Do you think it is wrong ?

Discuss anything interesting but not remotely Countdown-related here.

Moderator: Jon O'Neill

Post Reply
User avatar
Marc Meakin
Postmaster General
Posts: 3241
Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 3:37 pm

Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Marc Meakin » Tue Oct 23, 2018 6:53 am

I'm about to embark on an adventure .
I'm playing in the World Scrabble Championship in Torquay from today.
There are two divisions but the first division is open to anyone.
So naturally I've entered in the open division.
I'm 96 out of 97, currently the full roster won't be confirmed until 10 am.

I entered mainly for a opportunity to play one of the big names on day one as I believe it's a random draw in the early games.
Players like Nigel Richards, Craig Beevers (of this parish ) or current champion David Eldar, may have to play the likes of me, and if I get all the good tiles early doors and block the board I could win and probably have a large detrimental effect on their ratings.
Some notably good players have boycotted the tournament because of this.
I wondered what those of you who play Scrabble think of this ?
GR MSL GNDT MSS NGVWL SRND NNLYC NNCT

User avatar
Graeme Cole
Series 65 Champion
Posts: 1528
Joined: Tue Jul 06, 2010 9:59 pm

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Graeme Cole » Tue Oct 23, 2018 8:54 am

These "notably good players" have every right not to play in the tournament if they don't want to. However, it seems like petty elitism to me.

It's like if the best Countdown players at a co-event were to complain about having to play lower-rated players in the first round because they might not pick optimally. That sort of complaint says more about the complainer than the complainee.

"First game, last letters round, I'm 40 points ahead, the first eight letters are NNSTRIEO, and this clueless newbie picks a consonant! How could you not know that INTONERS takes any vowel? Do they not learn this stuff nowadays? I could have made the final! I'm boycotting these events until they change the draw format and put them on their own kids' table where they can't cause trouble."

Gavin Chipper
Post-apocalypse
Posts: 8396
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 10:37 pm

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Gavin Chipper » Tue Oct 23, 2018 1:08 pm

I'm not sure I really see the problem. Surely the Scrabble rating system should be robust enough to deal with the occasional freak result. And how likely is it really that some randomer will beat a world-class player anyway? And even if their rating drops, surely it will pick up again soon enough. And it won't exactly stop them qualifying for the world championships...

But I think I have heard of some people on Apterous not wanting to play people rated too far below themselves because they see it as too risky for their rating, which is pretty fucking retarded really.

User avatar
Jon O'Neill
Ginger Ninja
Posts: 4162
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 12:45 am
Location: London, UK

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Jon O'Neill » Tue Oct 23, 2018 1:13 pm

Yeah, it's dumb.

Although maybe the ratings system is not a good one if it's overly sensitive to lucky outcomes in your chosen game. But why are people worried about the rating change from (presumably) the biggest tournament in the calendar?

Matt Bayfield
Devotee
Posts: 534
Joined: Thu May 14, 2009 8:39 am
Location: Seated at a computer

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Matt Bayfield » Tue Oct 23, 2018 3:59 pm

Graeme Cole wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 8:54 am
...last letters round, I'm 40 points ahead, the first eight letters are NNSTRIEO...
You didn't need to go to the 8th letter - what kind of amateur picks five consonants to start, and not some permutation of 4C 3V from the first seven?

Back to topic, I'm not aware of any rating system which is particularly robust to (a) matches between players with relatively huge ratings differences, and (b) players who play relatively few rated games, which would include some of the Scrabble World Championship entrants. And to answer Gavin's question: Scrabble, unlike chess or Countdown, is a game where luck plays enough of a role that a low skill player has a much greater chance of beating a top player. (For example, I beat a player ranked in North America's top 100, in one of my first competitive games.)

I can understand decisions of players to stay away and protect ranking points, especially if attempting to defend prestigious GM/Master/Expert titles which are awarded purely based on ranking points. If this is their motivation, rather than disdain for associating with low ranked players, I see no moral wrong.

Gavin Chipper
Post-apocalypse
Posts: 8396
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 10:37 pm

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Gavin Chipper » Tue Oct 23, 2018 5:13 pm

Matt Bayfield wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 3:59 pm
Graeme Cole wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 8:54 am
...last letters round, I'm 40 points ahead, the first eight letters are NNSTRIEO...
You didn't need to go to the 8th letter - what kind of amateur picks five consonants to start, and not some permutation of 4C 3V from the first seven?

Back to topic, I'm not aware of any rating system which is particularly robust to (a) matches between players with relatively huge ratings differences, and (b) players who play relatively few rated games, which would include some of the Scrabble World Championship entrants. And to answer Gavin's question: Scrabble, unlike chess or Countdown, is a game where luck plays enough of a role that a low skill player has a much greater chance of beating a top player. (For example, I beat a player ranked in North America's top 100, in one of my first competitive games.)

I can understand decisions of players to stay away and protect ranking points, especially if attempting to defend prestigious GM/Master/Expert titles which are awarded purely based on ranking points. If this is their motivation, rather than disdain for associating with low ranked players, I see no moral wrong.
I would have still thought that the world championship would be the main accolade.

User avatar
Marc Meakin
Postmaster General
Posts: 3241
Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 3:37 pm

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Marc Meakin » Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:33 pm

To be fair , most of the good players absent had visa problems anyway.
I got the pleasure to play Mark Nyman today ( of this parish ) needless to say he beat me but it was nip and tuck until I picked up the Q late on.
Still 2 wins from 8 will do me as I'm 73rd rated out of 75 so I'm currently 66th
GR MSL GNDT MSS NGVWL SRND NNLYC NNCT

User avatar
Jon O'Neill
Ginger Ninja
Posts: 4162
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 12:45 am
Location: London, UK

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Jon O'Neill » Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:58 pm

Marc Meakin wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:33 pm
To be fair , most of the good players absent had visa problems anyway.
I got the pleasure to play Mark Nyman today ( of this parish ) needless to say he beat me but it was nip and tuck until I picked up the Q late on.
Still 2 wins from 8 will do me as I'm 73rd rated out of 75 so I'm currently 66th
How do you sleep at night?

User avatar
Jon O'Neill
Ginger Ninja
Posts: 4162
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 12:45 am
Location: London, UK

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Jon O'Neill » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:16 pm

Matt Bayfield wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 3:59 pm
Back to topic, I'm not aware of any rating system which is particularly robust to (a) matches between players with relatively huge ratings differences, and (b) players who play relatively few rated games, which would include some of the Scrabble World Championship entrants. And to answer Gavin's question: Scrabble, unlike chess or Countdown, is a game where luck plays enough of a role that a low skill player has a much greater chance of beating a top player. (For example, I beat a player ranked in North America's top 100, in one of my first competitive games.)
Well if (a) and (b) are features of your chosen competitive discipline, and the luck factor is high in those games, then make sure nothing important depends on this ratings system. I assume once you get a title you can't lose it so it's just people who are trying to qualify for titles that this objection relates to. And if you can't average a certain rating over a year without risking it against a few lower-ranked players, you don't deserve the title of Expert or GM, you deserve the title of Coward.

Alternatively an easy improvement to the ratings system to determine titles would be to allow discounting of the worst tournament score. Or only count your top x and if they are of a certain standard then you get the title (similar to chess)... that would incentivise players to enter more tournaments rather than fewer.

User avatar
Marc Meakin
Postmaster General
Posts: 3241
Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 3:37 pm

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Marc Meakin » Wed Oct 24, 2018 5:08 am

The only thing that is used to counter potential upsets is the five point penalty per word challenge.
In some American tournaments you lose your turn for an incorrect challenge, which is harsh.
The 5 point penalty worked against me yesterday as one of my opponents played SALTIER then later hooked an S onto it and I challenged as SALTIERS didn't look right
GR MSL GNDT MSS NGVWL SRND NNLYC NNCT

User avatar
Marc Meakin
Postmaster General
Posts: 3241
Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 3:37 pm

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Marc Meakin » Wed Oct 24, 2018 5:11 am

Jon O'Neill wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:58 pm
Marc Meakin wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:33 pm
To be fair , most of the good players absent had visa problems anyway.
I got the pleasure to play Mark Nyman today ( of this parish ) needless to say he beat me but it was nip and tuck until I picked up the Q late on.
Still 2 wins from 8 will do me as I'm 73rd rated out of 75 so I'm currently 66th
How do you sleep at night?
I go to bed early , I have to be up at four.......oh was you being rhetorical, my Asperger's kicked in 😀
GR MSL GNDT MSS NGVWL SRND NNLYC NNCT

User avatar
Jon O'Neill
Ginger Ninja
Posts: 4162
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 12:45 am
Location: London, UK

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Jon O'Neill » Wed Oct 24, 2018 10:44 pm

Marc Meakin wrote:
Wed Oct 24, 2018 5:08 am
The only thing that is used to counter potential upsets is the five point penalty per word challenge.
In some American tournaments you lose your turn for an incorrect challenge, which is harsh.
The 5 point penalty worked against me yesterday as one of my opponents played SALTIER then later hooked an S onto it and I challenged as SALTIERS didn't look right
Well having no penalty for challenge is also completely moronic. What's to stop people challenging every play, apart from looking like a total cunt?

Gavin Chipper
Post-apocalypse
Posts: 8396
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 10:37 pm

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Gavin Chipper » Wed Oct 24, 2018 11:45 pm

Jon O'Neill wrote:
Wed Oct 24, 2018 10:44 pm
Marc Meakin wrote:
Wed Oct 24, 2018 5:08 am
The only thing that is used to counter potential upsets is the five point penalty per word challenge.
In some American tournaments you lose your turn for an incorrect challenge, which is harsh.
The 5 point penalty worked against me yesterday as one of my opponents played SALTIER then later hooked an S onto it and I challenged as SALTIERS didn't look right
Well having no penalty for challenge is also completely moronic. What's to stop people challenging every play, apart from looking like a total cunt?
So in your case there would be nothing to stop you.

User avatar
Marc Meakin
Postmaster General
Posts: 3241
Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 3:37 pm

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Marc Meakin » Thu Oct 25, 2018 5:37 am

Had a semi successful day yesterday I won 4 and lost 5 giving me a score of 6 wins eleven losses.
In a game in b division there was a game that ended 668 to 33.
It was not a typo, turns out the losing player was only seven, and missed about 8 turns because his moves were invalid.

I don't know about you guys, but I could never be that ruthless when playing a novice.
GR MSL GNDT MSS NGVWL SRND NNLYC NNCT

User avatar
Ian Volante
Postmaster General
Posts: 3317
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 8:15 pm
Location: Edinburgh
Contact:

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Ian Volante » Mon Oct 29, 2018 1:07 pm

Marc Meakin wrote:
Thu Oct 25, 2018 5:37 am
I don't know about you guys, but I could never be that ruthless when playing a novice.
I think it would disrespectful to play badly on purpose.
meles meles meles meles meles meles meles meles meles meles meles meles meles meles meles meles

User avatar
Marc Meakin
Postmaster General
Posts: 3241
Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 3:37 pm

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Marc Meakin » Mon Oct 29, 2018 1:24 pm

Ian Volante wrote:
Mon Oct 29, 2018 1:07 pm
Marc Meakin wrote:
Thu Oct 25, 2018 5:37 am
I don't know about you guys, but I could never be that ruthless when playing a novice.
I think it would disrespectful to play badly on purpose.
Not play badly but not be ruthless though, for example if I knew they were playing a phoney I would ask them if they were sure , especially if they were a 7 year old from Pakistan who may not have a complete grasp of English
GR MSL GNDT MSS NGVWL SRND NNLYC NNCT

User avatar
Thomas Carey
Kiloposter
Posts: 1000
Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 4:17 pm
Location: North-West of Bradford
Contact:

Re: Do you think it is wrong ?

Post by Thomas Carey » Mon Oct 29, 2018 2:39 pm

At a co event recently with very few "proper countdown players" the few of us decided to not take the piss, i.e. if there was a lot of spottable 7s and one obscure bullshit 8 to declare 7 if the opponent did. Obviously there's nothing you can really do if they declare like 5 but eh I think it helped
cheers maus

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests