Indulge me: game time information gathering

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  • Indulge me: game time information gathering

    (Note: this is not an official "project asks" thread, just me trying to get some dialogue to help my own understanding/analysis)

    Hi all

    I am trying to get a deeper understanding of the comments we are getting on game times.

    So, in that vein, can I get people to comment on what is taking up the time in their games please?
    Is it thinking time (creating a plan), moving models (executing the plan), rolling dice, applying/resolving mechanics (e.g. shooting with a unit, casting a spell, or fighting a round of combat), reading rulebooks, discussing things with the opponent, checking details (ranges/arcs/etc), something else?

    In particular I am interested in hearing from those that feel the game time has increased compared to say 8th ed legacy or early t9a (say before 1.2 (~October 2016)):
    which aspects take longer, do any aspects take less time, etc etc
    Crucially, for anyone answering this, is your playing context the same then and now?
    (I.e. are you the same skill level, playing the same amount, against similar skilled opponents, in the same garage/club/touraments, etc etc?).

    Thanks in advance for the answers.
    Dan
    List repository and links HERE
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  • In most games I have no issue with game time.
    But in those few I see propblems you can put the most time wasted to some things:

    - Super long thinking time in movement phase measuring everything and redoing positioning 3 times including backtrack other units.
    - Long thinking in magic phase (casting a spell with 3 or 4 dice, or 2...the same on dispelling).
    - Least impact but sometimes also annoying. Having to count the dices at every single roll, even worse when there are 30 different colored dices with different symbols and sizes. (also hard for oponent to follow the correct number of dices).


    In our own gaming group time is only an issue when some players who very seldom have time to play join for a game.
    But it was the same back to the old warhammer days with these players.
  • My opinion:
    Game time has remained unchanged since 8th.
    The only reason a game would take long, is because of specific persons being actually slow. This could be in movement, magic, shooting, magic, decision making or in choosing the prettiest dice to roll.

    I have no issue with the game time at all :D
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  • I don't have a problem with game time, I have a problem with slow opponents. My impression is that a mixture of lack of routine and - most importantly - exaggerated ambition leads some people to overthink, -measure and redo everything. In my experience the main culprit is deployment and the movement phase. What contributes to this is that T9A can drastically punish even minor mistakes (like an enemy unit being able to charge you in the flank because you wheeled your unit a little more and forgot to check arcs again) so it kind of rewards overcautiousness.
  • DanT wrote:

    So, in that vein, can I get people to comment on what is taking up the time in their games please?
    1) As said above, most time-consuming is when people move/unmove/move/unmove their units until somewhat happy. Some players take this to absurd level when they try to find the perfect spot for a unit.
    2) Magic does cost some time. But mostly when people play with (too) many spells so they seemingly are overwhelmed with options.


    DanT wrote:

    In particular I am interested in hearing from those that feel the game time has increased compared to say 8th ed legacy or early t9a (say before 1.2 (~October 2016)):
    Maybe its just my personal impression, but the more balanced 9th age got, the more time games seem to take. Could be because people realized, that they cant hope for a miracle (double 1 for breaktest, total power pit of shadows for example) to turn a downward going game because of misplays around. But that may be just my observation.
  • The normal game time is fine.

    I cannot remember the last time I did not finish a game at an event within the time limits. However, I have been really rushed a few times to get all the turns in and I play WoDG and have no shooting and I pay attention to the game and plan my moves out while my opponent moves.
    There are some insanely slow players out there. Moving of units and simply being indecisive can really be aggravating.
    I play by the standard that if I move a unit I am not moving it back and I encourage that in others.
    Checking a rules issue or figuring out a magic casting can slow the game down a bit but normally not a major issue.
    The moving of units and repositioning is the area of concern. Those players that place markers down and then examine every possible move a unit can make take just as much time if not more than players who quickly move a unit and then sheepishly move it again.
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  • I play between 1-4 games a week at either my place or the local store and we try and keep within tournament time frames. Main time constraints actually arises from socializing rather than in game hurdles. However from legacy to now army sizes have increased a fair bit and it does tend to slow time long time players I’ve found.
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  • Great, thanks all for the answers :thumbup:

    And please anyone else keep throwing comments in.


    The key things so far seem to be thinking/moving time.

    All of these things seem to me that they would naively apply equally to e.g. 8th ed legacy or t9a before 1.2.
    Have any of you noticed a change of these things over time?
    If so, do you know what has caused the changes in how people are playing?

    ( I note @Zwei has made some relevant comments towards the answers to these questions already :) )
    List repository and links HERE
    Basic beginners tactics HERE
    Empire of Dannstahl HERE
    Adjustments to 2.0 HERE
  • Movement, there are so many ways to lose the game there, it happended waay too many times that i check everything then in the last movement a slight rotation put me on the flank of a unit that i forgot to check and the entire plan evaporates, or that some combo involving chaff and corner clipping got me because i didn't check the movement till the last millimeter, so i tend to take longer there.

    The other things would be making sure that i remember every rule involved, things like strider, ghost walk, bodyguard, rerolling charges, terror, strike from the shadow can completely change a situation and forgetting some is exceedingly easy given the number of the units that exist in T9A (also layouter here, at some point i had to codify nearly every single alpha/beta of any given book, things get confusing).

    I want to add that i really felt the pause of some months that i took before the last tourney, you could easily see that most of the basic situations weren't in my cache so to speak.
  • DanT wrote:

    Great, thanks all for the answers :thumbup:

    And please anyone else keep throwing comments in.


    The key things so far seem to be thinking/moving time.

    All of these things seem to me that they would naively apply equally to e.g. 8th ed legacy or t9a before 1.2.
    Have any of you noticed a change of these things over time?
    If so, do you know what has caused the changes in how people are playing?

    ( I note @Zwei has made some relevant comments towards the answers to these questions already :) )
    What surprises myself as not yet been mentioned is the increase of Army Sizes.

    Take my UD list at present 4496 pts, to field exactly the same list back in 1.9 version I work it out as 5063 pts old money.
    That's at least 2 extra units to Deploy / Move / Check Flanks ( both players ) etc. Can't help but feel that this also contributes to the extra Movement / Thinking time mentioned by the other posters.

    In my view the yearly pts review concentrates more on pt reduction than on increases ( understandably - it is easier to reduce the cost of a sub par unit than increase the cost of multiple units ).

    Honestly feel that a move to say 4000 pts as the gaming norm would be a good move. Obviously won't be popular with everybody but do feel that it would help out on the length of games which could be a turn off in attracting new players.
  • In my games deployment and first turn take long.

    Deployment: often one of the two players travelled to the others home and unboxes his stuff while the other preps the gameboard.

    Deployment itself is often a tactical one drop after one drop mini game on its own. First turn takes ages especially due to checking arcs. Magic in first turn also takes a bit longer especially when there are a lot of spells able to be cast.

    In turn 2 and 3 rules on combo charges, fleeing, pursuit etc are often reviewed again taking some extra time. Games are on average one per month so there is no real routine on things.

    last 3 turns often go quicker as less and less units are on the table and we know eachothers army and our strategy better.

    Our games often last around 5 hours from table prep to victorypoints. In some case even an hours longer. My attempt to play three games on one day (at a tourney) was not that sweet of a memory: rushed play, felt stressed. I understand it gets better when you play really often but 3 hours for me is not a good experience. I have however no problem with the evening-filling games of 5-6 hours i play now. Shorter is appreciated, longer not.
    Co-creator of 9th Age Data Analysis dashboard. Report your games here to make them count in it.
  • @wombat and anyone else who finds this interesting and fancies getting involved...

    Interesting point.

    I wonder if these is a way to look at this more systematically.
    Do you keep your lists?
    Would it be possible to plot the number of units in your (UD & EOS?) lists as a function of time?


    More generally, does anyone fancy counting unit numbers per faction in ETC lists over the last 5-6 years and seeing if there are any trends?
    I don't have the time to do this level of data gathering, but if we can spread the load over 5-20 of us it should become very tractable.
    So anyone feel free to pick a year and faction and post the results in this thread.

    My suggestion would be to count characters that don't go in units as separate units, don't count characters that are most likely in units, and count cowboys who can join units as a "bonus unit", so I would suggest to write e.g. an army with 7 units plus a cowboy that can join units as 7(8) units, and an army with 12 units plus two cowboys who can join units would be 12(14).
    (Any other subtleties anyone can think of for counting units?)




    @Sander
    @Chack

    Quoting myself... as you both seem to mention thinking/moving time...

    DanT wrote:

    ...
    The key things so far seem to be thinking/moving time.

    All of these things seem to me that they would naively apply equally to e.g. 8th ed legacy or t9a before 1.2.
    Have any of you noticed a change of these things over time?
    If so, do you know what has caused the changes in how people are playing?



    ( I note @Zwei has made some relevant comments towards the answers to these questions already :) )
    List repository and links HERE
    Basic beginners tactics HERE
    Empire of Dannstahl HERE
    Adjustments to 2.0 HERE
  • Before 9th age i only played 8th edition a bit with friends and we didn't really had any finesse in the movement and barely knew the rules well, also our rules were that you won once you killed every opposing soldier, and we didn't use break test, every unit fough like it was unbreakable, i don't think it's a relevant comparison by any means :D
  • Setup usually takes more time than some entire turns. Unpacking 200 infantry models, sorting them into units, then sorting them into the correct ranks and files so they actually fit together without their tails or spears pushing each other off their bases.

    After that... eh. We rarely look up rules, if we forget how something works, we might look it up after the game. Movement and aiming works on the "close enough"* principle and we usually trust our opponents to handle their own dice rolles.

    *as in: "Yeah, they can probably shoot at that unit, looks like they are in front" and "Looks close enough to charge". No one likes debating half inches. When in doubt, choose the option that makes the game more action packed/cool/shorter. Unclear charges succeed, iffy aiming hits, etc.
  • Most time consuming:
    1. Deployment and Movement phases in game
    2. Setting up (table, models) (technically not game time, I guess)
    3. Looking up rules we do not know (gets slightly better over time) or looking for special cases (e.g. random movement unit catching a fleeing unit doing a post-combat pivot, but NOT a reform, after a successful discipline test, was very new for me)
    @DanT I would also take a look at unit numbers and model counts compared from 5000 point era to 4500 point era (beginning) to 4500 point era (now). With massive point drops (e.g. command groups) in the latest updates my theory is, that armies are now as large as 5000 point era armies effectively undoing the decision to reduce from 5000 to 4500 points.

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  • @DanT: the time i spent on deployment and movement mainly caused by my thinking is very stable. The time is spend it today is as much as in my earlier games and editions. Frequent playing reduces it, but for me once a month on average is feasible. More is nice but not always compatible with family life and work. As said, not a problem for me. Only becomes a problem as soon as i want to go to tourneys. Which i dont because of this. I dont wanna be that opponent.
    Co-creator of 9th Age Data Analysis dashboard. Report your games here to make them count in it.