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1 hour battle time limit

Discussion in 'Policy Review' started by Zarel, Oct 8, 2017.

  1. Zarel

    Zarel Not a Yuyuko fan
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    So, in at least XY, ORAS, and SM, there's a game mechanic where the game automatically ends after 1 hour, and goes to tiebreaker.

    - At tiebreaker, the winner is whoever has the most unfainted Pokémon left.
    - If both players have the same number of unfainted Pokémon, the winner is whoever has the most total HP percentage left.
    - If both players have the same total HP percentage, the winner is whoever has the most total number of HP points left.
    - If both players have the same total number of HP points left, the game ends in a tie.

    Jellicent's post saying to implement it got 25 likes and no objections: https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/endless-stall-clause.3610486/#post-7448832

    I'm about to implement this into PS, but some people in Smogtours didn't want it implemented. I don't really want a shitstorm like HP Percentage Clause was, and honestly I don't think it should be my job to decide policy and all that, so here's how it's going to work:

    In one week, I'm going to fix this bug (and implement this mechanic of forcing games to go to tiebreaker). Feel free to use this time to discuss things such as a clause-mod (like HP Percentage Mod or Sleep Clause Mod) that allows OU to have longer games than possible on-cart. I don't expect there to be consensus on this, so to be clear: I will only implement such a clause-mod if a senior staff member tells me (speaking on behalf of Smogon as a whole) to implement it.

    edit: In case it was unclear: This is going into effect for VGC and Battle Spot no matter what. The week grace period is just in case you want to stop it for going into effect for OU etc.
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2017
  2. ABR

    ABR
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    In order to effectively maintain the status quo of PS' functionality, I am going to propose the No Time Limit Mod

    "No Time Limit Mod: Games have no total time limit"

    This mod lets us do what we've always done while a 1 hour time limit would have very harmful metagame effects for singles formats. For example, someone could be up say 5-4 in mons but lose the game in the long run so they take a long time + make super passive plays constantly to reach the 1 hour limit. The 1 hour rule just seems way too exploitable and drastic of an attempt to be more like in-game when it was never intended for competitive 6v6 singles anyway.
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2017
  3. DragonWhale

    DragonWhale It's not a misplay, it's RNG manipulation
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    Is it going to be 1 hour for battle spot and vgc as well? In gen 6 the timers for these formats were 30 minutes (15 for irl vgc events), and in gen 7 they both have a 10 minute chess timer with no full match timer. The 1 hour limit is for wifi battles (where smogon formats would be played on cart).
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2017
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  4. Jhon

    Jhon Someday in the Rain
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    In regards to implementing it for Battle Spot and VGC, BS in SM doesn't use an overall timer as it did in ORAS (then 30min). It only uses the 'Your Time' 10min move selection timer. VGC as played on the cart ladder follows this too. It's only at live events that there's a 50min time limit, with 3 additional turns after time is called, to complete a Bo3.
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2017
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  5. Zarel

    Zarel Not a Yuyuko fan
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    Yes, I'll need someone to help out with this aspect of it, too.
  6. Nails

    Nails Nuke the Weebs
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    You can't accurately implement a 1 hour time limit without implementing accurate move animation lengths. Without that information, the timer is just an arbitrary cutoff while also being functionally different from cart play. Considering PS has instant animations, the maximum amount of turns that can be played on cart is still far fewer (and the actual max number which works out to somewhere around 400 iirc? could be wrong that number just comes to mind), so I'm not sure what the point of this is. It causes headaches with disconnections (which should just hard end a game if we're trying to implement silly things like this) potentially timing out tour games. I'd be fine with implementing the No Time Limit mod if you Really want to acknowledge it but it's always been one of the few ways that sims intentionally break from cart play (along with sleep clause, a battle log, the ability to forfeit between turns, the ability to cancel moves, the ability to reconnect, etc) and it's a good thing that it does. It doesn't help VGC at all and just seems to be a change for the sake of making a change.

    Also while I'm here the current VGC timer sorta sucks considering it has a 15 minute cap with 60 second turns and adds back time every time you make a move... which all seem quite arbitrary and not accurate (I think? I don't actually play on battle spot much so maybe it is lol. Certainly not accurate to tournament play though.) Maybe I'm missing something but that's not very close to how the VGC timer works ingame. It's not the point of this thread exactly but the current singles timer is very good and doesn't need to be messed with.
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2017
  7. Nails

    Nails Nuke the Weebs
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    If timer stall on the ladder is a problem you could implement something where around turn 150-200 the time added back per turn starts scaling down to maybe half of normal, which for players with animations should make them move pretty quickly while not impacting the vast majority of games. Hard caps are no fun and a generally lazy and abusable way of handling things imo.
  8. Sam

    Sam why not seize the pleasure at once?
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    This is a change that could drastically affect Smogon metagames, I would prefer it be claused out for non-cart metagames.
  9. teal6

    teal6
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    I've argued about this a ton on Discord the past two days so I figured I'll write my basic points out here publicly as well.

    The implementation of an overall game-timer for the sake of cartridge accuracy "solves" a problem that doesn't exist and in the process creates a number of incredibly notable issues for the decade+ running tournament circuit that we've created and worked to upkeep. Tournament players don't constitute the bulk of Pokemon/Showdown players but, and I think this will make sense to most that read it, should be taken into special consideration when implementing sweeping changes to the way that the game is played. This is in light of the massive contribution the tournament scene provides in terms of metagame development, community culture and entertainment. We are verging on an e-sport with some other things in the way of getting there "fully" and I think that the voices of any given e-sports most prominent members should be given consideration above others. I apologize if this gives off the "Smogon Elitist" point of view.

    That said, the implementation of an hour-long game timer (which is the one I'll use as an example for the remainder of this post) creates a very real problem for the way our tournaments work, especially given the tiebreaker methods in the OP. I'll use the same example I used on Discord:

    Say I am playing vs Ojama in SM OU for OST. This is an individual tour and one I'd very much like to win in, so I have no problem using stall from the get-go. However, there is a large gap in skill between me and him, and I know that he will win against me 9/10 times even if I do stall. I can drag the game out but he will, most likely, be able to break through my efforts given enough turns and time due to being the better player. Without a timer, he wins 90% of the time and advances. With no overall timer, I may say fuck it to stall and attempt to come up with a solution that isn't bog-standard spamming of a known Double-Defog team, and instead create and invent new strategies that he wouldn't know how to deal with.

    Now, in this same scenario, imagine there is an hour-long timer in play. Ojama may bring balance with a setup sweeper that is capable of running through my team should it get a free turn vs one of my six Pokemon. However, to get to that point, he will likely have to pivot, sacrifice and waste mons to engineer this turn. All the while I am doing nothing more than switching to a resist and hitting the healing move. He may be, over time, creating a positioning advantage wherein he gets his Salamence in against my Chansey and uses the one turn to win the game, but he might be down 5-1 in the process. This is not a new concept, this is something I wrote about offense players having to get comfortable with in my now two year old archived RMT. To the SS and other non-tournament players reading this, please understand that I do indeed have a fairly solid grasp on how to play offense in general and against stall. It often involves being "down" in terms of Pokemon but gaining positioning slowly but surely.

    If there is a one hour timer I, as the stall player, can recognize that my opponent is gaining this advantage and that he will, over a given period, be able to engineer a situation in which he wins. However I have X number of seconds per turn to sit and do nothing, having decided to switch to Chansey/Toxapex/Tangrowth etc. ages ago. I maintain the mon advantage and the HP advantage while he slowly eeks out the positioning advantage. Alas, an hour passes and the tiebreaker comes into effect. I might be staring down a +2/+2 Salamence but I win, for whatever reason.

    Yes - as some members have brought up Timer Stalling can be recognized as a legitimate strategy. But if we have explicitly acknowledged that certain strategies are simply incredibly unfun and non-productive to competitiveness in the past and as such claused them out, why refuse to do so here? There is no active, decent tournament player that wants this implemented. As I said in a previous post a few months ago, the game that is most often brought up in terms of exceeding appropriate length is Tele v ABR in OLT III, which frankly had a whole host of other factors involved in it and had several avenues of being "solved" that weren't taken due to the two people involved in the game. It is incredibly not relevant to any discussion regarding overall game timer.

    In summation, I beg you not to implement any sort of overall game timer for any of the following tiers: SM Ubers / SM OU / SM UU / SM RU / SM NU / SM DOU / SM LC / ORAS OU / BW OU / DPP OU / ADV OU / GSC OU / RBY OU. I do not care about what is more faithful to the cartridge for any of these tiers whatsoever, I care about the almost decade-and-a-half attempt we've given to create a competitive tournament circuit on this website (and in Pokemon as a whole). Smogon's efforts and tournament community have created something that has at times taken the place of GF and arguably surpassed it in a number of ways - competitiveness and viability of competition is a tertiary thought to Gamefreak/Nintendo but is our absolutely number one concern. To emulate and ape them any more than we have to, even if we explicitly acknowledge how detrimental it is, would be nothing short of foolishness. Adopt ABR's proposal from the first reply to this thread and let the concept die.
  10. Zarel

    Zarel Not a Yuyuko fan
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    Okay yes but, to be clear, there is no begging necessary here. I will do whatever Smogon as a whole decides. I just need an official decision from someone.
  11. blarajan

    blarajan Rest in Bling
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    vgc isn't hurting for this either

    Like, current timer situation is dope (Nails Zarel i didn't realize we were getting time back? I don't think we should. Zarel explained that we get a minute instead of 45 seconds because our animation time is shorter so he on average gave us an extra 15 seconds to make up for that which I'm fine with)

    Regarding an hour max...I'm exactly 0% interested and if you add it or not for VGC I'm fine either way. That being said, it's not a pressing issue or pressing feature and if you want to add it I implore you to stall on this mechanic change until we are all sure what to do with other tiers

    Like, cart metagames really don't get negatively impacted by this too much so it's no big deal for me whether we have it or not. We can chill for more debate
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2017
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