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60,000 passwords have been reset on July 8, 2019. If you cannot login, read this.

Techtree Contest #13 - Results

Discussion in 'The Arena' started by Spellbound, Feb 11, 2020.

  1. Spellbound

    Spellbound

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Techtree_13_Image.png
    Techtree_13_Banner.png
    Based on Magic: the Gathering's coloured mana system, design a faction that represents the philosophies associated with a single colour.


    White
    Blue
    Black
    Red
    Green

    White3.png
    Blue2.png
    Black5.png
    Red.png
    Green3.png

    White exemplifies the ideals of order and consistency. White's ultimate goal is peace, ideally through structure and law. White can be restrictive and authoritarian.
    Blue seeks perfection through knowledge and progress but can also be the sphere of deception and manipulation. Blue can be unethical or lack morality its its efficiency.
    Black embodies the essences of selfishness and opportunism. Black desires power over all else as it allows it to get what it wants. Black is merciless and shameless.
    Red desires freedom above all else. Red is pure passion, chaotic and impulsive. Laws are anathema to Red as they get in the way. Red has the capacity for complete anarchy.
    Green personifies growth, instinct and harmony with nature. Green is honest and interdependent and dislikes artificial change. Green can lead to rigid and unchanging traditions.







    [​IMG]
    • 1st place: 75 reputation points
    • 2nd place: 50 reputation points
    • 3rd place: 25 reputation points
    • Entry: 5 reputation points
    • Judge: 15 reputation points
    The three winning teams will receive an award icon, representing the winning entry.





    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]








    [​IMG]
    Nightmare2077 judging



    I thank you all participants for their entries. I hereby submit my judgement.


    A couple general remarks

    -I sort of introduce two 'tacit' criteria: completion and bugs. Contest rules gave a minimum number of Heroes, units or buildings; but it's obvious that making four heroes should be rewarded compared to making 1 hero. Bugs are self-explanatory, no bugs is better than some bugs, and some bugs is better than many bugs. I will thus make reference to completion in Creativity and bugs encountered in Gameplay.

    -It is impossible, even in theory to say all one wants to say. Accordingly, my published judging does not contain all of thoughts, or even all of my written notes. As reifining raw notes into publishable text is extremely arduous, each contestant will receive my rough notes though private messages.

    -You can take my word that I've not done the math for polls, so I don't know who'll win. I judged based on my preference alone.


    Riki Martin, Sons of Tyskhadi (Black), 29/35


    Theme: 9/10
    Unique and pleasant visuals (both units and icons), slave sacrifices, cruel fighters.
    I only have doubts about the Evoker-Elemental pair. It's not exactly a magical races. Furthermore, why is there 1 Elemental/Evoker? An ability that says that Evoker has an active Elemental is welcome - but not enough. What is needed (quite badly, e.g. once Elementals start being killed or infused) is some indication of the correspondence between Elementals and Evokers, e.g. upon selecting one the other is tinted black.

    Gameplay 7.5/10

    Training units in 'armies' is reasonably creative and playable. As often is the case, creativity and playability directly contradict each other and striking the right balance is hard. This map struck decent balance, but my feeling is that is sub-optimal. Namely, training units in batches takes away one's freedom for a preferred army composition. This is further worsened by contents of the offered Armies: why do so many of them contain the 'useless' (T1) Zealot?
    Creativity vs Playability clash again at the Slave mechanic. The rituals (uses for slaves) are really creative, but hard to micro well. Furthermore, I was disappointed not to find any instructions on how to get slaves. (On the Nth playthtrough, I figured it's something like 'gain the slain unit's level in slaves with probability 50%'.)
    Unit roles are fine (read: armour and attack types), with one exception: both flyers have Light-Piercing. Amazon should have had Magic attack, lest their roles overlap pretty much completely.
    Lastly, bugs. Try destroying the initial gold mine - it will disappear. Custom Haunted gold mines are tricky (see yours truly DOC race for a working solution). Then, Elemental Souls can't be summoned at 1 food surplus (apparently checks if food is enough after summoning). A couple of hotkey issues were encountered (these are PMed).

    Balance 3.5/5
    War Academy causes power to scale poorly over time. Early on, I'm too vulnerable to rushing (fighting worker's don't help much and are too weak). Late game, my ~5x War Academies can create vast armies very quickly.
    None of the units or spells seemed overpowered or under-powered to me.

    Creativity 9/10
    Three heroes and not four gnaws at the tacit 'Completion' criterion. As I wrote in Gameplay, slaves and armies are cool and creative features. So are the dual workers (I'd be flattered to learn that these were an homage to yours truly DEL race, but I'm not so arrogant as to count on that). Spells/abilities/research are also unique, fitting and bug-free (I especially liked Evil Maze and Toxic Arrows)



    Wazzz, The Bandit Outlaws (Black), 28/35


    Theme: 8/10
    The race is simple, but not primitive. Most mechanics and visuals are solid and straightforward. I liked the hiring mercenaries feature. Custom icons (e.g. Bandits Shadowmeld) are nice and fitting.
    Aesthetics. Mostly good, with a couple of exceptions. The immensely huge red plague cloud attached to Stormvermin is a crime against eyesight (you can see nothing but those on the battlefield). Wizards and Nether Drake's projectile art choice is poor. But these two I would consider relatively minor hiccups.

    Gameplay: 8.5/10
    Really good style: solid, intuitive and simple (not simplistic). I particularly liked several mechanics, namely Refuge ability, also life insurance & higher item sell price research.
    Unit roles are all good, except perhaps two 2-food unit (either spear thrower should be a 3-food 'Rifleman' or the axemen should be 'Grunt').
    Bugs. Only one encountered (so good job!): Nether Wyrm's splash damage has friendly fire.

    Balance: 3/5
    I noticed some blatantly OP abilities and features, without any obvious fraction-wide compensating downsides. 'Haste' (t1 bloodlust). Mercs instant hiring. Nether Wyrm costing mere 3 food. Ruthless aura (15% bash!). Red plague cloud (-4 armor!). To be fair, subjectively none of these made a difference in my playtesting, so I'm wary to give less than 3.

    Creativity: 8.5/10
    As I mentioned above, I really liked some mechanics and research. Furthermore, I really appreciate all 4 heroes being made.



    xYours Trulyx, The Xetkin Clan (Red), 33.5/35


    Theme: 10/10
    At first I was confused as hell. But this many-layered mechanic grew on me quickly. Great job: you've realized both the very unorthodox gathering mechanic and even more unorthodox training mechanic flawlessly.
    I was very impressed with custom sound-sets for units, something one doesn't see often. Visuals are good all around. A deserved 10 outta 10.

    Gameplay: 9.5/10
    I can repeat that I was confused at first, but once I figured out what to do the game became very enjoyable. I've encountered 0 bugs (immensely impressive given the insane mechanics). Some features such as disassemble and workers being indicated when the corresponding hut is selected are very welcome and appreciated.
    Control loss executed flawlessly. Hero spells are cool. Unit roles are good and fitting.
    The only 0.5 points deduced here is due to me disliking the rigidity of early game. The hut mechanic and lack of proper workers at the start makes initial few minutes quite annoying (as well as harbingering great vulnerability, to which I now turn...)

    Balance: 4/5
    The race's gatherers are very vulnerable, especially early game. (E.g. they at least shouldn't grant XP when killed by the enemy). Subjectively, I never felt the race to be either overpowered or underpowered. No OP abilities spotted either. Hence the only point deduced is early game vulnerability.

    Creativity: 10/10
    I already praised the overarching training mechanic (+gathering through huts). All four heroes are done, so no penalties for incompletion. Spells, abilities and research are all good. A full mark well earned.



    MyPad, The Orderions (White), DQ \ 18/35


    This will be a shorter review. The faction is incomplete. Specifically, it violates the "Your faction must contain at least 1\8 hero\buildings." criteria, and is therefore eligible for disqualification.
    I really enjoyed playing this alpha-version, without any attempted flattery I must say that it shows a lot of promise.
    The unit roles are good, interesting mechanics with lumber gathering (though doesn't always work or respond to the number of gathering wisps).
    I leave it to moderators to suspend the disqualification or not. Provided the map stays, the following score is assigned (use as purely informative otherwise):
    Theme: 5.5 (some aesthetics are ok, other subpar)
    Gameplay: 5.5 (bugs encountered; as well as some debug text)
    Balance: 3 (hard to gauge without any Heroes)
    Creativity: 4 (quite good, but suffering heavily due to incompletion)



    islesofurth, The Forces of Gaia [Green
    , 16/35]

    Theme: 3/10
    The race uses only vanilla models and icons. Better visuals via imports are much needed here (e.g. Raccoons don't have work animations and thus make bad workers). Few to no overarching interesting mechanics. The race looks like a beta now, but will flourish if given more attention and work.

    Gameplay: 4/10

    Unit roles are not well thought-out. Attack and armor types should be based on 4 Warcraft races, not on neutral-hostiles. Shop is bugged (pseudo-mobile). Bite cooldown won't work when auto-attacking (remake with mana or with Orb of Slow).

    Balance: 3/5

    Felt alright, unless bite-bug is abused.

    Creativity
    : 6/10
    I really liked the 'Improved Motivation With Nuts' humor. Tree jump mechanic is quite creative. Only two custom heroes made. As I said in 'theme', more creative mechanics would've been welcome.



    Leods, Cult of the Damned (Black), 20.5/35


    Theme: 6/10
    The race is okay, but suffers form overusing of vanilla models. Acolytes, workers, Sacrificial Pit... Furthermore, I've encountered several typos and weird english in tooltips. The presentation is also lacking at times, e.g. hero abilities should have line breaks when describing levels, not just "Deals 100/200/300 damage". You reuse (and misuse) some icons, as well as sometimes not giving them proper positioning.
    Overall the race feels undead-ish enough, so the score here could've been much higher if some simple (if tedious) issues were dressed.

    Gameplay: 6/10
    While there are some original mechanics (workers dying into skeletons), the race doesn't feel new enough. Unique overarching mechanics and hero abilities would've been most welcome. Some bugs encountered, such as a worker being stuck inside goldmine's collision on initiation.

    Balance: 2/5
    Necromancer star(lightning)-fall kills virtually everything at level 1, and absolutely everything at level 2. 1000% dmg increase for Geist's ultimate is overpowered. Workers too vulnerable to early rushing. Sacrificial Pit turning units into weak skeletons and dying itself is under-powered for sure.

    Creativity: 6.5/10

    I already mentioned that I like some mechanics but these sort of are few and far between. More polishing would've allowed the map to blossom, as the potential is clearly there. A fourth hero would've been welcome.



    Spellbound & Mythic, The Starfall Empire (Blue), 26/35


    Theme: 10/10
    Just wow! Phenomenal aesthetics. Really beautiful building wrapping in really beautiful units through a really beautiful UI. Outstanding, sir. I'd consider bending the rules to give it an 11/10, were it not for a few vanilla icons (e.g. Blacksmith).
    I really like many mechanics, such as Huge Sorc line-lightning attacks, mana-dependent abilities, towers being mounted on the blue turtle.

    Gameplay: 7/10
    Gameplay itself is totally fine (except light armor being weird choice for a basic ranged unit). All three point deduced here are from bugs alone.
    Firstly, gold mines. The only one that works is the initial one, and that only if you don't destroy it.
    Loading saved games doesn't work.
    Witness can't be moved (I'm aware that this is known), so a non-existent unit gameplay-wise.
    Turtle starts granting food already at the begging of wrap-in.
    Wrap-in charges are nowhere explained (I sorta figured that this is the limit per time slash total limit).
    Some other more minor bugs are PMed.

    Balance: 1/5
    Everything is overpowered as hell. T1 3-food units are insane fighters. Three sentinels and a lvl-1 hero absolutely annihilate orange camps; 8 Arbalests and a hero destroy a ~50lim opponent army. Shard armour totally op - would've remained so even if it cost 125, not 50 mana.
    Most important of all, wrap-in mechanic allows construction of huge armies in a blink of an eye; this fraction-wide advantage is not offset by anything (aside gold expansions not working, lol).

    Creativity: 8/10
    I already praised the wrap-in mechanic. Unit abilities are cool as well. So all is fantastic. Both points here I deduce for incompletion. Two heroes with 7 spells between them is lamentable. Witness is de-facto a non-unit.






    Results calculation

    • Judgement: 70%
    • Poll: 30%
    FinalScore = (30*Reached_Votes/POSSIBLE_VOTES) + (70*JudgeScore/100)

    Riki Martin, Sons of Tyskhadi [Black]
    (30*3/38)+(70*29/100) = 22.6684210526
    0 days overdue (no penalty)
    Final score: 22.6684210526

    Wazzz, The Bandit Outlaws [Black]
    (30*8/38)+(70*28/100) = 25.9157894737
    0 days overdue (no penalty)
    Final score: 25.9157894737

    xYours Trulyx, The Xetkin Clan [Red]
    (30*7/38)+(70*33.5/100) = 28.9763157895
    0 days overdue (no penalty)
    Final score: 28.9763157895

    MyPad, The Orderions [White]
    (30*4/38)+(70*18/100) = 15.7578947368
    2 days overdue (3% penalty)
    Final score: 15.2851578947

    islesofurth, The Forces of Gaia [Green]
    (30*3/38)+(70*16/100) = 13.5684210526
    2 days overdue (3% penalty)
    Final score: 13.161368421

    Leods, Cult of the Damned [Black]
    (30*3/38)+(70*20.5/100) = 16.7184210526
    0 days overdue (no penalty)
    Final score: 16.7184210526

    Spellbound & Mythic
    (30*10/38)+(70*26/100) = 26.0947368421
    2 days overdue (3% penalty)
    Final score: 25.3118947368




    First.png Second.png Third.png

    Congratulations to all the winners and a big thanks to all those who participated in the contest.


    Contest | Poll
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2020
  2. Mythic

    Mythic

    Media Manager

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    Congratulations, everyone!
     
  3. Spellbound

    Spellbound

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    Congratz to all who participated!
    @xYours Trulyx well done, you've truly come a long way.
     
  4. Wazzz

    Wazzz

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    It's good to finally see some results, but I am really questioning of a lot of the points made about my entry?

    Like, for instance, I look at the comments regarding Gameplay, and nothing there really reflects why I lost 1.5 points there. There seems to be some opinion that having two 2-food units available at tier 1 isn't good or something, and friendly fire from splash being a supposed "bug" when it was based off of the Demolisher's Burning Oil ability where the whole idea is that it does include friendly fire?

    Then I sort of look at the balance aspect, and... Haste is viewed as some sort of tier 1 Bloodlust, which it really isn't - while the spell is based off of Bloodlust, its properties are actually designed to be a mirror of Slow, which is a tier 1 spell. Instant hiring was also an aspect that was sort of seen as "imbalanced" for no discernible reason, as there is a significant delay before those units are available, and they cost substantially more than they would if they were able to be trained regularly.

    I even look at Creativity and there's nothing reflecting why 1.5 points was lost there.

    Take a comparison of that with some of the points raised in the Xetkin Clan, and facets like the custom soundset are mentioned in the Theme - but nothing of the backing soundtrack or custom AI for my entry was mentioned there. It's hard not to see a degree of bias in that respect? Not to mention, the Theme areas never really seem to refer back to the actual theme of the contest, which just seems outright strange to me.
     
  5. xYours Trulyx

    xYours Trulyx

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    Thanks, and to you as well!
    Aah, yes. 4 years, and I've finally gained my first golden Techtree medal. That's a keeper.

    I'm not the one to argue about your first two points, but I think the reason why a few points on your Creativity was reduced here is because music is simple to replace, whereas multiple custom soundsets are a burden to actually implement to a map. I had to undergo a tedious process for each of the sound files to make them actually work and fit in Warcraft 3.

    The Theme scoring does stray from the contest's theme, though.
     
  6. Wazzz

    Wazzz

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    It really does, and I think I am vaguely familiar with the unit sound designs being difficult to implement, but it should also be noted that I am in no way a proficient coder - when it came to implementing the background music, I had to learn enough rudimentary vJass commands, an area that I had previously avoided completely, to not only implement the music, but also incorporate it in such a way that it only played the music for players using the Bandit faction themselves. There was a surprising amount of depth to that, which pushed my skills further - there were also minor optimizations here and there that I had to learn about, like how when you create a Special Effect, you need to Destroy the special effect immediately after - but this also results in special effects that don't have a Death Animation not playing at all. For things like the Bounty Hunter Aura, where I wanted the Gold Bounty effect to play on its use, this meant I had to edit the Animation names of the model itself. It was a good opportunity to push myself to learn more about the Editor, definitely.

    But yeah, at no point in any of the theme scoring does it ever say... well, anything about the Theme of the contest at all. Did my entry do well at representing the Black Philosophy? Did it do poorly? If it did well, then what did it do well, and if it did poorly, then what needed to shift?

    If the Theme section is going to simply laud entries based on things that are unrelated to the contest, then surely that would mean my background music would be worth a mention, as would the custom AI - both things entirely unrelated to the entry, but put in to create an atmosphere of the faction standing out on its own, but also allowing you to immerse yourself in playing against it.

    Oh... also, custom AI can be a biiiiitch :p

    EDIT: Here is a recap of what the creativity parameter is for:

    Not only was the soundsets mentioned in the Theme area and not the Creativity area, but it has nothing to do with the Creativity. As appeared to be mentioned almost in passing, I allegedly demonstrated phenomenal innovation and creativity with existing game elements presented in a new and original way, and yet... 1.5 points is lost for no provided reason at all.

    Now, since you did mention the Creativity field, I feel a direct comparison is worth mentioning:

    That one was for my entry. Now, to compare to your entry:

    So... mechanics were enjoyed, "no penalties for incompletion" due to all four heroes being done (which should never have been a thing, considering the minimum requirement was 1 hero? So why should someone lose points for meeting those requirements?), yet the point values are different. It seems to put favor in a mechanic that starts you off on the backfoot compared to how other races start, due to beginning with five workers that cannot actually gather resources, and therefore have to allocate their first five free food to getting to the same point that every other faction starts at from the beginning, severely disrupting the flow of the early game.

    From what I can gather, both quotes say exactly the same thing, yet the points in no way reflect this. It's actually pretty uncanny. Not to mention, at no point does it mention the use of clever concepts - instead, it seems to focus on "did this person make four heroes instead of the minimum requirements?", which just seems to miss the mark completely.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2020
  7. WolfFarkas

    WolfFarkas

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    • Your faction must contain at least 8 non-hero units.
    • Your faction must contain at least 1 hero unit.
    • Your faction must contain at least 8 buildings (if your faction has more than 1 defense tower, they will all count as 1).



    Contest rules gave a minimum number of Heroes, units or buildings; but it's obvious that making four heroes should be rewarded compared to making 1 hero.

    3 IMO ideas:

    1) Is not obvious, and it should be wrote in the rules from the begining, that was a post-poll rule creation.
    There is a similar rule in the MiniRPG contest and everybody is more or less doing 1 awsome hero (even with voice acting) instead of 4 not that awsome.

    so 1 hero 5 heroes, 8, 12 heroes should all have same weigth in theory if min is 1.

    2) Quantity should not be better than quality. 2 quality heroes should beat 4 with less quality.


    3) IMO if 4 heroes will reward more points than making 1, but is not written, rules should say minimum: 4 heroes from the begining, so everybody will do 4 heroes and not waste time in items or custom UI or 6 custom towers, so it wont happen this, some did 4 another did 2, and the one that did 2 gets low score because was confident that minimum was 1.

    on good point, is just affect creativity points so IMO, is not a big issue, a minor thing to consider for future contest.
    for future contests: make the 4 heroes mandatory in rules so everybody can mindfully compite on equal conditions.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2020 at 12:28 AM
  8. xYours Trulyx

    xYours Trulyx

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    Aah, another delay. Sure, why not.
     
  9. Heinvers

    Heinvers

    Arena Moderator

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    We will try to be more strict with judging criteria next time. Sorry but I'm swarmed atm. Thread approved.

    @Wazzz
     
  10. Wazzz

    Wazzz

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    Think we need to be more strict with it now tbh, it raises a lot of questions.
     
  11. WolfFarkas

    WolfFarkas

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    what do you mean? call for a re-judging? thats quite a lot of burocracy, I dont recommend it... is better to just let it pass,
     
  12. Wazzz

    Wazzz

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    It's not really better to just let it pass when it seems miss the mark completely on what the contest was about - for those of us who actually participated, there was definitely a level of time investment in following a contest's themes and rules. To have a judging result that ignores those themes and rules completely defeats the purpose of the contest at all, and really removes any motivation to participate in future contests.
     
  13. EnterpriseReforged

    EnterpriseReforged

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    I would agree, the best thing to do it learn from the mistakes made and move forward because as Wolf stated, it will have a bureaucratic impact and make people less likely to want to participate if they see this type of thing.
     
  14. WolfFarkas

    WolfFarkas

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    with the botton of my heart, I understand your point, I was in that situation too.

    please read this , complete if posible:



    and then follow my recomendation, let it pass,
     
  15. Wazzz

    Wazzz

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    It already makes it less likely for people to participate as it is. The biggest issue is that results were released when it was already said before that they were being reworked - yet upon release, nothing was reworked. It already went against what was established by our Arena Moderator, and yet these are the results that get published and then approved.
     
  16. EnterpriseReforged

    EnterpriseReforged

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    That was what I was saying btw sorry for the confusion, situations as such make people think "why should I try this" if that makes sense.
     
  17. Wazzz

    Wazzz

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    I'm not entirely sure if I see where you are coming from, but I think in a sense it does make sense - when the judging doesn't follow the rules or themes of the contest, it does raise a lot of "why should I try this?" questions, and when the results seem to have an unusual bias it really comes across as it doesn't matter what you do, the results will never favor newer contestants.
     
  18. EnterpriseReforged

    EnterpriseReforged

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    Correct, think about it if people see the police beating people what are they to think about the police? not saying there is favoritism or anything like that at play but it's very hard to make contests like this fair enough.
     
  19. WolfFarkas

    WolfFarkas

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    this thread was approved by the arena mod already.
    is quite 99% imposible to revert that.

    I mean is a very very hard crusade to make an appeal and try to revert a result ( seriously I tried).


    and a little of bias, favoritism, or poor judging can be tolerated.

    unless there is a clear overwhelming injustice or a huge violation of the code of conduct of a judge,
    just let it pass.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2020 at 1:28 AM
  20. Wazzz

    Wazzz

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    Feb 5, 2009
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    Oh definitely, and while I also don't know if there was favoritism or not at play myself, it's hard not to see there being a lot of free passes given to some entries while others just seem to get far more harshly critiqued. As far as the results go, there was a /huge/ drastic shift in standards. It is pretty uncanny, especially when you see some personal touches being praised, and yet others don't even get so much as a mention.

    It definitely did seem to be a questionable decision to approve the thread while it was still in such a questionable state.