Announce post #2918: 2018 In Review

AutoposterAutoposter BotMember, Bot Posts: 116 ✭✭✭
edited January 15 in Announce posts
What were your wins or achievements in 2017?


PvE Rebalance + Hunting - Every class has had its NPC damage audited and brought in line. No longer do some classes just level faster than others, at least not egregiously. This also let us combine a number of skills into a new skillset, Hunting. This skillset ties to your level and let us decouple damage from guildskills. This way, you get better as you hunt, instead of having to invest lessons... and no more widely varying effectiveness by skillrank.

DUNGEONS! - Our first Dungeon, Beneath, has been released. Requiring three people, this is a new type of content for Aetolia, and even includes speedruns. It has its own currency for rewards and lots of unique mechanics to solve.

Bamathis - The Seals Event was a big win for everyone. The event was a blast, our staff had fun running it, and it was just great overall. Our previous lessons in storytelling freed us to come up with great ideas to shine every bit of this great story up, and major changes took place because of it. Aetolia's storyline is moving once more, in directions it hasn't taken before.

New Mission System - The mission system is a neat new replacement for standard quests that lets players track the effects they have on an organizational scale. It also rewards Pk, PvP, and Crafting, giving everyone a way to pitch in! Our implementation wasn't perfect, but the response overall was very positive. Expect events in the future to have less intense implementation!

New Talent - Perfumery... Now our players can stink less! Or at least customize their stink.

Minipets Minipets Minipets - One of our most prolific promotional items, minipets are everywhere. Now they have things to do! They race in derbies for gold prizes in a new system that is city funded and rewarding. In the future, we'll expand them continent wide!

Imvra - We've created a new Admin Role just for roleplaying questions, our Head of Lore. Tons of questions have finally been put to bed, and everything It answers is recorded so that our lore grows ever deeper. Remember to ask It all the questions you can think of about reproductive biology! It loves those.

Rebuilt Honors - Titles can now be attached to honors, and the means by which you get honors lines has been redone. This means that custom rankings and titles are far easier to get, including things like honors lines for events that remember what you were doing!


What went wrong this year?

Proxy War Length - We let this one go on too long. What should have been an Epic war dragged on for at least an extra month, leading to fatigue in both those running and those participating. Multiple new systems were tested all at once, and while we all had fun.. well, you don't see New War System up there in our Wins column yet. This taught us so much about running events! One had never been done this way, and likely won't be run so again... you can tell the difference in the event that followed!

Still no Mages - This revamp is now an albatross around Tiur's neck. It's been plagued by design issues (we've thrown out two iterations!) and some technical issues. We're on this, though! It is a major part of our Q1 plan. We're also still very excited by some of the new concepts, including things no mud has ever done before.

Indorani - We've tried a number of times to express that we want events and player actions to have repercussions. They did, and we lost a guild. To some it was obvious, to others a suprise. We don't feel like this is a Loss, but it needs work and love to be brought to the Win column.


What would you do differently to try to avoid what went wrong?

We've learned a lot of lessons about discussing things with the playerbase. Some direct communications backfired, some helped, but we're learning. Communication is key, and we'll be increasing how much information flows outward officially. It may be neat to have a secret ending, but it's just more fun if everyone knows when to log in!

Buckling down. There are a number of tasks *coughmagescough* that suffer from major schedule slippage due to various circumstances. That's not fair to players! Over the coming year expect a number of tasks that have been left half done to be finished. While we do enjoy jumping straight to whatever is new and shiny, half finished is unacceptable.



How did you do in achieving the player-facing goals you put forth a year ago?

I think we succeeded most in bandaid pulling. When things needed changing, they were changed. There have been some hurt feelings, but largely our playerbase is with us in wanting the best game possible.


Goals for 2019

Well, it's silly, but I want those Mages done. It'd be nice to move on!

Our commodity replacement system is nearing ready for stage 1 release. It won't replace everything, but you'll get an idea of what we're going for.

Last year we spoke of the PvE update and how it went Worldmap - Dungeon - Endgame... The worldmap ended up being an issue from the design/code end, so we skipped ahead. PvE still needs its Endgame portion, so we're on track! And when the Worldmap works... we'll have things that use it. Expect more dungeons like Beneath, and another unreleased type.

We'll be switching styles of schedule/dev management. Our Big Projects will be tracked in a more standardized, official manner. While you guys might not see a difference in information received, this is being implemented to prevent schedule slippage and more carefully track our resources. For fun I might release some of the design documents in the post-mortems so that everyone can see!
BenedictoStathanFezzixMoxieAloliLuasOonagh

Comments

  • EliadonEliadon Somewhere Over the RainbowMember Posts: 151 ✭✭✭
    Mages overpowered, nerf mages.
    Aloli
  • EmirEmir Member Posts: 300 ✭✭✭
    People can tank more singularities than holocausts, nerf Ascendril, buff Sciomancer
    (Web): Toz says, "Emir's Express Evacuation and Existence Eradicator, Every Experience is Explosive - Experience the Entirety of your Existence!"
    Stathan
  • VyxsisVyxsis VyxsisMember Posts: 439 ✭✭✭✭
    I can't believe I'm posting here again. Two things:

    1) Indorani not a loss? Uh, ok. As far as I know, most of us have largely or completely disengaged with the game, and the other organizations we were part of have suffered for it. Not sure how this isn't a loss considering the guild's population and activity pre-deletion, especially in such a tiny game. But sure, ok, spin it however you like.

    2) I haven't seen the fruit of whatever lessons you've learned about communicating. I've been waiting on replies to emails for what I can only describe as unreasonable lengths of time, and I've even tried pinging @Tiur via a forum message. No response, but this self-congratulatory point about communication appears shortly after my last attempt. It seems like there continues to be a tendency to simply avoid dealing with issues. Plus, you still have staff who've made homophobic jokes across global channels, participated in unicorns-talking players with (other) players via possessed mobs, and otherwise communicated unprofessionally. Do you intend to put these lessons you've learned into practice at any point?
    Indoran'i is back baby. It's good again. Awoouu (wolf Howl)
    An Atzob cultist says, "Is a shamatato as tasty as a potato?"
    (Tells): From afar, Mephistoles hisses harshly to you, "Hey baby, show me your ovipositor?"
    The mighty Jy'Barrak Golgotha opens his maw, catches the glowing spear in his many jagged teeth, and chomps down. The Divine spear breaks with a noise like thunder, shards toppling from the Emperor's jaws. "OM NOM NOM!" He declares, then spits the last of the ruined weapon from his lips.




    KonnornKalinaar
  • KonnornKonnorn Member Posts: 268 ✭✭✭✭
    I also wanna object to the following sentence..

    "Bamathis - The Seals Event was a big win for everyone."

    'It was a big win for everyone in the US. For us Europeans, it was not as much of a win, since we either had to unicorns our sleeping schedule and that could affect our work, or simply skip out on the whole thing, like at least a few of us did. So I don't want to say that it was a big win for -everyone-.
    And tonight there's a big event for everyone interested in Lightie rp! At howling! When Europeans are sleeping! So hooray! Still not learning that there are people outside of the US who might be interested in events. But I guess I'll read all about it.

     

    BenedictoKarhast
  • BenedictoBenedicto Tentacles Errywhere! Member Posts: 637 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Konnorn said:

    I also wanna object to the following sentence..

    "Bamathis - The Seals Event was a big win for everyone."

    'It was a big win for everyone in the US. For us Europeans, it was not as much of a win, since we either had to unicorns our sleeping schedule and that could affect our work, or simply skip out on the whole thing, like at least a few of us did. So I don't want to say that it was a big win for -everyone-.
    And tonight there's a big event for everyone interested in Lightie rp! At howling! When Europeans are sleeping! So hooray! Still not learning that there are people outside of the US who might be interested in events. But I guess I'll read all about it.

    I would like to state that I agreed with this post in that the sweeping statement of 'everyone' was not factually correct due to the reasons @Konnorn stated.

    That being said, I also agree with what @Toz said regarding optimal times and the futility/contradiction in giving the EU playerbase the huge, game alterting events to the detriment of the (larger body of) US players.

    Welcome to Brexit.

    ZailaKalinaar
  • AloliAloli Member Posts: 146 ✭✭✭
    edited January 16
    Oh, @Vyxsis, I remember why I missed you now, sometimes I enjoyed your heated discussions and passionate temper (in doses).

    I'm going to address your first point and not the second only because I have zero experience with the staff being disrespectful to players. My experience and observations have been quite the opposite where the players are overly impatient, plainly rude, or extremely sensitive to the admins while not being cognizant of the admins having a -lot- on their hands in the *game* in addition to their personal lives.

    Yes, I'm emphasizing the word game here for a reason. Everyone uses the excuse that this is 'just a game, take it easy, take a break' but at the heart of the matter, we've all been loyal to this community for years and have learned quite a bit about ourselves and about how kind, ugly, and backstabbing people are and can be. So, it's not just a game when you consider the life-lessons you're learning at the hands of others and sometimes at your own hands.

    However, it still is just a game and a business in some respect, but this isn't retail where you, the customer, are always right.

    Having said all that, I think you're missing the point that the OP was making: "We've tried a number of times to express that we want events and player actions to have repercussions. They did, and we lost a guild."

    Notice how the OP wrote "we" lost a guild?

    This is because they are part of this too, not out to get you or any specific group of people. The lesson that they instilled was for everyone, which is that actions have consequences regardless of the storyline or the RP being had. This wasn't the case in the past, and this is an excellent step in the right direction, in my opinion, because now every leader will think twice before throwing the weight of their entire organization behind a decision.

    This is just one side of this "Loss" statement.

    The other side is what you're talking about - if everyone in the guild decided to leave the game because of this event, that's okay because not everyone is going to be happy with the outcome of everything. In my experience, and quite recently learned, people (not you) will always first see what they want to look at in a situation or what they've been taught to see (or traumatized) into seeing.

    I hope you'll see that not everything is negative, there's always a positive side to every situation.


    Edit: typo fixing!
    KalinaarArista
  • KonnornKonnorn Member Posts: 268 ✭✭✭✭
    8pm GMT = 3pm EST = 12pm PST = 7am Sydney time
    Make it a Saturday (Sunday for Aussies) and lo and behold, most people could, with some compromise, attend the event! Everyone would have to compromise in one way or another, but everyone would be able to attend.

    Just saying.

     

  • AloliAloli Member Posts: 146 ✭✭✭
    Saturday morning US, please :)
    TeaniKonnorn
  • KonnornKonnorn Member Posts: 268 ✭✭✭✭
    Saturday morning US sounds good for a townhall meeting. That would give me a chance to attend! And I completely understand that the Europeans can't be included all the time, it's just a bit down-heartening when we're not involved much at all. :)

     

    Aloli
  • AloliAloli Member Posts: 146 ✭✭✭
    @Rhyot One of these days Aloli will find a way to convince Rhyot to stop bashing long enough for me to get the experience fame! Even if she would have to organize massive group hugs!

    On a serious note, though, I've had to completely remove certain mobs off my bashing list because of how scary they can be (against my weak audit) and the toll that death takes. I always kick myself when I forget the starburst too. But Tiyen...man... thank God for the vindictive charm sometimes because otherwise it would take me a bit of hit and run to split up some of those groups, especially when they congregate with the creature.

    It still took a little creative work to get around some of this, like learning how to up my crit rate and fixing my system to sometimes attack by type and not by number since I can get three kills per combo in some places.

    I do hope there's a less taxing alternative in the near future but I'm an adaptive person so it's easy for me to just go with the flow of things and hope for the best.
  • XeniaXenia Member Posts: 1,022 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I think the meaningful deaths change came in response to that comms theft in Enorian and the shouting about how there's no meaningful conflict nor meaningful death and that's why we have to steal form one another to get conflict,happened.

    Agothaxl
  • TozToz Member Posts: 2,491 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Deaths got softened again for pvp though, and dying in another city is brutal. So I think they have it backwards, in a way...revert bashing deaths to a flat number and up the xp loss for posted bounties to be a % with the modifier like raiding. That would put things more in line with the intended(?) goal?

    Arbre-Today at 7:27 PM

    You're a vindictive lil unicorn
    ---------------------------

    Lartus-Today at 7:16 PM

    oh wait, toz is famous
    ---------------------------

    Karhast-Today at 7:01 PM

    You're a singularity of unicorns awfulness Toz
    MjollSteeleAloli
  • HavenHaven World Burner Flight SchoolMember Posts: 2,250 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Keep in mind that some areas that players bash were originally intended to be bashed in teams/as a group - hence the seemingly absurd difficulty at times. What ended up happening though is that many of us fell into a line of thinking that the XP was too "low" when shared - especially when there are other areas that gave similar or better xp for less effort. It's been a while since I played so take my words with a grain of salt. Maybe they've redesigned areas to be more streamlined and uniform - I dunno.

    That said... There was a time before where a decent portion of the playerbase said that dying was too expensive. They said lowering XP loss would increase activity. The admin of the time were reluctant but eventually made the change (or maybe they had a different reason, I forget it's been so long). The people rejoiced and ... Very little changed with the playerbase in the long term. Over time people said death was meaningless. Others argued that the loss was still too high an investment to frequently PvP while others toted "but bashing so easy and good". Eventually, no xp loss on death was granted for leylines (I forgot the official reasoning for this but besides the point). Even with that - little actually changed in terms of players wanting to fight in the long term.

    The reality is that those who want to fight will fight. Those who want to bash will bash. When it comes to things players want there are seemingly no bounds whereas when it comes to things players need they will more often than not take the path with the least amount of resistance.

    That ever elusive "meaningful death" is something that each individual player must decide for themselves for each of their characters. Death has already been defined for us in the game. Anything beyond that is what -we- make it. It's where we decide to make it and engage the other players. Measure your success by those willing to engage you back.

    If there is to be any change at all on the admin part for this topic I think it should be in 2 places:

    1) Better telegraphing an area's or mob's difficulty. I couldn't tell you how many times I've heard over the years "holy unicorn... That's supposed to be a level 80 area?!" 

    2) Streamlining area design, scope and purpose. Not just the new areas but also going back to the old. Aetolia has so much content that's under utilized and ignored because it's so disjointed from the rest of the world and especially it's surrounding region.

    Anywho. Those are my thoughts anyway.
    ¤ Si vis pacem, para bellum. ¤
    Someone powerful says, "We're going to have to delete you."
    havenbanner2
    Aloli
  • TiurTiur Producer Member, Administrator, Immortal Posts: 601 admin
    Totally agree that we could better streamline and integrate some areas. Almost all new Celani are given a revamp area instead of a new area these days.

    Telegraph would be nice. We had a moratorium on certain things Starmourn has as features because they're its claim to fame. But given time, we'll generalize upgrades like telegraphing.
    HavenKalinaarTeaniAloli
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