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Vem

Wed, May 1 2024 4:58 PM (30 replies)
  • BrianCheese
    43 Posts
    Wed, Apr 24 2024 5:55 AM

    Okay, I think you've probably realised by now [ref: discord] that I might not be a dyed-in-the-wool conspiracy theorist, but I have enough of an unhealthy belief that anything computer code related is open to manipulation and if someone is clever enough to create a game like wgt (albeit golf sims were the first big sport to realise it would work well on a PC or games consul or even phone) then there's someone equally clever who can create something that enables the creator or 'producer' to manipulate results, if they wished.

    My first and largely unproven gripe with wgt, long before VEM was mentioned and before we first became friends is the elements of the game that ruins the 'authentic' experience. The shots that defy the laws of physics, putts that should miss (or vice versa), wild slices or hooks that somehow get you a heartbeat when you thought you'd be playing out of the rough 22yds from where you wanted it - because the quirks aren't always a TP stopping an impossible shot without the vokey in their bag to allow impossible shots to really happen, they sometimes benefit us, even if we brood over it less than we would when it goes against us.

    These are the quirks of virtual golf because it doesn't matter what algorithm they write, golf is the perfect game to replicate this way - it's very much the individuals game play that dictates the outcome; there are a multitude of very small mistakes or errors that could happen IRL that might happen in wgt. It's always been a case of 'the game does its best to replicate the real game of golf and even the best shots in golf don't always have the best outcomes because [insert variables: ball quality, wind speed and direction, green speed and direction, a yard not necessarily equating to a yard depending on which course you play; whether or not you had sex before you play, how do you feel because, you know, human beings are just complex machines and they can't guarantee doing the same thing over and over again... WGT's best excuse for the quirks of its game is to point the finger back at us.

    It's essentially life and some days, regardless of how brilliant you feel yadda yadda yadda someone or something is going to throw some lemons in your general direction. That's your real 'WGT' position. If someone engages with them or their people about something like VEM, whatever it can do, vague is best; political statements such as 'telling us the truth' don't always mean we're being told the truth; just because blah says blah isn't working or real isn't guaranteed to be true. Politicians have been lying to us for hundreds of years, a company that desperately needs to generate income isn't necessarily going to admit to something possibly unethical because we live in a world where manufactured outrage is just as effective as the genuine stuff and no one wants to be on the receiving end.

    I'm sure you can point me in the right direction for philosophical discussions about WGT, but I had to play a ranked round yesterday for my weekly challenge and the course was one I play regularly when I go in the coin rooms. I played the 9 holes I had to at Congressional and despite some atrocious shots - hooks (or whatever the computer gives us as I don't think this game can replicate a proper hook), slices and a general sloppiness that had it been replicated in a coin room I would have lost 5 of the 9 holes I played, yet I still managed to shoot a -4.

    I mentally noted a few of the proper off-ding shots I made, mainly because I was deliberately being clumsy and heavy handed and when the round finished I was mightily confused. But you see I remember coin games (I actually only play it for the six or seven sponsored games, when I whinge about them on discord, it's my daily dose of sponsored games I'm whining about, it's not like I'm addicted to them, I might have the occasional out of sponsorship game, but usually when I have ten minutes to kill or a goal to achieve), where I've played wayward shots against Legends, TLs, Cs and TCs and the shot I'm given is closer to my ranked 'ability', but if I'm playing a TM or lower, every little millimetre I'm off from the ding the 'bad' shot is accentuated. This is slicing a shot right of the flag will take it 30yds right rather than settling 9 feet from the right side of the hole.

    We've touched on this before, but I played golf until the early 1990s and to a relatively good standard and my betters, the ones who would shoot sub par rounds at our actual golf club, will tell you that you can be having the round of your life and something goes wrong on the 17th that turns that 66 into a 74; the sense of crushing disappointment when you watch an opponent in real life send a putt rolling towards the hole that has an almost perpendicular break with a ball speed that would be seen as attractive by a tortoise and it Just. Goes. Straight. In.

    You don't get the disappointment because all Earth-bound golf courses abide by the laws of physics; and they don't exist in a world where your/his putt starts off too narrow or too wide to be the hole, but the reverse camera shot is of it having moved a number of degrees before it plops in the hole for an unlikely/well-deserved victory. 

    I have periods when I have far too much time on my hands and being an analytical kind of guy as a result of all this time I've spent on this game, I see just how inconsistent it is. I'm sure other people see things all the time - the number of people I've had volunteer their belief the game is fixed during a game is quite high and, of course, a poor workman always blames his tools. It might be that coin room games are the most direct - and promoted - way to get a game against someone else. By their nature they immediately place a player within some kind of competitive position. Coins have little or no value outside of the coin room environment, so another OCD loving hook can be sewn into the fabric of the game. By their nature coin games attract people with opinions; if you thought the game was fixed before you found the coin rooms then you will meet a lot of likeminded souls and a lot of people who could be 'easily swayed' because we've all seen the quirks of this games from both sides. 

    If VEM doesn't work the way I thought, then there is something in this game that does. 

  • HamdenPro
    2,430 Posts
    Wed, Apr 24 2024 1:10 PM

    BrianCheese:
    such as 'telling us the truth' don't always mean we're being told the truth

                             

    When I first started playing golf irl, and after my father decided I was hopeless, he enrolled me in some lessons with the Pro at the country club we belonged to. This guy was a former PGA pro who, for a short while, had a "card" and played for few years on the tour.

    I remember watching him show off by bouncing balls of a manhole cover (sewer cover) which was a few hundred yards down the driving range from the tee box area. It was amazing to watch how accurate he was. Notwithstanding, he did not hit the manhole cover every time. Sometimes he was a little long, sometimes short or hit just to the left or right. There was a deviation albeit slight.

    A virtual golf game wherein, if you hit every shot the same way, given the variables that exist, same wind, same aim, same power on the meter, and the ball lands exactly the same every time, is not a realistic game. There are many golf games that are just like that.

    WGT prides itself on being the most realistic golf game available. WGT attempts to simulate the game as much as possible - enter "VEM". 

    Although it seems like I am saying that VEM is about variance, that is not the case. However, VEM may cause some variance. According to the patent, some of what VEM does is manipulate the sweet spot of the club face. This may make it easier for newbies, such as beginner clubs (irl) with large sweet spots as well as make it a little more difficult for more skilled players, like a real life Pro's clubs (steel shafts, smaller sweet spots, etc). As you know, there is a difference between the standard clubs you can buy at the local sports store verse the custom clubs provided a PGA Pro. However, in WGT, it does not matter how skilled you are, if you are a high enough level, a Tour Pro can get the same clubs as a Tour Legend. However, the same clubs in the hand of the Tour Pro should not result in the same shots as a Tour Legend. The clubs should play in accordance with that particular member's skill level. VEM manipulates the equipment based upon the player's skill level. As the player's skill improves, or for that matter, deteriorates, VEM makes adjustments.

    As in the real game, as with WGT, there are the errant shots, or bad shots ending up great, and great shots ending up bad, to the extent you want to blame VEM, well then, just another example of how VEM makes WGT a very realistic game.

    I do not always, and in fact seldom do I, agree with SamSpayed, other than we both agree that I am awesome (although he may publicly deny it for "street cred"), I do agree, that when it comes to the poorly executed shot, the blame lies with the player and not VEM.

    As for your realization that the game could be manipulated by WGT to bring about a certain result, I am confident that WGT does not use VEM to bring about a desired result or tournament/coin room outcome. The fact is, an individual with knowledge, who can hack into the server, can manipulate their own play by ensuring they hit at that point in time where the conditions are ideal. In such a manner, all would be needed is to hit the ding. Manipulation of an outcome, in an online game, any game, works both ways.  I am more inclined to believe that, more likely than not, it is the savvy, and creative, players that manipulate the game in their favor and not WGT using VEM to assist them.

    For your perseverance in your beliefs, and continued discussion with regard to same, it is my great, and distinguished, honor to announce that :

                

    Furthermore, with your consent, I would like to feature you in a soon to be released series: "THE WGT FILES"

                  

  • SamSpayed
    4,927 Posts
    Wed, Apr 24 2024 1:45 PM

    HamdenPro:
    I do not always, and in fact seldom do I, agree with SamSpayed, other than we both agree that I am awesome (although he may publicly deny it for "street cred)"

    I agree that you are awesome on those occasions when you agree with me 😄

    HamdenPro:
    I do agree, that when it comes to the poorly executed shot, the blame lies with the player and not VEM.

    Awesome 🙂

  • MioKontic
    4,610 Posts
    Sat, Apr 27 2024 2:40 AM

    HamdenPro:
    enter "VEM"

    HP - that's it in a nutshell.  Not the words I quoted, the whole thing, but my nutshell is already crammed and I didn't have room for any more.  Anwyay, it was succinct, eloquent, and, as you said, out there.

    We hit a bad shot, or a good shot badly, and we want someone to blame.  Why not blame WGT, after all it is their game.

    But are we wrong to do so?

    Yes.

    Or maybe no.

    The manhole cover, it got me wondering, maybe that's what WGT have at the bottom of some of their holes, that would explain why a ball that is hit perfectly, with correct line and length, lands on the exact spot where it was meant to - in the hole - and then shot out at 200 miles an hour like it had been fired from a cannon, and lands 450yds away, further than we can hit any WGT driver, and invariably a lost ball.  I consider myself extremely fortunate to not be good enough to be that good, having only ever done it once, back in 2011, my first ever hole-in-one, at Kiawah, and it must have been sponge at the bottom of the cup because the ball stayed in there.  Thankfully.  (Did you see what I did there?  I tried to make one sentence into two sentences by using a full stop that shouldn't really be there.  And in case you hadn't noticed, earlier I made one paragraph into 4 paragraphs).

    This post will now be moderated (whatever that means, as I don't think WGT's understanding of the term agrees with the Oxford English Dictionary's meaning of same term), and as it is Saturday it will be a day or two or more, plus 8 hours, before you will be able to read it, by which time it will have lost it's impact.  And that's if it gets posted at all.  Which it might not.  (I did it again ;) )

    And I agree with you, the truth is out there.  The truth about what?

  • MioKontic
    4,610 Posts
    Sat, Apr 27 2024 2:45 AM

    Can I ask that all future posts, regardless of the topic, get posted in the WGT Tournament Announcements section of the forum as that section is not moderatable.  Thank you.

    Is that a new word?  I need to speak to someone to see if that is a new word.  I should get it patented.  Going to do it now before someone steals my idea.  Or it gets VEM'd!

  • BrianCheese
    43 Posts
    Sun, Apr 28 2024 2:18 AM

    "when it comes to the poorly executed shot, the blame lies with the player and not VEM" ...

    Do you know how many times I've dinged drives and the ball has ended up anywhere but the fairway? We've all been playing long enough to be familiar with the way we play and the variations there are.

    The thing is, I think we're almost talking about different things. When I discovered VEM it felt a little like an epiphany, but the good thing of the last two years is I'm part of a CC where erudite, awesome and far more knowledgeable people than myself will educate me without a hint of exasperation, and I take that on. I think, initially, VEM gave me a hook to hang my underlying frustration with the game. It's clear that VEM does give the game that certain variance that will happen IRL; the main problem is IRL we don't get the analyse our efforts in the same way. I played shots based on how far my clubs went and then adjust accordingly; if I played golf as well IRL I would be on the seniors tour.

    I don't think VEM manipulates the game, I also don't think it spoils the game because if it was just all down to maths it would literally be shooting 49s everyday. I think what is manipulating certain areas of the game - person v person areas - are changes to 'forgiveness'. In coin rooms you're already tooled up by the apparel challenge - A nice shirt will give 3 more power on drives.

    Despite what level you are in the coin rooms you will always be drawn against whoever is waiting for a game; there might be algorithms trying not to pair hacks with legends, but even if they do the game balances things up. In coin rooms hitting the ding is most important because any hook or slice, however minute, will be accentuated depending on how low your opponents ranks is. I think games that have coins need to be balanced out and this is where I see a distinct difference between ranked rounds - where lowering your average takes you higher up the ladder, but probably needing to upgrade some clubs, whereas devout coin room players are probably not interested in getting their averages lower and their levels raised. I've seen impossible putts, improbable flop shots, approach shots get caught by a magical 70mph crosswind, TPs getting more heartbeat shots with the unlikeliest clubs or holing an 80 foot putt. I think WGTs 'handicap' system kicks in and the score is evened up. Low ranked player gets far more forgiveness, therefore force the better player to play to his/her best. There's just no logic to it; I know this isn't real life and certain compromises need to be made to make this a viable concept; when I played much better players I usually had my backside given to me. I'd maybe 'win' 3 or 4 of the 18 holes, if I was lucky.

    I've played quite a few TLs, Cs and TCs in recent weeks and I often think 'they're playing badly' and I wonder if there's someone sitting there thinking the same way I do; why is my game all over the place, it shouldn't be, I'm not doing anything different than I was yesterday? 

    Maybe no one really cares as long as they have some fun. I'm probably really overthinking this. 

  • MioKontic
    4,610 Posts
    Sun, Apr 28 2024 3:14 PM

    BrianCheese:
    Maybe no one really cares

    No comment.

    BrianCheese:
    I'm probably really overthinking this.

    Most definitely!  I just took a quick glance at your profile.  After 6 years you are still only a Legend.  But that doesn't really prove anything.  However, your average of over 69 does; to put it politely, your game sucks.  A quick glance at your score history, and in particular your stroke play scores, backs up what I think.  Now if you were SoCalJim you would blame your poor scores on the poor quality ball you use, and the fact you don't have the best clubs (by the way, do you get albatrosses?), but really, your skill level just simply isn't good enough.  Yes, VEM may come into play on the odd shot, but it would not ruin your score to such an extent as your score history shows.

    Just a litte analogy, of sorts - many years ago I went on a snooker coaching weekend.  Someone on the course asked why us amateurs don't get kicks as often as the pros did.  The simple answer is that even us poor amateurs got kicks just as often as the pros, but we just didn't know we were getting them.  And in a similar way, you don't really understand why you are scoring badly, thinking it's VEM rather than your own skill level.

    All the above was a little tongue-in-cheek, although the part about your skill level not being up to scratch is true.  Just because you ding a shot does not mean you will hit the fairway, or the green, you still need to aim your shot in the right direction to account for wind.  Maybe you don't move the aim marker enough?  And if you miss the ding this could exacerbate the shot depending on which side of the ding you missed.

    Try to figure out where your bad shots are.  How close is your approach to the pin?  How good is your first putt, and how often do you sink your first putt?  I suspect this is the area you need to work on.

  • SamSpayed
    4,927 Posts
    Sun, Apr 28 2024 5:52 PM

    BrianCheese:
    the good thing of the last two years is I'm part of a CC where erudite, awesome and far more knowledgeable people than myself will educate me without a hint of exasperation, and I take that on.

    Thanks for the kind words, Phil.  We're happy to have you in our CC and are happy to (try to) help 🍺

    BrianCheese:
    I think WGTs 'handicap' system kicks in and the score is evened up. Low ranked player gets far more forgiveness, therefore force the better player to play to his/her best.

    I don't play many coin games, but I've never felt handicapped when I do.  Sure, I've played against lower-tiered players and lost.  Many times.  But let's face it... there are a lot of very good players out there in Coin Room Land, even at the TP - M - TM tiers. They're good at coin games because that's all they play.  There are also a lot of players in coin rooms that are just trying to get a quick game or two in... and so they play very aggressively, especially with their putts.  If they make their shot... great... if not, they just quit the game and try again.  

    But at the end of the day, does it really matter what tier your opponent is?  You have to beat her/him no matter what their tier or talent level.  When I play, I just try to focus on my own game and not worry about what they are doing.  If they bang in a 50-foot putt, I smile and congratulate them for a great shot.  If they made that putt because they got a little more forgiveness, I don't care.  I just see that as even more of a challenge to buck up and make mine 😉

  • CaptRon48
    185 Posts
    Mon, Apr 29 2024 7:32 AM

    Great attitude! My father always told me athletically no one "beats" you. You are just as capable and only beat yourself.

  • SamSpayed
    4,927 Posts
    Wed, May 1 2024 10:00 AM

    CaptRon48:

    Great attitude! My father always told me athletically no one "beats" you. You are just as capable and only beat yourself.

    You are not defeated when you lose. You are defeated when you quit. -- Paulo Coelho

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