Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

... sit down, kick back and relax, and talk about anything that doesn't belong on one of the other forums.
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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by Thore » Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:25 am

I'm guessing the player demographics of the game are one of the main factors. Look, we used to get 150+ sometimes 200+ back in the heyday; the game's no worse now than it was then (it's better, minus numbers). We just don't have 80% middle and high schoolers playing; we're all adults+ and our game time has gone way down, no?

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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by Tempest » Mon Feb 03, 2020 1:05 am

Yeah thore hit it on the head, trying to get kids to play when they all have ps4s and xbox, esports is a rising phenomenon. Even back in the heyday, we all knew this time would come and here it is, lets just enjoy it while it lasts and keep the crap to a minimum

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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by Reyne » Mon Feb 03, 2020 10:59 am

I'd bet there's more 15-29 year olds playing random indie and/or text games today than there were people playing video games in sum total 20-30 years ago.

imo the problem is more that there's so many options and it is very easy to get lost in the shuffle.

There's also basically no pipeline for bringing in players who aren't already interested in MUDs or Wheel of Time - and just the latter is still difficult because if you search "wheel of time game" nothing really comes up. I opened incognito mode, searched "wheel of time game" and it's just noise about that old WoT FPS game from 1999 until finally on page *4* there's a link to Kinslayer MUD. I didn't look past that. This is something that *really needs fixing* before episode 1 of the show premieres (so we have some time!). Not saying pay google for ads - but there's probably some SEO that could be done such that we're at least appearing on the results.

So, basically, if someone reads the books and then does a search... they're unlikely to find us. The problem isn't that no one is willing to try the game - the problem is no one can reasonably find it if they aren't already looking for a MUD.

e: "wheel of time video game" = no results on the first 5 pages I looked at. Personally I only have been throwing up a couple adverts in spaces already MUD oriented - such as /r/MUD - but I will also think about branching out more.

ee: I think a "Let's Play" style written post somewhere like /r/games or /r/letsplay might be good. I know a couple other places I can try also. Many people I know who started playing Dwarf Fortress did so because of the Boatmurdered LP. I might try my hand at this although I have no experience writing LPs... but I'm thinking basically just a longer form RP post with game stuff interspersed so people know what is happening would be a good start.

eee: The C:DDA subreddit has 18.5k subs, and that game is straight jank ASCII graphics (and recently some good tilesets, but there are many 'purists' who play without). DF subreddit has nearly 100k subs. Even if only 1/10th of each of those are real individual people, that's still a ton. I don't buy that there's just no one interested in these types of games. The AAA games industry has been shooting itself in the foot repeatedly anyway, lately.

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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by Aria » Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:26 pm

I agree with the difficulty in finding the game. Even with the new fanpage, it simply gets buried in google search, and I have looked at it a lot over the last 1-2 weeks with different search terms. The webpage uses the right key words, it just doesn't have enough links to it, so falls in the algorhythm. I actually see that someone is paying for google ads but it doesn't come up until page 2. We lost a lot of our google ranking when most of our clan fanpages on geocities and the like went down with geocities (and all pointing at the original webpage which is now useless). The best options to correct that in my opinion is to reach out to the WHeel of Time community to see if we can get a link somewhere on places like theoryland or dragonmount. and if someone has time, add a game entry to the WoT wiki as it gets google page 1 ranking.
and for whoever is running the google ad for the webpage, I would be curious to see the stats from it. I may be willing to chip in some money for extra ad bidding when the TV series come ou.

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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by Reyne » Mon Feb 03, 2020 1:36 pm

I fixed the wiki page so the .info address is there instead of the older .org. I'll see what other minor SEO can be done.

We reaaaaalllllyyyy need a re-direct. I know I am being a broken record here and that it is outside of imms control but it's literally a single line of html in exchange for a huge gain. At this point the two sites are competing against each other for ranking instead of helping each other. Having a redirect from the older .org means every single link still going there (such as older fan/MUD sites that realistically won't ever be updated) will now be adding weight to .info, among other things.

ahrefs is giving a domain rating of 3.9 based on 28 backlinks from 14 unique domains and is at 25 with 4610 backlinks from 325 unique domains.

e: Just as an example here:
the .info site links to which looks like an older fan page. That tripod site then links back to though. I doubt that tripod site will be updated anytime soon and in the meantime that backlink juice is being largely wasted.

ee: Another small/easy thing but will help a lot - it looks like the .info site has HTTPS enabled and someone is paying for an SSL cert... but the website doesn't use 301 redirects to force HTTPS. That means the crawlers are hitting the page and there's a very high chance they are spitting back that there's no HTTPS and it is unsecured, which dings us (you can check this with a manual crawler tool like

IDK what the webserver is but an example, for Apache:
RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{HTTPS} !=on
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://%{HTTP_HOST}%{REQUEST_URI} [L,R=301,NE]
eee: Generating and adding an .xml site map is another quick and easy one.

Otherwise the site looks good and seems like it loads quickly on various browsers and devices so that's fantastic.

This would all be good to do but it won't be a silver bullet, obviously.

eeee: Many edits >< This forum and the website need to be tied together a bit better. Right now there's basically no backlinks going from this forum to the website. There should be a sticky in Newbie/Help and Announcements mentioning the new website and actually using a hyperlink:

This forum gets tons more traffic/activity and new content than the website does - we should benefit from that.
Last edited by Reyne on Mon Feb 03, 2020 2:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by Benito » Mon Feb 03, 2020 2:16 pm

I'm not as concerned about getting new players--though its great to have them--as I am about getting returning players to stick around.

From what I've seen a lot of people still cycle through, they just log off quicker if nothing is going on or once whatever they were doing is over. I think a lot of people log on with full sets and level 51, and at that point aren't sure what to do.

Maybe I'm lucky, but I've been able to PK started almost every time I've logged on simply by taking two tics to hit a scout and walk up to Blight. Then I just spam narrate to let people know that something is happening. DS numbers pretty reliably crank up during extended PK, LS a little less so.

I'm not much of a smobber, but think Shiva is right that we need more people willing to lead smob groups since that's another reliable way to keep people on for an extended amount of time.

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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by Reyne » Mon Feb 03, 2020 2:24 pm

we need more people willing to lead smob groups since that's another reliable way to keep people on for an extended amount of time.
I think this is definitely true and I'll try to step up here as well. I know I have a bit of a habit of seeing if there's a smob group going and if not I won't make efforts to start one... Think I need to bite the anxiety bullet and just start leading though!

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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by werf » Tue Feb 04, 2020 9:12 am

the SEO piece was literally the best and most helpful response to the entire thread.. thank you.. That's how you find people. The reddit and subreddit pieces were close seconds. I just don't think people understand that eventually we're all going to be gone... and that many of us are in our 20th year + so now's the time to bring in new players while we're still around and capable.

People love indy games, you just have to be able to find them and in our case we're struggling. I think with some fixes there and some real efforts in reddit we could make some waves.

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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by Rikkus » Tue Feb 04, 2020 9:27 am

4.54 billion people were active internet users as of January 2020, encompassing 59 percent of the global population.

I still think we can find that population, Indie games are massively popular.

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Re: Adding to our Playerbase - Campaign

Post by Trevor » Tue Feb 04, 2020 5:21 pm

Im also thinking if this wot tv show is as big a hit as GoT was, we will get a big influx of players

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