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 Post subject: 50minutes of clicking for 10 minutes of content.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2008 1:32 pm 
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Ninja
Ninja

Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:11 am
Posts: 54
Location: ..
As much as I enjoy the duels, there's too much empty clicking. It seems I average 10-20 page loads for one combat that last 2-6 rounds. Every now and then I'll pull a battle of equal level and the it will last maybe 20 rounds. All in all, I spend way more time looking for a fight than actually fighting. Playing the slots helps a little, but not enough. And to be honest I dislike having to hunt for a monster that may or may not be there. It makes it easy to zone and hit F5 after you see the monster as opposed to clicking on it.

I don't mind looking for the monster, but if it's not there every page load, or at least every other page load, it quickly becomes more annoying than fun. When I'm doing other content on the site, I don't want to feel like I have to look for that purple slime because it's rare. Right now it feels more like a side game than an actual feature of the site.

Maybe you could put in 2 monster types. The normal blob that has the random monsters which appears on 50%+ of page loads and another "elite" monster that is always one monster that is ~120-150% as powerful as the user and give it a slightly better loot table. You could even add a third that is flagged as a guild monster type. One that's balanced against the current user's active guild members.

I'd enjoy narrowing the standard deviation of the difficulty of the monsters. I find overpowered creatures and underpowered creatures a little more often than I'd like. Maybe narrow the range ~25%? The calculation of the power/difficulty rating may need some tweaking, but I don't know the math behind the system.

A level cap (hard or soft) would be nice if the PvP duals become more common. More skill/min-maxing, less "I have more spare time to waste than you".


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 Post subject: Re: 50minutes of clicking for 10 minutes of content.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2008 1:50 pm 
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Awesome Dragon
Awesome Dragon

Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 5:10 pm
Posts: 1332
Location: Omaha, NE
First, I'll say thank you for the feedback! I don't get enough of it, honestly. Oh, and welcome back. Now, onto your points.

I can see how hunting for monsters can be annoying, and monsters are much more common now (1 in 5 pages) than they used to be for that very reason. This is partially the reason the monster arena came into existence - so that you could fight when you wanted without having to hunt for monsters. I certainly don't mind raising the spawn rate, since unlike random battles in RPGs, you don't have to click the monster and fight.

I like the idea of multiple types of floating monsters. Ones that are stronger being less common and such. I put that on my to-do list.

Part of the problem about the power level deviation is that user ratings are so difficult to quantify. A user rated at 500 is generally way stronger than a monster at 500 because of AI issues, skills, and special mulleteria. It only gets worse as ratings get higher. The thought has always been to have strong monsters that will kill you, but obviously if it happens too often it really starts to suck. Plus, if I narrow the range too much, you will always fight the same monsters and that could get dull as well. Again, the arena helps this as you know the range of monsters you are fighting going in. I have tweaked the monster selection algorithm a bunch of times and I will continue to do so in order to get on average higher quality duels.

Since you are a programmer, I would be happy to share some of how I do things with you to get feedback on how you think things could be made better.

On caps - I want to avoid hard capping anything if I can help it. Skill levels are soft-capped quite nicely and attributes are going to get the same treatment. I am constantly trying to tweak power levels and make things balanced. People spending more time will always have advantages, but I want their opponents to still have a chance.

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 Post subject: Re: 50minutes of clicking for 10 minutes of content.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2008 8:51 pm 
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Ninja
Ninja

Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:11 am
Posts: 54
Location: ..
The only problem with the arena is it becomes really pricey really quickly (As I think you've seen by now. Stupid ninjas stabbing me while I'm studying. -_-) Which also makes the trophies pricey as well. Maybe I just haven't gotten to the monster level where my mullets scale to be worth as much as gold in DII.

Doing the math on the clicks

Quote:
5 to find monster. (~6 sec per click to scan page)
1 to click on monster (~2 sec)
1 to fight or run (~3 sec) (+1 click & 5sec for failed run)
1 for Vs. screen (~2sec)
========
8 clicks pre fight (~37 sec pre fight)

1-2 clicks to loose impossible fight (~1s)
2-5 clicks to win easy fight (~2s)
10+ clicks on even fight(~2s)
============
~3-4 clicks for the average fight (~7 sec)


At least, that's pretty close to what it feels like. That's not counting missed monsters cause I zoned into page refreshing. Sometimes I it comes more quickly cause I get lucky, but I stand by that 5:1 is a bad ratio.

Another thing that might work better is after winning a fight you have the option of "tracking" the monster or "looking for trouble". Basically it's a guaranteed fight after winning a fight. I'd suggest having the fights gradually scale (10-25% more difficult each time) and maybe a better chance at treasure for each fight (5% per fight perhaps).

Another thing I've noticed is I always seem to get caught running away from super powerful monsters. If the the group can one shot me, they should send their minions (1/2 the power) to chase me down instead of wasting their time. Maybe bump the success chance of running to 90% and if you successfully flee 3 times you elude all combat. You could increase the death penalty to even the score.


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 Post subject: Re: 50minutes of clicking for 10 minutes of content.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2008 9:00 pm 
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Awesome Dragon
Awesome Dragon

Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 5:10 pm
Posts: 1332
Location: Omaha, NE
These are interesting ideas that I will certainly consider. Some of them will take a little more time and thus might end up lower on my list. I did go ahead and increase the spawn rate a smidge for the time being.

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 Post subject: Re: 50minutes of clicking for 10 minutes of content.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2008 10:29 pm 
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Ninja
Ninja
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Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 11:53 am
Posts: 1056
Location: Omaha, NE
First of all, I'm glad to see you back. You do make some good points, and some of your suggestions are intriguing. BUT......

The monsters ARE just one of the MANY features of the site. Instead of just sitting there hitting refresh waiting for a monster to appear, why don't you go take part in some of the other stuff? Go answer the QOTD, play some flash games and rate them, join some acro games, better yet go spend a while doing the slots (which is a GREAT way to bide time if you're looking for some monsters). Then you won't just be sitting there hitting refresh like a douche, and monsters will just seem to pop up all the time because you are actually involved doing other things. Even better, then when you come on posting essays of what you think would improve the site, people will take you more seriously because you have actually invested in the community that AT is. That way you can avoid what happened last time you were on here, because so far it seems you are heading the exact same direction... http://www.awesometheory.com/blog.php?id=13

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