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Opinions Desired: FAF Ladder Survey

Survey Links:

English: https://forms.gle/vXpvVtTPCTATg6qv8

Russian: https://forms.gle/UydrLLT998iTKEEW8

One of the largest complaints with the ladder system we currently use on FAF stems from the inflexibility of it. We need to essentially create some sort of compromise between making the barrier to entry into ladder small enough to encourage new players to play it, while also making it engaging enough for higher rated players/players with a lot of activity to continue playing.

Oftentimes this results in the constant struggle between the two major camps for changing the ladder: the people that want a smaller pool and those that want a larger pool. A smaller pool should make it easier for individuals to learn maps and less intimidating as it is easy to look up a replay of a map when it’s practically guaranteed to be played in a 5-7 map pool. It’s also easy to adjust to your mistakes in prior games as the period between games on that same map will be far shorter than it could potentially be in a 15-20 map pool.

However, the problem then arises: what if you dislike a specific map within the pool and now 15-20% of your games in a small pool are now likely to be on that map. Another problem is the sheer exhaustion of playing a map with the same sort of meta over and over again. While a common rebuttal to this attrition argument is the fact that a small pool will allow for a variety of interesting metas to form on a map and thus create more diversity in itself, that argument seems to fall flat outside of theorycrafting. Contrary to other RTS games, the diversity in macro elements on FAF stems almost entirely on the map layout and while the most interesting maps allow a variety of potential ways to play the map, these styles are still going to converge around similar elements of the game. If you dislike navy, even if you can do a com drop or air focused game on Roanoke Abyss, you will still be heavily interacting with navy and will be forced to either play with a gameplay element you dislike or you will be forced into a few rogue strategies on the map. This holds even more true on the lower levels of ladder in which rogue strategies are often not seen as they are more difficult to pull off than a more macro based win through elements such as map control or economy.

Now, these last two paragraphs were JUST about the size of the pool and I didn’t even address all the potential arguments about it. There are also similar arguments around the length of each pool as well as the map distribution within a pool that are just as long if not even longer. I hope that gives you an insight into the impossibility of solving the problem.

These issues are what caused the FAF team to instead accept the giant variety in opinions on the ladder and build a system around it rather than attempt to make a ladder system that attempts to minimally satisfy as many people as possible. We are planning on creating ladder pools that differ based on the rating ranges of players on the ladder. What those rating ranges will be? We don’t know! That’s the point of the survey.

I want to see the map preferences for players in a wide variety of rating brackets and create a system that creates pools that appeals to as many people as possible within each subgroup. If the people 1500+ all desire a ladder pool of the exact same characteristics, then that group could be a pool subgroup. If it turns out 1800+ prefer a pool different from other groups, then that would be a subgroup in itself. The point is, I need as many data points as possible to make the right choice, and I can only do that if as many people as possible on FAF help me help them.

Thanks for reading!

The FAF Team

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Anihilnine: Our New Promotions Councillor!

After going through the applications and doing a selected interview process, the FAF Council has decided to hand the responsibility of the Promotions Councillor seat off to Anihilnine. Anihilnine is an Australian developer that is extremely interested in finding the most efficient step forward for FAF in external promotions while also working to improve our player retention.

Likewise, Laticlave, the runner up candidate for the seat, will be working alongside Anihilnine in collecting and parsing data on the player experience in order to improve FAF for new players. Both Laticlave and Anihilnine share similar viewpoints on the direction to take FAF, and so we hope that their combined effort will allow them to attain their goals in the best manner.

For more information about the candidates and their platforms please visit: https://forums.faforever.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=18999

The FAF Council welcomes Anihilnine and is eager to work with him on his goals! We hope the community is too.

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The May “Coffin’s Tourney” Clan War

Date: May 15th, 16:00 UTC Over $200 in Prizes!

Teamwork. Communication. Camaraderie. What elements could be more important on a battlefield? Well mass and energy but that’s besides the point.

If you’re in a clan or want to join a clan, come onto the forum thread at: https://forums.faforever.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=19221 in order to signup or say that you’re looking for a clan to join. The tournament has a rating limit of 7600, but there are clans that have several 2k members so even lower rated players could be picked up as players.

The tournament will be a 4v4 double elimination tournament, which essentially means you need to lose two rounds in order to get knocked out of the tournament. The top bracket will consist of best of 3 rounds and the bottom bracket will consist of best of 1 rounds. The final will be a best of 5.

If you’re interested in providing additional funding for the tournament, please contact either me (FtXCommando) or the TD (Saske_Kaske).

Good luck to all the players, we hope to see a lot of competition between the clans on FAF!

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May FAF Tournament News

Hello Commanders!

With the coming of May, we begin our 5th Ladder League Season. The Ladder League is a month-long leaderboard for our 1v1 ladder matchmaking system where people can win several avatars and prizes depending on their rating bracket. The leaderboards are constantly updated with the results of games and give an insight to who is playing the best and the most often in a variety of rating ranges. If you want to join and compete, just play games on the ladder!

For more information about the League System please visit:
https://forums.faforever.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=18042

To keep track of League Stats bookmark:
https://www.faforever.com/competitive/leaderboards/leagues

Alongside the new League Season, we’ve also got a new Tournament structure being tested out throughout this entire month. Farmsletje, alongside others, will be hosting tournaments every Saturday this May at 16:00 UTC. However, unlike the typical tournament where a winner is determined after 1-2 days, these tournaments will instead rely on a point system that rewards the best performing player across all 4 of these tournaments.

You will get more points the higher you place in each tournament, meaning that capability is still rewarded in the tournament itself. However, the main difference is that it also rewards activity and consistency alongside capability. If someone isn’t able to play one weekend, they could still lose even if they did place well in all the others!

If you’re interested in learning more about the tournament please visit:
https://forums.faforever.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=19159

If you’re interested in signing up for the first tournament in the series please visit:
https://forums.faforever.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=19160

For spectators, a new FAF caster called “Supreme Derp” is planning on casting the events live! It’s always been a struggle to find people that can cast FAF Tournaments rather than simply stream their games in the tournament itself, so please do come and support him this Saturday! If you’re interested in checking out his channel, he has already done a few FAF casts.


Here’s a link to his most recent cast:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F7FW8L6tqGo&

If anyone is interested in funding either Farmsletje’s tournament or the Ladder League itself, please get into contact with me (FtXCommando) through either the forums, Discord, or the client itself.

That’s all for this month. Good luck for the players and have fun watching for the viewers!

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Season 4 of Ladder League is Over!

The 4th Season of the FAF Ladder League has finally finished and given us our new Ladder and Faction Champions! For those that don’t know, the Ladder Leagues are a way to showcase the current top performing and active ladder players across all rating brackets on the ladder. It’s a great way to find people near your rating that are trying to improve. Be sure to check the forum link at the bottom of this page for additional information about the Leagues!

Congratulations to this season’s winners!

1800+ Bracket:

The top bracket was won by ThomasHiatt. For most of the month, the top spot was hotly contested between ThomasHiatt, Blodir, and Chamo_Rosso. Blodir was able to maintain competitiveness with the other two thanks to his excellent win rate. Chamo_Rosso unfortunately fell off as time went off due to the fact his win rate required him to maintain a massive time investment to keep up with the other two. However, Thomas had been able to maintain a massive time investment into the ladder while also maintaining a solid win rate that allowed him to pull ahead of Blodir during the last week or so of the League.

When it comes to the King of Faction titles, ThomasHiatt of course won the King of Cybran Avatar with his 73% pick rate and his 1st place placement. While Blodir didn’t win the League, he at least has the consolation of being recognized as the King of Seraphim with his crazy 100% pick rate of the faction this month. Sure shows that Cybran isn’t required to dominate the ladder, especially with his extremely strong win rate!

For UEF, Swkoll was able to snatch the avatar with his 6th place finish as Blin unfortunately was not able to reach the 50% pick rate for UEF. Swkoll is the first person in the League to ever hold both the Prince and King avatars! Congratulations to him and his love for the UEF, hopefully he can keep his title in future Leagues! When it comes to the King of Aeon, Turinturambar had secured the title with his 13th place finish. It seems Aeon isn’t too popular with the upper bracket of the ladder.

1300-1800 Bracket:

The 2nd Bracket was won by Bond007, a player that took a break from FAF and came back over the last few months. This bracket was even closer than the first bracket and could have been won by anyone all the way to the last date of the bracket. Essentially any of Bond007, Fatso, Quagar, and ALEKS had the capability to take the title, so congratulations to Bond007 for pulling ahead and taking it!

Alongside with his bracket win, Bond007 also secured the Prince of Cybran avatar. He was able to just barely snatch it from Fatso with his 55% pick rate and unfortunately leave Fatso with no avatar for this League month. The same situation seems to have happened between Quagar and ALEKS, with Quagar being able to take the Prince of UEF title with only 7 points separating him and ALEKS. They were only separated by 3-4 more ladder games!

Storm Lantern was able to secure the Prince of Seraphim avatar with his 6th place finish and respectable win rate. Good work! Lastly, chewbaka took the Prince of Aeon title with his 32nd finish. It seems this bracket also has a distaste towards Aeon.

800-1300 Bracket:

It seems the brackets just get more and more competitive as we continue on! This bracket could not only have been decided on the last day, but even the last hour of the month! Plopp was able to secure the win over LaissezFairy thanks to the tiebreaker of time spent playing putting his score over LaissezFairy. But regardless, good job LaissezFairy for being able to stay competitive with around half the time spent on the ladder! You had an impressive win rate! Aside from these two, koleos also was an extremely close runner up and could have taken the champion title if a few games just turned out a bit differently. Good job Plopp for winning this hard fought bracket!

300-800 Bracket:

While not as intense as the last bracket, the 4th Bracket still is remarkably close and even has its own interesting aspects. It is the first bracket we’ve seen this month to actually have Aeon mains in the top 10, and in fact has a “main” as the winner! Congratulations Dygron! However, his 34% pick rate likely means that he either played random with all 4 factions or only 3 factions. But regardless, he maintained a strong win rate while picking the rogue faction of this month which is still massively commendable!

<300 Bracket:

The final bracket gives a good insight on players to watch for upcoming Leagues as it often includes the new players on the ladder that are willing to invest time into improving. Good job Seiga, a_papertowl, and Grinchbi for taking the plunge into ladder this month and putting in the effort to find a place on the top 10 board for this bracket! We will watch your careers with great interest.

In addition, Congratulations to LordPondscum for being able to succeed and take the top spot in this bracket. His excellent win rate not only allowed him to take the first place spot, but he also was able to push himself into the next bracket for the next League! Hopefully he can maintain this strong performance in that bracket and take a top 10 position once again!