Firstly I'd like to say many thanks for making this app, you've really done a great job. Risk was my favourite board game as a kid and I purchased the infinite games the first chance I got.
So as a Grandmaster who was ranked in the top 900, this new "I'm ready" button has unfortunately just cost me 600 ranking places (down to 1500) :/. I only play 6 player World domination with fixed cards and getting the ranking up requires 4 wins in every 5 games (with at least 1 opponent ranked Expert or above). I always host games and make sure one of the opponents is Expert (ideally Master or Grand) and no Beginners. Unfortunately the new button means people can back out after I've commited to playing. This is a nightmare for higher ranked players as if a high ranked opponent doesn't press the "I'm ready button" I'm left with intermediate opponents and the AI. Which means if I lose I lose big but if I win I gain virtually nothing. Plus the game becomes more about luck than skill as the AI is very unpredictable. You can manipulate the AI and therefore control what the AI does but that only works up to a point. Normally I would never start a game without at least 1 Expert or higher as it really is pointless, but the new system allows this situation to happen.
The old system of people having to commit once the host starts the game did have it's issues. If you were the last person to join, the host could start the game before you've even had chance to decide if you wanted to play in that room. That is the main reason I started hosting only, as I didn't want to get stuck in a room full of beginners which gave a high risk (no pun) for no reward. The new button is a nice idea but seems flawed.
Maybe when the host starts the game, the 10 second timer could start in the room. If anyone backs out or doesn't press the "I'm ready" button, the timer stops and the slot becomes available for someone else to join the room.
There must be some system where both the host and the other players are protected from having to commit to a game they don't want to play?
All the best