Season 2: feedback, suggestions and ideas for the future

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Lash
Posts: 33
Joined: 21 Feb 2017, 10:15

Season 2: feedback, suggestions and ideas for the future

Postby Lash » 27 Mar 2017, 17:03

Thanks for all the updates for this season. Most of my feedback and suggestions are to do with player/group incentives in the game, which I have explored in previous posts as well. TL;DR summaries in bold.

Leaderboards

Fundamentally, respect really needs to have greater value to keep people enticed to play and compete. Even as respect relates to "bragging rights" at the moment, leaderboards are global across servers. While this gives an incentive for people to leave their home server in search of easier resources and respect from donations in a less active server (making it more active), it also punishes the active servers a bit on the leaderboards if you want to just play with low ping (due to more competition). Also, the global respect leaderboard is also the only leaderboard that really makes sense at the moment, since the Elegance and Efficiency leaderboards are quite nonsensical (see: viewtopic.php?f=17&t=1610&p=10545#p10545).

I have a few suggestions for possibilities regarding having meaningful respect leaderboards and incentives. If anyone else has ideas, feel free to suggest alternatives, or improve or completely reject these based on the game principles:

1) Each clan starts with ~10 member slots. Clans gain levels based on the total respect they earn. Levels give more member slots to the clan. It is an incentive to kick inactive members of the clan, since you have limited slots, reducing zerg incentives further. Also an incentive for your clan to strive for respect beyond leaderboards.

With the new diplomacy system, you can have “cooperating” clans designated as allies, so you still effectively have unlimited group size, as we do now. We can also keep the flexibility of managing your resources in a shared sense through the shared usage of buildings. You can work together with allied clans against enemy clans easily, since we have allied and enemy tags. Normally smaller clans would just be absorbed into the larger clan, since that is optimal on the respect leaderboards, but this causes a dominant mega clan and kills the server's competition. Instead, this suggestion requires flexible diplomacy, and there is more interesting decision making and diversity.

You need to use parties to communicate and coordinate with these allies (since clan chat doesn't work), giving the party function a further purpose. But you will also have to coordinate with these clans to share the respect benefits. If they think they are getting a raw deal with the alliance, they will stop being allied and potentially become enemies. There can also be flexibility in taking down the leading group, since the sum of smaller allied clans can take down the leaders, resulting in perpetual conflict and competition. At the moment, smaller clans just get absorbed by the mega-clan or just quit since they cannot make interesting progress as they are totally destroyed by the mega-clan (Porcodio in the last season, LOL in the current season).

2) Each clan member gets respect tokens depending on how much respect your clan received that day. The amount of tokens received by each clan member is the respect total the clan received that day, divided by the number of players in the clan. This gives incentive to kick inactive clan members, and punishes the bloated clans. Solo players get the respect directly as tokens 1:1.

These tokens appear directly into the inventory of the player, and they take no inventory space/weight, and cannot be dropped on death. There are cosmetic vendors in the game world. You can trade respect tokens for visible cosmetic options that last forever and are persistent across seasons. Total spent or stored respect tokens are added to your solo respect score in the leaderboards.

Random events that force more conflict

I've been thinking about possible ways to make it so that people actually are forced to fight over something, which aren't the resource point capture events and sieges which only occur during prime-time. Taking a carcass or meteor event from someone else isn't so fun or productive, because coordinating between defeating the existing owner, and fighting off the NPC elements, usually results in the loot contents just dying. You might as well just PvE another event (there are enough of them). My suggestions that leverage the interesting player vs. player combat already existing in the game:

(Edit: decided ideas below were a bad idea after more consideration)

a) Blood sacrifice event. Appears randomly in the world, like meteor and carcass events. A control point with no HP. A 5 minute countdown is only activated when 2 players from different clans (or one is solo) stand on top of it and activate it within 2 seconds of each other. Duel! It can only be looted if one of the 2 players who activated it dies (but a gank is not necessary), and then the lootable contents belong to the other living players clan. If the 5 minute timer expires before either player dies, the loot is destroyed. The rewarded loot is always better than meteor or carcass events. You can also set up group fights this way, where you have to protect the players who activated the event. Blood sacrifice event winners are announced to the server.

b) Fighting for “sport” could be an element in the game world. The free citizens from the cities wish to see blood spilt in the valley for their entertainment. These duels eventually occur at a Colosseum, but could start off as just a walled off area with doors that lock behind them. People give a small donation, and they are entered into a Colosseum duel with whoever else answers the fight request (also by going to the Colosseum and giving a small donation). Duels last 5 minutes maximum, and if there is no winner, both participants lose. You can also have group fights between clans.

For the "fair duel'" environment of the Colosseum, an additional persistent element can be added. All players/clans start with 0 glory. You win and lose glory based on who you defeat in duels. It follows rules from other Elo/MMR systems. There are glory leaderboards. Duel winners get double the donation back as a prize, along with glory adjustments, and the winner is announced to the server. Other players can watch from outside. 1v1 duels give “solo glory”, and group fights give “clan glory”. Weekly glory winners get respect bonuses. Glory decays for every day you don’t have a duel. Glory cannot go below 0.
Last edited by Lash on 29 Mar 2017, 19:47, edited 2 times in total.

Nysek
Posts: 22
Joined: 01 Mar 2017, 12:33

Re: Season 2: feedback, suggestions and ideas for the future

Postby Nysek » 28 Mar 2017, 00:47

+1 solid stuff broski

Lash
Posts: 33
Joined: 21 Feb 2017, 10:15

Re: Season 2: feedback, suggestions and ideas for the future

Postby Lash » 28 Mar 2017, 11:20

Hah I don't expect any of my ideas to become reality, but whenever I give feedback on this sort of stuff, it is a fun mental exercise to come up with potential solutions as well.

I don't envy the developers and game designers for this game, since it is quite tricky to balance their goals. At the same time, it is quite an interesting challenge to think about ;)

Lash
Posts: 33
Joined: 21 Feb 2017, 10:15

Re: Season 2: feedback, suggestions and ideas for the future

Postby Lash » 29 Mar 2017, 19:25

I was thinking about the Blood Sacrifice (a) event more, along with the Colosseum (b). You might have to disable equipment dropping on death, and the increased equipment drop rate from dying to make this worth it. But then you might get this exploited as well. I started thinking of solutions but I couldn't think of anything particularly elegant without being convoluted, so I think these are bad ideas as they stand :)

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dbltnk
Game Developer
Posts: 2544
Joined: 27 Feb 2014, 12:52

Re: Season 2: feedback, suggestions and ideas for the future

Postby dbltnk » 30 Mar 2017, 11:47

Thanks for sharing. I am exploring similar ideas right now. Will keep you posted when I have some more solid designs.

Lash
Posts: 33
Joined: 21 Feb 2017, 10:15

Re: Season 2: feedback, suggestions and ideas for the future

Postby Lash » 30 Mar 2017, 13:21

dbltnk wrote:Thanks for sharing. I am exploring similar ideas right now. Will keep you posted when I have some more solid designs.


Cool! At the moment, we kind of do organized fights over resource points. If you get to red HP you yield, whether in a 1v1 or group fight. Makes it so you don't increase your equipment drop chance. Perhaps my above ideas could work that way too. Of course both parties have to agree to the rules :) This is only during peak times though. We really need something for off-peak times to fight over, I think a lot of complaints at the moment stem from that.


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