Category Archives: Announcements

Tiny_Matt’s Response: Why can’t we buy Clams with in-game money?

If you fancy some ‘light’ reading while we await the Christmas event to begin, find out WHY we can’t buy Clams with in-game currency, from Tiny_Matt on Reddit:

“The short version: because coins and clams inflate at very different rates, which means this would require a drastic overhaul of the economy to keep them at playable levels.

(Qualifier: I’m a community manager, not a game designer. So please take this with a grain of salt. That said, here are my observations from working in F2P for many years.)

The longer version: In games like FG:TQFS, coins act both as a currency and as a progression mechanic, which means it marks how far you’ve come in the game. (XP is another standard progression mechanic.) This means it inflates over time, by design, as a player advances. The higher the level and better the buildings, the more coins you get. You can see this in how the coin IAP packages increase as you level, though the “earning power” of a player increases faster even than that after a given point.

This has many positives. Increased earning power is a big part of what makes a Quahog feel successful. It gives you a clear indication that your game is better than it was 40 levels ago. Design-wise, it gives us tools to design buildings that are more awesome than their predecessors, giving them clear value within the game’s mechanics.

As players get really good at the game, min/maxing strategies emerge that can greatly accelerate coins. Similarly, as we create better and better coin buildings, high-level Quahogs make big leaps in earning power. We see that many players have joined the Millionaires Club, and we’re stoked for their achievement (and they’re quite proud) – but that also means we need to add more coin features to the game for them to spend it.

The challengeĀ thereĀ is that as coin stashes grow, there’s a greater division between players who have built up coins for months, as opposed to those who just reached max level. Simply releasing a 100-million-dollar decoration (assuming it was an exciting deco worthy of the price) wouldn’t fix the issue, as the players who earned that much would get back quickly, and the players who hadn’t would be frustrated that they were priced out by an order of magnitude. We saw this during one of our earlier land expansions, which had a higher coin cost than most players at that level were expecting.

Clams, as a premium currency and reward, are much more flat. The number of clams you get at level 50 is closer to what you get at level 15, with the exception that level 50 players have had much more access to quests and collections that reward clams.

Setting a flat exchange rate too high would be above what helps most players, and setting it too low would flood the economy with too many clams. In addition to reducing the value of clams, it would require a significant overhaul of pricing, progression and the general game economy.

It would also require more stringent nerfing of coin strategies like office farms. We consider emergent gameplay and strategies to be a good thing for the game, as players enjoy finding them. Linking coins and clams would require a much stricter coin economy to keep it from inflating both out of control.

This is a very popular request, so never say never. This has our attention as a possibility for the future, but to pull it off would require substantial changes, and we don’t have plans in place to implement it soon.

As a side note, we are looking at adding new things for players to do with their coins. We see this as a need for the game that is separate from clam producers, though the intersection is interesting.

It would help me immensely to hear ideas on what form this could take.

Have you seen this work in other games you enjoy?

Do you have an idea for how it could be kept separate from coin inflation?

How many clams would you need to get for, say, 1 million coins for it to feel worth it? (Sadly 1M Coins -> 40,800 Clams is not a possibility, due to the progression/inflation reasons above.)

How would you incorporate this as a game mechanic, rather than a straight-up converter? Examples would be like a coins mystery box with a low chance for clams, or a repeatable questline that uses variable coins to complete.”

What do you think? :)

Tiny_Matt’s Response to Yearly Subscription!

An interesting conversation was started on Reddit which I thought you might like to read – it is called ‘Realistic Prices?’ and was started by jmjones242! I have only posted the main post and the responses by Tiny_Matt and the comments he has responded too:

Continue reading Tiny_Matt’s Response to Yearly Subscription!

Blast from the Past: Using Old Buildings

A great number of people have been griping about the lack of interactive game play from buildings gained in past events. These buildings from Comic-Con now need to come back out of your inventory as they are needed to help unlock Hayley and Steve Smith… if you don’t already own these buildings, TinyCo has brought them all back for Clams!
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Continue reading Blast from the Past: Using Old Buildings

Tutorial: How to post a screenshot in the comments

As we have announced that we have made a members only area of the site called Quahog Millionaire Club, we need to see your screenshots showing us you have collect $1 million coins! Here is how:

(You can also join the group – Quahog Millionaire Club on Facebook and submit your screenshots by clicking here)
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Continue reading Tutorial: How to post a screenshot in the comments