Better plus/minus stats

November 21, 2022-

For a long time, Basketball GM has had raw plus/minus (or +/-) as a stat, which is how many points per game his team scores with him on the floor minus how many points it gives up. In basketball, this is not the most useful stat in the world for multiple reasons.

One is that it's not adjusted for playing time, but obviously it's very different to have a +/- of -1 per 10 minutes or -1 per 30 minutes. To address that, the +/- stat has been replaced by a "per 100 possessions" version, which makes comparisons of this value more fair.

But even per 100 possessions, it's a pretty shitty stat because if you play with good teammates you'll have a good +/- even if you're not very good. This is the problem that various adjusted plus/minus stats try to solve with fancy statistics. Those are probably too complicated to include in BBGM, although BBGM does include the box plus/minus (BPM) stat which is a simpler approximation of adjusted plus/minus.

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Game simulation settings for all games

There have been settings in Basketball GM to let you make leaguewide changes to game simulation - like changing the pace of games, the number of three pointers, etc. Now that same feature is here for the other sports too!

Want to simulate 1930s football, before they really figured out this newfangled "forward pass" thing? Turn up interceptions, and turn down the passing rate, yards, and completion factors.

Or 1980s hockey with crazy scoring? Turn up pace and turn down saves.

Or baseball in the dead-ball era? Turn down power and fly balls.

Or whatever you want. It's your league!

Here's what the settings look like in Football GM:

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ZenGM goes international: 10 new teams, including cities in Europe, Asia, Australia, and South America

September 16, 2022-

I know there have been a lot of logo updates lately, but this one is especially exciting. Elliott Strauss is the designer who did most of the logos in my games, and he just finished a new batch of 10 teams. There are a few straggling North American cities, but it's mostly international.

You can use these teams in several ways. You can create a new custom league and click "Customize" next to the list of teams. You can go to Tools > Expansion Draft in an existing league and pick one of them as an expansion team. Or you can go to Tools > Manage Teams and relocate an existing franchise to one of these cities.

Or play ZenGM Hockey where Edmonton, New Jersey, and Winnipeg are in new leagues by default.

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New teams in Anchorage and Quebec

September 13, 2022-

This time there are two new teams: the Quebec Voyageurs and the Anchorage Glaciers!

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New team: the Albuquerque Thunderbirds

September 9, 2022-

There's a new team in the ZenGM universe, the Albuquerque Thunderbirds!

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Create leagues from a mix of teams - random teams, real current/historical teams, and teams from your existing leagues

Recently I added an exhibition game feature that lets you play a game between two teams from any season in any of your leagues. In BBGM you can also pick any real teams, current or historical. This was a pretty exciting feature because it was the first time there was any type of cross-league play. But you can imagine a lot of other things involving multiple leagues that might be fun.

So here's another one: when creating a new random/custom league, you can now include and current/historical teams from any of your leagues, including real teams in BBGM! Try it out by clicking the "Customize" button next to the team selector when creating a new random or custom league.

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New team: the Oakland Blue Oaks

August 18, 2022-

There's a new team in the ZenGM universe, the Oakland Blue Oaks!

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Bug fix for trading picks during the draft

August 18, 2022-

This isn't that important of a bug fix, and I bet most people won't notice either way. But it does need a bit of explanation to make sense, so here is a blog post!

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All sports have an All-Star Game, and more All-Star settings

July 11, 2022-

The All-Star Game has been in Basketball GM for a few years now, but I never got around to putting it in the other sports. Well, now I have. Plus some new All-Star settings for BBGM too.

The biggest difference between basketball and the other sports is that positions matter a lot less in basketball. You can throw 5 guys out there and it might not be ideal, but they can play. For other sports, the All-Star Game needs to be pretty rigid by position for it to feel credible. And that's how it works, you'll see the best players at each position selected as All-Stars in other sports.

There's some new customization features too, available in the new "All-Star" section of the League Settings page:

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The Universal Draft Lottery Simulator

July 7, 2022-

Earlier today I released an update allowing the draft lottery to be customized, rather than only having a handful of preset options. You can set the number of picks to determine in the lottery, and set the odds for each team.

Previously, my draft lottery odds calculation code didn't support this kind of thing. Originally it was 3 hardcoded nested loops to handle the 3 picks in the NBA draft lottery. Then when the NBA added a 4th lottery pick, I added another conditional nested loop. At this point it was starting to get pretty ugly. Now the MLB has a 6 team lottery? I'm not doing 6 nested loops. I decided to rewrite it to support any number of picks. That made it easy to support the new custom lottery settings.

While doing that, I figured this might be a fun thing to play with on its own. So I took my lottery code and put it in a little self-contained website called the Universal Draft Lottery Simulator. Kind of silly, I know. But I bet someone will have some fun with it!

Also, it's open source.