Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, everyone!
I'm en route to Florida for a little vacation. A special thanks goes out to "beachwoman" for hosting me and my boyfriend on New Year's Eve. We had a fun (and delicious) visit!


Unknown said...

Enjoy the games. Nice job. Here's some unasked for comments on hearts. The frequency of players bailing is on the rise...
1. Penalize players withdrawing with Qspades in hand.
2. Penalize players withdrawing when losing.
3. Reward players finishing out a game.
4. Reward players finishing game when they joined losing.

Marya said...

I share your frustration! It doesn't bother me too much when someone leaves - I am one of those who tends to laugh at it. But my enjoyment of the game increases a lot when we start with 4 players, and end with the same 4 players. It's my goal to make this happen as much as possible.

In your comment, you suggest that players should be "penalized", but you do not say how. Do you have a specific suggestion? I should point out that players who quit a game in progress are penalized already. There are two personal stats: you take a loss in your "absolute" stats, and the game is marked as abandoned in your "relative" stats. Even these penalties do not prevent everyone from quitting.

BTW penalizing someone for leaving a game in progress is sometimes unfair, because it is not possible to tell if someone left deliberately or because of internet issues. I've had people suggest in the past that someone who leaves should be temporarily banned from the site altogether. But this would punish people who left through no fault of their own... and they are already taking a loss. Banning from playing any games seems unfair.

I wonder, have you tried playing in ranked Hearts games? I know that it can be a wait to get them started. But it appears to me that people leave far less often when playing ranked Hearts. If a player leaves for any reason, even through no fault of their own, then they are penalized in two ways. 1) They take a loss to the remaining 3 players and 2) they are banned from ranked play for 4 hours. I've had some negative feedback on this - the policy is frustrating to those who left through no fault of their own - but I don't have enough input to decide whether to change it. I've also had feedback from people saying that they strongly approve of it.

Someone once suggested to me that I should start a "committed players club" consisting of people who promise not to leave a game in progress. Ranked games are intended to be something like this - in that, if you quit, there are some annoying penalties that (hopefully) you will do your best to avoid.

BTW I have two blog posts about a year ago talking about the problem of quitters. These might interest you if you have not already read them: Quitters part 1 and Quitters part 2.

One final comment: you have control over who you play with at the site. Some people claim that registered players are less likely to quit. You may want to use the option to play with registered players only. Then filter out the quitters by disliking them, once you see that they have a pattern of quitting.