Rulebook Press

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cdngooner
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Rulebook Press

#1 Post by cdngooner » Tue Feb 15, 2022 8:43 pm

Can anyone explain to me why Rulebook Press isn't the default system here on WebDip (and perhaps other online hosts too)? I mean, maybe it wouldn't make games that much shorter (although it would make them somewhat shorter). I just wonder why the online game decided to go a different way from the in-person game?
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Re: Rulebook Press

#2 Post by Doom427 » Wed Feb 16, 2022 6:21 pm

Mostly cause it's nice to send more press than less. Locking out press means everyone has to just do nothing for a phase. Typically retreats and unit placement phases are shorter, but that doesn't work great for online play.
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Re: Rulebook Press

#3 Post by JECE » Fri Feb 18, 2022 3:53 pm

cdngooner wrote:
Tue Feb 15, 2022 8:43 pm
Can anyone explain to me why Rulebook Press isn't the default system here on WebDip (and perhaps other online hosts too)? I mean, maybe it wouldn't make games that much shorter (although it would make them somewhat shorter). I just wonder why the online game decided to go a different way from the in-person game?
I imagine that it is a holdover from playing Diplomacy by mail and e-mail, and the beginnings of this site too when anonymous games didn't exist. It made little sense to work on coding rulebook press when no diplomacy during the retreats/disbands and builds/disbands phases couldn't be enforced.

I agree, though, that it would be ideal if rulebook press were the default system now that the necessary coding is in place. It's unfortunate that there isn't a version of public press that prohibits sending press during the retreats/disbands and builds/disbands phases.
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Re: Rulebook Press

#4 Post by jmo1121109 » Sun Feb 20, 2022 3:53 am

JECE wrote:
Fri Feb 18, 2022 3:53 pm
cdngooner wrote:
Tue Feb 15, 2022 8:43 pm
Can anyone explain to me why Rulebook Press isn't the default system here on WebDip (and perhaps other online hosts too)? I mean, maybe it wouldn't make games that much shorter (although it would make them somewhat shorter). I just wonder why the online game decided to go a different way from the in-person game?
I imagine that it is a holdover from playing Diplomacy by mail and e-mail, and the beginnings of this site too when anonymous games didn't exist. It made little sense to work on coding rulebook press when no diplomacy during the retreats/disbands and builds/disbands phases couldn't be enforced.

I agree, though, that it would be ideal if rulebook press were the default system now that the necessary coding is in place. It's unfortunate that there isn't a version of public press that prohibits sending press during the retreats/disbands and builds/disbands phases.
The main reason is really just that it confuses people who think the game broke. It isn't an intuitive functionality piece for people who've never played the board game.
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Re: Rulebook Press

#5 Post by JECE » Sun Feb 20, 2022 8:28 pm

jmo1121109 wrote:
Sun Feb 20, 2022 3:53 am
JECE wrote:
Fri Feb 18, 2022 3:53 pm
cdngooner wrote:
Tue Feb 15, 2022 8:43 pm
Can anyone explain to me why Rulebook Press isn't the default system here on WebDip (and perhaps other online hosts too)? I mean, maybe it wouldn't make games that much shorter (although it would make them somewhat shorter). I just wonder why the online game decided to go a different way from the in-person game?
I imagine that it is a holdover from playing Diplomacy by mail and e-mail, and the beginnings of this site too when anonymous games didn't exist. It made little sense to work on coding rulebook press when no diplomacy during the retreats/disbands and builds/disbands phases couldn't be enforced.

I agree, though, that it would be ideal if rulebook press were the default system now that the necessary coding is in place. It's unfortunate that there isn't a version of public press that prohibits sending press during the retreats/disbands and builds/disbands phases.
The main reason is really just that it confuses people who think the game broke. It isn't an intuitive functionality piece for people who've never played the board game.
What are the chances of getting a version of public press where you can't send messages during the retreats/disbands and builds/disbands phases?
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Re: Rulebook Press

#6 Post by A_Tin_Can » Thu Mar 03, 2022 5:10 am

Oh! I know this one!

When I implemented rulebook press, I didn't make it the default because at the time changes to the default game settings were extremely contentious, and I didn't feel like having a fight in the forum.

I know the PPSC advocates will disagree here, but I tried really hard to only make changes to the defaults that the majority of the users would support or find unsurprising.

I agree with JECE's answer about the history of play by mail -> web play being the reason that sites didn't start with "rulebook press" (I spent ages trying to come up with a name that wasn't clumsy for "rulebook press" - I'm still not happy with it, because it doesn't easily describe what it does if you haven't read the rules).

From a personal perspective, I started playing online, and although I think that rulebook press is "purer" (has interesting properties, and is what is actually described in the rulebook) - I still enjoy the negotiation in the retreats and build phases. I don't mind it being the default.
It's unfortunate that there isn't a version of public press that prohibits sending press during the retreats/disbands and builds/disbands phases.
This would be a super trivial thing to implement.

When I was working on webdip, I didn't want to implement too many options, though - as each time we diversified the number of options available, the total number of games went down (this was part of the rationale for removing PPSC - although for the full explanation you'd have to dig through the many many forum posts about it).

My long term plan was to implement a "game queue", where you'd select a range of settings you were happy to play, and it would put you in a game that matched your ranges. Unfortunately, the way the game creation and gamemaster works on webdip means that this would be a substantial code change.
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Re: Rulebook Press

#7 Post by cdngooner » Thu Mar 03, 2022 12:30 pm

Thanks for that explanation from an authoritative source, A Tin Can. :-)

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Re: Rulebook Press

#8 Post by Yonni » Thu Mar 03, 2022 2:15 pm

I very much like being able to negotiate during builds and retreats. I don't see a reason to get rid of it. However, I also see why we'd want to speed those phases up. The best solution, imo, is what they do on other sites and let build/retreats be a different phase length than the others.
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Re: Rulebook Press

#9 Post by thamrick » Thu Mar 03, 2022 6:03 pm

I certainly see the appeal to having shorter build/retreat phases, but it is also nice to have a set time that phases will advance. It can make planning your play time easier for those who can't check in hyper-frequently. Obviously, you could have the option and opt out of shorter build/retreat times.

On the same token, it could also be nice to have a "phases won't adjudicate when everyone readies" option so that phases always advance at a set time.

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Re: Rulebook Press

#10 Post by fourofswords » Fri Mar 04, 2022 8:05 am

The reason that Rulebook press is not a part of online Diplomacy(on any site I've tried) is actually very different from face to face Diplomacy. Someone said because more press is better. I won't judge better nor worse, but a lot of press is one of the reasons why the online game is different. Online Diplomacy and face to face Diplomacy are practically entirely different games. The long deadlines and tons of press are the two main reasons. In ftf, one must think very quickly, negotiate quickly, and there is a lot more honest play and honest mistakes. The deceitful have less time to work their magic on newbies. ftf is TONS more fun. Short deadlines and rulebook press make online diplomacy a tiny bit more like ftf. I like rulebook press. If you can't think for yourself, online Diplomacy is for you!
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Re: Rulebook Press

#11 Post by Octavious » Fri Mar 04, 2022 4:48 pm

Ftf is indeed somewhat different from online diplomacy. Due to time constraints the game is very rarely about a titanic struggle for the solo, and more a race to get as many centres as you can before someone has to go home and have dinner. Different skills are required for the game. Whereas online diplomacy demands well crafted communications and depth of thought, ftf diplomacy favours talents such as the ability to write stuff down quickly and good spelling.

Rulebook press make online diplomacy a tiny bit more like ftf, and as such is best avoided ;)
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Re: Rulebook Press

#12 Post by Claesar » Sat Mar 05, 2022 1:16 pm

Octavious wrote:
Fri Mar 04, 2022 4:48 pm
Ftf is indeed somewhat different from online diplomacy. Due to time constraints the game is very rarely about a titanic struggle for the solo, and more a race to get as many centres as you can before someone has to go home and have dinner. Different skills are required for the game. Whereas online diplomacy demands well crafted communications and depth of thought, ftf diplomacy favours talents such as the ability to write stuff down quickly and good spelling.

Rulebook press make online diplomacy a tiny bit more like ftf, and as such is best avoided ;)
It's not entirely fair to compare FtF with daily games. The latter should be compared to postal Dip. Reach back to 2015 when you played your last live online game. You completed your titanic struggle for the solo in a 5min/phase FP game. That's akin to FtF.
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Re: Rulebook Press

#13 Post by Octavious » Sat Mar 05, 2022 3:08 pm

Fairness would be an unfortunate habit for a Diplomacy player to adopt ;)

Live games still give you more time for actual diplomacy, truth be told. To much time in ftf is taken up by trying to find somewhere to have a conversation and in the competition to get a good look at the map without making it obvious which bit you're looking at. It is easy to forget how useful being able to glance at the screen and see easily who owns what and what they've just done actually is.

Admittedly you do lose a little something special when you go from ftf to online, but you lose a hell of a lot of irritating faff as well, and you also gain a fair bit.
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Re: Rulebook Press

#14 Post by THC » Sun Mar 06, 2022 5:35 pm

I don't see why Rulebook Press couldn't be part of the online experience if that's what players wanted to play. It really doesn't move Online play that much closer to FTF or vFTF, frankly.

I don't think it would make games shorter, though. Short deadlines do that; long deadlines are long deadlines whether you're allowed to communicate or not.

Given that webDip doesn't provide for different deadline lengths for different phases, and that Online play requires a decent amount of time for diplomacy phases (if you want to play Diplomacy, that is) I don't think it would make much sense to apply Rulebook Press here.

The thing with Online play is that you need to provide time for people to talk to each other. I'm in the UK; I could be in a game with someone from California and someone from Melbourne. How much time do I have during a 24 hour period to talk to those people, especially when you have a life outside of Dip? (Shocking, I know :-D )

Now consider deadline lengths. On webDip there are 18 deadline lengths shorter than 24 hours. I've got to tell you, in a typical 24 hour period I can possibly get online for 2 short sessions. In that time I've got to read messages, consider the content, respond to messages, change orders... You know what I'm getting at. If I were in the game I described above, that would potentially be sending those players a single message a day.

In reality, then, I need deadlines of 48 - 72 hours. I may not be typical in that, and part of it is that I may not be typical in the amount of diplomacy I do. But that's the reality for me. Now consider possibly 6 days when the only thing I can do is order a retreat/disband/build with nothing else to do.

Even if deadlines for retreat and adjustment phases could be made shorter than for the diplomacy phase, for me they'd need to be no less than 24 hours for safety's sake. Two days in a game in which an order or two is entered and nothing else can go on is still a silly length of time.

Compared to an FTF game, when everyone is in the room, or vFTF, when everyone is playing live, and the rules for no diplomacy during retreats and adjustments make sense, they simply don't make sense for Online play.

Frankly, if the reason were to make the games shorter, that wouldn't be a good enough reason anyway. There's a lamentable lack of diplomacy goes on in a lot of games online anyway; faster games - in this medium - mean poorer games (but that's a personal quality judgement that not everyone will agree with).
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Re: Rulebook Press

#15 Post by JECE » Tue Mar 08, 2022 2:02 am

THC wrote:
Sun Mar 06, 2022 5:35 pm
faster games - in this medium - mean poorer games
I agree 100%. :evil: If you haven't played a 3 ½ year game, you've never played a good game of on-line Diplomacy. :eyeroll:
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Re: Rulebook Press

#16 Post by THC » Thu Mar 10, 2022 6:57 pm

JECE wrote:
Tue Mar 08, 2022 2:02 am
THC wrote:
Sun Mar 06, 2022 5:35 pm
faster games - in this medium - mean poorer games
I agree 100%. :evil: If you haven't played a 3 ½ year game, you've never played a good game of on-line Diplomacy. :eyeroll:
Whut? To Spring 1904? :-D
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Re: Rulebook Press

#17 Post by JECE » Sat Mar 12, 2022 4:45 pm

THC wrote:
Thu Mar 10, 2022 6:57 pm
JECE wrote:
Tue Mar 08, 2022 2:02 am
THC wrote:
Sun Mar 06, 2022 5:35 pm
faster games - in this medium - mean poorer games
I agree 100%. :evil: If you haven't played a 3 ½ year game, you've never played a good game of on-line Diplomacy. :eyeroll:
Whut? To Spring 1904? :-D
I was thinking more like Spring 2005, but sure! :lol:
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Re: Rulebook Press

#18 Post by THC » Tue Mar 15, 2022 12:57 am

fourofswords wrote:
Fri Mar 04, 2022 8:05 am
In ftf, one must think very quickly, negotiate quickly, and there is a lot more honest play and honest mistakes. The deceitful have less time to work their magic on newbies. ftf is TONS more fun. Short deadlines and rulebook press make online diplomacy a tiny bit more like ftf. I like rulebook press. If you can't think for yourself, online Diplomacy is for you!
Hmm. This isn't something I'd agree with at all. Diplopups have less time to think for themselves, I'd say. The number of times I've seen novices to FTF competition Diplomacy crash and burn simply because they're not experienced in making quick decisions and because they're lead astray by the more experienced players. If you've never seen an experienced Dipmeister hurrying a novice into a conversation and befuddling them into simply trailing along with their tails wagging uncertainly, you've not really seen a Dipmeister at work.

On the other hand, Online play rewards those who can think for themselves. Yes, Dipmeisters are still able to nudge the Pups the way they want them to go, of course, and they do have longer to encourage that. But the chance to sit back and think again that comes with extended deadline play - of any kind - means that you're less likely to become a Dipbitch.

Richard Sharp thought extended deadline play was better than FTF. He enjoyed Postal Dip because, he claimed, there were less mistakes and better quality play because players had more time to consider their moves.

For me, the difference is that, in FTF play, you have to make decisions quickly, and persuade others to come along with you quickly. The only advantage that you have in doing this over Online play is in being able to read body language. And the downside of having a lot of time to consider moves in Online play is that you can end up multiple-guessing yourself and persuading yourself out of the right moves.

Perhaps Andrew Goff is closer to the truth, though. He said that the main issue Online players have is getting their orders in. Remembering that, during the Diplomacy phase in FTF Dip, you have to submit your orders is made more difficult by experienced players tying you down in lengthy conversations so that you run out of time. Not a common issue with Online play (although losing track of deadlines does happen).
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Re: Rulebook Press

#19 Post by Claesar » Tue Mar 15, 2022 2:07 pm

I've definitely missed more deadlines in online play..
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Re: Rulebook Press

#20 Post by JECE » Tue Mar 15, 2022 4:27 pm

THC wrote:
Tue Mar 15, 2022 12:57 am
Remembering that, during the Diplomacy phase in FTF Dip, you have to submit your orders is made more difficult by experienced players tying you down in lengthy conversations so that you run out of time.
While this is probably true in most face-to-face games, I think that it is actually against the rules of face-to-face play. The diplomatic phase and the order-writing phase are two separate phases according to the rules of Diplomacy.
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