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RE: =AQ= Summer Season of Gifting Contest - Frostwyrm Rider Set

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7/20/2021 19:47:56   

Some food for thought. Not for this contest, but certainly for the next summer donation contest, I think it should be that the top tier be expanded to top 25 from top 15. I think one factor that stops a lot of people from donating more is the fact that the top cut often takes an extreme amount to qualify for. If the criteria were expanded from 15 to 25, I think more people would be willing to donate as the expanded qualification cut would be lowered, giving people more encouragement to go for the top spots.

At least there's an idea in economics that there's a happy balance between taxation and revenue. Too high of a tax and less revenue will be created as people get discouraged from the high onus. Lower taxes encourage people to do more as they reap more benefit relative to how much they do. It's certainly an idea worth testing, and isn't really foreign to AQ. In the past Token prices have been cut and people are more likely to buy token items and packages now because they are cheaper.

Also, something to be observed is that the rate of donations has fallen drastically from the first few days. I suspect a lot of people are playing it relatively conservatively and will likely flood the charts at the last few days of the contest. I think there should be certain incentives to donate throughout the contest consistently. The people who weren't playing at the beginning aren't likely to have received anything compared to the people who played since the start of the contest.

< Message edited by PD -- 7/20/2021 19:51:48 >
AQ MQ  Post #: 26
7/21/2021 0:56:38   

Suggestion: allow viewers to see top 150 givers when lowest rank based prize is top 100 givers.

This change should increase motivation for giver who have a shot at top 100 givers.

< Message edited by ruleandrew -- 7/21/2021 0:59:24 >
AQ  Post #: 27
8/4/2021 2:17:05   

So we are a little past the midpoint of this donation contest. If this were the last one, it would have ended by now. But it has been extended. As usual, there hasn't been much urgency at all to donate at this point. As we anticipate the rush that will happen at the end, the same effect will be that those entering now will receive nothing. I can't help but wonder if the inherent design of these contests is poor - the very competitive nature of the contest makes it so that only those whom have a fair amount of confidence will ever get the idea of competing in the first place. The minimal rewards do help a little for those who do not have an appetite to compete, yet as I said before a chilling effect shall exist inherently.

But what if we had a different structure? The last few wars for example have not had a Top X system in a while. I think that there would be *more* donations if there were clearer tiers that had a hard requirement rather than the current where it only increases upwards like an auction. Perhaps something like the following:

200k donated - Armor
100k donated - Weapons
50k Donated - Pets

And I Think this would solve several issues with the current situation of the contest:

1. Stop the chilling effect so that people will be more incentivized to donate by knowing their donations aren't going to be "wasted" should they not donate enough.

2. I'll call this the Valley Effect - although not entirely, it would help decrease the current behavior of only donating at the beginning and at the end of the contest. Because of the current structure and its competitive nature, people donate only so much as their competition does. Urgency tends to increase at the end of something. Think of something like Free Agency in sports: Most deals are made right after the off-season, or right before the trade deadlines are finished. By putting a hard requirement on the rewards for all the items, you can afford to accumulate your way throughout the contest without worrying about the competition. Often times the actions of an opponent will spurn others into action, especially if it affects you. Now granted this will still likely happen even with a hard requirement as people will probably stop donating after they reach the last tier. Yet this will create more confidence to donate knowing they aren't competing, and they can be assured they will with certainty be able to afford the tiers. Again, I do invoke my previous idea of lowering thresholds to increase participation (which admittingly borders on neoliberal economics). It is still worth a try.

A suggestion to improve donations so that the Valley Effect does not happen going forward:

1. First, only give the tokens at the end of the contest.
2. When the contest is over, allocate 50% of all the tokens donated to everyone who donated. IE, if 10,000,000 tokens were donated, and 4,000 people donated at least 1 Z-token, then 5,000,000 or 50% of the original end total would be evenly distributed across the 4000 people who donated. So every person who participated gets at least 1,250 tokens.
3. Then, with the remaining 50%, allocate that remaining based on the percentage of the total pool you contributed to. So let's say I donated 5000 tokens throughout the event, so approximately .05% of the total pool. So I'll get an additional 250 Tokens for my contribution to the pool, or .05% of that 500,000. So my total return in this case would be 1,500 tokens.
4. Of course, to incentivize people to donate a greater amount and not coast on the total, there would still be tiered prizes, but not based on the rank of how much you donated. It would be a hard requirement like I specified above.

I will admit that I have benefited more than my fair share (around 30,000 free tokens received as of this post, most of it from the first 2 weeks of the contest), but I still feel that I should voice my disapproval of this all. Anyways, there's still about a month left before this contest is over.

I can only hope the Staff is taking notes so that this will not happen again.

< Message edited by PD -- 8/4/2021 21:52:31 >
AQ MQ  Post #: 28
8/5/2021 12:08:12   

Is there a place to see the top donators? The top donator list link in game is broken. I was 7 or 8 last time the list was up but not sure now.
AQ DF MQ  Post #: 29
8/5/2021 12:37:54   


It is now found at: home -> menu button -> top -> Elftokens
AQ MQ  Post #: 30
8/5/2021 13:23:13   

AQ DF MQ  Post #: 31
8/6/2021 11:36:24   

I just got a big donation, so thanks for that! First token donation I've gotten in years. I sent it right back out, as I actually collected enough tokens from the OlymPax to finally get a shared vault. As always, it'll be interesting to see how the items turn out.
AQ Epic  Post #: 32
8/7/2021 23:20:43   

Since someone has said they haven't received a single donation, another idea to help possibly spread out the donations so that people can get chances throughout the contest.

Once per day, when you donate, you'll have a chance (10%) to have double the tokens you just donated refunded back. IE, if you donate 5000, and you hit the chance, you'll be given 10000 tokens. But since you donated 5000, you get 5000 net tokens. And you'll have this chance until you get your refund for the day. Now people will most likely use this to donate only the minimal amount (25 tokens) until they get the refund, or likely only donate once per day. But this a desirable outcome because the incentive is to have people donate every day. Also, by donating only the smaller amount, more donations will be sent out, so many more people will receive donations, spread out through more days. Of course, with it being a contest and all, there will still be incentives to donate the maximum in order to reach that prize threshold. I think by doing this, a happy balance can be achieved.
AQ MQ  Post #: 33
8/30/2021 0:43:05   
Primate Murder

Last week remaining for the donation contest!
AQ DF  Post #: 34
9/1/2021 16:26:47   

So if you donate 2000, do you get the 2k reward, the 1k reward, and the face?
Post #: 35
9/1/2021 16:33:17   
Heroes of the Scape

You get everything your reward level and below.
AQ  Post #: 36
9/5/2021 0:01:08   
Primate Murder

24 hours remaining to secure your spots!
AQ DF  Post #: 37
9/5/2021 21:19:33   

Does anyone happen to remember how often the leaderboard updates? Is it different from war leaderboards or is it still around ~30 minutes per refresh?

Anyways, still hoping that we could possibly get some reforms (including some which I have proposed) for the donation contests going forward. It is actually quite disheartening to know that a tiny minority of the players are reaping nearly all of the donated tokens by gaming the system when ostensibly, the purpose should be to give tokens to those who usually don't buy tokens and/or afford it.

< Message edited by PD -- 9/5/2021 21:28:47 >
AQ MQ  Post #: 38
9/5/2021 21:51:41   
OG Ranger

Solid point. Someone who only has one character is massively disadvantaged compared to someone with 9 placeholder accounts that only serve as a means to collect resources. The person with multiple characters is also more likely to have plenty of tokens as opposed to a single character.
AQ  Post #: 39
9/5/2021 22:46:31   

Right now...

Top 15 can get armor as reward, and ~24 competitors for it. That means: 50 can get pet (9 players, who compete for armor, pushing out next 9 peoples who compete for pet only and dosen't care about armor and that means... the z-tokens needed for only pet goes so high that peoples won't donate tokens because it is way too high.

To fix this, split donations. Make separated donations,

Donation for armor
Donation for weapones
Donation for Pet
and so on.

Or like PD said:
200k donated - Armor
100k donated - Weapons
50k Donated - Pets

Otherwise players who only want pet must compete with players who compete for armors.
And players who want weapones only must compete with those who want pet.

Sorry for my bad english, not my main language, hope you all get it.
Have a nice day!

< Message edited by SAARLANE -- 9/5/2021 23:01:13 >
Post #: 40
9/5/2021 23:00:47   

While I haven't been recording the entirety of the competition here's something I found by going on the wayback machine:

Aug 11th: A total of 5,617,475 tokens have been donated in this event.
Aug 23rd: A total of 5,617,475 tokens have been donated in this event.
Sep 5th, 11:38: A total of 8,874,250 tokens have been donated in this event.
Sep 5th, 14:52: A total of 8,958,450 tokens have been donated in this event.
Right now as of this post: A total of 10,886,725 tokens have been donated in this event.

This could be wrong (but wayback machine rarely lies), but if this were correct that between the 11th and 23rd of the contest, NOBODY was donating a token. Meanwhile from noon today until right now, over 2 million tokens were donated. People have been waiting for the last day only. If you weren't until the last few days or at the very beginning you would have gotten nothing donated to you.

Alas, this criticism of how contests is run is likely to fall on deaf ears. Until this is addressed contests will be forever as dysfunctional and unfair as they are. Those who don't know what is going on behind the scenes are being robbed in plain sight and don't even realize just how much theft is going on.

< Message edited by PD -- 9/5/2021 23:09:44 >
AQ MQ  Post #: 41
9/5/2021 23:05:32   

Rank 16-24: Donated 100k tokens.
Rank 40-50: Donated Between 10-50k tokens

Basically those 9 players, who donated 100k...they donated almost for nothing. Overkill.
Post #: 42
9/5/2021 23:21:34   

I think SAARLANE's idea of having separate donation drives for Armor, Weapons, and Pets are good. This way people could choose which reward they want to compete in. Also, it means they would need to donate more if they want to get all 3 rewards

For the issue of people donating only on the first and last few days of the event, maybe the three donation drives could be released in sequence (maybe with a 2-3 week gap in between?) with all of them ending at the same time.

I don't know, I'm just thinking out loud here. I only received a few tokens myself, but great event nonetheless. Good luck to those still waiting to donate (~40 minutes left). I hope the Frostwyrm items will be great
Post #: 43
9/6/2021 0:04:56   

The contest is finally over. Thank god. Nonetheless the damage has been done. The next contest will probably be during Frostvale (December). Let's hope the staff is taking notes for improvement on future contests.
AQ MQ  Post #: 44
9/6/2021 10:20:35   

Hope they got an accurate listing at midnight, cause I was dropped down from like 9th at 2am down to 17th at like 4am according to way back lol. Happened like, three years in a row.
AQ  Post #: 45
9/6/2021 11:43:53   


Hope they got an accurate listing at midnight, cause I was dropped down from like 9th at 2am down to 17th at like 4am according to way back lol. Happened like, three years in a row.

The competition was stopped on time so it's accurate. You should know that everyone tries to snipe at the last minute.
Post #: 46
9/6/2021 12:42:29   

^^ Which happens, but it really shouldn't and the fact that everyone it pitted against each other when the community is at the same time focused on a collective goal makes no sense. All the instinct to sniping does is create an atmosphere of paranoia because people know that the sooner they donate to the deadline the less fuel they have to give to their opponents. We'd be able to fix this with fixed-tier rewards for every item and an equal distribution system that dis-incentivizes gaming the system. As a compromise we *could* still retained a ranked-system so that the highest fixed-tier rewards get a special bonus to them (color customs), but it's clear the ranking system and randomized (which BTW is much less random than you think it is given the nature of the token pool) donations has presented WAY more problems than purportedly grants good of.

On that note of gaming the system I've seen reports of people who were able to manipulate the system so that they earned tens of thousands of tokens, including two players whom each were able to gain over 100k tokens by using their extra slots to manipulate the pool in their favors (I myself was able to gain ~70,000 tokens). By my estimate of peoples' self-reported receipts there were probably only really 50 or so unique players whom collectively between each other were able to receive over 2 million tokens. Or that the top 50 receivers reaped nearly 15% of all the tokens. I honestly would not be surprised if it were later found out that the top 100 unique players got half of all the tokens.
AQ MQ  Post #: 47
9/6/2021 12:46:16   

I wish that they add titles to frostvale gold donation contest.
Right now we have "Swimming in riches" title with a cost 1,000,000,000 gold.
Compared to billions what players donate during contest, this one billion title is absolutely nothing.

Congratulations to all the winners!
Post #: 48
9/6/2021 14:41:05   

Is there a reason we cannot do tiered donations? We did the same for wars, and it's been great at reducing the insanity of warring. It's incredibly physically unhealthy, mentally taxing, and unfeasible for most to war for 6 hours a day for 2-3 weeks, but the change allowed even people who played a fairly reasonable hour per day to gain the best rewards. It's by no means a perfect solution: people have generally done far fewer waves than in competitive wars, which Olympax proved yet again, and warring still has quite a lot of inherent tedium that should be addressed at some point. I still think the change really helped make warring open to more casual players, which I believe is the entire point. Warring is supposed to be a collaborative event in which players can work together to defeat the hordes that we could not do alone. Competition for rankings just perverts that.

The same could be said for the Donation Contest. Obviously, we aren't purely altruistic, and people wouldn't spend the amount of money and donate the number of tokens they do now if not for higher rankings. However, this is supposed to be a redistribution event in which the top paying players give to those who cannot spend that kind of money. Instead, it's become a paranoiac mess that has people hoard until the last hour to snipe positions on the rankings. That sniping will just inevitably lead to bitterness among the players who spend hundreds of dollars only to receive the same rewards as those who have spent nothing (if they got lucky from donations) or very little. It feels like this goes completely against the spirit of giving.

Tiered donations should help with the "valley effect" that PD notes since people probably will not feel the need to donate only at the end, though the situation would probably be quite similar to recent wars in which there is a relative lull in the middle until the end once the most enthusiastic warmongers have finished their 2,500 waves. I really like the idea of incentivizing donating tokens every day either with PD's system of a refund or something akin to a consecutive login bonus in which players are rewarded for consistently donating over the entire Donation Contest.

This all still does not fix the current problem of some players benefitting a lot more from the Donation Contests. I have heard of many people who have only received a single massive donation in years while a small subset of players can consistently receive 20,000+ Z-tokens every Donation Contest. We really do need a way to make the output fairer. PD's suggestion should help, though I believe the simplest solution is to just limit the list of recipients to accounts instead of characters.

Of course, I'd be a hypocrite if I did not admit to participating in all this. I donated tokens relatively late, and I have many characters, so I disproportionately benefited from the system.

Finally, this has relatively little to do with the rest of this post, but could we have more collaborative Donation Contests like that Winter Donation Contest that gave us Neko and Nilak? I just really like that everyone benefits even if some players do not receive any donations whatsoever. It also addresses a bit of the issue in the sheer number of temporary releases that AQ has.
Post #: 49
9/6/2021 14:48:27   

Excellent suggestions all around from RobynJoanne. I only ever go for the guaranteed rewards myself, but if I knew how much I needed to spend to grab the pet, I might be more inclined to do so.
AQ DF MQ  Post #: 50
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