First, allow me to thank you. While I don't agree with much of your posts, your ability to frankly AND eloquently state your position is very much appreciated. Furthermore, it was a breath of fresh air in comparison to most people I disagree with in these forums.
Secondly, your ideas regarding player incentives I thought were well rounded. It's obvious that if you, yourself, does not already work in the gaming industry, then you at the very least have a worthy gaming resume' from which to pull these bits of brilliance from.
Thirdly, Your spiral discussion, and sphere of influence are fascinating ideas I would be willing to discuss more for one reason in particular: I don't know where I fall within your consideration.
Thank you very much for responding. Although I feel I can help steer Halo in the right direction, the line about hiring me was more or less a joke. You see, I am only a college student, and an economics major at that. I will be graduating next year, and well I doubt I will be logging hours regardless of whether Halo 4 is good, bad, has a visual ranking system or not. In other words, I made this not because this is my best interest, but rather for my love of the game.
As far as my spiral discussion, Much of that is based is based on modern economic thought. Incentives are is just reframed utility theory, while my Player Spiral Theory is based on liquidity spirals, like those ones characteristic of the recent financial crisis in the mortgage market.
As my fourth point will go into, I don't completely agree with your need for a Ranking System. But if I quit Reach today for some reason, any reason.. be it dropping dead, or just refusing to play the TU.. no less than a dozen other people basically stop playing this game too. That doesn't even take into consideration the friends of those friends who would also stop playing.
I'm assuming that's a rather large 'sphere of influence' compared to most, you tell me.
I have a rather "casual" attitude when it comes to these discussions, yet I'm here, participating in them, with a positive KDR and thousands of games played going back to Halo CE in 2001.
What's the disconnect then? Your theory, well thought out as it may be and intelligently described in this thread... run contrary to my actual experiences. Am I simply an exception to the rule? What's the deviation rate for such a player in your model? Do I actually fit somewhere within your categorization in a way that proves your point?
Well if you have thousands of games going back to CE I would call you a fairly Hardcore Halo Fan. Well actually, I just took a quick look at your stats and you have only lost only about 30% of your games, additionally I noticed that you have also purchased Bungie Pro, you have already noted your positive K/D. These are all things few players can say.
Moreover, it is great that you identify as “casual” but there is a strong bias to identify as either competitive or casual because of the way those terms have been polarized community. Truth is though you probably lie somewhere in-between and therefore are likely to have a medium sized sphere of influence.
As far as my theory running contrary to your experience, well again that would be because you like most people, surround yourself with players similar to yourself. Again, I never tried to make a rule that was true all the time, you see that is not the point in trying to model reality. The goal is to come up with rules that are true reality in general. As far deviation, well I obviously, I do not have the necessary data otherwise I would have run a few regressions and made a much stronger argument. And I do not know if you are a stats-y person or not but all I can really speak to is whether any given β is positive or negative and well that is enough for me to make an argument.
Fourth, last and certainly not least... Much of what you're proposing while I admit, are good ideas... are not things that REQUIRE a Visual Ranking System (herein referred to as 'VRS'). Nor does your hypothesis prove that a VRS was (or should be..)the actual driving force of player populations.
A.)I do believe there is a place for a VRS.
B.)I do believe distinction in competitive and social playlists are good things.
C.)I do believe that players WANT competitive matches.
D.)I do believe that players want incentives.
E.)I do not believe that points B-D, if executed properly, REQUIRE a VRS.
I would like to assume OP that since I took the time to read and understand your position on the matter, that you will be extending me the same courtesy.
In case you don't however...
TL/DR Version: Good ideas, I disagree, details listed above.
This is an excellent point however if you do not present any alternate solutions, our discussion will obviously be limited. However, I will do my best to present you with the biggest issue you would have in trying to implement a non-visual system type system.
You can absolutely perfect similar skill matching, but ultimately this will not matter. The problem is the fact that competitive players are by their very nature competitive, if there is no prize to play for, they will not play. As I have been saying all this time, people need incentives. There must exist something in these playlist to get that is lacking in other playlists, otherwise you will find a lot of talent wasted and top players will simply spawn kill kids in BTB all day where the incentive is the dissatisfaction of the other team. I do admit that part of the problem with Halo 3 is that people once they achieved the highest rank quit but I have addressed that issue here with a merit system as well as hardcore mode. If you build the rank system, they will come but if not, but if not I can guarantee they will not, those playlist will suffer the same fate as the arena, and Shadow Run.
Well one can simply say, well that is too bad for that small number of players, but I have already explained the negative effects this spells out for the entire community with my player spiral effect.