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Thread: Why You’re Not Finding Loot (A Much Bigger Problem Than PBT)

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    Why You’re Not Finding Loot (A Much Bigger Problem Than PBT)

    I’ll try to keep this thread clear and concise (EDIT: it has grown significantly longer from updating rebuttals. Please find your counterarguments there). The structure will be a bunch of TLDRs in logical sequence, and if you’re curious about one of them, read into it.

    I see a lot of threads on PBT, but I think that there’s a bigger, chronic issue that we will only start to see in a week or so; signs of it are already showing—a lot of people can’t find good loot today. That issue is a dwindling economy. I hate people who boast about their credentials, but I find that it is the only way to get people to start listening to you, so here it is: I am attending one of the most recognized business schools in the world, so rest assured that at least I kind of know what I’m talking about. Hopefully now that I have your attention, read on to see if I deserve it:

    Point 1. TLDR: Think about the big picture, not just about the immediate effects on you
    I keep seeing people say things like “learn to raid... I’m doing fine.” That’s really not the way to look at the situation. For the rest of this article, please just trust me and think about the entire clash community as a whole. I don’t want to get too much into it here, or else I’ll start losing people, but you'll hopefully understand as you read on.

    Point 2. TLDR: An economy is all about the balance of inflow and outflow (important analogy)
    The shortest way to explain this is through an analogy. Imagine a world has $100, and $2 just disintegrates every day. The central bank mints a new $1 bill every day. You can easily see that eventually, there will be no money in the world. Sure you can pickpocket money from other people and hoard a pile of cash, but more of your hoard disintegrates ($2) than you can replenish it ($1 from the central bank). Now replace the disintegration with everything in CoC that deletes resources (upgrades, etc…), and the mint with everything that generates resources (league bonus, etc…). So even if you are the best looter in CoC (the pickpocket), it’s all about the inflow and outflow of the economy as a whole. See Rebuttal A(i) for another example.

    Point 2a. A macro view is important because local views skews things (Added)
    First, ask yourself if the world from point #2 is in a dire situation. Yes? Then you just accepted the global view! Nice! How? Because from a local view of the pickpocketer, he is lining up his pockets with everyone else's money and life is good. But taking into account the economy from a global view (i.e. our view which can see the entire monetary situation of that world), we see that they are going to feel it real bad in 1-2 months--even the pickpocketer.

    Point 3. TLDR: Inflow has been drastically reduced
    The most obvious is the removal of the league bonus inflow via snipes, which as SC mentioned, was about ~80% of all raids; to see just how significant this is, see Rebuttal C below. Another, which I just learned from other threads, is the (secret) reduction in war bonuses. As a result, the only real inflow into game now is collectors, and the game is now much more focused on resource transfer (i.e. raiding) rather than generation.

    EDIT: This is major news to me! Apparent, some people with dedicated war bases are observing that their semi-inactive bases are getting hit less frequently. This suggests a modified matchmaking that further decreases inflow, since it hides the collectors of those dead bases (i.e. makes them unraidable) at a faster rate. See article as well.

    Point 4. TLDR: Outflow has drastically increased
    With the introduction of the new TH, there is now more resource outflow as people are using resources to upgrade (excluding the people who gem their resources, who are a minority and are negligible). Furthermore, I see a lot of sentiment about people dumping their resources into walls to prevent others from taking it from them. This is a further increase in resource outflow, induced by this update.

    Point 5. TLDR: Increased transfer "friction" is a further outflow
    Adding another layer of complexity to our example in #2: imagine it costs 50 cents (it disintegrates too) to pickpocket others. This represents raiding, and the 50 cents represents the “friction” involved in resource transfer (e.g. the elixir for the troops used in the raid, "Next" costs, etc...). It is clear that this “friction” is another outflow since no one gets it. Furthermore, now that SC is forcing us to use more expensive troops, the “friction” is greater than ever; in the past, we could just barch and keep this “friction” low. Now, the net resource transfer per raid is lower because of this increased "friction".

    Point 6. TLDR: Putting it all together: outflow >> inflow, resulting in a decreased cumulative supply of loot
    Think back to the example in #2: the world will eventually run out of money because outflow ($2 disintegration and $0.50 “friction” disintegration) >> inflow ($1 newly minted dollar). The same will happen to CoC’s economy. It doesn’t matter if you “pickpocket” more from other people, because you will use that resource (outflow), but the inflow won’t be able to sustain your “pickpocketing”, so you’ll feel the effects too once all resources run out.

    Point 7. TLDR: Because loot drain is not enough, a shift in shield distribution further accentuates the drought by hiding the bases worth hitting and only showing the hard / no loot bases.
    In the past, everyone who leaves their TH outside (whether premie or maxed base) will get sniped equally, inject money into the economy, and get a shield. Now that everyone has their TH in and there is no more league bonus, the distribution of shields will skew towards the weaker bases / bases with lots of loot. For example: imagine there are 10 max TH10s with no loot and 10 weak TH9s with 400k each. Who do you think will get shields first? Obviously the second group. And once all the loot-worthy TH9s are behind shields, then what? You can only attack the max TH10s with no loot, or a wait a long time until the TH9s run out of shield. Drought...

    Point 8. TLDR: More people are waiting out their shields, further accentuating the drought by removing their loot from the queue.
    This just keeps getting worse eh… Because a lot of people figured out the above (even if not consciously), I start reading replies from people who would rather wait out their shields than break it as they did pre-update (when they knew they will get a free shield by exposing their TH). By waiting out their shield, they keep their bases out of the queue. The people with this sentiment are usually the ones who are hit a lot, probably because their base isn't max / they have a lot of loot. So with their bases out of the queue, there are even fewer bases that are economical / viable for raid. As a result, there will be longer stretches of time where all you can find are max bases with little loot (think the TH10s in the above example). More drought...


    Rebuttals Index

    Rebuttal A. TH snipers keep the loot for themselves and hide behind shields so I can't get it. By removing TH snipers, it doesn't affect me.
    Rebuttal A(i) - Related: As long as the loot I raid and the league bonus I get exceeds my army and league costs, I accumulate resources. What's the problem?
    Rebuttal B. But I got so much loot yesterday (the day of the update)!!!!
    Rebuttal C.
    A lot more people farm in the lower leagues where league bonus is not a significant factor. Changing league bonus / removing sniping will not affect the majority of players.
    Rebuttal C(i).
    Lower leagues have been functioning fine without league bonus. Why will it be a problem now?
    Rebuttal D. This update puts people in their proper leagues and incentives them to play well.
    Rebuttal E. Was league bonus even a significant inflow into the game.
    Rebuttal F. SC is a multi-million dollar company. You don't think they would have thoroughly analyzed the ramification of this update?
    Rebuttal G. Why did you not consider gemmers, as they are a major part of this game?
    Rebuttal H.
    What's the problem? Outflow will just equal decreased inflow, and all will be well.
    Rebuttal I.
    What about the TH10s (TH11s now) that maxed everything and are just playing for fun without draining resources into upgrades?
    Rebuttal J.
    You don't have any hard evidence, only "personal anecdotes". How can you say this is happening?
    Rebuttal J(i). Questioning the dataset is necessary to modifying it.
    Rebuttal J(ii).
    Then you shouldn’t be making these hypothesis / estimates at all.


    Rebuttals Response

    Rebuttal A. TH snipers keep the loot for themselves and hide behind shields so I can't get it. By removing TH snipers, it doesn't affect me.
    See Point #1 above. This is individual thinking, not global thinking. Again, let me use an example. Imagine that there is a psychopath who NEEDS to eat 2 apples a day. Right now, there is an apple tree that grows 2 apples a day, so he's happy feeding off it. By your thinking, you're saying if that apple tree disappeared, it wouldn't affect you because those apples go into the psychopath's stomach anyway, and you don't see any of it. Wrong. Once that apple tree disappears, he still needs to eat those two apples a day (i.e. resources for his upgrades), and he will be killing YOU for your two apples. Apple tree = league bonus. Psychopath (lol) = TH snipers.

    A more realistic example would be that the psychopath needs 5 apples, 2 of which comes from the tree. The logic of the analogy still holds. If the apple tree is gone, that is 2 more apples he will need to steal from everyone else (which includes you btw), so you will still be affected by the absence of that apple tree. See Rebuttal H as well for another modified example of the psychopath-apple.

    Rebuttal A(i) - Related: As long as the loot I raid and the league bonusI get exceeds my army and league costs, I accumulate resources. What's the problem?
    The problem is that while from your local point of view you are amassing resources, from a global view of the entire CoC economy, that may not be the case. Take this example. Assume you are with 19 other players in CoC, and everyone has 5 elixir. Total elixir in the CoC economy is 20 x 5 = 100. Now assume you raid all the other 19 players with armies costing 3 elixir, and you gain league bonus of 1 elixir each raid. Therefore, you accumulate an additional 19 x (5 - 3 + 1) = 57 elixir, and everyone else now has no elixir (because you raided all of them). While yes, you accumulated elixir,the total elixir in the economy is now your starting elixir of 5 + the 57 net elixir you gained from raids = 62, which is lower than the starting total elixir in the economy!

    Why is this? Because the 5 elixir from the other players' storages from raiding is just loot transfer from them to you. There was actually no loot inflow. The inflow in this example is the 1 elixir league bonus, and the outflow is the 3 elixir in army costs, resulting in a net outflow of 2 elixir. Therefore, every raid, though you yourself are gaining and accumulating elixir, you are actually removing 2 elixir from the economy. Sanity check to show you that this makes sense: 19 raids x 2 net outflow = 38 net outflow of elixir from your raiding all 19 other players. Initial total elixir = 100. Ending total elixir = 62. Difference = total net outflow = 38.

    Now further imagine other players can then raid you for 5 elixir, with same league bonus and army costs. Since their net outflow per raid is also 2 elixir, you can see that eventually, there will be no elixir left in the game. Of course, this is a simplified model since there are other sources of inflows and outflows. Point is: it doesn't matter that you see yourself accumulating elixir because that is from your local perspective. It's all about global inflow and outflow.


    Rebuttal B. But I got so much loot yesterday (the day of the update)!!!!
    "Golden Hour"

    Rebuttal C. A lot more people farm in the lower leagues where league bonus is not a significant factor. Changing league bonus / removing sniping will not affect the majority of players.
    Again, this falls under the misconception from #1. Think GLOBAL! First of all, because people in the higher leagues do not have league bonuses, they are dropping down. I don't even need to prove this; just look at that screenshot of some guy who gained 500+ trophies in one night. Second and more importantly, even if no one dropped trophies, see rebuttal A. Because the top guys got high inflow from league bonuses, they are not feeding off YOU. Take away their apple tree, they will be coming for YOU. And because of transfer "friction", loot drain increases.

    Rebuttal
    C(i). Lower leagues have been functioning fine without league bonus. Why will it be a problem now?
    I need to come up with a shorter phrase than "See misconception from #1"... It was functioning before because none of the top guys are dropping down and taking loot from the lower guys. It was functioning because on a macro level, inflow = outflow. Now, inflow < outflow. So yeah, on a local view, the lower leagues might look fine now; referring to the example in point #2, to the pickpocket, all he sees in his pockets lining up with other people's money. But would you say the world in point #2 is in trouble? Exactly. Local view (of you, of the pickpocketer, etc...) always skews things until sh!t hits the fan.

    Rebuttal D. This update puts people in their proper leagues and incentives them to play well.
    I agree with you, but that is completely irrelevant from the loot drain problem. Again, misconception from #1. Just because you are playing well and stealing a lot from other players, it doesn't mean the economy is sustainable. This is because you have a very local view (the pickpocket in the example in #2). That is largely the reason why this loot drain issue is not apparent to more people. You really need to zoom out and look at game level data. And I will bet you my bottom dollar that total resources in the entire game (excluding dead bases that are not searchable anymore and don't matter as a result) is very quickly decreasing. And when things keep decreasing, they usually go to zero--no matter how good you are are raiding and how full you see your storage become. Because you are in the economy. As so, your storage will go close to zero as well given enough time (see example in #2)

    Rebuttal E. Was league bonus even a significant inflow into the game.
    See Johnnysks's calculation on page 7 (post #69). To summarize, collectors yield 500k/day for a TH9, and war about 250k/day. Snipes account for about 350k/day, which is about 50% of the other two combined.

    Another good one is GKJ's anecdote in post #294. I know it's just an account from one person, but just as you can argue that there are probably many unlike him, I can argue that there are probably many like him. So let's not do that, and just take him as a data point in your considerations. To summarize: pre-update he gets attacked 34 times in M3 just because he breaks shield that often. 30 of them are snipes, which, multiplied out with the M3 league bonus, is 3.4M/3.4M/17k inflow, just from one base!

    Rebuttal F. SC is a multi-million dollar company. You don't think they would have thoroughly analyzed the ramification of this update?
    I don't think they completely overlooked it, but I do think they fail to fully predict / underestimated the impact. The staff at SC are smart people, and they probably thought players would react a certain way, namely: shift towards higher leagues so the sheer number of people attacking each other, even if it were less frequent because of more expensive armies, would make the inflow from the current league bonus system still significant. Logically, that would make sense. However, that completely backfired as they didn't realize that people are driven by emotions and don't like being told how to play the game. Furthermore, not everyone can wait so long for troops (without gemming) / play so often to keep their cups up. Therefore, inflow due to league bonus is much less than what they expected.

    Rebuttal G. Why did you not consider gemmers, as they are a major part of this game?
    Ok, let's consider gemmers. First, we need set the scope. As discussed above, what matters is the inflow/outflow of resources, so we are really only considering gemmers who gem resources for upgrades, as that is indeed an inflow as well. How many of those people are there? Furthermore, how many resources are actually gemmed by those people (hopefully you know that gemming is probably the least efficient way to gain resources)? Now compare that to the inflow from all other sources: collectors, wars, league bonuses/snipes (pre-update), ... Because that's not enough, to further show you how insignificant inflow from gemmers are, realize the gemming resources is temporary. It might have increased now, just because people on the leaderboards are gemming to max TH11s, but once things settle down in the long-term, hardly anyone will be gemming resources (except the select Youtubers for their videos). That is why I didn't give gemmers that much discussion.

    Similar logic can be applied to gemmers who boost their collectors instead. While this represents a more significant inflow than gemming resources, it is still relatively insignificant. Three factors: the number of people doing it, the boost increment, and its transience. One: still, a relatively few people do it in stable state (i.e. no TH11 upgrades to max). Two: boosting is only 2x production; and combined with three, this is 2x production over only a 24h period. Unless all gemmers who boost continue to do so for long stretches, the inflow from boosted collectors is also insignificant considered to other sources of inflow. Another reason why I didn't give gemmers that much discussion.

    Rebuttal H. What's the problem? Outflow will just equal decreased inflow, and all will be well.
    Agreed that the economy will eventually balance inflow and outflow, as a mismatch is unsustainable. My exaggeration that all resources will go to zero is for illustration purposes. Realistically, because of decreased inflow, outflow will match that decreased inflow because, as Chris pointed out in post #321, our psychopath in Rebuttal A does not "need" 2 apples, but merely "want". But think of how this outflow can decrease to match the decreased inflow. It can either involve people quitting (therefore not upgrading anymore), but eventually, their dead bases will get removed from the search queue; furthermore, this scenario would decrease inflow (though maybe not as much as it would decrease outflow), since the people who quit aren't warring or getting *some* league bonus. Or it can involve people settling for less than before (i.e. the psychopath surviving with zero/one apples instead of two). But that involves accepting a much slower pace for the game. Yes, you can argue that this could be better, but really? Maxing TH9 and TH10 takes long enough, even without walls. The only party who would benefit from players' longer progress through the game is SC, as they can increase the games "lifespan" and get more gems as a result.

    Rebuttal I. What about the TH10s (TH11s now) that maxed everything and are just playing for fun without draining resources into upgrades?
    At first glance, it seems like these people only contribute inflow (their collectors) and no outflow. Until you consider that their storages are probably completely full. As a result, when they raid "for fun", they are actually sending the resources they raided into the abyss. Furthermore, because their storages are full, their collectors are full because they can't collect the collector resources. Therefore, inflow stops as well since collectors don't generate past storage capacity. When you dig deeper, those players (there probably aren't very many of them?) are actually resource black holes that inflow hardly anything and outflow lots, depending on how often they raid "for fun".

    Rebuttal J. You don't have any hard evidence, only "personal anecdotes". How can you say this is happening?
    If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it's probably a duck. Sure I don't know for certain that the evidence is there, and I (nor you) will ever know unless SC decides to release that information. In this situation though, you estimate based on observations and hold that as true until you find significant contrary evidence to indicate otherwise. From rudimentary statistics: say out of 100 people, 2 are psychopaths. Unless God tells you the true ratio of psychopaths, you will never know. All you can do is estimate: 2/100 = 2%. That is what I am doing based on the large sample set of "personal anecdotes" from other and logical consequences I laid out. Meanwhile, what you are doing is arguing that oh, how do you know those two people are actually psychopaths? How do you know there isn't another psychopath? How do you know if those 100 people even exist? etc... Necessary? Sure, but you have to do with the best unmodified dataset you got.

    Rebuttal J(i). Questioning the dataset is necessary to modifying it.
    No, it's not. Referring to our previous example, say you think the number of psychopaths is understated because psychopaths don't report themselves as being psychopathic; therefore, you argue that we should maybe at add two to the count, to bring predicted number of psychopaths to four. Well, just like you questioned my evidence, I can ask you how you’re certain that you should be adding at all? What if some people want to seem cool and report themselves as being psychopaths? And even if it is understated, how do you know to add two? As you can see, I can play this same game as you did in Rebuttal J, but you’ll have a harder time proving it because historical examples of people overstating/understating that they are a psychopath (the statistical dataset you would be pulling from to base your hypothesis), is much more limited and indirect.

    Rebuttal J(ii). Then you shouldn’t be making these hypothesis / estimates at all.
    What you are saying is equivalent to saying: “Because you aren’t certain about your dataset, you shouldn’t be making any guesses.” Well, if everyone did that, the world would be nowhere. Before there were telescopes, Pythagoras, Aristotle, and a bunch of the ancient guys still devised their model of the Universe. Sure things are wrong, but it conformed to their observations. Most important of all, they got somethings right. Then, after a series of modifications resulting from new observations, by Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, etc… we now have the complex cosmological model of today. This is the scientific process: constantly updating and building upon hypotheses as new evidence is found, getting closer and closer to the truth—a highly rational (not emotional) process, mind you, and without which there would be no progress in this world.


    Reasonable Solutions (Needed to delete because I hit word limit...)
    See DoctorW's great post


    Further Readings
    - Great video on why what SC is doing is unsustainable (can skip to 1:40)
    - More on loot circulation
    - Concrete example of the loot crisis (a 24 hour breakdown)
    - PBT Flaws
    Last edited by george8880; December 17th, 2015 at 09:31 PM.

  2. #2

    Loot

    They have made it harder to raid a th 10 because of the changes to healer also. Too many changes at once. They should make one or two changes at a time to determine affects instead of many changes at once. There are so many changes how do we know what to change. We don't really know which change is causing the biggest problem

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    well elaborated.

    seems like my good hunting yesterday was more an exception than a rule - according to really poor offered loot im finding tonight.

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    I wish any member of the SC staff or moderator read this.

    Very well explained.

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    You are right on. Anyone in a low league is causing a huge problem by spending more loot on nexting and army costs than they are creating from the league bonus for their wins. We all need to climb in trophies so that more loot can be created through league bonus. Every win should come with a substantial amount of loot created out of thin air and that only happens when you are high in trophies.

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    I've tried to Gibarch people and no such luck since I'm seeing so many maxed out TH10's that would just melt my poor Giants. I've resorted to training full gowipe to even get into their core. It's working but man it's so freaking boring. Around an hour and a half per attack compared to 20 or so minutes with Gibarch. Yawn, I dunno how people can cup push this is hella boring.

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    there are 3 things u must have in mind in ur big picture,
    1. in long run leagues will be more filtred , so ppl will be mostly just be raided with same town halls with same defensive and offensive status,there will be less wipe outs,this will make a huge diffrence in lower leagues, there will be less th 10 9 wiping 8 7 in gold and bronze,it means balance
    2. with the new shield system ppl have to prepare for a good fight,not just 200 archers for collector farming or th sniping, so in the long run ,bases will be defending better and also attack fully,this means that not even we wont be having free shield for high town halls with good defense in lower leagues, we will also have them to be looted by pushing them into the proper league that they belong to,this means income
    3.in higher leagues the loot bonus is pretty good ,im getting 165k in master 1,and also ppl are mostly upgraded and there are lots of 300k 400k there , but its a little bit harder to get them,so there is the chalange ,u will get good bonus + a good loot by just playing good,u dont belong to a good league if u have just archers in raid and ur th outside

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    Completely agree, nicely put.

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    Spot on, and great point about the psychopath and apples. Indeed he will drop to silver to get his apples and compete with others as his demand for apple is still there.
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    And as for those convinced that silence is the best approach - that's silly. Players find out about this from YT, other forums, the web, social media...not on the official Clash forum. Keeping quiet here only promotes the image that it's OK.

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    Good points all. Now, we should properly address them... Support real changes to deal wi our current economy, not just complaining about everything. We aren't going backwards, the snipe made every change they tried to inject into the economy impossible, it just encouraged even more sniping...

    Now the game has a baseline to accurately account for what is happening in the game for the first time! This idea that they will let it destroy itself is unrealistic. Once they realize the game will probably be elixir and dark elixir poor due to all the millions of real expensive armies that are barely profitable if at all are draining the economy, they will lower their costs or address them in some way. That's pretty obvious.


    These are some constructive changes that help address the only significant problems left in this game... We should all be addressing the real issues, not holding on to the snipe, it is gone.... A moment of silence for the snipe... Post these ideas or something similar in every single thread...

    1. Nexting gold disappears from the economy. Make each base have a kitty, every time a base gets nexted over, that gold goes into the kitty for the eventual conquerer. This increases loot in loot poor bases and turns loot rich but crazy hard bases into better targets and the victor gets the added spoils. Whether the loot added is exactly the nexted over, a set amount of gold/elixir/de generated from SC, or a % increase based on league, the result is better raids.

    2. With the new league bonuses based on % SC is encouraging big armies all the time. While this is good in many ways, it is also challenging to maintain profits. Large armies cost a TON of Elixir and Dark Elixir, arguably as much as your potential winnings or a significantly high percentage to be discouraging
    . On a successful win, refund a % of the army cost based on the % destruction and also ties to leagues. This would encourage shield breaking, large army usage, proper leagues based in your TH level and general competitiveness.

    3. Make defense wins matter more then trap re arming, lost clan castle troops, and even more lost loot. Defense wins should get a % of the league bonus in some form or another. This could easily be added in such a way that it isn't abusable. Enough to cover the trap re arming and some of the lost loot. We should be excited about the opportunity to win a defense, not strategizing how to lose a defense with the least damage to our resources.

    4. Army cost and cook times. These really need addressed. With the loss of TH snipes and shortened playtime due to PBT and forced defenses and likelihood of massive loot losses, large armies cost far too much and take too long to make. No army should take longer then 1 hour to make (boosted to 15 min). That means 15 minute golems, 10 minute dragons, 15 minute pekkas. Cut spells to 15 minutes a spell. In order to take out 70% (the new full league bonus) on a th10 or 11 (good luck with that) is not a common occurrence and costs 2500-4000 DE and potentially 300k to 500k elixir with spells. There is little room for profit even if you managed to take most of the loot offered. Cut costs of longer cook time troops in half at least to make it more reasonable using large armies with the huge price tags, particularly DE troops.
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