Recent posts by saybox on Kongregate

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Topic: Kongregate / strong arm tactic to get us to kong plus

Although Bobby is the only person really saying this outright, the reality is this: people don’t buy cosmetics. It’s the same with donations: people don’t donate. Everyone says that they’d donate to support a developer, or that they don’t like pay2win stuff, or that microtransactions / IAP should only be for cosmetics, but nobody buys these. If you want to sell cosmetics, they have to confer some sort of status on the buyer. Donations need to be begged for. Even then, in either case, the numbers don’t come close to what people say they’d spend.

But here’s what’s sad about it all. Dobby is happy to pay for Pogo Premium. Kind of ironic, since Jim Greer quit Pogo to make a better gaming site. So what does Pogo offer for premium members?
- you can earn badges
- you can play every game on the site
- you can do quests
- adfree
- for $40/annual

In case anyone isn’t seeing the problem here, it’s this. For more money than K+, Pogo sells the same features that Kong gives away for free. And yet Bobbs considers Pogo+ to be good value but not K+.

Would you like to pay for badges and quests on Kong? Probably not. But this is why private chats are K+ only when other sites have them for free. And this is also why profile customization is K+ only. And this is why you can be sure that any of the new features Kong adds that people would really like, will be being considered as K+ only options. You might think that all the forum regulars would leave in protest if Kong added bookmarks, notifications, velocity exemption and signatures as K+ only, but the reality is that people would stay, and they’d pay for them. And a site elsewhere that offers all those things for free would not be able to sell its own adfree package because people wouldn’t see the value in it.

In short, ff, like Obby, you say you “need value” for your money, then the stuff that’s added to make up the value is stuff that will be restricted from free accounts. There is no other way to make a premium service that has value.

The point that too many people don’t seem to understand is that most websites need to make money some way or other. And if you won’t pay without being strongarmed into it, you’re going to get strongarmed into it – except you’re not, because you don’t have to be here. Go to a competitor if you must. If you’re not making money for a site that needs money, you won’t be missed. And when people say that, it’s not to be a dick about it, it’s because the site that you want for free simply won’t exist if everything is given away from free, so whether you’re here or not becomes irrelevant. If the site closes, you won’t be here anyway, and neither will the people who were willing to pay.

Kong is big enough that freeloaders are still useful to them, as FlayingCat pointed out. But a free, adblocking user is not as useful as a free, ad-viewing member. So don’t expect the site to consider you as a priority when you’re here with the attitude that you, and only you, matter; or that you should be able to have a completely free, adfree, experience on someone else’s dollar.

PS: someone claimed ads 10 years ago were less intrusive, and I felt the need to point out that that’s not the case. In 2005 most sites still ran popup ads, but most major browsers blocked them by default.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / 100K (Rounded up) Games Celebration Giveaway [Over Now]

So, I’m going to do the cliché “what does that word mean” thing:

I look at the following people with pleasure: JayZeeM50one, Skaterfly. I frequently admire Jay’s garden and that is definitely not a euphemism of any sort.

Best mods are VforVendetta, MrGravy, and sometimes Tecnotruck. Skullbat is cool too.

also flyingcat because this thread is something nice for the community :))))

 
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Topic: Kongregate / Are Hobbyist games doomed to forever be "under judgement"?

The problem is nothing to do with the types of games and everything to do with how Kong now shows new games to users. Or doesn’t, really.

  • new games are hidden from everyone by default.
  • Kong only shows new games with a 3.5+ rating
  • there is nothing on the site to indicate that genuinely new games exist at all (to find them you have to go through the filter / sort options yourself)
  • 99% of new games are reskins, spam, or tutorial games, which is why Kong is reluctant to display them anywhere
  • games do get a rating before 50 rates, now, but it’s weighted low. So if you’re slow to get those early ratings, you also find that your rating is below what it should be, making it almost impossible to get anyone to play.

In the past, new games were much more a focus of the site, meaning most games got a fairer start. Gradually, starting when the new profiles rolled out, the focus was removed from new games and placed more and more onto games that were already making money for Kong. That makes sense for Kong, and I don’t have an issue with them promoting the games that bring in traffic, but it takes something away from what Kong used to be. I used to really enjoy looking through the new games queue and playing all the new stuff that was uploaded – but it’s not entirely Kong’s fault. The new games queue looks a lot like any other app store, it’s full of spam and garbage, and the games that are genuinely good and being overlooked are a very small percentage of that.

There are some possible fixes for the problem, but whether the development time is worth it for the small number of good games that are being missed is another discussion entirely.

My preferred solution would be to offer a $5 frontpage ad placement, only available to games with fewer than 150 ratings. As soon as the game reaches that number of ratings, it’s removed from the spot. The payment is small enough that any serious dev can afford it, but high enough that the views from the ad alone won’t cover it in ad revenue. It would also mean that people uploading tutorials, junk, etc, probably wouldn’t bother with it.

Other options:

  • curate the new games list and promote good games early (this happens for big name developers already but it’s not like they need the boost). THe drawback to this is that someone has to play all the games to find the good ones.
  • clear out spam, junk, reskin accounts so that the new games queue isn’t full of garbage
  • limit uploads to one per user per week, and prevent alts uploading games, to make the new games queue more useful
  • feature all new games by default, hide them from the queue entirely if the rating doesn’t hold up
  • offer more incentives to rate games with under 50 ratings, to give more games a rating. For example, double points, badges for rating X number of unrated games ,etc.

PS: I didn’t have time to try your game yet but I rated it 5/5 anyway, pretty good bet that when I do play it that will stay the same.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / Holy crap

How did this thread become so hostile??

Any volunteers to do an epic voiceover reading of it? :D

 
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Topic: Off-topic / Saving a OT user's life or getting laid?

Originally posted by JayZeeM50one:
Originally posted by Haruhion:
Originally posted by JayZeeM50one:

i choose both

getting laid with the oter’s corpse?

getting laid with the oter i save

help i need saving

 
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Topic: Game Programming / Gamemaker Studio

nope :(

 
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Topic: Game Programming / Unity or Flash

Use Flash if you only want to put the game on Kongregate. Reasons are:
1. you already know how to use it
2. the majority of Kong players still prefer and expect games to be in Flash.
3. it works fine for Kong stuff
4. Kong won’t stop supporting it.

Use Unity if any of these are true:
1. you want to release the game on mobile, downloadable, etc.
2. you want to make it 3d
3. you need / want to make use of the asset store for pre-made characters, scenery, lighting, etc
4. you’re exceptionally good at Unity in comparison to Flash, meaning the game would be high enough quality for users to be okay switching browser to run it.

Use Unity and convert to HTML5 if:
1. Eh idk. I’m reluctant to recommend this. If you want to use HTML5, right now it would be better to learn how to use WebGL yourself, rather than relying on Unity to convert your code. Additionally, I agree with Aiurs that it’s too early to make a serious game exclusively with HTML5 – it requires up to date software & hardware for anything fancy, and many people won’t have this. There are some amazing things that can be done with WebGL but that’s pointless if your users can’t use it.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / Are there any guidelines for game messages?

Dev messages require a high rating & number of plays for the game to send at all, and are subject to these restrictions:

You can message your players up to one time each week. Please only send messages about [game name] or sequels on Kongregate, they cannot contain any information about other games or any links or promotions off of Kongregate.

Players will have the ability to turn off messages from your game. As such, you should be careful to be moderate with the number of updates you send out. Keep them interesting and relevant, messages should only be sent when an item is truly newsworthy and useful to a player of the game.

Messages will be manually approved by a Kongregate administrator, so it may take up to 48 hours for messages to be sent to players. For more information about the best practices and policies of this messaging tool, visit the developer documentation.

Messages sent by players via a game, like “Hey rinkydinky, Spambob has sent you a free teddybear in Horror Teddy MMO” have less restrictions on them.

 
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Topic: Technical Support / banned - Reason: please reply to email on Paypal account

Whatever email your Paypal is registered to will have an email from Kongregate sent to it. THey likely need you to show the account is yours, so you’re going to need access to the email to verify it.

If you didn’t get the email, contact kreds@kongregate.com (preferably from your Paypal address) and they’ll sort things out for you.

 
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Topic: Game Programming / Can You Guys Check Out My Game? Not a Spam Just Read The Description

saying stuff like “Literally GO AND F*CK YOUR SORRY A*S SELF.” in the game comments doesn’t give a good impression of you or the game.

 
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Topic: Game Programming / Spending kreds in game

Originally posted by Draco18s:

Donations, by the way (the tip jar system) is 100% to the developer. But there’s no ability for the developer to make a game that knows that a player did it.

The tip jar was removed like 2 years ago. And you’re not allowed to sell stuff in rreturn for donations anyway, GameBuilder tried it once.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / A freeium problem

Ya gotta remember that ads don’t make real money most of the time.

To make a game that covered my rent and bills for one month – not counting food – I’d need something that got 400,000 – 600,000 plays, without paying anyone else for working on it. And that’s not deducting tax from it.

The developers who can consistently make games that pull in those numbers would still do beter to move to Steam (as many of them have done) and sell for $5.00. THey’d make more money for far less sales.

For free games, the money is in selling stuff in game.

 
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Topic: Off-topic / OT's Life is Strange thread *OFFICIAL*

Originally posted by karmakoolkid:

First: we know that a thread posted on OT IS an OT thread.

I often come to this forum and wonder where I am, its like “where on kong could I be surrounded by so much stupidity” but when it’s in the title then I’m reminded of it and it’s fine.

Oh yeah on topic (even though this is off topic) Life is Strange is amazing and everyone should play it.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / May '15 Suggestion Thread

So after recent changes to the new games list, it’s almost impossible to find unless you know it exists. This is bad, but makes sense because 90% of it is junk. On the same note, even from the people who do go through new games, there aren’t enough ratings for unknown games to get the popularity and votes they need to be promoted to Hot New Games.

I suggest that to allow new or less well known devs to make sure their game has a chance to be seen, any game with under 200 ratings should be able to purchase a frontpage spotlight listing for around $5. The listing would only run until the game reached 200 ratings.

This would mean that developers who don’t have a huge following already could get their game rated enough times for it to settle on a fair number. If the game is good enough, after this point it will be in Hot New Games anyway. If not, it will be off the front page pretty quickly as 200 ratings for a frontpaged game doesn’t take long.

The $5 fee is high enough to discourage spam / junk / new devs from putting garbage on the frontpage, because the money wouldn’t be made back in ad revenue before the frontpage listing was over. It’s also low enough that someone serious about their game can afford it. An admin approval process could be added if necessary to prevent troll games being put there though.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / [Suggestion] Replace Postcount Display with Karma Meters

Originally posted by ElBandito81:

@saybox

You do have a good point though. A lot of my concerns come from this sort of a system in a larger community, such as reddit.
Kongregate does have a smaller community, and as such, maybe they can handle the system well. May be worth giving it a shot.

I think it all depends on implementation. On Reddit it works / doesn’t work different per sub; in some subs it’s great and in others it’s a horrible system. IMO it shouldn’t order replies by most popular or rethread topics, though. It would literally (for me) just be a little +/- display like comments have, with a threshold to stop displaying posts. How to make it not work? Don’t moderate it, at all. How to make it work? Prevent brand new accounts with no / not many posts from being able to vote, and give mods the power to vote-silence forum users so that people miusng the system stop having their votes affect anything. You definitely have to assume that people would do their best to mess the system up for everyone, and work in ways to minimise the effects.

Of course you can argue that the above is more work for everyone for a system that isn’t needed as such, but I’m assuming that the hypothetical implementation is one Kong decided to give unlimited dev time to, so the extra work needed doesn’t affect the pros and cons of it.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / [Suggestion] Replace Postcount Display with Karma Meters

Originally posted by ElBandito81:

@saybox

You do have a good point though. A lot of my concerns come from this sort of a system in a larger community, such as reddit.
Kongregate does have a smaller community, and as such, maybe they can handle the system well. May be worth giving it a shot.

I think it all depends on implementation. On Reddit it works / doesn’t work different per sub; in some subs it’s great and in others it’s a horrible system. IMO it shouldn’t order replies by most popular or rethread topics, though. It would literally (for me) just be a little +/- display like comments have, with a threshold to stop displaying posts. How to make it not work? Don’t moderate it, at all. How to make it work? Prevent brand new accounts with no / not many posts from being able to vote, and give mods the power to vote-silence forum users so that people miusng the system stop having their votes affect anything. You definitely have to assume that people would do their best to mess the system up for everyone, and work in ways to minimise the effects.

Of course you can argue that the above is more work for everyone for a system that isn’t needed as such, but I’m assuming that the hypothetical implementation is one Kong decided to give unlimited dev time to, so the extra work needed doesn’t affect the pros and cons of it.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / [SUGGESTION] Better Vote System

Works on Newgrounds. Also doesn’t work on Newgrounds, depending who you ask.

I like the idea of high level users having more voting power, because not enough people rate games currently and the extra “you’re special, you should vote” incentive might be nice to have. It might be better to give the extra votes to people who vote on games a lot, too – I’d be totally fine with someone who’s rated 5,000 games having their vote count double.

But a 10x multiplier is way too high. Most active level 1 accounts are genuine, not bots. Their vote shouldn’t be totally wiped out by higher level votes.

A potentially better solution, but harder to implement for Kong would be that the more votes a game has, the less a vote is worth from someone with high voting power. Every 500 total rates on a game after the first 1k drops your own vote’s value by 1, if it’s above 1. So if you have x5 voting power, and vote on a game that only has 24 other votes, your vote counts x5, because those games need the extra votes. If the game is popular and gets 2,500 ratings, your vote has now dropped back to only being worth 1x for that game. This is to prevent a bunch of high level accounts teaming up to blame a popular game.

Originally posted by adv0catus:

So people that may have been on Kong for years but don’t actively badge hunt don’t matter as much?

Not in this context. If you’re not getting points and levelling up, you’re probably not playing that many games – maybe you just play one MMO a lot, or something. Giving your votes extra weight doesn’t make sense if that’s the case. THe extra voting power should be for people who play a lot of different games, understand points, votes, what voting does, etc. Setting it by level seems like the easiest way for Kong to filter it.

Originally posted by FlyingCat:

As I’ve said before in threads where players are rewarded for being high levels, it may encourage users who otherwise wouldn’t use them to use hacking tools. I can imagine a few devs will make a few high leveled accounts to bump themselves up a bit.

Rating games may not be an important enough feature for people to do that, but it may lead to a slippery slope where one group has more voice than another.

I don’t think so – a level 65 account is still quite a lot of work to set up, for what wold only be a few extra votes, even as originally suggested. A dev that was artificially weighting their rating like this would be easier to spot – level 65 accounts mass rating a game from the same IP would be far easier to track – and the number of votes a popular game will get would minimise the impact anyway.

 
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Topic: Kongregate APIs / Confused on how I make money on kongregate

Kong puts ads on your game for you. You can use the API to get a bonus on the percentage of the ad share they pay, but the API itself isn’t for ads, it’s for things like high scores.

 
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Topic: Kongregate APIs / Is it all right with Kongregate if I do this or will I get banned

If you mean forums outside of Kong, Kong won’t care but it’s kind of spammy and the boards might ban you. Check the rules in each forum and look for forums where it’s okay to post your projects.

 
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Topic: Kongregate APIs / What are the rules about poping the game out of Kongregate frame to play in full screen mode?

Not usually allowed afaik. I think games with Kred purchases can do so because money.

 
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Topic: Game Programming / "Title has already been taken" after failed upload

Either wait for it to appear on your profile (there’s often a delay now), rename it, contact Kong support, or guess the URL to edit it and reupload.

 
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Topic: Game Programming / AS2 SharedObject help?

Your example isn’t a bertter solution, for two reasons. First, you shouldn’t be saving level data separately to map data anyway. Whne you change level map data would need to reset immediately. You can’t end Flash mid frame unless you crash it, so if the variables are all updated on the same frame ,your save data is there either way. Second, if your player closes between levels and hasn’t manually saved, then all his progress is gone because auto flush won’t be doing anything.

However I did say in my post that some games like RPGs are better to not constantly autosave. If you need the player’s location to always be up to date, no matter what, then you should be writing to .data constantly. But most RPGs save at selected points, in which case you’d do things your way – keep variables in game, then transfer them all to data when you’re ready to save them. If you save them to data as you play, the player can’t load an earlier save, but in an idle game you generally want the save to be as recent as possible.

Same for other genres. Made a quiz game? You’re gonna want to save whenever the player gets a question right. If you leave it 5 mins between saves, someone could find a lot of progress gone. Racing game? Probably no need to save mid-race, unless you have a 24 hour endurance race, in which case you’ll want to be saving as much as you can.

The lag isn’t caused by AS2, it’s a Flash Player issue.

It’s caused if both the following are true:
- local storage is set to anything other than unlimited for that domain
- you have a bunch of other saves from the same domain (even if you’re nowhere near the storage limit)

Now remember that by default Flash Player’s internal storage is set to 1mb for every site you visit. That means that anyone on a new laptop, a fresh install of Chrome, etc, is on a machine that isn’t properly configured for your game. All these players will have unplayable lag in your game if you keep running flush all the time. Never ever assume the user is going to set their machine up properly….. design for your gran to be able to use it.

THere is only one point where you should call flush, and that’s where you create the save file. You’re gonna want to make sure the cookie is saved right away, because you don’t know if there’s enough space for it or not until you first attempt to save it. After that, the only reason to use it is for players who don’t believe autosave works, or if you keep adding more and more stuff to it and might exceed the space limits later on in the game.

Finally, your assumption about player behavior is incorrect. The player who gets unplayable lag every 30 seconds in the game he’s playing will 1/5 and not come back. The player who comes back to find his save is deleted has alreasdy come back, which means he’;s likely enjoyed your game enough to upvote it, and will be more lenient on things like save files going missing. IOt’s not ideal, but it’s also worth remember save files going missing through corrutped data is very rare and it’s usually caused by people deleting cookies without realising game save weill also be wiped.. The lag issue, on the other hand, affects far more players up front because new machines don’t come set up correctly.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / Petition: Clarify the Technical Support forum's description.

Suggestion for this thread: come up with a better way to help people find the right forum easily.

I would note that tech support is linked from the top menu and I’d guess people don’t even see the description before getting there. If anything, it should be turned into more of a generic help board where people were redirected to wherever they needed to be posting.

 
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Topic: Kongregate / [Suggestion] Replace Postcount Display with Karma Meters

That makes sense. I have the opposite opinion though, I think that a rep system would cut back on people posting for the sake of it, and make people think out their posts more. I dpn’t think people would stop posting unpopular opinions – it would just more clearer when someone was disagreeing but had genuine reasons to do so, compared to someone posting unpopular posts because they’re trying to be edgy or controversial or just don’t like Kong for some personal reason.

 
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Topic: Game Programming / AS2 SharedObject help?

That isn’t true. The stuff in .data is handled the same as any other variable in your code until flush is called, at which point it’s all saved to the cookie in one go. There isn’t any more or less chance of data corruption. Variables don’t randomly get corrupted when the game is running and the cookie is only written when flush is called – this is why flush can return a “pending” status, and why you can write to .data.whatever & read back from it even if local storage is disabled.

I’m not sure how having one variable instead of two can make something harder to debug either.

For an idle game there’s no reason to constantly call flush rather than constantly keeping the data updated ready to automatically flush. Your version with a 60 second save&flush just means that someone who closes the game 59 second seconds after it last saved will find 59 seconds of progress wasn’t saved. It also means that someone who doesn’t have their Flash Player storage settings done properly will get lag every minute that they play the game, and even though it’s their fault, you’ll get the 1/5 rating for it.