Topic: Draft Flowchart for Voting

I've been thinking about this for a while actually. High Score is a great site and community, but I'm becoming more and more concerned with the voting process. I actually think automatic YES voting is becoming more of a problem than automatic NO voting, and have noticed lots of submissions that are at 100% after a day or so, despite something glaringly obvious being wrong with them (such as the score being wrong or the platform being incorrect). I think it would be helpful to have some guidelines on what people should think about when voting on submissions. I've had a little go at it, but please be aware this is a draft I've quickly thrown together. I'd love for the community to discuss and improve on it.

I fell the first thing that should be asked is whether or not the submission is for an Emulated category or  Physical Hardware category. I feel the process for validating each type is slightly different.


1. Is there any evidence provided that the submitted score was achieved? (If no, then vote NO)

2. Does the selected platform (ie. Atari 2600, Amiga etc.) appear correct to your knowledge? (if no, then vote NO)

3. Does the score submitted match the score in the evidence? (if no, then vote NO)

4. Is a video provided, or is there any proof that the submitter achieved the score in the image(s), such as initials on a high score table or a piece of paper? (if no, then vote NO)

5. Would the score achieve the number 1 World Ranking with no video evidence? (if yes, then vote NO)

6. Is there any sign of cheating or tampering in the evidence? (if yes, then vote NO)

7. If you've got to this point, vote YES


1. Is there evidence that the score was achieved on real hardware and with correct settings? (if no, then vote NO)

2. Is there evidence provided that the submitted score was achieved? (If no, then vote NO)

3. Does the score submitted match the score in the evidence? (if no, then vote NO)

4. Is a video provided, or is there any proof that the submitter achieved the score in the image(s), such as initials on a high score table or a piece of paper? (if no, then vote NO)

5. Is there any sign of cheating or tampering in the evidence? (if yes, then vote NO)

6. If you've got to this point, vote YES

I think the majority of the above is pretty obvious, but some points might be controversial. Rather than me point them out, I'd like to hear other people's thoughts.

Posted by on 2016-01-14 18:52:30

This is a good guideline, but most trolls are going to ignore it.

Posted by on 2016-01-15 20:14:20


I think this more for us regular users and careless yes voting.

Posted by on 2016-01-15 20:56:49

I'll weigh in on this possibly tomorrow, it's a real good guideline but I'm checking out for the night :) zzzzz...

Posted by on 2016-01-15 20:59:33

I'm glad that you guys feel it's a good guide, at least after a quick look. I feel the best way to get people thinking about it is to actually document it in practice. I know that this will likely make me a target for people that don't agree with me, as my NO votes will not be anonymous.

I'm going to start doing it right now, so I hope I have some support. I'm not trying to change the world. It's the only way I can think of to get people thinking and to try to get some consistency in the way people vote.

Here goes...wish me luck.

Posted by on 2016-01-17 15:41:55

yes indeed. a good guideline to follow. thanks. :)

Posted by on 2016-01-17 16:55:54

I was somewhat pushing people last spring who were posting in the hardware categories that they needed to show there hardware. It did get a few people to start showing the hardware, but scores still come up in those categories with a close up of a score with half a monitor and that's it.  I know for the most part what hardware regular users have, like I know baz has an NES, and I called him out for not showing it in a photo only submission ( several months ago), I didn't vote no but my piont was that it shows a new user lazy habits when providing evidence. My reasoning behind the push was discovering scores in the SNES category that weren't played on one, they were played on a wii with a photo of the t.v only. There's quite of a few scores that passed like that and I have serious doubts that they were played on the correct hardware :/

Posted by on 2016-01-17 20:47:58


I can certainly appreciate the thought going into this, as well as the spirit for which this is intended, but some folks simply do not have the ability or the time to go to such lengths to fulfill all the demands (that aren't required by the rules of the website, BTW) in order to pass a score. Yes, I agree that more care should go into voting, like checking the score against the submission, console in the pic, etc.)

The only piece I take issue with is #4...the video requirement.  The website says that a photo is just fine for evidence.  That being said, I do believe that when playing on actual hardware, that the actual hardware should be visible in the picutre.  When I play on real hardware, I make sure that the console is visible in the picture and I have a piece of paper with my username and the website showing.  I do not have any kind of setup for recording video of my games on real hardware, so should none of my scores count because I can't do a split screen of me playing vs. the game screen?

As far as emulation goes, I used to take a picture of my computer screen with my name written on a piece of paper and the date the score was achieved.  That was getting no votes.  So I went to screenshots.  I took the screenshots into paint, where I would enlarge the pic and then insert a text box, where I would enter my username and date.  That got no votes.  So, I went out and found a screen cap video recorder, complete with audio recording.  I would start recording, state my name, what game I was playing and all necessary settings.  The process became cumbersome as I would have to start, stop, restart, etc. until I had a successful run.  Not to mention that these videos were getting pretty lengthy and uploading them to YouTube was taking quite a bit of time, but I did it.  After all that, I would still get no votes because there was no proof that it was actually me playing the split screen action.

So, I said screw it.  Why should I go to all that time and trouble if I'm still going to get no votes?  So, I went back to what was easiest for me and I just accepted the fact that there was no pleasing some people.   But let's use an example:

Currently, I have a score waiting to go through...Montezuma's Revenge - Atari 800 emulated.  Now, it needs 5-6 more votes to go through, but it has a no vote because it's just a screenshot with my simple watermark edited into it.  Assuming I'm cheating, then that means I went out onto google, did an image search for the game, found one with the score I'm submitting and then put my name on it.  So, I challenge the no voter (or anyone else, for that matter) to go out and find that exact screenshot I submitted (minus my watermark, of course.)  It wouldn't take much scrolling through before you would see that no such image exists, other than the one I submitted.  Wouldn't that be proof that there's nothing shady going on?  Now, I will go back to taking pictures if that is prefered over screenshots, which I plan to address in my latest score submission.

I am not bashing Trickster's idea, in any way, shape or form.  I totally get it and I respect it.  And if I am getting no votes because I'm not following all of his requirements (which is his right to have in place) then I will accept his no vote.  Trickster is a respected member of the community and one hell of a Pinball Arcade player.  I appreciate you wanting to make voting more consistent...I just don't have the equipment, the ability or the time to meet all the criteria.

As for taking more care with voting, I am taking more care to ensure I don't vote yes carelessly, but I'm not going to knock down a score for lack of video evidence. 

Posted by on 2016-01-18 08:17:30


Completely agree with you Deteacher.

I would add, it is anyway impossible to watch all videos in search of cheating. I think the community easily detected suspicious players like KuKu Kube, 999 999 999 score and co.

Posted by on 2016-01-18 12:11:59

I agree with 99% of everything you posted. Regarding #5 from emulated, I assume you meant for both emulated and hardware, If the score isn't over the high scores by an outrageous amount I'm good with a picture only for most games but not all. I guess I would judge a reasonable amount by the other scores for that game.

Another criteria I look for which you could include would be the use of tactics e.g. Farming for points and the like. Recent example I debated about which way to vote Ghosts'n Goblins

Posted by on 2016-01-18 21:51:11

In the topic "YOU DECIDE.... the integrity of HSC",

Desert Falcon on Atari 7800 system was the main debate subject. In November 2012, I broke the rule by sitting and shooting in excess as a technique to get huge scores - the settings were Advanced for Main High Scores and Expert for Bonus.

Here in, there is a variation of 7800 Desert Falcon in which you can sit and shoot freely - Expert / Any Tactics.

Check out my video evidence and comments in the following URL:

Posted by on 2016-01-19 04:38:57


I actually intentionally left video off as a requirement for hardware, but that's up for discussion. Ideally everyone would include video evidence for every "world record" submitted, but I understand that this can be challenging. It's far less challenging for emulated games though, so I do think it really should be a requirement for emulated submissions.

I agree that REALLY HUGE scores should be accompanied by video, regardless of what platform they were achieved on.

Posted by on 2016-01-19 17:49:34


Once again Deteacher, I thank you for your well thought out response, and for understanding where I'm coming from, even if you don't agree.

Please note that I have not made video an absolute requirement for hardware submissions. Point 4 says:

"4. Is a video provided, or is there any proof that the submitter achieved the score in the image(s), such as initials on a high score table or a piece of paper? (if no, then vote NO)"

That means that if there is a high score table or a piece of paper with the players initials or name on it in the image, then video is not necessarily required. As OriginalGamer said, it might be a requirement for MASSIVE scores, but I wouldn't expect it for every world record achieved on hardware.

I made this differentiation between emulated and hardware submissions because I do understand that it's much more difficult to capture hardware achieved scores on video. If I look at someone like Frankie, who submits dozens of scores on real hardware with really good photographic evidence, I don't think we require anything more to know that those are legit.

Emulation is different for a few reasons. Firstly, it's so much easier to cheat and manipulate scores through savestates. Most images are just a screenshot too, rather than an actual photograph where the player's computer can be seen along with something that identifies it as their own.

I understand that you still received some negative votes, even when you were including videos, but those people were going to vote no, no matter what you submitted.

I mentioned it in another thread, but I want to reiterate that I don't doubt your scores in the slightest, and I don't believe I've ever voted no on one of your submissions (unless the submitted score didn't match the one in the image). I just don't like setting bad precedents for new members of the community to follow. If I didn't recognise and trust you as a High Score community member, I would likely vote no on your submissions. I'd rather not act in this hypocritical way, hence the flowchart.

I'm not going to continue to "raise awareness" on your submissions by the way. I might do so on some others though, who might not have seen this discussion to at least have a think about it.

Posted by on 2016-01-19 18:06:47

In case anyone is interested, below is what I do when recording video for emulated games. I've stated many times above that doing so is easy, so it's only fair that I share why I think it's easy.

I use Bandicam to record my game sessions. The software picks up the program I'm using for emulation automatically, whether it be MAME, Stella, WINUAE or whatever. In Bandicam I set a specific key to turn on our off recording (I make it L, but you can choose whatever you want). So as I'm about to play a game, I press L. When I reach game over, I press L again to stop recording. I can easily press L again if I want to try again, without having to leave the game.

Once I've achieved the best score I can, I load up Handbrake and run my video through it using YouTube settings. This shrinks the video size substantially without losing any noticable quality, and prepares it to be uploaded to YouTube.

Finally I upload it to YouTube and then submit my score to High Score.

Posted by on 2016-01-19 18:13:04


I'm going to look into that, Trickster.  Sounds like a decent setup.  Thanks for the info.  :)  And thank you for the clarification on point 4.  I appreciate it.  I'm all for providing decent evidence for my game submissions and if this is easy to use, I'm all for it. 

Thanks again! :)

Posted by on 2016-01-19 20:21:17


Sure, except Bandicam leaves a watermark, and we don't always have the money to buy the license.

Posted by on 2016-01-20 14:17:21

I can solve this as long as those who are willing to accept this voting system follow in my footsteps. I started a catigory called NO EXPLOITS. So let the voting system stay as is for those who want to just post their score. However is you care about the authentic vote system list any game under NO EXPLOITS which will ask voters to be as technical as possible when voting on a NO EXPLOITS score.
Posted by on 2016-01-20 14:42:35


That's true, but it's not tremendously expensive ($39), and there are other programs out there that do a similar thing for free, or at least for less cost. I merely described my process in case anyone would benefit from it.

Posted by on 2016-01-20 15:14:01

I've just had a voting session and found that a bunch of submitters are now including photos of hardware that hadn't previously and generally just submitting better evidence than previously.

All I can say is thank you for not taking offense to my comments and accepting them in the spirit that they were meant. smiley

Posted by on 2016-01-20 16:59:04

Well, I understand what you are trying to do, but almost all my scores would fail your list. Not only because I made all these scores and photos from before I joined Highscore (I come from a few other Records Sites), but also because the other Record Sites aren't as close to as strict as the people here on Highscore. I have many new scores I can post but I have refused to post because of the strict voting guidelines a lot of people like to follow here. It discourages people like me from posting on this site and I have even stopped voting much. Being Very Busy, I just couldn't be bothered to follow this guideline when Posting Proof for records. My Proofs have been Sufficient for other Records Sites, So It is Disappointing that My Proofs get rejected by many people here.

Posted by on 2016-01-21 01:53:26

@DarkEonMaster: Darkeonmaster this is why I purpose the NO EXPLOITS and its why I purposed it in the past. You can be freed of HARSH voters and feel free to posts scores that you were afraid to post before. You should be supporting this idea because both sides win.
Posted by on 2016-01-21 12:01:23


You May have forgotten that I was already supporting this idea and I was like the first to support it. :P
I think I was the first that proposed this idea (though it was slightly different)

Posted by on 2016-01-21 12:56:56


Now that you mention it I do recall. Thing is its hard to keep track when most of the users were against me. Several were saying NO EXPOITS should not be a thing because it would mean all their scores are suposably nullifyed and it would be way to much work to repost all their scores all over again.


I'm happy to see less attacks on me and I wish the best of luck to all of us for this to work out. Infact the system is already in place and working. TheTrickster simply needs to start requesting the NO EXPLOITS catigory under any new requests made. It is that simple. 3users on board with this system and I already know several will vote properly and harshly in this already existing catigory as it was done in the past. This encourages me to start posting scores again

Posted by on 2016-01-21 23:10:10


good guidelines Trickster!  yes  Thank you.

That's pretty much the same as what I go by, except I tend to go easier on a lot of them when voting.  Still it's good to have a checklist as a reminder.

I TOTALLY agree with you that yes votes are more of a problem here than no's. will probably never have a set standard that everyone votes by but at least it's great when users share their thoughts about voting.

Posted by on 2016-01-22 01:09:04


Gotcha yes For me the process or recording and uploading for real hardware is a lot faster than emulation, I don't have to wait and compress my fraps emulation video files from 5+gigs to about 300mb, that takes quite a bit of time and additional software vs. Webcam file to youtube, that's it.

Posted by on 2016-01-22 20:20:02


I think we who agree to go with trickster should talor towered NO EXPLOITS and request Serious adds an agreed upon voting rule set that the NO EXPLOIT users should follow. For example screw yes and no voting for the NO EXPLOITS. Lets have a list that voters can vote on just like the list is on the normal vote system when voting no. Instead of giving a reason for a no vote it ask questions that lead to a percentage so at the end of voting it gives a % per user.

Sounds like alot of work for serious but Ican make a mock up on my website to demonstrate the idea to give a better understanding.

Posted by on 2016-01-23 20:00:49

It's the double-edged sword of incentivising voting the way the site does. On one hand, without awarding points for casting a vote, not as many people would. On the other, points for voting and giving a prize to whoever casts the most votes just encourages people to vote on whatever they can, whether they have any idea if the score is legit or not, or if the picture is even of the correct game. Voting yes takes less time (since you don't have to justify a yes vote), and most of us don't want to be the jerk who no voted a perfectly legit score, so you're going to get a lot of indiscriminate yes votes.

I understand that some people want more proof than others, and a flowchart like this can be great for them, but creating making a list of questions part of the voting procedure for everyone isn't the answer. You just end up creating a bunch of unnecessary requirements, or the illusion of more requirements than there are which is going to discourage a lot of people from posting scores

Posted by on 2016-01-28 01:59:13


Thats why I think it should talor to the NO EXPLOITS catigory only.

Posted by on 2016-01-31 00:53:52

So whats the NO EXPLOITS category ?

Posted by on 2016-01-31 07:47:32

So whats the NO EXPLOITS category ?

Posted by on 2016-01-31 07:50:40


An "exploit" is where you have a game where you put yourself in a certain position and can score points very easily, like there being a checkpoint right before you go to a next level, but you can just sit there and pummel bad guys over and over again for an indefinite set of points before going to the next level.

A no exploits category forbids doing that.

Posted by on 2016-01-31 11:42:52

I knew that, my question is more, does this page have such category ?

Posted by on 2016-01-31 12:09:13


The NO EXPLOITS catigory is how it is listed when submitting a score. For example if you play any game lets sat StarFox 64 and you find the listing for StarFox 64 you sadly will not find a listing called StarFox 64 (NO EXPLOITS) However if you wanted the NO EXPLOITS you would request it just like any other game has been requested within the entire list of games. Once requested and created as a new catigory to add scores to you may post your score under StarFox 64 (NO EXPLOITS)

This has already been approved for several Atari games I posted under.

In the NO EXPLOITS catigory one must provide good evidence with video that is not just screen captured. The game's interworkings obiviously can not be exploited as well as any external exploit. Everything including game system must stay in camera view. It is best to show your hands using the controller.

This is what a NO EXPLOITS video should generally look like 

Posted by on 2016-02-01 19:47:09

@Maxwel: Also lnown as NO LEECHING :-)
Posted by on 2016-02-02 02:56:52


one thing about "NO EXPLOITS" that may cause people not to get into it, it seems to suggest that exploits are allowed normally, which mostly they're not.  ... maybe if you called it "STRICT EVIDENCE" (or something like that but better), since this category essentially has to do with quality of evidence, raising the quality of evidence.

Posted by on 2016-02-05 13:58:04


Great idea but then my NO EXPLOITS would have to be renamed by serious which is more work. Or we could just delete the NO EXPLOITS and start over perhaps. Not really sure on this one. I kinda like the name as is because it is exactually what it is. Though I do know that calling it STRICT EVIDENCE makes alot of sence. Thing is STRICT EVIDENCE listings could allow exploits as long as their listed which is part of what I was attempting to eliminate. For example Super Mario bros farming (NO EXPLOITS) would defeat its self in its own words. However Super Mario bros farming (STRICT EVIDENCE) works perfect

I'm willing to change NO EXPLOITS to STRICT EVIDENCE in the long run it does allow for more options as my point was to cut certian options with strict evidence. I think people voting on a title named STRICT EVIDENCE would work better as well. I can defently compromise on this one.

Posted by on 2016-02-05 16:50:01

So then we will have 2 entries for each game, one with "no exploits" and one without ? That should be intresting.

Posted by on 2016-02-05 16:55:13


That can look like alot of clutter when trying to find a game. I found my NO EXPLOITS already clutters up the search list. Becides that every game requested means it can be requested 3 times total for escentually the same scores. Not stating this can't happen or shouldent but I think we should consitter this. It can work but I think everyone need to have their say in the matter and consitter the options. I'm all for both NO EXPLOITS and STRICT EVIDENCE but I also think having both kinda acheaves the same general idea in reality.

Posted by on 2016-02-06 12:01:59


What about encouraging everyone to have a trust the player till its proven that they are cheats. thats mostly how i am thinking. I think we are more inching towards becoming a new marp, used to be fun, till someone creating an illegal mame version and an inp checking utility that less than 5 persons have ever seen, but everybody trusts blindly. The philosophy on marp is, you are a cheat until proven otherwise, or unless you are part of a cartain few, that covers uo each others.

Sad but true.

Posted by on 2016-02-06 13:05:18


Sounds good in principal excent I show video proving a user can indefinitly cheat with out ever getting cought even when recording video profe.

I admit I do not like guilty till proven innocent. Its also why it is a voting system as S.BAZ stated. Voting no does not state guilt. It only states the evidence is lacking. Our reputation is not a reputation of how credable a use is but more along the lines of how well their evidence holds up. For example authentic pictures should receave some no votes as evidence is lacking while other yes voters pass the score as more then likely it is an authentic score. This way when a user gets a trophy above another user with better evidence those two can attempt to better not just their score but evidence. As a user like myself will state a user has a better score in Atari Kaboom over me except my evidence is better. So this user may hold the trophy but I know personally I hold the more credable evidence which in my mind puts me on top even if the site states otherwise. As far as I'm conserned it is strictually based on evidence.

Posted by on 2016-02-06 14:22:14


Voting no does not state guilt. It only states the evidence is lacking.

Or it states there's someone trolling, as there have been times where someone voted no on a 20 minute video or something in less than five minutes after it was put up.  That person did NOT watch the video; they didn't have time.  But did they specifically state for their "reason" that something fishy popped up in the video at the :23 mark or whatever?  No.

Posted by on 2016-02-07 10:38:44

@DarrylB: Ok so legitimate vots are showing evidence is lacking. Troll votes can never truly be eliminated.
Posted by on 2016-02-08 14:08:25

bump!  laugh

Posted by on 2016-08-10 13:43:10