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I have an argument against entering the 3v3 side event

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Slashtap    2347

Several formats back, Jeff posted praise about the 3v3 team side event, stating that it's a solid event since it's very hard for a team of 3 good players to lose 2 matches out of those 3.  Until yesterday I agreed with this, and actually still do except for a particular technicality that is part of the structure of this particular side event.  I'll go into my argument in a bit, but I'll post some lighthearted stuff too cause it wasn't all bad.  This is a summary of the first and only time I attempt the 3v3 side event.

 

Team name

This part isn't very important but one cool thing about 3v3 is you get to select a team name.  I was with Desmond and Ben.  Desmond was cool with me being the middle seat player (meaning I could interact with both Ben and Desmond directly on my right and left during the match), but he insisted on having his name in the team name.  This gave us little to work with.  "Desmond and the Boys" was the first suggestion, but I felt the band name gimmick was overplayed.  I really liked that Ben/Des were both playing Pat's Gunde Control deck and wanted to call it Gunde Control or Desmond's Policy on Gunde Control (since he had to have his name in it).  For the sake of brevity, we settled on Abyss-Desmond, which was probably not the greatest idea from a strategic standpoint, since any monster our team sets on turn 1 would be interpreted as an Abysslinde instead of a Geargiarmor.

 

Prizes

In the morning I was racking my brain a good while, trying to decide which side event would give me the most returns for my time and money.  Do I go for Giant Card, which is a potential $300-400, but requires an entire afternoon and a perfect record to win?  Do I go for regionals, which is fewer rounds, allows time for multiple entries, but only offers $100?  Do I go for teams, which is all afternoon, and offers $100+, and also does not necessarily require a perfect record?  Each of these side events had its own pros and cons.  Generally, the regional appealed to me the most, but I went with 3v3 because I never tried it and the 3rd seat was right there in front of me.  With 13 tops among our team of 3 players, I didn't want to say we were the best team, but I did feel we had a realistic shot at winning some sheets of shinies among the 40 total teams.

 

Levity

I won't go through every round, but I will highlight round 4, which was my favorite round.  Two members of their team were a gay couple.  I wouldn't go out of my way to perpetuate a stereotype, but I could not help noticing these two were the best dressed men in the entire convention hall.  Just two, really well-groomed, well-dressed guys.  Anyway, Desmond was playing against one of them, and it turns out the guy was running Noble Knights.  I couldn't resist so I said, "That's your worst matchup!"  Noble Knights?  "No, reading!"  Desmond hates reading cards (this statement is also true if you take out the word "cards"), and NKnights just have this way of putting up an impenetrable wall of text.  He did manage to take it though...while asking his opponent to tell him what his cards do.  Their team name was "Initial Load," and yes, the sexual innuendo was entirely intentional.

 

The argument

Round 5 is where I witnessed what I consider the major flaw of the 3v3 tournament structure.  They say 3v3 favors the better players, and this is true.  I mean, this is true of all formats.  1v1 favors the better player.  The Pokemon TCG favors the better player.  Even DSF format favors the better player.  With that said, I believe that 3v3 REDUCES the favor that the better players have.  It makes sense in my head when I look at it with imaginary numbers.

 

Let's say Des, Ben, and I have a skill level of 100.  Our team's total strength is 300 and our average player is a 100.  Now let's say our opponents are 50, 70, and 30.  Very very roughly speaking, I would say that is about what we faced in the fifth round.  Their total strength is 150 and their average player is a 50.  That means on average, one of our players is twice as likely to win against one of their players, and our team is twice as likely to win against their team.  Our average player is three times as likely to win against their worst player.  This sounds really good.

The additional variable is coaching.  If the 70 player is the middle man, he can play the 50 and 30 players like they're his puppets.  He can play them up to his level, 70 and 70.  Now their team strength is 210.  Well, it just so happens that the players to his left and right were playing Chain Burn.  These players would have made drastic mistakes had the leader not played for them.  I would argue that the leader could even raise their play level beyond 70 since it's Chain Burn.  He plays his own Fire deck like 70, but perhaps he can coach his teammates into playing Chain Burn at the 100 level.  Now let's look at our stats: the opposing team's level is 270 and average player is now 90.  What was a 2:1 likelihood of our team winning is now almost a 1:1 likelihood.  It is still in our favor, as all forms of Yugioh favor the better player or team, but the degree of that favor has shot drastically down.

 

But shouldn't our team's level increase with coaching as well?  No, coaching favors the worse team in terms of how much increase they get in win potential.  What do I have to tell Desmond?  He is already playing correctly, and he is the best backrow reader on our team.  What do I have to tell Ben?  He showed me what he was going to side, I confirmed that he was correct (meaning my coaching did not change any outcomes for us), and that's the extent of what we can do.  Net gain in team power level?  0.

 

Alright, so perhaps coaching reduces the gap between a good team and a bad team (provided the bad team has one good player).  But why is 3v3 that bad?  It's still similar odds to most versions of 1v1 Yugioh, right?

 

Well, a variable that I was afraid would take effect but did not think would actually matter did in fact take effect: time.  When a crummy team confers one another for help on their plays, they take FOREVER.  My opponent (the one I generously deem a 70) won the dice roll, took his sweet time coaching his partners, didn't scoop when I opened autowin game 2, and continued coaching through game 3.  So many of my turns were literally me with my entire play in hand and ready, waiting for him to stop talking to his partners and look at me so that I could show him my play.  What ends up happening?  He wins by being up 700 life in time.  To emphasize the point, I ask him to play out the rest of the game with me.  In a few brief moments, I decisively close the game for real in a matter of turns: turns I would have had if I hadn't sat through his puppeteering.

 

What can we take from this?

First, we are not taking away that 3v3 favors bad players.  All Yugioh formats favor good players, just to different degrees.  If we replayed round 5 several times, Abyss-Desmond would win the majority of those matches.  We happened to lose to an outcome that was in the minority of probabilities.  I had to lose the dice roll and go to time and be down life in time.

What we ARE taking away is that 3v3 can significantly reduce the divide between bad and good.

What we ARE taking away is that 3v3 is very likely to cause upsets that involve time.

 

Time upsets are a significant factor, unfortunately.  It's not as isolated as one may think.  Patrick lost in top 16 of the main event because he was down life on the last turn...even though he had the actual game won.  Another player lost in the same way in top 16.  That means at least 25% of the victories in the top 16 cut were the "false" victories as a result of tournament settings.  I don't say this to liberate or diminish anyone, but just to highlight that it is very realistic that the actual winner does not always win.  3v3/draft happen to be formats where this can occur more often.

 

If you subscribe to an opposing theory and do not agree with my conclusion, by all means, may you enjoy the 3v3 format.  I'm not some radical trying to shut down 3v3 or get everyone to quit it or anything.  I write this because I think there are at least a few people out there who, like me, have considered 3v3 and would appreciate learning that in terms of monetary returns/EV, it is not a very good investment of an afternoon of side event play, and particularly not a good return if you have three players who have the capability of doing well in individual competitions.

 

Addendum: I just learned that a team of solid players from my hometown took 2nd place in this side event, hurrah.  Again, it's not that 3v3 favors bad players, it just increases the variance against good ones.

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M.C.B.    172

Never thought of it this way. Changed my perspective entirely. I thought 3v3 was a good idea. Now not so much.

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Living Legend    3798
I never really understood the profitability of side events, even the giant card. Best idea seems to just trade and play for cash day 2 if you want to make money.
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Slashtap    2347

^Both of those activities are lucrative, but I am very introverted and also wouldn't want to risk a ban.

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»Jeff Jones    13262

I enjoyed reading this.

 

My favorite part was the gay couple. And that the gay guy used Noble Knights. Makes me wonder if hes a fan lol

 

But yeah, I can see what you're saying, but I've played in like 10 3v3's and won every single one of them, which doesnt prove anything, no, but it just makes me feel like there is a lot more to it then all of this.

 

But also, the whole coaching thing was put into effect more recently. I think if they did a 3v3 YCS, they wouldnt allow the whole coaching thing. Or maybe they would. But either way you would still get the 40 mins and you can call your opponent on taking up too much time just like normal.

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M.C.B.    172

Last time I was playing 3v3 me and my tammates were at 3 different tables at all times. There was a table for player A and separate tables for B and C. Problem solved. But then again, this is Konami...

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Tartarga    74

If the leader is the coach, they are probably sitting between the 2 other guys. You only force him out of coaching by applying pressure on his game. Like telling him to hurry up or knocking the table to make him notice you are there. Those little things make them lose focus on their game and they will probably lose. And once they lose, make them focus only in 1 player so that way your other team mate can win his match without another guy sticking his nose and telling them how to play burn

Or just return them the favour and start talking about something with your mate to make them lose time (assuming they are down in life). If they do something like this to make time, you can just make time as well when the game is favouring you.

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SAX    8

Just wanted to say that your ''articles''/reports are always a nice read, your writing style is relaxed which makes the story pleasant to read.

 

On topic:

 

I agree with most what you say and your coaching theory has logic in it but I honestly believe that it's not the structure of 3v3 that's at fault there, it's specific rulings about time/coaching that aren't really clear yet and should be adjusted a bit. It's great to hear that you don't get salty though haha.

 

Anyways 10/10 would read again.

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Souji Seta    673

Sorry that you guys had a bad time in the 3v3, playing vs. Chain Burn is the worst. I'm one of the three guys that won the 3v3, so sorry, lol. 

While I don't want to say we were the best team to win, I'd like to say that me and my two friends had a lot of determination and confidence in ourselves. We're unable to travel, so we don't really go to events, and are unable to attempt anything at a YCS level. But I'd personally say that my standard of playing is above most people (not trying to brag, not trying to say I'm amazing, I'm not, we all have our flaws.)

But overall, we had a really good time at the 3v3, and we really had to put our heads together to win each match. Yes, maybe our power levels weren't exactly equal, and talking to each other helped raised that a fair bit. But I'd like to think that it's a part of the experience and it made us feel like a team. On my side it wasn't so much coaching as much as it was brainstorming for the best possible solution. But enough about that, time to talk about Chain Burn.

I'm piloting Fist, and my two team members are piloting Geargia and Mermail. The Chain Burn team is from our locals, so we knew what we were up against. It's not rocket science to see that we seriously did not want to go against them. So, I get paired vs. Chain Burn. Geargia vs. Fist, and Mermail vs. Chain Burn. What saddens me is that the ONE person on the team to main triple trap stun (Geargia) happened to go up against Fire Fist which is an awful match-up for Geargia. Needless to say, he lost. 

Game 1, I have two level four monsters and he flips Ojama Trio. The day before the event, I decided to Extra Deck Armades because I didn't have an Exciton Knight. So I made a rank 4 (Believe it was Tiger King) and summoned Veiler to synchro into Armades with two Ojama tokens. After Armades kept swinging for a few turns, I eventually won.
Game 2, I remember little to nothing about it. I lost easily.
Game 3 is where the real shit begins. I have Tiger King and Bear, and he Ojama Trios me. I pop a token with Bear taking my first damage of the game and proceed to make Armades again with the Bear and Veiler. I know he has Dimension Wall, he Duality'd for it. So I just swing with Armades and pass. Eventually he summoned Lava Golem on me. Two or so turns later, he has two backrow besides dimension wall. We're in time.On my turn, he flips Secret Barrel and Just Desserts and then extends his hand saying good game. He said I was at 5000. Excuse me? What happened here, was an extreme misunderstanding. And no one knew what happened except me for some reason. Instead of subtracting 300 from the Ojama token, he subtracted 3000. We redid life point damage and I ended up being able to live. His one Dimension Wall was his only backrow. I Gyokkou'd it, summoned Wolfbark, made Kagutsuchi, summoned another Wolfbark, switched Golem to attack mode and attacked with everything, putting him at lower life. His turn comes around, and it's the last turn of the duel, so he's unable to do anything, and I end up winning. Mermail player won his chain burn match, too.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, helping each other out is just what makes this event so different. Yeah, it's pretty silly if there's only one good player and two bad players that are coached by the other. And yeah, going into time happens here. But that happens in every other event, too. What could manage this is if players held by the rules a little more and have their opponents not take so much time on one play. Or just extend the time for 3v3 like they do in top cut. Whatever works. But I see your point and understand what flaws 3v3 may have. Like I said, however, it's a completely different event. Yeah, you may not get your money back as much as the other events given how much effort you put into it, but I think what's most valuable about this event is how you work together as a team. That's what the experience was like for me.

Also fuck Chain Burn.

Edit: Also, if it wasn't for my friend being there, I wouldn't have realized that I could pop my own Ojama Tokens with Bear, so I wanted to thank him on that. It was my first tournament with Fire Fist, so it's not like I'm a master at the deck or anything. I just understand advanced rulings and know what the cards do to a certain extent. Something like popping your own monster NEVER comes up, so it never occurred to me. 

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+Urthor    10225

See

 

I KNEW MAKING ARMADES WITH EFFECT VEILER IN FIRE FIST WOULD BE RELEVANT SOME DAY

 

Autre Monde getting in there

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Souji Seta    673

See

 

I KNEW MAKING ARMADES WITH EFFECT VEILER IN FIRE FIST WOULD BE RELEVANT SOME DAY

 

Autre Monde getting in there

It most certainly helped in that situation. Although, if I had Exciton or a second Dweller, I think Armades wouldn't have been there. I also neglected to mention that I made Armades by using two Ojama tokens game 1. Oops. Edited. 

Welp. I definitely have two Excitons now! (In that damn sheet I can't use)

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+Urthor    10225

um you definitely don't want 2 dweller, it never comes up and cards like black corn are rlly relevant at times lel

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Souji Seta    673

um you definitely don't want 2 dweller, it never comes up and cards like black corn are rlly relevant at times lel

I was playing Corn. But yeah, I would've used Exciton for sure.

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Dont Forget    609

I don't agree that 3 100s can't increase their level above 100. When Dalton and I play on Dn while we are on Skype we lose maybe 5% of our matches if even that. I find it impossible to think that any 3 good players would agree on every play in 3 matches times however many rounds there are.

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Souji Seta    673

Cant you just take the sheets to a Kinkos and have them cut it for you?

I'd rather not risk it, honestly. It might cut a little too off.

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I guess i can take the 70 rating as a compliment? But then again you said you were giving that as a very rough rating. i believe the 3vs3 should have more time do to the fact you are aloud to talk to each other while playing, and really the only time I talked to my teammate for more than a minute at a time was in game 2 when you were doing your whole leopard, summon spirit play, and once you said go, I went. Then on my turn I would say the occasional thing but I still made plays in a timely fashion. And why the hell would I scoop turn 1? Sure you opened the nuts, but i'm still going to play a game out. Unless you are doing an ftk and i cant stop it, or you are going to otk me and I cant stop it, then i have no reason to scoop, because anything can happen. and of course you can tell then how to play better against chain burn, the fact is though not everyone knows how to play against it, players who over extend for no reason, are the ones who lose, and guess what? both Ben and Desmond constantly over extended, and your team got 3-0'd. not the first time my team has beaten a pro team in the 3v3, and its the fact that our "player strength" is much higher than you said. yes none of us have any premier tops, and the best we have are regional tops, along with tops at cash tournaments for $1k-5k, which no other place has held a $5k cash tournament other than Florida, so I know you don't have that under your belt, pretty sure nobody has held a $3k either than Florida, but i don't want to get into how Florida has a much tougher player base than pretty much every other state. 

 

The amount of salt in this article is unreal, and shows how much poor sportsmanship you have. I was happy to play the game out for you, because i'm a nice guy, but once you found out you would have won, you got all butt hurt. And you saying you would win the majority of the games in a best out of 5 is a joke, if that's true, than you shouldn't of had a problem with us in the first place, but you clearly did. 

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+Urthor    10225
I mean the chain burn guys just sounded like people exploiting the shit out of ygo's eomp policy and the fact their opponents didn't push them hard enough around time when 3v3 is slower to get to the endgame of chain burn in eomp. Which is just meta gaming. But this sounds less like am argument about 3ve and more like why allowing coaching is silly. Is that really how it works most of the time? Jesse says 1 thing, but everyone says something else.

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+Urthor    10225
[quote name="the_scrap_king91" post="3683268" timestamp="1391536727"]I guess i can take the 70 rating as a compliment? But then again you said you were giving that as a very rough rating. i believe the 3vs3 should have more time do to the fact you are aloud to talk to each other while playing, and really the only time I talked to my teammate for more than a minute at a time was in game 2 when you were doing your whole leopard, summon spirit play, and once you said go, I went. Then on my turn I would say the occasional thing but I still made plays in a timely fashion. And why the hell would I scoop turn 1? Sure you opened the nuts, but i'm still going to play a game out. Unless you are doing an ftk and i cant stop it, or you are going to otk me and I cant stop it, then i have no reason to scoop, because anything can happen. and of course you can tell then how to play better against chain burn, the fact is though not everyone knows how to play against it, players who over extend for no reason, are the ones who lose, and guess what? both Ben and Desmond constantly over extended, and your team got 3-0'd. not the first time my team has beaten a pro team in the 3v3, and its the fact that our "player strength" is much higher than you said. yes none of us have any premier tops, and the best we have are regional tops, along with tops at cash tournaments for $1k-5k, which no other place has held a $5k cash tournament other than Florida, so I know you don't have that under your belt, pretty sure nobody has held a $3k either than Florida, but i don't want to get into how Florida has a much tougher player base than pretty much every other state.    The amount of salt in this article is unreal, and shows how much poor sportsmanship you have. I was happy to play the game out for you, because i'm a nice guy, but once you found out you would have won, you got all butt hurt. And you saying you would win the majority of the games in a best out of 5 is a joke, if that's true, than you shouldn't of had a problem with us in the first place, but you clearly did. [/quote] The universe doesn't work that way even though you think it does.

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Joe.    4932

I love the coaching aspect of these. I think that is the best part. If you have "three players at level 100," the coaching suddenly becomes a fundamental disagreement amongst "level players." Which I think is fascinating.

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»Digbick    7258
[quote name="the_scrap_king91" post="3683268" timestamp="1391536727"]I guess i can take the 70 rating as a compliment? But then again you said you were giving that as a very rough rating. i believe the 3vs3 should have more time do to the fact you are aloud to talk to each other while playing, and really the only time I talked to my teammate for more than a minute at a time was in game 2 when you were doing your whole leopard, summon spirit play, and once you said go, I went. Then on my turn I would say the occasional thing but I still made plays in a timely fashion. And why the hell would I scoop turn 1? Sure you opened the nuts, but i'm still going to play a game out. Unless you are doing an ftk and i cant stop it, or you are going to otk me and I cant stop it, then i have no reason to scoop, because anything can happen. and of course you can tell then how to play better against chain burn, the fact is though not everyone knows how to play against it, players who over extend for no reason, are the ones who lose, and guess what? both Ben and Desmond constantly over extended, and your team got 3-0'd. not the first time my team has beaten a pro team in the 3v3, and its the fact that our "player strength" is much higher than you said. yes none of us have any premier tops, and the best we have are regional tops, along with tops at cash tournaments for $1k-5k, which no other place has held a $5k cash tournament other than Florida, so I know you don't have that under your belt, pretty sure nobody has held a $3k either than Florida, but i don't want to get into how Florida has a much tougher player base than pretty much every other state.    The amount of salt in this article is unreal, and shows how much poor sportsmanship you have. I was happy to play the game out for you, because i'm a nice guy, but once you found out you would have won, you got all butt hurt. And you saying you would win the majority of the games in a best out of 5 is a joke, if that's true, than you shouldn't of had a problem with us in the first place, but you clearly did. [/quote] >complaining about poor sportsmanship > is a bad sport . l0l

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Slashtap    2347

Hmm seems a lot of posts since I last checked here.

 

To the guy who got 1st: don't get your sheet cut!  The sheets are given out uncut on purpose.  They're a rare prize worth more uncut than cut.  And while I don't know you personally, I'm sure you had a strong team.  Like I said from the start, 3v3 still favors the better players; it just creates more variance for them.

 

Mitch (and Joe too): You're correct that we'd disagree over plays if we were playtesting, but in the 3v3 tournament they don't give you the time to see every play your teammates make.  The likelihood of one of us seeing the other do a play we disagree on is too low since we're absorbed in our own games.  Of course level players having lots of time to critique each other during playtesting is an amazing exercise, but it just becomes silly when all three are involved in a game.  When everyone is playing, the type of coaching that is relevant is helping someone not blatantly misplay, which is why I say overall coaching favors lopsided skill levels in a timed match.

 

Guy I lost to: You're definitely over-exaggerating with the use of the word salt.  Anyone who's ever played me at a premier event would testify I don't express any of the common and toxic emotions ever-present in Yugioh culture.  Acting "butthurt," as you call it, or anything along those lines such as complaining about luck, is not in my programming.

 

Regarding my criticism that you didn't scoop when I opened Sacred Fire going 1st: this one is a tad more next level.  At peak play, 4-axis, +1 Fire, and several other decks cannot win going 2nd vs. the 9 card opening.  The extent to which I'd play out a game like that might be to see if I can resolve Exciton while holding Veiler in hand, and if not, I'd scoop to avoid going into time.

 

Regarding the section comparing achievements: Your entire argument there is results-oriented and you're essentially turning a discussion into a pissing contest.  An argument doesn't become more correct based on the number of tops or amount of tournament winnings achieved by the person making the argument.

 

Regarding the last comment: I thought you were a nice guy too, and I still think you are but just don't communicate it well.  The poor sportsmanship comment is objectively incorrect (see my spiel on match behavior above).  I think you're looking at a passage that casts you in a negative light and interpreting that as "poor sportsmanship."  Also, and this might blow your mind, I don't think the way you coached was wrong.  Play to win, that's the motto.  I would never be mad at someone playing to win (legally).  Do you notice that my argument is NOT "don't coach your teammates?"  Rather, my argument is that if you and two friends play at a level where you won't play much better if you can coach one another, then it is better EV for the three of you to play in a singles competition.  Read the title of my thread.  It is argument against entering 3v3, not argument against the opponents we played in 3v3.

 

Now, regarding the very very last sentence in your post: reread it carefully, but take your team and my team out of the equation and replace it with any general player.  It's flat out wrong.  If a team will win more games in a best of 13 vs. another team, it does not mean they will win more games in a best of 7 vs. another team, or a best of 5, or 3, and so on.  The last sentence in your post shows a fundamental lack of understanding of what variance is.

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