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Hosting Requirements

Discussion in 'Office of Strategic Influence' started by Steven Snype, Sep 2, 2011.

  1. Steven Snype

    Steven Snype
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    As of now, the hosting requirements currently permit anyone to host games, but with a couple of the recent games, I don't think that this is necessarily a good idea since there were major hosting mistakes that happened in the last two beginner games from rather inexperienced players at the time of their hosting. I think it would be better to have let newer players get accustomed to playing mafia and get accustomed to the mafia community before hosting. I suggest a change that requires all hosts to have played a set number of games (3-5) or be active in the mafia community for a long time. This amount of time could be up to circus mod discretion or by a fixed amount of time.

    Any other opinions/thoughts about this?
  2. jumpluff

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    The problem is that they're inexperienced hosts, not players, in my opinion. You just have to be thorough, neutral, and so on to host a game, not necessarily good at mafia, though game design and balance (which aren't necessarily so much hosting so much as designing issues) do necessitate some mafia experience. I fucked up the original Fire Emblem Mafia 'cause I was a newbie host, not because I was new to playing (which I also was), but I learned my lesson from that fuckup and improved a lot as a host. People are always going to make hosting mistakes because they'll be inexperienced at hosting, but they'll either improve or stop hosting. A better way to approach this imo is insist that at least one host has experience hosting or playing (if we don't already), but what happens if a better player / host can't be found?

    ETA: I just checked MUDS and what happened was kingofkongs not being thorough enough. I'm not sure more playing experience would help him pay attention to what row of the sheet he's on. Furthermore, my solution wouldn't have stopped this because the main host is Yeti, an experienced player and host. I'm not sure how yours would have stopped it either, except it would've stopped Yeti from having a MUDS cohost (unless she found someone else) and then eventually he would've made a similar mistake anyway for lack of carefulness imo.

    We don't let newbie hosts host Big and Expert games without an experienced host; that's good enough for me.
  3. Yeti

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    My only suggestion is if you allow actions to be submitted on IRC make sure both hosts are on or you PM the experienced one to confirm the name in your Target column is actually who you said !_!
    Don't trust the beginner host.

    Basically what happened was someone told kok their action on IRC and he misread a line or misunderstood what was being said or something and I was asleep (laptop goes off at night) and therefore not online. I see a name in the Target column with a corresponding Action and think let's rock. Only after, when given the flavor for a dead safeguard (lol) with the wrong name, did the individual inform me their target had been inaccurately stated, providing the logs of the situation.

    Some nights, USER was never filled in in the prewritten flavor.. imagine if when results were sent the improper flavor was used and USER was never filled in, the player in question would have no idea they had targeted someone else.

    Double checking your Results column only goes so far if you input the target's name incorrectly. If one host wasn't on when the action was given via IRC they will have no clue the specified target isn't right - I always try to go back and check PM logs and channels/spreads one last time to confirm I've written down the right names in the right order from the right night.

    Newbie hosts have to start somewhere and I don't think a first-time host should ever be hosting alone, but they should be responsible for double, even triple, checking the results of the night. Especially in a game with 5000 (cncnd this number is accurate) hookers crossfiring between safeguards. They also should take care to check they haven't shifted off a column entering names but not actions or just plain misunderstood something.

    It just comes down to understand you do need to be very detail-oriented to get your results together properly and willing to over-confirm your accuracy.
  4. Blue_Tornado

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    Like how new players get better through beginner games, new hosts get better through hosting beginner games. Where's the problem?

    Then again, if a host consistently ruins their games, we can just blacklist them as a host. Nothing wrong with something like that.
  5. Destiny Warrior

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    Speaking as a former newbie host, I agree with jumpluff. To host, you need to have the experience first and the ability to cover every base and ensure you don't make mistakes. In Overkill 1 for instance, I didn't really do many night updates(just 1). Since I had had no prior experience with doing night updates, I did make a few errors that update. The point is, hosts need a short learning time when they get a grasp of how hosting works.
    I also agree with BT's last statement; if a host is consistently screwing up, blacklist them.
  6. Steven Snype

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    What are the purpose of beginner games? To get newer players into the game of mafia. Ideally, I wouldn't want players of beginner games be more likely to subject to having game-changing host mistakes. It wouldn't be very fun for people to play their mafia games that were meant as their early steps into mafia if there were game-influencing hosting mistakes.

    Playing experience probably isn't the best requirement, but with the last couple of games, I don't want to see another beginner game that has rather "heavily game-influencing" (for lack of a better word) mistakes that risks the quality of a game that newer players are going to play in.
  7. Blue_Tornado

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    Yeah that's a good point, but I don't see any other way hosts can practice. I mean, ok, the host needs to have some experience to host ANY game, but where does he get that from? Even a seasoned player can be a really bad host, so it won't come from experience as a player.

    Beginner games are, unfortunately, the "best" choice for beginning hosts I can see, whether it's a good idea or not. We could make a category for "games hosted by new hosts", but honestly who would want to play in something like that?
  8. Daenym

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    The only reason I can think for requiring a player to take part in multiple games before hosting is to better understand balance of role distribution, as well as how games will play out. But overall, hosting and playing are so different that it's almost pointless to lump the two together. Which is more or less what Jumpluff said, I guess.

    Eep and I just finished hosting our game. Overall, it was a success imo. There were maybe 2-3 big errors throughout the game (a couple of which ended up being mostly remedied thanks to one of the game mechanics), but never any problems with who was targeting who, or how the actions affected each other.

    What Yeti said about new hosts not hosting alone is, imo, really important. In Luigi's Mansion, I think a solid cohost would have told Walrein he was an idiot for even considering letting Sam sub in, which would have eliminated the biggest fault of that game. And also might've made him reconsider having a Dickens that was that strong.

    BT, I sorta agree, but there's always the argument that very little separates Beginner from Standard anymore, other than the types of players who sign up. My first game was a Standard and, while I think it was a bit ambitious for a first-time game, it worked. And the hosting errors throughout the game would've been pretty much the same had it been a Beginner instead of Standard.

    As far as blacklisting shitty hosts... I would hope that someone realizes they're a shitty host and just stops making games long before anyone has to actually blacklist them. If you've hosted 3+ games that all failed massively for one reason or another than you should probably just reconsider hosting overall. And if you know someone's a bad host, then just don't sign up for their game.

    For what DW said, I think something important is to not "split up" the updates between hosts. Eep and I were both pretty involved in every update, besides the couple where one of us couldn't be around. However, I knew that both of us are relatively detail-oriented, so it was never a big concern. Making sure both hosts are involved in going over the results/writing the update is pretty important.

    For something Yeti was saying about how the results got messed up in MUDS, something Eep and I sorta unintentionally started doing in the sheet was just having "<verb> <user>" in the sheet of Night actions. It wasn't always something really consistent, but it was specific enough to differentiate between other roles nearby in the sheet. I dunno if that would've fixed the problem(s) encountered in MUDS, but it's at least one way to possibly notice that you're recording in the wrong spot.

    And another thing. Players should also take it upon themselves to make sure their information is handled properly. If you submit to the hosts on IRC, make SURE that they respond and say that the info is recorded. If you submit to one host on IRC and the other is afk/offline, then send a PM to one/both hosts anyway. If you're playing in a game where the hosts are new or have made errors already, double-check with them before update to make sure that your action is what you think it is.

    Really, I think some people are just more cut out for hosting than others. After playing in a few games and hosting one, it has pretty much solidified the fact that I much prefer game design/hosting over playing. Other people probably enjoy the gameplay more than taking the time to create a really good game. Hosting shouldn't be some great goal you're working toward through playing. If you're someone who can be thorough and you have an idea you think would make a good game (theme, experimental concept, or otherwise), then you should go for it.

    Another thing to think about is who you pick as a cohost. I learned through Viking mafia that Eep and I worked well together. I have a lot of really crazy ideas, while Eep does a good job at pulling me back and thinking about a lot of things that I missed. So make sure you're picking a cohost who is a good balance to yourself before the two of you start working. If that means you don't go through the Request-a-cohost thread, then fine. PM a few people that you think would work well with you. If you don't really know anyone well enough then, well, maybe you should play a game or two and get to know the regular mafia players better, etc.

    It occurs that I have no clue what I just said. Sorry, I have a monster sinus headache. Hope it made sense :x


    Edit:

    Snype and BT both posted while I was typing, and I can't resist temptation.

    What KoK/Yeti are doing is a good option for Beginners, but maybe switch it around. Have the "new" host take the lead in design, while the experienced host keeps them in check. Sorta like what the Circ mods do, but throughout the whole process, since the mods can't be expected to find every fault in the game design when they're only checking it over at the end of the process.

    And the "games by new hosts" category wouldn't work. That practically screams "game where mistakes will happen" and people would hesitate to sign up for it. :/
  9. Blue_Tornado

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    Actually there's a really effective idea- pairing new hosts with active, experienced co-hosts. For the first one or two games, just so they learn some trivial stuff like arranging sheets/actions.
  10. askaninjask

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    We're trying to fix a problem that doesn't exist. Yes, old hosts make fewer mistakes than new ones, but there shouldn't be any requirement about any of it. New hosts become old hosts through hosting games.

    If you join a game with a host you don't trust, then you have to deal with any and all mistakes the hosts make. Chances are that the game will be fine anyway.
  11. jumpluff

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    THANK YOU.

    Even if it were a problem, it wouldn't be a new one. It's not like there's an epidemic of hosting mistakes. I don't think anyone's been hosting lately that doesn't take it seriously.

    They are unfortunate but inevitable. Like I mentioned, pairing newbie hosts with experienced hosts doesn't always work.

    And you know what? Even the most experienced damn hosts make mistakes. Happens every fucking big game. I will concede that some are worse than others, however.

    I don't see any reason to dictate how design is done, since games are already subjected to an approval process; I also don't think we have enough games and a big enough community (though according to the Propose-a-Game thread, we're set as far as beginner games go for awhile) to turn away new blood. Hosts have to learn somehow.

    I'm just as happy as anyone else to bitch when a host makes a mistake, particularly if it affects me, but... shit happens, and I know at least some people in Circus avoid games with hosts they don't trust to make / host a good game. And even then, hosts who are good players and good hosts alike make slip-ups.
  12. Quagsires

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    Well, to be honest, when we're having no standard games up atm and even fewer in development, why are we talking about this as something that needs attention? While I don't fully believe that this isn't a problem, there's no one stepping up without requirements for a standard.

    However. I think the argument could be made that newbie hosts do make more mistakes than others, although that's not saying experienced hosts do not make mistakes. The only ways for them to learn though are either going through the game themselves or having an experienced person actively looking over everything to do. And the latter isn't necessarily an easy task...

    And if you don't trust the hosts for a game, don't sign up. It's that simple. I don't see a reason for blacklisting hosts though if we really need hosts, but it's not a bad idea if we can get a more consistent stream of standard games
  13. jumpluff

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    Any given game can be balanced perfectly fine, though you can't predict every permutation of roles (though you should try to predict what happens when given roles interact). Doesn't mean you don't make a simple mistake during hosting. The mistake kok made in MUDS (sorry to keep dragging this up, but it's what triggered this thread) had nothing to do with game or even sheet design.

    If there were an influx of terrible hosts who kept trying to make games, maybe a blacklist would be necessary, but nobody who still hosts is that bad. It's not even the dearth of hosts that is the best argument against a blacklist. The best argument is that we'd have nobody to put on it.
  14. Amelia

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    I feel really weird posting after such a long inactive time, but look at Big_Bigest_Mafia. That was one of my greatest fuck-ups ever, and i had even hosted a mafia before it (with the help of Gmax though, and he was a huge help).

    Anyways, give everyone a chance. Everyone makes fuck-ups, but believe me when i say that no one feels it more badly than the host itself.
  15. jumpluff

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    This thread is now about Amelia returning.
  16. Da Letter El

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    SUP AMELIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  17. Outlaw

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  18. zorbees

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  19. Amelia

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  20. K2000

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    Well on the other forum that I use there is hosting Requirements, you have to understand how a mafia game works, been on the forum for around 3 months, and played around 3 games so while some hosts do still mess up at times, so do the old hosts, and while to be honest most people there play the games before even thinking of hosting one themselves (I only had the idea to host one on their a month or two ago). Also co-hosts won't be something everyone is happy about, I was a co-host to learn how to manage a mafia game, and I will say, that yes I messed it up, I let slip something I shouldn't have, and that messed up the game, only slightly, but still messed it up. Also co-hosts isn't always great in non clue mafia games, since if I am right you share role pms and stuff right, so if say I wrote 5 role pms, and my co-host wrote 3, then someone could be lynched since the co-hosts style of writing is different to that of the hosts.
  21. Destiny Warrior

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    Mafia experience is obviously needed to be a good host, even here.



    Everyone even here plays games before hosting.


    Rules clearly specify that role PM style is not necessarily consistent. If the village still wants to lynch, their loss. Besides,, most people know about such differences already.
  22. K2000

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    Well thats me put in my place, to be honest I've looked at a few games, but the only game that I've played that was no-clue was quite bad. The bit about having, but I can see that you took some of the post wrongly, the requirements from the other forum I use are just that, I wasn't implying anything, just making just pointing out a few good rules that I know, the bit about playing games before hosting, that was just in regard to the point made in the OP about newer hosts, since it sounds the the OP is implying that newer hosts should play more games before hosting. Also that final rule sounds quite good, it wasn't something stated on ONM so that caused a lot of trouble in the game.
  23. jumpluff

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    Except you're assuming that all hosts take a share in writing PMs, when in fact only one host may. A good cohost is a great asset and it's rare that a game is worse for them. I don't see cohosts as forced upon anybody. All a cohost does is help host and/or make the game, which is pretty vague, so a cohost can be anything. A cohost might run the game by themselves while the main host designs it, or they might take an equal part in everything, or they might just give suggestions on design and help a little with the updates, or they might even just exist to update when the main host isn't around, or they might even just do nothing except sit and look pretty. Usually when a person hosts a game they've played a few. In the case of Expert and Big games, they have to have a lot of experience. As for the rest of your posts, I've already made it clear that I personally don't think we need restrictions (my opinion obviously isn't the be-all and end-all, but there's no point in me reiterating what I've already said to personally refute what you've posted).
  24. K2000

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    From what I've read, co-hosts seemed to be what was beign implyed, and I know from games that I played, and co-hosted, hosts have both writen role pms, thats what I'm basing it on, I understand that smogon is not the same, so what I am saying might not be as true here as as well.
  25. Lady Salamence

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    Sorry buddy, but in Mafia Rising, Staraptor Call wrote all the PMs. I only corrected them.

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