The other side of the "Lucky AI" coin

Alright maaaaaaaaaaaaan… I’m not trying to over-inflate the importance of this. I’m not trying to complain. I’m just thinking.

In my alt account which I am thoroughly enjoying playing (but that’s a discussion for another day) I just had an experience in Arena that caused me to reflect on something I don’t think is considered or brought up much.

Let me rewind the tape.

We talk a lot about the emotional experience and perceptions of player “luck”. We talk about yes the game is a cheater, but always in the Human’s favor, never in the AI favpr. This cheating is discussed in terms of how the AI is programmed to take sub-optimal moves from time-to-time, and we also discuss the combo-breaker which reduces ET chances turn-after-turn.

Now, back to where I was in Arena just now.

I just had 3 Arena fights in a row where I did not get a single opportunity to exercise any kind of choice in the game. Specifically, for 3 games the only thing I could do was take a single match of 3, with choice of Mana color not up to me since there was one and only one move available each time I had control of the board.

Most of the time it was Red, the only type of Mana my team could not use. Each subsequent cascade randomized the board sufficiently that the AI would get one or more chains of moves, each time gathering Mana that benefited it and when its turn was over, returning control to me with a single, non-useful Mana swap left.

I won 2 of those 3 fights. And I hated winning.

I think because of the intense frustration that was building in me from not having any control of the board, as well as memories of my recent “freakout”, it started to bring into focus another emotion that players feel, which is not the feeling of luck or the absence thereof, but the intense frustration that comes when the sense that the player has no control at all.

Another way of looking at this might be that the game cheats to guarantee the AI doesn’t exceed a certain level of performance. But is there any cheat in the game that guarantees a minimum level of performance for the Human?

This is philosophical stuff… and I don’t have time to think every nuance through, nor do I want to potentially limit any discussion by overly-defining the conversation. But are you feeling me?


the concept of minimal performance i wanted to offer with the feature request about devour and instant kill chance tweak in here so yeah i think i do get you

yet im on the other side of fence totally not getting frustrated - playing the dragon soul and just exploding everything regardless to the board setup XD i have been wanting to put that into statistics but i just relax with movies lately and play far too little attention to the game to be bothered, ugh… still did not forget about it just moving it until im not so tired and have more time for it :slight_smile: so far everything ive been observing while playing the restful way is - that i do not even pay attention to what exactly is on the board :laughing:

anyway thats what id recommend for everybody who needs more restful play:

pvp (skip bone dragon if u see it but no need to scout):
krysta sylva DS shadow dragon + abysmal

explore (normal or hard difficulty):
behemoth DS pharos/aziris pharos/aziris +abysmal

just as an experiment @KrudlerTheHorse could you try to play some games with the decks i listed and tell me is it still as much frustrating as usual for you?

Sure I love stuff like that :slight_smile:

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in return tell me some deck usual for you and ill see is it for me as frustrating as for you :o

I don’t share my power-decks not even with my Guildies, sorry :wink:

Joker’s Wild was one of my rare exceptions.

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