From a indie dev: idea/suggesting for improving lobbying system


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I'm an indie game developer that has been enjoying The Forge event quite a lot. However, I think the lobby/queuing system of the event can use some improvements to help make the event more enjoyable for everyone.

The three main issues I can identify are, I will try to elaborate each in-depth below:
1. Level discrimination
2. Lack of recourse against AFK player
3. Quickplay player can often join unwelcoming team


-- Level discrimination --
For level discrimination, the phenomenon boils down to an uneven trade-off of player proficiency:
- Forge is a teamwork oriented game.
- Having experience (knowing what to expect and do) is the best way to raise your team’s chance of victory.
- Higher level -> more exposure to gameplay -> higher chance to win -> more EXP.  
- Lower level players do not bring any tangible benefits to the team while higher level player would need to spend effort teaching. 

To remedy this, perhaps Klei could try to introduce positive, tangible reinforcements as seen with WOW's famous well-rested bonus.
For example, for each player below level 20, a 10% exp bonus is applied to the entire party.
- Many high level players play to grind skins and other event specific prizes and this can directly incentivize them to team up with low level players.
- New players will actively attract more experience player and learn faster.
- New players will level faster due to their own exp bonus and shed their low level stigma faster.
- If a hardcore player wishes to exploit this with mules, it could potentially be another source of voluntary revenue for Klei, but possibly a slippery slope.



-- Lack of recourse against AFK player in lobby --
This is a problem because:
- Player have no option to check for AFK players, it takes a lot of effort to move all-non AFK member to a new room. Resulting in much wasted time and frustration and often just end with the party disbanding.
- Frustration breeds toxicity, which breeds even more toxicity, which kills potential for teamwork in a team oriented event.

To remedy this, perhaps Klei could try to introduce a vote to check for AFK.
- A person can initiate a vote to check for a teammate's AFK status, if more than half of the team vote yes, then the system initiate a dialog box with a count-down timer. The player will be kicked from the room if do not respond in time.
- This vote can only be initiated against player who is not currently ready.
- Another vote cannot be initiated against a player who recently proved their presence for a set period of time.



-- Quickplay into unwelcoming team --
- Currently the quick-play button seems to enroll player into rooms with no filter (other than connection and pw protected rooms?)
- New player gravitate towards Quickplay button and can often be placed into unwelcoming rooms.
- Players who want to recruit for a specific run (high level run, all random run, etc.) often find unwanted quick play players with no recourse but to ask them to leave voluntarily. This can breed problems when new players refuse to exit and hold the server hostage. 

To remedy this, perhaps Klei could try to introduce a server setting called "available to quick-play" that denote whether a room is available for queuing using Quickplay.
- The option will be default to true when creating a server.
- There can be an exp bonus for exposing the room to potential risk of random players (perhaps +10% party exp?).
- Most importantly this gives tangible reason for teams to accept unexpected players, which makes it easy to work out plans pre-game, which promotes team work and more enjoyable games.

I understand that grinding for skins and rewards are a big part of these events and it is important for Klei to control the rate of obtaining skins for the players. But currently the lobby and queuing situation do call for an improvement to ensure a more positive gaming experience for everyone.  EXP rate can be a tangible and powerful tool to promote heathier gameplay.


PT Zhang

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May I ask your current level in The Forge and if you ever had a non-english speaking Wilson with Infernal Staff, Steadfast Grand Armor & Resplendent Nox Helm who never revived any teammates, didn't listen to your team, kept attacking the Boarrior whenever he was supposed to sleep and flamed at you at the end because you're such a terrible player?

10 hours ago, pintianz said:

- Forge is a teamwork oriented game.

That's a reason why lvl +30 Lobbys don't want to have any lvl 1-10 players in their game. Most of the low level players keep doing mistakes and ruin your fun while playing The Forge. There are lobbies which are made for players who want to have fun and there are lobbies where players want to get their daily win or some harder accomplishments. And joining a challenge lobby just to have your own fun isn't fun for the other players.

11 hours ago, pintianz said:

For example, for each player below level 20, a 10% exp bonus is applied to the entire party.

That won't attract the high level players because they'll loose more exp than they'll get and I'm sure that this will be abused for afk-EXP farming.

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