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BarronRichthofen

Player Retention and Low Tier Play

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So my son has decided to start playing WoW's and asked me to help him grind up some GXP and Silver. Now his is a brand new Account and a few of the thing I've noticed about the new player experience I'm going to include in this post.

The service record. Here is where the issues come in. Most of us who have been playing a long time do not remember the total annoyance of the service record. No upgrades til level 6, not a big issue but annoying. No Captains until level 7, HUGE Issue here.

The experience I had was ok at lower levels of service Until I reached this point. I'm not certain of this but prior to level 7 of service the matches had a few real players but mainly bot's. ( I think WG has a block at Lv 7 service record similar to the 1 Tier MM at lower Tiers) The first match after reaching level 7 on the service record was UGLY. 0 point capt random battle, G-101. (yeah I should have been grinding in co-op until at a decent svc lv but I HATE co-op) Anyways, 0 point capt's are thrown in with the normal player base. So new Players with a dozen or so battles 0 point captain are being thrown into a match with 24 real players and Captains seal clubbing with 10+ point captains. That is just cruel and almost evil to do to these new players.

At level 7 they have NO FLAGS, NO CAMMO, and a 0 to very low point captain. They can be facing off against people in say a Tier 4 ship  Like a V-170. Now I still own my V-170, it only has a 10 Point captain but with the Captain and Cammo Her detection is a 5.5 km vs a G-101 sitting at 6.7km with no camo or Concealment Expert for his captain. In a DD fight this stacks it so far in favor of the V-170 it is UGLY for the G-101, totally unfair even. This can and probably does cause new players to quit right there. I do not know the numbers of players going on past this point but I suspect that this is the first hurdle WG has to player retention. The second was the Tier IV vs VI, which they sort of fixed with the 1 Tier MM stuff at low Tiers.

I'm not saying WG should eliminate  the Service record. But I do think they should re-order the service record to be more friendly to new players. Service level 1 and 2 are fine, as are 12-15.  But to maximize player retention they should reorder 3-10 so new players get a better feel for the game as they increase service level. My Suggestion for this does not include the Silver or other rewards for achieving a Service level just the "Main" reward (random battles, captain, camo, signals ect)

Level 3 Upgrades (currently Random Battles)

Level 4 Ship Commander (currently Containers)

Level 5  Containers (Currently Free XP)

Level 6  Free XP (Currently Ship Upgrades)

Level 7 Random Battles (Currently Ship Commanders)

Level 8 Signals (Currently Scenarios)

Level 9 Camouflage (Currently Campaigns) 

Level 10 Scenarios (Currently Signals)

Level 11 Campaigns (Currently  Camouflage)

By simply re-ordering the service levels like this new players can learn about Upgrade's and  Ship commanders far earlier and when they Reach  Level 7 and are thrown into to the Big boy pool from the kiddie pool it will not be such a shock. They will have learned about Commanders and Upgrades long ago (thanks to the lower XP gains from Co-op) and will at least have some experience with some of the core components before facing off vs REAL Players.  I personally think that this would help a lot with player retention.

What do you other players think?

Look at  this from a New player perspective and please give constructive criticism. 

 

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Well since they are kept in the kiddie pool till level 14, most players are in the same level. 

 

Problem is once they get released to the open population it is a rude awakening because the game doesn't explain or provide tutorials on how to set up your ships, captains and how to actually play (proper angling, AP vs HE, ect)

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I could see that helping some, afaik most new players arent leaving the protected MM until T5.

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Honestly, I think gating things in general can be cruel. Back when I first started, I so badly wanted to grind the ARP stuff, but only was able to by the time they released the penultimate set. Sure, it was made okay by the last month having every single one, but it doesn't change how frustrating it was to be at a loss for how on Earth I unlock access. I think I dug for an hour or two before I finally found the list of unlocks, and it still took me some time to even unlock the stuff.

Every other unlock at the time was just "Cool, I can do that eventually, I guess." But with them giving you little to actually work with, these unlocks don't mean a whole lot to a new player. I actually think this is one place WoT does better, as they give you a commander with the tank you pick. A crap one, but still.

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8 minutes ago, RipNuN2 said:

I could see that helping some, afaik most new players arent leaving the protected MM until T5.

Don't you leave protected at around level 7 or 9 or something?

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6 minutes ago, Shoggoth_pinup said:

Don't you leave protected at around level 7 or 9 or something?

 

There are multiple different ways to leave protected MM including service level or your first T5 match.

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I just started a second account to get the refer a friend rewards and experience game play a bit more leisurely. I haven’t really found any issues with the tier system yet but only gotten to rank 7 so far and strictly played tier 2/3. It will be interesting to see what happens when I get into tier 4 or whenever protected matchmaking ends.

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Throw the seals a fish, grant them a free tier 10 captain for their first ship raching the appropriate level. It’s true with the amount of clubbing going on these guys get bloodied.

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Well as I stated I experienced leaving protected MM the first match after achieving Service record level 7. The first Tier 5 match may also be a trigger for this. I bounced around some with the low tier ships so he would have some options instead of only one line researched. But I don't think you can grind a Tier 5 ship before Level 7 of the Service record. Buy yeah but Grind I doubt it.

 

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5 minutes ago, monpetitloup said:

Throw the seals a fish, grant them a free tier 10 captain for their first ship raching the appropriate level. It’s true with the amount of clubbing going on these guys get bloodied.

I don't think I'd go that far. But at least let them learn about captains (and have a few captain points) and modules before facing off against other players. At least they are not Facing Gaede's and the Hydro on a DD at Tier 3 (Unless they division with a Tier 5 and the Gaede Does the same)

 

Edited by BarronRichthofen

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As a veteran player myself, I'm way past these issues, like you Barron.  And yet, one thing that I'd suggest, though I feel that there's no way in hell that WG would do it, is this.  Instead of new captains having 0 skill points, I wish that all new captains had 10 skill points (enough to have 1 L1, 1 L2, 1 L3, and 1 L4 skill), or perhaps 6 skill points (enough for 1 skill at levels 1, 2, and 3).  This would mean that no player would ever have a truly dreadful new captain.  All new captains would be reasonably competitive, assuming that the player knew the proper skills to select.

 

 

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54 minutes ago, BarronRichthofen said:

I don't think I'd go that far. But at least let them learn about captains (and have a few captain points) and modules before facing off against other players. At least they are not Facing Gaede's and the Hydro on a DD at Tier 3 (Unless they division with a Tier 5 and the Gaede Does the same)

 

I would. We all got at least a couple free captains by now. And the pop is so mature at this point that ranked is tier 10 and missions have reached tier 6 minimum. Any fool who actually is trying to start today should get a filet mignon thrown at him. First hit’s always free remember?

Edited by monpetitloup
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True. I really hadn't though of how mature the player base is. I have 6 19 point captains and I don't think I have a single one below 10 points. With all the 19 pointers I have it's easy for me to bump a captain to 10 points. A 6-10 point captain and a FORCED tutorial on captain skills would help them a lot. 

 

The ideal is to increase player retention here so giving the new player a decent captain and teaching him what skills to take for it would help. 

Edited by BarronRichthofen

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Protected level is 11, tier is 4. Once the player breaches these, he's out in general population.

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24 minutes ago, BarronRichthofen said:

True. I really hadn't though of how mature the player base is. I have 6 19 point captains and I don't think I have a single one below 10 points. With all the 19 pointers I have it's easy for me to bump a captain to 10 points. A 6-10 point captain and a FORCED tutorial on captain skills would help them a lot. 

 

The ideal is to increase player retention here so giving the new player a decent captain and teaching him what skills to take for it would help. 

You're making the same failed assumption WG seems to make. That they want to learn.....

Most of them don't, don't want to invest the time. I've spent 3 years in port chat watching this go on....forcing a tutorial on them will do nothing but drive them away quicker.

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58 minutes ago, TheTrickpony said:

I just started a second account to get the refer a friend rewards and experience game play a bit more leisurely. I haven’t really found any issues with the tier system yet but only gotten to rank 7 so far and strictly played tier 2/3. It will be interesting to see what happens when I get into tier 4 or whenever protected matchmaking ends.

Remember doing so you alrady know how to play. It’s easy to put up purple numbers doing that. A true noob would be clueless.

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I really wish they would implement a "newbie" campaign for each class of ship. In other words you unlock the campaign at low tier and have to run thru a set of missions that essentially teach you the game all done thru co-op. Your "graduation" would be to play a PvP match in that class of ship. Do this for each kind of ship and by the time you are done you have maxed out not only your service level but are tossed into PvP combat with a nice, fully upgraded tier 3-4 ship. A nice prize for finishing each one would be a 10 point captain to put on your boat. IMHO everyone wins. 

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7 minutes ago, monpetitloup said:

Remember doing so you alrady know how to play. It’s easy to put up purple numbers doing that. A true noob would be clueless.

This is only partly true.

I started playing when Twitch gave away a free Texas and during the Cat Commander promotion so jumped in straight away cluelessly playing tier 5. That was also about the time of last ranked season and coming from a MMO background wanted to experience what I thought was “endgame” so picked up a Prinz Eugen that I had no idea how to use properly and combined picked up about 300 games of truly abysmal play before getting any sort of clue. Even now I only really feel comfortable in a few ships that I can count on to strongly contribute in any game situation.

I have consciously made a decision to play exclusively French ships on my alt account since it is a line I haven’t explored yet, so my experience will actually be closer to that of newbie than a truly good player.

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     What's always bothered me is the emphasis on T10 play.  90% of the ships are T9 and below.  Beautifully rendered and a lot of fun to play.

     Fun.  Especially T5 - T7 and maybe T8.  And yet the emphasis on T10 and the high expenses to drive sales of premium time, etc... I have premium time, and it's the best Christmas money spent in the game for me.  In fact about the only money.  It's great for campaigns, etc.  But it would be nice if there was equal time given to encourage game play in tiers that don't have an "X" in them.

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2 hours ago, BarronRichthofen said:

So my son has decided to start playing WoW's and asked me to help him grind up some GXP and Silver. Now his is a brand new Account and a few of the thing I've noticed about the new player experience I'm going to include in this post.

The service record. Here is where the issues come in. Most of us who have been playing a long time do not remember the total annoyance of the service record. No upgrades til level 6, not a big issue but annoying. No Captains until level 7, HUGE Issue here.

The experience I had was ok at lower levels of service Until I reached this point. I'm not certain of this but prior to level 7 of service the matches had a few real players but mainly bot's. ( I think WG has a block at Lv 7 service record similar to the 1 Tier MM at lower Tiers) The first match after reaching level 7 on the service record was UGLY. 0 point capt random battle, G-101......etc

Look at  this from a New player perspective and please give constructive criticism. 

 

So just to be certain...you're playing the game for him so that he'll have to figure out how to play at a higher level without ANY in-game experience nor skill?

VR,

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1 hour ago, TexJapan said:

So just to be certain...you're playing the game for him so that he'll have to figure out how to play at a higher level without ANY in-game experience nor skill?

VR,

4 hours ago, BarronRichthofen said:

The first match after reaching level 7 on the service record was UGLY

I'm assuming not based on that comment...w/as many games as he has in it would be a seal clubbing nightmare for his opponents at that level as opposed to something described as UGLY...well...UGLY would work...just w/the roles reversed.

 

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My son introduced me to WOWS about 2 years ago.  He didn't tell me anything but WASD and use the mouse to shoot.  I didn't even know how to line up a torp shot.  I floundered around for weeks trying to figure out how to improve.  I guess that I had been playing for 6 months or more before I found Wiki.  That made a terrific difference.  I understood what different things did.  I didn't find the forums until 6 months ago.  Be patient with newbys.  There's a lot to learn.  Some of us played games back in the days of Atari (before many of you were born).  

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2 hours ago, TexJapan said:

So just to be certain...you're playing the game for him so that he'll have to figure out how to play at a higher level without ANY in-game experience nor skill?

VR,

I've only played a few matches for him most I was coaching him beside him, 2 or 3 really. he only has 15 i think total.

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I think the biggest thing they could do to curb seal clubbing would be to cap the number of captain skill points actually work below t5.  yes, you can drop your 19 point captain ther,e but if you only get credit for the first 7-9 points (no CE) it would make a big difference.

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