Posts by Ammanurt

    The first problem (10% of the playerbase pays for 90% of the income) is the big one here. I don't see how to solve that, considering that some whales pay 100$ per item or more bought in the auction. If the entry fee is 10$ you'd need 10 new players per item to compensate just for the loss of income on auction items and that's just the start of it...that's not happening. The only way the devs might do something like this, is as a special server or something like that.

    The second problem (registering fee) could perhaps be solved by giving back some % of the fee if you've only played for a % of the days in the game round.

    Just looked over the currently existing servers...The number of players really has gone downhill huh. Let's hope it's because of summertime, because if it isn't, the game is basically dead. Rightfully so imo, the game really doesn't deserve to live, but still a shame of the potential Travian has.

    That would be how I see it at any rate. Perhaps you can make a (special?) server that only allows gold for (the old Travian Plus) bonuses that aren't pay-to-win. So a server without e.g. instant merchant, instant build, NPC. I think a server like this would be insanely popular - I at least would return to playing Travian :D - and this way you don't block new players from entering.

    I think that's exactly right. Players leave not because they get farmed or catapulted to death, but because the game is either too demanding or not engaging enough for them. Travian has, since T3.6, always been trying to fix the former problem by making the game easier and less time-intensive to play. The idea was always that this would help retain players during servers and attract casual players from the enormous casual gamer population, so the total amount of players would grow too. What happened instead was that the entire playerbase was replaced with mostly casual gamers. But not many more gamers in total than before. And they weren't retained on servers any more than their ancestors either :) In fact, not that much changed - with a 5k server in the old days, you used to remain with maybe 500 after a year. Now, with the same number of players, you still remain with 500 after one gameround - half a year. So, the dev team's actions caused the player population to change in type of players. That's all that was accomplished, but that wasn't the goal!

    Clearly then, the dev team's solution to the playerbase problem just doesn't work. Yet they're so fixated on making this game as casual as possible that they're unwilling to see it, while it's blindingly obvious to any veteran. Even the most casual players livened up in the Colony because the rest of the group was fighting hard and was highly active, with high morale. Moreover, everyone had fun. We didn't leak that many players throughout the servers even though we had many new players, including pickups from the server. That should prove the point in its own right if it wasn't already self-evident that an interesting game tends to retain more players than an uninteresting one.

    The dev team currently has no clue how to make the game more interesting. Nor do they want to have a clue. They have simply not thought about or tried anything to make the game more interesting for each part of their playerbase - the casual, semi-hardcore and hardcore players. If they really want to retain and attract more players, that's what they should be focused on but the probability of this happening is 0. Their mindset is fixated on having this game be the casual player attractor, even though T4 already attracts mostly casual players and is therefore their casual game and a direct competitor of TK, lol. Proof of their mindset can be seen in the night truce - at least I think that's the most recent proof of it -, they still haven't figured out that an even less time-intensive game is still not going to solve their problems. For the above reason.

    Yup, well, I'm almost in agreement. Average players tend to take the easiest available route and that's part of why metas exist. However, being a part of a meta is usually not by choice for most players except the (usually pro) meta leadership. They're the ones, and they're very few in number*, who are the type of player would indeed join a noob server to crush it. But the rest of the players mostly just sway along with the breeze - they don't really make any choices. That's the easiest possible route. Not choosing. If they start out in a meta, that's where they'll stay. If they happen to spawn into any other, non-meta alliance then they would stay there and they wouldn't do anything about their position either, since that's easiest. It's not the case that most players just want an easy game and win - that's for meta leadership types -, it's that they just want to play and don't really care or know enough to choose to play differently.

    So the above is for gameplay during a server. But a similar thing actually holds if they have to pick before they join a new server: If e.g. Players' prestige level indicates they can no longer join beginner server A but should pick intermediate server B or pro-server C, then that is what most will do - instead of creating a new account and crushing noobs. It's the easiest, most obvious option there, too. If the choice is not restricted though, I'm afraid that players will underestimate themselves and pick servers that are objectively too low-skilled for them. So I would suggest putting prestige or other restrictions on servers to enforce somewhat equal servers.

    By the way, Jak said in his OP that the meta problem was cured. I doubt it and have no idea if it's true, haven't played in quite a while. If it really was cured though, I think that would help make the point that good players tend to want a more active, involved game and that every other player is fine with it since that's the easiest route. If the meta problem is really solved, it's not like players cannot create metas, they apparently just often choose not to. In that case, it's plausible that good players would also tend to choose appropiate servers if those existed. Which would mean the "pro players on noob server" problem might not be too big. Also, lots of players are quite attached to their account and aren't going to bother creating a new one with 0 prestige just so they can troll noobs on a noob server. Most players just aren't like that.

    *so few in number that, if you're a leader of any half-decent alliance on a server, you will likely know or have heard of most of them as the server goes on. I'm really taking about let's say 20-50 players on a 5k server, max

    Actually, currently everyone is on the "same" type of server. So if the idea works and most 'pro' players join the pro servers, everyone else should have less pros to worry about. Would you say most pros actually want to crush noobs instead of playing on an equal playing field and would therefore join the noob server? I'd think players like that would be in the minority, at least if you take metas out of the equation. I could be wrong.

    Mind you, I'm not saying these problems are all-important. Anything anyone ever builds will have problems in some sense, all I'm saying is: Think about the potential issues and what you're trying to gain by implementing this.

    It's certainly an interesting idea, I kinda like it actually. Would you allow anyone to pick any server (so it's more of a recommendation)? If not, how would you determine who is allowed on which server? Prestige? Years/months played? An obvious practical problem would be: Can the player population actually support this? Would we end up with mostly empty pro servers, or perhaps mostly empty noob servers? Another problem might be that the dev team wants this version to be casual. So perhaps they won't want competitive distinctions like this.

    It might actually be interesting to consider having a voting mechanism anyway, at all times, so that governors can vote their kings out - stage a coup/revolution, say - when they feel their kings are in need of decapitation or are otherwise not fit for the job. In non-premade teams this would give kings an incentive to actually care about keeping his governors happy (through morale, not resources) and it gives governors some power over their fates. Maybe the process should take a week normally, and 3 days specifically when a king is inactive. Of course there should be consequences for the kingdom if they decide to go through with the process...

    You don't have to play to win the server, but if you are trying to win the server - in a competitive enough environment, which TK really isn't, but let's pretend it is - your decisions better be sound. It's always possible, and happens quite often in fact, that you accidentally or randomly win the server even though you made less sound decisions than your opponents, but your chances in the above environment will usually increase if they are. There's a reason the alliances I've helped lead, and alliances that make decisions like my alliance does, either win servers or are good contenders. Simply put, the effectiveness of your decisions increases if your decisions are sound. This holds both for individual players as well as teams. Saying that isn't the case is madness and demonstrably false (even a paradox, since it would be sound to make unsound decisions??).

    With that out of the way, I think Thorsson has the right of it. The most important part of the current discussion isn't about having other goals than winning the server, starting conditions, expecting to win immediately as a new player, being able to influence each person's strategies on the server, etc. Those things are mostly irrelevant because they are already implied. You have an alliance consisting of a kingdom that went through a union. Let's assume they want to win or at least get close to winning the server. Let's assume their starting conditions no longer matter that much because they've passed the start and are still playing. Let's assume they're not new players and would like to keep building their alliance if possible. Let's assume this alliance and other alliance has more-or-less equal influence on any other kingdom's condition for now (although I really don't see how this is relevant here).

    The king, say a previously trusted, high quality player, of the unified kingdom is gone. He doesn't come back. What can/will/should the governors there do in that situation, given the fact that they in principle want to win and assuming an actually competitive game? In the old versions you would just create a new alliance with different leadership. Here, you have basically have three options:

    1. Join an alliance that you probably have no shared history with. Not likely to be geographically wise at this stage of the game. Probably not fun. You might 'win', I guess, if you feel that counts.
    2. Stay in the current, broken kingdom and likely lose, like Scorox states.
    3. Create a new kingdom with new kings . You'll be vastly behind.

    3 might be your best bet, but it's hugely disadvantageous to a group of people that couldn't have made a better choice regarding their king with the information they had. Wouldn't it be much better for their gameplay, and therefore for player retention, to have e.g. a voting mechanism at least in the case that their kings go inactive?

    I don't know how bad it is compared to TL, it's probably worse there, but in TK depending on the server it can range from "pretty bad" to " bad". Most metas I've played against had at least some multiaccount subgroup that was dedicated to either feeding a ' real' player's massive hammer through illegal friendly farming, or to making a forward base that consists of multies that you have to fight through before you can get to the real account, or to spreading out and joining (spying on) each potentially important enemy kingdom. Like in TL, there's virtually no policing so the cheaters almost without exception can get away with whatever.

    The freedom players currently have with those two options is to pick and choose the meta they want to be in. That's no freedom at all. This "freedom" of yours can only work for those that are already at the top of the game - it sucks for everyone else.

    This is exactly like the healthcare discussion in the US. You, like many rich people in the US, would say that guaranteeing healthcare takes away people's freedom. While in reality, without guaranteed healthcare, most people only have the freedom to choose in what way they DON'T get healthcare at all because they can't afford it. Again, that's no freedom at all. It's self-serving crap that only considers their own position and not other people's positions.

    I get what you're saying, but I can't agree with it. You're treating this as if everyone has the same starting position and the same freedom to pick the amount of friends they want to have. That's hardly true. Only a select few players actually have the freedom you're talking about, the rest is forced to be in a meta and has no freedom of choice. Imposing restrictions on e.g. metas would give far, far more options and freedom for those (that is, most) players.