What do I do with all these extra cards? Need coins not gold... (and a response)

Hey there, I want the tone of our next conversation to be as level, calm, and understanding as possible so I will start off by saying how much I love your game. There is so much you could do to make this an amazing (truly absolutely and honestly) game. There is a ton of ideas and suggestions out there on the forums for you guys to implement. I don’t mind spending money on your game at all because it is so fun and a huge time sink for me which is good because it keeps me occupied from doing other horrible and terrible addictions. I truly believe that you guys can pull this game together and make it a huge success and compete with games like hearthstone from Blizzard.

There are a few problems however. One, which is never getting back to me. I consider myself to be one of your top investors. I have spent an embarrassing amount of money on your game. I actually just dropped another $120 today which was not intended. And if there continues to be zero response from your devs might be the last time I buy anything from your company (this is not a threat just a reality and a concern) But there are some things that need to be done in order to keep the player base you have and continue to grow that player base. I (and countless others) Just want to know that we are being heard and to know that you guys are doing something to fix the problems that are very clear about your business model. It seems like it’s just a get rich scheme, and then sabotage the game and forget about it. (Like take everyone’s money and run.) And that really sucks to start to feel that way.

I have not gotten a single response since our last interaction and I have sent screenshots of things that have been happening in your game that seems to be very shady in some respects. I am completely maxed out on cards that I do not need and the only reason I buy your packages is for the coins and season tokens as well as the diamonds. There needs to be some sort of way that I can be compensated for these extra cards that I no longer need. Maybe you can just sell me coins at that level or let me turn my cards into some sort of skin for my characters or let me do something just something anything with these extra cards that I don’t need.

Please I just want to be heard I just want to know that you guys actually do care about your player base and your investors. I have never ever ever responded to a game company in the way that I am now. And that’s not a bad thing actually it’s a really good thing it means that I really really enjoy your product and I want something to be done to compensate for the extra cash that I am spending. I think this game is awesome and I think there is so much that could be done to make this game one of the most greatest and fantastic games on the App Store. I truly believe this.

But it seems that there have been no responses from you at all about the concerns that the community has about your game and your business model. This worries me not only because I feel like I’m not getting my moneys worth but I feel like the game that has brought me joy and entertainment (and my life right now is pretty screwed up) Is going to end up being a waste of money instead of an investment into my entertainment.

Please, just let us know that you hear us, including the people who don’t want to spend money, that’s totally fine, but at least come up with some ideas to compensate the people who do want to spend money and who do you want to invest in your company. I would not be writing this or coming to the forums if I did not truly care about your game.

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Totally on your Side.

Totally agree here with everything you said, from spending an embarrassing amount of money on the game to thinking it could really be one of the best for mobile devices.

In the spirit of offering solutions instead of just criticism, here’s what I think should be considered:

  • Make gold a currency for social aspects of the game, starting with Boss Blitz and including future features that have been discussed, like Alliance battles.
  • Instead of attenuating the leveling process with coin drops, do it with the cards. Earning coins with a grind to reach higher levels is far more frustrating when we have that huge number of upgrades available. It would be far less frustrating if cards were seen as more valuable and when we attain enough to upgrade, chances are good we have enough coin to do it. Right now, we’re showered with cards and the response to over- leveling is to keep dialing back coin drops. It’s clearly having some damaging consequences.
  • Enhance the donation abilities, and consider implementing a card trade system. Trades could incur costs in gold.
  • Commit to a value proposition in the real-money products and stop tweaking it silently. This is one of the shadiest practices ever and it needs to stop now. Play with pricing all you want to nail down your target sales, but quit with this moving target nonsense of value in packages that reduces product-to-price ratios by 50% or more.
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Also:

  • Explore microtransactions more instead of this “sink your paycheck” kinds of offers. I imagine a ton of folks would pay $2-$5 for a portrait they like or skin set completions; orders of magnitude more than are willing to drop $100 for a chance to get enough currency to slog through a giant purchase tree to get them.
  • De-emphasize the de facto “pay to win” elements of the game so that it appeals to more people for longer (I expect player churn is a big problem)
  • Scale currency drops by player level
  • If player engagement would help resolve intractable technical MM issues, reduce the friction to keep playing. Either lower the cooldown on chests/XP rewards or reduce the scale of diamond it pricing to refresh.
  • Pick a currency conversion rate that’s reasonable and stick with it. The diamond-to-coin conversion, for instance is insane, particularly if you need a few thousand coins to complete an upgrade and want to buy it immediately. A good exercise here is to map these rates back to the range of real dollars needed to buy them and ask “is the market of people willing to spend ~$80 to upgrade a single unit from 14 to 15 really large enough to support us?”
  • Award gold instead coins for card donations (in conjunction with the previous suggestions for gold, above)
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I understand your position of straying from criticism, but we have all offered many recommendations already, and there has not been a single post that says “hey guys we hear all players from all levels and paying to play for free players. Here are some things we are discussing as a team moving forward.” That would be sufficient enough to at least keep us engaged and part of the decision making and game development process as investors and participants. We have not seen anything as such.

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Oh, no, criticism is certainly warranted. But since it’s not getting very far, it seems a change in tack might be helpful. I’ve seen a lot of suggestions, but they’re all of the “make it the way it was before” variety. It’s a stretch to assume these unpopular changes were just made to piss people off; I think it’s far more likely that the changes were made to address business or gameplay concerns and they had unintended consequences or simply failed. I tried to make my suggestions above keeping in mind that “the way it was” didn’t solve those business or gameplay problems. I’m trying to brainstorm changes that could achieve external goals while being palatable to players.

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The most frustrating thing about all this is the lack of response at this point.

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Some of the coin problems:

  • chests’ coins are useless for high level players (100 coins?!?)
  • quests prizes are not coins anymore (who needs that gold?!?)
  • events coin prizes are much lower now (now around 10k. It used to be 50k)
  • coins on purchase offers packages are ridiculous (3950 coins?!? Useless. so even paying we can’t get coins)
    Etc
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I agree, but those drop rates are problematic mostly because we have sooooooo many upgrades waiting for us, by card count. If the expectation was that leveling a legendary card from 16-17 was something it took weeks or months to get enough cards for, then it wouldn’t seem so outlandish to expect it to take a couple hundred chests’ worth of coin to do it.

The PM on this project really fouled things up by inverting that and making cards fall from the sky.

Of course, the toothpaste is out of the tube, as they say, for level 17/75. The only way to fix it now is swap he rarity resource (cards instead of coins), raise max card level to 25 or something, and slow progression that way. We’re all so pissed at the devs because the devs are controlling the coin drop in a direct way. I think we wouldn’t be nearly as frustrated if the card drop RNG we’re taking more of the blame. It would feel more like a part of the game, instead of artificial economy manipulation.

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