What does sim gaming mean to me/you?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by majesty95, Mar 28, 2017.

  1. majesty95

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    I had a Twitter conversation with MillenniumOS from Operation Sports yesterday about drag bunting in MLB The Show 17. The conversation wasn't as productive as I hoped because A. its hard to articulate your thoughts well in 140 characters and B. we made assumptions about what the other was saying due to the lack of depth in 140 characters. That kind of took us off track and kept things form being as productive as I would have liked. However, the thing that stuck with me was that he mentioned he had distanced himself from the word "sim" lately. Honestly, that's not the first time I've heard someone say that. There is the perception of the sim community, and some of it rightly so, that we can be a little extreme in our views of how the sports games we play should "sim"ulate real life. I wanted to take a few moments and talk about that and, specifically, what sim means to me and why I'm so passionate about it. Feel free to let me know what sim means to you in the comments!

    What is sim? To me, sim gaming is simulating the real life sport as closely as possible within the context of a video game. That means that, not only should players look like their real life counterparts, but they should also play like their real life counterparts. Don't just put a name and a set of ratings on a face scan and call him Tom Brady. I want my virtual Brady to look like Tom Brady, but most importantly, I want him to play like Tom Brady (throwing motion, decision making, play calling, etc). I want my teams to play like their real life teams as well. I want to see the Patriots throw a lot of short, timing based routes. I want them to throw to their running backs and create mismatches with Gronk. I want my real life players and teams to play, as close as possible, to their real life representations. I realize that I'm never going to be a professional player or coach so I want the games I play to give me the experience of being on the field and competing against those players and teams.

    I also want my sports games to represent real life statistically. Now, this is the area that typically creates the most debate. We, as sim gamers, like to throw out stats. A lot of guys get lost there as they realize stats can't always replicate real life because, when playing other users, you have to account for the non-simulation things they would do (like runnign the same play over and over or not adjusting to their opponent's tendencies). I do agree with this to a large degree. If a guy is sitting in Cover 2 all game and is not adjusting to your smash concepts and post routes, yes, it's going to skew the stats. However, the mean (average) game where there is some realistic strategy involved, should look like the real life sport for the most part.

    Our example with drag bunting is just one of the many ways I want stats to replicate real life in the games we play. The top bunters in Major League Baseball only attempt a drag bunt about 4% of the time when they are up with nobody on base (typically the only time you would bunt for a base hit). That's once every five games, at most. Obviously the other user can play a role. If he's grooving easily bunted fastballs down the pipe and has slow, inaccurate fielders (especially at 3B) then, yes, that game is going to skew the numbers. However, in an average game against a relative competent user, we shouldn't see a user bunting with the same guy every time he comes to the plate (this has been addressed with MLB The Show 17 so we'll see how it plays out once everyone starts playing online consistently). Why? It just means that their isn't enough risk involved with doing it (ie bunted balls going foul, being popped up or going straight to a defender).

    As I said, I'm not suggesting the games we play mimic real life perfectly as human users can definitely skew the numbers. However, the risk/reward that real teams face in real life does need to be present in the game. If an NFL team only completes one corner route per game in real life (in 60-70 plays) we shouldn't see 5-6 corner routes completed in the average online game (with 30-40 plays). Likewise, we shouldn't see a guy that bunts for a hit once every 5+ games in real life, bunting for a hit every time he comes up.

    It's always an interesting debate and one that I am (maybe to a fault) more than happy to have any time the subject comes up. I love the sports I follow (mostly football and baseball) and am extremely passionate about the games I play (mostly Madden and MLB The Show). I played both sports growing up and learned a lot about the rules and strategy of the game (as well as all of the players) through video games. I would not be nearly as big of a fan of the NFL or Major League Baseball (or NCAA football) without those games. I want to continue that tradition with me and my gaming buddies, but also the next generation of sports gaming fans. I want our games to teach them the basic fundamentals of the game, the rules and the basic strategy. I want them to grow up loving the sports they represent like I did, not because they were able to run the same play, or do the same thing, over and over again and have success, but because that video game taught them about the game on the field and gave them a greater appreciation for it when they see it on TV (or play it themselves).

    What does sim gaming mean to you? Why do you get into sim gaming and how has it changed the way you think about and play the game?
     
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  2. georgiafan

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    Interesting topic as far as football goes as much as I watch I have no clue how many patterns a team completes in a real NFL and other things like that. I am just to focused on watching and cheering on the team I want to win So to me it comes down to just avoiding anything that's a obvious flaw because its a video game.

    Another thing you didn't cover which is important to me is team building and doing that in a sim way. I remember last madden one of the main sim leaders in the community tweeting out that he had like 8 first round draft picks. In a league like this something like that would never happen with all the rules in place. In my offline NBA 2k I've made a move or two over the years which would never happen in real life but I don't have a desire to do anything crazy like that.
     
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  3. majesty95

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    I think balancing real life routes with the ability to do those in game helps mimic what you see on TV better. You don't see teams running corners over and over in real life. You don't see them running nickle blitz over and over. The numbers don't have to be perfect, but it needs to look like real life to a large degree if you want to attract and keep customer IMO. If you turn on a game of Madden and see a guy running every play from gun bunch it looks weird because you know you don't see that on Sunday.

    As far as franchise, I agree, trades are something every game struggles with. That AI is very difficult. You see even a text based sim like OOTP struggle with that. However, it needs to get better and I think 2k does it about as well as anyone. They definitely can improve though. It might be fun for someone to load up their team with 8 1st round draft picks, but how soon do they lose interest when its no longer a challenge?

    Thanks for sharing! Madden is obviously near and dear to us but hearing ideas from gusy that play other sports like NBA 2k always helps to give us perspective!
     
  4. dspbuckle

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    Your comments of look and feel like Tom Brady are a major part of it. Think about games like Gran Turismo vs Burnout. If you select a vehicle you want it to feel like it's real life counterpart. Imagine selecting a rear engine sports car that drives like a steel wagon in GT.

    The expectation (to me) is to experience a racing sim that can allow me to drive and master various cars, skills and tracks in a virtual environment.

    In Burnout I just want to ram explosive metal shells into as much carnage as possible haha. Sim would likely NOT be fun in this situation since the accident would be over after I roll over a barricade and deploy an airbag haha. There is a time and place (or gamer) for both games thanks to their game play styles.

    Overall this is why I can't stand why when I get stuck playing the CPU and Phillip Rivers scrambles for 80 yards some how. GTFO!

    If you're going to call yourself SIM (Gran Turismo) then there can't be a compromise. Madden isn't a SIM game from what I know and therefore must find a balance of sim/arcade. It's also likely much easier when you just need to program one controlled entity (a car) vs various controlled and AI entities (football players) which is why we can't ever have a true baseball/football SIM. I think we can all understand that.

    Like you said, humans are a big role here and as much as I think Johnny Manziel should be sloppy, it's virtual so who's to say he didn't figure out his life and make a comeback this this virtual world? Unlikely, but some who wants to lose on purpose? LOL. It's not SIM if the Browns win.

    SIM to me in regards to Madden is replicating what we see Sunday as much as we can. We have tools that are good but it'll never be perfect sim. All we can do is try and have fun because by the time we master these tools they make a new gaming engine and take out all the features we became accustomed to. Or they add some QB vision feature with the right stick, har har har! It's fun to try and replicate Sunday. Let's just remember that: Have fun.
     
    #4 dspbuckle, Mar 28, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2017
  5. WKXT85

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    I've been wrestling with this question since it was first posted and you guys have touched on a lot of great points. You guys have done a great job covering the way players should play and how the numbers should look, and for that reason I'd like to turn our attention to another aspect, this being scheme and going back to free agency a bit.

    This is probably one of my largest pet peeves when I watch the AI or even guys in other leagues who take "the best overall player available". What should be taken into account is size, speed, scheme among other things. If I have two WRs over 6' tall and am looking for a slot guy, why would I pick up or draft another 6' tall guy, that's not a sensible fit. Defensively, I don't necessarily want somebody who doesn't fit my system be it an Attacking 3-4 or a Base 4-3 and it bugs me to see guys just throw scheme to the wayside.

    I'm a Titans fan, so with backs like Derrick Henry and Demarco Murray, why should I run a lot of straight drop backs? I should be pounding the defense to set up the play action because that's the system. If I have an attacking defense I should be running a slightly higher percentage of blitzes than straight up man or zone coverage.

    In terms of it being SIM, I want things to feel authentic. It may not be an exact reality match, because from the beginning of the season it's difficult to predict how players will shape out and that's the fun of building a team depending on those players who don't show up. But it's important to stay true to draft disciplines and practices that you believe in. Finding a scheme that you like or love or works for you and find the players that fit that scheme as opposed to cherry picking everybody. I want to see guys avoid players simply for the sake of knowing that it won't be a scheme match or taking a chance based on the player's scheme history, things like that matter to me and I find that authenticity is the essence of SIM and while it may never be achieved, why shouldn't we strive for that authenticity?
     
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