Another look at the NCB (in General)

horseguy001 February 6 2008 1:06 PM EST

My 4 month run is over today, and I am really happy with the results, coming in with a final mpr of about 2,250,000. However, the purpose of this thread is to discuss how the NCB in its current state is unable to reach 95% of the top mpr. Actually, that statement is slightly incorrect. The NCB bonus is spot on, the problem lies in the inability to maintain a high enough challenge bonus while climbing in mpr.

Now, I hit over 90% of my BA, however there were definitely some changes I could have made to hit a higher mpr. I added over 25 mil NW to my tattoo during the NCB, which meant less time with my RoE. All in all, I would approximate the max mpr one could obtain under my current bonus of 212% would be 2.6 mil (at the cost of about 150 mil CB).

So what exactly was the problem? I hit 1 mil mpr in just over the first month, which means I was on pace to match the top mpr. The coming months in comparison grind to a halt however. In almost triple the time I made a similar mpr growth (including hiring minions). From my observation, the problem lies in how scoring works.

As CB ages, players in the top 20 are constantly growing in PR, yet scores are remaining stable, or rising slightly (not nearly enough to compensate for the increase in PR). As a result, once you hit a certain mpr it becomes impossible to maintain a high enough challenge bonus to support your rate of growth. I remember my bonus went from 100% to 10% in a period of 7 days, effectively crippling my growth.

I think if the scoring system was reworked in a way to include both PR in the mix as well as success in combat things would be greatly improved. Or some mechanism that introduced a rising score over time while growing mpr. If I had a 100% bonus the entire length of my NCB, I could have hit 3.8 mil mpr, which is astronomical (the cost would be astronomical as well though). I don't know exactly what the new scoring solution should be, but something along the lines of a flat score increase for every BA spent in addition to a score increase from winning. Combine that with less score from losing and I think it could be a workable solution.

Imagine if everyones score at the moment instantly doubled, almost everyones rate of growth will have doubled as well, The closer you get to the top mpr, the less benefit you get as well, since everyone below you will be getting a higher challenge bonus. I don't think it is a good game mechanism to accept that once your challenge bonus is gone it is gone forever.

Just my 2 cents. Please don't take this thread as a rant or complaint, as I am quite happy to be hovering around the top 20, and get to knock heads with the big boys...even if I lose :)

Ulord[NK] February 6 2008 1:09 PM EST

Congratulations! Spectacular run!

QBJohnnywas February 6 2008 1:12 PM EST

Great run!

SimplyNic February 6 2008 1:15 PM EST

Nice job :)

Talion February 6 2008 1:16 PM EST

Wow! 2.25M MPR. I hope I can come close to that. Based on my current NCB pace and the time I expect to switch from the RoE to my tattoo, I hope I will hit a similar score.

Great observations.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] February 6 2008 4:41 PM EST

Nice HG!

The only thing I'd add, is the the Bonus should get you to 95% without requireing the use of a RoE.

Obviously, if the top MPR is using a RoE, you'll need one to keep pace.

Which might be where this problem originates.

It's going to be far easier for the top MPR to fight with a RoE and not suffer too many consquencies, as thier already largest MPR in the game can buffer problems with subbing in a non fighting Tattoo.

For a growing character, it's harder to use a RoE effectively, as it limits your ability to fight up, and you (unlike the top MPR) are penalised for fighitng down.

I have no idea what the solution to this would be though. And if it's really a problem at all...

chuck1234 February 6 2008 4:55 PM EST

Congrats, HG :)

smallpau1 - Go Blues [Lower My Fees] February 6 2008 4:55 PM EST

goodness, the NCB bonus before the changes in %'s must have been severely low because i am at 250k fights and only at 1.7 mil MPR. after my NCB was over i might've been at 175k fights and only around 1.5 mil MPR... I see you only fought 90k fights. =/ I also used RoE till around 750k MPR (but i dont think it would have made THAT much of a difference)

AdminG Beee February 6 2008 5:00 PM EST

For the life of me I can't figure out how to get to 95% of the top MPR. I'm currently running my second NCB and there's no way I'm going to get anywhere near the magical 95% number, and I'll end up using more than the 90% of BA that Horse used.

RoE + USD is a must and that's not how it's supposed to work as far as I know.

Good run btw Horseguy...

TinTizzy February 6 2008 5:11 PM EST

nice run ill be happy too make 1 mill!

QBRanger February 6 2008 5:27 PM EST

I personally believe that you should be able to reach 90-95% of the top MPR by using the ROE all the time.

The NCB/NUB is designed to get the character, not the tattoo to the top ranks. Therefore you have to maximize your growth and the ROE does that.

However, one has to then consider what Mantra did. That is buying minions after the N*B run is over. How fair is that to overtake the top MPR by buying minion?

In any event, I think all of us know that the current N*B is way way off what Jon proposed it should be doing. That is why I would really like to see a rolling bonus based on the top VPR of the game. But it is a pipe dream only it seems.

AdminG Beee February 6 2008 5:34 PM EST

Ranger: I personally believe that you should be able to reach 90-95% of the top MPR by using the ROE all the time.

Yes, but that's not Jon's intention with the current format as far as I know.
Simply put, the NCB isn't working in the manner that the majority of people seem to believe it is intended to.

QBRanger February 6 2008 5:44 PM EST


Everything Jon has posted about the intentions of the N*B has been to be able to get to 95% of the top MPR. Unless I am mistaken and missed some posts.

If we are wrong about its intention, then perhaps we should be so informed. Perhaps people would not waste millions of CB2 on a NCB if Jon's intention was only 70% of the top MPR.

I was agreeing with his goal for the N*B.

QBsutekh137 February 6 2008 5:58 PM EST

Ranger, I also bought my minions after the NCB, and I just _barely_ exceeded your MPR at that point. IIRC, you were able to come back and re-take the MPR lead within a few weeks.

So, I'm not sure if the N*B rate has been tweaked at all since then, but I would guess that even with full RoE usage, using all BA, and getting good targets while being in a top clan, someone running things up and then buying all minions would just barely surpass you (in MPR, that says nothing of total PR).

As an example, such a person was Mikel. And if he bought his remaining two minions today, that would increase his MPR by...what, maybe 600K? (I am not good at calculating that...) That would put him above you, yes, but just barely. AND, it would cost a great deal of $CB to do it.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] February 6 2008 5:59 PM EST

This goal was stated before the introduction of the RoE.

As Jon's not said anything about the goal changing, I think it's safe to asume the 95% figure doesn't take using a RoE into account.

AdminG Beee February 6 2008 6:12 PM EST

Ranger, my reply was specifically aimed at your comment that you believe you should be able to reach 95% with a RoE. As far as I'm aware you're supposed to be able to reach it without one, was the point I was trying to make. There's been more that a couple of users who have now used a RoE for a large part of their NCB without missing much BA and fallen a huge way short of the 95% threshold.

I'm most likely incorrect in my next assumption. That is, I don't believe Jon took into consideration the fact that users may use the opportunity to buy minions at the end of NCB to jump above the 95% mark. Something, which incidentally next to no one has been able to achieve. I'm currently negotiating a new re-mortgage of my house with my bank manager in order to be able to afford the necessary $CB to do such a thing at the end of my current run. It's either a re-mortgage or one of my kids up for sale...

horseguy001 February 6 2008 6:47 PM EST

I did use an RoE exclusively for the first 10 weeks of my NCB. Within the first 5 weeks I hit 1 mil mpr, within 10 weeks I was only 1.5 mil mpr. I Missed very little BA during that time, and bought ALL available BA, burned as much BA as I could during whacky times, and had a clan bonus of >10%.

Because of the inability to maintain a challenge bonus, my rate of growth slowed to 50% of what it was. I think the current bonus is calculated to reach the top if you can keep a 100% challenge bonus the entire time. Under the current system, that is an impossibility.

Relic February 6 2008 6:52 PM EST

I couldn't agree more. My MrMunch character was screaming up the MPR ranks and hit a veritable wall and starting getting next to no bonus then eventually negative bonuses for the remaining time. The NCB is broken, I am trying it once more with full RoE fighting until I hit my 2.6 mil tattoo, then I will use that only to grow it higher and have some hope of competing up high.

It is most likely a fools errand, but hey, it's worth a shot.

QBJohnnywas February 6 2008 7:00 PM EST

"However, one has to then consider what Mantra did. That is buying minions after the N*B run is over. How fair is that to overtake the top MPR by buying minion? "

Ironic thing to say, considering what happened to that character afterwards.

TheHatchetman February 6 2008 7:47 PM EST

"It's either a re-mortgage or one of my kids up for sale..."

I'll offer $20 +S&H for the lot of them ~_^

deifeln February 6 2008 8:09 PM EST

creepy hatchetman...creepy

QBRanger February 6 2008 8:32 PM EST


Everyone had a chance to buy Cosmos before I did. In fact, I did not buy it until it was for sale at least 2 weeks with no offers.

colonel [penny pincher] February 6 2008 8:49 PM EST

Personally, I'd suggest removing the NCB altogether as we (as a group) are difficult to please. I would then institute an old char penalty (OCP if you will), that would significantly reduce all gains from fighting (maybe not forging, but who really cares about forging anyhow) after some initial period.

For example, after a character is 12 months old fight rewards are reduced by 10% and then by an additional 10% for each additional month. After 22 months then no rewards period. This would get the top echelon of users to recreate characters (of course they'd keep all of their really nice gear) and potentially get a few of them to try new strategies more frequently. This would create a more dynamic environment and make it feasible for everyone in the top 20 or so to have a crack at the top even if for only a few days/weeks before they can no longer hang on, but then they can try a new char.

One notable downfall of this would be the fact that in 12 months without an NCB/NUB type bonus no one would ever be able to even come close to the MPR levels currently seen, so maybe this is an idea for CB3 (granted some scaling of the current rewards could address this, e.g. all rewards are new characters going forward get rewards at a 250% level). I'm good for another supportership for CB3 . . . so who knows. Just a thought.

QBOddBird February 6 2008 9:15 PM EST

"That is, I don't believe Jon took into consideration the fact that users may use the opportunity to buy minions at the end of NCB to jump above the 95% mark."

I certainly hope the N*B isn't currently working as it does in order to adjust for this. It would be really cruel to those preferring a single minion team. :P

QBOddBird February 6 2008 9:16 PM EST

That said, rolling bonus FTW...

QBsutekh137 February 6 2008 10:04 PM EST

Still. Ironic.

QBsutekh137 February 6 2008 10:41 PM EST

colonel, good points (as usual...)

Would you say a rolling bonus constitutes as an OPP (Old Player Penalty)? I'm down with OPP. Yeah, you know me. *smile*

As for CB3, or at least a reset and start-over...yeah, it's a neat thought. I'd like to see a lot of things on a fresh slate, lack of transfers being the main one. I haven't seen a game yet where transfers don't lead to USD, marginalization, bickering, and polarization. While it's true the lack of those things means the game would be that much less "real"...I like that. I play games because they AREN'T real. That's a matter of strict opinion, though.
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