Poll: Given the many recent new additions/changes to Hex in the last weeks (Merry Melee modes, Cosmic Coins/Siege Sacks, Ladder changes), is your future outlook on Hex positive?

  • For each person who says "I wouldn't have backed if it wasn't a TCG", I'd bet there are 10 people who heard about the game, thought "Nope. I don't have unlimited money to throw down a hole," and never gave it a second thought.

    Something that's become clear to me over time is that there's a big similarity between TCGs and MMOs: You need a large player base, or it doesn't work. Another thing is also similar -- players with large financial and time investments in existing games really don't like to switch, so unless you're the first big success (MTG, WoW) or have a massive multimedia empire behind you (Pokemon, YGO, Final Fantasy), it's hard to attract that big player base that you need to be sustainable.

    Rendakor wrote:

    All the things you say in your final paragraph, I could say about PVE, except that the PVE content we have hasn't even made the PVE players very happy.
    FWIW, I also think PVE ended up being a mistake. Definitely not in concept, but given the resources available. They bit off more than they could chew, and we ended up with half-baked versions of both PVE and PVP. If all of the design and engineering resources that went into FRA, AZ1/2, and Siege had instead been put into stuff like the auction house, deckbuilder, replay system, and casual formats, the PVP side of the game might be a lot healthier today.

    But I don't begrudge HXE for that, because PVE was a hell of a dream (until it ran face first into the problem that you can't balance PVE in a TCG, another way in which being a TCG hurt them).
  • WoW wasn't the first big success. By far. EverQuest, Ultima Online, and even Dark Age of Camelot were absolute titans in their time (for the active game-playing internet population at the time).

    Also, you can't even begin to bring Hearthstone into this equation. When Hex was being made, no CCG had ever been even a blip on the radar. Hearthstone was only as big as it was because Blizzard did it. Without that name behind it, it would have been just another nothing in a long line of nothings. Can you honestly imagine people throwing millions of dollars in backer revenue at a CCG, in a pre-Hearthstone world? Really? For a game that they couldn't even buy what they wanted, but would have to buy literally hundreds of wasted packs to get the cards they wanted, with no ability to trade the extras? Fat fucking chance. The T is what makes this whole thing work, not the CG. :P
    --ossuary

    "Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none."
    - Shakespeare, All's Well That Ends Well
  • WoW was the first big success. MMOs were a footnote before it came onto the scene.

    The reason CCGs attract players is that if you don't want to dump a truckload of money in, there's at least a readily obvious way to work towards the deck you want for free. It's a massive unfun grind, but it's there. Hex has that too, but it's obscured through three or four different subsystems. You have to bootstrap yourself into a good PVE deck, then you have to grind PVE, then you exchange gold for plat, then you buy what you want. So most people who approach it just see a big wall that says "pay me or GTFO" and they GTFO.

    Then again, I don't think CCG is a great model either (and it would have exactly the same PVE balance problem as well). And for whatever reason the unwashed masses seem to react poorly to LCGs, so while I think it's a great model, I admit it probably wouldn't have turned out well. So maybe there just isn't a good business model for card games.
  • Ossuary wrote:

    WoW wasn't the first big success. By far. EverQuest, Ultima Online, and even Dark Age of Camelot were absolute titans in their time (for the active game-playing internet population at the time).

    Also, you can't even begin to bring Hearthstone into this equation. When Hex was being made, no CCG had ever been even a blip on the radar. Hearthstone was only as big as it was because Blizzard did it. Without that name behind it, it would have been just another nothing in a long line of nothings. Can you honestly imagine people throwing millions of dollars in backer revenue at a CCG, in a pre-Hearthstone world? Really? For a game that they couldn't even buy what they wanted, but would have to buy literally hundreds of wasted packs to get the cards they wanted, with no ability to trade the extras? Fat fucking chance. The T is what makes this whole thing work, not the CG. :P
    WoW was the first BIG success. Prior to WoW, MMOs were extremely niche games played by relatively small crowds. They were successful, but they were niche.

    The T may have been what got them the funding... but it was also what made the whole thing impossible. So it's kind of a catch 22 there.
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  • The PvP Kickstarter tiers were like 12000 times value.... even a lot of PvE focused players I know picked PvP tiers because they were just RIDICULOUSLY valuable.
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  • Ossuary wrote:

    WoW wasn't the first big success. By far. EverQuest, Ultima Online, and even Dark Age of Camelot were absolute titans in their time (for the active game-playing internet population at the time).

    Also, you can't even begin to bring Hearthstone into this equation. When Hex was being made, no CCG had ever been even a blip on the radar. Hearthstone was only as big as it was because Blizzard did it. Without that name behind it, it would have been just another nothing in a long line of nothings. Can you honestly imagine people throwing millions of dollars in backer revenue at a CCG, in a pre-Hearthstone world? Really? For a game that they couldn't even buy what they wanted, but would have to buy literally hundreds of wasted packs to get the cards they wanted, with no ability to trade the extras? Fat fucking chance. The T is what makes this whole thing work, not the CG. :P
    Hearthstone was known early on when hex was brought to us. Closed beta for hearthstone was in August of 2013. I remember getting flamed that hex should be more like hearthstone and had similarities.

    Remember Cory knew about heartstone earlier than any of us because that took over his card game deal with blizzard. I always wondered if jealousy was a reason he went for tcg.
  • And you, remember that Hex was being worked on for 2-3 years before it got to the Kickstarter phase. They only went to Kickstarter because there were issues with the Gas Powered Games version of the client and they needed a little monetary boost to get the original version finished (most of that work ended up having to be scrapped, but I can't talk about that in any more detail or the post will get deleted).

    Hearthstone may have been known of at the time of the Kickstarter, but Hex was already long in the works before a team at Blizzard was even assigned to think of working on a card game (they specifically said they only worked on it for like 6 months before it was released for the original beta - that's what an actual budget from a giant company is capable of).

    So no, Hearthstone's existence had NOTHING to do with Hex, even in the early design phase. Cory certainly knew earlier than anyone else that WOWTCG was going away, and he may have even known in advance that something like Hearthstone was going to happen, but that didn't impact Hex's development - that was already well under way by then.

    Cryptozoic has done lots of card games. It's perfectly reasonable to believe they could be working on more than one at once, completely independent of anything that may have been going on with WOWTCG.
    --ossuary

    "Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none."
    - Shakespeare, All's Well That Ends Well
  • I dont know the entire backstory for Hex. But I thought it was originally being pitched to blizzard and they decided against it and went for hearthstone. Do I know that as fact, no. But that seems to be the implication.

    Regardless, hearthstone was a paradigm shift and some people on these forums wanted hex to react. They didnt...
  • Chasing Hearthstone would not have done well for Hex; without the benefit of an established IP, Hex would be just another clone in a sea of clones. "Digital MtG with a working client" is the market Hex originally targeted, but have largely failed to deliver on due to the lack of casual PVP (Kitchen table mode, EDH, etc.).
  • Rendakor wrote:

    Chasing Hearthstone would not have done well for Hex; without the benefit of an established IP, Hex would be just another clone in a sea of clones. "Digital MtG with a working client" is the market Hex originally targeted, but have largely failed to deliver on due to the lack of casual PVP (Kitchen table mode, EDH, etc.).
    Unlike the success it is now... There arent many good CCGs. Hex could have been one of them.
  • My outlook on Hex is grim, because they now finally have a due date: As of August 28th, the Lord of the Rings card game comes out. If Hex hasn't shown me it cares about PvE by then, that's my limit - I'm gone and I won't look back.

    Given that we're at over two years since the last good PvE release, and they insist on radio silence, I'm not expecting miracles from them. I'll miss this community though.
    Never shift in to reverse without a backup plan.
  • To add to the whole card game model discussion, Hex being a TCG is one of my biggest problems with the game. It's just way too expensive or time consuming to get to a deck that I actually want to play that I basically haven't touched the game in weeks (I logged in today to get the sleeves and had no desire to do anything). And to be honest a very simple way to fix that problem would be to support Rock as a format to a similar degree as WOTC support Pauper on MTGO. Then I would be able to at least enjoy one format and maybe use the prizes from that to slowly build my way to something more pricey. But since the only way to play it is in scheduled tournaments twice a week (I know there's four of them, but I can't play in those due to timezones), it's very inconvenient for me to do so.

    Instead, I've gone back to Shadowverse, and I'm consistently impressed how well they encourage players to stick with it. To get you started, clearing the tutorial gets you 10 packs of each set currently in rotation. You also get 10 packs of every new set that gets released. Then you can get 20 packs for playing against different players in private matches and an additional 30 packs for beating the hardest AIs. This is in addition to the rewards from the single player campaign, which is still receiving new content and gives a lot of resources as well. If you really want to, you can get rid of the stuff you don't want and have probably close to a tier 1 deck, otherwise you can build something cheap and works towards the deck that you want.

    Then, to have a player stay with the game, they give daily quests and login rewards. It's simple and yet clever, as once a player logs in to collect that it's very easy to be like: "Okay, let's play a bit, do my quests, grind the ladder etc". They have a monthly ladder that offers both useful (i.e. gold, packs, crafting materials) and cosmetic rewards, and you can get those by playing either of the game's formats (something Hex won't let you). The game is also available on mobile, in fact it's originally a mobile game that got ported to PC.

    It honestly weirds me out how little Hex offers in comparison. Even if you play Standard, which has a much higher barrier of entry because of deck costs, the ladder doesn't offer that much until you get to Cosmic, and even then I'm not convinced the Cosmic Coins are enough. My problem with that is similar to the new Bash prizes - it rewards people who've already put in a ton of either money or time with more stuff, while leaving those with less resources behind. And if you want to play any other format, you're limited to scheduled tournaments, which are inconvenient, or the Immortal Gauntlet, which has a bad cost/prize ratio.

    The game essentially expects players to throw down a large sum upfront, and then, if they're good enough, they maybe won't have to pay anymore in the future. Cygames instead offer new players a large boost in order to gain trust and loyalty, and many players spend money after they've decided to stick with it, whether to accelerate the growth of their collection, to purchase exclusive cosmetic items or simply to support a developer that has treated them well.

    Here's another one: Cygames recently celebrated Shadowverse's second anniversary. They gave players 100 packs spread out over 20 days (again, encouraging daily logins to get more engagement from the playerbase) and are currently having a temporary competitive event that's basically their version of MTG's Cube. This is a multi-stage event that has a free daily run (further runs can be acquired via either the free or premium currencies) and gives rewards based on performance, as well as offering massive rewards to players who do well in the final stage. In comparison, when Hex recently celebrated its fifth anniversary, it gave the players a sleeve. Oh joy.

    If people's only exposure to CCGs is Hearthstone, I can understand why they'd think that it's nothing but a grind with a deck you don't really enjoy, but it's honestly the only game that I've played that really has that problem. And even Hearthstone has improved its rewards (at least, that's what I've heard, I haven't played it in years). All the other CCGs know that their best sales pitch is "we're cheaper than HS", so they don't have that problem, or if they do, it's to a much smaller extent.

    This isn't my only problem with Hex (the game has tons of issues), but it's easily my largest. I don't care about PvE, I don't like limited, I don't care about Siege, and I'm not interested in casual formats. But even disregarding the technical problems with the game (like the shitty Auction House, the lack of an in-game log, the numerous bugs), constructed has a cost/reward ratio that is just way too bad for me to stick with it. And that's too bad, as I enjoy the gameplay. But if I ever want to play something like this, it makes so much more sense for me to play Pauper on MTGO. So as it stands, I'll most likely not be playing Hex in the future. I'll keep visiting the forums to see if anything changes, but my expectations aren't very high.
  • I remember too in Alpha, I was surprised to find how much work still had to be done for the finished product. Like a lot of kickstarter games, there was a lot of hype and not a lot of product. It took 2 and a half years more just to get a regular set release schedule rolling. That was a huge red flag for a lot of people right from the beginning.

    If I didn't get that timeframe right I'm sure someone will correct me. Heh.
  • Ossuary wrote:

    that's what an actual budget from a giant company is capable of
    It's also what having a team of people with experience developing slick UIs, clean code, and bug-free games can do. Hearthstone's original team was only like 15 people. Source: "Initially, the team had between 12 and 15 members" - en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hearthstone

    Realistically speaking, I imagine HEarthstone's budget was smaller than Hex's... it was a pet project of a very small team of developers. They just happened to have established lore already usable, art assets they could recycle, and a development team full of people who were already VERY GOOD at developing video games. That's the real difference. Not saying anything against Hex's team, but they're clearly not experienced at making video games.

    Rendakor wrote:

    You think we should be more like HS, I think we should be more like MtG.
    I don't think the game could be much more like MTG without literally being a clone. The number of changes were barely sufficient to avoid serious legal problems...

    (Also I don't think many want the game to be specifically more like HS, just more distinct in its own right - have something it can use to sell itself that isn't 'hey look we're MTG but with digital effects)
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    Also... I'm terrible at this game.