The Incoherent Ravings of a Mad Man
For the people who do not know me, I'm one of the members of the th12 (Lambo/m00n) team. The thoughts expressed do not necessarily reflect or come from the other two team leaders. Also I'm speaking from a position of modest ignorance. I know nothing more about the newest land expansion than what has been posted so if anything this is just plain wrong you understand why.
That being said I feel that we are going hard in the wrong direction with the game. I have been disappointed with “phone app”, the low level bots, the pull back on rewards, and the lack of meaningful attempts to get new players but this newest things is just too far.
I can not see selling lands as anything other than a pay to win money grab that does not help the game in anyway. The way I understand it, is if we give splinterlands money, they will lets us have the ability to make things that are used to help us win. It is implied that it will be significant, or there would be no value in buying the land. Why pay for the land after all, if you can't get an edge to win?
Allowing us to craft and farm is just busy work to hid the fact that it is just selling pay to win spells. Also what is good at farming and crafting in games? Low level bots... No one is going to want to do daily busy work crafting and farming just so they can play the card game competitively. I'm sure there will be many guys who make bots for this, so please hit me up and I will let you farm my land for a percentage. Failing that we can make our own bots. Also to the people who want to buy land to make money, you will need to compete with farming bots. Do you enjoy hours of daily grind work for a fraction of minimum wage? If yes, this is the investment of a life time for you!
Adding a spell to the end of the game, or really in any part is not going to make high level bots less effective. If anything it will make them more powerful. People who are thinking this is anti bot are mistaken. The new land helps rich people who know how to bot well. Sadly our target new play is not on average rich people who know how to bot well.
I'm not sure if the spells are one time use, or if they are use as many as you want at that level.
If they are one time use th12 guild is willing to work with any other guild who would like to not take part in this limited resource arms race. Meaning we will agree to use the lowest level free spells on you, if you do the same to us. It will have the safe effectiveness as us wasting the spells on each other. This way we can save the spells and we can use them on guilds that do not want to take part in our logical alliance. This should help both of our guilds get higher rankings.
If the spells are not one time use, then you all should expect to pay whatever you need to, and grind as much as you need to, to get up to the highest level to match our team. I will not let anyone have an unfair advantage to our team and I can spend silly money making sure that at best you all are right where you started before the expansion. There is no advantage to game play here, nothing adding to the fun, just the joy of paying money so we can spend time and effort crafting crap that in the end is not meaningful. It will slow down the game making each game take two turns. Tournaments will get much longer. A bot that can do 100,000 simulations is not going to be hurt by a few combos of spell, it makes it much better for bots. When a budget for a team of bots is higher than being spent on the game, it is really silly to make it so bots get an advantage over humans.
Is land a 100% fail idea? No, maybe use champion points to buy land for the guild. Use the land to get access to guild only tournaments. Maybe access to season only p vs e challenges or the like. There is so much potential here that it is just being used as a must have pay to win add on that it is literally sickening. Why pay them so we can get more busy work? Why not make something that people want to play?
The amount of long time people who have contracted me trying to sell their decks for under 50% value on first ask is amazing. I understand, your point of view and desire to flee but at this time I'm not going to be a buyer unless we are talking crazy low like 25% of market at most and even then it will depend on the cards in the deck. I'm not looking to put more money into the game at this time. I also understand some people like the idea of the land. I kinda think many of you just want change, just want to see progress. Some cool things like art and what not that will be added to the game will be cool for some but many of us just want to play a game. I play the game like I used to play chess. I bot like I used to bot chess. There is fun in that for me, art is okay but not why most people are here. When people play chess do they really care about the style of the board? To they play chess to show off their pieces? I'm sure a few do but a game can't be based on that.
I have been patient on just about everything, I was told the next big thing would be getting new users. This land thing will not help that at all. People are going to see how much it takes to level up. Paying to win, by letting everyone have access to the same cards is one thing, but forcing people to now buy land and craft is just going to force more people away. Who wants to start out as a landless peasant? No one is going to drop the type of money it will take to get to a decent level especially with rewards being significantly shifted downwards. People are leaving faster than they are joining. I understand that with out money Aggy and Matt can't feed their kids but this is highly short sighted and doomed to fail. It is so bad of an idea we are speculating that the goal might be self sabotage. After they sell land, what will they do to get more money? Why would they ever stop selling pay to win things if it works? I as a game player like the card game, all this other BS is going to turn me off to the game despite me being in the best position to take advantage of it. I have enough money to be highly competitive in any pay to win situation and I have the ability to have bots to farm and take advantage of busy work (for all players). I'm not here to win at all cost, or even make money, I'm here to have fun. I bought into this game willing to take a 100% loss that being said, I'd rather this turn into something great and get even greater returns.
One of the biggest problems with the game is the reward system and the lower level bots taking more than their fair share in rewards. I have an account called th12-toy and the highest level card that it has is level 1. This account can get into Diamond and play in Diamond tournaments. Is that reasonable? Is it reasonable for botted accounts who have bought no cards at all to get to gold? I understand the dislike for some of the higher level bots, they are very clearly seen and they do win a good amount. However the reason for the rewards going to fail is not because someone who spent $35,000 on a maxed deck, its because someone spent $5,000 on 500 bot accounts with almost no cards added. What makes more rewards, 500 accounts at Gold or one at Champion? It is clear that low level botting has the highest pay out by far...
The whole system needs to be reworked. We need to move apart the rating/matching system from the reward system.
The rating system that we are using now is fine for matching. People want to play people at their own skill level despite what cards they might have in their deck. This is good and works so don't break it.
However the reward system needs to be highly reworked. The classes (silver/gold/champion) that people get access to should not be based on rating but rather the value of their accounts. There would be many ways to sort this out but I'd guess the easiest would be based on DEC. I have no idea what the levels should be so I will pull numbers out of my ass and such for example 100 DEC gets you to the 1st reward level, 500 DEC gets you to the 2nd level and so on until we get to the highest level of 69th or whatever at 100,000 DEC.
The amount in your account based on DEC only unlocks how high you can go on the reward system. You still need to play rated game to get a rating to be able to claim the rewards at these levels. If a 100,000 DEC accounts plays 3 games a season, they will get level 1 rewards. A 100,000 DEC account however is going to be normally at the top and should be. So to get Gold rewards one must have a Gold valued account based on DEC and play to the rating required for Gold rewards.
Now what this will do is stop all the bot account that never bought a card. Their rewards are now level 1 or even 0. They need to either quit or buy cards. Buying cards clearly helps push up the price of cards. Them quitting stops the BS rating inflation. It is a win win (unless you are a low level bot farmer). Plus the reward cards that are being sucked up by the bots can now go back to real accounts. Rewards were being printed too quickly, and that was an issue. But it is better to just limit the rewards to real customers than low level bots. You guys wan't playable reward cards back, not silly potions and DEC correct? I know I do...
This also will let new players have a much better deck to experiment with. Give them phantom cards of the normal betas, the normal untaimed and a hand full of rewards. All level 1, but with out any DEC value. Let them play but don't let them get rewards (maybe 1 box a season or so). Also make the accounts FREE! No one want to pay $10 just to get some untaimed level 1 crap cards and fail vs all the bots playing the beta phantom cards. New players if they come here at all are running away so damn fast it is not even funny. It is absolutely demoralizing. And absolutely unnecessary.
This also solves tournament issues. The reward unlocking system based on DEC should also give access to tournaments. Lets say an account is level 16 at 50,000 DEC. He should be able to play in all tournaments 16 and lower. This will stop all the spam bot accounts from messing up tournaments. And also, if we wanted to do so, we could make tournaments like only level 10 to 15 or level 2 to 5 to keep out top accounts from killing n00bs. The rewards should be much much lower but it would be nice to let the n00bs only fight n00bs from time to time. No one like signing up for a tournament on silver and getting killed by a master of the game.
In this type of game bots can not be stopped and also since it is a pay to win game, we might as well restrict the winning ability to accounts that have paid. If something like this does not get implemented quickly I'd wonder who is really doing all the low level botting.
There can also be season rewards with in a class. For example right now the top accounts split a few hundred untaimed packs. Each class based on DEC could also have prizes for 1st 2nd 3rd and so on. Clearly the top levels need to be very highly prized. The lowest levels could be just a few DEC, or a single reward card. The point is people who have to be at a lower levels can still fight after their reward are done. I'd honestly like to see how high of a rating I could get at level 5 for example even if the pay off is not huge. I want to keep th12-toy and see what he can do, but I should not get diamond level rewards for that account.
A different idea that I personally like is a reward card that is limited to 1 or 2 seasons. Does not matter how many get handed out, (but it should standardized) but that they are limited to only one or two seasons. They can be passed out in normal rewards (but more heavy than normal reward cards) and as a bonus to that seasons tournament prizes or tops places in classes. Maybe pop up in a mystery potion rarely. It would get humans to play each season (bot will play no matter what) so it helps get things active.
A limited number of Th12 accounts will be for rent as soon as we get the ability to change our names. This has been a many month long wait. Just FYI our accounts that we control can be 100% bot, mixed human/bot or all human. It really depends on what is at stake and how much free time we have. Bots can be good but so far we can not get bots to out play grand masters like bji1203 and JaceW. Also I personally like to play the game when I have time. I have staff that also can at times play.
The two other co leaders are not me. They are very real people who do not work for me, and I do not pay them. We have a profit sharing agreement and they can leave the team at any time or do anything they want at any time. I do not control then in anyway and their thoughts are their own. I know there has been some speculation about this. I'm crazy, but not three people crazy:)
I hope these ravings of a mad man are clear enough for you all to understand most of my ideas so that we can save the game and make it something great for the ages. In the end there will only be one great blockchain card game and I hope it is splinterlands. I might be a bipolar high functioning alcoholic asshole with delusions of grandeur but I'm on the side of the community and I just want a fun game to play. Let us not destroy the good that we have, don't make me leave and go out on my own.
All feedback is welcome, thank you.