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Author Topic: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games  (Read 767 times)

Offline Megas_Droungarios

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A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« on: 29 May 2018, 03:05:25 PM »
As it is now, a 3 or 4 player game in which one player has such a dominating lead that the outcome is not in question must be played out, unless one of the losing players is willing to take a draconian hit to his/her ranking and resign.  If I was playing with friends with physical cards at my dining room table, the players who are behind could say, one to the other, "Shall we just quit and let him/her have it and start another one (or pack up)?" and if they agreed, either the group could start a new game or go home.

I'd suggest letting the player who is in second place propose resignation and if the player in last place agrees, the game ends with the same effect on rankings as if it had been played out with the leaving player winning, while if the player in last place does not, the game continues.  Of course, bugging out for a rankings hit should still be an option.  For the vanishingly rare 4 player game the player in second place would need agreement from those in third and fourth place.

Offline markus

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Re: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« Reply #1 on: 29 May 2018, 11:19:26 PM »
Second and third place matter for rating purposes. So people would have to agree on that as well.
It could be:
1) Last player offers to resign.
2) Second player can accept second place --> game ends

Offline Megas_Droungarios

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Re: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« Reply #2 on: 05 October 2019, 03:16:31 AM »
Second and third place matter for rating purposes. So people would have to agree on that as well.
It could be:
1) Last player offers to resign.
2) Second player can accept second place --> game ends

I agree all the trailing players need to agree to freeze the rank order in the game by ending, but I think having the second-place player propose joint-resignation would be a superior protocol.

I see the site owners don't regard this proposal seriously enough to comment on the feasibility or desirability.

Offline Qaanol

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Re: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« Reply #3 on: 20 October 2019, 02:33:19 AM »
A simpler solution would be, when a player resigns, they are locked into last place among the remaining players.

Thus, in a multi-player game, the first player who resigns is guaranteed last place. The 2nd player who resigns, is guaranteed 2nd-to-last place, and so forth.

In particular, for a 3-player game, if 2nd and 3rd place both want to resign, the proper sequence would be for 3rd place to resign, locking into last, then 2nd place to resign after.

There should be no “additional” penalty. Simply the fact that resigning locks you into last place among the remaining players is penalty enough.

Offline Ingix

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Re: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« Reply #4 on: 20 October 2019, 09:40:15 AM »
The main problem is once one player has resigned, there is no game anymore. Continuing with a bot in place is no good, and you can't suddenly make it a 2-player game. So there has to be a mechanism that works while the game is still going on.

So I don't see options other than one player resigns, and if we are in a 3+ player game, all the other players also get a message if they want to resign. After each player has made their choice, the games is ended.

If one player still wanted to play, they place first, the other players are ordered somehow, it is debatable if they all place last or all placed second or order based on their points total.


Offline Qaanol

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Re: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« Reply #5 on: 24 October 2019, 01:40:28 AM »
The main problem is once one player has resigned, there is no game anymore.
This is objectively, factually, observably false. When one player resigns, there is still a game. That game involves 2 players and a bot.

Continuing with a bot in place is no good
"no good" for what purpose?

For determining that both of the remaining players finished ahead of the one who resigned? It is perfectly good for that.

For seeing which of the two remaining players finishes with a higher score than the other? It is also perfectly good for that.

Yes, the bot will probably make *different* play choices than the player who resigned, but the bot’s plays will still be legal. In particular the player who resigned *could have* stayed and made exactly the same plays as the bot did.

Playing the remainder of the game with 2 players and a bot is a perfectly valid option.

and you can't suddenly make it a 2-player game.
But you *can* make it a game with 2 players and a bot, because that is what it already is.

When one player resigns from a 3-player game, the game immediately becomes one with 2 players and a bot. This is simply a fact.

So there has to be a mechanism that works while the game is still going on.
I described just such a mechanism earlier. While the game is still going on, if one player resigns, that player finishes in last place.

The game continues with the players who did not resign, and a bot to replace the one who did. Note that at this point this game is, indeed, “still going on”.

So I don't see options other than one player resigns, and if we are in a 3+ player game, all the other players also get a message if they want to resign. After each player has made their choice, the games is ended.

If one player still wanted to play, they place first, the other players are ordered somehow, it is debatable if they all place last or all placed second or order based on their points total.
I already provided another option, which I believe you have in fact seen.

I see no benefit to forcing the game to end immediately as soon as one player resigns. That sounds actively antagonistic toward the enjoyment of the remaining players.

Resigning should mean exactly what it sounds like. When a player resigns, they lose. They come in last place. All the remaining players finish ahead of the player who resigned.

It really is, it really can be, it really *should be*, that simple.

Resigning means the player who resigned, loses. That’s it.

Offline Ingix

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Re: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« Reply #6 on: 24 October 2019, 10:22:16 AM »
The main problem is once one player has resigned, there is no game anymore.
This is objectively, factually, observably false. When one player resigns, there is still a game. That game involves 2 players and a bot.

You are right, so let me rephrase my statement so it becomes correct:

Once a player has resigned, that game is over. It's done and the ratings effect has been calculated, with an additional penalty for the resigner. Then a new game is created (unrated) with the 2 remaining players and a bot instead of the resigning player, starting at the position the previous game was when the  resigner resigned.

Continuing with a bot in place is no good
"no good" for what purpose?

...

For seeing which of the two remaining players finishes with a higher score than the other? It is also perfectly good for that.

And that is the point where you and the game programmer (Stef) disagree. The point of a ratings system is to find who is better in a particular game configuration, and putting a bot in place of a human player in a 3-player game is just not doing that. In 3+ player Dominion, the strategies of a player are much more influenced by those of their oppoenents. If the bot takes over, that means a different strategy and (for most purposes), an inferior one.

There is a reason you can't play rated 2-player games vs. a bot. The bot does a small number of strategies well, but often does questionable things, bad things or even boneheaded things. The bot im most cases simply can't replace a player that was playing anything else than big money with draw support.

Sure, it's doable to continue the game with a bot and use the relative placement of the human players as a standin for their placement in the 3-player game, but, in Stef's opinion, not desireable.

You have apparently a different opinion about that.

Offline Qaanol

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Re: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« Reply #7 on: 25 October 2019, 02:02:15 AM »
The point of a ratings system is to find who is better in a particular game configuration, and putting a bot in place of a human player in a 3-player game is just not doing that. In 3+ player Dominion, the strategies of a player are much more influenced by those of their oppoenents. If the bot takes over, that means a different strategy and (for most purposes), an inferior one.

There is a reason you can't play rated 2-player games vs. a bot. The bot does a small number of strategies well, but often does questionable things, bad things or even boneheaded things. The bot im most cases simply can't replace a player that was playing anything else than big money with draw support.

Sure, it's doable to continue the game with a bot and use the relative placement of the human players as a standin for their placement in the 3-player game, but, in Stef's opinion, not desireable.

That line of reasoning is not convincing to me.

At the point when a player chooses to resign, they are signifying that they accept a loss. They are no longer trying to win. Therefore, any strategy they had beforehand, when they still thought they could win, is irrelevant. They are now in a losing position, and they can make any plays whatsoever without changing that.

If the player were prohibited from resigning—or disincentivized due to an additional penalty for resigning beyond just finishing last—then they would continue to play, but there is no reason to expect them to play well.

The player in question has already decided they will not win—indeed, they have decided that they will finish last. They could make any arbitrary plays instead of resigning. They could intentionally cause a pileout when one player or another has the VP lead, or set things up so that another specific player would have a winning play. They could, essentially, play kingmaker.

And, as mentioned earlier, the player who wants to resign could also stay and make the exact same plays as a bot would, with no additional penalty beyond just finishing in last place. They could make whatever suboptimal choices they want, even to the point of intentionally affecting the outcome between the other two players, and they would only receive the standard rating-loss from finishing last.

So I see no downside to letting them resign, letting them accept last place, and letting the remainder of the game play out that much faster. If nothing else, the bot will finish its turn much faster than a human, and if the entire outcome of the game is obvious, then the remaining players can themselves resign in reverse order of score, letting everyone finish the non-competitive game quickly and move on to a new one.

• • •

Which brings up a secondary point. Resigning should not remove a player from the table, only from the game. They should still be part of the same table as a spectator, so that if everyone want to play again with the same players, they are already there. That is especially amenable to the “everyone resign in reverse order” resolution to a foregone game.

Offline Ingix

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Re: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« Reply #8 on: 25 October 2019, 10:33:51 AM »
I think I understand your point now better, thanks for the explanation!

I think the main difference between the viewpoints is how relevant it is that the resigning player could have made the same (or similar) choices as the bot. Maybe you are right that it mostly wouldn't matter if the game is very advanced and will only last a few more turns.

But if a player resign's early, then the bot will play a significant part of the match, and while the player may have made the same decisions, it's highly unlikely that the player would have done so for everything. And in a 3+ player game, the actions a player does have influence on the other players, obviously. If a significant part of the game was played by a bot, that is in practice not the same as if it was played by a human player.

Basically, your true statement that the player could have played like the bot is not important because in reality the bot played, which is in capability significantly different from a human player.

Offline Qaanol

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Re: A joint resignation option for 3 (and 4) player games
« Reply #9 on: 25 October 2019, 07:13:27 PM »
The crux of my argument is not so much that the player could have made exactly the same choices as the bot, but rather that the player *no longer has a preference* what moves they make.

The player accepts they are going to lose, and does not want to waste time, energy, and thought on which specific losing plays to make. They do not care, because they are going to lose.

Thus, the resigning player essentially *delegates* to the bot, saying “Pick for me, I do not care what moves are made because I accept that I am going to lose.”