ROAR – the automated record of played ASL games
Posted by Denny Koch on May 5, 2010
A quite common situation: you are sitting in front of an Advanced Squad Leader (ASL) scenario, thinking something like “whoever created this scenario… what the heck… you can never ever win with the American side!” or “I’ve got the impression that this scenario is badly balanced and the Russians have a high advantage!”
With ROAR (link to the ROAR website) it is possible to prove your suspicion: is this scenario really unbalanced (not too unusual in ASL where scenarios can present a real historical situation which had been hopeless from the beginning!) or is it due to my own incompetence why I’m generally loosing with this or that side?
But ROAR can do even more for you – besides providing information about play balance and the popularity of an ASL scenario! As a nice bonus, ROAR can record your played games for you, doing all the book-keeping: opponent, date, side played, result.
ROAR – what is it and why do I need it?
“ROAR” is the abbreviation for “remote on-line automated record“. This is a database which is filled consecutively by ASL players from all over the world – with the results of their played games. From this vast amount data you can gather a lot of interesting information: in which scenario which site has won how often or how many times a scenario was played at all etc..
Beside that, all gamers have the option to rate a scenario (on a graduated scale from “extremely recommendable” to “highly unfavorable”). Of course it’s obvious that, the more gamers take part in ROAR by posting their game results, the more information you can get out of this database. A higher number of reports is more reliable and of greater statistic value: a scenario played only 3 times with 3 Russian victories is not as representative as a scenario in which the Germans have won 243 and the Americans 256 times.
But ROAR offers more than an insight into the balance and statistics of a scenario – it offers a very useful personal archive for the dedicated ASL player: Each registered player can log in with his own password to his personal ASL statistic: ROAR records every game with date, opponent, played site and result. So, there is no need to archive your ASL games in some paper lists or Excel spreadsheets – just take a look into your ROAR statistic and you can keep track of all of your played games since the beginning of time. You can even add games played years ago.
The admins of ROAR try to keep the database updated, so it will always be adjusted with every new scenario published. Not only the original MMP and classic-scenarios are registered – you can find all third-party-scenarios from different sources (like journals and magazines) as well.
What do I have to do?
The ROAR system is very easy to use.
First of all there is the option to report your own results. This happens on the main page under the link “Add a Playing”. Of course only one of the two players involved in a scenario announces the game result, therefore you should agree about this with your opponent in order to prevent the double posting of a game.
After clicking “Add a playing“, a window opens where you choose the names of the players (real names, no pseudonyms or whatever!) who took part in your game (they must be registered players, but don’t worry, registering is very easy and you can even register your opponent if he has no internet access) and the scenario which was played.
Then you encounter a mask where you enter which player played which side (of course ROAR knows that the Paratrooper scenario “Le Manoir” only deals with American and German forces, so you can only choose between those) and who won this game. Furthermore it is possible to tell if you used a changed balance and even how funny the game was (if you don’t want to tell this now, you can do this later in your personal section). With a click on “Submit” the result is added to the database and general statistics as well as to your and your opponent’s personal statistic.
You can get an overview of your own ASL history with the link “Personal History”. There you have to log in with your name and password to attain a page with all your ASL results. If you print them out from time to time, you have a perfect archive of your ASL career 🙂
Besides the automatical registration of played games, ROAR offers some more convenient functions.
First, as mentioned above, it is possible to search for the statistics of a certain scenario. In order to do this, you choose the function “Record by Name“, then pick out the requested scenario from a drop-down list. Now you get a detailed overview about the results of all recorded games and a statistic about each sides’ victories and losses. This provides valuable information about a scenario’s balance.
In addition to this, ROAR offers different search modes (found at the bottom of the page!). There you can find – besides the statistics of a scenario – a list of the most played scenarios, respectively the most popular ones (compiled from the popularity ratings submitted by the players).
Furthermore there is a monthly report about all finished games – an “activity report” which shows how active the ASL community was in a specific period.
Last but not least, you find a very interesting statistic called “Overall Balance” which is sorted from “very well balanced”, to “balanced”, “slightly unbalanced” and “extremely unbalanced” scenarios.
Should I take part in the ROAR system?
First of all ROAR is a good thing because it allows you to archive your own games without much work and book-keeping. Besides that, it is a very useful tool for getting a representative analysis of play balance. To achieve this, a wide data basis is necessary. The more people take part and report their games, the more reliable the information gets!
The HFC supports the ROAR-system and encouranges all ASL players to register and to add their played ASL games to the database! It takes only a few minutes but the benefit for oneself and the ASL-community is enormous!