24 votes, rating 2.6
Warning: Long. I'm having weird mental health issues, and trying to be concise is not an option. Part of my objective is to see if the "insights" I am now privy to are noise, or some bizarrely virtuous side-effect of my slowly-accelerating brain damage. I'll try to filter for "comprehensible," and I'll lead with my position in case good ol' TL;DR sets in while you're going through my blather, so you at least can see what I'm pointing at.
Tilt (n): A dissonant state caused by a subconscious realization that acknowledged action/resource vocabularies at hand are insufficient to meet stated objectives, resulting in a shift in actual objectives toward a dual aim of convincing the conscious process that it is working toward stated objectives, while actually working for maximum noise generation in the interests of doing something, just to avoid acknowledging a loss of control.
"Tilt" can also be expressed as a verb. I came from the nominalization because the verb "tilt" has lots of common uses, but as a noun, it's easier to relate to our deal: same concept either way.
In amateur psychobabble that I'm hoping someone here can address with a more academic perspective:
Tilt is what happens when you think you know your stuff pretty well, and in fact, you have enough familiarity to have an intuitive sense of what to do. But this familiarity doesn't match with a conscious understanding of those intuitive processes, and the "gosh-darn it, I lost" realization kicks in intuitively, while consciously you still see a path to success.
Your ego sees this disjunction, and knows damn well that it has to hitch its wagon to the intuitive horse, but use "accurate but misleading statements" to convince the conscious process that it doesn't really have to check for dissonance, and all the right things are just resulting in ever-more-improbable bad luck.
Meanwhile, your intuitive calculus is not really useful if it just sits in despair, so your ego has to put it to work. Your ego, like any ego, isn't really keen on the whole "beat your head into a wall of futility" thing, unless it can establish futile head-beating as a self-directed goal. And while your ego is happy with the idea of "try to win" as an outside imposition, because when it results in a success, you get to say, "I meant to do that," and everybody who saw it will agree and congratulate you on having the chops: big success for the ego, so the ego is on board with that kind of external objective. But once that's off the table, well, you haven't internalized a fallback position to aim for, except for the tie, which is a handy compromise. But what if you can't do that either?
Well, now your ego has a problem. That silly conscious idiot, he's doing all sorts of wishful "could happen" calculus, not even knowing he's already hosed. Your intuitive processes have gone through your "go-to" and "check-down" objectives, and decided both are nonstarters. So now your ego has to feel that this finely-honed intuitive structure is going to waste, and that's not okay. So, without any sense of a valid teleology to run on, the new goal is, "feel like this tool is still effective, even if I can't make it productive." And that means doing the thing that has the best chance of having the biggest effect, from its own perception. Well, since "biggest effect" is measured from your own perspective, and burning is more efficient than building, the best tilt mechanisms are mostly forms of self-sabotage: playing for masochism, backstabbing supposed allies, rejecting your core principles, stuff like that.
So now, not only is your opponent beating you up, you're using perfectly valid tools, in the functions they were intended for, but your tool use isn't keyed to any desire to succeed. Really you just want to offer yourself cover so that if there was any degree of chance in the disaster you're responding to (as long as we're talking Blood Bowl, the only certainty is that something will go wrong), and any significant bad luck after you started tilting (remember, now you're gaming to tempt fate, so this is inevitable), you have cover to blow it off as an anomaly. If you're actually right about your relative intuitive assessment thing, you get empirical reinforcement, because you don't tilt very often. But it still happens, right? And you can acknowledge that fact in the abstract or after some games have passed so you can think "well, yah, I blew that one, but that was then," as if undirected practice helped get you past the "familiarity" stage or something.
So, if you are confronted with evidence of your own tilt, once in a while, fine. "Happens to everyone" is both basically true, and a totally valid onesy-twosy defense mechanism. But you can't admit that it happens a lot: any concession to any limits to your skill has to be clearly structured to justify your stated commitment to improvement. "Okay, fine, I'm not Endzone or PeteW" is a self-serving self-effacement, but once you start having to own your record, if your record doesn't offer you something to hang your hat on, you need to blame something without telling yourself that's what's happening. So the RNG, Christer, cheaters, ever-more absurd claims to outlier status, those all have to turn into bad guys.
But wait, there's more! Say you blame the RNG. A priori, it's evident that RNGs are designed by people, and introducing perversity is a thing that could be done, and your only evidence that Kalimar doesn't have some personal beef with a coach he'd never met is that it seems highly improbable. You'll happily agree that this would have been a terrible assumption, but you didn't come to this assumption without a process that has some very valid components. Unfortunately, valid components just reinforce invalid processes, and your obviously legitimate reference to a population of "dice rolled in all your games on the site" as a sample if taken in its entirety. Your ego isn't gonna just assume that population = sample, or that there aren't valid ways to skin your cat that you don't get (you're a tilter, not a fool or a solipsist), but population as sample gets validated in your mind, on a compound fallacy that is as absurd as it is self-reinforcing:
1) The skills to take the outcomes in the population I care about (my games) and craft a nice, beefy sample are out there in the coaching population (true);
2) Not only that, but there are more valid methodologies than even a professional in a related field would simply refuse any attempt at exhaustive granular enumeration, and I don't have to conform to some external methodological straitjacket to get a cogent outcome (true);
3) My understanding of how the processes I'm using are basically consistent with successful ones (probably true; terrible coaches don't tilt as bad as mediocre ones, because the noise argument stops making senes as a counter for the malice argument);
4) Well, by dint of Dunning-Kruger and my (probably cogent) evidence that I grok enough of the subject to feel like I qualify for the last point, the coaches described in 1), if they're better than me, it's not by much (doubtful but plausible; good coaches tilt too, but the trigger has a higher threshold (working definition of "good"), "knows how to get off tilt" correlates strongly with "good coach" status, and the other correlates produce success just by dint of the fact that your ego can't fool a good coach with facile mistakes, which tends to help your ego get back to owning the outcomes);
5) Moreover, better access to valid methodologies to crunch numbers yields all sorts of useful information (true), and 5a) this means that a good coach can take that crunched data, and apply it productively based on his skill set (missing a modal and/or existential reference), so, since I'm at least a kinda good coach (already stipulated, with an invalid basis that you can't see because you're focused on a couple valid components as mental shorthand), and more useful data is always better for your objectives (idiotic leap to disaster so you can serve serve your tilt, and this realization is a good handhold to climb out), then anyone who has used a valid number-crunching strategy will also win more as a result (somewhere near the zenith of your aforementioned leap);
6) Coaches near your skill level use your toolkits in ways you would understand to achieve their different result mix that has the same intended effects and achieves them with a comparable degree of efficiency (your only defense here is for the efficiency claim, and that's unfalsifiable because your aesthetic mix of objectives can't be assumed to correlate with your pragmatic teleology, let alone account for all the noise you dismiss in the other parts of this claim);
7) Therefore, since useful statistical analysis toolkits exist among the skill-sets of coaches qua coaches (unfalsifiable but truthy to the initiated (I'll even play along, if you spot me an asterisk), and valid given stipulated premises), and by dint of (some approximation of validity, or at least strength, that I don't care to quibble over rn) inference from those premises that I'm doing what the other guys are doing, so my lopsided cherrypicking is the cogent outcome of some personal variant on the best practices (you don't need me anymore);
8) By dint of all that, not only do I know for a fact that Kalimar saw me coming way back in 2010 and gamed to hose me, but I also know that my inability to explain how I know that this process in managing this has resulted in a spectacular revelation that nobody else can even keep up with (except for a select few maligned "whingers" who play my confirming Cassandra), that's incontrovertible proof that I'm an intuitive genius! (The rest of us, if we have any excuse to defend our ego, use a slightly less stupid, in the "infinity-1" sense, come to the same conclusion, and since we all spot that in ourselves by dint of the cogency of the excuse taken for itself which lets us see our own variant and let everyone off the hook, we must all own the idea that we're all intuitive geniuses, so we don't get to beef with this conclusion lest we have to attack our own unstated leaps. Voila, institutional reinforcement.)
Now all you have to do is log on and find someone to help you confirm it all by letting you crash. Honestly, if you're reading this, I suspect you can smell pre-emptive tilt within about two turns, if you even have to load the client to get that far. And by dint of massive and mission-critical multitiered reinforcement, you have to go on your personal brand of feeding frenzy to help him out. I mean, he wouldn't have even gotten into the fishbowl/scheduler/tourney/whatever if he wasn't looking to engineer a payoff. Throwing him an anchor carries the moral imperative (to a much lesser degree, but that's not dispositive of any change in mandate, just a justification for playing along), of throwing him a life-preserver would if "Blood Bowl" were "ocean swimming" instead.
On top of that, now that Christer has taken it over, well, obviously he'd have seen the "hose Joe for giggles" mechanic in the RNG, and you're still getting hosed, so now it's a conspiracy! What's more, anyone who points out the idiocy of this position (which is anybody who says anything, because it's obvious) is now also part of the conspiracy, so the whole site is just one big group of folks who mostly don't know each other very well, using really complex coding processes backed up by a whispering campaign that somehow gets around to everyone but you, designed at hosing some random stranger for collective schadenfreude. And you go bye-bye, because nobody wants to live that nightmare.
What's worse, beyond simply offering you a counter-argument, any appeal to that argument is doomed to backfire even worse. The better the counter-argument, the more unacceptable it is, because it challenges a priori "knowledge" and you can't get to it unless you come around to it on your own. But if someone is trying to force it down your throat, they're triggering your internal feedback mechanisms. These mechanisms are reinforced by your whole worldview, while the argument is just about one dimension. So the feedback aimed at drowning out the "obvious but unacceptable" paradox driving this whole thing gets reinforced by every other belief you have, most of which undoubtedly have some reasonable basis. This means that every arithmetic ramp up on the counter-argument is met with a similar ramp-up on the defense, augmented by massively exponential ramp up as all the other views you have jump in, and the offending counter-position just gets mobbed by an internal "Hey, Rube!" response.
This happens in all ways, and when the dynamics are primarily social, two egos tilting against each other are pretty much incapable of trying to come to common ground without a bypass mechanism. This is worse in politics, because the collective egos are quite real, but the collective intellects are, at best, some unexplorable cocktail of objectives without even any kind of causal unity. Every party platform that I've ever seen in 25 years as an American voter (and they get reworked every 4 years) is a hodgepodge of teleological, material, and formal imperatives, built without any framework for accessibility with the subconscious but valid objective of not giving the other side a facile direction of attack. But this ends up tying in three of the four causes based on sort of a common calculus by a coalition (efficient cause) whose common interests seem to be served by banding together. This throws an efficiency test into the multicausal platform, which has to be implicit because we all agree that trying to prescribe identity is not acceptable, but we don't actually leave ourselves any room to avoid it.
DISCLAIMER: I know this example is a minefield, and if you deliberately trip it, I will totally analyze your disregard for this admonition in terms of tilt, and you will richly deserve it for trying to derail the effort to get us all off tilt (a pretty obvious tilt response). If you need an example to address anything that follows, well, you're a Blood Bowl coach: stick with that, unless something similarly banal but more applicable to your point comes to mind. I'm really trying to point to an intuitively and empirically well-understood example that demands an immediate resolution, because while we can't all agree on exactly what the looming catastrophe looks like, "this bodes ill" is one of the few broad points of agreement (roughly on the order of "the sky on a clear day usually looks blue"). So, somewhere else, in some more appropriate venue, feel free to apply this stuff in service of the example. Staff: if you think this warning isn't enough, please PM me so I can find a new real-world analogy that might benefit from applied Blood Bowl skills.
If you follow politics in my beloved USA, and you see one of the two sides as organized institutionally around serving the tilt rather than trying to be productive, well, you're right! And if you think the other side, or everybody who's not on a side, is in any way operating outside of tilt mode in my country's contemporary political scene, well, that just means that you are also on tilt. Don't blame yourself: the whole system has turned into an orgy of self-destructive "don't call it despair," because everybody has convinced themselves that their legitimate disagreements have to be the product of malice on anyone who disagrees on any level.
On the right, this results in a reinforced lockstep drive into a demand to order every single item off of a catastrophically inconsistent menu, but the left isn't really responding any better, because we don't tie our egos into each other tightly enough to avoid disastrous infighting, or to offer a coherent message that anyone can buy as an omnibus (omnibus objectives are an institutional imperative in a two-party system), even though almost everyone can pick and choose stuff that they like, unless they're committed to rejection out of fear that they'll have to buy into the omnibus to acknowledge any virtuous micro-elements. End result, both sides are playing to force everybody, themselves included into meltdown, and the actors are so large scale that self-evaluation efforts pretty much always get dismissed as false-flag attacks.
Don't spare my ego. If I'm wrong about any of this, call me out, don't just let me have a fiction for my own tilt.