Suggestion - delete the 10 minute "approaches" announcement

Cryfowl
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Suggestion - delete the 10 minute "approaches" announcement

Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:13 pm

aS the title says I strongly feel that the 10 minute "so and so approaches . . . . " announcements should be deleted. NOT the " has found . . . " announcements those work as intended.

Let me start by saying that this is not an Anti - zerg thread. My goal here is not to allow me to get BH uncontested (as if that ever happens anyways) Zergs always have and always will exist. I understand that there is simply no question that numbers = power in this game. however, that being said, we have to ask ourselves do we further want to implement game mechanics that the sole function is to encourage and strengthen Zergs ? not only that but at the direct cost and detriment of what used to be primarily small scale ? Shadowbane is great because of the greater balance. small scale pvp AND large scale pvp are both equally important, and the content balance must be maintained in order for the game to remain healthy.

Brand new and returning legacy players all start the game as small scale or solo players, at least for their initial time in game until they establish with guilds. Also there is undeniably a portion of the player base that actively enjoys solo and small scale pvp. (By the way this minority of players plays a huge role in the active economy in game) The "approaches" announcement only accomplishes one thing : it enables lazy Zergs plenty of time to dominate any and every Disc rune. I find this kind of blatant spoon feeding to be abhorrent.

I don't know the exact reasoning why this feature was ever implemented other than 1) "it promotes Pvp" and 2)" we are an aging population with RL commitments and this is a convenience" The response to these is the same. There was never a lack of Pvp at the good discs. This mechanic only switched it from small scale pvp to large. and 2) it shouldn't be allowed regardless of convenience if it's bad for the game.

As proof of my observations look back to when they were first implemented here: THose that ZERG routinely started camping BH with 2-3 full groups ! 2nd rate runes like Archer with 1 + full group ! This was unprecedented in the entire history of SB and only possible due to the "approaches" announcement. So the end result of one small game mechanic "for convenience" and to "promote pvp" actually enables a zerg to reduce competition and reduce pvp because If you don't have 15+ bros to go fight for BH Why bother ? Did this happen again at relaunch ? yes to an extant. Instead of 3 Fg they only had 12 -15 show up. Perhaps the Zerg is breaking down.

In summary:
* pvp at Discs was never lacking - it wasn't broken why "fix it"
* is there a lack of large scale content in game ? NO. why take what was in the realm of Small pvp and hand it to large pvp only and how does this affect retention levels of small scale / solo players when they have no chance to compete for meta - critical Discs ?
* rewarding and spoon feeding bad players for no reason other than they have the most bros is against the spirit of the game.
* any mechanic that favors and strengthens zergs will stagnate the server faster.

PLEASE DO AWAY WITH THE "APPROACHES . .. . . " ANNOUNCEMENTS.
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Armegeddon
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Re: Suggestion - delete the 10 minute "approaches" announcement

Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:44 pm

I would argue to have no announcements at all. The end goal should be to get players to zones. Think of that single focus. Open up the map. As it was, three quarters of the map or more became useless. Barren wastelands. Sure, you can manipulate the dropper, drag it delay it to throw off the spawn clock and pass on the information to guild mates.. that's the way it should be. But to sit there and broadcast a spawner, bad idea. Make people go out and search. I can remember the joy, pre-announcement of finding Aelginar all alone and uncontested. Reward population in the zones.

If it were up to me, I'd eliminate mines all together (or reduce them to gold only). They do not draw population to zones. I'd have the resources drop off of mobiles. If you want to get the best gear, be active, organize farm groups, turn mobiles over...... be ACTIVE.

But that's another discussion.
Colest
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Re: Suggestion - delete the 10 minute "approaches" announcement

Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:46 pm

I would dispute some of your points personally though I don't speak for the team as a whole nor is my disagreement ruling it out for discussion.
pvp at Discs was never lacking - it wasn't broken why "fix it"
PVP at discs on live was never lacking. PVP at discs a couple weeks into a server the past couple iterations here and that other place has been lacking IMO. Really you're finding fights at one or two discs after that intro period, and some of those high demand discs we added a second dropper for so it theoretically halved the chance to find a fight. I don't believe in removing potential fights for niche discs because bounty hunter is popular as that seems like throwing out the baby with the bath water to me. Likewise, BH specifically was nerfed in 2.0 and some of the changes to stealth have indirectly decreased demand for discs that were big parts of previously dominant solo-builds. If those discs continue to be in high demand and they are easily monopolized or de facto unobtainable for small scale players, then fixing the availability of those specific discs seems like the more prudent option to me.
is there a lack of large scale content in game ? NO. why take what was in the realm of Small pvp and hand it to large pvp only and how does this affect retention levels of small scale / solo players when they have no chance to compete for meta - critical Discs ?
I don't think it does that and furthermore larger guilds frankly have more important things to worry about rather than discs. With HZs (and now FC events), mines, and potentially banes, these are significantly more important than farming another commy or archer. In fact, the more group content that is added the less competition you will see at discs and the announcements help to funnel the people who can't participate in that content to the smaller scale content (i.e. small guilds or solo players). Not that I'm saying small scale content isn't needed, just this isn't a zero sum game.
rewarding and spoon feeding bad players for no reason other than they have the most bros is against the spirit of the game.
I personally outright disagree with this statement. I don't think your ability to spend more time in game and monitor a spawn is something that should be considered skill and rewarded. Many of the changes made to PVP content and leveling has specifically been to cater to the aging playerbase this community sports as they can't spend 6, 8, 10, 18 hours on SB at any given time anymore. This is in lock-step with that philosophy. Likewise, larger guilds have the resources to do that easier as more eyes can be kept on a spawn.
any mechanic that favors and strengthens zergs will stagnate the server faster.
I don't think this system favors zergs any more than planting next to popular dropper did before announcements. Neither system is in theory immune to zerging but I personally haven't witnessed that being an extended problem on these past several server iterations. If a population boom happens or a guild can successfully monopolize disc(s) in a manner that shows the kind of glaring flaws you're describing, then a revert is easy enough but I don't believe in reverting on grounds of hypotheticals. There will be some times when a guild decides it wants a bounty hunter or a sky dancer and you have to accept that small scale fights for that drop aren't going to happen. I don't think evidence shows this occurs more frequently now than it did before the announcements and I would argue that discs are more contested with the announcements than without them.

As I said though, this is my personal opinion and I encourage discussion on this subject to continue.
Cryfowl
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Re: Suggestion - delete the 10 minute "approaches" announcement

Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:45 pm

Thanks for the input !
Colest wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:46 pm
pvp at Discs was never lacking - it wasn't broken why "fix it"
PVP at discs on live was never lacking. PVP at discs a couple weeks into a server the past couple iterations here and that other place has been lacking IMO. Really you're finding fights at one or two discs after that intro period, and some of those high demand discs we added a second dropper for so it theoretically halved the chance to find a fight. I don't believe in removing potential fights for niche discs because bounty hunter is popular as that seems like throwing out the baby with the bath water to me. Likewise, BH specifically was nerfed in 2.0 and some of the changes to stealth have indirectly decreased demand for discs that were big parts of previously dominant solo-builds. If those discs continue to be in high demand and they are easily monopolized or de facto unobtainable for small scale players, then fixing the availability of those specific discs seems like the more prudent option to me.
Actually i think that the reduction of the number of available droppers is a good thing. a reduced supply for a smaller player base makes sense. That also funnels PvP into a smaller area which is also good but once again What type of PvP ? If it is your position that Disc demand and therefore disc pvp is constant from live until now then my question is -What good did the "approaches . . " announcement do to promote pvp ? I understand the demand cycle and i don't think the "approaches . . . " announcement affects it one way or another again this begs the value of it. I contend that it did little to increase the volume of PvP but it did change the NATURE of it from small scale toward Large.
Colest wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:46 pm
is there a lack of large scale content in game ? NO. why take what was in the realm of Small pvp and hand it to large pvp only and how does this affect retention levels of small scale / solo players when they have no chance to compete for meta - critical Discs ?
I don't think it does that and furthermore larger guilds frankly have more important things to worry about rather than discs. With HZs (and now FC events), mines, and potentially banes, these are significantly more important than farming another commy or archer. In fact, the more group content that is added the less competition you will see at discs and the announcements help to funnel the people who can't participate in that content to the smaller scale content (i.e. small guilds or solo players). Not that I'm saying small scale content isn't needed, just this isn't a zero sum game.
and yet zergs have indeed been appearing for the first time ever at BH with 3 full groups since this was instituted. I am speaking primarily of the last server iteration not this one. The biggest I've seen this time is 15 at once. I know i am not the only one seeing this nor am i the only one drawing a direct cause > result relationship here. Those same smaller people again are not benefited by the approaches announcement any more than without as it is still a giant red global call to arms for those who would otherwise be to preoccupied / distracted/ don't care etc. IMO it is kinda zero sum when you directly take from what was the small scale arena and give to primarily the large pvp. One has gained the other has lost and the greater balance is changed (not for the better) If you also agree that more small scale content is needed then is this not a great opportunity to add just that ?
Colest wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:46 pm
rewarding and spoon feeding bad players for no reason other than they have the most bros is against the spirit of the game.
I personally outright disagree with this statement. I don't think your ability to spend more time in game and monitor a spawn is something that should be considered skill and rewarded. Many of the changes made to PVP content and leveling has specifically been to cater to the aging playerbase this community sports as they can't spend 6, 8, 10, 18 hours on SB at any given time anymore. This is in lock-step with that philosophy. Likewise, larger guilds have the resources to do that easier as more eyes can be kept on a spawn.

IMO the ability to monitor a spawn and the time invested IS a SKILL and should be rewarded. It's not like either are huge tasks and the game should never be numbed down for convenience. Would it be fair of me to argue that mine windows need to be changed to better accommodate my busy life because as they are now it's inconvenient for me ? Acquiring Discs should be no different they are simply a different game resource.. I am not opposed to the philosophy of change and progress but we must ask if this change helped, hurt or did nothing. IMO it did little to help and had an unintended side effect that hurt balance a lot.
Colest wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:46 pm
any mechanic that favors and strengthens zergs will stagnate the server faster.
I don't think this system favors zergs any more than planting next to popular dropper did before announcements. Neither system is in theory immune to zerging but I personally haven't witnessed that being an extended problem on these past several server iterations. If a population boom happens or a guild can successfully monopolize disc(s) in a manner that shows the kind of glaring flaws you're describing, then a revert is easy enough but I don't believe in reverting on grounds of hypotheticals. There will be some times when a guild decides it wants a bounty hunter or a sky dancer and you have to accept that small scale fights for that drop aren't going to happen. I don't think evidence shows this occurs more frequently now than it did before the announcements and I would argue that discs are more contested with the announcements than without them..
Obviously things like a guild planting near good zones should hold value. They always have and it's an important part of the meta game but a tree close to a good rune is by no means as powerful a lock down tool as a global announcement. If anything the "approaches . . . " announcement reduces the value of real estate as it allows any Zerg living anywhere ample time to mobilize and travel. I don't know what you personally have witnessed only that i have spent a lot of time out in the wilds both last server up and this time. This is what i base my opinions on. I can't see any increase in pvp frequency only the shift in the size of the encounters and it is that shift that worries the most about balance. IMO this is one thing that is critically important because it alienates solo / small players at the direct benefit of zergs.
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Colest
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Re: Suggestion - delete the 10 minute "approaches" announcement

Thu Oct 12, 2017 8:58 pm

Cryfowl wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:45 pm
Actually i think that the reduction of the number of available droppers is a good thing. a reduced supply for a smaller player base makes sense.
That was done for a lot of them but the discs that had that really had the demand were given an extra one.
If it is your position that Disc demand and therefore disc pvp is constant from live until now then my question is -What good did the "approaches . . " announcement do to promote pvp ?
That is not my point. I could've worded it better but my point was on live the population was such (and some of our lack of responsibilities were such) that finding fights in zones was easy. These past couple iterations here and on MB after the first few weeks finding a fight at most discs is difficult, to say the least.
and yet zergs have indeed been appearing for the first time ever at BH with 3 full groups since this was instituted. I am speaking primarily of the last server iteration not this one. The biggest I've seen this time is 15 at once. I know i am not the only one seeing this nor am i the only one drawing a direct cause > result relationship here.
Again, if we're talking about 1-3 discs here then changing a system that effects finding fights at 20+ other discs is being a bit wide in our reach. If the availability of BH is an ongoing issue past a time that is seen as reasonable then measures can be taken to effect the availability of BH. I still assert this is no different than a guild parking a tree next to AB on server up on live for easy access to Commys and that was a very common occurrence.
Those same smaller people again are not benefited by the approaches announcement any more than without as it is still a giant red global call to arms for those who would otherwise be to preoccupied / distracted/ don't care etc.
If you define benefit as having an easier time obtaining resources then yes that is absolutely correct, but that was never the intention. Items in the game should ALWAYS be a focal point for conflict and prior to 10-min announcements, it allowed for scenarios were people just could sneak away without a challenge. If people are distracted and looking for something to do and the announcement spurs them to go hit that zone then it sounds to me like it's working pretty good. I just don't believe nor has it been my experience that there are large groups of people fitting this criteria that zerg large numbers of disc droppers well after the honeymoon phase of the server.
IMO it is kinda zero sum when you directly take from what was the small scale arena and give to primarily the large pvp. One has gained the other has lost and the greater balance is changed (not for the better). If you also agree that more small scale content is needed then is this not a great opportunity to add just that ?
The fights you can find at less highly sought after discs are the benefit. Likewise, discs drops should be seen a contestable resource rather than an either or for large or small group. If something is that highly sought after that people want to bring a group there every drop of every day for months, then that's likely a symptom of something being off balance wise with that drop rather than a problem with the system. Removing announcements isn't the kind of small scale content that fits the role that systems like the FC events are designed to fill for large group content. Truth be told, SB has never really had a small scale content system in place and it's mostly been player run events that have been most successful. Everything that you can get away doing with one person in SB becomes exponentially easier the more people you bring and well-designed small scale content would break the truth in that statement.
Would it be fair of me to argue that mine windows need to be changed to better accommodate my busy life because as they are now it's inconvenient for me ?
Many people did make an argument very similar to that for many of SB systems and that is honestly a very large driving force behind many of the changes to WOO for mines and banes, HZ timers, and XP curves. Changes, I will add, that have been some of the most universally well received of our changes. It's just a fact that the regulars in this community have less time to spend on the game compared to 10 years ago so either we can slowly alienate most of whoever is left or we can adapt to them. Acquiring Discs should be no different they are simply a different game resource.. I am not opposed to the philosophy of change and progress but we must ask if this change helped, hurt or did nothing. IMO it did little to help and had an unintended side effect that hurt balance a lot.
I don't know what you personally have witnessed only that i have spent a lot of time out in the wilds both last server up and this time. This is what i base my opinions on. I can't see any increase in pvp frequency only the shift in the size of the encounters and it is that shift that worries the most about balance. IMO this is one thing that is critically important because it alienates solo / small players at the direct benefit of zergs.
Then perhaps a system can be implemented that monitors how many people are at a disc dropper when it spawns. Empirical data on the subject would be beneficial for both of our perspectives.

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