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How to Attract New Players - Revisited


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I'm starting a new thread because the excellent idea by Roo5ter on how to attract new players has been completely hijacked by a SP vs MP argument. The original thread can be found here:

 

http://forum.il2sturmovik.com/topic/15602-reasonable-plan-expand-player-base

 

This is my response and updated proposal.

I'm not sure how that turned into an MP vs SP debate. I never play SP for more than a couple of week in new flight sims to get acquainted with the FM's but I agree it is an important market. That argument, however, is pretty far afield of the OP. Maybe stop sniping each other over this OT and proffer some ideas about how to DRAW PEOPLE IN. We have plenty of input on why people suck and/or don't play flight sims currently over there. Identifying that is important but is not a solution in and of itself.

 

I don't think just using the Russian $12 game is viable in the open market. It is a loss leader for a major contributor. There is no incentive to do it over here. It wouldn't be a loss leader it would simply be a loss. And it would p!$$ people off mightilly. The rants here (forum) and abroad (aviation and/or bicycle forums) would be loud and wild as we ate our young.

 

It seems the devs don't want to do a purely F2P or they would have done it already. It may or may not have done what they wanted in ROF. They have the data to make that choice intelligently. Not implementing a true F2P is their absolute right.

 

There are thousands of WT players of a variety of skill levels we have not tapped into. We need to figure out how to appeal to them without changing the fundamentals of our current game. This is more marketing than anything else. A successful BOM in publications will go a long way here but the Devs need a good PR coup as well to silence the, "I hate how they treated all gamers, pilots, me, etc the last time. NEVER AGAIN crowd." 

 

The game is progressing nicely and I have no problem with the dev cycles or the price of the full game. It can be played with a limited amount of gear on a decent but not top end computer. It is, of course, better on a top computer, with top speed connection and a full cockpit but none of that is necessary to have fun in an introductory package. This is something that gets lost in the, “OMG $100 for BOS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

 

With that said, I think the OP still has a lot of merit. Reading through, I think there is one more modification necessary. Add three or four stock missions which would take some portion of a design cycle. The missions would cover Take Offs and Landings and a basic intro to coordinated maneuvers - turns, loops, rolls - and one on ground attack. I don't think anyone needs one on basic aerial gunnery but maybe one on lead and angle would be good too.

 

So with that my proposal, feeding off the OP and adding one more element is as such:

 

Offer a limited two aircraft set of competitive (with each other) aircraft on a small map with two types (trucks and MG/AAA emplacements) of ground objects. Include the QMB but only for those two aircraft. As previously stated, my recommendation is the Emil and Rata on a fall map because it gives limited access to two aircraft which are competitive, shiny and new. It introduces you new product not your old one. It is a matter of perspective from a PR standpoint. Don’t show the “old game” which had warts, show the “new game” which will have all of the updates and seem considerably more polished at release.

 

Offer three to four stock missions to introduce the spectacular graphics and FM this sim has to offer while realizing it is not easy but not impossible to learn. Offer a NOOB DF server for these guys to get into direct competition. Keep them out of the main servers until the full game is purchased but allow full members access to the noob servers. The interaction, even with the differing skill levels would grow organically and be an additional incentive to purchase the full game.

 

Offer these two planes as a package deal only at $20 and no ability to add aircraft through grinding. Allowing that would enflame the masses again. It’s a $20 investment. You’d pay that for a basic game of Mahjong out of a wire basket at Best Buy. It would make it a reasonable purchase price for the young and or inquisitive fence sitter and excellent access to what this game can do. At $20 bucks there would be no loss to the DEVS other than a design cycle for a couple of members of the team. You could offset this further by giving the (four missions) mission making to a skilled community member like AM or another who has continued working in the FMB, if they are willing. Then you lose NO design cycles from BOM.

 

For the $20 you have the chance to introduce the product to a broad slice of potential customers. It is $20 worth of income to the devs regardless of whether the player stays or goes, is a fence sitter or has a limited attention span or just sucks. It could be the gateway to a broader player base and seems to be (one of) the only option(s) not thus far explored in the genre. If you don't like it, what is YOUR suggestion for bringing those players in. The bottom line is you have to want to get the Gen X'ers, the fence sitters and perhaps most importantly the WT crowd. Get this thread back on topic, please.

 

We don’t have to dumb the game down. We have to make it accessible.

 

According to my marketeering wife: TLDR. Sorry, guys.

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The best way to attract new players is to have lots of options.  You need SP and MP.  You need flight models from full real to arcade style.  You need good graphics.  You need lots of maps.  You need lots of aircraft.  You need a stats system that encourages competition.  I don't know how you'd do that for SP, but I think you have to figure something out.

Edited by BraveSirRobin
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The best way to attract new players is to have lots of options.  You need SP and MP.  You need flight models from full real to arcade style.  You need good graphics.  You need lots of maps.  You need lots of aircraft.  You need a stats system that encourages competition.  I don't know how you'd do that for SP, but I think you have to figure something out.

 

Yes

 

and especially this for MP whether it be online war or whatever "You need a stats system that encourages competition"

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barking up the wrong tree. the game should try and get people to stay first. the tacked on single player experience, the lack of options in terms of weaponry in the campaign, has made it pointless for me to continue.

 

it doesn't feel like a sim. it feels like air quake.

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I agree in the long run the key is options, since the pool is small enough that the game needs to cater to a wide range of tastes to get critical mass of numbers. 

 

Getting new players to try an entry level BoS is one thing, perhaps achieved through a specific package, pricing and promotion deal of the types suggested. (Or get it into schools as an educational programme?)

 

Getting them to stick with it and invest more money over time is another thing - people are going to be coming at it from different directions , and if they see that the game does not quite do it for them, they are mostly going to drift off rather than "support the genre" just because there are few CFSs about. Plenty of other gaming choices. (Just spent the evening playing Pillars of Eternity :))

 

In the SP world there is quite a variety of tastes, from scripted campaigns to sandbox, requirements for intense action every sortie or the possibility of no contact sorties etc. A scalable campaign will be more popular. 

 

I am not sure that a statistics system is useful for SP: stats are only meaningful when they are comparable and if people are choosing from a wide range of options this will not be the case: I am not convinced that the SP stats system in RoF contributed much, but some may have found it motivating.

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While it is clear SP content is, in fact, important it will have to be primarilly user made. I don't like it but I don't see it changing unless the game really takes off and the devs can throw money and design cycles to it. It is not likely to happen in the short term. On the other hand, I think there are some talented people out there and I've seen good hypotheticals thrown about from idea guys on what it should look like. I suspect some of it will appear down the road.

 

Airquake is always going to be part of the online experience to some extent. It has a little to do with maturity and experience. New guys will always be drawn to airquake and vulching until they figure out how to use aircraft to their strenghts.

 

While slightly off topic I think the stats page should be adjusted to make the ground war more important and encourage the TEAM who wins. Some sort of a bonus for the team win - TBD (points, advantage in the next round, Im open to suggestions). This is really important to many in the Battlefield series. The popularity there, ability to join a squad on the fly and formation of numerous clans should be a model we seek here.

 

When the ground war is important it gets the mud movers involved and that by necessity requires teamwork, either from additional mud movers/safety in numbers, fighter cover and by extension CAP over objectives. I see this having success in the Eagles Nest and DED servers. 

 

Those who were going to stay have. It is now a matter of getting back some we lost, which is happening to some extent, getting the fence sitters onboard (which a polished BOM is likely to help with) and attracting a younger crowd - read:WT Crowd.

Edited by HerrMurf
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If I'm the producer of a game I'm not going to put a lot of money into a campaign.  I would provide all the resources for the community to produce a campaign, but I would not do it.  It costs too much and the data indicates that there is very little return.

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johncage makes a good point.  I would add to my list of things, don't have unlockables for people who paid full price.  However, a discount version of the game with unlockables is probably a good feature.  

 

Unlocks should simply just be thrown in the dustbin of bad ideas so they can be forgotten about asap. If/when we get a PWCG type deal this would be unnecessary as you could get assigned different aircraft and loadouts by the 'squadron commander' in each mission...I imagine that would float the boat of many offliners. For they onliners they are just hated.

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While slightly off topic I think the stats page should be adjusted to make the ground war more important and encourage the TEAM who wins. Some sort of a bonus for the team win - TBD (points, advantage in the next round, Im open to suggestions). When the ground war is important it gets the mud movers involved and that by necessity requires teamwork, either from additional mud movers/safety in numbers, fighter cover and by extension CAP over objectives.

 

I would have separate stats for bombing and air/air.  All stats would encourage survival.

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For the offliners...quote from Jason today
 

"No one has a problem with a 3rd Party Campaign system like what was done for PWCG. I am actually working on that, but progress is slow at the moment. I need a programmer for that who knows Java."

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Options is important. Haven't been around for a while (flown either) but is there any changes in graphic options?

 

 

 

The best way to attract new players is to have lots of options.  You need SP and MP.  You need flight models from full real to arcade style.  You need good graphics.  You need lots of maps.  You need lots of aircraft.  You need a stats system that encourages competition.  I don't know how you'd do that for SP, but I think you have to figure something out.

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I would have separate stats for bombing and air/air.  All stats would encourage survival.

Maybe but would the air to air guys then care about the ground pounders at all or would it encourage them to continue airquake while the mud movers fend for themselves?

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Options is important. Haven't been around for a while (flown either) but is there any changes in graphic options?

 

 

 

No, and I don't think there may ever be. Might be better to push for a few more presets rather than complete user control at this point. Let's not get off topic.

That isn't the sort of options I'm talking about.  I'm talking about options in how the game is played.

and this too.

Edited by HerrMurf
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Maybe but would the air to air guys then care about the ground pounders at all or would it encourage them to continue airquake while the mud movers fend for themselves?

 

I'd give bonus points for shooting down bombers still loaded with bombs, or for causing damage to bombers which are forced to miss their target.

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For the offliners...quote from Jason today

 

"No one has a problem with a 3rd Party Campaign system like what was done for PWCG. I am actually working on that, but progress is slow at the moment. I need a programmer for that who knows Java."

I'm glad it's addressed. Seems to also be inline with my follow up post.

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No, and I don't think there may ever be. Might be better to push for a few more presets rather than complete user control at this point. Let's not get off topic.

 

The easiest thing they could do is simply roll back the graphics options to what they once were.

But for whatever reason, they do not seem to be open to doing this.

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I'd give bonus points for shooting down bombers still loaded with bombs, or for causing damage to bombers which are forced to miss their target.

I like it. It's in line with convoys and trains bringing in supplies. On the other hand it would encourage bombers to drop their load at the first sign of fighters. Maybe bonus points before entering some line of demarcation as well or as an alternative.

Edited by HerrMurf
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That isn't the sort of options I'm talking about.  I'm talking about options in how the game is played.

Well that may not be what you meant but when people spend Money to build a proper sim pc, they want to be able to tweak it so they can enjoy their build.

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According to my marketeering wife: TLDR. Sorry, guys.

 

Maybe I missed something, but I didn't see anything you proposed that has not been tried by this and or other realistic flight sims.. 

 

And thus far none of it has seemed to work..

 

Sadly the dumbed down flight sims like War of Blunder is the only thing that seems to be working wrt flight sims

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Well that may not be what you meant but when people spend Money to build a proper sim pc, they want to be able to tweak it so they can enjoy their build.

Noted, still slightly off topic, moving on.

 

Maybe I missed something, but I didn't see anything you proposed that has not been tried by this and or other realistic flight sims.. 

 

And thus far none of it has seemed to work..

 

Sadly the dumbed down flight sims like War of Blunder is the only thing that seems to be working wrt flight sims

Noted, not quite accurate regarding this has already been tried. Bring something positive to the discussion.

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 On the other hand it would encourage bombers to drop their load at the first sign of fighters. 

 

You don't get any point in a bomber if you just dump your bombs at the first sign of trouble

 

I'd also give bombers bonus point for hitting targets from high altitude,

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Bring something positive to the discussion.

 

Constructive? Ok.. How about this..

 

Do you honestly think your the first 'user' to come up with the idea of posting a 'how to attract new players' thread in a game forum?
 
If I have seen one I have seen a hundred of them in my 30+ years of flight simming..
 
Since the early days of Compuserve's FSFORUM users have thought they know better than the devs and think they have the answer on how to save the game.
 
And I got no problem with it!
 
My only point is I have not seen anything new posted in this thread or the hundreds like it that has not already been tried by this and other realistic flight sims.
 
Which should not be confused with me saying you should not try and posts like this should not exist!
 
I am simply pointing out that I don't think their is a problem with realistic flight simming
 
IMHO the problem is there just isnt enough hard core flight simmers out there..
 
Jane's combat simulations figured that out the hard way back in 1999 when they cancelled the A-10 simulation and switched to less realistic flight simulations.
 
Fast forward to today and the only fight simulations that are doing well the Quakie eye-candy dumbed down flight modeling War of Thunder types..
 
They are far from realistic, but they offer something a no realistic flight simulation can ever offer..
 
A small learning curve and no need to appreciate let alone know the history of it..
 
Combined that with cutting edge eye candy and wa-la, You have the answer the the realistic flight simulation problem!
 
That being
 
Stop catering to the hard core flight simmers, make a flight simulation with a dumbed down flight model and focus on cutting edge eye candy and a Quake like online MP mode.
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You have the answer the the realistic flight simulation problem!

 
That being
 
Stop catering to the hard core flight simmers, make a flight simulation with a dumbed down flight model and focus on cutting edge eye candy and a Quake like online MP mode.

 

 

Surrender is not the most appealing answer.  It might be the most likely answer, but it's not appealing.

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I just want to note that HerrMurf has entered this in a discussion format over a previous suggestion.  While my thread was a suggestion and was moved into the dead pit of oblivion which is the suggestion forum, this is now a discussion and moderation should not be applied to move this ticket out of the general discussion.

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AoA,

 

Fair enough. I guess that is the way to attract new players to a flight sim. Now, however, the question is how to attract new players to THIS flight sim. Maybe that should be split into categories.

 

a. How to attact them to this flight sim tomorrow and in the short term

b. How to attract them to this sim for the long haul

c. How to attract them to the NEXT flight sim

 

My immediate concerns are a. and b.

 

My current solution is primarilly for a. which I hope bleeds over into b.

The solution for b. may include a scalable FM for offline or the old No Damage With Ground/Objects, bounce to 100', from the old school sims.

The solution for c. is a game I'm not willing to buy.

 

I have this game and am willing to buy the next iterations. I am looking for a solution within that framework. So far, Roo5ters is the best solution I've seen. I, of course, would promote my modified version of his idea, well, because I started this thread with a premise. Either of our options has a cost which seems low and the potential benefit seems high.

Edited by HerrMurf
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Surrender is not the most appealing answer.  It might be the most likely answer, but it's not appealing.

Surrender?

 

No, not the goal here at all!

 

A little background for the yongins..

 

There was a time, not that long ago, that flight simulations were some of the most popular PC games.. As noted, it did not take long for that to change.. Such that the only people makng flight sims during the late 90s and early 2000 were those who did it out of the shear love of doing it! Think Oleg! Than the advent of the x-box play stations types.. and the bean counters getting into game making.. The bean counters realized there is a market for flight sims, but, only a dumbed down quakie big explosions everyone gets a trophy type of flight simulation.. Fast forward to today, and we have the War Thunder approach to flight sims and tank simulations.

 

Also note, that even from the early days of flight simming, realistic flight sim makers included options to dumb down the flight model for the beginers.. The kind of options where the plane would not and could not stall now mater how hard you tried and you could fly into the ground nose first and simply bounce back into the air.. You would be hard pressed to find a server wiht these settings and if you did it would typically be empty.. So, it was really intended for the begginer to pratice offline until he was comptent enough to join the hard core types online..

 

Well, that table has turned!

 

Now, the hard core types are in the minority and the Quakie types are the majority.

 

The only thing we both have in common is we want to see the flight simulation succeed so we can play the games we like!

 

But now, the norm is the dumbed down flight simulation and.. the only thing we hard core types can hope for is the bean counter flight sim maker types are NICE enough to include options to make the flight molding somewhat realistic.

 

That is my take on all this..

 

That being everything that can be tried has been tried to bring the Quakie types over to the Hard Core side of flight simming..

 

It all FAILED!

 

Now, are only hope is the Quakie types will let us play their game with some of the setting set on high! ;)

 

Now, however, the question is how to attract new players to THIS flight sim.

As noted, everything mentioned thus far has been tried..

 

So, I don't think it is a question of how to attrack Quakie War of Thunder types over to this realistic simulator as much as we should be longing into the War of Thunder forums and asking for more realistic settings with regards to the flight modeling!

 

Put another way, there is nothing THIS sim has that the War of Thunder sim does not have and have more of..

 

This sim has two things that War of Thunder does not have..

 

1) a more realistic flight model.

2) more history.

 

Sadly, those two the War of Thunder types could care less about

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Now, are only hope is the Quakie types will let us play their game with some of the setting set on high! ;)

 

Why should they spend lots of money to make a small group of grumpy old men slightly less unhappy than they are now?

Edited by BraveSirRobin
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I read this forum every day.

So do I but that doesn't make me grumpy. Saying that though,some of the stuff posted is very self opinionated and inflexible, taking absolutely no account of anyone else's opinions or viewpoint and that makes things a little disappointing tbh.  

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before it went down the flying circus was populated more consistently than any other server

 

its peaks might have been lower than syndicate, but it had a sizable population on it much more often

 

air quake servers were also incredibly popular in il2

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Now don't be so hard on yourself!

 

I'm not.  But I am sometimes amazed by the lack of respect some people in here have for the developers of this game.  I understand reporting problems, but some people do it in a manner that I find amazing.  Rude would be a big step up from what I see in here.  I can't imagine the developers of a game that actually makes money wanting to jump on the grenade that is this community.

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Just one epic movie highlighting air combat in WWII.....would have the younger generation fired up....As it is right now....most don't have a clue as to what happened in WWII, nor do they care.  It's a sign of the times......

 

You had "Enemy at the Gates" and the sniper sims came out....."Band of Brothers" and you had Brothers in Arms.. Hell's Highway.....Das Boot....and you had "Silent Hunter"....."Blue Max" and you had "Red Baron"......."Fast and Furious" and they're into cars......WWII is fading away with the veterans that fought there....my father included, and he is gone now as well.  This is one reason I fund projects like BOS and BOM.

 

Regarding SP and Career tracking......sorry but it's an important point.....there needs to be a story line....a feeling of belonging to a unit, a time in history.  I will leave at that... 

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I'm not.

Well, once again, we will have to agree to disagree

 

But I am sometimes amazed by the lack of respect some people in here have for the developers of this game.  I understand reporting problems, but some people do it in a manner that I find amazing.  Rude would be a big step up from what I see in here.  I can't imagine the developers of a game that actually makes money wanting to jump on the grenade that is this community.

Agreed 100%, but that is way OT
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Just one epic movie highlighting air combat in WWII....

Crowdfund gogogo.  :)

 

We are long overdue for something of the sort are we not?

 

I would love a super gritty story on one of the German aces.

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take the best features of BOS and meld them with the best features of IL2 1946 and there you will find you answer.


Crowdfund gogogo.   :)

 

We are long overdue for something of the sort are we not?

 

I would love a super gritty story on one of the German aces.

 

what you didn't like redtails....I turned that  off after 30 mins.....

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