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What is min/maxing?

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24 minutes ago, trogenion said:

Generally means minimizing the impact of flaws ext. While maximizing certian powerfull aspects.  Well in games with flaws and the like. 

This is a good point.

 

Often in COX you can Max-Max instead.

 

For a given combo ..(usually) 

 

You can do builds that vastly increase your ST and AOE damage over SO builds and at the same time vastly increase your survivability over your SO levels.

 

 

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It is taking 4 words and a question mark and force multiplying that into pages of responses

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5 hours ago, Haijinx said:

This is a good point.

 

Often in COX you can Max-Max instead.

 

For a given combo ..(usually) 

 

You can do builds that vastly increase your ST and AOE damage over SO builds and at the same time vastly increase your survivability over your SO levels.

 

 

right, it generally ammounts ti just the maximizing part of the term in online games and such, but i guess it could be minimize the number of bad choicies to maximize the ammount of power?

i guess?

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 No. It is a specific term that goes back to tabletop gaming culture and lore and mechanics. As discussed earlier in the thread. 
 

an old school D&D character had 6 stats. If you had a GM that let you use the system of stat placement your character looked and acted like a caveman (min stats) but had the intellect to fire iff massive magic at bonuses ( high int)

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There are a lot of specific definitions, but in general it is the process by which a player maxes out his combat potential, the ability to do as much damage as fast as possible, without regard to any role playing or theme. You essentially sacrifice concept in order to maximize effectiveness.

 

An example would be my wanting to create a character based upon my favorite comic book hero, like The Hulk. If I based it upon theme and role playing I might choose to make him a Super Strength/Invulnerability I would take super leap as his travel power, because that is how The Hulk travels.

 

But if I min/maxed him I may look at each melee power set to see which has the most damage dealing ability, and what percentage of enemies have resistances to the different damage types they use; and decide that a Dark Melee/Inv scrapper was much more effective. So, I choose that because even though it doesn't go with my theme it is more effective in levelling.

 

I minimize the weaknesses of my guy and maximize his strengths purely with an eye toward his levellling and gaining power.

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There is imo a difference between Min/Maxxing and fine tuning a build to be optimal, its a fine one but it does exist in my pov.

 

Minimizing ones weaknesses while maximizing ones powers is obviously what minmax means but what does doing that mean? It means putting the META first and foremost. It starts with primary and 2ndary power choice picks, sometimes further guides by some high end build combo you are aware of and wish to build towards. Some builds exploiting certain epic/ancillary pools are known for this late game blooming. Further every power pick is taken based entirely on some meta plan like soft capping res and def.

 

But not every great build is a meta build. Many great builds are born as RP and concept builds. Powers taken because of flavor or the sheer fun of it, pools picked to flesh out an idea rather then to reach some specific metric. However once one hits 50 with such builds its not at all uncommon to take stock, ponder what powers you rarely if ever use, what situations you struggle in, and thus what powers you could drop and take that still fit your concept. Maybe you want to move slots around, like you put a full set in invisibility find you only use it when stealthing adn dont really need all those slots there and move them around etc. Thats fine tuning.

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All of these are good definitions.  But I think this can be further understood by considering what the opposite of Min/Max-ing. 

 

Min/Max-ing is the opposite of: 

 

"I'm a powerful ancient alien species who uses mental powers to manipulate foes, so I need to take only mental powers or powers that could be explained with telekinetic or mind manipulation and I'll slot them for maximum duration because I'm just that powerful."

 

or...."Maria Jenkins says I may need help to raid the Preatoria lab.  I better form a team of great heroes to defeat this dangerous foe and rescue our lost hero."

 

It's not that you can't be both a min-max'er and a concept player.  But the min-max'er is calculating how much recharge is needed to make that ancient alien species toon have perma-dom while maintaining an optimized attack rotation.  They also know that they can clear that Preatorian lab if they bring a long a few purple inspirations and a handful of greens for the AV fight at the end, even though they may bring along a team.

 

 

 

Edited by Shred Monkey
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On 2/6/2020 at 2:59 PM, Shred Monkey said:

 

 

It's not that you can't be both a min-max'er and a concept player. 

 

This is actually really important to note, I think.  You can min-max within the bounds of a concept, as opposed to just pure min-maxing in an absolute sense. 

 

I've never been that interested in peak performance as such (in this game), but I've always taken note of what people who dig into the maths say, because I want to make my concept as effective as it can be, even if the concept limits the toon from being the most effective possible toon I could make.

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On topic. For a melee character could i get a few opinions of the top three damage dealing powerset 

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31 minutes ago, The Philotic Knight said:
  1. Firey Melee
  2. Firey Melee
  3. Psionic Melee (against all but certain types of mobs)

Just because it should be there because the secondary effect is more damage instead of any form of mitigation, doesn't mean that it is.

For any AT that gets it and wants to IO it out, Titan Weapons is an outlier, and War Mace isn't far behind with both sets doing well in both single target and AoE damage.

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6 hours ago, Snarky said:

On topic. For a melee character could i get a few opinions of the top three damage dealing powerset 

Titan Weapons

Titan Weapons

War Mace

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Min maxing generally means optimization of resources and long predates gaming.  Well, computer gaming and rpg at least.


[NPC] Mad Freak Slammer: Destroy and be free!
[NPC] Enforcer Swiper: Capitalist scum!
[NPC] Mad Freak Chopper: It's art! Smash it again!

 

They put SUPERHEROES in my trading game?!?

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Another link explaining Min-Maxing, through the perspective of not only gaming but other artistic/performance works.

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/MinMaxing

and a very related concept: Dump Stat. The stat that you decide you'll minimize in exchange for what you choose to specialize in.

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/DumpStat

 

But pretty much everything that is stated above is accurate. But I'll try to sum things up:

 

1: There is a particular desirable end goal to achieve. (Typically beating the game, but for open-ended games like D&D or CoH where there is no official end of game, it's typically attaining the state of strength to bypass any possible hurdles or set-backs to reliably experiencing all available story or bonus content.)

2: From the point where the player start the game and proceeding up to and including the point where their end goal meets, there are various failure conditions to be defeated or avoided.

3: The player will have access to some resources and customization. But the vast majority of the time, they'll be unable to maximize every asset. (In games where maximization of all assets IS possible, it is typically only available shortly before the end goal; thus the player still has to bypass enough of the failure conditions with the limited assets they have before building up to the endgame.)

4: They'll have to measure and distribute their available resources to successfully defeat or bypass the expected encountered failure conditions. Depending on the game, they might not have to deal with every possible failure condition. (Games with branching paths only have to deal with the threats on the paths they intend to take. For D&D, player characters are expected to mostly function as a team, so players tend to focus on maximizing the values of the role they are expected to fulfill in their group. The diplomat of the group help the whole group succeed in social encounters, so everyone else doesn't have to invest quite as much in diplomacy and can further boost the potential of their own role.)

5: Contrary to the name, the assets do not have to be fully maximized to be considered "min-maxed". In fact, in games where there are diminishing returns (like Dark Souls), there is a term called Breakpoint, where a certain asset has given the optimal value that could be given for your resource when compared to the other resources it could have been invested in.

6: Min-maxing varies for different players and their needs/desires. Thus, the min-maxed build in question is sometimes referred to as the "chassis" and the player the "pilot". For a pilot that is a thrill-seeker, possessing of quick reaction time and/or using a very responsive computer, they might focus on a chassis that put emphasis on timing and fast recharge, and DPS style gameplay. For someone who is timid, conservative or have a poor computer, they might min-max in favor of defensive play, ranged combat or similar mechanics to reduce the pressure on themselves (or the computer).

An extreme example might be someone with a disability who'll minmax any play-style that'll enable them to experience the game as much as possible and keep up with their peers, such as a pilot with poor motor control choosing a chassis primarily focused on toggles to minimize "piano-gameplay" where their disability could become detrimental to their enjoyment of the game.

 

NOTE: Min-Maxing is partly dependant on fore-knowledge of what assets and failure conditions are present in the game. Not all games are balanced equally, and sometimes the value of the assets is deceptive.

For example: If the players of a D&D group know their GM puts minor emphasis on roleplaying and more emphasis on dice-rolling, the assets that would be maximized will shift to favor combat. For a GM that favors social encounters instead, the chosen assets may shift in another direction.

For an actual video game example: If there is a stat that can be boosted, but investment in that stat is insufficient or overly limited, it might not be worth investing in, even if the skill looks good "on paper'. A hypothetical +200% damage bonus in explosive weapons might sound amazing, but if ammo for explosive weapons are too infrequently found, then the skill is possibly a trap, and the player better served with smaller bonus that is more reliably found (such as a +50% bonus to pistols).

 

 

Hoping that isn't too wordy! ^^;

Edited by RTresserhorn

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Ok, I had to look up my old Operations Research (OR) books because it was nagging me.  Regardless of MMO definitions, mathematical programming is all about the minimization or maximization (min/max) of an objective function of many variables, subject to constraints on the variables.  Linear programming (LP) which is a subset* of problems that mathematical programming tries to solve, means solving for an optimal solution given certain parameters.  The components of an LP model are:

  • Sets, like a set of products
  • Parameters, like production and profit rates
  • Variables, whose values we are trying to solve for
  • Objectives, to be minimized or maximized
  • Constraints, which the solution must satisfy

You can see how this optimization appeals to certain player type in RPGs or MMOs.

 

In CoH terms for example: you could maximize damage output (the objective), given the DPA (damage per attack) functions of each power, your AT bonuses, the enemy resistances, and impact of IO bonuses on DPA, your attack chain, etc (parameters).  You are trying to solve for the defined list of IO's and attack chain (variables) that will maximize your damage output (the objective).  Your constraints could be a limited number of IOs, a certain level of defense, resistances, and KB protection.  Not entirely sure about what makes the set, but I think it is entire universe of IO's and their bonuses; and the universe of attacks that your AT can use.

 

Please don't think min/max was invented by MMO or even RPG players. As someone said, it's older than that; and also much broader.  And if people are going to apply it to MMO/RPG, it should be applied correctly.  Even my initial response was wrong.

 

* For linear functions, meaning there is a direct proportionality between the quantities of interest and their sums. Mathematically speaking, f(X) can be graphed as a continuous line or space. Non-LP problems are those that have gaps and spaces, and so are not continuous functions and can't be graphed as such. And sorry, that's as simple as I can get it to with my limited math knowledge.

Edited by Olly

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Min/Maxing is the art of annoying everyone by being overly focused on achieving a .2% increase in efficiency.

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Discount Heroes SG:

Frostbiter - Ice/Ice Blaster

Moonlight Mantra - Kinetic Melee/Bio Armor Scrapper

Throneblade - Broadsword/Dark Armor Brute

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On 2/3/2020 at 7:01 PM, biostem said:

Generally speaking, (at least in my experience), it comes from games where you can allocate stat points;  Let's say you wanted to be a mage in D&D - you put your highest stat in intelligence and "dump" your lowest points into things like charisma or strength;  You maximize those aspects of your character that are the most critical to your performance, and minimize those aspects with the least impact.

 

Another connotation is to simply play up your strengths and minimize your weaknesses;  Perhaps, as a blaster, you take defensive powers to fill in any holes, and slot others to maximize your damage output at the same time.

 

There are different uses of the term, so a lot depends upon context...

This has always been my interpretation of min/max.  I'd also add any computer game in which you can allocate points towards stats: Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights, Pillars of Eternity, and Knights of the Old Republic come to mind.  The closest I can think of regarding City of Heroes is taking and/or slotting a power with a set bonus you have no intention of using while skipping or underslotting powers that may be useful in some circumstances.  

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There is no origination for this idea. And it is an idea. Specifically, like all things that are related to communication, it will depend on context.

 

For example, the word "dude" may have numerous meanings and any may be present at any time, depending on situational context. Interestingly, 2 or more contradictory meanings may be present simultaneously and only participants of the current communication channel and cultural medium may fully grasp the nuance. For instance, "dude? Dude! Dewd! Ah, dude," as proclaimed during a sporting event.

 

In order to ascertain a real communal understanding our base understanding should hold the current societal precept as the norm, adapting meaning thereof, situationally.

 

Currently, this base or common understanding has no known origin, being the afore mentioned idea. That idea is one of simple maximization of benefit.

 

Hence, we find ourselves at a core concept of personal analysis of benefit. Humans make decisions when faced with options. These options have benefit or cost and may have interrelated compromises. We make decisions regarding this, considering self interest when weighing marginal benefit.

 

This marginal benefit simply means, "what will I get for that and what will it cost me?" The next logical step is, "to get one more unit of that, how much more do I get and at what cost?"

 

Now we come to the base premise: we make choices, weighing benefit vs cost, trade offs and decreasing returns. When we perceive that we are receiving no more benefit or are actually losing, we make a different decision.

 

This is human nature and is the essence of what min/max is. Will I stay up one more hour watching Netflix? Will I get enough sleep and be ok for work tomorrow? When net good is eclipsed by net bad, we stop. Generally.

 

Now, in game terms, "I'm gonna get most buffawesomesauce... More! MORE! Ok wait, I just got nothin. Damn! I got less! What the...?! I could'a got better if I did that??" Immediately switch to 'that'.

 

Thus, min/maxing: greatest benefit considering all factors at lowest possible cost.

 

Happy hunting!

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26 minutes ago, SwitchFade said:

There is no origination for this idea. And it is an idea. Specifically, like all things that are related to communication, it will depend on context.

In the current context, the origin is generally attributed to Dungeons and Dragons.  

27 minutes ago, SwitchFade said:

For example, the word "dude" may have numerous meanings and any may be present at any time, depending on situational context. Interestingly, 2 or more contradictory meanings may be present simultaneously and only participants of the current communication channel and cultural medium may fully grasp the nuance. For instance, "dude? Dude! Dewd! Ah, dude," as proclaimed during a sporting event.

Dude!  What are you talking about?!

 

32 minutes ago, SwitchFade said:

In order to ascertain a real communal understanding our base understanding should hold the current societal precept as the norm, adapting meaning thereof, situationally.

Being this is a question in a game forum, the current societal precept seems obvious in this situation.  

 

37 minutes ago, SwitchFade said:

Currently, this base or common understanding has no known origin, being the afore mentioned idea. That idea is one of simple maximization of benefit.

As you say, it depends on the context.

 

39 minutes ago, SwitchFade said:

Hence, we find ourselves at a core concept of personal analysis of benefit. Humans make decisions when faced with options. These options have benefit or cost and may have interrelated compromises. We make decisions regarding this, considering self interest when weighing marginal benefit.

This is true.  However, there are few if any real world costs in our current context.  Giving my Barbarian a 3 intelligence probably won't effect anything beyond his skill points and dialogue options

 

45 minutes ago, SwitchFade said:

This marginal benefit simply means, "what will I get for that and what will it cost me?" The next logical step is, "to get one more unit of that, how much more do I get and at what cost?"

 

Now we come to the base premise: we make choices, weighing benefit vs cost, trade offs and decreasing returns. When we perceive that we are receiving no more benefit or are actually losing, we make a different decision.

Yep!

 

57 minutes ago, SwitchFade said:

This is human nature and is the essence of what min/max is. Will I stay up one more hour watching Netflix? Will I get enough sleep and be ok for work tomorrow? When net good is eclipsed by net bad, we stop. Generally.

Some don't care a whit about min/maxing in game terms.  So It's also true that it's human nature NOT to min/max.  Your example isn't the best here as the benefit and cost are rarely a consideration in that context.  

 

1 hour ago, SwitchFade said:

Now, in game terms, "I'm gonna get most buffawesomesauce... More! MORE! Ok wait, I just got nothin. Damn! I got less! What the...?! I could'a got better if I did that??" Immediately switch to 'that'.

 

Thus, min/maxing: greatest benefit considering all factors at lowest possible cost.

 

Indeed.

 

All kidding aside, thanks!  It was an interesting read.  

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