Author Topic: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta  (Read 838 times)

Offline Reier

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Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« on: October 12, 2019, 02:44:57 PM »
(I wrote this right after we finished filming CENTAURI 3 while it was still fresh in my mind but didn't post it till now to avoid spoiling the matches)
TCRR: I might riff on this bot a bit but I mean no ill will. I really am glad you entered and I honestly learned a lot from the experience.

okay, so Code Red has kind of blown my mind. I like to think i know a thing or two about ra2 but I didn't see this coming at all.

So I just finished hosting CENTAURI 3, an 8-player pvp tournament using parsec. Code was one of the players that entered, with this... unique design... and, with all due respect, I actually was really close to rejecting it initially because I thought the build was too sloppy. It fishtails and is hard to drive, it's not invertible, has tinfoil armor, and the weapon looks like a joke. my thoughts were it was going to guaranteed die and eat up a slot that a more polished design could fill. especially because the last tournament of mine he entered a bot that was... well. special.

But boy was I wrong and I'm so glad I was. As I talked about in my topic about how pvp will save RA2, I predicted pvp would bring about the rise of a whole new meta and era of innovation if people just gave it a chance. In any AI tournament, this robot would lose 2-0 in both of its matches and be immediately removed from the competition. MS2 got a very neck-and-neck runner-up to a very solid wedgy VS. It consistently won matches, and against bots I thought would trounce it (including mine :rage).



There's a couple reasons why I think it did so well and why I think it matters:

We were all building like we would for an AI tournament. status quo stuff. 2wd wedgy VS, damaging weapons, etc. All of our weapons were front-facing and most of our bots had minimal side protection. You don't need much side protection in AI and most of us just thoughtlessly built around that mindset out of habit. MS2 hard countered a lot of our designs by eating wheels and motors left and right. Call us shortsighted for not putting wheelguards on but that's exactly my point - you have to build differently for pvp and I think that's a very good thing.

There was no way to see it coming. with an AI you can pretty easily predict what the fight is going to be like most of the time, but due to having a human driver, the bot was able to adapt as the fights went along. Code would change up his approach when something didn't work and most of the time it was effective. He'd switch from the plow to the spinner constantly. He didn't overly rely on one over the other, he would swap between pushing into hazards and going on the offense with his spinner and it worked very well.

Also: this. goofy. weapon. my goodness this thing. I swear it ripped some vital component off of every single competitor consistently every round of every fight. In my experience I thought both DSL bars and iron spikes on spinners were subpar. I never build weapons like this. But something about the position of these weapons allowed it to amputate some important part of his opponent like every round. It's kind of amazing and I personally want to look at it more. Without a human at the controls I feel it would do much worse, but that is hardly a negative.

Driving matters. Code is a much better driver than I thought he would be, especially considering how hard MS2 is to drive (its wicked hard). I feel this design would not work if you drive poorly. AI has no such concept.

In all, this isn't your everyday Razor Guy or Insult to Injury V - bots that were pretty bad but had a huge streak of wins or luck - MS2 is a different beast. In a lot of ways it's ahead of the curve. It looks subpar but it's innovative and very solid. Stuff like this is why I feel I can't go back to AI tournaments. you never see upsets like this in AI, at most you feel like it's a fluke. MS2 was no fluke. It may not have set the bot building world ablaze but I think it's a glimpse of how the pvp meta will evolve and that always makes me happy to see. I have never been so happy to lose a match in my life.

Offline kix

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2019, 03:03:02 PM »
Epic sh**post
ENTER BOTM OR I WILL

Offline Reier

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2019, 03:09:29 PM »
Epic sh**post
1v1 moldy sponge and lose noob

Offline Mystic2000

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2019, 03:18:45 PM »
Moldy Sponge's case isn't just a AI RA2 thing, Nuts 2's RW run basically relied on the same thing, snipe weakspots instead of attacking head on and end up winning because no-one ****ing thought you were gonna snipe their wheels/motors/stabilizers from the side instead of just attacking head on with a big-ass weapon, if anything it's just running an off-meta design, a side hammer with lots of reach and good wedges would basically accomplish the same strat in a AI comp
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Offline RedAce

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2019, 03:20:24 PM »
« Last Edit: October 12, 2019, 04:19:10 PM by RedAce »

Offline kix

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #5 on: October 12, 2019, 03:22:37 PM »
Epic sh**post
1v1 moldy sponge and lose noob
yes, i would but your internet is sh**
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Offline 090901

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2019, 03:26:52 PM »
i mean its not that much a shock tbh considering code reds bot is basically a sns and sns always dunk on super narrow bots aka half of the bots in centauri i think everybody is just more surprised code red had the iq points to drive ray billings tombstone style and just side swipe these nerds who made narrow bots

Offline Thrackerzod

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2019, 05:46:04 PM »
i mean its not that much a shock tbh considering code reds bot is basically a sns and sns always dunk on super narrow bots aka half of the bots in centauri i think everybody is just more surprised code red had the iq points to drive ray billings tombstone style and just side swipe these nerds who made narrow bots
That's exactly the point though? "Driving Ray Billings style" is an option here. AI it's not

Offline 090901

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2019, 06:16:52 PM »
i mean its not that much a shock tbh considering code reds bot is basically a sns and sns always dunk on super narrow bots aka half of the bots in centauri i think everybody is just more surprised code red had the iq points to drive ray billings tombstone style and just side swipe these nerds who made narrow bots
That's exactly the point though? "Driving Ray Billings style" is an option here. AI it's not
what i was trying to say was that his driving style/bot/etc basically fit the classic meta of SnS killing narrow bots(yours, cringeys, and reiers) so it doesn't really seem to shock/surprise me that he would have won his matches and doesnt really "break the meta" as reier said. if you AI'd his bot with meltybrain im pretty sure the results would have been pretty much the same (just comes down to if the AI doesn't kill itself on the hazards lol, hell it might even kill redace's bot since of how cancer melty is in ra2). i would say nightraven in centauri 2 is a better example of a design that wouldnt work with AI winning taking out a bunch of fools. on another note i think we would probably see some more ""anti-meta"" bots like clamps that focus more on controlling your opponent and using the hazards to your advantage if the weight class was higher since its kinda hard to make a clampbot at the lw level.

Offline [cringey name goes here]

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #9 on: October 12, 2019, 06:41:38 PM »
horiz. spinners arent hard to drive at all
also, adding to what 09 said, its basically an sns, which is a simple bot to drive that counters basically the whole meta
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Offline ty4er

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #10 on: October 12, 2019, 11:59:43 PM »
bruh every single design in your tournament was super weak against any side swiping horizontal spinner, most of the entries were either a narrow pile of arse with sides that are beyond easy to sideswipe, or they were some box with a wedge that was hella useless once the front wasn't facing the opponent.

i've always said that these kinds of tournaments isn't about any driving 'skill' but more about punishing mistakes by the opponent, and if the opponent has some dumb design that is easily exploited by one of these terrible designs with a very basic weapon type that works against those bots, then you cant really make any conclusions based on that other than 'this bot type works well against this'. either your drivers are awful at driving their bots, or their bot inherently is going to lose to that type of bot, and it all depends on which of the drivers' mistakes the other bot is able to capitalise on.

driving does not matter nearly as much as you think, it is just a fact of who can punish more mistakes by the other driver with respect to the bot types that each person is driving. even if you held a similar tournament with all the same bot types (or even the same bot altogether), it wouldn't come down to whoever was the 'better driver', but whoever was able to punish the biggest mistake first. when you add in inherent bot type weaknesses to a tournament that is meant to be a test of driving skill, it really doesnt show much about any driving skill from either side until there's some big upset.
even if this was an ai tournament, his weapon style (a basic ass horizontal spinner) would've beaten any of those wedged vertical spinners with hardly any weapons, let alone the ones that are super narrow and easily sideswiped. 100% this kinda stuff is easy to see if you build a bot type that has glaring weaknesses like this.
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is this bot don't lost all razors in a fight before do a damage thought

Offline kix

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2019, 09:05:40 AM »
Guys its because of you all Centauri 4 is cancelled


Ok in all seriousness its not hard to drive an sns
Its just "press left/right control and you win"


Also the fact that he wasnt really affected with the lag unlike other people, which needed more precision


Shame this sh**fest is us only
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Offline Team Code Pinkish Red Robotics

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #12 on: October 13, 2019, 10:58:39 AM »
Guys its because of you all Centauri 4 is cancelled


Ok in all seriousness its not hard to drive an sns
Its just "press left/right control and you win"


Also the fact that he wasnt really affected with the lag unlike other people, which needed more precision


Shame this sh**fest is us only
I was lagging quite badly, but I'm guessing the reason it sniped how it did is because I pushed with the front and used the back, and with that it would turn their exposed parts to the side of my blade and cause that to happen. But I also did sometimes lead with the spinner, and when I sniped with that It probably was just because of the weird angles caused by it fishtailing, and the range of the blade
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Offline geese

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2019, 03:44:40 AM »
code goes hard when he isn't lagging his balls off tbh

he only managed to pit himself twice in all of the matches I've done with him over the weekend
Come on guys just leave him alone.  No forum rule exists that ban players from showcasing useless ugly bots.

Offline Reier

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #14 on: October 16, 2019, 03:05:24 AM »
i like how most of the posters eother havent watched the matches or have a bad case of the retroactive predictions

Offline ty4er

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Re: Moldy Sponge 2: a glimpse into the PVP meta
« Reply #15 on: October 16, 2019, 12:58:11 PM »
i like how most of the posters eother havent watched the matches or have a bad case of the retroactive predictions
epic post i like it thanks
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is this bot don't lost all razors in a fight before do a damage thought