Inflation - a genuine explanation, please

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  • James_PearceJames_Pearce Posts: 1,365 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Avenged said:
    Y'all still play clubs?
    That's like asking if I take a dump.

    I sure do, but only out of necessity and certainly not because I enjoy it.
    Take a good book with you when playing clubs. It certainly helps when having a dump. 
  • bantel_catbantel_cat Posts: 969 ✭✭✭✭✭
    On a serious note, with a lot of talk about how in-app purchases that involve random outcomes being tantamount to disguised gambling, the proliferation of CFs feels exactly like that. It’s encouraging massive spending for people who may, or may not, be able to afford it. I wonder whether Hutch’s data includes that as a consideration?  
    Not even disguised in my book, however you might want to put fancy words and legalese around it.
    I'm not judging Hutch, what do I know, maybe they spend all their gains on charitable deeds and writing Mother Teresa eulogies.
  • malsmals Posts: 234 ✭✭✭
    SSV said:
    It seems like 5 maxed epics will get you T1 in the current prize car final.
    Just for context, I was interested to see what it would take if you tried to achieve this with without buying any gold offers (ie. Just opening ceramics for ig cash):

    To get 5 Epic Italian cars - Epic drop rate of 1 in 50 packs - 250 Italian ceramics - 250 packs x $42,000 = $10.5M
    To get UR fuse food - 15URs per Epic - 75URs total - UR drop rate 1 in 7 - 525 ceramic packs needed - 525 packs x $32,500 = $17.1M
    Fuse cost per Epic - $81,175 x 5 = $0.4M

    Total IG cash needed to get 5 maxed Epics = $28M.
    Total ceramic packs required = 775
    Over 1000$ each legendary maximized... sad but true, altought more sad is to see to this players spending and spending money, a lot of money.
  • xaratsarhsxaratsarhs Posts: 380 ✭✭✭
    The only thing that Hutch is right about it is that competitiveness came out of the roof as it is now.
    Last example of the finals for the Audi.
    More free/greater packs/prizes means that every one has better chance to upgrade his garage, so that means for you "Regular spender" (count me in on that) you have to buy more in order to create a safe gap and get the advantage.
    That's inflation and that's why they don't give bigger/free prizes, to protect us.

  • greddygreddy Posts: 1,882 ✭✭✭✭✭
    The only thing that Hutch is right about it is that competitiveness came out of the roof as it is now.
    Last example of the finals for the Audi.
    More free/greater packs/prizes means that every one has better chance to upgrade his garage, so that means for you "Regular spender" (count me in on that) you have to buy more in order to create a safe gap and get the advantage.
    That's inflation and that's why they don't give bigger/free prizes, to protect us.

    Sarcasm? 
  • xaratsarhsxaratsarhs Posts: 380 ✭✭✭
    Obviously
  • Huskic69Huskic69 Posts: 1,857 ✭✭✭✭✭
    This game feels so empty and repetitive 
  • REALAISREALAIS Posts: 906 ✭✭✭✭
    All long term games are repetitive in their own way. 
    And its normal that in long term game gets booring, because you know already all and there is no surprises or big changes.

  • LittleEnosBurdetteLittleEnosBurdette Posts: 3,120 ✭✭✭✭✭
     REALAIS said:
    All long term games are repetitive in their own way. 
    And its normal that in long term game gets booring, because you know already all and there is no surprises or big changes.

    I understand what you mean, all games have their life cycle obviously, but there’s so much that could be done to reinvigorate TD very easily by the devs, why they don’t do it is a bit of a mystery. 
  • mauro07mauro07 Posts: 2,968 ✭✭✭✭✭
    respawn a prize table in campaign and put some rq restriction too!!!
  • REALAISREALAIS Posts: 906 ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2019
     REALAIS said:
    All long term games are repetitive in their own way. 
    And its normal that in long term game gets booring, because you know already all and there is no surprises or big changes.

    I understand what you mean, all games have their life cycle obviously, but there’s so much that could be done to reinvigorate TD very easily by the devs, why they don’t do it is a bit of a mystery. 
    I think a lot of people are playing the game because of what it could be, rather than what it is right now. Hope the devs repay our faith 🤞🏼

    Dont get me wrong - I still enjoy it otherwise I’d be off, but here’s hoping we get something new to get the juices flowing 
    I agree to you too. 
    I am expecting game evolving too.

    But for example as hyped clubs were before update and how much time it took to create that and at the end it is not very popular among players as I would guess Hutch wanted it to be. They will need many times rethink what and how they will implement stuff in game. 
    I can understand them too, its not easy to choose one particular game mode, spent large amount of time to create that and at the and it would be meh. They cant afford big mistakes.

    But I wish them bright minds and surprise us with something very good.


  • Huskic69Huskic69 Posts: 1,857 ✭✭✭✭✭
    REALAIS said:
    All long term games are repetitive in their own way. 
    And its normal that in long term game gets booring, because you know already all and there is no surprises or big changes.

    Yeah, farming for 30k daily is so fuuun
  • REALAISREALAIS Posts: 906 ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2019
    Doest it bother you so much?

    Its only 6x CF for Prelims.
    Finals will have 15x of those.


    3x is for France.
    And 2x expensive 5x CF offers. Those are not so often.
  • REALAISREALAIS Posts: 906 ✭✭✭✭
    People votes with wallets.
    When long term base < new players with wallets, things changes.
  • bantel_catbantel_cat Posts: 969 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Im curious to compare Hutch profits for this year with those they made last year (which is public avaiable), pretty sure we will see a big jump up. And its ok that they make money... but maybe give the players something back?! The game is on a standstill, clubs seem to be abandonded, no new game ideas or modes, just new bugs added with each car update.  Other games do way better on this field.
    Just don't post the link to Companies House on here as it will get removed (with not even a common courtesy of informing you).
    Hutch pay for the forum so it is up to them if they want to censor but really? Something in the public domain? 
  • REALAISREALAIS Posts: 906 ✭✭✭✭
    I love those Disagrees. So those who put disagree think that things doesnt changes because some part of people are spending more?
  • Hutch_TimHutch_Tim Posts: 667 admin

    Thanks for the elaborate explanation, Tim. I think we all appreciate it. A few comments though:
    1) Not that we should expect anything different, but that is the issue with capitalism - management always expects to make more money compared to the last quarter/fiscal year. Isn't there a point where enough is enough? When the game is profitable but does not necessarily increase its profitability every year?

    2) I've been playing for over 2 years. I spend (I suspect) more than average time on the game - around 4-5 hours a day! And from my perspective, there is not a lot to do in the game. At my rank, it's stressful and competitive, but not fun. When I win, I win by 1 star and get rewarded $250 in game cash. It's very underwhelming. Five tickets net me (on average) less than $2000 in-game cash. Not enough for a single upgrade on a UR car.

    3) Rising Competition - what do you mean by saying that the impact of the carbon fiber offers has been "quite small." What is the metric measured here? From a player perspective it sure doesn't seem that way. I play against people with way lower trophies than me (they are still at the 6000 range) and they have maxed Legendaries. I've played for two years consistently and I still am not there, despite my 23000 trophies (symbol that I do play a lot). Do I suck at playing? Is there some skill that I'm not aware of? Or did these newcomers simply buy their way really quickly (15cf offers every week...that's a lot of cars for food, and good chances for more legendaries). So, please elaborate on how the impact of carbon fiber
    1) I know what you mean about the capitalist imperative. If the game makes the same amount every year though, we can keep supporting it. If it makes less and less every year, then at some point we will have to cut back a bit. I would really like to avoid the latter!

    2) Indeed - in a competitive event, winning some amount over 50% of the time and getting 1 star each win doesn't feel that rewarding. In the last mega economy thread, I mentioned that I liked the idea of giving 3 cards for every single win. I still do! I probably need to figure out how to make a stronger argument for it. There are some other ways we can make things more rewarding that we're looking at too.

    3) I'm specifically talking about the more frequent CF offers we've been putting out since around January. These have increased our sales of CFs a bit, but as a percent it's not as much as gold earnings have increased since the addition of Clubs, for example. 


    My simple question for you is this - what actual harm did it do to the game or other users when the prize boards were higher and smarfing more lucrative? I always think of it as being like the side missions in Far Cry - I might not want to have to hunt a bunch of animals to upgrade my ammo pouch, but I need more bullets if I’m going to finish the main missions. That’s what smarfing really is, and to that end I really still don’t see a problem with it.  

    You know how you feel about players who make lots of money from club events because they have time for it? Or have lots of amazing cars because they spend a lot of money? That's roughly how non-smarfers would feel about smarfers, except they don't know how people are making that cash. That's the main harm.

    The longer-term one is as I mentioned: keep adding features and rewards, and eventually it's too much. I mean, imagine if you really loved Clubs, and made as much as you used to from smarfing as well! And then we added more things you liked, that gave you even more cash and gold - more cash and gold than you'd know what to do with! Perhaps that seems like a crazy dream, but that's the eventual risk if we're not careful about how we manage the in-game economy long-term.

    (Incidentally, I still think Club Events should make a bit of participation more rewarding, and a huge amount of participation a bit less rewarding.)

     And if its just a small group of smurfers, why cut down un funds for all players? 
    I guess I just can't convince people of this, but the majority of players really are making more cash after the rebalance. This is because they didn't smarf, so they are turning less than 5 prize cards for every 5 tickets played. End cash prizes doubling/tripling (depending on tier) and prize boards going down by 38% puts them net ahead. It just does! Much as it's inconceivable if you're any kind of smarfer.

    BoxtaS said:
    Ironically, the prize board nerf has made efficient smarfing even MORE essential.

    I actually agree with this, and we knew this was likely. I'm smarfing even more these days than I used to. When I can, I half-smarf - ending the event as high as I can for the bigger prizes. I'm fine with that because a half-smarf is more consistent with the spirit of the game. Like I've been saying, the main aim was to make smarfing less enormously beneficial over any other approach.


    RobGripes said:
    I do think that Top Drives is missing something now, that was there before.

    The correct metric should be fun. 

    [...]

    I strongly believe that the previous level of ig-income (For Smarfers) was the correct one. It was just enough to have to decide between upgrading or opening packs. It allowed us to do one or the other, but not both. Nowadays we can't really do either.

    If the old economy for Smarfers is the correct one, other players should have their incomes brought up to match (or nearly match), rather than lowering the Smarfers as then nobody really earns enough to have fun. The only players who really earn enough are the Clubs grinders - and that is not fun to do.

    [...]

    Whereas I previously only needed to max my SR and UR to be in a good table position, now I need to max Epics. If you guys become a little bit more generous, it will go a long way to keeping the fun element of Top Drives.


    A lot of people coming back to the 'fun' part - yes, that is what we'd like to achieve here! And while time spent playing and active-days-per-month are generally indicative of fun, they won't match it perfectly, that's for sure. One of the reasons I engage with the forums like this is to try to fill in the bigger picture.

    The idea that smarfing income was the 'correct' one distills what I think a lot of others are saying. The counterargument would be that a huge number of players never smarfed, play every day, and have done for months and years - I mean, I guess it's an assumption, but I was think they must be having some amount of fun. But I do think "Status Quo Bias" is a big part of this - people got used to one thing, not having it any more then just feels wrong.

    Your closing point is interesting - that you now need to max Epics. That speaks back to my 'rising competition' point. If the biggest problem is that it's getting harder and harder to compete, giving more cash out for a certain strategy will solve that problem for the players that use that strategy, but will make it worse for everyone else.

    (In the specific case of the 5x Alfa Final, this was consistent with any Top Drives event that uses a brand that has been in the game for a long time - there were a lot of 4C's out there that were pre-maxed, and it was an extremely desirable prize car, so competition was always due to be fierce in that one.)


    Rising Competition Revisited
    On the topic of 'rising competition', I did revisit some analysis on this I did a long time ago. There were some pretty interesting results.
    - In Finals, the average number of players that made T1 without spending is, honestly, weirdly consistent. From my own experience I thought that was probably getting harder as it feels like I need to save up more gold and more food to secure a T1, but - on average at least - it isn't.
    - Similarly, suppose you save (or buy) gold, and use it to buy 10 or even 15 of the CFs for a Final - are you less likely to make T1 now than you used to be? Again, it varies by final, but on average, actually no.
    - On the other hand, one measure has very obviously changed: in the first year of Top Drives, you could win a Final having played for less than a year, by definition. In the second year of Top Drives, it's harder to win a Final in your first year, kind of obviously. 
    - Late-joining has been on the increase. If more weaker players wait until the last few brackets, that does tend to make earlier brackets harder.

    Making late-joining less lucrative therefore fixes part of the problem. At the same time, it does look like there's a case to increase the size of the top brackets a certain amount, to offset the ... I guess you'd call it 'maturing' player base.


    The Late Game
    After thinking about this thread a lot, I think there might be a bigger problem to solve: there isn't enough of a "late game" in Top Drives. You collect more cars, gradually build up a bigger high-end garage, but it all slows down eventually.

    I've been playing the Cadillac Cien Prelims (RQ105, Italian x5, IR x3), and I'm having a lot of fun as I try out different combinations of cars and upgrade different lower RQ Italian cars to find the best way to round out my hand. In my first year or so, almost every event was like that; 2 years in, this only happens for a while after a lot of new cars are added. The rest of the time I'm just deploying my existing maxed cars, and if I can't make T2 then there's very little I can do about it.

    I think there's definitely things we can do to make the late game more interesting, and I know we already have some ideas and plans around that. Not that I expect that to raise anybody's expectations at this point, but at the very least I personally feel like I now better understand what's going on here, and where we need to go with the game next!
  • RobGripesRobGripes Posts: 2,513 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2019
    I'm not sure if you've already mentioned previously @Hutch_Tim, but do you know the proportion of player cash incomes being earned by the following groups of players:
    1) non clubs players, event smarfers
    2) non clubs players, event non-smarfers
    3) clubs grinders

    The proportion i refer to is of their cash earned from each of the channels available to them, ie. Prizeboards, end-event prizes, clubs cash.

    If i was to take a guess at myself (feel free to check my data and post if u like) i would say i earn about 70k a day over a 2 week period (i consider this a season due to the prize car cycle)

    I think i earn half 49% from prizeboards and 49% from prizes and 2% from clubs.

    For the fun part in my personal opinion it is to do with having the ability or belief that i can achieve my goals. That means i need to remain of the belief that i can earn enough to open packs, that the odds of said packs need to be high enough in order to build my garage. 

    I gotta also feel, that i can give myself an edge by playing harder and/or smarter because if it is pure luck, I don't get the strategy element from the game.

    For me, the luck part seems to outweigh the strategy / diligence part at the moment. Someone who is just slightly luckier with a drop can consistently outperform opponents in many events, and the effect snowballs. That might lead to some players feeling rather helpless and quit the game. 

    It certainly seems like right now people feel the balance of power has shifted to new money coming in. Old garages feel useless and strategy is needed if players just buy all the top cars through 15 packs.


    Post edited by RobGripes on
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