Friday, 7 December 2012

No more friendly faces



"With power comes great responsibility, respect and importance, if you have none of the later, you only have power"

This one is for some of the now Ex-Zynga employees.

Due to Zyngas' continuing failing business model, the once flush with millions & millions of gamers per a game (and with a big selection of games to chose from that was impressive), it has now dwindled down to mere millions of gamers per a game (some only hundreds of thousands per a game).

Meetings behind closed doors were held, and a restructure of the place was in order, how would they go about this? would they be able to pull off the biggest rescue mission of all? save their own company?

The basics were in place, they would actually look at there customers feedback for once, this was/has been largely non exsistant and has been the trend since just after the begining for them, yes in the begining they were good, had staff that listened, took feedback, made changes off that feedback and communicated with the players. The plan in place was yes look at actual feedback and combine that with what there biggest earning games were, and cut the ones that had caused losses.

The christmas present to there loyal longtime employees aka contractors were that they all got a christmas holiday, however they made this a permanent holiday cutting many contracts short and outsourcing there jobs, the communication that was there is once again severed, the gamers may not of relised it yet, but when they find that they have to start yet once again on making communication with some n00b mods that are a silly bunch, mad with there new found powers of moddum, they might finally just call it quits, the new mods usually have no idea of the game and cant relate to the gamers that have played the game for 3 years and have seen every change/thing thats been forced upon us.

I  dont think il bother getting to know any of the new mods, why waste my time when they just wont understand and give me a copy/paste answer from their textbook "how to deal with people that are wrong" having a quick look over there i can see maybe two mods? i have no idea, they wont introduce themselves or stick around to talk about the product they are meant to be helping people out in. The forums itself is dead, dont get me wrong theres knowledge there. However that knowledge may as well be for a completely different game, walkthrus, guides, the lot are all to be found there, but all outdated by the ever increasing crap that the game pushed out and changed, not changed for the better but for the worse when the communication lines went dead so did a large chunk of the playerbase. I dont see mafiawars making much of a come back at all, i see them testing "new technology" so they can spawn that off into other new games and in doing so increasing the disgruntled players causing more to drop off the DAU/MAU.

If i ever have a business that can come close to what Zynga once was, id be proud, however i would make sure i treated it and its staff alot differently. after all happy customers + happy staff with a mix of good communication is a great business model.

i myself am pretty much done with the game, only really staying to keep the scripts updated, but once i can get them self sustaining, (which im aiming to do so now) il be gone too.

To wrap this all up: 

I can still remember the first mods/others that have supported the gamers and to them i thank them all, even tho some left the company some time ago, some due to the way America structures its contract systems. id like to thank:
Hitman Fred, Niki King, Parizad, Bandilero, Al gore, CM, HD, Rinzler, Midnight Marauder, Blue Eyed Nate
I cant remember the ones that are double ups ;) I'm sure theres some ive missed, but its been a good time with all even when i gave them hell, and i (also known as MrSimy0) wish the recently departed ones goodluck with there future.

Saturday, 13 October 2012

The "Upset Brat" Effect

What a week!

I forced Drone version 4 upon everyone due to a lack of feedback, because i knew it was buggy as and full of errors which i needed reported so i could find them and fix them, so i took some code out, Secondry options and other new features i had been working on.

I fixed quite a few errorz and bugs :) but was left with more-that so far i havent been able to fix. I still yet cant find any code that would give me the slightess hint of what is causing them.

So for the minute Drone v4 is on the backburner and long live Drone series 3.

I feel there was a few fixes that some people never got, i use CDN to ease the load on my server, this causes some of my updates to take anywhere from minutes to hours to even days to get out to all people. If i say the script is updated and your still seeing the same old version, then chances are it hasnt updated for you yet.

Cant take the kid to Hollywood, so take Hollywood to the kid
,
so with the undecided future of drone v4, its new features needed to get let out of the box.


My issue with new features is it causes new vars, which need to be saved and with every new var all settings get wiped.


So to combat the people that start drone and dont notice that its settings has been wiped i added a "Settings Refreshed" statement that flashes and then disappears :) aswell as an increasing version number. This should only appear and flash when the settings for drone dont exsist or have been wiped (same thing?!?).

What is new!?
I <3 new stuff!


Learn Energy Reqs: This learns Brazil, Chicago & London energy requirements, so if you havent mastered the district, or have different requirement than other accounts example
one on the left has energy requirements of 324, account on the right has energy requirements of 18.
Both ruby'd just Zynga being special. Drone had the requirements for the "Secure Hooch to sell to your Joint" hardcoded in at 324, but if you click the button "Learn Energy Reqs" it will now change the requirements to 18 energy :)

Learnt new energy cost, energy cost per job is now 18..

This is great for accounts that havent mastered some districts, or like to farm the secret districts on different mastery stages.

Autopost for crew: When under 18, Autoposting can cause issues on some accounts. Disable if you experience them
Finaly i added this in (took me long enough) Autoposting doesnt work after a autopost limit has been reached by MW/FB, and then the crew posts start appearing on screen and clog up everything, somepeople had an excess of 80 popups to click thru, (sorry!), and some dont have autoposting at all, so ive lowered the autopost crew limit right down so instead of clicking at 30, it now clicks at 18 if enabled.
Smart Level:Is London Fully Mastered This works in conjunction with Smart Level
Is Chicago Fully Mastered  This works in conjunction with Smart Level
Is Brazil Fully Mastered? This works in conjunction with Smart Level

These 4 options are all
combined! This will try and give you a big XP jump onto your next level, so if you have 3-4 thousand energy left and only another 50xp untill you level, this will switch jobs, depending on what you have mastered and click the jobs in an attempt to give you maximum XP overflow. This still needs some tweaking, so feedback is appreciated BTW "it doesnt work" is not the feedback that im after.

I have also included a few other bug fixes which were long needed, ie sitting in the marketplace trying to do jobs :D

Locking up and stopping when stamina was under 75, which im pretty sure is fixed, but if not fill me in.....

i also added in some code that should help detect levelups so not to waste stamina or energy on backupjobs etc

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Changes are afoot

Today i was talking to a friend about a script that i host and modded for him, i was just going to link him to my new fightscript and say give this a go, when i decided id check the link first... i did it gave me a odd message on screen.





I didnt host a script that had that in it. I automatically sent a message to my friend

who works in IT and had given me that area of the website to host scripts on.

i then decided to check another script in the same folder and got the same result...
checked another folder, same thing.

checked my site, same thing.

Checked the main site...

oh crap.

i then sent another message to my friend to give him the message the site had gone walkies...

Inshort, the domain is expired and if not renewed il be moving to another host, but il be needing my friend to report back about that firstly.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
i checked messages and i saw someone had sent me a message about new features that were in the drone before it went down.
Nightmode
New Restart Timers
Fightcode not working properly.

I have no idea of these features, other scripts can inject into my script tho (kinda like a spock plugin) so these may of been them.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

MW Changes!?

Thru the MW Grapevine theres said to be a new city releasing in October.
With rumors to follow that vegas will close...

If those are true...

Yay a new copy paste city...

Bad new if vegas closes as the stamina burn on fight jobs is one of the quickest ways to burn off thousands of stamina.

Now i was nice enough to counter this months ago by sugguesting the following to the devs in the ignored forums of doom and gloom, where no feedback is given on things you say.





forum link here

New city could have stamina jobs which would make vegas going acceptable. but if it doesnt protest? with burning torches?

oh and did i tell you i have a new fighting script?

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Let the script wars begin.


Top 4 be cheaters right?

I dont have screenshots of the last time this event ran, and i wasnt going to go steal/borrow/nick them off ol' MWLL (esp after she had a little bitch about someone else doing it).

moving on...

but im pretty sure the top 4 looked rather similar.

What you have is crowd sourcing folk that have played the game long enough and know how to beat the system.

Ladies & gentlemen, start your engines.

Most successfull folk in mw have one or two alts even if they dont admit it, but some have alot more, one certain person i know has 36, another 60, sure facebook did there best to kill off some of them, but with a sign up process that can be done in under 10minutes including making a free email address at the ever growing places on the internet, an army of purposeful alts can be built within the hour. i know alot of people that average about 15-20alts most never are used, but when they are theres a reason for them and the person that runs them? ever event completed and completed the maximum times if there are free resets (ie gift mastery events)

I use to have a little archive of photos that people had sent me of there "Mafiawars Setups" which usually included 3 laptops and a desktop pcs each running a handfull of profiles in multiple browsers. Zynga tried to fix this issue by introducing IP Throttling, which killed the response time if too many requests were sent in from one IP, or made pages fail to load,  this killed a lot of farms down because at the time of introduction it was when people could farm and gift usefull loot (was more aimed at loot sellers), but people found they could still run an average of 4-5 accounts at once.

Scripts made this event entirely easy to dominate:
Step 1: Turn on autoheal on your main, hell even set it to go fight.
Step 2: turn on first alt to just attack your main, if your alt only has 100 health, then it is only 5 hits and your alt is iced which then gives your main one ice which is put towards the event. in long: Your main gains wins and an ice and looks like it legitly made an ice which triggers the event and gives you the point.
Step 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10 and so on is a repeat of Step 2 just with different alts.

The top 4 has:
97
100
100
96
numbers in there redtag, and if they each had lets say 20alts each they could be gaining 20 ices a minute, but hey with Zynga lag and stamina reqs + health timers i would put the number closer to 100 ices per 10 minutes.

So cheating or not? i dont think so, all i would call it is beating the system that is provided. the figures of the top group would mean it iced over 6000 people each over the duration of the event, which is a little impossible when it would have meant they iced the current MAU of MW 3x over, goodluck proving that considering the servers/grouplings that is provided.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Recent zBotting Activity


As an author of a script that performs automatic activity within the game, (Drone.〤) I find it sad that Zynga have banned two accounts with the only real thing in common is their high level



Yash Lawrence, level 38,686

Dean Anders, level 71,196.

Zynga have mentioned before (and just the other day) that "The use of bots or scripts (pieces of software code that allow you to automatically play the game) are strictly prohibited as per Zynga’s Term of Service. Such bots/scripts hinder the fair play of the game, create excessive load on our servers, and can introduce errors into the game. Such use of bots and scripts are grounds for refusal of customer service request and could lead to account suspension."

I agree with some of that, as some fight scripts can be quite nasty and have yet always been seemingly allowed, however for people that just want to serial level and use scripts such as "repeatjob by spockholm" which tends to have little botting in it, as all it does is repeat one job over and over or "robber bg by spockholm" which just robs over and over, both have hardcoded speed limiter in place which dont overload Zynga servers, both also are good for burning both HUGE or small energy & stamina amounts. Other scripts include variations of the above or go completely different, ie OGP (Which is currently kept uptodate by Simony) which gives the extact same thing but combines both those mentioned scripts into one and will switch between the both of them. Theres also my Drone.〤 & MWAP/RX6, all have hard coded speed options in them so that you cannot "create excessive load on Zynga servers".

The scripts all mirror ingame activity otherwise they dont work as intended, i cant code a wrong link into Drone and expect it to work properly, so i fail to see how we can rewrite Zyngas' servers to "introduce errors into the game"
and im sure everyone remembers the last Zynga statement on them blamming scripts when they introduced the "Change in the Collection of Energy and Stamina Stats from Properties" and then blammed users on running scripts that stopped them from getting a more in energy/stamina countdown timer. (fixed that bug yet Zygna? lol) Which made one user go out of their way to replicate the issue using only Zyngas poor coding, and making sure they used no scripts of which they also got the error.


Facebook reports that there are 350,000 daily players of Mafia wars left, Spockholm Mafia Tools has 284,533 fans. which sure means they have a huge fanbase, however im sure not all fans are active in the game anymore, for example how many alts have people gone in and clicked like with and then abandoned the accounts ;) but still it is a huge number and when it represents a large percentage of the player base it sure means that scripts are here and well used. i only have 1397 of "likes" but yet i have had 185,531 Unique users of my one script Drone.〤, which is just over half of the fb reported users. (My figures come from Google Analytics, that one started from 0 with the series 3 release which was only back in June)


According to MafiaTornado there are 16 players above level 35,000 (not entirely sure if record is extact) 2 of which are now known banned accounts (above). Is Zynga going to go thru and ban them all? I'm sure they won't as one of their big spenders is on the list "[RYfG] =§W€D€="

Zynga threatening to refuse CS if bots are detected, how do they know your using a bot? Everything a bot can do, a human can do aswell. Same patterns, click style, the works.

Due to the lack of response by Zynga a group has been set up to support Dean Anders & Yash Lawrence called ZYNGA, GIVE DEAN ANDERS AND YASH LAWRENCE THEIR ACCOUNTS BACK  which are planning Boycotts & VIP cancelling. Numbers started off small but with a quick refresh the group has doubled in size and is still growing, Some are saying they will straight out quit MW to show their support, with one person even saying they would quit the current PAC.


Alot of users happily admit to script usage as its the accepted thing these days. 

To echo MWLL's words "It’s been fun for the community to watch his progress as Dean has kept everyone up to date on where he was. Dean has been a part of the community and in the Mafia Wars Gods (MWG) for years. He helps other players and has worked hard to get his account to the level it is. "

So Zynga Give Dean Anders & Yash Lawrence their accounts back!

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Drone.〤 series 3

GuessX Drone.〤

Drone.〤 Series 3 is finally here!

26 jobs! with an ease of use for me now to add any new ones! (Caz Drone series 2 code is awful, not that this is much better)

New York
Repel the Yakuza [1.81]
Muscle in on a Triad Operation [1.95]

Vegas
Move The Take Out Of Town [1.9630]
Stash The Take [1.9879]
Rescue A Hotelier [1.9651]
Nab A High Tech Prototype [2.0316]
Dig Up Links To Halloran And A Meth Ring  [2.07]
Verify Halloran's Arrival [2.0316]

Brazil
Give Chase to the Neo-Imperium [1.98]
Bribe a Taubate Prison Worker [2.221]
Assassinate the Neo-Imperium [2.191]

Chicago
Secure Hooch to Sell [2.136]
Case Warehouses on North Side [2.135]
Flee the Scene Before the Police Arrive [1.96]
Approach The Police With Leads [2.05]

London
Run The Racket [1.98]
Pay Off Your Debts [1.99]
Run Your Empire [2.24]
Ambush The Convoy Transporting The Gang Boss [2.09]
Forge The Reports [2.18]
Chase Down Your Son's Kidnappers [2.23]
Sneak Into The Manor [2.19]
Retire To The Isle Of Wight [2.23]
Investigate The Trail Of The Puzzle Box [2.25]
Steal The Puzzle Box [2.13]
Fight Off The Police [2.28]

Stamina Options
Rob in NY
Fight Specific Opponent
Question Some Meth Heads [2.2250]
Eliminate A Hill Supplier [2.2578]

I have also colour coded the job locations:   
New York = Black
Vegas = Orange
Brazil = Green
Chiago = Red
London = White
Secret District = Purple (Please note, i will not be paying to get into any previous secret district, so will not be adding old jobs from them)

New Feature!!

new drop down menu thingee!
Normal Click
Normal Untill
Untill Ratio

Normal Click will go as normal and at the speed you set it to go at. and only do 1 energy or stamina job.

Normal Untill, Selecting this, will open a secondry field which will let you chose another job to do aswell, then will do your first Energy or Stamina selection untill it gets down to what you set the energy/stamina point to be then it will switch over to the secondy job.

Untill Ratio, Selecting this, will open a secondry field which will let you chose another job to do aswell, then will do your first Energy or Stamina selection untill it gets down to what you set the ratio point to be then it will switch over to the secondy job.

The settings!

well most are familiar! whewww
When out of resources: either stop and put a note in the log, or change it to restart
Restart in: if you chose the above to restart, simply change the times for the drone to restart here.
Spend: Energy First, Stamina First or Toe-to-toe, This will do exactly as it says. As soon as you have which ever resource (energy or stamina) then it will take you back to spending whichever, toe to toe just spends one till its out then flys to the next place and spends the other resource till your out.
Apply Skillpoints: if you want to add your skill points into an attribute, simply chose whichever one.
the next 5 options are based on peoples internet speed, not everyone has the fast internet and changing these options can help out to stop lag etc.
Robbing Refresh Rate
RepeatJob Refresh Rate
Pageload Rate
Rob Individual Speed
Attack Speed
Fight in: if you've chosen to fight someone this will let you set which location you want to fight them in
Vegas Fobbing Options: Mafia Size or Level? if your not a strong account you can set boundrys of what you want to hit, and what to skip.
Heal Thres Hold : when fighting this is your autoheal option, will heal you when you fall below it

With the config menu, if you click the X in the corner it will not save your options, if you click save... you guessed it, everything saves.

By clicking on the job names it will move to the next one both primary and secondry are identical, so if you cant do a job then another job one way swap them around.
Same with fighting, you cannot fight two people and this is disabled!

If you dont set the Normal Untill or Untill Ratios with values then it wont switch over.
Sorry, i dont like writing guides, because they look like this. any questions just ask

Monday, 14 May 2012

Updates from the third PAC v2.0 Meeting



A special meeting of PAC v2.0 was called to discuss scripting a few days ago.  I was going to wait until something was posted by Zynga, but why wait? (plus i promised to keep you informed).

Let's go back to the FIRST PAC v2.0 meeting. They (Zynga) brought up the something that reminded me of a beta of something they had released before called, "the Witness Protection Program". This was a failed program and was only rolled out to a small number of users of which some still have. Over a year ago Zynga did beta testing on this. If you signed up for it, you got 24 hours of no one hitting you but this was a failure, caz then you couldnt burn stamina at all. They (Zynga) did bring this up at the first PAC v2.0 meeting with a question of "Would the players be interested in being able to block up to 5 other players and prevent them from hitting? Game play would continue as normal". Personally i'd like to thank the PAC for actually asking the community on if they would of liked this feature... oh wait they didnt...

Back to the latest special meeting call, it didnt go so well, because after about an hour other people started joining the call! But, before it ended there was a tiny hint about the bully throttle playing a more important role in the game.  My sources tell me that Zynga is considering taking the bully throttle a step further.  Once the throttle is activated, you won't be able to hit the player again at all.  No word on how long before you can kill them again.

Maybe the next meeting will go better and there won't be an "overlap" and they (the PAC) might be able to decide on something, rather than wasting Zynga's time and nothing been done or decided for the playerbase?

Friday, 11 May 2012

hmm... u mad?

apparently im full of shit, cool story bro! you mad?

In the last article, i mentioned PAC, scripts and other stuff. [1] To be honest it was written to troll, caz <3 for the trolls & hat0rs.

Apparently my information was wrong, and i was out of contact with Zynga, also i was clearly was writing the article based off the official mafiawars blogs post [2] or/aswell as MWLL's Article [3].

However i predated both articles
 2nd of May beats the 4th of May.... eeeeee awkward much
where am i getting info from if i predate the articles? according to Jens last comment (below) it was from the blogs... true story bro!


I also find it funny that my sources (oh yeah, note the s on sources) both mentioned the same things. I even mentioned giftblaster and its effect it was having with facebook and zynga servers, so no surprises Spockholm later announced his new 10 second delay.
Im sure the WE in Team Spockholm just had this idea magically and it was nothing to do with Zynga asking them to edit the script at all. I think had they just come and stated Zynga had asked them to modify the script to include a delay they would of got a better reaction from the community rather than the outraged users that bitched about the delay being implemented.

Now i see you saying to yourself. wait wut? Zynga arent angry at the scripters for having scripts that work with there game? their not asking the scripters to take down there entire bookmarklets pages and so on?! they are only asking them to edit bits and pieces? Bullshit!

Infact its not, RX6 made from the PlayerScripts team, that did MWAP, have also been audited from Zynga and they have made sure this isnt a hidden fact, i have seen them state this many times and in various places. Having talked to another script writer, they mentioned that their script had been checked and changes made, Zynga only want the scripts to not be botting, as botting strains the servers.

Melissa Y: Community Manager, from the Mafiawars forums, posted an interesting post,
  (interesting post is not actually interesting) however something that caught my eye was:


The Mafia Wars team’s official stand against botting: Botting strains the servers and spoils the experience of other players. Any Script which interferes with the normal gameplay is a bot and botting is a Zynga TOS violation.
 
Myself having just stated that Zynga have been auditing various scripts, now sees that it makes perfect sense to audit the most popular used scripts, this way to ensure they are not abusing the servers and so forth. which left me with an interesting opinion.
If a script runs at a normal speed and does jobs, fights, robs etc as per normal its not a bot because its not interfering with normal gameplay?
 
I sent a message to Melissa Y asking for a bit of clarification, but so far shes keeping her track record of just dumping posts/asking questions and not replying or providing/boucing/ideas/feedback of the community.

I think Zynga should just release a list of Scripts they have audited and deem them safe. Just for them to finally get over it, Scripts are here to stay. Otherwise they will lost the last of the majority of the userbase. I'm more than happy to keep providing information that gets given out, it does make me mad that the users that get the info first hand then have to tamper with it so much that only their word is deemed the truth.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

PAC NEWS oh the lulz

PAC NEWS oh the lulz

Last year in early 2011 Zynga sent out notices it was forming a Player Advisory Committee (PAC) for Mafiawars, alot of players were excited, it was finally their chance to tell Zynga how they could improve the game and slow the decline in DAU/MAU.

The PAC was made out to be a shiny rock, where it turned out to be just that, a shiny rock and not much use at all. (Hat0rs gunna hate)



After the big excitement no one knew who they were, there were outside sources (from PAC members) of their flight to San Fran, about how the had a tour then discussed MW and threw ideas left right and centre. No list of names of who anyone you could talk to or get a hold of, in otherwords pretty piss pour communication.

Because of the above and some other little niggly bits the PAC became pretty much a joke. The players that had been excited to get their says in, had turned and had said "thank goodness they didnt pick me". The main organizer for communication between "Zynga and the players" and "Zynga and the PAC" left Zynga to pursue other career opportunity's which pretty much was the downfall for any communication Zynga was releasing, Soon the PAC fell more into a state of confusion with most members bailing and saying either "I'm done" or "i have finished with Mafiawars".

Skipping forward to early this year (2012 for my space-age fiends) the word was out that Zynga had Officially Dissolved PAC

"Dear Mafia Wars Player Advisory Council Member,

Thank you for participating in Mafia Wars’ Player Advisory Council (PAC). As of February 29, 2012, the current Player Advisory Council (PAC) will be dissolved.

In recognition of PAC’s contribution to improving Mafia Wars, we are awarding all PAC 1.0 members with 100 Reward Points as a thank you for helping Mafia Wars. The RP will be automatically credited to your account on March 1st 2012. Your participation helped us shape the next iteration of the Player Advisory Council (PAC 2.0), which we will be launching next month. PAC 2.0 will be a smaller program with focused feedback sessions designed to ensure the continued success of Mafia Wars.

Thank you for your participation in PAC and we look forward to hearing your valuable feedback on the Mafia Wars Forums.

Sincerely,


The Mafia Wars Team"

Sweet! 10RPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Best reward ever!!





They did bring us some good things, they also had a "different" MW experience than most of us, they would submit their PID's and they would get to beta test things and give feedback/bugs on those things before being released to everyone.

 Zynga thought "lets do this again, this time with a new crew, that we will pick and it will be so secret that no one will know who are members, so no ridicule etc etc, what can go wrong?"




This time Zynga did no trip to San fran, no skype room with text as a communication source, so no one could copy and paste the whole conversations off into other rooms. It was setup as a skype room but with call functions, wouldnt it be tragic if someone recorded the call? ohhhh wait! SNAP! lulz.


On the side note of all this, to be in the PAC(s) you had to sign and send them a NDA, its pretty much just a two page contract saying you wont blab and reveal your discussions.


So what have PAC version 2.0 been discussing?

  • Scripting to be allowed?
  • Facebook vs Zynga
Seems that Zynga have been looking at introducing scripts, thats pretty cool. Good idea or Bad? IMO its a bad idea. I think if they opened steps and guidelines of what was and wasnt allowed, it would be much better, would they approve of a script writer and say all scripts by this person only are allowed? and would that mean that other peoples scripts were evil and that everyone should report the other script0rs with links to Zynga? I do like how Zynga were trying to make them vote and ask the PAC members to declare their use of automation on Jobs, Fighting & Robbing tho, nice touch.

Now having had someone just read the above paragraph they said "oh so you mean they would let only Spockholms' scripts?" Sure thats one way to look at it and it makes sense since Spockholm is in the PAC, but this leads us onto the next part...

Facebook vs Zynga, ohnoes!!!!!!!!! It seems that not all scripts are being nice to either server, one is spamming packets in, which then has to bounce between both servers and is causing Facebook to bitch to Zynga about the script use which is causing a full circle of Zynga talking to PAC about scripting, Cool story bro! However not all scripts do this, just the ones that interact with both Facebook and Mafiawars, personally i think things like Giftblaster could have a nice built in effect if Mafia Studios bothered to see why people are needing the scripting use in the first place. They (Zynga) could divulge the gifts been spammed and then work on those areas in the game, IE sending *yawn* the lastest property part, misery bags etc etc *yawn* that area in the game is long gone for me so i cant really tell you what the latest craze with spamming gifts is.

Keep on Z with your cloak of secrecy, they (and like the game) seem to contain (listening) bugs ;)

Friday, 6 April 2012

Hypoc.....

Recently i was pointed to an article, this one in fact.

Frankly i do not care, about the selling/trading of accounts or "<insert name here>" I'm not writing this out of spite. Infact i dont even seeing this post go anywhere. So why post it?

Why? because asked!

During the life span of this game i have seen many accounts sold, traded and of course banned accounts.

Some accounts have had "uber" glitches occur and have had alot of skillpoints appear out of nowhere, other accounts had Zynga server side data corruption occur and of course there is good ol' CS which when starting out would believe a duped screenshot and set the account to what it was shown or just general clumsyness by them with accidental stat change [1].

One person *not named use to sell loot and on occasions buy accounts, this was before the ever so popular status that they maintain now a day. One such account was a Zynga data corrupted account, that had alot of skillpoints (think millions), the person spent alot of time getting the energy in the account to other 800,000 and now can do quick walk thrus/documenting it as they go of new citys/locations. This account was fixed but Zynga left the energy alone. I warned the person not to do X amount of jobs in one day as it would cause a fight/gift/ban to trigger, they didn't heed my warning and on a lootdrop demonstration it ended up passing the amount and was auto banned to fight/gift/ban status.

When going to the above account it has exactly the same as the one pictured in an article with no links to attack it etc, it only has "remove from mafia".

On the subject of  sold/traded accounts one easy way to do this is just play the slots on that persons profile, Zynga store the original fb data of a persons account so if you went to a sold account that had changed there name it would show the original fb name instead of the newly changed one.

I must admit i find the article in general a bit of a "who cares, drama drama" saga. I fully understand Zynga been mad @ a "whale" for giving them the finger flicking off their account which in turn means that Zynga isnt getting another $ out of the whale and that the person that brought it now doesnt have to spend anything near what they would on their account to get it to the stats of the newly brought account.

Zynga even had one from their own select PAC v1 sell his account of which i dont see banned (yet). which had inflated stats from Zynga.
Once again, i think its good on the person for selling off their money draining addiction, esp to a company that over its short past has shown its customers that they dont care and its just one big slippery slope to the bottom. I dont see the unmentioned people having their accounts effected, one might... however the other it makes no business sense for Zynga to go and do so, as maintaining the unlevel playing field is an inside joke to them.

Tuesday, 31 January 2012

The Zynga Dynasty

Apologies in advance for my there, their and they're(s?) plus lack of spelling, punctuation and so on.

In the first year of me playing Mafiawars, i welcomed many changes from Zynga inwhich them, themselves profited from, by the end of the year we had many great new features with not only the succuessfull new location of Cuba, but we also had Moscow aswell, with many game fixes and adition add ons ingame IE Lotto, which at the time when vaulting it, you actually noticed the increase in droprate. This was 2009-2010 period, skipping forward a year to last last year, 2010 - 2011 segmanent merge, what did we see? a rush of events etc etc which led to event fatigue, and the usual stuff about "lets boycott Zinga" (again etc etc). They had also implemented NERFS, vaulting lotto no longer increased droprates, infact they had nerfed droprates from 40% to under 4% and had killed most things people loved about the game.

Now lets fast forward it another year, another rush of events which led again to event fatigue, BUT!!?!! instead of lets the "lets boycott Zinga" it was a theme that had started to take great shape and form, infact it had gathered a great speed and was making the ever growing app data statistics chart of/on Facebook apps continue its awesome slippery slope to its ever so quickly growing target of less than X amount of players continueing to onplay the game. This here is the problem of a gaming company that seemingly only knows one thing, Success from a new player base and that is all. The onslaught across the board of the decline of all Zyngas "latest and greatest, bright new ideas" or as most would now recongise complete and blatant rip offs of other peoples games.

The latest and greatest of games in the yet-to-be-released Zynga games is the up and coming "Dream Heights" whos original creators infact decided to publically call out ALL of Zyngas employees that they had ripped off their game. The creators of Tiny Towers (NimbleBit) last year won IOS Game of the year, but before we all light the pitch forks and lynch mob Zynga, they (Zynga) annouced that they are trying there hand at open sourcing HTML5 projects for IOS projects (Zynga unleashed) they also had infact tried UNSUCCESSFULLY to aquire NimbleBit for an undisclosed sum. But IMO its still wrong to blatantly rip them off, Proof? well NimbleBit's Ian Marsh took to twitter and let Zynga have it in a open challenge by means of a comparasion pic of which Zynga flooded their twitter with various game links in a seeming effort to drop that from any feed. We dont have too look far when comparing other Zynga games and what they have been copied off the examples are out there on the net with an ever growing number of people from around the world blogging the examples.


(Click on pic to enlargen)

Zynga has been known to payout other game companys when they have stolen their ideas, sums of upto $USD 10million (Google-able). However as mentioned, Zynga do not have a long levity in maintaining their player base, the game of choice i play by them is Mafiawars, i played when it had a corner caption boasting 4million daily players, then that was changed to 6million and growing, now a few years later... its unique hits hovers around 200,000 players with a loss of 20k of players a week/month it has done a complete U turn. How could a game go from 6million daily players to 200k~ daily players? there can not be one singular reason, as there are many, was it the player end? or was it the company that grew to an awe aspiring profit margin that was too successfull, far too quickly and with no previous knowledge of how to handle themselves and contracted employees that had tax scheme contracts so Zynga wouldnt lose money by keeping them on as full time staff and had them listed as external contractors, so you always had new staff with no previous knowledge of the game.

As profits and players drop from the once successfull company, we will never get a answer, infact i would wager a guess at Zynga been used as an example in up and coming IT/WEB development seminars with the topic of what not to do, with it been picked to pieces and examples of lack of interaction with its playerbase most likely been its main topic. From my own and personal background i have learnt that even if i like and think what i am putting out is great and awesome, it doesnt mean the playerbase will like it and i learnt to adapt my output to their feedback to benifit everyone, Other succuessful gaming companys will completely agree with this, After all its the playerbase that makes the game and lets longlevity take a grasp and therefore judges future profit margins.

I know players that spent $USD 5k a month "to be the best" or "have every item" some have spent massive amounts over $USD 100k now alot of these account lay wasted having not been used in quite awhile by disgrunted customers, Some of these customers have sold accounts, others have swapped account. All to try and get back money they once spent on a thriving game. The one winner out of all of this was Zynga and i suppose in the end, its bravo to them for enticing users to spend money only for them (Zynga) to turn around and cull its once profitable source, which ranges across all of their games, not just Mafiawars.

I'm now on the sidelines watching a game company take a headfirst dive, one that hasn't only learnt from its past mistakes but continues to head in a repeat fashion of what most players have come to recongise, entice players to a new game, get their money, fumble on nonexsistant longlevity ideas and repeat the progress over again.