Rating Drop After Win by Timeout

I don’t know what’s the reason for the drop. As far as I can tell your rating should’ve gone up after that game. It was your 16th ranked game, so it should be the first game of a rating period (earlier games should have no influence on your rating at this point).

Huh, interesting. System glitch perhaps ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Same here - won by timeout and dropped 0.1 k :confused:
I mean I dont care that much about rank… but if you play a match for months (against a stronger opponent when the match started btw)… it really seems you are going to win, then (s)he times out and you drop in rating despite your win… feels a little dissappointing tbh! My last opponents didnt change that much in rank, most of them climbed a little as far i can tell. I am not a mathematician so a simple explanation for this would be much appreciated!

BTW, would this have happened if I won the game regularly?

Absolutely the same thing. The time-out had nothing to do with your final rating.

There are three possible explanations for a rating drop after a win:

  1. Your rating was in “preliminary” status, and was going to drop anyhow, due to recent adjustments of your recent opponent’s ranks. Your win just lessened this. This cycle of adjustments happens all the time.

  2. Your win happened in the same batch as a loss, and the loss outweighed the win

  3. A bug.

So far, it has always been either or both of 1 & 2 when this is reported.


Thanks for the quick reply. Just out of curiosity, is there anyway I can check if possibilities 1 or 2 are the case?

#2 is easy to check: mouse over your rating graph for the date when you won the game, and it will show you how many games are bundled in that data point.

#1 is much harder to check retrospectively. You can get an indication by looking to see if your recent opponent’s ranks were trending down at that time.

hmm okay, the graph isnt updated yet but for all other timepoints the ‘batch’ consists of 1 game only, or am i reading this wrong?

concerning point #1: as far as i can tell some opponents got stronger, some weaker…

again, thanks for your input though. It is only 0.1 kyu so its nothing to break a night of sleep over it, i just want to understand how it works :wink:

Me too - and find bugs if they exist. Can you point out the game in question?

Sure, https://online-go.com/game/20042381

Also, the Ratinggraph is still not updated in 10 days… so maybe it is a bug?

Not a bug. It’s a feature.

Sorry for the inconvenience.

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Can’t believe we’re still using a six year old thread, lol


Could you elaborate how in this case the “mass timeout” rule caused this person’s rating to drop after a win?

I would have thought the only think that rule could have caused is not-to-increase after a win…

For some reason, (some) annulled games trigger a rating recalculation. Since the ratings of at least the most recent opponent changed since the last game ended, the new calculated rating should be slightly different.

And my answer was to explain why the game doesn’t show up in the rating graph.

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Fascinating :slight_smile: Good catch!

I think it’s great. It’s useful to keep similar line of discussion grouped in the same thread.

Thanks for diving into this. However, in the gamelist, the game is flagged as rated, not annulled.

If it’s a feature, I still dont understand it. To prevent sandbagging it’s only logical that the rating of the player who times out is not affected if a batch of games lost by time out. But why the winner is "punished " for this as well remains a complete mystery to me.

Annulments caused by the timeout rule do not show up on the game history. I know this from my own experience. As for the winner not getting the win: for every win there must be a loss, otherwise the whole ranking system would gradually inflate. So if the loss isn’t going to count, the win can’t count either.

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Briefly, it’s for ranking system stability.

If lots of people join, start games, and leave by timeout, it is said that the effect will be an upward trend on all ranks on the server, which is not desireable. A lot of care is taken to make sure that the overall ranking stays stable (this also is why new people are 13k with high uncertainty).

If you are interested in more details, and to see the various arguments on the table for and against, you could start here: Escaping by Timeout


Thanks for clarifying things up, makes total sense now!