NESDev Compo Numbering

NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231898)
So apparently it has taken 8 years to realize that numbering the competition by year is a bit confusing. Especially when the competition actually ends the year after....

I propose we make it sequential, so it coincides with the Action53 volumes. Please discuss below, or vote in the poll.

If anyone has a reason to keep doing it by year, please post below. The only reason I can think of is all the references scattered throughout the posts.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231913)
I think the lengthy judging period (which is necessary) and the time between that and multicart release further lends itself to the confusion.

Looking at it from a design perspective, and ease of speaking, I think we should place the number after "NESDev" and before "coding competition."

"So-and-so placed first in the NESDev 5 Coding Competition" would roll off the tongue more easily (than NESDev Coding Competiton 5) and follow well-known practice of Ludum Dare numbering.

It would also be hashtag friendly for social media:
#NESDev5

And it would free us of the burdensome "Coding Competion" being necessary in casual discussion, podcasts, etc.

"Do you plan on participating in NESDev 5?" "No, but I might in 6."

What we should not do, is go with ordinal numbering, i.e. The 5th NESDev Coding Competition. It's a mouthful, doesn't lend itself to obvious shortening for hashtags or casual speech, but more importantly it results in hierarchical conflict of information when discussing awards (and on the award badges, since I plan to have those on the wiki for this year's). So, we want to avoid "second place in the fifth competition" or "sixth place in the fifth competition"

I also considered suggesting Roman numerals, Super Bowl style, because I think it would lend itself to badge (and eventual logo) design well. But due to the v at the end of NESDev, the hashtag would be clunky: #NESDevV. Unclear whether to read the final V as number or not, etc.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231914)
Also, transitioning from years to numbers is not unheard of. King of Fighters did it at 11, for instance.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231923)
I thinking more along the lines of NDC 5 as an abbreviation, or NDCC 5. Also if we use compo instead of coding competition, then I feel NESDev Compo 5 rolls off the tongue better than NESDev 5 Coding Competition.

I also just realized I didn't really post this in a suitable category if someone wants to move it.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231925)
While I do find the timelines a bit confusing, I still think by year is sensible.

I don't think people looking to submit are too confused about the deadline for the 2018 compo, and that's really the important thing. What happens after that is less critical.

Sure, the grace period, judging, and any cartridge releases aren't going to occur in the named year, especially if the deadline is end of year + 1 month grace, but I think the important thing is just that people made games in 2018.

The merging with the name "Action 53" for cartridge release is maybe confusing too, but I don't think that would be solved with a name. It'd good that Action 53's scope exceeds just the compo and can include other stuff and revisions etc.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231936)
I think shortening the cart delay is more important than naming.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231952)
FWIW, I voted "Other", because my opinion is something along the lines of: do whatever you feel is best, but just remember "the Wrestlemania numbering scheme" (just an incrementing number per occasion, often in roman numerals) worked just fine since 1985, but I think people generally understand the current model if it was to remain how it is.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231954)
rainwarrior wrote:
I don't think people looking to submit are too confused about the deadline for the 2018 compo, and that's really the important thing. What happens after that is less critical.


I don't have strong opinions, but it definitely gets confusing when talking about it and trying to remember what was what. When people ask if I submitted anything to the 2017 competition, I have to spend some brainpower trying to figure out which one that was. Whether that's worth changing the name over? That's the question.

Quote:
The merging with the name "Action 53" for cartridge release is maybe confusing too, but I don't think that would be solved with a name. It'd good that Action 53's scope exceeds just the compo and can include other stuff and revisions etc.


Yeah, I've found the coupling between the competition and the Action 53 cart to also be a little confusing. They're fairly tightly coupled for the most part, but stuff can be in on the cart but not the compo. Or I've heard people ask what Tepples will allow to be in the competition, without understanding that the cart release (managed by Tepples) and the competition (managed by NesHomebrew) might have slightly different criteria for inclusion. Again, this isn't a major problem, just something I've noticed.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231957)
Is changing the deadline out of the question?
If the deadline was some time in the Fall, then it would leave time for people to work on cartridge releases before the holidays. Plus the game's release year could coincide with the compo year.

You could still call it the "2020" competition, even though it technically started in the Fall of 2019, since only 1/4 of the compo would occur during 2019.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231959)
FWIW I do think numbering them would be fine too, I just think the "by year" system works well already.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231960)
Zutano wrote:
Is changing the deadline out of the question?
If the deadline was some time in the Fall, then it would leave time for people to work on cartridge releases before the holidays.

Simply put, it takes a while to get a cart release together. Keep in mind, it is 2019, and the "2017" cart hasn't been released yet.

I'm not against changing the deadline. If we did a fall deadline, at least it wouldn't add to the "what year is it?" problem. It could also give a bit of time post competition to get things in order and make an official start date in January.

gauauu wrote:
Yeah, I've found the coupling between the competition and the Action 53 cart to also be a little confusing. They're fairly tightly coupled for the most part, but stuff can be in on the cart but not the compo.

Also, moving forward who knows what will happen. Maybe there won't be a cartridge release for each year, or maybe there will be multiple releases. Only time will tell.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#231962)
"Action 53 IV - Collected games from the NESDEV 2017 Compo and more"?

Seconding the notion on roman numerals to differentiate it from "53". Plus it worked for megaman, castlevania, etc. I think its also somewhat celebratory.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#232043)
We could add a dash. Call this year's competition the 2018-2019 competition. Last year's would be the 2017-2018 competition.

And I agree that the cartridge production really ought to have a tighter deadline.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#232046)
I don't think it's fair to ask for a deadline for the cartridge.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#232048)
rainwarrior wrote:
I don't think it's fair to ask for a deadline for the cartridge.


Agreed. It's a lot of unpaid volunteer work putting it together.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#232052)
Quote:
I don't think it's fair to ask for a deadline for the cartridge.

If you enter a contest that offers a prize, and you win said prize, I believe you have a right to receive the prize in a reasonable timeline. I mean, would you give the same response had an entrant still not received their cash prize?

Gosh that's acerbic to say though.

I love the work of all the volunteers, but I also really worry that we're going to get backed up if we start taking over a year to put together the cartridges. In a few spots it seems like the delay isn't from a lack of volunteer effort, but because entrants are allowed to update their game without a deadline for finalizing the ROM. If the games aren't set in stone, the artist can't design the cover. And if the artist can't design the cover, the manufacturer can't print the boxes. That's a reason for the delay.
Re: NESDev Compo Numbering
by on (#232076)
Is there any interest in including both 2017 and 2018 competition games on Vol. 4?

Pros
It seems with the planning of the Master Release that INL has boards that can handle the size.
It would provide more bang for the buck for the consumer. (Especially since I'm concerned the current plan for Vol. 5 to include games from Vol. 4 will reduce interest in Vol. 4 anyway.)
We could possibly actually have 53 games on the cart.
It would prevent conflict from JRoatch's no-demos rule for inclusion in Vol. 5 if we get demos submitted in the new contest.
I recently changed to a modular-based cover art design instead of a singular illustration, so I can still progress on the art without needing to know the full roster (Probably a decision I should have made earlier, so my apologies there.)
It would correct the year-behind schedule we're on.

Cons
It would cannibalize interest in Vol. 5 if Vol. 5 is still planned to include games from Vol. 4.*
Depending on how many remakes we have show up for the subcontest, it could complicate Vol. 5.
It would further delay 4, but a hard deadline on version updates to the contest entries could manage that delay.

* We could possibly take A53 in the direction of releasing it once we acquire 53 games, instead of from each deadline.
If the current roster post-competition doesn't hit 53, a call for submissions from the community would likely get it there quickly, since "help make Action 53 Vol. 4: Actually 53" might be a bit more of a motivator.
(If the submissions from the new competition take it over 53 titles, that'd be an interesting dilemma, but having at least 53 games would be even better than having exactly 53.)

If we were to do that, we could omit Vol. 4 titles from appearing in Vol. 5, have Vol. 5's counter start with next year's competition (plus back-games from Vol. 1~3, per JRoatch's discretion), and Vol. 6 fresh after that.

Just a thought here. Would love to hear others' opinions on it.