Discussion: Scaling the games difficulty and the challenges associated with making everyone happy

This will be a long post. Probably too long. If you are not interested in debating the ideas in the OP, I would recommend you stop reading now. If you would like to personally attack me and not debate the actual ideas in this post, I am c2vs on line. Feel free to send me all the nasty attacks you can. The mods have enough on their plate without responding to hurt feelings.

Still with me?


I recently started a new topic here that turned into a straight-up dumpster :fire:within 10 minutes of posting. The crime in question? (besides me stirring the pot intentionally knowing the response that was coming no matter how the rest of the post was written) Asking for greater difficulty for end game players.

E&P is a grind. And while that is half the fun, as players progress there is a demand or at the very least hope for fresh content that can keep the player base engaged for longer and longer periods. In my opinion, this is the perfect opportunity to introduce challenges, events, and content with increasing difficulty. To, SG’s credit I believe they are currently in the process of doing this…but I believe they are doing so in a very tempered manner.

Why are they afraid of adding truly difficult new challenges (with matching reward structures)? It is my opinion that a vocal and impatient younger (in gameplay or ability, not age) player base hinders these potential new features. That statement will make many users upset or at the very least they will vehemently disagree with me. Let me explain

There is a wide range of players here and everyone wants the newest and best content right now. New content is fun, rewarding, and offers a fun break from farming. But I do not believe that all new content needs to be nerfed down to the lowest common denominator. There is more than enough currently built into the game to keep your average 1-6-month-old play plenty busy and just because the content is there in the game, doesn’t mean that it needs to be accessible to all players.

New players should be building out their teams, learning game mechanics, figuring out hero synergies, pushing through the map levels, building their 3* and 4* benches, figuring out to how hit titans effectively and building teams around that aspect of the game, fleshing out 6 war teams that are serviceable to their current level, and participating in all the great new content that is already in place (and is scalable for all players) like:

  • POV
  • some of the raid tournaments
  • challenge events
  • seasonal events
  • emblem quests
  • rare quests

All of the aforementioned items ARE 100% scalable for your level of play. Your current roster and skill level allow you to earn the rewards that are appropriate for your current gameplay.

  • A 3-week old player may be able to get a few levels into a rare quest. but then they are gated by their inability to compete against harder enemies. That is excellent. Why do they need a tome after less than a month of gameplay? they can focus on more important things like building their teams out to complete the map or be better in raids in the gold arena.
  • An 8-month-old player may need to blast a challenge events stage 15 legendary with battle items to finish it, but the rewards are GREAT and will help them get over the hump with stronger heroes that may allow them to start winning in Platinum raids
  • An 18-month-old player may autoplay rare quest, emblem quests, and much of the seasonal event to get their 4*AMs and emblems that are helpful for staying relevant as an endgame player, but certainly won’t change their ability to finish every last challenge that is thrown at them currently.

All of these scenarios are fair and perfectly balanced and I love that. When I could BARELY finish the second stage of the emblem quests I was motivated to get better. I didn’t ask for them to be made easier. When I couldn’t finish legendary in the challenge events, I asked for help, crafted a bunch of items, and carpet-bombed the last three levels to finally make it through. I was so happy. Not that it was dumbed down so I could easily finish it, but because I had grown as a player and could finally complete it.

So all that being said. Back to the original question.

Why can’t we have more difficult challenges without pitchforks and torches being pulled out?

There is lots of scalable content out there for all levels of players. But because some loud voices can’t/won’t put in the time to grow their rosters as later stage players did, the game cant implements some truly fun content.

POV is a case study for my point.

POV was and is a near-perfect event. Both premium and free rewards that were quite good. You had the ability to finish the path with even a moderately built out roster if you were committed enough. It encouraged planning and daily play. And most of all it was fun and new.

But I :poop:you not, it was less than 6 hours before complaint threads popped up on this forum. POV is too hard. POV is P2W. POV isn’t fair because I don’t have the time. POV isn’t fair because I can’t finish it. (all of which are falsehoods and I would be happy to debate these specific points with you elsewhere if we can agree that Fair means that everyone has the opportunity, not ability)

No drive to get better as a player. Just gimme my rewards. I would hope that a group of gamers would be looking for a challenge, not a handout.

So why can’t we have harder content? In my opinion:

  • Newer players believe all features should be able to be completed at their current level.
    – I believe this is just something that should be flat out ignored. You can’t make everyone happy and if those players are committed enough, they will grow their team and be able to compete soon enough. If they aren’t, they will stop playing anyway and appearing short term players is no way to manage a game
  • There is an overabundance of fear that any new feature only further separates endgame players for those that strive to get there.
    – I understand this fear. I used to have this fear, that I would never catch up. But it is unfounded. Top-end rewards have diminishing rewards for top players. How impactful are a scope and a ring for me today? not very. It is nice to have but will not change my overall ability to compete and win. Tyr is excited about slipping rings on to his non-bladed wolverine hand in a few days and the scope gets me up to 6 but I will wait to ascend anyone since my blue 5*s are in good shape and I’m not in any hurry to ascend heroes that aren’t specifically needed. So calm your jets. I climbed the mountain and In a year’s time from my start date can beat most teams. You can catch up too. and when you get there, you will want a new challenge too.
  • SOME F2P and C2P are overly sensitive to the game’s progress and need to make money, thus hindering new content development.
    – I think the P2W term is stupid. You can pay to advance. You can pay to go faster. But there is no try pay to win going on. That being said, SG has toed the line several times and I hope they continue to keep some balance here.
    – On that same note, SG is a business. It is their duty to create a platform that encourages people to spend on the game. Unless they are straight-up selling Guins and Finleys in the store I say let it roll. If someone wants to spend a grand a month, let them. They are literally funding the game for F2P players. If someone wants to take the slow route as a F2P player, that’s fine too. It just doesn’t give you the moral high ground since you are F2P.
    – Shooting down new content because you have CHOSEN to not pay into a game you spend hours in is foolish. Let the game progress.

Should the game have harder features for more advanced players? If so what kinds of features would you like to see? If not, why?

Ok…I think that’s it. I am hoping for a constructive conversation.

13 Likes

One thing that I think would be helpful is to have the routine daily quests scaled to your ability as a player. As a new player, Find Recruits, Scavenge Resources, etc were both challenging and helpful for advancing in the game. As a mid-game player, most of those quests ceased to provide either sufficient challenge or rewards that were worth the world energy costs, but the Rare Quests did. As a late game player, the only quests that provide enough challenge for me to turn off autoplay are the final stages of the Class Trials, the last 2 stages of the Masquerade, and the last 5 levels of the Challenge Events (each tier). I would like to see each of the routine quests offer a choice of difficulty levels, with rewards and world energy costs appropriate to the degree of difficulty chosen. When starting the quest, the player would be able to choose 1 (and only one) difficulty level to attempt, but would be able to keep trying until that difficulty level was completed.
For example, Scavenge Resources I might be the current iteration, with the current rewards and WE costs. Scavenge Resources II could offer significantly more food and iron, and perhaps an ETT instead of the silver token. It would cost a bit more world energy and would be scaled more for a team of 4* heroes to complete. Scavenge Resources III could offer still more, or perhaps the food/iron bundles instead, and an EHT, with a commensurate difficulty and WE cost.

Another thing that could be helpful is to add in more missions, but make them more about challenge and less about repetition. Rather than “kill 2000 of x mob” something like "win 2000 raids against more powerful opponents "

12 Likes

How many high leveled players auto farmed S3 when it come out?
I’m hoping for a 100+ :heart: On this comment :beer::hotdog::sunglasses::+1:

7 Likes

I think scaling could work but not on something like POV, where a purchase is required to reap the bulk of the benefits.

If there were to be an ‘Expert’ level added to the Challenge events, that might be able to work as it remains accessible to all.

Anything that requires payment will remain a hotbed of discussion and mud slinging.

5 Likes

I don’t think more challenging content for higher end players is a bad thing.

I also know it is hard to separate my own selfish loot & “progression” desires from what’s good for players who are more advanced than me.

Coming from other games and systems where you need the best loot & best gear to play the highest level content to in turn get better loot that will eventually be released, my mind gets jostled from time to time remembering that there is not really a victory or need for newest shiny toy to access all the content in the game.

Do certain heroes provide an “easier” experience of content? Yes. But unlike some console or PC games you’re generally not limited on content in the game based on heroes you have (albeit to access Season 2 or 3 you have to reach a certain point in the PvE aspect).

The leaderboard is present but there isn’t really an “I’ve won this game” moment in Empires & Puzzles.

With this shift in mindset I welcome more challenging content and hope I can contend with it sooner rather than later.

Additionally in both threads (despite possible poor phrasings), I don’t think @Cvs intends or wants to alienate and divide the community but rather continue to add challenging, variety of content to unite the community of in game ambitions.

4 Likes

I did on Normal. Didn’t try on Hard, but I probably could.

3 Likes

I have to agree with you there. No content in this game should be locked behind a paywall. It should be available to any player who has reached the requirements, whether those requirements are a certain raid trophy level (like we have for the raid arenas), completion of prerequisite quests or map levels (like we have for Seasons 2 and 3), a minimum player level (like we have to access alliances and quests), or some other non-paygated requirement.

2 Likes

They give everyone a new season and it’s auto farmed by most people like wtf Kinda slap in the face really.

I doubt most people autoplay it. I’m probably one of 4 or 5 in my alliance that could. I would guess probably 5-10% of the player base could consistently autoplay the S3 hard levels. Maybe less.

1 Like

That’s the fun Gone though! I’ll auto it collect loot job done :woman_shrugging:
No one seems botherd and that is a problem.
I did 20 flasks at Atlantis the hard way sure I auto a few but Atlantis need loot! Haha

A very well thought out post and I do hope that it stays on track.

I think there needs to be something new in place to strive for; let me explain what I mean using myself as an example.

2yrs ago I started playing - what was on offer for me to strive for:

• Getting my 1st 5*
• Getting enough mats for said 5*
• HoTM; once learning what it was
• To make it to the diamond arena AND stay there
• Field 6 war teams of 5*s
• Being able to complete ALL challenge event tiers
• Upgrading my base, etc

Right now I have achieved all of the above, except my base.

I am competitive in RL so it is only natural for me to do the occasional run to #1 global; something I used to do on a weekly basis.

With the addition of having something to do every week (costume chamber, S3, PoV, RT) other than war and grinding is very welcome.

So I now find myself with nothing more to strive for in Raids (except when I do a #1 run), Wars (I have a multitude of 5s to choose from that I don’t use any 4s).

I would like to see another Raid level, would be awesome to have that excitement returned of wanting to get there and stay there.

Also, an added change to Wars or it’s rules - similar to RT. For e.g. After picking your first attack team, it remains as your attack team until they’re no longer. Something like that.

Challenge Events are great as there is still that aim to get in the Top 100.

Base is always there and always (if you’re slack like me) something left to upgrade, craft, etc.

Heroes, I no longer chase, and have the luxury of being able to pick and choose who can be maxed.

6 Likes

Do you think another level would be interesting?
Already know if I go over 2500 cups I see naybe 2-3 almost identical defenseteam types. I assume it would get worse in this higher raid league.

2 Likes

I agree with you. I look forward to more challenging and fun content.

I think part of why players complain is that progress in the game you eventually need 5* heroes and that’s a challenge for FTP players.

I really liked the POV and I’m really happy with Season 3. I’m looking forward to more advanced player content too.:wink:

2 Likes

I may not be at @Cvs’s level, but as a daily player for close to two years I would welcome new gameplay for higher level players.

There were milestones you had to pass in the early game to participate in more areas of the game. I would like to see things added for higher levels of individuals and alliances. None of these are original to me, I’ve seen them presented in different places in the forum.

  • I like the above mentioned idea of higher levels of daily quests. I haven’t done a standard quest beyond the ones needed for pov in a year. The rewards aren’t worth the WE nor the time.

  • I like the idea of further rewards and tougher tasks for pov

  • For higher level alliances I would welcome changes to war. More flags, one time use defenses, raid tourney like restrictions (but greatly expanded).

  • I am interested in gameplay changes. Things like allowing multiple teams to work together against an opponent/monster/level, maybe play options that are not the same matching of gems that we have had for three seasons.

There’s more and I will revisit this as I think on things.

3 Likes

First, I would like to say I appreciate the thoughtful responses. The dumpster fire may still come, but at least the first 14ish responses have restored my faith in the forum.

Responding individually to some of the ideas above

4 Likes

I understand what you’re saying, however the goal of getting to Diamond has long since passed for those of us that have played for years and it would be great to see another tier added…with rules perhaps so we’re not inundated with Guins and Tells :woman_shrugging:

I like a lot of the ideas here.

The daily quests having more scale would be a great general update and would certainly bring some new life into the game. Also, the choose your path idea is a great one that has a real scale.

You and I can autoplay just about all the same items and I would love to see even more that I cant.

1 Like

I played through everything myself the first time because it was fun. But I did go back and am able to play all of normal on auto and P1 on hard without changing my standard defense.

1 Like

The biggest problem I see with this, and the other post, is that when you scale things for top level players (like the PoV stuff you added, or even events) is it further widens the gap between the top 0.1% and everyone else.

Before you misunderstand stand me, I’m not talking about the gap that comes between new/old or pay/free, but the gap caused by available mats and who can access them.

The reward structuring causes the chance of someone joining this very top tier to fall, as the same people that are already winning all these events/tournaments, would be the same to win the new harder events/tournament/pov.

The rich get richer, so to speak. The problem is that as a company, you are wanting EVERYONE to get richer thus growing a more dedicated base.

Now, I completely agree that as a higher level, or long time, player there are certainly diminishing returns right now. I also agree that the Devs need to do SOMETHING to appease them (I guess I could fall into this category, playing over 2.5 years now). What I personally don’t want to see if something that will make those I play with who are F2P or C2P get disheartened and leave, or make newer players feel like things are so far out of reach the player base starts dying off.

I played a game back in the early 90’s this happened to. It, at one time, was up in the low 7 figures of players but continued catering to a small group of people. The game still runs today, but to about 2000. Obviously THAT isn’t going to happen here, especially in the mobile gaming age, but I’d like to see it continue to grow rather than stagnate.

I hope they find and strike a good balance for everyone.

3 Likes

I am going to disagree with both you and @NPNKY here but we may just agree to disagree on the point.

I know it is a hot topic, but I don’t mind if someone buys something that I don’t. As long as they arent directly selling heroes, its all good to me.

I do like your expert idea on the challenge events and that has the added benefit of being an easy add for SG.

Cookie Settings