FORUMS


The grind, gating the full experience, and humane/sensible player retention



Posted: //
April 5, 2018, 2:19 a.m.



This game delivers on large scale tactical space combat with better balance and depth than anything else I've played, and the build diversity and meta is compelling to explore. It was easy to recommend this game to about a half dozen friends and incorporate it into our regular gaming over our weeks.

However, while the grind is better than Star Conflict or other similar games, I still don't think it's humane game design, and is ultimately costing you a player base more than preserving one through its presumed intention of drip-feeding content to keep players invested for a longer time (setting aside the gross incentive to pay to reduce the grind). The diversity of module combinations, ship variations, and continuous attention to balance tweaks are what preserve interest in the game and keep it interesting and worth sticking around for (which ultimately builds value for those cosmetics and hero ships you want to use to monetize and support this project), but the grind wall to access that depth and the real meat of the game is immense and surely turning off many players before they ever see the full appeal of this game.

I recently tried the game out and immediately recommended it to about half a dozen friends. We have eagerly been playing for weeks on and off (we all have day jobs and several of us have kids), and while I've grinded out 11 hours of match time (who knows how much time with queueing and hanger-time) to unlock every T3 ship, several are still slogging through T2 trying to unlock even 1 T3 ship (though they'll need 2 to even try Veteran!). Once clearing that time-consuming hurdle, the few of us that have made it into Veteran were immediately confronted about another jump in grind, where no longer can we even get a new module to experiment with within 2-4 games, and unlocking an addiitonal new ship to experiment with could take weeks!

2 of us were so demoralized by the grind to unlock new ships and abilities that they don't even want to finish T2 to get to T3, but the 4 of us that made it to T3 ships are demoralized by the ever-escalating grind we met in T3 (1 of which still doesn't have his 2nd T3 ship, so he can't even play veteran with us yet!). We are willing to give it an earnest effort to get some modules and see if small adds in versatiltiy restore some of the fun on the way to the potential we can see, but are demoralized and considering quitting, despite our enjoyment to this point.

The threat of stagnation just sucks the fun and potential out of continuing to explore new ships, modules, and combinations. If it's just repeating the same battle over and over again, getting bullied by fully teched T4 ships in our vanilla T3s, we might as well go back to playing Heroes of the Storm; it's repetitive too, but more diverse and fun than being stuck in vanilla T3s or only playing in recruit. :-/

This game has wonderful depth and layers of ship design strategy and tactics, but you're hiding all that beauty and appeal behind an ugly grind. It's like chess. Chess is a great game, with an alarming amount of depth for its complexity, and that makes it easy to learn, hard to master, and immersive for a lifetime to many. The T1 grind is basically teaching Checkers before trying to teach Chess, I get that. However, the T2 grind is basically locking non-pawns behind many hours of play (so much that 2 of our players who can only play with us 1-2 nights a week have little hope of getting into T3 to play with us anytime soon), and the T3 grind feels like unlocking each back row piece after days and days of regular play. By the time we can just play chess and start to appreciate its design, so many of us are too demoralized, disinterested, or already gone to see it through and invest enough value to want to pay into the game.

You're free to play to secure a large player pool, please don't shoot that in the foot by also grind-gating the core of the game to monetize it. I want to love this game, I have from the 1st proving grounds battle, but it just makes it harder to keep loving it the more I play and the more needy the grinding gets.

I'm more than willing to discuss further or in more depth (I'm sure others from my group would as well) here in the forum or any other capacity. We want so badly to love this game and see it succeed, and are disheartened to find the inhumane grind eroding our interest in and passion for an otherwise wonderful game with a lot of potential and we want to do what we can (if anything) to affect that trajectory.


Posted: //
April 5, 2018, 6:17 a.m.


Updated //
April 5, 2018, 6:50 a.m.

This is my biggest issue with dreadnought. The grind is still long lasting and exhausting with elite status, without it, it is even harder. The devs have a roadmap, and one of the things they want to improve is progression speed. God knows when that is going to happen. I fully agree with you, and exactly this long lasting grind wall is what keeps me away from dreadnought. I want to, but it is just...as you said, demoralizing.

I am trying to tell other captains and the devs exactly this. If you have little time, it seems hopeless to achieve something, and all greatness of dreadnought is locked behind an enormous grindzilla. I really love dreadnought, but it hard doing so with this grind. You won't receive any good respones, only stuff like "git gud", "team play, "buy elite" etc. But I am not sure. The developers have to listen to people like you and me, the game is getting crushed under its own progression and grind


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Posted: //
April 9, 2018, 12:08 a.m.



The grind is sort of opressive. Eliete helps.

Recent update helped by allowing you to unlock watever you want.

Real problem is squads.


Posted: //
April 9, 2018, 6:37 a.m.



VirtualRiot#3785 posted (#post-217102) said:

The grind is sort of opressive. Eliete helps.

Recent update helped by allowing you to unlock watever you want.

Real problem is squads.

I disagree. Squads are a problem,but they are not that problem. The grind forces Players to buy Elite, to experience atleast some Progress. It is a joke right now. With Elite I got for a score of 500 around 3k XP. Without: 800 XP. The grind cries way to much for investing real money, and I don't like that. Make fun and teamplay more rewarding.


The community should not be afraid of the developers- The developers should be afraid of their community. carrier

^I want to believe^

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Posted: //
April 9, 2018, 1:06 p.m.



The grind is bad is you are not that good at the game. I don't buy elite as it would be a waste of money for me as my play time is very sporadic. I've managed quite well with out elite. The only thing I've bought have been cosmetic items/hero ships.


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Posted: //
April 9, 2018, 2:56 p.m.



Brother Belial#4215 posted (#post-217142) said:

The grind is bad is you are not that good at the game. I don't buy elite as it would be a waste of money for me as my play time is very sporadic. I've managed quite well with out elite. The only thing I've bought have been cosmetic items/hero ships.

I would like to try, but mostly I am getting stomped. Not even by SOS and LYB. I cannot grind if every enemy scores one double kill per minute. Teamplay only really exists when I have some smart players in my team. Mostly my team mates are just running around like beheaded chickens! And I guess soon squadding up wont help me because of pub stomp preventions, and tacs will become obsolete after the healball fix. And those meta builds. How to grind when 3 vindictas are scrambling and ramming me? There is a huge gap between players who are forcing their way through the tech tree, and the ones who bought elite and skipped through. Without elite it took me one year straight getting from the t4 jutland to the t5 monarch. With elite I made it from t4 vindicta to t5 brutus (need to buy the 7 mods that are left) withing one week.

Two weeks of elite: 1 tier 3 (gravis) finished, t4 obtained, 1 tier three finished (akula artillery), 2 tier three obtained (virtus oberon artillery , ceres), one tier 4 finished

I don't want to even try, there is only stomping, purging, disrupting, heal bałłing, ramming etc. Grinding is not possible when the match is already a lost cause after 5 mins.


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^I want to believe^

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Posted: //
April 9, 2018, 5:12 p.m.



Even with elite, the grind is oppressive. That one single thing is the only reason this game never took off. Beating a dead horse though at this point.


Posted: //
April 10, 2018, 6:59 a.m.



Valkin#7165 posted (#post-217174) said:

Even with elite, the grind is oppressive. That one single thing is the only reason this game never took off. Beating a dead horse though at this point.

That's your perception vs mine. I find the "grind" with elite very good. But then I'm an average to good player. So I normally get 5K+ per match in vet.


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Posted: //
April 10, 2018, 7:05 a.m.



Brother Belial#4215 posted (#post-217255) said:

Valkin#7165 posted (#post-217174) said:

Even with elite, the grind is oppressive. That one single thing is the only reason this game never took off. Beating a dead horse though at this point.

That's your perception vs mine. I find the "grind" with elite very good. But then I'm an average to good player. So I normally get 5K+ per match in vet.

And that is the problem. You cannot understand our concerns. You have to see it from the perspective of a bad to average player Without Elite to fully understand it.


The community should not be afraid of the developers- The developers should be afraid of their community. carrier

^I want to believe^

https://youtu.be/z_Gd9-IfYzw


Posted: //
April 10, 2018, 7:10 a.m.


Updated //
April 10, 2018, 7:13 a.m.

Brother Belial#4215 posted (#post-217142) said:

I don't buy elite [...] I've managed quite well with out elite.

Brother Belial#4215 posted (#post-217255) said:

I find the "grind" with elite very good.

So which one is it?

Personally I find the grind ludicrous, but that's mostly due to the (lack of proper) matchmaking and having to grind ships you don't enjoy playing just to get at the briefings you need.


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