Ladders for live games?

The ladders on OGS are only for correspondence games.
I think those of us who only play live games would appreciate ladders for live games.
One way to do this would be to let the creator of a ladder specify a standard time limit for that ladder’s games.
There’s one problem: a challenge should only be accepted if the players can agree a time to play. Maybe a player could state times available to play in the player profile, then possible challengers could check that before challenging.

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The problem is that a fundamental of a ladder is that you have to accept a challenge - otherwise people camp in the high spots, as you said.

But you can’t force someone to accept a live game - they may be asleep.

How would you police this? What minimum availability? etc…

Instead of trying to “police” anything, rely on the basic goodwill of ladder participants. But a simple mechanism to keep the games flowing could be something like this:
When a challenge is issued, the challenger and the person challenged have some time (e.g. 5 days) in which to agree a time to play. When they’ve agreed a time, one of them posts that time and the other confirms it.
If they can’t or won’t agree a mutually acceptable time within the time limit, then they both go down one rank in the ladder if that is possible (i.e. if not already at the bottom).
The time allowed to negotiate a playing time could be extended if one player already has unscheduled challenges.

If you don’t play any live ladder game for 24 hours your position decreases - automatically. So only active player will be able to be king of the hill.


I think this is tending toward just a live arena like they have at lichess. Win as many games as you can in a timeframe and top the table, you get paired with the active people near your position.

I think there is another thread about live ladders

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This seems to have some legs, but I’m still not clear on how the mechanics works so that a person can’t camp at the top and avoid serious contenders?

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You can’t challenge someone too high from you - so all challengers are serious enough.

Everyone have to turn on “live ladder” mode manually - only then someone will be able to challenge you. There is list of available at the moment players. “live ladder” mode disables automatically when game started or you go offline. So it works like custom games. But you can’t cancel after game started.

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I think the ‘live ladder’ mode makes sense, it’d be useful to just auto-reject challenges rather than manually cancelling them.

If it’s to be like the current ladder system, one could have it that if you’re online and someone challenges you but you cancel or have live-ladder off, then they automatically move ahead of you. (That could end up being a bit chaotic though.)

That also seems to make sense, maybe it can bump you down a good few places, so that inactive players drop down fast, rather than only a handful of places at a time.

Another option could be to make it like a daily/few-days/weekly ladder, which auto-clears everyone after a certain point so that inactive players get dropped out, and players interested rejoin.

Maybe in the ladder show amount of games that player played (in the ladder)? Numbers on the right of player are not clear.

This could be awesome, maybe. For those who don’t know, an arena is a tournament that lasts 30m, 1h, or 2h. You get points for wins (and half points for draws in chess). Automatch pairs you with new opponents quickly and automatically. Because you get points for winning and can be paired as soon as you win, there’s incentive to play fast and finish games quickly, as well as resign lost games to get on to the next attempt quickly. All arena tournaments have blitz or speedy time controls. Some marathon arenas can last more than four hours, I think.

Here’s what the schedule looks like on lichess:

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I was thinking about how we could organize a live arena-style tournament ourselves and had this idea.

Participants join a group and send out challenges to each other during a designated time. The organizer tracks games and awards each participant:

  • 1/2 point for each game played (awarded just once for each distinct opponent)
  • 1 point for each win

So that encourages everyone to challenge everyone else, with a bias toward playing even games and wrapping up quickly. Stronger players could even take on multiple games at once for an extra challenge.

Has anyone tried something like this before? I guess it’s kind of like the Western Dan Challenge but on a shorter timescale.