Forums  /  Left 4 Dead  /  Proposed changes to bring us in line with L4D2
  TheMasterTheMaster

Hello everybody, today I received quite the surprise when I saw I was added as a series mod, hooray! I don't want to make drastic changes right away since I am coming into an established community (albeit a fairly vacant one at the moment) so here we have this thread.

For some time now I've been deeply involved in the L4D2 leaderboards and have worked with others there making changes to timing, etching out new rules, and so on. Now that I have the ability to do things here as well I would like to post about proposed changes that can be made to bring things in line with what's going on in the much more active L4D2 portion of the series so that both games have rules much closer to each other.

I see demo timing is used for RTA runs and there was discussion about that a while ago. In L4D2, we now use RTA with strictly the loads taken out to time easily and fairly, as the scoreboard appears for a consistent, scripted time and loads can be removed based on how long the icon shows in the upper-right. I assume that L4D1 will work the same which is something I plan to investigate. Demo timing has a very high barrier of entry for new runners especially and recording them is not the easiest during a run. Considering RTA runs are supposed to be timed beginning to end and the scoreboard is essentially a cutscene in this game, it seems to make more sense to keep all of that and time via video as we've been doing with L4D2. I'd like to change that here. We should be able to accurately re-time runs submitted here retroactively by adding whatever the flat time is from the end of a demo to loading start. I'll be investigating this further to make sure I have the right system in place to get correct times.

Videos should absolutely be necessary for every submission. Requiring people to contact the runners for demos just to see what a run looks like is pretty unreasonable.

I'm still working on trying to figure out how to best handle adding Expert (and lower) to the L4D2 boards. That could be ported here eventually.

I'd like to split co-op and solo categories so solo runs become viable. It's the most popular in L4D2 and is an attractive option for new runners that don't want the pressure of running with a team or, even more importantly, can't get a good team together to compete. Spectators seem impressed that one person can complete the game by themselves, too.

I'll post more if I think of anything. Hope to hear from some of you guys soon. I will likely go ahead with making changes if there isn't a response for a while, just wanted to make sure I try to voice everything first for discussion.

mr.deaglemr.deagle and mariorules64mariorules64 like this. 
  bill_play3bill_play3

If the timing method changes to be equal to L4D2, i could try to port the autosplitter i made to this game. The games are very similar so shouldnt be hard

 
  TheMasterTheMaster

Ah, also, I am considering the removal of the level leaderboards and shifting the individual campaigns there, like L4D2 does. Currently some of them have no submissions at all, co-op doesn't have any submissions, and the majority of the times are Freezard alone, SirRed alone, or several where it's just the two of them. I don't anticipate any new submissions would be coming in there, either. Running single levels sounds kind of maddening. Open to discussing it either way.

 
  CanterlottCanterlott

"I'd like to split co-op and solo categories so solo runs become viable."
yes boys

"Ah, also, I am considering the removal of the level leaderboards and shifting the individual campaigns there, like L4D2 does."
no boys

 
  mr.deaglemr.deagle

Originally posted by Canterlott"Ah, also, I am considering the removal of the level leaderboards and shifting the individual campaigns there, like L4D2 does."
no boys

Why not? L4D1 has so little activity already, Having 5x the leaderboards doesn't really make sense to me.

 
  Cyberdemon531Cyberdemon531

hey I requested you to be mod on the site forum since I was getting tired of inactivity lol.

All I request is making 1.0 solo campaigns its own categoy, separate from co-op. Making co-op and solo subcategories would easily fix this.

As for ILs, I think they should remain the way they are, personally.

CanterlottCanterlott likes this. 
  bill_play3bill_play3

I guess you could keep the ILs where they are and keep the single campaign runs where they are too. Just splitting solo from coop is enough (even though nothing stops you from getting solo times and submitting them in the current format, it's just not as rewarding)

 
  mr.deaglemr.deagle

But what are the reasons for keeping the ILs? So far in this thread we have at least two reasons to axe them:

1. Consistency within the L4D series
2. To avoid 5x super-diluted leaderboards that only have one person each in a highly inactive game

 
  Cyberdemon531Cyberdemon531

Because theyve been done, and there's no real reason to remove them. Whats wrong with them being there? If theyve been done, theyve been done, I don't see why they should be removed. I also don't see why consistency is important. I also wouldnt be opposed to ILs in L4D2 either

DerpduckDerpduck likes this. 
  mr.deaglemr.deagle

What's wrong is, as I've already mentioned, it dilutes the already thin amount of activity even more. Is that not a "real reason"? ILs only detract from actual competition when the 0–4 active runners at any given time have 25x2=50 extra leaderboards to look at. You should scale the number of divisions according to the depth of the competition, because that's how it works in legitimate forms of competition like sports.

If a shitty category should go, then the runs can just be viewed on SDA/Twitch/YouTube/etc. then. It really doesn't matter to me if they're already done (I'd be happy if LMOE disappeared from L4D2, but that's another story). Of all those who have done anything for L4D on this site over the past half a year, I think only Canterlott can fight for his two runs in 2015. If a significant number of ILs were done by more than one person who did it all in 2012 and early 2013 (they're all copied/duplicated from SDA anyway), or another who just solo'd a fraction of the levels and is no longer active, then maybe I wouldn't be strongly opposed to them.

 
  Cyberdemon531Cyberdemon531

It doesn't dilute anything. If someone wants to run the game, they can and will. Just because they have more options doesn't mean they are forced to spread their activity more thinly between them. They can just run what they want to.

 
  mr.deaglemr.deagle

Originally posted by Cyberdemon531They can just run what they want to.

That is exactly what dilution is. The amount of time/motivation that runners have is not infinite. Spreading one's time over the extra options results in less focus on campaign/full runs.

 
  Cyberdemon531Cyberdemon531

So, less focus on what YOU want, then? This isn't your game. People are free to play how they like lol

 
  CanterlottCanterlott

it doesnt matter nearly as much as anyone thinks it does
like its a speedgame my dudes
nobody plays this shit game
the reason why the ILs are in the order that they are is because that's how runs were/are submitted to SDA before SRC was a thing, Individual Levels alongside full RTA runs, but the IL times are what people spent the most time on
i think Freezard said his no mercy 1 attempt took like 1000 resets or something outrageous like that, and thats just for one IL
since around agdq 2013 when l4d1 runs started being shown, RTA runs have been more popular than IL/demo runs, so it makes sense to make whole campaigns the new ILs instead of just Individual Levels to go with the flow of how runs of this game are being done nowadays; although, i can also see the reasoning behind wanting to preserve and respect the hard work that people have already put into this game by keeping the leaderboards the same as they have been
so in the end it doesnt really matter and i dont care
i just said no because change is bad boo hoo

Cyberdemon531Cyberdemon531 likes this. 
  TheMasterTheMaster

Whooooooooo boy that really took off fast... I've let the discussion go a bit and have been percolating on it myself. I think I have a proposition that will work for everybody, myself included. I agree with Canterlott's sentiment about how the game, and really speedrunning in general, has changed to RTA and individual levels with demo timing make less sense now than they used to, at least for this game. I also would like the series to be more consistent with each other. Here's what I'm thinking,
---
"Level Leaderboard" is changed to the campaigns, No Mercy, Death Toll, etc. with Solo and Co-op categories

"Full-game Leaderboard" is changed to All Campaigns Solo, All Campaigns Co-op, Original Campaigns Solo, Original Campaigns Co-op, Miscellaneous

Miscellaneous will have a category like "Individual Maps" (called it maps to differentiate better from Level Leaderboard?) and inside there will be subcategories for each map. Hopefully speedrun.com supports that many, I'll have to see. Probably a players column there for Solo and Co-op since I can't do subcategoryception and put a subcategory in a subcategory. Co-op doesn't even have any submissions for the maps anyway.

Actually, thinking about it, instead of just one big misc category with all of the levels, maybe it should be like "No Mercy Maps" or some such for each campaign. Hmm.

This will line the main categories up with L4D2 for parity and shift the maps over to a place where they don't feel as "necessary" to run and split the runner's attention while preserving the previous submissions, just shifted around a bit.

What do we think? I can put this misc category up quick as an example if we want to see what it looks like, and make sure it functions as expected. It should.
---

If you could port the autosplitter, bill, that'd be great! Thank you.

Ahhh it was you Cyberdemon, cool, appreciate you putting the word in to the site. I was thinking of taking that step soon myself so it seems you got to it faster. We'll get L4D1 up and running in no time, other runners are already interested in doing solos here after I told them there is no Rochelle or Jockeys.

As for the 1.0 Solo category, I don't think it would be a good idea to have a category solely requiring an old version. I can put a column in to differentiate version numbers like L4D2 does, though. I just don't want it to be an absolute requirement to submit. Dead Air 2 actually has a pipe bomb drop in newest (I think it works in L4D1?) you can do that works around that map. Are there any other huge skips in 1.0 that wouldn't have backups? I am not familiar with it yet myself. If there is a list anywhere of the differences that would also be good.

 
  mr.deaglemr.deagle

Originally posted by Cyberdemon531So, less focus on what YOU want, then? This isn't your game. People are free to play how they like lol
Less focus on 50 twice-redundant leaderboards where >90% was done by two people who are no longer active as I mentioned earlier, yes. Of course I wouldn't want those. You're fighting for ILs, yet the single run you have submitted to L4D1 here is an original campaigns run from spring 2015.

I don't own sports either, but I perfectly understand the purpose of divisions and why they don't want just two people competing in each one. These are leaderboards, not a collection of diary entries. People can speedrun whatever they want regardless of speedrun.com, as SDA/YouTube/Twitch/etc. exist.

Originally posted by Canterlott although, i can also see the reasoning behind wanting to preserve and respect the hard work that people have already put into this game

This would be a valid reason if the majority of the ILs weren't done two years before a L4D1 section was even created on speedrun.com, but it seems Freezard was done with the game a loooong time ago. His runs will stay up on SDA.

 
  CanterlottCanterlott

edited because i dont feel like arguing my dudes

Originally posted by TheMasterMiscellaneous will have a category like "Individual Maps" (called it maps to differentiate better from Level Leaderboard?) and inside there will be subcategories for each map.

Originally posted by TheMaster"Full-game Leaderboard" is changed to All Campaigns Solo, All Campaigns Co-op, Original Campaigns Solo, Original Campaigns Co-op, Miscellaneous

These decisions seem fair.

Originally posted by TheMasterAs for the 1.0 Solo category, I don't think it would be a good idea to have a category solely requiring an old version. I can put a column in to differentiate version numbers like L4D2 does, though. I just don't want it to be an absolute requirement to submit.

Running main campaigns solo on anything other than 1.0 isn't a good idea in the first place, you're missing out on the crescendo skip on death toll 3, for instance. I'm all for having solo as it's own category, but the version doesn't really matter.

 
  TheMasterTheMaster

Deagle unluckily posted simultaneously with me so that was great timing. I'll let a couple more posts come in before I make changes.

Ah, you mean the vocalize bug to start the church? Weeeeelllll.... there ¤is¤ a workaround for solo that I was playing around with in L4D2 that I know would work here, but it is very difficult. Still, technically one does exist...

I think the version column is good, it lets less serious runners still submit good times and serious runners can get their hands on the old version to squeeze out every last second. Seems to go alright for L4D2.

 
  CanterlottCanterlott

The pixel walking you showed me on stream that one day, you mean? Technically yeah, that would work, but good luck doing that in an RTA and then not getting wiped by an ultrahunter or something for the rest of the run.

But yeah, even if the I(M)s are hidden away in a miscellaneous section and the campaigns become the new ILs, I'm fine with that. I'm also fine with virtually everything else you listed, you'd just have to do some experimenting to see how everything looks is all.

I'll give you my yes vote, but let's see if anyone else has any suggestions.

P.S. I still have the installer for my copy of 1.0 and the link to where I got it, so if you decide to post a sticky later on like there is in the L4D2 section that tells people where to find certain versions, let me know and I'll hook you up so you don't have to go searching.

P.P.S accept my crash course IL run breh 🙂