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Old 09-20-2017, 09:04 PM   #42
MCXD
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Just some general thoughts of mine. I know they may not be worth much since I'm not active, but this whole thing really interests me because I do want to see the ASB succeed. This isn't an actual proposal, though I could make one sometime if people want.

My philosophy is that the battles are the most important thing. The main attraction of all this is the battles themselves. It's the core gameplay element which will keep coming back. All this stuff about progression and ranks is all good, but if both battlers and the refs aren't coming out of a battle feeling fulfilled, then all the work in the world can go into acquisition and competitions, but at the end of the day the league won't function. There won't be enough people wanting to battle and wanting to ref. I would go as far as to say that if the trainers and refs aren't interested in a battle with no rewards at all, then the whole thing just isn't fun enough. That may be an unrealistic expectation, but it's an ideal which I vehemently believe we should be at least aiming for.

Of course, I'm not just talking about the in-battle mechanics, but also league mechanics (acquisition for example) which directly impact upon how people consume and enjoy battles. It all comes back to the battling in the end.

With that in mind, I think our focus should be:

* Streamlining registration, acquisition, battle formation, conducting battles, concluding battles and recording results as much as possible.
* Removing barriers which prevent people from battling how they want to (e.g. with Pokemon they like).
* Removing barriers which prevent people from reffing how they want to (e.g. freedom of creativity, within reason).
* Providing positive support to trainers who wish to learn how to battle, or learn how to ref.
* Consolidating, clarifying and simplifying rules surrounding battle, to reduce complexity and confusion for everyone.
* Adjusting round to round battle mechanics to better reward adaption and creativity, rather than punishing it.
* Balancing Pokemon and moves so people don't feel forced into particular Pokemon or strategies to compete.
* Reducing undesirable aspects of Unstable Equilibrium, both in battle and across the league.
* Ensuring that both winners and losers in battle feel a sense of progression and satisfaction.
* Ensuring that refs leave a battle feeling fulfilled, rather than scrutinized or antagonized.

I'm very much in favor of the proposals that I've read which reduce the number of statistics that are floating around, like SP, TP, TL and KOs, and remove their absolute importance towards enabling someone to battle how they want (e.g. by locking Pokemon behind TL levels). The commitment required currently, and the fact you pretty much must win, makes it feel incredibly daunting as a new or returning trainer, and makes loses feel really brutal. Besides, less stats is good, because the ASB should be about battling, not bookkeeping.

That said, I do think there needs to be more serious discussions about how battles are run and how reffing is done. Right now it feels like ASB doesn't know whether it wants to be a serious business, no-nonsense competitive league with very well established rules and mechanics, or if it wants to be an RP battling league with flashy and creative battle scenarios that are about being fun to read and write. I know that in an ideal world, it would be both, but right now it just seems confused, and that's a major source of tension and tedium when it comes to reffing and battling. Right now, it's too complicated and rigorous, both in and out of battle, to enjoy as creative writing, and it's too inconsistent and ambiguous to enjoy as a competitive game without a lot of butting heads... or without sticking around for 10 years to learn all of the subtleties. It needs a clearer identity, and that's especially important because whether it's trying to be hardcore competitive or creative will impact upon what the best decisions are regarding acquisition, gyms, competitions, etc. Everything stems from that.
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Last edited by MCXD; 09-20-2017 at 09:18 PM.
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