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How to Truly Keep Novices

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  • SarapisSarapis Member, Administrator Posts: 3,398 Achaean staff
    You've sold lessons on the website before, was your revenue for that month significantly lower than the norm or something?
    Yes. The lesson promos have generally resulted in our worst months revenue-wise.
  • QuisseQuisse Member Posts: 299 ✭✭✭✭✭ - Grand Achaean
    edited April 2014
    The old "I walked uphill both ways to school" arguments coming from older players are really missing the point of the thread. The game isn't the same as it was 10 years ago, and, as Antonius pointed out, there's some perks to that and some drawbacks. If we want to keep people playing, we can probably do better than sending people off to auto-rat for hours on end.

    Eta: I still think good old fashioned interaction is the ticket to keeping people coming back. Getting sucked into the storyline is what makes Achaea so exciting to play.
    WynedereSabahShirszae
  • DaeirDaeir AustraliaMember Posts: 6,288 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Sarapis said:
    You've sold lessons on the website before, was your revenue for that month significantly lower than the norm or something?
    Yes. The lesson promos have generally resulted in our worst months revenue-wise.
    Why not offer them permanently, side-by-side with standard credit purchases? I know that many times, I would purchase lessons over credits, especially if they were at a significantly higher ROI (30-40% increase over buying the same value amount of credits and converting to lessons), and have infact purchased lessons during those sales.
  • JacenJacen Member Posts: 2,305 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    What about Daeir's idea, but only allow those lesson sales to apply to characters with < 20 hours play time, or something?
    image
  • MannimarMannimar Member Posts: 973
    I'd like to say that before I was gainfully employed they only money spent on Achaea was money gifted for my birthday. Almost every Transed skill I have and surprisingly several artefacts were solely earned through questing, and deepsea fishing. It took a bit, but because of that and the availability of credits in game I was able to game CFS make a notable profit, while earning lessons and credits.

    It takes time, but it's anything but impossible to get things without cash.
    Sylvance
  • FeralFeral Member Posts: 56 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    Thanks for the awesome post @Makarios

    Though this also brings up another thing that I suspect hurts new player retention. The documention on how your abilities work, and what exactly you need to be effective, is delibritly missing from the in game help files. You are expected to interact with other players to learn this. Yet this becomes very hit and miss. If you asked feral in game what you should learn to be great at bashing as a serpent I would have no clue how to answer. Only due to @sena's awesome thread do I know that unless I have better than X stats on a whip (plus trans subterfuge) I should stick to using camus.

    This gets even worse when it comes to PVP. The sheer amount of knowledge you need to acquire (on TOP of building/buying a curing system) is crazy. Again you rely on the player base educating others. This gets back to the original topic of the thread which is how time intensive it is do to this education. On top of that not everyone is equal to the task. There is a lot about being a serpent that I can pass on but there is also a huge amount I have no clue about. Only a rare few players have full knowledge of their own class let alone other classes.

    I realize that my opinion goes against the culture of the game but I strongly feel that if you had detailed mechanical information available to all (on every class) it would increase retention and increase the desire to participate in PVP and thus increase credit sales. Leave the secrecy to the RP aspects of the game not the mechanics.
    Nim
  • WynedereWynedere Member Posts: 305 ✭✭✭✭ - Eminent
    While cost of play is a large deterrent, people will spend money on a hobby if they consider the investment worthy. Interaction is key here, even more so than all the wonderful features Achaea's admin have worked hard to provide. This is why I believe that seasoned players should be given incentive to work with novices more. Sure, you can say that helping novices is reward in itself. That is true, to a point. But, burn-out is a very real thing and happens more than some of you think. It honestly feels like a job to the people who do it frequently. Show them appreciation through some sort of reward system, and they will feel less like their time has been wasted when newbie #9873 decides not to return after a newbie helper has spent hours with him or her. Not to mention the fact that the newbies will ultimately benefit from all the extra attention. 

    Yes, everything can and will be abused. My question is, what does it matter the reason why a player is helping newbies if the newbies are still getting tons of positive interaction and help?

    SylvanceFeralAlexandre
  • PaikPaik Member Posts: 12 ✭✭ - Stalwart
    Sarapis said:

    One big thing that affects people in the mid-funnel is having a system, and that's a place you're going to see more effort going soon. We'd like to provide a free system in our client that's good enough for most combatants, at least when they're starting out in PvP. As someone earlier pointed out, that whole side of things is a giant barrier to entry as well.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you! All the work that's been going into the HTML client has been awesome, and has gone a long way to improving the game experience, for me at least. Huge raves for that, and I'm super excited to hear that this is on the to-do list.
  • CarmellCarmell Eastern WashingtonMember Posts: 473 ✭✭✭✭ - Eminent
    I have a protege that is building a system for priest totally with the HTML5 client.  I've been able to point him in the directions of the forums to get started and he got into contact with someone who was able to help him start scripting in it.  He comes to me every few days to let me know how he is doing on such and such and to find out what my recommendations are for things he should be building into his system for offense.  We need to make sure that the documentation is there for building the client correctly.  I know that my protege has gotten in touch with Tecton a couple of times when he wasn't sure how to set something up for it.  If we have more young ones that are able to use the client well it would be great.  But that only works for people that have a good idea about how to script.  I still struggle to make sure anything I do up works when I finish it and sometimes it can take me multiple tries to get it to work.  So making sure that there are very simple minded instructions I guess you could say would help.
    AlexandreSybillaSabah
  • SaevaSaeva Member Posts: 1,944 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    edited April 2014
    Before I made the switch over to the Achaea train, I spent $29.99 a month on a premium subscription and $12.99 a month for basic, switching back and forth, off and on for yeaaaaaars for a different MUD. MUDs just seem to be absurdly overpriced. I'm coming to terms with that. I guess I liken it to Walmart versus the small town family business. Walmart (your WoW equivalent) can afford to make their product cheaper because they are -masssssssiiive- companies. But the mom and pop store down the road has to scrape by while likely charging a bit more. I'm okay with supporting the little guy.

    Other than having an Elite subscription... I've spent like... a couple bones on those globe packages around Christmas time with gift cards I was gifted (because that gamble of what's gonna pop out of that pokéglobe was really thrilling for some reason!) and none more (I have a complex about spending money for the most part. I really hate doing it.). And I have, in roughly 7 months, -transed- 5 skillsets (Have several with lessons invests but not transed) and gotten  Shield of Absorption and Tuning Fork artefacts by using my daily lessons/monthly credits/IG gold.... It has been slow going but I mean.. I'm making progress! And now that my character is in the higher 80s level-wise, I've found enough hunting areas/gold gathering grounds to make a decent dent when I focus on it.

    The point is - Even when I had only transed elementalism and crystalism as a -novice- mage... it wouldn't have really mattered if I had transed 8+ skillsets because I did -not- know what the heck I was doing in combat anyways! I knew how to play MUDs but I had -so- much to soak in and try to adjust to and learn about Achaea that I couldn't be bothered with feeling sorry for myself for not being tritransed with survival and weaponry etc. So... maybe it's just me, but having to learn it all slowly along the way has created an environment where I actually know what my own personal skills are a bit more intimately. I don't see that being a bad thing for any novice.

    I can understand how the need for so much time and or real money would prevent making effective alts, which is actually kind of stank tank. Having alts with different perspectives and interactions in a gameworld can be really enjoyable. But as far as really focusing on one character as an actual novice... it's not so bad if you're at least willing/able to get on a subscription.

    And the HTML5 client was probably one of the more infuriating things of all, as a novice. To start learning how to use it and then to find out that it's nowhere near adequate and that I was going to need to use Mudlet and get a system in order to cure for hunting? I thought that was totally jacked up. If your game host can't provide you with the tools to properly BASH without having at least minor coding skills... Well, you can kiss any young or actual novices goodbye.

    Edit : Oh...also, having to tell a protege that if they want to actually hunt/getinvolvedincombat that they should consider using a different client so that they can get a proper system... that's depressing and it's a big fat turn off.


    AlexandreSarapisSylvanceSabah
  • NakariNakari Member Posts: 596 ✭✭✭✭✭ - Grand Achaean
    I will say that back when I was still pretty new, the little "log in for x amount of time a day for a credit" was actually pretty nice. I mean, it didn't impact all the lessons needed and such that much (I only started really getting skills transed when I got on membership), but it did make it feel that I was getting somewhere, however slowly, and that was a rather nice feeling when it felt frustrating how many skills I needed to get to trans.

    Nim
  • SarapisSarapis Member, Administrator Posts: 3,398 Achaean staff
    Saeva said:
     If your game host can't provide you with the tools to properly BASH without having at least minor coding skills... 


    Don't quite get this. I can bash just fine on a plain telnet connection using Achaea's in-game alias/target system. What am I missing regarding what you mean?


  • SarapisSarapis Member, Administrator Posts: 3,398 Achaean staff
    Carmell said:
    I have a protege that is building a system for priest totally with the HTML5 client.  I've been able to point him in the directions of the forums to get started and he got into contact with someone who was able to help him start scripting in it.  He comes to me every few days to let me know how he is doing on such and such and to find out what my recommendations are for things he should be building into his system for offense.  We need to make sure that the documentation is there for building the client correctly.  I know that my protege has gotten in touch with Tecton a couple of times when he wasn't sure how to set something up for it.  If we have more young ones that are able to use the client well it would be great.  But that only works for people that have a good idea about how to script.  I still struggle to make sure anything I do up works when I finish it and sometimes it can take me multiple tries to get it to work.  So making sure that there are very simple minded instructions I guess you could say would help.
    I'm thinking that the best way to get this done may be to pay someone to develop a system, with full admin support. It's something that's very doable without needing access to our code, so paying an experienced player-scripter just may be the way to go.
    CarmellSylvanceTvistor
  • PaikPaik Member Posts: 12 ✭✭ - Stalwart
    edited April 2014
    Saeva said:
    And the HTML5 client was probably one of the more infuriating things of all, as a novice. To start learning how to use it and then to find out that it's nowhere near adequate and that I was going to need to use Mudlet and get a system in order to cure for hunting? I thought that was totally jacked up. If your game host can't provide you with the tools to properly BASH without having at least minor coding skills... Well, you can kiss any young or actual novices goodbye.

    Edit : Oh...also, having to tell a protege that if they want to actually hunt/getinvolvedincombat that they should consider using a different client so that they can get a proper system... that's depressing and it's a big fat turn off.
    Agrees all around until this part. Where on earth are you bashing that you need a Mudlet curing system? Even in places that afflict, you just make one round to find the affliction text for that spot, panic and TOUCH TREE like a hippy, and then make a nifty trigger. I'm the king of stupid-hunting-death, but still my omgwtfiscode triggers work just fine, and I've not really been overwhelmed with afflictions from denizens. Also, maybe, were you working with one of the earlier versions of the HTML client? The latest incarnation is pretty bashing-friendly, especially with the autosipper and balance queue. I'm on board with you about the combat part at the end, but hunting can totally be done typing out every command in full on a laptop in the garage with a cig in one hand. Truth.
    TharvisSylvanceSabah
  • AntoniusAntonius Member Posts: 4,917 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    There's only one place I can think of where you'd possibly need a full curing system to deal with afflictions, and that's the scorpions by Ugrach in the Underworld. Nowhere else that I can think of has afflictions coming that fast or in such huge amounts that you couldn't feasibly manual using aliases or macros.
    Tharvis
  • KyrraKyrra AustraliaMember Posts: 4,853 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Antonius said:
    There's only one place I can think of where you'd possibly need a full curing system to deal with afflictions, and that's the scorpions by Ugrach in the Underworld. Nowhere else that I can think of has afflictions coming that fast or in such huge amounts that you couldn't feasibly manual using aliases or macros.
    Prin. Guardians are affliction whores, so are the spooks in the jungles, and the guards in the temple. Not to mention that weird midget that likes to sacrifice people. If you end up getting proned, you're pretty much fucked without a full curing system. I think even Penwize bashes better on Prin since he switched to Svo.
    (D.M.A.): Cooper says, "Kyrra is either the most innocent person in the world, or the girl who uses the most innuendo seemingly unintentionally but really on purpose."

  • SaevaSaeva Member Posts: 1,944 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    edited April 2014
    Before Cidusii gave me a list of coded healing priorities and triggers for HTML5, I mean..even going to Xhaiden Dale, I was having to manually cure against the worms or striders or whatever it is that's there, that I needed to apply mending for. Or the acolytes that set me on fire. Or the random snakes I would pass walking somewhere that would afflict with voyria.

    I don't know if HTML5 has included the triggers now for healing yourself at this point because for obvious reasons I don't use it anymore... but if they did not, as a NOVICE (I'm not saying someone who is familiar with the game and someone who knows how to cure and what cures what affliction)... I died quite a lot of times to random afflictions while trying to learn to hunt, simply because there was no reflexive healing. The auto-sipper was the only means of triggered healing I had at my disposal.

    And you saying you can build basic triggers... that's where I get off saying that you need at least a minor knowledge of understanding how the coding works. And that's what I am stating is a turn off.


  • PaikPaik Member Posts: 12 ✭✭ - Stalwart
    Saeva said:
    I don't know if HTML5 has included the triggers now for healing yourself at this point because for obvious reasons I don't use it anymore... but if they did not, as a NOVICE (I'm not saying someone who is familiar with the game and someone who knows how to cure and what cures what affliction)... I died quite a lot of times to random afflictions while trying to learn to hunt, simply because there was no reflexive healing. The auto-sipper was the only means of triggered healing I had at my disposal.

    And you saying you can build basic triggers... that's where I get off saying that you need at least a minor knowledge of understanding how the coding works. And that's what I am stating is a turn off.
    Ahhh, gotcha. No, the HTML5 client doesn't have a built-in reflexive curing system. Would that be handy? Absolutely. Did I need to really cure anything as a newcomer? Not at all, unless you count oyster blindness, which was a great learning opportunity and rarely leads to death unless SHARK.

    Personally, I'm sort of fine with the game requiring that folks pick up some very basic trigger-building knowledge. Don't all houses require some form of anti-theft reflexes and provide in-game support to help teach the basic principles of those triggers? Any game has its own unique learning curve, and making basic triggers is Achaea's. Once my housemates taught me how to make a trigger for hypnosis, it was pretty easy to build my own for being paralyzed by denizens.

    Also, it's very difficult to compose a response here when I can't stop staring at the kitteh in your signature. I WANTS IT.
    SaevaTharvis
  • TvistorTvistor Member Posts: 2,900 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Exhausted after fencing comp, just going to comment that people are free to spend as much time as they want getting basic class skills, but the fact the game relies on people being okay with it easily explains why most people don't stick around. I think most Heads of Newcomers can attest that being unable to trans things does indeed drive tons of new players away.

    Achaea's playerbase will always be tiny though, since most gamers will opt for a modern game like Call of Duty, and people who want the other end (more creativity and stuff) are better off with D&D. Because of that I doubt Achaea could afford to drop their credit prices anywhere near where a casual gamer might deem them reasonable.
    AlexandreLacertix
  • NimNim Member Posts: 2,015 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Tvistor said:
    Exhausted after fencing comp, just going to comment that people are free to spend as much time as they want getting basic class skills, but the fact the game relies on people being okay with it easily explains why most people don't stick around. I think most Heads of Newcomers can attest that being unable to trans things does indeed drive tons of new players away.

    Achaea's playerbase will always be tiny though, since most gamers will opt for a modern game like Call of Duty, and people who want the other end (more creativity and stuff) are better off with D&D. Because of that I doubt Achaea could afford to drop their credit prices anywhere near where a casual gamer might deem them reasonable.
    I know there's a bonus for the first 1000 unbound credits, and that bonus alone is nearly enough to trans a skill. I feel like it could probably be sharpened a bit. Effectively, it's 1500 free lessons that only new characters get - perhaps it could be spread out to the first 500, 250, or even 100 unbound credits. Just a thought, of course.
    Tvistor
  • TvistorTvistor Member Posts: 2,900 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Maths is hard, just going to agree with you.
    NimTharvisSylvance
  • JovoloJovolo EnglandMember Posts: 3,212 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    edited April 2014
    Nim said:
    Tvistor said:
    snip
    I know there's a bonus for the first 1000 unbound credits, and that bonus alone is nearly enough to trans a skill. I feel like it could probably be sharpened a bit. Effectively, it's 1500 free lessons that only new characters get - perhaps it could be spread out to the first 500, 250, or even 100 unbound credits. Just a thought, of course.
    1000 credits is 6000 lessons before the credit bonus. 1000 credits is at minimum 6,000,000 gold or $299.99. What relevance does that type of person have in the discussion of whether or not transcending being too difficult or not drives potential players away? 

    I did the math before, and to transcend just class skills it would take either hunting all the way to level 90 and earning 2,000,000 gold along the way to spend on just credits. If you don't want to spend a large majority (read: pretty much all) of your money on credits to save them for required house items, curatives, weapons, armour and so on. That becomes level 90 and $140. Does Achaea require exorbitant time and/or money to gather your basic class skills (3 of a possible 19 skills)? Are any of you actually going to try to argue "No" to that? I don't get why.

    People should really stop with the bullshit excuse of "Well you don't need your class skills to enjoy Achaea!" Well - you. Yes I do, and so do many others. If I wanted to just login and do nothing but roleplay, there are many, many other games on the internet that I can achieve that on. Take your holier-than-thou opinion and apply it only to your holier-than-thou self. I'm sure I'm not the only one that doesn't want it.

    TvistorSabahNellaundra
  • AntoniusAntonius Member Posts: 4,917 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    I might be wrong, but I read @Nim's suggestion as being you'd get the 2500 (not 1500) bonus lessons for converting credits to bound credits across a smaller number of them; so if it was dropped to the first 100, rather than 1000, you'd be getting 25 bonus lessons per rather than the current 2.5.
    TharvisJovoloNimShirszae
  • JovoloJovolo EnglandMember Posts: 3,212 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Oh, I see that now. That is quite a good idea Nim, but I don't see Sarapis going for it for obvious reasons.

  • TvistorTvistor Member Posts: 2,900 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Yeah, I don't think IRE (understandably) would have any interest in getting more players in if it wasn't going to boost overall profits, and I doubt any changes would bring enough people to offset it.
This discussion has been closed.