The PvP Arena Rewards poll is now closed and given the results have created a lot of discussion around the poll (and the poll system itself), we felt that it'd be beneficial to offer a transparent summary of the poll outcome. If you are unaware of the PvP Arena, you can find all the relevant information here.
Before we look into the voting we wanted to answer a few questions related to the poll.
Why was the poll restricted, preventing a portion of players from voting?
We’ve been experimenting with restricted voting on polls for some time now, mostly focusing around providing additional support for specific communities such as Iron, GIM and UIM. These were received positively and showed how the poll system can work to benefit those who might otherwise not be heard when a poll is open to voting by everyone.
With the PvP Arena rewards, we pushed this much further than we have before by only allowing accounts that have participated in PvP to be eligible to vote on the majority of the reward ideas. That was quite a big change, and regrettably, we should have gone into more detail on why we were doing this prior to opening the polls.
PvP in Old School is an iconic activity and we know it has been an underserved segment of our community in recent years. The PvP community is one of the oldest in Gielinor, and we want to ensure it remains a healthy one that can not only continue to survive but thrive in 2022 and beyond.
Historically, PvP content has not been favoured well in polls. We know that many players have their frustrations with PvP, with certain issues being highlighted in our Wilderness Changes blog last year. Since then, we’ve spent considerable time trying to address the various concerns raised, whilst still trying to retain what PvP in Old School is all about - risk vs reward with unique and unpredictable interactions.
Some of these changes include:
- PK Skull Prevention - An option within the settings menu that when enabled, you will be prevented from attacking players in any way that would cause you to become skulled.
- PJ Timer - A grace period in single-way combat areas during which a player cannot be attacked by another opponent or aggressive monsters since the last time they were attacked.
- Luring - Additional safeguards and measures put in place to hinder scammer’s attempts at tricking other players in order to steal their items.
We're also looking into an alternative method to obtaining the Dragon Pickaxe that doesn't involve the Wilderness. We see how often this gets brought up and quite frankly we don't think many PvPers actually care for it being locked behind Wilderness content! It's likely this will be tackled as part of the upcoming Wilderness Bosses rework that is scheduled straight after the PvP Arena.
With these long-standing concerns now addressed, providing a more even playing field for those venturing into the depths of the Wilderness, we felt this would be a perfect opportunity for us to trial a more restricted poll specific to those who engage in PvP activity to try and bring some new life into the scene.
There were various concerns raised about players being able to skip iconic grinds or bypass content to gain gear. Why were these not addressed?
One of the issues surrounding traditional PvP is how accessible it is. Players that are only interested in PvP have to engage in almost every aspect of the game in order to get their accounts ready to fight - this can be daunting for newer players and prevents many from trying it out. Other areas of the game are now well established and have a healthy population, partaking in a plethora of different updates over the years which have been added to help grow and sustain the communities that surround them. This is not something PvP has benefitted from and is something we'd like to change sooner rather than later. We want to grow the PvP community and the rewards from the PvP Arena were an attempt to provide an alternative way to obtain items that could be used in PvP situations, whilst ensuring some of those important grinds and milestones still needed to be met to fully complete an account.
Our intention was to allow players to have access to items that could be used in PvP by engaging in PvP content. We drew comparisons to existing items to help explain their power level and potential use cases but never saw this as bypassing a grind, given the rewards would incur quite the grind within the actual arena before players would be able to obtain them.
Now, let's get into the poll itself!
An image showing where the majority of no votes come from based on account type.
An image showing where the majority of no votes come from based on how many PvP kills each player had at the time of voting. Non PvPer = no kills, Limited PvP = 1-25 kills, Moderate PvP = 25-50 kills, High PvP = 50+ kills.
An image showing where the majority of no votes come from based on how many PvP deaths each player had at the time of voting. Non PvP Deaths = 0, Limited PvP Deaths = 1-25, Moderate PvP Deaths = 25-50, High PvP Deaths = 50+.
Looking at the above, we can see the following:
- There was a higher number of Iron players voting no than other restricted account types, but the majority of no-votes still come from non-iron accounts.
- The largest amount of no votes was by those that have never had a PvP kill registered against their account. In fact, they account for 80% of all no-votes in the most recent poll.
- There is little difference in voting between those with a low number of deaths vs those with a higher number. The highest number of no-votes came from those with no PvP deaths registered against their account.
Now, you might be wondering how is it possible for players with no PvP kills registered against their account to have voted if we restricted the voting to only those who engaged in PvP?
Given this was the first time we’ve restricted the majority of questions in a poll, we wanted to approach the criteria we used with caution. We purposefully set low requirements so that those who might have interacted with PvP even in small doses were able to have their say.
Our criteria for voting eligibility were as follows:
- At least 20 kills in the Wilderness or PvP worlds
- A win in LMS
The image showing Non-PvPers voting does not include any stats based on LMS games played. For this purpose, we're solely looking at players that have had a PvP kill added to their K/D ratio by having either a Bounty Hunter, Wilderness, or PvP world kill on their account. Those listed as "Non-PvPer" most likely became eligible via LMS activity on their account.
Now let’s dive into how the results would have shaped up if we only counted the votes from the categories shown.
An image showing the poll results if we were to only count the votes from each account type. For example, if we only polled the questions to "Group Ironman" and excluded everyone else from voting.
An image showing the poll results if we were to only count the votes based on how many PvP kills each player had at the time of voting. Non PvPer = no kills, Limited PvP = 1-25 kills, Moderate PvP = 25-50 kills, High PvP = 50+ kills. For example, if we only polled the questions to "High PvP" and excluded everyone else from voting.
An image showing what the poll results if we were to only count the votes based on how many PvP deaths each player had at the time of voting. Non PvP Deaths = 0, Limited PvP Deaths = 1-25, Moderate PvP Deaths = 25-50, High PvP Deaths = 50+. For example, if we only polled the questions to "High PvP Deaths" and excluded everyone else from voting.
When we looked into the voting even further, it was clear that any votes cast by non-PvPers would not have been enough to sway the overall results of the poll. The above tables show that even if we had restricted voting in the poll to only those who had PvP kills on their account, regardless of how many each player had accumulated (Limited, Moderate and High PvP kills), only the Ornament Kits, Blighted Wave sacks, Blighted Surge sacks, and Imbue Scrolls had a realistic chance at passing. The rest of the rewards on offer from the PvP Arena would have failed regardless of the restrictions in place.
Clearly, there is more work for us to do here if the arena is to offer more rewards than those listed above!
We know many of you were looking forward to trying out the new rewards, yet many of you want to see them changed. So to begin with we’d like to see if there is a way we can rework what was on offer in the poll so they are more accepted by the community - both PvPers and non-PvPers alike! In order to achieve this, we’ll be utilising the PvP feedback Discord server mentioned in this blog alongside our usual feedback channels.
Whilst the server will only allow those selected from the survey to participate in direct discussions, for now, we’ll be making the server open to everyone to view conversations as they progress. Our aim is to give players increased visibility, transparency and input on PvP changes, to help our PvP-focused team deliver meaningful updates, and improve PvP for veterans and novices alike.
Once suitable changes have been agreed upon, we'll then look to release an updated blog detailing all of the changes we'd like to propose, before considering re-polling the rewards once more.
You can join the PvP Feedback Discord by clicking the button below
We’ll also be looking at how we handle restricted polling in the future. This was very much an experiment for us - it’s uncharted territory and we don’t always get it right! It may be that we adjust the criteria before we look to re-poll any reworked rewards, but this is something we will consider heavily before proceeding.
We understand the frustrations around being able to have your say, and finding the right balance between offering support for a smaller community whilst still feeling like the wider community’s voice is heard is a difficult one to get right. Ultimately we want to avoid letting what is already a dwindling community completely die out, but we also need to ensure you don’t feel alienated from the decisions that we make.
We hope to share more about the future of the PvP Arena rewards in the coming weeks and we look forward to working with you all to get this right!
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