Thank you to all those who submitted questions for the June 2020 Dev AMA.
We hope you look forward to our next AMA - and now, here are the answers to 15 of your most burning Shadow Arena questions:
1) How do you plan on increasing player population?
From: wTT, Shakestar, Pipiskalka
We know that Shadow Arena’s player population is a source of both concern and frustration to many of you. We received this question multiple times for this Dev AMA and it’s something we saw our community members bring up multiple times as well.
During the Shadow Arena Early Access, we want to focus on increasing the completion of the game’s development. That means fixing issues, tweaking what’s there, balance adjustments, taking out what’s not working, adding new content - all of this, until we end up with something that is akin to what we envision Shadow Arena should be. Once we reach that stage, we plan on marketing and promoting the game in earnest. We have our eyes set on acquiring players more actively through these methods at that time. We would like to thank everyone for all the love and support they’ve given Shadow Arena so far, and we’d like to ask you to wait a bit longer until we reach this stage together.
2) Are any new modes planned aside from the Battle Royale mode?
One of our most popular game mode requests was a 1v1 mode, and preparations for a “King of the Hill” mode are underway. We’re getting close to being able to release it, so players will be able to experience this mode soon.
The lead producer talks about the upcoming “King of the Hill” mode and other upcoming content in the latest Dev’s Note, so if you’d like to learn more, check the note out here.
3) Do you have plans for adding any new maps and characters? Can you share any details about these prospective additions? Regarding any new maps – will they be available on a rotating basis?
From: SillyHobo, RiskyBiscuits
Since the start of Early Access, we added 2 new Heroes to the Shadow Arena roster in Venslar and Tagahl. We want to keep up this pace and plan on adding a new Hero every 3 to 4 weeks. There are also definite plans for new maps in the future. We’re sure many of you are all too familiar with the Serendia map and would like some more diversity. We haven’t decided yet whether the maps will be available on a rotating basis or selection basis, but we’ll consider everyone’s feedback when the time comes to making this decision.
4) Are there plans for a Battle Pass-like system in Shadow Arena?
We’ll be adding a Battle Pass system in Shadow Arena very soon. We are reviewing both a free and priced Battle Pass, but in the beginning when we implement a Battle Pass system, it’ll be free.
You can look forward to getting Silver, Skins, and a variety of other rewards with the Battle Pass.
5) How do you come up with balancing decisions? What specific stats are being used to determine what classes need to be adjusted?
From: Mime, Choo
We consider data and feedback from a wide range of sources.
At its basics, our balancing decisions are made on the principle of preventing infinite combos. As for stats, we look at a combination of a hero’s win rate, their kill percentage per match, as well as their pick rate when making decisions about what should be included in a balance patch. These stats help us to decide whether a hero is OP, underpowered, or in a good place. These stats are examined by tier as well.
Apart from these stats, we look at player feedback from our Discord and other communities as well as internal QA test results when we are coming up with balancing decisions.
6) There are people who stop playing because they are being matched with players who are way above their rank.
We’re continuously working on improving the matching system in Shadow Arena. We believe that this, paired with the player acquisition efforts that we’ll be committing to once the game is in a more complete state, will help players to be matched more equally.
7) Why hasn’t Haru been nerfed yet?
From: Rvena, Seyrenlol
Haru was nerfed a few days ago after we received this question through the AMA! We’re now keeping an eye on how she performs with these nerfs. We’ll be listening to player feedback about these balance adjustments as well, so if we feel a change is needed again, we’ll revisit Haru again. This goes for every other hero as well.
8) Will bots be added to duo queue?
By the time these responses are published, bots will have been added to duo queue. This is a request we’ve received from players who love duo mode but can’t play it as often as they want. We’ll keep an eye on player feedback regarding this change.
9) Will Shadow Arena come out on PS4? And will crossplay be available?
Yes, we are currently in the process of making Shadow Arena for console (both PS and Xbox), and we are considering taking the crossplay route.
10) What would be the best heroes for advanced players?
This really depends on the player and their preferences. We designed Badal to appeal to players who like fighting games and Orwen for those who enjoy shooters. We’ve seen advanced players play a mean version of pretty much every Hero in the lineup, but it seems that Badal and Venslar are pretty popular picks with advanced players.
11) For seasons do you ever plan on revamping a heroes kit? Could be 1 skill different or all 4/5 skills different to give people a fresh new take on a certain class/hero.
We’ll be working on altering heroes through balance adjustments. A revamp or remake is probably something we’ll do if there is an issue with the hero which we feel can’t be solved through balance adjustments.
12) Can you please bring players names back? I want to know against who im fighting with. It is kinda frustrating see only the hero name.
By the time this AMA response is published, we will have added the option of turning this function ON or OFF in Custom matches.
We initially added the name hiding feature in to prevent stream sniping and to alleviate teaming, so we would like to observe how this performs in regular matches for a bit longer.
13) People run a lot in this game with no way to catch them (With no stamina potions left) because everyone's speed is the same, they can run from any fight successfully. Since this game is a BR and it promotes aggressive play, wouldn't you guys think it would be a good idea to add a mechanic to catch up to the opponent?
This is not something we are actively considering because we receive contrary opinions to this as well. There are players who want to be able to catch their opponents, and other players who feel that there should be better ways to escape and reset a fight. However, we’ll continue to keep our eye on this.
14) Will you make modern day skins?
We’ll be actively adding new skins for every hero as we move forward with Shadow Arena. However, the skins will be sticking to fantasy-themed styles and not straying from this theme.
15) Will there be more randomized events during matches? For example, a rare and stronger Shadow Lord or special item event that makes every match feel fresh and exciting.
We plan on hosting fun and diverse in-game GM events to keep things fun and fresh. Examples that we’ve got in mind are Ancient Weapons showdowns with Laytenns, tier-based matches, hero-based matches where we just get everyone to play the same hero in a match together. If you’ve got any ideas for events like these (like your special item event idea), make sure to let us know! We’d love to consider them.