Thoughts on what is holding Pox back, and possible solutions

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Coltsfan3, Apr 12, 2018.

  1. Coltsfan3

    Coltsfan3 The King of Potatoes

    THERE IS A TL/DR AT THE BOTTOM
    Hi guys, I have not been very super active in pox recently, but I have played this game on and off for a good 8 years and I would like to share some thoughts.
    First, I do not think Pox is dead. The fact that sokolov has an entire update (and expansion? i'm not quite clear on that) is some proof of that. Pox also has some long time hardcore fans who would probably surge back at and new signs of life. Given that, I want to give my thoughts on why Pox has so much trouble bringing in new players, which literally all it needs to do to make a big comeback.

    The main thing keeping new players out of Pox is its incredibly steep learning curve and its punishment of new players. Imagine being a brand new player in today's game, it would be completely overwhelming. As such, measures should be taken to reduce Poxnora's learning curve to make it easier for new players. I realize that several of these ideas may be unpopular with many of Poxnora's long time players but if this game is going to make a comeback we need to cater to new players. I'll be separating this post into issues i see with the game and possible solutions.

    ISSUE: TOO MANY RUNES TO LEARN. Having a lot of content is good, too much to learn scares off new players.
    POSSIBLE SOLUTION: A possible way to address this could be a system like the one deployed in hearthstone. Have 2 separate game modes. In one (wild in HS), all cards from every expansion are available. In another, there is a cutoff at a certain expansion. This would massively cut down on the sheer volume of content a new player has to learn by allowing them to focus only on newer runes.

    ISSUE: TOO MANY ABILITIES: A new player will either spend their entire turn reading the abilities of both their champs and the enemies, or they'll forget about abilities and screw up. Regardless, new players will probably lose just about every game to experienced players for a LONG TIME. All new players start out sucking, but in Pox you spend way longer sucking than most games.
    POSSIBLE SOLUTION: The solution to the first problem will help with this issue as well. Additionally, cutting low-use/unused abilities and combining others like in the major update not too long ago would help as well.

    ISSUE: LEVELING RUNES AND AVATARS: I realize this might be a source of income right now from the old players, but it is just another hurdle for new players. One, it is another system to learn. Two, it ensures that their decks are worse. This once again means that new players will lose a lot of games early, increasing the odds they quit. Note: I am not saying to cut the customization of champions, though this is an additional complexity for new players.
    POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS: I would cut it completely. It seems needless to me, and it punishes new players for simply being new players. AT MINIMUM cut down the cost of tokens significantly.
    Cut avatar purchases completely: Give players all the avatars. If this option is done I would actually keep avatar leveling because it is fun to watch your avatar level up as you play a faction and it gains all the cool armor.

    GENERAL SOLUTION: REWARD NEW PLAYERS: I'm not sure how many decks you get from the tutorial or how much dust new players start with, but give them more of both. Give them a nice, solid foundation with at least a couple deck options. Get them into the game. Don't give too much, so they still have incentive to buy some credits, but we need to reward these players

    GENERAL SOLUTION: NEW PLAYER LOBBY: Pretty simple, a lobby for newbies only. New players need more opportunities to win games. If they always lose, they will quit. Getting some wins will keep them around. Older players might make new accounts and go slaughter them, sure, but they're being slaughtered in all their games right now anyway.

    GENERAL SOLUTIONS: Have an entire section of the website dedicated to new players. Advertise the discord so new players see the involved community and ask questions. Post some deck building tutorials and potentially some more game play tutorials (can be just videos)

    GENERAL SOLUTION: REFERRAL CODES- this is self explanatory. Reward old players for referring new ones. System would need to have checks for old players making new accounts as is the case in all games with referral codes.

    GENERAL SOLUTION: Game types. Get tournaments up and running. I looooooooved the old tournaments where you drafted cards. That was by far my favorite times playing this game. Maybe even have new player draft tournaments.

    GENERAL SOLUTION: Focus on the client, not the cards or new content: Dont worry about bugs with specific runes right now. Focus on smoothing out the client. Don't worry about putting out new content, there is tons for new players to learn already. Instead of new content, focus on implementing ideas to get more new players.

    I love this game and would hate to see it die. I really appreciate it if you read this far. I hope you will add your own ideas and discuss below.
    DEVS: PLEASE READ THIS and tell me what you think.

    TL/DR
    ISSUES: New players are punished for being new players. Too many runes and abilities to learn. Too many game mechanics that punish new players.
    Solutions: Reward new players to keep them in the game. Have a game mode with only newer runes. Cut down and combine abilities again. Remove leveling up champions and avatars or give all players avatars to start the game. Remove aspects of the game that punish new players.
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2018
    chickenpox2, guokamoli54 and Varthas like this.
  2. Coltsfan3

    Coltsfan3 The King of Potatoes

    Please note that these ideas for changes are coming from an old player. I already have all the avatars, lots of leveled runes, and have played and enjoyed the complexities of this game for a long time. So I don't necessarily stand to benefit from these changes. I just want the game to be successful so we can keep playing
     
    chickenpox2, guokamoli54 and Varthas like this.
  3. Baskitkase

    Baskitkase Forum Royalty

    Population
     
  4. Morfeas

    Morfeas I need me some PIE!

    The client.
    As far as I am concerned the new client is responsible for killing pox.
    And for us to concern ourselves with what is keeping it back it has to first not be dead.
     
    Tweek516, potatonuts, poinl and 3 others like this.
  5. PoxBot

    PoxBot Well-Known Member

    The most important thing in gaming right now is social media interactions and fan driven media. User-created content boosts game sales because it gets people emotionally invested or transmits the finer intricacies of games by veterans to the casual spectators who are not willing to put dozens or hundreds of hours to discover the details. This usually comes in the form of one big Youtuber giving a game exposure and his or her like-minded audience giving it a go. There's a lot of reasons why Pox doesn't support this, starting with the fact that the majority of the players didn't grow up in this new internet environment or how devs haven't tried much outside of streaming which can only be found by the small Pox pond.

    The marketing strategy DOG seemed to bet on was going to conventions and promote the game with stands, demos and word of mouth but it seems it didn't pay off really well. There were also efforts made on FB and Reddit but I think those were pointless because those mainly serve games to keep already invested players hooked whereas the strategy should have been focused on growth and integration. I told Gedden in person about Sepulcher's growing channel waaaay back at PAX and how he used to create Pox content but I don't think that ever lead to anything, be it Sepulcher's disposition or a lack of communication between both parties. Either way, all efforts made seemed futile unless some big name content creator picked up Pox and gave it exposure, any other attempt at Twitch or YT content would be fruitless.

    A big hurdle with the YT/Twitch route is that it basically requires charity work and understanding of the game. Someone like Sepulcher might understand Pox, but gaming channels are an extremely competitive entertainment sector and the time spent covering Pox would yield minimal views compared to Fortnite, League, Overwatch, Minecraft, new releases or whatever the Firk kids play nowadays. You'd be creating content knowing you're spending hours playing, recording, editing and staying up to date on a game with longer than average iteration match times. Meanwhile, BigE****McGee put like 20 mins into a Call of Team watch global offensive 2 with his reactions with a facecam and got millions of views off of that which he can repeat. The logical decision for anyone is to cover some game niche and try to gain ground within it so that they can hit the revenue breakpoints so that they can eventually pay off writers and editing guys as to add pizzaz to their gig and keep expanding.

    Anyhow, this is the thing that would make the most sense for DOG to shoot for at this moment where they have such limited personnel and resources. Well, that and boob ads but they don't seem to want to go that route for some reason that I bet doesn't make any rational, intelligent semblance of sense.
     
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  6. OriginalG1

    OriginalG1 I need me some PIE!

    Pox nora's ability complexity is what keeps poxnora alive when the game become stagnate. Players get to dig deep, and create strong combinations that the meta meatheads miss. D.O.G. literately needs a patch to address the ability and spell visuals and then a patch to allow the combat log to become interactive again for faster referencing. Then pox nore would be fine enough to get nit picky about stuff.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2018
    Kiruzen likes this.
  7. badgerale

    badgerale Warchief of Wrath

    Sure, pox's problems could be fixed with time and money, but really, after the millionth rework, I would much rather work started on a sequel to pox.

    It doesn't have to be 3D amazing craziness, but it should be a fundermentally good game with improved graphics.

    I would also like it if DoG was in a financial position that they didn't need to rush it and botch the release as usual.

    I guess this will take a lot of time though, and if they can also find time to keep the servers running here and put out an expansion a couple of times a year I will be happy.
     
    zenadel likes this.
  8. poinl

    poinl I need me some PIE!

    Tbh i think that's around the time I dropped off. The whole experience was annoying instead of the usual smooth and responsive.
     
  9. calisk

    calisk I need me some PIE!

    would you play a sequel though?

    I mean I likely wouldn't, maybe if it looked amazing or seemed to be of better design I might dabble in it, but to be quite frank any game devs that do what they are doing to this one right now, I would skip.

    no matter the game the devs behind it will be the same, so they would likely sell it to SOE in a month after release, then have us sit on our ass for a year waiting for news, then SOE would drive a spike in it's head and we'd all be right where we are again now.

    They still wouldn't advertise the thing and they would still be under staffed, so how would pox 2 be any better?

    you can look at plox neon to see how pox 2 would be, second level of the game it stopped working on my mobile device, no chance of it being fixed, the issue is not pox, it's the devs behind pox.
     
  10. Vote Kanye 2020

    Vote Kanye 2020 Better-Known Member

    Issue: no new content or patches that have changed the game since I stopped playing.
     
  11. Halius

    Halius The King of Potatoes

    I would still be playing the heck out of this game every week and blowing cash on it, except I'm a campaign player, and I can't play the game for literally the most simple problem: you can't save your game progress.

    I'm no longer a kid; I can't just sit there in front of your video game for several hours straight, DOG.

    Years ago, I started bringing this up on the forum every so often. SOE completely ignored me. DOG actually responded with ideas for how they could implement either a save system or a workaround (which I found acceptable), but then went totally silent after the new client was released, and never responded to me again LOL.

    Conclusion: DOG hates money?
     
    poinl and Thbigchief like this.
  12. Halius

    Halius The King of Potatoes

    Just logged in to see if DOG ever replied to this.

    AND GUESS WHAT? THEY DIDN'T. LOL I'M "SO SURPRISED"! :D

    Sorry, do I sound negative? I know how DOG could turn that frown upside down! (Scroll up one post. ;))
     
  13. Baalzamon

    Baalzamon I need me some PIE!

    I hate money also.
     
  14. chickenpox2

    chickenpox2 I need me some PIE!

    What we need is a necromancer because pox is already dead
     
  15. vipoid

    vipoid I need me some PIE!

    I know I'm probably beating a dead horse at this point, but I thought I'd add my 2 cents:

    - Both the game client and Poxnora website are awful. I start the game and immediately it loads the updater. Okay. Then I click 'Play' and it loads again. Now I log in and it loads again. I click 'Solo Play' and it loads yet again. And I haven't even started an actual game yet (that's at least one more loading screen away). I refuse to believe that we need this many loading screens.

    The website has a similar issue. Clicking on any card has an irritating loading delay. And if I want to change the abilities on 2+ of the same card, I can't just switch between them but have to load into one, then load out of it, then load into the next one, then load out of that etc.. And the Forge system is even more irritating. I don't want to have to click about 3 times and suffer through constant loading just to get rid of the 5 surplus runes of a common card. We really are in dire need of Hearthstone's 'dust excess cards' button.

    Anyway, the interface really need to be smoother.

    - With the loss of Poxbase, there is no longer any tool for searching through the different runes. Yes, I can look through them one by one, but that would be a terrible idea even if it didn't mean suffering through a bazillion loading screens. What we need is a way to look for keywords - Life Siphon, Counterattack etc..

    - The levelling system is completely redundant and needs to die. Being able to switch out abilities on cards is a nice idea. Having to either pay extra or use the card about 100 times before you're allowed to do so is a terrible idea and incredibly off-putting to new players.

    - Runes that can't be forged. If Hearthstone releases a new edition, I can make the new cards in it - including all the Legendaries and such - right from day 1. I can also still forge cards from the earliest editions. So why does Poxnora feel the need to have so many cards that no one is ever allowed to craft? Now, I can fully get behind having versions of cards with purely aesthetic differences that have to be paid for. For example, being able to craft Serkan normally, but also having a version of him with a top hat that has to be paid for with real money (not nora shards). That's fine. The problem is that many of the un-forgable cards don't have any equivalents that can be forged. This is the sort of thing that really turns people off the game. I mean, it's not like MTG where the cards have to be physically printed - we're talking about completely digital cards here. Why do their numbers have to be strictly controlled in this manner?

    - Same goes for only allowing booster packs for the newer expansions to be bought with real money (rather than the in-game currency). This is far more likely to turn new players off the game than to encourage them to spend real money on it.

    - The campaigns are terrible. Halius mentioned above that you can't save your progress, but I don't think that's the issue. The real issue is that the campaigns take so long that saving your progress becomes an actual issue. Far too many of them have no way of challenging you beyond throwing an absurd amount of crap at you on the largest maps possible. They generally stop being challenging once your deck gets up and running and instead devolve into pure tedium as you're forced to slog through endless enemies, often with requirements that you go even further out of your way before you're allowed to win. Basically, the campaigns just feel far too padded. And that's even before we compare them to the campaigns of other, comparable games - which are almost always split into more bite-size chunks, rather than long, drawn-out battles.
     

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