We’ve been doing small tweaks to the site recently and we’re going to make quite a few more. I thought I’d make a quick post on some changes we’ve already carried out, but also some changes that are upcoming.
1. Dividends and Earnings (Before Dec 17th)
In Empire Avenue, when you buy “shares” in someone, it means you get to “share” in their earnings. Over the past months we’ve changed the core game so that users now have effectively unlimited shares available. Sometime this week (before December 17th) we will roll out changes so that increasing your total shares available (which now happens automatically) will not decrease your dividend payments.
What this means: Dividends will now be based on your activity earnings and your network values. If you are active and have high network value, your dividends will be larger, and the amount paid per share will not decrease as you add more shares. If you wish to pay greater dividends, you can either be more active or increase your network value.
Why do this? For hardcore players the numbers and all the equations are fun to deal with, however, in order for us to create a mass-market game, we need to simplify. Dividends are there to encourge you to buy in people who produce good content in valuable networks.
UPDATE: There was a delay in testing, this change will go love on the night of December 20th, 2010
2. Public Leaderboards (Live Now)
You may (or may not) have noticed that many of our Empire Avenue leaderboards are now public. Yes, tell your friends and family to go check you out without having to go signup!
3. More Wealth Achievements (Live Now)
There are multiple ways to play Empire Avenue. One of them happens to be about wealth. Quite a few of you have hit the “Millionaire” mark and wondered what’s next. Well, we never intended it to be stopped at a “Millionaire” we fully expect that in the life of Empire Avenue we will see many people reach multi-multi-billionaire status. In the process we hope they will have discovered amazing content around the world. I’m happy to note that there are now special achievements reaching up to 2 Billion. If you are wondering how impossible it is to reach those heights, as the site, product and the platform evolves we think a few poeople might actually make it.
4. Shareholder Mail (Before December 17th)
Our intention with Shareholder Mail was to allow you to easily reach your network of Shareholders. In our initial rollout we hoped that people would respect the mass-communication tool and use it to spread great news rather than spammy “Buy Me!” messages. Unfortunately, that was not to be the case. Earlier last week we removed the ability to buy more slots to send Shareholder Mail from the Shop. In the next few days, Shareholder Mail will cost you a base price in eaves plus an additional amount per shareholder you have. In addition, sending more than one message in any given 7-day period will increase costs exponentially.
We believe that mass-communication tools make a big difference when used correctly. Reaching out to your network can be beneficial to all. By putting in a simple cost-based barrier, we hope everyone, now and in the future, will treat this feature with respect and value.
5. Brands and Interests (Before December 20th)
Within the next week, we will be combining Brands and Interests into one list. We’ll move your current brands into the interests list. We’re doing this for several reasons, but the most important is our continual process of removing complexity on the site including reducing what people have to do to complete their profile! We believe a single interests list will be much simpler going forward and helps with our move into other platforms.
So these are some of the changes we’re working on, there’s more of course, but we’ll get to them in time!