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RIP Gateway Island?


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Do we feel that the GWI as it stands works stand-alone enough for people to progress?

I currently sit at the dock watching and helping people as I can, but I get various PM's asking for help that I am unable to deal with because I am not on enough time as work is incredibly busy.

I think currently, while a good lot of work has been put into GWI, we possibly want to consider pausing people spawning there and allow a quick way onto the mainland again while it is continued to work on.

What do people think? Im wondering if we need to, for the moment, make it super easy to get there so people can help out as I don't ever see anyone else helping and I dont know who is meant to be here.

 

To be clear, I dont start this topic to offend anyone who has worked on it, or are tasked to run the island. But to work out what is best for new players and returning vets. I keep getting forum and ingame messages about being stuck there so...

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I think the island is automated enough to be able to take newcommers to the mainland via multiple ways. What you describe has nothing to do with the island  but with the realm in general being based on accoubts that are not on the island.

 

If you ask me to chose between moving newcommers where old accounts are, or allowing old accoubts to access the island , i prefer the island as it is, because it offers a good amount of single player activity. 

Sad to say but single player activity is the only thing that can fix such times, not putting remaining active accounts in same scene.

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3 hours ago, Chewett said:

Do we feel that the GWI as it stands works stand-alone enough for people to progress?

No

 

3 hours ago, Chewett said:

I currently sit at the dock watching and helping people as I can, but I get various PM's asking for help that I am unable to deal with because I am not on enough time as work is incredibly busy.

been there done that

 

3 hours ago, Chewett said:

I think currently, while a good lot of work has been put into GWI, we possibly want to consider pausing people spawning there and allow a quick way onto the mainland again while it is continued to work on.

Well yeah the point was to filter them out, so it does what it was intended to do?

 

3 hours ago, Chewett said:

What do people think? Im wondering if we need to, for the moment, make it super easy to get there so people can help out as I don't ever see anyone else helping and I dont know who is meant to be here.

most ways are easy once you see them, the other reason is that people dont read the hint, instructions and so on

 

3 hours ago, Muratus del Mur said:

I think the island is automated enough to be able to take newcommers to the mainland via multiple ways. What you describe has nothing to do with the island  but with the realm in general being based on accoubts that are not on the island.

i think the issue is that from the point of view of new people the game is dead, but even if you are there and pick them up the game is undesireable for most people, many are used to get stuffed with beginner items and told how good they are with flashy and shiny thingies

 

3 hours ago, Muratus del Mur said:

If you ask me to chose between moving newcommers where old accounts are, or allowing old accoubts to access the island , i prefer the island as it is, because it offers a good amount of single player activity. 

only if you read and want to read, the start is very boring in my opinion, when i started i just returned because i wanted to know where the story goes, it kept me long enough to interact with people, people then made me keep coming back, not that i could play the game alone, so idk if the single player activity is valid when  the game is the community rather than the mechanics

 

2 hours ago, Chewett said:

Is there a suggestion about what I can do with the various people (new and old) getting stuck with technical issues and the ridddles/etc?

Iv ported some of the older accounts out that didnt know how to progress because I didnt want them stuck forever.

tbh that seems to be the most reasonable thing to do for returners since they might want to check in because of the people and memories they made and might be put off by the island

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1 hour ago, MaGoHi said:

only if you read and want to read, the start is very boring in my opinion

now that i think about it, the story with the cube and the little girl was a hell of an intro. it was building a lot of suspense, while the island is quite peaceful by comparison

what if we add the elements of a crisis there? like, aramors being assembled by unknown entities, boarding ships to who knows where; or, the island being enshrouded in a 'cloud of viscosity' with each passing day, threatening to become occult from the mainland

or something

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Feel free to delete any of the spoilers, I'm not going to go in depth in them but they are kinda spoilers.... I'm also going to mainly approach this as an older account going to GWI. TLDR on that front: It is interesting and everyone should do it once, but needs to be simpler to leave for those teleported there. As I've written it, this is quite spoilery but I am sure I have something wrong so please correct me!

Spoiler

There is a lot of interesting stuff there, even if it isn't 100% obvious, lots of interesting Research & Connections there too! I've yet to finish everything (need to make a bag of heads and build the balloon) but there is a good amount of stuff. The main ways older accounts leave are a pain from what I saw, although please correct me if I've missed something.

Spoiler

99.9% will not be able to leave the easy way, fighting MaGo. Too many AD as I think it is capped at 30? I'm not sure how the heads thing works, I think you need 100, so that is quite hard and how can you hold a mini heads competition with nobody there, getting the Bag of Heads is bloody awkward in the first place, getting 2 people to stand somewhere is not easy, never mind no Guardian to let you out anyway? That leaves you with the balloon and the riddle.

The balloon is a pain, as far as I am aware there was not a way to get enough rope yourself easily, without maybe rolling in MDShop. Plus, people can take your progress I believe!

The riddle... I am not good at riddles by any stretch but that was ridiculous. I am not sure what sort of player is supposed to figure that out and graduate from GWI. Or maybe I am just stupid :) Still, once you have the answer you can leave forever as many times as you want I guess?

Spoiler

SUPER SECRET BONUS: Using the heatveins to escape was fun, it is not a practical option for 99.9% of MD however.

 

 

For new players, I don't think it is a good impression having them start on an island with nobody else nor a story to keep them interested at the moment. I like how it teaches core mechanics, hell the combat option looks interesting, looks like they even need to learn about what abilities/targets do and their signifcance. I also don't think it is a good idea to keep them on there too long, smacks a bit of the old freemium game model of making you wait, although I appreciate that is not it's intent at all. Why not kick them out after a week and make them figure their way back in if they want to fully explore the mysterious island?

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While my opinion might be considered somewhat biased. I try not to be.

I think keeping GWi as spawning point for new players is better than directly to the main land. As has been said. At least GWI offers some single player activity. And it slows a player down a bit, though not much, before seeing how empty MD currently is. 

What it does need is an automated narrative/guide. Since there aren't enough active helpers to have a 24/7 presence. And follow up quests for the various exits. 

For someone actually stuck. Or old player just popping in. Sure port them out. (easy enough to make a clicky that offers insta travel choice to anyone above a set ad minimum)

 

@ Ledah. The rope is not hard to get. It is easy to miss though. (It's just lying on the ground somewhere ;) ) The Heads option is one of the oldest possible ways out. But it was disabled because there was no point. As you pointed out. Not enough people... And riddles... well they are tricky, some you get instantly and others you just can't figure out. But I'm glad you enjoyed it anyway. 

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The main things I see about GwI is are that it is a great way to start players off when they first get learning how things in MD typically work. It isn’t as inclusive as the old tutorial, but that’s fine. My 3 main suggestions:

have a way off of island unique to players 120+ AD ( I’m sure ungod already has a story in mind)

Introduce a little bit of that overarching story to GWI, not necessarily as a forced content, like old tutorial, but perhaps in that cave we put in a clickie of a book, player can then choose to read a little bit about what is happening on island (perhaps excerpts from diary of being that set it up)

make it just a little easier for players on mainland to get to GWI, though if 1 becomes reality, then I I think this largely moot

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the game needs to hold people mechanically first and foremost , so that they have enough thing's to do while they get into the community. currently we have 2 main systems in place that could do this. combat, and crafting, neither of which are fleshed out enough to be a main focus for players to get into. 

combat: this tends to be what is probably the main draw, collect creatures, fight them, level them up, and feel a sense of progression as your account get's stronger with the more work you place into it. with the current player base, this is very difficult, they can collect creatures, and fight a little bit, but if people really want to fight and focus only on that, the ability to do so is far too limited.

crafting: crafting in md is very punishing, for what little of it that can be done, as many thing's consume in stacks rather than set quantity, probably the most rewarding crafting experience( as far as functional items is concerned) is based on common items which is based on shop purchases which shouldn't be the case. the molima is a very good thing but it's also very inaccessible.

unfortunately not much can really be done about these thing's without drawing too much on mainstream aspects which contradicts with a lot of MD's philosophy, but if MD's goal was to adapt to a wider audience i think some mainstream elements may be required. 

 

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I was supposed to be there as I applied. But sorry I’ve been snowed under recently in RL. I guess I cannot take the job for a period. 
I discussed about the state and my opinion of the island when I began to take the job. I thought it’s about the details of the guidance and rewards on tasks and the thought keeps the same. 
Please PM me if someone wants to take the position as a guardian or tour guide of the island. I’ll pass the tools to next one. 

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On 10/27/2020 at 4:34 PM, Chewett said:

Is there a suggestion about what I can do with the various people (new and old) getting stuck with technical issues and the ridddles/etc?

Iv ported some of the older accounts out that didnt know how to progress because I didnt want them stuck forever.

Its all ablut the attitude. An older player thst returns to see whats new, chat aith old friends, etc, without any real intention to play  would find the island frustrating.

A real player old or new that wants to discover the island secrets will find it fun challenge.

We need to decide this ancient issue about making things convenient for old vets that no longer have the enthusiasm to actually play, or to keep things even harder for them.

The way i see things should be, the island should have different ways for old and new. If a vet becomes stuck there, porting them out is a way to hide from the issue. Instead, we should put ourselves in their shoes and see if the issue is real or just caused by lack of interest.

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Hey! Dont you guys dare delete the shiny Island!
I remember when i woke up after some time and found myself there. While it was kinda odd at first, i quickly
learned how to like it. There is always Azull or Ai there to offer help, plus its artwork is unmatched. That Island is everything MD is just in a refreshing way.
Hey, i know. If you guys decide to remove it, put the whole island in that book on Clash of Ages, behind some spell.
Ye, and put me in there while you are at it:)

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does the gateway have a combat exit still? i remember reading about the heads exit being removed, but potentially it can be replaced with a series of progression fights aimed to challenge new players. perhaps we shift the basic creatures (barren and grasan) , to the island as well, and set small challenges, nothing major, just basic combat ideas. this would allow them to dip their toes into thinking about combat, provide a solo way off the island, but also allow returning vets to steam through it and leave if that's what they want. upon beating the challenges an item could be granted that allows a one time exit, so it's not forced, so that if they win they have an out but can choose to stay if there are other things they want to see. 

 

also i think allowing people back and forth with "ease" wouldn't be a terrible idea. and everything that's set to focus on newer players that vets shouldn't be using can be hidden based on AD , i understand that parts of gwi are meant to be a reward for vets finding their way there but is that the best idea? i can't say for certain, i can see for and against. but it would alos allow newer players to leave and not feel punished for not finding everything (especially in conjuction with my next idea) 

 

another thing that people like are spells, perhaps some new very weak spells could be introduced that can be gained on the island? and a quest could be introduced to unlock the visability of the erohlin at mp3, because we all know it's still there and working even at that level, but unlocking it would add an extra bit of content and introduce them to what it does, how it works, and spellcasting

Edited by Syrian
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  • 1 month later...

Let me make something of an analogy: I used to run a minecraft alpha server with a pretty steady 10-20 people on it at any moment and a bunch of regulars. It was mainly freebuild and spleef, which drew all the attention, but had some other interesting game modes as minecraft added more commands being zombie or lava survival, CTF, and mazes. As I continued to explore new options for the server I had the idea to make an adventure mode. The premise was that you would start in a purgatory underground area and face some rather trivial challenge to escape to the earth layer, where you would face two stairwells, one up to heaven and the other to hell. Heaven would be the freebuild area where I hoped the players would create an ever expanding landscape made by the players of which could become the quest hub zone. Hell would be the true quest area you are sent to in order to face the main challenges that would constitute the adventure.

While these are all seemingly good ideas, the mistake I made was to remove the main landing page of my server which garnered the attention to begin with. It was to be a temporary decision on my part in order to facilitate the building of the new areas which would later make up the quests, but the players interest in the new areas was immediately depleted since it deviated from the standard set by the server and the norms in other servers, as well as my interest in continuing the project would disappear due to lack of available tools and commands from minecraft to complete my goals and in the end I would stop hosting the server. I should have kept the main entrance to my server open and allowed the players to opt into the new mode in order to retain the main crowd. The analogy immediately evident to me upon opening of the purgatory style Gateway Island and closing of the old Paper Cabin entrance to the game was the closing of my server's main entrance in favor of the new adventure opening.

There may be more similarities to discern between the two scenarios of my server and MagicDuel, but the main takeaway is I would suggest to at least allow the Paper Cabin opening to be chosen and preferably be the default. I don't think, at least so far, that starting on the island has a higher player retention rate as it is much less populated, and we are a community game if anything. This actively reduces the amount of people a new player will encounter and perhaps more importantly it currently requires established players to act as shepherds to the newbies, reducing the population available on the mainland which is the main allure to the game. I don't think the allure of starting on the island to get to the mainland is better than starting on the mainland to have an extra island to discover considering the island is really only a husk of what the mainlands have to offer.

Edited by Mallos
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Even tho I like your story, I have to disagree with you Mallos, although the old intro was amazing, it can't work in current circumstances because MD doesn't have required ingredients for it anymore. 

The old intro was dependant on the (awake) presence of other players and LHOs to some extent, which simply are not there anymore, and a new player would have nowhere to interact, except read a lot of story mode chapters (as cool as they are). 

The Island tries to implement some limited single player stuff, and allows a new player to actually play something. As unfinished as it is, it's still a better option. 

Once they leave tho we have the same problem, but at least they will obtain some sense of basic MD features until that point. 

 

In my view, old intro can only be brought back (modified or not) once the community revives. 

Edited by Jubaris
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I completely disagree that the paper cabin entrance was dependent upon players, it was only encouraged for LHOs to take part in the new player experience, there was nothing you needed of any player to advance.

I don't think it has relevance to the island but I am of the opinion that the paper cabin story was much more compelling to me wanting to play the game, and the island is lacking of a story of any sort. Maybe the island could benefit from a story as has been stated in this thread.

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I can agree with mallos on some parts and i havent been on the island in a while, but if there was no change then it will still be somewhat accurate what i think, the biggest bifference for me is that back when i started i was bored so i looked for a game, the story was somewhat interesting, but the waiting part annyoed me so i quit again, until i was bored enough to come back because "there was that story that did sound somewhat interesting", the story kept me coming back long enough to actually make contact to other players, then i started to come back because it was fun to talk to the people.

while with the island the "nothing to do" part got removed and is at first more appealing to new players, the lack of online people to talk to or something actually interesting is what will not let them come back after a while

from the viewpoint of an ex guardian i can say that being on the island and trying to make people interact is just frustrating, my respects to those that still do that, thats not an easy job, i know from personal experience that even when you try to be there and available a lot you still manage to miss some people that might have had a chance at staying and considering the ultra low influx of people that is really bad, so not having a comunity there like it was on mainland does make a difference imo

 

the only solution i have to this is actually scrapping the shitty idea of shards being a special resource that were intnded as some sort of start currency and open up the island maybe make a "waiting scene" with a timer where you sit on a ferry for like 5 to 10 minutes or even make it only go every hour or so, to not make it that easy to get there, but i think it might make the island more lively and that might make the game more appealing or at least slow down its dying process

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How did it not depend on other players? After the first few steps, you wait a lot for the next story checkpoints with nothing to do as there are no other mp3s and no people to talk to. I didn't say that you mechanically require players to finish the intro, just that without that part it's not half the product it's supposed to be. 

At least the island keeps you occupied. Ofc it can and should be continuously improved. Magohi mentioned some shards, I don't know all the details but generally am for simplification and am against forcing newbies on keeping track of useless features. 

Edited by Jubaris
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On 12/22/2020 at 11:07 AM, MaGoHi said:

"there was that story that did sound somewhat interesting", the story kept me coming back long enough to actually make contact to other players (...) maybe make a "waiting scene" with a timer where you sit on a ferry for like 5 to 10 minutes or even make it only go every hour or so

Maybe a mini-story for the island? meeting the ferryman or someone, who then leaves you to the guardians and whatnot

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