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 Post subject: It it still worth it?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2008 10:02 pm 
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I have been playing, helping develop this game for about 5 years. We created this game as a hobby, and we love to play. What we strive to create was a game where there was a great community spirit and a game where new players could play, learn and enjoy the game. A game that was so very balanced it was a fair for the large player as well as the smallest player.

However, recent events have really made me wonder if I even want to continue to do this. Out of our own pockets we pay for the hosting, we spend many hours developing ideas, balancing out solutions and trying to make a game that everyone enjoys. I take the time to play and work through solutions to help balance a game that can run away one way or the other. So when we make a change to fix a problem, instead of thinking "Wow, yeah that is a problem" I hear "The Progammers and Admins are cheaters" it makes me wonder why I do this. Maybe we should just shut down the server and the game development for a while and see if it matters to anyone. I know I would miss it, but I would get some real life work done.

Yes this is a rant. No, I won't shut it down.....Yet. But how about everyone think about how you can keep players from quiting. Maybe the players can be less of a bully and be constructive and willing to teach the smaller guy. That doesn't mean you pod them and then say ok now I will show you what to do. A community is only as good as the people in it. If all the people are bullies, the game will eventually die. It wont matter what we do to fix it. I only hope everyone starts thinking of what they can do to help make the game better and a place they will want to spend time in rather than how can I keep the low players down.



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 Post subject: Re: It it still worth it?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2008 12:22 am 
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Thumbs up!


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 Post subject: Re: It it still worth it?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 11:47 am 
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Heres the thing.
This is a game about domination.
Winning it all if you will.
As you try to balance the game to make it fair to all players, you alienate those that did well before.

For instance NASCAR is a prime example of trying to make the playing field level.
I am not a fan of their rule changes. If you want fair and level, race IROC.

There will always be people treated unfairly, and people that take advantage of the rules. The more rules you put into place, the harder people have to work to find away around them. The nature of the game.

You have done a fine job in enhancing bnt to its current form. Personally I prefer the old .14 version, but I am bias in that because I won.

Anyone that was winning, and isn't due to a rule change will complain it is unfair. You either take it in stride, or take it personally.

I think your goal is to get more people to play, and let them enjoy the game. Not having to worry about being podded every day.
I think that is an admirable goal, but not really what the goal of this game should be.

That is, if you want to keep the game "fun", you cannot please all the people all the time. The ones that learn fast and play long, are not the ones that will enjoy the limited game that prevents them from attacking everyone. Not saying it is right, just saying that is how it is.
The game will lack the depth that they have grown so fond of. The skirting of the rules as it were.

The casual gamers who don't learn as fast, take weeks to get the hang of the game will be happier with the game as it is going, because it will be easy to play and stay alive.

You have run into the classic game developer conundrum. Do I make a game for the hard core gamers (limited in numbers but very devoted,) or do I make a game for the masses (they come and they go, but out number the hard core gamers almost 10 to 1.)

I will still play as I have the time, but am not fond of the way the game is going.
I would prefer the protected phase type game. That is newbies are protected for a certail level/score or till they do an agressive act.
When you chose to venture beyond, or score well enough that you must be noticed,(floating point, say passing 1/3 of the current players) then you have shown that you can play and will be treated as such.

I prefer the older freeier days when anyone could kill the top player. I liked the sector nova's. As the game becomes more civilized, you lose players like me, but gain others.
Just a choice of what you want to do. Either way, you have helped to make a fantasic game.


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 Post subject: Re: It it still worth it?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 1:48 pm 
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Ash, I agree on most of what you are saying.
There will always be players who whines "It's unfair". among those players like myself.
I usually makes it to a place in the top of the rank, but lately the game the game has turned into a building contest, so I had to change my commitment/strategy for the game from "I want total dominans of the galaxy" to "I am the elevator boy" (moving up and down the rank). The last many round it has been the dedicated builders who has been on top of the rank. Respect for that.
In some sense the game have lost some momentum for me with the way the game is going towards. This have made me from taking the game very seriously (Sometimes I woke up in the middle of the night, fearing that I was whacked), to now to taking less seriously since it is a building contest and my name isn't Bob;) So I play a kind of tag game in AAT I whack you and then you can whack my ship.

But PJ and crew can't please all and I had my time and my fun, so I have enjoyed playing this amazing game so far.

I think my role in AAT current is a loose gun who can make some noise. Earlier I was the one to beat.



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 Post subject: Re: It it still worth it?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 2:26 pm 
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Hmm... my two cents on balance:

Trader is an independant style of play (independat of other styles I mean). You trade, with little chance of being blown up (sleep in fed space usually) and make some money. That doesn't get you far, and doesn't last long.

Spies work for attackers, and sell info. Spies need attackers. However, the business could be better. Some attackers can scout for themselves.

Attackers need someone to attack; they need builders. And attacking alone isn't as profitable as building, so they often need to build themselves.

So with fewer and smaller builders, you've got much fewer and smaller attackers, and just about no spies (already aren't many). More incentives to build means more builders and bigger builders, and more builders and bigger builders means more attackers and bigger attackers, and also a bigger market for spies.

So builders are vital. I think building should make the most money.



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 Post subject: Re: It it still worth it?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 4:16 pm 
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I said it in the blog and I will say it here:

While the game has traditionally been about "total domination" that fact itself is flawed. Often the top players know of loophole (to be kind) that allowed them to get a leg up. I have certainly voiced my opinion about this before as those who have the most to lose (in a dominance sense) always lobby the hardest for things to not change.

Frankly, it has killed the game.

It's time for a radical shift in AAT. It's time for PvE and PvP distictions to be drawn.

Also, there needs to be "fair play" rules put in place.
As PJ said in another thread, when will a 5B player every be able to defend against a 35B player? Never. So why does AAT still allow this kind of brutal behavior to occur?


PvE (Player vs Environment) --

It was mentioned in Tanrus' blog that we should use Fed Space as a PvE learning area.

I agree! Using fed space as a "full scale" training ground would be a wonderful idea.

You can build in no more than 1 sector of fed space. Perhaps 1 level of SG's so that people can see how they work. Certain fed space sectors will remain off-limits to planet building (those near Sol) so that new players won't get shut out.

You can deploy mines, sd and all the rest but while in Fed Space but instead of killing the opponent the mines and sd will "escort" the other player out (if they get caught!).

Spies still work in Fed Space homesteads, however, no spies will ever jump to a ship. This allows players to see how they can be deployed and how they work. The spy however will NEVER convert a Fed Spaced homestead PvE player planet to thier own.

Finally, ship to ship combat IS ALLOWED. However, the consequences are nothing more than a note: "Player X simulated an attack on you and won! You would have been destoryed!" The same message could occur when a player hits SD that "escorts" them out.

I think the above would cover letting players learn the ropes while in a non-threating environment.


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 Post subject: Re: It it still worth it?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 6:10 pm 
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Valience, already, building is the best way to advance score. Don't believe me? Ask why the top players each round are builders...

The problems come into play in the mid-range game. Builders in the mid-range are about the same size as good attackers, and the attackers have better ships than the builder's defenses, and the good attackers know how to attack. So the mid-range builders get hit, and don't get to make it into the super-credit stages. And you can't really argue to protect the builders more so they get bigger, and thus have bigger attackers, because if the builders are protected more, then the attackers can only hit the builders who don't know what they are doing.



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 Post subject: Re: It it still worth it?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 6:40 pm 
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I know that building is the best way to go, and also that what you said in the second part of your post is true. I was advocating how the game currently works, as opposed to KZ, who seemed to want attackers to have more power.



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 Post subject: Re: It it still worth it?
PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2008 1:10 am 
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I first must say that I have not been around as much as I would like, but real life stuff does have first priority.

Tarnus and PJ, please keep things going. I have a large group of students who play and I know that they would have major withdrawal problems if you guys stopped.

I think that we might need a 'Learners' type of game like KZ mention above. I would be happy to look after and host that type of game but the code that I have needs to have the updates the same as the main.
If Tarnus can help in tweaking the settings then I could manage from there.
I have had a number of players admining some of my games so that they can see what happens from our side and maybe we also need to have a game that is reset every few weeks for that purpose.

As for the problem players, this is a game for all to have fun including you. If you don't like it then I am sure there is another game / website out there that you visit. :cool:

Just my 1/4 cents worth. :D



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