TA Forums Game of the Week! (June 27)

Discussion in 'General Game Discussion and Questions' started by undeadcow, Jun 27, 2013.

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What is your favorite game released the week of June 27, Touch Arcade's GOTW??

Poll closed Jul 4, 2013.
  1. Bounty Hunter: Black Dawn

    22.1%
  2. League of Evil 3

    12.6%
  3. Attack of the Spooklings

    9.5%
  4. Block Block Block

    4.2%
  5. Layton Brothers Mystery Room

    6.3%
  6. Hero of Many

    12.6%
  7. War of the Zombie

    6.3%
  8. Anodyne Mobile

    1.1%
  9. Magic 2014

    13.7%
  10. Siegecraft TD

    11.6%
  1. Appletini

    Appletini Well-Known Member

    Jan 8, 2011
    2,564
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    Ankh-Morpork
    It's not a major issue if it happened (I only recall ever seeing six votes for Layton Brothers), as it is pretty standard for the votes to be cleaned up to prevent abuse before the winners are officially announced.

    Right now literally half of the twelve accounts pushing Hero of Many into second place are brand new ones that were created in the last couple of days in order to take part in the poll, for example, as opposed to Black Dawn's legitimate seventeen votes. I'd expect this to be taken care of before the final count is made, because without these shill votes HoM currently won't place at all this week.

    In a similar vein, Anodyne and Siegecraft TD have both been voted for by their developers, which is something else that is not allowed; while the vote for Anodyne wouldn't make a difference here, the one for Siegecraft would.

    As of this post the standings are:

    1) Bounty Hunter: Black Dawn (17 votes)
    2) Hero of Many (12 votes)
    3) League of Evil 3 (11 votes)
    4) Siegecraft TD (10 votes)

    With the disqualified votes removed, the standings become:

    1) Bounty Hunter: Black Dawn (17 votes)
    2) League of Evil 3 (11 votes)
    3) Siegecraft TD & Magic 2014 (9 votes)
    4) Attack of the Spooklings (7 votes)
     
  2. Exact-Psience

    Exact-Psience Well-Known Member

    Jan 12, 2012
    22,665
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    The Work-At-Home Guy
    Philippines
    Wow... can believe Hero of Many would shill their way up. I did like Hero of Many though. Still a pretty good game to play, but it didnt take me like Black Dawn or LOE3 did.
     
  3. undeadcow

    undeadcow Well-Known Member

    Dec 4, 2010
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    Houston, TX
    For the record, I have not removed any votes and am not aware of any stealth moderator or other party cleaning up behind the scenes.
    Thank you for reviewing the vote logs; it's probably fair to say these rankings will stand although there is still a few hours left of voting.
     
  4. psj3809

    psj3809 Moderator

    Jan 13, 2011
    12,448
    395
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    England
    I was quite keen on that game and was hoping it would be universal at some point. But to hear all about these shilly votes etc, just puts me off supporting them
     
  5. copaeci

    copaeci Well-Known Member

    Nov 2, 2012
    1,606
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    student, writer, reviewer, beta tester
    ID
    those votes probably came from fb pages users, the dev posted about this GOTW thread in their facebook page... here the original post

    Probably, most of them doesn't care with this caution

    looks like many of fans come here to support the game, quickly make new accounts and forgot to read the rules, and all of them just mess it all...
    rules is still rules.... sad reality..
     
  6. Appletini

    Appletini Well-Known Member

    Jan 8, 2011
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    Mm-hmm, as I said, I'd only ever seen the current six votes for Layton Brothers, but if any votes had been removed (from any game), it would only have been done in the interest of maintaining the poll's integrity, because you could hardly delete a legitimate vote and expect that to go undetected or unchallenged by the person who cast it.

    Invalid accounts/votes have unfortunately occasionally been overlooked and left in for the final scoring, but I'd be very surprised if there had ever been a case where legitimate votes had been deliberately removed.
     
  7. awp69

    awp69 Well-Known Member

    Oct 30, 2009
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    Greenville, SC
    Kind of sad about Hero of Many. It really is a wonderful game and I'm not entirely sure the dev was trying to be malicious. Totally agree the votes need to go, just hope it doesn't affect feelings towards the otherwise great game and a dev whose been quite active on the forums.
     
  8. undeadcow

    undeadcow Well-Known Member

    Dec 4, 2010
    9,493
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    Houston, TX
    It may be occassional suspect votes sneak by I'd be surprised if that was frequent enough to impact the outcomes.
    I agree, often times developers innocently vote their own game without realizing the rules but there have been cases of ballot stuffing that seemed more malicious in the past. In one case high number of typically inactive but valid developers voted suggesting collusion external to game merit and in another, like with HoM here, tons of new accounts with no posts created that week voted. On the other hand, nevermind the 2012 forum GOTY disaster where large scale votes were deleted drastically changing outcomes in a questionable manner.
     
  9. Royce

    Royce Well-Known Member

    Mar 22, 2011
    4,238
    177
    63
    Moderators have stated before that they don't have the ability to do such things. Someone must have been mistaken if they thought they saw more than the current votes. That's why it's up to the vote counter to discount invalid votes each week for the official results.
     
  10. DaviddesJ

    DaviddesJ Well-Known Member
    Patreon Bronze

    May 19, 2010
    2,493
    14
    38
    Burlingame CA
    Theoretically, what would happen if a spam/shill account voted in the poll and then was deleted? Wouldn't the count go down?
     
  11. undeadcow

    undeadcow Well-Known Member

    Dec 4, 2010
    9,493
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    Houston, TX
    This is my understanding and I can confirm that GOTW original poster has always "manually" ignored shill votes. I know EchoSeven does and I can confirm that I always have "voided" suspicious votes when filling in. However, there may be a way to delete votes because my, perhaps faulty, recollection is that votes were deleted from the 2012 GOTY thread.
    This is my understanding also, but it seems unlikely shill accounts would both vote for GOTW and then spam around irrelevently enough to be deleted at a level to impact polling here.
     
  12. metalcasket

    metalcasket Moderator
    Staff Member Patreon Silver Patreon Gold Patreon Bronze

    May 24, 2010
    10,892
    1,154
    113
    Deepest Circle, Hel
    We do actually, but while we can remove "votes" (as in modify the number of votes for each game), it doesn't affect who is voting. I don't know if that makes any sense, but say "Game X" got 20 votes and you can publicly see who voted, I could go in and change that...to say...1 vote, but you'd still see all 20 names of those who voted for "Game X".

    As far as tampering with this week's thread, nope...it's untouched. I just edited the title of the poll to "What is your favorite game released the week o June 27, Touch Arcade's GOTW??" (which is supposed to be "of", obviously) and any moderator can see that I've edited the poll. Prior to that there was nothing. When I change that title back, it'll also leave a trace.
     
  13. awp69

    awp69 Well-Known Member

    Oct 30, 2009
    8,249
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    Greenville, SC
    Oh, I completely agree. I've been one of the ones who has questioned "shill" votes before and they do need to be discarded. Only thing I've seen regarding HoM was a post saying that the dev put a link on their web page saying to vote "if you're a member". So I at least don't think the dev did it with evil intentions. But the rules are there for a reason and do help keep things in check.

    My only point is, particularly if it wasn't done with bad intentions, I hope people don't look down on the game because of it.
     
  14. Appletini

    Appletini Well-Known Member

    Jan 8, 2011
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    #74 Appletini, Jul 3, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2013
    Even once is once too often. In fact, the only reason Spiral came second instead of third in last week's poll is because a new shill account and votes from two of the game's own developers (although Nader acknowledged his mistake in the poll thread) pushed it one vote ahead of Icebreaker (Spiral only had 23 legitimate votes, not 26, while Icebreaker had 25). Yet Spiral is still listed as being in second place, which it shouldn't be.

    Consistency is also good: the GotW poll only ever has three places, but you added a fourth place position for last week's poll solely so that your personally-favoured game, Kingturn RPG Plus, could be given an "official" TA GotW ranking, which is a bit on the nose and something we shouldn't really see from somebody overseeing such a competition. As long as developers continue to use the poll results as a promotional tool, it's worth managing it properly.

    No, it's entirely possible to see the vote count change, and moderators have even openly announced that this has been done at the time in cases where it has been particularly severe, but this usually appears to be linked to the removal of the entire voting account in question. There may not be an option to manually remove an actual vote given by a legitimate active user, but then the problem of illegitimate votes generally comes from brand new accounts made for the sole purpose of manipulating the numbers (maliciously or otherwise).
     
  15. Erric

    Erric Well-Known Member

    Hey guys, I found out what happened about Hero of Many. It is absolutly fair to diqualify us.

    When the game was nominated I tweeted this:

    "Hero of Many was nominated for Game of the Week on Touch Arcade: http://forums.toucharcade.com/showthread.php?t=194573 … If you have an account, pls a vote!"

    Well some of our friends interpreted it their way:(, they just wanted to support us. It was not the intention to anyhow exploit this voting. It happened and I apologize.
     
  16. DannyTheElite

    DannyTheElite Well-Known Member

    Oct 13, 2012
    2,913
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    Forum poster
    Area 51
    Voted for Black Dawn.
     
  17. undeadcow

    undeadcow Well-Known Member

    Dec 4, 2010
    9,493
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    Houston, TX
    #77 undeadcow, Jul 3, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2013
    I am fascinated by the event of shill voting in ill conceived efforts to market the game as winning user acclaim. Also, the problem of how to handle this voting fraud presents some interesting challenges. I previously created a thread in Site Feedback to discuss this when it was a problem before and it might be worth moving some of the large scale GOTW/polling process discussion there and leaving this thread to current releases: http://forums.toucharcade.com/showthread.php?t=178804.
    On review there were 3 suspicious votes for Spiral Episode 1 last week (AaronRuizMora, misscarrusel, + Nader) but none for Icebreaker so once removed your are correct Icebreaker is the second place winner and Spiral Episode 1 is third. I have amended the first post of this thread accordingly. To police ineligible votes it'll likely take a community effort; for example, I'm not familiar with the other Spiral developer enough to identify him. Thank you.
    I didn't intend to grant anything beyond the first three place any sort of official status but do now see how that could be misconstrued so have removed the forth place entry. This was initially intended partially in jest and partially to draw more attention to what is a good SRPG but you are correct it is not fair to other candidates and was overly casual. The GOTW has only ever had 3 places and I would not have assumed to change that. I am offering a public apology to the Touch Arcade community for that mis-step, also via original post footnote. I appreciate your candidness.
    Hero of Many wouldn't be disqualified outright, but ineligible votes will be overlooked placing it much lower in the running.
     
  18. Appletini

    Appletini Well-Known Member

    Jan 8, 2011
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    #78 Appletini, Jul 3, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2013
    Actually, the three votes I had were from Misscarrusel, Nader and Benni_ (the latter two are developers). While AaronRuizMora's account has no posts, it was created back in March, so it wasn't made solely for this poll and I wouldn't disqualify it on those grounds. The net result is the same, of course.

    I'll just keep an eye on the polls as the weeks progress, and keep you informed if there's anything that gets overlooked; I know you don't miss things on purpose, so I'll help out as I can.

    It's not really a huge issue (the game did legitimately come fourth, after all), except that you're obviously a big fan of the game, so breaking established tradition in order to add a little promotion of a personal favourite can come across as a little off. Just recommend it in a separate section of the results post next time. ;)

    Thanks for that, Moo; I don't believe it would be fair to entirely eliminate a game from the running for this reason either. I know you're not a malicious person and put considerable effort into organising the weekly polls at the moment; I just think we (TA members, game developers, and iOS gaming as a whole) are all better off if we maintain the integrity of the site's features. If "awards" given out here start coming under scrutiny when it becomes apparent that they came about as a result of cheating, it lessens the value of the site, however slightly; if we accept rigged polls, we may as well accept paid reviews.
     

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