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Old 08-08-2011, 02:01 PM  
Rain Man Rain Man is offline
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Your Chance To Participate In A New Football Phenomenon (Sandbox Simulations)

I apologize if the mods think this is soliciting, and I guess it is, but at the same time it's beta testing a new product developed by long-time planeteers, and it's free.

cdcox and I have been developing a new football game for the thoughtful fan, where players build franchises and compete against each other. A description is below.

If you're interested, we're offering the game for free in Year 1 to Chiefsplanet members, with the goal of both giving the system a dry run and also hooking you like Phillip Morris. You can go to www.sandboxsimulations.com to sign up, and use the access code 6Lanier3.

Here's the overview:

Build and manage a full 53-player roster over multiple seasons, as an offseason activity to give you year-round football

Select your personnel to match your offensive and defensive scheme. Every position matters – even your blocking tight end.

Realistic and accurate simulations of league games based on head-to-head matchups against other teams in your league.


This is essentially a new concept in fantasy football that attempts to simulate as closely as possible the management of a real NFL franchise over a multi-year period. Unlike regular fantasy football, every position on the offense and defense contributes to your success or failure. On special teams, the punter, kicker, and kick returners matter.

In Sandbox Football you will build a team – an entire 53-man football team – via an initial draft, and will maintain it year after year in annual rookie drafts, trading periods, and free agency. You compete against teams in your league. In the first year of the game, before the start of the NFL season, you will build your roster by drafting veterans and rookies through separate drafts, and through trades with other teams in the league. Your roster is frozen at the beginning of the NFL season. During the real regular NFL season, you can focus on your traditional fantasy games and perhaps keep on eye on your Sandbox roster as our statistical models build the data on player performances. At the end of the regular NFL season, the Sandbox season begins. There will be 16 games in the season. In real time, the season will run about 8 weeks (2 alternate reality games per week).

Game outcomes will be simulated based on the performance of individual players during the just-completed NFL regular season. The simulations, developed by a PhD statistical expert, estimate how individual players will perform in the context of your alternate reality team competing head-to-head against other teams in the league and with the specific team that you have built. The simulations will consider the offensive and defensive schemes that you select. So you can build your roster to support a power running game or a high-flying passing attack. You can run a 3-4 or 4-3 base defense. You can run nickel formations or four-wide receiver sets. You can rotate your DL to keep them fresh.

The game is more about building a team than playing video games. So this isn't Madden, but you will have the ability to tweak your game plan to take the best advantage of your roster and the weaknesses of your opponent. Injuries are a factor in the game. If a player is unavailable during weeks 3 through 6 in the NFL, he is also unavailable during the same weeks in the alternate reality season. So roster depth matters. The game simulations are based on the most advanced statistics and the latest research regarding what matters in winning an NFL game. But, the outcomes of the games have a random component, just like real NFL games.

The calendar for the alternate reality league year will look something like this:
• Jan to Mid March: Alternate Reality regular season and playoffs.
• Mid-March to the beginning of NFL season: Roster building through trades, veteran draft (first year), free agent drafts (2nd year and beyond), and rookie draft.
• Beginning of NFL season to end of regular NFL season: Alternate reality league is dormant, but the NFL players are generating their performance stats for the up-coming AR league.
• Rinse and repeat.

Copyright Sandbox Simulations, all rights reserved.

We're still finalizing the cost structure, but this won't be an expensive game to play at all. It might range from a few bucks a year to $50 per year, depending on a few factors.

Year 1 will require a couple of days of drafting with rather high intensity, but we've got it set up where you can put your draft list together and do customized and automated drafting if you like.

So...go! Now! Time to get ready for the draft!




Note that we are still in beta testing, so things could change if we find problems in the system.


How Free Agency Works:

Free Agency will begin before the 2012 season after the rookie draft.

Our process is as follows for the 2012 season. In 2013 and beyond there will be minor changes as noted later.

1. We will unveil the list of available free agents so you can check out the talent pool.

2. If you look in "Standings", you will see that you have a salary account value of $1,300. You will use this to sign your veterans to contracts, sign your rookies to contracts, and (in a competitive bidding process) sign free agents to contracts.

The cost of a contract is as follows for players already on your roster (both veterans and rookies).

$0 - 1 season contract
$10 - 2 season contract
$22 - 3 season contract
$37 - 4 season contract
$55 - 5 season contract
$76 - 6 season contract
$100 - 7 season contract

You will sign your existing players to contracts using an interface that we will unveil shortly. If your 53-man roster is set you can spend your $1,300 on your current roster. However, it may be worthwhile to hold some money back so you can compete for free agents.

3. The free agency period begins.

Bidding for free agents will be open and competitive. As players come available, teams will be allowed to sign them if they are the high bidder. The contract length is automatically calculated by rounding down the bid to the chart below.

Contract Length (Seasons) Salary Points Bid
1 0 to 9
2 10 to 21
3 22 to 36
4 37 to 54
5 55 to 75
6 76 to 99
7 100 or more

For example, if you submit the winning bid for a player at a price of 25 salary points, that player becomes yours under a 3-year contract. If you submit a bid for 35 points and win, it’s also a 3-year contract. If you submit a bid for 38 points, it’s a 4-year contract. If you submit a bid for 120 points, it’s a 7-year contract.

For the 2012 free agency period, we will enforce the 53-man rule. You will need to cut down to 53 players before the free agency period starts, and if you sign a player to go above 53, you will need to cut a player to stay within the roster limit. NOTE: DON'T CUT YET UNLESS YOU WANT TO. WE'RE STILL FINALIZING THE SYSTEM AND WANT TO BE SURE THAT THIS RULE WORKS IN 2012.

4. Ending Bidding and Ending Free Agency.

Bids on an individual player will begin once the first player places a bid. For the 2012 season that bid must be $1 or more. Bidding ends when the existing high bid had not been raised for 72 hours. At that point, the high-bid team is awarded the player under the contract terms described in Step 3.

The free agency period in 2012 will end once there have been no bids on any players for 72 hours.

5. Unused Salary Points

If you do not use all of your salary points in a given year, they will roll over from year to year. This is experimental and we'll have to see how it works. If it doesn't work, they'll expire each year, or maybe a portion of the points can roll over. Right now, assume they all roll over.

6. Salary Points and Roster Management

In the Sandbox system, salary points and the salary cap are used only for acquiring players. You will never have to track the number of salary points “on your roster” and you will never have to cut a player for salary cap reasons.

Additionally, you are not obligated to keep a player for the full length of his contract. You can cut him or trade him at any time. However, recognize that it’s a waste of salary points to cut or trade a player before the end of his contract. But it doesn't hamstring you going forward - it's just past money that you wasted.

7. Free Agency and Contract Length - Retaining Your Current Players

When a player reaches the end of their contract, they go back into the free agency pool and teams will bid for their services. You are eligible to bid on them to get them back, just like you can bid on any free agents.

There is one exception to the rule of free agents going into the free agency pool, as follows:

• At the end of the bidding process, you have the opportunity to re-sign your own players by outbidding the high bidder. Your bid must be the minimum points to increase their contract period by a year over the high bid. (Example: your player goes to free agency, and another team bids 50 points for him, which equates to a 4-year contract. You can keep the player by paying 55 points for him, which is the minimum amount for a 5-year contract.) If the high bidder offered a contract of 100 points or more (7-years), you can keep the player by bidding 10% more points than the high bid.

8. Free Agency and Trades

If you trade for a player, their contract length is a consideration. Trading for a player with 6 years left on his contract will give you his services for that amount of time (unless you cut him or trade him, or he retires). Trading for a player with 1 year left on his contract means that he’ll go back into the free agency pool at the end of the season. (Of course, you can still retain him via Step 7.)

9. Future Years

In future years, the process will be identical to that shown above, with the following exceptions.

a. Because you will have a lot of veteran players under contract, you won't need $1,300. You'll get a new annual allotment of signing dollars. We're still working on the exact amount, but it looks like it'll be between $500 and $600.

b. In the 2012 season, we will introduce all free agents at once to catch up. In the 2013 season and beyond, the free agency period will occur during the actual NFL season. We will sprinkle the free agents in one division at a time over the course of the season. (The divisions may be randomly selected or we may release a calendar. It doesn't matter that much.) This system should be interesting because some free agents will come available early in the season when you don't know their performance for the year - greater risk, greater reward - while other free agents will come available later in the season when you know what their performance will be, but so does everyone else.

c. In the 2013 season and beyond, you will be able to retain more than 53 players through the rookie draft and the main free agency period. You will then have a cutdown period to get to 53 and we will have a final free agency period where you can sign any players who have been cut. In that final period you will have to enforce a 53-man roster, so if you sign a player you have to cut one.

10. When you think about the schedule in 2013 and beyond, it will go like this:

a. Sandbox season goes from February through April.
b. Rookie draft in May. No 53-man limit.
c. Free agency from (likely) September through December, with free agents sprinkled in throughout that period.
d. January. Roster cuts to 53.
e. Late January. Final free agency period to flesh out rosters and sign players cut in Step d.
f. New Sandbox season begins.


Last edited by Rain Man; 05-27-2013 at 09:15 AM..
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Old 03-10-2012, 05:27 PM   #1861
Count Zarth Count Zarth is offline
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Quick question about starting lineups:

Would I be better off starting a proven veteran over a rookie, or should I go with the rookie simply because he had a better statistical season last year? There's about a 200-yard difference between players.
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Originally Posted by Discuss Thrower View Post
KC has chosen to hitch their playoff hopes on 30+ year old game manager QB with obvious limitations with no real future prospect at signal caller on the roster.

There is no difference from what Dorsey is doing now than what the franchise has done for the last 25 years.
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Old 03-10-2012, 06:36 PM   #1862
cdcox cdcox is offline
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Rookie vs. veteran has no influence on game simulations. Start the player that you think had the overall better season in 2011. I'm not going to go into details about what constitutes a better season, but it is far more complicated than total yards. Also there is not a mapping of week-by-week performance between the NFL and Sandbox league. In other words, player X could have a bad week 1 in the NFL and a great week 1 in Sandbox.
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Old 03-10-2012, 06:53 PM   #1863
Count Zarth Count Zarth is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdcox View Post
Also there is not a mapping of week-by-week performance between the NFL and Sandbox league. In other words, player X could have a bad week 1 in the NFL and a great week 1 in Sandbox.
OK. Here's a related question:

Let's say I have an injured player who absolutely tore it up for a few weeks, but then got hurt. Will he be awesome for the weeks he's available?
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Originally Posted by Discuss Thrower View Post
KC has chosen to hitch their playoff hopes on 30+ year old game manager QB with obvious limitations with no real future prospect at signal caller on the roster.

There is no difference from what Dorsey is doing now than what the franchise has done for the last 25 years.
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Old 03-10-2012, 07:21 PM   #1864
cdcox cdcox is offline
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On average, yes.
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Old 03-11-2012, 09:15 AM   #1865
rageeumr rageeumr is offline
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I like the setup of the DL rotation.

My only comment is that it might be helpful to have the option for a single player to get snaps at multiple DL positions. I'm running a 4-3, and it would be nice to be able to play backup guys at both L and R DT and DE. I might even choose to have certain players get a few snaps at DT and DE if that were an option.

Is there any chance that will be incorporated into the game?

Great work so far. I think this is going to be a blast.
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Old 03-11-2012, 09:32 AM   #1866
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Originally Posted by Satanic Goat View Post
Quick question about starting lineups:

Would I be better off starting a proven veteran over a rookie, or should I go with the rookie simply because he had a better statistical season last year? There's about a 200-yard difference between players.
It's really about who was the better player and your judgment.

If the rookie had more yards - say 250 rushes for 800 yards - but the veteran had 100 rushes for 500 yards, you might want to start the veteran because his stats indicate more effectiveness. Who's the better blocker? Better receiver? This is all taken into account with the system we're installing.
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Old 03-11-2012, 10:01 AM   #1867
cdcox cdcox is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rageeumr View Post
I like the setup of the DL rotation.

My only comment is that it might be helpful to have the option for a single player to get snaps at multiple DL positions. I'm running a 4-3, and it would be nice to be able to play backup guys at both L and R DT and DE. I might even choose to have certain players get a few snaps at DT and DE if that were an option.

Is there any chance that will be incorporated into the game?

Great work so far. I think this is going to be a blast.
I went round and round about whether to substitute at specific positions (like I set up) or whether to keep it generic, like you suggest. It's always a balance between providing the flexibility that real NFL coaches have, and keeping the interface (and programming!) relatively simple.

If people want more flexibility in their DL rotations, I would probably consider it as an option in a future year.
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:28 PM   #1868
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:31 PM   #1869
Count Zarth Count Zarth is offline
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Still have 2 top shelf pass rushers for trade. Looking for CB, DT, RT, S. Priority in that order.
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Originally Posted by Discuss Thrower View Post
KC has chosen to hitch their playoff hopes on 30+ year old game manager QB with obvious limitations with no real future prospect at signal caller on the roster.

There is no difference from what Dorsey is doing now than what the franchise has done for the last 25 years.
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:33 PM   #1870
topher79 topher79 is offline
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When does this start? I'm (Wichita Potheads) kind of in need of QB. Any of the following would be available...

Cameron Wake
Jonathan Joseph
Steve Smith (Car)
Domato Peko
Future Draft Picks
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:36 PM   #1871
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Originally Posted by topher79 View Post
When does this start? I'm (Wichita Potheads) kind of in need of QB. Any of the following would be available...

Cameron Wake
Jonathan Joseph
Steve Smith (Car)
Domato Peko
Future Draft Picks
Which league? Post this in the discussion thread for the league that you're in.

As an aside, we're going to be setting up a separate BB system for Sandbox before too long, so that we aren't mooching on chiefsplanet for this. It's just a matter of getting it set up.
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:38 PM   #1872
Count Zarth Count Zarth is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by topher79 View Post
When does this start? I'm (Wichita Potheads) kind of in need of QB. Any of the following would be available...

Cameron Wake
Jonathan Joseph
Steve Smith (Car)
Domato Peko
Future Draft Picks
I'd be interested in Jonathan Joseph.

Check Denver Broncos roster.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Discuss Thrower View Post
KC has chosen to hitch their playoff hopes on 30+ year old game manager QB with obvious limitations with no real future prospect at signal caller on the roster.

There is no difference from what Dorsey is doing now than what the franchise has done for the last 25 years.
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Old 03-22-2012, 12:14 AM   #1873
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Just out of curiosity, have you coded to compensate for poor stats that result from players being dominant at their positions, like cornerback? Where often, they're poor statistical performance is due to being avoided. If we had the option of trotting out Kyle Arrington (88 tackles, 7 int.) versus Nnamdi Asomugha (40 tackles, 3 int.), should we go with statistical performance?
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Old 03-22-2012, 03:26 PM   #1874
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lostcause View Post
Just out of curiosity, have you coded to compensate for poor stats that result from players being dominant at their positions, like cornerback? Where often, they're poor statistical performance is due to being avoided. If we had the option of trotting out Kyle Arrington (88 tackles, 7 int.) versus Nnamdi Asomugha (40 tackles, 3 int.), should we go with statistical performance?
No, you should go with the better player.
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Old 03-22-2012, 03:47 PM   #1875
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Originally Posted by cdcox View Post
No, you should go with the better player.
So, who would be the better player in that case? I know NA is the bigger name, but was he better last season?

The reason I ask is because I have fallen for the Pro Football Reference Approximate Value as a general indicator of the player's importance to the team.

Arrington does have "better numbers", but his AV is also 8, compared to 7 this season from Asomugha. It's nominal, but it would seem to indicate that Arrington was more valuable to the Pats than Asomugha was to the Eagles.

I'm going round and round with Stafford and Newton in a similar situation. Stafford has more total TDs, passing yards, etc. Newton has the rushing TDs, and their total offense is close, but Newton's AV is 19 as opposed to Stafford's 16.

I guess a lot of it will have to do with how the scoring is weighted, as far as determining the better player, or am I putting way too much stock in the AV from Pro Football Reference?
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