Ranking Engine Update

I feel like I have been doing lots to this project this week with not much to show for it.

As you can see I’ve just edged over the 25% mark for the number of pairwise comparisons that I need to do for my game ranking of my collection.

I’m not going to bore you with another “look at my current top 10”. Instead I’m going to bore you with my top 10 worker placement games based on my current rankings of games. 

What this really show cases is the start of the next stage of my stats engine. After a bit of behind the scenes rewriting of code, I’ve started a gui front end (see below). It’s an ugly, not designed gui. I’ll sketch something out over the weekend. 

But basically I can select a game mechanic and find all the games in my collection that have that mechanic. 

It then takes those results, and finds out how I’ve ranked them, followed by printing out the top ten. 

So before I add categories, designers and publishers I need to sort out the gui. That’s the major effort. 

Once that’s been done I’ll expand the stats to look at the bgg hotlist, followed by the bgg all time top 100. 

I then have more stuff on the road map. Wait did I just type that? That almost makes me sound like professional and I’ve planned it. But in reality I haven’t and I’m not. I’m making things up as I go along. I have ideas that I really should write down before they are lost. In away these posts are acting as my dev notebook. Well hopefully gentle reminders. 

Hopefully you can see things are progressing both code wise and rankings wise. I also hope you are finding the verses posts interesting. Which were a surprise spin off from this project.

Anyway I’ll see you in my next post.

Verses: Tokaido vs Zombicide

Today it’s like we have chalk and cheese duking it out. Talk about two completely different games.

On the right we have Tokaido, on the left Zombicide.

Tokaido is just such a beautiful looking game. It doesn’t feel competitive. But it is. That serene journey from Edo to Kyoto (or is it the opposite direction), stopping off to experience hot springs, visiting shrines, painting the amazing vistas, buying gifts, encountering interesting strangers, and enjoying heavenly meals, although zen like, has you squabbling with fellow travelers for those exclusive spots.

Zombicide on the other hand has you working with your fellow survivors of the zombie apocalypse to kill zombies, gather food and weapons, and hopefully make it to the end of the day! And boy does this pile up the pressure. The better you get at killing the zombies the more of them appear.

Pimped out with the collectors box, you can replace the cardboard money in Tokaido with satisfying metal coins, and replace the wooden player counters with minis. Whilst listening to the games soundtrack!

Zombicide is just a minifest. It has so many minis, especially if you have all of the expansions and kickstarter exclusives (I have some of these, not all of them). And because of this be a bit of a pig to set up.

I called this one a draw. I couldn’t decide. It sounds like a cop out and it feels like one. But I love them both. They both offer a completely different gaming experience. Which one I would chose at any time really would come down to how I feel at the time.

I had a couple of comments on Instagram:


And the following from Facebook:


Which I think if my counting is correct gives the slight edge to Tokaido. The public have spoken.

The Destiny Challenge

So Dale kicked my butt today in our game of Star Wars Destiny.

I was playing a Jyn/Rey deck. While Dale was playing Rey/Maz. He had Force Speed to. Which on its special side with Maz was giving him four extra actions! That was obscene. Dale also had Force Heal which he used to heal Rey a couple of times.

Dale definitely has the upper hand at the moment. The increased card pool available to him from the booster box he bought has paid off.

I got to thinking, can I do better and cheaper targeting specific cards for my deck? So the challenge is I have a budget/target of what Dale paid for his booster box. Can I build a better deck for less?

I have an idea of the cards I want for my deck. I need to improve the mill side of it, plus combat the damage it takes.

Some of those cards are already on the way. But three of them I need to hunt around for. 

I need to research some more cards that will strengthen the deck. 

Verses: Escape from Colditz vs Memoir ’44

This is a juicy match up thematically and for what the games represent.

On the left we have a game over forty years old, Escape from Colditz. On the right we have Memoir ’44, champion of modern hobby gaming in this match up.

We have two games that are set during World War II. Well different aspects of it. One has you escaping an infamous prison. While the other is reenacting conflicts from various theatres from WWII.

These are two very differing games, very representative of their era. 

If you search back I had a blast playing Escape from Colditz. There were some issues mechanically. But having said that I know some people don’t like the randomness of the dice in Memoir ’44.

However Escape from Colditz takes a really long time to play. While in comparison Memoir can be played in less than an hour.

In the end it was a rather easy decision to make. It has to be Memoir ’44. The share flexibility and expandability, plus relatively quick game play, swung it. 

So did my decision match up with those that responded on social media?

Which would you chose?

A Magic Afternoon

Wizards of the Coast were very kind and sent some of their Welcome Decks from the recent Welcome event to me for my students to learn Magic the Gathering.

This afternoon a group of my learners that take part in my Monday enrichment session learnt how to play Magic the Gathering using a Welcome Deck of their choosing.

They have really enjoyed themselves learning Magic and playing the game. There has been a buzz, laughter, delight in discovering the creatures in their decks.

Think we will run a mini league using these decks. Then hopefully if I can get a booster box cheaply I’ll run a league for them based on the Magic League rules (after half term). I must get some extra life counters for them too. 

A big thank you to Wizards of the Coast for your generosity. The students were really really chuffed that they could keep their decks.

Top 10 After 15% Completed

I’ve hit 15% or 3476 of the total pairwise comparisons that I have to do to rank my game collection. Which I thought was a good point to stop, take a snapshot of the top 10 (well it’s 11 really because I forgot to take zero into account).

Interesting to see what I consider (will this exercise back up that gut feeling?) to be my favourite Pandemic, Iberia drop out of the top 10. Also Tiny Epic Galaxies has also dropped to just outside the top 10.

I also have a new number one game at the moment. I think that the top 3 has been settled on. These will just be jostling for which of the top 3 places they take. The remaining top spots I’m expecting possibly three to be replaced by other games. But we will see. There are still some epic match ups to come.

Holding on by my finger tips

This Wednesday sees a “massive” update to the Star Realms app.

In an email plus a more detailed post we got the following warning:

IMPORTANT: PLEASE FINISH ALL OF YOUR GAMES BY TUESDAY, MAY 16!

ALL IN PROGRESS GAMES WILL BE DELETED WHEN THE APP IS UPDATED

ON WEDNESDAY, MAY 17

So what changes warrant this ominous warning?

For starters the app is getting a graphic update.

Apart from the new look, we are getting more cards:

  • “53 All-New Colony Wars cards in the Trade Deck with fun, new mechanics
  • Cards that can be purchased from the Trade Row and can immediately be put into play or into a player’s hand.
  • Blob faction has a new ability to “acquire a ship of cost x or less for free”.
  • The Stealth Tower card that comes with Colony Wars allows you to copy any base in play!
  • Two new chapters in the ongoing campaign, each with six missions!”

In their infinite wisdom the way levelling works is changing:

Currently, we have a lot of players that are “Forever Fives” – stuck at level 5 (that’d be me). This isn’t much fun, so now, if you make it to level 6, that will be your floor. If you then make it to level 7, that will be your floor, and so on. Sounds more fun, doesn’t it? However, it should be noted that now challenges won’t count towards your level or weekly or monthly leaderboards, but they will still count towards your overall number of games played, as well as your win percentage.

So this change is going to be controversial. I welcome the moving floor. However the majority of my games are challenges against friends and the odd mystery Internet person I’ve never met, but been playing for a long time now. So basically if I want to level up I am forced to play random  games. Otherwise if I don’t want to play random games whatever level I’m at the end of Tuesday I’m stuck at. Wow that sounds fun!

Another big change is real time games! I’d go read the post for this one. I think it will replace the 3 minute games. Which I hardly ever played. I’ve seen some welcoming this. Mainly from those that stream games. I might start doing that myself. Who knows? The whim might take me to show the world just how bad I am at the game!

So I need to complete all my current games by Tuesday, make sure I don’t drop below level 6 (I don’t think I can push it up to 7).

You can read the whole announcement HERE.

Verses: BattleLore Second Edition vs Memoir ’44

This match up happened very early on in the pairwise comparisons. I thought “wow! This is a tough choice.”

How am I going to chose between BattleLore (Second Edition) and Memoir ’44

Both are based on the Richard Borg Command and Colours system. 

Yes BattleLore has some extras to its mechanics. Setting the game up is actually part of the game play. It also adds lore to the game, which is basically magic. And that setup as game play is inspired.

Memoir ’44 has had way better support when it comes to expansions. There is a shit load of stuff for it. Ok some are mega expensive because they are out of print (which I don’t get, because it’s a popular game, an ever green title, and keeping stuff like expansions in print shouldn’t be an issue.) Plus I’m not sure FFG will do much more with BattleLore now with their RuneWars mini game just hitting the stores. 

So does it just come down to theme? Do I prefer fantasy over historical? Or vice versa? 

I decided this was a draw. Theme wasn’t a big decider in the end for me. Because if on the day I wanted to play a game like these it would come down to what theme am I in the mood for? 

So I put this decision out on social media to get the thoughts of others on what they would chose.

I suspect Henning might be a little biased in his answer below. But he is correct his art in BattleLore is amazing.


So what would your choice be?