Friday, August 29, 2008

MT manipulations

This one doesn't come up in the rules much, but as a general thing, its frowned upon. I don't think most folks really think about it or think about doing it. I actually did it once in like the second math trade I participated in. I'd consider it again if this wasn't Jeffy Jeff's MT. Manipulating the results. yes, it is entirely possible to manipulate the trades when the algorithm for trading is trying to maximize the number of items that get traded. How? Create your own trade chains. Yep, that's right, list your own games as wants. For example, lets say I put in Age of Steam (AoS), Atlantic Star (AS) and Risk. Now, I know that AoS and AS are going to be desired (A LOT), and Risk is a maybe at best. If I want to increase the likelihood of Risk getting used in the MT's chains, I simply use my other items. For Risk I list AoS and nothing else, for AoS I list AS and nothing else, and for AS I build a list of stuff I want - something reasonable that I'd get for Risk - say Nexus Ops. As long as someone will pick up Risk, I will trade off Risk and get AoS, lose AoS (to me) and get AS and then get some game. Now, its likely you'd only pull off a good one like that once since the results would look retarded and obvious (Tatsu trades Risk to Tatsu for AoS. Tatsu trades AoS to Tatsu etc etc). This was something early mods used to explicitly ban. I have not seen anything like that recently. I don't usually go through the results that much either - I don't care what others are doing so much. Either I got what I wanted or I didn't. Oh well. I've also given up on the miracle trade up - just not going to happen. Or maybe it'll happen just once...

2 comments:

Isamoor said...

Jeffy is using the OLWLG, and you explicitly cannot add your own items to your own want lists. However, you could of course make a shill account to list a couple items. Or maybe go in with a local to get a big false chain going.

Tatsu said...

Didn't know that the OLWLG didn't allow that. I'm sure there are other trades where you could manipulate the system solo. Regardless, there are lots of ways you could do it - like you said, I could get any one friend and we could create a chain of "trades". The point isn't that I think it should be done, I was just pointing out there was a flaw in the whole system of trying to "maximize trades". Letting everyone see the want lists doesn't mean as much as an actual evaluation of the results...