Discussion of Stage Legality in Smash Bros. Ultimate

dav3yb

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"Jank" absolutely can mean random in Smash 4 context. I've heard it been used that way numerous times.
NEW RULE FOR EVERYONE: if you use the word "jank" you must define it and/or give specific examples. Otherwise the term can mean anything and becomes nothing more than an excuse to authenticate baseless claims
How about using THE definition? You know, the one that comes up when asking for the definition?

jan·ky
ˈjaNGkē/
adjective
NORTH AMERICANinformal
adjective: jank
  1. of extremely poor or unreliable quality.
    "the software is pretty janky"

But people should be giving examples of what they mean, especially if they call out specific stages
 
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MaestroDavros

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Just wanted to throw out there that to my knowledge, of all the major fighting games out there right now (Smash, Street Fighter V, Tekken 7, DragonballZ) only Smash has a starter/counterpick system. Literally all of the other games I mentioned, while there are some banned stages, have the stages picked through random.
 

Jamisinon

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Just wanted to throw out there that to my knowledge, of all the major fighting games out there right now (Smash, Street Fighter V, Tekken 7, DragonballZ) only Smash has a starter/counterpick system. Literally all of the other games I mentioned, while there are some banned stages, have the stages picked through random.
Not to come across as argumentative but Rivals of Aether also uses a striking and pick ban system. It's another platform fighter which I think should be noted BC stage matters a lot more in this subgenre of fighting games. I also want to point out Rivals was created with competitive in mind and that's why they use all the stages. Also the fact in Rivals you're talking about a dozen stages not 30+.

Just BC other games do things doesn't mean smash should. If every other fighting game added in items you wouldn't suggest smash do the same.
 
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[...]I don't think this is a good thing. If a player wins 3-0 on a fairly neutral stage list but almost loses the set when you switch to a broader stage list, then that is a problem. I want people to fight against each other, not against the stage.[...]
What's your definition of a neutral stage, out of curiosity? Stages like FD, Battlefield, Lylat etc get mentioned as examples of neutral stages and I don't think they're poor layouts at all, but I don't think "neutral" is the best term to describe them because they rarely ever are. If you're playing Mac then you don't have a "neutral" advantage (or lack of advantage) on FD, everything is in your favor moreso than the other player, which is...not the definition of neutral despite the straightforward layout. For other characters you can make other arguments about who benefits from X stage and who doesn't (like Rosalina on BF), but what Amazing Ampharos said earlier in the thread is right- the starters we do allow are very rarely in the exact middle of a hypothetical ranking of character prowess on each stage. I don't know that the most neutral stage is, but we shouldn't limit the list to what we've always done or really simple stuff just because we always have or in pursuit of some ideal which by the nature of Smash doesn't really exist.

I also don't think it's fair to compare a big stagelist to the necessity of having items off or not using custom moves. Items spawn at random rates in random places and you only need one good hit from a disjointed hitbox sometimes for a KO they can't come back from or a huge advantage. Custom moves are hard for people to unlock and practice with and a lot were really heavily unbalanced in a competitive setting. Stages, especially with hazards off, are the same no matter what- platform distance and walls and stuff are always the same so you can't blame them for being random or "jank". Even stuff with obvious tells (Pokemon Stadium 1) or stages with obvious cycles should be at least given a shot because it's not like they randomly drop bombs on you. Smash is a platform fighter and the use of both dimensions, X and Y, so heavily is what sets it apart, and our competitive stagelist and ruleset should embrace this.
 

NewGuy79

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so a poster named Glyphmoney on r/smash posted his brainstorm for a potential veto system that could work instead of the counter pick method we've been using for so many years, its a good read and he touches on a lot of the counter-arguments against his system.

one of the big ones being how to handle game 1 as the veto system only works when there is a clear advantaged player, I traded some post with him on how to solve this problem and I thought to post my thoughts here as well, in general, my idea is a fusion Amazing Ampharos Amazing Ampharos ' random select method and Glyphmoney's Veto method.

Don't know if you're still watching this thread, but I'd like to mack a suggestion for solving the game 1 pick problem.

we could use a fusion of the proposed radome select method and your proposed veto method. For instance, on game one a random stage will be selected (from the legal stage pool) players may choose to either play on the selected stage or veto the pick and random another stage. this process would continue until the players either run out of vetos or are satisfied with the stage selection.

Pros:

  • this would allow for the most stages right from the get-go
  • would encourage players to at least become familiar with the qualities of ultimates large stages list
  • is still fair despite the random element, do to the stage being picked before the character, stopping the possibility of unfair stage selection
Cons:

  • Is heavily disadvantageous for players looking to one trick a character, as there will always be a possibility that they will be selected into an unfavourable stage for game 1
  • could result in a "janky" game 1as there is no guarantee that Neutral stage will be selected
  • maybe too daunting for new player to learn all the tournament stages, especially if the legal stage list includes 20+ stages
while there are some cons to this system, I believe random game 1 would be the best way to create a varied viewing experience for spectators as well as an exciting and broad stage meta for players.

this method would also help the community to break in many of the hazardless stages and perhaps, help determine bans within the community quicker.

so what do you think?
 

PoptartLord

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...pointed out that choosing stages in series does lead to some interesting mindgames ... but I'm afraid it's beginning to get too complicated to teach to newcomers ... Maybe implementing some kind of app to streamline this process would be beneficial to avoid mistakes and maybe even keep things from running too long
I went into the mindgames of bluffing and calling the bluff, back in the post where I acknowledged the method's weakness. I don't see mindgaming the stage selection like that as a positive, so now I'm favoring the rewrite.
Too complicated, you think so? "You pick 10, I ban 3, pick from the remainder" sounds pretty straightforward. Even newcomers should be familiar enough with ten stages to pick from. Does anybody else have concerns about complexity?
You're thinking too high tech! You just need two things. One is a sheet of paper with the stage names printed on it (which, let's be honest, should be at every setup anyway regardless of the stage selection process). The other is ten tokens. Put tokens on the paper to pick your stages, and take them away to ban. No memorization required, everything is visible, and there's no reliance on high-tech, expensive gadgets. Tokens can be anything - pennies, tic-tacs, crumpled up pieces of a napkin, or those tokens used for CCGs like Magic or Pokemon

Here's what's going to happen. A controversial convention for 7 or maybe 9 "starter" stages will emerge ...
Ugh, I hate that time will most likely prove you right. We need to get a better method ironed out and proposed to the big players before the game comes out. Hopefully we can prevent your prediction from coming true

The problem might be that the player isn't good at dealing with diverse, dynamic environments, which is a central part of the game. So maybe they deserve to lose. ... I want the best player to win. The best at the game Smash Bros, not just the mini-game that you happen to like. Food for thought I suppose.
Agreed on both points. There's too many mobility options and variety built in to the characters to think otherwise (I say that, yet so many do...). Traditional fighters give you flat stages with walls, Smash gives you an exponentially better range of motion.


... Or perhaps the stages favor one character strongly and is disadvantageous for another. That's what I'm primarily worried about (see Zero Suit Samus). ...
Except that dynamic is a direct result of the range of motion inherent to the game. There's literally no way around that while having a diverse roster. Platforms, lack of platforms... no matter what kind of stage it's always going to favor some characters more than others
What's with the obsession with vertical kills? Here you mention ZSS, before it was DK on Halberd and T&C, before that it was calling Dreamland a bad stage due to allowing "janky rage up-air kills from ZSS [and Rosalina]"...

How about using THE definition? You know, the one that comes up when asking for the definition?
...
But people should be giving examples of what they mean, especially if they call out specific stages
Holy <bleep>, someone actually gave the definition. I was not expecting that. So my guesswork definition from earlier was the effect instead of the cause. Not bad, I was pretty close. Anyway, this is a case where I keep hearing a word used outside of its actual meaning to the point where it's hard to tell what people actually mean when they use it. Thus the call for definitions/examples. It's to help keep communication clear, really.

Just wanted to throw out there that to my knowledge, of all the major fighting games out there right now (Smash, Street Fighter V, Tekken 7, DragonballZ) only Smash has a starter/counterpick system. Literally all of the other games I mentioned, while there are some banned stages, have the stages picked through random.
Could you expand on this? I only played SFII and MK back on the SNES before realizing that traditional fighters were not my thing, so as far as I know all stages in these other games are just walled, flat planes. I've seen other people playing several other fighters since then and the stage style seemed identical. What are the non-cosmetic stage differences in these other games?

A lot of good stuff there, like the last post. I've been writing this post for far too long (distractions aplenty) or I'd give more focused feedback.

Oh, and I'm making an addition to the bullet points from the revised proposal; I'll have it up in a bit
 
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That last bit is.... wow. There's over 80 stages so far, and the game creators went so far as to implement a hazard toggle that affects every stage, and there should be 7 good stages? And four of the good ones were already in Smash 4, so only three of the new stages. Just how strict is your definition of a good stage?
I think it's likely we'll get more than 7 good stages, but we don't know how the hazard toggle works. I would expect a minimum of 9 stages for the competitive stage list, but we'll see. I don't think 9 or 10 would be bad, it'd be a significant step up from previous Smash games. More stages wouldn't necessarily be bad either, assuming all of them are good stages. Maybe we'll get 12 or 13 or even 15 legal stages this time, but 20+ seems highly unlikely.

Here's the problem with that - once you've removed (or not included) something it will never come back. People will fight tooth and nail to make sure of that. Just look back to Smash 4 for confirmation. Miis, Duck Hunt stage, Delfino (what is the list down to now, 5?), alternate specials... all gone, with nary a whisper of any potential return.
XXXX Miis were actually legal at CEO 2018. As for the stages, only bad stages were removed, and customs had serious issues that prevented them from being legal. You might still be right though, although we cannot look at past Smash rulings to really know (Lylat was banned for a bit, and so was Meta Knight in Brawl, and those rules were reverted due to community/top level outcry).

Any stage that can be chosen at random can be chosen through a stage striking process. Are you saying that you wouldn't need those 3-5 characters if you arrived at the same stage destinations through stage striking?
Stage striking would allow you to strike stages bad for your character, which would lessen the need for multiple characters. If Little Mac can strike Smashville and Battlefield game 1 he won't have to worry about either of them. Counterpicking could still be an issue, though, but at least it's better than random.

Duck Hunt: It hasn't been available for me to test, but I wonder if jump -> directional airdodge straight up -> jump is enough to reach the tree with problem characters without having to burn an up-B. It would be great if so
I imagine jumping and then using directional airdodge would leave you wide open for punishment, in many cases.

Just wanted to throw out there that to my knowledge, of all the major fighting games out there right now (Smash, Street Fighter V, Tekken 7, DragonballZ) only Smash has a starter/counterpick system.
As Jamisinon already meantioned, Rivals of Aether actually have stage striking part of the UI. Slap City also uses starters/counter-picks, with 5 starters and 2 counter-picks, generally.

What's your definition of a neutral stage, out of curiosity?
In this context, a neutral stage would be a stage where neither character has an advantage. There might not be any 100% neutral stages aside from dittos, but there are cases where neither has a significant advantage. Stage striking will generally mean that the worst stages are striked and they go to a fairly neutral stage, while random stage select could mean things like letting Zero Suit Samus start on Town & City, or letting Sonic start on Final Destination. So which stage is the most neutral depends on the character matchup.

I also don't think it's fair to compare a big stagelist to the necessity of having items off or not using custom moves.
My point was to challenge the claim that we don't play real Smash if we ban stages.

Smash is a platform fighter and the use of both dimensions, X and Y, so heavily is what sets it apart, and our competitive stagelist and ruleset should embrace this.
I think that if we have a stage list of 10 stages with 9 of them having platforms, then we have embraced the platform fighter aspect of the game. We don't need 20+ stages for that.
 

WritersBlah

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so a poster named Glyphmoney on r/smash posted his brainstorm for a potential veto system that could work instead of the counter pick method we've been using for so many years, its a good read and he touches on a lot of the counter-arguments against his system.

one of the big ones being how to handle game 1 as the veto system only works when there is a clear advantaged player, I traded some post with him on how to solve this problem and I thought to post my thoughts here as well, in general, my idea is a fusion Amazing Ampharos Amazing Ampharos ' random select method and Glyphmoney's Veto method.
Who gets to decide on a stage veto on game 1 though? Do both players have a shared stock of vetos, or do they have individual vetos? If the latter, what if both players choose to pass on a stage? Do both use up a veto, or do they RPS to see who uses the veto? If one player uses up all of their vetoes, is the other player obligated to choose the next stage, or can continue to use up their own vetoes?

Also PoptartLord PoptartLord I've been thinking about your revised proposal some more, and had a suggestion/question. What if the loser's stage pool was four stages instead of ten stages? This would more closely resemble modern stage striking with the missing "fifth" stage already struck by the loser. Then the winner just bans two of those stages and the loser chooses their preferred stage. It's functionally the same concept you suggested, but much quicker and easier to implement. The only thing I can see against this method would be the loser choosing two or three similar stages on purpose so they are guaranteed to get that sort of stage in the next game. The obvious remedy to this would be to enforce rules that forbid players from choosing more than two similarish stages, explicitly detailed and listed in a community-chosen list. So for example, all triplats and all flat stages would be grouped into separate lists, so the loser could choose from BF, Yoshi's, DL64, and FoD for a triplat, but only decide on suggesting two of them.
 
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What if the loser's stage pool was four stages instead of ten stages? This would more closely resemble modern stage striking with the missing "fifth" stage already struck by the loser. Then the winner just bans two of those stages and the loser chooses their preferred stage. It's functionally the same concept you suggested, but much quicker and easier to implement. The only thing I can see against this method would be the loser choosing two or three similar stages on purpose so they are guaranteed to get that sort of stage in the next game. The obvious remedy to this would be to enforce rules that forbid players from choosing more than two similarish stages, explicitly detailed and listed in a community-chosen list. So for example, all triplats and all flat stages would be grouped into separate lists, so the loser could choose from BF, Yoshi's, DL64, and FoD for a triplat, but only decide on suggesting two of them.
That's an interesting proposal. So game 1 would be striking from 5/7/9 stages, and game 2 the loser lists 4 stages, the winner bans two of those, and the loser selects one?

X wins game 1, Y proposes stagelist Z. If X wins game 2, is Y stuck with stagelist Z or can Y propose a new list of 4 stages? I assume X gets to propose his own list if he loses, right?
 

blackghost

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I think that if we have a stage list of 10 stages with 9 of them having platforms, then we have embraced the platform fighter aspect of the game. We don't need 20+ stages for that.
thats not necessarily true tho. Smash has more potential layouts than just 10. again i wanted to emphasize we are playing smash. if you are not willing ot adjust and learn to the full experience of fighting on platforms and stages of various designs within a reasonable scope. you arent playing the right game. I', not saying you have to play on pokefloats but simpifiying what is required to play competitive smash is not the goal. The stagelist should encourage ong term growth in the meta and players that can adapt and learn to handle situations, stages, and characters. Long term meta growth and change is the goal not short term comfort.
and honestly stop using lil mac as a reason for any method. he's an extreme. if you play lil mac unless we go to fd only format you are at a disadvantage. but you as a player choose that.
i went to a small event that had counterpicking work with the loser picking 3 stages and the opponent banning off one. it ran very well and its a method i did enjoy.
i think im a fan of the random select first game because it makes the audiencew have something to pay attention to, it forces players to learn all the stages or risk exposure, and it leads to variety in gameplay and strategies. but if the conservative preference players win and get their way, the game's potential will be cut in meta growth imo.
 

WritersBlah

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That's an interesting proposal. So game 1 would be striking from 5/7/9 stages, and game 2 the loser lists 4 stages, the winner bans two of those, and the loser selects one?

X wins game 1, Y proposes stagelist Z. If X wins game 2, is Y stuck with stagelist Z or can Y propose a new list of 4 stages? I assume X gets to propose his own list if he loses, right?
You hit the nail on the head the head, exactly. Not sure if four stages should scale to a higher number like PoptartLord PoptartLord suggested if we end up with a 20+ stagelist, but I think four is a pretty safe number.
 

NewGuy79

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Who gets to decide on a stage veto on game 1 though?
both players have equal power to veto at any time, so if player 1 sees a stage they don't like they can veto it at any point within the stage selection process.
for example, if player 1 gets their 10th best stage and veto's and then gets their 15th best stage they can veto that as well going to a 3rd random select, however, at this point, the stage selection is out of their hands and they either get a preferred or less preferred stage.
This is fiar for player 1 due to the fact that they chose to leave it in Gods hands, they could have ( lets say out of 20 stages) gone with their 10th best stage ( a stage that they were even on) but instead they chose to risk the middle ground for an opportunity to gain an advantage.

Do both players have a shared stock of vetos or do they have individual vetos?
both players would have an equal number of vetos (2 for my example but it can change to fit the meta)

If the latter, what if both players choose to pass on a stage? Do both use up a veto, or do they RPS to see who uses the veto?
as stated above vetos are first come first serve so whoever calls it first uses their veto, this, of course, may lead some players to hold their vetos on unfavourable stages to perhaps get their opponent to wast theirs but I don't see this as a bad thing as its just another tool for players to out mind game their opponents.
However, it should be noted that not calling for a veto is a silent admission that you are okay with playing on the randomly selected stage. a timer (5 or 10 sec?) should be given for players to veto and if no veto is given in that time then the stage is selected.

If one player uses up all of their vetoes, is the other player obligated to choose the next stage, or can continue to use up their own vetoes?
yes, the opposing player in this situation would have 2 vetos still available for them to use.
it's important to note that vetoed stages are removed from the stage pool, so if player one vetos FD and player 2 wants it they cant just veto until its picked again. reselected vetoed stages will force an instant re-roll until a none vetoed stage is picked.
 
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PoptartLord

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XXXX Miis were actually legal at CEO 2018. As for the stages, only bad stages were removed, and customs had serious issues that prevented them from being legal. You might still be right though, although we cannot look at past Smash rulings to really know (Lylat was banned for a bit, and so was Meta Knight in Brawl, and those rules were reverted due to community/top level outcry).
I'm pleasantly surprised about the Miis at CEO. I haven't been following tournaments lately. Although this late in the game aspirations of maining Miis have been killed off, but it's better than nothing.
Lylat returning (wasn't aware it was officially gone) could be due to maintaining the starter magic number 5. I believe you hinted at that when saying 4 is not a good number of starters earlier.
You're right, I should have added a corollary about taking away win buttons (Brawl MK). Those will come back. <I'm trying to expand on why but no matter what it always sounds too negative to post>

I imagine jumping and then using directional airdodge would leave you wide open for punishment, in many cases.
Right, but this was for one specific case where the opponent is camping on the tree. If characters needed to use their up-B to reach the bottom branch it's too easy for the camper to sit in shield, block the up-B, and get a free punish. % lead -> camp tree was one of the leading reasons for getting rid of Duck Hunt. If the airdodge allows enough height to reach the low branch then you can shark the camper or land+attack

so a poster named Glyphmoney on r/smash posted his brainstorm for a potential veto system
I skimmed through the main post but this sounds a lot like post #23 on this thread

Not sure if four stages should scale...
4 is way too low. I guarantee what will happen is everyone will pick FD, Battlefield, T&C, and Smashville as their 4. The list is too small to promote stage variance. I picked 10 not because you get to pick ten, but because you're forced to pick ten. In this scenario there is always a chance that you can be taken to a never-before-legal (or at least not in Smash 4) stage. Players will have to be familiar with more than the above mentioned stages or risk being taken there unprepared. Players will be forced to learn what stages are good and bad for their preferred characters, and the metagame will expand. Allow players to restrict themselves to familiar stages and the metagame will shrink
If anything 10 may be too low. When the game comes out the number (after bans) should be greater than the list of previous permanently-legal stages (combined from all four games). Nothing too drastic, maybe 12, there's only so much fine tuning that can be done this early
 

dav3yb

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Holy <bleep>, someone actually gave the definition. I was not expecting that. So my guesswork definition from earlier was the effect instead of the cause. Not bad, I was pretty close. Anyway, this is a case where I keep hearing a word used outside of its actual meaning to the point where it's hard to tell what people actually mean when they use it. Thus the call for definitions/examples. It's to help keep communication clear, really.
To be fair it is a bit of a slang term, but i do feel like it has a general accepted definition.

Could you expand on this? I only played SFII and MK back on the SNES before realizing that traditional fighters were not my thing, so as far as I know all stages in these other games are just walled, flat planes. I've seen other people playing several other fighters since then and the stage style seemed identical. What are the non-cosmetic stage differences in these other games?
While a lot of the stages are basically identical, there are some that can have too many other background elements on them and can cause some system lag due to having to process too much. It was less of an issue with 2d fighters, but 3d fighters needing the extra cpu power to process all the stage elements could be an issue. MK is a bit of a different beast, since it has various interactive elements on each stage, so there might be some elements of a stage deemed too advantageous for some reason.
 

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4 is way too low. I guarantee what will happen is everyone will pick FD, Battlefield, T&C, and Smashville as their 4. The list is too small to promote stage variance. I picked 10 not because you get to pick ten, but because you're forced to pick ten. In this scenario there is always a chance that you can be taken to a never-before-legal (or at least not in Smash 4) stage. Players will have to be familiar with more than the above mentioned stages or risk being taken there unprepared. Players will be forced to learn what stages are good and bad for their preferred characters, and the metagame will expand. Allow players to restrict themselves to familiar stages and the metagame will shrink
If anything 10 may be too low. When the game comes out the number (after bans) should be greater than the list of previous permanently-legal stages (combined from all four games). Nothing too drastic, maybe 12, there's only so much fine tuning that can be done this early
I'd like to think people would have four favorite stages that aren't the usual suspects, but you're probably right. Ten total stages still worries me though. Like, logistically, choosing ten stages after every game sounds like it would take a significant amount of time. And besides, if players really are as you say they are, who's to say they wouldn't just ban the outlying stages from those ten and end up deciding between BF, FD, SV, and T&C anyway? It's the same problem, but with more bloat. I'd like to believe that players would end up on more varied stages more often, but I just don't think that would be the case. This is probably why Amazing Ampharos Amazing Ampharos suggested random select in the first place, because this is what typical Smash player mentality is like.
 
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NewGuy79

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I skimmed through the main post but this sounds a lot like post #23 on this thread
your right, both of your guys are basically touching on the same method for choosing stages game 2+, it seems like the only viable method for allowing a large stage list without making stage selection too complicated.

good thing that stages are selected first now, or vetoing/striking stages this way would be far too advantageous to the player selecting the stage.
 

Untouch

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Some more hazardless info:
Spirit Train: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j4hUe-hLgj8
Stage doesn't change at all, but there is a moving platform. Ground still damages (obviously). Stage might move back and forth slightly, messing with blast zones (looks this way but can't confirm).

Skyworld: https://youtu.be/8dkbBYO0Wts?t=1097
No platform at the bottom, platforms do not break.

Wily's Castle: https://youtu.be/fe4Nb9nGLJE?t=1187
No platforms spawn at all, basically making it omega form.

Great Plateau Tower: https://youtu.be/fe4Nb9nGLJE?t=553
Stage does not break at all.
 
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PoptartLord

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Does it have to be 10? PoptartLord Maybe 7? Just thinking here.
I believe I just answered that in my last post. The timing was only 6 minutes before your question so I'm guessing it was missed. Here's a repost:
"Not sure if four stages should scale... " 4 is way too low. I guarantee what will happen is everyone will pick FD, Battlefield, T&C, and Smashville as their 4. The list is too small to promote stage variance. I picked 10 not because you get to pick ten, but because you're forced to pick ten. In this scenario there is always a chance that you can be taken to a never-before-legal (or at least not in Smash 4) stage. Players will have to be familiar with more than the above mentioned stages or risk being taken there unprepared. Players will be forced to learn what stages are good and bad for their preferred characters, and the metagame will expand. Allow players to restrict themselves to familiar stages and the metagame will shrink
If anything 10 may be too low. When the game comes out the number (after bans) should be greater than the list of previous permanently-legal stages (combined from all four games). Nothing too drastic, maybe 12, there's only so much fine tuning that can be done this early
To further expand, I'm aiming for a divergent series over a convergent one (I'm starting to use too many math terms, but I'm being asked for details). I'm classifying previously legal stages as "dead zones", or 0s. Due to familiarity there is going to be a heavy bias toward them in the community. Having a system where it's possible to limit the stage pool down to nothing but these 0s will lead to them being the only ones used, thus converging the enormous stage list down to 0's. This is a metagame quagmire from which we will never escape. My proposal creates a situation where there will always be "competitively newer stages", or 1s, in the mix. This adds an unknown element that players will need to account for. This sparks exploration into the rest of the stage list, with exploration comes knowledge, knowledge reduces fear, and we wind up using a far greater portion of the available stages than we otherwise would have

I'd like to think people would have four favorite stages that aren't the usual suspects, but you're probably right. Ten total stages still worries me though. Like, logistically, choosing ten stages after every game sounds like it would take a significant amount of time. And besides, if players really are as they say they are, who's to say they wouldn't just ban the outlying stages from those ten and end up deciding between BF, FD, SV, and T&C anyway? It's the same problem, but with more bloat. I'd like to believe that players would end up on more varied stages more often, but I just don't think that would be the case. This is probably why Amazing Ampharos suggested random select in the first place, because this is what typical Smash player mentality is like.
I'm operating under very pessimistic assumptions about player habits, which history has proven to hold true. Ten isn't so much, especially if there's a paper list you can mark off. It's still a lot faster than having to go through a stage strike process. Even at a lowly 21 stages that's what, 11 bans? The current stage strike process doesn't scale well at Ultimate's roster size
Not only is it possible but I fully expect that behavior at first. Until the first high/top player picks a nonstandard (but still completely legal) stage on stream and wins (more points if it's an upset!). At that point we'll start seeing players with "signature stages", i.e. favored nonstandard stages they gravitate towards, in an attempt to gain an edge over the competition. The counterplay to this is gaining familiarity with a wider array of stages, which will propagate to viewers and the rest of the playerbase
Random definitely has the advantages of speed and forcing nonstandard stages more often, but it takes away player control so I'm expecting far too much pushback on it

your right, both of your guys are basically touching on the same method for choosing stages game 2+, it seems like the only viable method for allowing a large stage list without making stage selection too complicated.

good thing that stages are selected first now, or vetoing/striking stages this way would be far too advantageous to the player selecting the stage.
Whoo, my posts are inspiring! Hopefully someone will post a link to my initial draft and then the revision on that site, since I like the revised version more. Oh, and this could also work for game 1, RPS for choosing rights. The only concession maybe being needed is increasing to 5 bans
Yeah, I'm liking the selection order change. I know it's been like that for games 2+ but with the game menus and the rules not being in sync things have been a bit messy. I've actually had someone tell me "you can't do that!" when I went back to change my character on game 2 after we picked the stage

Some more hazardless info:
Spirit Train: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j4hUe-hLgj8
Stage doesn't change at all, but there is a moving platform. Ground still damages (obviously). Stage might move back and forth slightly, messing with blast zones (looks this way but can't confirm).

Skyworld: (No video yet.)
No platform at the bottom, platforms do not break.
So no more touching the ground=death. That answers one of my remaining questions. They're really going all-out to make stages legal. This is very exciting!
 

ParanoidDrone

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Some more hazardless info:
Spirit Train: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j4hUe-hLgj8
Stage doesn't change at all, but there is a moving platform. Ground still damages (obviously). Stage might move back and forth slightly, messing with blast zones (looks this way but can't confirm).

Skyworld: https://youtu.be/8dkbBYO0Wts?t=1097
No platform at the bottom, platforms do not break.

Wily's Castle: https://youtu.be/fe4Nb9nGLJE?t=1187
No platforms spawn at all, basically making it omega form.

Great Plateau Tower: https://youtu.be/fe4Nb9nGLJE?t=553
Stage does not break at all.
Skyworld and Great Plateau Tower sound like instant bans to me on the basis of cave of life shenanigans. (If hazardless Skyworld is changed before launch to have normal platforms, it could be legal, but that sounds unlikely to happen.)

Wily's Castle is fine, although the issue of whether FD lookalikes should be included or not is also a (separate) question.

Spirit Train needs a debate over whether it's acceptable in hazardless mode or not. It has a unique and mostly static layout, with the dynamic features limited to a single platform coming from offscreen. But there's literally no below-stage area to speak of, drastically changing the offstage game and forcing high recoveries, which I can see being a point of contention.
 
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Untouch

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For the record, mew2king only hits the ground once in the entire match.

I think honestly, the level moving back in forth is a bigger issue here, as it moves pretty close to the blast zone.

I wouldn't mind seeing some smaller tourneys playing some of these stages at launch to see how they turn out because the playstyle here can determine how safe it is.
 
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Jamison

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Potential Stage List v2.2

Starters: Battlefield, Final Destination, Smashville, Town & City, Pokemon Stadium, Yoshi's Story (Melee), Lylat Cruise.
I'm sticking with this 7 starters idea still. I think BATTLEFIELD and FINAL DESTINATION are obvious picks here. They are starters in Melee and Sm4sh. I'm leaving out Dreamland assuming the blast zones will stay similar to how they were in sm4sh BC the stage is simply too similar to BF.

The third starter is SMASHVILLE. It's been shown to be a very neutral stage, especially in Sm4sh where it kind of replaced BF as the typical go to starter. I'm adding back in TOWN & CITY because it's a universal starter in sm4sh. I was reluctant at first BC it had some similarities to Smashville but also BC of its music. I think the larger stage list and better stages all-around should help alleviate the music issue.

The fifth starter will be POKEMON STADIUM (NO HAZARDS). This gives us a 2 platform stage to go along with our already 0, 1, and 3 platform stages. It is a counter-pick in Melee singles but a starter in Melee doubles so w/o transformations it can be a starter for both singles and doubles.

For the sixth starter the Melee player in me really wants to put YOSHI'S STORY (MELEE) in so I am. I'm hoping they don't do to Yoshi's what they did to DL and make it too much like BF. I know the BF version of the stage removes Randall. I'm hoping the hazard toggle keeps Randall BC he's cyclical and therefore not random in his movement pattern, but removes the Shy Guys. The big differences between Yoshi's and BF are the blast zones both are smaller both horizontally and vertically, and the stage is closer to the bottom blast zone. The platform layout is closer and the edges of the stage are angled. Yoshi's is a very different stage than BF in Melee so I'm hoping it stays that way. Even w/o Randall I think the blast zones and closer proximity of the platforms should be enough the differentiate it from BF. Plus, the aforementioned stages thus far all have a large base so the smaller base would create more platform play.

LYLAT CRUISE (NO HAZARDS) has a unique main stage that isn't completely flat and a unique 3 platform layout. No stage tilting would remove all the shenanigans as well.

My mindset for this starter list was take every Melee starter and every Sm4sh starter and see if they fit. I think hazard toggle should always be off so I do have some concern over Yoshi's for if it turns out to be too similar to BF. If that's the case then I'd propose it be removed completely and one of the counter-picks be bumped up to a starter.
Counter-picks: Wario Ware, Yoshi's Island (Brawl), Frigate Orpheon, Castle Siege, Reset Bomb Forest, Prism Tower
So firstly we have WARIO WARE (NO HAZARDS). I was mildly tempted to make it a starter due to it having 4 platforms but ultimately decided the blast zones and the fact PM used it as a counter-pick and not a starter made it seem logical to follow that pattern.

With the inclusion of Yoshi's Story (Melee) it makes it harder for me to justify having YOSHI'S ISLAND (BRAWL). Even though the platform layout is different the blast zones are similar and it also has a similar feel. But if I can have Smashville and Town & City I can have two Yoshi levels. Plus, it's a starter in Brawl. I could see changing my mind on this or use this stage to replace Yoshi's Story if it turns out to have issues or be another BF. This stage also feels like it could potentially act as a mini version of Smashville. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or bad thing.

Next, FRIGATE ORPHEON (NO HAZARDS). I was really tempted to put Brinstar (No Hazards) in this spot and I might change my mind and swap the two but in the end I felt Brinstar had fairly small blast zones. Those small side blast zones were already in several stages so I felt a larger stage was needed. Plus seeing this stage in action at the invitational made it seem like it could be a solid choice.

I thought about Arena Ferox but some of the transformations gave a little bit of projectile barriers so I feel CASTLE SIEGE (NO HAZARDS) is the better choice.

A stage I think that could be very unique is RESET BOMB FOREST. My reasoning behind this is that we haven't use a stage competitively that has a hole in the middle of the stage. I think with how small the hole is and with directional air dodging it won't create the same issues for Ness/Lucas that Saffron City does. I also think having a platform not too far above the hole mitigates how abused the hole could be. If the hole does prove to be an issue then I believe Mushroom Kingdom U would be a good replacement as it has a somewhat similar platform layout.

The more I look at the stages the more I think we need another stage without platforms but not another FD. FD has seemingly always been a strong counter-pick in many MU's as it has no platforms and a decent amount of room to move around. No walls and no slopes as steep as though on a stage like Yoshi's Island (Melee) would be preferred. Orbital Gate Assault (No Hazards) seems like it could be a possibility but that feels like a real wild card stage at this point. Especially since that stage is essentially nothing but hazards IMO. The platform proximity to the blast zones also could be an issue. The next best thing I feel is to have a stage like Port Town, Delfino, Wuhu etc where there is a platform that moves to different locations offering a variety of transformations along the way. Most of these stage had several platforms for large portions of the map cycle. However, PRISM TOWER had a flat platform for most of the match. None of the transformations seemed game breaking. A few things aren't ideal such as the walk-offs at the start of the match but they last a short enough amount of time. I'm not fully sold on this stage still and wonder what a no hazard Pictochat stage would be like.

I used to think 8-10 stages might be the sweet spot. So I'm pretty iffy still on using 13 stages (7 starters, 6 counter-picks). To some it might not seem that big, but it's still doubling the number of tournament stages we've been using.I'm optimistic about Frigate. Reset Bomb Forest does feel risky but I'm trying to keep an open mind and try something unique. I'm also a little concerned about a seeming lack of large stages. But I do believe small/medium stages make for better competitive play. It will mean things like RAGE will have a lesser impact on the gameplay.

I do think there's a chance that Great Plateau Tower gets reworked so that hazard toggle doesn't create an impassible platform thus removing the "cave of life" it creates. In that case GPT would replace Yoshi's Island (Brawl). It would also be good enough to be considered a starter so I could see making it a starter and then bumping Yoshi's Island (Melee) down to a counter-pick as a viable option.

I did notice no new stages made it into my list. But we've not seen a ton of new stages currently. As more info got released and potential for DLC stages I could easily see many counter-picks getting swapped out, perhaps even one of the starters. I tried to consider which stages Melee, Brawl, PM, and Sm4sh all used competitively and was happy all of them feel represented.

With this many stages I do think bans would be necessary and DSR would still be in play. I think minimum one ban for best-of-5 and two bans for best-of-3. But I wouldn't be opposed to trying 3 and 2 bans respectively. I would think trying fewer bans at first would be optimal. Then if we saw MU's or characters having too many strong stages more bans could be added.
 
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Skitrel

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Perhaps. Or perhaps the stages favor one character strongly and is disadvantageous for another. That's what I'm primarily worried about (see Zero Suit Samus). It might be the case that the stage list ends up fairly balanced (if ladder combos are nerfed across the board, for instance), which could change things. So much of what we're doing here is highly speculative and once we get to play the game we'll have more data to base decisions on.

That's the entire point though. A loser player is supposed to be able to pick something that is more advantageous to them. The winning player has some tools to limit the level of advantage (in the form of strikes) but the losing player ultimately gets an advantage.

This has been true ever since the start of competitive Smash.

Stages in Smash are SUPPOSED to provide different interesting aspects that are beneficial for different characters or harmful for others. It's an aspect of Smash that provides a tonne of the variety and excitement everyone loves in the game.

Neutral stages aren't even neutral. Final Destination advantages half the case while Battlefield advantages the other half. That's why everyone was mad about For Glory just being no platforms right?

Anyway. I've changed my mind, this is my favourite solution now:

https://www.reddit.com/r/smashbros/comments/8wmsjq/stage_vetoes_an_efficient_means_to_handle_the/
 

blackghost

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The more i've thought about it, I cannot see stage striking remaining as is.the solution from Skitrel Skitrel is the first one that seems like it would work although 5 picks may be too many.
 

NewGuy79

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the question that needs to be answered for the vetos method is how to handle game 1 selection, vetos only work when there's a player in a clear advantaged state so there are only 3 real ways to determine stage 1 pick.

1. random select
- selecting game 1 stage at random is a contentious option but with the added power to force a re-roll.
- but this adds a random element and while I think its fair, some players may not feel the same.

2. rock paper scissors. toss a coin
- is simple and already what we use to determine pick/ban order in smash today, the only difference here would be that the winner gets to chose the stages to be vetoed.
- this is however far too powerful for the winning player as they will be able to manipulate the veto to get a stage that benefits their character directly.

so then number 3 is a method I've been thinking about since this problem cropped up, its what I'd call the random pool pick/ban method. a function of random selection and tradition pick and ban consider this for how to solve the game 1 veto problem.

for example on game 1 players will highlight at random 5 times (selecting 5 stages) from the stages selected the players will then act as those stages are the neutrals and pick and ban as smashers have done in tourney for years (RPS to dertermine order of course)

what do you guys think, could this work or is some refinements necessary?
 

MaestroDavros

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Could you expand on this? I only played SFII and MK back on the SNES before realizing that traditional fighters were not my thing, so as far as I know all stages in these other games are just walled, flat planes. I've seen other people playing several other fighters since then and the stage style seemed identical. What are the non-cosmetic stage differences in these other games?
In the case of Tekken 7, there are some stages that have interactive elements. Some mostly are cosmetic (players hitting the ground or walls cause parts of what they come in contact with to break off, albeit without changing the field of battle) to some stages where you can crack the ground enough so that you fall into a new area. Not exactly like the transforming stages in Smash but unlike something like Skyworld those kinds of stages are allowed in T7 tournaments.

Street Fighter V, being 2D, has less of these things but one stage in particular (Bustling Side Street) has "walls" that if you KO a player into the left side its will break the wall opening up a new restaurant area. The next round will start within there, and the center of the stage will shift. There are a couple other stages like that as well.
 

DJ3DS

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Can we be real for a second? I don't understand why choosing a stage randomly for the first game is a massive point of contention.

Why?

Because to some degree it already is random. Whoever wins the RPS gets an advantage. Sure, stage bans minimise that to some degree, but the point remains.

My personal solution would be to use randomness in something along the lines of the following. Suppose we have a list of neutral and counterpick stages. Then:

Game 1:

- Begin with the list of neutral stages (say 10)
- Each player can ban one of these stages (To avoid particular imbalances, like Mac on Duck Hunt, for example)
- Both players pick their characters simultaneously (e.g. have them write theirs down before selecting so you know they aren't CPing)
- Stage is chosen randomly from the remaining stages

Game 2 and onwards can proceed however people think is best. My choice would be:

- Loser chooses a (small) set of stages
- Winner chooses one of those stages
- Winner chooses character
- Loser chooses character
 

Munomario777

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so then number 3 is a method I've been thinking about since this problem cropped up, its what I'd call the random pool pick/ban method. a function of random selection and tradition pick and ban consider this for how to solve the game 1 veto problem.

for example on game 1 players will highlight at random 5 times (selecting 5 stages) from the stages selected the players will then act as those stages are the neutrals and pick and ban as smashers have done in tourney for years (RPS to dertermine order of course)

what do you guys think, could this work or is some refinements necessary?
I don't really see how this is meant to work? Like, if the five highlighted stages are meant to be chosen "at random," having the players themselves select the five stages isn't the way to go about it lmao.



Game 1:

- Begin with the list of neutral stages (say 10)
- Each player can ban one of these stages (To avoid particular imbalances, like Mac on Duck Hunt, for example)
- Both players pick their characters simultaneously (e.g. have them write theirs down before selecting so you know they aren't CPing)
- Stage is chosen randomly from the remaining stages
I agree with random stage select, but character should be chosen after stage (especially with the new UI). Otherwise the RNG actually would be really unfair, since it could just screw over your character without giving you a chance to account for the chosen stage.
 
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I've been thinking, and I think the split is mainly between two groups of players.

Group 1 wants a minimum amount of RNG and a high level of player skill and character skill. Quality over quantity, only good stages should be allowed. This means that it's necessary to limit the amount of stages in order to have a good stage selection. Having 10 counter-pick stages with something like 5 bans would be a mess, so limiting the amount of stages to 9-12 seems like a good solution. This solution has several advantages, such as keeping the wildly used starter/counter-pick system used by all Smash games, Slap City, and Rivals of Aether (and potentially other games as well). There are some disadvantages, however: One is that it might not be obvious which 9-12 stages should be legal. There might be more potentially legal stages available, yet this system cannot deal with too many stages. We're left with two options: Cut down to a permanent stage list, or run with seasons. Another alternative is to have a large stage list (like 15-20 stages or so) and have both players pick 5 stages each (or something like that) in order to make up the stage list (there are other alternatives as well). I'm personally leaning towards just having a permanent stage list, though finding one will be a challenge for the community. Some people will lose their favorite stages, unfortunately.

Group 2 values stage diversity higher than group 1, which necessitates alternative systems. People have suggested random, veto, and a variety of other alternatives. People in this group seem to believe (in general) that having a huge stage list is good and that variety in stages is more important than balance and fairness in stage selection (many seem to believe that people should play multiple characters in order to off-set the issues of poor stage balancing).

I think Group 2 sacrifices too much in order to attain "variety" and a large stage list. Neither are all that important for the health of the competitive game, and the costs are too great. People have been trying to come up with several alternative systems, all with significant flaws that make them inferior to stage striking/regular counter-picking. Having lots of stages may be marginally more fun for spectators, but the benefits don't seem to be worth the cost.

If I were to make an estimation, I'd say that a majority of tournament players belong to Group 1 in some form, while Group 2 consists of a loud minority of Smashboards users and Redditors. People in Group 2 are, of course, free to try to convince people in Group 1 (and people on the fence) that their solution is the optimal one.

Because to some degree it already is random. Whoever wins the RPS gets an advantage. Sure, stage bans minimise that to some degree, but the point remains.
It's unfortunate, but the fact that both players get an equal amount of strikes tends to lead to a fairly neutral stage being picked for game 1. Random stage select could lead to things like facing a Rosalina on Town & City, or playing as Little Mac on Smashville, and such. With RPS, you'd still be able to ban the worst stages.

I agree with random stage select, but character should be chosen after stage (especially with the new UI). Otherwise the RNG actually would be really unfair, since it could just screw over your character without giving you a chance to account for the chosen stage.
Actually, it would be better for solo main players to pick their character before the stage. If you have random stage select and pick character before the stage, then solo main players risk being hurt by the system more (if their opponent isn't a solo main player). If both pick character before the stage, then RNG is about equally likely to hurt either payer. If you think it would be really unfair if you picked character first, then maybe we shouldn't do random at all? I don't think people should feel pressured to pick up multiple characters in order to deal with random stage select.

If you want character diversity, you should (ironically enough) encourage solo-maining, I think, or at least not heavily dissuade it. It seems to me that people who play multiple characters will, in general, play multiple top tier characters, not multiple mid tier or high tier characters. When a mid tier player picks up a secondary, chances are it'll be a top tier character. I haven't researched this though and I'm basing it on what I have noticed, so I admit that I could be wrong about this.
 

Munomario777

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People in this group seem to believe (in general) that having a huge stage list is good and that variety in stages is more important than balance and fairness in stage selection
This isn't true, at least in my case. If a larger stage list meant that the stage selection had to be imbalanced, then I wouldn't support it. My opinion is that there is a way to efficiently select from a large stage list while also being fair to both players.

I think that random stage select would work well enough for that purpose, but there's also lots of other ideas floating around that are worth considering. The most difficult part is finding a system which gives each player equal footing for game one. For example, I like the idea of one player choosing a few stages and the other player choosing one from that set, but that works better for counterpicking than for choosing a starting stage.

If you think it would be really unfair if you picked character first, then maybe we shouldn't do random at all?
Or we could just use the option that isn't the one I think is unfair? :v



Regarding solo mains, if you do want to be fair to them, you could give each player one or two stage bans in the random stage select (removing them from the pool of stages that can be chosen), or alternatively give each player one or two chances to call for a redo on the random stage select. The latter idea is lifted from early Melee tournaments, which iirc used random stage select despite character select coming first in that game.

So if your character does horribly on one or two stages, you can ban those stages from use, or redo them if they come up. If your character does horribly on MORE than one or two stages, then one of these is true:
  • The ruleset should change to allow for more bans or redos.
  • The character isn't 100% solo viable, so it's a good idea to pick up another character for when that stage comes up. This is extremely similar to picking up a secondary to cover hard matchups, which is already quite prominent in Smash 4. Compared to countering certain characters, though, this should be rare among characters which weren't already going to do poorly in competitive. (If a character's mobility is too low to deal with a number of platform layouts, that mobility is likely to harm them significantly overall, like with Mac.)
  • The stage is too polarizing, so there's a case for removing that stage from the ruleset. If this happens for a lot of stages, then the stagelist is eventually small enough to where traditional methods from past Smash methods are more viable. Additionally, since the experimental period is likely over by that point, the main advantage of random stage select (giving all stages time in the spotlight) is rather obsolete.



For the above reasons, I don't think random stage select has an issue in terms of putting characters on disadvantageous stages. What IS a concern is giving character mains their BEST stages, such as Rosa on TC / Mac on FD. If a strong character does have one or more stages on which they excel this greatly, then random stage select takes a blow in viability. That has a decent chance of happening, but it's also not something we should assume without seeing it first.

The biggest logistical problem is that you either choose characters before the random stage select, or after. Picking character first allows stage bans to mitigate characters dominating on certain stages, but introduces the possibility of a disadvantageous stage being chosen with no chance to change characters. Picking stage first gives players a chance to avoid bad character choices for a given stage, but introduces the problem of characters dominating on certain stages.

The other idea is introducing some sort of "character striking," but that concept as a whole is pretty iffy. I don't think protecting solo mains is all that important to begin with, but introducing a character ban would probably be too much overall. In combination with picking the random stage first, though, it's the main way to eliminate both advantageously and disadvantageously polarized stage-character combinations with a random stage select. Food for thought.



A lot of this depends on things we don't yet know. If the stagelist ends up smaller than some think, traditional striking has an edge. If characters' advantages and disadvantages on certain stages are less polarized, then random stage select loses its biggest concerns. So it's important to keep an open mind.
 

ParanoidDrone

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Frihetsanka Frihetsanka one issue I have with your vision is that you're taking the current process we have (character selection before stage, strike/ban system, starter/counterpick lists, etc.) and attempting to cram Ultimate into that process, instead of considering ways of modifying the process to better fit Ultimate. For example, it's clear that the existing stage striking process doesn't scale well for large stage lists. That should be an indication we need to figure out a better process that does scale, not that we need to ban stages just to keep the same process.
 
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Jamisinon

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I've been thinking, and I think the split is mainly between two groups of players.

Group 1 wants a minimum amount of RNG and a high level of player skill and character skill. Quality over quantity, only good stages should be allowed. . .

Group 2 values stage diversity higher than group 1, which necessitates alternative systems. People have suggested random, veto, and a variety of other alternatives. People in this group seem to believe (in general) that having a huge stage list is good and that variety in stages is more important than balance and fairness in stage selection (many seem to believe that people should play multiple characters in order to off-set the issues of poor stage balancing). . .
I think you're right. The only thing everyone seems to agree on is that we could have more than 6 stages. Group 1 wants at most 12 and Group 2 wants at least 20. So there's definitely not a middle ground that's going to fully appease both groups.

I think having an odd number of starters and equal bans and doing a 1-2-1 or if there were 7 starters a 1-2-2-1 gives us the closest thing to an even starting ground. There's a slight argument that 7 starters with a 1-2-2-1 (aka snake order) ban would be more fair than 5 starters. With five starters whoever strikes first also gets to strike last. With 7 starters and a snake order ban order whoever struck second would get to strike last, which would arguably be even more fair than what we currently have.

I believe you want the ability to pick a stage after game 1. The first game the set is even at 0-0, it's a tie, the score is neutral so you want a neutral stage. But after that the set is not neutral, whoever wins game 1 gets the counter-pick advantage. When you do random stage selection you completely remove that counter-pick advantage a player earned. That's my biggest issue with it, is that advantages based on stage selection aren't earned, they are random. It takes merit from a victory if RNG affects the outcome of a set. Even if you have rules in place that mitigate the strongest counter-picks it doesn't make it so you avoid unfavorable stages. A lot of people have suggested rerolls or bans to remove a couple stages if they are bad for your character. If you have 20 stagse what if your character has 4 horrible stages in the MU? You can't ban everything. Any randomizer could give you 3 out of your 5 worst stages. You could have 15 good stages and 5 bad ones and all you did was play on your bad stages BC of RNG. That sort of scenario will happen with randomizers at tournaments. You also don't want rulesets like 30 stages 7 bans each. It just complicates everything.

The point of bans is that you don't have time to play every set best-of-11 so you try to remove the most advantageous stages to create more fairness. With picks and bans and counter-picks, if you win game 1, which would be considered on a neutral stage then won the next game(s) on YOUR counter-pick you win the set. You wouldn't let RNG decides who gets to serve the next game in tennis, why would you want RNG to decides who gets an advantage in smash? (the way smash works currently feels like you play the tie-breaker game 1, then after that the loser of the previous game gets to serve. That way you don't have to win by 2. I think that's the best analogy I could think of and it fits.)

I've previously pointed out that Melee used a 20+ stage selection with random before and it's bad. I understand it was a long time ago and most people haven't seen it in use at all. I get that. But knowing we tried it and it didn't work should serve as a reminder. Please don't say "but hazard toggle" to me either. Playing with less jank doesn't change the advantages blast zones, stage size, or platform layout give.

I honestly don't understand why so many are so vocal about wanting to completely overhaul the pick and ban system. Melee, PM, Brawl and Sm4sh all use it with success. I'm in favoring of upping the stage count and increasing the bans but doing a complete overhaul just feels doomed to failure. Project M has been operating for years with more than just 8 or 9 good stages but they still exercise restraint in how many stages are in competitive. Just BC we may have more viable stages doesn't mean we should try to cram them all into competitive. That seems to be the thing so many are overlooking. People seem focused on just having a large stage list they are more likely to outright ignore all the downsides.

If I'm being frank, I don't think the people who are regularly competing are ever going to go for a 20+ stage list. Sure there will be some. Yes, many spectators will just want more variety. But I have faith the rules will shape to the demands of the players.If you polled all the entrants at a major tourney I think you would find the majority strongly against random stage select in any form. So I strongly believe it's not going to happen.

But you are still entitled to your opinion. You likely won't convince me a massive stage list isn't a horrible idea and thus I am also unlikely to convince you a smaller stage list is better. Even doubling the stage list size doesn't seem to be enough to appease many so in the end I think you just have to do right by the players and ignore certain opinions, even if it is a large group of people.

Last poll I saw more than half of people were in favor of 12 stages or fewer and there was more split between the 12-20 and 20+ range.

As far as other proposed ideas I've seen like select 4 stages, your opponent bans two then you pick 1. I think in theory that works. I'm not saying that it isn't fair I just think it over complicates stage selection. Obviously, the more stages you add, the harder you make the selection process.
Another thing I saw was selecting a premade group of stages. You couldn't create a grouping of stages that were similar enough either. Characters benefit from different things. You could want lots of platforms with small blast zones or lots of platforms with large blast zones. So it's impossible to organize stages into groupings fairly. Just BC it's not just one variable you have to take into account.
 

Spartacus5

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I hope we are smart and not assume just because stage hazards are off means that stages with jank layouts and transitions like Kongo Falls and prism tower deserve to be legal

What if we rotate the starter and counter pick list every pgr season with say 5 starters and 2 counter picks, that would be interesting...
 

ParanoidDrone

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What part of Prism Tower's layout is an issue? The starting walkoff is temporary, which negates the main issue posed by walkoffs in the first place, and historically temporary walkoffs have never been grounds for a ban. (Halberd, Castle Siege -- their issues lie elsewhere) The rest of the stage has perfectly fine platform arrangements.
 

Spartacus5

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What part of Prism Tower's layout is an issue? The starting walkoff is temporary, which negates the main issue posed by walkoffs in the first place, and historically temporary walkoffs have never been grounds for a ban. (Halberd, Castle Siege -- their issues lie elsewhere) The rest of the stage has perfectly fine platform arrangements.
I just think transitions are not that good for competitive 1 v 1s. Call me boring, but I prefer simple stages like smashville and BF
 

ParanoidDrone

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I just think transitions are not that good for competitive 1 v 1s. Call me boring, but I prefer simple stages like smashville and BF
Pokemon Stadium, Castle Siege, Delfino Plaza, Frigate Orpheon, Halberd, Arena Ferox, and Prism Tower itself are all legal in one title or another according to this wiki page.

Interestingly, the Wii U version of 4 is the only title that both has any transforming stages at all and doesn't allow any of them. In that respect, it's the odd game out.
 

VodkaHaze

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I hope we are smart and not assume just because stage hazards are off means that stages with jank layouts and transitions like Kongo Falls and prism tower deserve to be legal

What if we rotate the starter and counter pick list every pgr season with say 5 starters and 2 counter picks, that would be interesting...
Please try not to double post. But don't worry about Kongo Falls being legal. Even the hazardless version with no Klaptraps, no barrel and no movement on the platforms will probably be banned due to the rock encouraging camping. As for Prism Tower, the jury is still out on that.

As for a seasonal rotation, that won't happen as pointed out by Amazing Ampharos. It would be a nightmare to deal with.
What part of Prism Tower's layout is an issue? The starting walkoff is temporary, which negates the main issue posed by walkoffs in the first place, and historically temporary walkoffs have never been grounds for a ban. (Halberd, Castle Siege -- their issues lie elsewhere) The rest of the stage has perfectly fine platform arrangements.
I actually agree. I never had an issue with Halberd's walking blast line. However, for Prism Tower, it does return, and although it's only for around 10 seconds, we would need to do playtesting and see how much influence it has on matches. Depending on the results, we may decide to keep it or ban it.
 

IsmaR

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I still hold that Prism Tower is the 2nd best stage introduced behind Town and City for 4 as a whole.

It makes me sad Duck Hunt was the only other (temporarily) legal/CP of the "new" stages in Wii U, and it'll make me sad if it doesn't at least get a trial this time, however brief.
 

Jamisinon

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I hope we are smart and not assume just because stage hazards are off means that stages with jank layouts and transitions like Kongo Falls and prism tower deserve to be legal
Totally agree with Kong Falls, the rock alone breaks the stage competitively. As far as Prism Tower goes, I too am pretty much of the mindset that transitions often lead to issues. Every stage that transitions always has at least one transformation that's less than ideal. My only argument for Prism Tower is that there are a lack of stages similar to FD. Sure Kalos and Pokemon Stadium have just the side platfroms, so no middle platform and Smashville has the one moving platform but I can't think of other half decent stages where at least half of the time there is no platform. I think that kind of separates Prism Tower from Delfino/Halberd/Skyloft etc. If you use a larger stage list or even if you just have a single stage ban people already often ban FD and I fear the overall stage spread will be platform heavy stages. So for the sake of MU balance I'd consider the stage. But I won't say it's close to perfect either.
 
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