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Dispute: william rosa - Atari 2600 / VCS - Pac-Man - NTSC - Game 1, Difficulty B - Player: Jonathan Elson - Score: 3,437

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  1. VERIFIED Senior Member Credibility: 7,884
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    Dispute: william rosa - Atari 2600 / VCS - Pac-Man - NTSC - Game 1, Difficulty B - Player: Jonathan Elson - Score: 3,437

    Atari 2600 / VCS - Pac-Man - NTSC - Game 1, Difficulty B
    Score Trackhttp://www.twingalaxies.com/scores.php?scores=25
    RulesDefault Settings
    Player NameJonathan Elson
    Original AdjudicationN/A
    Verification MethodPhotograph [No Longer Accepted]
    Verification Date1999-08-27
    Disputed Score3,437 (Rank 15)
    Disputed BySnowflake
    Dispute Evidence / RationaleI strongly suspect settings were changed after the fact on this one. Of the 8 setting, 1B is the second hardest, yet photograph was allowed as evidence. A photograph could not have proved which settings were used, so at a time of photograph verification it stands to reason setting were either user choice, or easiest (since if setting were easiest who would cheat and play on harder settings?). Most atari games have 1B as the easiest setting, and as a result we see atari games across the board have 1b in the ruleset. I see this as the intent being easiest settings to be the rules, and 1B was just entered as the rule across the board without taking the time to see if those settings made sense.

    here is a link to the text of the manual that explains the setting, you can of course find copies of the settings in other places as well, no shortage on line of people scanning manuals.
    https://atariage.com/manual_html_pag...reLabelID=1031

    Games 1, 2, 7, and 8 feature a slow moving PAC-MAN. The ghosts in
    each of these games move at different speeds as follows:

    GAME 1 Ghosts move at jogging speed.

    GAME 2 Ghosts move at running speed.

    GAME 7 Ghosts crawl especially slow for young children.

    GAME 8 Ghosts move at walking speed.

    Games 3, 4, 5, and 6 feature a fast PAC-MAN with the ghosts moving at
    varying speeds as follows:

    GAME 3 Ghosts crawl around the maze.

    GAME 4 Ghosts move at walking speed.

    GAME 5 Ghosts move at jogging speed.

    GAME 6 Ghosts move at running speed.I believe because of this (as well as some other tracks where 1B isnt even possible as a setting! either because both settings are use, so "1BB" or "1BA" would be needed or because there is only one setting and neither "1" nor "b" make any sense) that 1B was just guessed across the board. Older members have also told me at an early point no rules were listed which would also lead me to believing this was meant to be easiest setting or players choice. For that reason I think the pre-tgsap scores on this track should be under a "3b" setting whereas the post tgsap (who were verified in modern time using 1b) should stay. It would be equally acceptable to make this a users choice for settings.

    I wasnt around when the setting were changed, I hope therefore older members can chime in on this. I also challenged the only score with a photograph as opposed to the highest score because my entire point of the challenge is the track itself, not any individual score.
  2. VERIFIED Senior Member Credibility: 1,003
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    Just to make sure I'm reading all of that correctly: Your argument isn't that the score is fake or cheated, but that the definition of the track was altered after the fact such that this score (and other older scores) may have been performed under different settings than newer scores?
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    Wow there are some big gaps between groups of scores in this game. For someone like me who isn't familiar with the competitive side of Pac-Man, do these score gaps even make sense as something that player skill would explain?

    Also would you be able to list the tracks where 1B isn't even a meaningful game setting? That issue alone has me inclined to believe this might a case where the track rules weren't defined until after a number of runs were on the board.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mapler90210 View Post
    Wow there are some big gaps between groups of scores in this game. For someone like me who isn't familiar with the competitive side of Pac-Man, do these score gaps even make sense as something that player skill would explain?

    Also would you be able to list the tracks where 1B isn't even a meaningful game setting? That issue alone has me inclined to believe this might a case where the track rules weren't defined until after a number of runs were on the board.
    Cant list them all, but let me give you two examples

    Venture, manual link here so you can verify what i say https://atariage.com/manual_html_pag...areLabelID=576
    Skill Switch
    Level Setting
    1 left B/right B
    2 left B/right A
    3 left A/right B
    4 left A/right AAs you see "B" alone means nothing, you must combine both switches to have a meaningful setting. Also (and i'll admit this point is a bit pedantic) there's no such thing as "game 1" theres only BB, BA, AB, AA. Theres technically not even a 1BB, only a BB although thats not too big a deal to me, since when only one option exists I'm comfortable just calling it "1".

    Then there are other games where a single switch is meaningful, however since both switches do something, I feel that only listing one is further demonstration the rule creator wasnt familiar with the game and just guessed, consider vanguard for example https://atariage.com/manual_html_pag...areLabelID=575

    1. Left A, Right A: Press the red controller button and move the
    Joystick in the direction you want to fire. Release the button to
    stop firing.

    2. Left A, Right B: Same as method 1 except that you do not have to
    move the Joystick forward to fire forward. The forward laser gun fires
    automatically when the red button is pressed.

    3. Left B, Right A: Move the Joystick in the direction you want to
    fire. Press the red button to stop firing.

    4. Left B, Right B: Same as method 3 except that the forward gun
    fires automatically.so although both difficulty switches do combine you could argue only listing a single one makes sense, as left A alone means autofire is off and you must press the button to fire, leftB means autofire is on and you must press the button to stop firing (in this game when you dont fire you go faster, also you may want to stop so that you can choose the exact moment to fire for precision, so there are reasons you may want to turn auto off). also right difficulty alone makes sense as right B means forward gun is automatic (when you'd normally be firing based on switch A) and right A means you only fire when pushing forward (and of course left A is allowing you to fire at all) if this sounds confusing remember that every when the left switch would say you're firing, you also have to push the controller in particular direction to fire in that direction. This is a case where I wouldnt say listing just one is "nonsense" per se but I do think it demonstrates people were just guessing 1b across the board. As a complete opinion by the way,I think this one should be players choice as the settings arent really about difficutly so much as control preferences.

    As for the score discrepancy I can speculate, but speculating about people's scores can be offensive so I want to preface this by saying its only speculation and by no means applies to everyone. I've been getting better and hit 5000 points. At about that point things get fast -- like really fast -- so I've been trying to develop a pattern. I know I could just look one up, but I figure it'll be more fun and easier to remember if i go through the trial and error on my own. Well, just doing things that make sense (as most options almost instantly get you killed, so really not a lot of choices) I stumbled across a bug where I can get ghosts stuck in the tunnel. This bug I believe everyone who's better than 7k would figure out by accident, since like i say, the movements you have to do to trigger the bug just seem to make sense as the simplest path to avoid the ghosts. And what a surprise, anyone who passes 7k would likely know the bug, also anyone who passes 16k (maybe some took twice as long as other to discover the bug? but by 16k you definitely stumble across it) suddenly jumps super far ahead with higher scores. Now, again, this isn't an accusation as people could know the bug and choose not to use it. I'm only bringing the bug up to answer your question and cant emphasize enough that's strictly speculation on my part.
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    Thanks, that was a very helpful post. So it isn't necessarily skill that leads to the giant gaps as much as it may be the knowledge learned while developing those skills.

    The Vanguard example was helpful as well. That sounds like something that should go in the track errors thread, rather than a score dispute, though?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mapler90210 View Post
    Thanks, that was a very helpful post. So it isn't necessarily skill that leads to the giant gaps as much as it may be the knowledge learned while developing those skills.

    The Vanguard example was helpful as well. That sounds like something that should go in the track errors thread, rather than a score dispute, though?
    I believe track errors are for things like wrong name, or typos. Before making this challenge I made a post on my wall tagging david to see if there was a way to challenge rules themselves without challenging individual scores, his answer was long and not a direct yes or not but pretty much said the only way to bring attention to rules issues is worth a score challenge and the discussion of the score will present a centralized place to discuss the rules. So I agree with you this isnt optimal, but I did first check for other avenues before challenging here.
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