Original Post — Direct link
15 days ago - /u/Dan_Felder - Direct link

Yup. :)

I thought folks on this subreddit and the path of champions subreddit made some good points. We originally set the limit to the cost of the highest star upgrade so that people could save up for it but still would feel it made sense to spend the fragments as soon as possible. But being at 40 meant that it was a bit too easy to accidentally lost fragments if you were saving up for it but got two rewards in a row.

Now it's much harder to lose fragments while saving up for the third star. If you are sub-40 you need to get 11+ fragments AND another reward all at once.

15 days ago - /u/Dan_Felder - Direct link

Originally posted by DevastaTheSeeker

...but if you have 40 fragments why wouldn't you spend any? It's literally enough to upgrade any character's tier to the max level.

Because a lot of people get paralyzed that they might need them more later for a hypothetical future champion or similar. Same reason people hoard items in rpgs. It affects a lot of people: https://youtu.be/rgU4Oum8SLg

I sure know I finished elden ring with a stack of 50 rune arcs I never spent. We also noticed in testing many people were incredibly reluctant to spend universally valuable resources until they hit a cap, and we want to encourage people spending wild fragments as soon as they can.

Our original thought with wild fragments was to guarantee some champion-specific fragments of their choice each day, or heavily boost a champion of their choice’s chances of being rolled from vaults. This would keep the “there’s no downside to upgrading!” Feel that comes with champion specific fragments. Might as well spend the garen fragments because why not? Wild fragments ultimately seemed a lot more user friendly in other ways though, less interfaces, no need to pre-select. So we introduced them with a cap so players wouldn’t hoard too long before feeling like they might as well spend fragments to free up room for more.

14 days ago - /u/Dan_Felder - Direct link

Originally posted by MothafuckingMufasa

GOATed dev, never understood any of this but fundamentally it does makes a lot of sense.

Thanks :)

14 days ago - /u/Dan_Felder - Direct link

Originally posted by Erook22

Sounds like a conspiracy theory

Riot is incredibly focused on "Player Experience First" - it's a core riot value and designers need to be ready to explain how their designs support it. It's brought up constantly in meetings. I love that about working here.

Fortunately, it's often possible to make designs that designs are good for both players and the sustainability of the game. That's not a conspiracy, just sustainable design. :)

The main goal of wild fragments was to give players some guaranteed fragments of their favorite champion on a regular basis, since the first "fully random" version (never intended to be final but we weren't sure what we'd supplement it with yet). This is why we were originally thinking about a "wishlist" system where players would select one or more champions to either increase their odds of rolling or guaruntee a percentage of fragments per day.

This would have worked great in theory but would be kind of annoying for players. They'd have to pre-select champions after all, and they might not understand the under-the-hood math. It would have also taken us a lot longer to build out all the extra UI and tutorials explaining it, which would have sucked because we wanted to give players a way to target their favorite champions as soon as possible.

We switched to the wild fragment solution. It was easier to explain and definitely solved the problem. The only potential downside was that it might encourage hoarding behavior. Players might suddenly feel bad about spending wild fragments in a way they hadn't about champion fragments, which would be more painful and less fun.

This was particularly relevant since we were replacing the daily bronze vault with a daily dose of wild fragments, they'd now be the major recurring reward and we wanted people to feel good about spending them. We also wanted them to spend them soon after getting them, so they got to regularly make progress on champions.

Introducing a limit accomplished both those goals. It also avoided introducing a new problem: which would be the dangers of a situation where players could "pre-finish" all future content faster than we could release it. We'd have to be super careful about giving out too many rewards in that world, which would make it harder to do experiments like putting fragments on the event passes, adding new event quests with path rewards, etc.

We were able to put those rewards in quickly, without running a bunch of economic simulations, because we knew that there was no way they could break the long-term sustainability of the mode. That makes it much easier to try stuff.

Imagine if you could "bank" XP in an MMO before an expansion. The devs would have to *reduce* XP gain to be lower overall, because it'd be kind of lame if you instantly hit level cap on day 1 of the new expansion. Level caps mean that devs can keep XP higher - because the worst that'll happen is some players might hit cap earlier than others. The new expansions will still matter to everyone.

Hoarding usually isn't great for players or devs. It means players feel worse about upgrading and makes future event quests and other activities less enticing. It also means devs have to be way more careful about giving out rewards, meaning we can't just toss them onto cool ideas; we need to spend a lot of time running careful simulations to ensure we don't create long-term problems.

The best designs are great for players and for the game's sustainability. That's always what I try for.

14 days ago - /u/Dan_Felder - Direct link

Originally posted by TrueLolzor

Yes, because game companies business practices are a mystery shrouded in darkness, and things like this never ever happened before.

I wrote a big explanation above, since you pointed out one of the other bonuses of the system. It does kind of feels like you've pre-decided that we only care about money though.

I'm not sure why someone playing LoR would think that, because there's a lot of very easy ways we could make money if that's all we cared about. It's just not who we are. Probably helps that a lot of us play Path ourselves too. :)

We care about building a great game that's also sustainable. We're always looking for designs that do both. Fragment limits encourage players to spend their resources instead of hording. That makes the game both more fun for a lot of players and more sustainable for everyone.

14 days ago - /u/Dan_Felder - Direct link

Originally posted by Lachymae

Imposing a cap to prevent excess hoarding is fine. The problem was that when one received quest reward(s) + legend reward for higher levels, they could end up losing the latter reward if they were close to the cap.

Currently we:

  • have a warning screen saying that if we're at or above the cap, we won't gain any more wild frags, which encourages us to spend them,
  • can claim the reward in full even when claiming it would make us go above the cap as long as we're below the cap when claiming.

These features are very much appreciated by all us I'm sure and they're player friendly. The issue was that the above case would make the player lose the wild frags if they were claiming multiple rewards.

Imho, when this was the case, the system should have prompted the player to champion screen to give them one last chance to spend their shards so they wouldn't lose the quest reward. It could be done in a way that if player tried to leave that screen to go back to PoC map, the system would ask them to confirm that by leaving this screen, the rewards will be claimed and if resources are capped, the excess rewards will be lost.

Increasing the cap will make this happen less often but I bet there still be players who will lose some wild frags due to reaching the cap and regret not spending them sooner.

Not sure why you got downvoted, ideally players would never lose excess fragments by getting several rewards in a row. A solution like yours would definitely help prevent that. It's just a lot more time-consuming. Changing the cap was simple enough we could get it done while doing other exciting stuff, and will still catch the vast majority of problems.

It's also worth noting that the rewards as we know them weren't designed to work how they currently do. We originally intended that players would "tap to claim" many of the rewards players currently get all at once at the end of the run or when checking their mail.

"Tap to claim" means players can control the flow of rewards one at a time, and know exactly which quest or condition they completed to earn the reward. This helps them learn where all their rewards come from and how to get more. Some players don't even know chapter quests exist.

We haven't gotten this in yet but I haven't given up hope that we one day will. If we do, it further reduces the value of spending time adding extra UI for this situation. If we keep finding more impactful things to do though, this cap increase will heavily reduce the chance of losing fragments. :)

13 days ago - /u/Dan_Felder - Direct link

Originally posted by TrueLolzor

I didn't pre decide what you "only" care about, I merely stated that in this particular case, it very much looks like an anti-player practice being mascaraded as something good and beneficial, which it isn't.

That's the point. The resource system is done so well outside of PoC, that's why it is double as baffling how bad it is inside PoC.

I'd love to give you money. I'm doing it at every opportunity I can. But, as a good example, you made vaults drop dupes. I get dupes from vaults most of the time, and only half of my library is at 3 star, and most of the time vaults give me less or about as much as a daily quest. When I'm more excited for a daily quest than for a vault, you've did something wrong. To expand on this point, by making vaults dish out dupes at such high rate, you actually made me not 3 star my champions, because if I do, I will increase the odds of getting dupes from vaults, reducing my shard income even further. The system you made is actively preventing me from having fun with how I spend my resources. But going back to my previous point, about the money. Because of how vaults work, I actually skipped on a season pass which had them, because I knew how low probability of them giving me something substantial. It is only when season pass included actual hero shards for PoC that I started to buy them, namely corruption pass and archlight pass. Were vaults dupe protected, I would have gotten the previous passes that had them. But hey, that's just me.

When I'm more excited for a daily quest than for a vault, you've did something wrong.

Busy at the moment so can't go deep but wanted to say I strongly agree with this, particularly the tension around platinum vaults. People are often super tense when opening those, worried about getting duplicates. It also creates a sense of guild when taking a champion to 3-stars because you worry about the increased chance of wild fragments.

Those are both design failures, and I'm the person most responsible for them. I originally set those systems up based on some other assumptions about progression that ended up changing late in the process. Can't go into details but it's definitely on my radar to improve this when we get a chance. The trick is finding a way to improve it isn't just a quick fix creating new problems down the road, which would delay cool stuff we've got planned.