Resetting the Stage

    • Resetting the Stage

      There has been a lot of (surprisingly unmoderated) speculation about Cory's latest "all we can tell you is that we can't tell you anything about the good stuff we promise is still happening" announcement. Most of that speculation falls into one of three categories: (1) HXE is being sold to Company X, who will turn things around; (2) HXE needs to completely overhaul the game and reboot it with some sort of sustainable monetization scheme; (3) HXE is milking the last few drops of money from the silence before a server shut-down.

      That got me thinking: If (1) or (2) happen, what would it take to draw me back in? I know feedback seems to be dead bandwidth, but I still think that opening this up as a discussion could be valuable. Let's chat about what we, the remnants of the existing community, need to see from HEX 2.0 to feel validated and willing to participate in a hypothetical renaissance.

      1) In the event of a reboot, what would I need to see to be considered reasonable consideration of my existing account assets?

      If HEX actually does a full reboot - boardwipe back to a clean slate under a possibly new economic model and a new direction - my void pile will be pretty massive: 2x Grand King accounts with all of the perks, promises, and sour grapes they represent; Full playsets of Set 1-6, a solid base of Set 7-9, and lots of trade bait I've been stubbornly hoarding for the launch of the non-AH trading system; Pretty much every Mercenary in the game, which are upgraded and eager for something to do; Piles of sleeves (some very exclusive), PvE loot, equipment (Stormcoats among them), Battleboards, AAs and EAs and AAAs and blingy-bling bling, plus other trappings. I have 6x of the infamous Spectral Oaks, producing a mass of several thousand acorns that would have rotted if not for their magical worthlessness properties. I have 2 annual VIP subs rotting on the vine and something like 40 VIP tickets I want to convert to something that I care about. And then there is the dusty vault of currency I've amassed with nothing worthwhile to spend it on.

      I'm a gamer - I paid what I paid to HXE to play the game. I never considered this any type of "investment", nor did I ever have any intentions of cashing out. I'm fortunate enough to have spare money to blow on silly shit like HEX, and foolish enough to let that creep to almost 5 digits over as many years. The only regret I have on my side of the transaction is that some lessons are more expensive to learn than others, but I can't blame HXE for me being a compulsive jackass...and I can now thank them for helping me get over it.

      All of that is to say that if HXE goes under, I don't feel like they owe me anything more than an apology (and ideally an explanation). If HXE continues on as the thing that I Kickstarted, then the only thing they owe me is (Raids, Guilds, whatever-Double-Backs-may-become, HexCon, etc). But if HXE reinvents itself and rises from the ashes of the thing that my money and goodwill financed, it gets more complicated. I will not "re-buy" anything that gets wiped, and I will not buy in at all if I feel that the reboot gives me too much middle finger. But at the same time, HXE can't give the existing players a free-ride to asset parity and still hope to have any revenue while the new system courts new players. Conundrum. Without knowing what direction they're taking the system and how they choose to monetize it, it is difficult to quantify a fair treatment. But suffice it to say that they will need to read the room a hell of a lot more competently than they've done so far to thread that needle and re-hook old whales like me.

      2) How far could a reborn HEX deviate from the original albatross of a vision to still hook me and my ongoing support?

      Truth be told, and much to the chagrin of, well...pretty much everyone, the main thing I wanted from the undelivered hype was Double Backs. Yeah, I know - I'm a naive fool and an evil bastard for supporting the bloated asset base that has been the bane of loading speed and AH functionality since the dawn of Beta. And I know it has been canned in lieu of a "system that delivers the spirit of Double Backs" instead. I'm cool with that - I never cared for the unique-cards stuff; all I ever wanted was account-level statistics and achievements per card (name), with the added bonus of being able to level up and unlock...whatever. MMOTCG, Guilds, Raids, Crafting, a real Trading System, Level 30 cap for PvE characters, 6 classes, more AZs, more dungeons, etc. All good stuff too.

      But if HXE reboots and rebuilds itself into something new, all of that can be considered moot. Then the question becomes: What could it become that would hook *me*? Looking at some of the suggestions for ways to rebuild HEX:

      - HEX goes full-PvP only: No thanks, I'm out.
      - HEX goes CCG instead of TCG: Honestly, I never did give two shits about the economic model. This wouldn't be a deal-breaker for me, and may even be good. I honestly don't care, assuming there is a game that I want to play built around it that doesn't try too hard to exploit me.
      - HEX offers AZ content as paid DLC: See #3 below.
      - HEX does something else: They're welcome to pitch it to me, and I'll listen with the that-boy-already-cried-wolf skepticism that I've paid dearly to acquire.

      3) What sort of content would I actually be willing to buy, and what would I be willing to pay for it?

      - Paid AZ DLC: I would buy them if the value was there. If AZ 1 and 2 were each paid DLC, I would have happily dropped $20 each based on the level of hype built at the time. If they were able to maintain any reasonable level of hype and release consistency, I'd say AZ3 (with level-30 cap, 2 more classes, and a similar level of content) would be another $20 win; AZ4 (delivered within 6 months of AZ3 and including a crafting system, upgradeable strongholds, and a way to bring PvE champs/Mercs into existing pseudo-PvE like FRA/Sieges, as well as a typical level of AZ content) also a $20 win. After that, AZs would probably simmer down to just more node drops, and would settle at probably $10 DLC 2-3 times per year. I'd totally support that. I'd also be willing to buy stand-alone Dungeons at $5-10 a pop, but I'd probably burn out on that after a while without bigger releases too.
      - PvP events: Not my gig. I would just like whatever HEX becomes to realize that PvE players like myself happily buy PvP cards outside of tournaments IF those assets seem worthwhile in the PvE content.
      - Battleboards: Meh. If Siege was compelling, maybe. If I could use them in FRA, maybe. At $10, I kick myself every time I see that I own any.
      - AA PvE Champions: I'd be willing to drop a few bucks on these IF (A) there is enough regular content to justify it; (B) the system changes in a way that encourages players to develop existing heroes rather than spamming new ones with all of these one-drop-per-toon BS; and/or (C) PvE characters could interact with modes such as FRA or Siege.
      - VIP: I like the way that ESO gives subscribers full DLC access while subs are active (and frikkin' love the bottomless crafting bag). Not relevant to HEX yet, but if you do offer paid DLC packs and make them accessible to active subscribers, that would sweeten the deal. A collection of cosmetics like AA PvE portraits/Battleboards/etc that were only useable while a VIP subscription was active on the account could be a decent incentive as well if the available content makes them relevant.

      That's off the top of my head. I'd be interested to see what others suggest as well.

      4) What would it take for HXE or its successor to spark enough trust or goodwill from me to even bother?

      This is the real kicker. At this point, I've been uninstalled for months out of simple boredom, so all of the recent behavior from HXE hasn't been a thing that I can protest by cutting funding that I've already cut - all I can do is keep a voice on the forum. But about that behavior: Comm blackouts, censorship, misdirections, stalls, bugs-turned-features, bugs-still-bugs left to fester, unresponsive support, copy/paste regurgitation, fumbled implementations, a total lack of interior coordination, top-tier dismissals, crumbling community, salt, salt, and entry fees. Honestly, I'm not sure what it would take for HXE to make adequate amends to get money out of me at this point. I log into the forum in the vain hope that the faith we put into @Dinotropia amounts to something less jaded. I log in to hang out with old friends who now offer hilariously scathing tirades in place of the lofty optimism of HEX past, and wonder what will become of them when the lights go out. I log in to see if @Sukebe is still fighting the good fight, and keep an eye out for the announcement that breaks even his unwavering support and send him to the wizened sidelines with the rest of us (I'm rooting for ya, buddy!). But really, I log in because I'm a sunk cost who wants to know how the story ends. If it keeps up the whole "not with a bang, but a whimper" schtick for much longer, I assume I'll just stop logging in.

      What would it take for me to care again? To trust anything that @HEXCoryJones says again? To reinstall? To pay?

      Beats me. But I'm still listening. For the moment, anyway. They could start by, y'know...talking to us.


      Anyway, another patented Greyhaven wall of text. I'll even do you guys a solid:

      TL;DR: Given all of this talk about reboots and renewals, what would it take to bring HEX back into the good graces of your gaming money?

      Good times.
      The Unnamed Council - Community Admin
    • Turns out TCGs are just a flawed digital business model in gamers minds, and in implementation.

      Make the game fun to play and free to play.
      Bring as much depth that HEX had.
      Have a real social platform. (Co-op makes the most sense here)
      Use the social platform to generate income.

      Simple recipe for success.
    • I'm not going to type it all out again. Read my last 100 posts or so to see what they should have done and still need to do... I've gone into pretty deep detail already. ;)
      --ossuary

      "Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none."
      - Shakespeare, All's Well That Ends Well
    • There's no difference between Hex shutting down and Hex restarting in combination with a full account wipe. In both cases, all my shit is gone and I will never be suckered into dumping another cent into whatever new scheme they'd be concocting.

      Edit: If there isn't an account wipe, I'll start putting money in again if there's a substatial pve update. I'd buy new AZ's as expansion packs with the new smart drop system to guarantee I'd get all the cards and equipment tied to the new zone. And when that happens, I'd also be willing again to spend dumb amounts of money on pvp cards and cosmetics.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Mornox ().

    • Mornox wrote:

      There's no difference between Hex shutting down and Hex restarting in combination with a full account wipe. In both cases, all my shit is gone and I will never be suckered into dumping another cent into whatever new scheme they'd be concocting.

      Oh absolutely. Anything they did at this point that eliminated my collection would 100% guarantee I'll never touch the game again, no matter what they do with it. I don't care if it turns into the OASIS and every human on the planet lives inside it - I won't be there. They've screwed us loyal players over more than enough already, I'm not going to personally refinance their reboot on top of it.

      Let the bear pay the Bear Tax. I pay the Homer Tax.
      --ossuary

      "Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none."
      - Shakespeare, All's Well That Ends Well
    • I need 4 things from the 'new Hex':

      1) I need to retain what I have.
      2) I need endless/replayable pve component involving at least slightly customizable characters(a la our pve campaign characters, but if they of some degree of reboot, I want something similar)
      3) I need the game's monetization to show that they recognize that gambling has a place in these games, and reward systems are not that place(and that cosmetics are better cheaper).
      4) Whoever takes over needs to get some communication going.
      Gamer. Streamer. Photographer. Writer. Anime Lover. Possessor of Stuffed Animals.

      Also... I'm terrible at this game.
    • I just want to play draft, 2HG, and multiplayer EDH in a pretty, mobile (tablet/touchscreen PC) friendly online TCG where it's easy to list/sell/trade my cards. If HXE deletes my collection, but gives me those features and say.... a lifetime VIP subscription that lets me draft for free regularly, I could be convinced to come back.
    • Great post OP. Really good read and expertly written.


      I haven't logged into hex for weeks and weeks. Partly I don't have time, but also I share all the same thoughts as many of us here.
      I'm not writing off a return though. It just depends how this plays out. Personally I'd like to see massive UI menu/AH fluidity overhauls and a solid rework of PvE content, because that is of course what the majority of us were attracted to hex for. I've loved my Limited PvP time, especially sets 3-6, but it's PvE that draws me.

      Anyway, I'll continue lurking and checking the main hex site weekly for news.
    • Mejis wrote:

      Great post OP. Really good read and expertly written.


      I haven't logged into hex for weeks and weeks. Partly I don't have time, but also I share all the same thoughts as many of us here.
      I'm not writing off a return though. It just depends how this plays out. Personally I'd like to see massive UI menu/AH fluidity overhauls and a solid rework of PvE content, because that is of course what the majority of us were attracted to hex for. I've loved my Limited PvP time, especially sets 3-6, but it's PvE that draws me.

      Anyway, I'll continue lurking and checking the main hex site weekly for news.
      they cant even fix the gems for draft, how should they be able to make a complete overhaul...
      Austrian Kickstarter & Slacker Backer
      -=] Dont mess with the bull, you gonna get the horn [=-
    • When Cory made the 'You will speak only when spoken to' statement, I announced that I was uninstalling. I did, and haven't logged in since.

      What would get me back, and more importantly, what would get me to sink money again?

      1) The game needs to understand and value the casual market. The AZs and old FRA did this. New FRA and Siege do not, neither does the entry fee for Merry Melee. Too much of HEX' design has been intent on the cutthroat aspect of card games, and we already have PvP for that. Renewable PvE content is in extremely high demand, and Siege should've been it.

      2) Small, QoL improvements need to get their space. Being able to skip the first dungeon when you make a new character, marking challenge encounters differently from regular ones, pre-determining the outcome of a coin flip in certain situations… These things need to be worked on.

      3) Monetisation of PvE through cosmetics. EA/AA/AAA of PvE characters and mercs, for starters. Battleboards would be valuable if casual players could actually use them.

      But the biggest, most important thing…

      4) An official, personal apology from Cory for mismanagement of HEX thus far. We -need- to know that -he- knows that he's been handling it wrong. If any of these changes are made but Cory is still operating under a mindset that will run the game into the ground, then nothing will change. We'll get some functionality before someone has to bail him out again. We need to know that the project managers know that they have to do better.
    • First they'd have to hire some project managers, since they don't have any. THEN they'd have to tell them they have to be better than the physical card game designers they have, who have no fucking idea how to make a video game or manage a video game company. ;)
      --ossuary

      "Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none."
      - Shakespeare, All's Well That Ends Well
    • Cernz wrote:

      Mejis wrote:

      Great post OP. Really good read and expertly written.


      I haven't logged into hex for weeks and weeks. Partly I don't have time, but also I share all the same thoughts as many of us here.
      I'm not writing off a return though. It just depends how this plays out. Personally I'd like to see massive UI menu/AH fluidity overhauls and a solid rework of PvE content, because that is of course what the majority of us were attracted to hex for. I've loved my Limited PvP time, especially sets 3-6, but it's PvE that draws me.

      Anyway, I'll continue lurking and checking the main hex site weekly for news.
      they cant even fix the gems for draft, how should they be able to make a complete overhaul...
      presumably through another company stepping in and coding things more efficiently and/or from scratch. I assume that the silence is either a slow death, ongoing negotiations with a company or the hope for negotiations whilst a slow death occurs.
      Who knows?
    • We're totally talking "What if" scenarios, right?

      Then, in the even of a wipe, I wouldn't mind losing stuff, if there was some compromise.

      I'd be comfortable with losing everything except from the currency IF:

      1) (This is in the event of a start from scratch, Set 01) we were given X amount of free Limited tickets for each set release up to and including Set 09. X can be infinite or not. Perhaps it's somehow dependent on how many cards of each set a player lost in the wipe. Perhaps it's set at 50, 100, 1,000 for each player. I don't know. I wouldn't mind having to play Limited FOR FREE to re-build the collection from scratch.

      2) a playset of all WoF rewards were given to players. 4-of for cards, 1-of for Mercenaries. Again, maybe base that on the account's age to see how far back you're gonna go? And maybe don't include sleeves?

      3) No idea about the AA / AAA cards though. If they intend to go about changing how to obtain them, I could see a world where we don't get them back.

      4) I'd probably either give all boards that were up in the Store for direct purchasing to everyone or just leave those to each account (i.e. don't wipe them). People have already paid for those, unlike cards which they may have gotten for free. If they went down with the 1st option, it'd also work as something to sweeten the pill. And afterwards perhaps only sell boards for real currency, not platinum.

      I'm sure there're as many different lines drawn as there are players. That's just what I'd want to see in the case of a wipe in order to not just pack up and leave.
    • I think he means that there's no way their reputation would survive wiping people's accounts and asking them to pay all over again.

      I don't think that's the way it would go down, though. More likely, it'd be HEX2, with the same backstory and maybe even the same cards, but a new codebase/feature set/roadmap; they wouldn't literally erase our accounts, they'd just stop releasing sets and ask us to come play HEX2. That'd be fine by me if they'd take a look at total collection value and give some loyalty bonus to their existing players in the new game (ideally Limited tickets to jump start building a new collection).
    • GeneralVeers wrote:

      I think he means that there's no way their reputation would survive wiping people's accounts and asking them to pay all over again.

      I don't think that's the way it would go down, though. More likely, it'd be HEX2, with the same backstory and maybe even the same cards, but a new codebase/feature set/roadmap; they wouldn't literally erase our accounts, they'd just stop releasing sets and ask us to come play HEX2. That'd be fine by me if they'd take a look at total collection value and give some loyalty bonus to their existing players in the new game (ideally Limited tickets to jump start building a new collection).
      This is what I envisioned what people are talking about when it comes to a wipe. Will hex say you have 20 brides that is worth x compared to 20 vampire kings worth y? I find that hard to believe. The ah is so shit it shoudnt be a decisive value of worth.

      In the real world it probably wouldn't be fair and it would be horrible pr. Money would be spent on revamping a product where you take away things bought and repackage them to be bought again. Would make much more sense to not piss off the people who spent money on the game and let them keep there stuff for hex 2.0.

      Edit I guess the only thing that would work in my mind if it was a true CCG and they gave corresponding dust to folks for their rares and legendaries.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Pandaemonium ().