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Thread: Is the Dice Masters community building guide on Facebook wrong?

  1. #1

    Is the Dice Masters community building guide on Facebook wrong?

    I just read it, and I feel like this might have worked for the local group that plays on Thursdays, but it's also not a guide I'd want to follow when making a community nor does it build a community I'd necessarily want to be a part of.

    I don't want varied events, I don't want theme nights. I want draft and constructed because those are literally the only 2 formats that matter at a higher playing level. Wasting time playing unsupported formats that don't matter to anyone ever outside of the group only once seems awful. It doesn't help you progress as a player, it doesn't prepare you for a meta. Theme nights do not help players get better.

    Point number 4 also seems really bad to me. I'd rather the prizes be top heavy than fairly evenly spread. Top heavy events promote competitive play, and players playing their best is what I want. I don't want to beat a bunch of poorly constructed teams played by players that barely grasp the flow of the game for the same reason I don't consider Barney's Hide & Seek to be one of the better Sega Genesis titles. Fisher Price tier players only make the tournaments worse for people that want to compete. That is not to say that inexperienced players shouldn't be welcome, but it's a tournament. I don't feel bad if you don't have fun being bested by better players piloting better teams. Simply by signing up for a tournament you should expect to play your best.

    Anyway, anyone else feel similarly? If not I'm all ears to hearing why I'm wrong.

  2. #2
    You're not wrong.

    But you're not right either.

    The article is about how you create and grow a community of players.

    Not everyone in a community will want to be a top level player.

    In fact very few will.

    Most will just want to play to have fun.

    It's an apples and oranges situation.

  3. #3
    *gives ScorTTp a big Hug*
    Man your the neutral positivity i will never have. Thats why its suprises me and makes me happy .

    Now to you Scum.

    The thing i am not reading out of your opionion is,

    is it only your opinion or the opinion of your group?

    I try to talk to everybody that purchased DM,in the way to hear their opinion on things they want, and maybe i want to try out.
    I take notes in my head and see if it would be a good idea.

    Thats where the Guide helps myself to compare, what want i as an TO to do and what did others(with success maybe) at their local store. Can do it too or is it complicated because i dont have 20 players ,but only 6 constant ones? Should i take something from it and make it "mine" version with some changes?



    If your group is very competitive orientated. Sometimes they maybe want to do an Fun-Event to take a break, getting creative and so on. The possibilities are unkown.

    I dont think you are wrong, i just think, you should listen to the other players as well, because this game needs at least a second player to work!

    And if you want to become an adventurer:
    Take a step forward, play for example Little Cup and make it competitive for the others too(everything can be taken competitive). You will see, that your skills will be sharpened and trained in the same way as in official events. The game doesnt change, but you will! Growing bigger and better than before. Thats what i learned from it.

  4. #4
    I agree that this is definitely a good way to grow your scene, but at the same time, it can be a way to divide your scene. DnD players won't come on Marvel only nights, and competitive players might not find the low prize distribution worthwhile on little cup nights.

    The answer really is, you can't please all the people all the time, but you can try to vary the people you do please from time to time. And remember, just because people want to play things with different constraints than you, doesn't mean you have to feel offended and try to sway the way they play. Just be happy the are there when they are there and be happy when they aren't, because they wouldn't be having fun playing against you.

  5. #5
    I haven't read the guide, but obviously different groups will have different preferences. Refer to that guide for some ideas, but listen to your players.

    Even if they don't want any change, consider that some potential new players may not be playing because of current decisions and perhaps trial run other formats and such (to attract thosw other players) without ignoring the trid and true current favorites.

    Solicit feedback after each experiment.

    ~Ken being captain obvious today

  6. #6
    Our local scene is growing and we've found a mix of Draft/Unlimited Constructed with other formats mixed in works well. We had our first little cup even last weekend and it was the largest turn out we've ever had. None of us want to do that every time but it was fun to have the change of pace and some challenge to create a good team from the limited set of cards.

  7. #7
    Variety leads to more people coming to be a part of what you are doing. Find what works best for your consistent players and build around them. If you have a group that loves themes and off the wall builds, they will come for those events and others will want to play.

    Ours works well when we have really competitive and real fun nights. Got to mix it up.

  8. #8
    Our store mixes it up, with at least two fully competitive events (one constructed and one draft) each month and the rest theme events. The theme events help get people thinking out of the box which allows them to find new tricks. We have a good mix of players, but not everyone has the top cards and they really enjoy the theme nights.

  9. #9
    In my experiences, playing the exact same format over and over keeps the hard core people, but alienates everyone else for several reasons. One, new players don't usually have the resources to compete with long time hard core players. Two, Even hard core players get tired of their games after enough playing. Three, if one deck out-metas everyone else, only one person ends up winning every week. Trust me, even the best sportsmen will eventually get irritated by this.

    Throwing in a few odd ball events keeps things fresh and gives the newer players a little more of an even playing field to work with. Plus, some of those card/dice you never use can suddenly become awesome. It also helps you think outside the box a little, and can let you see some combos you never thought of before. It's worth the time IMO.

    If we have 2 goofball events and 2 official style events in a month, I'm a happy man. If your unofficial style events are not fun, try some different ones until you start finding some you enjoy. I'll bet you will be glad you did.

  10. #10
    Some things that evolved over the past 14+ months at my local scene and what was done to adjust:

    1. The meta, if played consistently, alienates those players who are new to the game or casual players. Solution: we divided our events into two groups, a Thursday night event for casual play: constructed theme, draft, hybrid, limited, etc.; and a Saturday afternoon event for competitive constructed play.

    2. Drafts get stale and are a drain to some players wallets. Some sets are great to draft, others meh. Some players use drafts to fill-out their collections, others to hone their skills. My greatest concern was the cost to those players (mostly students) who do not have a lot of discretionary income. Solution: we reduced the number of draft events (1 or 2 month) but increased the frequency when a new set is released. So, when ASM releases in mid-Nov, we'll have two consecutive drafting events then ease back for a few weeks so players can try out new builds with the new cards.

    3. Draft/Constructed -- Constructive/Draft ad infinitum gets boring (for a group that meets frequently). Solution: We started a League. There are several posts that discuss this if you want more info. My point is if you have a stable player-base, a supportive FLGS and the time to administer, consider starting one. Done correctly, it will solidify your group and make the game more enjoyable, as well as keeping some of the elements of casual and competitive play. Note: we still continued the Saturday competitive events separate from our League night for those players who were not interested in joining the League.

  11. #11
    Justice League draft seemed to get stale really fast for us. We needed the other events to keep people showing up.

  12. #12
    As someone who never played a collectible card/dice game before DM I think the themes have really helped me learn what kind of team I want to build and how I want to go about winning in a more competitive situation. The fun themes also are ways to get younger players involved. We regularly have at least one if not 4-5 kids (pre-teen and younger)involved in the game. This is what will keep this game being played for years to come.

  13. #13
    I only skimmed through this thread but one thing that is a little unique to dice masters is it attracts "board game" type players and "magic" type players. These are 2 completely different kind of players and its probably hard to make both groups happy. I was just talking last night to one of my local stores event organizers, and he was explaining this exact issue that they had to deal with that eventually led to a decline in their number of players. At another local shop, there was a small group that would organize their own thing to play 2v2 or other things together and were too intimidated to play in the OP events.
    This is one of the reasons why the local group here, which includes a fair amount of worlds qualifiers, does not make an environment of everyone trying to smash each other with overpowered meta cards. Those players still win quite a bit, but its not a turn 3 kill or blowout game.
    I dont know what the answer to this might be, but with the size of the community we need to cater to whatever will bring in the most players. At some point, hopefully we can start making events catering to each player type.

  14. #14
    Might seem like the news people don't want to hear, but maybe Dice Masters doesn't have "a community", maybe Dice Masters has "communities" and it might be better to keep those communities separate because they're two different types of gamers. Instead of trying to please both maybe you try to please one and let the other have their own game night too.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Scum View Post
    I just read it, and I feel like this might have worked for the local group that plays on Thursdays, but it's also not a guide I'd want to follow when making a community nor does it build a community I'd necessarily want to be a part of.

    I don't want varied events, I don't want theme nights. I want draft and constructed because those are literally the only 2 formats that matter at a higher playing level. Wasting time playing unsupported formats that don't matter to anyone ever outside of the group only once seems awful. It doesn't help you progress as a player, it doesn't prepare you for a meta. Theme nights do not help players get better.

    Point number 4 also seems really bad to me. I'd rather the prizes be top heavy than fairly evenly spread. Top heavy events promote competitive play, and players playing their best is what I want. I don't want to beat a bunch of poorly constructed teams played by players that barely grasp the flow of the game for the same reason I don't consider Barney's Hide & Seek to be one of the better Sega Genesis titles. Fisher Price tier players only make the tournaments worse for people that want to compete. That is not to say that inexperienced players shouldn't be welcome, but it's a tournament. I don't feel bad if you don't have fun being bested by better players piloting better teams. Simply by signing up for a tournament you should expect to play your best.

    Anyway, anyone else feel similarly? If not I'm all ears to hearing why I'm wrong.
    The majority feels different. Now perhaps in your circle, you guys would prefer strictly more competitive, but at the same time it sounds like your local meta enjoys variety. Higher level play sounds like you are referring to Nationals and Worlds. I believe with those you have to place and to place means playing events at local venues. Yes, they only do constructed, but the teams have become diverse and meta changing each time.

    You should play some different events (not all the time) to sharpen your skills. Not only does this improve you and your adaptability, but it will show you combos never before seen because of new cards making it possible. Look at Adventurers for example. Outside D&d, they are considered too weak for unlimited...but combined with the BAC Infiltrate...well now you can use their experience mechanic in unlimited.

    You may not agree with the above and that is fine, but different formats help draw in new players and allow everyone to learn different types of teams that could become their staple win conditions.

    If the diverse format really bugs you, than only play on days that is your format of choice, but I can assure you that you will be more likely to get to nationals or Worlds through the diverse tournaments (you get points for all of them). All you can do is talk to you TO and see what he/she says about keeping strict Unlimited days.

  16. #16
    "Community: a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals."

    Scum, What you proposes is what is best for you (and probably your specific group), not what is best for a gaming store, the game, or Wizkids.

    I think, on a broader scale, the ideals that differ between both groups are in how they would answer the question "Are all games competitive? If so, to what level, and do they HAVE to be?"

    The winner-take-all, "if you aren't first, your last" mentality doesn't really jive with people looking to just get into this game for fun. This isn't poker, where there is a "professional circuit" of people who do this for a living. I also think this game has more dues to pay before it competes with Magic, and how many players of other CCGs (namely "Magic"), play professionally?

    I think most people play this game for the experience, and since it has had a major following with board gamers, that sense of fellowship seems more prominent. It's viewed as something casual, and a fun way to spend time with friends (and potentially make new ones). It is not a "I wanna be the very best...like no one ever was....." type of game for many players. If you start turning it into that, you are alienating a pretty big demographic.

    From a store or company perspective, you want the game to do well, and have a following, so you can sell lots of product. Giving the winner a major prize and not much for anyone else really turns some off...leaving the scene to dry up. The social norm of "everybody gets a trophy" is in full swing, because it makes people feel good. "Feeling good/ everyone is a winner" leads to more sells and keeping people around. Not many people have a mindset of"I'll get them next time, I just have to buy $100 in more packs, order some meta cards online, and practice 24/7." This game is still very young, and making it too competitive too early would probably hurt the game, due to how many it would turn off entirely.

    I think a major hurtle for Dice Masters is separating itself from the gaming/CCG pack. There are so many reasons why Magic players, Board gamers, and other CCG players should like this game. Unfortunately, there are more reasons why those demographics don't want to jump into another game, some being:
    cost
    barrier of entry (AvX is tough to get now, and a new set drops every 2 months)
    "I already play ____CCG, and that's enough for me. I couldn't possibly tear myself away"
    "I already play ____ CCG, and no other CCG or game will come close. why play DM when I could play more ____"


    In my opinion, a more competitive scene caters to Magic/CCG players more, and in my opinion, they are harder to pull away from their lifestyle games. A more casual community, that focuses on differing styles of play, and different team building, caters to a wider array of people. You don't have the feeling of "I need EVERY CARD to compete",

    On a personal level, I've been trying pretty hard to help get a scene off the ground in my area, and it hasn't been easy. My store has a casual night an a tournament night. It's finally at a point where there is a decent turnout most casual nights, but it's filled with new players. Nobody goes to tournament night. I was the only one consistently showing, and now even I've stopped (mostly due to a baby at home). I still ask how the turnouts Wednesday are, and it still hasn't gotten very high. The biggest Wednesday turnout they've had in months was for a Rainbow Draft (hopefully they do more in the future).

    The last thing I want to do is steamroll people before the community is ready to compete. That only turns people away. Starting with a competitive scene in my area would not produce results.

    Poorly written rant over.

    TLDR - my personal experiences, and overall view of competitiveness and gaming, lead me to believe the community building article is a great way to give stores and TO ideas to get more players involved.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Scum View Post
    Might seem like the news people don't want to hear, but maybe Dice Masters doesn't have "a community", maybe Dice Masters has "communities" and it might be better to keep those communities separate because they're two different types of gamers. Instead of trying to please both maybe you try to please one and let the other have their own game night too.
    That would mean in most cases ive seen at different stores the competitive players would be left to set up their own thing and prizes since most people are playing to have fun not to win prizes and win at all costs.

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