Social Features

2012-08-10

Planned or possible features regarding interaction between players

Guilds

A standard feature of browsergames is the guild or faction. It is more fun to play and interact with a known subgroup of people than with 10000 anonymous player. The problem at the moment is: Little Goblin is mainly a single player game. You go out, hunt down monsters, receive rewards and return to improve your character.

But … it does not stop there.

I think it is time for guilds to become more than a loose coalition of people who just happen to know each other or wish to protect themselves from griefers (in many strategic browser games you need a guild so other players do not farm you for your resources with repeated attacks). A guild should provide a bonus to the player (like the gold or experience bonus in Shakes & Fidget). For Little Goblin, the possible bonuses / features could be:

  • Tax reduction: Guild may bribe the tax inspector (again and again…) to receive a tax reduction for their members. Of course, this could also happen if their members do solve extremely hard quests…
  • Block or unlock special quests. The reputation of the individual members affects the entire guild. Be aware that negative reputation is worse than a low positive rep (having one member who killed the dwarf king is much worse than having ten who have trespassed on a dwarven gold mine [while questing for gold ore])
  • Guild loot chamber (put items here for all to use)
  • Reduced healing costs: pay some cash to have all guild members receive reduced rates at the Guild of Healers.

Messaging

It should be possible to send messages to

  • other players (who offer services / items)
  • guild members (=> message board for guild members or should they provide their own guild web page?)

This requires a send message page as well as an inbox. An inbox => email feature should be possible.

Twittering about the latest achievements may be fun, but I think something like that has a high aggro-factor with non-players.

Forum

The game should have a forum. Sadly it will also need administrators who monitor this forum, if outside users are allowed. But a forum is mandatory to show people that a game has a lively community - and it is also a form of advertisement about the quality of Customer Management. A game where the forum is dead and where complaints go unheard does not leave a visitor with a positive impression.

Highscores

Comparing yourself to others is something that comes automatically to most people. In a game like LittleGoblin, where there is no clear winner because the game goes on for a long time, this is especially important. A statistic about how good your character is compared to others helps you to get a feeling for your status and place in the game world. Achievements

I am not quite sure if I want this games to have achievements or not. Perhaps a later version could have tournaments?

Affiliate Links and advertisement

Players can get a bonus by bringing in other players. This has to be closely monitored to prevent spam.

Banners for forum signatures are another nice feature.