What about this behaviour?! - Smurfing

There are some guys deliberately lose games to beat noobs. They just get a loosing streak of -20 in 2h. This is an issue:

  1. It makes the ladder messed up. Like you can see in the example (later in the post) he played the same players some time in a row and just give them free points. This is kind of point trading with strangers. I know at Voobly there where rules against point trading. Are there any rules at DE about this?

  2. If he play seriously, he is bashing noobs. This is no fun experience for noobs. I think the game needs some protection against noob bashing.

Just an example:
https://aoe2.net/#profile-3125322
Note: This is not meant as name calling, but just as an example of the issue.

I have no idea if there are already rules that forbid this behaviour, but i think it is toxic behaviour and needs to be punished. It would be nice if the game has some ingame measures.

The best option will be the use of some big data technics to detect these accounts, so they get auto reported and the devs will have a look at those accounts. Such system can even work for finding all kind of smurfs. Not only those who bash noobs, but also those who just make a second account for fun. Multiple top players have multiple accounts in the top 100. What is the point of view of the devs on those smurf accounts?

An alternative solution can also be a maximum amount of games for each hour. For example: You can only join 5 games per hour. I am not sure about this. This might do more harm, because of all the current disconnects.

Edit: For some reason this post was flagged. I have no idea why. If those people who flagged my post can tell this to me, then i can adjust this post accordingly.

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I’m not a dev, but I think there are good reasons to have a second account, for eg trying out bad/weird/new strategies. I’ve considered making a second account myself, but haven’t done so because it looked too complicated.

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Yeah a second account in the top 100 isn’t a smurf account haha they’re still in top 100 afterall, it’s not like they’re playing scrubs.

I have a second account, the purpose is so I can play it on my laptop, which is a lower quality machine, meaning my games on there aren’t as good. I didn’t want to tank my main account by playing on the other machine. Not to mention some of my settings are different between the two.

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I agree that people persistently playing at the wrong ELO for their standard of play is bad. In the example you give, the person is alternating between playing too well and too badly, and this doesn’t make it right, because it’s not how well the opponent plays that wins or loses the game, it’s just random for them depending on whether the smurf is choosing to play well or badly that game.

I think there are legitimate uses for multiple accounts, such as a desire for anonymity, but people should always be playing to the best of their ability. A top player doing a challenge of “can I get a new account into the top 100 without losing a game” has its negatives for the people they beat on the way up, but they’re mostly playing against a different player each time, and the player in question did disclose his true identity to the players he beat, so they at least wouldn’t get depressed about how good other players seem to be at that ELO. I wouldn’t like to see them doing it multiple times, but if a top player wants to do it just once, it’s not TOO much of a problem.

Auto-detection for manual review - I don’t have a problem with that in principle, but it could be a lot of work for a small team. There would need to be clearly defined rules as to what is prohibited. I don’t personally have a problem with multiple accounts for anonymity as I don’t like the fact that even unranked games have their result stored in a database. This pretty much forces people to use multiple accounts as the only way to have truly “off the record” games.

FWIW you get this in other games too. In Gran Turismo Sport, there are a large number of people who try to rack up wins by lowering their driver rating. The game actually has an achievement for 91 online wins, which is more or less impossible to achieve for most people without cheating in this way, as you should hardly ever win a race when you’re racing at your correct rating.

The guy you posted is in the Top 10 lowest elo. I guess thats a challange for him, so there with this guy I do not see a problem. Yoiu can even assume he has a lot of disconnects, clould be. Sometimes I got angry because of a disconnect 1hour into a game, so I afked or left the next 5 games as well, just because of anger to the game (I stopped playing now completely). Would not say smurfing is any real problem of this at the moment

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I can undestand that there are reasons to have a second account. I never said all smurfs are bad. I just wanted a discussion about smurfing in general to see what the general opinion is about smurfing and to get the rules at this subject clear. What is allowed and what isnt allowed?

My main issue was smurfing with the goal of deliberately loose games and bash noobs. There are some players who just deliberately loose so they can bash noobs. They dont even try to play this games. They just Alt+F4 when the game launches, so they loose Elo.

So this is not true in the example. This guy just quit after the first second and is not playing at all or he just have a walk over, where he is just bashing noobs. You can check the starting time at aoe2.net. You can see if he is loosing games in a row, then get into a new game every 3-5 minutes. That is only possible if you just Alt+F4 at the start of each game.

Note again: My example is just an example of such player to demonstrate the issue. It is just a lower rated player at this moment. If you look at aoe2.net you can easily found some more of this kind of players with higher elo. You start the list of players at current loosing streak an have a look at accounts with a current high loosing streak. Some just loose there first 10-20 games and stopped playing, but there are also some accounts with much more games who are just dropping their rating. Like i said, you can spot this by checkin the time stamps of each game.

You know making new accounts is pretty easy at Steam? You dont have to do much more than just making a new steam account. No idea how it works on Xbox live.

Yeah, i have seen some of the serie of Hera. He was just open about his identity and most players seems to not having a problem with it. Most even thinks it was a honor to play against Hera this way. I think this kind of smurfs are different than just mediocare players that just deliberately loose games, so they can bash noobs in the end.

That’s exactly what I meant by playing too well or too badly. When he bashes noobs he’s playing above his rated ELO. When he quits, he is playing below his rated ELO, e.g. if he’s rated 800, he would lose to a 600 or lower ELO player by quitting immediately. Whether the other player wins or loses has nothing to do with how well they played, so this behaviour corrupts the integrity of the ranking system.

The tricky thing is always how to come up with an exact definition of what isn’t allowed. For example, suppose there were a rule that said you must always attempt to win to the best of your ability. I saw a game where Hera was persuaded by chat to try a Persian douche, even though he knows it’s not actually a good strategy if the opponent knows how to deal with it. He failed to build the new TC, game over. It could be argued that if such a rule had existed, he would have been in breach of it by trying a strategy that he knew would hurt his chances of winning. To avoid being in the position of being forced to take action against someone in this sort of situation, rules are often intentionally made a bit vague, but the lack of clarity can cause its own problems, and discretion being applied can make enforcement seem arbitrary and inconsistent.

Nobody bash you to play multiplayer games. Here, you may lose many games. So you may become angry. You may lose to top player or some low skill player. When you play versus the computer(AI ), it will always try to win. If you think, it is bashing, stop playing that game.
Microsoft just sell games. So everybody may play multiplayer games with it during Internet.
About bashing, if some of top players- [TaToH] defeat other high level player- [Capoch], is it bashing ???
A New player, if he/she alwalys lose, he can not give enough points to other players to reach top 100.
When you become better at the game, you will defeat more players.
For a Fair play- tournaments, it need the tournament to be played at LAN, at a tournament city/ place.
Rules may be put only at tournaments… If somebody buy the game and play multiplayer games to spend his free time, NOBODY can force him to play 1 minute more , than he want.

Based on this post i think you misunderstand the issue. I am not angry. I havent played against the guy in the example. I was just looking at the data at aoe2.net and this was the best example i could find. There are multiple of these accounts. I havent faced such guy. Your example is also not applicable to the situation.

I think there are two different situations. We have the lobby and the queue. For me, you can do whatever you like in the lobby. That is the reason why we have a lobby. The queue is for ranked games. This is a competative setting. In a competative setting you might expect some basic rules. Joining the queue is equal to accepting those rules for me.

Let us have a look at an example: Two soccer clubs have to play a game for the competition. Both team join the area and do the warming up. This is equal to joining the queue and getting into a match, so you can select a civ. Then the game starts. Club A decides to just walk away at the moment referee starts the game. Club B is left on the field without enemy and without game. What would be the result? Club A will get a penalty in some way. For sure. In this game, it is just fine. Nothing happens.

Another example: Again we go to a soccer match. This team to the lowest team of a club. Not those players will play the game, but the club decides to let the first time play the game. Those players just wanna enjoy an easy win and humiliated the opponents. This is most likely not even possible! Those players arent allowed to play in such low team! In this game that just seems fine. No one cares if you deliberately drop your rating. It just seems to be fine.

In your example there is no noob bashing at all. It is just two top players that face each other. That is just how the system works. But what about Tatoh making a second account. Just alt+F4 every game till his rating becomes 500 and then just start to troll the enemies. That would be a better example.

I fully agree that the tricky part would be the exact definition. Maybe we dont need suc definition at all. We have had more then once some discussion about early quitters and introducing some penalty on this forum. Many games have systems for early quitters. If we would introduce such system, it will already part of the solution to do something against noob bashers. Such system would mean that noob bashing will be more time consuming, because you cant just alt + F5 in the first second, but you really need to play 5 minutes.

The soccer player receive month SALARY.
Some player “” troll the enemies"". You say some players are always Noobs, and some players are always at top 10 !!!
But to reach the top 10 Ranking, the best players now, played many games versus Noobs. So, now if some player defeat many Noobs, and after that he defeat many top 10 players, he may reach top 10 too.
May be you begin to think for the smurfs, using wrong arguments. Some people make Internet sites to TAKE the money of the players, as Voobly. They create their own rules. The aim of their rules is to take player’s money. So they begin to bash the players. The Internet site- Voobly bash players. Thats why many players leave it very angry… Not because of the losed games. Every New player/ Noob may lose many games. But Voobly bash even intermediate players. They put intermediate players at a rooms, where they may only lose games.

As some amateur boxer to enter a boxing gym. He spend some money to have a training coach. He want to have some practice, but the owners of the gym put that amateur as a Punching bag for the pro boxers/ players. It will be interesting for me to see the owner of Voobly to enter a boxing gym and he to be put as a punching bag for the other boxers, as he is bashing some players at his site.

I have no idea what you talking about. In my example it is about your local soccer club. So not about profs that getting paid.

Also Voobly was free to play. So i have no idea what you mean by Voobly taking your money and hoe that is relevant to smurfing at DE.

You know we also had to paid for playing this game, like your boxing example.

I do think that the behaviour of deliberately losing ELO so you can have easy matches is bad.

If they’re really going to the extremely low ELO is really bad.
The very low ELO scene is actually quite fragile. It can be hard to find good game when there aren’t many people with your ELO. I know of one player who considered quitting because he felt too many of his games were completely unbalanced. If such a player gets wiped by a Smurf with his own ELO, he’ll feel bad about it without being able to understand it, and the Smurf is being an inconsiderate jerk.

By playing the ranked ladder you sign a social contract, to play for fun and also provide your opponents a fun game. Of course it isn’t strict, you can tower rush and your opponent may not like tower rushes. But if we’re looking at people who are ‘trolling’ at some level (eg HERA trying to play through the ladder without losing a game) the question which decides whether that troll is bad is “is it providing the fellow players with a satisfying experience”. Subverting the ladder to get easy games does not pass this test.