Slacktivator

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EDIT: This is an open, critical- (not just negative) discussion. Not meant to just 'hate' or anything

 

I know the game-makers want clear talk, and i know the players want to debate about the game. Allow me to drop some science and apply this excessively for sheer wit.  -- I am not going to file 30 bug reports/suggestions, as this is an opening for discussion between actual players and non-players to maybe revise the way this game is being developed/managed.

 

I know discussion has been opened for the patch tomorrow, but i am free tomorrow, and don't want to spend time tomorrow writing this.

 

I will present a couple of statements, and their background.

 

 

-- Polls

- Statement: Your polls are inaccurate and weak.

post-256407-0-94317100-1447349224.png

* Assuming you have done thorough analysis based on the "how" and "why" behind the answers you get, and not relying on your assumptions--You STILL make only one poll per topic. And that one poll could spawn multiple resulting hypotheses.

   "Unscientific polls, such as straw polls, internet polls and television polls are frequently presented in the media, since they can be created quickly and many who view them do not understand that they are less accurate than scientific polls." - Source: http://www.decodedscience.org/the-method-to-the-madness-how-the-scientific-method-relates-to-polling/4097

 

-- Communication

- Statement: 'You' are currently not in a good understanding with your player base.

*I have spoken to and listened to hundreds of people on chat as well as TS who say 'you' are difficult to communicate with, and they don't understand why you do the things you do. And have not for a long time. You have a reputation for not listening to players. This was also true when i first installed the game almost 2 years ago. I know you are trying, but consider the option that my statement above might be the reality.

-- My statements are backed by social constructivism in a zone of proximal development, which was originally conceived by russian psychologist Lev Semyonovich Vygotsky. I have had a lot of inputs from other players over a long duration of time. So even if i might not have had 15000 matches, been in your company, or made statistical analysis, my argumentation should be strong enough to be valid.

 

-- The Help Feature In-Game

- Statement: This help menu is little help to new as well as experienced players.

The help menu is of little benefit and doesn't cover the things players need. I assume this is self-explanatory. This feature needs an overhaul.

 

--PvP matches

- Statement: You have effectively destroyed coop-squad play in PvP

Wings of 3 or 4 players had a significant effect on game balance, a solo player had little chance to put up any kind of resistance regardless of his skill.

That's why 3-man and 4-man wings no longer have access to PvP modes

- Star Conflict 1.2.3

It has never been about a solo player VS 3 or 4 players. That's not what we meant. We meant, the match was unbalanced. When there is a squad of 4 players, we want the game to be balanced in some way, not for you to delete the entire game-mode.

Original discussion here: "Broken Matchmaker" : https://forum.star-conflict.com/index.php?/topic/28364-broken-matchmaker/#entry340653

 

To me it seems we have been misunderstood and the resulting general effect of efforts here, without intent however, could translate to:

 

"This feature is not working well. Let's make the whole game worse so it all blends in."

 

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Comment on the new rank system:

"Now all the equipment in the game has individual rank ranges, where it’s available for purchase and upgrades without having to re-do these steps later".... "With each level-up pilots feel more at ease, knowing that they do not have to play in uncomfortable conditions. "  From 'Developer Blog' -

- ^this means players of lower rank (and experience) will now prematurely get into T3-4-5 games with better modules, but then even worse lack of skill. Before, the system was somewhat based on your skills, now its judging more on how much you play. 

 

Consider this:

SMOKEYSHADOWS wrote in game chat "So this promotes farming lower tiers?"

 

Miscellaneous:

In layman terms: What the players have been wanting for weeks/months:

- Make the matchmaker more balanced

- Please solve the synchronization lag when players join

- I can't get a game in a squad in PvP

- I just want the game to work, in its basic form. Please stop breaking basic things.

- Pls fix dreads. Dreads are broken.

 

Other thoughts:

I have just stopped writing any more things, but it doesn't mean there are none left. I simply got tired of writing. I think you need a more thorough understanding of the consequences of changes you make to the game. And strengthen your social interaction with the player base. Several of your initiatives seem to be on an amateur level. 

 

"we are proud to announce the transition to a ranking system. We have been testing it with your help for a long time"  - The release of SC 1.2.3

 

I just took a sip of my coffee with your help. We are all helping each other, or not..

I think the "how" and "why" is important.

 

PS. I am convinced there are many players who want to help. 

 

PPS if you (players) are planning on replying to this i recommend it is not just to rage like "this is stupid" or "that is ur dumb chagne" - Try to contribute to the debate. That is the intention of my post.

 

EDIT :also if this post gives you any ideas to post suggestions or start other debates, pls do

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--PvP matches

- Statement: You have effectively destroyed coop-squad play in PvP

Wings of 3 or 4 players had a significant effect on game balance, a solo player had little chance to put up any kind of resistance regardless of his skill.

That's why 3-man and 4-man wings no longer have access to PvP modes

- Star Conflict 1.2.3

It has never been about a solo player VS 3 or 4 players. That's not what we meant. We meant, the match was unbalanced. When there is a squad of 4 players, we want the game to be balanced in some way, not for you to delete the entire game-mode.

Original discussion here: "Broken Matchmaker" : https://forum.star-conflict.com/index.php?/topic/28364-broken-matchmaker/#entry340653

 

Making PUG vs organized group balanced is impossible. However, I'm of the opinion that it doesn't need to be. It's a multiplayer game. If you're not playing with friends you're doing it wrong.

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"You have reached your quota of positive votes for the day"

 

So you know, I agree with much of this. I am constantly pushing for improvements and fixes to the ever-present issues and advocating for them to the devs. I can only push for so much at a time, but occasionally something resonates with them and we make progress.

 

I know it might look like mass whining, but the more everyone voices their frustrations with flawed concepts, the quicker they get noticed and resolved. I encourage you to continue your discussions, reviews, and responses to their decisions. We've made a difference already, we just have to keep pushing for more.

 

And as long as you don't flood my inbox, you're welcome to contact me directly. I've become a liaison of sorts for the English-speaking playerbase, and the devs do often enough listen to what I have to say. If nothing else, at least I can more effectively convey the reasoning for why something is the way it is. (Or why it isn't that way.)

 

Oh, and you can voice your thoughts directly in the discussion thread now. I suggest you do so. :)

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Hello Slacktivator. We appreciate such a reasonable feedback. We are working on changes,  some of them have been already implemented (for example dreads should work better after the last patch and the mm was changed on Friday) and more are coming. 

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We are working on changes,  some of them have been already implemented (for example dreads should work better after the last patch and the mm was changed on Friday) and more are coming. 

Except these changes have changed the game's status from 'testing your patience' to 'not worth your time' for lots of people and you refuse to even recognise that opinion... Even when it amounts to people ragequitting for good, which is a fact now, and if Steam charts can be used as any extrapolation for the bigger picture, it has been a fact for months.

14iobyt.jpg

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Except these changes have changed the game's status from 'testing your patience' to 'not worth your time' for lots of people and you refuse to even recognise that opinion... Even when it amounts to people ragequitting for good, which is a fact now, and if Steam charts can be used as any extrapolation for the bigger picture, it has been a fact for months.

14iobyt.jpg

Steam charts are not a bad tool to measure player activity, but beware that not all players use steam (i dont, and im pretty sure many others dont use it as well).

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Steam charts are not a bad tool to measure player activity, but beware that not all players use steam (i dont, and im pretty sure many others dont use it as well).

We don't have any other numbers and most probably there is some kind of relation between Steam and Non Steam playerbase.

At least you can see the tendency at steamcharts.

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We don't have any other numbers and most probably there is some kind of relation between Steam and Non Steam playerbase.

At least you can see the tendency at steamcharts.

The decreasing of steam-online is connected with the pause in advertising via steam channels (yes, steam-advertising of Star Conflict extists :fed001: ). 

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The decreasing of steam-online is connected with the pause in advertising via steam channels (yes, steam-advertising of Star Conflict extists :fed001: ). 

According to me any my sources, not anymore.

Season 2 "Dreadnoughts" was the last, which got a notification (Steam advertisement) about Star Conflict.

After that, it went to 0! Yes, zero!

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The decreasing of steam-online is connected with the pause in advertising via steam channels (yes, steam-advertising of Star Conflict extists :fed001: ). 

This is even worst then. With advertisement the charts should go up (seems that didn't happened), if you pause, it should stagnate.

This means with advertisement you was only able to supply the dropping playerbase.

 

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Season 2 "Dreadnoughts" was the last, which got a notification (Steam advertisement) about Star Conflict.

After that, it went to 0! Yes, zero!

 

There are different ways of Steam advertising. 

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Such as? :)

I know back in the day you could communicate with Steam about getting your game on the front page of the store, but it required your game to be new or you're game needed to have had a significant update, not sure if it would also cost you something. I don't know if that's still the case now though with the store having gotten a revamp some months ago. Still Star Conflict isn't the only game on Steam, so even if that's still the case it's not easy getting front page time, even with money.

Saying all that though, i find it absolutely laughable that there was no advertising on Steam when the game and Invasion came out of beta, except maybe a notification FOR THE PEOPLE WHO WERE ALREADY PLAYING THE GAME. Heck because of Invasion you could've tried getting the game more attention on the store front page, doing a whole pitch of ''hey the game is now finally out of beta, now also with the brand new Invasion mode, have fun blasting baddies with your friends in a open world bla bla bla, etc.'', maybe finally increase the discount of of the DLC's as well (instead of actually ninja increasing the price, though i know that's Gaijin doing because of being the publisher and it also happened to War Thunder).

I'm always curious how much the advertising is for the non-Steam version because they always boast how much bigger the userbase is than the players usually guesstimate (yes that's a real word :004j: ), not to mention just the difference between the west and Russia itself, are there like billboards everywhere in Russia with Star Conflict on it because i myself RARELY see anything Star Conflict related.

 

and if Steam charts can be used as any extrapolation for the bigger picture, it has been a fact for months.

14iobyt.jpg

I will say in their defense, when it comes to Steamcharts people usually grab the lowest number of user activity (like here) and ignore the average users stat. Which isn't nothing to write home about as well, but it's a more reliable stat than just stating the peaks and lows.

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Saying all that though, i find it absolutely laughable that there was no advertising on Steam when the game and Invasion came out of beta, except maybe a notification FOR THE PEOPLE WHO WERE ALREADY PLAYING THE GAME. 

Do you remember that release? We was not able to login, the servers crashed and overloaded, and from that time the servers become laggy. With more advertisement, they could lose even more potential players.

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I will say in their defense, when it comes to Steamcharts people usually grab the lowest number of user activity (like here) and ignore the average users stat. Which isn't nothing to write home about as well, but it's a more reliable stat than just stating the peaks and lows.

Actually, if you look at the graph, until September (which is when the mid-join patch was introduced), the number of players online was more or less stable at all times (almost 1300 in May, and then decreasing down to 1000). Afterwards it's become heavily dependant on Euro/Ru prime-time during weekends - those are the spikes you see on the graph; each spike represents the Eu/Ru prime-time of that weekend (usually Sunday afternoons/evenings).

 

What it means is that the average number of max players online would steadily decline until June, then it would remain steady until September, and then... well, you can see for yourself how spikey the graph is now. The player-base, as compared to its 'better days', has been active mostly during the weekends for the last 2-3 months, and most of Americans (or any non Eu/Ru players for that matter) have already quit the game, which is why you can accurately tell when Europeans and Russians play the game just by looking at a graph like this.

 

I'm kind of too lazy to crop and upload another comparative graph image at the moment, but you can check the average players/day numbers yourself and see how off they are as compared to a couple months back, before the most recent series of questionable updates: http://steamcharts.com/app/212070#1y

 

Last 30 Days       459.1   -17.2     -3.61%     1,003

October 2015      476.4   -66.0    -12.17%    1,077

September 2015 542.4   +36.2    +7.15%     1,133

August 2015        506.2   +12.8    +2.59%    1,001

July 2015             493.4    +6.5    +1.34%     925

June 2015            486.9    -104.6 -17.68%   942

May 2015             591.5    -9.3      -1.55%    1,272

April 2015             600.8    +90.4   +17.71% 1,299

 

We've lost 23,46% of our (average peak/day) player-base since April. If you add the fact that some new people would also join whenever new content was released, it means that the game has lost more vets than it's managed to get fresh blood.

 

/edit

Also, the graph I linked in this post counts average players a day per week. If you use this piece of information as your point of reference, we've lost 50,94% of our player-base since April/May (1272 on April 27 vs 624 on November 16). Yup, more than half.

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*snip*

Oh i agree with you, you're original post just looked like a lot of those other posts that just post a random peak and then find a big low to compare to and then thinking that's all the information needed to make a case.

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I know back in the day you could communicate with Steam about getting your game on the front page of the store, but it required your game to be new or you're game needed to have had a significant update, not sure if it would also cost you something. I don't know if that's still the case now though with the store having gotten a revamp some months ago. Still Star Conflict isn't the only game on Steam, so even if that's still the case it's not easy getting front page time, even with money.

 

Plenty of games make the front page after being out for a while. Usually if something is on sale, though. Star Conflict does sales every weekend, so it (hopefully) wouldn't be too difficult to advertise something about it. :P

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Plenty of games make the front page after being out for a while. Usually if something is on sale, though. Star Conflict does sales every weekend, so it (hopefully) wouldn't be too difficult to advertise something about it. :P

Yeah, but the thing with those games is that they usually already have quite a bit of content and probably the most important thing, they're already popular/well established franchises. Think of something like Killing Floor, even though this game is like 6+ years old it still easily gets front page time when their DLC goes on sale, when they have their summer/christmas updates going on, etc.

Star Conflict's popularity is tiny compared to other games, so they have to work harder to get that same attention.

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The currently active poll. :005j:

Actually this is a reasonable thing to ask. Do we want a story? Do we want emphasis on the bosses, or unit variety? Or do we just want theatrics? Each are interesting for their own reasons.

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Actually this is a reasonable thing to ask. Do we want a story? Do we want emphasis on the bosses, or unit variety? Or do we just want theatrics? Each are interesting for their own reasons.

Agreed, this was much better this recent poll was better than the one i posted as an example. I believe they will actually get much more useful results because of the narrow scope.

 

And because they only ask about PvE this time, not the whole game they avoid being manipulative like

- "Do you think I'm awesome OR would you like to TELL ME how awesome i am?"

 

Instead, they are asking:

- "What would be the best thing i could do about my foul smell?"

 

Agreed, it's level: Reasonable

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Actually this is a reasonable thing to ask.

Totally, but it's still being asked in a akward way like usual, it's why i quoted the ''weak'' part. In this instance for example they could've combined the hollywood and the storyline choices together to make 1 choice, unless with the storyline choice they mean JUST adding a bit more bio/text here and there with no gameplay alterations whatsoever.

The problems with these polls (imo) is that they should just be used for simple matters, not for asking about aspects of a game that can be discussed about with way more then just a couple choices.

Just to clarify i'm not going *angry rabble rabble* about this, just more of a agreement with the OP that these polls are far from perfect most of the time and still could be improved upon.

 

It's level: Reasonable

^This.

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