A viewpoint of a past veteran player: Looking back at E&P

@Rook Hi!

I’ve been off playing other mobile games, and it’s given me a good chance to muse over the pains and woes of this game, compared to other turn-based RPGs in similar genres.

In short, I love this game, and am still fond of it, but I think it suffered from a few things:

Double dependence on RNG:
You were locked into the chance of getting a character, and then again gated by RNG for ascension mats.

No ftp “hard grind” solution:
At the time of my last playing, there were no ways to “grind” towards getting the drops you needed or the hero you wanted. There were ways to increase your chances, but still, nothing was a sure bet. The inclusion of a certain way to get a specific card would make ftp players have a tangible goal, rather than saving and saving, only to have poor RNG draws. (ie, combine 20, 4* holy cards to get Joon)

Ftp and ptw gap:
The gulf between “free to play” and “pay to win” players seemed to grow. Ftp players struggled to catch up while the new meta shifts and newly released heroes were quickly integrated by the ptw player that had extra ascension mats, due to already having leveled their characters.

I hope you will find these comments helpful. And while I currently don’t plan on returning to the game, I may yet one day.

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I have missed you!!!

Your comments as always are helpful. I especially appreciate the ftp grind bit since I operate as ftp.

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Thank you for taking the time to provide the feedback. I think it’s important that we continue to voice our concerns, no matter how slow the change happens if at all… I want to echo both points you made as I too have noticed these seemingly small differences between E&P and other games… Where other RPG games option to spend money come in many flavors, many still give that “Hard-grind” option. I’ve noticed it in my kids phone games… They can ‘buy’ that riffle they want or keep grinding and collect random items to eventually just outright “buy” it for free… I do notice that these games are filled with ads and must-watch video features, etc… So is the price to pay for not having any of that in E&P worth it? It might be to some, I would be willing to bet that we (the people who prefer no ads and are willing to dish out some $$$ from time to time) might be in the minority…

I too agree that the gap between FTP vs PTW seems to widen with every major release… I mean, as it stands, I honestly don’t see how a FTP player can ever catch up to an “elite” seasoned player that spends money. Surely you can play the game of storing recruits and ham in TCs and do your occasional power leveling, etc… but by the time you can max your desired hero the “elite”/PTW player has maxed 2 or 3 more… It’s a never ending cycle which will lead in one of several ways, rage quitting, frustration spending or just plain old picking up the bad habit of spending regularly…

I think the single biggest impact the devs can make in the game is to balance out the FTP vs PTW camps a little more by providing valuable ROI for hard-grinding… As it stands, I see very little value in completing endless quests and filling out chests on the daily.

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I don’t really understand why newer players feel entitled to being able to catch up to older players who have been playing the game longer than them. Everyone is on a journey along the same path, and it stands to reason that those who have started earlier will be father along than those who have started later. Does the path have an ending? Having all possible heroes fully leveled up with all possible 4* troops leveled up, winning every single raid, being in an alliance with all the other 29 members having the same roster as you and winning all wars… is this the ending? Why can’t people play the game and find the playing rhythm and amount of money they want to invest that will lead them to progress at the rate they are having fun along the way. There are other activities to use time outside the game. And in the game, find people of similar level and mindset and have fun together in an alliance. Why the greed and sense of entitlement? I don’t really get it.

Sure, I understand there is frustration in getting slaughtered in raids or wars because the opponents have heroes that are much stronger and that you wish you had. But you cannot expect to win all the time. In raids and wars (and in life), there will be winners and losers. You cannot have one and not the other.

/rant

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To me, the gap between F2P and P2W isn’t even really a bad thing unless your goal in the game is to be #1 on the charts, and even then that goal is fleeting at best. I know that I’ll never catch up to the top of the heap unless I pay a sensible-used-car’s worth of money to SG. Instead, I get my satisfaction in the game from working out new battle strategies, building teams to execute those strategies, and using those to slowly work my way up as far as I can.

I don’t need to be #1 to defeat titans; I do that already in the mid-range and get plenty of rewards for it. I don’t need to be #1 to beat the challenge events; I’ve completed every level of every type of event so far with only 4* heroes to work with. I don’t need to be #1 to win raids; there’s plenty of players in my own league to battle with, and the widening gap only means that I’ll pretty much never run out of new opponents to try my luck against. And so on and so on…

The RNG-heaviness of the game could definitely stand to be toned down a bit, but there is at least a lower bound of predictable progress available to everyone with ascension materials through the rare quests and challenge events. TC13 and TC20 also help balance out finding good heroes without spending a lot.

At the end of the day, this is an idle game, and like any idle game the end rewards are just pixels on a screen. It’s all about enjoying the journey to getting those pixels on a screen. :slight_smile:

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Answered your own question. It’s not such a matter of catching up to these end-game players, as it is being competitive with them. Also, I will again stress that it is important for online games to entice new players to join and find ways to retain them - that usually involving speeding up their progress to get to a competitive standpoint. If you leave your new players to flounder, you won’t have many new players joining your game.

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Hi @Penari, glad you came back to the forums. I was a beginner and a lurker while you were still active and was wondering where you went!

I just want to echo everyone else’s comments on this game widening the gap between heavy spenders and free to play/pay a little players. I like the game and spend about $20-30/month, but I’ll probably cut that down over the next few months. Why? I feel there is almost no progression left for me. Past HOTM are way too powerful (alby) and unobtainable. Event heroes are scarce and cost hundreds of dollars. Only a handful of 5* heroes available from training camps are worth spending ascension materials on, and I already have magni, lianna, marjana maxed. I have 14 darts ready for if I finally get joon/Vivica and a full set of ascension materials for all colors just sitting because other 5* I’ve gotten from training camps aren’t worth maxing. Grinding for troops is extremely slow and it seems they slowed its down even more by reducing drops rates.

It’s hard to find motivation to keep at it when you’re at a point where you get rare ascension materials but have no use for them due to poor hero balance. I have ideas on what I think can fix this problem. Maybe I’ll end up posting them, but I’m not sure much will change.

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It is strange to hear that gap between P2W and F2P increases. At least half of complaints on this forum is about the fact that you can’t get what you want for your investments. You pay for gems, but you are not guaranteed to get good heroes and required ascensions items. So a progress of paying players is not as fast as they want.

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When you are a beginner with SH10 you hardly can expect to be competitive with players that have SH20 and multiple TC20 running for quite a time. You fight 2* 4* titans, work on improvements of your kingdom use all the ways of improving your roster. Otherwise it sounds like “I started my athletics training yesterday and I want to become an Olympic champion in a year.”

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PRECISELY! I maintain my position that the devs RISK losing their base as well as NOOBs to the P2W environment that seems to be rapidly taking over. WHILE it is their perogative, I sugges at least adding DEPTH to the game and also IMMEDIATELY rolling our new seasons TO MATCH that of RAID and AW updates… at least make it balanced for ALL PLAYERS

@SuuriKoira: exactly.

@Lurker: why do you even expect to catch up to the end-game players? The only thing you could feel entitled to aim at is to be at the same stage after having spent the same amount of time and money on the game. What makes newcomers so special that they should achieve high status in less time and for less money. Now we can discuss how the changes continuously made in the game may help or hinder progression as compared to how it was for the more experienced players, but even then, the point should only be to provide some constructive criticism and feedback to the game developers, and not sound like a tamper tantrum. The bottom line is that a person joins a game at a given moment and should compare his/her progress with those starting at the same time, and see his/her elders as inspiration and not direct competitors.

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It’s not about entitlement. It’s about the growth of the gap. It’s also not about new players. It’s about ptw versus ftp players, and that gap getting bigger and bigger as the game develops, even between players that have been playing for the same amount of time.

In many games, as newer and better things are made available, it’s easier to get to these points for players that come after them. It’s not about new players being entitled, it’s partially about new players having a chance at being relevant in the game. Otherwise they will never amount to anything substantial without dumping a lot of money in the game.

Some games offset this by having different servers, or different shards, of players that all started around the same time. So you don’t have ftp new players gawking at veteran ptw players, knowing that they have nearly no chance of ever getting to that level.

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In short, the goal post is moving away faster than a FTP player could ever achieve through growth in game.

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Penari, thank you for your time and thoughts. You, unfortunately, are preaching to the choir.

You will notice how your point was sooo missed by those whose sole argument is “I got mine”.

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Thankfully though, my comments are not aimed at other players, but at the devs. In addition to that aim, I hope the community will add their concerns, because effective communication does evoke change.

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Amen to that. I’ve always said that since the DEVS want to push RAIDS and AW (P2W), they really should also push F2P like story mode and more quests. They are rapidly losing their base. The disparity between the two are enormous…has F2P died in E&P?

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You’ve hit the nail on the head. To qualify my previous comment, I would describe myself as an end-game player. I break into the top 100 when raiding, Always top 5 in titan hits on 8-9* (could probably make a good dent at higher, but I like my alliance too much to “upgrade”), finish in decent ranks during events, level 44 (despite only farming province 5).

My raid defense is lacking because I don’t have Guin, Alby, Zeline, Hel and have no way to get them. I spend a lot of food to skip raids facing Guin and Alby because they are very difficult for me to take down without some of the more powerful heroes. The only way to significantly increase my titan scores are with Alby, Panther, Ares, Athena and I have no way to get them. I very much enjoy the events, but have begun to realize finishing in the top 100 or better requires more items and world energy refills than the rewards are worth.

In short, once you get toward the end game progress seems very stalled and the only way to break that final barrier is to spend. To make matters worse, even spending won’t get you previous op HOTM. The devs have stated there will be a way to acquire past HOTM, but based on my experience I am sure getting them will be a cash grab. (please please please prove my prediction wrong devs).

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I think there have been steps in positive directions. I hope that my comments regarding the need to improve the various challenge missions to give better, and consistent rewards, was a step in the right direction towards giving people access to a real ‘grind’ to combat RNG for ascension mats.

I feel that they need to implement the same for heroes. Not necessarily access to the best and newest, but a way to grind up to 5* heroes of their choosing perhaps those available during a normal draw. Something akin to once a month (or insert arbitrary time period) hero selector.

I understand the issue of the gap growing between players having started at different times, but in principle, raiding and alliance wars, and to a lesser extent, the events, are separated in cups brackets, rankings or tiers, so as to separate players of different experience.

I’ve been away from the game for a while, but if you’re referring to 3, 4, and 5* tiers, this is only a mildly different change. For an experience ftp player, the rewards across all tiers end up being comparable, because ptw players dominate the lower tiers as well, albeit in smaller numbers.