Drawbacks of not being open about future changes?

What are the drawbacks of developers revealing potential future balance changes?

I’m pleased that the developers have come a long way since the release of DE. Early on, they were very secretive about everything in future updates whether that was new features, modes, or balance changes.

In the past few months they began revealing new features or modes of future patches in trailers but are still secretive about balance changes. Why is that? It would help them get feedback from the community before anything goes live. Wouldn’t that be helpful? Can someone explain why that wouldn’t be a good idea?

honestly the best thing on this front, if you ask me would be a balance test map mod.
scrap the changes that don’t work and keep those that do.

so say today they release a new balance test map complete with changes - give people a few weeks to a month to test them and evaluate how well they are working.

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That might satisfy some people, but it probably wouldn’t help a lot, because most of the player base has no clue how to evaluate if a balance change is working.

I think releasing patch notes beforehand is cool, because it gives people room to discuss it. They should have just released everything they planned, once they decided to allow those leaks to happen. Now a lot of complains are probably unnecessary, since we only have a part of the whole picture.

don’t make it available to everyone. make it available to the top maybe 200 people.

what does that discussion do though? for example - it was commonly suggested on this forum to buff Koreans and Portuguese by raising the discount they receive and yet both are still subpar civs. this is why actual testing is needed.
i mean sure, if they have a test map - the changes get leaked either way (look at sc2, they announce potential changes, test them, and implement what works), but the actual discussion means very little, its all about the testing.

That works in theory, but how do you convince this very small group of people to spend quite a bit of time testing stuff? It’s not enough to just play 2-3 games. That wouldn’t give you more insight than discussing it.
So I think the approach they have by having a discord server with some of those people is probably the best they can do. And let’s be honest, so far the game has steadily gone in a good direction with balancing (yeah, there were a few hickups…).

It’s just about giving people information they like and making them happy. I don’t think it actually helps in any way :smiley:
And I dont think those changes you mentioned were bad. They are somewhat using the live version for testing, which is fine I guess. They just need to make sure not to totally mess up with the changes they want to test that way. So they need to take a carefull approach with that…which they do, so it’s all fine to me.

It doesn’t always work like that, the community or its majority is not the best for balance suggestion, since majority of this game is basically low level players, if you ask to them something like would you like to see cobras car in random map matches, the majority would say YES and then we will have cobra cars if we follow a democratic system, despite it would be terrible for the game.

Anyway they have done bad things in the past while balancing but we have got those things reverted in the past, so you shouldn’t worry, the meta has to evolve we are the testers of those changes at the end of the day.

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Seeint the current discussion about balance changes: I know one thing for sure. Every detail they reveal will lead to even more discussion. Everyone has a different opinion, so the balance will never be perfect for everyone.

You already see this now. The BR event leaked some of the changes and we already have multiple threads about those changes and why some might be bad. We event dont know all changes and we havent play with all these changes and we are already complaining.


I wouldn’t say complaining but discussion. The devs could get an overall picture of how the community views their proposed changes. Of course not everyone is going to agree about everything (even when they go live). They can then use that knowledge to guide them on how they want to implement those changes. Maybe they do nothing but maybe they realize something is underpowered or overpowered before it goes live to everyone. Maybe they get an idea that they haven’t thought of and use that. The users on the forums get something to discuss and the developers get feedback. Seems like a win-win.

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What we should do is some fun theorycrafting and thinking about how to proposed changes will affect gameplay, would new strategies might become viable. Discussions about if the buffed civs are actually going up to a very high tier or if it’s just enough to reach some middle ground - stuff like that.

What unfortunately happens is people who are very bad at the game are giving their (most likely) useless opinion on what should have changed instead^^

Completely agree.

The sentement that low-level players wouldn’t be able to evaluate balance changes is nonsense. Sure we aren’t as sensitive to balance changes as pros are, but we can tell if some civs/strategies are much stronger than others. Game imbalances which are noticed by the low-level players are the most important type of imbalance.

There are even things which are imbalanced at the low level but not at the high level.

The problem with that is that low level players can change those “balance problems” by doing things better. It’s not a problem about the game being unbalanced, but rather about them not being able to use the tools avaliable to them.

I do agree that it is possible for strategies to be a lot easier to execute and therefore be overpowered at low levels, while being fine (or even bad) at higher levels. If that goes into an unplayable extreme I think devs should adress this in some way.
But overall even in those cases bad players usually can’t identifiy which kind of problem it is. They just see that they’re losing to something and the thing they were going for didn’t work. You again need people with good understanding of the game to tell if the problem was the right strategy with bad execution or just picking the wrong strategy.

I am not saying the game shouldn’t feel good to play for low level players - it needs to be a fun game for them, they are the majority of the players.
But they just can’t analyze what went wrong and how to adress the problem properly in most cases.

I mean I’m sure both would happen.

It’s up to the devs on how to use the feedback. They should not implement everything people say. Of course they will have to filter through feedback. At least they can see how the majority of people view their changes whether good or bad.

Just because there’s feedback doesn’t mean they have to use it. People are already going to give feedback after the update is implemented which they may or may not consider in the next patch. Why not just have the feedback before the update?

Also you can be an average player yet have a good sense on how something will do if you watch a lot of high level players’ videos/streams. I don’t think that just because you aren’t 2k rated doesn’t mean you will have no understanding of balance changes.

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I tend to agree, but “average player” is a very flexible term^^
I think you should be easily able to get to a 1v1 rating of ~1500 with just good understanding, but pretty bad mechanics. If you have trouble getting there, your understanding of the game has to be lacking somewhere. By that I don’t mean basics like knowning counters and meta strategies, but rather very specific knowledge like when and how you need to transition, how to use power spikes, how to balance your economy.
I don’t think you need to be 2k to discuss balancing, but if you’re only ~1200 there’s still way too much weird stuff happening in your games. I just recently watched a friend of mine playing in that range and also I am doing some coaching. It’s not like those players are bad - there’s quite a lot of things they already do understand. But they also quite often still fail to see good resolutions to their problems. In addition to that stuff works that shouldn’t work - like going naked FC on Arabia.

The problem is not even the fact that lower level players are discussing balancing. It’s more that they put their opinion above the opinion of players who are clearly better than them instead of using that information to improve their understanding of the game. Of course the higher rated player might still be wrong, especially if he is not that high rated. And even the highest rated players might sometimes evaluate something wrong. Still people should be a lot more humble with their opinions.

So if average player to you means 1400+. Yeah, I think you have a point there. They might still get quite some thing wrongs, but they surely also understand quite a bit (or they just get carried by their good mechanics^^).
If average player means 1100+. Nope. It’s good enough to understand basic strategies, but games are way too much all over the place for them to get an actual grasp on why things work or don’t work.

Again: I am not against lower level players discussing balancing. I just find it hard to see them acting as if they were able to judge balancing properly and tell others how the game works.

Honestly I think the Devs know their game well enough, that discussion of proposed balance changes on the Forums won’t really do much.
What can they take from this: “lots of people dislike/like it” is a non argument because of the distribution of skill levels.
“People say this would be bad for reason x, or reason y”. Well most likely they have considered those things already, because they know their game and spend a lot of time on these balance changes.
What they CAN take into consideration is, when people just over and over complain about the same units and civs, that are op/underwhelming, which are live and they can benefit from proposed ideas, that they didnt come up with themselves.
But I think theorycrafting by the general community of changes they propose is not really helpful to them.

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They are already in touch with some pros about this subject. I think those players are much better in understanding the impact of changes compared to the average user at this forum. As dev i would care much more about the opinion of those pros then about the opinion on this forum. So in my opinion the discussion about this subject on this forum doesnt really change the opinion of the devs.

So for me it is OK that they just dont share these before the patch go live. It is something different then the major updates, which they do share. I also understand why they dont give a list of bug fixes they already did. They also wait for that till the patch is released.