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Old 08-18-2015, 02:49 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by -Goose- View Post
Especially since there is a timer on how long a game can last before the voice exploit crashes the server... Ideally, pre-ot wins would only grant 1 point and we could reduce the win score to 2. That would ensure at least 2 rounds but a maximum of 3, which should also prevent server crashes since the maps should finish before the exploit comes to fruition.
I certainly like that idea, I'm not sure how you set the per-overtime point value of a match but it's gotta be possible. This would be a 'big' change for people so we'd need some buyin from the public before doing anything. Comments?
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Old 08-18-2015, 03:37 PM   #42
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I actually had a good time last night. It was so crazy you had to just go with it. You never knew when you might be team switched. Even the lead scorer could be switched right before the end of the round. It was kind of exciting but yeah, needs to change.

I'm sure this is going to be awesome once the Worm is done weaving it's magic.

I'm not sure about this but is it possible it is kicking people from the match right after it plays the message "teams are uneven, balanced will be forced in 30 seconds"? I saw it flash that message 6 times in less than a second and I'm pretty sure it kicked 6 players when it did it (and more again later). It made the whole game kind of twitch for me.
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Old 08-18-2015, 03:44 PM   #43
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I don't mind the mid game switch, but the mid round one is a bit annoying, as someone mentioned, you work and tip the balance, only to find you playing against the yourself.

I did get switched mid round a few days ago while I was near the top and it was a bit confusing.

All in all though, good change, too many one sided blow outs....
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Old 08-18-2015, 04:01 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by Binger View Post
I actually had a good time last night. It was so crazy you had to just go with it. You never knew when you might be team switched. Even the lead scorer could be switched right before the end of the round. It was kind of exciting but yeah, needs to change.

I'm sure this is going to be awesome once the Worm is done weaving it's magic.
Nevermore-TMU was good last night. It lasted for at least an hour, and seeing a few people having to go to both sides often, well, it was a trip But I like everything else about the team balancer. Shuffling the teams based on last match results and starting fast rounds over is great so we won't have anymore maps done in 5 minutes.
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Old 08-18-2015, 09:53 PM   #45
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2fast after a Dria-hour-me-up crash, our team scored 2.. server said mulligan and took our 2 away. The other team scored 2 twice, even faster than our team, and it was allowed to stay. Talk about taking the wind out of our sails.
This may be the push i needed to finally put aside this 11 year old game. It was fun before the changes.. i tried to be open minded on these changes, but to appease the few who pushed this change, may chase some like me away. Thanks for all the good times Omni, it was fun. Someone ping me if it goes back to the old ways.
Thanks Carpe for maintaining the server all this time! just not a fan of the recent change.
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Old 08-18-2015, 11:12 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by The Sarge View Post
2fast after a Dria-hour-me-up crash, our team scored 2.. server said mulligan and took our 2 away. The other team scored 2 twice, even faster than our team, and it was allowed to stay. Talk about taking the wind out of our sails.
This may be the push i needed to finally put aside this 11 year old game. It was fun before the changes.. i tried to be open minded on these changes, but to appease the few who pushed this change, may chase some like me away. Thanks for all the good times Omni, it was fun. Someone ping me if it goes back to the old ways.
Thanks Carpe for maintaining the server all this time! just not a fan of the recent change.
Same thing happened to us tonight on TAL. We scored 2 points and it was taken away. After a "balance", opposing team scored a 1 pointer and a quick 2 pointer and they won the match.

It's a kick in the balls sure, but anytime something new is introduced it takes a bit to iron the bugs out and get it working the way everyone would like it. Take a break if you need to but don't quit the game man. Just because a new mod needs some tweaking and the server is hectic for a week or two isn't a reason to hang it up.
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Old 08-18-2015, 11:40 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by The Sarge View Post
but to appease the few who pushed this change, may chase some like me away.
It may be more than a few though, to be fair. Many people added to this thread approving of the change with some modification to it's current way of operating. I don't get an open minded feeling at all from any of your posts or conversations on the subject.

Take a break, come back and see how things pan out. Taking your marbles and going home is a mistake.

Andrew
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Old 08-19-2015, 01:56 AM   #48
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Oh, I was under the impression the mutator was sane.... guess I should read more carefully.

Taking points away if they are scored under a certain threshold is like trying to shoot off a suspicious mole with a 12 gauge. Not to mention that as soon as people understand the threshold they will begin to exploit it....

In short:

Use current map score + current map control for assigning new players to even player count teams.

Do not use map score or control as a trigger for re-balancing teams. Do this periodically and only if AVG PPH disparity is above some threshold. I'd guess once every 3-5 minutes would be often enough to check. And of course if player count becomes uneven due to players leaving, it makes a best effort to balance the PPH/team. Also, once OT hits, I'd only re-balance on player count. Obviously, re-balance in between rounds. I'd also only re-balance 1 pair of players per instance. Even if the PPH differential can't be made up by a single swap of best for worst, I have to imagine the second iteration will be sufficient in 99.9% of the cases.

Finally, quick losses happen even with well balanced teams. It is not the server's job to ensure matches last as long as possible, only that the teams were theoretically as even as they could be made.
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Old 08-19-2015, 02:42 AM   #49
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So, just to lob a couple grenades into this (fairly tame) hornet's nest, is there any way to prevent a player from being team switched more than once per map? Because on an individual-player-basis, that is my (and quite a few other players') biggest annoyance. I realize that may not be possible with only a few players on the server, so maybe if there are 11 or more players implement a "switch each player only once" rule.

I'd also like to echo -Goose-'s idea about only balancing in OT based on player count, possibly the same way it used to be done, by most recent connection. You could alternatively balance player count in OT with only players who have been on for under a certain amount of time (say, 2 minutes).

And in other "no one else really cares" news: not really seeing the need for the do-over if the first round on a map is short. Just balance at next round start, see if the losing team can dig it out. Underdog power!

Appreciate all the work you guys are putting in, and totally understand that you are trying to keep the crowds happy and sticking around. I, for one, don't mind being a guinea pig while the kinks are worked out... it would be a cold day in hell for a tool like this to work right on the first try.
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Old 08-19-2015, 04:42 AM   #50
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Like I pointed out before: There seem to still be a few bugs in the selection logic for team switch candidates. There is supposed to be a delay of one minute (might make this configurable as well) for picking a player again for balancing. Also, the top 25% players in a team should generally be excluded, which apparently doesn't currently happen.

The balancing at round reset isn't just a simple balancing. In addition to making team sizes equal or only differ by one, players are swapped to achieve a minimum difference in the team sum of points-per-hour values of the players.
In that regard, after a reset, your opponents are no longer "they" and your team nolonger are "us", but potentially two new teams. The usual restrictions like "top scorers" or "recently switched" also don't apply to this team shuffling. (I tend to avoid the term "balancing" for that feature.) I doubt you'd want that between regular rounds on top of "just balancing".

So to summarize:
It would be a very good idea, if the start of a new round happens with size-balanced teams, preferably not switching top-scorers. Mid-round balancing should happen less often and be more careful about which players are picked. Match reset with team shuffling is not necessarily practical for multi-round matches.
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Old 08-19-2015, 08:08 AM   #51
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I agree with the short-match restarts being weird and am changing the config to remove that. So the change now only encompasses shuffling teams at the beginning of any map and adding new players to the losing team. Please continue to comment, we'll get some middle ground established eventually.

Code:
ignore team preference: True
Announce team change: True 
Connecting players balance teams: True
Randomly start with sides swapped: True
Shuffle teams from previous match: True
Activation delay: 9999
Forced rebalance delay: 9999
Minimum desired round length (minutes): 0
Small team progress threshold: 0.5
Soft rebalance delay: 9999
Switch to winner progress limit: 0.7
Valuable player ranking %: 0.75
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Old 08-19-2015, 12:15 PM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pi View Post
I agree with the short-match restarts being weird and am changing the config to remove that. So the change now only encompasses shuffling teams at the beginning of any map and adding new players to the losing team. Please continue to comment, we'll get some middle ground established eventually.

Cool. Thanks, Pi!

And I was being imprecise with my language earlier, using "balance" to mean both having approx equal numbers on a team, and to even skill level. Drifted into the whole "assume you guys can read my mind" trap...

Shuffling team roster between maps - nice, I like it. Did seem like we'd often get the same or similar teams map-to-map based on some kind of join-order sorcery.

Only evening team skill on round reset, and balancing only numbers when necessary during the round seems like a fair way to do it. Realize you are working on the logic for moving players; I'd still like to advocate only switching players once per map if a certain server population threshold is reached, especially for top scorers.

Being the ping-pong ball of team evening is no way to go through life, son.
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Old 08-19-2015, 03:05 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Sarge View Post
2fast after a Dria-hour-me-up crash, our team scored 2.. server said mulligan and took our 2 away. The other team scored 2 twice, even faster than our team, and it was allowed to stay. Talk about taking the wind out of our sails.
This may be the push i needed to finally put aside this 11 year old game. It was fun before the changes.. i tried to be open minded on these changes, but to appease the few who pushed this change, may chase some like me away. Thanks for all the good times Omni, it was fun. Someone ping me if it goes back to the old ways.
Thanks Carpe for maintaining the server all this time! just not a fan of the recent change.
Sarge, you make no sense.

You often say, "Another blowout brought to you by Omni" And they make a change and you are the first one to bail. Yet when you are on the winning team and it is a blowout, you don't say a damn thing about the teams, only when YOU are on the losing team is when you say something. C'mon man... this is still in the early stages.
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Old 08-21-2015, 03:38 PM   #54
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New release, version 2 Alpha 8.

Changes since alpha 7:
  • renamed config options to hopefully make them easier to understand:
    • MinDesiredRoundDuration -> MinDesiredFirstRoundDuration "Minimum desired first round length (minutes)"
      If the first round is shorter than this number of minutes, scores are reset and the round is restarted with shuffled teams.
    • bShuffleTeamsFromPreviousMatch-> bShuffleTeamsAtMatchStart "Shuffle teams at match start"
      Initially assign players to teams based on PPH from the previous match to achieve even teams.
    • bConnectingPlayersBalanceTeams-> bAssignConnectingPlayerTeam "Assign connecting player's team"
      Override the team preference of a connecting player to balance team sizes.
    • bAlwaysIgnoreTeamPreference-> bIgnoreConnectingPlayerTeamPreference "Ignore connecting player team preference"
      Ignore player preferences for a team color, allowing the game or Even Match to pick a team.
  • new config options:
    • bBalanceTeamsBetweenRounds - Whether to always apply balancing between rounds.
      This isn't total shuffling, but just moves the bottom players of the bigger team to the smaller team until player counts are balanced. If player count is odd, the behind team gets the remaining player.
    • bBalanceTeamsWhilePlaying - Whether to auto-balance during the match if teams get uneven. (Turn off if you only want balance on player request.)
    • bBalanceTeamsDuringOvertime - Whether balancing (auto or requested) should happen during overtime. (disabled by default)
    • bDisplayRoundProgressIndicator - Whether the team progress HUD indicator should be displayed.
      That indicator is off by default now. If Even Match assesses the game state correctly, that indicator will not provide any useful information for players. I will probably remove it for the final version.
    • TeamsCallString - The chat message text players can use to call for team balancing instead of the "mutate teams" console command. (not set by default)
      While a round is ongoing, players and admin spectators can call for a team balance check. Non-admin spectators are excluded to prevent abuse. Even Match will do a quick check to see if the call is allowed and seems justified. If so, regular soft balancing will start as configured and will be followed by forced balancing if necessary.
  • Added Linux emitter crash fix. (This will only be applied on dedicated non-Windows servers.)
  • Added some more debug logging. (Enabled by default for now.)
  • Fixed an array index out of bounds error, which also partially broke soft-balancing.
  • Excluded bots from top-scorer ranking.
  • Added more "key player" criteria:
    • Double damage with >5s left
    • Super weapon with ammo in inventory
    • Using Linkgun to heal things
  • Added "criteria downgrades" for repeatedly unsuccessful forced balancing attempts. The "key player" criteria are turned off in the following order: nearby node check, UDamage, super weapon, linkgun, vehicle passengers, important vehicle, valuable player.
  • Improved team shuffling algorithm's computational complexity to reduce the risk of runaway loop crashes with many players and known PPH records.
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Old 08-21-2015, 03:51 PM   #55
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Patience Sarge, its work in progress.

Glad to see the changes and the progress and time that people are taking to make it. Repeated blowouts aren't all that fun. Better to have a closer balance.

Now if you guys could just fix terminator's lightning gun so it ALWAYS misses...
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Old 08-22-2015, 09:06 AM   #56
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Even Match sources are now available on GitHub and I'll make use of the project's issue tracker to record all known bugs and requested improvements.

[edit]
I'm looking into potential replacement algorithms for the team shuffling, in case it still stays crashy with larger player counts. To test replacement candidates, I need some test data for the PPH values, though. Can a server admin please send me the list? Starting with alpha 8 it's stored in EvenMatchPPH.ini, earlier versions stored it in UT2004.ini. In either case you are looking for the "EvenMatchRules" section.

Last edited by Wormbo; 08-22-2015 at 02:21 PM..
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Old 08-26-2015, 02:41 PM   #57
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Feedback: the biggest problem is that players don't understand that they've been switched at the beginning of a match. They'll spend the whole 1st round voice chatting with the enemy. If I key "p" for Public and mention it over voice it seems they never hear me. That's been a problem for a long time. Maybe my Public chat is broken. Others seem to have trouble getting it through the head of the broken voice-chat player too. I can get it to work by logging in as admin and chatting normally, all players hear that, but I've got to remember to turn it off again or else Termy will learn that I've stolen the Kraken
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Old 08-26-2015, 10:10 PM   #58
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Is this mutator responsible for the new announcer voice and the green arrow at the top-center of the HUD?
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Old 08-27-2015, 01:00 AM   #59
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Yes, Turbo K. The serverside "Display Round Progress Indicator" option controls whether that "green arrow" is displayed. It's not supposed to show any direction, or even anything you couldn't derive from the radar map and core health on the HUD already, but is there purely for testing purposes. It shows the mutator's view of the game state in terms of who's in the lead and by about how much.

hardspike: I guess I'll have to verify voice chat channels, then. I already had to create a workaround for player skins, which would not reflect the new team if balancing made the team change too late before respawn.
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Old 08-28-2015, 04:19 PM   #60
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I suggest that this be setup to only attempt to balance teams at the beginning of a map. Are the matches now building up a database that can be used to balance? If so then once the database gets built up a little the balancer should start to give good results. I would be okay with the occasional one-sided match as long as they weren't as common as they are now, especially if it meant no mid-game/between rounds player switches.

Another suggestion to go along with only balancing at the beginning of a game is to have it not build teams until a few seconds before the match starts. Put everyone in a list like a FFA match then build teams and launch. A lot more work for Wormbo, I know, but I think it's closer to the ideal.

This would also help with the v113 thing.
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