Dominion Strategy Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Pages: 1 2 [All]

Author Topic: Making Dominion Online better for new players  (Read 3177 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

JW

  • Minion
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 686
  • Shuffle iT Username: JW
  • Respect: +1211
    • View Profile
Making Dominion Online better for new players
« on: September 20, 2017, 11:10:42 am »
+20

Dominion Online can be difficult for beginners. Below are several suggestions to help address this, with links to ShuffleIT’s forums where I’ve posted about items there. Thoughts, comments, and further suggestions appreciated.

Items implemented since this post first mentioned them:
Create an official FAQ and guidelines about how to use the client, building on Chris’s excellent (but now outdated) unofficial FAQ. Edit: werothegreat has posted an official FAQ

Create a “new to Dominion” page in the game client that links to one or more video tutorials about how to play Dominion, to the Dominion wiki so that players can look up FAQs for cards that they are unfamiliar with, and perhaps links to the Dominion Strategy blog’s “New to Dominion” page as well. Edit: werothegreat has posted an official Welcome to Dominion online post.

Remind players of duration attacks, and show -Card and -Coin tokens.

Add a see Kingdom feature, including Kingcard cards (including ones not on top of split piles) / events/ landmarks / boons / hexes / states / non-Kingdom cards. This is particularly important for newer players. Implemented as originally developed by IceHawk78 in his "King's Courtier" Chrome plugin.

Easy to implement ways:
Rename “practice” games to “unrated” games. The term "practice game" seems problematic, because it may imply that the games aren't expected to be taken seriously, which reduces player interest in these unrated games. I believe that the term "unrated game" is both more accurate and avoids this negative connotation.  And unrated games help new players to learn new cards at their desired pace, and may provide some people with a less stressful experience.

Create an option to avoid opponents subscribed to more cards. This lets new players avoid running into kingdoms in which almost every card is unfamiliar to them, and there are many new mechanics.

A “Copper” subscription that adds only Intrigue and Seaside. The current smallest subscription option, “Silver,” adds Intrigue, Seaside, Prosperity, Cornucopia, Hinterlands and Guilds, which may be too much for a new player to learn at once. I eventually bought all sets on the previous online implementation but did so gradually because I was new to the game and that made it easier to learn.

Allow a player to "deactivate" the sets that they have subscribed to, so that they can, for example, still play rated games as if they only had the base set, but can mix in other sets when they want to.  By far the fastest way to find a game is to use the automatch feature to find rated games. Burning Skull had to create a separate account ("Drowning Skull") for his great "How to Base Dominion" video series because it is much harder to get a game with only the base dominion set if you are a subscriber.

Update the wording of Black Market to match the current implementation (probably not as important for new players because they're less likely to see it, but this is a simple change that will reduce confusion).

Harder to implement ways:
There should be a well-formatted log available after Dominion Online games to anyone with the hyperlink, regardless of subscription (like the old log prettifier). Having available game logs would make it easier for new players to analyze games, and to get feedback on their games.  There should be a search feature that allows game logs to be looked up later, like the old Goko Salvager website (the closest thing right now is that the website Dominion Scavenger lets you look up game IDs for recent rated games, which you can then load with the "load old games" Dominion Online feature if you subscribe to all of the cards used in that game).

Improve the visual interface of the game, so that less reliance on the game log is required and things are easier to follow for beginners. Show animations when Advisor reveals three coppers ("game does mandatory actions for me" should also be an option that needs to be enabled), etc.

Add an in-client tutorial about how to play Dominion

Improve the play of the bots. Once that is done, add offline play, preferably also available on tablets. Campaigns (potentially available both online and offline) designed to teach new sets one at a time may also be useful.

Note: This post was inspired by Polk’s excellent post that lays out the case for pessimism about Dominion’s future, in large part that full random Dominion has become more complicated over time and so it’s harder to add new players.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2018, 10:56:13 pm by JW »
Logged

werothegreat

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 7981
  • Shuffle iT Username: werothegreat
  • Prepare to be boarded!
  • Respect: +9188
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2017, 11:40:34 am »
+1

Create an official FAQ about how to use the client, building on Chris’s excellent (but now outdated) unofficial FAQ.

Create a “new to Dominion” page in the game client that links to one or more tutorials about how to play Dominion. This page should also link to the Dominion wiki so that players can look up FAQ for cards that they are unfamiliar with. Perhaps link to the Dominion Strategy blog’s “New to Dominion” page as well?

This is being worked on!  In fact, I've written it.  It just comes down to when it can be translated and implemented.  I'm guessing right now Nocturne has priority.
Logged
Contrary to popular belief, I do not run the wiki all on my own.  There are plenty of other people who are actively editing.  Go bother them!

Check out this fantasy epic adventure novel I wrote, the Broken Globe!  http://www.amazon.com/Broken-Globe-Tyr-Chronicles-Book-ebook/dp/B00LR1SZAS/

filovirus

  • Coppersmith
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 45
  • Respect: +33
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2017, 06:10:41 pm »
0

Found a glitch. I can't change the "you're allowing (number) familiar cards". I select Intrigue only, yet it always defaults to 36 familiar cards, therefore incorporating base set cards as well. Same happens with each expansion by itself. Always defaults to 36, except for the base set alone.

It's a little frustrating as I would like to play random games incorporating only one set.
Logged

Awaclus

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10592
  • Shuffle iT Username: Awaclus
  • (´。• ω •。`)
  • Respect: +11014
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2017, 06:15:41 pm »
+1

It's a little frustrating as I would like to play random games incorporating only one set.

If you create a table and choose the kingdom cards, there are checkboxes next to each expansion. That allows you to create random kingdoms from only the expansions you have selected.
Logged
Bomb, Cannon, and many of the Gunpowder cards can strongly effect gameplay, particularly in a destructive way

The Twitch channel where I stream DominionThe YouTube channel where I make musicDownload my band's albums for free

markusin

  • Cartographer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3596
  • Shuffle iT Username: markusin
  • I also switched from Starcraft
  • Respect: +2170
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2017, 06:17:38 pm »
0

It's a little frustrating as I would like to play random games incorporating only one set.

If you create a table and choose the kingdom cards, there are checkboxes next to each expansion. That allows you to create random kingdoms from only the expansions you have selected.

Has anyone had the problem on not being able to click the checkboxes of Adventures and Empires because the interface to select Colonies/Shelters/etc. is in the way?
Logged

Awaclus

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10592
  • Shuffle iT Username: Awaclus
  • (´。• ω •。`)
  • Respect: +11014
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2017, 06:22:55 pm »
0

It's a little frustrating as I would like to play random games incorporating only one set.

If you create a table and choose the kingdom cards, there are checkboxes next to each expansion. That allows you to create random kingdoms from only the expansions you have selected.

Has anyone had the problem on not being able to click the checkboxes of Adventures and Empires because the interface to select Colonies/Shelters/etc. is in the way?

I can cause the problem by having the browser in windowed mode and reducing its size, but I don't have it when the window is large enough (I have a full-HD display).
Logged
Bomb, Cannon, and many of the Gunpowder cards can strongly effect gameplay, particularly in a destructive way

The Twitch channel where I stream DominionThe YouTube channel where I make musicDownload my band's albums for free

filovirus

  • Coppersmith
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 45
  • Respect: +33
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #6 on: September 20, 2017, 06:24:48 pm »
0

It's a little frustrating as I would like to play random games incorporating only one set.

If you create a table and choose the kingdom cards, there are checkboxes next to each expansion. That allows you to create random kingdoms from only the expansions you have selected.

This is exactly what I was looking for. I was trying to go the "familiar cards" tab and it just wasn't working out. Thanks!!!
Logged

markusin

  • Cartographer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3596
  • Shuffle iT Username: markusin
  • I also switched from Starcraft
  • Respect: +2170
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #7 on: September 20, 2017, 06:31:31 pm »
0

It's a little frustrating as I would like to play random games incorporating only one set.

If you create a table and choose the kingdom cards, there are checkboxes next to each expansion. That allows you to create random kingdoms from only the expansions you have selected.

Has anyone had the problem on not being able to click the checkboxes of Adventures and Empires because the interface to select Colonies/Shelters/etc. is in the way?

I can cause the problem by having the browser in windowed mode and reducing its size, but I don't have it when the window is large enough (I have a full-HD display).

I have my window at max width/height pretty much. Dang, either my resolution settings or my monitor needs some adjustment then. I'll try shrinking the window later too.
Logged

FemurLemur

  • Moneylender
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 152
  • Shuffle iT Username: FemurLemur
  • Respect: +185
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2017, 08:56:37 am »
+1

Easy to implement ways:
A “Copper” subscription that adds only Intrigue and Seaside. The current smallest subscription option, “Silver,” adds Intrigue, Seaside, Prosperity, Cornucopia, Hinterlands and Guilds, which may be too much for a new player to learn at once.

I would argue that adding Prosperity to a theoretical Copper subscription would be a good idea. Among all of the "casual" players I know, Prosperity and Seaside are always tied for the favorite expansion. This does have the downside of having 3 new sets to learn instead of 2 though. But maybe if Seaside and Prosperity are loved that much more than Intrigue, then new players will be more willing to put up with learning new cards?

I don't know. Would it be too much of a sin to have a Copper subscription that is just Seaside and Prosperity? I mean, I feel dirty even suggesting skipping Intrigue- the most basic expansion- but if we're already skipping Alchemy, maybe it's not unreasonable to say that the cheapest subscription tier should be composed of the two expansions that new players tend to like the most.

Of course, this is all based on the assumption that the sample size of new players I've spoken with is representative of the majority (which very well may not be true). Maybe Donald X would have a better feel for this?
Logged

FemurLemur

  • Moneylender
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 152
  • Shuffle iT Username: FemurLemur
  • Respect: +185
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2017, 10:18:36 am »
+1

One could file this idea under "Not even fully fleshed out" rather than Hard or Easy to implement.

When it comes to players taking a long time, I like to give a lot more leniency on turn 1. I've played against some newer players who have had to take a really long time to:

A) Read the 10 Kingdom cards and Events/Landmarks to learn how they work
B) Understand what the card is actually doing
C) Figure out what feels like a good plan to them

Some people are just slow readers. As long as they are picking up the pace in future turns, I don't think it's a problem. I wouldn't want them to feel like they can't get into Dominion because other players don't give them a chance to learn the game.

But the problem is, how do you give them more leniency? There are obvious downsides to just increasing the amount of time allowed for Turn 1 (maybe I'm willing to wait around on Turn 1, but some players are going to find that agonizing enough that they would rather just resign). My initial thought was there could theoretically be a system in place that tells players what their Kingdom cards are going to be before they even queue up for a match. To avoid gaming the system, the random seed that determines their cards would have to be determined immediately after every match they play, and stored in the server. Otherwise players could just keep logging in and out of their account until they get a Kingdom they like.

The immediate flaw is, how are you going to reconcile the fact that two players are going to have two different random seeds? Hypothetically, one player may be told that they're going to see cards A through J in the next game, and another will be told they'll see cards K through T. So then the matchmaking system can't pair them together, right? What makes this completely game breaking is, there are so many possible Dominion Kingdoms, odds are that no two players would ever have the same random seed at the same time. What you can do is this: Have the matchmaking system only show 5 cards to each player beforehand (for 2 player games), then when the matchmaking system picks its two players, it takes the 5 cards from Player 1 and the 5 from Player 2 and combines them to make 1 Kingdom. This way, each player only gets to read 5 cards instead of 10, but the matchmaker doesn't have to fulfill any extra criteria than it already does when finding someone to play with.

Sidenote: If one of their preview cards were something like Urchin or a Traveller, the system would also show them the matching non-supply card(s). You probably wouldn't have it show them the bane card for Young Witch though.

I have thought out a method that would work irrespective of how many players there will be in the game, which doesn't break when there are duplicates in the players' previews (Such as, if Player A sees [Rats, Market, Mine, Magpie, Fishing Village] and Player B sees [Chapel, Ill Gotten Gains, Highway, Jester, and Rats], when the matchmaker tries to combine those two lists with a naïve approach, the Kingdom only has 9 cards since Rats was in both lists), and which could work by generating only 1 random seed per player. If anyone's curious I'll share, but otherwise I thought I'd stop there to keep the reply from getting way too long.

-------------------------------------------------------

So, possible problems with this idea:

  • It might not be worth the time to implement into code. No arguments from me here. I'm not at all qualified to speculate on how easy it is to integrate something like that into the current implementation of the online game
  • Players could find it confusing that they're only being shown 5 Kingdom cards, "but aren't there supposed to be 10?". I'd resolve this by having it show 10 card shapes, but 5 of them are just black silhouettes with question marks on them and the other 5 are actual cards. This way they pick up on the fact that they only get a sneak peak at half of the upcoming cards.
  • There could be unintended side effects in how this incentivizes player behavior. Maybe I was gonna play one more game, but I see that 5 of my upcoming cards really suck. Nah, on second thought I've got some other things to do irl. Then, because you can't avoid the seed by logging out and logging back in, you're aware of the fact that that sucky kingdom is waiting for you when you return. So every time I think "I'm gonna play some Dominion tonight", I remember "Oh wait, I'd have to start with that really crappy kingdom first.... Nah, forget it". With the current implementation, since players don't see a sucky kingdom until it happens, I feel like they take a much more "That's just the hand you're dealt" approach than if they were to be informed about the kingdom ahead of time. The only solution I can think to this is to give players a new random seed if it has been over 24 hours since their last game.

Anyway, this is all just an early rough attempt at spitballing something that could give players some more leniency on time without driving their opponents crazy. It very much may be killing a housefly with a hand grenade. But I think it's an interesting thought at least
Logged

JW

  • Minion
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 686
  • Shuffle iT Username: JW
  • Respect: +1211
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2017, 02:32:26 pm »
+3

I would argue that adding Prosperity to a theoretical Copper subscription would be a good idea. Among all of the "casual" players I know, Prosperity and Seaside are always tied for the favorite expansion. This does have the downside of having 3 new sets to learn instead of 2 though. But maybe if Seaside and Prosperity are loved that much more than Intrigue, then new players will be more willing to put up with learning new cards?

Unfortunately, Stef, the developer, says that there won't be a cheaper subscription option than the current Silver package. So unless that changes, the question of which sets a hypothetical Copper subscription should include is moot.

8. There won't be any cheaper subscription models. That's just an economical argument - Silver and Gold are already so cheap that almost nobody will reject it because of the amount. If people don't subscribe it's because they just don't want to pay for various reasons. And people playing with less cards aren't actually cheaper to support for me then people playing with all cards (assuming those cards get implemented anyway).


Logged

SCSN

  • Board Moderator
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2226
  • Respect: +7117
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #11 on: September 21, 2017, 03:27:24 pm »
+6

There just isn't a market for more fine-grained levels. Even on Goko/MF, where people could purchase as little as half of a medium-sized expansion, almost everyone owned either nothing or everything.
Logged

JW

  • Minion
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 686
  • Shuffle iT Username: JW
  • Respect: +1211
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #12 on: September 21, 2017, 03:44:49 pm »
0

There just isn't a market for more fine-grained levels. Even on Goko/MF, where people could purchase as little as half of a medium-sized expansion, almost everyone owned either nothing or everything.

I guess you have seen data on that! For the last several (6?) months that they had the license, Goko/MF started offering subscriptions through the end of 2016 rather than (very misleading) set "purchases." So I wonder if you saw so few people who owned something in between because relative beginners would have subscriptions instead of sets "purchased", and therefore shown up as owning nothing in your data.
Logged

SCSN

  • Board Moderator
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2226
  • Respect: +7117
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #13 on: September 21, 2017, 04:29:45 pm »
+4

There was no data about MF subscriptions because those weren't eligible for a 1-year subscription.
Logged

Donald X.

  • Board Moderator
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4810
  • Respect: +19601
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #14 on: September 21, 2017, 07:25:00 pm »
+4

There just isn't a market for more fine-grained levels. Even on Goko/MF, where people could purchase as little as half of a medium-sized expansion, almost everyone owned either nothing or everything.

I guess you have seen data on that! For the last several (6?) months that they had the license, Goko/MF started offering subscriptions through the end of 2016 rather than (very misleading) set "purchases." So I wonder if you saw so few people who owned something in between because relative beginners would have subscriptions instead of sets "purchased", and therefore shown up as owning nothing in your data.
No, MF told us before then that almost everyone owned nothing or everything.
Logged

Puk

  • Coppersmith
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 46
  • Shuffle iT Username: Puk
  • Respect: +94
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2017, 10:07:07 pm »
+3

I just want to say i really appreciate it you all thinking of how to help new players.

In june i bought a gold subscription for a month, and didn't learn that much because it was way to much new cards. I tried sometimes practicing on only one of two expansions but because i didn't have the patience for waiting for an opponent at a table, so i mostly played bot games and didn't learn very much. Now i bought a silver subscription for a month and have the feeling i improve a lot more.


8. There won't be any cheaper subscription models. That's just an economical argument - Silver and Gold are already so cheap that almost nobody will reject it because of the amount. If people don't subscribe it's because they just don't want to pay for various reasons. And people playing with less cards aren't actually cheaper to support for me then people playing with all cards (assuming those cards get implemented anyway).


I personally would like a subscription model where i could choose the expansions, so for example silver subscription = you choose 4 expansions (price would of course be different depending on the expansions). That way it would be easier for new players to focus on some expansions and learn the game gradually. So, for me it's actually not an economical argument to not go for the gold subscription, it's a practical "getting-to-know-the-game"-argument. In the long term i probably would buy more full gold subscription if i first could subscribe to not all expansions at one time.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2017, 10:19:52 pm by Puk »
Logged

werothegreat

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 7981
  • Shuffle iT Username: werothegreat
  • Prepare to be boarded!
  • Respect: +9188
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2017, 01:01:17 am »
+1

I just want to say i really appreciate it you all thinking of how to help new players.

In june i bought a gold subscription for a month, and didn't learn that much because it was way to much new cards. I tried sometimes practicing on only one of two expansions but because i didn't have the patience for waiting for an opponent at a table, so i mostly played bot games and didn't learn very much. Now i bought a silver subscription for a month and have the feeling i improve a lot more.


8. There won't be any cheaper subscription models. That's just an economical argument - Silver and Gold are already so cheap that almost nobody will reject it because of the amount. If people don't subscribe it's because they just don't want to pay for various reasons. And people playing with less cards aren't actually cheaper to support for me then people playing with all cards (assuming those cards get implemented anyway).


I personally would like a subscription model where i could choose the expansions, so for example silver subscription = you choose 4 expansions (price would of course be different depending on the expansions). That way it would be easier for new players to focus on some expansions and learn the game gradually. So, for me it's actually not an economical argument to not go for the gold subscription, it's a practical "getting-to-know-the-game"-argument. In the long term i probably would buy more full gold subscription if i first could subscribe to not all expansions at one time.

In the future there will be Campaigns, each focusing on a single expansion, which should help with that a bit.
Logged
Contrary to popular belief, I do not run the wiki all on my own.  There are plenty of other people who are actively editing.  Go bother them!

Check out this fantasy epic adventure novel I wrote, the Broken Globe!  http://www.amazon.com/Broken-Globe-Tyr-Chronicles-Book-ebook/dp/B00LR1SZAS/

JW

  • Minion
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 686
  • Shuffle iT Username: JW
  • Respect: +1211
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2017, 10:53:53 am »
+1

No, MF told us before then that almost everyone owned nothing or everything.

Even if in any given snapshot, almost everyone who owned some sets owned all sets, some people who eventually owned everything may have purchased the sets incrementally, and found that option to be useful.   Multiple new players have recently stated that they'd prefer options to be exposed more gradually to new sets, and a Copper subscription would be one way to help them out.

I just want to say i really appreciate it you all thinking of how to help new players.

In june i bought a gold subscription for a month, and didn't learn that much because it was way to much new cards. I tried sometimes practicing on only one of two expansions but because i didn't have the patience for waiting for an opponent at a table, so i mostly played bot games and didn't learn very much. Now i bought a silver subscription for a month and have the feeling i improve a lot more.

What I would love is the ability to turn off and on certain expansions that I've bought via my Silver subscription. I think that would enhance learning and allow for the steep jump from Base to the many expansions Silver encompasses. I get that that's not possible now, and I'll continue with my work-arounds and learning, but it might be something to consider for the future.

In the future there will be Campaigns, each focusing on a single expansion, which should help with that a bit.

Campaigns will help more if the bots play better. People can create a table now and get games against bots with random combinations of cards from the base set and their choice of expansion. Hopefully your FAQ will help more people realize that's an option, but these games are of limited use because it's so easy to beat the bots on most kingdoms, particularly with later expansions. So I hope better bots will be a priority first.
Logged

FemurLemur

  • Moneylender
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 152
  • Shuffle iT Username: FemurLemur
  • Respect: +185
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2017, 03:02:36 pm »
0

Campaigns will help more if the bots play better. People can create a table now and get games against bots with random combinations of cards from the base set and their choice of expansion. Hopefully your FAQ will help more people realize that's an option, but these games are of limited use because it's so easy to beat the bots on most kingdoms, particularly with later expansions. So I hope better bots will be a priority first.

I think campaigns will be easier to implement than making bots more competent and will help new players get familiarized with expansions quicker. Whether or not the bots are too easy won't change how familiar a new player gets with the new cards.
Logged

Deadlock39

  • Torturer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1722
  • Respect: +1736
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2017, 04:37:38 pm »
+6

Someone on reddit recently posted that the bot was unbeatable unless you mirrored it, so its ability probably isn't a major issue for brand new players. It is competent enough to beat them.

JW

  • Minion
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 686
  • Shuffle iT Username: JW
  • Respect: +1211
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #20 on: September 23, 2017, 04:43:47 pm »
+1

Someone on reddit recently posted that the bot was unbeatable unless you mirrored it, so its ability probably isn't a major issue for brand new players. It is competent enough to beat them.

Maybe the bots do okay in base only games against complete beginners (as long as they don't trash their whole deck with chapel). However, the bots play the expansions worse than the Base Set and by the time someone is looking to branch out of Base they have probably learned enough that the bots are easy, especially taking into account the cards in other expansions. For example, I believe that the bots don't know that Witch + money is much better than Smithy + money.
Logged

FemurLemur

  • Moneylender
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 152
  • Shuffle iT Username: FemurLemur
  • Respect: +185
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #21 on: September 23, 2017, 04:53:34 pm »
0

For example, I believe that the bots don't know that Witch + money is much better than Smithy + money.

I wouldn't really expect them to know that though. Programming AI with hard rules like that becomes a hot mess.
Logged

Donald X.

  • Board Moderator
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4810
  • Respect: +19601
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #22 on: September 23, 2017, 06:22:51 pm »
+5

Even if in any given snapshot, almost everyone who owned some sets owned all sets, some people who eventually owned everything may have purchased the sets incrementally, and found that option to be useful.   
It's possible, in the sense that it has a nonzero probability. It's not possible, in the sense that that isn't what happened, and it makes no sense to think it did; it's a thing to cling to when you don't want to give up on a poor theory.
Logged

JW

  • Minion
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 686
  • Shuffle iT Username: JW
  • Respect: +1211
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #23 on: September 24, 2017, 01:49:38 pm »
+2

I've updated the original post to indicate that werothegreat has posted an official FAQ and an official Welcome to Dominion Online post. Thanks, werothegreat, for all of your hard work on this!  Hopefully Stef updates the client to link to these posts soon.
Logged

allanfieldhouse

  • Moneylender
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 172
  • Respect: +255
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #24 on: September 26, 2017, 11:22:21 am »
+4

Even if in any given snapshot, almost everyone who owned some sets owned all sets, some people who eventually owned everything may have purchased the sets incrementally, and found that option to be useful.

This is exactly how I bought the sets on Goku. I bought them (in release order) every month or so and played the campaigns for that set until I learned all the new cards. Eventually I owned everything, but I definitely enjoyed adding new sets incrementally.

If you think about it, this is how long-time Dominion players have experienced new cards/sets too (just on a different timescale).
Logged

FemurLemur

  • Moneylender
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 152
  • Shuffle iT Username: FemurLemur
  • Respect: +185
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #25 on: September 26, 2017, 11:40:56 am »
0

This is exactly how I bought the sets on Goku. I bought them (in release order) every month or so and played the campaigns for that set until I learned all the new cards. Eventually I owned everything, but I definitely enjoyed adding new sets incrementally.

If you think about it, this is how long-time Dominion players have experienced new cards/sets too (just on a different timescale).
And this is often how people who play offline learn the sets as well. When a beginners asks me what Dominion set they should buy, I tell them the 2e Base Set. When they've played that for a little bit and ask what set they should buy next, I say "2e Intrigue" (and Seaside if they want a third set), not "2e Intrigue, Seaside, Prosperity, Hinterlands, Cornucopia, and Guilds - and mix all of those cards in all at once."

I guess the problem is that, even if it turns out that the assumption being made about people not wanting to buy a Copper Subscription is wrong, Stef's point about the cost of supporting a player not scaling is still valid. A player who buys one expansion is going to cost the same resources as one buying all of them.
Logged

Beyond Awesome

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2906
  • Shuffle iT Username: Beyond Awesome
  • Respect: +2404
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #26 on: September 26, 2017, 11:58:38 am »
+1

There's also a resource cost for the players who play Base only. And they aren't charged anything.
Logged

Awaclus

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10592
  • Shuffle iT Username: Awaclus
  • (´。• ω •。`)
  • Respect: +11014
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #27 on: September 26, 2017, 12:13:28 pm »
+1

This is exactly how I bought the sets on Goku. I bought them (in release order) every month or so and played the campaigns for that set until I learned all the new cards. Eventually I owned everything, but I definitely enjoyed adding new sets incrementally.

I started buying them in reverse release order so that I would learn the new cards faster. Then after I had gotten Dark Ages, there was the Humble Bundle deal, which I got, and then I never bought anything else until I upgraded into Gold subscription on ShiT.

Thanks for reading my blog.
Logged
Bomb, Cannon, and many of the Gunpowder cards can strongly effect gameplay, particularly in a destructive way

The Twitch channel where I stream DominionThe YouTube channel where I make musicDownload my band's albums for free

FemurLemur

  • Moneylender
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 152
  • Shuffle iT Username: FemurLemur
  • Respect: +185
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #28 on: September 26, 2017, 03:33:29 pm »
+5

There's also a resource cost for the players who play Base only. And they aren't charged anything.

Yes, but only because the "Free to Start" model works. People are far more likely to spend money on your product if they can try it out first. By offering Base Set for free, people get a small taste of what they're in for. The free sample has to keep them wanting more though, which is why you only get Base Set at the dev's expense. Once they've gotten a conversion from a trial to a sale, the product needs to be priced high enough that they can still make a profit. By asking them to take the extra risk that customers will get content after only 2 or 3 sets (I know plenty of people irl who stopped at this many physical sets), you're potentially asking them to neuter any opportunity they had to profit from this pricing model.

Essentially the argument is this: you can only pick 2 of the following 3 things to come true
  • New people give the game a chance
  • Customers get total control over their purchase options
  • Game is profitable enough for server load

Which one do you suggest they sacrifice in order to make the 2nd one come true?
Logged

JW

  • Minion
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 686
  • Shuffle iT Username: JW
  • Respect: +1211
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #29 on: September 26, 2017, 05:04:49 pm »
+2

Essentially the argument is this: you can only pick 2 of the following 3 things to come true
  • New people give the game a chance
  • Customers get total control over their purchase options
  • Game is profitable enough for server load

Which one do you suggest they sacrifice in order to make the 2nd one come true?

The argument is that the Copper subscription might be catastrophically successful and lots of people would be fine with only Base, Intrigue, and Seaside instead of Silver or (less plausibly) Gold subscriptions.  One way to avoid this is that if Copper subscriptions turn out to be too successful, the price can always be increased to closer to that of a Silver subscription.

I would say that the greatest risk to Dominion Online, and the greatest risk for anyone who loves full random Dominion and plays online, is that it never attracts substantially more people than it has now, and the player base steadily shrinks over time.  If the low price and simplicity of a Copper subscription induce a meaningful number of people to subscribe who otherwise would have chosen nothing, that’s a win for ShuffleIT and everyone who plays Dominion online. Those people may subscribe to Silver or Gold in the future, may buy the eventual Dominion Offline product, get their friends into Dominion Online, etc.

Furthermore, I doubt that Copper subscribers would actually be unprofitable in part because the pricing model suggests that server costs are low.  For example, the average Gold subscriber presumably plays more than 1.5 times as much as the average Silver subscriber (would love to see the actual data on this), but because server costs aren’t substantial the price is only 1.5 times as high.
Logged

dedicateddan

  • 2017 Dominion Online Champion
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 398
  • Shuffle iT Username: dan brooks
  • Respect: +1027
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #30 on: September 26, 2017, 06:26:58 pm »
+1

Thanks for putting together this analysis. A better new player experience is important for the health of the game.
Logged

Donald X.

  • Board Moderator
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4810
  • Respect: +19601
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #31 on: September 26, 2017, 06:41:14 pm »
+7

By offering Base Set for free, people get a small taste of what they're in for.
You can play with all sets for free, against someone who has them. So, it's a big taste for people who can tolerate human opponents, waiting to match up, and seeing lots of new cards for a while.
Logged

dedicateddan

  • 2017 Dominion Online Champion
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 398
  • Shuffle iT Username: dan brooks
  • Respect: +1027
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #32 on: September 27, 2017, 02:30:11 am »
0

... for people who can tolerate human opponents ...

Human opponent puny. ORC SMASH!
« Last Edit: September 27, 2017, 02:31:34 am by dedicateddan »
Logged

Titandrake

  • Mountebank
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2039
  • Respect: +2408
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #33 on: September 27, 2017, 04:05:23 am »
+2

Not sure making a Copper subscription tier is necessary if there are ways to disable expansions you already own.

I saw in the ShuffleIT thread that there were concerns that disabling expansions for rated games would slow down matchmaking, because there would be more possible constraints and finding a good pair would become more difficult. That's true but I'm not convinced it would slow down matchmaking by a lot. If there isn't a market for buying individual expansions, there probably aren't many people who would disable expansions in the first place, so you shouldn't have many matchmaking edge-cases to worry about.
Logged
I have a blog! It's called Sorta Insightful. Check it out?

ShuffleiTIsBetter

  • Pawn
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3
  • Respect: +8
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #34 on: September 29, 2017, 11:29:20 am »
+3

#ShuffleITIsBetter #MakingFunWasWorse
Logged

pst

  • Minion
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 530
  • Respect: +813
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #35 on: September 29, 2017, 01:46:33 pm »
+1

Campaigns will help more if the bots play better.

I want to have campaigns with bots that really know how to play the kingdom where they appear. It seems totally feasible to have bots tailor-made for the kingdoms. For beginners that will give a better idea of how to use the new cards introduced in that kingdom, and for better players it means that campaigns can be hard with ordinary rules.
« Last Edit: September 29, 2017, 04:11:23 pm by pst »
Logged

GendoIkari

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6825
  • Respect: +7668
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #36 on: September 29, 2017, 02:30:39 pm »
0

Wait, they shuffle the Black Market deck after every cycle? Why would they change the actual rules of the card? I know the setup part doesn't follow the "a copy of each card not in the game" because it's been long-established that Black Market setup rules are intended to actually be "however you want". But changing what happens to the 3 cards after you buy a card seems to just alter the way the card works; even removing a strategic element that exists with it.
Logged
Check out my F.DS extension for Chrome! Card links; Dominion icons, and maybe more! http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=13363.0

Thread for Firefox version:
http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=16305.0

Awaclus

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10592
  • Shuffle iT Username: Awaclus
  • (´。• ω •。`)
  • Respect: +11014
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #37 on: September 29, 2017, 02:43:51 pm »
+2

Wait, they shuffle the Black Market deck after every cycle? Why would they change the actual rules of the card? I know the setup part doesn't follow the "a copy of each card not in the game" because it's been long-established that Black Market setup rules are intended to actually be "however you want". But changing what happens to the 3 cards after you buy a card seems to just alter the way the card works; even removing a strategic element that exists with it.

That just removes a lot of the unnecessary analysis paralysis. Keeping track of (or Ctrl+F'ing) the exact order of 60 cards worth of Black Market deck just in case the entire deck gets cycled through wouldn't be a ton of fun (it wasn't a ton of fun on the 25-card deck either). The element of surprise also makes it more exciting; there are times when you would resign unless you get a kickass card from the BM deck, and if you know the kickass card is on the bottom of the deck, you just resign automatically.
Logged
Bomb, Cannon, and many of the Gunpowder cards can strongly effect gameplay, particularly in a destructive way

The Twitch channel where I stream DominionThe YouTube channel where I make musicDownload my band's albums for free

Donald X.

  • Board Moderator
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4810
  • Respect: +19601
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #38 on: September 29, 2017, 03:19:57 pm »
+5

Wait, they shuffle the Black Market deck after every cycle? Why would they change the actual rules of the card? I know the setup part doesn't follow the "a copy of each card not in the game" because it's been long-established that Black Market setup rules are intended to actually be "however you want". But changing what happens to the 3 cards after you buy a card seems to just alter the way the card works; even removing a strategic element that exists with it.
Stef asked me if he could shuffle the deck, so that people didn't care about the order or paying attention to it, and I said yes, and there you go.
Logged

GendoIkari

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6825
  • Respect: +7668
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #39 on: September 29, 2017, 03:31:42 pm »
+1

I can see the annoyance of deciding the order that you put them back in. But knowing when certain cards will come up after you've had a cycle is to me a good though minor part of the skill of using Black Market. Just in the last game I played IRL, I had to choose between playing Black Market and another Terminal, and I chose the other Terminal because I knew that the only good cards left in the Black Market were not near the top.
Logged
Check out my F.DS extension for Chrome! Card links; Dominion icons, and maybe more! http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=13363.0

Thread for Firefox version:
http://forum.dominionstrategy.com/index.php?topic=16305.0

Deadlock39

  • Torturer
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1722
  • Respect: +1736
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #40 on: September 30, 2017, 08:13:57 am »
+1

I think a non-trivial amount of that decision was based on simplifying (speeding up) the online play. Not just the analysis paralysis involved in the decision, but also the UI interface you have to go through each time to choose the order the cards are returned when most of the time, you just don't care.

I don't personally miss anything about ordering the deck.

Awaclus

  • Adventurer
  • ******
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10592
  • Shuffle iT Username: Awaclus
  • (´。• ω •。`)
  • Respect: +11014
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #41 on: September 30, 2017, 08:21:37 am »
0

I never even bothered to change the order, I just memorized whatever order it was (or at least the key parts).
Logged
Bomb, Cannon, and many of the Gunpowder cards can strongly effect gameplay, particularly in a destructive way

The Twitch channel where I stream DominionThe YouTube channel where I make musicDownload my band's albums for free

CreeperSlimePig

  • Pawn
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3
  • Shuffle iT Username: CreeperSlimePig
  • Respect: +4
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #42 on: November 05, 2017, 09:11:57 pm »
0

In my opinion, the AI is too stupid. Like I just did an AI game, and I won using Big Money on a game using Wall. How I beat Lord Rattington: He trashed every single card he owned. I ended with 4 Coppers, 7 Silvers, 3 Golds, an Estate, 2 Duchies, 2 Provinces, 7 Colonies, 2 Expands, 6 Platina, a Junk Dealer and a Necropolis. Lord Rattington ended with a Junk Dealer.

Well, the end game result was 90-2.

I would recommend banning Junk Dealer in bot games.
Logged

Donald X.

  • Board Moderator
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4810
  • Respect: +19601
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #43 on: November 06, 2017, 12:57:51 am »
+3

In my opinion, the AI is too stupid. Like I just did an AI game, and I won using Big Money on a game using Wall. How I beat Lord Rattington: He trashed every single card he owned. I ended with 4 Coppers, 7 Silvers, 3 Golds, an Estate, 2 Duchies, 2 Provinces, 7 Colonies, 2 Expands, 6 Platina, a Junk Dealer and a Necropolis. Lord Rattington ended with a Junk Dealer.

Well, the end game result was 90-2.

I would recommend banning Junk Dealer in bot games.
It would be pointless to take out Junk Dealer; it's the tip of the iceberg. There is an endless parade of cards that mean you can automatically crush the bot.

The way to think of it is, there isn't really an AI yet. There is a placeholder bot that has no intelligence to it.
Logged

JW

  • Minion
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 686
  • Shuffle iT Username: JW
  • Respect: +1211
    • View Profile
Re: Making Dominion Online better for new players
« Reply #44 on: April 04, 2018, 10:49:48 pm »
+5

Kudos to ShuffleIT on the release of the Kingdom Viewer as originally developed by IceHawk78 in his "King's Courtier" Chrome plugin, and to Icehawk78 and Ingix for their work on it as well!
Logged
Pages: 1 2 [All]
 

Page created in 0.134 seconds with 20 queries.