VA_M.O.N.E.Y.: To add a couple of things to what rod said,
Think of a turn-based games site like way-back when people use to play chess by the mail. That is they would make a move, then send a postcard through the mail to someone who in turn made a move and sent them the move back and forth through the mail.
So a lot of people will sign on, make moves on the games they have, then leave the site. Then maybe the next day, they will sign back on and see what moves they have waiting for them.
Like rod mentioned, there are even faster time limits (like complete games within 1 hour), but in my opinion - if you like live games, there are other game sites out there that offer live games. But turn-based games might grow on you. Give it a try - that is, start some games - make your moves - then come back tomorrow and check to see what games have moves waiting.
Luke Skywalker: Why not use auto-pass for fisher-timed games?
I mean I guess I always try to play for win/loss, and not timeout of my opponent - so if an auto-pass can help keep a game going even if it's fisher-timed game, I can only see that as a disadvantage to those who try to wait until their opponent is off-line to play their move in the hopes to get them to time out.... which I guess is one way of doing things but what is the point of playing games if you are not going to let your opponent move? OK, sorry... i'm getting off on a tangent.... I try to not even play fisher-timed games anyway...
Luke Skywalker: I was about to write almost the exact same thing on this discussion on Feature Request, but decided to read the other boards before replying - and you said almost exactly what I was thinking also.
For example - I like to use AutoPass, and Fencer does not - we have a game together - if Fencer makes a move, and goes to me - let the system autopass it (if it can) and give it back to Fencer to make a move. In this way, Fencer is happy that he does not have to use autopass, and I'm happy because I can use autopass.
Anyway, the exact 3 things you listed is exactly what I would love to see also. Even though I don't like the idea of an opponent being able to just write " . " as a message to mess me up since you know there will be a few users who just like to cause problems who would do that.... but that can be a suggestion later down the road - to autopass even if there is a new message (with the reply of "Opponenet autopassed without reading last message" sent back) - but again, that suggestion can wait for now.
I don't like the idea of it punishing someone who does not challenge - for example, myself - I'm not challenging anyone until I get my total number of games down, but I will take any challenge.
I think if a person is not on the site for 1 month, then they should be placed in retirement so no one can challenge them. That would be my vote. (And if the person comes back to the site, they can unretire and continue from where they were at.)
playBunny: A 2 win match would then be unfair for 1 player in the games in which 1 color has an advantage over the other - since 1 player will get the advantage twice.
Of course I agree with you for many of the games - well sort of, for most I would rather see just a 1 game match. I know my 3 day Stairs (no cube) (Sstairs in ◙ The Gammon Cube ◙ Fellowship) are pretty popular with just 1 game matches.
Czuch Chuckers: That is a good question. I remember suggesting if that happened, then first send user a warning to get out of some, then if they don't "randomly" put them into "retirement" in all but 1..... where if they do renew their membership at some point, they can start from where they left off from.
But I'm not sure what Fencer ever did or if something like that is in place.
Czuch Chuckers: I don't think there is a "list" anywhere, but if you know the person, you can go to their profile, click on the "Stairs" page.
In the "Step (your/max)" column, if it shows like "-/2", that means they are on retirement from that stair. If nothing shows up, it means they quit the stairs (but just finishing up their current games). For example, in my profile - I'm retired from a few stairs like the the swap 5-in-line stairs and such.
crosseyed: Yea, you got to watch the Fischer clock games - I usually never play in one that does not at least have a 1 day bonus. (Meaning you will at the least have 1 day to make your move from the time your opponent moves)
So anything with less of a bonus (like the example here of 3 hours) means if you let your last time get down too low, a game might come back to you with very little time left..... and hopefully you are on-line. :-)
So in the start of the game, you start out with 72 hours (3 days) to make your move.
Lets say you use 24 hours - so now you are down to 48 hours.
Opponent makes move
The games comes back to you with the 48 hours left PLUS the bonus of 3 hours - giving you 51 hours for your next move.
Lets say you took 50 hours to make your move. Now you are down to 1 hour
The games comes back to you with the 1 hours left PLUS the bonus of 3 hours - giving you 4 hours for your next move.
If you do not make a move within 4 hours of when your opponent does, then you time out.
This is how the Fishers clock works.
(The Limit: That is the MAX amount of time you can get. So lets say you make all your moves UNDER 3 hours of when your opponent does, then you would actually start gaining time on the clock - up to a max of 7 days.)
playBunny: Hum... A private stair for fellowships.
I would hate to see many more public stairs for the fact that too many will spread people out too much - unless one or a couple were designated as "official" stairs - and that is the stairs you would want to join to play the best of the best.
S O C R A T E S: My suggestion to anyone who hates to play lower rated players and only want to play same rated players, then stairs may not be the best thing.
Unless you want to stay around long enough to climb the stairs - then once a stairs spread out some and you are near the top, then you will only have to worry about being challenged by players close to you - which most likely will also be higher rated players.
estanto: Well that is one thing I like about BrainKing's stairs - they did not just copy another system, but tried to do a few things different to try to make it different for the site.
I'm sure if problems arise where players are unable to challenge people, and such and something like being able to challenge above would fix it, Fencer would look into doing that. But right now, the system is working great how it is. My opinion is to try it how the system is now, and once (if) something does not work, then would be the time to start thinking about being able to challenge above yourself - but since when someone loses, I believe there will always be people at the bottome and near enough to you to always be able to challenge people at the same (or below) your level to earn your way up to play the top players. (instead of skipping the same level people and jumping up to challenge the top players right away.)
Walter Montego posted about not liking the idea of not being able to challenge people on higher steps on the BrainKing.com board, so I will expand an answer here.
The point of the stairs is that the best players will sooner or later raise to the top steps. If a new person joins a stair, they have to EARN the right to challenge the top player - they need to play people on their own step and slowly climb to earn the right to play the top players.
The purpose of letting people challenge people in the steps right below them is so that will allow the top players to hopefully have someone to challenge so they can at least keep some games going, and not just jump to the top with no games to play. (Then again they do not have to challenge if they do not want to.)
Eriisa: yea, i think once it starts to spread out some, it will become less of a problem. But would be nice if you do click on the "..." to show everyone, to also show the other steps - but not that big of a deal (to myself that is)
In each stairs, it shows all active games - but would be interesting to see completed games also - see who was playing who & who won and such. Maybe not the complete history of games, but maybe the last month - or last 50 games completed in the stairs or something. (or all the games if possible)
dmk: That would be good to know quickly which stairs you have challenges to be made - maybe even on the profile page - maybe a (1/0) for 1 challenge made, 0 challenges against you) or something similar.