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Difficulty of Achieving/Maintaining ELO Ranks, Has it Changed?


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#1 despy

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Ones I'm not sure about

 

Vtak (Holland) - 995

Plutonius (Greece) - 965

Houhi (Greece) - 950

Lockout (Germany) - 940

Töffel (Germany) - 939

Petroviz (Greece) - 921

LamaMaKara (Israel) - 918

Undericover (Greece) - 915

Vfv (Greece) - 910

Wicked Willy (Holland) - 907

 

This may not be exactly the right thread for this, but since the above quote is relevant, I'll just ask here -

 

Do any high-ranking players here have an opinion on whether the difficulty of achieving/maintaining high ELOs has increased significantly over time?

 

I initially thought this might be the case when seeing how large some of the gaps are on the clean ranking between max ELO and current ELO, but the main reason I suspect this is the disparity I notice sometimes between skill level and achieved ELO in some opponents -

 

Typically when I encounter a strong-record player that I haven't heard of, I'll check the forums to see if there's any alias info on them. Just had a game with Vtak for example, and came across the above posting - I was surprised to see that he was sitting at ~1000 ELO, as despite being a strong player, he made some mistakes that I don't expect current 1k ELO players would make.

 

I suppose it's a tough thing to judge, since the perspective changes due to improvement over time. The closest thing to evidence of this would probably be anyone noticing they're unable to maintain ELO levels that they previously could -

 

Not that any of this matters, just curious!

 

TL;DR:

Have we been in an inflationary Skill -> ELO environment?


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#2 GaryLShelton

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Posted 3 weeks ago

I wrote a topic in the dim and distant past about what I perceived to be the evident ELO inflation on the site. I made my observation on only one fact. I originally made the old bronze Top 250 players with a 370 ELO rating. Then I noticed soon after that it required a 375 rating and I lost out and never returned there for awhile. Pretty soon it required over a 400 ELO and I commented that one day a person would have to be silver to be on the Top 250 bronze leaderboard! :D

Of course, now the system is different. But under the old system I finally did reach silver briefly, topping out at 621, while after the system change I was able to top the 700 platinum line once to catch an evanescent glimpse of 711 ELO.

Why the inflation was happening was always explained to be new accounts and that's probably true. But I've always wondered if the talent at a given ELO today would have been matched by a smaller number in the old days. Can it be said, for example, that the current 700 platinum line is matched, difficulty-wise, by the old 600 silver line? I think it might be approximately true, but it would be nice to hear what other long term players here think. Maybe they think it would take 800 ELO today to equal the old 600 line in their minds?
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#3 scottrussia

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Posted 3 weeks ago

There is an ever increasing amount of ELO points that exist.

 

Every time a new player comes to the site and plays a game and loses, points are created.

 

Likewise, every time a player ranked 100 plays a game and loses, points are created. (and also if they are 101, 102, etc).

 

So the question is:  Are there more points/player existing today than some time in the past.  Logically, I'd say yes there are.

 

Two reasons:

 

1. Some players sit near the 100 mark and play many games.  They constantly create points others are absorbing.  Those other players aren't "better", they just have more points.  And that slowly filters upwards in the ELO scheme.

2. A number of people will visit the site - try to play some games - and then abandon the site.  They have created points which others have absorbed.

 

How would there be less points/player?  If new players came to the site and began winning right away.  Then they aren't creating any new points to be shared but rather are consuming existing points which increase their ELO.

 

However,  All of this is practically irrelevant.  The only ranking that counts is Spartan Warrior Ranking!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Edited by scottrussia, 3 weeks ago.

​Spartan Warriors

KING of the Battlefield!!!!!!


#4 Napoleon 1er

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Posted 3 weeks ago

2 things:
As per my information vvg124 and hello124 are same player but vtak is not

About ELO inflation yes as scott says each time a new account is created and loses while he has not reached at least 112 then new points are created and transfered to the winning opponent. These new points can then be transfered to a higher ranked other player as soon as this opponent loses another game ... etc... at the end these additional new ELO points are exchanged between top ranked players, therefore overall there is an average of positive inflation. I started here in 2013 and if i look at my average ELO of each year this is constantly increasing. Even there are sometimes long periods of time until you reach your top ELO again. For example in my case at least 3-4 months and certainly more than 50 games since my last top ELO.

If you don't know where you go ... you have a lot of chance to arrive elsewhere ...


#5 despy

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Wow, so if I understand correctly, all three of you (Gary, Scott, Napoleon) seem to disagree with my theory -

 

I.e. you are saying that the same ELO level is in fact easier to achieve today than in the past? (So deflation in fact, since you guys are proposing that less skill is in fact required today to acquire the same number of ELO points)

 

That's very interesting, and I'd be curious to hear a theory of why there is such a large discrepancy between some players' max and current ELOs? For example, there are people that have reached the 900s in the past but are now in the 600s/700s -


Edited by despy, 3 weeks ago.


#6 tobermoryx

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Some people play a lot of games and so go up and down by a lot . This has always happened.

It's not any easier or harder to be at any level.

#7 Napoleon 1er

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Posted 3 weeks ago

 

 

I.e. you are saying that the same ELO level is in fact easier to achieve today than in the past? 

in fact what I'm saying is that reaching your own top level for 2nd time after you've gone down is as easy as in the past. 


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If you don't know where you go ... you have a lot of chance to arrive elsewhere ...


#8 Hielco

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Posted 3 weeks ago

its easier for me to get 20 points now then 1 year ago.

a year ago i got 1 or 2 points for a win, now 2or 3.


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#9 GaryLShelton

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Posted 3 weeks ago

its easier for me to get 20 points now then 1 year ago.
a year ago i got 1 or 2 points for a win, now 2or 3.



That's an interesting comment, Hielco.
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#10 GaryLShelton

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Posted 3 weeks ago

I.e. you are saying that the same ELO level is in fact easier to achieve today than in the past? (So deflation in fact, since you guys are proposing that less skill is in fact required today to acquire the same number of ELO points)

...

For example, there are people that have reached the 900s in the past but are now in the 600s/700s -


If it is really easier to gain higher ranks (which I believe), then that is inflation not deflation. Just like money. When that is easier to obtain you have inflation. When it is harder you have deflation. People go up and down all the time in their ratings, but it's clear that there has been a creep upward so things must be somewhat easier. Indeed, Hielco confirms this. He just reached 1,283 and says it's easier this year than last to gain points.

Does anyone remember the huge fan following not terribly long ago when we were all rooting for him to be the first to cross the 1,000 line? Now there are quite a few people at that rank. Therefore, there must be more chairs in our game of musical chairs than there was previously. :)
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#11 despy

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Posted 3 weeks ago

If it is really easier to gain higher ranks (which I believe), then that is inflation not deflation. Just like money. When that is easier to obtain you have inflation. When it is harder you have deflation.

 

Gary - inflation in the standard sense describes the prices of goods increasing over time; i.e., more money being required to obtain an equivalent set of goods. In Stratego, this would parallel more skill being required to obtain an equivalent ELO level.

 

Deflation, as in economics, where less money is required to obtain an equivalent set of goods, would parallel less skill being required to obtain an equivalent ELO level in Stratego.


Edited by despy, 3 weeks ago.


#12 TheOptician

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Or maybe ELO is the currency of Stratego - and more ELO is required to gain an equivalent level of skill. Depends on which way round you look at it - inflation/deflation - same difference :-)

#13 malcom.jansen

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Gary - inflation in the standard sense describes the prices of goods increasing over time; i.e., more money being required to obtain an equivalent set of goods. In Stratego, this would parallel more skill being required to obtain an equivalent ELO level.

Deflation, as in economics, where less money is required to obtain an equivalent set of goods, would parallel less skill being required to obtain an equivalent ELO level in Stratego.

Your definition of inflation and deflation is correct. However, the unit of measurement is ELO points. As Gary noted, 370 points used to place a player in the top 250, now 839 points are required. More points are required to achieve an equivalent rank, and this is consistent with inflation.

While it is presumably true that less skill is required to get a certain rating today, there is no direct measure for ability. Therefore, you cannot analogize Stratego skill and money, so labeling it deflation is incorrect.

Edited by malcom.jansen, 3 weeks ago.


#14 despy

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Your definition of inflation and deflation is correct. However, the unit of measurement is ELO points. As Gary noted, 370 points used to place a player in the top 250, now 839 points are required. More points are required to achieve an equivalent rank, this is consistent with inflation.

 

While it is presumably true that less skill is required to get a certain rating today, there is no direct measure for ability. Therefore, you cannot analogize Stratego skill and money, so labeling it inflation is incorrect.

 

Yes, obviously there are many pairwise relationships that you could use to define inflation - this is why I defined it clearly in my initial post, if you read back (inflationary Skill -> ELO environment).

 

If you defined inflation with respect to earning a 'Top X rank' with ELO points, this could potentially make sense, but to me it was pretty clear that we were talking about ELO points being the equivalent of 'goods' to be earned with skill. Looking at the relationship between 'rank' and ELO points is a meaningless endeavour, given that ELOs rising over time is a blatant observation to most.

 

I have to say I can't follow your logic in the bottom of your post, but I find it specious that you claim my labeling of a Skill -> ELO economy cannot be characterized by the word 'inflation', yet somehow the word is appropriate for an 'ELO -> rank' economy. I'm particularly curious at how you can assert that one 'cannot analogize Stratego skill and money' - please review the definition of analogy, pasted below for convenience:  "make a comparison of (something) with something else to assist understanding." Seems a little vague to merit such authoritative dismissal, though I'll graciously eat my hat and accept the ruling if confronted with a PhD in Law.

 

Analogize/equate/synonymize aside though, this is the English language my friend - if you think comparing skill to money is a reach, dive into some poetry. A quote that comes to mind: "Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks within its bending sickle's compass come."

 

Find someone that thinks the above more obscure than my comparison, and I'll find you an English Literature major or a liar ;)



#15 malcom.jansen

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Yes, obviously there are many pairwise relationships that you could use to define inflation - this is why I defined it clearly in my initial post, if you read back (inflationary Skill -> ELO environment).

 

If you defined inflation with respect to earning a 'Top X rank' with ELO points, this could potentially make sense, but to me it was pretty clear that we were talking about ELO points being the equivalent of 'goods' to be earned with skill. Looking at the relationship between 'rank' and ELO points is a meaningless endeavour, given that ELOs rising over time is a blatant observation to most.

 

I have to say I can't follow your logic in the bottom of your post, but I find it specious that you claim my labeling of a Skill -> ELO economy cannot be characterized by the word 'inflation', yet somehow the word is appropriate for an 'ELO -> rank' economy. I'm particularly curious at how you can assert that one 'cannot analogize Stratego skill and money' - please review the definition of analogy, pasted below for convenience:  "make a comparison of (something) with something else to assist understanding." Seems a little vague to merit such authoritative dismissal, though I'll graciously eat my hat and accept the ruling if confronted with a PhD in Law.

 

Analogize/equate/synonymize aside though, this is the English language my friend - if you think comparing skill to money is a reach, dive into some poetry. A quote that comes to mind: "Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks within its bending sickle's compass come."

 

Find someone that thinks the above more obscure than my comparison, and I'll find you an English Literature major or a liar ;)

Inflation measures the cost of a market basket of goods over time, cost is a countable quantity. Likening ELO rating, another countable quantity, and cost is appropriate. Stratego skill is not quantifiable so you cannot say that it is akin to cost/price. Therefore, the better analogy is to discuss inflation in terms of ELO ratings and rank.



#16 GaryLShelton

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Posted 3 weeks ago

I like listening listening you guys. I feel like I'm watching a Charlie Rose episode. It's a rare pleasure here on the site to read not hollow and unqualified snippets, but skillful and logical verbal lunges and parries.

Inflation is due directly to an increase in the money supply. Increasing prices are the symptom of inflation, not the cause. Increasing prices no more cause inflation than wet streets cause the rain. A loaf of bread is always going to be a loaf of bread, just like a mid range player is always going to be a mid-range player here. That we can say that loaf of bread used to cost 25¢ and now costs $2 doesn't reflect on the loaf of bread, only the amount of money needed to buy it. Likewise, if a mid-range player here used to be 420 ELO (half of Hielco) and now that same player can now objectively be said to be 640 (half of Hielco), then there is clear inflation going on. Of course, malcom.jansen is correct that skill is hard to quantify. But I submit that my Hielco standard for the median player is as good as any for our stratego "loaf of bread".
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#17 Napoleon 1er

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Thank you all for all your very interesting comments on inflation and deflation but may i ask you to open a dedicated topic for that as this is not directly linked to clean ranking.
My comment but is that if you consider only clean ranked players (to eliminate alias effects) and see their evolution over time you will observe that almost all of them have got regular ELO increase year after year. Over these same years all these people have played more games so they did also increase their skills. So my conclusion is that it is not possible to say if today is more than before or less than before difficult to gain ELO. Most probably it is the same.

If you don't know where you go ... you have a lot of chance to arrive elsewhere ...


#18 GaryLShelton

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Note: this topic has been extracted from the Clean List topic where the first several posts here originally appeared, but were too far off topic in that location, per Napoleon's request above.

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#19 despy

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Posted 3 weeks ago

Inflation measures the cost of a market basket of goods over time, cost is a countable quantity. Likening ELO rating, another countable quantity, and cost is appropriate. Stratego skill is not quantifiable so you cannot say that it is akin to cost/price. Therefore, the better analogy is to discuss inflation in terms of ELO ratings and rank.

 

In fact, an analogy superior to both of the above would be: "Cats are to kittens as dogs are to puppies". We can sit here measuring our abilities to make analogies all week; sadly this would add no value to the discussion.

 

Point being, quality of analogy is not so much the point as relevance. As I said, it's universally evident that ELOs have increased over time, so while you can propose all week that you have a 'better analogy', discussing how easy it is to achieve X rank with Y ELO is still perfectly inconsequential.

 

Since you're just interested in repeating your argument about the strictness of the English language, I won't bother to discuss that further and I welcome you to continue basking in your prescriptivism. Agree to disagree -



#20 The Prof

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Posted 3 weeks ago

 As Gary noted, 370 points used to place a player in the top 250, now 839 points are required. More points are required to achieve an equivalent rank, and this is consistent with inflation.

 

Comparing the ELO needed to be in the top 250 today with the rating needed to be in the top 250 when the site was in its first year is not the apples-to-apples comparison that it may seem to be.  This is because there are many more players, and aliases than there were back then - there are about 490,000 accounts today.  A truer comparison would be the ELO needed to be in say the 99.9th percentile of ELOs today, with the ELO needed to be in the 99.9th percentile back then.  






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