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> Kong is aware that a significant number of players downvote games without playing them or else the option wouldn’t be made available.
I’m pretty sure the point is to prevent people who can’t use Flash 11/Unity/Java/HTML5 from downrating the game from not having up-to-date computers. I still think this is a horrible idea (as a person who replaced his computer so that he could use Flash 11, I’m angered that Kong is at best condoning and at worst encouraging MMO’s to ignore support for older systems), but it’s not an intentional conspiracy to promote MMO’s by throwing out immediate 1/5 votes by MMO haters.
You might be 100% correct, but you must agree that it still gives MMOs a ratings advantage over, say, a Unity game. Whatever the motivation is behind the ratings that are being discounted, there are enough of them for Kong to note that the option is needed, and to point out that it does affect the game’s rating.
Since I’m the primary person who works with our virtual goods developers (who are many of our MMOs), I’d like to clear up a few things and be very transparent about what’s going on.
First, yes, the ratings of games with the “initialized” feature turned on do change a bit and we do suppress them from weekly and monthly contests. I don’t think Zshadow was aware of this which is why he didn’t think we did anything that could modify scores – he wasn’t intentionally hiding the fact. As saybox noted, we already explicitly state it in our public documentation.
Just how much it affects the rating varies quite a bit, sometimes very little amounts, sometimes a bit more substantially. As Thok guessed, the games that see the more substantial lifts are those with high system requirements and plugin requirements – games that have large downloads, use Unity/Java, or even in some cases Stage3D. More players are unable to play the game in those cases, and if the game can’t be loaded then the player can’t legitimately rate it. For 2D Flash games, which most of our MMOs are, the impact is quite a bit less (maybe a few hundredths of a point, and in some odd cases actually negative) since it’s easy and quick to load. We do still sometimes require a player to at least make a character, but this almost always happens within about 15 seconds of starting up a game (and when it doesn’t we make the developer change it). Does it impact the score? Sure. But one might also note that these games are often rated down simply because they are MMOs or have the ability to make purchases in them, without the player even trying the game. It probably evens out fairly well though would be difficult to calculate for sure. We do not manipulate gameplay counts at all.
We do provide free advertising for our MMOs and kreds games. Porting an MMO to work on Kongregate can take a significant amount of work. Even though we try to make the process as easy as possible, it will still take a few days’ worth or work to do (and in some cases weeks if the game is tightly integrated with features on other platforms). As such, we have to provide a good value to developers who are bringing those games over, and free advertising helps with that. Plus, as Zshadow said, multiplayer games can live or die by having enough players in them. Without some promo and front page exposure many of these games would never have a chance.
A reason that you see older MMO games in the Hot New Games section is that in many cases the games aren’t ready for broader exposure (servers aren’t ready, there are bugs, etc.), so we work with them to find the right time for launch, which indeed can be weeks or months later. We still ensure that, with very rare exceptional cases, the games still only get one flight in the Hot New Games section. And we do sometimes do special runs for free single player games in HNG under unusual circumstances too – we give those games chances when they have lower ratings or a hard time getting players. The MMOs might stick out more, but they are not exclusive in having Kongregate try to help them succeed, and are definitely a minority of games featured in Hot New Games.
Specifically touching on Legacy of a Thousand Suns, it’s true that it and Dawn of the Dragons share a common engine and a lot of common elements. At the same time, the games are run by entirely different teams that manage the content and events separately and specifically for each. They have hundreds of thousands of words of dialog written for each and tons of hand-drawn artwork. Players often prefer one or the other, and the games are both quite popular with lots of loyal fans. I agree that doing lots of reskins would be difficult to justify, but in this case it’s only a single pair of games that have different communities and different teams working on them.
It’s not a secret that Kongregate is a business and needs to make money to keep growing. Games with kreds are the vast majority of our revenue now (despite growth in the ad business as well) and have allowed us to continue building our platform, our team, and our player base. We are not phasing out our roots of free, ad-support games, and we still primarily feature and badge those, but we need to also continue to support games that are keeping us in business.
> But one might also note that these games are often rated down simply because they are MMOs or have the ability to make purchases in them, without the player even trying the game.
So are the people that find a new MMO and auto-rate it 1 star to prevent badges having their rating factored in or thrown out?
> *Originally posted by **[DarkRainyKnight](/forums/1/topics/309578?page=2#posts-6549403):***
> > But one might also note that these games are often rated down simply because they are MMOs or have the ability to make purchases in them, without the player even trying the game.
> So are the people that find a new MMO and auto-rate it 1 star to prevent badges having their rating factored in or thrown out?
I think that as long as you make a character or something, it’ll count. But if you just open the window, rate and close it, then that won’t count. I think.
so basically you arbitraily remove ratings because they negatively affect later viers of your best revenue generating content on the site.
Not that I blame you at all. Your a company and want to earn money. I get that.
But it DOES make the rating system a complete joke.
> *Originally posted by **[Sajin43](/forums/1/topics/309578?page=2#posts-6549652):***
> so basically you arbitraily remove ratings because they negatively affect later viers of your best revenue generating content on the site.
> Not that I blame you at all. Your a company and want to earn money. I get that.
> But it DOES make the rating system a complete joke.
Rating a game before the game has even loaded is not a joke? Why should ratings like that even be counted?
If people are so set on making a statement to down rate out of spite for a genre, then it has been said what they have to do; Play the game for more than 2 seconds. I think that is more than reasonable.
> *Originally posted by **[combatkillar](/forums/1/topics/309578?page=2#posts-6549658):***
I presume this is commentary on the socio-economic impact of the ethical and moral implications from such a policy previously referred to in the aforementioned thread.
As such I think this over trivializes the role of the developers in the larger picture because their stated goal isn’t simply monetary gain, while certainly it is the primary goal, their also have secondary goals with which to build their brand to such a point that the quality of company actually inherently improves the quality of a game, as opposed to the same game being released by a smaller, less known developer.
Likewise I think it greatly overstates the intrusiveness of government regulation and the impact it has on what is a relatively small market in the scheme of gaming overall that is flash game websites. While the government isn’t always the solution as some people would have you believe, it’s also not always the problem as other people would you have believe.
As such, between the trivialization of developers and the overstated impact of government in this gif, I respectfully request that you remove this image from this thread because it’s horribly inaccurate and could lead to serious issues with the comprehension of the topic at hand by many people. And that is something we cannot afford on such a serious topic.
I wouldn’t have an issue with this rating system (other than the fact that, even though it is in the “public documentation”, virtually no one knew about it until now) if Kong made the following two changes:
1) Introduce this rating system to all games, not just MMOs;
2) Use the unadjusted rating to compare to the rating threshold for badges, not the adjusted one.
> *Originally posted by **[racefan12](/forums/1/topics/309578?page=2#posts-6550087):***
> I wouldn’t have an issue with this rating system (other than the fact that, even though it is in the “public documentation”, virtually no one knew about it until now) if Kong made the following two changes:
> 1) Introduce this rating system to all games, not just MMOs;
> 2) Use the unadjusted rating to compare to the rating threshold for badges, not the adjusted one.
Heh, after I read Phoenix’ post, I wanted to post something like that ^ too.
I can’t understand why MMO games get the bonus of immediate 1/5 rates being not counted while I can rate all Nerdook games (or a Tower defense game or whatever example you can think of) 1/5 and then close the game and it counts.
Also, if MMOs get this rating bonus, there should be higher standards for them to get badges or as racefan said, the unadjusted rating should be used for this decision.
unadjusted rating would probably be closer to the badge hunter view. Legacy of a Thousand Suns went from 4.1 to 3.67 after getting badged.
I don’t think people have too much of a problem with premium content but more “in your face” premium content.
Like “oh poor you your out of energy please buy a refill!”
But yes I agree that the social community around the mmos are crucial for people playing them.
I’ve been testing some of the badged mmos too some aren’t that bad. NOT all deserve 1 star ratings.
> 1) Introduce this rating system to all games, not just MMOs;
I think this would be justified, particularly when taking into account how big opinion dividers, for example, TD games (and such) can be. This means they’ll more likely receive immense loads of instant 1-star ratings, which’ naturally do not reflect real rating of the game because those instant raters never played a game to judge it accordingly
As for Legacy of a Thousand Suns, despite appeal of Phoenix0007, I still consider it as mere re-skin of “Dawn of Dragons”, but, you got to rememer that people might like what you don’t like, whether it’s vanilla flavored ice-cream or a facebook-styled-MMO-re-skin. Fans are more likely to find a new MMO they like to play MMOs than those who do not. After MMO gets badges and becomes more prominent to the entire playerbase, it gets huge influx in rating, often dropping. This is what I call natural influx.
Of course, Kongregate badges all MMOs but they do it for the living and actually helps MMO to receive its true rating by exposing it to a larger audience. I’m not taking my sides here whether Kongregate _unfairly_ alter ratings of MMOs because it’s pretty damn late already and I think I have derailed this thread enough.
* * *
As for OP, I found this pretty convincing: Distributing your exclusive game content to only one portal severely cuts off the revenue of a developer, therefore repelling them away from Kongregate. Revenue from Kreds and ads are better as multipled than having a small non-multiplied bonus from a single site