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Thread: AI Charts.

  1. #1

    Default AI Charts.

    Have we all now got copies of all the AI updated charts, or do I need to send them on to anyone.
    If so is anyone ready to produce some for the Bombers and an R deck for the Nieuports with the rockets?
    I don't like to keep on pestering Richard Bradley for even more stuff.
    Rob.

  2. #2

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    I'm not in the campaign, but I am keenly interested in any updated AI charts that aren't in the files section. Thanks!

  3. #3

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    The advanced decks that I am aware of are Richard's A-D, H, and P decks and Blackronin's A, B, and S decks. Maybe there are more in the files section, but it seems to be increasingly difficult to find stuff in there.

    It would be really nice to have a full set of advanced AI decks, though even just a J deck would allow me to run most of my OTT missions with advanced AI.

    If there are any more of these charts available, please point them out forthwith!

  4. #4

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    What AI decks are people using for the campaign? The basic ones? Richard's advanced ones? Blackronin's hand drawn ones?

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by diceslinger View Post
    What AI decks are people using for the campaign? The basic ones? Richard's advanced ones? Blackronin's hand drawn ones?
    While participating in the campaign I used Blackronin's hand drawn ones.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Watchdog View Post
    While participating in the campaign I used Blackronin's hand drawn ones.
    Richard has now translated Blackronin's into finished AI decks, which I have available if anyone wants them.
    Rob.

  7. #7

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    I also have them and I can email them to whoever wants them. I tried to upload them to the files section, but wasn't able to do it. I'm sending them all to Keith so that he can upload them and I'll ask him if he can compile them in just one place for easy access.

    Rob, I'll try to make the missing decks in a few days.

  8. #8

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    For the campaign so far I have been using the simple decks with the 'unpredictable' modifier proposed in the initial rules post of OTT... with a slight modification of my own. Since there are two added columns, I use a d8 (eight sided die) to determine the enemy move [1 | 2-3 | 4-5 | 6-7 | 8].

    I would love to upgrade to the advanced charts.

  9. #9

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    Send me a PM with your email and I'll send you the tables.

  10. #10

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    I have the full set as well if people pm me I will be happy to send them on

    Paul

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackronin View Post

    Rob, I'll try to make the missing decks in a few days.
    Thanks Joaquim, but no rush, I will be away from Thursday till late on Tuesday, so will not need anything till aat least the next mission if it includes big bombers, or balloons. Just a passing thought. There is nothing in the rules to preclude a plane with rockets also arming with incendiary at the same time. Miss with the rockets and you have a backup for your next run.
    Rob.

  12. #12

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    Are you talking about the 11th mission that I just uploaded?

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackronin View Post
    Are you talking about the 11th mission that I just uploaded?
    The very one! Although Kyte has not officially informed me about it yet.
    Rob.

  14. #14

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    OH! Nope, no rockets. They weren't expecting to take down a balloon. Incendiary bullet, yes. Some pilots used them as common ammunition.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackronin View Post
    OH! Nope, no rockets. They weren't expecting to take down a balloon. Incendiary bullet, yes. Some pilots used them as common ammunition.
    That is really funny, because I have just gone and read it and found guess what? A balloon! Are you a mind bender?
    Kyte was way ahead of me there. he is ready for all eventuallities, which reminds me, he asked me to get a double order of G&T for the Mess tonight. Now I wonder what that could be for?
    Rob.

  16. #16

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    Well, I hope that some of that gin is for me... I might need it soon...

  17. #17

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    AI charts uploaded. Very soon Keith will put them in the files section here:

    http://www.wingsofwar.org/forums/dow...p?do=cat&id=63

  18. #18

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    Just got a copy of the updated AI. Very excited to use them.

    Just a note: If anyone is messing with them again for any reason, I would highly recommend a modification. Decks that do not have a sharp right turn should favour turning left over turning right. (An example would be A/B/S - moving away - 6,7: The chart should be biased toward the left.) It will help throw off the Camels and DR.Is.

  19. #19

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    Thank you very much for the pretty charts. I will add them to my kindle and try them out for my next mission.

  20. #20

    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by Flying Officer Kyte View Post
    Richard has now translated Blackronin's into finished AI decks, which I have available if anyone wants them.
    Rob.
    G'day Rob!
    I would like a set if you could Email them to me.
    I think you will still have my Email address but if not I will send you a PM.

    Thanks me ole mate!

  21. #21

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    OK.Barry you are now in my contacts book so there is no escape.
    Files on the way.
    Rob.

  22. #22

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    I just played a game yesterday with the new AI charts. I am undecided on whether or not I like them. I found the "Closing" and "Going Away" categories arbitrary and sometimes difficult to judge. A plane that is crossing on front of you - is it closing or going away? A few mm each way and the result changes for what is essentially the same position. I don't know if the added complexity provides anything materially better than the simple rules.

    The over-all result was, I found, not so much "reasonable but random" as "somewhat erratic". Maybe that is the intent, or maybe I just didn't get a good experience from my first game. (It is, after all, somewhat difficult to keep track of what 6 AI planes are doing.)

    I shall have to give it another chance, perhaps in a smaller battle. (Re-reading my criticism, it comes across as a bit harsh. It is not intended that way. As I said - this is an initial impression and will probably be subject to change. Or maybe I just had extremely high expectations!)

  23. #23

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    Thanks for the review Jon, I wondered about the added complexity as well. I don't think it will impact my play much. I pull up the solo chart on my kindle, roll a die, place the die next to the maneuvers to plan (to keep my place as I look for the cards) and lay the cards down. So really I think the added randomness will help me for not much extra time.

    I did find with simple solo rules that the planes tended to fly off the table. I generally fixed this with applying a the other movement option if that would keep the plane on the table. How do you guys deal with planes flying off the edge?

    The other issue I wasn't sure how to resolve is collisions. Do you allow solo planes to collide with each other or human players?

    I'm curious if anyone has an opinions on the special damage card. I have been playing that the explosion card applies as normal. My feeling is that rudder jams can't be applied because the AI can't deal with them. I did feel that way about gun jams, but I have found that if I fly like I had no jam I still tend to do well against fighters as long as I avoid head on passes. Two seaters are probably a different deal. I guess I would rather add an extra AI controlled plane to the scenario rather than exclude the AI planes from all special damage. I feel excluding the special damage removes a bit of character from the solo game. The visuals of smoke and fire are just too good. Thoughts?

  24. #24

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    There is a bit in the campaign rules section about special damage for AI:
    - rudder damage; roll a random direction for the jam after you plan your move. Fudge the AI movement to comply with the jam.
    - engine damage: roll a random phase for the stall after you plan your move. Fudge as necessary
    - pilot hit: no more Immelmanns - pilot tries to fly home. 2nd hit kills
    - smoke / fire as normal - pilot on fire with less than 1/2 hit points left will fly home
    - jams as normal

    As for flying off the table, I think we all alter the AI moves so that it doesn't happen. Often that just means switching out one turn for one in the other direction. Sometime it is as radical as forcing an Immelmann.

    I do play with explosions (and sometimes get a lot of them as I recycle the damage cards back into the deck after each phase). I think most people play with them in for the campaign.

    Some play with collisions. I never have. I think that if I did they would be far more common than they were historically. The game I just played had the two friendly AIs tangled up with each other for 3 consecutive moves.

  25. #25

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    I will give you my personal feelings on these Shawn.
    With the added complexity, the planes do seem to be more agressive and score more against my aircraft which I like.
    The strange thing is that I don't seem to get them flying off table. Only twice in some 15 or so sorties has an AI left the playing surface and I just assume that it did an Immelmann off table, and it arrives back where it left with a straight at the start of the next game turn.
    Size of table may be a factor, but with three feet to play in width wise they usually turn onto my plane long before that occurs. the only odd factor is that sometimes an AI will wander off on a circuit of its own for no real reason.
    For altitude, I have only used it where a landing or low level bombing run is indicated in the scenario. Then I assume that an AI will attempt to get into the best firing position for results,ie. at the same level as its victim. To do this I assume that if a straight is drawn for the AI and it needs to dive it will substitute that card. If a stall is drawn and it needs to climb, then that card will be drawn. Not perfect, but then accounts of combat are full of imperfect moves by real pilots so what the heck! Jammed rudder! If a turn in that direction is indicated I replace it with a stall. Represents pilot wrestling with the controls, and trying to make the aircraft obey him. If you think that is harsh just play a straight.
    Collisions are as per the rules. if my center peg is hit it is a collision.
    Explosion cards are a feature of the game and I always include them unless it is an induction game for a new player.
    Hope this gives you some food for further thought.

    I will be interested in any observations on this matter as I have just added these ideas as they have arisen in scenarios.
    Rob.

    Kyte says. "Stop faffing about and just shoot the bu**ers down."

  26. #26

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    Almost everything Rob said perfectly fits my experience with these rules. So here it goes my two cents.

    The charts were made to maintain the AI planes near the players planes. The moving away/closing is meant to give a difference in the maneuvers that allows this. When a plane is in the uncertain position where we can't decide if it's closing or moving away, I usually roll the die and decide between both maneuvers the one that seems more appropriate and better for the AI.

    I don't use collisions since they were far rarer than in the game. I only use collisions if the centre point of both bases are in the same position.

    Pilots weren't suicide and they tended to withdraw when were hurt or their planes were very damaged, so I always roll for morale for every plane except my own (even the other pilots I control).

    The new tables vs. the old ones are more or less 2,5 times deadlier. I.e. the enemy planes tend to fire 2,5 times more.
    They are less predictable, a good thing in my opinion, and of course sometimes makes the planes behave in a strange way.

    I rarely have to alter the movement of the planes, as the keep close to my planes. Only when my planes are flying near the border does that happen.

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by steel_ratt View Post
    There is a bit in the campaign rules section about special damage for AI:
    - rudder damage; roll a random direction for the jam after you plan your move. Fudge the AI movement to comply with the jam.
    - engine damage: roll a random phase for the stall after you plan your move. Fudge as necessary
    - pilot hit: no more Immelmanns - pilot tries to fly home. 2nd hit kills
    - smoke / fire as normal - pilot on fire with less than 1/2 hit points left will fly home
    - jams as normal
    Thanks Jon, I missed this part in the campaign rules I guess. I'll have to try them. Everyone's experience here is a big help!

  28. #28

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    One additional comment - I found that with AI vs AI (as called for in mission 6), the planes ended up flying around each other for long stretches without getting in very many shots. Again, maybe just my experience with a short session. Anybody else have any experience with AI vs AI?

  29. #29

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    No. One of the most interesting things is just that. The feeling that the AI vs. AI almost didn't need our help.

  30. #30

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    Ok. I have tried it again. Here is my second impression.

    The intent of the new tables is to make the AI unpredictable. It does that, and it does it tremendously well. Unfortunately for me, it does it so well that I found playing against the AI to be an extremely frustrating experience. On turn 9, after having chased the airplanes around the board for three full turns without anything happening, I gave up. It was just mechanical planning, plotting, moving - rinse, repeat. There were two occasions in those three rounds where I painfully worked myself into an advantageous position, and then I had to gamble. 50% chance the enemy goes one way, 50% chance it goes the other. Both times I made the wrong guess and ended up over 2 ruler lengths away facing the wrong direction... and had to spend another two turns just getting into a position where I might be able to shoot... if I guess the direction correctly.

    If you want an example of something like that, put yourself 1.5 rulers directly behind something like an Albatros D.III, both headed in the same direction. The D.III has 3 Immelmann options (straight, left, right) and two 180 degree turn options (left, right). About the best move you can make against this is side-slip right, straight, turn right. On 'straight/Immel/straight' you get to shoot after phase 2. On either of the right turn options you get to fire on phase 2 and 3. But if you guess incorrectly... well... the enemy is a long way off in the other direction. Line up and try again.

    The first 5 turns were fun, when there were plenty of planes weaving in and out and more-or-less accidentally ending up in a firing position. By then 2 of the enemy had been shot down and the tedium set in. After 9 turns I got tired of chasing the AI across the board and back and gave up.

    But (and this is a big BUT) - I have not written off the new AI yet. I want to run Mission six again () using the old AI. It may just be the case that flying 6 AI planes is like that. We shall see.

  31. #31

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    Jon.
    You have explained that if you use the new AI rules the planes fly as well as a good live opponent should. You may find it very difficult to get a bead on a good player.
    Some of my one on ones have lasted up to an hour and a half if I am playing another Ace.
    Rob.

  32. #32

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    I started playing wih the advanced deck intially and became very confused around the closing\moving away but used a bit of common sense which is diferent from being an idiot which is what I was after playing a "quick" game that involved the enemy always moving away from me or turning away. It was then that I read the rules again and discoved that the target angle was generated from the AI, not to the AI!

    Apart from that I think the rules are tough, but good.

    The special damage is good too.

  33. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by smitty_au View Post
    I started playing wih the advanced deck intially and became very confused around the closing\moving away but used a bit of common sense which is diferent from being an idiot which is what I was after playing a "quick" game that involved the enemy always moving away from me or turning away. It was then that I read the rules again and discoved that the target angle was generated from the AI, not to the AI!

    Apart from that I think the rules are tough, but good.

    The special damage is good too.
    I was going to say that too.
    Are you using the AI rules correctly?
    Are you generating the roll correctly?
    You must put the ruler over the AI plane a see if the player's plane is in which arc and if the player's plane is approaching or moving away.

    As for Jon's tedium with the AI rules, I usually play with some friends that play very well WoW and in some games one of the players keeps dodging the other time after time with hours passing by.

    The difference between the old AI rules and the new is that the old ones were very predictable and I usually was able to fire several times before being shot at. I could play with a disadvantage of 2 to 1 and still win easily. Not so much with the new ones.

    But I'm working in the advanced tables with a new rule option to make them even more deadly and soon we'll try them.

  34. #34

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    I think that one think that makes these solo rules work well is using them in scenarios that have the AI planes bug out at a certain point. I can see how a fight to the death would drag on and turn into a death spiral. If the enemy planes know when to quit the field it adds more realism and relieves the tedium.

  35. #35

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    You are right Shawn, but they don't always get the chance as I found out today.
    Even my PC characters are now following the same rule unless circumstances require a do or die decision.
    Rob.

  36. #36

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    Being a bit of a wargamer, I don't care for "to the death" battles. I believe retreating is a part of battle and the smart thing to do at some point. To that end I wouldn't penalize campaign characters for flying off the table edge. I'm in favor of allowing planes to leave the table and as long as they do so on their side of the trench they come home safe. I believe that the OTT campaign does this too.

    Rob, I'll have to check out your latest AAR to see what happened. Oooh...the forshadowing!

  37. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by diceslinger View Post
    I'll have to check out your latest AAR to see what happened. Oooh...the forshadowing!
    I'll try to get it posted tomorrow before we go away, but I can't promise as my forshadowing seems to be the packing looming up on the horizon.
    Rob.

  38. #38

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    I have yet to try the mission again, but wanted to respond to a few of the comments.

    I do believe that I am using the charts correctly. In the example I used above (your plane is directly behind the enemy, both flying in the same direction), the AI would roll on the "6, closing" table. (You are in his 6 and are closing, ie. going towards him.) Example 2, if the positions were reversed, it would be "12, going away". (You are in front of him [12], and are headed away from him.) Right?

    I think I am slowly coming to terms with having longer, more drawn-out battles involving more positioning and less shooting. It is closer to what one would expect against a human opponent. I am still not sure about that, though. I'm wondering if I would rather play quick a battle full of close-in maneuvers with lots of shooting. The shorter battles are certainly more intense, and I'm perfectly willing (as I am doing in mission 6) to compensate for the easy AI by adding an extra enemy plane with an Ace ability.

    Just for the record, the scores so far for the AI variants I have run:
    1 - All planes using 'new' AI: 1 enemy shot down, PC pilot forced to retire on turn 7 (due to heavy damage and fire). Wing-men judged to abandon the chase as they were completely ineffective in AI vs AI combat.
    - Enemy using 'new' AI, wing-men using 'Tyneside advanced*' AI: 2 enemy shot down, gave up turn 9 after 3 turns of nothing happening. Wing-men were somewhat more capable of engaging, contributing to one of the kills (though they were having the same trouble as I was chasing down the unpredictable enemy AI).


    * The advanced variant of Richard Bradley's AI, made by John Hatfield and Shaun Mather - posted on the Tyneside Wargames Club site.

  39. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by steel_ratt View Post
    I have yet to try the mission again, but wanted to respond to a few of the comments.

    I do believe that I am using the charts correctly. In the example I used above (your plane is directly behind the enemy, both flying in the same direction), the AI would roll on the "6, closing" table. (You are in his 6 and are closing, ie. going towards him.) Example 2, if the positions were reversed, it would be "12, going away". (You are in front of him [12], and are headed away from him.) Right?

    I think I am slowly coming to terms with having longer, more drawn-out battles involving more positioning and less shooting. It is closer to what one would expect against a human opponent. I am still not sure about that, though. I'm wondering if I would rather play quick a battle full of close-in maneuvers with lots of shooting. The shorter battles are certainly more intense, and I'm perfectly willing (as I am doing in mission 6) to compensate for the easy AI by adding an extra enemy plane with an Ace ability.

    Just for the record, the scores so far for the AI variants I have run:
    1 - All planes using 'new' AI: 1 enemy shot down, PC pilot forced to retire on turn 7 (due to heavy damage and fire). Wing-men judged to abandon the chase as they were completely ineffective in AI vs AI combat.
    - Enemy using 'new' AI, wing-men using 'Tyneside advanced*' AI: 2 enemy shot down, gave up turn 9 after 3 turns of nothing happening. Wing-men were somewhat more capable of engaging, contributing to one of the kills (though they were having the same trouble as I was chasing down the unpredictable enemy AI).


    * The advanced variant of Richard Bradley's AI, made by John Hatfield and Shaun Mather - posted on the Tyneside Wargames Club site.
    Jon, this is certainly strange for me, since I never had that problem. With a few exceptions, fast less manoeuvrable fighters (Spad XIII), the enemy AI planes always tried to close in and engage. There some few odd maneuvres indeed, but as soon as they are in another quadrant, they usually face my planes. You can see in this AAR that happening non-stop:

    http://www.wingsofwar.org/forums/sho...Late-Afternoon

    And with fewer planes, the same happens exactly in the same fashion, as in here:

    http://www.wingsofwar.org/forums/sho...litary-Hunting

    So I really don't know what might be happening, or if what I consider a nice game, you might consider boring...

  40. #40

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    Well, I just played yet another variant of Mission 6 - this time using simple AI rules.

    This one took 16 turns, but it was exciting! THINGS were happening almost every turn. The damage done over-all was much higher - three planes were driven off with heavy damage and two were shot down. (It helped that there were fires, engine damage, pilot wounds, smoke, AND jams! Everything but the BOOM card which was, uncharacteristically, not drawn.) Most of the hard fighting was over by turn 7. Then it was just my PC against the last two Albatroses, one of which went down on turn 10.

    Contrast this with Game 2, where at the end of turn 9 one plane had been shot down and about half of the remaining planes had taken 3 or 4 points of damage. (One of the ones with 3 damage also went down due to taking 2 engine hits). My PC plane had taken 3 points.

    I dunno... I liked playing this game. It was fun.

    Now I have to ask myself if I want to play quick, fun, and easy games, or if I feel that the campaign deserves a more serious and challenging experience. Right now I'm leaning towards quick and fun; I think it makes a more compelling story for the AAR than "we circled each other yet again...".

    Ah... dammit. I'm going to have to give the new AI another chance. But not mission 6 again. (Please! Not mission 6 again!!)

  41. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by steel_ratt View Post
    Ah... dammit. I'm going to have to give the new AI another chance. But not mission 6 again. (Please! Not mission 6 again!!)

  42. #42

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    Now here's a question. When you are playing against an AI, do you check to see what the possibly enemy moves are before you plan your own moves?

    I didn't used to do that. Richard Bradley's AI tables were intuitive enough that you had a fair idea of what was possible - even likely. I find myself drawn to looking at the possibilities for the new AI because of the much wider range of exotic outcomes. Perhaps when I get a feel for what kinds of moves the AI uses, that tendency will diminish.

    I'm interested to hear how others are playing it.

  43. #43

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    I never do that. Of course, after some time you get the feel, just like a pilot after a certain number of sorties would feel. And I admit that many times I get stunned how the apparent strange movement of an AI plane will end up in it firing at my planes.

    What are the things that I do that might be different:

    1) I usually keep the AI plane "targeting" the same plane if my planes are at relatively equal distances. In effect, the AI plane will maneuver preferentially against the same plane;

    2) If the plane that the AI plane is "targeting" is closing but more one and half ruler away, I'll chose the Moving Away table;

    3) If one of my planes is significantly damaged and further away, I'll roll a die (1D6) for each AI plane. On a roll of 5+, the AI plane will go for the easiest prey;

    4) If I play with planes that have pre-set missions in the game, I'll prepare all the maneuvers in advance (even if it is just a line in a hand-drawn map) and I'll try to follow them the best I can. I only depart from that when it is the most logic or when it is impossible to maintain it (a rudder jam, etc);

    5) I don't do a stupid thing just because the die roll decided that unless it could be a decision made by the pilot. As you can see in AI behaviour here:

    http://www.wingsofwar.org/forums/sho...Campaign-Rules


    Example: In a mission, an AI plane had an engine damage and after I rolled the die he decided to keep himself in combat. After that he was wounded, but the die roll was also a 6, so he soldiered on. When he got so much damage that he had only 1 remaining point of damage, I rolled again. Another 6. I decided that he had suffered enough so he would try to move away from the battle.

    These are the special rules that I use. I hope it helps.
    Last edited by Blackronin; 08-21-2012 at 16:06.

  44. #44

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    Very interesting. I especially like #2. That makes a lot of sense based on my experience.

  45. #45

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    Do try them, if you remember to do it. I, at times, forget to use some of it. But than, that is... human... And error human est.

  46. #46

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    Very good idea Joaquim regarding point #2

  47. #47

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    The only thing that I do to tweak the rules is if an AI is obviously doing something stupid, I look at the moving toward equivalent dice throw and see if that makes more sense without taking him under the guns of any of my planes.
    This helps to prevent the long wandering off circuits that sometimes occur.
    Rob.

  48. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by steel_ratt View Post
    Now here's a question. When you are playing against an AI, do you check to see what the possibly enemy moves are before you plan your own moves?

    I didn't used to do that. Richard Bradley's AI tables were intuitive enough that you had a fair idea of what was possible - even likely. I find myself drawn to looking at the possibilities for the new AI because of the much wider range of exotic outcomes. Perhaps when I get a feel for what kinds of moves the AI uses, that tendency will diminish.

    I'm interested to hear how others are playing it.
    I try to not look because I want to play the game, not play the system if that makes any sense. I am drawn to the more complex AI because I don't have "unremember" what potential moves there are. I think the key to the AI is to remember that it is there to move planes, not to beat. If you play to beat the AI you will, and it will suck the fun from your games. Just my two cents worth.

  49. #49

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    Oh boy! You hit the nail on the head with that one, Shawn. That strikes a deep chord with me. I have been being drawn more and more to 'beating the AI'. The new AI tables brought that out even more; I have a tendency to be just a wee bit competitive. I was beginning to become aware that this is what I was doing.

    Your comment has been like a bolt of lightning. It has illuminated everything... and has given me a jolt - enough to make me realize that I need to get back to the old way of playing the game rather than playing the system.

    Thanks for that!

  50. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by steel_ratt View Post
    Oh boy! You hit the nail on the head with that one, Shawn. That strikes a deep chord with me. I have been being drawn more and more to 'beating the AI'. The new AI tables brought that out even more; I have a tendency to be just a wee bit competitive. I was beginning to become aware that this is what I was doing.

    Your comment has been like a bolt of lightning. It has illuminated everything... and has given me a jolt - enough to make me realize that I need to get back to the old way of playing the game rather than playing the system.

    Thanks for that!
    Very cool! I'm glad I could be a part of that realization! I remember that lightning bolt moment for me. I had a friend tell me "The object of the game is to win. The point of the game is to have fun." It changed the way I game.



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