Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

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Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Xavier on Sun 8 Sep - 10:58

Hi everyone!

Here is finally my debrief as captain of the team in 2013.

First, I would like to congratulate everyone who made it possible for us to go. It's a big effort financially wise, and it's time consuming as well. We are all winners because we made it, we had fun together and we had the chance to take part to the largest warhammer event in the world Smile 
I want to give here my individual feeling and feedback about each player Smile 

Alan Roncoroni: Our best scorer with deamons, despite some really bad luck on some matches. You aimed for 90pts, and sadly those hazards made this goal unreachable. Maybe the list would have been less subject to bad luck with the GUO? This I don't know, but good overall performance.
Raphael Jenelten: The list was special, but you know how to play it at its best. Outstanding work for the match-ups estimation ! (an example to follow for all of us) And sadly your last game didn't allow you to reach a score over 70pts. Solid work Smile 
Victor Rossier: You had two months to master Skavens, which are one of the most difficult army to play imho. And you did very well ! Everybody was saying WOC would crush you, and you proved the contrary ! Very solid performance, and I think we finally found our Skaven player Laughing 
Paul Berclaz : The unlucky 0-20 at the first game made us all scared, but you proved us that you were a dwarves expert during the other 5 games. 59pts in 5 games, congratulations Wink 
Andy Geiser: I would like to thank him really much to be able to join us last minute. The list was not a very good 8th edition one (with all the deathlore around) and despite some clear lack of experience with 8th edition, you brought us enough points to show us that with some additional training, you had more than the level to be part of the team.
Filip Grebac I think here there's a combination between a bad army composition and bad luck. The 20 trolls (120LP !!!! haha) seemed good on paper, but deathlore was too much around for your list to work. But also, I would like to say, you had VERY bad matchups for some games. You were the sacrified one, the program decided. Given that, we can't really blame you for the overall low score Smile 
Dimitri Zaganidis: Well, here is a combination of multiple factors. First a lack of experience with the list that yielded wrong estimations for the match-ups against orc and goblins, that you had to take 4 times. Here we see, that the program works well if we are able to estimate our games well, and that we shouldn't try to find solely the best list, but also the best list that suits the player. Smile We have to learn from that.

I'm going to split my analysis into 4 categories:

1) The preparation of the ETC
2) The selection of the team
3) The metagame
4) The future of the ETC Swiss Team

1) The preparation of the ETC

This year for the first time, we managed to introduce some training throughout the year, and I must say I am really happy of the result.
We should not forget, that many players such as me or Dimitri, never really had a strong experience of the 8th edition before. I for instance started to play seriously at Divination 2012 with my Bretonians. I think that it greatly helped to get us an (arguably more or less) competitive team.
We also saw a new generation of players coming (Paul, Stefan, Victor, Christian) that are now full members of the ETC group. This is very positive, and I think we should continue towards that direction (with training days, training tournaments with ETC rules...etc)
However, we can do much more in the preparation right before the ETC.
I know this is hard to achieve for everybody, but clearly some of our lists were either not adapted or not tested enough (Orcs and Empire for instance) and some matchups were not estimated in a corrected way.
However let's keep in mind that it is our first serious ETC since 2010. We had a HUGE gap to fill, and I think we are on the right path to success.
We have the largest pool of player we ever had, and we are all very motivated to get better.

2) The selection of the Team

Okay, this was something that clearly annoyed me during this year. For me we should set clear responsabilities, and a fair distribution of rights and duties.
I must say, I have become against the fact we have 3 captains. This simply because it doesn't seem fair to myself. I feel like, it's splitting the right and not the duties.
Indeed, captain is more a burden that a honor, that seems pretty clear to me.
I have really thought about it thoroughly, to know whether I wanted to be captain again or not. It's a big work that I had to do myself only.
So for next year, that's either we continue with three captains, but then everyone has to be involved with the same amount of charges in the preparation of the ETC, or I will continue it myself, alongside with the other people of course.
Therefore two solutions.
a) Three captains that assume BOTH rights and duties (but it won't work imho)
b) One captain that assume everything
And about the team itself, I would like to keep the selection in april, after the team-tournament. I think it's a good date that gives enough room for everyone to stand out, and also enough time to form a good team and have a useful preparation.
First, I am going to announce a first group of about 20 people in a week or two, that I judge qualified enough to be in the team next year. This group will include a fair number of each linguistic regions, and might be enlarged if new players are starting to compete well in tournaments.
With this group we can start to talk about team strategies, metagame, share opinions about lists and break down 2013 results.
And after the team tournament in Sion, given on individual skills, team composition and availability of players, we can choose 8 players within this group.

The Metagame

Yet to come

The future of the ETC Team

I have to say, I ended the ETC with a very bad result as a captain, but still with the smile Smile 
Of course we are not Poland, we only have a slight chance to make a performance at the ETC, that seems pretty clear for me.
Nevertheless, I don't think we have to suffer in term of players' level to most of the team that take part of the ETC (except the Top 5-10).
I do not consider myself as one of the best player in Switzerland, because I still have a lot to learn and I'm not always aware of the new things that are out, but I personally never felt that my games were out of control or anything. Except the last one, I always had control upon my games and my opponents were forced to react more than to act.
This is really positive to me. We have good (and very good) players, that's a fact. I remember in 2009, David Schreyer was saying to me, that our pool of good player was small but that good players in Switzerland back then were not so far in term of skills from good german players. This is of course a bit less true now, because we had this "gap" at the beginning of the 8th edition, and we saw a new generation of players coming, that almost entirely replaced the old one (only me and Dim are left from 7th edition generation). The level is there Smile 
That's why I think we should really work on:
-train better to maintain and improve that level
-get a better metagame !
This second point is the most important to me. We focused in 2012-13 in raising skills of individuals, now in 2013-14 we should focus in raising the level of our team-comp.
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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  darksteve on Sun 8 Sep - 15:47

Nice posting and thank you for your work as a Captain.
Somehow I feel responsible, that the team was such a "mess-up" in the end because of me.

However let's keep in mind that it is our first serious ETC since 2010. We had a HUGE gap to fill, and I think we are on the right path to success.
We have the largest pool of player we ever had, and we are all very motivated to get better.
Fully agreement Smile

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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Xavier on Sun 8 Sep - 20:36

I mean, you have nothing to be blamed for Smile 
But of course, one will probably argue that no swiss-german was there, I hope that people will understand that it will be more due of the absence of the 3 best swiss german players than any preference of mine in term of players origin Very Happy 
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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Dim on Mon 9 Sep - 7:58

This is really positive to me. We have good (and very good) players, that's a fact. I remember in 2009, David Schreyer was saying to me, that our pool of good player was small but that good players in Switzerland back then were not so far in term of skills from good german players. This is of course a bit less true now, because we had this "gap" at the beginning of the 8th edition, and we saw a new generation of players coming, that almost entirely replaced the old one (only me and Dim are left from 7th edition generation). The level is there Smile
I think the gap is bigger, and this can be seen in our lists this year. Back in 7th edition, our lists were more appropriate to the metagame (that we understood better) than this year (in my opinion).
And Andy also is of the old guard Smile

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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Xavier on Mon 9 Sep - 19:16


Dim, I don't speak in term of lists, but in term of players skills.
The problem is, every team has filled this gap a bit.
We saw it, there are no small teams anymore for us. We lost against Ukraine, to say, but we also did good against Finland.

I think what we really lacked, is the killer instinct. We need players that are able to score points when need be.
We had very safe players, but nobody to score points. One of the thing we could improve for next year, is thus to identify two categories of players.
1) the one who are good to play safe, but might not have the capacity to play offensively
2) the one who have the skills to attack and bring points

And then, we could better use the potential of each player, because since our players base is not very large, we have to deal with that and put the right player behind the right army.

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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Dim on Mon 9 Sep - 19:43

I just wanted to say that part of the skill of a player is to make list appropriated to the current metagame context. Maybe we know more or less how to play our armies, but don't know what will be out to have an army appropriated to the context, so we had difficulties in the paring avoiding all the terrible match ups. (Our VC vs OG, Empire, Our OG and Dwarves vs Daemons and VC, our Skavens vs Chaos dwarves, weakness that some other builds have not, or less.

But yes, the best players of Switzerland do have some good skills on the board, I agree with this.

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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  ElDorte on Tue 10 Sep - 3:12

Thanks Xavier for your work and the debriefing.

I fully agree with you. And i also think that the players here are skilled enough to score top 10 at the ETC, but i think we made 3 major mistakes:

1. We didn't take the time to test the matchups. The scores for the parring program where more feelings than knowledge.

2. We had no real plan in our lists. Everyone played something good but i think we need to make lists and army with specific jobs (crush corners, play safe, crush everything Very Happy )

3. Our lists should be deathlore prove.

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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Buchi on Wed 11 Sep - 15:02

Nice post Xavier and thanks a lot for the work you have done!

Even though I have to say that I disagree on quite a few points - sorry to be a pain in the ass - again... Rolling Eyes 

Preparation
Indeed we did quite a bit with that and improved it compared to previous years. But that was not so difficult, as we basically started from 0. Smile
Imo there is much room for improvement as you said. Indeed a new generation of players is getting involved, which is extremely nice and most important imo. But to be fair you have to say, that we also lost quite a few very capable players of the old generation. So the playerbase remains small.
About the training in itself - I have to say, that the more able players imo did not really teach much at the training days. Feedback to me suggested, that it was basically just playing a game without much commenting on what to improve or do different between each other. Even though I have to say, that I have not been present for most of the times.
Where I say an extreme need of taking more care is the estimation process of results that are fed into DIMs program. Imo there is room for 15-20+ points per round alone in that. But it seems that we are on a good way with that for the coming ETC.

Team selection
Could you elaborate on which duties exactly you had to take solely on your own? I would be much interested to know, where you would need help or where you think you did not get (enough) support. That also make it much easier to answer to your proposition a+b.
For the rest of the suggested process I am with you.

Future of the ETC team
About the player level we seem to have quite different points of view. Firstly your view on yourself is somewhat strange - you are NTR No1 of Switzerland and yet you do not even consider yourself one of the best players of CH? That seems strange. And if that really would be the case - why did you take part in the ETC, when there are better options?
I hope it is clear that the last question is mainly rhetorical and not quite serious. clown 
Considering the overall playerlevel of Switzerland compared to the rest of the world though, CH is imo slightly below average. That is mainly due to a very small community as CH is a very small country. Also the tournament scene though still existent is not the most active nor very large even taking CHs size and population into account. That makes it very hard to improve or keep track with the wider development of the game.
Furthermore, there is the linguistic barrier in CH that sometimes makes it hard to even talk with other players or to share views, experiences and knowledge. Thus even this very forum, has a slightly lower value then in other countries, as not everyone is able to tell/understand everything here. So we lose something on other countries alone from that.
Another point is the level of expierence - we only have a small amount of very skilled players and we only have a small amount of players that can keep up with all the developments of the (meta)game. Also we had kind of a disadvantage in regard to the 8th edition change, as some of the most expierenced players quit or others stopped playing for a while. Hence there is a small pool of teachers and we have the disavantage of beeing behind expierencewise.
Overall that imo is justification enough to assume being slightly - and I emphasize slightly below average on a worldwide comparison.

About your goals for 2014 I have a question: What exactly do you understand under the term "metagame" and how do you want to improve the "metagame" and "team comp level" exactly?




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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Pulps on Sun 15 Sep - 14:39



+1 about the preparation mentioned from Buchi.


I fully agree that maybe the biggest mistake is, in fact, the preparation.


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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Xavier on Fri 29 Nov - 14:48

I would like to comment a bit more on that, since I have totally forgotten to answer Very Happy 

About the training in itself - I have to say, that the more able players imo did not really teach much at the training days. Feedback to me suggested, that it was basically just playing a game without much commenting on what to improve or do different between each other.
Clearly something to improve: a better flow of knowledge from the good players to the more average players.
We could also do this by encouraging players to communicate more after a game (to point out mistakes and such)
What we could also do, is foster the after-tournaments talks, by first introducing a new "tournaments feedback" section to the forum (see below for the forum enhancement aspect) Smile

Could you elaborate on which duties exactly you had to take solely on your own? I would be much interested to know, where you would need help or where you think you did not get (enough) support. That also make it much easier to answer to your proposition a+b.
That was just, I am the only one going to the ETC 2014 fom the former "team selection comitee".
Alan was there last year, but clearly the responsability of organizational matter was for me.
I enjoy being captain, (even if it very time consuming). My argument it's more theoretical, since I would not like to organize and travel with a person that I would not have taken in the team myself in the first place (which is not likely to happen of course, but if this 3 captain thing is maintained, new linguistic captains can be voted instead of you and Alan and basically rule out my wishes, what if I am organizer and captain during the event I would not like to happen).
I hope you get my point, it's not easy to express it Wink

Firstly your view on yourself is somewhat strange - you are NTR No1 of Switzerland and yet you do not even consider yourself one of the best players of CH? That seems strange. And if that really would be the case - why did you take part in the ETC, when there are better options?
I don' think however, that they are 8 players in Switzerland better than I am Very Happy
(and even if that were to be the case, I played Bretonnians better Wink )

Considering the overall playerlevel of Switzerland compared to the rest of the world though, CH is imo slightly below average. That is mainly due to a very small community as CH is a very small country. Also the tournament scene though still existent is not the most active nor very large even taking CHs size and population into account. That makes it very hard to improve or keep track with the wider development of the game.
Totally agree !
But since the variance between countries has shrinked too imo, being under the average doesn't mean that we are further away from the Top10.
We clearly lack training (and we are penalized by the absence of many of our top players) but we can think better than most of the guys I have played at the ETC.

I think what we also lack is a single swiss forum to develop discussions, and I think we should focus on that in the coming weeks/months.
Having our discussions open here with the ETc forum being part of a broader one will also delete the "eliteness" of the swiss ETC team that we are trying to avoid.
I am personally for a forum where it would be possible to speak three languages (basically the person who opens the topic also choses the language of the discussion)
By doing so, we attract people from all parts of Switzerland, even those for which English is a barrier Smile

About your goals for 2014 I have a question: What exactly do you understand under the term "metagame" and how do you want to improve the "metagame" and "team comp level" exactly?
My goal as a captain for 2014 are the following:
1) involving more and more people to the ETC process
2) bring in new "blood" in the team in order to not stagnate at the same level
3) improve the general playing level, but especially the community exchanges, which I think have never been any better (we see a clear increase in french speaking people going to swiss german tournament and the other way around, we even have new swiss italian players attracted by the ETC and swiss tournaments)
4) Keep up the good training level across the year, yet definitely improve the training before the event, for which I will try to involve as many outsiders we can.

What do you people think about that? Smile
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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Dim on Fri 29 Nov - 16:04

Nice.

Do you have any response for making a team for french/other country qualifications?

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Re: Debriefing 2013 -> 2014 !

Post  Xavier on Fri 29 Nov - 16:14

I'm secretly following their discussions, and they have not yet decided for which type of qualifiers they want to go.
The tendency is to have a two weekend event, a first with all the teams to select those who are going to participate to the second event.
But the solution to simply have a swiss round and send the winner is also on the table.

In both case I will ask again if we can participate, I'll keep you updated Wink
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