warning: limitless indalecio discussion

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warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Mon May 30, 2016 3:16 pm

Oh-kay! Here we go.
Ike wrote:While I enjoy more quizbowl and enjoy playing some of them, I think it's worth taking a step back and just talking about their creation as a whole. I understand that the stakes are kind of low here, but I think the general principle is also applicable to normal quizbowl, so bear with me please. Warning: this post reeks of circle-jerk, music mafia like mentality, and intellectual masturbation. In particular it reeks of James Bond and JRPGs, so deal with it or stop reading.
The warning applies to my post too, for everyone reading. Again, stop reading if you're not interested in such posts. Some of this is meant to be humorous/sarcastic just in case you're the type of reader that doesn't pick up on sarcasm too well.
Ike wrote: Good vanity packets are hard to do well: you have to make it challenging to the audience, and you have to make it accessible. I think the majority of vanity packets I have played has had errors in one or both of these categories.
First, I'm going to presume that your playing of LIMITLESS INDALECIO prompted you to write this post. Good! The packet had a casualty. Glad to hear it. Back to reality. I would like to remind you that your statement is true in general, however LIMITLESS INDALECIO was a gauge to see exactly what you guys know. I don't want to leave out tons of interesting clues and whatnot simply because "I don't think you know anything about game X." So we took an hour of our time to figure out exactly what it is you guys know about JRPGs. Jason's packet actually covered a bit more of canonical topics whereas mine went deep into areas not explored by you and your editing crew at ACFNATIONALS. I think this is a perfectly valid approach to seeing what the field's (at least the top half of the field's) limits are. To that end, I gave you very few easy parts on the bonuses. Given that LIMITLESS INDALECIO was pretty much designed to be read to the "top 1% of 1%" of JRPG question players, I wanted to see how far their knowledge stretched and for the most part, even though bonuses were converted at a rather middling 12.5 ppb (my goal for a room of 8 was 15-16 ppb and we had 5 players), people seemed to just not be able to pull a few ppb worth of things. Several answers were very close to what I wanted and people just couldn't remember the names of some things. Great! So at least I know that people know of these things, even though they couldn't convert them. What does that mean? It means that I can probably clue at least some stuff from those games at CULEX (say, in common links) and have them converted at a relatively high rate! I'm not leaving out interesting clues from JRPGs because they are "not Pokemon" or whatever the fuck. People know other things. They do! I have proof!
Ike wrote:Let's talk first about making it accessible. I think vanity packets are much more interesting if the giveaways are accessible. For my James Bond packet of 15 tossups or so, here were my answers:

Motorcycles, New York City, hotels or motels, (sniper) rifle, Japan, Valentin Zukovsky, License to Kill, Wint and Kidd, Rosa Klebb’s shoe,. James Bond being tortured in Casino Royale, policemen or sheriff, Elliot Carver, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, and the fight scene in New Delhi or the fight scene in India
Ike wrote:If you'll notice, around 60% of the answers are on easy things with real giveaways. If you have only seen the Bond movies once, you can probably get 90% of these answers by the end. That was done on purpose, and people writing vanity packets should be doing it more and make it feel less circle-jerky.
Huzzah, a good writing style that I've always meant to emulate at CULEX, but this time with truly canonical content and not random clues from obscure AKSYS games, Mana Khemia XXVI: Legend of the Tootsie Pop, or various other games featuring anime characters with green or purple hair and overly emphasized breasts who sing to damage their opponents.
Ike wrote:For ACFNATIONALS, a JRPG tournament, I knew that Rob Carson, Tejas Raje, and Dylan Minarik were probably the better players of the field, - I didn't think they have encyclopedic knowledge of JRPGs - no one does*


I amped up the difficulty of this packet in rather significant ways and after I changed the ruling on something I should have prompted him on, Jason went 5/5/1 on the packet and 6/2/0/1 or something on the easier twelve-question set, even getting the hardest question based on the name of an item he picked up their after a random fight. In a world that is huge. So yeah um no, YOUR ARE WRONG. I wrote LIMITLESS INDALECIO with the data I got from ACFNATIONALS in mind! I wanted to test peoples' limits. Whose limits was I testing? Precisely those players you mentioned! It turns out that hard questions are hard. Again, the packet was pretty much announced as a data-collecting exercise and it served its purpose incredibly effectively. When combined with CULEXsurvey and the right choice of second writer, this information will give me everything I need to turn CULEX into one of the best side events you will ever play. Why is it that you think you can write a set of questions under certain assumptions but I cannot experiment after I have even more data than you? My packet was announced late in the game but I knew a lot of players from ACFNATIONALS were going to HSNCT. So I had an opportunity to test their skills. I did! It worked, dude. You don't believe me? Wait until you listen to CULEX. You will be in heaven, or the farplane, or wherever.
Ike wrote: each one of them may probably only have beaten 20-30 RPGs that are longer than 40 hours
i like how you managed to not mention me in the list of people you thought you would be the best at the tournament even though i accomplished this feat by the age of 9
Ike wrote:So I wrote the tournament from there. If you’re assuming that people can name a single character from Shin Megami Tensei II, or Ar tonelico III: The Girl's Song that Pulls the Trigger of World's Demise, fuck you!
no fuck you lol the tossups on characters actually played well, almost all of them getting extremely solid buzzes. In actuality, of the seven tossups that went dead, three of them were the things on SEGA games. To be fair, I was a bit of a dick with a couple of these. I guess I'll take a moment to apologize for writing tossup 0 and then mislabeling it as tossup 1, but I mean fuck tossup 0.
Ike wrote:One thing that shocked me about ACFNATIONALS was that 35(!) people showed up for it. I think that’s partly because it was well advertised, but also because the tournament was designed to be accessible.
As will CULEX, dude. There won't be any tossups on the inside-jokey Charles Barkley JRPG in my tournament, Mr. Accessibility McAccessibilitypants.
Ike wrote: Now let's talk about making vanity packets challenging. I think it would be wise for more vanity packet authors to consider the knowledge base of their audience.
JRPGs are such a damn niche category that it's hard to know exactly what that is without, say, testing their limits! Oh wait, that's exactly what LIMITLESS INDALECIO was designed to do! Also, CULEXsurvey will give me an idea of what people know as well. Pretty nifty! Making overreaching assumptions on "what people know" makes you think weird things, such as your favorite strategy RPG series is more accessible than it is. Again, your favorite quizbowlers like to play games from that series, but that alone does not imply that they are more canonical than another game. For instance, at the main site, a question you probably 30ed (you know which one) was 30ed at the main site. This was taken solely from two extremely expensive strategy RPGs in said series. Meanwhile, I write a tossup basically testing to see whether or not anyone has played a game from another series, which was prominent in North America WAY before games from your favorite series were ever known in North America, and no one can convert it. (One of these games even appears on several "greatest RPGs of all-time lists!") Nintendo bias there, anyone? In fact, I think your favorite series' accessibility is directly proportional to how strong a character's tipper was in a certain fighting game not to be named. Before his appearance in that game, the series I tossed up twice was far more prominent in North America than yours. Okay, people don't play SEGA RPGs. I mean, judging by your content at ACFNATIONALS, I thought some of you did. So yeah. I tossed up a couple of them, one of which was accessible and the other which was, admittedly, difficult due to poor sales numbers near the end of the life of a poorly selling console. Okay. But I included 23 tossups in a packet that was advertised to be hard, so I fail to see the problem.
Ike wrote:For example, my Bond packet clued from the movies, games and books.
Mine included locales, people, events, films, languages, and all sorts of haberdashery. I chose to ask it in a different way because ***my intended audience was smaller than your intended audience, and that prompted me to write the questions differently!*** For CULEX, my intended audience will be extended! Oh and by the way, several people I wouldn't really expect to PM me to acquire this packet have done so and are interested in the content, so yeah let's make all JRPG question content only Pokemon-based.
Ike wrote: I also wanted to find upper middle clues that were distinguishing, in my mind, reaching deeper and deeper into the Bond films isn’t really testing more knowledge. I think a lot of the packets that I have played don't adhere to this, and it's stupid.
Fair point, and everyone should listen to this sound advice. For the record, my writing philosophy for CULEX won't be very different than this and never was going to be. There is room for challenging INDALECIO-type questions (the easier ones) but there certainly won't be an overwhelming amount of them.
Ike wrote:One more thing about vanity packets and what people know. They are designed to bring a smile to people’s faces.
Trust me, Jason was really sad when he powered four out of five questions. He was practically crying. Even with the question difficulties, eight questions were powered out of 23 with only five competitors. I hope you'll give me your data soon so I can see if you powered what I think you powered so we can add to the total of things that were powered by the top few people (aka the intended audience). I think you powered question 23, at the very least. At least you better have, I wrote it with you in mind. :)
Ike wrote:Some of my favorite buzzes of all time include Mike Cheyne’s first clue buzz on Wint and Kidd, or Benji Nguyen’s first clue buzz on Friedrich Nietzsche in JRPGs; if you know about Final Fantasy X, the tossup on Shoopuffs was designed to bring a smile on your face (and it did!) Point is: the reason why vanity packets exist is that you can get what Billy Busse has called a “satisfying buzz” out of them. Writing your tossups in such a way so that there are no satisfying buzzpoints is one of the hallmarks of shitty (vanity) writing. So for example, a shitty tossup on say the James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies might leadin with "The first commercial for this film shows X." Seriously, no one fucking cares unless it's otherwise memorable!
A good point! Listen to this, everyone.

On the other hand, you can't remember these things unless you have actually played the games. I cannot reiterate enough that 19 of the 35 questions I asked on Saturday night were powered. Obviously something was pretty memorable about those! I clued great memorable things from games - unfortunately for those of you who haven't played those games just yet, you're missing out on lots of memorable things! Maybe you should play some of those games you haven't played yet? At some point? Instead of, you know, just playing Pokemon and Final Fantasy? I would be happy to recommend some games to you. I've played a lot more of them than you have, more than likely.
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Re: Your vanity writing sucks. Fix it!

Post by Cheynem » Mon May 30, 2016 3:24 pm

This thread...it is bad.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by touchpack » Mon May 30, 2016 3:59 pm

Warning: this post is intensely circle-jerky. Cover your eyes while reading.

Jake, one of the main problems with the packet was not just that it asked about really really obscure games (I can somewhat understand why you did this, although it was not fun playing through a 23-tossup packet containing 0 games that I have personally played), but the problem was you asked about obscure and un-memorable things from games. Take the bonus on the Zelda series, for example. I spent hundreds of hours of my childhood playing Zelda games--they were my absolute favorites when growing up. I have played every single Zelda game except A Link Between Worlds, and many of them I've played through multiple times. I kept pace with noted-very-good-at-video-games player Jason Thompson on the one vanity Zelda packet that happened recently due to this. (while that packet had its faults, it at least was accessible and asked about things people are likely to know) I got 0 points on the Zelda bonus, because it asked for obscure things with names that are not memorable! (or in one case, never said in the game--the only way you would know the thing has a name is by reading the game manual for a game that came out before most of the players of this packet were born) Many of the tossup clues and bonus parts required that the player remember the exact names of obscure items/quests/etc. in games which were mostly already insanely hard! If your goal with this packet is to learn what players know, here's what you learned (as is evident by the 12 ppb): players do NOT remember exact names of minor details of things in games they've played over a decade ago, and it's intensely frustrating when dozens to hundreds of hours of investment net you with 0 points and a big middle finger.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Ike » Mon May 30, 2016 4:39 pm

I do not have the time or the patience to respond to all of this since I don't think you get my original point at all.

This packet was terrible. To be a bit glib: this packet was only legal because of Roe v. Wade. Making your tournament easier isn't going to solve the bullshit that's with this packet. The only reason this packet was remotely enjoyable was that the moderator had good sense to continuously override the packet with quick googling. After only playing 10 tossups, Billy and I were asking "how many tossups left?" because I had to medicate myself.

If and when whatever trash thing you do next comes out, I'm not playing it. I'll wait until the packets get posted and play them privately with a moderator who has more sense than you. And if you don't ever post the packets, fine I don't care.

I'm not responding to you further since I don't think you get it, and I'm not interested in having a further public discussion about it, I feel like I've used a bit of the community's goodwill just trying to make a point about vanity writing. I'm also not interested in having a private one, maybe someone else will be if you're genuinely interested.

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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Mon May 30, 2016 9:43 pm

AKKOLADE wrote:congratulations, you're fighting about the quality of video game questions written for video game nerds

edit: not that they shouldn't be good but y'all telling each other to eff off is pretty dumb
This point is good. Agree with it.

The packet actually played very well for the intended audience, even though a good bit of that audience wasn't in attendance. The tossups, at least. Except for the dead tossups, but that was mostly Sega stuff and we all like Square more than Sega so yeah. Also, I wrote the packet with the older part of the crowd in mind (Westbrook, Lafer, Escandell, Thompson) as well as the younger part of the crowd (Carson, Minarik, Raje, etc). Old people write questions with old people in mind every now and then. The two audiences I mentioned are at least a generation apart in terms of console lives. The set plays better for the older people in the intended audience as some of the "impossible" things were actually key points of their respective childhoods. The old games that I clued were not inaccessible to these people. They were a facet of everyday life.

In addition, the event consisted of three different sets of questions: my 12 questions from long ago (easier), LIMITLESS INDALECIO (challenging but contrary to what Ike tells you, fair for the intended audience), and INSANITY PRELUDE (challenging, but also more accessible to the younger crowd).

I would like to remind people of what Charlie once told me about not criticizing events that you weren't at. It's a great point and holds true to this day, and will continue to hold true. That advice is extended to this discussion without delay.

In the words of the immortal Allen Iverson: We're talking about a practice packet. Not a tournament, a practice packet. Not a tournament.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by jonpin » Mon May 30, 2016 11:54 pm

The Ununtiable Twine wrote:I would like to remind people of what Charlie once told me about not criticizing events that you weren't at. It's a great point and holds true to this day, and will continue to hold true. That advice is extended to this discussion without delay.

In the words of the immortal Allen Iverson: We're talking about a practice packet. Not a tournament, a practice packet. Not a tournament.
What?! To wit, from the rules:
As a result of the above, and of the need to reserve the privilege of moderating the forums for the designated staff members, anything that looks like telling other people not to discuss quizbowl is prohibited. This includes but is not limited to: telling someone that you do not like the “tone” of their post, telling someone that he is being “uncivil” or “impolite,” complaining about being “attacked” by criticism, demanding that people not criticize something that occurred in a state that they do not reside in, demanding that people not criticize something that occurred at a tournament they did not attend, or demanding that people not criticize something for any reason.
It is literally the official policy of this forum that what you seem to be attributing to Charlie (Dees?) "about not criticizing events that you weren't at" is not a great point and is in fact a terrible argument.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by tabstop » Tue May 31, 2016 12:07 am

jonpin wrote:(Dees?)
Steinhice, I would have thought.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Tue May 31, 2016 12:13 am

jonpin wrote:
The Ununtiable Twine wrote:I would like to remind people of what Charlie once told me about not criticizing events that you weren't at. It's a great point and holds true to this day, and will continue to hold true. That advice is extended to this discussion without delay.

In the words of the immortal Allen Iverson: We're talking about a practice packet. Not a tournament, a practice packet. Not a tournament.
What?! To wit, from the rules:
As a result of the above, and of the need to reserve the privilege of moderating the forums for the designated staff members, anything that looks like telling other people not to discuss quizbowl is prohibited. This includes but is not limited to: telling someone that you do not like the “tone” of their post, telling someone that he is being “uncivil” or “impolite,” complaining about being “attacked” by criticism, demanding that people not criticize something that occurred in a state that they do not reside in, demanding that people not criticize something that occurred at a tournament they did not attend, or demanding that people not criticize something for any reason.
It is literally the official policy of this forum that what you seem to be attributing to Charlie (Dees?) "about not criticizing events that you weren't at" is not a great point and is in fact a terrible argument.
Well then I apologize, however several years ago this same bad argument was made in my direction so I thought that was totally a thing. I sometimes (it's rare these days) confuse the good with the bad, and so I went for years thinking that this particular thing was standard. I'm sorry if I haven't read the forum rules in a while. Thanks for correcting that.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Ike » Wed Jun 01, 2016 4:29 am

Now that I'm done with my NSC editing duties, I'm going to unpack this packet and other issues at large for anyone who cares. For anyone who wants the more pragmatic criticism, skip ahead to the red section.

In my ten years of having been around playing quizbowl, I have never had a packet that was so offensive to my sensibilities. Make no mistake, this packet was an abortion. The fact that Jake is trying to rationalize it using Jason Thompson's good work is terrible, and he should feel ashamed of himself. This would be like claiming that my packet at a guerilla event wasn't as terrible because John Lawrence's was better. People have been asking me how to compare this packet to normal quizbowl. I can say this: in all my years of playing quizbowl, I have never felt so offended, or so repulsed. The closest comparison would be Jacob Reed 0ing a Bach bonus because he was a bad little boy and only listened to J.S. Bach for 10 hours a day as a child and not 14. Not one Bach bonus, but 0ing 5 Bach bonuses and missing five tossups on specific Bach pieces. I 0'd bonuses on game series that you probably haven't played that I have put over 500+ hours, not once or twice, but 5 times. There were tossups on games I beat more than once that I was unable to answer. That's fucked up. See the * below for an example:

The most annoying thing too is just how there was a lot of huffing and puffing about how awesome this was going to be - a ridiculous amount of posts for one packet, a bunch of insider jokes on this trash forum, etc. If this were someone who just had posted on here saying "Hey guys, I wrote 20 questions for the HSNCT, can you play them?" Sure - I would NEVER flip out like I did here - in fact I would encourage them to please try harder. But it's obvious from all of these posts that this writer is never going to improve, (such a cavalier attitude as "the packet gets second" just shows you he doesn't give a fuck,) so I don't see any rational response but to flip out. Even when I try to make a rational post about the subject I get responses like, "i like how you managed to not mention me in the list of people you thought you would be the best at the tournament even though i accomplished this feat by the age of 9" instead of actually giving a fuck about the core of my argument.

(Here's the part of the post that's more applicable to people at large.) Look we're all nerdy about something. I know I was incredibly nerdy about a bunch of things while younger, still very am. As an example: Billy Busse, Rob Carson and I have a private discussion ongoing right now about Final Fantasy X. But, at some point droning about a topic just becomes socially unacceptable. Learning how to interact better with others in quizbowl is definitely one of my more valuable things I got out of it. I do think it's okay to have conversations about what're the worst Star Trek episodes, what're the best French language books, etc. But this was just way too fucking much, and I say that as probably the best high-level QBer who has a love for these games.

Here's an anecdote: When I was working at 2K games, I found out that one of my co-workers was a game designer at Working Designs (which localized a bunch of JRPGs.) He worked on Lunar, Albert Odyssey and the shitty Magic Knight Rayearth game. Because he worked on one of the games that I grew up playing, I talked extensively with him during my time there. If you think he has encyclopedic knowledge of the games he's worked on, you're wrong! In fact, he's pretty much a "normal" dude: he has kids, he plays other games like Destiny in his spare time and can run a 5k marathon. The truth of the matter is that 1.) people eventually learn to grow the fuck up and 2.) quizbowl is really the only place where we value such deep nerddom, and while I don't think it's inherent nerddom isn't terrible, it's worth keeping in mind.

Ike

*One such offending sensibility was a paraphrase of lyrics:
15. In the song “Worlds Collide”, the mandatory faltering of these entities is mentioned in reference to a path the singer must choose.
But
lyrics actually wrote:"Paradoxes must break / This is the path I must take"
And so as someone who actually paid for this shitty game's soundtrack and listened to it 20 times or so, this was just a fuck you. Every question was written this stupidly and terribly. Much like the preface to Shaw's Androcles and the Lion is longer than the play itself, the catalogue of offenses and terrible things with this packet is longer than the packet itself. (Aside, Pop Quiz: If you can name the other "quizbowler" who I know that owns Final Fantasy XIII-2's soundtrack, you'll win a dollar! Scroll down to the end of the post to find out!)

If you guessed Ketan Jha, Shantanu's brother, you win a dollar!
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by p-vs-vp » Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:58 am

Ike wrote: and can run a 5k marathon
that's impressive
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Wed Jun 01, 2016 1:11 pm

This much angst over a single vanity packet seems excessive. Ike, I also don't understand why you're angry that people got excited about nerdy things while playing a jRPG event where you chose to participate. The second half of your post is very confusing.

To be clear: like, "we should have fewer/no jRPG side events for adults because they're childish" seems like a coherent position to me. I don't understand the position that "We should have jRPG events because they're fun, but you shouldn't get excited while playing or reading them."
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Wed Jun 01, 2016 1:31 pm

Ike wrote:
15. In the song “Worlds Collide”, the mandatory faltering of these entities is mentioned in reference to a path the singer must choose.
But
lyrics actually wrote:"Paradoxes must break / This is the path I must take"
And so as someone who actually paid for this shitty game's soundtrack and listened to it 20 times or so, this was just a fuck you. Every question was written this stupidly and terribly. Much like the preface to Shaw's Androcles and the Lion is longer than the play itself, the catalogue of offenses and terrible things with this packet is longer than the packet itself.
I admit this was an unfortunate attempt at wordsmithery. But at the very least you should have been led to know that the question was asking for a prominent thing from FFXIII-2, which hopefully led to your getting 15 points.

INDALECIO was an exercise in seeing which direction the canon should expand. That's it. We don't have a lot of these tournaments (and I'm sure some people wish we would dedicate more time to writing more academic things, which is a completely valid and respected opinion!), so I figured I would see how I could expand on your original set. It was also just one packet.

Thanks for telling me that you knew about the FFXIII-2 soundtrack! Although I did lead in with some unfortunate wordsmith fuckery, I now know that someone in the field actually knows something about it. What does this mean? It means I may dedicate a clue to it, so hey, when you change your mind and actually end up playing CULEX, you'll know that I thought of you when whatever it is I decide to write on is clued, if it is clued. The packet was designed to figure out what people at the upper ends of the field know so I can reward them for knowing such. That's it. When combined with the survey, I'll have everything I need to clue the rest of the questions properly.

To anyone reading this: The bonuses were not intended to have an easy / medium / hard part. They were meant solely as a data gathering exercise for myself. Did this work? Absolutely! Since Ike has taken it upon himself to reveal clues from the packet in a public forum, I'll give some examples without necessarily spoiling the clues myself:

1. The Zelda bonus was enthusiastically 20ed in the room by the intended audience. They couldn't pull the Twilight Princess clue, which was a little surprising, but whatever. What does this tell me? It tells me that the best players in the field actually do have somewhat deep knowledge of Zelda games. I didn't know exactly how deep. Now I have kind of an idea.

2. The Fire Emblem bonus was easily 30ed in the room. Hard-ass bonus? You bet! What does this tell me? It tells me that I could probably afford to write one of my challenge tossups for CULEX on a hard thing from certain Fire Emblem games if I so choose and people can convert it because, guess what, they have deep knowledge of at least a few Fire Emblem games.

3. The Breath of Fire bonus was zeroed. Now that bonus actually wasn't that tough comparatively, but no one knew any of the answers. This tells me that no one at the top of the field has played Breath of Fire 2 or 3, which is kinda disappointing, but whatever. I had no way of knowing who would know anything about what going in. I'll explain my answerline choices, even (since you think I just copied and pasted shit, or at least you would like people to believe this!):

3.1. A surprise town that comes up near the end one of the games. If you played through the game, you'll at least know what I'm talking about because how many dungeons are so massive that they have towns embedded in them? Maybe you don't convert, but you definitely know what I'm talking about. If I see people chatting about this during their bonus answer time, I know someone has played the game even though it wasn't converted.

3.2. A major figure in Breath of Fire 3. Again, common knowledge, but not surprising that it wouldn't be converted if the field stayed away from Breath of Fire. That this wasn't converted signals to me that the top players haven't played Breath of Fire very much (which is a shame, but that's just my opinion).

3.3. Look, if you played Breath of Fire 2 for 30 minutes, you have an idea of who this is, even if you can't remember his name. That no one knew who he was tells me that I should probably refrain from writing CULEX tossups on tough things from Breath of Fire games. In fact, I'll probably just throw some Breath of Fire clues into the common links or something, or maybe they'll be part of a tossup on an easy answerline, or something.

So that right there tells me that if I wrote a tossup on, say, something a little more challenging from Breath of Fire 2 or 3, it would go dead more likely than not. Okay, great! Now I know how I'm going to clue those games for CULEX, if I clue them at all.

I could go on, but I won't. You should get the point. Some of the bonuses were indeed incredibly difficult, I admit. But then again, at the main site, we just ran through the questions and didn't play tossup/bonus format. Some of the tossups were incredibly difficult as well! This certainly wouldn't have been as much the case if Rob hadn't decided to preemptively include a CULEX-style tossup in Tricon 6.0. However, he made that comment and so I figured I would toss up a certain couple of things and write some evil bonuses. Sooooo the conversion rate went down.

Look, a lot of the bonuses were brutal! I realize that. But they all had similar goals in mind. I was testing for depth of knowledge by the best players. Despite the putrid bonus conversion (12.5, a little lower than expected but not much lower), the intended field actually had a general idea of what was going on with 19-20 ppb worth of the items and only on a couple occasions did no one have any idea of what was going on. That's good for me to know! If I would have just thrown a whole bunch of easy parts in there, sure, people would have felt better about themselves and conversions would have been higher, but I wouldn't have gotten as much feedback as I wanted for the upcoming set. What do you know? The best players have played games outside of a few series, contrary to Ike's assertion that the best players have only played a small amount of JRPGs, most of which are Pokemon or Final Fantasy! One of CULEX's goals is to reward them for playing more canonical ones, and it will succeed in doing that while still being accessible. The first actual ACF Nationals was played on a set with difficulty similar to today's ACF Falls. The difficulty was eventually increased, was it not? Okay, so why can't we make a JRPG tournament that plays a little harder than ACFNATIONALS but remains accessible? How else are we supposed to know which direction to take such events if we don't set out probes to see? I'm not saying that the JRPG tournament will become an annual thing for all-time (although it totally should, amirite?). I'm saying that ACFNATIONALS did a lot of things well but those things can be expanded on in the next set. And the next set was not INDALECIO. INDALECIO was an experimental packet. Pretty much everyone besides a few people seem to understand this.

I was thoroughly impressed with everyone who played this packet's performances at ACFNATIONALS. They did so well that I thought I could expand on the difficulty of ACFNATIONALS in *some way* to help differentiate between those players a little better. I also thought they could use a challenge, and if I had written a packet in the same vein as ACFNATIONALS, almost every question would have been powered. Indeed, 11 of the 12 questions I read from my previous work were powered. I wanted to gauge exactly how much challenge material I should include in CULEX and exactly how hard CULEX tossups should be. From what I gather, the answer to the "how much challenge" question is *not a whole lot just yet*. We can't expect the rest of the field to know what the INDALECIO players knew, however unlike you, I do think there is some room for a few challenging tossups per packet (say, 15-20% of the answers), and even most of those will be taken from the lower end of the INDALECIO difficulty. Which games should those be taken from? Well guess what, INDALECIO helped me figure that out as well! Now I know which games people have deep knowledge of. I avoided extremely famous games like Final Fantasy VI, Chrono Trigger, Earthbound, Kingdom Hearts, etc in this packet (again, just one packet of death) rather intentionally because I already know people in the field either know the fuck out of those or are at least rather familiar with them. I wasn't going to get any information out of tossing those kinds of things because I already know that people are intimately familiar! Guess what? I threw in a couple of hard-ass bonuses from famous games / games I knew people in the field played. Guess what? Those were converted fantastically. If I had thrown in a few more, they would have probably been converted fantastically. Of my challenge questions, I might very well ask tough things from prominent games, but if a thing from a game that is less prominent is tossed up, chances are I'll ease up significantly on the difficulty. (You asked about the Profound Darkness at ACFNATIONALS. Wonderful! I asked about [insert boss from very prominent SEGA game] at INDALECIO. Not much difference there. Challenge tossups will be more like that if they are taken from SEGA, with the exception of maybe one or two, who knows at this point. But if I decide to ask about a location or any character from a very thoroughly played game, for instance, that's fair game.)

Was this packet produced as an ideal quizbowl trash packet? No, but that's because I wanted to use it to learn about the upper end of the field's knowledge. And guess what? I did just that. Guess what? I wrote four accessible tossups for CULEX just yesterday (and probably could have written and edited another three in the time it took me to construct this post0, so try not to worry about it.

All in all, you probably wrote ACFNATIONALS with very few tangible metrics in mind outside of which games you assumed people had played and which games you yourselves had played. Given the nature of JRPGs, that's probably all you actually COULD do outside of referring to game wikis for a few inorganic feeling clues. This is fine, it was the first tournament of its kind and aside from all of the shitposting in this thread, you did a very good job with it. However, I noticed a few things at ACFNATIONALS and wanted to gather more data to see how I can make CULEX a better experience for everyone. Isn't that how quizbowl works, to an extent? I just chose to go about gathering my data in a way that didn't cater to your senses. But I did gather it, and so INDALECIO achieved its goal. To anyone who has yet to read it: yes, it is hard as all hell. Yes, it may turn you to stone if you look at it for more than two seconds. But it did serve its purpose.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Auroni » Wed Jun 01, 2016 2:08 pm

I think there's a reasonable point to be extracted from Ike's posts, and that is that writers of questions on niche topics should still remember that people are going to hear and try to answer them. Considerations of clue and answer choice should not just be thrown out the window in these circumstances.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Wed Jun 01, 2016 5:17 pm

Auroni wrote:I think there's a reasonable point to be extracted from Ike's posts, and that is that writers of questions on niche topics should still remember that people are going to hear and try to answer them. Considerations of clue and answer choice should not just be thrown out the window in these circumstances.
I absolutely agree! I think where we differ here is that I'm fairly certain that said answerline space is larger than Ike thinks it is. As there haven't been a lot of JRPG themed competitons, it's somewhat nebulously defined. I am fairly certain the clues for those topics were fine for the most part as half of the questions that were answered were powered and literally everything else that was answered was answered before "for 10 points". That's even with half of the anticipated field actually attending. Some things from rather high quality notable games were not converted because the five participants hadn't played those particular games. A little surprising? Sure. But now I know what the better players have played and what they haven't.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Ike » Wed Jun 01, 2016 5:40 pm

The King's Flight to the Scots wrote:This much angst over a single vanity packet seems excessive. Ike, I also don't understand why you're angry that people got excited about nerdy things while playing a jRPG event where you chose to participate. The second half of your post is very confusing.

To be clear: like, "we should have fewer/no jRPG side events for adults because they're childish" seems like a coherent position to me. I don't understand the position that "We should have jRPG events because they're fun, but you shouldn't get excited while playing or reading them."
Given the option, I would choose to unplay the packet. Again, in turn with the Bach analogy, this packet was specifically designed to piss people off who only played games for eight hours a day, and only reward those who had played fourteen. If I had known that, I would have not played! It was specifically designed to piss you off! If you think I had an unreasonable expectation going into the packet, well you may be right because of who wrote the packet, but even then I had more faith (so mea culpa I guess?)

That said, it would be really hard for my sensibilities to be offended this badly ever again, so I promise that this is the only time I will ever get pissed off this badly from a packet. If somehow I ever get this mad over a packet again, I'll make a $500 donation to a quizbowl charity / non-profit.

The second half of the post is more about all the theatrics that went into this, by which I mean, when you announce and write your tournament even for nerds, be reasonable about it: most people in the gaming industry are not that nerdy - even about the games they work on! I don't care if you shout Hadouken while playing a video game packet - that's definitely within the limits of social acceptability. But, this, the shit I got tagged in FB about, the walls of text from some messages that came over FB from Jake about this, these ridiculous theatrics about how I'm not praising his ppg...like it's pretty annoying, and to top that off with just a basic non-understanding with how quizbowl, writing, or criticism works - it's terrible.

Edit: added in over a packet
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by touchpack » Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:36 am

There are a couple points that haven't yet been made:

1) Despite Jake's repeated insistence that everyone involved knew what they were getting into, this is blatantly a lie. In the original thread, he makes claims that "a lot of people will want to play these questions!" and tries to organize logistics for multiple rooms. It was advertised as a quizbowl packet that just happened to be quite difficult, not some hare-brained experiment to see how hard you can make questions before they become completely unanswerable! Jake mentions in an earlier post that "bonuses were not meant to have an easy / medium / hard, but rather as a data-gathering exercise" Like, what the actual fuck dude? You can't just completely upend a fundamental tenet of quizbowl unannounced and expect everyone to have a great time and willingly come back and continue to eat your shit in the future! You _claim_ CULEX is going to be different but your actions (and words in this thread) have given me no reason to trust what you're saying or that you've learned ANYTHING from this experience!

2) This packet had major issues other than difficulty. Ike points out a great example in the amazing "lyrics paraphrased" clue above. My biggest macro-level issue (other than difficulty) with the packet is a lot of the stuff it asked about was completely trivial! Like, I doubt anyone cares that the weapon in the Tower of Babil in FFIV is called the "super cannon." I looked it up--it's mentioned only three times in the game script of the international SNES version of the game. The DS, GBA, and PS1 translations never give the weapon a name; it's just described as some giant cannon. The difficulty of this part is irrelevant to why it is terrible--the name is simply not memorable, important, or satisfying. This could have been fixed by just asking for "cannon" or "Tower of Babil" or perhaps saying "description acceptable" and accepting "the cannon in the tower of Babil." This packet was full of questions that were immensely problematic stylistically; those problems were then amplified by the absurd difficulty to produce a completely unplayable piece of garbage.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Thu Jun 02, 2016 1:38 am

touchpack wrote:There are a couple points that haven't yet been made:

1) Despite Jake's repeated insistence that everyone involved knew what they were getting into, this is blatantly a lie. In the original thread, he makes claims that "a lot of people will want to play these questions!" and tries to organize logistics for multiple rooms. It was advertised as a quizbowl packet that just happened to be quite difficult, not some hare-brained experiment to see how hard you can make questions before they become completely unanswerable! Jake mentions in an earlier post that "bonuses were not meant to have an easy / medium / hard, but rather as a data-gathering exercise" Like, what the actual fuck dude? You can't just completely upend a fundamental tenet of quizbowl unannounced and expect everyone to have a great time and willingly come back and continue to eat your shit in the future! You _claim_ CULEX is going to be different but your actions (and words in this thread) have given me no reason to trust what you're saying or that you've learned ANYTHING from this experience!
This is a fair point (probably the most well thought out point in the thread) and I respect it. I should have been more clear about the whole bonus thing and wasn't. I was willing to accommodate multiple rooms if need be, but it became apparent that wouldn't be necessary as we approached the weekend. I apologize if the experience was sour for anyone besides Ike and Billy, but do maintain that I gathered a ton of information that will hopefully help make CULEX the standard-bearer for all future events of its genre.

On a side note, OZMA, CULEX's challenging companion, will be another challenge packet, probably without bonuses this time. More than likely, I'm going to aim for a difficulty between the two main packets of this weekend for OZMA, without as many truly evil tossups. In this way we can take things that actually ended up being too hard for the main set and throw them into OZMA. Hweel!
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by vinteuil » Thu Jun 02, 2016 5:38 am

Jake, you've repeatedly chosen not to answer the posts about you writing on utterly trivial, unmemorable, barely-named features of games. This honestly makes me very nervous about what on earth you might decide to clue for the math at CO.

As others have said, there's a difference between "good hard" (not many people are likely to have come across this material, but you're asking about it in a way that guarantees that those people will get points) and "artificially/bad hard" ("hard" in the sense of not many people answering it, but that's because it was impossible to understand your cluing, or because you decide to ask for the name of Proposition X in some textbook).
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Cheynem » Thu Jun 02, 2016 9:52 am

All of the CO questions are being looked at by the other editors, some of which have non-negligible knowledge of math, so I don't think it will look anything like this packet.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Thu Jun 02, 2016 11:23 am

You keep saying that you "gathered a ton of information", but I'm not sure what making people play that packet taught you that simply asking anyone who played "hey, should I write a bunch of questions on things from the Final Fantasy Legend games and Shining Force III?" Because, no, of course you shouldn't. Only the fact that you had literally the most knowledgeable JRPG player in quizbowl in the room (who holds that title by an even wider margin than I thought before, good lord--this was beyond even Will Nediger at Arrabal as far as outpacing the field to rise to the level of insane material) prevented the packet from being a complete catastrophe.

In the long run, of course, it really doesn't matter--no one's out any money or significant amount of time, and no one's baying for your blood. They just didn't like your packet, especially given how much you talked it up, and are concerned its qualities will manifest in the full tournament relevant to their interests that you're similarly talking up. I'm glad you're understanding that now, because I would like to enjoy playing CULEX!
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:05 pm

I can assure you that there will be tons of material from games people have played before at CULEX. I guarantee you! Of the 12 tossups I've written so far, 11 of them feature clues from such games, and the other is from a game I assure you some people in the field have played before, and even if not, it has a nifty giveaway. I will certainly clue other games in common links and whatnot. Play CULEX! (188 tossups to go!)
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Ike » Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:25 pm

Auks Ran Ova wrote:You keep saying that you "gathered a ton of information", but I'm not sure what making people play that packet taught you that simply asking anyone who played "hey, should I write a bunch of questions on things from the Final Fantasy Legend games and Shining Force III?" Because, no, of course you shouldn't.
Now that we're past the "I'll keep defending this terrible packet at all costs" stage. It's really hard for me and I think others to believe that this was a genuine data gathering exercise. We wrote 10 rounds for this crap for last year, and no one went away thinking "Man this tournament was too easy!" We also just used common sense. The problem that I have with all of this is in addition to just what Rob called petulance, there was a fundamental lack of understanding of how to write quizbowl questions - the paraphrase of song lyrics, and just a fundamental misunderstanding of how people play video games. You call it a data-gathering exercise, but I find that disingenuous; really the only data you got was "don't make shit too hard" not "this is how fine everyone's knowledge is" and that should be self-evident from our tournament last year and just through common sense.
Only the fact that you had literally the most knowledgeable JRPG player in quizbowl in the room (who holds that title by an even wider margin than I thought before, good lord--this was beyond even Will Nediger at Arrabal as far as outpacing the field to rise to the level of insane material) prevented the packet from being a complete catastrophe.
Writing a tournament for one player is a terrible idea - and even if we had known about the existence of this player I wouldn't have made the tournament any harder.
In the long run, of course, it really doesn't matter--no one's out any money or significant amount of time, and no one's baying for your blood. They just didn't like your packet, especially given how much you talked it up, and are concerned its qualities will manifest in the full tournament relevant to their interests that you're similarly talking up.
Yeah, and just to be clear, I'm not out for your blood. But I think even getting the difficulty out of the way, I have a lot of concerns about the writing and just general attitude -- for example there is no such thing as a canon of rpgs; there are games that a percentage of the field people play and games that people don't. And like using that lyrics thing as an example: if you think that players of the field care about lyrics to songs that play in FFXIII-2, they don't.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:37 pm

I have taken all of the criticism to heart, guys. It actually was a data collecting exercise, believe it or not. I know that's hard to believe at this point, but I'll probably post particulars later. Can we agree that the packet lived up to its name, at least? Please, whatever you do, don't think for one second that my elitist JRPG stances have anything to do with my academic writing whatsoever. I have to get to work.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:42 pm

The Ununtiable Twine wrote:Can we agree that the packet lived up to its name, at least?
Since it's named for something I've never heard of from a game I'm vaguely familiar with but have never played, I have no problem with this.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Time Keeper » Thu Jun 02, 2016 7:01 pm

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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Thu Jun 02, 2016 7:19 pm

The Time Keeper wrote:Image
Will you marry me?

But in all seriousness, I do not like to be accused of lying. I fail to see how I lied about the difficulty of this packet. Perhaps my definition of difficulty and the reader's definition of difficulty for this niche topic are different. In fact, almost certainly so! But nowhere did I indicate that this packet was intended to be slightly more difficult than ACFNATIONALS. I said it was meant to exceed the difficulty (which I could have specified further in the original post in the packet archive, admittedly), but I didn't specify how much at that point. I did, however, specify it in other posts.

Indeed:
The Ununtiable Twine wrote: I'm about 35% done with LIMITLESS INDALECIO, a 20/20 JRPG packet intended to exceed the difficulty of ACFNATIONALS. I intend to use this packet as sort of a difficulty barometer for CULEX, a hypothetical JRPG tournament slated to take place in the next couple of years
The Ununtiable Twine wrote:
Auks Ran Ova wrote: I'm as excited to play this packet as I am to write a CULEX-inspired JRPG tossup for Tricon 6.0.
this packet just got that much harder
The Ununtiable Twine wrote:This is the official thread for LIMITLESS INDALECIO / INSANITY PRELUDE, a bunch of hard JRPG questions to be read at HSNCT and potentially other places if this kind of thing interests more folks.
Note that Jason called his packet INSANITY PRELUDE, which to anyone with basic reading skills should imply that my packet was expected to be insane. Many people who did not play the packet have asked for a copy of it. Quite a few of them since it was played at HSNCT. Some people who were at both HSNCT 2015 and 2016 opted not to play the packet because they didn't think it was for them. Perfectly fine by me.
The Ununtiable Twine wrote: However, I would strongly prefer that at least a couple of teams form for my packet as I have written twenty bonuses that *must be experienced*.
I understand that people have the expectation that some people expect that all bonuses ever written and that will ever be written will have an easy / medium / hard structure that adheres to good quizbowl standards. I do. However, I fail to see where I lied about their difficulty in this post. Perhaps I should have been a little more specific and spelled out that they do not all have an easy / medium / hard structure, however I did in fact say that they *must be experienced* (in *asterisks* at that!) which should give some context that they should have been expected to be insane. Was this a stylistic mistake? Yes, the experience sucked for most who played it and I apologize for not making it at least a little more accessible. Was it a lie? Nope.

Indeed:
The Ununtiable Twine wrote: Plus we're slated to have 42/20 challenging questions this weekend, so fun will be had regardless. Okay, a few of my tossups aren't THAT challenging, but still. The bonuses make up for that, I promise.
I think this part spells out that the bonuses were going to be insanely difficult. Poor choice of cluing for optimal enjoyment? Sure, you can accuse me of that. Guilty as charged. Did I lie about it? Most definitely not. "A few of my tossups aren't THAT challenging" implies that most are. So now after reading all of the posts regarding the difficulty (which was, in fact, nearly completely spelled out) I think it's safe for anyone who actually read these posts to assume that this packet has some sort of disgusting difficulty gradient that may not be fit for all but a few people. Not all who challenge the gradient will like the results. In fact, not even close to all. And folks, that's precisely why I was pissed off. Not only did someone who clearly did not read any of these posts decide to take a giant public dump on my packet (while revealing some of its content, one clue which was a poor choice by my own admission), but I was also accused of lying about the difficulty by members of the community. There wasn't even an attempt at private discussion by the individual who authored the first scathing critique. To boot, it was a trash packet that was made free to play to anyone. As an unfortunate side effect, I now have someone who is legitimately afraid that I may sabotage CO math and hard science. As Will pointed out in the other thread, I've been a member of the community for well over a decade now. Think what you will of my questions for this inconsequential packet, but I think it's rather absurd that some people would even think of attacking my character for some ambiguity regarding difficulty of a vanity packet. You're more than welcome to like or dislike my questions, but I think I've shown enough evidence to show anyone reading this post that I did not intentionally misrepresent the difficulty to piss people off.

tl;dr - I am not a liar. Proof! I don't mean to drag this on, but I don't like being called a liar (in a public forum read by tons of individuals I interact with on a professional basis, at that) and really wish some people wouldn't shitpost claiming that I am one. You're better than that, quizbowl. No one is bound by some codex to make their vanity packets cater to the needs of others, although accessibility rocks and such accessible packets are very much appreciated. My packet is a vanity packet that is free to play, and on top of that, I spelled out what you were getting yourselves into before you played. For proof, see upthread. At worst, I let you play a shitty vanity packet for free. It's not like I charged you to play questions that clued Leela Gandhi's office phone number or anything.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Fri Jun 03, 2016 11:56 am

The Ununtiable Twine wrote:tl;dr - I am not a liar. Proof! I don't mean to drag this on, but I don't like being called a liar (in a public forum read by tons of individuals I interact with on a professional basis, at that) and really wish some people wouldn't shitpost claiming that I am one. You're better than that, quizbowl. No one is bound by some codex to make their vanity packets cater to the needs of others, although accessibility rocks and such accessible packets are very much appreciated. My packet is a vanity packet that is free to play, and on top of that, I spelled out what you were getting yourselves into before you played. For proof, see upthread. At worst, I let you play a shitty vanity packet for free. It's not like I charged you to play questions that clued Leela Gandhi's office phone number or anything.
No one actually called you a liar, just a bad writer and a poor judge of difficulty. Furthermore, your oblique reference to a bad tournament Ike wrote over half a decade ago (and has repeatedly apologized for and made up for with his consistently excellent writing since) to try to cover your failed experiment just highlights the fact that you're completely resistant to internalizing criticism and will continue to act petulant despite the fact that your questions just were not that enjoyable and just not that good.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Fri Jun 03, 2016 12:12 pm

The Quest for the Historical Mukherjesus wrote:
The Ununtiable Twine wrote:tl;dr - I am not a liar. Proof! I don't mean to drag this on, but I don't like being called a liar (in a public forum read by tons of individuals I interact with on a professional basis, at that) and really wish some people wouldn't shitpost claiming that I am one. You're better than that, quizbowl. No one is bound by some codex to make their vanity packets cater to the needs of others, although accessibility rocks and such accessible packets are very much appreciated. My packet is a vanity packet that is free to play, and on top of that, I spelled out what you were getting yourselves into before you played. For proof, see upthread. At worst, I let you play a shitty vanity packet for free. It's not like I charged you to play questions that clued Leela Gandhi's office phone number or anything.
No one actually called you a liar, just a bad writer and a poor judge of difficulty. Furthermore, your oblique reference to a bad tournament Ike wrote over half a decade ago (and has repeatedly apologized for and made up for with his consistently excellent writing since) to try to cover your failed experiment just highlights the fact that you're completely resistant to internalizing criticism and will continue to act petulant despite the fact that your questions just were not that enjoyable and just not that good.
Well then how about I apologize and make it better? I wrote a packet perceived to be bad my many. I'm fairly certain I understand that. The questions weren't good for the field because I overshot the difficulty of the packet (and even my target difficulty). Contrary to popular belief the questions did focus on things that were very important within the context of games (for the most part). Whether or not my experiment failed will be determined by CULEX. If it worked, CULEX will be a lot better than I had previously intended it to be. I realize that Ike has done better since, Eric. Thanks for your concern but I'm fairly certain I understand how the results of this experiment will affect the actual tournament. You won't be disappointed.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Time Keeper » Fri Jun 03, 2016 1:21 pm

I only had four words to make a joke.
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Sat Jun 04, 2016 4:35 am

This post goes into a detailed comparison regarding the 15% of answerlines at ACFNATIONALS and the material that I put into LIMITLESS INDALECIO, as well as to clear up some simple points about how other people fuck up writing too. It happens. Anyway this is a long post, you're more than welcome to read. Spoilers abound.

I would like to point out that the very person who is criticizing me for a bad lead-in to a question in a challenge packet that I did not charge anyone to play also seemed to have problems giving me points on a protest - points that are still not accounted for in the stats of his tournament! Since we are bringing up particulars and my writing style has come into question because of a bad clue, I figured I would elaborate:
ACFNATIONALS wrote: 18. An enemy at this place attacks using a spring-loaded boxing glove which comes out of its belly. An NPC in this location challenges you to a contest to drink eight cans of soda within a short time by button mashing. A minigame here involves the player knocking three monsters back to stall for time to touch a blue light that will save a hostage from being lowered into a pit of flames. The Green Ambler and the G. I. Jogger are participants in a four man race in this location. A robot named (*) Gato in this location can be battled to earn 15 Silver Points, which can be spent at the tent of Norstein Bekkler. Performing good actions at this location like rescuing a child’s cat and not stealing an old man’s lunch increases your chances of being found not guilty of kidnapping Princess Nadia in a trial. For 10 points, Lucca sends Marle 400 years back in time during what event held in 1000 AD in Chrono Trigger?
ANSWER: Millennial Fair [prompt on “Leene Square”]
To give some context, look at my avatar. Clearly, I know what this thing is. Someone negged this early on with an unrelated answer. Aaron asked me to wait to answer the question, but it was obvious what the answer was. I ended up buzzing at "in this location" in the second sentence. Naturally, I'm like "ok Leene Square from Chrono Trigger is a location, this tossup is super fucking easy, just buzz" and buzz with an answer of "Leene Square." Prompt. Wait what, that's a location for sure! Little did I know that it was the event was what was being asked for until later on (after the tournament, I believe). Naturally I protested simply based on the fact that I know what a place is. The editors said they would look at it later. When I saw the question, I was of course upset (but I'm a bit better than starting an entire thread to shitpost on someone's writing!). In fact, it appears he wants the location until after the FTP, when suddenly we want the location. My point is that we both fucked up clues.
The Time Keeper wrote:I only had four words to make a joke.
It was a great joke, even if I don't agree with its substance. It put a smile on my face.

Let me point to what inspired me to write LIMITLESS INDALECIO the way I did. Toward the top end of ACFNATIONALS, Ike tossed up some very hard things from non-Final Fantasy games or even characters and things from non-numbered Final Fantasy games. Given that people played this tournament and did quite well, I wanted to see exactly what kind of knowledge base the potential field for CULEX had on the harder end of things, given that the conversion stats seemed pretty decent across the board. This is why I repeatedly advertised the packet as hard. I wanted to see what kind of things they knew from that end of the canon. Some people seem to think doesn't exist but I'm a bit of a JRPG generalist/elitist so I have my own grand vision of the JRPG universe. Quizbowl, for those of you who don't know me, I am in fact an incredibly nerdy person so it shouldn't surprise you that I have such opinions. I understand that it's an opinion. This packet was meant to be a challenge for a room of people who had played a ton of JRPGs, not something meant to piss them off.

As I said before, the upper end of ACFNATIONALS was actually my inspiration for writing LIMITLESS INDALECIO. I eliminated most common links, thereby making the packet more difficult. He did write a lot of common links with the majority of his questions, for sure (as I plan to for CULEX). They were excellent, but in the end I didn't really think they would tell me what I wanted to know, so I tossed most of them for the packet. Indeed, let's look at what I gauge to be the hardest 15% of answerlines from ACFNATIONALS that are either things from non-Final Fantasy games or really hard things from Final Fantasy games. Things that "you would know only if you played the game or some minigame within the game."

Chris Houlihan Room (a secret room in A Link to the Past: I enjoyed the question but this is not super gettable)
Ramza Belouve (main protagonist of FF Tactics)
Dark Force (Phantasy Star boss common link)
Happy Happy Village (a town from Earthbound)
Stella (Final Fantasy IX sidequest issued by random weird-ass woman from Treno)
Jupiter Djinn (from Golden Sun, all prompts or acceptable things like "wind djinn" are no longer acceptable at the end of the question, hooray conversion)
Sammer Kingdom (Super Paper Mario kingdom)
Vampire Castle (from Bravely Default, actually a hard topic that wasn't exactly given away)
Slave's Butt (I guess this is the laughy answerline, I guess it's less accessible to me because I don't watch South Park)
Asmodeus (common link from Star Ocean, my kind of question)
Seraphic Gate (Tri-Ace games secret dungeon)
Dark Rift (location in Skies of Arcadia)
Hilbert (given away with math clues like Nullstellensatz and 23 problems, not at all an easy topic when it comes to JRPGs)
Flammies (creatures you ride in Secret of Mana. I liked this question a lot.)
Wild Rose (from FFII (JP). This was a hard fucking tossup)
Centurion Tenebrae (a character from the incredibly shitty Tales of Symphonia sequel)
Elicoor 2 (a planet from Star Ocean 3)
Sho Minamoto (a character from The World Ends with You, a game which should be played by everyone but contrary to the writer's opinion, has not been)
Prinnies (exploding penguins from Disgaea. I could have included harder things in the list but this was a tough common link, kudos to Jasper for getting it in our match)
Drachma (a character in Skies of Arcadia)
Gallia (a continent from Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance. Despite it's nifty getaway, it consisted of very challenging content)
Velvet Room (a location in the Persona series of games)
Terra Tower (the final dungeon of Chrono Cross, which was acceptable until the end of the question when it was suddenly not)
Shy Guy's Toy Box (a location in Paper Mario for N64)
Bodhum (common link on a place in the Fabula Nova Crystallis series of FFXIII games, which apparently only 10% of people have played the second one. This town is central to the plot of a lot of FFXIII's breakaway cutscenes but still this is a hard answerline)
Nanami (the second-most important protagonist in Suikoden II, a very expensive game which only recently became affordable on PlayStation Network, so not really accessible if we're talking about the grand scope of JRPG history even though Nanami is one of my favorite characters of all-time and yet I found a way to neg her in the tournament, fuck.)
Pyroclasm (A powerful attack used by Vaan in FFXII)
Great Sand Sea (a location in The Last Remnant. Again, the answerline loses its answerability at the end because he wants the specific thing after something like "the sea in The Last Remnant" is read and it's harder to get it at that point if you haven't played the game)
Super Training (a shitty minigame in the Pokemon series, again really hard to get if you haven't played the games but somehow magically assumed to be easy enough for the field to convert because it appears in Pokemon. That's somewhat fair, I guess, but the answerline is still not at all easy)
Lance of Longinus (a very hard common link tossup that's only given away by a Jesus clue)

Now, let's look at the LIMITLESS INDALECIO tossup answerlines (ignoring the bonuses as they were advertised to be an experience and that they were):

1. Albert Odyssey manual - this was a tossup 0 intended which I decided to count for points. Was this a quality question? Not near my best, no way in hell, but it was thrown in and counted for shiggles.
2. The MAGI (items very central to the plot of Final Fantasy Legend II - hard answerline but more gettable by older players, given away properly at the end of the tossup)
3. The dog from the Secret of Evermore (challenging material, however it is clear that I want a dog at the end of the question. Plus the dog is in your party for pretty much the whole game)
4. Prince Charmles (a memorable character from Dragon Quest VIII, not a main character though. If you've played through a substantial portion of the game, you'll remember this arrogant fucker)
5. Eleth (the substance crucial to the plot of Tales of Graces for PS3. It's kinda like what is known as "mana" in the JRPG universe but it has a different name.)
6. Bloodpool (a memorable level from ActRaiser. This was challenging but if you played ActRaiser for a few hours you will definitely be able to place the material even if you cannot place the level name. Hard answerline.)
7. Zeon (final boss of Shining Force II, one of the two or three best RPGs on the Genesis.)
8. Pazuzu's Tower (a fine dungeon from Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest. Memorable but challenging.)
9. Melnics (a language in Tales of Destiny II/Eternia. Crucial to the plot however physical copies of the game are challenging to find. Definitely wrote this one after Carson claimed he would write a CULEX-inspired tossup for Tricon 6.0)
10. Erdrick (If you are playing a JRPG event and don't know who he is then just gtfo, like he's the grandfather of JRPG characters, guys)
11. Shrine of Kaddan (a memorable dungeon from Star Ocean 3 which is visited on more than one occasion)
12. Sylvalum (a continent in the new Xenoblade Chronicles X which I assumed SOMEONE would have picked up and at least walked around Mira, apparently not! That doesn't mean you shouldn't, though. In the prelude to the prelude, Jason first clued a tossup on an area from the first Xenoblade game with a leadin that was like five times harder than this one, which I only mention in a congratulatory tone!)
13. Altosk (the main guild from Tales of Vesperia, a game which netted me several powers at ACFNATIONALS. Challenging answerline, but central to the plot and since this game was tossed up several times at ACFNATIONALS I figured this was fair game if not hard)
14. Karn's fusion transformations (abilities from the first Breath of Fire game that makes your party super powerful. You're required to have one of them to complete the game. Challenging, for sure, but converted confidently by Escandell!)
15. paradoxes (the plot of FFXIII-2 revolves around them)
16. Tomb of Raithwall (a notable dungeon in FFXII, a common game)
17. Julian (the main character of Shining Force III. This tossup was not easy to convert because of the circumstances surrounding the game's availability. It was also a challenge tossup)
18. Priphea flowers (a tossup about some flowers central to the plot of the first Lufia game. This is the first tossup I wrote when Carson suggested I would not finish CULEX. A tossup on the final boss of this game was converted fairly easily in my 12 other questions. Hard.)
19. The animation from the Eden summon in FFVIII. Hard, but from a canonical game.
20. The End Magnus (cards that are central to the plot of Baten Kaitos. Dylan's buzz on this was absolutely superb.)
21. Maxwell (very powerful summon from multiple Tales games, also key to the plot of Tales of Xillia)
22. Ronixis Kenni (a character that appears in multiple Star Ocean games who is one of the main protagonists of the first game)
23. Dragon Campaign (a campaign absolutely crucial to understanding the plot of The Legend of Dragoon)

Indeed, the lists are quite similar. We tossed up specific things from games. Several of mine were a bit harder, but not unreasonably so for a challenge packet that was advertised to be a challenge packet. I simply wanted to test whether or not people played (or watched LPs of) certain mostly canonical but sometimes fringe canonical games. For the record if these packets had been written for ME to play, my conversion rate would be more or less similar. Let's look at the games asked about.

Star Ocean series, Baten Kaitos, Final Fantasy XII, Breath of Fire, Tales of Vesperia, Xenoblade Chronicles X, Star Ocean 3, most Dragon Quest games, ActRaiser, and Shining Force II are pretty well-known games.

Tales of Eternia, Albert Odyssey, Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest, Final Fantasy Legend II, Shining Force III, Tales of Graces, and Secret of Evermore, Legend of Dragoon, and Lufia are more or less outliers, although it can be argued that a couple of these belong in the first list (and a couple in the first list belong here) I was just testing to see who had played what. A few were dick tossups, but I've been over that.

With Ike's list, Link to the Past, FF Tactics, Phantasy Star, Earthbound, Final Fantasy IX, Golden Sun, Star Ocean, Skies of Arcadia, Secret of Mana, Paper Mario, Chrono Cross, Bravely Default, and some Pokemon game are more or less played by a lot of people.

South Park JRPG, Suikoden II (because of the whole availability thing and no other reason), Super Paper Mario, The World Ends with You, The Last Remnant, Tales of Symphonia 2, Disgaea, Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance are kind of fringe (even though it can be argued that a couple of them are closer to being more commonly played), and FFII (JP) is one of the least-played Final Fantasy games.

At any rate, sure, my packet was harder than the top 10-15% of challenge answerlines of ACFNATIONALS if they were put into a packet to be played, but not by nearly as much as you have been led to believe. Indeed, a bit of his material was quite challenging and required a lot of games to have been played through rather deeply to have much of a chance to get. The same things he curses me for (writing about characters in minor games, or even minor characters in major games), he actually did in his own tournament towards the top end of his challenging questions. Given the absurd nature of the topic that we're discussing in this thread, that this is even remotely true should surprise exactly no one. Indeed, if the 23 hardest questions from his tournament were place in a packet and read alongside the 23 questions that were written for LIMITLESS INDALECIO for someone who had heard none of them, the results would almost certainly be similar plus or minus personal taste in games. Given that LIMITLESS INDALECIO was designed to be a challenge packet, I see no problem with this. The thing is that Ike and company also wrote a wonderful amount of accessible questions for their tournament, but then again, it was an entire tournament that was advertised as accessible and not a packet that was advertised as extremely challenging. Truth be told, the top 20-25 hardest answerlines from ACFNATIONALS and LIMITLESS INDALECIO feature nothing but Arrabal-type niche material. Indeed, LIMITLESS INDALECIO has both given me some of the data I need to make CULEX better while also living up to its name.

Maduin (regarding the difficulty of LIMITLESS INDALECIO): How do we know...unless we...observe for ourselves?
Jake Sundberg
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Alabama '10-14
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Sat Jun 04, 2016 3:40 pm

too long; didn't read
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Re: warning: limitless indalecio discussion

Post by No Rules Westbrook » Sat Jun 11, 2016 10:21 pm

Someday, I'm gonna get around to reading this thread.

Not today, but someday. I hope it's the same day I finish my JRPG tournament.
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Left here since birth...forgotten in the river of time...I've had an eternity to...ponder the meaning of things...and now I have an answer!

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