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A Look at Map Balance
Posted by: Kosciuszko ()
Date: August 30, 2016 11:20AM

After playing many games, it seems to me that the maps tend to be biased. On the most popular maps, the traditional Europe 1000 3v3 maps, the South is favored to win when player skill is equal. I recommend that the game balancing algorithm be tweaked to improve player experience.

The % score generated when creating a new map seems to be flawed. For example, look at the case shown in the following linked picture: []
This picture shows the Ulster-Hanover-Lithuania vs. Grenada-Sardinia-Nicaea.

This is rated as 50-50 by the game. However, it is one of the most unbalanced maps.

From my experience, the most objective way to evaluate the balance of a map is to count the number of territories that fall to each player. Allocate provinces based on the proximity to each player's capital. Provinces equidistant between players are not counted. This methodology is visualized with the attached picture.

The attached picture shows a map (rated at 50% - 50%) with 35 provinces allocated to the South and 31 provinces allocated to the North. With equal skill levels on each side, the South is highly likely to win if the game drags on.

I suggest that the previously explained methodology be used as an algorithm for generating the balance % scores. The % score would more aptly be the division of territories. For example, with the example game, I would rate the score as follows:
North: 31/(31+35) = 47%
South: 35/(31+35) = 53%

The map shown is only one of many examples. The vast majority of North vs. South Europe 1000 3v3 games favor the South. Although the proposed methodology is not perfect, I believe it is an improvement over what is currently used. If this is implemented, it would make map balancing much more transparent.

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Re: A Look at Map Balance
Posted by: Ephialtes ()
Date: December 01, 2016 09:53AM

3% map imbalance can rarely be felt because the individual player strength and province distribution plays a far more determining role.

Now the hex maps exists where you got your 100% map balance. As nice as that is, playing chess boards is also a bit stiff. I guess I am not the only one who likes Mace, Lux or Poland with its "opportunities".

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