Draft Gauntlet feedback

    • Draft Gauntlet feedback

      We had a thread on this in the old forums, and it doesn't seem to have come over, so I made a new one. I really like the flexibility of not playing all my games in a row with the new draft format, and I don't personally have a problem with playing people outside my pool. The loss of hate-drafting is not a big deal to me.

      That said, I think the format is just not as rewarding as it used to be, and I preferred the single-elim prize structure. Winning that first match and then going 1-2 feels so crappy. I know they are adding a rare for 1 win, but I doubt that will change my feelings about the format. I obviously don't have data, but I have to think the new draft gives out notably fewer packs per 8 entries than the old one did. Maybe I just don't like draft that much, but the EV of Evo is just so much better that I find myself rarely playing more than a draft a week.

      It also really sucks that it will instantly match you with someone with a different record. I just got steamrolled in my first match, requeued, and was instantly paired against someone who hadn't played yet (and had 4 Surging Wildfires). Needless to say, I went 0-2. The "benefit" of a double-elimination format isn't all that great if both of my matches can be against decks that will end up 3-0.
    • I think the old format was far superior, but I dont think we are ever going back to that. It really is too early to see how popular the new draft is because people need set 6 cards/ packs and we have had two weekends of 6-6-6.

      I still think a more swiss like reward structure with no pairing rules is superior to what we have now. Let the high end reward limited format be the Sunday tournaments.
    • I played a few drafts using tickets that I had won via streams or by leveling in the first set 6 release weekend.

      I went 3-0 in two drafts, 2-1 in two drafts, and 1-2 in one draft. This earned me 16 packs. If it had been the previous payout with single elimination that would have been 18 packs.

      If it had been the 5/2/2/2/1/1/0/0 (1x 3-0, 3x 2-1, 3x 1-2, and 2x 0-2 per 8 players) I'd have earned 15 packs, but would still feel better about the overall prize structure. I think someone already ran some numbers about the average number of draft games vs drafts fired, and found that there are a decent number of drops (which no one can get byes from now).

      Long story short, I still think adding 1 pack to the total prize payout isn't a huge change in prize payouts from the traditional draft and would make the gauntlets feel a lot better for people who get 1 win. I know I won't draft aside from using tickets at the current prize payouts.
    • I very strongly dislike the new gauntlet format. It is absolutely resulting in fewer total packs paid out, and the lack of any high reward on demand queue is extremely frustrating. I would never voluntarily do a draft at all if I didn't have a ticket to use or to take advantage of a release event. It's not fun, and it's not rewarding. A total failure in my opinion.
      --ossuary

      "Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none."
      - Shakespeare, All's Well That Ends Well
    • To add a conflicting view to this thread, as someone who is a consistent player, I really enjoy the current prize structure. It is very possible to lose your first match to some bad luck / a small mistake and getting nothing from starting 0-1 in my opinion feels much worse than having a chance to redeem myself by winning the next two to finish 2-1.

      I don't feel like I deserve a prize for going 1-2. A 33% win rate getting prizes on top of the ladder rewards seems odd / wrong.
    • TripleZed wrote:

      Long story short, I still think adding 1 pack to the total prize payout isn't a huge change in prize payouts from the traditional draft and would make the gauntlets feel a lot better for people who get 1 win. I know I won't draft aside from using tickets at the current prize payouts.
      The biggest problem is right here... the prize payout is a real feel-bad experience.
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    • Sure why not I'll voice myself again.

      I like the idea of the format. I strongly dislike how it was handled.

      Why I think the format is worse than the pod drafts

      To me the format sacrificed the most important part of drafting to become the gauntlet, the choice. Now there's a strong chance to never face the people in the same pod as you which means anything you pass is irrelevant. The best 'strategy' is to select your 2 shards then pick nothing but the statistically best card in the pack that matches either of those shards. The situational picks don't matter, you can't guarantee the situation will come up. What the other players in your pod pick don't matter, you probably won't have to deal with them. You can say you have a choice of 1-17 cards but in reality it changed the way of drafting to make it so only 1 of those 1-17 cards is ever the best pick whereas before there was still that 1 best card but there may have been 2-4 situational picks which would have possibly been better for you to get you to winning the draft and the irrelevance of the situational picks means there just isn't a choice anymore.

      The format also opened up something which sealed+evo fall into only worse. Since you will face players of any pod you can be facing players who just happened to have a worse or better selection of cards putting at least one player at a disadvantage from the start. To some extent this existed in pod drafts based on where you happened to be in the 8 but it was to a much lesser degree. The reason it's worse than sealed+evo for draft-gauntlet is because there's also skill variance adding to the difference, if 3 very good players happened to be in a pool with 5 inexperienced players then just by the inexperienced not knowing the best cards to pick those 3 very good players will have an advantage over anyone in a pool with 8 experienced players just because they get more chances at better cards.

      Those changes were made to make the draft-gauntlet. It's what had to be done to work. The problem is a draft still takes 2-3 times as long as a sealed or evo to complete (If you go the full number of rounds.)

      These 3 points combined are why I casually refer to the format as delayed-sealed because it lacks the core part of drafting to me and it introduced one of the fundamental issues of sealed/evo while still being significantly slower than sealed or evo. (I still refer to it as draft-gauntlet in chat as people seem to get upset when I call it delayed-sealed.)


      Why I think it was handled poorly

      They decided to launch it at the worst time in the entire lifetime of hex. They launched it with a PvE launch, at the slowest limited play rate ever in hex (I believe) and during a flashback event giving players they're last chance at set 1 + 2 cards before the rotation.

      The prizing structure. It's one thing to make a format feel competitive by making the 1st place high reward but they loaded basically everything into the 3-0 which just scares people off and leads to 7 out of 8 players feeling dissatisfied (Even the 1 random standard rare for 1 win won't be enough to make up for it).

      It removed the pod drafts which were the main competitive limited format and draft-gauntlet just isn't as competitive as pod drafts. And it's left a void between standard tournaments and soon the hex clash.

      With the CCS being a pod draft for top 8 and hex clash also being a pod draft in top 8 it is ridiculous that there is nowhere to practice that format.

      It was a huge change as it was the first time a format got removed entirely and it was only given maybe a weeks notice without any real reasoning. (At least constructed remained playable even after constructed gauntlet was removed and sealed remains playable even with the removal of the scheduled events)

      ------

      The format itself isn't bad. It just isn't a draft to me and I do not like that it was launched as a replacement to pod-drafting. If it had just been an additional queue I would be positive towards it but I just don't agree with how it was handled and launched in anyway

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

    • I'm going to kind of reiterate the feedback I had provided regarding the format in the other thread, since others are basically doing the same :)

      From my experience(admittedly it's been fairly limited and my record has been terrible... Evo is just so much more rewarding overall right now so it's hard to justify drafting):

      The Good:
      It adds a huge element of freedom to it. While you still require 8 people to perform the draft and an opponent to play against, you can now choose when and how much time you spend on it, within reason. It also makes the format overall more friendly towards off-hour times as fewer people are required and a shorter commitment is required.
      It makes the format more suitable for learning, as you get a minimum of two full rounds per draft, thus increasing the opportunities to learn.
      It increases the playtime to cost ratio of the format, making it more 'valuable' from a playtime perspective. For anyone who actually finds the format fun, this should be a huge plus since you can engage in it for a larger timeframe for less money.
      The overall power of decks has increased. With people being more interested in focusing on their own decks, better cards wheel which leads to more interesting decks overall. Some people may dislike this, but I find it fun to see a power level between 'evo bad' and 'constructed good' and I think draft fills that nicely.

      The Bad:
      The prize structure is really bad. Since there's no prize for 1-2, it motivates people to drop after a single loss, which leads to less balanced matches overall since there're fewer 'bad decks' in the pool to play against.
      The fact that the vast majority of the prize is so heavily frontloaded completely undoes the 'good' of the play structure in terms of 'value', making it not friendly for new players trying to learn since it quickly becomes a moneypit.
      There is less opportunity for players to practice for CCS finals.

      The Neutral - things that changed but are neither good nor bad to me:
      Hate drafting is less important. Whether this is a good or a bad is up to you, I am completely neutral on the subject. I think the removal of hate drafting simply shifts the skill into different places, so I'm okay with it.
      Wait times have been shifted from between matches to waiting for queues. In some cases this resulted in less wait, in some more, so overall I see this as neutral as well. Although for some people in the higher bracket ranges(2 wins), it can mean uncertainty as to whether a match will fire.
      The addition of this required the removal of a much liked format. Again, I'm personally neutral on this as I generally am of the opinion that 'technology moves forward, and games move with it'(which is why I'm generally unsympathetic towards 'I can't play this offline' complaints)... but I understand that this impacted a fair number of people in a negative way, so it bears mentioning.


      It's unfortunate that 'the bad' creates such a huge negative situation that it completely overrides most of the positive. I really really love the concept of drafting. The concept of gradually selecting your cards one at a time, of picking your deck slowly over time like that... it's fantastic. And there's nothing quite like it. Don't get me wrong, I also love evo, but for completely different reasons. It has a totally different feel. Sealed just feels so much different than drafting, regardless of if it's in-pod or 'gauntlet'. But the fact that there's literally no chance of me getting even a mediocre reward from my draft, even if I happen to go 2-1(which is probably unrealistic for me given my history)... and the fact that the vast majority of the time I'll get nothing... it makes it hard to justify putting that type of money into it when if I play evo as long as I can get one win I get something.
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      Also... I'm terrible at this game.
    • Galliard wrote:

      A rare is like 80% of a pack, so I think that's a pretty solid offering for one win.

      I would like to see it have a chance to be a legendary though. Otherwise the ratio of rares to legendaries for a set will shift and that could have odd effects on the economy.
      Not to people who want to continue to draft. Unless it's a rare that can fetch them more than the price of a pack, I think most people would rather have the pack so they can draft again for a bit cheaper.
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    • Darkwonders wrote:

      Galliard wrote:

      A rare is like 80% of a pack, so I think that's a pretty solid offering for one win.

      I would like to see it have a chance to be a legendary though. Otherwise the ratio of rares to legendaries for a set will shift and that could have odd effects on the economy.
      Not to people who want to continue to draft. Unless it's a rare that can fetch them more than the price of a pack, I think most people would rather have the pack so they can draft again for a bit cheaper.
      You say that like we don't all already know that's the point of not giving out a pack.

      You can read my post as "80% of the contents of a pack" if that helps.
    • Galliard wrote:

      Darkwonders wrote:

      Galliard wrote:

      A rare is like 80% of a pack, so I think that's a pretty solid offering for one win.

      I would like to see it have a chance to be a legendary though. Otherwise the ratio of rares to legendaries for a set will shift and that could have odd effects on the economy.
      Not to people who want to continue to draft. Unless it's a rare that can fetch them more than the price of a pack, I think most people would rather have the pack so they can draft again for a bit cheaper.
      You say that like we don't all already know that's the point of not giving out a pack.
      You can read my post as "80% of the contents of a pack" if that helps.
      But a rare is not 80% of a pack.

      A good rare is. HUGE difference.
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    • JeffHoogland wrote:

      You think some people dropping after one loss is worse than forcing everyone to be done playing after a single loss?
      Considering the people in the 'one loss' category would be playing against people in 'no games played' category, I do.

      I don't have specific data though, it's all anecdotal - I don't think it's actually possible to get the data from the tools we have. But I do know several drafters who always do it, so I can say it happens at least somewhat often.
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    • Eraia wrote:

      it's all anecdotal - I don't think it's actually possible to get the data from the tools we have. But I do know several drafters who always do it, so I can say it happens at least somewhat often.
      Saying it is all anecdotal and then coming to the conclusion it happens "somewhat often" is a contradiction right?

      I'm sure some people do it, but I never have and I can't say I've ever talked to someone else who has either.
    • I'll repeat what I said in the old forums too. I love the asynchronous modes and how it allows me to play limited. I love not needing to set aside 4 hours for a draft that sometimes ends in one. I love not needing to wait an unknown amount of time for the other matches in the pod that I am in to finish.

      The prize structure is a worst of both worlds compromise between the players who loved swiss drafts because it let them play the most for the money spent, and the players who loved the 8-4 drafts because it let them draft the most for the time spent. When the population doubles in size from what it was during set 5, and during special events where the population is temporarily increased I would love to see scheduled competitive events alongside async ladder with more swiss-like prizes. However, until then, compromise is reality.
    • Darkwonders wrote:

      Galliard wrote:

      Darkwonders wrote:

      Galliard wrote:

      A rare is like 80% of a pack, so I think that's a pretty solid offering for one win.

      I would like to see it have a chance to be a legendary though. Otherwise the ratio of rares to legendaries for a set will shift and that could have odd effects on the economy.
      Not to people who want to continue to draft. Unless it's a rare that can fetch them more than the price of a pack, I think most people would rather have the pack so they can draft again for a bit cheaper.
      You say that like we don't all already know that's the point of not giving out a pack.You can read my post as "80% of the contents of a pack" if that helps.
      But a rare is not 80% of a pack.
      A good rare is. HUGE difference.
      Most packs are worth less than 80% of the market value of a pack!

      For most players any rare is going to be one they don't have 4 of, so my 80% estimate is primarily from their perspective.

      A chance to get a Legendary makes that a little more stable.
    • Galliard wrote:

      Darkwonders wrote:

      Galliard wrote:

      Darkwonders wrote:

      Galliard wrote:

      A rare is like 80% of a pack, so I think that's a pretty solid offering for one win.

      I would like to see it have a chance to be a legendary though. Otherwise the ratio of rares to legendaries for a set will shift and that could have odd effects on the economy.
      Not to people who want to continue to draft. Unless it's a rare that can fetch them more than the price of a pack, I think most people would rather have the pack so they can draft again for a bit cheaper.
      You say that like we don't all already know that's the point of not giving out a pack.You can read my post as "80% of the contents of a pack" if that helps.
      But a rare is not 80% of a pack.A good rare is. HUGE difference.
      Most packs are worth less than 80% of the market value of a pack!
      For most players any rare is going to be one they don't have 4 of, so my 80% estimate is primarily from their perspective.

      A chance to get a Legendary makes that a little more stable.
      I agree with that part. If Hex is only going to offer a rare for 1 win, it should have the same chance to proc a legendary.
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    • Just my two cents on the Draft Gauntlet. I do not like the payout structure. The balance is really off compared to playing from a pool of 8 people and seeing in someway what you will be up against. Now it's just draft your super deck wait a day then face other super decks. With the balance removed the whole thing just isn't fun anymore.

      The post was edited 2 times, last by FlyingMeatchip ().

    • When I go 1-2 in the current draft structure it's strong evidence that I drafted poorly. It's an invitation to think about what mistakes I made in the draft and in gameplay, where my priorities led me astray, and plan for how to improve on that. Getting the extra game or two gives me more information to plan those improvements. Compare this to going 0-1 in the previous format, where losses could be due simply to having a bad deck, but also to bad variance on my side or strong variance on my opponent's side. Unfavorable draws teach me comparatively little and I can't even see how my deck would play in a normal matchup. Going 0-1 in the previous format was a worse feel-bad for me than going 1-2 in the current format is.

      I spend much less time queued up for draft gauntlet now than I did in the previous format. Do you remember the 20 minute wait during deckbuilding because AFK drafters wouldn't forfeit? Pepperidge Farm remembers. I'll queue up for a minute now; if there's no activity then I'll check the AH or grind some FRA for 10 minutes before trying again. I can do something now in between matches, which I couldn't before.

      In practice it's pretty easy to play against the pod you drafted with. Just queue up as soon as the draft is over. It's unusual to get all three matches against fellow podders, but I usually get two. This has the added (dis?)advantage of increasing the odds of playing against the other experienced players who quickly saved and queued.

      The reduced benefit of hate drafting means better cards get passed deeper in the pool, which provides more opportunities for switching shards late and/or splashing off shards. More opportunities to make important decisions give more opportunities to exercise skill. It rarely felt like a meaningful decision when I hate drafted Twilight Revenant in 555.

      I don't claim that it's perfect, and I understand that others will weigh things differently than me, but draft gauntlet has been a spectacular improvement in my book.