Q&A with Game Designers - Summer 2022 Edition (Discussion for Part I)

We have now published the first part of the answers for our Summer 2022 Q&A! Please read them here:

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Thank you for doing this. It was much requested in the past and I think the community wants it even if we don’t always get the answers we want.

  • “So… what are these dragons that were mentioned last year?”
    Tim: We’re still working on it:) It’s a big feature, bigger than any of the events we’ve ever done, and for the first half of the year we’ve been building the foundation for it (involving some buildings and other fundamental elements). In the latter part of the year, we will hopefully get to work on the new kind of gameplay stages and the new type of Heroes. There’s a chance that something reaches beta testing very late this year — but no promises yet.

More comments on new buildings. It seems like this could be a game changer in how the game is played which increases its excitement. What does new type of heroes mean? Intriguing.

  • “What is the likelihood of having an event around players being able to swap their unwanted duplicate Heros with others who might hold duplicate copies of Heros they desire. Soul Exchange is a great initiative but let’s be honest, freeing up roster space is appreciated, but 15x5 Heros for 1x5* Hero is an expensive choice to make“*
    Joel: Direct Hero swaps between players is something we’re not currently considering for Empires & Puzzles. It was a big push for us to get the Soul Exchange into the game — we’ll continue to keep a close eye on how it functions for the remainder of this year (and beyond).

Trading won’t happen. It’s been asked. It’s been answered. And it continues to be asked.

  • “What are the biggest changes to gameplay upcoming?”
    Tim: As always, we hope that upcoming features and Heroes make their mark and contribute to the game in meaningful ways. On that note, we hope that Monster Island — the co-operative Alliance adventure — will provide something completely new every month once it’s running at full capacity. The big dragon-related feature, which I can’t really say much more about quite yet, is also something that will hopefully add a new perspective to many familiar things, from Heroes to stages to PvP.

More mentions of dragons and monster island. Potentially exciting content.

  • “Another match3 game I play just added a 3x speed mode to all animations which greatly speed up animations. I know SG has said this can add strain on old devices. Is this any more possible now?”
    Joel: We’re not actively looking into adding a speed-up mode to the game. As with many other things, it will likely have both benefits and drawbacks, but considering how well our core gameplay works as it currently is, we don’t think adjusting it — even on a seemingly simple level (speed) — is really the best way to go.

My question. Playing on 1X is painful in that game now and I only do it in timed modes to make sure I’m not wasting time thinking. Faster speed is a thing from games to podcasts/audiobooks. I enjoy playing the game, not waiting for everything to happen so I can go back to playing.

  • “There is severe dis-trust in the forums regarding pretty much all the odds that are stated on the Hero cards: Special chances, talent/ability chances, passive chances. Can you issue a clear statement that you are using an honest, un-tweaked, good, well code-reviewed RNG for all those, using exactly the stated percentages for both the defenses and attackers?”
    Tim: I believe such concerns regarding RNG have been addressed several times already (though the last time may have been a long time ago)? From my perspective, I can say there is simply no need to tweak the chances in such ways in the game. It’s by far best to keep the system as simple as possible when it comes to RNG. This has been the case from Day 0 of the game’s development; the game is already so complex that doing anything unnecessary with any of the odds would just create problems for us.
    That being said, some individual specials or talents may have some unintended oddities that were not caught during testing. We definitely try to fix these when we become aware of them. But these are always issues concerning a specific aspect of some very specific thing, not a widespread underlying RNG problem, or anything that would be designed to specifically benefit either the defender or attacker. For example, I think we had a problem with a specific talent in Puzzle Combat that made a Hero’s odds of reviving suspiciously high. Indeed, in that case there was a clear and easily reproducible bug in there — it took a while to identify it, but things were absolutely clear once it was found.

Another question that has been asked and answered. However I fear the admission that they once got it wrong will be all the proof some need.

Summary

Questions have been asked and answered or questions
Questions are about upcoming changes that can’t be commented on further
Questions are about changes to gameplay and there are no changes to gameplay planned

I’m glad they go through this and answer questions even if I feel many answers won’t be enough.

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… and it’d be really cool to be able to provide extra utility without having to summon for it again.

Costumes are a farce.
Thanks for skirting the subject.

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  • Is your team actively discussing any specific ways that the game can grow without requiring more and more screentime?”
  • Tim: We do keep track of screen time, and from our perspective we’re actually extremely mindful of that aspect of the game. One could say that each player probably has something they would like to do quite a bit more of each day. For example, I’d really, really like to play more PvP daily, as I only really engage with Wars and Tournaments; I hope that we could get something extra to do every day on that front. But that is just my own personal preference on that very specific matter:slight_smile:

Are they really that mindful of screentime? Forcing us to play the new seasonal event in order is the most recent example of unnecessary screentime added to get premium rewards. The latter part of the response tells me that the question was answered on an individual feature level rather than an aggregate screentime per day.

Grinding and playing all features takes way too much time; even the game designer picks only a subset of features to play (from what I am reading).

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I am happy to see that now at least there is a small chance for having some new 3-4 star heroes for season 5 (or 4 ???).
Last year it was clearly stated there are no plans on doing them.

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First off, a big thank you to the SG team for doing this. As @Ruskin505 mentioned above, we may not always like the answers BUT I do appreciate the attempt to engage, and the time/effort needed to put this together.

First impressions:

I sure am curious how the calendar will look like, once THAT is added in… several events (Mythic Titan, Costume Chamber…) already do not run every month… please please please please do not bump Atlantis Rising to every 2 months…!!

This I very much agree with - at least, the new shortened POV contains enough slack re missing Dailies or last tiers of Valor challenges. I am able to open 3 extra valor chests despite missing the last tier of 6* Titan challenges, for example

I personally have no issues with how RNG works in this game… my issue is with the low odds. Would increasing the 1% chance of a Legendary in some portals to 1.5% or 2% really break the game?

This gives some insight, I would expect that things like balancing heroes and creating new costumes are also time and resource-specific. So… of course the most recent heroes are prioritized eh? :wink:

So is this a way of saying players weren’t as interested in Slayers / Villains / Starfall? I wonder if it has anything to do with:

a) too many events
b) Gargoyles heroes being arguably more powerful, and thus more attractive to summon, compared to Villains et. al. (after all, how many times did THOSE families get buffed??)

I’d be curious as to the exact metrics reviewed, to say that Gargoyles should continue separately. or is it because we’ve only had 1 Gargoyles run so far, while the others have had multiple… so if Gargoyles’ does not do so well after a couple of runs they could get lumped in with the rest…?

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I love how they tackled the hard-hitting questions! I’ve been wondering about those bridges for ages.

Ok, I’m acting in bad faith. They did go a bit more in depth than this.

A lot of talk but nothing is said. They are like a true politicians.

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Higher Titan: blah blah blah, but not a priority…
New War type: blah blah blah, but not a priority…
W3K: blah blah blah, but not a priority…
New 3-4* heroes: blah blah blah, but not a priority…
Revamp quests: blah blah blah, but not a priority…
General game play improvement: blah blah blah, but not a priority…

My take in short: Only priority is designing new overpower 5* heroes that they can sell to us (and then nerf!). I loved this game, but I have stop spending money since the C-Krampus racket and the money greed overall culture is starting to get to me and I just played less and less lately because I just feel like a money milking cow.

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After reading the Q&A that was exactly my opinion! Just blablabla

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Yes, I can agree. They have not told much more information besides what is already on 2022 Sneak Peak.

Maybe they will give more new information to us next week of the week after… :smiley:

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If they dont have time they should hire more people. But that would eat into their earnings so probably not a priority…

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“A lot of players have their favorite HotMs,”

Yes.
And none of those players receive the…

“extra utility (and hopefully interesting looks)”

Unless…
they spend to get "their favorite HotMs"
again and again.

:+1:

Also also, was it just me?
Or…
Was the answer to this question:

"No, we’re trying to figure out how to add more time suck to the game"

Did I comprehend that wrong?

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I don’t think so learned anything from reading this. Can I have my ten minutes back?

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Reading all of those responses, and so much of “it’s not a priority right now” - brought one single question to my mind, and that is;

What is on the priority list right now, then?

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Very good question. :slight_smile:

But I think we all know: Releasing new OP heroes, what everyone will pull for.

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i see that my question about the possibility of Sand Empire being replaced by Kalevala got answered.

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Did anyone else notice a clear avoidance of an important topic? Specifically:

  1. In a future ruled by Giant Robots and Cybernetic Monkeys who wage war against each other, which side do you pick?
  2. In this future ruled by Giant Robots waging war with Cybernetic Monkeys, if the Cybernetic Monkeys won, how would that make you feel and why?
  3. In the future when the Cybernetic Monkeys rule the planet, the only food anyone will be allowed to eat is bananas. Do you like bananas?

I think we have some Giant Robot sympathizers working at SGG!!!


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Not gonna lie, I’m a bit concerned about this:

So… what are these dragons that were mentioned last year?”

  • Tim: We’re still working on it:) It’s a big feature, bigger than any of the events we’ve ever done, and for the first half of the year we’ve been building the foundation for it (involving some buildings and other fundamental elements). In the latter part of the year, we will hopefully get to work on the new kind of gameplay stages and the new type of Heroes.

Especially the “bigger than any of the events we’ve ever done” and “new type of Heroes” parts.

While I’d welcome new, creative ideas, I don’t want E&P to become a completely different game. I chose it because I like its core gameplay the way it is.

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