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March 2013 Create Levels and Voting (and Results)

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As some of you already spotted, the levels submitted for the March 2013 Create Competition are now available for download:

 

http://cczone.invisionzone.com/index.php?/files/file/227-cczone-march-2013-create-levels-packaged/

 

You can comment on the levels in this thread. Once you form some sort of opinion on the levels, list them in your preferred order and email that order to me at valeosote at hotmail dot com. I will use these lists to determine the winner of the competition. You can define your own criteria for how you are voting, for the original competition announcement reminded the contestants that "a good level will be enjoyable to many types of players".

 

Details:

 

1) You can discuss the individual levels, but don't publicly post your full list so the results are not spoiled or others' voting is not affected so much. I already released the participants' names, so I thought it would be fun to run the voting as a secret ballot.

 

2) If you were one of the participating designers, you can still vote on your own levels, but these will have no effect on the outcome in relation to the other entries. Please do not vote down what you think are good levels just so your own levels will fare better, as this won't have an effect either, except if more than one person starts doing so.

 

3) Once all the votes are in, we might have an additional round of voting where we pit pairs of levels against each other that were too close in the voting to determine their positions with certainty.

 

4) Once the preferred order of the levels is set, the standings between the designers is determined by their best level, and will receive Chip Cup points accordingly.

 

5) Voting will close a week after I receive votes from ten people. If this is taking too long, I will announce the deadline for voting towards the end of April. In any case we hope to have the results within about a month.

 

Finally, here's the list of levels you will be voting on:

Level 1 - Michael
Ancient Glider Temple - Flareon350
Tricks & Traps - CraigV
Shemozzle - jblewis
In or Out - jblewis
The Beach - Minus3K2
Flip-Side-Up - random 8
That Ticking Noise - rockdet
200m Free Style - rockdet
Protect Me as I Protect You - BlazingApollo
Bricks - random 8
Impedence - random 8
Bringing Up the Rear - BigOto2

 

Your votes should also basically just list all the levels by name, though you don't have to list the designers, or you can just list the level numbers in your preferred order, as long as it is clear to me. Remember, the order of your list matters! Once I receive your votes, I'll try my best to respond to you and confirm that your votes have been recorded.

 

I might be forgetting something, so please ask for clarifications. (Also if you would like me to change some of the text in the ccx file, say you'd rather be referred to by your full name, you can ask for that too.)

 

Enjoy!

 

-Miika

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Just to clarify a bit, you don't have to list all the levels in your votes, particularly your own, but you can omit others too if you can't make up your mind. You do not need to solve the levels to be able to evaluate them, as I think you an form an opinion on them even by not figuring them out completely. You can also state if you think two levels are perfectly tied in your opinion, though this will make combining the votes a little more difficult for me. Also, I think the levels are intended to be played first before you look at them in an editor, but of course you can still vote on them even if you first look at the map. Once you get your ballots in, I won't release the exact lists, but I may comment on statistical aspects regarding all of them combined.

 

I also thought I'd post everyone's write-ups of the levels here, so you don't necessarily need to get the ccx file and read them in TW 2.0.

 

Level 1 - Michael; no write-up, no worries.

 

Ancient Glider Temple - Flareon350

Like 50% of my levels, this one was created while listening to this VGM (video game music) called "The Ancient Temple" from Pac-Man World 3. Here's a link to listen to the music, if you're interested: 

 

This game is my 2nd favorite game of all time and this is one of the levels you play through in that game. Actually this specific level in Pac-Man World 3 I was stuck on for months on end, that I had to contact the makers of the game for help. The music though fits perfectly with both the game's level and the level I made for this competition.  

 

The level I made, took about 40 minutes to create and make fully solvable. While viewing it in an editor, the level looks very difficult but it nowhere near as difficult as it looks. The level includes a puzzle, precision, a chase scene, backtracking, and a basic plot (if you were to view it on a storyline basis), all in a simple 60 seconds given to solve it. On top of all this, it is also Lynx compatible and is based off my favorite monster in CC, the glider. Not to sound modest, but I think this level would pull through being in an official set in the future (with a bit higher time limit though)!

 

Hope you enjoy! :)

 

Tricks & Traps - CraigV

I had always wanted a level with that set up of traps and buttons for a while, but I could never find the time to use it. So I decided to make it the first puzzle in the level. But the time it took for the tank to reach the first trap button was much too short, so I had to expand it greatly. Not having adequate space to do so, however, meant that I had to use an ice turn.

 

The next challenge is one I've seen in a lot of other levels, in a sense, but never have used myself. The teeth were just asking for use, however, so I went with it. The challenge here was the switching the toggles again. I found that, without the force floor pointed up next to the gravel, the teeth would not be able to push the button again when it was needed. This issue was solved with a little bit of creative thinking.

 

The final puzzle was the result of wanting to have a four-puzzle system with a central hub to return to. The three puzzles are just ones I thought would be interesting to switch to. And of course, for those who like it, optimize.

 

Shemozzle - jblewis

I watched an episode of the American reality TV series "The Amazing Race" (in which teams of two people with a pre-existing relationship race around the world for a cash prize) where the contestants went to New Zealand. While they were there, they had the opportunity to partake in a rather interesting cultural touchstone called the "Shemozzle Race." To put it simply, competitors would race with a sheep dog through a very outlandish obstacle course. The version in which the Race contestants participated was much milder and included tasks such as crawling through tight spaces to get covered in molasses (or "tar") and feathers, carrying a dozen chicken eggs to the very end without dropping any (though they could make multiple runs until they got all of the eggs), and sliding on a slick slip-and-slide into a pit of mud or manure, where the finish line would be. The real version is a cross-country event and includes even more ridiculous challenges such as eating raw eggs, carrying around bull testicles in one's mouth, and more.

 

When I heard about the Create Competition for this month, I had two ideas I wanted to try: a "race" level with various stages and a "Replay"-style level in which all of the options were small and short. I started to design the latter and even went as far as to make it a "blown-up" version of LESSON 1's layout, with each of the rooms holding one of the chips the player could choose. But in the end, this linear race idea felt more fun. My original vision was to call the level "Boot Camp" and have the player run through an obstacle course like people do in a real boot camp. But with dodging and a bit of teeth-leading involved, I thought the Shemozzle race would be a fun "real-life" game to portray in CC. Obviously, not everything could be portrayed here. But I tried to include an "item collection" bit at the beginning (much like the "hold all of the eggs you can" challenge), plenty of quick dodging challenges that test the reflexes, a fun "slip and slide" near the end, and a "mud pit" as the final room. There's even a "shepherd dog" (teeth monster), but in the interest of keeping up the player's momentum, I thought it'd work better to have the teeth disappear from the first room and help you out at the end. :) You'll also notice that there's at least one of every monster in this level.

 

Enjoy!

 

In or Out - jblewis

This level was somewhat inspired by Miika's "Volcanic Island." :) The 9x9 room in the middle is an adaptation of an (unreleased JBLP2) level that was originally a lot bigger. It's also based on an idea I saw in a Chuck's Challenge custom level, called "Splash" (and which has also been used in some custom CC levels, like Pit of 100 Tiles's "Bridges for Bugs." However, I wanted to take it step further and initially make the puzzle appear impossible at first by forcing the player to block the path to the exit via toggle button pressing should all the blocks be retrieved. In reality, though, only five are needed.

 

Initially, this level contained only the central room as an island amidst a large body of water on the outside that connected to the "path" of water inside the room. Then, I thought, with that "path" in the central room, why not make a bunch of "streams" on the outside to which it could connect? Before I knew it, the whole thing was turning into a maze...and then I started to wonder, why not actually offer a maze as a second option to complete the level? Players could either figure out a puzzle under pressure or wander around outside the puzzle while dodging a few monsters under pressure. But either way, they would have 60 seconds. Originally, the maze was very strict and had some terribly mean dead ends. The pop-up wall that allowed easy access to it wasn't even there. But after a while, I figured going the "Half and Half" route with tons of deceptive paths wasn't entirely the best option, so I decided to modify the maze such that multiple paths led in the same direction toward the exit. There's only one real "dead end" area of consequence, as well as a long path toward the goal that can be bypassed via a shortcut toward the beginning of the maze, so it should be fairly reasonable to complete.

 

The Beach - Minus3K2

My sister draw a level that was full of dirt. From that I got the idea of making a beach and the player would visit different islands. Before you go into the water, you have to put on your swimsuit in the changing area. Watch out for other swimmers! At the end you go to have ice cream at the bar.

 

Flip-Side-Up - random 8

The idea for this level started with an unfinished level in CCMiniLP.dat/ConsistentInconsistency.dat, "ALSO UNFINISHED" (the previous level was called "UNFINISHED" for similar reasons). After CCLP1 submissions ended, progress on this level stalled indefinitely.

 

Fast-forward to the March 2013 Create competition. In the opening post, Miika mentions that the previous year's March Create competition involved restricting the level to a 9x9 area; this inspired the idea to use this UNFINISHED level as a template. Several days were spent making this level, with some playtesting along the way. During one of these playtesting moments, when most of the fourth room had been built, the level proved to be too long to fit the 60-second time limit requirement; thus, decisively, the level was cut in half for the competition. The original 4-room level, however, will be untimed, slightly renamed, and released in ConsistentInconsistency.dat on the set's next update.

 

That Ticking Noise - rockdet

       I had that sudden idea: What if you were awaken by a ticking noise, to find out someone placed a bomb under your bed? That's quite a twisted situation, but let's say you don't necessarily have to live a clean and fair life as well for your head to be wanted. Now they're trying to get you and your family, so you have to gather your things and leave the house.

       I had as an initial idea to place some Chip characters in the other bedrooms as the kids and the wife, but I still wanted the level to be Lynx-compatible, so instead I placed chips in the respective rooms. The walls are all painted in blue, the X-shaped things are beds with blocks as pillows, the remaining blocks are desks. There are chips in the bedrooms (more precisely: in the wardrobes and drawers): they represent clothes, since it's freezing cold outside. The pink ball is a toy, two ways to explain why it moves: Either your kid is playing with it right now (but not represented for Lynx purposes) or it's simply possessed. I should also point out that the thin walls are doors in the house. Anyhow, get your kid and move on!

       Now the second bedroom: The teeth there is an electric toy powered by a battery, but you don't have time to mess around with it! Instead of Chip characters, I placed a chip in there as well to assume you're getting your kid to follow you and actually take his clothes as well.

       Now the bathroom: I really like my washing machine with the blob cloner, like it's saying "dirty stuff goes there". Shower with sliding door at the far left, toilet at the far right and sink also on the right. No time for all of this so let's just grab your pants out of the drying machine and quickly urinate because you can't hold it...

       Random room with dumbbells: they be toys, let's not even open it. Now's the kitchen. Your kid is starving, so quickly get something to eat. The youngest one has forgotten his favourite toy which is in the living room, lying on the couch. Quickly get it, but don't hurt your pinky toe on the electric train lying in the way! Now prepare to leave, get your coats on, but what? Have you forgotten something? Yes: the car key. Go get it and leave the house!

       Not pointed out yet is the TV, made of gravel tiles. That makes it look like you don't get the signal, which could be the case, since opening it with the green button doesn't seem to work... There's also a computer around. The dining room table has a glass middle, and the chairs had to be movable to be realistic! The fire tile is the oven, there are also 2 sinks in the kitchen. The blue thing in the middle of the kitchen also represents a furniture. Also, the blue button outside is the doorbell. Many details out there, but last thing to know is that it's a reproduction of my house! I just added the toys for the sake of having a decent yet not that difficult challenge, and the bomb as for an emergency scenario. So there you are: That Ticking Noise!

 

200m Free Style - rockdet

       I had that idea in my bed one night, and I thought that it would be a very rad concept. Ever wanted to play it Phelps-style!? Now's your chance! Chip has his chance to shine at the Olympic pool. Now building this level was much harder than what I thought it would be, and it left me with not a lot of possibilities, especially on the interactive side. The solve is trivial, but at the same time, those races ARE trivial, Chip does the effort. It's an individual thing, and there's not a lot to influence the other swimmers' performance, since everything flows 5 tiles a second. Chip has the potential to beat them, though.

       Mechanics include pink balls giving the starting blow, on the form of "On your marks", "Get Set", GO! Those appear as blocks on the bottom of the screen, while the first ball blows the bomb, the second opens the gates and the race is on! First 50m gets the suction to get the red on the 2nd one. 3rd gets the chip for the socket at the final rush. Excitement!!! You have to win it or tie it, or else the tank will turn around blocking the access to the gold medal. That happens exactly 1 move after the other swimmers would pass there, controlled by the fireball.

       Last thing worth mentioning: This is always the same race. There wasn't really any way to make it randomized in a way that would benefit Chip, so like I said, it's a trivial solve, the idea's the real plus of that level. It also works in Lynx, but because of the boosting, your head start will be greater in MS.

 

There you are!

 

Protect Me as I Protect You - BlazingApollo

Uh... what should I start with?

 

Ah, right. In this short level, your task is to guide Chip to climb to the top of the tower. The tower design itself is quite simple: just a straight path, with ice floors surrounding it, and switching toggle doors as the wall. At the start, a teeth will try to kill you in the corridor. Of course, there's no other way to sneak through this guy, as you will bounce back when moving left or right, sliding and hitting the toggle door.

 

Good thing is, you are protected by a single block.

 

And this block is special, as it can protect you from all but one hazard, and that is the deadly, magical pink sphere. Once the block gets a full-hit from it, the block will lose it's power to help you finish the level.

 

Be careful, the tower is not an easy challenge to beat. Fireballs, missiles (gliders), tank guards, and magical spheres, they will be fired into the small pathway.

 

Can you use the block wisely to protect you as you climb the dangerous tower? And also, can you return the favor by protecting it from pink spheres?

 

...And I can't believe that's what I wrote xD

 

Bricks - random 8

The decision to make a second entry grew as more people posted in the thread that they submitted second entries. The chances of Flip-Side-Up making the top ranks began to appear worrisome, though now that this level is complete, Bricks appears to have a WORSE chance. But enough of my time has been spent on this competition as it is.

 

Like the previous level, the original construct proved to be too long to be reasonably solved within 60 seconds. However, [spoiler: read backwards].sdnoces ytxis naht erom eriuqer yam ti hguoht ,noisrev siht ni elbaod llits si noitulos lanigiro ehT ."tuc trohs" a wolla ot deifidom saw level eht ,devlah gnieb fo daetsni

 

The level layout/idea was originally intended for what is now Black Jack (made approximately 3-4 years ago) in ConsistentInconsistency.dat: "Chip is running to the exit, but--Oh, no!--there's an invisible wall in front of it! Now he's definitely going to get hit by the--wait, there's a secret side passage...and another exit!" And so it would continue (this idea isn't entirely my own, either, but partly suggested by an old classmate of mine). From Black Jack and this level, it should be clear that this idea still hasn't been completely fulfilled: one only has the layout, the other only the concept. It probably never will be fulfilled either, given my change in tastes since that time.

 

Impedence - random 8

I know, i wrote that i can't spend any more time on this competition, but this concept was really simple to implement. The inspiration to make this level was actually recent, coming from Miika's "Nested Replay" in the March 2013 Time Trial Competition. The main difficulty when making this level was probably the name. Unlike the other two levels, there were no issues keeping the time limit within 60 seconds. It was initially titled "Catalyst" but that seemed too revealing (as if this level is one of the toughest in existence).

 

...Yeah, not too much on this last one. Sorry about that. Hopefully my lengthiness in the other two descriptions compensate for it.

 

Addendum: The "CHEATER!" written at the bottom of each level was inspired by level 17, "Wormhole Blockage", in the set BigOto Returns.

 

Bringing Up the Rear - BigOto2; appropriately for a last-minute entry, no write-up.

 

Now let's here all of your reactions to the levels!

 

-Miika

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Geez that means I gotta start playing! Such a huge stretch too. I changed my mind, though. Expect my input in 2 weeks, Miika.

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Geez that means I gotta start playing! Such a huge stretch too. I changed my mind, though. Expect my input in 2 weeks, Miika.

(Y) (Y)  (Y):D

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I submitted 2 of my levels (they're not so great, but I wanted to try my hand at designing), and I can't find them on the list. Did you manage to receive them, or something else?

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I submitted 2 of my levels (they're not so great, but I wanted to try my hand at designing), and I can't find them on the list. Did you manage to receive them, or something else?

Oh boy, I'm sorry that has happened. I can't find your submission in my email, or the new competitions' email. I can't recall seeing it earlier either, or sending you a confirmation that I have gotten them. Do you still have the levels yourself? What was the exact place you sent them? Perhaps PM me or send an email to valeosote at hotmail dot com. It would still be interesting to see your levels!

 

-Miika

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Ok, so last month was a bit hectic in real life for me and apparently for many of you guys too, since I only started receiving votes now in May. We now have five people who have weighed in on how they evaluated the levels, but I'll give this another week and then compile the results. If you have played the levels, please take a few minutes to sort them from your favorite to least deserving and send the list over! You don't have to solve all the levels to evaluate them, and you can use your own criteria to rank them. You may also only vote on a few of the levels if you find it hard to list them all. The more people that vote, the more reliable the results will be. If you haven't played the levels at all, take a look at them because there are some pretty fun ones in there!

 

I will have the results announced before the month is out!

 

And budugoo, it would still be interesting to hear what happened with your levels. How about sending them over now?

 

-Miika

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Ok, voting time is now closed and the results will be announced soon. I received rankings of the levels from six members, half of whom also had made levels for the competition. While you wait for me to check the results, here is the order I ranked the levels myself, along with a short explanation for each level.

 

Bricks
 This level is quite hard. There are many monsters to dodge and Chip needs to find the right paths to take to reach all the chips. After this, he has to find a block to move so the bomb guarding the exit can be blown up. I didn't yet get around to solving the level, but so I'm not sure if the bomb is disposed off with a block or maybe a paramecium, but in either case the time limit is very restrictive. I expect a level with a time limit of one minute to not actually have a bold time that is close to one minute, except if the route is very clear and the level is a type of race. Even without the bomb this level would have been a tight solve, so I have to rate this level the lowest of the bunch of submissions.

 

Flip-Side-Up
 I must be in a mean mood, as my second lowest ranking for a level is another one of random 8's. This one also suffers from a lack of clarity and simplicity. Well, that is the point of the level, to be a bit confusing isn't it? I had the priviledge of seeing some earlier versions of this level, and those weren't quite as complex as this final submission. I do find the concept for the level very clever, and like the throw-back to CCLP2 #49, a level which would have fit the theme this month perfectly. It's been said about Just a Minute!! that it's possible to discern that there are two teleports, and thus two compartments, due to the sound of passing through the teleport which isn't heard if it was a single teleport. Flip-Side-Up tries to fool the player by actually having two teleports in the starting compartment, and it's up to the player to figure out how to block a teleport to get to the other compartment. If the puzzle had stopped here, and refined this mechanism, the level would have been a hit, but in its current form I find it to be a bit of a work in progress.

 

Level 1
 This level is the only one of the submissions that can't be played in lynx. Other than that, one can't blame it for being overly complex. There is not much challenge in this level, not with figuring out the block pushing or with regards to the time limit. A little bit more effort could have made this a fun level to play, but as it is, at least it did not frustrate either.

 

The Beach
 This is also a simiple level, but not too simple. I do like the story that the level has, which can be read in the ccx file. Maybe dodging the gliders can be a bit unpredictable, but this is a decent level and a set full of levels like this might be quite fun.

 

Bringing Up the Rear
 I like the first part of this level more than the outer area. In the first part you blow up some bombs and get some items. Then you go outside and try to get the rest of the stuff you need, while dodging and interfering with gliders. There is also a bit of a puzzle involved with which items you need to take to be able to exit, which is a good puzzle that plays well with the time limit of just one minute. I would have rated this level higher if the gliders would have been easier to deal with, but as it is now, the time limit and the precise movements took me too many tries and did not leave me wanting to revisit the level.

 

Impedence
 Is it a coincidence that random 8's simplest concept ranks the highest of his three submissions on my list? The puzzle is clever, and most won't solve it on the first try, or even maybe the fifth one. Nevertheless, the time limit is appropriate and plays a role in the solution. Even the mechanism used to create the effect is a clever design. If anything, I'm a bit surprised that the level is only 8th on my list, but maybe that tells of the quality of the levels yet to come.

 

In or Out
 As the name advertizes there are two ways to solve this level. I first opted for the "In" but then went back for the "Out". Either way was fun and I never found myself at a loss for understanding the objective. If someone can't crack one approach, there is the other one to try. A fine filler level, but not quite one that would be remembered as a top notch one.

 

Tricks & Traps
 The start has a nice mechanism, though it works a bit differently in lynx. Manipulating the teeth to press the buttons was also nice, particularly since at Chip was safe behind walls. The three other rooms reachable through the teleport weren't quite as clever as the start, but nothing too annoying there either. A nice little level with an appropriate time limit.

 

Ancient Glider Temple
 This level feels like breaking into an ancient tomb and trying to get out unharmed after setting off some traps. There is a nice calm before the storm once Chip goes through the first teleport, and must guess through which way the gliders will arrive. Then the rest is just being careful not to do anything too stupid, or too slow. As a whole the level works remarkably well.

 

That Ticking Noise
 This is another level with a strong theme and story. Often times levels like this don't do it for me, because there usually isn't much of a level to play as the designer has concentrated on what the objects in the level represent, instead of how the game play feels. This time despite that, the level was enjoyable to play, and the rooms were all interesting. If anything, the time limit could have been even tighter to emphasize the rush to get out of the house!

 

Protect Me as I Protect You
 Of all the levels submitted, I perhaps liked this concept the most. It is a clever puzzle I have not encountered elsewhere. It takes a while to understand what is going on here, and I suspect those that didn't get it would rank this level much lower. Chip needs to bring a block to the top of a corridor guided by a teeth monster, and then come back down with the same block, but not allow any of the arriving pink balls to bounce off the block. There are a few flaws in the execution though. The teeth monster mush be disposed off at the top of the level, and this requires Chip to find a blue wall that is fake. I found this to distract from the actual task at hand, and would have preferred if the method to get rid of the teeth monster would have been simpler. That's a small gripe, but a larger one is that the level is busted. On the way up, Chip can quite easily use one of the columns with more than two open toggle doors to get onto the othe side of the block while still dodging the teeth. In the past, I might have punished a designer more harshly for creating something with a bust, but now I think it's nicer to forgive something like this and rather look at the potential of the concept. Perhaps the level will be updated to avoid this bust and all will be good. For now, I'm ranking it quite high for concept, but not quite at the top because of some small issues.

 

200m Free Style
 Sometimes a level comes along that just wins you over. For me it was this swimming race between Chip and some gliders. From the rankings of other players I can see it didn't hit home with everyone, but for me it did. I love this level. The concept is cool, the execution flawless, the sounds great, and the feel is awesome. It's funny too! In fact, I have to go play it through once right now, just to check if I can still beat those arrogant gliders!

 

Shemozzle
 What makes a good 60-second level? If you look at the list above, you'll find some levels that are short and by nature can be solved in a minute. You'll also spot a couple that really were decent level ideas crammed into a one minute time limit. However, the best ones are the ones that start with the low time limit in mind and expand the level from that to see what makes the time limit significant in an interesting way. This level is one of those. It's a race! It's got obstacles! It's pretty to look at! It's even busted, but you don't have time to realize that at first! The concept is clear, as the the only way to go is forward, and yet there are so many rooms! And all the monsters are represented, as well as many types of small puzzles. The rooms are symmetric, not needing a lot of time to understand what needs to get done. The time limit is just right and the bold route is interesting to find. A thumbs up from me in every regard!

 

Remember, these aren't the final results, but only my rankings. I'll post the results soon!

 

-Miika

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And here are the results, starting from the most liked level:

12-9-0 Shemozzle
 9-4-1 That Ticking Noise
 9-1-2 Protect Me as I Protect You
 8-6-1 Ancient Glider Temple
 6-6-3 Trick and Traps
 6-5-1 In or Out
 6-5-1 Impedance
 4-4-2 Bringing Up the Rear
 4-2-2 200m Free Style
 3-1-1 Flip-Side-Up
 2-1-0 The Beach
 0-0-1 Bricks
 0-0-1 Level 1

 

Taking the best placed level from each participant, this means they rank like this:

jblewis
rockdet
BlazingApollo
Flareon350
CraigV
random 8
BigOto2
Minus3K2
Michael

 

Congratulations to the winners! The levels were all enjoyable. Thanks also to those that voted, namely random 8, Reynaldi, Jupey95, BlazingApollo, Michael, and myself. 

 

-Miika

 

(I wrote more explaining the ranking mechanic, but computer stuff happened and I lost it. I might write it again when I have more time.)

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Ok, so what follows is some sort of an explanation on the ranking system for this competition.

 

All six participating voters submitted a list of all 13 of the levels in their preferred order. If someone submitted an incomplete list, even that could have been used. For the most part I disregarded any votes a designer would have given his own levels, but had I needed that information for some ranking method, I would have considered them to have voted their own levels as the highest for balance.

 

I looked at each pair of two levels in the pool and pitted them against each other by counting how many of the voters who didn't make either level ranked one higher than the other. A majority here awarded a level with one point. So if three voters out of five eligible ranked Impedence higher than Bricks, one point went to Impedence for being generally more liked than Bricks. It didn't matter if all five preferred the level or only three out of five, and it didn't matter what the designer of either level thought. After all twelve pairings for a single level pitted once against each other submitted level, its score added up. This is the first number you see in with the results announcement. Impressively Shemozzle won all of its 12 pairings!

 

But what about second place? There were two levels with the same number of points and even further ties lower down the list. For just two tied levels it might be possible to rank them according to which level won the pairing between the two of them, but even that might be a tie on occasion. So we take into account a form of standard deviation. If one level wins all of its matches really tightly, like 3-2, it could be considered less successful than one that wins all of its matches with a larger margin, like 4-1 or 5-0. What if points were awarded only for matches where a single vote could not decide the outcome? So this is basically the second number in the results announcement. It practically records how the scores would have changed for a level if one person who ranked that level decently high, had instead voted that level as the lowest. This results in That Ticking Noise beating out Protect Me as I Protect You for having clearer match-up wins, even though the match-up between those two levels was actually 3-2 in favor of the latter.

 

I think the last number in the results tells of how many ties a level was involved in, as this is better than out-right losing a match. After this the tiebreaker was to look at the match up between those particular levels. So In or Out and Impedence both had the same amount of match wins, and the same amount of match wins if someone had voted differently, and the same amount of ties in matches, but their own match favored the former 3-2 so it was ultimately ranked higher.

 

To finish off, I want to note that I compared the results of this ranking to simpler methods, and the top levels stayed the same in just about all of them, with some differences appearing lower in the rankings. I liked the method used because it seemed fair enough for all the levels no matter who voted on them, and it didn't require everyone to rank all the levels. The method did benefit from having a good number of entries to compare against each other, and it would have been even better if more people had ranked the levels.

 

The downside of doing any type of voting like this was that participants in the competition were forced to wait for the results. It also requires active voting, which truthfully can take some time. Hopefully this time the effort and waiting was worth it!

 

-Miika

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