Season 7 Predictions
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Join Date: Jun 2012
The Dilithium Depression - Dilithium Dilemma - Dilithium Gate
11-14-2012, 06:27 PM
I cannot lay claim to the euphemisms going around and the players calling the changes to season 7 the Dilithium Depression, or the Dilithium Dilemma or Dilithium gate but it was incredibly obvious that once the players saw them that they would revolt.
It surprised me as to the absolute instant outrage players felt and saw as they realized that their access to Dilithium was being pulled from the game.
There were loads of fan boy outcrys about how players could do content they dont like to do to earn dilithium and it was oh so easy but the wide majority of players instantly revolted and screamed about the changes.
Honestly, I felt that it would have been far better to listen to those that were speaking up before these changes went into place rather than knee jerk reactions afterwards to deal with instant hate and disappointment afterwards. Probably by now, DStahl has lost credibility from the player base and most will see him at best as a shill for PWE and at worst as a bold faced liar. It would be incredibly difficult for him to restore his credibility and believability when he speaks to us in the future. I seriously doubt people will harbor much trust of him in the future. Posts were written warning him about the perils of travelling down this path and frankly they were ignored. Damage to respect and reputation have occured and that probably will never return. I doubt he can regain the respect and loyalty of the player base ever again. Gecko may have been walking that tightrope but he was less vocal in his misinformation.
Its 36 hours from the launch of sucky 7 and reaction has been overwhelming and mostly negative from all but the die hard of fanboys. Many posts have been written about feeling removed from the game, resistance at being forced to grind missions that players do not like, time gated "requirements", the ubiquitous and never to be forgotten comment of "working as intended".
The short version of all this negativity is that Cryptic is saying they want to reward players less for playing their game and to give them less dilithium. You have to work harder, play more, and spend more time for less reward.
Anything you punish or reward less will always result in reductions. If you lower rewards and tie them to time based gates so that you are giving less reward for time spent in this game then you are going to get players spending less time in this game. You lower the rewards and you lower peoples reasons to show up and play.
Even if Cryptic restores "some" dilithium back into the game via stfs its not going to be enough. Players like having a bit of spending power and having some access to dilithium. This is being lowered and players are adjusting their expectations and enjoyment factor to match the progression.
Despite hating I told you so's, its necessary to point out that before the foundry came out I made 2 bold predictions and 1. was that players would use it to find exploits and 2. that cryptic would use it as an excuse to punt new content. Both have happened and Cryptics attempt at forcing players to play long foundry missions more as other access to dilithium has been lowered or removed is ample evidence that those predictions have come true.
Ive never spoken to a player in this game who told me that they have or owned too much dilithium. Most complain that they do not have enough and that it is too hard to get. There are people that tell you how easy it is to get but to me they are just shills and stooges to suggest that their opinions are superior when they start talking about how other people should spend their time.
Customers and players want enhanced value for the time they spend in game and not reduced value. Love them or hate them, the clickers gave good value for the time spent, and players came to factor this into their expectations of the game and landscape for their enjoyment of it. Another posters said that it was an exploit but a happy exploit that people liked. Removing things that people like is not a great way to run a business. Putting in things they dont like is disastor. People like having a bit of dilithium come their way daily and they dont like being dilithium poor.
Returning dilithium to stfs will help a bit and I applaud Cryptic for reversing themselves and their policy on it. Its still quite the reduction and I still think people will see sharp and catastrophic reductions in the amount of dilithium they actually earn and refine.
Again, running the game in a fashion that pushes players into being dilithium poor will not go over well in the long run. The dilithium exchange will continue to see an erosion in the value of zen, crafting thats mostly dead will die further, fleets will reduce projects and/or quit loading them, everything that went right with season 6 and starbases will be reversed and become a moot point, and players will approach this game with a grind mentality rather than a have fun attitude.
Cryptic would have done well to increase the rewards for the missions they hoped players would play more rather than reduce the rewards for thosee that players liked, enjoyed and used. And yes the clicker console mission was a mission players, liked and enjoyed and used. Believe me or not, the clicker console, mission was probably the most popular mission in the game. I dont care of someone thinks its an exploit or not; it was a popular mission that players felt gave them good value and they played. If cryptic didnt want exploits they should have thought about them before rushing out the foundry. They knew this would happen; they were warned it would happen; and it became part of the landscape. Removing it after players spent a year making it the most popular mission in the game seems shortsited.
Cryptic devs just tell me Im stupid and wrong and that I dont know a thing about what makes players happy in this game. They tell me that they can throw more grind content at us and the fact that players have more to do and will have to work harder will make them enjoy the game more. The facts are that players that have easy access to items will take them and go play the missions they love. Players that do not and have to constantly grind for them like a mule following a carrot will find something else to do.
The outcry was instant and it was huge and while mostly focused towards stfs there was an underlying theme I think Cryptic refuses to see. Less dilithium and more grind to get it means less fun for players. You cannot give players less currency to spend and then expect them to enjoy the game more because of it.
STO needs more fun. Its crying for more fun. Removing fun from the game is a catastrophic fail method of trying to achieve the goal of attracting new players and keeping the ones you have and getting both subsets of customers to play more.
The bottom line is that STO is a product sold and by reducing dilithium payouts and rewards, Cryptic has installed an absolutely huge price increase to play their game. They are not raising prices based on the purchase of zen. But indeed they are raising the prices for having fun by reducing the value of your time that you share with them.
This is not a good thing.
Love them or hate them, Clickers became part of the game, and the value of the dilithium injected into the game were an important part of giving people value for their time spent here.
You remove value; and you remove fun; and you remove a really good reason for people to play and you just might wake up and see that youve removed your customer who their time in another game where they feel they are being rewarded for their time and are having more fun as they can experience gaming instead of grind.
Cryptic does not see it this way; they tell me Im wrong; and they truly believe giving players less dilithium makes it fun for them. I keep desperately posting and hoping they will wake up but I dont expect it to happen.
One way or another; clickers need to return; or Cryptic needs to find better ways to inject dilithium into the game. Or they need to drastically and sharply reduce prices for everything that needs it. The dilithium depression will drop down to the dilithium recession as they reverse a couple of changes but players still will not have as much as they want and things people like such as fleet progression, crafting, exchanging dilithium for zen, and upconverting doffs, will seem to be more out of reach of players. Its a bad trend. Its going to continue. And despite knee jerk changes to reduce awful decisions, we are not going to convince cryptic of their mistakes and get them to change their minds.
And many, many, players will slowly trickle away to other entertainment options where they are sold a product that respects their time and financial investment and partnership in it.
Adding 960 dilithium back to stfs is a bandaid on top of a shotgun blast to the gut. It helps a little and the bleeding sill slow a bit. But its not enough. Cryptic needs to be rewarding time played in their game at a higher rate and not a lower rate. If they dont do it then players will find a game that will. People are saying I like this game and I play here because I have friends here. Long term they need to be saying that they play this game because its actually fun. Right now that may not be true. Reward us for our time. Fix it.