Suggestion: better initial tutorial
There seem to be quite a few threads about how CivWorld is not fun, has no strategy, etc. Beside obvious personal preferences, I think there's a big component of newer players not understanding how the game is meant to be played. At least for me, it took me literally until my 6th game or so, until some core players explained and showed to me in civ chat, that I finally got it (yeah I was real slow, hehe)
Most players here have friends who stop playing CivWorld after 4-5 days, cause the city they build disappeared (ie their game finished, they are in another game, but they don't realize). Recently I saw a global chat about "what is the use of winning an era, does that increases your productions in your city?" There had been plenty of talk of people about what their city (or other people's city) looks like at what point in a game, how many houses and how much of everything they had accumulated... It seems like by most people's nature, we assume that our city is our main focus and goal of a CivWorld game, and the mini-games are there as a repetitive side game to occupy our time only. If that were really all there is to CivWorld, I agree it would have been a pretty boring game. The fact that your city is there to help you reach the era wins and eventually winning the game, and to do that you have to collaborate with civmates and decide on strategies to best reach the maximum of era wins possible is not that clear on 1st glance.
The majority of strategies are unfortunately not explained in the tutorial, after the very basic, it just lefts at a very generic goal of: win an era... There is no emphasis about this is really how you win the game, by winning eras. There is no explication about how to go about earning the fame points, and that earning fame points is the goal of the game. It doesn't even explain what are the points in green dot beside your name, and what are the number in gold star beside your picture.
There are also talk here about other facebook games, Empire and Allies for example got named a lot. They do have a better tutorial that guide players through the initial 6 levels so after the tutorial a player have a good grasp of what the game is about. Most other facebook games still provide goals beyond the initial tutorial, but in CivWorld that is not necessary cause that's what chat and other players are about, we provide to each other goals to work toward to win. I understand CivWorld being a winnable game that repeats cannot afford to use up the initial 4h in a tutorial, or a player would miss literally the 1st 6 eras (at current speed at least). I don't know what's a better plan for a tutorial, but IMO it is not effective to guide us enough to understand and be able to play somewhat efficiently. This will become even more important once the game goes official, because the majority of Facebook players will never actually read the wiki, they rely on that tutorial to teach them how to play.
Here are some examples of quests that I think should be added in to teach new players, in no specific order:
-Instead of simply put down a garden (who ever uses garden really?), have another of removing it, change it for an orchard, ask them to put it beside 2 or more water squares, and let the player realize it's more productive.
-Instead of just moving 3 puzzles pieces, tell them about usefulness of succeeding many in a row and the x5 multipliers. And warn them they would lose their swaps once they get a great person.
-Instead of help build a wonder, notice to them that wonders could be stolen so sometimes it's better to keep the great people.
-Instead of just having the quest of earning a medal, notice to them that they got promoted in rank in their civ that way, and that if they win an era now they would get more fame points.
-Have a quest that ask them to build road on worked forest,
-have a quest for fighting barbarian when that happens,
-have a quest later in game once their civ have museum to replace their theater by a museum and let them realize it's more productive, and notice to them it's the same thing with university replacing library.
-Have a quest of making a stack of 5 soldiers, so they know they can build them, and more than 1 of them (I'm not joking, a lot of players would buy at ridiculous price on market instead of building them).
-have a quest of making them fortify, heroic, and notice to them the difference, same for asking them to put in a defensive vs offensive army and go through the numbers in tutorial.
-Have them not just move in a maze, but to finish a maze, and explain in the tutorial what kind of science gain gives moves, what kind don't.
-Have in the tutorial restarting a maze, switch tech, but elaborate that they would lose all excess if they go to a smaller tech...
-I'm sure there are much more things I forgot, can't remember the tutorial well either, as I did it months ago.
-Since some of the quests cannot be finished right away (eg fight barbarian, finish a maze, it would make sense to be able to have several quests at the same time, so players have a feeling they are working toward something
Basically, all the things that most experienced players had to repeat dozens, if not hundreds of times by now, in chat. They should be explained to new players formally, instead of having experienced players spell them out again and again and again, and often for players in their 2nd, 3rd, or later games. I understand they are all really basic things, but it seems needed for a Facebook game. To judge from the state of beta, it seems it really took 3 weeks (so 4 or 5 games?) before a good number of players picked up to a competitive level, I'm sure that can be shortened with some good tutorials.
...that is a whole lot of handholding there... I'm still in my first game and I learned all that the first day. Its like day 4 or 5 of my first game and I'm one of the top ranked players in the game. ...3 weeks.. competitive level picked up? No, what happened was. Experienced gamers started getting invites.
There is a rather steep learning curve as far as strategy is concerned, and are a lot of unexplained mechanics. I'm a veteran civ player, figuring out how production worked took me the better part of a day. I figure my first game is a throwaway to be used as learning experience. The Wiki is still in a very rough state and surely will improve as the beta moves forward.
LoL throwaway First game? I made craploads of mistakes and still got second place.
I get it, you're brilliant and probably look down on anyone who plays proper Civ at less than Deity level. Over here though, the lag is bad enough right now that I'm not interested in dealing with the annoyance of rebuilding my city after I've seen what I'd do different next time. I'll wait for the next game.
Nope, just was very hyperactive during most of the game.
I think is irrelevant if some learn fast or not. The point is to get everybody ready to understand the game and play it on the first or second try. If you feel like you know everything already just skip it. There are some things that I don't agree with on the OP post but I think is a very good idea to expand on the existing tutorial. I personally prefer to leave the optimization, general city placing, strategies, etc, to each player, because figuring that out is the most enjoyable part of any game for me. I also like to see and discuss what others came up with.
While figuring out how everything pieces together is indeed enjoyable, there is a deficit of information available regarding basic game concepts.
Examples of things that took too much time to figure out:
- When I got the quest to assign a worker, my civ instincts immediately took me to my build screen.
- Having to move houses from resource to resource based on immediate needs felt cheap rather than an essential strategy.
- I get that farmers like to live next to farmers and forests, but I'm still unsure as to whether that works with other assignments, since only farmers seem to tell me why they're happy.
- Had no idea that the bubbles over citizens are resource gathers.
- Its not immediately obvious that resources trickle outside of harvests
- Had to read the wiki to figure out that the reason none of our votes complete is because of inactive players in the roster
- Still have no idea how battles work because our civ couldn't close the declare war vote for 2 days
And while you're figuring out all this stuff, you're fighting with an interface that is astonishlingly modal (there's only one path to any particular function, so there's a lot of backing in/out of functions). It'd be nice to be able to chat with someone while you are visiting their city to walk them through this stuff, but the chat function isn't available.
Once you start to understand this stuff, the game becomes more compelling and interesting, but its easy to get frustrated and turned off in the meantime.
It's a big mistake to assume that other people will understand game mechanics and strategy - let alone basic functions - if one does well. I've been playing games almost my entire life (I learned chess when I was five, and went from there), have played way too much of the other Civ games in the past, and I really like and enjoy understanding games, so I was able to understand and adjust to the game fine...but that doesn't mean that if I invited a friend and explained everything I knew that s/he would automatically understand the game. People learn at different paces, and in different ways.
It's also a big mistake to assume that those of us that *are* doing well actually have that good of a grasp on the game. It's potentially complex enough that we may all be doing things horribly wrong, just much less so than everyone else. :P
OK, I'll admit it - I was only just added to the Beta, am in the middle of my second game, and am very much lost. And, yes, I've played the previous Civ games, other strategy games, German-style board games, &c.
Originally Posted by JingL
I think the improved Tutorial is a must. The Tutorial items were very "point-and-click" oriented, did not introduce all the basic game mechanics, and had little connection with wider strategy.
Additionally, and I know this is vague, it'd be nice to have a better idea of what's happening within the wider game, e.g.
- How many eras have already been played?
- With what kind of victory?
The news feed just isn't sufficient to keep me up-to-date. I log in and immediately feel as if I have no idea what's going on and no ready way to find out.
+1 to basically all of this.
Originally Posted by mugwump67
I learned way more from other players giving advice in chat than I did in the tutorial, and I am trying to be helpful when I see people who have questions. I think that's a real bonus of the social/co-operative part of the game, actually. Not that the tutorial can't be better, but I'd love to see people continuing to help one another out.