Zach wrote:
> It is common now in pickup
> to see stacking. Team A has 2 or 3 elite players, team B has none. A
> quick geno ensues. Newbies are getting tooled. You can argue either
> way this is good or bad. ... I think the idea of automatic balancing
> has been put forward in the past. To balance numerically would be
> fairly trivial but balancing based on clue would not be as straight
> forward. This is where persistent status would help.

This may be the feeling of it - but the sample size is quite small these 
days, and drawing conclusions based upon this sample size is probably 

Experienced people don't like playing with people who don't read their 
messages, who obviously have no "clue" what they are doing. Enforcing 
experienced people to put up with an inexperienced team might appear to 
be appealing in the short term, but long term, it's reducing the game to 
a level that can be enjoyed by newbies, and experienced people will 
leave. There is no evidence that such measures would increase the number 
of players who would play netrek, or increase the skill level of those 
few who do.

People have peaves against the current and past players of Netrek, and 
would love to see things changed. As far as I am concerned, however, the 
problem that Netrek faces, is that it always targeted a very specific 
demographic, and this demographic has grown responsibilities. The new 
generation doesn't want a game like Netrek when hundreds of more 
visually appealing and entertaining games exist on the market. Even 10 
years ago, I had to twist the arms of friends to play, and they never 
really picked it up. It's no surprise at all that fewer and fewer people 

For certain, enforced team balancing throughout the game (as would be 
required - because the people in a game change over long games, and the 
"stack" moves back and forth, which would requiring re-balancing, 
forcing experienced people who worked hard to win one side, to suddenly 
switch to become a defender on the losing side???) certainly won't make 
me put in Netrek hours.


Mark Mielke <mark at>