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2016 CTF Fundraiser - Give us your feedback!


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Hey guys,


Thanks for helping to raise funds to keep our servers going for another year. I'd like to get some feedback from you to help make our next fundraising effort more enjoyable, for as many people as possible. Please comment here with anything you feel it is constructive to share. For example:


  • What did you enjoy or find less enjoyable about this year's fundraiser?
  • What could be done to make fundraisers more accessible or enjoyable for you in future?
  • Do you have any game types or ideas to share for next year?
  • Would you like more community involvement in the construction of events (build competitions etc.) or do you prefer to be surprised?
  • Any other things you feel are important to mention?

Having read some feedback already, I know that this event was difficult for some people to access, and for others, just not a gamemode you particularly enjoyed. I'd like to get some positive discussion going if possible, so that we can get a well rounded view of the kind of thing people would like for next year.


Thanks once again!




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I unfortunately wasn't around much to play but I did pop in a few times. The only real big concern that I noticed was that teams would be imbalanced. I'm not entirely sure how we can fix that though, when I ran the fundraiser before this one we couldn't come up with a great solution.


Edit: I believe the last 2 rounds were okay, but I thought the first round was greatly favored to Lime team?


Another thing I noticed was chest locking. Is there anyway to make it so that when you place a chest it is automatically locked to your team? I know someone on Lime went and locked a bunch of Red's chest because they were public. Not sure how difficult it would be to make a chest autolock to a region.




The map


10/10 feedback. Want to provide something actually constructive?  :dry:

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The good:


Loved the map itself, had a lot of fun exploring all the island/planets on the map.

The jet packs were a really neat way to traverse the map.

Death messages were awesome


The bad:


The team balance also seemed to be a big issue, at one point during round 2 and 3, the team I was on had double or more the amount of players than the other team. Needs to be fixed or overhauled for next year.

PvP was incredibly unbalanced, it was nearly impossible to kill anyone who was moving around with a jet pack. It was impossible to catch a flag holder, let alone kill him while he flew 1000 blocks through space to get back to his flag. Unlike past CTF's, enderpearls cannot be used in the void, so you couldn't catch anyone.

At one point last night, someone was flying in the other teams dome and no one could kill him.



My suggestions:


Balance PvP better for space battle. Flag holders should be debuffs put on them so they can't run/fly as fast as the people who may be chasing them.

Arrows are basically useless in space; hitting someone on a 3d playing field is so much more difficult. Make arrow travel time a lot faster, take away the gravity and drop factor because why would arrows fall in space, and make each bow shot a volley, to increase the chance of hitting the enemy.



To all the people who made posts on the subreddit or the forums wondering why the servers were down; maybe redirect them all straight to the event server, or when the attempt to join and are sent to the lobby, inform them a CTF event is ongoing.



While I am 100% a PvE player, I don't think having separate modes or events would be beneficial. For example; having the yellow team was not a good idea, it just took people away from the game. Instead if people would like to be neutral they can choose to be, but they still face the possibility of being raided.

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There was much I enjoyed about the event. The feeling of being a space miner, floating around asteroids picking up resources. The space stations, the othello, the fucking cave spider nopenopenope asteroids. And all of the amazing variations of asteroids made exploring fun.

That being said there was a few things that I felt were rather unfair, esp to people unwilling to spend all day playing. The jetpacks were expensive and without them you were regulated to staying in the dome. I'm not much a fan of PvP. I tried to participate but found the imbalance frustrating. Richer players could move faster. If you were found by the opposing team you lost everything and had to spend hours recovering.

I would love to see more support for PvE mode (yellow team). You guys hacked that in the last round and it was appreciated but by then the majority of PvEers had given up. So I guess I'm advocating for support for us carebears, cause working farms for the PvP teams isn't the same as making a separate colony.

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One crazy idea that might help to address some of those issues would be to have the third-party PvE team actually take the place of each PvP team's resource-gathering efforts.


What I mean is, players joining could choose whether to PvP or PvE. If they choose PvE, they get put on a neutral team that amounts to the "civilians" of the map. If they choose PvP, they get assigned to one of two military factions. Those two factions would PvP and cap flags as per usual, but instead of making their own farms and doing their own mining, they would have a means to find currency on the map, which they could then trade with players from the PvE faction to obtain supplies. This could potentially be done through the application of an economy plugin.


Just some food for thought.

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As a disclaimer: I am a P player by and large, though I relish a chance to go PvPing.  When I entered the field to fight in the second round (I wasn't participating in the first), I was wearing a U3P4 diamond jetpack, PP4 diamond leggings, and P3 diamond boots, carrying a Sh5M diamond sword and an P4FI bow.  I also did help with general testing, though space-based PvP like the kind frequently seen during the event was not one of them.


That being said I actually enjoyed the challenge of the space map and its effects on all aspects of the game in this event, one of which was in fact PvP.


On the whole, though, while the target's extra mobility is very frustrating for PvPing (high-level diamond-gear opponents are already difficult enough to fight to a win or lose on the ground), it is a great boon for players seeking to dodge PvP, especially for flag capturing.  This put a lot more emphasis on flag defense, which I thought was a nice challenge and change of pace from the usual, where both flag defending and carrier chasing could be done equally well.


I've heard other complaints that the different speeds of diamond and iron jetpacks are too great, and that it is difficult to catch a flag carrier once they steal the flag.  Though I think part of the fun is to formulate new strategies for the environment at hand, I will also echo both sentiments - the faster diamond jetpack made fleeing from a fight with iron nearly impossible if the foe is determined enough (and I know I've done that at least once ._.).  On top of that, stopping a carrier in flight after they steal a flag becomes dependent on how much the carrier turns or stops while flying, how closely the pursuer is watching and taking advantage of them, and how quickly the pursuer is able to kill the carrier (I actually landed a few hits on a flag carrier before he got away).  A carrier who steals the flag, gets out, and beelines for a friendly flag post is near impossible to reach, let alone take down.  (I bring the last point up mainly to echo gameplay feedback, though during preparation, slowing the flag carrier was considered difficult to infeasible to implement technically.)


The other comment I have is that, being on lime team for the second round, it seemed weird to me that diamonds were more straightforward to get (acquire potatoes, bake them, trade) than iron (mine or sit at the spawner).  Not sure how silly it is; we did have three layers of potato farm and we still lost to red in the end after all :P...but it felt weird in the end that diamonds seemed easier to acquire than iron.


Also, as a random point - would it be possible to implement a team auto-lock like what Switch mentioned, and/or ensure livestock in base can only be killed by the team that owns it?  

Edited by buzzie71
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One thing that I've seen a few people mention was a desire for a little more advance notice / publicity of the event. Maybe have an announcement pinned on the forums and subreddit a couple of weeks ahead, perhaps even an email blast to everyone registered on the forums?

I didn't even know it was happening until the day of.

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It was far too overwhelming for me. I wasn't around until Sunday evening UK time which affected my enjoyment I'm sure. I had read the info post in advance but the start time on Friday was middle of the night for me and I wasn't going to stay up to be there for the start. This was my response to the info post:
Ok, CTF that's interesting. Now, forcefields. This is beginning to get complicated. Buffs? Oh god. Diamond and iron chestplates + more needed - that's a lot of resources. New commands...

I logged on, joined a team and found myself on an end island with a potato farm. After running around the whole place I couldn't see anywhere else to go, and I didn't have a clue how I would go about getting a jet pack or even coal to power it. There was a derp bridge probably about 50 blocks below but if I dropped onto it I would die. Without an idea what to do I logged off and waited for the event to end.
I play on p because I like building but really dislike pvp on Minecraft. Whether its my computer's lack of power or my internet connection I can't rely on players being where they appear and this means that admin hunts and even spleef are frustrating to me. Chasing another player around is even worse.
The event was amazing in terms of the work involved in world building and getting the system working, but it was so non-vanilla that it seemed to be a completely different game. Joining on Sunday I had no idea how much longer it would last and whether it was worth trying to figure more out.


So far, my laziness.


But I didn't realise that there were builds of significance to be found. Narissis's spaceship sounds awesome. If there was some way to go sight seeing I'd probably have stuck around longer. But as far as I had understood it there were just a couple of bases and flag stations.


It seems bizarre to put so much effort into something so ephemeral. A year of some of the best builders on the server working on something which will be gone in 48 hours! Now that I know that there was more to be seen I wish I would have stuck around a bit more. I donated a bit despite rather than because of the event.


I know I sound like I'm moaning here but I'm not really. It's a negative sounding post because the event didn't suit me which is my problem and I thought I'd explain why in depth.


I've really enjoyed some of the other "events" we've had recently. The Viridian Journals were excellent. Holiday mobs are a good laugh. The tree competition was really good fun and had lasting impact on the map this time. The PVE Awards are a great motivator. Nightoak is terrifying. Rather than an event which will be lost in time like tears in rain I prefer something which lasts. I absolutely love the lobby map this rev, and the scavenger hunt in it is brilliant (I worked out the answer even if I haven't quite found all of the clues...)


What can I suggest which could actually be productive? Something to unite the different server player bases. Some sort of view-only trophy house or museum server that event winners can be immortalised in in some way. Maybe take screenshots of winning builds, turn them into maps and display them on the walls of the museum. Or world edit in significant parts of the builds and equip them with warp signs to go there and back.


I'd actually suggest an event with different levels which only get unlocked as donations reach set amounts, like Kickstarter goals. As long as players aren't paying for an advantage over each other this should be perfectly acceptable by the EULA.

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  • Amazing, amazing map
  • Concept was fun and mainly well-executed - CTF In Space seemed like a great idea to me
  • I thought it was a minor miracle that the server was as stable as it was, given the kind of plugins being used
  • Achieved dual aim of being mostly fun and raising enough cash to keep the servers going for another year


  • Patchy teamwork support - I'm not sure how to square the circles of accommodating dip-in-dip-out players, all-event players, and everyone in between; of having shared storage and other LWC things but maintaining control of team resources; and of having welcoming teams but balancing their composition against each other - if there are ways of dealing with them, It'd be great to consider them
  • "Starting from scratch" - to mine the iron for armour, tools, weapons, and jetpacks took quite a while (as did mining coal) - if you didn't you were very much confined to the bases. If you suck at PvP (as I do) and died a lot, then you were often condemned to repeat the whole thing (especially if you died over the Void) - would there be a way of incorporating inventory persisting into future CTF maps when access to the whole map is in some way limited?

Overall, though, this was a really, really fun Event. Thanks to the Staff for putting in so much time and effort! :D

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But I didn't realise that there were builds of significance to be found. Narissis's spaceship sounds awesome. If there was some way to go sight seeing I'd probably have stuck around longer. But as far as I had understood it there were just a couple of bases and flag stations.


It seems bizarre to put so much effort into something so ephemeral. A year of some of the best builders on the server working on something which will be gone in 48 hours! Now that I know that there was more to be seen I wish I would have stuck around a bit more. I donated a bit despite rather than because of the event.



All I need to say is that the map is gorgeous.


Maybe we ought to make the map available with CTF plugins disabled and free, unlimited-fuel jetpacks (or simply flying enabled) as sort of a "museum" server to allow players who missed the event or want a second look to explore it.

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I do enjoy the space aspect of the map.. I'd love to see it as a word we could portal to from PVE.

It was a bit of a grind to work up a set of gear. I would maybe buff up the iron ore about the bases or make an Iron trade available at the store.


Overall I had fun but I had to drop in and out for family stuff and getting back to space was tough.

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I enjoyed the event. I thought its biggest strength was all the great stuff people had built around the map. The ships, meteors, etc were a lot of fun to explore.


For next CTF I'd really like to see something ground based make a comeback (the jetpacks were great fun but mid-air combat was near impossible). But, I think it'd be really cool to have a heavily customised & themed map featuring explorable builds again.


Thanks to all those who worked on the project and to everyone who took part. :)

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Maybe we ought to make the map available with CTF plugins disabled and free, unlimited-fuel jetpacks (or simply flying enabled) as sort of a "museum" server to allow players who missed the event or want a second look to explore it.


I second this. While we usually only have rev maps available for download, I think the CTF map qualifies as a worthy exception.

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Can I continue to request that we don't just turn off the other servers when this happens? But honestly, some advanced warning would have been nice too... I joined nerd each day before, and don't recall seeing a single thing about it until the day it was happening when I signed into C and got kicked to the lobby which all of the servers were closed... I turn around and see CTF... I honestly could have taken that as just "all the servers are down, kthxbye" But regardless, advertisement of the event probably would have helped a lot... 

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Honestly, I didn't enjoy this event as much as I did last year's. That one was super easy to get into. You spawned, grabbed gear, and ran off to the other team's base. There was no need to harvest coal for jetpacks, to fly anywhere. The map last year had plenty of avenues for water travel, and it worked well even with crappy 1.8 boats. I enjoyed this year's map more, because it was really well made and it looked good, but a good map isn't enough to make PvP fun. I say this based on anecdotes from other players, since I never once saw an enemy. The nature of the map made travel much harder, and the fact that you had to do quite a bit of mining to get even a low-tier jetpack, let alone decent gear, disincentivized combat and exploration. I don't care if I lose my diamond sword in a fight, but losing a quarter stack of iron's worth of gear plus the coal fuel, of which you had to carry quite a bit, and your gear? No thanks. I died once, and quit because I didn't feel like going after more gear. Also, Minecraft PvP sucks when it's ground based, and flying around just makes things worse. I used to play a lot of kitpvp, and that was the closest to balanced I've seen the game. Vanilla mechanics got fixed in 1.9, but those mechanics rely on you being able to shoot opponents with some degree of accuracy and/or get close enough to use the shield and sweep attacks. Flight makes the latter impossible, and the former difficult. I'd love to see the event next year repeat the beautiful map design and go back to playable PvP.

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There have been comments related to people not being able to play because their schedule is bad on the particular weekend the event occurs, or simply due to a lack of notice. 

We should change the schedule of the event to split the 3 rounds over 3 different weekends. I'd suggest 2x half-day events and one 2-day "primary" event on the final weekend.

The progressive schedule would ensure plenty of notification time and less possibility of schedule conflicts. I did something similar scheduling a week of 10 minute build contests I hosted on C a few rev's ago (before they were regularly scheduled by admins), and had overwhelming attendance on the final day. An added benefit would be that staff would have more time between rounds to find solutions to any bugs or other issues. 

We could even get creative and change the map or rules between the 3 events so we have 3 different flavors of CTF. 

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  • 5 weeks later...

Here are my thoughts, from the notes I jotted down a month ago.


  • Technical:
    • Most things worked well.
    • The only unresolved truly technical issue I can recall is that the glow effect on flag holders persists across a restart, when the flag holders will have dropped the flag.
    • The reset procedure was the biggest failing.  The team regions were not reset between rounds, leading to grief of region-protected areas.  Any last minute fixes to villager trades, and possibly regions (e.g. the blaze spawner building was not protected), got lost whenever the event reset.  I doubt this was tested.
    • Some of the death messages were wonky, with &z etc appearing in chat.
    • Some long standing problems with EasySigns may have cropped up again:
      • No loot from signs if you don't have free inventory slots.
      • Sleep signs don't work if you are standing in the sign hitbox.
  • Map design:
    • The map was beautiful and so detailed. It's a shame that there is so little time to appreciate it all fully when playing the game.
    • There were several problems with the bases:
      • The flags were all different. Why? One of lime's flags had a larger protection area around it, which meant that more blocks had to be placed to block up three entrances.  In a competitive event, why would you build in a handicap against one team? Surely you would try to make the environment as fair and equal as possible?
      • The piston based airlock doors were a clusterfuck.
      • The base regions did not protect the spawner under the base islands.  Why not?  We did this in 2013, and a record of the planning that went into that event is still on these forums.  (Pro-tip: a thorough reading of that post would have prevented some of the other problems in this event.)  Grief is cheap and easy.  This issue is related to the lack of consideration given to the rules and reality of PvP in the Gameplay section below.
  • Prior Communication:
    • We failed to communicate some key aspects of the event to players ahead of time (or at all).  Particularly, the existence of spawners under the bases.  Also, the PvP rules.
  • Gameplay:
    • It is a great irony that we provide a PvP event for a group of players who almost exclusively play PvE or Creative.  At the time of writing, the PvP server has now finally been laid to rest, but in a practical sense it has been dead for years.
    • I consider CTF in space to be, if not ill-conceived, then at least poorly balanced from a gameplay perspective.
    • The game degenerated to preventing someone from touching the flag.  If they could touch it, they could escape with it.  The jet packs were completely overpowered for PvP.  It was very difficult to hit someone with a bow or a sword, and impossible to catch someone once they had the flag.  It took way too many hits on someone with diamond armour to take them down.  The event generated into a relay race.
    • As is typical in CTF, having the flags away from the base exacerbated the problem of lack of defenders.
    • No consideration was given to the possibility of competitive grief of spawners etc and I imagine that dissuaded people from making XP grinders.
    • No consideration was given to the rules of PvP in this event.  There was no reference to the rules from Survival in the information post, for instance.  In past events, the rules were spelled out in terms of the rules of our extant PvP server. But in this event we had people making up the rules as they went, with no experience in moderating a PvP server.  Despite a long-standing practice of ruling against abuse of LWC locks for base protection on our servers, this practice was allowed in flag defence and no definitive rule was set, leading to escalating rule-brinkmanship.  Did we learn nothing from the past?
    • No consideration was given to mob grief. It's a bit tricky to build your defences out of wool when all your sheep are dead.
    • Nobody considered red-green colour blindness as a potential problem with the team colours.
    • Lime team were at a disadvantage because the only cactus to dye sheep was 1000m away from lime base and lime dye also requires bonemeal. Red team had a base full of red flowers. Why wasn't lime team yellow team?  Additional villagers were added to the shops to provide these items, then lost when the map reset.
    • One spawner for a whole team of players (when they find out about it on the second day) is insufficient.  The XP buff, if there was one, was insufficient.
    • Some of the alert messages were ungrammatical.


  • Suggested Improvements
    • Minecraft PvP is imbalanced enough with people on the ground. Allowing people to fly away simply lets people avoid the fight altogether. Flying is not good gameplay here.
    • Making the flag slow the carrier down would have made re-capture possible in this event and would even be a good idea in a ground-based CTF.
    • If you're going to have a PvP event, write down some rules and tell people what they are; don't make them up as you go.
    • More play testing.  I hear this event had only a couple of hours of testing.  Some more would surely have uncovered a lot of the problems.
    • One final improvement: ditch team-based PvP as the primary focus.  Run a completely novel game-mode - MMORPG like or zombie survival, or something.  These can allow PvP if it adds to the experience.
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