Timing

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Luckless
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Timing

Post by Luckless » Tue Nov 25, 2014 12:22 am

Looking around I have seen that some people are starting to get to their 4th/5th/6th... etc. run-through of the game and the general mindset seems to be that right now the game is too young to start listing anything as a competitive time or "World Record", which I agree with especially since Europeans (like myself) don't have the game at all yet. However, Pokémon Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire has managed to sneak it's way onto the wiki and Viskiv today listed his time on there already. As such, we need to discuss exactly what timing is to be used for this game because right now the Times page says the "Timing is by in-game timer" while on the Category Rules it says rightfully that the timing is "Not yet determined". So I thought I'd start this topic just so we can decide the timing ready for in a few days time when we can start thinking about competitive times/WR.

The starting point of the timer is easy. After you choose your language it gives you the "begin game" button and the timer will start when that is selected. The tricky part is the ending point.

From my observation the biggest problem for this game is that the annoyingly long credits counts toward the in-game time and that after the credits there is an extra Rival fight that you have to do before in-game time is shown. This causes some major differences between RTA and IGT since runners have been ending the RTA after beating the Champion and Viskiv has already shown that considerable time can still be lost in the extra Rival fight. His RTA was a 3:23:10 and IGT 3:38 while Werster for example has done it in 3:26:06 RTA and 3:39 IGT. a difference of 13 minutes as opposed to 15.

My suggestion would be that people could just reset once the forced save just before the Hall of Fame is complete and see the in-game time there, however people will argue that the extra Rival fight should still be part of the run, keeping in mind the AZ fight from X/Y and the fact that after you load from the save before the Hall of Fame, it will still play the Hall of Fame and credits, it's not true clear data.

Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong since as I said I don't actually have the game myself yet and I'm going just off what I can see from watching streams, and discuss away! :D
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Re: Timing

Post by Amoeba » Tue Nov 25, 2014 2:12 am

Ahh poop, I just posted on the discussion page for the ORAS time page, and now I've found this.
The after-credits rival fight does clear up why people would want to use RTA (I just thought viskiv had added it for no reason), but I still think RTA is a bad idea, because you could end up with inconsistencies between the soon-to-be 2 different versions of the 3ds. The newer 3ds has been shown to be much faster with loading times, and though this probably wont affect RTA immensely, the disadvantage will be noticeable.
X/Y runs include the after-credits fight as well, so I think it should be included for ORAS runs.

God I wish nintendo would go back to showing the IGT at the hall of fame...
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Re: Timing

Post by Vulajin » Tue Nov 25, 2014 2:44 am

For the record, the loading time difference between 3DS models will probably also affect IGT (if it is all similar to how load times differ between DS models for gen 5), so I wouldn't count that as a reason to favor IGT particularly.

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Re: Timing

Post by Amoeba » Tue Nov 25, 2014 3:14 am

Vulajin wrote:For the record, the loading time difference between 3DS models will probably also affect IGT (if it is all similar to how load times differ between DS models for gen 5), so I wouldn't count that as a reason to favor IGT particularly.
I thought IGT didn't tick through loading times? I know it doesn't in gen 3 at least. Sucks if it does for this...
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Re: Timing

Post by Viskiv » Tue Nov 25, 2014 11:25 pm

I have yet to see a *single* justification provided for using IGT in ORAS. Disregard for a moment the credits; RTA could be ended at the Champion or at the Rival Battle as could IGT by resetting after HoF save. Loading differences will be counted into IGT, rendering the justification for using IGT in gens 1-3 completely irrelevant, Beyond that, IGT has three disadvantages. One, it inherently forces single segment, which prevents runners saving for safety - despite the fact that it's typically not something you'd do in, say, a WR run, there's no reason to disallow it and consider a run illegitimate / prevent it from being on the leaderboards for using a safety save. Two, the timing is imprecise - though having ties isn't a big deal, there is *no reason* to arbitrarily chop seconds off when you could just have them instead. Three, if the community decides to change timing to HoF save at any point for any reason or later back to post-Rival, it renders all previous runs moot as the IGT will be unavailable. IGT, in return, offers no advantages that I can see other than simply being tradition.

RTA vs. IGT aside, I am in favour of ending timing after Champion / HoF save rather than credits. The vast majority of games end their timing at the last meaningful moment before credits and I don't see merit to this game being an exception, as there is no meaningful gameplay afterwards and 13 minutes of fluff. I did lose two minutes on the rival fight my first time doing it with Kyogre, but that will never happen again now that I know what to expect, nor do I expect it to happen to any runner past the first couple of days of release.

X/Y should not be used as a basis for making a decision now. Two wrongs don't make a right; make your decision on the actual merits of each side now, not based on what was decided for X/Y a year ago.

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Re: Timing

Post by Luckless » Wed Nov 26, 2014 1:10 pm

Vulajin wrote:
Amoeba wrote:you could end up with inconsistencies between the soon-to-be 2 different versions of the 3ds. The newer 3ds has been shown to be much faster with loading times, and though this probably wont affect RTA immensely, the disadvantage will be noticeable.
For the record, the loading time difference between 3DS models will probably also affect IGT (if it is all similar to how load times differ between DS models for gen 5), so I wouldn't count that as a reason to favor IGT particularly.
Furthermore this is also why there is a Platform column on the leaderboards. The new 3DS model will be noted.
Viskiv wrote:I have yet to see a *single* justification provided for using IGT in ORAS. Disregard for a moment the credits; RTA could be ended at the Champion or at the Rival Battle as could IGT by resetting after HoF save. Loading differences will be counted into IGT, rendering the justification for using IGT in gens 1-3 completely irrelevant, Beyond that, IGT has three disadvantages. One, it inherently forces single segment, which prevents runners saving for safety - despite the fact that it's typically not something you'd do in, say, a WR run, there's no reason to disallow it and consider a run illegitimate / prevent it from being on the leaderboards for using a safety save. Two, the timing is imprecise - though having ties isn't a big deal, there is *no reason* to arbitrarily chop seconds off when you could just have them instead. Three, if the community decides to change timing to HoF save at any point for any reason or later back to post-Rival, it renders all previous runs moot as the IGT will be unavailable. IGT, in return, offers no advantages that I can see other than simply being tradition.
Well I didn't intend this to be a Gen 6 version of this thread but you raise a valid point, although I do like the single-segment rule myself since it is standard across almost all modern speedrunning and I think this could be less likely to change. Your second point applies to almost all generations of pokemon and through discussion people tend to be half-and-half about it. Having ties and not having ties can both be seen as good and bad depending on how you look at it and there's nothing unique to this game to make this particular point on it's own stand out more than before, that's all I can really say on that one. Third, with all due respect to people who have completed the game while running a timer next to it, at this early stage "all previous runs" shouldn't have to be a factor here because we are having this discussion before the game gets optimized enough for it to matter at all.
Viskiv wrote:RTA vs. IGT aside, I am in favour of ending timing after Champion / HoF save rather than credits. The vast majority of games end their timing at the last meaningful moment before credits and I don't see merit to this game being an exception, as there is no meaningful gameplay afterwards and 13 minutes of fluff. I did lose two minutes on the rival fight my first time doing it with Kyogre, but that will never happen again now that I know what to expect, nor do I expect it to happen to any runner past the first couple of days of release.

X/Y should not be used as a basis for making a decision now. Two wrongs don't make a right; make your decision on the actual merits of each side now, not based on what was decided for X/Y a year ago.
I personally agree with you on this one, I have already developed a disliking for the final rival fight and the whole situation of it with the long credits being included in the time, etc. It's not fun to watch, it doesn't look fun to play at all (I have seen a few people showing their disdain for it on stream too) and I think there is a plausible enough reason to not include it. I guess I might not have even made this thread had I not felt this way but it just seems really dumb to me.

Perhaps not completely relevant but I have also been told that the game doesn't truly recognize that you've beaten the game until after the Delta Episode where you get given a medal for beating the game for the 1st time, so the out-and-out ending point of completing the game from purely a gameplay rational might not even be so black & white. Just throwing that out there OpieOP
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Re: Timing

Post by Viskiv » Wed Nov 26, 2014 8:33 pm

I do like the single-segment rule myself since it is standard across almost all modern speedrunning
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Single-segment is an archaic remnant of the past. The *vast majority* of non-Pokemon games are RTA, not single-segment, and Pokemon would be too if not for the use of IGT - this is demonstrably proven, in fact, by the fact that when IGT is made irrelevant (races) the community allows saving and quitting, thus becoming RTA rather than single segment. My second point does apply to all generations, the difference is there is at least some advantage that using IGT provides in turn in Gen 1-3 that helps justify using it. Here, IGT doesn't, and you didn't raise any actual advantages IGT could have. My third point was with regard to the future. It is entirely possible, a year from now, for the community at that point to form a consensus that the rule of ending timing should be changed. With IGT, this means either the rule is set in stone forever or we would potentially bin everyone's time at that point.

I hadn't seen the thread you linked, but I want to address the 'real time cons'.
- It seems unfair to say that a run is worse than another just because another beat it by a few seconds that were likely caused by RNG. (e.g. useless crits)
- It unties World Records.
This part is a complete joke. Seconds and minutes both can be caused purely by RNG, so by that logic we can't call any run within minutes better than another, and that aside, you could just as easily have saved thirty seconds by better menuing, movement, and decision making. Saying "we can't call one run worse than another because RNG exists" is a completely contradictory stance for leaderboard rules to have considering it's anti-competitive and leaderboards are by definition competitive. Even furthermore, even if it *were* purely on the basis of RNG, that's part of Pokemon and capitalising on when you get good RNG is an important part of being skilled. Likewise, calling ties a good thing is kind of a huge stretch. I don't think ties themselves are a bad thing, but I do think it is a bad thing to actively promote a system for the sake of having more ties.
- It means we would have to re-time a huge amount of runs.
- It means we would have to enforce stricter rules regarding emulators etc. (which could be debatable/controversial)
- Many times currently on the leaderboards will have to be removed.
None of these apply to ORAS.

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Re: Timing

Post by zeo285 » Thu Nov 27, 2014 12:46 am

I have yet to see a *single* justification provided for the end of the game being after you beat the champion in ORAS. In previus gens the e4 was the end of the game but this is not the case in ORAS, rendering the justification for the E4 as the end in gens 1-3 completely irrelevant, Beyond that, early end game has two disadvantages. One, it inherently forces players to end the game earler then the game says it is beaten- despite the fact that it's typically not something you'd do in, say, a WR run. Two, it is an arbratray cut off there is *no reason* to arbitrarily chop off a big part of the game when you could just have it instead. Early end game, in return, offers no advantages that I can see other than simply being tradition.

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Re: Timing

Post by Luckless » Thu Nov 27, 2014 1:06 am

Viskiv wrote:you didn't raise any actual advantages IGT could have.
Correct, and I didn't intend to, this is not me trying to defend IGT at all, I would be fine with either IGT or RTA myself.
Viskiv wrote:I hadn't seen the thread you linked, but I want to address the 'real time cons'.
That thread isn't part of this, that was for Generation 1 games only and was made quite a while ago. Also those pros and cons were not manifested by me, I was listing them as the unbiased creator of the OP based on what others were saying so I am not the one to defend them.
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Re: Timing

Post by Keizaron » Thu Nov 27, 2014 1:20 pm

I'm just gonna say running Mega Man Battle Network games has spoiled IGT for me. I much rather see RTA as much as possible.

In regards to the timing in ORAS, I do think the intended end game should be the final split.

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Re: Timing

Post by Shenanagans » Tue Dec 02, 2014 6:52 am

To determine the timing issue we need to determine first what is the end of the run. I can see someone arguing that the Rival fight is similar to the Red fight in Gold/Crystal.

Another issue that we should bring up is the Delta Episode section. Upon completion of the Delta Episode you get a message that says "congratulations for beating the game for the 1st time". I can see someone eventually posing the argument that The delta episode is similar to the Kanto section in Heart Gold. Should this be part of the run?

One solution may be to define glitchless as "Completing the elite 4 as fast as possible without the use of glitches" This definition may solve both issues because the rival battle could be seen as "extra content" after the completion of the Elite 4.

If we define it this way I don't see any negatives to using RTA for timing though the timing should end at the start of the credits (so it accounts for pokemon caught) I'm fairly certain that you get a save before the credits as well so we could use IGT just as easily. (Just use whichever is more accurate)
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Re: Timing

Post by Viskiv » Tue Dec 02, 2014 7:02 am

Delta Episode has been brought up many times in my chat but really, universally, in all of speedrunning the goal of Any% is to get to the credits. (H)G(S)SC are a bizarre exception to this nearly completely ubiquitous standard that I don't necessarily agree with, but at least they have a justification of having a final set of credits, whereas Delta Episode does not.

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Re: Timing

Post by Keizaron » Tue Dec 02, 2014 12:19 pm

Don't you people dare bastardize Gen 2 with any decision made here DansGame

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Re: Timing

Post by Viskiv » Wed Dec 03, 2014 6:43 am

So far nobody has provided any arguments for not using RTA and everyone in the thread has indicated no issue with doing so, aside from Amoeba who posted his stance with the misunderstanding that using IGT would prevent loading time disparity when it in actuality doesn't - I'm going to go ahead and list RTA alongside IGT on the leaderboard again for now. If there's an issue with it somebody can make their case on the forums, Otherwise, hopefully we can agree to standardise on just RTA in the near future, given that IGT bears no actual advantages in gen 6 unlike gens 1-3, disallows saving, and is less precise.

Given that there is not yet an established timing start and people have started their timers at different times, for now I will establish timing start when A is pressed on title screen. This differs from XY (which starts on language select) but is consistent with every other game in the series on starting time when the new file is actually started and makes the most sense logically to me. If somebody has an issue with this, this could be brought up as well, but this is honestly a pretty irrelevant point since it makes zero difference in the end and with the timing I've provided, it's possible for anyone to get their accurate time from their vod where a language select timing may not necessarily allow that for those who started their timer later.

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Re: Timing

Post by Amoeba » Wed Dec 03, 2014 3:19 pm

Viskiv wrote:aside from Amoeba who posted his stance with the misunderstanding that using IGT would prevent loading time disparity when it in actuality doesn't
Yeah I'm not on either side, just wanted to point out what I thought would be an issue with the new 3ds.

Though I do think that, whichever decision gets made, it's going to affect other categories, or at least definitions (like what constitutes "any% glitchless). This discussion might lead to a bit of a re-organization of categories.
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Re: Timing

Post by MoneyHypeMike » Wed Dec 03, 2014 10:36 pm

I don't even know why this is a discussion but anyways....

Runners in favor of RTA: Viskiv
Runners in favor of IGT: Eekcast, iMAX1UP, MoneyHypeMike

Obviously, if you don't run the game you shouldn't vote on this issue...

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Re: Timing

Post by jtmagicman » Thu Dec 04, 2014 12:22 am

In Game Time should be used as it is with other pokemon games

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Re: Timing

Post by Viskiv » Thu Dec 04, 2014 1:17 am

Sorry, Mike, but that is legitimately bs - if you can't provide actual reasoning, stop advocating for game time. Making a skewed and blatantly inaccurate list to misrepresent the situation does absolutely nothing to advance the conversation/discussion and shows absolutely zero intent to have anything other than getting your way. If you have justifications for game time beyond "I want it and so do two other people's names who I've listed", please go ahead and make your case, but right now the timing method is literally changing how runs are able to be played in a negative manner by banning save & quit where it otherwise clearly would be allowed by the community. Regardless of how necessary you think it is to have saving and quitting, disallowing it on the basis of "I just feel like using IGT instead of RTA" is so incredibly dumbfoundingly bad. Honestly, even at this point it's theoretically possible to get WR in Red with a save and death to Lance, for example, and beyond that would be a great boon to helping newer runners finish runs without telling them their time is invalid. At least in Red there are actual reasons to use IGT, but this game? Still haven't seen one. Also, why use a less precise timer when you could just use a more precise one instead and things would be exactly the same?

@jt: This is completely baseless and as easily as you can say "IGT should be used because other Pokemon games use it" I can say "RTA should be used for Pokemon because >90% of speedgames use it". Neither of these statements have any merit.

Edit: Screw it, I don't know why I bother wasting my time, knowing how the speedrunning community works. Speedrunning is a collaborative hobby of sorts and because the unique characteristics of it, it kind of requires people to discuss and potentially compromise over disagreements, but in just about every case people will openly refuse to do so, as demonstrated here by the complete lack of even trying to have a discussion. Run IGT without a reason in the world if you want, I'm beyond the point of caring about attempting to be a part of the community rather than just doing my own thing.

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Re: Timing

Post by GarfieldTheLightning » Fri Dec 05, 2014 9:49 pm

The way I see it, you haven't beaten the game if you haven't completed the final rival battle. It brings your friendship with your rival full circle, which only really makes sense as an ending. I understand that the arguments so far have been about the mechanics of having a battle after some credits, but I still feel like even when a game is speedrun, it's still a game - not purely a series of battles.

Having said that, looking at the issue from the angle of the rival battle not having an impact on the IGT from run to run... well, I'm not convinced that can be judged just yet. Here's an example that may or may not pan out:
Let's say that I routed Zangoose and found it to be competitive for a good time. Let's say that the Zangoose I caught had Final Gambit as its first move, and that I managed to hold on to the move for the entire game. Now on the rival battle, it's possible that I could sacrifice Zangoose to Final Gambit and lose the battle quickly. Cool strategies like this would be cut out if the final rival battle was discounted from runs.
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Re: Timing

Post by Amoeba » Sat Dec 06, 2014 7:25 pm

GarfieldTheLightning wrote:The way I see it, you haven't beaten the game if you haven't completed the final rival battle.
Just as a quick point, and this isn't me arguing for/against any points, but the game doesn't consider you done until you complete the delta episode, as far as I know. It apparently gives you a notice/badge/something that says "congratulations on completing the game for the first time".
I quite like the idea of runs completing the delta episode, personally, and I might do it myself just because, but I also like seeing the credits in runs, and I can see why others wouldn't like it included.
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Re: Timing

Post by Gymfreak739 » Sun Dec 07, 2014 5:46 am

Amoeba wrote:
GarfieldTheLightning wrote:The way I see it, you haven't beaten the game if you haven't completed the final rival battle.
Just as a quick point, and this isn't me arguing for/against any points, but the game doesn't consider you done until you complete the delta episode, as far as I know. It apparently gives you a notice/badge/something that says "congratulations on completing the game for the first time".
I quite like the idea of runs completing the delta episode, personally, and I might do it myself just because, but I also like seeing the credits in runs, and I can see why others wouldn't like it included.
Hmmm, that's actually a cool idea Moobs. Maybe we can have a second category where we complete Delta Episode?

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