The future of character rankings



  • How do we reconcile the problem of the rankings taking so long and yet wanting to do them even more frequently? I have a few ideas:
    • I can stop editing. Basically, I'll do the data collection and contribute a little here and there, but essentially I'll just publish the rankings in a private google doc and give access to anyone who wants to write something. Once we have something for everyone, I'll publish what they wrote verbatim.

      This will take way less time and effort on my part, but there may be a wide disparity of opinions, potential factual errors, and possibly contradictions between writers in the same piece. Also, there's no guarantee that writeups will actually get done -- people are busy, after all, and most of us would rather write 2 pages on Sentry than a paragraph on 2* Wolverine.
    • We can publish rankings with no commentary. This is really easy -- we could do this easily every month and probably even more often as long as people don't get tired of voting. Would it be interesting, though?
    • I can publish my personal rankings, and only comment on new characters and characters with significant change. This eliminates the work/wait of voting and data collection, and is probably a manageable amount of work for me to do once every six weeks, but there's no protection against my personal biases, since we'll lose the diversity of perspectives we would get with more people contributing.
    Any other ideas? Post them here and I'll put up a poll after a couple of days.

    You should create a poll and have people vote on the 3 options.
  • Lots of good ideas in here -- almost too many! So I broke everything down into a few categories and put up a poll, trying to get at a few different aspects:

    - How often should we do rankings?
    - Who should be doing the ranking?
    - How should we do writeups?
    - How important is having stuff that's just for fun?

    I can't promise that I'll do whatever gets the most votes, but I'll certainly try to use the results to inform how we run the next round, which I intend to start a week after the next new character is released (as that will make six new characters, not including Lady Thor). Yes, that means we'll probably get to do this all again in about 3 weeks, yay!

    Also, thank you all so much for your kind words! It makes me really happy to know that the rankings are useful and that people enjoy them as much as I enjoy writing them, and having people take time out of their day to say so is incredibly gratifying and a big part of my motivation to do these regularly.
  • loroku
    loroku Posts: 1,014 Chairperson of the Boards
    vudu3 wrote:
    You voted for mischiefmaker posting his own personal rankings and nothing else.
    Opps, you're right! I didn't read it closely enough. I meant - like many others have said - do the survey but then don't worry about writing something up for everyone, just the big deals.
  • I would agree with others who said to have everyone vote but only have a write up on new character or those who have changed considerably. And even then, they don't need to be as extensive as you have been doing for every character. Thanks for the efforts so far. As a new player starting recently they have been an invaluable resource, not just in terms of the rankings but also in how to approach the game.
  • I think we should vote every month, and then post current ratings. We really only need in-depth commentary every three months.
  • AXP_isme
    AXP_isme Posts: 809 Critical Contributor
    Firstly I'd like to thank you all for the effort that's gone into the rankings. I can see how much hard work has gone into it, the editing alone must have been a serious challenge, but that also means you're making a rod for your own backs by adding all the diverse elements. While I enjoyed the memes and the theme songs I think you could slim down the amount that you put into it in the interests of maintaining your sanity.

    Personally I think you could get to the point where you only provide write ups that are adding something new. You can leave the optimal builds or the ranking of powers to the individual character threads. Equally you don't really need to say new things about bagman or blonde widow, you could reuse the same commentary or just link to a previous ranking. It is good though, to get a view on new characters or ones that have been funbalanced. A rough rule of thumb could be that any new characters, or those that move more than 5 places up or down (doesn't have to be 5), have probably been individually changed or have changed enough in the meta to benefit from some commentary. That way you can run the ranking reasonably frequently without needing to build your life around them (you can save that privelige for the game). That's my ten cents, for what it's worth.

    Once again, great work everyone who contributed and many thanks.
  • 3 months is too long.
  • vudu3
    vudu3 Posts: 940 Critical Contributor
    3 months is perfect. If you do it too frequently you're going to get a lot of noise from characters moving up or down a couple of rankings for no real reason. You're also going to get new characters either over- or under-rated depending on initial reactions. We'll get much better results if we give everyone some time to figure out where these players rank.
  • Even with the speed they're releasing characters? It should be 2 months at least.
  • sorry i havent taken time to read whole thread, but do we really need to rank every character every time? who cares who is worse between yelena and bagman

    I think it would be easier to just rank the top half of the characters maybe
  • Pwuz_
    Pwuz_ Posts: 1,186 Chairperson of the Boards
    Pjoe0211 wrote:
    sorry i havent taken time to read whole thread, but do we really need to rank every character every time? who cares who is worse between yelena and bagman

    I think it would be easier to just rank the top half of the characters maybe

    The rankings are not just for those of us going into and well into the 3* phase of the game. These rankings help new players as well, think of how many new players may accidentally waste Iso leveling up Bagman because they don't know any better! New players need the rankings more than the rest of us, experienced players have a good idea as to were all these characters fall. Would a new player know how useful that OBW is just based on her abilities and abysmally low health?

    That said, a lot of the characters in the 1-2 star.png range don't need new write ups each ranking. Copy, paste, move on to characters that actually changed.
  • First of all, thank you to everyone who is involved in making these rankings - they are one of the most enjoyable parts of my MPQ experience, and they add a lot to the game. Thank you especially to Mischiefmaker, who heads up this endeavor and puts a lot of his own time into making the rankings happen.

    I've dealt with polls, rankings and Top X lists a lot as part of my RL job, and I'd like to make some suggestions. Take these as you will!

    1) I would list at least the ranking of every character. For the sake of completeness, it's good to list all characters. If people notice one character is missing, they might think that others are missing as well.
    2) I would NOT do a write-up for every character. This is time consuming and painful, and makes this more of a chore for you, than something fun that you look forward to doing. Instead, let me propose a hybrid solution (I Haven't seen anyone else suggest this):

    A) Do a write-up for all new characters since the last ranking. Each of these characters should have a fresh view, and should be easier to write about.

    B) Do a write-up for all pre-existing characters that have had major changes since the last ranking. For instance, CMAGS, Black Panther and X-Force had some major revamps since the July rankings. The True-Healing characters had changes as well.

    C) Do a write-up for anyone who has a major swing in rankings, and doesn't fall under A or B (maybe +/- 8 spots).

    C) Separate this into three lists: One for 1*, One for 2* and one for 3*&4*. For the 1* list and the 2* list, only discuss major changes (new characters, revamped powers or major change in rankings). The 1* and 2* characters don't really matter for the end game anymore, except for stuff like Balance of Power. Having the 1* and 2* lists be separate from the 3*/4* list will also make it easier for people making the transition from 2* to 3* to figure out which 2* characters they should target to maximize first, and by definition, these characters are less interesting to talk about than 3* and 4* characters.

    D) Do a write-up for any characters in the Top "X" of the 3* and 4* list. I'd suggest making it the Top 10, Top 15, or Top 20. Over time, the Top (10/15/20) will represent a significantly decreasing percentage of total characters.

    3) The developers of the game are very committed to making MPQ fresh and frequently updated - not just with new content, but with revamping older content (characters) that need changes. Because of this, I would update this list every two months. Jettisoning 60% of the write-ups of characters should make this a much more manageable task.

    Anyhow, just my $0.02. I think that the hybrid rankings/write-up would keep the enjoyable parts of the rankings as-is, while getting rid of the filler that makes it a tedious task!
  • perhaps you could write about a char only when it receives a huge buff/nerf otherwise do a 2 lines description and that is it ...
  • First off, I think with the speed of new characters, 2 months is more appropriate. By November we are already looking at 6 new characters and potentially, 3 new powers (Loki, Rags, Doom)

    Write ups - Cut and paste current 48 into the new rankings. Do a quick read through with the thought process, has anything significant changed from this. If no, then that one is done.

    For example, next time, Storm (and other tile destroyers) need 1 new line added to existing writeup. "The value of Lightning Strike is slightly increased with the presence of Charged tiles."

    To make sure everything stays fresh, you can have scheduled once a year rewrites. In March, characters from A-F get rewrites. In June, characters from G-M. In September, characters from N-S. In December, characters from T-Z.

    Just my thoughts, thanks for all the hard work. Your guide is invaluable.
  • Isay_Isay wrote:
    Perhaps limit the extensive writeups for new characters and existing characters who saw a major change in their ranking (nerfs/buffs/metashift/WAT?!s)?

    These are an excellent tool for older and newer players and your efforts on each edition is truly appreciated.

    I've quoted the above because I think this is a smart idea.

    I know from my previous years of gaming experience(Magic the Gathering, DOTA 2, League of Legends, Smash Bros, many other fighting games) how tough making a tier list and talking about WHY characters/things are ranked that way is hard to accomplish. This is something that takes HOURS or more. I really appreciate your tier list and explanations as a newer player, and it tells me how valuable things are or aren't(*COUGH* BEAST COLOSSUS DOC SUCK *COUGH*) so I can spend my ISO, HP, and Covers wisely. If it came down to it, I'd be happy with a tier list and your opinions on major character changes or why you disagree with the tier list. Maybe you can have color commentary from trusted sources as well? I don't know if this helps any, but this is what Fighting games use(since tier lists change so often and everyone has a different opinion)
  • I just wanted to drop in and add my thanks for these rankings as well. As a relatively new player (only 56 days in) I really benefited from reading the last two rankings. Thanks a ton for doing it.
  • Monthly rankings, use same information for each character unless they get buffed or nerfed. New characters get new information. Drop the songs (sorry locked) add link to forum for each character. Once you get it set up on a spreadsheet. First sheet links each character to their own sheet/tab. You only have to modify it when needed for each character making copying and paste way easier without putting up old information. Memes and heat map are nice just not as important as up to date rankings. Also if you want breaks you can get me or locked to step in and do that months rankings or start a rotation. Other people had good ideas if I didn't cover them sorry. Splitting characters up by their stars not going to happen, dropping everyone votes for a council not very likely.