 10-20 people worldwide, its bound to have a lot of conflicting ideas on what's right. I would post a suggestion, but at the moment I can't think of anything that seems fair for everyone. I just wanted to voice support for the concept, and say it might benefit from some small adjustments.

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I likely plan on including a point system for tournament placement alongside the system for ladder activity, meaning that both award players invites for LotS assuming they score higher than others. Definitely don’t plan on removing ladder activity as consideration in LotS.

I also don’t understand your position, Tagada. You constantly state that the point of including people that have no chance of winning is to get them to improve to the top level by having them play the top. Now who is more likely to improve, the 2k with the time to invest into actively playing/analyzing everyday or the 2.1k that plays about 2 times a month? If you want to optimize improvement, you should be all for accounting for activity or maybe some system where individuals with the largest difference in rating over the year in 1800+ get rewarded. Definitely not what we have now.

If someone is so inactive they neither play tournaments nor ladder that year to qualify, I see no reason whatsoever to invite them for that year’s championship. Their resume speaks for past years not this one. I don’t really mind hosting a few qualifiers either, but it’s also possible to just get rid of qualifiers and instead host micro-tournaments during the last few months of the year that count for LotS points. That would functionally be fairly equivalent to qualifiers.

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A compromise might be to seed in the top 4 players from my Invitational Points system after the Fall Invitational (currently, nexus, petric, tagada, blackheart) as top seed in each group. Then fill the next 8 slots with ladder invitational slots and hold one qualifier to fill the last 4 + subs.

This allows the very top players to be invited based on high level tournament performance, and playing the ladder invitationals is heavily incentivized and there are still some open slots for random people to join in.

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@FtXCommando said in FAF League Invitational Series:

I likely plan on including a point system for tournament placement alongside the system for ladder activity, meaning that both award players invites for LotS assuming they score higher than others. Definitely don’t plan on removing ladder activity as consideration in LotS.

Good to hear.

I also don’t understand your position, Tagada. You constantly state that the point of including people that have no chance of winning is to get them to improve to the top level by having them play the top. Now who is more likely to improve, the 2k with the time to invest into actively playing/analyzing everyday or the 2.1k that plays about 2 times a month? If you want to optimize improvement, you should be all for accounting for activity or maybe some system where individuals with the largest difference in rating over the year in 1800+ get rewarded. Definitely not what we have now.

True, I think I overreacted to Thomas's post and he is possibly the only one in the ladder league that doesn't care much and doesn't want to improve while the rest see the Ladder league and LoTS invites as a way to challenge the best and improve.

If someone is so inactive they neither play tournaments nor ladder that year to qualify, I see no reason whatsoever to invite them for that year’s championship. Their resume speaks for past years not this one. I don’t really mind hosting a few qualifiers either, but it’s also possible to just get rid of qualifiers and instead host micro-tournaments during the last few months of the year that count for LotS points. That would functionally be fairly equivalent to qualifiers.

After consideration I must agree and I like the micro-tournaments idea serving as qualifiers allowing very good players that haven't been invited nor played ladder to secure a spot.

Again I would like to state that I have nothing against Ladder League series as an idea nor as a tournament catering to ladder players, I just want to make sure that the biggest event - LoTS won't be harmed because of it. And as was the first and second draft for it (first 10, then 8 slots reserverd for Ladder League) it didn't really feel right nor fair for some of the players. After all while ladder is competitive 1vs1 the level sharply ends at around 2.2k - 2.3k. It's sad and unfortunate that this is the case but I don't think that such drastic measures as forcing best players to either spam ladder games for league tourneys they don't want to participate in or gamble a bit in a qualifier with few slots just to get into LoTS.
After all I think we all want the same thing which is a competitive LoTS that also allow some newer active players in while not forcing veterans out or making it hard for them just to qualify.

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@Tagada said in FAF League Invitational Series:

On another note I am really amazed at this stance where people talk about eg. Me or Nexus as we would only win because of our BO's and spend insane amounts of time on them while that's absolute bullshit.

I did say that the pro players are way better than everyone at the game. I just said that on top of that they also prepare build orders, have 20 UI mods, and bind every hotkey in the game. You can undoubtedly beat me without those things. Since you also have all those things and can perform every action quicker and more efficiently than me it just does not sound fun or interesting to play against you.

@Tagada said in FAF League Invitational Series:

True, I think I overreacted to Thomas's post and he is possibly the only one in the ladder league that doesn't care much and doesn't want to improve while the rest see the Ladder league and LoTS invites as a way to challenge the best and improve.

Unless I have seriously misjudged the players in the ladder league I do not think any of us are looking to launch our professional FAF careers anytime soon. Esperanto is playing for the money and Aurico is an upcoming player, but the rest are all very old players that had plenty of time to improve and play the top players. We aren't going to suddenly improve and become competitive if we get thrown into the ring with you and nexus. I estimate that 50% of people in the league probably will not participate in the round-robin tourney each month because they don't care and just like playing ladder.

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Completely hypothetical scenario: old pro refinds motivation for faf 2 months before lots. He starts practicing and week 1 he gets mediocre result in tourny. End of month 1 hits #1 in ladder. End of month #2 hits 2500 ladder. Tough luck bud not enough league points, some 1900 ladder guy with less than 1% win probability vs 2500 gets in instead.

Like I get it, this long term points stuff works pretty well in sc2 since the top players play it professionally. But we ain't professional here. God forbid we want to play some other games every now and then after 8 years of faf.