Possible Solution to "CB is Dying" (in General)

Mythology May 25 2007 3:03 AM EDT

Theres only ever really been one major problem with CB (excluding MrsDi :P j/k! j/k! ) and that has been its far too complex for new players. Therefore it is Natural that as the game progresses and more things are added less and less people will play because more and more new players will just say "well screw this no idea what the hell any of that is".

Me and a few friends played a game called ogame, its text based and 100s of thousands play it, text based gaming is growing not dying. The simple fact was in comparison with CB it is not as complex and has more pictures. In the end we had a clan with about 50 people in which grew simply because we each told friends irl about it and they all played, some didnt get it (girls mainly :P ) but most kept at it and learnt how to play.

If I tried to do the same now and told say 10 of my friends in real life id be amazed if even 1 kept playing past the first day. Yet almost 9 or 10 would still be playing ogame months on. However I think CB is a much better game, so how can you make it less complex?

Id say the best solution and one a friend and me used on site is to simply mask the majority of the site to new joiners not just for a little while but indefinetly. How id apply it to CB, and I hope you can put yourselves in the shoes of a new player not only to CB but to all RPG type games,

--When new players join they would be told as to not blow them over with too many things that all the sites functions and teams abilities will be locked and unlocked when their team gets strong enough.

Everytime a new point is reached they would be taken to a screen explaining exactly what the new things being added / unlocked were and in depthly told about them so that they actually know a lot about a few things.

0 MPR - Weapons store melee, fighting, DX STR + HP Training unlocked + explained.
1 MPR - Training un+ex
20 MPR - Weapons store, Ranged weapons + ammo unlocked and explained.
50 MPR - Hiring unlocked. - Talk about split exp between minions.
100 MPR - Armour Legs + Chest ulocked + store.
150 MPR - Fireball Unlocked - Spells explained DD.
200 MPR - Armour Shields
250 MPR - Chat unlocked - New players unless its removed?
300 MPR - Armour Boots
350 MPR - Blacksmith Unlocked
400 MPR - Armour Gloves
500 MPR - Anti-Magic Field Unlocked
600 MPR - Armour Hats
700 MPR - Giant Strength / Haste Unlocked
800 MPR - Buying BA Unlocked
900 MPR - Armour Cloaks / Amulets
1000 MPR - Forum / Threads unlocked - Encouraged to make a first post say hello to community for first time, introduce self.
1250 MPR - Tattoos
1500 MPR - Magic Missle
1750 MPR - Skills UC / Evasion / arch
2000 MPR - Auctions unlocked - Rare items explained
2250 MPR - Ability to make new Characters / teams. - Encouraged to make a new one now know more and have more abilities.
2500 MPR - Etheral Chains
2750 MPR - Ablative Shield
3000 MPR - Clans Unlocked and explained, benefit of just being a clan of 1 explained.
3250 MPR - Guardian Angel
3500 MPR -

And so on, hope you like the idea :) Save CB!

AdminNightStrike May 25 2007 3:11 AM EDT

Advertising works, too...

Mythology May 25 2007 3:13 AM EDT

We had advertising back in the day I remeber people compared different click through rates of the various CB banners and the lead fees to the reffferal bonus etc..

I plan to spend money in a new player initiate fund on advertising but theres no point if the people just leave after joining because its all too much and confusing barrage of options.

muon [The Winds Of Fate] May 25 2007 3:15 AM EDT


The idea behind your post is a good one - don't overwhelm people with choices straight away. I agree with this.

But not allowing them to use magic missile until they have 1500 MPR? Chat not allowed until they've fought about a hundred battles or so?

While I agree with the concept, and think that it should, in some respect, be implemented, I think that whoever does implement it needs to _carefully consider_ what to unlock when. I realise that you didn't consider what was unlocked when, but more just tried to have it go up linearly with "complexity" of the "thing" (like auctions being complex compared to the store etc), but I just thought I would make this a bit more obvious so that people don't disregard the idea out of hand because of that ;-)

So, yeah, two thumbs up...


AdminQBnovice [Cult of the Valaraukar] May 25 2007 3:16 AM EDT

Wonderful to have you back Myth!

Mythology May 25 2007 3:20 AM EDT

I agree some fine tuneing would be in order, and thank you for the post.

I left chat so late so that the player would be very ready for chat when they were given it and would have something to talk about and strat questions needing answered.

But yeah I guess they could all be shifted back.

Its the idea really as you said :)

[The Wretched]Freekie [Lower My Fees] May 25 2007 3:38 AM EDT

I think this may be one of the best suggestions if heard... Best idea to help a player that wants to try and stick with the game at least. Simply Awesome ;)

SBW May 25 2007 3:48 AM EDT

myth = super duper cool + smart + iono.. ahah

QBBast [Hidden Agenda] May 25 2007 5:45 AM EDT

And the XP loss to the NUB? It's far more efficient to 'quick fix' what they've got under way, via chat, and help along those who are amenable to it.

Mythology May 25 2007 5:55 AM EDT

I think of the whole idea to pick on the XP lost is bit trivial, increase the number of BA they get till a certain MPR then, its really neither here nor there.

Why would this idea stop what is currently going on now?

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] May 25 2007 5:59 AM EDT

What is currently going on?

IndependenZ May 25 2007 6:11 AM EDT

Sorry for going off topic, but yikes! Myth, you really think MrsDi is still around? :P

BootyGod May 25 2007 8:21 AM EDT

Hmm... I can't agree with "CB is dying". But, I love any idea that aids new players. And I really, really like this idea.

But, I agree with muon. This is one of those things that needs to be -carefully- done. Treating the new players like complete idiots may lead you to denying them any fun in the beginning. And denying them magic is a bit harsh.

But as for more slowly dipping the players in, I agree. And to go along with this, anyone else think it may be a good idea to have something in the Help! labelled like "New Player Quick Stop" with some basic, important information for them to read through? Because, quite simply, the Help! is HUGE. Though this is a good thing, to a new player, confused already, it may just make you give up.

So any ideas on that?

QBBast [Hidden Agenda] May 25 2007 8:45 AM EDT

Okay, the long version. By Jon's stats, the majority who disappear immediately just get through the tutorial to the point that chat loads, then never log back in. At which point the game is neither complex nor simple, they haven't _done_ anything yet. Perhaps these are the people looking for graphics.

Then, anecdotally, there are the people who show up for a couple of hours, say "All you do is fight and train? This is too simple/ u r dum." and leave. "Simplifying" will hardly make the game more palatable to this sort.

Then, anecdotally of course, those who say, after repeated attempts to get them to understand 'strategy' and 'fight (Scores) above your own PR', "lol I don't tihnk 2 much". For these the game is too hard, because it is harder than tic-tac-toe. Dumbing down the intro is pointless because they _want_ pointless/mindless/meaningless slash'n'hack.

There are people to whom the game, inherently, will not appeal. I don't do the math, nor do I "strategize", and I'm not actually here for the clicking, the hook has nada to do with how soon "buying BA" is revealed to me.

Updates have been made to the tutorial and there are now goals for the new player to work through, which means they have more to do while waiting for BA, they get some "start-up rewards", and all the goals are geared toward learning to navigate, find things, and/or "get involved". The option on thinking is still left up to the individual player.

The answer is likely on the marketing side: how to find enough math geeks/chess players/Risk (R)TM) players?

*reply assumes acceptance of initial premise for conversational purposes only.

Drama [Just for fun] May 25 2007 8:51 AM EDT

New player should be able to free retrain for 1 month so they can make their choice on witch strategy they'll keep. This would help the lost of exp.

Vicious Cat May 25 2007 8:55 AM EDT

As the "half BA refresh/double rewards" is apparently working, how about just having one BA per day, but multiplying the rewards by 160?
That would probably do it

AdminG Beee May 25 2007 9:11 AM EDT

Whacky times and Clan fighting wouldn't like that option very much VC.

Vicious Cat May 25 2007 9:19 AM EDT

But think of the

=Rewards =
=Cash (total) $91,392 =
=XP (per minion) 56576 =

boxes :-)

Flames Fame May 25 2007 9:31 AM EDT

If your gonna do that, it shouldn't be just 1 ba per day you should still get your 160, but maybe 1 of those ba would be a special ba, and you get 1 say every couple of days.

Daz May 25 2007 10:43 AM EDT

I played ogame and it has Huge problems. I was in a clan with 20 odd people, and I think all of us, after playing for a few months, realised we hated the game. For the first few months it was great. Then you get out out the protection mode. And get brutalised by players who are 100's of times your size. Not so much fun. I didn't have that happen personally, but most of my clan did. I think it just lost the allure it had. CB has had that happen twice. But I came back both times. There is no way I shall be going back to ogame.

My take on it. If you are going to do something like that, the spacing needs to be thought about a little more, maybe. Some of those things will be unlocked completely by accident with no level of achievement. Another problem on ogame is that half the time, when you want to know how something works, you need to figure it out with babelfish's dodgy translations, as most of the real information is in German (IIRC). That's not a problem CB has - the problem with CB is that the wiki is ... difficult at times, and the information you're after won't be in an obvious place. You can always ask someone and hope they're telling you the most recent version.

Another thing that may be problematic for new players is that some strategies can depend on a certain item, and then it turns out the item will cost 3 mill. And that's, for me, too big a dive for something you're not even really sure you want to do. (This is just an example...).

It seems I only post large posts on CB when I'm half asleep. I hope everything here makes sense...

QBOddBird May 25 2007 11:02 AM EDT

Amazingly, I agree 100% with Bast.

Someone, quick, take a picture!

QBBast [Hidden Agenda] May 25 2007 11:04 AM EDT

That'll still happen for awhile yet, 'Birdie.

QBOddBird May 25 2007 11:19 AM EDT

Clarification time:

What'll happen for a while yet?

And do you mean it'll be a while yet before it happens, or it will continue to happen for a while yet?

I swear, even your simplest replies are cryptic to me. O_O

SBW May 25 2007 11:21 AM EDT

yeah lol. bast is right.

Heavy May 25 2007 3:55 PM EDT

Hmm I like the old CB 1 more.

CB 2 is more complicated and is too focused on fighting.
CB 1 got tournaments/camping to spice up the game play.

I am not sure about it but the old cb1 interface is more user friendly/less cluttered/easier to handle?

A better/simpler interface combined with more options to enjoy the game than fighting/forging would attract a lot more players/keep them playing.

It seems the game went from casual to hardcore.

There is not enough incentive for the casual/lazy players to keep playing. Most (new) players are casual :D

Eurynome Bartleby [Bartleby's] May 25 2007 6:21 PM EDT


I'm sorry, I really can't agree with the people who want a more retarded game. Seriously, go play WoW if CB seems too much to handle for you, maybe it just ain't your type of game.

I want my brain to work when I play CB, even if just while I think up strats or meditate on buying or not buying items to make good deals.

I say NO to Kindergarten Blender...


AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] May 25 2007 7:41 PM EDT

holy crap, when did Myth come back? Hey man!

AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] May 25 2007 7:56 PM EDT

Also, I like Myth's approach, but I think that the thing that CB needs is more "Randomness". Currently there is no, I repeat NO way to get ahead in this game short of spending un-godly amounts of time fighting and buying equipment.

What we need to help CB is a solution that is multi-layered:
-Tournaments to hold people over who like to be hardcore, but for short periods of time.
-More random rewards for newbies/vets that simply involve playing the game, either through new equipment, or through some new attribute. (This reward would allow the person to get ahead of other people who have been playing just as long, if not longer then other people.)
-Fix the black-hole in clans that seems to gobble up people from the 150k score all the way up to the 2 mil score range.
-Less fees OR add more ways to gain money. (I know Jon hates this one.)

Kong Ming May 25 2007 8:45 PM EDT

If the NUB is the cause of unhappiness, then reduce the rate and lengthen the time of the NUB.

Eurynome Bartleby [Bartleby's] May 25 2007 8:50 PM EDT

Tiny something I want to share. You heard of it before.

I got myself a second student today. But wait, that ain't what you've heard before, I'm getting there!

He asked lots of questions, seemed interested. (He probably won't be here tomorrow, but ''bleh'', that's life, I tried.)

He told me that though: (I'm not gonna c&p the CM, cuz I don't feel that's right, instead I will recap what he told me.)

He said, you know, no offense, but before today, I had no idea this game existed. This is what you heard about before :)

Now, I have myself looked around the net a lot to find MMOS I could play. Free ones, because I'm dirt poor. And I am pretty sure I am not exagerating when I say I have tried at least a hundred of games. All kinds of em', from text to full 3d. But I was VERY lucky to fall on CB. Because it is nowhere, you see? Not even in those directories, full with half finished, not updated games.

First thing if you want CB to have more people, is making a list of all these places where they list games, heh? Then, divide these sites between a number of volunteers here, and go write up on CB there. We already have (I say WE, but I was not active in that decision.) decided on a perfect description, in the past, am I right?

Any amount of trying to retain players will not get you anywhere when the game is hidden so far in the mountain of crap games out there. (Amount of crappiness subject to interpretation.)

I may not be bringing anything new to the mix, but I felt it had to be dropped here in a thread on the ''death'' of CB.


AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] May 26 2007 7:06 PM EDT

Actually I was planning on making some kind of "organizational" tool for organizing all of us lazy Cb'ers to meet on some of these social networking sites and digg/click or whatever CB so that we could put it on the front page and get some exposure for us. But I haven't managed to put it together yet, and Yes, we would need something like that for it to work properly.
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