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Balancing AR Play with Online Play

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#1 BlkSabbath74
I’m posting this as much to cover up the ugly spam as anything, although it has been on my mind and I think we could benefit from a discussion on this…

First off, let me say that I think you guys are doing a terrific job with Maguss, and it is shaping up to be an awesome game.

However, I am starting to have some concerns about the game balance of the AR elements vs the Online elements.

I certainly don’t begrudge players who enjoy dueling, and definitely see a need for a PvP element in almost any game. I also understand that we can’t be out exploring and fighting monsters all the time, and that Maguss needs to have something for players to do between explorations that will keep them engaged.

However, at this point, Online dueling is by FAR the quickest and most efficient way to level. If I go to the park, or walk around the neighborhood for an hour, I might get in a half dozen battles with monsters, as well as maybe a chest and some herbs. Of course, Exploration, Herb Lore and Brewing don’t contribute to my level. I fully understand the reasons behind that, in not wanting players with lower spell casting skills to trigger higher monsters,but with monster combat so limited, relative to dueling, it just feels like there is much more focus on Dueling.

Please let me restate that I have no problem with dueling. It can be fun from time to time, and I know there are many players who enjoy it more than I do. I also understand that the PvP players in most games tend to be the cash cows in terms on making premium purchases to keep ahead. I certainly don’t want Dueling to be nerfed. I think it still needs to be expanded in a number of ways. However, at its core, Maguss is supposed to be an AR game that gets people out of the house and interacting with one another, not indoors, repetitively fighting strangers online with little or no communication.

I know there are also a great many of us with a preference for exploring, meeting and playing with other players, and other PVE elements of the game, who are very excited about the continued development of Maguss. Moreover, we signed on for a game that would get us off the sofa and out and about, playing in the world around us, not sitting at home playing online. However, when you are trying to level up to get that next tier spell or slot, by necessity, you end up at home (or elsewhere) plugged in and dueling online, because you get ten times the XP that way.

As an experiment, I played regularly for 2 months without dueling, going out on walks or hikes or runs or bike rides very often, fighting all the monsters I found, collecting herbs and brewing. I went up from level 9 to level 11. Then I sat down one Saturday and started dueling, and went up to level 16 in one day. This is very frustrating to those of use who aren't really into dueling or playing online.

I don’t have any solutions to offer. I’m hoping that others can make some good suggestions. I am hoping that Territory Wars will go a long way towards fixing this problem. I also think that a friend list, chat and friend finder would really shore things up. But it would be great if the game could be a little more balanced, and maybe have at least an equal share of reward for players who are outside exploring in the real world.

I say this in the most positive, constructive way possible because I want the best for this game and our growing community.
I skewered him where he sat and saw the startled expression on his face as the wound began to flame.

"Oh, basely done!" he cried. "I had hoped for better of thee!"

"This isn't exactly the Olympic Games," I said, brushing some sparks from my cloak.


- The Courts of Chaos, Roger Zelazny
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#2 BlkSabbath74
Also, I stated that in most mobile games, the high-end PVP players are the cash cows for premium wares, and that is true. Most of these games don’t have a lot in the way of value to the player beyond paying to have the premium items needed to beat up your enemies.

I don’t think that will end up being the case AT ALL with Maguss.

I think there is a ton of inherent value in Maguss, and that more value can be added to make it worthwhile to rank-and-file players to purchase, as long as the prices are reasonable.

First off, you have the personal POIs that we’ve discussed;

- Faerie/Herb Garden
- Personal Tower/Stronghold, ect.
- Guild/Guild Hall

You could probably come up with 10 more, and if they were useful and reasonably priced, most of your dedicated player base (not counting the lookie lous who always d/l, play for a few days and move on) would make some purchases that would enhance the game for them.

Beyond that, you could allow players to purchase public POIs (such as the Fortresses for the upcoming Territory Wars) to place where they want them. These could also be sold to companies to increase foot traffic, and there are all sorts of varieties that could be created for that as well.

Then you have all the equipment that will appeal to both ordinary players AND the professional duelists.

Also, the more features are added, the more expendables become available. Many of those wouldn’t be worth the value of real money, but some would. For example, if you could purchase a Dungeon Key that would open a dungeon for you and your friends, for several hours or a day’s fun, I think most players would find that well worth it. Stocking up on potions to tackle a dungeon would become all the more fun.

I think there are a number of ways to capitalize on Maguss besides PVP.
I skewered him where he sat and saw the startled expression on his face as the wound began to flame.

"Oh, basely done!" he cried. "I had hoped for better of thee!"

"This isn't exactly the Olympic Games," I said, brushing some sparks from my cloak.


- The Courts of Chaos, Roger Zelazny
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#3 Bloodilicious
I'd like to start with saying; Thank you.
I've been on the fence a long time considering if I should pledge real money to support Maguss and start helping out with testing the game.
I'm like you in the way that I'm not a huge fan of PvP and seeing that I'm really looking for a game different from Ingress and Pokemon Go, but still force me to get my ass moving, I thought Maguss was the Perfect Fit for me.
But seeing that the experience gain from PvE, that require exploration, is severely lacking compared to PvP where I can lay on my couch and gain it without issues while eating chips is not a good selling point for me.

Both PvE and PvP needs to be equally rewarding where it comes to gaining experience.
If I spend 2 hours on Maguss on my couch and gain 80% experience, it can't be that I only earned 5% experience exploring for 2 hours.
I don't know how severe the difference is from experience since I haven't pledged, but if I haven't misunderstood something this is a game breaking difference for people who consider themselves mainly PvE players.
If the difference in exp gain is too severe between PvE and PvP, you are basically "forcing" people to PvP.
Is that the intention of Maguss?
If you want to keep up with everyone else you "must" PvP to gain levels?
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#4 BlkSabbath74
(07-06-2017, 10:12 AM)Bloodilicious Wrote: I'd like to start with saying; Thank you.
I've been on the fence a long time considering if I should pledge real money to support Maguss and start helping out with testing the game.
I'm like you in the way that I'm not a huge fan of PvP and seeing that I'm really looking for a game different from Ingress and Pokemon Go, but still force me to get my ass moving, I thought Maguss was the Perfect Fit for me.
But seeing that the experience gain from PvE, that require exploration, is severely lacking compared to PvP where I can lay on my couch and gain it without issues while eating chips is not a good selling point for me.

Both PvE and PvP needs to be equally rewarding where it comes to gaining experience.
If I spend 2 hours on Maguss on my couch and gain 80% experience, it can't be that I only earned 5% experience exploring for 2 hours.
I don't know how severe the difference is from experience since I haven't pledged, but if I haven't misunderstood something this is a game breaking difference for people who consider themselves mainly PvE players.
If the difference in exp gain is too severe between PvE and PvP, you are basically "forcing" people to PvP.
Is that the intention of Maguss?
If you want to keep up with everyone else you "must" PvP to gain levels?


Please don't let my post affect you negatively. I still think Maguss has the best concept around, and would pledge more if I had more to pledge.

So my advice would be to jump in and get a package.

I just wanted to make sure that this topic was raised, because I hear the buzz about this on the different chats and sites and private messages, and I want to make sure that Maguss is a long term success.

Okay, I was thinking about this, and I think that one solution would be to re-introduce utility spells.

The real difference between Exploration and Dueling is that when Dueling, you are constantly casting spells, and therefore constantly racking up XP for your casting skills, whereas, when exploring, you only used spells when fighting monsters.

I remember that when I first started, there was a revelation spell that would reveal hidden things on the map.

If there were useful utility spells that could be cast outside of combat, while exploring, then you would be able to achieve a more comparable result .

For example;

Stasis - Invocation
Stasis would be a spell that could be cast when brewing a potion, so that if the potion reached it’s time limit, it would not ruin the potion or drop it to a lower quality. This would solve people’s major problem with potion brewing, and allow brewers to gain Sorcery XP. You could limit it to initially only having one Stasis at a time, and make additional castings a perk of Brewing/Invocation.

Open – Incantations
Open would automatically open a Chest. It could be made a higher Tier spell, but as chests are already limited, it couldn’t really be abused.

Detect Magic - Sorcery
This would work like the above mentioned spell, but would only reveal hidden potion ingredients. It would work for a certain amount of time before being able to be recast, to prevent abuse.

Detect Evil – Dark Arts
Same as above, but it would reveal an additional population of monsters that are more difficult, and maybe a bit darker, and that Aggro.

I’m sure if we brainstormed, we could think of many more. Plus, every time a new feature is added, it would create new opportunities for new utility spells.

For example, when Territory Wars comes out, there could be a spell which is used to detect/find the nearest Fortress, and while in effect, points the direction and the distance (similar to chests) on the map. You could have a whole range of detection and finding spells for all the things that are introduced.

Other things, which are already in play, such as Detecting/Summoning Chests, or HP Regeneration while walking, could be tied to spells. That would not only enhance the experience of exploration, but would enhance spell casting itself and the game as a whole.

Virtually any game effect could be tied to a spell, (ie. Invisibility – toggle off availability for dueling) which would make the whole experience more…well…magical…pun intended.

The utility spells could all effectively be controlled, with timers or other limits, so that they could not be abused. XP rewards for those spells could be scaled so that they are roughly equivalent to the XP mined from dueling.

I am not trying to tear Maguss down, I am interested in building it up.
I skewered him where he sat and saw the startled expression on his face as the wound began to flame.

"Oh, basely done!" he cried. "I had hoped for better of thee!"

"This isn't exactly the Olympic Games," I said, brushing some sparks from my cloak.


- The Courts of Chaos, Roger Zelazny
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#5 Robyn Oakwise
Hello,

I also pledged based on the fun promotional video. Many of the aspects you see in that video are already implemented in the game: exploration, gathering herbs, engaging in pve combat with monsters, brewing potions, and dueling other mages.
Are there bugs? Yes As an Alpha build many thinks change all the time. Usually you do not even go Beta until you have your core features working and stable. Right now, there are a couple game breaking bugs that they are hard at work to address. Are there duel balance issues? Yes Also an area that is the whole point of testing. Are there horrible individuals who take advantage of some of the bugs in game? Yes It is a Alpha and the bugs are there, some people will be responsible and report them and avoid doing it, others will keep doing it until it is fixed. That is the nature of the beast.
I explore like crazy, gather herbs (level 50+ herbalist, engage an occasional monster in battle, and batch brew (in groups of 8) potions until I run out of Tonic energy each night. Other than not having access, by that I mean I have yet to find them during gathering even level 50, a couple herbs I need for some of my potion recipes I am having a blast. I just wish I could trade then to others.
I have faith in the development team so far. They are bringing an idea to life that many of us only dream of. I will keep testing, reporting things I find, and posting ideas and support.

Keep it real ?,
Robyn
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#6 BlkSabbath74
(07-07-2017, 05:09 AM)Robyn Oakwise Wrote: Hello,

I also pledged based on the fun promotional video. Many of the aspects you see in that video are already implemented in the game: exploration, gathering herbs, engaging in pve combat with monsters, brewing potions, and dueling other mages.
Are there bugs? Yes As an Alpha build many thinks change all the time. Usually you do not even go Beta until you have your core features working and stable. Right now, there are a couple game breaking bugs that they are hard at work to address. Are there duel balance issues? Yes Also an area that is the whole point of testing. Are there horrible individuals who take advantage of some of the bugs in game? Yes It is a Alpha and the bugs are there, some people will be responsible and report them and avoid doing it, others will keep doing it until it is fixed. That is the nature of the beast.
I explore like crazy, gather herbs (level 50+ herbalist, engage an occasional monster in battle, and batch brew (in groups of 8) potions until I run out of Tonic energy each night. Other than not having access, by that I mean I have yet to find them during gathering even level 50, a couple herbs I need for some of my potion recipes I am having a blast. I just wish I could trade then to others.
I have faith in the development team so far. They are bringing an idea to life that many of us only dream of. I will keep testing, reporting things I find, and posting ideas and support.

Keep it real ?,
Robynv

Sorry, for some reason this thread has tagged the 'gambling' filter on my work computer, so let's continue this in one of your recent posts.
I skewered him where he sat and saw the startled expression on his face as the wound began to flame.

"Oh, basely done!" he cried. "I had hoped for better of thee!"

"This isn't exactly the Olympic Games," I said, brushing some sparks from my cloak.


- The Courts of Chaos, Roger Zelazny
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#7 Tereza Kulovaná
I am rather casual player. Here are my few thoughts about this topic.
I am not great fan of non leveling my character by herblore and brewing, but I get it. I would call it an Oblivion syndrom. This happend to me ages ago.
I was playing Oblivion, where leveling up any skill will level up your character. I had character with high Alchemy and Trading skills, I was kinda good in Light Weapons and Archery. But suddenly minotaurs had started appering on the roads. I was high level with low level fighting skills so I got my ass kicked more times than I can count anywhere I went. I didn't finish the game.
This is dangerous. You don't want to get players frustrated because they have to battle to powerful monsters.
Also I don't think utility spells are the way. They can be spammable. I am afraid of bots.
So when we get it, but we aren't satisfied with it - what to do? There are potential remedies for this problem.

1. Make current system just little more rewarding. Give us some treats. Have achievments. Have three badges avaible on profile screen from achievements (also herblore/alchemy themed). Have skill level up small pop up screen.

2. Tie alchemy/herblore to other systems. Help defend in Territory wars with supplying potions for player xp or some extra reward. Make trading avaible to make feel gatherers important and seeked by others.

3. Make new mechanic for none competitive players. PoGo have - catch them all. There are many people still going without high levels or perfect IVs just to fullfill their childhood dreams and slowly tick of the list. Solo play or non competitive play is great for casual players. Have something to feel people important even if they are weak at duels. It can be bonus for brewing with fresh (day old) ingredients. Lore, quests and main story implementation. More daily quests. For someone it could be learning all the spells (this lost some of its charm with necessary changes with spell deck). Daily test, mix and match icon with part of effect desription, for one spell tree - boost xp to this tree for an hour.

4. Make support role more important through community. It can be things mentioned above - Territory Wars, trading. Also Orders and party implementation. Make people want and seek non competitive player and make them valuable. One one person can be best of all in duels, but making your order grow can make you feel like one of the best, part of the team.

5. Trick us. Make us want to cast spells and battle monsters. Make some ingredients drop from monsters only (or chests and monsters only). Make ingredient/potion making important in taming creature. Make challenges to battle with monsters with one preselect spell (to force us use other than our favourite).
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#8 BlkSabbath74
(07-10-2017, 02:14 PM)Tereza Kulovaná Wrote: I am rather casual player. Here are my few thoughts about this topic.
I am not great fan of non leveling my character by herblore and brewing, but I get it. I would call it an Oblivion syndrom. This happend to me ages ago.
I was playing Oblivion, where leveling up any skill will level up your character. I had character with high Alchemy and Trading skills, I was kinda good in Light Weapons and Archery. But suddenly minotaurs had started appering on the roads. I was high level with low level fighting skills so I got my ass kicked more times than I can count anywhere I went. I didn't finish the game.
This is dangerous. You don't want to get players frustrated because they have to battle to powerful monsters.
Also I don't think utility spells are the way. They can be spammable. I am afraid of bots.
So when we get it, but we aren't satisfied with it - what to do? There are potential remedies for this problem.

1. Make current system just little more rewarding. Give us some treats. Have achievments. Have three badges avaible on profile screen from achievements (also herblore/alchemy themed). Have skill level up small pop up screen.

2. Tie alchemy/herblore to other systems. Help defend in Territory wars with supplying potions for player xp or some extra reward. Make trading avaible to make feel gatherers important and seeked by others.

3. Make new mechanic for none competitive players. PoGo have - catch them all. There are many people still going without high levels or perfect IVs just to fullfill their childhood dreams and slowly tick of the list. Solo play or non competitive play is great for casual players. Have something to feel people important even if they are weak at duels. It can be bonus for brewing with fresh (day old) ingredients. Lore, quests and main story implementation. More daily quests. For someone it could be learning all the spells (this lost some of its charm with necessary changes with spell deck). Daily test, mix and match icon with part of effect desription, for one spell tree - boost xp to this tree for an hour.

4. Make support role more important through community. It can be things mentioned above - Territory Wars, trading. Also Orders and party implementation. Make people want and seek non competitive player and make them valuable. One one person can be best of all in duels,  but making your order grow can make you feel like one of the best, part of the team.

5. Trick us. Make us want to cast spells and battle monsters. Make some ingredients drop from monsters only (or chests and monsters only). Make ingredient/potion making important in taming creature. Make challenges to battle with monsters with one preselect spell (to force us use other than our favourite).

Tereza, I STRONGLY disagree. You are NOT a casual player, you are a very passionate player, who just doesn’t happen to be interested in grinding out wins in PVP. I ALWAYS see you on Facebook, fighting the good fight and promoting Maguss, and you are active on all the forums/chats.
 
Hah hah!
 
Okay, seriously, though, great post, and this is the kind of positive dialogue I was hoping for!
 
I don’t know that I would totally give up on utility spells, although, yeah, they would need to be made proof against spammers and bots. However, I think that is doable.
 
For example, on a Detect spell, similar to the old one, that detected hidden monsters/spell components. If the spell lasted 30 minutes, and could not be recast until it ended, and it gave you 20 XP every time you cast it, then even if you developed a bot to Spam it, you’d only be getting 960 XP a day. You can get that much in an hour of dueling…maybe two.
 
I think there are ways to make utility spells, if not spam-proof, to where they just aren’t worth the effort to spam, but would still be helpful to players who are gathering and exploring.
 
As far as Oblivion Syndrome, if they can tie Brewing, Gathering and Exploring, (and other, future parts of the game, such as Territory Wars) as you said, back into Spell Casting Skills, so that you can build up your casting skills while doing things other than combat, then it won’t be an issue.
 
I don’t think that Sorcery, Incantations and Invocation would be mostly tied to just combat (probably mostly Dark Arts, but I still think there are some cursing/destroying effects not directly related that wouldn’t necessarily be combat.
 
And yes, as you have pointed out, I’ve forgotten completely about charming/summoning creatures, which was originally a key aspect of the game, and could also bridge that gap.
 
Thank you Tereza!
I skewered him where he sat and saw the startled expression on his face as the wound began to flame.

"Oh, basely done!" he cried. "I had hoped for better of thee!"

"This isn't exactly the Olympic Games," I said, brushing some sparks from my cloak.


- The Courts of Chaos, Roger Zelazny
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#9 Bisturilucente
You guys have great ideas! I just wanted to add that a quick/easy fix to AR vs PvP balancing would be to get experience not only from casting spells but from defeating monsters too. Every higher tier giving more exp thant the previous one. This way would be more appealing to go around and fight those mobs
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#10 Memnoich
It would make sense to add in some kind of Player xp from fighting monsters. As it stands right now, there really is no reason for a fight to go past round 4-5, anything after that doesn't earn you xp, as you can only cast 5 spells of each skill before you cap XP for the fight. Even then you still get the same amount of XP if you win or lose after that point, so something to make it worth while to do the monster battles besides just to be able to cast spells.
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