These are 80x40 as 400x200 doesn't translate too well downscaled to 40x20, I asked ftx to use 80x40 instead who asked blackyps/biass who said ok. 400x200 and 40x20 versions are present too.
Sizes comparison (Diamond-1)
40x20 (hopefully obsolete in favor of 80x40 but mb useful to have near ava in chat)
All icons in 80x40
Grandmaster (supreme commander is a yikes name)
And the "acu mask" version that kind of turns the icon into an acu face if you have imagination, or you could say its not a face and just a ladder symbol in the middle as well
My personal icon (non-negotiable)
It's been a bit over half a year since me and ftx created https://www.twitch.tv/faflive, an official FAF streaming hub focused on covering tournaments and running various events. I've had the idea for it for a while from the old official faf twitch run by Zep which had been greatly successful but was lost with Zep's departure from FAF.
I thought now would be a good time to review the progress and state my mind on the plans and goals of the channel.
The channel currently sits at 843 followers and with Spring Invitational coverage bringing in almost as many followers as LoTS on top of what we already had there is a trend of healthy rapid growth which I expect to continue until the active FAF userbase depletes itself after which there could be different options to try and expand the channel further.
The accumulated stream revenue is closing in on 200$ which I suggested is used on showmatches as it is a fun format and provides longer viewing experience for the funds available, it's also just a format strangely underused on FAF. The participants to be voted in by viewers or/and done via some sort of wheel of fortune or a hybrid system aimed at fairness.
Currently channel is Twitch Affiliate and I'd like to have it promoted to Partner as that will reduce the Twitch money cut and give additional cool extra features, the only requirement missing is amount of days streamed. I don't want to clutter the channel with things like random ladder streams to not bring the engagement down, and right now we have an off-season for tourneys so we need to create some content to stream.
These are the requirements for Partnership
With this in mind if you are a top player interested in playing something that will be casted to fill the stream time please post below, if there is any interest I'd like to use the momentum we got from streaming Spring Invitational and complete the quota. The format I'm not sure about yet, but could be anything. Currently we don't yet have the payout set up yet while we are figuring out the best person to manage the funds based on country, taxes, free time and trust but for now can make some unique avatar prize. It won't be a conventional showmatch anyway as we need to fill 8 days of streams, unless we have at least 3-4 players willing to help which would be enough.
We currently have 2 emote slots which I plan to fill with some fantastic creations of mine once the motivation to forge them comes. The overlay can also be reworked, the current one I made as practice and while it serves the purpose it could definitely be improved.
Last LoTS peaked at 276 viewers, would be nice if we can reach 350 for next one, 400 would be a huge success in my mind.
Also to increase the overall stream production and casting quality to generate more revenue and use that to host more events and potentially kickstart a self-sufficient ecosystem of competitive scene growth. This is probably the entire idea of the channel, as FAF has been growing for a long time and recently more than ever but the proportion of good players compared to casuals has not been impressive what so ever and while certainly in part it's due to the age of the game I attribute a large part of it to lack of care from the big casting figures.
Thinking back on how I became a top player, it was largely because I discovered FAF through TA4Life's youtube channel on which he was casting competitive 1v1 almost exclusively, and watching some of those plays is what fueled my entire motivation to play and try to get casted with some of my own cool plays. With TA's departure there was a long time period where there was absolutely no coverage of anything competitive scene related except for players streaming their POV until JaggedAppliance took up the torch. That is to say in my opinion discrepancy between FAF's growth and its lack of promising new talent is due to lack of public outreach. Newshub is only read by the active community and even that only in part, if you are just a casual searching FA on Youtube or Twitch and click on the first/biggest thing that pops up you will likely be met with some kind of Dual Gap or, if lucky, blessed by a teamgame or senton neither of which really gives any indication that the community doesn't just consist entirely of nostalgia driven dudes hopping in for a round of big robot shoot big robot twice a year but actually has matchmaking, tournaments and all the cool active community stuff.
We definitely owe people like LegendOfTheStars, Swkoll, Morax, Stups and other major donators for keeping a lot of the interest alive but I don't want FAF to just keep relying on luck with generous patrons. I hope to one day reach the point where the viewership generates enough motivation for the players and in turn players and casters generate motivation for the viewers to become the players, to the point that we don't have tournament off-seasons in FAF. Probably too ambitious but going well so far.
Another point is about FA viewability improvements, namely it looks "slow" from viewers perspective and 1v1 looks too "spammy". I think both can be vastly improved.
For the first one I think the way people cast FA is fundamentally wrong, I already voiced my opinion on this to ftx and Swkoll, not to go into detail but in short I think casting primarily zoomed in is the right way, it however has some technical limitations that need to be solved for it to be properly tried out. It also needs a lot more effort and skill on caster's part to properly capture everything but the end result is worth it in my opinion.
As for the second point, that is not a problem of 1v1 but a problem of maps and game design both of which can be adjusted. Mappers and mapgen can definitely be guided towards less snowbally maps and as far as game design I have long-term plans to make a unit interaction redesign mod after some of the balance stuff is out of the way.
That's it, again if you are interested in helping with fulfilling the quota post below.
This post is a summary of the current status of FAF Beta. It maybe will be updated at key turning points with new PRs being merged to reflect the state of beta at any point in time.
The purpose is to have a more easily accessible information channel on changes in progress than Github's atrocious interface. Later hopefully there will be some permanent link to the thread from a certain hub or a certain chat topic.
Changes that will make it into the next patch unless any faults are found during beta:
Aeon T2 arty
Cybran T1 Maa
Unit target priorities
Changes that will not make it into the next patch but are there for general testing:
Here's badlands, in general a map where a lot of approaches are viable from hardcore t1 all in to eco turtle and t3 rush, a lot of people like the map because it allows for big variety of play and doesn't punish early game mistakes as much, be it bo related or not.
From a quick count I see it has 28 safe mexes, 4 greyzone mexes and 4 highly contested mexes per player. It's a very heavy tip in favor of safe expansions. Now it doesn't mean they are always easy to get and will never be raided but you generally won't ever lose them outright but will only get delayed. This plus a moderate reclaim amount and the majority of games on badlands reach t2 and t3 stage which is more than a lot of 10x10 maps can offer, and it's by no means a turtle tech map.
Here's palms, another classic loved by most people
As you can see again overwhelming majority of mexes are clearly defined expansions that are closer to one of the players by a good margin. However due to how open the map is it is very easy to sneak units by and raid so none of the safe expansions are truly safe, this just generally leads to more aggression compared to badlands but overall I'd say the style of the game is shaped by how hectic the early game is and again it could become anything from t1 spamfest to an ecowar into t4.
Here's hollow, an extreme example of the opposite style.
I see 7 safe mexes, 4 greyzone mexes and 5.5 contested mexes per player. A staggering difference from the previous maps. Majority of games on hollow are hardcore t1 spam where a small BO whored efficiency advantage or a small mistake in raid defense are what often decides the game and the snowball is usually very hard to stop. This is just due to map control being absolutely crucial as a huge portion of map's eco is highly contested. From what I've seen from the games I played in the tourney maps generally lean towards this style. Personally I hate these kinds of maps but it definitely should not be abolished either, I'd rather see both styles and anything in between and further on the extremes, ideally weighted towards more tame solutions in general.
Some impressions of the mapgen after playing the tourney:
First of all, a huge improvement over the last iteration I played in a tourney like half a year ago where the maps were far from being a consideration for competitive setting. While it will never reach the quality of handcrafted maps I would love to see it being used more and get continuous improvements. I hate playing the same map in 1v1 even twice a day so this immediately brings down any pain levels from playing significantly. It also removes any BO whoring aspect from the game which is the absolute worst part of FA in general in my opinion and probably a big reason I don't play the game apart from tourneys anymore. Would be nice to see it used as a standard form of competitive play in tournaments in the future (next lots?), some things to improve on for now thought:
And ofc would be cool to have the "undiscovered" mode at some point for that authentic AoE feel and to complete the picture.
I double the moderation request, and not just for moses or the balance discussions, but some other you know who individuals too, this shitposting is the reason noone on the balance team takes any forum talk seriously and barely anyone even reads it. Quite mindboggling how this forum managed to top the old one in the sheer idiocy just after being released.
Give players a prompt to pay a "small" mass fee equal to 20% of the mass worth of the remaining units and buildings of the deceased to receive their remaining assets. Prompt stays up for half a minute during which the units and buildings in question are transferred to a neutral civilian faction and receive diplomatic immunity and are protected by the Geneva Convention. Reclaim and capture attempts result in immediate termination of the Commander rank and excommunication from the game. Upon accepting the fee you start paying out the mass at a consistent rate reaching the finish after 2 minutes. Excessive money will accelerate the process but failure to collect the funds by 2 minutes time will start piling up the extra % on the fee to pay exponentially. Failure to end the payment after 10 minutes results in declaration of bankruptcy and immediate confiscation of the Commander unit. The first on the team to claim the base will be responsible for the payment but naturally they can seek assistance via various non-destructive means such as "Farmsletje, I need mass." and "This 1300 doesn't need his t1 pgens anymore anyway".
After some talk with BH we came up with some more ideas for events to fulfill the quota some of which include intermediate-upcomer player showmatches, 2v2s and various FFA stuff so if you are ~1700+ on ladder or a strong teamgame player (no astrogap only pls) and are interested post below, only thing required is being responsible enough to actually show up. As for what kind of events to hold me or ftx will talk to the players and decide once we have a scope of what we are working with.
If anything Swkoll's system is the closest thing we have to ESL system. Firstly they have 200$-100$-50$ spread for 1st through 4th places which is a decent enough motivation for most people but just isn't anything FAF can provide on a weekly basis. That gives enough incentive to play them regularly and not feel like it's a brutal grind. They also only give only 10 pts for 1st and 5 pts for placing 2nd.
And here's the prize pool for seasonal (winter-spring-summer-fall) ESL tourneys which they have one per region + a global one with the finalists of the regionals for about half as many ESL points. This one is for the European region.
This goes on until 37-44th place which give 3 points.
Heromarine is the most successful ESL Open Cup "farmer" ahead of anyone from any server by a landslide with 26 1st places and 9 2nd places and summed up they only give him 305 points which is about as much as you get for placing 3rd in a single seasonal regional ESL tourney. Heromarine himself has been placing ~4th in all of them. And this is just ESL seasonals which basically are the equivalent of what Swkoll has been hosting for faf since last year. Every other tournament also gives EPT points relative to its size and prestige, just like Swkoll is giving points for winning tournaments hosted by anyone that isn't him.
Now I love watching ESL open cups but I wouldn't ever want sc2 players to be forced to grind every week to gain acknowledgement they already have and ESL does a great job at it by giving only a small portion of EPT points to these tournaments but still enough for the 2nd-3rd rate pros to compete for.
All this is to say that I think Swkoll already has a good system and I don't see why you should reinvent the wheel, ladder league could and should be made relevant but not the the extent where you are placing arbitrary grind requirements on players who really don't need to prove their skill. The only question is how many invites to give vs how many qualifier places but even that can be adjusted by changing the tournament size overall.
I'll start doing revisions today/tomorrow if noone will show up.
Meanwhile my questions are:
Is the in-division rank going to be displayed over/near the icon? Here is how SC2 does it
This would be a good incentive to keep climbing even if you aren't yet close to breaching into the next division, it's also quite necessary for the grandmaster rank as the amount of people there is small. I assume it will be 1800+ which makes sense, but just like in SC2 the difference between low GM and top GM is absolutely massive and that should be displayed using the rank number. I also heard some suggestions from nexus/tagada that there could be separate icons altogether for very top ranks, this could potentially be extended to leagues other than gm but that runs into a problem of people wanting to keep a high place in their league without advancing, hence just reserved for gm. The numbers representing rank within league should still be available for all leagues. I'm willing to make some extra highest rank GM icons if the code support for it will be there.
Having support for separate icons within the same league also would allow unique, possibly personal icons, very much like avatars. It's a tricky implementation but here's my idea:
The benefit of this over the avatars is that unlike avatars it actually would require you to be active to have your icon displayed. Also it will be high res instead of a tiny abomination. If it's GM only we could have big tournaments' prizes have unique division icons, if it's the "trueskill expectation" system then on top of that we can also do stuff similar to current ladder month and give out unique division icons based on whatever performance metrics, especially because ladder month will be obsoleted and the avatar/monetary rewards will be gone. Also makes a lot more sense to have division icon prize for ladder achievements, if you are very active you probably care more about that than a chat avatar. And to show it off you would have to play at least the placement matches for the next season where you actually get your unique icons.
In, would also prefer mapgen. The format should by default be X games instead of BOx for consistent outcome and more games on average. Money should be x for each game and y for each game won or just a light split like bh suggested.
2012 players are built different
signing up with more than 8 characters in my post why is life so full of needless suffering