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Frayta

Timezones, Internal Game Systems, Resets and You!

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Hello there fellow adventurers, first time poster long time lurker here with a few suggestions for some tweaks on specific internal systems for the game

Specifically, Time!

 

Time is relative, as they say. The Discord group and I like to joke that those of us in the Americas live in the past- and this is technically correct on pen and paper as we are often a day behind the regions of the rest of the world. But as far as Survived By goes, this game simply doesn't know what time it is.

Right now we have three (potentially four) active systems operating at different rollovers,

Daily Log In- This system appears to be attuned to a European timezone of some sort, the thing is I can't really even look up which, because not only does this lack the time its on, countdown till reset, but it also lacks the day, and how many days remain to claim what you can out of the current set.

Daily challenge board: Currently this resets at 1AM in my timezone, PST This does list the time left before its reset.

Holiday event T.R.E.E- This little oddity doesn't have a universal time reset at all, and instead demands 24 hour cool downs- which makes it rather easy to miss a day from attrition if you have a varied schedule, like I do. 

-Zenith Buffs (Not sure when these rollover other then what is currently designated as 'the weekend')

On top of all of this, the game UI lacks a current display of real life time in any form or timezone.

 

So onward to the suggestions then...

1: Dedicate all resets to a universal time, so that all once a day occurrences happen at the same time.

2: Display countdowns to resets wherever they are applicable (In this case Daily Log ins) And in such example, show the hr/day left to claim remaining rewards.

----Optional additions-----

1a: Since this game is a world wide endeavor, it would not be too unseemly to root the timezone resets based on which server set you choose (Asia, EU,Americas etc) At the most one could abuse this system to jump forward one day in rewards/dailies so abuse is rather minimal. And even then one could only do this once, and would need two days of inactivity to do so again. 

1b: For systems such as Daily Log In, it may be a better option to instead require completion of a set to move onto the next instead of demanding perfect attendance each month to obtain every item. Given certain moments of instability, rollback, and players own moments of real life taking priority, you will find far less complaints this way. This also allows you to place more value in your long term players as well as inspire new ones to continue playing to earn certain rewards they see veterans using. 

---Time Display-

Personally I would rather see my current time in the game UI instead of the game based one we currently see in the mini map. I think the sun dial is more then enough for that purpose as currently the time of day has very little effect on the world outside of the bestiary you fight.

Other games currently have systems where time can be displayed in a form that shows server time, your own PC time, or both interchangeably when you mouse over it. I personally would like this as a QoL change, so that I may keep track of the world better then I play instead of having to change game play displays or alt tab to check the time. 

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Hey there Frayta - 

This is a SUPER helpful post, thank you! We're always working and operating in the same CST / NA server, so there are no surprises for us -- which makes it even more helpful that you were able to point this out for us. I know a lot of things, like the zenith, are reset at the same time each week on a CST schedule, which may not be optimal for other timezones. I do also like the idea of a way to see the current time in the in-game UI. As you point out, in-game time doesn't currently have much consequence. I think that's another great idea.

Thank you for bringing this to our attention, we want to make sure our game is international friendly.
--Katie

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No problem Katherine! 

Most of the time, the 'day' doesn't really make much of an impact in time, but in a monthly daily log-in system like we currently have we have players (including myself) Who were seeing the monthly rewards rollover in the early afternoon of the previous day (In this case the 31st). This is when I really noticed how different the time-blocks were. While I don't think it's particularly fair to have the inverse of those ahead waiting for the last of the timezone to finish out the month before it rolls over- I know this has and will continue to cause some strife and confusion for those who thought they had more time to get some particularly tantalizing rewards.

A good compromise, as I listed in one of my suggestions might be to have rollovers occur on midnight of one timezone for each region. NA would go under CST as most developers consider 'midnight' as when that time occurs in their locale. 

As for EU, and Asia timezone, you have better access to the data then I do as to your biggest player bases. If this were done however, it may be pertinent to add an Aussie and South America Server Set. With time I imagine the more stable they get the less we will have people hopping regions outside of the Discord server group. 

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I'm not sure how the midnight rollover for each region would work in practice (or 1a), since the data for the players seems to be shared between all the servers, and players could move back and forth between different "days".  However, I agree, some sense of when resets for Challenges, the zone quest giver, login rewards, etc would be a good addition.

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Most modern systems and engines which keep a record of time are capable of tracking when the internal clock has been 'nudged' and if they  allow abuse only do so in one direction (jumping forward) and even then this can only occur once if it is also tracking time by the day/month cycle. 

Another option would be the GW2 Home server/visiting option which sets your server home to be somewhat permanent but allows you to visit others to do things with friends. Much bigger game I know, but always good to know how other people decided to work these things out. 

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I like that idea quite a bit! I've ticketed up the idea of changing our in-game clock to be more reflective of when our rewards will roll over, etc. This perspective has been so helpful, and I hope we can make changes that will make these systems more accessible.

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