Author Topic: The Order of the Meeple  (Read 11267 times)

Offline danisthirty

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The Order of the Meeple
« on: February 13, 2015, 07:36:23 AM »
Hello all! This is a fairly long post but please bear with it as there's a lot to take in!  :)

The absence of any kind of ongoing reward and recognition program for Carcassonne Central's online tournaments is something that has been felt by myself and others for a little while now. Whilst the tournaments themselves are a lot of fun and help individual competitors to improve their playing skill as well as building friendships and rivalries here on the forums, there hasn't been anything to unite the tournaments we've run so far and as such it's easy to view them in isolation rather than being parts of something bigger. With this in mind, please allow me to introduce you to: "The Order of the Meeple" :meeple: :green-meeple: :blue-meeple: :red-meeple: :black-meeple:

In the same way as many forms of martial arts use a system based on coloured belts to represent individual skill/ achievement, a similar system has been devised by jungleboy, MrNumbers and myself based on colours of meeple. Anybody who has taken part in at least two online tournaments and one weekly online game qualifies to become a Yellow member of the order, but progress towards membership at the Black level becomes increasingly challenging as you advance through the various levels/ colours of membership.

So... what is the actual point of the Order of the Meeple?
  • First and foremost: Fun! (obviously)
  • Universal recognition of your Carcassonne-playing achievements and abilities
  • Provides specific goals to aim for during tournaments (as well as just trying to win, or at least beat certain people)
  • Encourages ongoing participation, and helps players to stay motivated
Right. So what do I have to do before I can tell my friends/ colleagues/ pets/ random people on the bus that I'm a "Black-belt" in Carcassonne?

Before you can become a member at the Black level you need to be a member at the Red level. Before you can become a member at the Red level you need to be a member at the Blue level. And so on, with Green and Yellow coming before Blue. Here's a look at the overall plan with some definitions to follow just in case anything isn't clear:


Order of the Meeple: Yellow member... :meeple:
  • Participate in at least two online tournaments (anything since and including the 2014 Base-game League)
  • Participate in at least one weekly game
Order of the Meeple: Green member... :green-meeple:
  • Be a Yellow member
  • Finish in the top half of all competitors taking part in any online tournament
  • Win any tournament match by 35 points or more
  • Hold at least 2500 Career Points
Order of the Meeple: Blue member... :blue-meeple:
  • Be a Green member
  • Reach the knock-out stage (top 8 ) of a World Cup style online tournament
  • Win any tournament match by 60 points or more
  • Hold at least 3500 Career Points
  • Complete any individual tournament with a Total Score Differential of 100 points or more
  • Hold at least 30 Career Experience Points
  • Win a weekly game against at least 3 opponents using any combination of expansions
Order of the Meeple: Red member... :red-meeple:
  • Be a Blue member
  • Finish in the top 3 of all competitors taking part in an online tournament
  • Win any tournament match by 80 points or more
  • Hold at least 5000 Career Points
  • Maintain a Career Score Differential of at least 350 points
  • Hold at least 55 Career Experience Points
  • Beat 2 existing Blue members (or higher) in a head-to-head, base-game only, best of 3 games style challenge match
Order of the Meeple: Black member... :black-meeple:
  • Be a Red member
  • Win an online competition
  • Hold at least 8000 Career Points
  • Maintain a Career Score Differential of at least 700 points
  • Hold at least 80 Career Experience Points
  • Beat 2 existing Red members (or higher) in a head-to-head, base-game only, best of 3 games style challenge match
  • Beat a mystery opponent in a head-to-head, base-game only, best of 3 games style challenge match
  • Win at least 5 weekly games against at least 3 opponents (all major expansions 1 – 5 should be included at least once)

Career Points: total number of points scored by you in all games of all tournaments you've taken part in. This can only go up and is updated at the end of each tournament.

Career Experience Points: these points are awarded at the end of each tournament based on finishing position. Last place gets one point, each place above this gets one point more than the rank below i.e. (total number of players – rank) + 1. This can only go up.

Career Score Differential: total number of points scored by you in all games of all tournaments you've taken part in minus the total number of points scored against you in all games of all tournaments you've taken part in. This can go up or down depending on whether you have more or less points scored against you than you score against your opponents during each tournament.

Challenge Matches (Red and Black levels): in order to qualify for membership of the order at either of the top two levels (Red and Black), you must win two "challenge" matches against players at the same or higher membership level as yourself. So once you reach the Blue level you may publically challenge any other Blue, Red or Black member to a match and that member must respond to your challenge within a week to arrange a suitable date/ time for your match (there will be a special thread for issuing challenges, arranging matches and posting results). Challenge matches are base-game only and decided on a best of 3 games basis, and you can't challenge the same opponent more than once per calendar month.

Mystery Opponent (Black level only): in order to qualify for membership of the order at the Black level, you must win a challenge match against an opponent who is unknown to you. This isn't to say you won't ever have played them before, but you won't know who it is, nor will you have any control over who it is as your opponent will be selected for you. Other than this, the match will operate in the same way as any other challenge match (see above).


Other Notes:
- Members of the Order at the Yellow and Green level will be subject to "demotion" (i.e. they will move back one level) if they don't participate in three or more consecutive tournaments. Members at the Blue, Red and Black levels will not be subject to the same on account of the increased difficulty associated with reaching these levels.

- I will maintain a master list of all necessary statistics and results from every eligible online tournament played at Carcassonne Central (coming soon). This will be used to assess whether individuals are entitled to be promoted to the next membership level so please contact me directly if you think you've spotted a mistake in this.

- Promotion from one membership level to the next is only possible outside of active tournaments. So in other words, you can't be promoted from one level to another while you're taking part in a tournament and must wait for it to finish before your eligibility can be considered.


Hopefully you're as excited as I am by this and can't wait to join the order and start charging up through the different levels of membership. Initial memberships will be handed out to all qualifying players once the current tournament has finished.  :(y)

Any further questions, please ask!

Linkback: http://www.carcassonnecentral.com/community/index.php?topic=1526.0
Heroically snatching defeat from the jaws of victory since 2018

Offline Paul

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2015, 07:49:45 AM »
A great idea and sounds like fun!

One thing needs to be changed, though. Anyone should eventually be able to reach max colour, even if it takes 10 years.

I understand that in real life, a Black Belt is earned by honing their skills but since this is less strict and supposed to be fun, there should be less mandatory requirements.

This is merely to make things fair. I am a good example in this.

I will never win a tournament and most likely not to reach any finals (or maybe have a very slim chance). This will exclude me from advancing.
  Thus, this will also take away the fun for me, seeing some people will get recognition for their wins while I contribute to a whole lot of other things and won't get any recognition at all.

 O:-)
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Offline Jéré

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2015, 07:52:59 AM »
So when is the next weekly game?? Haha :D I guess I can't ignore those anymore!

Offline Jéré

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2015, 08:23:05 AM »

A great idea and sounds like fun!

One thing needs to be changed, though. Anyone should eventually be able to reach max colour, even if it takes 10 years.

I understand that in real life, a Black Belt is earned by honing their skills but since this is less strict and supposed to be fun, there should be less mandatory requirements.

This is merely to make things fair. I am a good example in this.

I will never win a tournament and most likely not to reach any finals (or maybe have a very slim chance). This will exclude me from advancing.
  Thus, this will also take away the fun for me, seeing some people will get recognition for their wins while I contribute to a whole lot of other things and won't get any recognition at all.

 O:-)

Yellow, I think it is meant to be difficult. For instance I got a few victories in the tournaments so far but my weak point appears to be the score diffential so it is possible I will never reach a colour if I don't improve that particular aspect.

...and the main objective is (beside having fun playing) to encourage participation so if it takes 10 years then we can say it was successful :)




Offline danisthirty

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2015, 08:39:06 AM »
@Yellow - there’s no reason why you don’t stand as good a chance as anyone else of reaching the higher levels. It seems you’re going through a bit of a tough patch at the moment but let that be your motivation to beat everyone else! I know that you’re a strong player from the games we’ve had and I know that anyone can beat anyone else if the right tiles come along! So stick with it and you might surprise yourself...

@Jere - part of the thinking was to try to include many different aspects of playing Carcassonne so naturally this includes playing against more than one opponent. It’s expected that we may have to run at least two “weekly” games every week to ensure that everyone can join a game at a convenient time but we can work that out as we go.

Finally, it’s worth pointing out that the scale is staggered so that the next achievement should be considered within reach. The top levels may seem unattainable for some, myself included at the moment, but as we all work towards them over a period of time (perhaps years) the idea is that we will be able to focus on the individual criteria as we improve and celebrate each and every achievement along the way.



A great idea and sounds like fun!

One thing needs to be changed, though. Anyone should eventually be able to reach max colour, even if it takes 10 years.

I understand that in real life, a Black Belt is earned by honing their skills but since this is less strict and supposed to be fun, there should be less mandatory requirements.

This is merely to make things fair. I am a good example in this.

I will never win a tournament and most likely not to reach any finals (or maybe have a very slim chance). This will exclude me from advancing.
  Thus, this will also take away the fun for me, seeing some people will get recognition for their wins while I contribute to a whole lot of other things and won't get any recognition at all.

 O:-)

Yellow, I think it is meant to be difficult. For instance I got a few victories in the tournaments so far but my weak point appears to be the score diffential so it is possible I will never reach a colour if I don't improve that particular aspect.

...and the main objective is (beside having fun playing) to encourage participation so if it takes 10 years then we can say it was successful :)

Spot. On. Couldn't have said it better myself!  :(y)

Offline jungleboy

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2015, 08:39:52 AM »
So when is the next weekly game?? Haha :D I guess I can't ignore those anymore!

 :(y) We seem to be having them on Sunday nights now, at about 9pm CET.

Yellow, I think it is meant to be difficult. For instance I got a few victories in the tournaments so far but my weak point appears to be the score diffential so it is possible I will never reach a colour if I don't improve that particular aspect.

...and the main objective is (beside having fun playing) to encourage participation so if it takes 10 years then we can say it was successful :)

Yes, this is the way we approached it. The point is not that everyone becomes black. Actually it will be quite hard for anyone to get to black. It's about giving a wider meaning and context to these leagues and games that we're playing (and to be fun as Dan and Jéré said).

Thus, this will also take away the fun for me, seeing some people will get recognition for their wins while I contribute to a whole lot of other things and won't get any recognition at all.

We thought about site-wide recognition with the Order of the Meeple but decided for a variety of reasons to limit this to a competitive 'rank'. It doesn't measure your contribution to the community. e.g. kettlefish doesn't play these leagues/games at all but we all know that her contribution is enormous. Same for you with the shipping you've been helping people out with recently, or for quevy with all the great fan expansion work that he does, or for Graham W with his amazing new artwork, etc. We have merit to recognise these contributions and even without merit we can all see who deserves recognition for what they do in the community. 

The point is that your efforts can and will be recognised regardless of your Order of the Meeple rank. So, thanks again for sending me Carcassonne: the Castle!  :meeple:

Besides, you can just get to yellow and decide that you've already reached your favourite colour so you don't need to move up anyway!  :meeple:

Offline Paul

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2015, 08:59:21 AM »
I'm sorry but this is just not fair. Not just towards me but for many members.

If you are going to do something like this in the forum, it should be made so that many can take part in it.

What has been suggested here, laid out and without my knowledge or input is a slap in the face.

This needs to be revised so that at least half of the members can join in, right from the start, and without having to join the leagues.

Offline danisthirty

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2015, 09:08:23 AM »
This needs to be revised so that at least half of the members can join in, right from the start, and without having to join the leagues.

I don't understand. Anyone can join in. The whole point of it is that it's supposed to be about the tournaments and other forms of online play.

I can only assume that I'm missing something here as this was supposed to be something fun for anyone... ?

Offline kettlefish

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2015, 09:22:43 AM »
I think - we all should come together and we like to decide together what format of "ranking" ist the best.

I am also not much happy with this.
And with this - ranking - I never have any interest to play online.
I told you I don't play online, because I have much other work for the forums and for HiG to do.

Offline danisthirty

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2015, 09:40:46 AM »
I am also not much happy with this.
And with this - ranking - I never have any interest to play online.
I told you I don't play online, because I have much other work for the forums and for HiG to do.

You have said that you have no interest in playing online and that's absolutely fine with me. I don't hold it against you. I prefer to play up at a table too, but I like to play online because there are so many people to play against here on the forums and it would be too expensive for me to fly round to their houses individually to play them in person. I'm very grateful of all the other work you do for these forums and for the world of Carcassonne in general too, as are many other members of this community. Thanks!

What I don't understand is why you have any interest in this ranking (given that it is a ranking that is earned through online play) when you've said yourself that you don't play online. I don't do Judo, but I can accept that those that do do Judo should be entitled to wear whatever colour belt befits their skill level.

I just don't get what all the fuss is about or why anyone feels that they've been excluded from this?

Offline Paul

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2015, 10:54:31 AM »
Dan.

If two people seems to have an issue with this, shortly after the thread was created, the first thing you have to do is take a step back and think about this further. It's just as me going how can you NOT understand the fuzz when it's clearly stated.

This is a public forum meant to engage as many as possible. What's been proposed here is something grand and official that will only engage and benefit a few people.

Meaning:
1. One small group will enjoy this and get the ranks while others that enjoy tries to step up
2. One larger group will have to endure these posts seeing "achievements" and "abilities" go to luck of the draw games that will get others upset because they will never be part of this, whether entering the league or not. And please don't go all "then don't read them" on me, that's just insulting.
3. The rest of the members in the forum, probably don't care or is just not in the forum that much.

Now, personally, I'd like to think I would have wanted a saying in this, input a few ideas, but I was never approached. And most certainly would disagree from the start. Everything I work for to bring to this forum has always been to benefit as many members as possible on equal terms.

This said, a revision of this idea mighst still make it work.

One thought would be to go more global with stats.

For example Graham's artwork seems popular by many. We could make a poll and have people vote if they like the art or not. When poll is closed, Graham earns the amount of Career Points as there was votes that favourited his artwork.

Hope this helps clarify things a bit.

Offline MrNumbers

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2015, 10:57:45 AM »
As jungleboy has written, this is not about contribution to the forum itself. It is ONLY about skill level in online games and tournaments. We could think about other system, that will show member contribution to the forum, but nobody can do everything: someone can make fan-expansions (me, for example, not), someone maintain the CAR... We all know those people and give them merits all over the time. The Order of the Meeple is about just to make online games more attractive, apart of this is an interesting way to spend some free time, you can be proud of what you have achieved.
Maybe my explanation was a little bit discursive, but I hope you have understood what I meant.
"I never lose. Either I win or I learn." (Nelson Mandela)

Offline jungleboy

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2015, 11:06:31 AM »
I would like to make a few points.

1. As I said in my last post, The Order of the Meeple is a way to add context and meaning to the leagues and other competitive online games that we play here. Nothing more and nothing less. It is not intended to measure overall site contribution or anything else. Not all site members have to participate nor should they feel that they have to participate. All it is is a supplementary ranking system for those who play in the online games.

2. The idea and implementation of the leagues is almost entirely due to Dan. He has put an enormous amount of work into it and it has helped make this place a better community for all of us. Personally, I am extremely grateful to Dan for all his efforts in all parts of the site, but particularly in setting up the leagues. So I think Dan has earned the right to guide the future direction of the leagues. He sought input from MrNumbers and myself on this idea and we had a lot of interesting discussions and spent quite a lot of time working out the details. I don't think Dan could have been expected to consult every single member.

3. Part of the purpose of The Order of the Meeple is to give meaningful and achievable goals to all online players, especially those who aren't likely to win a league. It's true that most people (myself included) haven't won a league yet and perhaps won't ever win one. But instead of saying, "I won't win a league so I can't be black so this idea is no good," think about it this way instead: the Order gives you other targets to aim for in each league, so that even if you don't win a league, you can possibly achieve one or more of the goals for the next colour. It means that all players in a league have something significant to play for.

4. Several months ago, Dan and I had a deep discussion about the future and purpose of the leagues. My biggest issue was that I thought eventually the leagues would lose their appeal (especially if we replayed the same league several times). I believe that The Order of the Meeple is the solution to this because I think it will keep the leagues interesting and relevant in both the short-term and (especially) the long-term. The purpose is not that everyone reaches black immediately - actually it has been set up so that no one will even be red at the conclusion of the Traders & Builders tournament.

Thanks for reading. Please feel free to reply with your thoughts.

Offline SRBO

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2015, 12:38:02 PM »
Can I Suggest the Following?

I for one very much like the idea if for example an Yellow member will win a tournement, that his action is being recorded and he then already finished the achievement necessery for the black member.

Maybe you can add another level meeple with the same points as black just a little easier and make the points of black a little harder as an exclusive one.


But to add to Yellow's comment, Maybe you can also add a similar idea in the future with NON-tournament based in with stuff like
- Design an Fan-expansion.
- Write 10 reviews of your played games (not online, and with picture!)
- Post a 1000 times.
- Own all the mini expansions released in 2014.  (picture in your own Meet the member section )

In this case you meet some members who dont play much online game halfway. Its their choice to participate in the order of meeple.

Offline Hounk

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Re: The Order of the Meeple
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2015, 12:59:03 PM »
I think, this sounds fun. It also gives people aims, in which direction to improve there online game. I must say, I can not follow kettlefishs argument. @ her: if you are not interested in competing in online games, why do you bother about the way, this will be measured overall? You did a great work with doing the X-tables during the T&B League and got merit for that by me and probably some other persons as well. Nevertheless, this is in no way a system to measure the effort some people put into the community. (I for instance can not say, that I contributed anything special at all.) But just for the fun, of giving all the small games and leagues a "bigger meaning".


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