A New Level of Hearting

Posted by Jim {Power Gamer} | 26-Oct-12 | 24 comments

hearting

We’ve expanded on the hearting feature to allow giving hearts in bundles! Below are details about the new feature and hearting quests, as well as some info about how this affects other aspects of the site.

Types of Hearts

hearting-bundle-windowWhen you click on the “Heart It” button on a game page, a pop-up selection will appear giving you four heart bundles to choose from:

  • Single Heart – Gives a game one heart
  • Bronze Heart – Gives a game 5 hearts
  • Silver Heart – Gives a game 15 hearts
  • Gold Heart – Gives a game 25 hearts

Daily Hearting Limit

Where before your daily hearting limit (+1 per Gamer Level) was based on individual hearts, it is now based on heart bundles. Each bundle counts as one towards your daily hearting limit.

For example, if your limit is five a day, you could give three single hearts, one gold heart and one silver heart.

Goals Behind This Feature Update

  • Give gamers the ability to give even more hearts to their favorite games.
  • Members of the site that buy gems so that they can give more hearts will not only be supporting their favorite games, but will also be supporting BoardGaming.com and helping us continue to make this site better!

New Hearting Quests

The Bronze Heart

The Bronze Heart

Give 10 Bronze Hearts to games that you like.

The Silver Heart

The Silver Heart

Give 10 Silver Hearts to games that you like.

The Gold Heart

The Gold Heart

Give 10 Gold Hearts to games that you like.

Possible Concerns

Q: Won’t this new feature allow a person to “buy XP”?
A: Though it is now possible to complete the original hearting quests more quickly, it doesn’t create a loophole allowing a user to purchase XP indefinitely.

Game Popularity

A bit of technical info for those interested:

  • The weighting of the hearting on the overall popularity score for our Top 10 list has been reduced. Hearting is still a good way to influence that ranking.
  • The Top 10 “Popular” widget on the home page now refreshes once an hour (instead of once every 12 hours). Also, giving a bronze, silver, or gold heart will refresh the list.

We hope you enjoy this new update. Thank you for supporting your favorite games, and thank you for supporting BoardGaming.com!

Comments (24)

Gamer Avatar
7
Football Fan
MERCS fan
Canada
The Gold Heart

If this costs gold, why is limited to hom much you can do in a day?

Gamer Avatar
9
I play blue
Football Fan
USA
Advanced Reviewer

FWIW, I much prefer the new way to show financial support – a direct correlation of purchasing Gems to getting a badge – and leaving the whole XP/heart thing out of it!

Gamer Avatar
3
United Kingdom
Indie Board & Cards fan

Seconding Diogenes opinion. Wading through half hearted reviews that were written just for the xp is a pain. The ability to heart reviews – great.

Gamer Avatar
9
Rated 100 Games
Stone of the Sun
Advanced Reviewer
Novice Advisor

The ‘like’ system already encourages writing good reviews, but making it possible to heart reviews and transfer some gold to the reviwer, will only further encourage people to write good reviews.

Gamer Avatar
9
USA
Platinum Supporter
Petroglyph
BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester

@Jon sounds good. I would just like to see more ways to interact with other users on the site.

Gamer Avatar
9
I play blue
Football Fan
USA
Advanced Reviewer

A means of transferring BG between members would be good and hearting reviews seems the best way of accomplishing that. If you are going to implement the programming to do that, might as well add it to tips too. I don’t expect those to get as many hearts as reviews, but if someone has a really good one, it would be nice to have the option.

Gamer Avatar
6
Platinum Supporter
Thunderstone Fan
I play blue

@Granny … we’ve toyed with the idea of allowing users to “heart” specific reviews or tips. We haven’t implemented that yet, partly because it’s a bit redundant with the yes/no grading. But, if you are making a reference to giving Gold at BGG, I suppose that giving a heart to a review could also result in transferring 20 BG Gold from one user to the other. So, rather than just a straight-up cost, you’d be paying the writer of the review. That could have some interesting implications and influence perhaps on the quality of the reviews. Anybody else still reading these comments and want to weigh in on this?

Gamer Avatar
5
Sweden
Hockey Fan

Overall i like this site very much and I’m grateful for the work you put in and don’t mind buying some gems now and then, they don’t cost more than a pizza or a beer.
It’s good to see that you listen to feedback and some day I might give some suggestions on how to increase user funding but I don’t have any brilliant ideas right now 🙂

And the new heart system is way better than advertisement!

Gamer Avatar
9
Sweden
Bard

Thanks for the clarifications, Jon. I think you’re right about not having communicated your intentions enough, but I do not have any major objections to your reasoning. Keep up the good work!

Gamer Avatar
6
Platinum Supporter
Thunderstone Fan
I play blue

Appreciate the comments. This may look like just a way to further fund the site, but it’s more than that. For one, it makes it a lot easier to give multiple hearts. Giving “heart bundles” was actually not our original idea … it came from user suggestions. If you typically give 5 hearts each day, you can now do it with fewer clicks.

Hearting a game isn’t just about completing some quests. Although it may start out as that, we hope that for the more seasoned users, hearting becomes a way to show your true devotion to a game. That is why it costs BG Gold to do it – if it wasn’t painful (i.e. costing something of virtual value), hearting wouldn’t mean much.

We also are working on a theory that having more ways to spend BG Gold will make BG Gold more valuable, and having it be more valuable will mean that getting it as a reward will be more meaningful.

I’m not sure how well we communicate this, but one of the keys to the hearting system is that it gives an individual some power to influence. If you are a good critic, you can have some significant influence, but not everybody is a good reviewer, and not everybody likes to write reviews (me included). If you really love a game and want to see it succeed, then there is a possibility of influencing it’s popularity score by giving it hearts. Of course, # of hearts is only about 1/3 of the equation. But if three games were otherwise equal in their 1/10 ranking and # of plays, then the # of hearts would be the thing that made the difference.

On another topic (buying XP or giving supports an unfair advantage), we see no reason to NOT reward the financial supporters of the site with things like a bit more XP and special badges (through quests). But, we are being careful to avoid problematic loopholes. The site was designed as a game with what are essentially “in-app” purchases, but our goal is to ADD features rather than turn what used to be free into an in-app purchase. I can’t say for sure we’ll always be able to do that, but that’s our goal.

Keep in mind that gamer XP on BoardGaming.com mainly has to do with a user’s level of participation on the site. Therefore, we reward some XP for doing things that support the site.

Another point of interest to some people … the income from the gem purchases does not yet cover the cost of web hosting. So, don’t be surprised if you continue to see us try to recover some costs by creating more incentives for purchasing gems. 🙂

Gamer Avatar
5
Sweden
Hockey Fan

I totally agree with Granny and coltsfan76.
The will or possibility to buy virtual money shouldn’t affect the rating of a game. This feature doesn’t really make the functionality of this site or this community better.

*Thumbs down*

Gamer Avatar
9
I play blue
Football Fan
USA
Advanced Reviewer

Thanks b0bb33z3r, I appreciate it. For me, Granny is hitting the same point I am trying to make. In the Site-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named, they have always been very direct that they will NOT make a distinction between financial and non-financial supporters. The realm of fundraising is mostly separate from the rest of the site.

Here, it is blending the two, too much for my taste. Like I said, we already have multiple levels of gems and at each level of gem purchase corresponds to Supporter badge you can buy. I would rather just see that promoted more.

Or limit the amount of hearts to one type per day. That is still getting you to 45 “regular” hearts a day vs the maximum now of 225.

Or do a end-of-year fund drive where you highlight this and maybe give additional bonuses for funding in December.

Or introduce more Avatars/Badges/Backgrounds at higher prices.

Or let cash let you work around some of the limiting features on the site. Pay X cash and get another brag slot, or follow Y more gamers for Y dollars.

There are plenty of ways to encourage donating cash without directly impacting the “Game.” As for me, i am turned off on the whole heart thing now, whether that matters to Jim and crew or not, just stating a fact. But given where I am at on my levels, it is about the only thing I could really do each day to keep chipping away at quests.

Gamer Avatar
9
Mask of Agamemnon
Paladin
The Gold Heart
Cooperative Game Explorer

Interesting. Time to make a saving hearts.

Gamer Avatar
9
USA
Platinum Supporter
Petroglyph
BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester

Hmmm. I can see both sides of this, but as far as the “game” goes, it will leave out those with lower funds. I guess this mirrors the current political climate in a way. Money talks.

May I suggest the ability to give people Gold for their reviews, etc? I know this is similar to another site that will not be named, but BG has more to purchase with the gold anyway…. making it all that more valuable.

I definitely want this site to succeed, and understand the need to monetize. I would just like to see it done in more clever ways… and give those with lower funds the opportunity to earn more on the site, as those options have not grown as much as I’d like.

“I’m Granny, and I approve this message.”

Gamer Avatar
8
BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester
Subscribed to BG News
Platinum Supporter
Advanced Reviewer

I appreciate where you’re coming from coltsfan76, I do (and I respect and appreciate everything you contribute to this site, you’re a great member) we’ll have to agree to disagree on it though. I feel like Millhouse hits a little closer to the mark in regards to this feature.

If there was a “was this helpful” button, I would Yes vote your post Millhouse.

Gamer Avatar
8
BoardGaming.com Beta 2.0 Tester
Went to Gen Con 2012
BoardGaming.com Bronze Supporter
Advanced Reviewer

I also think this will end up being good for the site and for the caretakers for the site. I think it works well to get the most $$ from a user for their “life”.

Note that the life of a user for this site, I would guess, is about level 4-5 on average. However for most of that time you can engage the site without running out of gold at all. Now there are more options for people to send real money to advance their gamer. This may sound like a money grab for the developers, which if it is Im ok with paying people for something I enjoy daily, but I dont think that is the case.

I think the real bonus for the site is when people pay real money they are making a true investment and will stick around the community longer and be more involved. That is truly good for the site.

Gamer Avatar
9
I play blue
Football Fan
USA
Advanced Reviewer

I have nothing against the site trying to support itself monetarily. But there is a very easy way to do that now through the supporter badges that marry up exactly with the gems that you can buy at certain levels.

I guess what bothers me about this is that BG is a mixed bag that can be obtained through trying to bolster content on the site and outright cash. So far, it has been fairly tempered because if someone has an influx of BG, they still can only spend so much of it a day. Now you can bypass the system by dropping 9 Gold Hearts a day (225 hearts a day vs. what used to be 9 at the highest level).

It now becomes something that in order to “compete” you need to keep up with cash or have a stock pile of BG, which is off-putting to newer members. You get to a point where XP won’t matter but now the heart function is completely broken too.

Gamer Avatar
8
BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester
Subscribed to BG News
Platinum Supporter
Advanced Reviewer

I love this new feature! New ways to spend gold, new ways to help support this amazing site financially so that it stays up and running and the guys behind the scenes can add even more new features and art work for us to enjoy!

Gamer Avatar
8
I play purple
Football Fan
Movie Lover

I, for one, am looking forward to seeing someone who spends a lot of $ to get their obscure favorite game moved up the heart ranking charts. This is the main way this is broken/good. Otherwise, good to spend that gold more easily.

Gamer Avatar
7
Ireland
Zealot
Advocate

Don’t know how I feel about this.

Add a Comment

You must be to add a comment.

× Visit Your Profile