Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

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Inevitable
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Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Inevitable » January 26th, 2018, 11:34 am

A close friend of mine on Steam says how Wesnoth is more luck-based than skill-based. He even said how the Loyalists are really OP, and the top people on the ladder use them. He agreed with the statement that the people at the top of the ladder are just lucky comparatively to who's below them, with small margins of skill, since skill is apparently largely irrelevant in Wesnoth according to him. Can someone put forward either some Math on this, forward an explanation or both? He said how the units don't hit properly too, how they only "hit when they want to hit," and, given my improvement of Wesnoth, I've won a lot more games than I have a few years back. I feel strongly that he's wrong, so is he?

Just a side note, he even said that I'm lucky when I told him I have won a fair few games - almost to say that I only won them because I'm lucky.
Last edited by Inevitable on January 26th, 2018, 11:55 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Elder2
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Elder2 » January 26th, 2018, 11:41 am

Maybe he watched only replays of RiceMuncher. That is the only explanation I can come up with.

Of course he is wrong, his only argument is basically that because luck exists therefore its luck based, and apparently he overvalues luck.

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Xara
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Xara » January 26th, 2018, 11:44 am

Inevitable wrote:He even said how the Loyalists are really OP, and the top people on the ladder use them. He agreed with the statement that the people at the top of the ladder are just lucky comparatively to who's below them, with small margins of skill,
To put it in a simple way, he would be entitled to such opinion if he actually reached there.
Inevitable wrote:He said how the units don't hit properly too, how they only "hit when they want to hit,"
This is an open source game, there is no point to suspect such things.
It pronounces Sha'ha, not Zara.

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Inevitable
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Inevitable » January 26th, 2018, 2:17 pm

It's actually interesting, because I actually think he just believes Wesnoth is so RNG based because he loses a lot. I even asked him what is his reasoning, and then he just tried to avoid the question by saying things like: "are you KIDDING me?" and "I've already said it so I don't need to re-paste it." Oh well, if he won't actually explain his reasoning properly aside from vague references to anecdotes, then his point seems pretty baseless, since anecdotes can be misinterpreted, biased or fallacious.

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Ravana
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Ravana » January 26th, 2018, 2:27 pm

If it is rng based, then he would win half without knowing anything as well.

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Pentarctagon
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Pentarctagon » January 26th, 2018, 2:30 pm

There's also this stickied thread, if you haven't already seen it.
99 little bugs in the code, 99 little bugs
take one down, patch it around
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Sapient » January 26th, 2018, 5:27 pm

Inevitable wrote:I even asked him what is his reasoning, and then he just tried to avoid the question by saying things like: "are you KIDDING me?" and "I've already said it so I don't need to re-paste it." Oh well, if he won't actually explain his reasoning properly aside from vague references to anecdotes, then his point seems pretty baseless, since anecdotes can be misinterpreted, biased or fallacious.
Maybe you could help him save some time by using this handy form. ;)
http://www.wesnoth.org/wiki/User:Sapient... "Looks like your skills saved us again. Uh, well at least, they saved Soarin's apple pie."

Daravel
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Daravel » January 27th, 2018, 12:56 am

Inevitable wrote:A close friend of mine on Steam says how Wesnoth is more luck-based than skill-based. He even said how the Loyalists are really OP, and the top people on the ladder use them. He agreed with the statement that the people at the top of the ladder are just lucky comparatively to who's below them, with small margins of skill, since skill is apparently largely irrelevant in Wesnoth according to him. Can someone put forward either some Math on this, forward an explanation or both? He said how the units don't hit properly too, how they only "hit when they want to hit," and, given my improvement of Wesnoth, I've won a lot more games than I have a few years back. I feel strongly that he's wrong, so is he?

Just a side note, he even said that I'm lucky when I told him I have won a fair few games - almost to say that I only won them because I'm lucky.
As was mentioned above, if the game were entirely down to chance, then everyone would win 50% of the time (in 1v1). Skill demonstrably plays a significant role in the game (e.g. time of day - choosing when to attack is entirely skill based). Even in a highly luck based game, it is skill which separates people (those who are more adept at 'managing their luck').

Though I can imagine where your friend's frustration comes from. Wesnoth is heavily influenced by the RNG. It is entirely possible to have unwinnable games and the specific tides of luck can tip the balance of close games also. I can't play multiplayer Wesnoth for this reason - I don't mind losing, but I despise losing to luck.
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Pentarctagon
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Pentarctagon » January 28th, 2018, 7:39 am

The topic of luck/RNG in general does also remind me of a quote from Star Trek:
Jean-Luc Picard wrote:It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness, that is life.
99 little bugs in the code, 99 little bugs
take one down, patch it around
-2,147,483,648 little bugs in the code

name
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by name » January 29th, 2018, 8:01 pm

Which leads us to the ultimate question:

Is life mainly luck and not skill-based?

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Eagle_11
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Eagle_11 » January 30th, 2018, 3:51 pm

Seeing how life is such archaically structured that you cannot even pick where to spawn, there is some truth to that statement.

Daravel
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Daravel » January 30th, 2018, 11:38 pm

Pentarctagon wrote:The topic of luck/RNG in general does also remind me of a quote from Star Trek:
Jean-Luc Picard wrote:It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness, that is life.
But Wesnoth is a game, not real life.

This is purely my opinion and has no bearing on anything whatsoever; but no multiplayer game should ever have the possibility in which a player has no chance of victory. The object of the exercise is fun and there is nothing fun about playing 5/10/15 minutes and the game simply deciding that you lose.
Dialgoue editing for non-native English speakers - I will edit your scenario/campaign dialogue
I can also help re-write your campaign dialogue, drop me a PM (Completed projects: The Sojournings of Grog)

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Krogen
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Krogen » January 30th, 2018, 11:58 pm

Yes, luck will decide games, and yes, it'll make some of them unwinnable, especially in multiplayer. Anyone who wants to play this game has to accept that.
That's why it's good that there are tournaments, or even better, Ladder, where it's the overall performance of a player that counts, not one lucky or unlucky game. The influence of luck in situations and single games can be huge, but skill will always prevail in the long run. There are some players on Ladder with several hundred games and 80% winrate. How is that?
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Velensk » January 31st, 2018, 12:21 am

I'd describe it like this: If your opponent is playing well and you aren't, your odds of winning are minuscule but exist. If both players are playing well, there is still plenty of opportunity for one to play better and have higher odds of winning (though he may still lose).

If you are sufficiently skilled, your odds of getting through any of the expert campaigns on normal without having to restart a level more than a couple times are pretty good (assuming you know the campaign). If you don't know your stuff, the odds of getting through an expert campaign on normal at all aren't even worth laughing at (unless you are patient enough to save scum repeatedly in situations that are hopeless).

Above all, wesnoth will teach you that managing luck is a skill.
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Re: Is Wesnoth mainly luck and not skill-based?

Post by Tad_Carlucci » January 31st, 2018, 12:40 am

Wesnoth is not the only game where luck is a factor. And it far from alone in complaints about luck. And, most certainly, it is not the only one where you need to learn to plan both for bad, and good, luck.

Be honest, raise your hand: how many of you got bored of the games where, once you learned that all you needed was The Plan (step here, wait until that happens, dash there, turn the corner and shoot the enemy in the back) you win every time?

Don't you think you'd still be playing if, every now and then, you'd accidentally sneeze, or kick a wrench you didn't see, only to turn the corner to find the patrolling guard grinning and fingering his blade just before he slips it up under your rib cage?

My point: take out luck and you become nothing more than a robot executing your program.

Finally, remember, if we did take out luck, it would just mean complaints that we're not giving enough new challenges to keep players interested while they discover and memorize their new program.
I forked real life and now I'm getting merge conflicts.

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