Competitive Play Discussion (Types, Implementation, and Analysis)

A big problem for me and many other players is games get boring and start to lack objective and challenge. Indeed, there do exist some challenges and objectives players can go for, but they do not enhance the gameplay, and even make the game more boring. I will be analyzing how and why this is, what the potential solutions are, and what the problems are with these solutions. I know there exists some discussion of some of these suggestions, but I want to expand on those ideas and offer more analysis.

To begin, there are 2 objectives players can work towards in their games:
‣ Levels
‣ Monthly Leaderboards

I’ll start with the first, levels are great at giving the player a sense of meaning and accomplishment whilst playing the game. It makes players feel as if they are working toward something and achieving something as they play, rather than feeling like each game doesn’t matter and is meaningless. This ultimately keeps players playing for longer, generating more revenue for Hive as players become more engaged with their server and brand (through purchases of Hive+, costumes, and other marketplace offerings). The level system is a great addition to the game and enriches the gameplay through fulfillment and rewards. However it is important to note that it doesn’t enrich the core-gameplay beyond this. Each game is the same and it even incentivizes players to play fast, repetitive games against low-level players to maximize the amount of XP you get.

The second form of objective is the monthly leaderboards, but they require players to dedicate hundreds upon hundreds of hours grinding fast games in order to rank highly. They don’t incentivize challenging gameplay; quite the opposite. Playing against high-level players is disincentivized, and leaderboard rankers will oftentimes requeue in order to get faster games. I have grinded leaderboards in the past, maintaining rank #1 for a couple weeks and it was excruciating. You have to force yourself to spend all your time grinding, no matter how much you don’t want to do it. I highly doubt players who grind leaderboards find it enjoyable. The leaderboards do not represent skill either, as how much time you put in is more important (though skill does affect your rate of winning). I think leaderboards can be done well to enrich the experience, but the current form disregards the core-gameplay.

In conclusion, the current forms of objectives do not focus on the core-gameplay, but supplementary content and features to make your games feel worth-while. As a result, many players get bored of it as the games start to feel repetitive and the current forms of objectives only exacerbates this problem.

How can we solve this problem? You may think it’s strange to complain about these games being repetitive, as it is a minigame after all. It is a fundamental aspect of these games to start at the same spot, same map, with the same mechanics, and with the same stuff. However, the reason the gameplay gets repetitive isn’t because of these prerequisites. Gameplay gets repetitive because the outcome is the same, and the same exact exchanges take place. For some, this may not be an issue as each game may be challenging for them. However, for others, players are usually less skilled and not a challenge for them. This leads to repetitive gameplay as the other players continue to play poorly and the outcome is clear. What makes these games exciting is the challenging gameplay, the twists and turns as a position develops, and the innovative mind games and plays that catch players off guard. These games never have a clear outcome, and the tension is high as players are strained to come up with strategies and ideas, forced to coordinate properly with their teammates, and adapt to changing situations. That is what makes games exciting, and I would love to play more of that. In short, the solution to repetitive games with clear outcomes is more challenging gameplay. To do that, more experienced players must be matched with each other, or at least not disincentivized to.

In order to match more experienced players with each other, there are many types of solutions, including:
‣ Rewards for defeating high-level players
‣ Skill-based matchmaking
‣ Skill-centered events

Beginning with rewards for defeating high-level players, this would incentivize players to queue for and play against high-level players, creating more challenging gameplay. These rewards could come in the form of increased XP, increased rewards on monthly leaderboards, or some form of ELO (best paired with skill-based matchmaking). There are essentially an infinite amount of ways you can incentivize certain behavior if you are creative enough, and it comes in the form of some type of reward. These rewards would also additionally enrich the gameplay as players feel more satisfaction when defeating a skilled player. Also note that if other modes are created, this feature could be exempted from ‘casual’/normal play.

Secondly, skill-based matchmaking is the most convenient way to create challenging gameplay. However, casual players would likely dislike this and it may be better to have it as a separate mode. But it would be slow to find lobbies for specific skill levels, especially if it is a separate mode. This could cause less players to use it, creating a feedback loop that kills the mode. If skill levels are too broadly combined, it may not be much different from normal play, making the mode useless. However, if leaderboards or something like an ELO system was used, it may incentivize enough skilled players to make the mode worth-while. Once it becomes worth-while, more players would start using it and it would become a positive feedback loop until all the competitive players use it.

However, if the lobbies are not filled fast enough and there aren’t enough skilled players, then you can have designated times for skilled players to play. This is where skill-centered events come in. You could have tournaments at specific times for players to compete. There are again an endless number of ways this could be implemented as long as you are creative. For example, there could be swarm tournaments. How exactly these events work can be customized with a lot of freedom.

Next I will discuss the problems with incentivizing challenging gameplay and how they can be avoided. Potential issues include:
‣ Cross-platform disadvantages
‣ Casual players unable to play casually
‣ Demoralizes beginner players

First off, the biggest and most glaring problem is cross-platform disadvantages. It is astronomically difficult for a touchscreen player to go head to head with the average keyboard player. While it may be possible, it would take hundreds or even thousands of hours for the mobile player to get to where the keyboard player was at 50 hours of experience. The learning curves are much different and it is an incredible feat to be at the level of the platform above you. This creates skill inequality between platforms and makes it almost impossible for certain platforms to surpass a certain skill level. The most common solution to this is platform-based matchmaking. In this scenario, it would be using platform-based matchmaking for challenge-centered objectives. The only downside to this is that it creates isolated skill levels. For example, the best controller players may find no challenge in platform-based matchmaking and want to face off against keyboard players. My opinion on this is that the platform-based matchmaking is not exactly a problem, but rather a limited form of skill-based matchmaking. Platform-based matchmaking tries to prevent large skill disparities that are seen when pairing platforms together. However, skill across platforms isn’t exactly the same. An experienced controller player may be more skilled than a beginner keyboard player. As a result, platform-based matchmaking is more of a skill-based matchmaking that limits skilled and inexperienced players from matching with players from a different platform that may be more similar to their level of skill. We would see more fair games with skill-based matchmaking implemented. However, it would be a good idea to have a different default skill level for different platforms.

Secondly, some players want to have a casual game and not try too hard. This can easily be solved by having a separate mode for skill-based matchmaking.

Last of all, it may be a concern that beginner players would be demoralized by the skill disparity. I disagree with this point however, as incentivizing challenging gameplay would make experienced players go up against inexperienced players less. This means inexperienced players would be going up against similarly inexperienced players. This may be through the skill-based mode or the casual mode, but I think it would be much better than how it is now. Right now, experienced players are heavily incentivized to only play against inexperienced players. This is not a problem to incentivizing challenging gameplay but rather a benefit.

In conclusion, I think the objectives should be reshaped to create challenging gameplay that enriches the experience for the player. This is also beneficial to the server, as it helps to build a dedicated community that will likely purchase Hive+, costumes, and marketplace offers and also bring more people in. Additionally, I think it will create a more fair environment where beginner players can not feel so demoralized, helping beginner players become engaged with the game.

I believe that Hive sometimes over-fixates on the casual, beginner audience because it’s the largest demographic while not understanding that beginner players get more experienced and they may get bored and leave if there aren’t the necessary objectives in place to captivate a more experienced audience. I think that the largest demographic is the casual beginner audience because Hive doesn’t offer the necessary utilities to foster an experienced one.

Thank you for taking the time to read this painfully long post, and I appreciate any discussion on this topic. I’m especially curious what Hive’s stance on this subject is. What do you think? I would love to hear other opinions out there on this.

TLDR: I think the current forms of objectives do not focus on the core-gameplay, but rather supplementary content and features to make your games feel worth-while. I believe the forms of objectives should be reshaped to create challenging gameplay that enhances the core-gameplay experience. I explain why in detail above.

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there is NO-WAY im reading that,any chance of a tldr

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Yeah I’m not reading that lol

I’ll read it during lunch and try to shorten it.

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Ok i tried reading it and I read half (woo)

this looks like a well formatted post and i feel this is a good suggestion but

this.

just a small problem, not all players who are high levels are good at the game, and might have levelled up only becuz of the time they played

also remember to vote for your own suggestion

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I added a TLDR

Just read it thank you for that, I will read the rest later.

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That’s true, but there are many ways to implement skill-based matchmaking. I wasn’t quite thinking of level-based matchmaking, but rather some other form, maybe an ELO system. There would be great skill disparities across platforms if it was level-based, and that’s ignoring the fact everybody gets more experienced at different speeds.

TLDR: Level-based matchmaking is a very bad skill-based matchmaking system.

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:clap: good one dude, i rly like this suggestion, but I don’t know if I shud vote cuz I don’t play bedrock much anymore, other than that, awesome suggestion :smiley:

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Well they weren’t wrong

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Ok, I’m starting to read it.

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I don’t think rewards for killing high level players are good 1 Content Creators get random levels when nicked so what then? 2 something similar to stream sniping would happen were players would try to kill high xp player and you don’t have to be skilled to get xp BUT many higher level players are skilled. So I recommend the option for players to select if they want to enter competitive matches (non-competitive do not offer these rewards.

There is already mobile, pc and console matchmaking but someone such as me who uses a controller on a mobile device os put in with touchscreen people (If there are too little people). BUT you are completely right (I am exiting as I am reading)

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Can someone summarize this for me lmao
there is no way Im reading the whole thing.

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Good post, I feel like it should be moved to #games though since skill based matchmaking is already a suggestion

Touch and console players could be given the option to play in PC queues if they feel like they’re not being challenged anymore, I don’t think PBMM should be removed all together.

I think they meant to say high skill level, not their level in the game.

Also why are there so many people complaining about not wanting to read the whole thing, seems pretty disrespectful to me. Ask nicely for a TLDR or leave if you’re too lazy. Just my opinion.

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YO my guy summarized most topics into one… thanks man

you wasted ur time tho :confused:

Goodness sakes! I can’t read that

Recategorizing to the Games category since this is more of a discussion rather than a suggestion.

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So, you say instead of a level based matchmaking you suggest some sort of ELO/MMR type system, which I can understand why you think that would be a good idea, but I think this would be bad for individual players and the community in general.

I have played a few games with MMR or ELO matchmaking, one in particular I played a lot of was rocket league.

I started as a casual player, not even knowing there was a ranked mode, but then I realized that ranked could be really fun, giving you something to aim for.

I slowly made my way up the ranks fairly quickly, and eventually reached GrandChampion, this was a huge achievement for me, but I wanted more, so I decided to try and climb the ladder of MMR.

As soon as I started, I got increasingly frustrated, not stopping until I had gained a decent amount of MMR, and if I didn’t, I felt down for the rest of the day.

The stress soon became unbearable, and I had to quit permanently.

I believe that this sort of thing would happen alot if this kind of system was implemented into the hive.

Not only that, it would decentivise people to play with there less skilled friends, as they would just want to play “competitive” and grind, thus dividing the community into different skill levels.

The thing I love about the hive is the fun and casual side of things, and being able to play with friends, which is what makes it amazing.

Hope this won’t take too long to read, I just needed to add some things.

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Ah, I see. The reason we disagree is because we enjoy the game in different ways. For me, it’s very hard to have fun playing casually. It feels repetitive and meaningless. Maybe this is because I’ve played thousands of games or maybe I simply don’t really enjoy it anymore.

The flex is strong with this one

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