Release 180: XP and Progression re-re-balance!


#82

I would like to comment on your response

If you look at the definition of a MMORPG on Wiki then I would have to agree with you. Boundless has enough features in common with a MMORPG to be classified that way. I would also agree that by specifying possible collaboration between players, an open persistent world, and possible roles such as builder, crafter, explorer and hunter, the website does tick most of the boxes for a MMORPG. I do think that it also being presented as a sandbox might be where I had not thought it through. Most of the sandbox games I play like Medieval Engineers and Space Engineers can be multi-player or truly solo, but there is no leveling (part of the definition of a MMORPG) or the other characteristics that would make them a MMORPG.

Quoted from Wiki “Another common practice is to enforce a maximum reachable level for all players, often referred to as a level cap. Once reached, the definition of a player’s progression changes. Instead of being awarded primarily with experience for completing quests and dungeons, the player’s motivation to continue playing will be replaced with collecting money and equipment.”

In boundless what is the goal after level 50? if you are crafting and selling it might be the accumulation of money or creating everything possible. If you are a hunter, it might be killing a Titan or some of the other creatures that will be part of Boundless at it moves forward. If you are an explorer, it might be to see all the new worlds as they are added. For a builder, money and equipment have no value. What I want is to have more freedom to build bigger and with more features. I am not sure what the developers have in mind for the post 50 goals.

In my opinion the problem with ghost towns is not the amount of plots provided. The issue is with the fact there is nothing to do with a build other than store, craft, use to house a portal and sell once it is built. This will be the case no matter how many plots are given until more features are added. I would also state that there are a lot of small 1 and 2 plot builds that are just abandoned all over the starter planets. People learn more about the game as they level and move on to be part of a community or to another location/planet to make their home. Another factor in the creation of ghost towns is the fact that you can fuel a beacon for 6 months (I think) and not have to have any interaction with it. There have been a lot of discussions on changing the beacon fueling to try and address this. I know I have always been careful with my plots and when I moved, I broke everything down and took the plots, but many people do not. Probably because they are not in the game to build so they think the number of plots they have is sufficient to abandon a few here or there.

This is the one place where I strongly disagree with part of your statement (specifically about plots as a commodity). If you want to be a crafter you can do that everyday and not have to rely on anyone in order to be able to do that. You can level up and have all the skills to craft everything. You can gather your own resources and craft without any game limitations or a requirement to buy a resource you need to craft from another player.

If you are a Hunter you can hunt every day. You can gather the resources for weapons from hunting and even level up and give yourself the ability to craft your own weapons. You need nothing from any other players to pursue this role and there are no game limitations on how often you can hunt.

If you are an explorer you may need to be able to gather resources to craft portals or warps, and will need the skills, but you do not need to get anything from any other player to be in this role and there are no game limitations on how much you can explore.

If you want to be a merchant, again you can level up and get the skills you need to gather and craft what you need to run a market without any game limitations and without any other player interactions to get there. It might be very boring for you if no one wants to buy from you, but the game itself does not limit you.

Why should being a builder (one of the roles specifically defined on the Boundless website) be any different. I can certainly mine and craft everything I need to build without any real limitations (a discussion on skill points not being part of this). My limitation is plots, If I want to build everyday I will run out of plots. I should not have to buy them from someone else. No other role has that requirement to buy a limited resource. All the primary resources regenerate, you might have to look in other places for them but everyday I can collect resources and then craft, hunt and explore or even collect resources for a few days and them craft, hunt and explore for a few days without any game imposed limits. I also do not think that as a builder that I should have to grind for 20 hours to get 10 plots. No other role has that kind of grinding requirement in order to pursue its primary objective. And frankly 10 plots is not very many. I have a small place in Eden, due to the way plots intersect the land, it required 12 plots. It took me probably 3 hours total to design and build this. So for my role to do 3 hours of its primary objective requires more than 20 hours of grinding. I have a problem with this. If the game has no technical limits on how many plots people can have, why should you think they should be limited? I will propose an idea I have about helping the builder role in another topic and its builds on your point on linking plots to skills.


#83

Everything I am seeing at this point is regarding number balancing. 10 plots per “level” past 50 is not enough? That’s a fair argument. I would be upset as well if it was a hard cut off, but it is clearly not. But what’s wrong with having other sources of gaining plots outside of leveling? Trading and buying deeds sounds like a great source of plots to me in addition to 10 per level. As a builder, I’d happily build a mansion for a hunter on their own plots in exchange for some deed tokens and coins. I’ve already sold a few hundred of my own plots to other players in real estate sales on 3 separate planets. In my 1250 hours playing Boundless, I’ve never felt restricted as a builder. Maybe that’s thanks to my backer tier, but if that is the case, it’s a number balance issue. Number balance does not merit this degree of panic. Just state “hey, the ratio of plots per level feels bad. You gotta pump those numbers up! Those are rookie numbers!”


#84

That has been stated and the response has been, it takes no time to advance and get your 10 plots. Or there are too many plots given out already since most people are not using them.


#85

@Havok40k I respect you fully and the work you did and your willingness to put so much real world cash into this among countless hours of game play.

Yes at a base level the ratio is off on plot’s given per level. We tried to explain this many ways and it wasn’t heard.

Let me ask you one thing, in your new build in New Berlyn how many plots is it? Based on my rough count it equals about 310 across those 3 buildings along with 20-30 reserved spots. Can you let me know the actual number on the beacons? Because if I am close on the numbers then that is a perfect example of all I will be able to achieve in this game as a builder after grinding 50 levels. That’s it nothing more basically unless I repeat the process on the 2 other characters I have.

Also go look at @Kirinvar floating island. It is 175 plots. It’s amazing but he can only do about 2 of those structures and that is it. Is that what we want to promote in this game?

I don’t think that is fair to me or other builders and just not fun as a builder.


#86

@lawrey Reset the map and the ghost towns will go away. They exist because people had unlimited build possibility. A reset will show what really can be build based on the current game design.

@Kal-El’s points basically answer the same way I would in response to you.

Plots should not be a commodity as a requirement to the game. They are a nice option and way to create an economy. But I shouldn’t be forced to buy them just like people aren’t forced to buy gems. They can go find them through A LOT less effort than plot grinding. I never said I was building a city or not. Even at 20-30 plots a level in the higher ranges of a character you won’t have enough to do that.

I don’t mind interacting with people and like it. I moved to Therka from Berlyn to be around people. But I shouldn’t be limited by being forced to interact with them if I want to spend some time doing my own thing.


#87

I think having fewer plots per player is good, as bigger builds should definitely be something you have to work towards and only complete at higher levels. As much as I wanted the 30 plots per level before, it is quite excessive. Space on worlds will be limited so plots should be more of a challenge to get.

That said, after levelling a few times in the new system I feel it may be just a little too low. After level 50 people will likely have big builds in progress, or they wont have an interest in building at all so won’t be affected. In my own build, the visible difference 10 plots makes right now really isn’t that much. I’m trying to clear away a sand dune to make space for my marketplace. I knew this would take a lot of plots, but having to go 3 plots high to clear it all means you don’t get a lot of horizontal space with each level. I also have the remains of trees floating above my settlement but I’m reluctant to use plots to clear them when I still have unfinished buildings.

I would adjust the 50+ plot gain to be around 1 plot every 10,000-15,000 exp. Assuming you’re just building (no mining, no crafting or anything else) you can only get exp from clearing, building and chiselling blocks.Some quick calculations:

  • one plot has 512 blocks
  • 4xp per natural block removed
  • 8xp per block placed
  • xp to chisel varies based on type and number of chisel hits, let’s average at 8

If you cleared a full plot then filled it with chiselled blocks you would have 10,240xp.

I reckon this should be enough to get you the next plot. Obviously though not all plots you beacon will be full, and you won’t fill them completely. You’ll probably only get a fraction of this total so you’ll still have to grind a bit or maybe craft your building materials for the extra exp. No player interaction necessary.


#88

I think this is a little unfair, given that we’ve just done a release that rebalances the XP and progression based on player feedback. The rebalance was specifically in response to numerous comments, posts, reviews and our own experience of the pacing of the game. We don’t want a “grind”, and never intended it to be a “grind”, so when the game is described that way we want to fix it. XP and progression will get another pass, but not until we have true metrics to evaluate possible changes against.

Additionally, when I was reviewing the rebalance there were a few specific points we discussed:

  1. How many players are using all their plots (also normalising for players with working(?wtf) perks). This was a valid query, given that if the majority of players had deployed all their plots then it would suggest that actually players were starving for more. But this wasn’t the case.

  2. When we discussed the # of plots rewarded up to Level 50 as a reduction I was extremely mindful of taking something away from our players. Now it might be the right thing to do - but we would need to explain this super well to keep everyone on side and going in the same direction. But this query became a little moot when we calculated that, ignoring the absolute amounts, that the rate of plots earn was actually increasing. So we weren’t taking anything away, we were actually accelerating the rate at which players earned plots.

  3. Plots can be earned indefinitely.

    Fixating on the # of plots earned per level, or by Level 50, doesn’t take into account the changes in the XP required to achieve these levels and the rate at which XP can be earned.

    The claim is that Release 180 increased the # of plots all players receive.

(Discourse has just told me that “I’ve already replied 3 times to @Xaldafax in this particular topic, … and have I considered replying to other people?”)

Finally, I’m wondering if there is room for a builder skill that increases the number of plots by a fixed percentage: Increase total plots by 5%, Increase total plots by 10%, etc. Other professions have skills that increase drop rates, mine faster, shot harder, etc, maybe there is room for an increased landowner skill.


Plots After Level 50
#89

I agree with you about maybe finding an alternative. Please look at my topic “plots after level 50”. Maybe there is something that can be done with a skill to give incentive to those that choose to be builders.


#90

@james I wasn’t trying to be unfair… don’t take my response in any way but trying to be helpful and specific to a point of a large concern I see. I work in IT so I know the challenges of moving a vision into the real world and the strong headwinds you can face. Maybe that is why sometimes I might come of stronger than I intend.

I think some of us were not feeling heard because we didn’t get much response from development about the points we were making and a many people weren’t even understanding the points. Obviously your thorough response just now actually removed the “unheard” comment. :slight_smile:

Thank you for the points. In response for each point:

  1. Were these numbers only gathered on active users that have more than like 50 hours in the game and have logged in multiple times? If it’s compared to an average user base that is not focused on building or don’t play much then we get data that isn’t giving a clear picture. Clearly there is something different in how plots are being looked at compared to other resources in the game. There are dynamics on how much stuff is mined and keeping it balanced but not ones of people holding excess stone, money, and other resources in their character. Since plots are a serious resource to those that want to build we shouldn’t be compared to average players that have shown no major need to build and hence remove plots because other’s aren’t using them.

  2. I don’t fully know the plot numbers handed out before the patch so I can’t understand how it is increasing. For a player like me that started new in this game plots don’t feel increasing. It was less than 10 for most of the 600 hours I have played up until level 20. During that time I constantly had plot number issues and raised suggestions like “landscape plots” to solve some of my issues. Now I am still only making 10 at 40+. There was never an abundance of plots provided me (experiencing levels of 20 or 30 plots) and so nothing feels increasing. My alt used to earn 10 at level 20. Now I am earning 6. So please explain where my math is wrong because maybe I am really missing something here. Yes I might get them forever but I am earning less today in the hours I played than before the patch.

  3. I fixate on the experience under level 50 because that is where I am. I am not level 50. I am playing the game as it stands now and not the game in the development teams heads or on some board somewhere. My hours of time are spent in the current game so I must speak only to that. The experience for all 3 of my characters is a constant low count of plots and not a likely hood of having more than 1 decent sized build unless I spent 1000+ hours per each character. And I won’t like grinding above 50 to just get plots because I get no other benefit on skill points,etc.

Honestly look at havok’s build in New Berlyn City - just over 300 plots. It is amazing and I would love to give that to the community as a solo builder… maybe even a few things like that. But, that is ALL I can achieve across all your 30-50 planets as a character at level 50 because of the plots I’m being allocated. I’m all for teaming with people but I can’t do that 24/7 or trust it would work out. I want to do some things my own and a single project is it unless I destroy it to create another. The time to grind the other 300 plots on that character isn’t worth it. Lastly, I don’t want to have to wait until level 50 to build and finish something like that or have it take 50 levels of work.

  1. As to skill points, if you are creating a class based game and “builder” is a class where points can increase plot delivery then that can make sense compared to other professions in the game. I am not sold on that idea but certainly am not opposed. I just try to watch carefully on providing fixes or other solutions to a problem that is just simply the number of plots you have as you go through the game. Is there really a need to add more program structure to solve a simple thing of adjusting the delivery ratio in the mid/late game.

Also, a simple flat scaling doesn’t feel right compared to a more bell curve type design. I just would want to make sure that percentage was appropriate and decent for mid levels since that is where many of us have the most challenges right now in this game. Also skill points are very hard to come by in some ways so I wouldn’t want to hurt other needed stuff but I know that stuff can be balanced.

I just want more discussion and understanding on the development team’s concerns around plot numbers and what people can have. That helps me give feedback and suggestions on how to solve the challenge I am being faced with. I am very clear on my challenge and can articulate it. Help me become clear of your challenges in relations to plots so we can solve things because I know other builders completely support and feel the same way as I do.


#91

This is one place where I will disagree with @Xaldafax. For skill acquisition you get more points the higher your level. You worked for it and you get the reward for the hard work. I think the plots should be the same. As you advance the allotment should always increase. It shows your dedication to the game and as it takes more xp to level up you should be rewarded for the extra effort. What you should get at each level is certainly something to discuss.

I do think it is in the interest of the game to allow each profession to make an impact prior to reaching the last level.


#92

From my experience with the latest update levelling and experience progression seems to be in an excellent place now. The really important stat, as the devs here have pointed out and people seem strangely unable to understand, is that the rate at which you gain new plots has significantly increased.

You get less plots per level – but levelling up is now much faster and significantly easier. I am absolutely happy with this change and I believe it’s a deeply positive one. Previously, I was that player on the edge case who used all their plots and didn’t have enough – I still am and will be, because I’ll use all of them, no matter how many I get – and because of that, the real bottleneck is how fast I am able to get them. I am now able to sustain gameplay in an enjoyable way while building and gaining new plots, rather than having to halt all my projects and go grind for a while until I can continue. Less plots, but more often, is much better for this.

Speaking of XP gain methods, I’ve done a little testing and still have some experiments to make, but with the right hunting methods I’m pretty sure hunting is the fastest XP gain now. You can get some crazy numbers, but it will depend on having a focused group playing for efficiency rather than loot. Even solo hunting I seem to be getting more XP than when mining or collecting soil with a silver shovel.

Anyway, what people are all complaining about in my opinion is just a sort of misunderstanding in attitude. This is a game and games are meant to challenge you: The fact that power-levelling is an option and an avenue available to you immediately should alleviate whatever stresses you have about not having enough plots. You can earn them in infinite quantities.

It’s like this: I don’t play a game of chess and demand that knights should move in diagonals like bishops because the current way is “wrong” or not the way I like it. The game is the game and the joy of it is in finding creative solutions to the problems presented by it. If I simply revise the rules so that it should be easy in such-and-such a way to instantly checkmate the king, I am not actually gaining anything, only undermining my own pleasure in discovering the way to do so for myself in the context of the constraints applied to me.


#93

Ah, you managed to express some ofbmy thoughts better than I had.


#94

Updated OP for 180.2 patch release.


#95

Lerp. Lerp. Leeerrrrrrrp. LERP?


#96

Lerp?


#97

I hate those invalid lerps!!!


#98

Yeah the valid lerps are so much better!


#99

Just to add some valuable thought before this conversation drifts away towards off-topic waters:

I prefer lerping and inlerping valids.


#100

I would agree with Xaldafax that this number isn’t as accurate as you’d hoped, since I am one of the players that has used barely a fraction of my plots, because I know that the build that I am planning takes WAY more plots than I currently have. When it’s time to build I can’t just build plot-by-plot as they are given to me, I need to lay the groundwork and build the entire frame of it so I can get the shape right. it’s going to take hundreds of plots for that… meaning I can’t even start placing blocks until i’m level 50, maybe 40…

[bit of a sidetrack] oh, did I mention that this is with my alt? yes, my main account/name is ctrl_64. Like Kal-El said in a previous post or thread I use the same name everywhere so everyone knows who I am. Like some people I have a name that I always use for my alt, which is from a TV show. The show is based in a giant spaceship, which I plan to build, crashed on Therka. So that’s going to take a lot of plots. Plots that I will have to grind for on my alt. he’s only 18 so far and I only have 50 plots. that doesn’t even cover the floor plan of the ground level. Now I don’t want to sound like I’m complaining, I’m just giving you some scale. It was my decision to use the alt and I know it’ll be a massive grind.

My main is level 37 and has 222 plots (198 of them are unused)…
So I wouldn’t complain about more plots given, although it might not be the best solution, I’m guessing that when alts are automatically friended/beacon accessible this won’t be a problem for me anymore as I could just add onto my alt’s plots with my main (hopefully that will work).
I also like the idea of being able to trade plots, there are certainly a lot of players that don’t use them as much (hunters, traders etc…) and also a good handful that are starving for more. (I’m with the latter even though it doesn’t look like it)… My original idea for a solution was to be able to trade them in the trade window, very similar to trading coins. That way you don’t have to craft anything, no need for another texture/model etc… then again maybe there should be some kind of cost associated, as others suggested crafting plot tokens and that would work too.
Personally I think the best solution is having a skill (lol yep, another one… noob me can’t believe i’m suggesting this) to boost the number of plots you get. I’m thinking 3-5 levels of increased percentages would be great.

Apart from the points mentioned I am fairly happy with how the progression is coming along in the last update. Like I said it’s still a grind but i’m still kind of enjoying it. It’s rewarding enough with the feats (glad I can click on them now!) and different XP boosts here and there. :thumbsup:


#101

Uhh. Is this the place for reporting wonky objectives?

Anyway, the explorer’s objective of “Setting a waypoint on the compass” just takes the number of meters you’ve walked and not the fact that you’ve reached that location. So I just ran around in circles to complete it. On the other hand, it’s quite tricky if we want it to be completed once the player arrived at the location since they might set a waypoint exactly to where they are. Not really sure what could be a better way to introducing waypoints…