An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

1/5/2012 3:15:02 AM
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An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

I'm sure you've heard of 'macros', right? On modern 'gaming' keyboards and mice, they let you assign full sets of key presses, including delays, to single keys. If we set up a macro for every possible drop keypress combination, I do believe it would be possible to play Cultris as fast as one can type.

I block: 2 rotations, 7 horizontal positions, 10 vertical positions.

T block: 4 rotations, 9 vertical positions, 8 horizontal positions.

S blocks: 2 reflections, two rotations, 8 horizontal positions, 9 vertical positions

L blocks: 2 reflections, four rotations, 8 horizontal positions, 9 vertical positions.

O block: 9 positions.

Total number of macros needed: 1301, not including soft drops.

Of course, this is not the ideal number, which treats each block separately. A DAS right, double rotate is the same for an O and an I block. I will figure out the ideal number and get to work recording macros.

1/5/2012 6:17:24 AM
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

It's been done:

https://sites.google.com/site/ddrkirby/coding-projects/keyblox

Any placement can be accomplished with only one key in 40-key mode (one key per tetromino). The learning curve is very challenging, but some players have had success. No one has used to to break the non-macro-type WR.

1/5/2012 9:34:26 AM
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hi

Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

Interesting...

I wonder if people that play cultris at the moment use macro's, anyone?

1/5/2012 5:32:13 PM
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

thats cheating. isn't it ?
lame.

1/5/2012 5:37:41 PM
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

i wouldn't call it cheating. If you're that dedicated to learn a system like that, you earned it :-D

1/5/2012 6:54:02 PM
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

Delete my post, if it is not desired.

I began playing a similar way even before I knew, that KeyBlox/Typomino existed. It's no wonder, that nobody broke the 40 line world record with KeyBlox. Why should someone spend so much time playing a single player game?

Why are not many people using macros? The answer is simple: Because most Tetris games (e.g. all flash games) only look at the end of each frame, if a key was pressed down. This means with macros you can't move the pieces faster, so no real advantage. The slower a tetris clone is ( key repeat rate and repeat delay ) the more useless macros become, as you need more time until you press down the correct key. Perhaps a macro for rotating pieces by 180°, but everything else doesn't make sense there.

Cultris is different: It buffers all your keystrokes (or uses the ones memorized by your operating system ). So during a frame, a block can be moved multiple times by tipping a key multiple times (or using a macro simulating those keystrokes). The advantage lies on the hand: Your keystrokes are precisely converted, even if you have a bad frame rate. I remember playing the 84 bots challenge, having a FPS rate of 1 to 2, but being able to do 60 BPM. Not possible in most other Tetris games - lags make your movements dependable on when the frames begin and end, so the same keystrokes can result in different movements. The disadvantage: Bots become invincible ( even bad programmed ones ), because they can be much faster than humans.

Is using macros cheating? I don't know. Can you play faster using macros? I don't know either. I am faster with macros, but before I began using them, I tipped the keys and never hold them down to autorepeat. But what I can say for sure is, that macros can decrease the number of keystrokes and misdrops, as the only way to misdrop would be pressing a wrong key.

How fast am I using macros? I use 19 keys. In Cultris 1 single player I have a BPM of 130 to 140. Haven't played much C2, just the single player challenges, so I can't say. I am used to right handed Tetris games and I don't want to give up a specific one. Like KeyBlox I am combining rotation, movements and drop downs. But for some rotations I have to press an additional key. 40 ( or 35 ) keys like in KeyBlox are too much for me, I couldn't reach all keys fast enough.

1/5/2012 10:45:55 PM
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

I think Paradox came very close to his non-macro score of 28 s so it would be interesting if someone sub 25 would try and invest his time in learning this to see if there's really an advantage.

I think that when you increase the number of keys, it will indeed of course decrease the number of keys per block, but it will probably increase the delay between the moment when you have taken the decision of where to put the block, and the moment when you press the first key.

Indeed, the fewer the keys, the less movement  you will need to make with the hand from the position it is right now to the position it must acquire to press the desired key and as opposite, the more the keys, longer will be the distance to go from actual position to the position of the desired key.

SO it is not certain that having more keys will necessarily be an advantage to gain speed.

If you compare tetris playing with sentences typing, it would be like comparing typing speed of english in dvorak (= keyblox)  and typing speed of a language using only Q,W,E,R,T letters in Qwerty(= cultris without macros)

1/7/2012 11:50:20 PM
t0x
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

i honestly DO think that using macros is cheating... if you re trying to find a way to play tetris faster and with less keys/block you shouldnt play a competetive multiplayer game. if the devs wanted to make it possible to do 180° rotations with one key, or to move a block to the side with no delay, they would ve made it possible.

so you re just gaining advantages by using macros, advantages that others dont have or dont want to have.

i talked with Noir about it, he had a good point: "if you allow macros, you will have to make a full guide how to use and make them and put it in the cultris manual"

 

as there is no (?) way to prove that ppl using macros, i just hope that the community is "wise" enough and has enough courage not to betray their fellow players

 

"i wouldn't call it cheating. If you're that dedicated to learn a system like that, you earned it :-D"
one point of playing hours/days/weeks of cultris is to learn and completely control the delay/repeat techniques of cultris. ppl who play about 150 will know how easily you missdrop a piece cause you didnt move it completely to the left, or cause you pressed "rotate" more than you wanted to. macros decrease the mistake-rate, which is... cheating. 
also you dont really have to "learn" the system, by using a program that helps you play faster and with less missdrops.

 

if you want to try it out and get better with a macro-system i m fine with it. try it offline, with bots, or with your friends. but dont use it online against other players. 

1/8/2012 10:05:32 AM
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

if you want to try it out and get better with a macro-system i m fine with it. try it offline, with bots, or with your friends. but dont use it online against other players.

I agree, that Macro users should not play in Tournaments, except when all issues are arranged in advance. But why shouldn't I allowed to play Cultris online? I try to explain everybody, what I am doing and I don't take away the first ranking positions.

Many Multrisers don't really care, how I play. They just want to have some other competitive players around to play some good games. That's happening, when a community is small. In mean games some other Multrisers are better, but I have made the best human Multris score. There are many inactive players in the list and a bot in the first position, so it makes no big difference.

This doesn't mean automatically, that playing Cultris with macros makes you faster. The key repeat rate and delay in Multris is the same as the operating system is using. So probably those settings are more flexible in Cultris. And you can use the SRS rotating system to have lesser keystrokes than in Multris. Playing fast with not many misdrops is an advantage, but you will also have problems to stack high. You can't navigate the falling piece around a high stack, because you can't change the order of rotations and sideways movements. Using the slowly drop key is also difficult, as all fingers are already in use.

The rest of my post is a little more generalized:

i just hope that the community is "wise" enough and has enough courage not to betray their fellow players

Many average players like Nik are thinking, that everyone, who is better than them, deserves it, doesn't matter how it's done (when at least a human is playing). But most top players feel like you - fearing the unknown, wanting to stay the best. ( This reminds me a bit off the Hard Drop poll, in which some HD were thinking, that some strangers would take away their blockbox tournament. )  And this is, why probably everything will stay, as it is. Why taking all the time - one month at least - learning how to play with macros, just to become an outcast?

also you dont really have to "learn" the system, by using a program that helps you play faster and with less missdrops.

Probably there were some technical evolutions in Cultris, something like stacking/down-stacking style or which rotation system to use. Top players had to adapt themselves to stay the best. IMO that's how it should be. Competitive sports have to develop. As an example ski jumping: There were not only jumping-technical innovations (like V style or telemark), there were also material changes. When Sven Hannawald used broader skis and won all 4 competitions of the 4 hills tournament, everybody complained, but soon everybody used them, too. When Simon Ammann won his last Olympic titles, some people complained about his curved connecting rods (or however this is called in English), but soon most jumpers were using it. Of course you have to follow the rules. When the BMI index was introduced, everybody had to gain weight. Transferred to Cultris, this means: As long the Devs don't say: Macros are forbidden, they are not.

there is no (?) way to prove that ppl using macros

How to recognize, that someone is using macros (I don't mean the 180° turn macro):
Cultris 1: Macro users usually have an unnatural high keys per block rate, as every sideways movement is one keystroke. Me having about 4. Of course you could also simulate holding down a key, but that would make you slower, so no real advantage.
Cultris 2: Normally, you should see other players moving there pieces (at least I can see the bots doing that). The movement of macro users should be more abrupt. If you were playing against me in Cultris 2, probably you would only see the falling pieces in their spawning positions and then suddenly dropped down.

And for the completeness, how to recognize a bot:
Only well programmed bots will have the ability to move the falling piece under your stack ( slow drop ).There building style will be majorly fixed. If you are unsure, if you are playing against a bot, you can ask her/him to change it: Leave the initial gap at the other side or in the middle, use 3-gap instead of 2-gap etc.

1/8/2012 9:06:01 PM
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

I think C2 should include the 180 rotation macro (that way it can't be considered cheating to just easily use AHK to accomplish this).

Other than that, there aren't too many macros that will give a player an advantage. The fastest 40-line records were all done without macros, showing that you really just need fast autorepeat to be a top contender. Hell, Korean players get under 23 second times while only using single rotation.

1/8/2012 9:38:05 PM
t0x
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

I try to explain everybody, what I am doing and I don't take away the first ranking positions. 

cultris isnt just about ranking+score..it bugs players when they lose, and the moment you realise that you probably lost cause someone used additional programs or hardware in order to play better -> they get pissed. its understandable.

But most top players feel like you - fearing the unknown, wanting to stay the best. ( This reminds me a bit off the Hard Drop poll, in which some HD were thinking, that some strangers would take away their blockbox tournament. ) And this is, why probably everything will stay, as it is. Why taking all the time - one month at least - learning how to play with macros, just to become an outcast?

that is right. it would really bug me when that ppl get better with less training-time and especially with additional programs or hardware. thats human, isnt it?

@skijumping: i heard gregor schlierenzauer doesnt use the new curved connecting rods ;-) (just sayin..)

sure you re right that macros are "ok" as long the devs say that they re "ok". this is just my opinion here, and i dont wanna "stop" the development of tetris, but as long as just a few know how to do it, its not a technique, its just unfair.

when simon or nik will answer this post, and "allow" to use it, then i at least expect a really nice tutorial on how to do it.. either an official one by them, or by you.
otherwise i m definitly and 100% against the use.

1/9/2012 10:48:21 AM
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hi

Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

I'm not against macro's, i think people should decide for themselfs if they use it. The reason for this is because tetris/cultris isnt only about speed... If i can place a piece in 0.2 sec instead of 0.4(example) that wouldnt help me alot since I cant think that fast :P

 Also im using 5 keys 6 if soft-dropping, if i would use more ill go crazy :P so hats off for someone that is using 10

1/9/2012 11:41:54 AM
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

i dont use macro and i didnt know it was possible --'

do i really need it for play better ?

no.. i dont think.

just go training your 2 rotates skills is enough for play good

1/9/2012 2:41:27 PM
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The only way to get smarter is by playing a smarter opponent

Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

I'm against legalizing/tolerating macros.

I think using macros is cheating by defintion.

And yes, it is possible to take advantage of macros even without learning the 10 or 40 key stuff. Even one additional key has a significant effect if used right.

1/9/2012 10:04:13 PM
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Re: An Idea for the Most Efficient Way to Play

It's clear that there's no feasible method to detect macro software/hardware so we don't even try to. But we encourage players not to use macros. Especially in tournaments or in (ranked) online games.