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Solving a Fundamental Problem

Discussion in 'Suggestions & Ideas' started by Redneck Messiah, 11 Jan 2019.

  1. Redneck Messiah

    Redneck Messiah Well-Known Member

    28 Oct 2018
    Damage Depot
    Soooo... It has been noted on these forums that this game tends to struggle with recruiting and retaining new players. I believe I have the solution, achieved through changes to the tutorial new players experience. Having played through this recently while syncing my account to a phone, I realized that this tutorial is incredibly dull, and while introducing the game's core mechanics, it is extremely bad at "hooking" you, catching your interest. (I'm not saying it's utter rubbish, just that it could be doing a way better job than it is.) So how do we fix this?

    Firstly, we need to promote Battle Bay's biggest draws. These are:
    1. A large lineup of modes.
    2. Heavy loadout customization, with 8 ships and 40 items currently present in-game.
    3. Team-based, collaborative gameplay and strategy.
    The current tutorial doesn't do squat about the first two, and barely makes an effort for the third one. This NEEDS to change. Here's how I outline the tutorial, with instances of core element promotion highlighted in a corresponding color:

    Upon starting the game for the first time, a player is immediately thrown into a game of 5v5 Team Elimination against bots, in a Shooter loaded with a gray Standard Cannon, Standard Mortar, Standard Torpedo, and Standard Shield to introduce controls and item diversity. This plays out much like the first game already in the tutorial.
    After that, the player levels up and is given a box containing gold, sugar, a standard shield, a Gatling gun, and a turbo. (all uncommon.) Here, they are shown the basics of leveling, ship upgrades, talent training scrapping (the gray small shield), and loadout customization. Questing is also introduced via a quest to win 3 games, with the reward being a prize box.
    Now, they are returned to a botted Team Elim, after which they are introduced to TDM (3v3 with 6 kills to win) and CTF, both against bots, and learn skills like capturing the point, and guarding or taking a flag, as well as being placed into situations where either they or the enemy are outnumbered, and learning basic tips for those scenarios. After this, the 3-win quest is done, and the player receives the prize box, which contains a Defender ship, a big shield, a bandage, and a cleanse pulse (uncommon again), and are introduced to swapping items between ships. They also have a chance to do more leveling, this time choosing what item(s) and ship to upgrade.
    Now, they go back into Team Elim, against more advanced bots, and are shown the benefits of staying together with their team, helping a medic, and the basics of dodging torps/mortars and shot leading. After finishing that game, the player is told that they will now be given free rein, the tutorial is complete, and they will now face real players like themselves. As a "parting gift from Bhurt," they are presented with a rare sniper cannon, rare long range mortar, and rare swift torpedo, and allowed to choose one of them that they think will help them the most. The same thing happens for blue items, but with a standard shield, turbo, and bandage. The player is also instructed in buying new ships, via Bhurt giving them one last present: Gold for a Speeder and a choice of rare nitro, overboost, and Tesla bolt. After this, the player knows everything they need to know, and are ready for whatever the Bay brings. (and hopefully interested enough to continue their journey).

    Whew! my fingers are sore lol... Any feedback/suggestions, please let me know :)
    @The Grim Repair
    Last edited: 11 Jan 2019
  2. JoshW

    JoshW Well-Known Member

    17 Aug 2018
    This sounds way better than the current tutorial!! +1
    Redneck Messiah likes this.

    HAPPY SITHSHA Well-Known Member

    24 Feb 2018
    A Place that u could never imagine :P
    @TheAntiSnipe ,@Ash KOT ,@CaffeinatedChris ,@YerJokinArnYer ,@Help I Cant Swim :cool:
  4. ViscountSniffit

    ViscountSniffit Well-Known Member

    3 Sep 2017
    I think you make a very good point. First impressions are crucially important for retaining new players. You really can’t overemphasise how important it is to get that right. It would definitely be worth investing a lot of time into, even if the benefit to existing players isn’t immediately obvious.

    I honestly have no way of knowing what changes would be most beneficial in that regard, however, I can talk about a tutorial I really liked, why I liked it, and why I think it was successful.

    Advance Wars 1 on the GBA has, what I believe, is one of the best tutorials of all time. It’s an incredibly complicated game, with ~20 different vehicles, all with different rules, stats, and abilities. It would be beyond daunting to have to learn it all, just to play your first battle. But the game breaks it up into a mini campaign, which not only teaches you how to play (at your own pace), it’s also incredibly fun. So much so, that even many years later, I would replay sections, just to try and get a better score.

    While the tutorial is very detailed, and long enough to be a game in itself, it is entirely optional, and each section is broken up into short missions, that you can play in your own time, and replay as often as you like.

    Rather than being a whole battle, each mission is a contrived scenario, sometimes you start the game damaged and outnumbered, you’re often against the odds, but then it will introduce a new weapon or technique, and show you why it is perfect for that situation. Each mission also has a narrative, and a bumbling bad guy, who trash talks you, but also teaches you through his mistakes. It doesn’t feel like a tutorial, it feels like you’re actually playing to take this guy down a notch.

    If I were going to translate it to Battle Bay, you might have a mission like a 2v1 against two big Defenders, but they only have short ranged weapons, while you are introduced to the Sniper. Then it would teach you how Sniper can win by kiting them and keeping your distance.

    In the next mission, the antagonist will declare that you only won because Sniper is OP, and he’ll gloat about how he now has a legendary Sniper, and you are going to pay. But then it will put you in a situation where there are lots of walls, and you’ll get to school him with a new item: Mortar.

    Later you might play a game where you are outnumbered and damaged, but you’re able to turn the game around with Bandage. Or where your team starts off separated and damaged, but you can win by healing them up with Fixer.

    Every few missions, you also get free-play Battle, where you can practice what you’ve learned.

    I think Battle Bay could really benefit from something like that, especially if the missions were short, with a compelling narrative, and available offline. It would give new players something to keep coming back to, in their own time. And I bet that even veterans would enjoy playing through, to see how quickly they can win certain scenarios, or to try to get the most stars.

    By the time you’ve completed the campaign, not only have you had a very detailed introduction to every item and ship, you’re also hooked on the game, and can’t wait to try out everything you’ve learned, against other players.
  5. TheAntiSnipe

    TheAntiSnipe MVP

    11 Jun 2017
    Classified top secret ;-)
    Thank you @HAPPY SITHSHA for mentioning this thread, I've been looking for it for a while lol. And all of your suggestions are excellent, and I think both @Redneck Messiah and @ViscountSniffit have made excellent points. I shall share this with the devs, and I hope this makes it into the game someday!

    HAPPY SITHSHA Well-Known Member

    24 Feb 2018
    A Place that u could never imagine :P
    It's my pleasure, bro;)
  7. Agile Vanguard

    Agile Vanguard Well-Known Member

    8 Apr 2018
    Random Battle Bay player and tuber.
    In a land far far away...
    Awesome idea.

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