Titans and AW - a bit more resilience against Connection Failure

Similar was posted in January and not much seemed to come of it, and evidently it’s still happening.

I’m resurrecting, with a more concrete description of the problem and suggestion for approach to address:

The problem:

Disconnection at the time you join a Titan fight, or start an Alliance War battle will take your energy, but then fail to present the encounter and take you back to main screen, with the result that you lose the energy for the encounter, with no result.
This, for a Titan, can be annoying. For Alliance Wars it can be a game changer. Our last war was sufficiently close that 1 person’s decent contribution was the difference between win and lose. One of our top hitters had her attack aborted at the start by lost connection and lost the flag with 0 points. We ended up losing the war by less than what she would have won for that battle.

This is not a one-off deal. Our alliance member has lost a number of Titan flags to this issue, and there is the very real possibility of her losing more War attack flags to the same. It’s happened to me a couple of times as well (on Titans), and I generally play in areas with GOOD connection.

Potential Ideas to Fix:

(1) For the Titan:
Check the connection BEFORE you deduct the flag. You only enter the battle once connection to the server is established, and only take the flag at the time you enter the battle. (Obviously can’t take the flag after the battle screen has shown otherwise people start abusing it and killing the app mid-battle).
If you lose connection mid battle or when submitting result, that unfortunately is too bad, otherwise it can again be exploited. But this suggestion would still help, because you are establishing that the connection exists prior to committing the resource. That will serve in most cases.

(2) For the Alliance War Battle:
Similar to above… only take the flag after the connection is established. But in addition, you preserve the reservation on that team by the attacker for a limited time… so once the attacker comes back they can start the aborted encounter without someone else having jumped in. They cannot take part in another encounter while that reservation is in place.
Again, a disconnect once the screen has rendered and the battle has started would just be too bad to prevent abuse.

This is a mobile game, guys… would be nice if there is at least a nod to the possibility of a variable connection and SOME resilience against it.

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Would be good to get some thoughts about this. Is it an issue for others? Is it a reasonable idea, or just a waste of time?

Can’t see the coding changes being too difficult (really just changing order of events), assuming reasonable app design…?

I just lost a Titan attack point due to this issue. Could the points be decucted ONCE the battlefield gets loaded? It’s not the first time it happened to me. Realy anoying…

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In the last two AW I have lost hits as part of this. Once before I even crossed the bridge (this morning) and once AFTER I killed the team. It would be great if there would be a way to tweak this so that it happens less often.

Both instances on strong, reliable wifi.

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I’ve lost a few titan and war flags due to connection issues. But always chalked it up as my own individual issue if i have bad connection. I am interested to see if there could be a fix for this, never crossed my mind that there could be.

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To be fair, there isn’t a true fix to losing connection without massive effort. Really, the idea is to make your progress or your points more resilient to it, so you don’t end up being disadvantaged by the game’s bad handling of a lost connection.

If you’re programming a game to run on a mobile device, really you should be programming better handling of connection issues than that which we have observed. It’s no small thing that the loss of a person’s connection may have cost the whole alliance their victory in the war due to an essentially avoidable issue with a simple fix in the way you deal with the potential for lost connection.

I don’t know that there is a perfect solution, but even personally if they didn’t debit the flags until an actual game move was made (i.e. a match) it would eliminate 50% of my problems. AW provides me the perfect example. Last war - I started a war and it never even started. -1 flag. War before I finished a one shot KO victory and it locked up. -1 flag. I’m actually not that bothered by the latter because I know they can’t implement this as the debit point because it would make it easily abused. Raid not going well? Titan board suck? Peace out at try again, no penalty.

It’s the ones that lock up at the very beginning that bother me the most and happen the most for me (I’d say its 70% at beginning, 25% sometime during and 5% at the end). Happens about once a day overall to me and I am 99% on reliable wifi and when I do it over LTE I know I am taking a risk.

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The loss of connection is getting to be a very big issue. And I don’t think it is the player’s connection that is the problem. This has only recently become such an issue in the forum. One of our last AW several of our alliance were losing connection during the last hour of the war, myself included. Some of us were thrown out of the game entirely. In addition, the chat was going haywire. The members of our alliance are situated in three countries - it is hard to imagine connectivity failures spread this far out all at the same time. During the last war, we experienced loss of connection again, resulting in loss of the points for taking down a whole team. It also occured this week during a titan fight, so those points were lost as well.
SG needs to look into this asap.

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Agree. Pressure on getting your transaction handling correct in the face of potential connection issues (whether they be server side or client doesn’t make a difference) is going to ramp up with alliance wars. If you are introducing direct competition in the game, you need to be scrupulous in providing a fair and level playing field, or you open yourself to a lot of noise.

@sleeperZ96BT is spot on. There isn’t a perfect solution. The proposal I put forward is an EASY solution that is implemented client side and is agnostic to where the interruption to service happens… but will handle a large proportion of the problems in a fair way. (The ol’ 80/20 rule.))

There is a timer on titan fights and in war battles. If there is a lost connection, can’t the battle be saved and restored upon reestablishment of connection? Click can keep ticking for fairness. Or even if lost connection cannot be restored, allow the time to run out and award whatever score had already been earned. A level of offline play or at least offline save of battle with loss of time restored or not-a continue or not isn’t the issue. Either save and reward partial progress or return flag with titan battle time shortened. In war, either lose flag or heroes but not both OR award progress before lost connection. Can we try and find a good fair solution rather than just say it will be abused and not try?

Above, insert clock in place of click…

…an offline save of progress could award remaining time without awarding battle progress on titan fights.

On war battles, less than 5 seconds used may indicate unintentional connection loss warranting full restoration of heroes & flag. More time expended may indicate potential abuse & loss of flag or heroes with 0 points. Another option would be to lose both while awarding points accumulated. THE WAY IT IS NOW IS NOT NOT NOT FAIR! Give heroes back, flag back or accumulated points back. None of what I suggest is fair enough but until a better solution comes around, this is a good compromise. You can even go with score say, after 30 seconds or more as a rule. Under 10 sec, restore flag & heroes. Between 10 & 30 seconds, lose flag or heroes but not both.

Best solution for wars would be to allow offline battle with results reported online. The connection establishing icon with a timer on screen would alert gamer to need to reestablish connection within time indicated. A short buffing time would be required before battle to download required battle game. Another acceptable option would be recording of battle progress offline with brief pause before game to ensure adequate memory on device. After the battle, results reported & battle deleted off memory.

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