I dont think i am too far from the reality by saying that everyone that played Faeria enjoyed the puzzles A LOT. I would even say that almost all casual players love puzzles over anything when starting the game. Systematically, I’ve seen players go for puzzles as soon as they got new ones to solve. It’s simply fun to go over puzzle. And that’s (in my opinion) one of the thing the game should aim at ; providing fun to players.
These puzzles, by themselves, seem to be something that define faeria and distinguish it from other card games (dont think for a second that its the only thing that i like about Faeria). Such unique and enjoyed feature should be encouraged and rewarded. Community as shown one of its major interest in the game : its complexity and its creativity .
Maybe releasing a few more puzzles from time to time might not be enough for one of faeria’s major asset. Maybe some new kind of system should be developed to encourage the development of new puzzles.
The idea of user created puzzles has been something the community talked a lot about in the past months (in fact since the first reveal of puzzles). Players want to challenge themselves in two ways. Creating fun and challenging puzzles AND testing their skills by doing puzzles of others.
What kind of system would have to be implemented to assure the longevity of a user created puzzle system. The task is far from being simple (as some stated multiple time) A few things are needed : 1. a user-friendly interface to allow players to build puzzles. 2. a way to rank the puzzles and to filter those who are not “worthy” (such as puzzles design by trolls or no puzzle at all) 3. a way to distribute the puzzle to new players.
the first one (user friendly interface) is probably the simplest one. It would take time to design it, but would not require that much complexity. Two options are available: an in-game user interface or a HUB supported puzzle creator. The first one has the advantage of simplicity for casual faeria players that want to create the game and doesn’t even know or bother looking at the HUB (which i assume is strong majority of casual players). The puzzles would need to be stored a bit like the decks and we would assume a max number of puzzles per account. The second option, would make it a bit more complicated for players to create puzzles since they have to loge out of the game. The puzzles would be stored in a similar ways of decks and guide on the HUB and later be access by the game to test in-game.
the second challenge (ranking puzzle) is really important to make sure the puzzles stay fun over time. There needs to be a way to report puzzles. and a way to rank its difficulty . there’s also the question of annonima. Should a puzzle be identified by its creator. On one side there’s the fame, but on the other side there’s the risk of trolls and popular streamers (that might be part of faeria’s future) getting their puzzle accepted just because of supporters. Maybe that not a real problem to consider. Still its something the devs would have to think of if they want to make such a systems. Ranking on a system like the HUB would not be a hard task since a similar already exists for the HUB. Ranking for in-game puzzle creator is something else since players would have to deliberately go test puzzles that might not be good one. I would therefore add an option to test puzzles or rank puzzles. This option would be separate to simply play the puzzles since not everyone want to test any kind of puzzle (because of difficulty not being ranked yet and possibly “unworthy” puzzles)
the third challenge (distribution of puzzles) is quite interesting. Unless developers want to introduce puzzles packs with user created puzzles, we have to think about another system. A few things are worth considering : 1. how would the puzzles be accessed 2. why would a player do the puzzles (fun and/or rewards). The simple way to access a puzzle is to have a huge list with all created puzzle. I am pretty sure, we agree, this is not a fun way to play puzzle. It’s overwhelming for most players. And you dont want to go over all puzzle. Search option could be implemented to help players. ex : removed previously done puzzles, difficulty. Still clicking individually on puzzles is not (in my opinion) the funniest way to do it. A system could be implemented to either play a pack of puzzles based on their difficulty or just an endless stream of puzzle that you can acces at any time. Something else to consider is whether or not players will have to pay gold for their puzzles. (faeria gotta make money in some ways) and also will there be any rewards. (and will the rewards be higher then the cost). I am not sure player would do the puzzle if they are constantly sinking gold into the puzzles. And getting unlimited gold from user created puzzles seems like a bad move for the company. So maybe the rewards should not be gold but instead packs, memoria or cards.See this as an alternate way to just open packs. Instead play a bunch of puzzle to get a small discount on you opening packs. this could almost become a new fun and interacting way of players to buy packs. something like pay and resolve 800 gold of puzzles to get a chest. The number of puzzle would have to be chosen in order to not feel like its a waste of time but also not feel like its to easy. Maybe the discount of the packs will be slightly better if you play more difficult puzzles. This would keep players play faeria for fun as they use earned gold to by packs with a small reduction. Its worth noting also that no matter what system is used for the creation and ranking, the distribution has to be in-game (obviously).
Theres still one point that i would like to discuss. I feel like, in order to keep a good flow of puzzle going, we need players to have an incentive to create puzzles. There should be a reward for each puzzle you do that is selected by the community. And maybe a bigger reward for higher difficulty puzzles. But if we want quality over quantity, the importance of the rating of puzzle comes again because we dont hant players to do infinte variation of already created puzzles. Maybe a maximum number per account would also be needed
This comes to the end of my reflexion on a realistic incorporation of user created puzzles to faeria. Nothing i presented is perfect or refined. This are the main idea that came to me while I was thinking whether or not this system would be good for the game, the community and the developers. I believe taht, once refined, a system like this would do wonders to the game. It would assure an endless flow of user created content. That would get rewarded for their creativity and help players have fun as they explore the game of faeria.