With the next event maybe just a day away (I’m guessing that it’s a minor event), I figured it was time to lay out my thoughts on how EA should schedule their events and the downtime between them.
First, a few things to point out. EA appears to have settled on Tuesday as the release day for events. This has been true for at least a solid year. Before that it was sometimes Wednesdays. Second, the average lately between events is about 20-something days. That’s basically three weeks, or 21 days.
So, my first thought here is that EA should settle on a 21 day downtime between events. Having a schedule to this would help us to “bide” our time, which would allow us time to Nuke our towns or design what we have from the last event, or go on vacation… For the downtime following a shorter event maybe just 2 weeks.
During these three weeks I suggest 1 week off, 1 week for a minor event (the real deal like Deep Space Homer), and another week off, maybe with a Gil deal (something we’ll covet once the next event starts). During the first week they could also release an expansion. At the end of the middle week they could release an in-game teaser for the next event. I liked how it was done with Flanders’ Xmas façade, but a “system message” could suffice.
Back to the events themselves, they average around 35 to 40 days. I think the shorter the better. I suggest a straight 28 days for an event. (35 days is 5 weeks long. 28 days is just 4 weeks long.) Some events might only merit a 3 week run. I also suggest just 2 “acts”.
My suggestion with acts is that they don’t lock us out of the previous act’s prizes. That this would be a hybrid of the old “no act” system and the new. It would be similar to what they’re doing with the Daily Challenge System or the Wild West Event’s General Store prizes, where we can win the prize each day, or allow them to accumulate and “win” them all a week or a few days later. I think that acts are good for giving us something to look forward to, to divide up our time, and not feel so behind if most others are better at playing than ourselves.
During the event, I’d suggest just 2 updates, each of them near the end of the acts. Only “mini” events and Gil deals, of course. I wouldn’t say that they’re optional. They’re for the hardcore players that are done with each act about a week early.
Sum Up and Promotionals
How they work in promotionals (episode tie-ins) is up to them to figure out, but it would probably just be that they take the place of “mini” events or minor events, or at least tail-end them. Valentine’s Day 2016 was both an episode tie-in and a minor event.
To sum up: 3 or 4 weeks of an event, 2 acts, then 2 or 3 weeks of downtime, with minor/mini events sprinkled conservatively throughout.
What ideas do you have on this? Do you wonder why I’m suggesting these? Leave a comment or a question for me.