Sunday, March 22, 2020

Revisiting an obsession of 13-year-old me

Strange times lead to strange activities.

Ah...who am I kidding, this isn't a strange activity for me at all.  I've mentioned before that I enjoy following sports (especially those of my Georgia State Panthers) and, like pretty much everything I enjoy, I occasionally follow its threads to their obsessive and geeky ends.  (That's shown up in, say, the 1d6-skill-system-based football microgame I worked on way back when.)

So, you may have noticed that sports aren't really going on right now (although I saw a rumor that maybe they'll be playing baseball in South Korea...?).  In a strange way, it's almost seemed to me like a tiny contribution I could make to the world, to fill that void in a very small way that I can control.  In thinking about this, I've drifted back to one of the first games I ever put real effort into designing, a baseball simulation that I worked on back when I was around 13 (the reason I bought my first-ever "funny dice").

This isn't a complicated "simulation" at all.  It's just a d100-based resolution system in which the results of each at-bat can be determined by one or two rolls.  It uses a "50-50 method" of following the pitcher's stats half of the time and the batter's the other half...which I found out in reading around lately is a somewhat controversial paradigm among those who enjoy tabletop baseball games like Strat-O-Matic (which might have to be a post for another time).

For each at-bat, just roll a d100.  If the result is 1-50, check the pitcher’s table; if it’s greater than 50, check the batter’s. Finally, if the result is “In Play”, roll another d100, check it on the hitter’s “In Play” table, and resolve the play.

Image by Cindy Jones from Pixabay.

Some examples with a GSU batter and pitcher:

Merejo, Elian

98-100 HR
87-97 BB
78-86 K
51-77 In Play
In Play
86-100 2B
41-85 1B
36-40 OUT (fly 9)
31-35 OUT (fly 8)
26-30 OUT (fly 7)
24-25 OUT (fly 6)
21-23 OUT (ground 6)
19-20 OUT (fly 5)
16-18 OUT (ground 5)
14-15 OUT (fly 4)
11-13 OUT (ground 4)
9-10 OUT (fly 3)
6-8 OUT (ground 3)
4-5 OUT (fly 1)
1-3 OUT (ground 1)

Watson, Ryan

19-50 In Play
16-18 HR
12-15 BB
11 HBP
1-10 K


First AB: First roll is a 9. Check Watson’s table...Strikeout.

Second AB: First roll is a 61. Check Merejo’s table...In Play. Second roll is a 22...ground out to SS.

Third AB: First roll is an 89. Check Merejo’s table...Walk.

I'm just working out some rules for stealing bases and need to write out what I see as the most reasonable way to resolve baserunners' advancing in different situations, and I think it'll be complete enough for now.  I have a spreadsheet going that turns stats into player tables pretty easily, and my plan is to play out the conference championship tournament that we won't end up getting this year.

More to come.

Stay safe out there!

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