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knightofeffect
05-25-2013, 03:06 PM
An anecdote:
There is a new set coming out for your favorite card game. You have been looking forward to this for a while, all indications is that this will be the best set in a long, long time. As a matter of fact, you have been trying to get all your friends hyped up for its release as it promises to usher in a new height to the game. You and one of your friends rush down to the store for a midnight launch of the new set to get a head start on the rest of your friends, each planning to buy a box for themselves and bust it on the spot. The time finally arrives and you and your friend are just tearing through pack after pack. When all the foil settles, you are almost stunned to realize that you didn't hardly get a single card that you were hoping for from the spoilers, what's worse, your friend got several rares he was hoping for and even a couple of probably really valuable foils. Now you know you should be happy for your friend, I mean, your collection was already a lot better than his, but you can't help but feel severely let down and disappointed. You rarely buy a whole box as it is a little outside your budget, and now your uncomfortable and a little confused, you're not sure if you want to buy more or just go home and forget about the whole thing. Only thing you do know for sure; you won't be on the front line hyping up all your other friends opening up their product tomorrow.

To start off, I will not be discussing or comparing the relative values of any of the tiers. Honestly, I don't think there is really any big controversy about the relative value of the tiers; there is a lot of unknowns about the value of PvE perks, obviously forever is more than 1 year if your planned perspective is further out than only a single year, and two perks is better than one. All I am trying to do is understand the community reaction the game has recently experienced, Cryptozoic's motivation and reasoning, the ramifications of those decisions, and where to go from here.

Major TL;DR ensuing warning:
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"Well, the GK and PP tiers sold out with the quickness... Everyone seems to really put a ton of value on those lifetime drafts."

"Yea... I mean it kind of makes sense. Guaranteed value over time as long as the game stays afloat. It's worth like $1 a day, every day... And that's even if you don't win a single draft."

"But these other $250 tiers are good too. Maybe if people had a better appreciation for how those PvE mechanics worked, they would be more popular."

"But still... There has never been an economy for a PvE MMOTCG, the competitive value of cards has always driven the TCG market. How could be ever convince them that the other $250 rewards are of comparative value?"

"Yea, you're probably right... But man, those GK and PP backers really did a huge job of fueling this campaign's meteoric rise. It would really be great if we could move the other $250 tiers like that."

"Hey, everyone keeps talking about the drafts, right?"

"Sure"

"Well, let's give all the $250 tiers drafts for a little while at least..."

"What, like a year?"

"Sure, why not?"

"I guess we could do that... Wouldn't the hardcore backers just buy more of those tiers and stacks all the drafts like we have already seen?"

"Well then we'll say they don't stack with any other free drafts"

"Man, all these tiers and stacking sure is getting complicated..."

"Hey, we knew what we were getting into with a playerbase as aggressive as TCGs"

"Wait... speaking of that, won't the PP and GK backers be a little upset over this"

"Nah, they still have by far the best long term value, and this will actually probably make drafting easier for them. And we'll throw them a couple of set 2 packs for good measure."

"Alright... if you say so... I hope the PvE drafters don't just rare-draft and then idle out in games."

"Haha, don't worry, this train is up to full steam as it is... Everyone is going to be blown away by the tablet support anyway."
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Seems like a pretty reasonable Cryptozoic conversation.
Now for some internal GK backer conversation:

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"Hmmmm... this game looks pretty sweet. I mean investing a bunch of money in something that is this big of an unknown is kinda risky, but they are offering amazing value.

The King is the best bang for the buck on just straight packs... I really wish the PP tier was still open, a free draft every week would be incredible!

Phew... Am I really considering going up to the $500 GK tier? I mean, the value is just amazing! The way this campaign is going, it seems like this game is going to have a pretty large playerbase too.

Yea, this is really just too good to refuse. I'll just make sure all of my friends get into it too.

So far the stretch goals are going to be awesome and there are still like 5 left. It's still kinda a risk, but I can't help but get really excited and engaged in this!"
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Full disclosure: I'm a GK backer and while the above conversation isn't exactly what went through my head, something both more verbose and less dramatic did with the same results; I made an emotional decision fairly quickly for more money than I would expect to risk on an unreleased product based on trends, perceived value, and diminishing availability. Judging by a lot of the comments and conversations I've seen recently, I am by no means in the minority. However, after the legendary reveal, while I had the pang of disappointment and a little uneasiness that many also experienced, I tried to be pragmatic in my approach to what is going to happen next, and what I should do.

The first ramification of the legendary goal was immediately obvious: the community was now divided.
There was overt jealousy towards the holders of the free weekly drafts, which is completely reasonable and expected. Every kickstarter that has "early bird" tiers or exhaustible special tiers experiences this, it's only natural. As I'm sure we all know, the TCG playerbase is a very competitive and emotional group that has always "enjoyed" a fragile balance of fair play and hostility. Several times in my playing career I've seen various skirmishes break out over contentious issues here and there; almost all of them have been over a competitive or financial advantage. Honestly, all it really requires is the perception of a possible competitive or financial advantage in order to funnel fuel over the always glowing embers.

My first thought was "Uh oh, these 2000 people thought they had a really rare foil, only to discover that a bunch of other people were given the exact same foil as a promo". I mean, yea, eventually the basic print foil would be worth more than the promo foil, but these people are probably going to be pretty pissed that their exclusivity just took a huge hit.
Oh geez, then there is going to be the other whole side of people that are glad to see them knocked down a peg and will accuse them of entitlement and greedy for wanting more than everyone else. I mean, they technically didn't lose anything at all and instead now there is a greater chance of people flocking to the higher tiers and participating in drafts... What kind of self-entitled a-hole could be against that? It'd not like they are going to drop their tier anyway... it's still the best.

knightofeffect
05-25-2013, 03:06 PM
As I alluded to in the opening anecdote, the legendary goal had a huge build up. The last few tiers had seen rare and legendary equipment get handed out, 50 packs of set 2, crafting materials, keep defense, playback tools... I mean the last tier before legendary had been a little lame, but that was just the calm before the storm right? This was going to be the best, give me all the ammo I need to convert my holdout friends and then this kickstarter was going to soar even higher!

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"Tablet support... a few set 2 packs... a huge re-balancing of relative tier values... more confusing rules about the stacking of rewards...

Hmmmmmmm

Well, in all honesty, the tablet support, while expected, could really be the thing that helps this game challenge the big-time players in the market currently. It might be the thing that actually makes this investment the most worthwhile, but.. on the face of it? I don't have a tablet and I imagine a lot of hardcore TCG players don't overlap with the more casual-computing tablet market (notice how many requests for windows tablet there are? Not quite the representative market share.).

More packs is always nice, but my free drafts and couple hundred other packs makes this seem kinda insignificant, like a drop in a lake.

But now what about the no-brainer decision I made when I stepped up to these high tiers? Well, now the situation is much more confusing... It seem like getting two $250 tiers is the best idea, but wait... the stacking rules kinda ruins that... unless you are stacking PPs... What if I just get a regular king and $250? Well, I still don't really know what to expect about PvE and how important that will be to me... all I could possibly know about is the competitive TCGs I have always played.
I still really want the eternal drafts, but is the cost worth it now? Man I really wish this legendary goal had continued to solidify my certainty in my decision and evangelical fanaticism instead of making me take a step back and reevaluate everything."
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Those were roughly my immediate thoughts when checking the legendary update right as it was posted. I like to think they were a fairly reasonable response. Obviously the question, "Is the cost worth it?" doesn't make too much sense as the value of my choice did not change, but the clear pressuring incentive as something that simply was too good to turn down had been muddied with other compelling, less expensive options.

I quickly saw many more responses that clearly contained some similar feelings, but also included a lot more resentment, anger, and abject disappointment.
It seemed like Cryptozoic had taken their most engaged and fanatical playerbase, those that were very plugged into their current competitive TCG scenes, those that got onboard Hex early and in a big way... they took them, got them built up for the final revelation that would ensure Hex's place firmly in their future and additional validation that they were part of the elite that would long enjoy the fruits of their early faith... and - poured - cold - water - all - over - them.

We have seen the huge momentum Hex had building (at least via kicktraq trends) come to a nearly complete halt immediately after the reveal. Was it just a coincidence as the last few GK's had sold out just a day before? Or did the external narrative encouraging people to jump on the train change dramatically as internal conflict began and maybe a car or two jumped the tracks?

knightofeffect
05-25-2013, 03:07 PM
I don't think I could be any more long-winded about the causes and effects, but how about where to do from here?
Backing up is clearly not an option and moving forward with the expanded $250 tiers before even the stretch goal was probably a good idea. Furthermore, continued readjustment would just serve to continue fragmenting the community and dissolve confidence further.

Here are some ideas on how to move forward:

Remove any and all stacking of tiers. I know this will tick off some really hardcore PP backers, but let's be honest, it is likely the minority and anything more than a single free draft a week goes from ridiculous to ludicrous. Currently the stacking rules are convoluted, seemingly unfair at times, and clearly a source of controversy. This would also likely open up a few of the maxed out tier slots for other backers who really want in. But how do other campaigns mitigate people wanting the multiple combining of awards?

Create Add-ons! I think everyone can agree, this is long overdue and it's not too late to do this! A lot of the weird stacking and controversy can be attributed to the lack of these addons. Yes, you will have to put some thought into balancing them and also keep a limit on them as well to keep people from buying too many of a single addon (IE a bunch of set 2 packs at a reduced price) . I would suggest just allowing a single of each addon per account to keep it simple. Just a couple examples: X months of extra VIP status, set 1 and/or set 2 packs (25 of them perhaps?), a single year of any $250 tier bonus, an extra set of all kickstarter exclusive cards you are eligible for, random legendary equipment, primal packs, merc of your choosing. It could even make really high tier rewards more approachable (but still pretty darn expensive). Like help design a card (PvE and/or PvP), likeness on a card, help name a card, etc.

Provide as much clarity as possible into the workings and economy of the game. Particularly in the fields of PvE rewards and player auction house. One of the big differences between this campaign and other kickstarters... really the difference between any game and a TCG (emphasis on the C), is that this can be viewed as an investment. Come to think of it, you are actually combining two things that have a history of being ruthlessly monetized by players, MMOs and TCGs. Several players are clearly nervous at the lack of information regarding the transfer of valuables and their relative place on the market for a genre that doesn't really exist yet. There is a lot of uncertainty how the aggressive economic model of a TCG will combine with the raid-based loot economy of an MMO.



At the end of the day, I'm still excited, I'm still trying to get friends on board (admittedly a little less fanatically), and still considering keeping my GK tier or letting someone else enjoy its fruits at the last minute and moving to King.

If you actually read this far, hopefully you enjoyed it! See you in the game! ;)

Karnegal
05-25-2013, 03:13 PM
TL;DR less made up story more concision

ForgedSol
05-25-2013, 03:26 PM
I wish there was a poll option so we could get a better sense of how people felt about what happened. You say the community got divided, I feel like an extremely small minority stayed offended after having some time to think about what the adjustment to the tiers really meant.

(Full disclosure, I have 4 Grand Kings, and after the Collector announcement yesterday, I may or may not give up two of them. I also ended up skimming your post(s). It is beyond simply being "long.")

Going back on their word is a bad idea. The whole system of how they set up their kickstarter is to encourage everyone to pledge early and get rewarded for coming in early. They made it specifically clear that the exclusives you get in the kickstarter are going to stay exclusive no matter what happens down the line. They've strongly implied that they will not create strictly better version of these kickstarter exclusives down the line.

So, let's pretend that the community is divided 50/50 on this issue. Should Cryptozoic go back on their word because of this ratio? What happens when the community grows and total kickstarters are outnumbered by players who are extremely dissatisfied with the fact that they can't get spectral lotuses? Or cardboard tube mercenaries? Or any of the other exclusives?

Exclusivity based on when you joined is the whole philosophy Cryptozoic chose to use when approaching this campaign. Backing out on their promise of exclusivity is not a good idea.

However, with that said. I'm sure they did want to have 1000 individuals in the Pro Tier and Grand King, and not such a high percentage of stackers. I, for one, would not mind if they took a rough guess at how many of those spots are stacking spots, and opened up a "Not too late" Bird Pro Player and Grand King tier, that cost $400 and $800 respectively. (Maybe $350 and $700, but definitely not less than that.) And have those tiers be non-stackable to encourage people to not scoop up multiples. (Some people still will, but it would be less.)

Showsni
05-25-2013, 03:38 PM
So, if I'm reading it right, you're saying that you backed Grand King partially on the expectation that you'd get something awesome and exclusive to your tier off of the final Stretch Goal, and when it was actually revealed you were a little disappointed?

Well, I can't really blame you; if you don't own a tablet, that last stretch goal seems pretty irrelevant. On the other hand, Stretch Goals aren't meant to be rewards for backing - that's what the actual rewards are, you know. Stretch Goals are supposed to add to the whole game, which I think earlier tablet support does, and if they can convince people to throw in more money (because they want to see the game do well) then that's a bonus.

I can kind of see how giving free drafts out to other tiers might make some Pro Player or Grand King backers a little sore; but that does seem kind of like sour grapes to me. You're getting awesome rewards anyway, can't you just be happy that someone else is also getting something good? And if the free drafts for a year seems good enough to you that your own tier is now looking lacklustre in comparison, then by all means switch tiers! There are still plenty of slots in the other $250 options, and I'm sure plenty of people who'd be happy to snap up your vacated slot.

To answer your points in the third post:


Remove any and all stacking of tiers. I know this will tick off some really hardcore PP backers, but let's be honest, it is likely the minority and anything more than a single free draft a week goes from ridiculous to ludicrous. Currently the stacking rules are convoluted, seemingly unfair at times, and clearly a source of controversy. This would also likely open up a few of the maxed out tier slots for other backers who really want in. But how do other campaigns mitigate people wanting the multiple combining of awards?

This will not happen. Cryptozoic have promised to work with customer services to stack tiers, and they will honour that pledge. To back out now would do massive damage to their public image and the amount of backers and money raised on the Kickstarter. There's absolutely no reason for them to do this. The stacking rules are hardly convoluted; Corey's post laid out clearly how they would work (maximum of four different pledges can be combined, the common sense things that wouldn't stack don't, the rest do) with even some nice surprises (three free drafts and 3 months VIP do stack, which I wasn't expecting). They added one further caveat, that the other $250 yearly drafts wouldn't stack, and that seems more than fair with all they're giving away.


Create Add-ons! I think everyone can agree, this is long overdue and it's not too late to do this! A lot of the weird stacking and controversy can be attributed to the lack of these addons. Yes, you will have to put some thought into balancing them and also keep a limit on them as well to keep people from buying too many of a single addon (IE a bunch of set 2 packs at a reduced price) . I would suggest just allowing a single of each addon per account to keep it simple. Just a couple examples: X months of extra VIP status, set 1 and/or set 2 packs (25 of them perhaps?), a single year of any $250 tier bonus, an extra set of all kickstarter exclusive cards you are eligible for, random legendary equipment, primal packs, merc of your choosing. It could even make really high tier rewards more approachable (but still pretty darn expensive). Like help design a card (PvE and/or PvP), likeness on a card, help name a card, etc.

This seems unnecessary. The campaign is already funded; trying to do this now smacks of either trying to wring more money out of people, or of the people who want them trying to wring more money out of Cryptozoic! In some instances I can see it being worthwhile; but in general, the limited numbers on things such as design a card, free drafts, etc. show they've already put up for sale the most they want to give away of those rewards.


Provide as much clarity as possible into the workings and economy of the game. Particularly in the fields of PvE rewards and player auction house. One of the big differences between this campaign and other kickstarters... really the difference between any game and a TCG (emphasis on the C), is that this can be viewed as an investment. Come to think of it, you are actually combining two things that have a history of being ruthlessly monetized by players, MMOs and TCGs. Several players are clearly nervous at the lack of information regarding the transfer of valuables and their relative place on the market for a genre that doesn't really exist yet. There is a lot of uncertainty how the aggressive economic model of a TCG will combine with the raid-based loot economy of an MMO.

I'd hazard a guess that this is something they haven't fully fleshed out themselves yet; otherwise I think we'd have seen more responses to questions about it before now. If they need to meet with lawyers or what have you to see how far they can allow "cashing out" then I don't mind giving them time to do so. It could be this is something that won't be addressed for quite a while if the beta period is more focused on getting game mechanics and so on to work properly.

Meglodon
05-25-2013, 03:38 PM
I have only kick-started two projects including this one so I don't know too much about the add-ons but I thought the chart Camelot Unchained used was pretty clever. If they did decide to go back and rebalance by removing any and all stacking it could be replaced by a version of the founders points. They wouldn't even have to come up with the cash-in chart right away so they could take their time coming up with good stuff and making sure it was balanced.

Or, they could just leave it be. Disclosure: I am a single PP so it doesn't affect me at all and I could see how early adopters would be surly about losing that crazy value.

All in all I think the staff have been making a good faith effort to listen and understand. They do still have 12 days left to make some changes but I would hope they would go into effect with no less than 5 days left. That would give time for the rage to subside and rational thought to reassert itself. Everything is conjecture right now though and we are just offering ideas here.

ForgedSol
05-25-2013, 03:42 PM
Maybe I was blind, but I hated the founders points system of Camelot Unchained. I saw no clear list of what could be purchased with those points and for how much. (Again, maybe I was blind. It seems like something so obvious to put, but I just couldn't find it.) I was close to backing it even for a low tier, but that confusion added to the fact that I'm backing Shroud of the Avatar, was enough to keep me on the side of no-backing.

Meglodon
05-25-2013, 03:47 PM
I can kind of see how giving free drafts out to other tiers might make some Pro Player or Grand King backers a little sore; but that does seem kind of like sour grapes to me. You're getting awesome rewards anyway, can't you just be happy that someone else is also getting something good?

This. People should be high-fiving the other tiers for also getting more awesome. We (PP) lost nothing. Smile, realize you have more people to draft with during the games infancy, and go about your business.

Temig
05-25-2013, 03:48 PM
A well-composed and obviously thought-out post(s). I can certainly see the parallels between your opening anecdote and what happened with the legendary goal, and as a GK backer I see both sides. I felt pretty well taken care of prior to the update and certainly felt the non-$250 tiers needed some additional love. I also see where the disappointment comes in too, if only for the fact that the big red legendary border set up an expectation of something truly amazing and instead we found ourselves with, as Cryptozoic rightly changed it to, a re-balance of the $250 tiers that shouldn't have been stretch related simply because it was a necessary step to make the tiers attractive to backers ( I say this without passing any judgment on the actual method behind the re-balance), tablet support which is nice, and certainly non-trivial, and set 2 packs which are a nice extra. All in all, the disappointment comes simply with the general perception that the stretch goal wasn't as legendary as many hoped for.

All of that being said, it would be a terrible mistake for CZE to change their policy on pledge stacking at this point after they have formally announce their policy. They ma very well regret that policy on some level, and perhaps it should not have been allowed from the start or been more limited than four pledges, but now it is done and going back will certainly garner more bad faith and bad press than it would likely gain.

I certainly think that add-ons could be a great way to boost pledges at this point in the campaign and agree that if they were done properly, and limited where appropriate the campaign could be given a big surge of life. If the right add-ons were made available it may even allow for some backers to feel comfortable pledging for less tiers than they are currently backing and just enjoying some add-ons potentially opening up some closed off slots for new-blood to back the project (which gives the opportunity for more add-ons, additional word-of-mouth, and a larger player base.)

As for your third point... I believe that, while there are still a lot of "unknowns" at this point, CZE has done fairly well at offering information up to this point. PvE is clearly still very much in development so it's hard to blame them for not wanting to show the unfinished product to the ultra-critical masses. With regards to the financial, they've stated that they are very unsure on many points simply due to potential legal ramifications that need to be assessed. Hard answers would be wonderful to have, but part of me is glad that, at the very least, they're not making promises they're not sure they can keep simply to appease the crowd.

Overall the campaign has obviously been very successful albeit not perfect. Certain things could have been handled better in a few cases, but that's life. Each individual has the opportunity to show their support with their money or not support a project if they simply don't like it, don't have faith in it, or don't like the way the campaign is handled. Like you I, too, am excited for what CZE will end up bringing us in the end and despite a few (IMO, excusable and almost expected) hiccups, will continue to show my support of what they are trying to accomplish.

Talreth
05-25-2013, 03:49 PM
Okay, soooooo I guess disclaimer I'm 3x PP tier. However, I think that going back on their word would be an awful thing to do. I would have been perfectly fine if they limited stacking to two or whatever after they had confirmed you could stack, but there was a lot of time and thought put into how many times you could stack and what you could stack and they came out with an official update including it, not just purple posts or whatever (which can sometimes be ahead of the gun). So it's essentially the same level as them taking away a stretch goal or something with regard to how much they have specifically addressed tier stacking. And I would lose a lot of faith in CZE if they did that. In the long run, I don't think tier stacking will be that big of a deal and the only people making a fuss over it now are the ones who showed up late. Is it fair? No. Would I be disappointed if I couldn't go PP or GK at this point? Yes. However, that being said, CZE is making a great game and has made very many good faith efforts to work with the community to try and get them to have the maximum level of satisfaction. I think they have also learned that they need to carefully consider all of their decisions especially with regards to prizes, pricing, etc. in the future. But since this is the way they stated they will run the KS campaign, this is what I would like to see.

Aww yeah wall of text.

JesusChristMD
05-25-2013, 03:51 PM
I agree with the OP 100% and honestly wonder if I somehow blacked out, made a new account, and posted that.

Meglodon
05-25-2013, 03:51 PM
Maybe I was blind, but I hated the founders points system of Camelot Unchained. I saw no clear list of what could be purchased with those points and for how much. (Again, maybe I was blind. It seems like something so obvious to put, but I just couldn't find it.) I was close to backing it even for a low tier, but that confusion added to the fact that I'm backing Shroud of the Avatar, was enough to keep me on the side of no-backing.

When I was on the site yesterday just to see how far they got funded I found the Founders Exchange chart about a third of the way down the page. It is a lot of text and numbers though, no doubt.

As for when that chart came up, I can't say. I checked out the project when it was posted day one, realized it wasn't for me and moved on without digging further. I didn't even know about the founders points thing until I checked it out after it ended.

ForgedSol
05-25-2013, 04:01 PM
When I was on the site yesterday just to see how far they got funded I found the Founders Exchange chart about a third of the way down the page. It is a lot of text and numbers though, no doubt.

As for when that chart came up, I can't say. I checked out the project when it was posted day one, realized it wasn't for me and moved on without digging further. I didn't even know about the founders points thing until I checked it out after it ended.

Yup. There it is. I'm blind. It's a good thing I missed it. Hex, SolForge, and Shroud of the Avatar are literally more than I can handle.

knightofeffect
05-25-2013, 04:01 PM
@ForgedSol

I completely agree that going back on your word is a bad idea for the very reasons you laid out. I actually say so explicitly in my post which I know the post was prohibitively long, but it just kept going.

@Showsni

I was actually completely satisfied with everything that was already offered, and like I said, I really still am. What the GK offered was simply too good to refuse, so I couldn't and made the rash decision to move up and pledge for it. But like the momentum of the campaign, the momentum of the positive forward thinking also came to a halt with the underwhelming legendary reveal. Again, I think most people had this reaction to some degree.

@both

I'd argue that allowing people to stack tiers instead of having a well-crafted add-on selection is simply a way to allow people to add-on without having to think of an add-on selection.

Crytpozoic has already stated that they did not craft the tiers with the people stacking them in mind. It also doesn't make good sense to allow people to gobble up a limited rewards through stacking when you could allow a wider availability of the additional rewards through add-ons thereby increasing satisfaction for everyone.

I also think/hope that the stacking of PP and GK is a minority or particularly engaged individuals... I imagine that they are disproportionately represented here as a result of that level of engagement. I just wonder if part of the reveal that tiers could no longer be stacked and the reveal of add-ons, but no auto 1 year of drafting for the other $250 tiers would have resulted in the same response and momentum shutdown.

@also both
My response to each of the end of your responses is roughly the same. I agree, I don't think they have fully fleshed out how the TCG and MMO economies will involve and intertwine, but at the same time they didn't understand that this lack of clarity would make people heavily gravitate toward the eternal rewards that have and obvious long-term value. I'm also not sure their solution of what equates to a free PvP add-on for those tiers was the even-handed way to address the situation.

I do think that there are steps that could be taken moving forward to address the issues in a better light without going back on their word. I'm not sure they should have said they would honor the stacking even though it was unplanned for and against design, but perhaps they should stand by it for continuity sake despite the convolution (despite your list of 5 or so specific conditions, it still feels very "thrown together").

Remember Kickstarter is not necessarily the end of crowdfunding. They already have the paypal method set up on their site and have said this will stay active after kickstarter. It is not too early to set up things correctly involving add-ons to formally keep funding open on their site. This would not be a money-grab scenario, several successful campaigns have kept evolving the crowd-funding on their own websites afterward to a good playerbase reception. Kickstarter "exclusives" must remain exclusive though :).

knightofeffect
05-25-2013, 04:07 PM
@Temig & JesusChristMD

Thanks guys! I'm really not trying to be diversionary at all. I really do think that accountability is paramount, with the little that they lost in the legendary as it is (with the perceived lack of PP exclusivity for a year) would have preferably been avoided. If blocking tier stacking would really provide another significant hit to this, then it should be avoided certainly (and tier stacking is more prevalent that I led myself to believe).

I couldn't have said it better myself Temig; the campaign wasn't perfect, but still wildly successful. My hopes and expectations of the game itself are not much different! ;)

BenRGamer
05-25-2013, 04:14 PM
This. People should be high-fiving the other tiers for also getting more awesome. We (PP) lost nothing. Smile, realize you have more people to draft with during the games infancy, and go about your business.

Personally, I think it was a great move when they stuck to their guns on that, to show that can stand up to a loud minority in the fanbase. It means they're more likely to actually do what's best for the game than listen to knee-jerk reactions of a few fans.

Turtlewing
05-25-2013, 05:12 PM
I'll just leave thus here http://dresdencodak.com/2006/04/07/naked-and-riding-a-dinosaur/

nicosharp
05-25-2013, 05:24 PM
Backing up is clearly not an option and moving forward with the expanded $250 tiers before even the stretch goal was probably a good idea. Furthermore, continued readjustment would just serve to continue fragmenting the community and dissolve confidence further.

Here are some ideas on how to move forward:

Remove any and all stacking of tiers. I know this will tick off some really hardcore PP backers, but let's be honest, it is likely the minority and anything more than a single free draft a week goes from ridiculous to ludicrous. Currently the stacking rules are convoluted, seemingly unfair at times, and clearly a source of controversy. This would also likely open up a few of the maxed out tier slots for other backers who really want in. But how do other campaigns mitigate people wanting the multiple combining of awards?

Create Add-ons! I think everyone can agree, this is long overdue and it's not too late to do this! A lot of the weird stacking and controversy can be attributed to the lack of these addons. Yes, you will have to put some thought into balancing them and also keep a limit on them as well to keep people from buying too many of a single addon (IE a bunch of set 2 packs at a reduced price) . I would suggest just allowing a single of each addon per account to keep it simple. Just a couple examples: X months of extra VIP status, set 1 and/or set 2 packs (25 of them perhaps?), a single year of any $250 tier bonus, an extra set of all kickstarter exclusive cards you are eligible for, random legendary equipment, primal packs, merc of your choosing. It could even make really high tier rewards more approachable (but still pretty darn expensive). Like help design a card (PvE and/or PvP), likeness on a card, help name a card, etc.



This is all you had to say, but it was summarized well. I completely agree with what I quoted from you above. Stacking tiers is a joke.

Even if all the backers that are currently stacking took their money and left, those spots will be filled, and frankly, the community will be better off for it. There will be plenty of a'holes that will find work arounds anyway, at least it hinders their access to high end world tournaments when grinding.

Yasi
05-25-2013, 05:24 PM
Every posts in this thread is so goddamn long.

nicosharp
05-25-2013, 05:27 PM
Every posts in this thread is goddamn long.

Your contribution to every thread is appreciated. And the green makes it so much easier to read.

jai151
05-25-2013, 05:33 PM
This is all you had to say, but it was summarized well. I completely agree with what I quoted from you above. Stacking tiers is a joke.

Even if all the backers that are currently stacking took their money and left, those spots will be filled, and frankly, the community will be better off for it. There will be plenty of a'holes that will find work arounds anyway, at least it hinders their access to high end world tournaments when grinding.

You do realize most of the active forum community is stacking, right? So no, if all the people stacking left, you wouldn't be better off for it.

nicosharp
05-25-2013, 05:39 PM
You do realize most of the active forum community is stacking, right? So no, if all the people stacking left, you wouldn't be better off for it.

I couldn't give two shits about the forum community. They are stacking because they can. Kickstarter backing #'s >>> than active forum community.

Who I am hoping reads this are employees at CZE.
Not people, camping the kickstarter page and actively defending their google chrome hacks to pick up PP and GK tiers, posting on the forums.

jai151
05-25-2013, 05:41 PM
I couldn't give two shits about the forum community. They are stacking because they can. Kickstarter backing #'s >>> than active forum community.

Who I am hoping reads this is employees at CZE, not people, camping the kickstarter page and actively defending their google chrome hacks to pick up PP and GK tiers, posting on the forums.

What I'm trying to point out is it's not only, or even mostly, the assholes stacking. The whiners do not represent us.

Yasi
05-25-2013, 05:41 PM
I couldn't give two shits about the forum community. They are stacking because they can. Kickstarter backing #'s >>> than active forum community.

Who I am hoping reads this are employees at CZE.
Not people, camping the kickstarter page and actively defending their google chrome hacks to pick up PP and GK tiers, posting on the forums.

Testify.

Talreth
05-25-2013, 05:43 PM
Most of the people here stacked before they were sold out, so I doubt many of us are sitting here with our "hacks."

Digital_Aether
05-25-2013, 05:57 PM
Personally, I think it was a great move when they stuck to their guns on that, to show that can stand up to a loud minority in the fanbase. It means they're more likely to actually do what's best for the game than listen to knee-jerk reactions of a few fans.

This. One of the most important things a developer can do is say no, because they're the ones with the vision. I'm even more confident in their ability to manage an mmo now than before this all happened. There will always be loud people, and they can't be allowed to speak for everyone. HOURS and hours of the flame talks were literally just two people, justin hewlit and dennis something, on the kickstarter comments. Two people alone dominated the chat for HOURS, for two days in a row. I think I've heard less than 2 dozen actual individuals say they were mad about it, and I read every comment / post. Just because it's loud does not mean they're speaking for everyone. Not everyone posts or speaks up, but the digital age has allowed the loudness of your voice to be disproporitionate to your count.

CZE has been ridiculously generous, but I don't think people should expect generosity just because it's habitual. Some people got built up, but as a GK/PP, I was just stoked to see tablets being supported. They've said in other videos that they're going to bring in a team to do mobile support with this goal, which will greatly accelerate the time scale. I was caught off guard myself when people got upset over 'only' getting 15 boosters of the second set (as if getting tablet support was irrelevant entirely, when the expanded base has a lot of implications). They didn't once devalue any tier, but rather gave out heaps of freebies and exclusives on top of what you already put down for. The notion that this game is a huge gamble for your money, so you should keep getting free things hand over fist, just doesn't make sense to me. The game has had 2 million invested into it over 2 years if I recall, and is being done by a professional TCG company. It's not going to fade into the ether a few months after launch. You gauged that risk when you threw down for a GK, and it isn't their duty to provide more and more to make sure you 'stay' convinced. Tablet support is how you bring down that risk, because you get a huge amount of players, a huge expansion of the game's market, and you get the ability for this game to take off like crazy by showing up in app store lists, not just going around TCG circles. That means a lot more than getting a bunch of loot to reward you for the risk.

One thing people often seem to miss when talking about stacking, is the alternative. A lot of people with stacked pledges would have just bought multiple accounts. The second the bonuses to the $250 was announced, people started saying "yeah, i'm going to get a collector on a second account". Unfortuantely they don't really have a good way to stop it even if they wanted to. People will always game the system, and there's only so much you can do. Addons have no exclusivity or way to limit them by KS, so they're hard to manage. There weren't a lot of options for them here.

And btw, putting a bolded TL;DR halfway through 2 pages of text is horribly misleading. I was like "WHEW, that was a wall of- WHAT? 2 more pages?"

nicosharp
05-25-2013, 06:14 PM
Most of the people here stacked before they were sold out, so I doubt many of us are sitting here with our "hacks."

Yes, that is completely true. "Hacks" sounds really stupid. I am talking about auto-refresh to grab the few freeing up. People jumped on a good deal. No one blames them for doing it. At the end of the day CZE already agreed to let people account merge. The alternative is the same people using multiple accounts.

Grim
05-25-2013, 06:18 PM
I love this forum :)

Hollywood
05-25-2013, 11:17 PM
Yeah, stacking really sucks for those of us who just recently were pointed to Hex. Feels bad enough when you find out that you missed out on a sweet limited quantity tier (talking about PP & GK mostly). Really feels like a big middle finger when you find out people are just camping on 2+ pledges of each. Talk about bad for the game. Taken to the extreme, how many people would be furious if let's say 20 people had snapped up all the PP tier slots? Something like a Kickstarter Fundraiser should be as inclusionary as possible, not exclusionary. You want MORE people to get behind the game, not less. With that said, I don't see how it benefits CZE at all to allow players to pledge more than once for the same tier. The slots will obviously be filled but you don't have the same amount of customers, thereby limiting your potential future sales and repeat customers.

Anyways, guess I'll stop ranting. If anyone has a PP or GK tier that they no longer wish to pledge, let me know. Don't really have the time to constantly sit at my comp refreshing the page.

ForgedSol
05-25-2013, 11:24 PM
Yeah, stacking really sucks for those of us who just recently were pointed to Hex. Feels bad enough when you find out that you missed out on a sweet limited quantity tier (talking about PP & GK mostly). Really feels like a big middle finger when you find out people are just camping on 2+ pledges of each. Talk about bad for the game. Taken to the extreme, how many people would be furious if let's say 20 people had snapped up all the PP tier slots? Something like a Kickstarter Fundraiser should be as inclusionary as possible, not exclusionary. You want MORE people to get behind the game, not less. With that said, I don't see how it benefits CZE at all to allow players to pledge more than once for the same tier. The slots will obviously be filled but you don't have the same amount of customers, thereby limiting your potential future sales and repeat customers.

Anyways, guess I'll stop ranting. If anyone has a PP or GK tier that they no longer wish to pledge, let me know. Don't really have the time to constantly sit at my comp refreshing the page.

The kickstarter should be inclusionary to what point? I doubt anyone who says this (you are not the only one) thinks that after the kickstarter is over that every player should get a spectral lotus and all the mercenaries and exclusive cards when they create an account with a set buy-in level. There would be a giant uproar if that happened. Every single tier in the kickstarter is about having exclusives starting with the Beta Invite, Lady Cassandra, and continuing on up the levels.

Hollywood
05-25-2013, 11:58 PM
The kickstarter should be inclusionary to what point? I doubt anyone who says this (you are not the only one) thinks that after the kickstarter is over that every player should get a spectral lotus and all the mercenaries and exclusive cards when they create an account with a set buy-in level. There would be a giant uproar if that happened. Every single tier in the kickstarter is about having exclusives starting with the Beta Invite, Lady Cassandra, and continuing on up the levels.

Well, the whole "every tier is exclusive" isn't true since there is no cap on the King tier which has exclusive cards not available for those who back at a lower tier.

But to answer your question, if the tiers were limited to only 1 pledge per person then not having a cap is perfectly fine. If anyone truly thinks that a competitive player is going to only draft their 1 free draft a week instead of multiple times afterwards then you obviously don't play MTGO very much. Do you know why companies love to give out gift cards/certificates? Because it is guaranteed cash in the hand now with the possibility that that gift card is either never used or partially used and also because money loses value over time. As has been stated in other threads already, the more people they get behind the game now during Kickstarter the better. You want more people to be invested now because it gives a better, more stable base of people who are going to play the game. If there aren't enough people playing the game past year 1 then none of this matters anyways because the game will not sustain itself. Limiting a digital product that has no limitations on production is dumb.

For me personally I look at it like this; CZE can have $500 of my cash right now or they can have $250. In both cases, there is no guarantee that I will play forever. And $364 is an amazing price to keep a customer loyal to your product. Hell, do you really think that players are going to be satisfied with the cards they receive from 1 free draft a week?? C'mon man!

ForgedSol
05-26-2013, 12:03 AM
No no, I'm not saying every tier is exclusive. I'm saying the whole campaign is about getting in and receiving exclusive things before other people. If you pledge at the king tier, you get exclusive cards that people won't be able to get after the kickstarter is over. What happens to the people the day after it ends? They are now excluded from receiving any of that. Would you want the King tier to constantly available to buy into for the life of the game? I doubt it. Or let's shrink the time frame. You're saying year one is the important time frame. Would you want all the tiers open for the first year? That's how to be inclusive isn't it?

Hollywood
05-26-2013, 12:14 AM
Ah, I see what you're saying now.

No, I agree that there definitely has to be a cut-off. I just feel that that cut-off should be when the Kickstarter actually ends. The entire point of a KS is to fund your project, with a secondary goal of building your initial client base. To entice people to do so you offer them goodies. It's just like when a company wants to raise capital a common practice is that it becomes publicly traded. You are offering something to get an immediate influx of cash revenue. Once you have that influx you no longer need to sell off any more of the company, or offer any more incentives in the case of KS's. Considering CZE has put in over $2 million before announcing their KS, I'd say that their vision for how big they want this game to become can handle not capping tiers for their KS, again assuming that they limit pledges for each tier to only 1 per person.

nicosharp
05-26-2013, 12:28 AM
I'm saying the whole campaign is about getting in and receiving exclusive things before other people.

Oh, I thought it was about supporting a product you believe in/like, and if successful you get something in return for your investment?
I do see that there are many kickstarter campaigns that are set around these early bird pledge tiers to get the backing the company needs. Typically those same pledge tiers are then reproduced as the campaign continues, but at a higher cost for the same value. (Example: Early bird king tier - vs. current uncapped king tier)

This is the first time I have actually pledged using kickstarter. Looking around more, what CZE did with this campaign is no different than most any other product on here. The only difference that I see, is their overall campaign is shorter, and they have less pledge tiers being recreated for the tiers that sold out. This may all change with time as the campaign nears end.

ForgedSol
05-26-2013, 12:40 AM
Oh, I thought it was about supporting a product you believe in/like, and if successful you get something in return for your investment?
I do see that there are many kickstarter campaigns that are set around these early bird pledge tiers to get the backing the company needs. Typically those same pledge tiers are then reproduced as the campaign continues, but at a higher cost for the same value. (Example: Early bird king tier - vs. current uncapped king tier)

This is the first time I have actually pledged using kickstarter. Looking around more, what CZE did with this campaign is no different than most any other product on here. The only difference that I see, is their overall campaign is shorter, and they have less pledge tiers being recreated for the tiers that sold out. This may all change with time as the campaign nears end.

Some kickstarter campaigns can be purely about support of a project, there were some open source projects that I recently saw where I think most of the tiers were about getting thank yous for supporting them and all that. However most kickstarters in the gaming and technology part of the site have evolved into more of a pre-order at your own risk system (Pointing these sections out because that's where I tend to kickstart). Do you honestly believe that there would be this many pledges right now if they weren't offering exclusives? Cryptozoic has intentionally included exclusive content in every tier. They didn't have to set it up that way, they could have offered T-shirts and stickers in the rewards. They could have offered solely discounts with boosters, with more boosters with bigger discounts the higher you pledged, but they didn't do that. They decided that putting exclusives in every tier was the best approach, and I have no doubts that there would have been fewer pledges and less money pledged if they didn't go that route.

I'm not saying they shouldn't open up more tiers. I'm not saying opening up more spots in the PP and GK tiers is a bad idea. But yes, the campaign is about getting exclusive content because that's how the campaign was set up.

nearlysober
05-26-2013, 12:44 AM
Understanding the Legendary "Controversy"

A bunch of spoiled whiny children got concerned that other kids got a toy to play with that, while not as expensive or nice as their toy, was denied to them. So they ran to the internets to complain about how unfair life since when they went to go tell mommy and daddy to make it right, they just looked at them confused as to what a digital trading card is.

This is what happens when an entire generation is raised telling kids they're all the most specialest of all and everyone gets participation trophies in sports people.

So CZE, to stop the crying children, just removed the distraction. Then, everyone continued to cry because they do not comprehend that tablet play is good for the game, even if it doesn't apply directly to them.

Ya'll are seriously like some 16 year old screaming at her parents on some horrible MTV 'reality' show because they bought her the wrong color BMW for her birthday.

Gorgol
05-26-2013, 02:07 AM
Understanding the Legendary "Controversy"

A bunch of spoiled whiny children got concerned that other kids got a toy to play with that, while not as expensive or nice as their toy, was denied to them. So they ran to the internets to complain about how unfair life since when they went to go tell mommy and daddy to make it right, they just looked at them confused as to what a digital trading card is.

This is what happens when an entire generation is raised telling kids they're all the most specialest of all and everyone gets participation trophies in sports people.

So CZE, to stop the crying children, just removed the distraction. Then, everyone continued to cry because they do not comprehend that tablet play is good for the game, even if it doesn't apply directly to them.

Ya'll are seriously like some 16 year old screaming at her parents on some horrible MTV 'reality' show because they bought her the wrong color BMW for her birthday.

This. So much this!

MasterPlan
05-26-2013, 03:14 AM
^