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blundertwink's Achievements

  1. It's really not like Tears of the Kingdom, IMO...I mean, is watching people fight bots in Empyrion fun because it's "like tears of the kingdom" insofar as people build ships...? Or Space Engineers? Not really. First you need context for what you're watching for it to be fun -- a lot of people play games like Tears of the Kingdom, not so many play DU. Most people won't be able to follow what they're seeing or understand why a given build is more interesting than any other. To a viewer, it'll all look the same: some ship tab-targeting squares. Most MMOs don't have PvE content that's "fun to watch", I'm not even saying that's a bad thing so long as players have fun running the actual missions. I just don't see how it'll "make interesting youtube content".
  2. Well...PvP content doesn't make for interesting YouTube or Twitch viewing, so I would think PvE would be even less so? I guess time will tell!
  3. That's wrong, though -- people don't post here because no one is playing the damned game. It's the same on other channels like Twitch, Twitter, YouTube, or Reddit -- no one is posting about DU anywhere. If it were merely an issue with people not liking the forum negativity, you'd see activity...somewhere on the Internet. First, I don't know why you think this is low-hanging fruit. Anytime someone explains how "easy" it is to implement something, I have to roll my eyes. Granted, you do acknowledge that it's just your perception that it'd be easy. All we know is that dev has been historically very slow and that the project is 8+ years old -- that doesn't communicate a flexible, simple codebase to me where this would actually be "low hanging fruit". Tax rates are not likely so flexible -- it means introducing new networked variables for every TCU and introducing a level of dynamism in the actual tax rate recurring "jobs" that might not be so trivial. Also, we do know that NQ's dev resources are now split among 4 projects. We do know that player counts have only decreased since launch. We do know that NQ implemented taxes as a means to control cost; it has little to do with design. To speak to the idea itself...I'm not sure that this idea will be so impactful. Adding incentives like a tax break doesn't magically transform a poorly designed feature (like combat in general, to be real) into something engaging and fun. If PvE alone isn't enough to create engagement (which I 100% agree that it isn't), I don't see how any level of incentive will really make the game more popular! In most games, combat and fighting is the engagement point...saying "this isn't enough and won't work" only underscores how impossible it is for NQ to make this game scale. Even with tax breaks...will that be enough to 1000x the number of players? That's what it'd take, at a minimum...and that doesn't even matter if NQ can't retain those players. I get that the community here is negative...maybe unfairly at times. Still, the game's population and the reality that even NQ is focusing on other projects...that's completely relevant to every idea as it speaks to the core of how NQ views the product and what steps are realistic for them to take...and puts any idea in a grim but fair context: which is that the game needs a lot to turn around from where it is today.
  4. That's truly horrible from a metric perspective any way you slice it. The most important metric for a subscription service is churn rate, without a doubt. A large number of new players is not really a sign of health in a subscription MMO, not that 150 people joining in a month is anything close to a large number. Frankly, that's bad even for a single player game. That's only ~$2,200 in revenue -- do you actually think that $2200 is going to make up for churn in the same time period...? Even if 100% of new players resub in June, that's nothing for revenue...and I'd be shocked if retention rates were even 50%. NQ's employees would literally make more money for the company if they all ran DoorDash. 20,000 claims is not relevant at all, it tells nothing about the number of active subs. That's why DAUs are a much better metric, and DAUs show a steady (and dramatic) decline month-over-month...from a high that wasn't very high to begin with. Yes, ~50 DAUs doesn't tell you the total active subs either, but it's the clearest picture of real engagement that exists in the stats we have. It's a far better indicator than claimed tiles. Further, these stats are mirrored in every social channel there is -- this forum doesn't even see daily posts anymore...it had been almost 2 weeks since the last post before today! The reddit is similar, with it actually losing members and rarely showing more than 10 people online at a time. This idea that the game is actually not doing so poorly isn't grounded in any sort of reality that I can see -- every view of the stats we have shows a steady decline since launch, a decline that's mirrored across every engagement channel. The stats are as dire as people say....even a single player game wouldn't be able to justify continued development with similar numbers, especially for a studio of NQ's size.
  5. No one expected real, full-fledged PvE content -- I think it's unlikely that people will even do "a couple" of missions to be honest. There's that few players now...I mean it's ~50 DAUs a day on Steam, dramatically down from even a few months ago. No one is going to come flooding in to try this version of PvE...especially when the "payoff" is DU's clunky, crude, boring version of combat. For few the people still left, it just doesn't matter. I think this is a valid idea, but unfortunately taxes aren't a game design concept, really. They exist to control cost -- and NQ hasn't shown a willingness to relax on costs and likely never will -- as player counts drop even further, they'll not want to relax cost controls like taxes. If anything, they will go the opposite direction and try to reduce cost even more. DU is now at deadpool level -- there's a tiny segment of players still left, but no way to NQ to turn those players into profit...and it isn't physically possible to earn enough new players to make things work because basic mathematics around churn rates prove that the game can't scale as a subscription. Adding this simplistic "PvE" won't change that math, even if they did add more incentives like tax credits. They could 10x or 100x the rewards...I don't think it'd matter. Hence why NQ's focus is on three projects other than DU -- and honestly I have to give them "credit" for continuing to dev this game in some form, because a factual look at the game's performance and future would lead most studios to shutter dev completely a long time ago. Maybe it's goodwill or maybe it's hubris, but I am surprised that NQ is still devoting resources to a game that would need to ~1000x its playerbase to become profitable.
  6. I get what you're saying and think a lot of people likely agree........but technology isn't magic. Not every problem has a solution. There do exist limits to scalability, especially when cost is a factor. Building games often requires compromise between technical reality and design. To your point, NQ hasn't been good at finding that compromise. They buried ore so absurdly deep it was a mole simulator, but then complained about costs and removed digging for ore completely, eliminating an entire pillar of exploration-focused gameplay to replace it with a mini-game. That said...a core issue with DU is that the general premise of the game wasn't on solid technical footing from day 0. The very idea of a single shard MMO sandbox is arguably impossible to scale as imagined. Players creating cities? Terraforming moons? Building whatever they want without limit in a persistent multiplayer world? That concept would only ever work with a highly optimized tech stack that used some sort of cutting-edge breakthrough to manage scale and cost...which NQ claimed to have early on, but that claim ended up being total, absolutely BS. They didn't even write their own engine or stand their own servers. There was no fix to that BS, so there was no way to make the "vision" work. There was no way to "buckle down" and just fix things....the core premise and core technical foundations just didn't make sense. The only way to just fix things would have been to start from scratch, which wasn't practical after years and years of JC's "leadership".
  7. I don't agree with this sentiment, the MMO genre has only increased over time and WoW had over 12 million players at peak back in 2010. This is a $20+ billion industry today; perhaps not "huge" compared to the oil industry, but still about 10% of the gaming industry overall by dollar value. The MMO "slice" maintains a roughly 10% CAGR, so it's certainly growing and will only continue to grow. I wouldn't say it's a "small niche". Hence why many MMOs secure $200+ million budgets -- it's a bigger business now than it's ever been. I'm not sure I agree about DU being cutting edge -- or maybe I don't agree that the areas where DU was trying to be "cutting edge" are actually a good ideas. The "cutting edge" ideas about the design don't really make sense (like the idea that the game didn't need NPCs and players will do everything or even the general idea of a single-shard persistent builder ever scaling as an MMO). The design of the game (as it actually exists, not the "pitch") never really made sense. Perhaps more importantly, there's nothing "cutting edge" about the technicals because they don't scale, which dramatically affected their ability to delivery on random design ideas that had no basis in reality. There's nothing cutting edge about the visuals either, clearly. Or the lore. This makes it sound like DU is just fine as a product, the issue is with how the game is presented. Or that the issue is that not enough people have given the game a try. I am not sure I agree with that idea, but I'm not sure it matters...because a truly "niche" MMO can't exist, especially as a subscription product. Even Eve Online (which people sometimes say is a "niche" MMO) isn't truly a niche game. It obviously has a level of mass appeal. Eve is a game that nearly 10 million people have played over its lifetime, yet people consider it "niche" because MMOs must operate at "massive" scale to work, so they compare it to huge titles like Wow or Final Fantasy. By comparison....DU has had maybe 10,000 or so that have played during its lifetime of release? Maybe as high as 20-30k? After 8+ months of release? And 8+ years of dev? It's had ample chance to find its niche (more than many, many, many games) but a stable player base for a game of this quality just doesn't exist in numbers enough to work.
  8. I think many people around here have similar experiences...and it's important to keep in mind that DU's audience skewing older is generally a bad sign for an MMO. For it to be "massive", it can't have a design foundation that's ~20 years old. Asynchronous open world PvP is an outmoded, old concept that isn't going to scale in 2023, especially when the "combat" in this game is boring, simplistic, and poorly balanced. This style would only work if the systems surrounding PvP made it less harsh and annoying and offered far better feedbacks and mechanics in general. I feel that NQ built the game from a perspective that was decades out-of-date and it shows across every system they made. Some of these people are probably still believing that Territory War will come, never mind ground combat...the game is 8+ months into release, with a peak of ~800 DAUs and now not even exceeding 100 DAUs. It ain't happening, people. TW ain't happening, ground-based combat of any sort ain't happening... Yet much like Blockchain bros, some people want to double down about why the game didn't work..."well, it'd work if there were more PvP, the problem is that things are too safe. More risk equals more engagement." That's not how game design works, of course. Risk isn't proportional to engagement and no serious designer would try to make that claim, but that's what the PvP crowd keeps insisting for some reason...people love looking for a simple explanation of why things aren't working, but with DU...it isn't that simple. The issues run much deeper than naive, simplistic views of risk vs. reward or "do more PvP".
  9. Well there was 59 players active on Steam during peak Sunday, so your event attracted about 10% of the peak online steam playerbase! Just a couple months ago the peak counts were closer to ~150, so...relative to how many people are still playing the game, your event actually attracted a fair number!
  10. Honestly, bullying is a good way to describe it -- not because they want to use game mechanics to fight other players, but because they have no respect for what other people might consider fun. If you have to question why someone does or doesn't think something is fun...that's already a silly exercise in narcism and really none of your business. But all that aside, it's especially weird to be insistent that everyone PvPs in this of all games, where the combat model is a joke and the asynchronous nature of open-world PvP is far from being competitive or balanced. But hey, I guess I get it, since arguing about PvP is actually the only form of PvP left in DU
  11. I think you misunderstand DU's state of development....the developer NQ is working on three other projects right now. While DU might be their only published work, it isn't their top priority. They don't want player suggestions because even if they had the time to read them, they simply don't have the resources to act on them. Why would NQ give DU more resources when it has struggled so bad to achieve any commercial success? We're talking about a sub game with DAUs in the hundreds...so yeah, the ship has sailed for player suggestions a long, long time ago (not that they did a great job listening back when it mattered either).
  12. The combat in this game isn't fun, PvP or not. The risk (by which we're talking about time, not money or resources) is never worth it -- because the payoff is a niche form of combat that most players find too boring and clunky to take seriously. If it were really so fun...there'd be plenty of people to PvP and no one would need to be plopped into PvP space just to give PvPers something to do. Like...if the game isn't fun as a PvPer, maybe try a game with an actual player base and a real implementation of combat mechanics...a game where you can face real competition. It's hilarious seeing people around here proud of their PvP 'smackdowns' when it's against the same tiny group of players in a game that no one takes seriously as a PvP experience. It's the same with using words like "coward"...if you're so brave, try a game with even a shred of an actual competitive PvP scene. Not that using "coward" means anything to anyone playing a game that's over fourteen; we play games to have fun, not to show how "brave" we are. Granted, there's nothing especially brave about PvP in any video game, especially this video game. If you're concerned about everyone else being a "coward", that's just a really strange obsession to me...especially in a thread that's supposed to be about PvE. PvP and its many issues have been talked about for years and years, give it a rest for this one thread...
  13. Best of luck! Applaud your optimism, but there's less less traffic across-the-board nowadays as the game's player base has unfortunately bottomed-out....so it's really hard to organize an event in general.
  14. Yes, it's from LinkedIn. If I had to guess I'd say prospective employees -- the context of their last posts are definitely geared toward recruitment. Perhaps? I won't link directly to their LinkedIn, but it's easy enough to find. Most of his posts are of a similar theme in terms of content.
  15. Per NQ's CEO: I don't understand this CEO at all...they decided to do everything with DU, it didn't work...so they decide to start working on three new projects...?! Sure we know they are working on one new gaming project and they've mentioned a "3d blog" before...but I guess there's even a third project they are "tinkering" with? Especially for small companies, there's value in focus. Specialization. Making even one product that actually works. If they do want to focus on these three new things...spin down DU and stop charing people as if the game is going to get more than 1/4th their attention (at best). They pushed DU "as far as possible"....okay, so why are they still charging people and pretending there's a roadmap? I don't know...I personally want to work for a company that's stable and has a real vision for the future, not one that's more interested in "breaking the mold". Not one that's more interested in "leveraging new tech" for game making than embracing the fundamentals of what games are and how game design works.
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