What was attractive about this game?

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slon02
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Re: What was attractive about this game?

Post by slon02 » Mon May 30, 2016 3:31 am

What first attracted me to Bzflag? It was simple to install, simple to learn/play, and it was free.

What kept me playing was the community, the ability to customize things and the variety in different types of maps and gameplay (and I loved that I could make maps of my own design and play on them too), as well as that I could pick up and play any time I wanted to- Bzflag loaded instantly without waiting, and I could play for as little as I wanted and still get some fun out of it. I didn't have to spend a long time loading, I didn't have to spend a long time remembering where I left off last time, and I didn't have to DO anything before I got right into the heat of the action.

As I found myself surrounded by players I didn't recognize anymore, and as I saw largely the same maps time after time on the front page (and hence the variety disappeared), I started playing less and less. But I kept Bzflag installed (also: barely takes up any space!) on every computer I've had so I can pop in at any time.
Current Server: hosting.BZADDICT.net:5173
Former Server: Fairserve.bzflag.org:5259

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kaadmy
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Re: What was attractive about this game?

Post by kaadmy » Mon May 30, 2016 3:08 pm

slon02 wrote:...As I found myself surrounded by players I didn't recognize anymore, and as I saw largely the same maps time after time on the front page (and hence the variety disappeared), I started playing less and less. But I kept Bzflag installed (also: barely takes up any space!) on every computer I've had so I can pop in at any time.
Yep. This is the exact same experience I've had i the past few years.

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iObserve
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Re: What was attractive about this game?

Post by iObserve » Mon Jun 27, 2016 4:34 pm

The community is what pulled me in, and for a long time it kept me here.
Bz had a rough patch, and a lot of players I knew and loved, left. Many due to silly arguments.

What would bring me back?
Graphics, and seeing a larger community back in the server list. Been on 2 times in the last 48hrs, and not seen one familiar face.
The leagues are inactive, and dont seem to be thriving.

Start to make changes that pull people in, and I will be in that group. :)
Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

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Pizzahead
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Re: What was attractive about this game?

Post by Pizzahead » Wed Oct 05, 2016 6:32 am

Simple design, relatively easy to pick up and difficult to master, and a balance of fun and competitive in both public and league settings were all big factors.

Biggest factor had to be the sense of community and relationships that I formed while playing. Spent a sizable portion of my pre-teen and early teen years in the game, and my interactions with a wide variety of people with different personalities and perspectives and backgrounds certainly had some influence on my life. I remember a year ago I hopped back on for a day or two in early December and when I mentioned it to my dad, he started talking about bzflag for a solid 10 minutes; just a testament to how obsessed I was that my dad would remember something a few years after I stopped playing consistently.

Not really sure what compelled me to check up on the state of things, but here I am, getting all nostalgic. I miss this game, and I miss the people more.

Plan on checking in more frequently just to see if anything develops.

pizza
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Re: What was attractive about this game?

Post by Gerbil » Mon Feb 27, 2017 5:45 am

I'm way late to replying here but, as an old timer...

A lot of the bells and whistle effects, as they are used in some world designs, are just eye candy. But some get used to make really creative worlds. A lot of that falls on the map creators. But I think options are good.

That leads to the next issue which is people jumping in don't have a drag-n-drop, single source program way to create maps and servers (though it's been a while since I ran a server, maybe that's changed).

Most of the official help reads like a programmer's IT manual which isn't encouraging people to just dive in and do things. It may let a programming experienced dev think, "Ah it's properly phrased from a technical standpoint" but it does squat to make it easy for a player who just wants to have fun with a game. In the past, there was a lot of disdain for "plain o;d players" who wanted tools to make maps and servers easier and as new features added in, people were then told to master 3d modeling with third party programs like Blender and to grow upo and code their own maps like a man an d stop whining about WYSIWYG easy map editors. Didn't help any.

But as a guy with over thirty years of sales and marketing experience the biggest thing is promotion: how, when, where and how often.

In the old days, the game was fairly comparable to a lot of what was on the market, there was a robust PC owner base and slashdot articles and the like kept the game prominent. Go in a Best Buy store now and think back a few years; there used to be whole areas of the store centered on desktop computer accessories and parts and it's all gone now. Same with the old Circuit City (dead now), Office Max and the rest. The PC gaming market outside the triple-A titles is way smaller and most "kids" nowadays don't use a desktop 90% of the time.

What could reach more people are apps but I'm not sure what app would make BZ catch interest outside where it is now. I do think a map-making/remote server start and stop/social app might help some but that isn't the same as "marketing".

The game really needs promotion. BZ is like chess at it's purest. It is a game with skill requirements high enough to challenge and provide a sense of satisfaction but with ease an ease of play that makes it infinitely replayable. There might be some gaming bloggers and vloggers out there that would love reviewing it. We just need a bigger player base and to get it we have to reach people. But I think making a real, full-feature WYSISWYG editor would be a help in keeping newly attracted players on. And just like you mentioned modernizing the display menu and all,, doing the same thing for server creation would help to.

Stripping the game back to bare bones as it started is not what I think would help. Players want more today. I think simple things like offering variable block textures easily used in an editor would help--things like, wood, stone, etc.
Politically correct BZ: A kinder, gentler Guided Missile.

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