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Is this release schedule sustainable?

StraycatStraycat Posts: 838 Critical Contributor
There has been a new release every 2 weeks for a while now. I remember the dev video released before the OML nerf where they basically said, we like the schedule and aren't changing it. And over a year and half later, they've stuck to it. The current roster is pretty huge, and its not hard to predict how big it will get if it continues. So the main question comes down to: Does something need to change?

On one hand, dilution is crazy and will just get worse. On the other, I have mostly kept pace with the vaulting tokens and the 50-50 latest/classic tokens. At best I had all but 4 champed. Currently I have all but 5. I gained ground on the 5* tier. Aside from the other issues that have come up, like less forum discussion, overall apathy etc. what would happen if the game continues on its current trajectory?


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Comments

  • n25phillyn25philly Posts: 332 Mover and Shaker
    I have no problems with the release scheduled, but I would like to see some effort put into managing it better.  Doing Ultron this morning one of the side missions called for Hawkeye.  It defaulted to the 2* one.  Could use the 3* since I just sold a max champ and the replacement only had a couple of covers on it.  Decided to use the undercovered 5* and it took around 3 minutes for me to find him.  They can add all the characters they want, it will only be a problem if they let it become a mess which it is already starting to become.
  • brollbroll Posts: 4,481 Chairperson of the Boards
    edited November 30
    Bowgentle said:
    The release schedule has been the same for almost 5 years.
    I'd say it's sustainable, yeah.
    1. It can't be more than 3 or 4 because that's when 5* came into being.  Before that it may have been similar but couldn't be the same (before my time).
    2. Just because something has been the same for a long time doesn't mean it's sustainable.  Whaling went on for hundreds of years and now that rate can no longer be sustained, many non-renewable resources experts say will stop being sustainable soon.  If I could eat 4000 calories a day for years before I got so fat I couldn't walk/  If you have a forest with 10,000 trees in it you could cut down 1,500 trees a year for 5 years, but you couldn't sustain it past 6.  I could put 200 gallons of water day into a 1.000 gallon reservoir for 4 years, but not past 5.  The fact that something was done for years doesn't necessarily mean it's sustainable.  
  • BowgentleBowgentle Posts: 4,664 Chairperson of the Boards
    broll said:
    Bowgentle said:
    The release schedule has been the same for almost 5 years.
    I'd say it's sustainable, yeah.
    1. It can't be more than 3 or 4 because that's when 5* came into being.  Before that it may have been similar but couldn't be the same (before my time).
    2. Just because something has been the same for a long time doesn't mean it's sustainable.  Whaling went on for hundreds of years and now that rate can no longer be sustained, many non-renewable resources experts say will stop being sustainable soon.  If I could eat 4000 calories a day for years before I got so fat I couldn't walk/  If you have a forest with 10,000 trees in it you could cut down 1,500 trees a year for 5 years, but you couldn't sustain it past 6.  I could put 200 gallons of water day into a 1.000 gallon reservoir for 4 years, but not past 5.  The fact that something was done for years doesn't necessarily mean it's sustainable.  
    Stop trolling.
    They have released a character every two weeks since about March 2014.
    Of course the tiers of the characters changed.
  • HobieCat76HobieCat76 Posts: 65 Match Maker
    broll said:

    Whaling went on for hundreds of years and now that rate can no longer be sustained, many non-renewable resources experts say will stop being sustainable soon.  
    LOL, I initially thought you were talking about the high-rollers that go into buy clubs and get tons of Starks and then I realized you literally meant whaling
  • brollbroll Posts: 4,481 Chairperson of the Boards
    edited November 30
    Bowgentle said:
    broll said:
    Bowgentle said:
    The release schedule has been the same for almost 5 years.
    I'd say it's sustainable, yeah.
    1. It can't be more than 3 or 4 because that's when 5* came into being.  Before that it may have been similar but couldn't be the same (before my time).
    2. Just because something has been the same for a long time doesn't mean it's sustainable.  Whaling went on for hundreds of years and now that rate can no longer be sustained, many non-renewable resources experts say will stop being sustainable soon.  If I could eat 4000 calories a day for years before I got so fat I couldn't walk/  If you have a forest with 10,000 trees in it you could cut down 1,500 trees a year for 5 years, but you couldn't sustain it past 6.  I could put 200 gallons of water day into a 1.000 gallon reservoir for 4 years, but not past 5.  The fact that something was done for years doesn't necessarily mean it's sustainable.  
    Stop trolling.
    They have released a character every two weeks since about March 2014.
    Of course the tiers of the characters changed.
    I'm not trolling.  I've said for a long time that adding a 6* tier could add time to their unsustainable release cycle.  Dilution continues to bloat and it's not a problem that's easily solved with the numbers of characters they have.  Adding a new tier and adding regularly to smaller tiers would add longevity to their release cycle.  Without doing that, some other release cycle, or some other dilution fix that acually works (They've already made 2 attempts that didn't come close to fixing by my count), the game will continue to strain under it's own weight until it implodes.
  • DAZ0273DAZ0273 Posts: 1,619 Chairperson of the Boards
    broll said:
    Bowgentle said:
    The release schedule has been the same for almost 5 years.
    I'd say it's sustainable, yeah.
    1. It can't be more than 3 or 4 because that's when 5* came into being.  Before that it may have been similar but couldn't be the same (before my time).
    2. Just because something has been the same for a long time doesn't mean it's sustainable.  Whaling went on for hundreds of years and now that rate can no longer be sustained, many non-renewable resources experts say will stop being sustainable soon.  If I could eat 4000 calories a day for years before I got so fat I couldn't walk/  If you have a forest with 10,000 trees in it you could cut down 1,500 trees a year for 5 years, but you couldn't sustain it past 6.  I could put 200 gallons of water day into a 1.000 gallon reservoir for 4 years, but not past 5.  The fact that something was done for years doesn't necessarily mean it's sustainable.  
    Please don't give the idea to the Dev's that whales are in danger...
  • BorstockBorstock Posts: 1,001 Chairperson of the Boards
    I mean.... How many characters does Marvel have? A few thousand? 

    Sustainable.

    Now, whether or not that's good for the game is another story. 
  • BlackWidow70BlackWidow70 Posts: 27 Just Dropped In
    n25philly said:
    I have no problems with the release scheduled, but I would like to see some effort put into managing it better.  Doing Ultron this morning one of the side missions called for Hawkeye.  It defaulted to the 2* one.  
    Yeah, so far this event I've had the Iron Man node defaulting to the 1* despite the fact that I have a champed Hulkbuster, a max champed IM40, and another champed IM40 around level 200.  Same thing with the Captain Marvel node, it's given me the 3* champed one over the 4* champed one.  It's a little thing, but it's frustrating.
  • JSP869JSP869 Posts: 437 Mover and Shaker
    n25philly said:
    I have no problems with the release scheduled, but I would like to see some effort put into managing it better.  Doing Ultron this morning one of the side missions called for Hawkeye.  It defaulted to the 2* one.  Could use the 3* since I just sold a max champ and the replacement only had a couple of covers on it.  Decided to use the undercovered 5* and it took around 3 minutes for me to find him.  They can add all the characters they want, it will only be a problem if they let it become a mess which it is already starting to become.
    Tapping on the essential Hawkeye, IF all Hawkeye variants are eligible (for example, in the case of R&G I think you can only use the 3*), should bring ALL of the Hawkeye's to the front of your roster, and darken everyone else.

    If they can move ineligible versions of characters to the back of the roster, they can move all essential versions to the front.
  • bbiglerbbigler Posts: 1,100 Chairperson of the Boards
    I've said the same thing before, that unless something changes, their release schedule is bad for the game.  The current and future problem is that older 4*s and 5*s are very hard to cover.  I also agree that despite something "working" for years, that doesn't mean it's sustainable.  Take US social security, for example.
  • HoundofShadowHoundofShadow Posts: 1,298 Chairperson of the Boards
    It has been this way for close to 5 years. I think it's sustainable. Other match-3 games with similar rpg element has between 600 to 5000 "cards". Besides, I believe that in another year or two, that might be another permanent feature like bonus hero to reduce dilution problem.
  • Pants1000Pants1000 Posts: 470 Mover and Shaker
    They will change things to address dilution, but I highly doubt part of that will be fewer releases.  They have to balance what works well for new players and veterans, and the only way to keep veterans investing time and money is to keep adding things.

    The simplest idea is to add a 6* tier and slow or stop 4* releases, but the players don’t want that, so they tried things like supports.  Who knows what they’ll try next?
  • spidyjedi84spidyjedi84 Posts: 120 Tile Toppler
    n25philly said:
    I have no problems with the release scheduled, but I would like to see some effort put into managing it better.  Doing Ultron this morning one of the side missions called for Hawkeye.  It defaulted to the 2* one.  Could use the 3* since I just sold a max champ and the replacement only had a couple of covers on it.  Decided to use the undercovered 5* and it took around 3 minutes for me to find him.  They can add all the characters they want, it will only be a problem if they let it become a mess which it is already starting to become.
    It defaults to your lowest ranked Hawkeye, for some reason, even though all three of mine are boosted... Same with Deadpool. My X-Force is higher ranked than my 3-star Deadpool. Iron Man, though, it goes right to Hulkbuster at 209...
  • bluewolfbluewolf Posts: 1,845 Chairperson of the Boards
    n25philly said:
    I have no problems with the release scheduled, but I would like to see some effort put into managing it better.  Doing Ultron this morning one of the side missions called for Hawkeye.  It defaulted to the 2* one.  Could use the 3* since I just sold a max champ and the replacement only had a couple of covers on it.  Decided to use the undercovered 5* and it took around 3 minutes for me to find him.  They can add all the characters they want, it will only be a problem if they let it become a mess which it is already starting to become.
    It defaults to your lowest ranked Hawkeye, for some reason, even though all three of mine are boosted... Same with Deadpool. My X-Force is higher ranked than my 3-star Deadpool. Iron Man, though, it goes right to Hulkbuster at 209...
    The theory I’ve seen is that the game defaults to the last version of that character that you actually used in a match.  Many players use 3DP every day.  Depending on the character, you might have used the 1 or 2* most recently.

    Try to see: once you start the boss nodes, does it go back to your non preferred version?  And did you use one of them in DDQ in between?
  • AardvarkPepperAardvarkPepper Posts: 127 Tile Toppler
    edited December 1
    Straycat said:
    There has been a new release every 2 weeks for a while now. I remember the dev video released before the OML nerf where they basically said, we like the schedule and aren't changing it. And over a year and half later, they've stuck to it. The current roster is pretty huge, and its not hard to predict how big it will get if it continues. So the main question comes down to: Does something need to change?

    On one hand, dilution is crazy and will just get worse. On the other, I have mostly kept pace with the vaulting tokens and the 50-50 latest/classic tokens. At best I had all but 4 champed. Currently I have all but 5. I gained ground on the 5* tier. Aside from the other issues that have come up, like less forum discussion, overall apathy etc. what would happen if the game continues on its current trajectory?


    Look at it from a money perspective.

    On the plus side, putting out a new character can drive sales for people that want to "collect them all" and for people that are particularly interested in a character whether for play value or for other reasons.  Sure it costs to implement characters, but I don't think the costs of adding a new character are that high.  (Yes there's art, animations, research and development, programming, debugging, publicity, and other costs besides, but MPQ's been down that road a bunch of times and I'm sure has cost-cutting measures in place).

    On the minus side, what?  I'd bet as far as the money people are concerned, nothing.  "It works so far, why mess with it"?  is my guess.

    So think on it.  You can say (and I'd agree) that ever more fairly useless characters makes the game *less* interesting (I don't use 80% of my roster at least) and *more* intimidating to new players, then there's things about dilution, etc. etc. - and all of that is true.  But if you want to get over the hump with the money people, you have to explain how implementing new features and new policies justifies cost.

    If I were going to make a presentation, I'd say something to the effect that pretty much any new player can quickly see that roster slots are a limiting factor, so they have four options - 1)  shell out big bucks to pay for a bunch of roster slots so they won't lose out on covers; 2)  read a guide so they know how to better spend their resources (but in so doing they can realistically find that they can get best rewards for time spent in game *without* spending money), 3)  quit,  4)  just play casually.

    Then I'd argue that though initially players would spend a load of money for roster slots, the ever increasing number of characters makes it less likely that players will want to put out ever increasing amounts of money for roster slots without knowing exactly what they're getting.  That is, more characters and increased costs can pull in revenue from players that just don't care, but considering the time and money investment, I would say it more likely that knowledgable investors would be *less* likely to spend, and might even end up spending nothing after doing more research.  As to players that might quit because feeling intimidated by things they don't know, or that play casually and don't care, I'd argue we want to convert those non-players and non-spenders into players that spend.  So I'd argue for costly new features, like (xyz).

    But to get back to the initial question - are new releases sustainable?  and citing apathy and dilution -

    Well, dilution is a mechanical thing that I think is relatively straightforward.

    But for apathy, even though veterans might understand the sentiment, again, it comes down to the money people argument.  They'll just argue that apathy comes from players that have been doing the same old same old and that there's no cost-effective way to counter it.  Then they'll ask how, precisely, apathy is a result of ever more characters.

    I'd reply given the current structure of the game in which players are best advised not to use most of their characters (if they have a pretty developed roster) then of course nobody gives a (blankity blank) about new characters.  New characters aren't fun or exciting, they're just fodder and if they're boosted maybe they get used or not, who cares.

    Not that this is entirely a bad thing, as trying to put too much pressure on players to develop all their characters would result in the game feeling unpleasant to play so I'm not for that either.

    But anyways really, to get back to it - I don't think the character count is so much the issue.  I think it's the fact that most new characters are pretty useless that's the issue.  Mind the dilution argument is quite contrary.
  • Projectus2501Projectus2501 Posts: 52 Match Maker
    The guys that suffer more with this agressive release policy are the new players.... 
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