10/16/2012 9:13 PM
The difference between HBD and World of Warcraft is akin to the difference between Monopoly and beer pong. 
10/16/2012 9:39 PM
Posted by deathinahole on 10/16/2012 3:11:00 PM (view original):
I can see what tufft is saying. I'm tired of the ridiculous price increases over the years for what basically is 0 improvements to the game!!!!!

Oh wait....
Since you referenced me, I've got to ask.

What are you talking about?  Who's posted anything about price increases?

10/16/2012 9:46 PM
``What's I've seen posted before, but not recently is that, despite all of the flaws in the game and the lack of updates or improvements, HBD seems to be, without too much debate, the best baseball simulation out there.  If I found a better one, or one almost as good, I would have jumped ship at least a year ago.  One more reason why it's understandable why Fox doesn't invest a dollar on HBD. "

The collarary is that FOX has also not increased the price a dollar since HBD started.

It falls under the watch what you wish for category.
10/16/2012 9:47 PM
Which, it should be added, you didn't wish for. I was more expanding on your thought than denying it.
10/17/2012 12:14 AM
Posted by MikeT23 on 10/16/2012 9:13:00 PM (view original):
The difference between HBD and World of Warcraft is akin to the difference between Monopoly and beer pong. 
Not even close, but my guess is you have no idea of what you're talking about. WoW is a spreadsheet with a very pretty front end. HBD is a spreadsheet with a simple UI dropped over it. To be good at either game you have to fully understand a myriad of ratings and their effects on other players and how to put together a team that can defeat varying enemies.

They're both challenging and supposed to be fun. Both of them have a random factor, but rely very heavily on numeric skill and base ratings. Different worlds, and WoW certainly has a hand/eye component, but for the experienced player in either game (and many others) it all rolls back to how well you understand and can work with the numbers.


10/17/2012 8:21 AM
Posted by kschoenberg on 10/17/2012 12:14:00 AM (view original):
Posted by MikeT23 on 10/16/2012 9:13:00 PM (view original):
The difference between HBD and World of Warcraft is akin to the difference between Monopoly and beer pong. 
Not even close, but my guess is you have no idea of what you're talking about. WoW is a spreadsheet with a very pretty front end. HBD is a spreadsheet with a simple UI dropped over it. To be good at either game you have to fully understand a myriad of ratings and their effects on other players and how to put together a team that can defeat varying enemies.

They're both challenging and supposed to be fun. Both of them have a random factor, but rely very heavily on numeric skill and base ratings. Different worlds, and WoW certainly has a hand/eye component, but for the experienced player in either game (and many others) it all rolls back to how well you understand and can work with the numbers.


I've never played WoW but it's a video game.   There's action that's controlled by you(like beer pong).    HBD and Monopoly are slow moving strategy games with a nice helping of luck.

Maybe you don't know what beer pong is. 
10/17/2012 11:08 AM
I know beer pong and I assume you play (and lose) quite a bit before posting.

Why I brought WoW up in the first place is that you can have simulations based on ratings and attract greater audiences by improving the front end. By making the game easy to start, but with a depth of strategy tor those willing to spend the time. HBD isn't beginner friendly and they haven't really expanded the depth of the game. So they limit the initial audience and by failing to add to the game's complexity decrease the years players will stay on. They are fortunate that there really isn't much competition out there. I can think of one other online baseball strat.


10/17/2012 11:14 AM
So you no longer dispute my post about high action vs. slow moving?

How big is the boner you have for me?    Or do I not want to know?
10/17/2012 5:19 PM
Posted by MikeT23 on 10/16/2012 9:13:00 PM (view original):
The difference between HBD and World of Warcraft is akin to the difference between Monopoly and beer pong. 
I know a fair bit about all 4 of these games, least about beer pong.  Lots of WoW in my house, although I don't play it.

This analogy only captures half the difference between WoW and HBD, but it captures it perfectly.  My kids say that the strategic elements of WoW are easy to master and that after you've played for a while, success is basically related to hand-eye skill.  In HBD the hand-eye is easy to master (although the number of CS calls about accidentally releasing players suggests that some owners may not have mastered it) but the strategy is complex and detailed; one mostly plays HBD for the strategic challenge.

But there's another, even larger difference between WoW and HBD; role play.  My kids play WoW because they like role-playing heroes and villains in a real-time second life.  Role-playing Billy Beane (or worse, Dan Duquette) is not an attraction of HBD, and nobody really thinks of any individual world as a second life, I don't think.  And tons of young WoW players are attracted predominantly by this element.

So, while there are programming similarities, it's a very different breed of cat that plays WoW from the one that plays HBD, and I don't think WoW's player base size is in any meaningful way indicative of what HBD's player base size could be. 

Finally, diah's comment about OCD is spot on.  To be fully competitive at HBD you more or less have to check in every day, most days a year-- very few other games don't let you put them down for a 2-week vacation without consequences (can anybody even think of another such game?).   So once you establish the base of people that like to play, you have to take the subset that will play at least a little almost every day, and that's a pretty small subset.

I repeat: HBD is a niche market.
10/17/2012 6:24 PM
Posted by deathinahole on 10/16/2012 9:47:00 PM (view original):
Which, it should be added, you didn't wish for. I was more expanding on your thought than denying it.
Thanks. Agreement. What a concept.

I would be happy if Fox added an expansion option to HBD.  Pay more to get more.  That's where the money is not in gaming & membership sites. Free or cheap to play the basic game.  Opportunities to pay more for more.  Some people stay with the free/cheap.  Some go up the escalation ladder.

10/17/2012 7:19 PM

dedelman - Really enjoyed your post.  I think you're right, but that you've also missed the two bigger issues.

To maintain HBD (or any site/game like this) two things have to be working.  Bring in new people and retain the ones you've got.

This game as never been well marketed.  It's a How To Not Sell Your Stuff On The Internet tutorial.  Top reason for that, currently, is Fox doesn't care & never will care. I'm sure they could do better. They have no compelling interest.  It's too niche of a game to ever impact their bottom line.  I have no doubt the user base could be grown 10x from what it is now.  And even then, it would be a rounding error to Fox.  Unless HBD is put into the hands of decision makers & investors interested in $2-4MM in annual sales and a profit of $400K - $1MM, there never will be the marketing effort made to grow the game.

Fox misses what was obviously the machine that could have, with just a bit of good marketing, gotten 10X the number of people into HBD.  Moneyball (book and movie) was a HBD wet dream most businesses will never see in their lifetime.  I didn't see a single HBD ad or promotion tied to Moneyball.  That hype lasted years, on & off, and now it's done.  Never to be repeated.  They had Brad Fukin Pitt as their poster child & didn't do anything with it. Forgive me if I don't hold out a lot of hope over their possible upcoming WS promotion.

The second issue is the game takes a lot of hours -- I argue too many  -- every day of the year to compete.  Sure you can play if you check in every few days.  And you can take a vacation for a week your team MAY not fall apart (unless you miss coach hiring, or FA signing, or you have a few extra inn games and your Ps run out of gass...)

But you're at a HUGE disadvantage to Mike, who clearly is never off line more than a few hours (and I mean never as in 24/7/365). No travel. No vacation. No time with family. No job that sometimes has responsibilities and take more attention.  No finals week.  Etc.

I'm not picking on Mike.  I think he's a nut & I argue with him in the Suggestions Forum, but more power to him. Fox couldn't pay him enough for what he does for free. If he’s not getting any sort of money, comp, or kickback from Fox/WIS, he’s naive.

And he's a WAY at the edge outlier.  In any version of HBD that involves strategy, he's going to have an advantage. 

The reality of the game as it's played now, IMO, is the ability to invest time is TOO MUCH of an advantage.  And that directly results in people leaving. I believe this because that's what almost all of them have told me on the way out.

There are specific aspects of HBD that could be changed that would result in a game that still closely simulates MLB and still rewards good strategy & smart play AND would take a lot less time or allow for more flexible time to play the game and compete.

Until HBD is out of Fox's control, I don't see how that's going to happen. It would take computer programmers. And it's likely whatever servers the game runs on would have to be reconfigured to support a different kind of interaction. Given all of the things Fox can and does invest in, and the ROI they can get on other opportunities, even 10X HBD is peanuts.

Not that they’re asking me, but it seems obvious Fox would be increase their profits and rid themselves of an insignificant property if they sold HBD, probably all of WIS, off to someone with a passion for it.  Someone who knows how to market & can hire competent programmers could make Fox more money that HBD/WIS does now by increasing the user base and running ads, promotions, and contests for Fox’s other properties. 

If any of you have a few million burning a hole in your pocket, you could probably pick up an under performing property at a reasonable price.
10/17/2012 9:20 PM
Tufft-- I agree with almost all you wrote there.

We all tend to think that for every good idea, there's an untapped market.  But this is the internet era, and the internet closes distances and widens social networks-- everybody has a Facebook friend that's Facebook friends with Kevin Bacon (exaggerated for effect).  I think that the majority of people who might try this game have already been exposed to it, because insane baseball simulation game fans will be in some social network--roto league, website subscriber, maybe literally Facebook friends-- with some other insane baseball sim fan who already plays HBD.  Or at worst, they'll be in a network with someone who's in a network with an HBD player.

Obviously, this isn't uniformly true.  But I think the untapped market could easily be closer to 2X than 10X.

I do think that different levels of game-- simpler for those who want to be able to walk away from it for a week at a time, like it is currently for diehards like me-- makes a ton of sense.  I also agree that there's no business case for Fox making any major changes to HBD.
10/17/2012 10:09 PM
dedelman - Obviously I'm making up 10X, as you're making up 2X.

There is massive, fundamental difference between knowing about something and being sold on something.  With obvious exceptions at the edge of the price scale, that's why you own everything you own and don't own everything else that you know exists.  One way or another, you or someone else was sold you your possessions and not yet sold on the rest.

I'm a case study of one.  Meaningless.  I know & interact, online & offline, with hundreds, maybe thousands of people every week.  Maybe 1 or 2 of them know I play this game.  I think I tried to sell one of them, 2 years ago, on trying HBD.  So I don't fully agree with your social connection model relative to this game.  I guess I'm among the many who are pretty much closet players.  It's been posted many times - pretend baseball doesn't bring in the chicks.
10/18/2012 10:02 PM
192 openings, this is rather insane. It's time to start shutting worlds down
10/19/2012 7:08 AM
Let's get to 200 first!
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