Terms: Nation - Resolved -


  • Moderators

    @panther Actually, just to clarify, @lafayette was talking of the "Neutral" player of TripleA (a TripleA invention, not present in the "traditional" games) that is called "Neutral", but it is actually never neutral, but always at war (hostile) with everyone (look at the "Neutrals" of World At War). That is another case of very bad naming on the side of TripleA, in which we have a neutral relationship and a neutral player that is not neutral at all. It would be good to rename the TripleA null player as something else, but this is not really part of this topic (using the term "player" instead of "power", I prefer, because this is what it is in TripleA). Nation is way too specific to be a good term, as I pointed out in here (rather better the more generic "country"). Faction might be confusing, as you'd think you are talking of a whole alliance (like all the Axis).


  • Moderators

    @lafayette To be clear, the U.S.A. is surely a Nation (at least since the end of the Civil War), so there is the use of using the term nation that way. However, by the more correct/strict meaning of the word the U.S.S.R. or the British Empire are not Nations (actually, the U.K., let alone India (formally an Empire on its own right) etc., might be considered not a Nation, but the sum of the 4 nations of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland).


  • Moderators Admin

    @cernel Thank you for the clarification. I just wanted to emphasize that the rules give (more or less) exact definitions of terms used in the game. Personally I would welcome it very much, if TripleA reflected those terms/definitions, too.


  • Admin

    @cernel Neutrals are not one nation, but many nations. "Nation" does not cover that example. The problem here is we are trying to come up with a name that would fit many cases and all maps. In some maps "nation" works well, in others "power" works better. IMO "alliances" or "factions" fit best.

    @frostion said in Terms: Nation - Resolved -:

    TripleA is a game. In computer games there are players, sometimes divided into human players and bots/AI players. People playing games know and expect this, so naming players anything else than players might "fix something that ain't broken" and maybe even confuse people.
    Also the term "player" is very generic, so it easily fits map themes and player slots, from managing chess pieces to dinosaurs, from single unit players (if a map should have this) to intergalactic federations, etc. Terms like countries, nations, powers might not fit all current and future maps.

    Yes, but TripleA is not consistent about what it calls Players. To make matters worse, what is typically called a Player in game, TripleA calls a "node". For example, this sentence should make sense: two players are playing TripleA, Bob and Sally. They find another player to do a 1v2, and then they find TripleA and can add an AI player to do a 2v2. Unfortunately, except for in the one place, lobby column count, TripleA would have you say that same sentence replacing the word 'player' with 'node'. To TripleA, a player is "USSR" and has no connotation if it is played by an AI or human.

    Notice that the the lobby uses this terminology to refer to "players in a game":
    screenshot from 2018-07-30 17-33-09

    But, when you get to within a game, the terminology changes, players are called "Nodes", and nations/factions/powers are now called "players"!

    players

    IMO it is between 'faction/alliance/power' as what to properly call what TripleA majority case calls Player. That's why it's confusing in the code. PlayerMap does not necessarily contain any of the 'player names' and it can be played by the 'null' node, which makes little sense (and this does makes the code hard to work with).


  • Moderators

    @lafayette said in Terms: Nation - Resolved -:

    IMO it is between 'faction/alliance/power' as what to properly call what TripleA majority case calls Player.

    So, my suggestion was "Power", and it stays.

    Regarding the alternatives given:

    Alliance: I surely advise against it, as that is already used to mean the Alliance. For example, in the picture you posted, you can see that you have the "Alliance" column, on the right (for example, "AntiRomanAlliance" is an "Alliance" (redundant naming there; it should have been called just "AntiRoman")).

    Faction: This is a possibility that I wouldn't exclude outright, but I think it is not a good pick, on the account that it usually means either an alliance or, more commonly, a subset of an alliance, or anyway a plurality of actors (like a clique), not having a specific sound to it. For example, if you say "Neutral Faction", I would think you are talking about an alliance of some sort of all the various powers that are currently Neutral, politically. Of course, there are, instead, cases in which faction would sound just right; for example the Americar Civil War or the Chinese Warlord Era.

    Power: This was and is my favourite pick, even without weighting in the fact that it is the Axis & Allies usage. However, this is breaking one thing to fix another; so I want to remember that, in this case, it is also needed to reword all the current occurrences of "Power"; for example the "Power" value you get in the battlecalculator (rename it "total strength").


  • Moderators

    @lafayette In start game screen, like in the picture you posted, the column called "Name" really needs to be renamed, because "name" of what? Aren't the entries for the Alliance "names" too? So, under the current naming, that column should be called "Player", while under my proposal it should be called "Power".

    Also, the "Stats" tab has recently been renamed as "Players".


  • Admin

    @cernel said in Terms: Nation - Resolved -:

    Power: This was and is my favourite pick, even without weighting in the fact that it is the Axis & Allies usage. However, this is breaking one thing to fix another; so I want to remember that, in this case, it is also needed to reword all the current occurrences of "Power"; for example the "Power" value you get in the battlecalculator (rename it "total strength").

    I'm not in favor of this for two reasons:

    1. Would be confusing in the code, there are other things called 'power' (defense power, attack power, total power, etc.. seeing something named "powerMap" is not likely to mean what you would think)
    2. Rarely used in common parlance. "Which power do you want?" seems an unnatural question.

    Faction does not necessarily mean an alliance of multiple, it can be a " a party or group" https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/faction. I'm pretty convinced that is going to be the best fit for what we are looking for.

    Yet.. this is moot. The term player is used instead of faction just about everywhere in the game. It's not going to be easy or necessarily worth changing.

    Also, the "Stats" tab has recently been renamed as "Players".

    That's significant and good to point out as it is building on a confusing naming. I think the problem is basically, the single player game was first, basically, network is made to be transparent and as an add-on to single player (it came later). So in the first iterations, in single player the term "player" was originally adopted to mean "nation/faction/power/alliance". Without seeing this in contraSt to "player" being used naturally for "how many players are in your game?" to mean something else, it's very easy for this to fly. Then, network/multi support was grafted on top of this, and so "player" can mean different things compared to which context you are in (not very good considering it has a pretty well defined meaning no matter which context).

    I'm thinking going back to 'Stats' might be best move there, in multiplayer games having that tab be called 'players' would be confusing.


  • Moderators

    @lafayette said in Terms: Nation - Resolved -:

    1. Rarely used in common parlance. "Which power do you want?" seems an unnatural question.

    Well, we can also add that, historiographically, terms like "Axis Powers" are consistently used, and the most important pact of WWII, at least on the Fascist side, the "Pact of the Three Powers" ("Dreimächtepakt") has "Powers" in its own original name ("Macht" is German for "power"), although, for some reasons, it is commonly known as "Tripartite Pact", in the English speaking world.

    This is the German version of the Tripartite Pact, also known as the Pact of Berlin:
    http://www.zaoerv.de/10_1940/10_1940_1_4_b_872_874_1.pdf


  • Admin

    @cernel You're right, but the context is to consider are TripleA players, the full set of maps and those we expect in near/mid future, and also the code which will need to use these terms many fold more than they would be seen on the surface. So while 'power' is not bad, 'nation' or 'faction' are both better. (but this is really moot, the effort to actually change this is really high and requires a non-compat release; it's unlikely to be updated, ROI is not favorable)


  • Moderators

    @lafayette I believe "country" is better than "nation" for the job (already explained my point).


  • Admin

    @cernel I think I might be trolling you, but for me country is overly specific. A map like middle earth that does not work. WWII maps 'country' is better than in ways than 'nation'. But for 'neutrals', that is not really a country, it's a set of countries or nations (which is why I like faction, since it can be one or a collection)


  • Donators

    It is worth noting that the "powers" in Axis & Allies are not always states/nations/countries/polities. In the base game, Germany, Britain and the United States are actually alliances. In the global game, UK-Pacific is a theater of operations. A number of scenarios use high-level military formations (such as Camp David). Non-state entities also show up in some scenarios such as zombie hordes, Japanese daimyos, Chinese warlords or New York criminal gangs. For that matter some of the "players" are not playable e.g. the Global Game has 5 non-playable "players".

    As there is really no perfect term, we might as well leave it as "player".


  • Admin

    @rogercooper said in Terms: Nation - Resolved -:

    As there is really no perfect term, we might as well leave it as "player".

    To one extent I disagree, as "player" is the name for something else, eg: Bob and Jill are playing a game, Bob is playing as the allies and Jill is playing as the axis. We then have "player" meaning two different things on which context.

    But... the code is pretty consistent about using "player" to mean playable nation/faction/power. Multiplayer came along later, which is when/where 'player' comes in with the more common understanding to mean the people playing the game (the players), as opposed to the roles they are playing. That's why the code got the terminology wrong, in a single player game, the players are "US" "UK" etc... in a multiplayer game the other/more common meaning comes into conflict. TripleA does not label the alliances to the user anywhere, so we've managed to get away with not needing a decided external name for this concept. That means internally to the code (and map XML) player will retain a pretty well defined meaning, and what is called a "Node" will always be a bit misnamed/weird.


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    @rogercooper Well, looking at the amount of upvotes for you and @Frostion, it looks like that most people are not bothered at all about the fact that the played element and the playing actor are both indistinctively called "player", that I instead feel extremely confusing and near to impossible to talk about.

    Even tho it is not my preferred pick, I would surely take "faction" or even "polity" over "player".

    In the basic games there is no Germany or Britain, there are Germans and British. Of course, the British are not only British, but also Indians etc.. In the moment the name is referring to something specific, namely to the people of a particular "country" or "power" constituting the core of that particular faction, I don't see a problem with being coherent with that.

    Side note, also "empire" would be a good pick for WWII. British, Germans, Japanese were empires (tho, for the Germans, "Reich" doesn't clearly translate as such; that would be "Kaiserreich"), while Russians and Americans are quite often informally referred as such ("imperialism" and all that), albeit "sphere" is probably more suitable a term.