How Do You Know When Your New Game Is In Trouble?

ETA: WoWp has made tremendous strides in Open Beta. Check out my more recent review.

When one of the developers solicits feedback on his blog, and only gets eight direct replies.   Seven of which are negative reviews saying the game is not ready, not fun, and needs serious overhaul.   World of Warplanes is in trouble.

 

Other indicators:  you can’t give away invites to the Closed Beta to save your life.  Though I couldn’t tell you the final number, Curse.com still had north of seven thousand beta keys left a few days before they ended the promotion.   And there’s just not a lot of people playing.   How many battles were going on at a time in WoT during the Closed Beta?  A thousand?  More?   When I logged into WoWP a couple of weeks after .4.1 went live, I never saw more than a couple of hundred.

 

But, the game is going to get launched soon anyway.  They will have to if they want to recoup some money.  I’m just not sure its going to be anywhere near the smash hit that tanks has been.   And the playerbase will bleed itself out.   A typical game in closed beta is 7 on 7 after a minute + wait time (yes, there are that few people), and usually boils down to 1-2 plans per team with 4-5 kills each duking it out.  I grew up on flight sims, but I can go matches at a time without scoring a hit on an enemy player.  And most of my kills come from flying them into the ground or my AI controlled rear gunner.

 

And sometimes, the matches are just a matter of who sucks less and who crashes less:

 

Click to embiggen, and check the number of kills in this match...
Click to embiggen, and check the number of kills in this match…
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3 thoughts on “How Do You Know When Your New Game Is In Trouble?

  1. Pingback: Reaction to World of Warplanes | To Game For Life

  2. You’re probably right, the games in trouble, notwithstanding all my positive impressions. If nobody plays, it doesn’t matter if the game is any good or not. But don’t be too sure nobody will play, WoT had no game like it (that I was aware of) to compete with and got a lot of interest because they hit a new formula. Now, we’ve got WoT, WoWP, War Thunder, and perhaps chinese knockoffs all grabbing attention. If they can get a fraction of WoT players during the beta that might be good enough – if you can get the wait time down from the current minute plus wait to enter a battle.

    I hadn’t thought about the “one guy killing everybody” problem but you’re right – the matches do seem to end up that way. I’m comfortable with just staying alive and “convincing” other players to crash into the ground though as well. I believe I’ve played 30 matches or so, and have yet to get a kill, but have killed a lot of ground targets.

    1. I’ve played far more than that, with both a joystick and mouse (I’ve been in since early Alpha). The game has progressed noticeably, I will give them that. And I have been approving of some of the changes (removing ammo counts for instance).

      But the game is broken – the picture above is not about one guy killing everyone, its about the other half of the matches. 12 planes, but only 5 kills, 2 of which are team kills (both were unintentional). That is crazy. We have a 6v6 match on the cusp of ending where the number of players that have crashed their plane accidentally si the same as those who shot someone down, and where you are almost as likely to be shot down by a teammate as an enemy! That is a direct result of adopting a very rigid and difficult control scheme. I did not get a chance to try 0.4.2 last night to see if that helped.

      If not, there is no way this game is ready for open beta. You won’t enlarge the player base any, since you can’t even get people into the closed beta by making it rain keys everywhere, and you will be showing off a very frustrating game to play. I’m happy to keep testing it, but its clear its not ready yet.

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