December 03, 2020, 12:44:06 pm

Author Topic: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale  (Read 3865 times)

Sailor Vulcan

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Sorry it has been brought to my attention that my post was hurtful and I didn't realize that. My brain is kinda fried right now and I'm still not sure how it was hurtful but I'm taking it down now because if someone else thought it was hurtful then it probably was. I will write and apology later once my brain is working better again.

Sorry and thanks for your understanding.
« Last Edit: April 26, 2017, 06:04:47 pm by Sailor Vulcan »
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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2017, 04:04:36 pm »
Salenia Arena MUST exist!  Someone Make it SO!
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Pyrion

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2017, 04:12:01 pm »
Every game I play on octgn nowadays feels kinda samey.

Maybe the problem is that there aren't enough different spellbooks? I've noticed that a lot of people myself included have started to have a preference not to play mirror matches, and that mirror matches have come to mean games where each player uses the same Mage. Not necessarily the same spellbook or the same strategy, but merely using the same Mage is enough for it to be a "mirror match".

It doesn't feel like spellbooks that use the same Mage are different enough from each other to really set themselves apart from each other enough to catch my interest and attention, at least not on octgn. Whenever people talk about their spellbooks, they often just refer to them as their [mage] book. They don't qualify what kind of [mage] book it is in the name, at all. A forcemaster spellbook is just referred to as "my forcemaster book", a beastmaster spellbook is just called "my beastmaster book". Spellbooks that are unique enough to have a name of their own seem less common on octgn.

I have totally different experiences here. Especially on OCTGN I've seen and I've played against many people who tried out extraordinary spellbooks. If a new good deck strategy comes to your mind OCTGN is perfect for just putting a spellbook together and it lets you find an opponent to test it quite quickly. You also have the chance to challenge a huge variety of different players who all can contribute different ideas to your deck which is just not possible in most of the rather small local gaming groups. This is one of the points that makes playing on OCTGN so interesting for me. Of course I don't know what kind of matches you had but for me the thing about very similar decks and strategies is not true.

Also, people don't talk much at all while playing on octgn. There's very little social interaction *during* the game.

I think this is the big point here. Again I've also played against very communicative opponents but you are right that there are also a lot of players who don't say anything during a match. I think its exactly this point which makes playing on OCTGN this "stale" as you said it. When I play irl matches the communication and the discussions make up nearly half of the games fun for me. When playing on OCTGN in addition to the missing consistent communication the discussion about game rules, missing automations, etc. via the chatbox can be really annoying and are in my opinion the main reason why OCTGN matches need so much time. So i absolutley agree with you that voice chat should be used more often in order to increase the motivation to play on OCTGN.

One way to combat the staleness of octgn MW is to try a variety of different modes of play.
Unfortunately, Domination is rarely played on octgn, and academy is almost never played on it. Team games are even rarer. And I'm willing to bet that I can count the number of free for all non-Domination mw games that have ever taken place on octgn on one hand and that I've been a part of every single one of them.

When it comes to team games I think the problem with OCTGN is that the organization is just too bad. In comparison to 1 vs. 1 matches where you can just start a new game and be relativley sure that somebody will join soon team games require more planning as you need more players at the same time who also are able to play together in teams. Again especially here the chatbox is not sufficient for team talk and with 4 players and potential spectators it can get very caotic. There are no applications, websites or forum threads where people can plan those bigger matches at least nothing that I know of so maybe it would be a good idea to create something like this.

Is it just the interface? I mean as far as I can tell it seems like everything about the game online and in real life is the same except for the interface. It's not like there are any significant rule changes between the two mediums. Maybe in order to make MW on octgn less stale it needs to engage the senses more. More sound effects besides dice rolling maybe, or perhaps we could have the chance to personalize our spellbooks more with fanmade alternate Mage art cards? Or if someone fixed the volcanic and marble arenas so that the zone borders in the marble are easier to see and the volcanic zones colored differently so red action markers and card borders are easier to see on it. And maybe people should use voice chat during games more instead of just text chat. I'm not sure these changes would be enough to make mw on octgn really interesting and dynamic like real life MW is, but I'm having trouble putting my finger on why. I mean it has to be *something* about the interface, it just has to be, because there is nothing else that is different between online and offline Mage Wars. Octgn Mage Wars just feels a LOT less interactive than offline Mage Wars and I can't figure out why that is exactly.

I'm not sure about the interface. Personally I like it and it doesn't disturb me while playing. Of course everybody will agree that it is nothing in comparison with an irl game with real cards, action markers, etc. but I don't think that it is a game breaker.

I'm glad that a thread like this exists. Any improvement on an already good gaming plattform is very positive!
« Last Edit: April 27, 2017, 12:00:33 am by Pyrion »
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bigfatchef

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2017, 06:20:58 pm »
good topic!

I am having trouble finding time to play a game. But when it is possible I would ALWAYS prefer real life over OCTGN. That has essentially two reasons.

1) communication! I hear nobody laughing and joking!
The limited chat window is crowded with information. The fact that not everything is automated brings quit a lot rules discussions, doublechecks and corrections. While waiting for calculation at new rounds no conversation is possible. And while playing the conversation is only word. It had to see the mood of the other player.
-> I enjoy playing in real life with a beer at the table. I like to laugh when the enemy burns with 8 amazing burn conditions and I like to see my oponent smiling when he finally teleports me into his death zone or when he reveals a perfect reverse attack the right moment.
What OCTGN misses are emotions!

2) time.
in my opinion games in OCTGN take much longer then in real life. Automatisation is absolutely helpful, but at the moment there is quite a lot that is not automated, or that nobody knows if it is and that has to be checked. Also planning can take forever. And maybe I am wrong but also the strategies online seem to favor the long game more then in real life.
Another time aspect: Waiting for your opponent can be incredibly boring. You are actually starring on you computer and you do nothing. In real life the breaks are not that boring. You maybe have a chat or there are more people around. You have cards in your hand to play with and resort your book or whatever.

1+2) the combination
If planning takes long in real life I say "come on" every minute. I can say this very often and I see the reaction. I would not do the same online. On the other side some comments I read seem to be quite rude or that someone is a bit pissed. But maybe he is not. Maybe there is just a disturbing cat or short words or whatever and the other one is relaxed... you can't feel it and less communication is the result.

What I don't see is that spellbooks are all the same. In fact I agree with pyrion that I heve seen pretty experimental books on OCTGN and the overall quality of games is high.


zot

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2017, 08:07:05 pm »
i would suggest trying to grow the game offline and get new players excited and use the online for matches when you can. for breaking perception of sameness, perhaps playing against those online you have not played much against before. you are clearly limited to whomever is on at the same time you are, and likely it is the same group mostly.

i think the ad tournament was a great way to get players to play mages outside of their strengths. perhaps fire up another of those.

Halewijn

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2017, 01:54:19 am »
I think communication is indeed the issue. (I have no problem with the interface or game modes) I don't think AD can't really do anything about it since I believe it is linked to OCTGN, but it would be nice if:

1) There was one chat for communication and another chat for game information
2) If both players agree, it should be possible for players to include sound (and maybe even video). It would make the games way more personal.

Maybe we should send suggest this to OCTGN?
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jacksmack

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #6 on: April 27, 2017, 04:47:29 am »
My opinion:
The only reason why OCTGN games are long / stale is because of the current meta.

Everybody and their grandma's seem to be doing board control books no matter what mage they are playing.
Unfortunately is common to see both players put a spawnpoint in their own starting corner (or possibly 1 up).


OCTGN is much faster for experienced players who pay attention to the game results in the chat.
given: this is relying on performance of the current version and there are issues atm.
For whatever reason in some games upkeep (not necessarily with many effects taking place) takes longer and longer as the game progress'.
Also it requires that cards are 'working'. IE. Wolf fury provides piercing and Joined strength makes mage take 1 of the damage and actually give melee +1 - to avoid manual corrections of results all the time.

Its also prone to much less errors such as forgetting to pay mana for spells and accidentally moving of the cubes for life / damage / mana (channeling is easy to figure out).
Also it remembers various roll extra / less into account that can be forgotten. (i refuse to believe that i'm only one who is occasionally surprised about the suggested amount of dice when looking at a given attack - and after doing the math and checking all cards i have forgotten an effect such as veteran token or aegis or element +/- x.)

Back tracking in OCTGN is also much easier when any error is suspected.


Now.... setup.... OCTGN is ready in 1 minute... Setting up (not even talking about bringing all stuff out of house) in reallife takes some time no matter how disciplined you sort your tokens (Double sided tokens with different effects - Terrible idea).

Spellbook building...... even if i were to play a reallife match i would still create the book online first and then find the cards... It takes freaking forever to build a book without any online help.
Even just copying your online book to a reallife book takes quiet some time to find all the cards (yes mine are sorted nicely.)
During play its 10 times easier to keep the overview of your own spellbook as you need to scroll a maximum of 1 time to have seen all cards opposed to flipping pages 10 times.
I simply don't understand why this would make planning phase shorter in reallife... Perhaps people are playing more casually thus accepting quick planning phase at the cost of the possibility of making a blunder.
But then it's not really OCTGN itself, then its the attitude players bring to the platform, and i guess you can just agree with your opponent about a casual game with short planning phases.
Anyway... in reallife i have seen just as long planning phases just as often in certain games.


I am one of those players who don't talk much during a match except about the progression of the game (do you pass? will you QC? and rule discussion, etc).
Often i'll gladly discuss the match after the game.


In general the games on OCTGN are pretty solid when it comes to strategies and spellbooks. This means that 'fancy books' that are less competitive have a harder time.

V10lentray

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2017, 03:03:48 pm »
in reallife takes some time no matter how disciplined you sort your tokens (Double sided tokens with different effects - Terrible idea).

Infite agreement!  They are a nightmare!!!!!
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Biblofilter

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2017, 04:44:59 pm »
If only i could get on OCTGN  :P

Would love to play more Mage Wars both live and online!

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bigfatchef

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2017, 06:00:16 pm »
in reallife takes some time no matter how disciplined you sort your tokens (Double sided tokens with different effects - Terrible idea).

Infite agreement!  They are a nightmare!!!!!

Thats why I never use them and take printed cards (with token stack counts) instead. I don't get why they decided to print them that random ... Worst idea ever

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #10 on: April 27, 2017, 06:19:50 pm »
I would like to hear more sounds. I know nothing of programming so I'm not sure this is possible.  I just think it would be cool if when casting an enchantment it had a specific sound. Same for Creature, conjurations, etc.  I feel like that would enhance what is going on with the audio cues.

and the salenia arena

and designated areas for equipment.
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zot

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #11 on: April 27, 2017, 07:05:43 pm »
If only i could get on OCTGN  :P

Would love to play more Mage Wars both live and online!

biblo, are you coming over for gencon? there will mw all week long, even before the con starts...

Biblofilter

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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2017, 12:18:30 am »
can i crash at your place before the con?
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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2017, 12:20:03 am »
Does that mean you're going? :)
If so, planning to visit New York again?
« Last Edit: January 28, 2018, 08:25:59 pm by Reddicediaries »
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Re: Thoughts on How to make playing Mage Wars on OCTGN less stale
« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2017, 11:16:11 am »
in reallife takes some time no matter how disciplined you sort your tokens (Double sided tokens with different effects - Terrible idea).

Infite agreement!  They are a nightmare!!!!!

Thats why I never use them and take printed cards (with token stack counts) instead. I don't get why they decided to print them that random ... Worst idea ever

I heard it explained somewhere once, but the short answer is it was a cost saving measure and all of them are  different, (not every daze is a stun) is so that while being double sided, you never are out of one counter because their other side is all being used.
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