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AW - Alliance Swap Strategy, AW Rating, and Competitive Balance

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Comments

  • Why not assign AW rating on an individual basis and the net score determine squad rating?

    Kabam already keeps individualized information per war. Wouldn’t be tough to determine metrics that were measurable. (Tier fought + difficulty of opponent + points earned etc)

    This would stop swapping for certain. As for tanking, you can simply measure defense placed PI vs squad prestige to eliminate 2&3* wars. Or you could simply freeze AW rating during breaks.
  • xNig wrote: »
    Tag... war... ratings... to.. individual.. players....

    Problem solved.

    They can jump, but war ratings of the ally is the average of the players. So no shell alliance jumping will bypass this, only tanking (which is also a problem) lol.

    This does some good things but it is exploitable in other ways. Consider a very high master level alliance with at least one "filler" account. At any time you could kick the filler and replace it with another filler account with a horrible intrinsic war rating, even zero. At very high rating levels, say above 3000, essentially removing one player's contribution could lower your rating by a hundred rating points or more. Doing that dynamically within a season can significantly improve your match ups at no cost. Worse, you could with some work actually create any rating you want up to your maximum rating using fillers. Being able to specifically target a very specific rating and hold it while still winning would be incredibly valuable in many cases.

    The problem I see with most (or virtually all) suggestions to eliminate alliance war manipulations is that they address something currently happening, but aren't themselves hardened against completely different manipulation. This isn't a trivial thing to address; I haven't seen a suggestion or even a combination of suggestions I couldn't beat myself. If I could do it, I'm sure the master alliances already doing these things will be able to figure it out as well.
  • DTMelodicMetalDTMelodicMetal Posts: 2,798 ★★★★★
    edited December 2018
    DNA3000 wrote: »

    The problem I see with most (or virtually all) suggestions to eliminate alliance war manipulations is that they address something currently happening, but aren't themselves hardened against completely different manipulation. This isn't a trivial thing to address; I haven't seen a suggestion or even a combination of suggestions I couldn't beat myself. If I could do it, I'm sure the master alliances already doing these things will be able to figure it out as well.

    Eliminating alliance war seasons matchmaking manipulation is very hard to do. If it can't be done without collateral damage the best solution may be to have a season-end single-elimination tournament for the top 4-8 alliances. At least then alliances who receive MCOC's best rewards are required to outplay the best of their peers to do so.

    Edit - This suggestion has potential, it could remove the desire to manipulate the matchmaking process to find weaker AW opponents:
    Rektor wrote: »
    Win bonus and your score multiplier should be dependent on your opponent’s war rating/tier/prestige rather than your own.
  • DTMelodicMetalDTMelodicMetal Posts: 2,798 ★★★★★
    @DNA3000 That's the 1st I've seen that suggestion. I'd like to here MCOC developers thoughts about it.
  • @DNA3000 That's the 1st I've seen that suggestion. I'd like to here MCOC developers thoughts about it.

    Me too. I should point out something I forgot to mention explicitly. The biggest thing this idea does (besides addressing a major point about cheating penalties) is directly tackle the biggest objection to most AW fairness suggestions, even by me. When you change the rules, you generally have to change them for everyone. And many harsh rules changes designed to address fairness or cheating hit casual alliances hard, for example forcing everyone to match simultaneously. By creating two divisions of AW, you can relax in the lower division and force players who want to compete for the highest tier rewards to accept the harsher rules in that division. This mostly eliminates objections related to things like "convenience." We don't need the master bracket to be convenient. We just need a casual place for casual alliances to continue to compete on some level. The two divisions I think do that.
  • GroundedWisdomGroundedWisdom Posts: 27,518 ★★★★★
    I mean, one solution would be to disallow movement during the Season. That would probably have more side-effects than anything. People wouldn't like that much at all.
  • GroundedWisdomGroundedWisdom Posts: 27,518 ★★★★★
    Meaning, during the Off-Season, you prepare your Ally with all the Players you plan to have, and during Season, if you move Allies, you're disqualified. Obviously that wouldn't go over well.
  • THX135THX135 Posts: 83
    @DNA3000, I like your idea and suggestion. However, I am not sure how much work and time it would be to implement such a system and bracket.

    In addition, Kabam's goal is not specifically fairness or convenience. As told to me by a Kabam developer at the last comic Con, Kabam's 2 primary goals for AW:
    1. Prevent more alliances from 100% the AW map
    2. Drive high level alliances to spend more to complete the map
  • DTMelodicMetalDTMelodicMetal Posts: 2,798 ★★★★★
    THX135 wrote: »
    @DNA3000, I like your idea and suggestion. However, I am not sure how much work and time it would be to implement such a system and bracket.

    In addition, Kabam's goal is not specifically fairness or convenience. As told to me by a Kabam developer at the last comic Con, Kabam's 2 primary goals for AW:
    1. Prevent more alliances from 100% the AW map
    2. Drive high level alliances to spend more to complete the map

    High level alliances spend less when they match against tier 2-3 alliances
  • THX135 wrote: »
    @DNA3000, I like your idea and suggestion. However, I am not sure how much work and time it would be to implement such a system and bracket.

    In addition, Kabam's goal is not specifically fairness or convenience. As told to me by a Kabam developer at the last comic Con, Kabam's 2 primary goals for AW:
    1. Prevent more alliances from 100% the AW map
    2. Drive high level alliances to spend more to complete the map

    During the early access preview of the last AW revamp, I had a discussion with a developer who basically stated that the prior stated goal to prevent 100% was no longer a priority, because the problems associated with high frequency full exploration were no longer common enough to be a design problem. This was in connection with the specific design goals of the global buffs being tested in AW.
  • Meaning, during the Off-Season, you prepare your Ally with all the Players you plan to have, and during Season, if you move Allies, you're disqualified. Obviously that wouldn't go over well.

    This seems to be an unnecessary burden insofar as it seems to have little to no impact on any of the manipulation strategies currently being employed. It wouldn't even affect my proposed manipulation strategy where accounts actually swap in the middle of the season, because those accounts don't explicitly need seasonal rewards for the strategy to be effective.
  • AxeCopFireAxeCopFire Posts: 1,115 ★★★
    edited December 2018
    I don't understand why anyone would do this. If you dropped from a "top 20" alliance to an alliance that scored in the Participation bracket, like the OP claims, they would be getting almost nothing for each win until they got back up to tier 5 or 4...

    A loss in tier 1 is worth almost a million points, while a win in tier 13 is worth like... 400,000.

    Is there some kind of secret reason that anyone could somehow benefit from a plan that seems so idiotic?
  • Tasty_Yum_YumsTasty_Yum_Yums Posts: 410 ★★★
    Alliances risk season rewards with a loss or two to getting back into the top tiers. That’s a lot to risk for rewards in each war win. I’m not saying I agree/disagree with this strategy. Just saying it’s not fullproof and they have just as much, if not more, to lose by going this route...
  • GroundedWisdomGroundedWisdom Posts: 27,518 ★★★★★
    DNA3000 wrote: »
    Meaning, during the Off-Season, you prepare your Ally with all the Players you plan to have, and during Season, if you move Allies, you're disqualified. Obviously that wouldn't go over well.

    This seems to be an unnecessary burden insofar as it seems to have little to no impact on any of the manipulation strategies currently being employed. It wouldn't even affect my proposed manipulation strategy where accounts actually swap in the middle of the season, because those accounts don't explicitly need seasonal rewards for the strategy to be effective.

    I was simply looking at a suggestion to prevent what the OP is referring to. By no means was I putting it forth. I hear you.
  • LeNoirFaineantLeNoirFaineant Posts: 7,029 ★★★★★
    DNA3000 wrote: »
    Meaning, during the Off-Season, you prepare your Ally with all the Players you plan to have, and during Season, if you move Allies, you're disqualified. Obviously that wouldn't go over well.

    This seems to be an unnecessary burden insofar as it seems to have little to no impact on any of the manipulation strategies currently being employed. It wouldn't even affect my proposed manipulation strategy where accounts actually swap in the middle of the season, because those accounts don't explicitly need seasonal rewards for the strategy to be effective.

    I was simply looking at a suggestion to prevent what the OP is referring to. By no means was I putting it forth. I hear you.

    OP wasn't talking about moving during the season...
  • GroundedWisdomGroundedWisdom Posts: 27,518 ★★★★★
    DNA3000 wrote: »
    Meaning, during the Off-Season, you prepare your Ally with all the Players you plan to have, and during Season, if you move Allies, you're disqualified. Obviously that wouldn't go over well.

    This seems to be an unnecessary burden insofar as it seems to have little to no impact on any of the manipulation strategies currently being employed. It wouldn't even affect my proposed manipulation strategy where accounts actually swap in the middle of the season, because those accounts don't explicitly need seasonal rewards for the strategy to be effective.

    I was simply looking at a suggestion to prevent what the OP is referring to. By no means was I putting it forth. I hear you.

    OP wasn't talking about moving during the season...

    Ok, so they're moving prior to the beginning. I misunderstood. Either way, I'm not keen on these manipulations of the system.
  • LeNoirFaineantLeNoirFaineant Posts: 7,029 ★★★★★
    DNA3000 wrote: »
    Meaning, during the Off-Season, you prepare your Ally with all the Players you plan to have, and during Season, if you move Allies, you're disqualified. Obviously that wouldn't go over well.

    This seems to be an unnecessary burden insofar as it seems to have little to no impact on any of the manipulation strategies currently being employed. It wouldn't even affect my proposed manipulation strategy where accounts actually swap in the middle of the season, because those accounts don't explicitly need seasonal rewards for the strategy to be effective.

    I was simply looking at a suggestion to prevent what the OP is referring to. By no means was I putting it forth. I hear you.

    OP wasn't talking about moving during the season...

    Ok, so they're moving prior to the beginning. I misunderstood. Either way, I'm not keen on these manipulations of the system.

    Agreed. Manipulating War rating in order to get mismatches is a huge problem. It's also a hard problem to fix.
  • GroundedWisdomGroundedWisdom Posts: 27,518 ★★★★★
    DNA3000 wrote: »
    Meaning, during the Off-Season, you prepare your Ally with all the Players you plan to have, and during Season, if you move Allies, you're disqualified. Obviously that wouldn't go over well.

    This seems to be an unnecessary burden insofar as it seems to have little to no impact on any of the manipulation strategies currently being employed. It wouldn't even affect my proposed manipulation strategy where accounts actually swap in the middle of the season, because those accounts don't explicitly need seasonal rewards for the strategy to be effective.

    I was simply looking at a suggestion to prevent what the OP is referring to. By no means was I putting it forth. I hear you.

    OP wasn't talking about moving during the season...

    Ok, so they're moving prior to the beginning. I misunderstood. Either way, I'm not keen on these manipulations of the system.

    Agreed. Manipulating War rating in order to get mismatches is a huge problem. It's also a hard problem to fix.

    It is, but when something becomes a repeated problem, eventually a solution has to be made. Usually it involves a "lesser of two evils" scenario in these cases. I'm glad to know they're on it anyway.
  • LeNoirFaineantLeNoirFaineant Posts: 7,029 ★★★★★
    DNA3000 wrote: »
    Meaning, during the Off-Season, you prepare your Ally with all the Players you plan to have, and during Season, if you move Allies, you're disqualified. Obviously that wouldn't go over well.

    This seems to be an unnecessary burden insofar as it seems to have little to no impact on any of the manipulation strategies currently being employed. It wouldn't even affect my proposed manipulation strategy where accounts actually swap in the middle of the season, because those accounts don't explicitly need seasonal rewards for the strategy to be effective.

    I was simply looking at a suggestion to prevent what the OP is referring to. By no means was I putting it forth. I hear you.

    OP wasn't talking about moving during the season...

    Ok, so they're moving prior to the beginning. I misunderstood. Either way, I'm not keen on these manipulations of the system.

    Agreed. Manipulating War rating in order to get mismatches is a huge problem. It's also a hard problem to fix.

    It is, but when something becomes a repeated problem, eventually a solution has to be made. Usually it involves a "lesser of two evils" scenario in these cases. I'm glad to know they're on it anyway.

    This is one of those weird moments where the planets align and we agree lol
  • GroundedWisdomGroundedWisdom Posts: 27,518 ★★★★★
    DNA3000 wrote: »
    Meaning, during the Off-Season, you prepare your Ally with all the Players you plan to have, and during Season, if you move Allies, you're disqualified. Obviously that wouldn't go over well.

    This seems to be an unnecessary burden insofar as it seems to have little to no impact on any of the manipulation strategies currently being employed. It wouldn't even affect my proposed manipulation strategy where accounts actually swap in the middle of the season, because those accounts don't explicitly need seasonal rewards for the strategy to be effective.

    I was simply looking at a suggestion to prevent what the OP is referring to. By no means was I putting it forth. I hear you.

    OP wasn't talking about moving during the season...

    Ok, so they're moving prior to the beginning. I misunderstood. Either way, I'm not keen on these manipulations of the system.

    Agreed. Manipulating War rating in order to get mismatches is a huge problem. It's also a hard problem to fix.

    It is, but when something becomes a repeated problem, eventually a solution has to be made. Usually it involves a "lesser of two evils" scenario in these cases. I'm glad to know they're on it anyway.

    This is one of those weird moments where the planets align and we agree lol

    Let's take it in before the moment passes. XD
  • AxeCopFire wrote: »
    I don't understand why anyone would do this. If you dropped from a "top 20" alliance to an alliance that scored in the Participation bracket, like the OP claims, they would be getting almost nothing for each win until they got back up to tier 5 or 4...

    A loss in tier 1 is worth almost a million points, while a win in tier 13 is worth like... 400,000.

    Is there some kind of secret reason that anyone could somehow benefit from a plan that seems so idiotic?

    You're confusing season bracket with war tier (which seems to be a common mistake). The "participation" bracket means in the previous season that alliance didn't score enough points to enter even the bronze bracket - essentially they didn't fight any wars. But that has nothing to do with how many points they will earn this season. That's based on war tier, which itself is based on war rating.

    An example would be easier than explaining in a generic fashion. Suppose I am in control of two alliances. In one of them, I and all my friends play normally and we're all very good, winning most of our wars and getting into tier 1. We also get, say, Master level rewards. Lets say the other alliance is a shell I bought and it has a war rating equivalent to tier 2. We shove a bunch of secondary filler accounts into that one.

    Next season we swap: we move our accounts from the prime alliance to the secondary alliance and vice versa. In effect, our tier 1 alliance of *people* and *accounts* now sits in a tier 2 alliance in terms of war rating. Our secondary accounts now sit in a tier 1 alliance. We can now play all out in this season in the secondary alliance and we will crush all our competition because we will start potentially hundreds of ratings points lower, at least initially. A season is only twelve wars so getting the first three or four victories for free is a huge advantage. Meanwhile we deliberately lose in the prime alliance which now houses our secondary accounts a couple of times (which isn't hard), dropping down to tier 2, and then stop playing. At the end of the season, we will end up back in tier 1 in the secondary alliance and the prime alliance gets knocked back down to tier 2. Remember all we had to do was lose a couple times in there, so those secondary accounts don't even have to be especially strong. We can now rinse and repeat. Next season, when we switch back into the prime alliance it could show "participation" because all it did this season was lose once or twice then go dark.

    What the OP is saying is that he thinks he caught an alliance doing something similar to this: a bunch of super strong players jumped into an alliance that last season didn't do much, which was either an idle shell that got acquired, or was a shell that had been used for this kind of purpose before. In this scheme, one alliance is always earning top rewards and the other one takes a couple of losses and then goes idle, possibly winning almost no seasonal rewards.
  • There's one more trick you can play, but it isn't pertinent to the explanation and I'd rather leave it as an exercise for the reader.
  • EvilEmpireEvilEmpire Posts: 639 ★★★
    Could just remove seasons and give t2a and t5b frags for winning in higher tiers. The problem with the current system is if you push it to the max you will inevitably find yourself without a paddle relative to the competition and your alliance will suffer the consequences of failure when you spend an entire season losing because your rating is too high to be sustained and you start losing players to more favourable situations. Guys are doing what they have to do to be competitive within the confines that Kabam has created. If your options are to fail miserably or play the shell game it’s no question which is better for the group.
  • RektorRektor Posts: 674 ★★★
    Hey Everybody,

    I wanted to drop in to let you all know that we are aware of this behaviour, and are looking into different ways to dissuade or prevent it. As we've moved forward with Alliance Wars, we have continuously worked to ensure that we can identify and prevent any kind of behaviour that unbalances the system, or gives any Alliance an advantage through unfair means.

    We're going to continue to do that, and are exploring methods to not only prevent this sort of behaviour, but other means that some Alliances may be using to their advantage that are not in the spirit of true competition. We will share that information with you as we solidify ideas and details in the future.


    Bring this post to the next dev meeting on how to fix AW and I’m sure you will be able to solidify ideas:
    Vale84 wrote: »


    I am gonna agree on this statement. More over, a further look in depth as to be taken towards the remaining plagues effecting seasons:

    1) Presence of matchmaking rooms with most of master allies in them:
    avoiding each other, they turn seasons into a mere "match lower allies and see who gets the sloppiest one leaving nodes up". If you guys ( @Kabam Miike ) would bother to keep a close eye, you would notice that the only difference in point made by the top 1 to 7/10 is the defender left by the lower allies they match. That is why Season "fever" has gone. None cares anymore, everyone lives it like a t4 arena which you do out of boredom for rewards.


    2) Matchmaking system making point 1) possible with its exploitability.

    Matchmaking is hugely flawed. All you need to know is matching times of each ally and you can easily both avoid each other AND pilot matches the way you want. Being the forum i can't make names, but there have been 2-3 allies since season 1 literally controlling all master matches to their advantage, sending their lapdogs on proper scheduled matching times to fight against allies being not part of the "SISTEM" representing a threat.
    All this time, you at Kabam thought to be controlling Seasons at your wish while truth is the system is so easy to manipulate that 99% of allies cheat one way or another.

    3) +/- rating showing up during defence placement leading to easily trackable opponents leading into colluding.
    Why? what is the utility of knowing the rating gain or loss before starting the war? all it does is allow allies to find their matches and make their able to collude, set up, and even trade a result they need.

    EXAMPLE: Ally A, top 3 master, abusing 1) and 2) to get sorted against a platinum 2 ally.

    Ally A officer pm to Ally B officer: Hello, we are going to set a no diversity defence full of the worst defenders (5 korgs, 5 imiw, 5 medusas every bg). You won't be able to do even 50 nodes per bg. But if you agree to leave path 5 untouched we can give you normal defence so you ll be able to clear bosses and not ruin your season.

    THIS is another exploit going on since forever. Standing no chanches, lower allies are also threatened into an even worse scenario: not being able to clear bosses hence ruin completely their season.

    4) Allies colluding in the last days with other allies unable to gain anything anymore
    Being able to control matching, friendly allies can agree on matching on purpose with one of them unable to gain any further advantage in the season, hence leaving 10,20, 30 nodes up for the others so they can jump from plat to masters or from top 7-10 to top 3, factually CHEATING into better placement. This has happened plenty in all seasons, expecially in S2, and S3, and is currently in the air for this one too.


    SOLUTIONS:

    There are several ways, but few very easy ones to stop this poop show tbh:

    A) As you did for AQ, at the start of every season's week make leaders/officers able to select how many wars they intend to do giving them options to select which days (day 1, day 2, day 3). Give this application 12 hrs expiration, then use the other 12 hrs to elaborate a pool of allies. For every day, RANDOMLY sort matches by war rating, war tier and prestige.
    You can even factor in latest results in the future (allies losing last wars will have a multiplier for a more favourable match).

    B)Completely hide +/- gains in defence phase. Quicker partial solution which still will prevent collusion.

    C)Defenders remaining is the only exploitable thing in wars aside matchmaking: make them count towards the direct point calculation against the opposing ally, but value it ZERO for season points. That way the only difference in scores will be given by offensive death, which consequently will show the overall best ally.

    There's many more option which can be added to further best the system, but those imho are the top priority ones.

    Thanks!
  • Horror_punkHorror_punk Posts: 955 ★★★
    I know an alliance named R13 shifted to G13
    They now in gold1 and aiming Platinum1 by winning all wars

    Last season they're in Platinum 2 rank1
  • Viper83Viper83 Posts: 187
    edited December 2018
    I know an alliance named R13 shifted to G13
    They now in gold1 and aiming Platinum1 by winning all wars

    Last season they're in Platinum 2 rank1


    So you are the smart one in your alliance huh?
    Boy, it is not possible to get in P1 from gold 1.
    Has it ever came across your mind that, said alliance might be taking a break from the competitive aspect?
  • Ultra8529Ultra8529 Posts: 526 ★★★
    Few thoughts on this:

    1. Why can't an alliance legitimately decide that they are fed up with the rewards chase and item-burn at the top masters level, and decide that they (as an alliance) want a break together at a lower war rating to have some chill wars, and take it easy over the holiday season? It is ok for 1 player to retire, ok for 10 players to retire, why can't an entire alliance have a change in direction?

    2. Regarding the point that OP feels it is unfair because they are placing 7 R5s and your ally may have 1 - 3. Ever considered that is simply the nature of the game? The AW system is such that it both gives the top tier rewards (T5B). At the same time, your ally's success is also largely dependent on how much of that resource your ally has had in the past - stronger defence and stronger attack. Those with 7 R5s, put simply, have more because they have paid more for it. Why are they not entitled to use it wherever they want to now?

    3. Ever wondered why this is happening? OP's ally may see it from the perspective of the gold tier ally (for example) that is losing to a platinum ally that has allegedly swapped into a gold tier ally. But pause to consider - maybe the platinum ally has itself been experiencing the same thing, getting matched up against Master allies, and getting destroyed war after war. It is the nature of the war rating and matchmaking system that once you cross 2900 war rating or so, you are at extreme risk of matching any of the master allies, including the top 5. People at the top know that the top 5 allies are miles ahead of any other ally, even the rest of the Master bracket, much less the platinum ally. It is not at all uncommon to see a top 5 ally match a Platinum ONE ally, and the Platinum One ally will lose by over 50 KOs. This problem seen at the Gold tier is simply a trickle down effect of the same problem being seen at the platinum and higher tier. The problems with matchmaking have been mentioned over and over - this is the real root cause that has to be addressed. As an aside, it is also worth pointing out that such imbalanced match-ups only contribute to the greater rate of retirement, and in turn also contributes to lower tier allys seeing more and more players with huge rosters come down to their tiers - these are simply all the previously Master tier players with multiple r5s who have either retired or decided to take it down a notch.
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