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Barkam
08-19-2013, 01:29 AM
I started a thread talking about a "PVP ranking system (http://forums.cryptozoic.com/showthread.php?t=27055)" and I think I was confounding things in my head. Anyways, I think I finally sorted out what exactly I was trying to get at. And that is Ladders.

I reviewed the tournaments listed on the Hextcg.com webpage and noticed that all of them involved getting a group of people playing a specific format and get prizes at the end of a "short" time period (longest it seems is 6 hours). What I would like to see, which I think would further increase the replayability of the game and entice more people to join the paid tournaments, is having a free ladder-type tournament. This would provide a format for casual play that would even capture the market that Heartstone and Solforge are targeting. This is a format that people can play one quick match while waiting for the bus and feel like they had an engaging experience and also made "progress." Hex TCG now becomes attractive to all. Below is what I am envisioning.

Ladder Tournaments

Anyone can enter for free
Constructed Deck format
Match making system based on Elo ranking system or MMR
There can even be different ladders: One for standard format, One for a given set, one for a given block, etc.
Elo rating/MMR decay with time
Titles granted based on top % ranking/placement.
Prize Ideas: Championship qualifying points, sleeves, achievements and other vanity rewards
Prize type and quantities based on placement when the ladder is over.
Ladder tournament duration: 6-12 months.


I don't expect to win any of these Ladders but I always enjoy seeing my Elo or MMR go up. It makes me feel like I am improving and progressing forward in PvP. This is something tangible for me to talk about and showoff within the game even though I don't win a prize. Also, I don't have to get disheartened because my sub-par deck got just curb-stomped by a net decker.

Thoughts?

jaxsonbatemanhex
08-19-2013, 01:43 AM
While I do like the idea of this (I'm getting the impression that this would last for either a few days or a week - a week seems pretty logical and lines up with an idea I've seen previously, the weekly poker tournament in Zynga which ranks people based on winnings), I do think that there should probably be an entry fee that covers the whole week, especially if there are potentially decent prizes. As much as I love the prospect of potentially getting stuff for free, at the end of the day this is a TCG with valuable product.

A $4 entry fee for the whole week, with the average prize between all rankings players being equivalent to 6 boosters would sync with the draft rewards scheme, and would be very inexpensive for potentially a whole week of competitive gaming.

keldrin
08-19-2013, 01:45 AM
So essentially, this would allow you to gain ranking.
Well, if they go this route, what about doing something like chess does, and you can gain a rating, as well as a playing class. (for instance, I'm a class B chess player, such that I should normally play other chess players rated between 1600 and 1800). That way, we can get a more accurate measure of playing level of each player in PVP constructed. Maybe have a different rating for draft, and other tournament modes.

keldrin
08-19-2013, 01:49 AM
While I do like the idea of this (I'm getting the impression that this would last for either a few days or a week - a week seems pretty logical and lines up with an idea I've seen previously, the weekly poker tournament in Zynga which ranks people based on winnings), I do think that there should probably be an entry fee that covers the whole week, especially if there are potentially decent prizes. As much as I love the prospect of potentially getting stuff for free, at the end of the day this is a TCG with valuable product.
A $4 entry fee for the whole week, with the average prize between all rankings players being equivalent to 6 boosters would sync with the draft rewards scheme, and would be very inexpensive for potentially a whole week of competitive gaming.


Well, if the prizing is basically ladder ranking, and potential qualifiers for tournaments. What about a add on fee kind of like VIP membership, allowing unlimited access to ladder ranking play? So essentially a subscription fee.

jaxsonbatemanhex
08-19-2013, 01:53 AM
Well, if the prizing is basically ladder ranking, and potential qualifiers for tournaments. What about a add on fee kind of like VIP membership, allowing unlimited access to ladder ranking play? So essentially a subscription fee.
It was my impression that prizes would be various and based on ladder ranking at the end of the period of the tournament, but sure, a VIP like sub (or even a different level of VIP that costs a little extra but includes it) could be a good option. I know I'd take it.

Barkam
08-19-2013, 02:01 AM
While I do like the idea of this (I'm getting the impression that this would last for either a few days or a week - a week seems pretty logical and lines up with an idea I've seen previously, the weekly poker tournament in Zynga which ranks people based on winnings), I do think that there should probably be an entry fee that covers the whole week, especially if there are potentially decent prizes. As much as I love the prospect of potentially getting stuff for free, at the end of the day this is a TCG with valuable product.

A $4 entry fee for the whole week, with the average prize between all rankings players being equivalent to 6 boosters would sync with the draft rewards scheme, and would be very inexpensive for potentially a whole week of competitive gaming.

I wanted this to be unique and completely different compared to all the tournaments listed in the Hex homepage (http://hextcg.com/game/tournaments/).

The way I envision this is more like Starcraft. This is really a long duration tournament. Maybe like 6 months or even a year. I want the rankings to stay up long enough to be worth talking about and used as a reference. Think of it as seasons in football or basketball. It is always fun to see how far you get.

I want to minimize the barrier of entry for people so I think entry fees are out. When the tournament payout is so few given the ladder tournament duration, there won't be a need for entry fees. Think of this as a marketing fee for CZE to hand out these prizes. This will help PvErs a taste of PvP because they'll be able start with a cheap deck from the AH and see what the hoolabaloo is about. With MMR/Elo match making they'll get a taste of an epic close match and come back for more. Remember, that they have to use PvP cards and those only come from CZE so CZE is getting their share. This actually really help foster a healthy economy between plat and gold, PvP and PvE worlds. The demand for PvP cards go up because PvErs now can also use them in PvP instead of just PvE. Also, as you tap the Hearthstone/Solforge/Android market the demand goes even more up. Win-win for everyone.

Barkam
08-19-2013, 02:03 AM
So essentially, this would allow you to gain ranking.
Well, if they go this route, what about doing something like chess does, and you can gain a rating, as well as a playing class. (for instance, I'm a class B chess player, such that I should normally play other chess players rated between 1600 and 1800). That way, we can get a more accurate measure of playing level of each player in PVP constructed. Maybe have a different rating for draft, and other tournament modes.

Oh yeah, we can certainly flesh out the match making system. That would be an interesting discussion on how to translate chess classes into the TCG format.

Madican
08-19-2013, 02:08 AM
This is very similar to WoW's Arena setup. Teams queue to fight, get matched against people with similar numbers, and then gain or lose points depending on if they won or lost. More points means they move to a higher position on the ladder. At the end of each season people in the high places on the ladder win special prizes.

There is a huge possibility of abuse with this sort of system though. Two main ones from what I've seen with WoW in particular. One is that after attaining a high position on a ladder then the team stops playing. They don't gain or lose points so they stay right where they are until the end of the season if there's no decay.

The second one is that people can and will game the system to gain as much as possible. This is especially noticeable when, say, a team gets 2600 rating in WoW Arena, beyond what world-class PvPers realistically get, one Season while a cursory examination reveals they didn't even get above 1500 in the previous. Now they could have trained and trained until their skill increased to be world champions...but the most likely thing is they cheated the system through things like wintrading and carrying.

keldrin
08-19-2013, 02:30 AM
This is very similar to WoW's Arena setup. Teams queue to fight, get matched against people with similar numbers, and then gain or lose points depending on if they won or lost. More points means they move to a higher position on the ladder. At the end of each season people in the high places on the ladder win special prizes.

There is a huge possibility of abuse with this sort of system though. Two main ones from what I've seen with WoW in particular. One is that after attaining a high position on a ladder then the team stops playing. They don't gain or lose points so they stay right where they are until the end of the season if there's no decay.

The second one is that people can and will game the system to gain as much as possible. This is especially noticeable when, say, a team gets 2600 rating in WoW Arena, beyond what world-class PvPers realistically get, one Season while a cursory examination reveals they didn't even get above 1500 in the previous. Now they could have trained and trained until their skill increased to be world champions...but the most likely thing is they cheated the system through things like wintrading and carrying.
This is possible. In chess, each tournament class has a chance at prizes for placing in their class. So, you have people keeping their rating a class or two below their actual playing ability to grab easy prizes.
Obviously, there would need to be a minimum participation to keep your rating. And random opponents, will make it much harder to do win trading. Plus, if against the rules, I know I would turn someone in for trying to win trade with me.
Every tournament has potential for some kind of abuse. I guess you make it hard for such to happen, and then roll with it.

Mathaw
08-19-2013, 02:48 AM
While I do like the idea of this (I'm getting the impression that this would last for either a few days or a week - a week seems pretty logical and lines up with an idea I've seen previously, the weekly poker tournament in Zynga which ranks people based on winnings), I do think that there should probably be an entry fee that covers the whole week, especially if there are potentially decent prizes. As much as I love the prospect of potentially getting stuff for free, at the end of the day this is a TCG with valuable product.

A $4 entry fee for the whole week, with the average prize between all rankings players being equivalent to 6 boosters would sync with the draft rewards scheme, and would be very inexpensive for potentially a whole week of competitive gaming.

For this format I'd rather see free entry and no prizes. There will already be paid tourneys anyway so it wouldn't be adding much otherwise. Or at least make the prizes arbitrary.

Or maybe a compromise would be that it was only available to VIP subscribers.

I really like this idea by the way. It creates an entry into tournaments for newer and more casual players, without the financial risk. I personally don't mind dumping cash on cards and the VIP program, but I've never been super keen on paying for prolonged tournaments. This, however, would really appeal to me. I don't need prizes, it's the competition aspect I'd be interested in.

Mathaw
08-19-2013, 02:53 AM
It was my impression that prizes would be various and based on ladder ranking at the end of the period of the tournament, but sure, a VIP like sub (or even a different level of VIP that costs a little extra but includes it) could be a good option. I know I'd take it.

Why does it need to be an extra cost? I think Hex will be a good enough money spinner without us suggesting throwing more money at Cryptozoic for a basic free ladder tournament :p

jaxsonbatemanhex
08-19-2013, 03:09 AM
Getting free boosters when there's no other way to really get them for free (even if you go infinite in tournaments, other players are paying for that, so they're pretty much buying the boosters for it) feels a bit dodgy to me. Sure, I'm not going to complain, but I'm not going to expect CZE to throw free boosters at us.

This is, of course, following on from the suggestion that these ladders should have prizes, which I do support. Besides, a few extra dollars is nothing for a week/month/half year long tournament.

Mathaw
08-19-2013, 03:32 AM
Getting free boosters when there's no other way to really get them for free (even if you go infinite in tournaments, other players are paying for that, so they're pretty much buying the boosters for it) feels a bit dodgy to me. Sure, I'm not going to complain, but I'm not going to expect CZE to throw free boosters at us.

This is, of course, following on from the suggestion that these ladders should have prizes, which I do support. Besides, a few extra dollars is nothing for a week/month/half year long tournament.

Ah, we differ in that area though.

I think there should be free tournaments, but I don't care about there being prizes. Naturally I don't expect boosters to be thrown around for free.

There will already be paid for tournaments with prizes anyway though, so not sure what this would add if it requires upfront cost to participate (something I'm not keen on unless it's drafting etc; which is just a more fun way of buying boosters).

jaxsonbatemanhex
08-19-2013, 03:40 AM
We might differ but I'm pretty sure the original suggestion was for these ladders to have prizes. ;-)

Mathaw
08-19-2013, 03:57 AM
It was you're right, I just meant from my perspective :)

I think it's a bit too much to ask for something for nothing, I'd just be keen not to over encourage further moneytisation strategies, I have disposable income, but I'd rather it not ALL go to Hex :p

Malicus
08-19-2013, 08:56 AM
It was you're right, I just meant from my perspective :)

I think it's a bit too much to ask for something for nothing, I'd just be keen not to over encourage further moneytisation strategies, I have disposable income, but I'd rather it not ALL go to Hex :p

I am pretty much resigned to the fact that it will :)

For me any kind of league option sounds good and realistically there is no reason you can't have an amateur (free) and a pro (pay) league or even leagues of differing lengths, you could even have say a 6 month tournament where your cumulative weekly rankings reflect prizes and position but each week also has its own prizes. The possibilities are really quite lovely.

Mathaw
08-19-2013, 10:31 AM
The possibilities are really quite lovely.

They certainly are!

Madican
08-19-2013, 10:44 AM
I mention WoW Arena a lot but it's my main point of reference in these sort of things. Anyway, in Arena ladders, there are no prizes until the very end of a Season. People spend that Season ranking up or down as they do until it reaches the end. Then the top teams receive their prizes, which are all vanity items like titles and mounts.

That's what I think ladders should award. They can be free, allowing people to rank up or down as they play, but they should award nothing monetary in the game. Top players should instead get cosmetic stuff like sleeves, alternate-art cards, titles, etc. Things like booster packs would make it pretty much required for the ladder to be paid for, which defeats its purpose.

Stok3d
08-19-2013, 10:50 AM
I mention WoW Arena a lot but it's my main point of reference in these sort of things. Anyway, in Arena ladders, there are no prizes until the very end of a Season. People spend that Season ranking up or down as they do until it reaches the end. Then the top teams receive their prizes, which are all vanity items like titles and mounts.

That's what I think ladders should award. They can be free, allowing people to rank up or down as they play, but they should award nothing monetary in the game. Top players should instead get cosmetic stuff like sleeves, alternate-art cards, titles, etc. Things like booster packs would make it pretty much required for the ladder to be paid for, which defeats its purpose.

Realize though that Hex is not subscription based and that is how Blizzard primarily makes their money in WoW. Essentially what the OP is suggesting is to create a 6 month to 1 year tournament that provides vanity prizes. It's not difficult to figure out what active community members would covet the most (some free packs or an elusive title or deck sleeve that you can get once a year). I honestly think this would greatly hurt their bottom line as that's all people would want to do: Play for free and get free stuff that's only attainable once or twice a year.

I'm not a fan and believe the amount of ppl looking to "game this system" would be enormous. It already is for WoW.

Deathfog
08-19-2013, 10:57 AM
A general use MMR ladder like most modern games would be kinda expected. Nothing more complicated than matchmaking against a peer with +X on wins and -Y on losses depending on the initial ratings going in. Making breakpoint for say bronze, silver, gold, platinum, uranium, etc... wouldn't be much trouble.

keldrin
08-19-2013, 11:04 AM
That's what I think ladders should award. They can be free, allowing people to rank up or down as they play, but they should award nothing monetary in the game. Top players should instead get cosmetic stuff like sleeves, alternate-art cards, titles, etc. Things like booster packs would make it pretty much required for the ladder to be paid for, which defeats its purpose.

Maybe, but if the subscribe to fee, is relatively low, like a couple extra dollar (plat) a month, or something like that, it would still make ladder play/ranked game play, more accessible to lower budget players, than tournaments.
I've also slept on this...
1) ladder play, should be at most, completed every 3 months. This allows more jump on points for new players. Admittedly, it would be possible to have multiple ladder games going on at the same time. It does sound a bit confusing though.
2) Ladder games could be per your playing class. Something like, the top 10% of the playing class gets bumped to the next playing class, for their next ladder entry. Minimum participation games required for rank moves up or down. Bottom 5% might get bumped down a ladder class. (I think it should be easier to move up the classes, than back down, since moving up, is a achievement)
3) if there are playing classes, maybe the lower playing classes would be free to play. With the more competitive higher playing classes having modest entry fees, and better prize support. That way, you do provide a way to get involved in constructed PVP, while not putting your money on the line. And the ranking you earn, eventually earns you access to more competitive and exclusive PVP ladder play.
4) A rule, kind of like the VIP membership, that you can only have one account active in ladder tournaments.

Stok3d
08-19-2013, 11:04 AM
A general use MMR ladder like most modern games would be kinda expected. Nothing more complicated than matchmaking against a peer with +X on wins and -Y on losses depending on the initial ratings going in. Making breakpoint for say bronze, silver, gold, platinum, uranium, etc... wouldn't be much trouble.

Yeah, couldn't this system simply be done via drafting and winning regular tournaments if implemented? I still don't understand a need for a completely separate league that entirely works with ratings. Seems that those supporting the bottom line with drafts / tourn entries should be the ones earning the covetted ratings and vanity perks.

keldrin
08-19-2013, 11:14 AM
Yeah, couldn't this system simply be done via drafting and winning regular tournaments if implemented? I still don't understand a need for a completely separate league that entirely works with ratings. Seems that those supporting the bottom line with drafts / tourn entries should be the ones earning the covetted ratings and vanity perks.

Well, there's no reason there couldn't be seperate rankings for each type of game tournament play.
In chess, you have rankings for standard play, blitz (15 minutes or less per player for the whole game), and Bullet (1 minute or less per player for the game, usually adding a second or 2 to the players clock for each move made).
So, there being ladder play, doesn't mean the other game modes shouldn't have their own rankings.
What I liked about the concept, was one off, pickup games. Playing a quick ranked game against a similar skill player, before work. or while at lunch. Or anytime, you have a limited amount of time, and want to play a bit, but can't commit to a long tournament.
I would be happy to pay a subscribe fee, and could care less about sleeves or prize support.

zadies
08-19-2013, 11:42 AM
The issue becomes tournament play should not be delineated by ranks unless in the end you are going to have multiple world championships for each class... Which may work well with a huge population like the majors and minors in baseball but deciding and segrating a launch population like that will likely not work... It's more a multi year goal first Block everyone is in the majors to figure out rankings and how classes should be delineated.

Dinotropia
08-19-2013, 11:59 AM
The system sounds like what LoL has. At the end of the season, everyone who placed in ranked matches get a little something. Gold rank and above get a free (and exclusive) skin. They seem to be doing quite well for themselves. I think it is a mistake to claim that this kind of a system will harm CE. I think if they balance it correctly against the other draft prizes, it could be an excellent gateway between the PvP and PvE worlds.

Madican
08-19-2013, 02:55 PM
Realize though that Hex is not subscription based and that is how Blizzard primarily makes their money in WoW. Essentially what the OP is suggesting is to create a 6 month to 1 year tournament that provides vanity prizes. It's not difficult to figure out what active community members would covet the most (some free packs or an elusive title or deck sleeve that you can get once a year). I honestly think this would greatly hurt their bottom line as that's all people would want to do: Play for free and get free stuff that's only attainable once or twice a year.

I'm not a fan and believe the amount of ppl looking to "game this system" would be enormous. It already is for WoW.

It's true that Hex is not subscription-based, but keep in mind you still need to pay in order to get PvP cards, so the models wouldn't be all that dissimilar from one another.

The ladders also wouldn't last nearly that long. Three to four months is ideal. And yes there would be people trying to game the system, but that's where Hex has the advantage. Cory has already stated that anyone pulling this sort of thing will be sought out and banned, whereas Blizzard only moves at the end of the season (and not even all that accurately).

Plus it's kind of nice to get a win and suddenly be told you're now Gold rank, when you've been Silver for a few months. Accompany it with a bit of fanfare and a minor prize (sleeve or something) for reaching it the first time and you've just engaged the effort/rewards part of the brain into continuing further.

Yoss
08-19-2013, 04:40 PM
I really like the idea for a F2P PVP ladder with MMR/Elo. It should not give significant prizes, especially not boosters or money. Those that want prizes need to go play paid tournaments.

Barkam
08-19-2013, 09:37 PM
The rewards don't have to be boosters or cards. They can be all vanity rewards. That's fine. I think then to keep this tournament unique would be to just have the ladders completely free of any entry requirements other than the fact that you have to use PvP cards. Hex needs this if CZE wants to make sure that they have a steady stream of people dabbling in PvP. This ladder tournament is going to help CZE be a contender in the Solforge/Hearthstone market by having quick, easy, engagin non-committal duels. Right now, all tournaments proposed by CZE requires players to be committed for hours. This ladder system will allow a format for a 10 minute duel just like Hearthstone and Solforge.

I'll edit the OP to reflect this.

People and CZE need to respect Hearthstone's ability to take the market away from Hex. Hex can target the same market if CZE really want to. Once a player starts investing in Hearthstone, it's going to be very hard to convert them to Hex. There is enough depth in Hearthstone to satisfy an average gamer. We prefer Hex fulfill that role.

Hmdrake
08-19-2013, 11:01 PM
I kind of feel like if you're going to spend 3-12 months gaming the system for $6 worth of booster packs or a symbol next to your avatar, you've left the realm of competetive, or even sane.

Synesthesia
08-20-2013, 09:28 AM
Ladder I believe is a huge draw to many people; it's nice to have an ongoing sense of progression in the form of a rating or league of some sort (bronze/silver/gold/plat) and will keep people playing.

I think it should be free entry (as pvp requires you to obtain cards via money anyway, and the meta should be constantly changing to favor new cards/strats) and I don't think a system with prize support to the top 1% of players every 6 months would really offer potential to "game the system" at all.

zadies
08-20-2013, 10:38 AM
Depends on if the rewards are for each bracket if they are there will be ppl that underpreform just to get the rewards from a lower bracket

Barkam
08-20-2013, 11:09 AM
To prevent abusing the system and keeping the rules simple would be to:

- No brackets within ladders. But certainly, it would be cool to have titles associated to various top % placements. So for example when the season ends, if I am in the top 0.5%, I can get awarded the title High Ancient Dragon and show it off.

- I am partial to 11 month (yearly) seasons so we can attach the year to the titles awarded. I then can show a 2014 High Ancient Dragon badge on my playmat. Maybe we can have that off month where CZE can sponsor duel exhibitions between the top 1%.

- I agree with Elo/MMR decay with time. This way people can't sit on their early high MMR.

I agree that boosters to a very small top % players every
12 months is pittance to CZE. Also, boosters provide a really strong incentive to join the fun as well.

Great inputs everyone. I'll update the OP.

zadies
08-20-2013, 12:01 PM
Ladders should be done around set releases not have a set timeframe. A new set completely changes the meta.

Yoss
08-20-2013, 12:46 PM
Ladders should be done around set releases not have a set timeframe. A new set completely changes the meta.
Yeah, so maybe the ladder is in four month blocks, with the sets.

Synesthesia
08-20-2013, 05:24 PM
That is a cool idea - I can imagine winning titles based on sets. So for instance if you are top 1% during the first block/set, you'd have a title/custom sleeves/custom playmat that would reflect that you were top 1% for that block (maybe with the set symbols on it like in mtg)

Barkam
08-20-2013, 08:28 PM
Ladders should be done around set releases not have a set timeframe. A new set completely changes the meta.

That's the whole point for having a ladder to go through different sets is to test players' ability to ride the meta wave. Meta is a very important of TCGs and I would like to reward that skill.

Certainly, there can be other ladders that focus on sets so that the meta is limited to that set.

Maybe the types of ladders can rotate. Maybe for 2014, we can have a 12 month ladder. For 2015, we can have 3 four-month block ladder revolving around the sets. For 2016, we can have a 12 month pauper ladder. And etc.

Barkam
08-20-2013, 08:29 PM
That is a cool idea - I can imagine winning titles based on sets. So for instance if you are top 1% during the first block/set, you'd have a title/custom sleeves/custom playmat that would reflect that you were top 1% for that block (maybe with the set symbols on it like in mtg)


Yeah, that's a really good idea. The badge reward is the set symbol itself. Very very cool.

zadies
08-21-2013, 07:50 AM
I disagree with the idea is to ride the meta wave when I join a tcg competition the meta is set they aren't going to release a new batch of cards in the middle of it. Or a more specific example applied to digital wow does major class overhauls after the arena season not during it.
Also shorter seasons increases the likelihood of a new person joining a lot of people won't join in the middle of a season unless it is somehow abusable.

Yoss
08-21-2013, 09:04 AM
Yeah, year-long seasons seem rather too long.

Madican
08-21-2013, 09:32 AM
The meta is not supposed to change in the middle of a season. Setting the blocks with the sets sounds like a good idea.

On the subject of the badge being the set symbol, it gave me an interesting idea. What if the badges earned from Hex were more like pins in that they can be traded around? Digital pins in a digital cardgame, it's evil and yet amuses me.

Poolboy
08-21-2013, 10:46 AM
I really like the idea of 3 seasons yearly coinciding with the sets. As far as ranking to discourage cheaters you could always place people into random divisions to keep team a from purposely losing for team b because team a might be in zeta while team b is in division gamma.

Another reward that could be available is perhaps team pendants? Similar to Dota pendants except perhaps you can have a card or maybe card book with them all their for your viewing. Would be awesome as well to see gamewide division champions pendants displayed or even guild pendants to display wins for the winners guild in this way.

Also the league games themselves should be free; I don't need cash to play games against others or friends, and neither should you here. However, say the first two months are regular free matches, like in other sports your win-loss ratio can qualify you to play for the last month for prizes; entry then requires an fee. If not, or if your just a player who wasn't at the top rankings, you can still spend the third month playing matches for free to have fun and practice.

zadies
08-21-2013, 12:07 PM
I was talking about brackets in reference to thing such as chess ratings when I said they were abuseable.
Any PvP that has a possible prize needs an entry fee.

dogmod
08-21-2013, 12:25 PM
I was talking about brackets in reference to thing such as chess ratings when I said they were abuseable.
Any PvP that has a possible prize needs an entry fee.

I agree for short term and disagree for long term. If people can enter long term leagues such as the suggested 4 month blocks then I don't feel that there needs to be entry fees. The prizes should be non-extravagant and the time/#matches non-trivial. This way people have a fun outlet and a chance at prizes but it won't greatly effect the game economy.

I think a lot of people are worried about the game economy if they give away "free" stuff but the fact is that any company is going to give away a small amount of "free" to sell a lot of non free. Look at Magic and there upcoming game night where they are giving away 2 free packs to anyone participating at their local magic shop. A small amount of free to get advertising and hopefully sell a whole lot of not free. It's good business and it would be fun.

That and it will allow just about anyone to feel like a "pro" once in a while when they win a game. And then they will be more invested in watching and following other people playing.

My 2 cents.

Madican
08-21-2013, 12:39 PM
Also keep in mind that even if you have prizes for, say, the top 5% of the rankings then you don't need to charge for entry into the tournament because it's PvP: you already need to pay to get the cards to become competitive.

Poolboy
08-21-2013, 12:51 PM
Also keep in mind that even if you have prizes for, say, the top 5% of the rankings then you don't need to charge for entry into the tournament because it's PvP: you already need to pay to get the cards to become competitive.

Exactly this. I think of ladders as using your own cards that you already own, if your doing draft matches then I can understand fees since your perhaps using new carfs

Masquerade
08-21-2013, 02:50 PM
What about a PVE ladder tournament that would be free to enter and reward the top player with points toward a PVP championship and vanity rewards. Keeps it free and gives good players an in to higher level tournaments for free, but if they wish to do so, they'll need to start investing in pvp cards.

I really like the free idea. Its good to get people interested who wouldn't play otherwise. Plus it would make people feel like they can transition from PVE to PVP easier.

Poolboy
08-21-2013, 07:09 PM
What about a PVE ladder tournament that would be free to enter and reward the top player with points toward a PVP championship and vanity rewards.

I like this. Free and you play for points. Enough points or ranking and you qualify for some tourneys with prizes. Entry fees are a requirement like IRL, cards must be brought by each participant - you pay for your own decks.

Leingod
08-21-2013, 08:14 PM
PVP ladder would be fun I think. Could make some titles/sleeves style things as prizes. Give maybe a small prize for attaining a certain rank, don't let other people see your elo/mmr, only allow personal pvp cards, and then have some nicer cosmetic stuff at the end.

This would allow for a casual outlet for pvp that gave some sense of progression beyond just playing random games since I imagine the paid tournaments will likely be serious people only for the most part. Might also get some pve mainly/only players interested in the pvp side in order to see their ranking go up. It's also nice to be able to semi-guarantee that you will be playing somebody around your skill level. Ladders/mmr/elo generally helps cut down on 1 sided stomps due to skill/deck imbalances which is good for everyone.

Of course, obvious pitfalls that can be learned from wow arenas also come in to play. Win trading, selling rating, and boosting in general will likely need to be solved. Hopefully the prizes being purely cosmetic or achievement based would cut down on a lot of this though since I don't hear much about this kind of stuff from LoL's solo queue ladder.

I feel like 3-4 months would be great, especially if those are about how often new sets come out. If you want to track being able to keep up with metas as a skill you can always just see if they keep the same ranking across 'seasons'.

Barkam
08-21-2013, 08:40 PM
I actually don't think there should be any free PvE card ladders. One of the reasons I am pushing for no fee PvP card ladders is because they still have to buy PvP cards to participate in the ladder. In a sense, CZE get paid for their service of providing a magnificent game. Cheap decks can be made through the AH with gold if people want to dabble in the ladder. Having a PvE card only ladder doesn't provide any incentive for the free players to help support the game.

As I said before, awarding a small percentage of the top players in the ladder per season is pittance compared to the amount of money CZE will make due to the fact that everyone has to use PvP cards in the ladder. The prize that people would get would actually not even make up for the amount of money they have to invest in creating the best decks to be in the top %. The players do get to have a lot of fun though as ladders tend to be and some shiny badge to show off. Since there is no fee to entry to enter the ladder, you'll have people that would never join the regular tournaments try PvP and get addicted to it and they buy more PvP cards/boosters. More PvPers, more paying customers, more profit CZE makes, more money to develop the game, more features for players to enjoy and the cycle continues. Win-Win for everyone.

Malicus
08-21-2013, 10:01 PM
one of my concerns with a free ladder is how you then judge the top X% - though I suppose more I mean how do you determine the participation percentage since someone playing 10 or even 20 games may not really be considered a participant where the top 50% of players are playing 100 or more games and the top 10% may have played 500 or more but enough of the low level play participants increases the # that top X% represents. Alternatively do you actually say the top 500 people instead of say the top 5%.

Forgot to clarify that a buy in mitigates this issue since buy in determines base volume.

Madican
08-21-2013, 10:08 PM
MMR and other such things help out there. For example, look at WoW Arena. The system weights its points such that you can get to 1500 relatively easily but over 1800 or so you lose more points in a loss than you gain with a win. This means that only the truly good teams, in theory anyway, are able to keep winning and raising their score when they're facing other people doing the same thing. Even for the ultimate players they're facing people of similar skill level, so they're not going to always win a game. This means there's a sort of "cap" on the score they can get even if they're world champions, no matter how many games they play.

It's kind of like a pyramid. Lots of people at the bottom but each tier has less and less until the very top has only a small handful of what we'd call pro players.

Leingod
08-21-2013, 11:10 PM
one of my concerns with a free ladder is how you then judge the top X% - though I suppose more I mean how do you determine the participation percentage since someone playing 10 or even 20 games may not really be considered a participant where the top 50% of players are playing 100 or more games and the top 10% may have played 500 or more but enough of the low level play participants increases the # that top X% represents. Alternatively do you actually say the top 500 people instead of say the top 5%.

Forgot to clarify that a buy in mitigates this issue since buy in determines base volume.

You saw this happen to WoW during TBC. In Season 2, Gladiator (top .5% get gladiator title) stopped at around 2350ish rating. In Seasons 3 and 4 this dropped to almost 2000 rating due to an explosion in popularity for various reasons.

A few things can combat this. Minimum number of games can keep people who tried it and weren't interested from being counted. (I think WoW had a 50 or 100 match minimum to be a 'valid' team.) Additional rewards for a flat number of top players can keep competition going depending on how it is done, though it will often lead to things like dodging and sniping. Although given that you can have multiple decks to choose from this wouldn't be as big a problem since you wouldn't really have the hard counterpicking possible compared to WoW. Also, the starting point for rewards is usually pretty high for ladders. The absolute worst title you could get from arena was still something like top 30% of players, and it dropped off sharply in top % from there.

Axle
02-16-2014, 01:07 AM
Just wondering if it's close enough to release that we can get some information on how this will work. I'm not creating a new thread since there is already many good posts in this one and making my own would be unnecessary.

QuantumZeruul
02-16-2014, 02:47 AM
What about a block long ladder where say the top 64 players or such get the right to participate in a final tournament where the prize is being able to design a card (with the help of the design team of course)? FFG does this with their World Championships, and I know that I like most every TCG player would love to design my own card. And from a "cost" standpoint, it would just basically be some email interactions with the design team, and setting it as block long ladders would make it so that this "ultimate prize" would not be something handed out frequently.