some possible tweaks to game play suggestions collection thread

So the linking under field event has ended, and I've read comments from all sorts of place and I thought a thread to collect people's ideas together might be good.

One of the suggestions made was to tweak the game so that a faction could link and field under its own fields, but not under the other faction's fields.

What suggestions have you heard that you think really has merit and would increase interest in the game and still retain the competition and strategy aspect?



  • sophielabsophielab ✭✭✭

    Drone hunting. I'd like to see the drones with agent names so we can return them.

  • Cell score percentage is proportional to decay rate next cycle.

    (You get 90 percent of last cycles score, you get a daily 90 percent decay rate. Well, maybe not 1 to 1. 1 to 0.5? I guess this goes for the team that loses, too. Get no MU this cycle and nothing decays next cycle.)

  • Combine this with a kinetic drone that has reduced cooldown from walking. Can you run fast enough for your drone to survive?

  • KonnTowerKonnTower ✭✭✭

    If they make a new thread and summarize only the one thing they want, they can try and control the conversation for lazy folks who won't read the other discussions. 🧐

  • I thought @KonnTower’s suggestion of MU burnout was interesting.

  • crystalwizardcrystalwizard ✭✭✭
    edited May 1

    or put it all in one place so Brian doesn't have to hunt for stuff HE liked - plus show him what the community found value in.

  • Get rid of permanent links and fields.

    In my area there are long links that have been up for months, because the anchor points are varying degrees of inaccessible - employee or resident only, closed to the general public for safety, only open for infrequent and expensive private events, or spending hundreds of dollars on BGAN service. These links make the game less interesting for most players. Linking under fields makes the play-denial aspect of region-covering BAFs less, but they are still disheartening to people who watch the score. The most frustrating aspect of these links and fields is that they are then maintained with minimal effort purely through remote recharging.

    So rather than have arguments about which semi-inaccessible portals are valid and rely on arbitrary judgements about them, make it purely objective - favor portals that get physically visited.

    My suggestion is to increase the decay of portals by an amount proportional to the length of links anchored to it and the total MUs of fields anchored to it, multiplied by the time since it was last physically visited.

    This would not prevent players from holding guardian portals or emergency blockers in out-of-the-way places - if they're not linked/fielded then there is no additional cost. It would not set a hard time limit on how long a link or field could stay up, it just costs progressively more to keep it up, or a visit to it. It wouldn't prevent large operations from being organized, as the results would still be in place for long enough to be admired, whether cheerfully or grudgingly.

    It would get agents on the move again.

  • In my area there are long links that have been up for months, because the anchor points are varying degrees of inaccessible - employee or resident only, closed to the general public for safety, only open for infrequent and expensive private events, or spending hundreds of dollars on BGAN service.

    This ignores the fact that players are actively maintaining those links. They're not just staying up for months by themselves.

    So rather than have arguments about which semi-inaccessible portals are valid and rely on arbitrary judgements about them, make it purely objective - favor portals that get physically visited.

    This is why stopping Capsule Duping of Keys is important. If you can't get keys to a portal easily, you're less likely to keep reusing it when the easiest of the 3 anchors gets taken down. People would naturally start to choose portals they can access because they have to access it to get more keys.

  • HosetteHosette ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 1

    Cell score winners are based on a differential from the last cycle's scores rather than on raw MU. This rewards people who actively play the game rather just maintaining a lot of standing fields, and also doesn't put a dominated faction in a hopeless situation-- scoring will be a much fairer fight. As an example, if the score was 1,000,000-0 on the last cycle and the losing team knocks that down to 950,000-0 then they win the current cycle, and they also win if the score ends up being 1,000,000-100.

    Paired with this, I would like a metric for and a leaderboard for MU destroyed. People who take fields down contribute as much to the score as the people who put them up. (A badge would be a lagniappe.)

  • edited May 1

    Differentials also punish teams whose opponents don't take down their fields though. You can't re-field if your enemy is too lazy to actually do anything.

    And being forced to take it down yourself, is a type of 'perverse game loop'.

  • HosetteHosette ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Perringaiden It just requires the leaders to keep adding more rather than resting on their laurels.

  • HosetteHosette ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Perringaiden Nope, do enlighten me.

    If those rules existed and a team boxed themselves in such that they couldn't create any new MU or destroy the opposing faction's MU then that would be a strategic error, right?

  • You're building game loops that actively encourage minimal play.

    "Don't build 10 layers. We need to have more layers to add later".

    This is what's known as a "perverse game loop". Something that actively encourages players to not play as hard as they could or may want to, and punishes people for going above and beyond.

  • HosetteHosette ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 1

    @Perringaiden As opposed to the current perverse game loop where a faction that's massively in the lead has no incentive to do anything but recharge? I think my way is better because the leaders would have to go out and play if they wanted to maintain their lead. You seem to be opposed to allowing keys to duplicate because that makes it too easy to win, but you're in favor of letting people win for a long time by throwing fields once? I can't reconcile those two things.

    My way would also disincentivize throwing hard anchor fields that covered large areas for extended periods of time. While I personally love throwing big fields I also understand that they negatively impact gameplay underneath. "Permanent fields" is one of the most common gameplay complaints on here, and we seem to lose a lot of players and player-motivation because of them.

    I think "I won't throw as many layers as I could so that I can add on later" is a much smaller negative than "I won't go out and do anything because we've already won.

  • perverse

    willfully determined or disposed to go counter to what is expected or desired; contrary.

    The current play loop isn't perverse. It may have elements of runaway leader, but that's more of a "choosing to not compete" issue. The game does not give you incentives to "only recharge". That's called quitting. The game gives you incentives to both take down their fields and put your own up. The fact that you choose not to, is part of your personal motivation, not what the game's loops are designed for.

    If it were a spoofer putting fields you, 100%, the game should be stopping that. But rewarding people for outperforming the other team is what competition is for.

    My way would also disincentivize throwing hard anchor fields that covered large areas for extended periods of time. 

    Your way would disincentivize taking down enemy fields, because it would force a team to take their own fields out, no matter how hard the anchors were or weren't. It would not incentivize making fields that are easier to take down, because that's not how human psychology works.

    The very fact that your planned result is "disincentivizing" what is currently the win condition for the game, is exactly why your suggestion is a perverse game loop. You're actively attempting to damage what the game's primary focus has been for 8 years.

    The philosophy of "Can't win, won't try" seems to have morphed into "Can't win, change the rules". I know that's a very American thing right now, but that doesn't make it a good thing.

  • vidiconvidicon ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 2

    I think a possible solution to both the "dominant factions have no incentive to try anything new" problem that @Hosette raises and the "deltas create a perverse game loop" issue that @Perringaiden raises is to instead create something akin to a golf handi-cap (hyphen added because otherwise the word is censored) to scale scores by. Although there are multiple approaches to how to scale the scores (e.g., portal ownership or activity), my suggestion would be to scale scores based on the rolling 50-cycle average cell scores (I'd suggest 50 since that's a year, but I could be convinced of longer or shorter). The dominant faction is disincentivized from "running up the score," but will still try to win each cycle. While there's a bit of an incentive to lose big if you can't win, this approach should make winning possible for both factions in every cycle.

  • There are other far better and less damaging options to start with, before mucking with the score is actually necessary.

  • grendelwulfgrendelwulf ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 2

    Count only fields created before the first checkpoint and newer toward the cycle.

    Edit: or have it roll. Fields only count toward the cell score for one full cycle. After 1 cycle they fall off and have to be rethrown to count again.

  • Alternately, provide a "MU's Removed" leaderboard (with totals) that allows people to compete to take down MUs and get visible recognition for it.

  • HosetteHosette ✭✭✭✭✭

    @saarstahl @Perringaiden Both a leaderboard and stat/badge for MU destroyed were part of my proposal.

    I still think "What did you accomplish this cycle?" is a better scoring mechanism than counting stagnant MU. It also seems like it should be reasonably easy to implement because the totals for each faction for the last cycle are known and the math is trivial

  • @Hosette brilliant proposal, and no changes to the game needed to implement the new scoring mechanism, just pen and paper (or a google sheet). According to your mechanism, ENL won 4 of the last 6 cycles in NR-02-GOLF-12, instead of losing every cycle by a huge margin.

  • ZeroHecksGivenZeroHecksGiven ✭✭✭✭✭

    The problem is, agents here don’t just put down there ideas. They take them very personally and go down with ship defending them. So this thread will be no different than the ones I posted above. Just the same ideas, argued over and 100 comments we’ll never even know if Niantic looked at. Certainly not going to get any responses from them in their own forums.

  • LuoboTiXLuoboTiX ✭✭✭

    Some people just would like to stick to the forum and find something to do, usually this something equals arguing for topics that nobody from Ingress team really care about. So just let them do they want. This is part of their self-actualization process.

  • Yes, but your core principle was "Break everything, oh and here's something else". I never said that the leaderboard was a bad idea, and it's one many of us have repeated ad nauseum.

  • ToxoplasmollyToxoplasmolly ✭✭✭✭✭

    This incentivizes letting the other team put up MU in the first place, so that you can then remove it, as opposed to the current practice of trying to block fields before they happen.

  • That's why you only provide the leaderboard (and maybe the stat), not the badge.

    Couple this with Capsules not Duping, and it incentivizes choosing easier and more accessible portals to field with, as well as actively competing to take them down.

    Changes need to be "in the positive", not seen as a punishment, or they become demotivating. Incentivizing an activity you want is far more effective than disincentivizing an activity you don't want but is currently actively incentivized.

    Niantic has never been great at predicting player actions (Unintended Consequences), and even less so at guiding them (incentivizing good behavior), but there's always room for improvement. The "how" of a change matters a lot for the reaction of the player base. Giving a reward for a preferred behavior doesn't work if it's seen as a punishment for a previously rewarded behavior.

    The core competitive aspect of Ingress is to capture and hold territory. We do that through the gameplay of "making triangles". AP is a measure of activity, but that's purely a personal aspect. The community is generally driven by fun, friendly competition. People who take that too far definitely exist, and communities should work to minimize or eliminate toxic behavior, but competition and excelling at the core goals of the game, doesn't automatically equal 'toxic'. However, treating the core gameplay as 'bad' and changing the rules in a way that's seen as "punishing success" will always, in any game, be seen as a company failing to be able to manage it's playerbase.

    All proposals need to be seen as incentivizing people 'going the extra yard' or putting more effort in. Incentivizing taking down other players fields is a good thing. A leaderboard however, is ephemeral compared to a badge, and only matters 'within the same game-space' as everyone else on that leaderboard. Each week it's reset. If the other team doesn't put fields up, then within your own faction, even taking down 10MU can put you up in the rankings, but someone else taking down 10MU also will.

    I agree that a badge based on MU destroyed would encourage people to let fields go up, or even result in people manipulating the region to throw and destroy, but a leaderboard that's based on what's available in any given week would not have the same effect alone.

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