Why your players are upset and how we got here
This is going to be a long post, but there is a lot to unpack with the recent changes to the game as well as some of the longer standing issues that led us to the point we are at now. The purpose of this post is two-fold. One, to let you know why your players are upset. And two, to request some clarification and possible remediation.
There has been a sharp decline in overall communication across the board; but especially on the forums, for a long while now. We used to have much more developer interaction. It felt like they were part of the community and really helped build a sense of trust and care. Even if we didn’t like it, we were given roadmaps on where we were going. To go from that to where we are now already creates a sense of unrest in your playerbase.
Why does Bishop remain untouched? Why are new characters required for SHIELD training? What happened to supports/support circuit? Why is Professor required in PvE and the only way to get him is 1/250 odds? Silence. And on down the line. So already there is a sense of disconnect. A widening of the gap and an us (players) vs. them (developers) mentality.
All of a sudden, we start to notice a throttling back of feeders. Seems odd and with no communication (see: above) we are left to speculate. On a podcast the developers claimed that they gave out too many, too soon. So we know the throttling was intentional, but we don’t know the “why”.
We are later told that you want feeders to be “special” and tied to special events. So we are to expect them less. Fair enough. Holidays pass. The 80th Anniversary of Marvel passes. And the big one... the 6th anniversary of MPQ passes, and we get no feeders. In the moment it felt to me like you were buying time so you could throttle back rewards. Looking back now it definitely seems like the case.
After you received negative feedback from your players concerning the lack of any feeder for the 6th anniversary, we were told the reason was “there was no obvious connection”. So now, not only have the goalposts been shifted, but many players felt that their intelligence was being challenged. You had two characters that were released ON Anniversary (Gambit/Cable) that were rolled out with an accompanying 4* (Rogue/Domino). There are many other examples but I won’t go into it as they were already posted (to resounding developer silence). Looking back, it seems like another attempt to buy time.
Finally, we were told that feeders are not dead. They would be part of a new feature that would be coming soon. A feature that in this age where dilution is the worst it’s ever been, we’d be able to make targeted progress on our heroes. This was met with resounding fanfare. Expectations were high and questions were asked. But rather than just roll everything out at once and answer questions, we were left with a ton of speculation (a recurring theme at this point).
So shards are announced as a replacement for bonus heroes. Many did not expect you to REPLACE a feature so loved by many as we thought you were ADDING to the game rather than replacing. An issue that could have been avoided with proper communication up front.
When we finally get communication it hypes up “this is good for the players!” without so much as acknowledging the obvious bad. Where you were once part of the community, we now just get manipulation. For me personally, it’s a huge turn-off as a consumer.
The biggest drawback we got was the fact that our “bonus” resources would be lowered under this new system. We were told, “but wait until you see the WHOLE rollout. You’ll get shards from other places to make up the difference!” If you comb through your forums, you see many players saying “I’ll believe it when I see it” because we’ve been lied to before (see: above).
What wasn’t mentioned (yes... again), is that the shards we’d be getting elsewhere 1) aren’t for characters we are actually targeting and 2) are apparently taking the place of rewards we were getting previously. So now our “bonus” pulls are down and we are getting less progression rewards. Not only that, but you’ve found a way to charge us for the new resource drought you created in the form of a “shard store”.
So with many people upset about shards (especially the “orphaned shards” issue... more on that later) we are told that they are being added to progression rewards, feeders would be massively updated and we’d be getting rewards retroactively! You took some of our rewards that will bleed us long term, but promise of a huge short term payout was enough for many players to forgive. Players expectations were high and the term “shardageddon” was even used!
However, just like this whole process, instead of giving us information right then and giving the whole rollout so we could process, you told us we’d get information Monday.
Late into Monday night we still had no information. When we finally did, it was very very vague with multiple interpretations. And no time or people available to field any questions.
Knowing that our CP, HP, LT, Iso would be cut with the update, the consensus was “open now!”. So many many hoards were broken. You should see some of the screenshots of people’s vines. It is pretty insane!
Which brings us to today. Mass confusion ensues from people as to why they are not getting the rewards they thought were coming based on their interpretation of the vague late-night update. A compete nerfing of retroactive feeder rewards with no explanation- when we already had nerfs in progression rewards and number of bonus pulls. A complete deviation of precedent that had been established with no notification of the change so we could plan accordingly. And to top it all off, a number of what you call “bonus shards” sit there wasted on characters we never planned to chase as a reminder of how much better bonus heroes were.
I look at all of my characters with both new feeders and old and see tons of checkmarks for prizes I never received. Mighty tokens? 4* character shards? 5* character shards? The game is saying I have received these rewards. And they are not there. We were led to believe that we’d be getting a huge reward payout and instead have yet another nerf. After MONTHS of begging for feeders and you effectively hyping up that we would FINALLY be getting them, it made us feel like the wait was going to be worth the pay off. Only instead of getting those rewards, we got a third of them.
When you look at all of this in context and wonder why each subsequent decision is made with less and less support from your community, this is why. People tolerate some “bad” when you build up goodwill, but you’ve made too many withdrawals from the bank and now there is nothing left (Justin’s comment also didn’t help).
People here can chime in on what they feel proper compensation should be, but for me that goodwill is gone. I feel like there needs to be not only compensation in the form of paying out those rewards we were led to believe were coming, but also a sincere apology, and an HONEST explanation of your thought process. This would go a long way in depositing some goodwill in the overdrawn account. Because this is indeed a broken relationship in need of serious repair work.