Standing out in the crowd...

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Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Fri Jun 28, 2013 1:11 pm

I have taken this qoute from another thread... Which is about a DC map.

koontz1973 wrote:
brhiba wrote:I disagree almost entirely with your most recent sentiments.

Why do you disagree? I have no problem with you disagreeing, but as stated in the guidelines:
4. All sound advice must be followed unless a logical rebuttal by the cartographer or another member of the community is provided.

None has been given. brhiba, sorry, but with over 200 maps now, and the majority of these mid sized classic maps (like this one), another one is not going to stand out in the crowd.
Answer this for me.
Why would I want to play this map when I have a lot of others to play?



I am in the firm belief CC needs more simple maps. Call it whatever you like, and say CC has plenty as is, but lets face it. Most all of the people to ever play on CC enjoy simple maps the most. Classic is the most played map and will always be, for a number of reasons. Your average CC player always starts off on simple maps. Many keep to those maps while some venture out to the complex maps. While complex maps are great and we the best anywhere online at them, we must also remember what got us here. Simple maps. When CC was at its peak in 2008 / 2009 Most all maps on CC were simple. The complex maps were just hitting in larger numbers.

A map does not have to stand out in the crowd to be good. A map should fit in though. I am not saying we should allow any map that comes up in. A map still needs to go through the graphics and gameplay parts of the foundry. What I am saying is a map can be perfectly normal and simple game play with nice graphics and still make it in. We as map makers need to look at the bigger picture sometimes. We forget what got us here.

While complex is good at times we must not flood CC with them. Just think if you went into a grocery store for milk and they never had any as it was always out, yet they did have lots of other close things, other juices or whatever. Many people would stop going to that store after some time. We had a long period of time where new users were getting "farmed" by people on complex maps with odd settings. Now that the game finder is flipped around many of those maps / settings are no longer played. Why? Because only a select few really like those maps and or settings. Supply and demand.

We as a foundry need to supply what the people are asking for, even if they are not posting. The ultimate vote of a player is when he plays a map or not. And the ultimate vote of a player for this site is weather he sticks around and buys premium. CC is fighting an uphill battle with technology, and the foundry needs to do as much as possible to help keep members on CC. I am not talking about old players who have played thousands of games, but rather keep new players from leaving the site so quick. Where is that new crop of players? Why do we keep losing them all and the numbers go down? I have some theories behind it all, but the foundry can sure help out by keeping the maps more simple for the most part.

Debate away.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby waauw on Fri Jun 28, 2013 2:11 pm

I agree that I liked the simpler maps and that that's why I came to CC, but eventually I'm staying here for the more complex maps. After a while the simple maps get too easy and boring. The complex maps are a challenge.

Though if I read your text right, one of the problems is that new players unwillingly end up in games with complex maps they do not understand. We should have a way to filter maps on complexity.

Also, I do not agree with your conclusion or seeming conclusion anyway, that CC is declining because of bad map foundry management. The biggest problem for CC is bad marketing imo. If you just type "risk online" into google, you'd notice it.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Aleena on Fri Jun 28, 2013 4:12 pm

"None has been given. brhiba, sorry, but with over 200 maps now, and the majority of these mid sized classic maps (like this one), another one is not going to stand out in the crowd.
Answer this for me.
Why would I want to play this map when I have a lot of others to play?"

This comment above makes no since to me...
Why would he play a new mid sized map when he has others to select from... So he wants more simple maps...
But he also has other simple maps to choose from as well - so why would he play a new simple map?
With his logic, there really should only be 2 or 3 of each type of maps and that is it...

I disagree - the variety of maps (larger Qty the better) is what helps give this game a little spice. For when it all comes down to it - the battle mechanics all pretty much all the same - so it's really only these varieties that help keep players interested. For playing the same maps (at least for me) with the same set of rules over and over again (even if against different players) get's a little routine and boring.

I agree with waauw that the Marketing of this site is not the greatest, I ran across it just by chance.. Though I have seen my map from this site (which is in draft right now) pop-up under web searches about the topic of my map. Seen it happen twice as I try to gather reference materials - using Google.

I feel that there are 5 things that this site needs to be able to really pull in and keep the crowds...

1) Better Marketing as stated by waauw

2) They layout and graphic design of this web site itself needs to be help-up to the same standards that the map makers are being help up to. Really when someone comes to this site - by first glance only - it looks like it's just a simple bulletin board and not really a Fun Place to stop and play.

3) When selecting games to start or join - a better filtering system - maybe tabs for simple/complex/Large/Small/Med-Size/ ect..

4) The same way we grade each other after each game - we should be able to grade the game play/graphics/enjoyment value ect of the board we just played as well. This then should figure in with the filtration system above - the most liked and popular games under each main subject tab - will be displayed first in the list based on average scores given to them by the players. (Average scores not total - so a game that was played only once still could be placed above a game that was played 100 times, as long as the average score was higher)

5) More modifications to the Game Engine to allow players to offer a much wider variety of game play. I know it was initially setup to give homage to "RISK" but you can only go so far with that.. The engine needs to allow us to branch out more - think of other games like "Axis & Allies", "Diplomacy", "Chess", Checkers", "Tic Tac Toe", "GO", "Otello" and a wide variety. I think open up the game engine and allow the players to build games way beyond the simple format of "RISK". I'm not saying for us to build these other games - but to be given the tools to build games that have features that these other games have. Even with that we still can keep the modern JPG size maps and build a huge pool of dynamic and unique games. Maybe even allow an option to the map maker to make the game as a turn based or Command Point (through timers based) game. Basically more flexability in game design - and the players will build you for free a wealth of really fun games...


(Side Note)
Would be nice if we could make the legends and Rules of the future maps as a second hyperlink page instead of forcing them to squeeze all this information on the same map. This way as the games get more complex and interesting - the map size does not have to suffer to find room for all the lists of rules and bonuses..
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Fri Jun 28, 2013 10:48 pm

waauw wrote:I agree that I liked the simpler maps and that that's why I came to CC, but eventually I'm staying here for the more complex maps. After a while the simple maps get too easy and boring. The complex maps are a challenge.

Though if I read your text right, one of the problems is that new players unwillingly end up in games with complex maps they do not understand. We should have a way to filter maps on complexity.

Also, I do not agree with your conclusion or seeming conclusion anyway, that CC is declining because of bad map foundry management. The biggest problem for CC is bad marketing imo. If you just type "risk online" into google, you'd notice it.


Then you catch my drift... CC is losing too many people that never stay.. or play very very few games.

As of right now 644756 members have joined CC. Now taking out say 50,000 (High number) for busted multis, that still leaves over 600,000 and yet only 12,000 on the site right now. Tells me CC has a problem retaining players. With that said the foundry should be trying to help out as much as possible. More simple maps are needed to keep the new players off the complex ones for a bit. I will see if I can run some stats later and show the data. I think we all know once someone is addicted they will stay a good long while. Some of us have been here since 2006, but we are targeting a new crop of players to sprinkle in with the old vets.

I think when every map maker makes a map they want people to play it. Some maps are more popular than others. That is a fact. When I get the stats done I will post them so we can see where maps stand.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Dukasaur on Fri Jun 28, 2013 11:00 pm

I am one of many who prefer simple maps, and my first instinct is to simply agree with what Bruce said.

Thinking a little further though, I think this is not really a Foundry problem. The real problem is in the user interface. People who use the Join a Game tab and the Game Finder need better options for filtering out map features they don't like. The developers are aware of this and I'm hoping within the next six months or so we will see more and more improvements to the Game Finder and the Join A Game tab.

I know I curse and swear when I play Random map and end up on some nightmare like Antarctica or All Your Base, but there are people who love those. I don't think the Foundry should stop putting out niche products like that; I think the site needs to create better options for how we go about choosing our games. There should be quasi-Random options that allows you to choose simple maps only, or small maps only.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Fri Jun 28, 2013 11:38 pm

Dukasaur wrote:I am one of many who prefer simple maps, and my first instinct is to simply agree with what Bruce said.

Thinking a little further though, I think this is not really a Foundry problem. The real problem is in the user interface. People who use the Join a Game tab and the Game Finder need better options for filtering out map features they don't like. The developers are aware of this and I'm hoping within the next six months or so we will see more and more improvements to the Game Finder and the Join A Game tab.

I know I curse and swear when I play Random map and end up on some nightmare like Antarctica or All Your Base, but there are people who love those. I don't think the Foundry should stop putting out niche products like that; I think the site needs to create better options for how we go about choosing our games. There should be quasi-Random options that allows you to choose simple maps only, or small maps only.



I am not saying the foundry needs to stop all complex maps. I am saying the foundry needs to put out maps in relativity to demand. The highest demand is for simple maps and that is what the foundry should be cranking out.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby koontz1973 on Fri Jun 28, 2013 11:42 pm

Guys, this was all discussed in the mid sized maps - do we need more thread and the district of Columbia thread. If you read both threads, you will see my whole points and I stand by them. But the main point of it was, that if the foundry produces map after map the same, can anyone really complain when no one comes here to comment?

Imagine the classic map, rotate it 90/180/270 degrees while changing the graphics from a world map to a space, city and battle map. What you end up with is 4 maps completely the same. Thankfully this have not been the case yet but we are getting close to this.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Sat Jun 29, 2013 12:27 am

koontz1973 wrote:Guys, this was all discussed in the mid sized maps - do we need more thread and the district of Columbia thread. If you read both threads, you will see my whole points and I stand by them. But the main point of it was, that if the foundry produces map after map the same, can anyone really complain when no one comes here to comment?

Imagine the classic map, rotate it 90/180/270 degrees while changing the graphics from a world map to a space, city and battle map. What you end up with is 4 maps completely the same. Thankfully this have not been the case yet but we are getting close to this.



How do you figure we are close to this? There are thousands of areas left to be done. Counties, cities, and regions.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Aleena on Sat Jun 29, 2013 12:30 am

I do not think you should limit the creative practice of the map makers because your apart of a large group whom prefers small maps to large maps. Making maps is not easy and is a long drawn out process - and if your going to add more limitations to the creative boundaries - what you'll end up with in not more small or simple maps as you request, but instead you'll end up with less maps being produced all together..

If you feel that there should be more small simple maps - then nothing is stopping you from making them yourself.

And I agree, the filter needs more work.. Quasi Random (Random under certain criteria) sounds like a great start.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Sat Jun 29, 2013 1:39 am

Aleena wrote:I do not think you should limit the creative practice of the map makers because your apart of a large group whom prefers small maps to large maps. Making maps is not easy and is a long drawn out process - and if your going to add more limitations to the creative boundaries - what you'll end up with in not more small or simple maps as you request, but instead you'll end up with less maps being produced all together..

If you feel that there should be more small simple maps - then nothing is stopping you from making them yourself.

And I agree, the filter needs more work.. Quasi Random (Random under certain criteria) sounds like a great start.



Nobody is going to limit the creativity, but rather the foundry should be producing more of what the people are asking for.


It works the same in my business. I stock what sells the most, as do most businesses. Carrying those odd items that only certain people want is great, but with some limits. I would not spend most all my money on odd ball one off items. I would put my money in the faster turning items, so I can keep moving forward.

What all of us map makers must remember is that we are not making maps for ourselves only, but for all of CC as a whole.


Perfect example. DiM made City Mogul. A very interesting map, with some unique game play. But after the map came out and he saw what it was being used for he commented on how he would have rather not made it than have it be used for farming. This is when King Herpes was farming the hell out of it if I am not mistaken.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Aleena on Sat Jun 29, 2013 2:17 am

I'm sorry, I'm new here so I might be completely wrong...

But you say that the Foundry should produce what is in demand and what you feel is in demand is small games.

((If your basing demand off the qty of small games being played a day verses big games - then your statistics are flawed - for small games don't take as long to play - therefor it might have high traffic not because it is more popular, but simply because it can be finished and repeated multiple times before the long game is completed. Example: Let's say I like a long game and a short game equally. But in the long game it takes 7 days to finish, while in the short game it takes 1 day to finish. Your states might show that I like the short game better for I played it 7 times in one week where as the long game I only played once. Which would be wrong, for I said I liked the games evenly - just one takes longer to complete.))

I thought the players made the maps, not the foundry?? If the foundry on it's own is also producing there own maps - not counting the ones made by players - then ok, I guess you can try to pigeon hold the foundry that way. But if you are referring to the maps made by players and your addressing them as foundry maps - then I disagree..

For example - Labyrinth is a new map (great concept and Idea from one solid player) which uses somewhere around 164 spaces.. To me, 164 spaces sounds like a big map. So if you told him at the start - sorry, we are only excepting small maps because that is what is in demand - what do you think would of happened to this poor map makers creative dream?

Let the map makers try to build the image in their head - and not force them to build what some players feel is in demand - Else we will lose out on great maps like Labyrinth - and the creative process could be destroyed. Granted some map makers will make small maps with out being told - let it happen naturally...
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Sat Jun 29, 2013 2:32 am

Aleena wrote:I'm sorry, I'm new here so I might be completely wrong...

But you say that the Foundry should produce what is in demand and what you feel is in demand is small games.

((If your basing demand off the qty of small games being played a day verses big games - then your statistics are flawed - for small games don't take as long to play - therefor it might have high traffic not because it is more popular, but simply because it can be finished and repeated multiple times before the long game is completed. Example: Let's say I like a long game and a short game equally. But in the long game it takes 7 days to finish, while in the short game it takes 1 day to finish. Your states might show that I like the short game better for I played it 7 times in one week where as the long game I only played once. Which would be wrong, for I said I liked the games evenly - just one takes longer to complete.))

I thought the players made the maps, not the foundry?? If the foundry on it's own is also producing there own maps - not counting the ones made by players - then ok, I guess you can try to pigeon hold the foundry that way. But if you are referring to the maps made by players and your addressing them as foundry maps - then I disagree..

For example - Labyrinth is a new map (great concept and Idea from one solid player) which uses somewhere around 164 spaces.. To me, 164 spaces sounds like a big map. So if you told him at the start - sorry, we are only excepting small maps because that is what is in demand - what do you think would of happened to this poor map makers creative dream?

Let the map makers try to build the image in their head - and not force them to build what some players feel is in demand - Else we will lose out on great maps like Labyrinth - and the creative process could be destroyed. Granted some map makers will make small maps with out being told - let it happen naturally...



You are missing the point. It is not about small or big maps.. It is about simple vs Complex. A map can be simple and large such as world 2.1 and USA 2.1... Or Small and complex. The simple maps get played at a far greater rate than most all complex maps.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Aleena on Sat Jun 29, 2013 2:34 am

Though again - It sounds as if Labyrinth is a complex map - and with your train of thought - it should not of been made - instead the foundry should of pushed out a simple map.

Don't know about you, but I like the Labyrinth map... It's a shame you wish it did not exist based on your stance stated many times above. :(
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Sun Jun 30, 2013 10:45 pm

Aleena wrote:Though again - It sounds as if Labyrinth is a complex map - and with your train of thought - it should not of been made - instead the foundry should of pushed out a simple map.

Don't know about you, but I like the Labyrinth map... It's a shame you wish it did not exist based on your stance stated many times above. :(



I am not saying the map should not be made, but rather less of them should be made as a whole.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby koontz1973 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 12:16 am

In the end, the foundry will produce what it produces. As I mentioned earlier, all things go in cycles, so what we have today will not get made tomorrow. It really all depends on who is making maps that year and who the cartoes are at the time. I have made no secret of my disliking for mid sized maps that have nothing apart from the simplest game play. I have always found there maps boring. So when a map maker tries to make one of these maps, I do gentle push them to add something to the map (Seamus added the cities and towns to China) all to make the map better.

Duke, you made the point that the foundry should make what the players want, and I agree with you, we should, but if the players do not come, how can we know? And here we have the game stats. Quoted from the other thread.
show

So with your logic of making what players want, we should all be making larger maps with non standard game play.

We can only as map makers take our direction from the players, if the players do not comment, then how are we to know what they want?
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Mon Jul 01, 2013 2:43 am

While those stats are interesting, we all know that there is only one Arm's race type map. How many simple maps are there?So using the logic Arm's race vs all simple maps... We have a clear winner?

Just using that as an example.... I can paint the numbers anyway you like, but simple maps rule the roost hands down. The players of complex maps are more into them(total games played per player), but simple map players tend to play more maps of the same type.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby conde180711 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 4:18 am

i see your point totally, i play complex maps and simple maps, if im honest though most of the complex maps i play i learnt the map for clan games. For a "fun" game id probably look for a team game on quad cities / iberia, something like that, which are far from complex. If i hadnt got into the clan scene would i be playing the more complex maps, probably not, doesnt mean to say i dont enjoy them now though.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Mon Jul 01, 2013 4:35 am

I think most all vets enjoy the complex maps at times. I do , but I am a simple maps person. With that said far, far more people who come and go are turned off by complex maps. Nobody wants to play 10 games on shit settings and odd maps and win 0. That does not make people wanna stay. I was always a firm believer in the fact every map for a new player should be simple until after game 10 or so..
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby conde180711 on Mon Jul 01, 2013 4:42 am

i agree totally, even 10 games wouldnt be enough for some totally new players i would say
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Aleena on Mon Jul 01, 2013 10:12 am

Players have the option to either join a game or start a game - if their is no simple game for a noob (like me) to join and if that is what I want to be playing, then all I need to do is start one of my own..

The most common map is the classic map - and if I was a noob that prefer basic simple game play - then most likely I'd start with and maybe stick with for a small while - the classic map - for that is what a non-ambitious, non-challenge seeker would be use too...

But do not limit it for anyone - since I'm more of an actual gamer and adventure seeker then the standard Joe - and I'd hate it if I did not have at least the option to play some games that where a little more creative and imaginative. It's ok if I lose a lot, for over all it's a game - and we should not be sour losers, but try to learn from our miss-steppes and be come more tactically savy at the art of war.

But true for those elementary kids, maybe we should at least add a filter that will allow them to find the variations of the kiddie versions of this game. (the simple maps - for the simple players)
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Bruceswar on Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:43 pm

Aleena wrote:Players have the option to either join a game or start a game - if their is no simple game for a noob (like me) to join and if that is what I want to be playing, then all I need to do is start one of my own..

The most common map is the classic map - and if I was a noob that prefer basic simple game play - then most likely I'd start with and maybe stick with for a small while - the classic map - for that is what a non-ambitious, non-challenge seeker would be use too...

But do not limit it for anyone - since I'm more of an actual gamer and adventure seeker then the standard Joe - and I'd hate it if I did not have at least the option to play some games that where a little more creative and imaginative. It's ok if I lose a lot, for over all it's a game - and we should not be sour losers, but try to learn from our miss-steppes and be come more tactically savy at the art of war.

But true for those elementary kids, maybe we should at least add a filter that will allow them to find the variations of the kiddie versions of this game. (the simple maps - for the simple players)



Here are some hard numbers for you... There have been 12,937,988 games on CC x 4(players in each) since it started in 2006... 645,169 total users. If you take the number of games total / number of users.. you come with about 80 games each.. Now conidering the top 250 players have played right at 2.5 million of those games, then your number goes down to 64 games per player... And the next 250 players have played about 1.75 million

So the top 500 players have played 4.25 million games... Leaving about or so for the rest.. That comes out to about 60 games each.... 100 players have retired that would be in the top 500, so 600 players have played roughly 9% of all of CC games. Top 1100 or so players have played 7,175,00 of those games. That is accounting for the retired people in the top 500... Leaving 57 games each for the rest of the 644,000 or so people.

See where I am going with this?

It means CC is not keeping players long enough or keeping players at all. That means players are confused when they join, not willing to learn complex maps, and impatient about things. Your average player just clicks on join a game and that is that. They pick one of the first games and go from there.
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Re: Standing out in the crowd...

Postby Aleena on Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:15 pm

Apples and oranges....

A + B does not all ways equal C

What I get out of your numbers is that CC is not retaining players....
But why are they not retaining players is not clear...
I think your making a huge jump from these numbers to the fault being complex maps...

Maybe they are not retaining players because these Turn Base style games are a little out-dated and that their are 1,000's of other war sights that offer either Command Point turns or Time Based Turns where players do not have to wait so long to make their move... One of my favorite games that seem to retain a lot of players is Supremacy1914 which is a board-like game like this - but a lot more advanced.... I do not see many of those players giving this site more then a week or so...

Maybe the reason is because basic players can only play 4 maps at a time - and that does not seem to provide them with enough desired game play experience per day as they wish - (got to win them over first before you expect them to pay to play) - Supremacy allows all players (new or not) to run up to 50 games at once which as you can imagine can fill a good amount of one's daily play time.

Maybe the are not retaining because their is a average percentage of # of players that will die off or move on - naturally - and do to the poor promotion of this site - they do not get an equal or greater number of new members daily to match this? I'd be interested is seeing what the % of new players per month now verses that of 4 years ago....

There are 100's of reasons why players will leave a game site and to focus that reason on complex games with out really having any solid feed back or evidence supporting that reason is a poor way to guide the future of this site, even though I know you mean well. Honestly - the game play even on the simple maps are at most fair... And if I was not so wrapped up in the designing facet of making a map - (which most war gamers will not be) - I most likely would of left this site after playing 6 or 8 games myself - (and if and when I abandon this site it will have nothing to do with complex maps - which I'm sure goes the same with many before me) - for there are much better war sites then this...

It does not mean that this site does not have a future - it just means they have an uphill battle to outshine themselves from the millions of other game options out there....
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