VOLVO OCEAN RACE
Post by iconPost by pmangino | 2017-09-18 | 19:23:42

Do you have any information to share so far with us in regard to the VOR Virtual Game..?
Best regards,
Princess Marina

commenticon 29 Comments
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2017-09-18 | 20:45:07
There are rumors that VR are rewriting the user interface and the new one will be used for the Clipper (from Leg 2 on) and possibly for the VOR. I've seen Facebook posts with screenshots by supposed beta testers.
Post by iconPost by Old-git | 2017-09-21 | 18:51:35
Are you talking about a newer interface than vr03 which came out the day after you posted your comment ?
Post by iconPost by pmangino | 2017-09-19 | 00:21:22
Is it confirmed that VR will be the official site of the VOR..?
Where can I see the Facebook posts with the sceenshots..?
Thx Cvetan.
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2017-09-19 | 14:51:56
They have updated the game page with the new interface and some info.

Quote:

Skipper your own boat all around the world in the most famous sailing races (the Volvo Ocean Race, Vendée Globe, Transat Jacques Vabre, Fastnet, Sydney Hobart, Route du Rhum, Clipper RTW and lots of others). Race against hundreds of thousands of rivals in real time.
Post by iconPost by pmangino | 2017-09-19 | 18:10:18
Thx Cvetan. I can see now...
Post by iconPost by pmangino | 2017-09-19 | 18:14:25
We need your help urgently..!!!
The zezo extension is not longer in use... I hope you can put it to work again soon...
Best regards,
Princess Marina
Post by iconPost by toxcct | 2017-09-19 | 18:24:24
You can still type the coords manually.

The brower add-on is one of the lower issues we're encountering with the new interface... unfortunately.
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2017-09-19 | 19:59:57
We need a browser plugin to shop playing cards indeed ;-)

It's entirely new protocol. Not sure how exactly the plugin interface handles that type of communication, bit it may be possible to do something. I'm doing some research now.
Post by iconPost by pmangino | 2017-09-20 | 14:30:53
Cvetan,
Thx for your precious help. However, so far I agree with many other player's decision in not participating in a playing card game. Too much money ($$$$) and to much abuse. Good bye Virtual VOR, unless they reconsider their mistake.
Princess Marina
Skipper
Post by iconPost by karriv | 2017-09-20 | 15:53:15
If yo are interested in a free, more predictable and realistic virtual navigation game (with a lighter client), please check sailonline.org.
Post by iconPost by pmangino | 2017-09-20 | 17:39:46
Thank you karriv,
I'll check it out...
VR and its crew have been steping backwards for more than two years now...
I can asure you that the number of players will decrease drastically sooner or later, unless they revise and correct their voracious appetite for money ($$$$$$).
Best regards,
Princess Marina
Post by iconPost by karriv | 2017-09-20 | 17:47:29
I understand that they run a business. But from a doubt the steps they've taken, taking into consideration all the feedback I've seen on the forum, are wise even from a business perspective. One would think trying to keep the customers happy would be good for business.
Post by iconPost by Michel | 2017-09-20 | 19:47:02
I tried this new game and new interface wih the VG full options and the Bridge whithout option.
Yesterday i tried the Latest version ! Is it yachting simulator or Blackjack ?

I return on Liveskipper
Post by iconPost by MarinsEauDouce | 2017-09-20 | 19:50:26
I am posting a post on this forum to let you know that I have posted all the information about the new version of Virtual Regatta.

Take a look at http://www.facebook.com/MarinsEauDouce.

As the ClubHouse on VR is closed, if you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask them on my Facebook page (whether technical or not, I have the answer to all your questions). I will answer you with pleasure.
Post by iconPost by NOR7034 | 2017-09-20 | 21:35:23
I was really looking forward to VOR, - but I agree with the previous posters, - not very interesting when card playing has become part of the game....
But what other options do we have (if we want to participate in VOR)? Liveskipper looked interesting, but no mentioning of VOR on their homepage.. Could it be that VR holds some kind of rights to the VOR virtual race?
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2017-09-20 | 22:42:05
That's the real problem with all real races. The organizers hold the IP rights, therefore VR has to pay license fees. And then VR wants good ROI (that also works as advertisement fee because there is no better way to advertise a sailing game than to have a link on the real race site)

So the real advantage VR has is that they have real world connections with the real races.
Post by iconPost by pmangino | 2017-09-21 | 01:28:15
I understand the business issue of VR. Any entrepeneur is looking for a good ROI. In this case Volvo is a big great Global Company, their mistake is that they chose the wrong partner.
VR performance has been decreasing in freefall.
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2017-09-21 | 10:20:58
Their business model boils down to "kill the competition, secure a monopoly and then screw the customers however you like"

Which is not unheard of, especially among mobile carriers and the like, but I still don't like personally.
Post by iconPost by karriv | 2017-09-21 | 09:08:28
I think other platforms (sailonline.org, liveskipper.com) might have races one could mistake for VOR, but naturally are totally different races.
Post by iconPost by marcusbelgicus | 2017-09-21 | 22:15:54
I was somewhat negative at the beginning with this new version. But given the amount of credit you get at the beginning of the race, the amount of cards you get, you can actually be competitive without giving 1 single $. Which was clearly NOT the case before, impossible to be in the first 200 without paying for the options, and see Toppen and Co always at the first places was quite boring.
To me the main negative points this new version have are : too much memory consumed, you need to go to the 3 D screen to get your position, you don't see the first boats, they should remove those 'help cards' which are useless.
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2017-09-21 | 22:41:39
You got that amount of credit just because it's a public beta.
In the real game each card is going to cost you few real bucks.

And Toppen and Co. will still be in the lead given the same amount of money as anyone else.

Well, maybe the real goal of VR is to get rid of Toppen and Co. I was thinking about that today. If that's the case they are doing a pretty good job and we all could wish them good luck.
Post by iconPost by SnowPetrel | 2017-09-21 | 23:26:15
I am trying out this VR version "vor3" with the Opening Race. I find it a struggle to use this interface. How long has this been around? It is a memory hog, no doubt. The fan on my Surface Pro is blowing full bore all the time the VR is on, even if minimized.

I get the boat position off the boat info panel. (Click on the your boat, or any boat, and scroll 7 clicks to the right.) I do like the card chum barrel, but only if it keeps on giving. But I really dislike the cost and clumsiness of waypoint placement.

The display of wind is an interesting concept, but <6 knots is impossible to see graphically, especially if there's any light on my device.

Without the search function, or the message function, or mouse-over name display, the social side of this is tedious. I tried to zoom in and click around in the known Lat/Long of a friend, and I couldn't get any other boats to pop up.

The 3D option is a waste. The sails don't change, and the boat is always on a reach. So far, you can't toggle for the names of nearby boats. You're stuck with dark at night. Air temp?? None of the data boxes update. The wind waves and swell is always the same; no such action is being modeled in the game.

How does the un-grounding process work in this version? Last VORG (last time I did this), sailing back off a boundary took some pretty careful attention and patience. Here, the closest zoom is the 1 nm scale. The coastline starts to like like Dora the Explorer.
Post by iconPost by marcusbelgicus | 2017-09-21 | 23:44:17
Yes you might be right, I guess we won't get so much credit in the future. Now let's see how much they will pay back for the cards we have not used, I have plenty of them !!!
I just think that there are 20-30 players which used to be 'without options' that can now compete with the old 'AO' so the game will be more open. But I might be wrong and the top 'with options' might still be significantly better than the 'without option', we will see.
My feeling is that they want to have a group of 50+ players that can compete, not only 10-20.
What they want as well is to force more players to connect more often, to get the free cards. And then generate more traffic for the ad. So far no ad, but they will come back again for everyone. But they might be cards to 'rid of the ad', that we will need to pay, off course.
Post by iconPost by Toppen | 2017-09-24 | 18:26:10
Marcus, you shouldn't be bored by "Toppen & Co", you should be inspired ;)
I personally don't think the new version will cost more ("full options") than the old version. If you don't by extra sails you won't stand a chance, just like the old version (as someone said, the free credits we got for the test races will disappear from The Mini Transat and forward).
I think not much will change regarding top 10-25 or top 50 or top 100. As soon as we have figured out all "stupid" things like the 4 knot rule (i guess it will disappear after the test races, after all they claim they use real weather data and not manipulated weather data) and the polars are back, zezo has made his adjustments, other routers has made their's etc it will look the same. On the down side for "the top players" is that we don't have free waypoints and programming options any more so i assume there will be an increased cost for the top 50...
VR will lose some more top players as they did with the version 2, and there will be new ones on top 100 list.
zezo is spot on about my future with VR - Toppen will most likely not do "almost every race" from now on, the next race for me will be VOR and if things doesn't change i will do very few if any more races. VR tend to implement too many things that has nothing to do with racing and they really suck at communication.

I think VR should do 3 things to make everyone happy including the CFO at Virtual Regatta:
1. charge every player a small amount of money (€1?) per race (incl relatively competative sails/options, the difference should be not more than when we sail with the maxi trimarans) and keep full options at the current level (maybe some adjustments relative race length and VSR category?), and get rid of the stupid cards...
2. set up a reference group among the players and start develop the SW using that group to canalize requirements etc
3. improve communication by a 1000 % or so...

// Toppen
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2017-09-24 | 20:33:17
My guess is that right now Toppen is not in the lead of zanzib 2 not because he forgot to renew the autosails or did not have good enough cards to play. It's just the weather was unstable and some of us chose the losing card. Fort me the beauty of the game is the proper forecast. It's random enough so you don't need to add more chance for the game to be fun.

Two editions ago the VOR was implemented from scratch by a Dutch company. They probably did not have enough time so had a lot of issues with the scalability, but other than that:

1) Hired the winner of the previous VOR as consultant. The guy knew the game inside-out, and also happened to be a great engineer/programmer.

2) Made the charts vector-based. I still wonder how the intersection check for so much line segments worked so well, especially server side, but it did.

3) Had a protest committee with with few members from the leading players (at least the winner of leg 1 AFAIK)

4) Did not stop developing the game. Each and every leg brought new features, and those were useful tools for the players, not new items to sell for cash.

P.S. Top players change all the time anyway. It just get too boring/tiring at some point. I have been playing for about 10 years and have seen hundreds of players on the top 10 list.
Post by iconPost by marcusbelgicus | 2017-09-25 | 00:00:29
Hi Toppen,
Just to clarify my thoughts...What I wanted to say with 'Getting bored' is related to the fact that only players that buy the options could have won before.
When you were starting a race with the old version, somebody that did not take the options could not target to be within the first 200. Many SO have asked for a special 'ranking' for them because you have almost 2 races in one, one for the AO and one for the SO. Which never happened.
The new system will merge those 2 groups, and I strongly believe that there will be a broader range of winners.
Regarding the cards, this seems to be the best way to maximize the traffic on multiplayers games....And this is what VR is interested in, generate a maximum of traffic to get the max amount of $ for their ad, ...which is what is paying them, not the options. I don't think asking the players to pay 1 EUR will change anything, you will have a lot that do not want to play anymore, even for 1 EUR and so reduce traffic and EUR coming from ads.

NB. I fully agree with you that they need to improve the way they communicate, and also getting some feedback from a selected group of players to improve their soft would be very helpful for them. And also a more detalled manual, with all the rules would be far better.
NB2. Congratulation for your performances!
Post by iconPost by zezo | 2017-09-25 | 07:46:03
The as income from one single player is something like 1 EUR/month.

Which is comparable with the income from the paid options (let's say 5% of the players times 20 EUR/month)

For purely ad-sponsored game to work you need to be able to engage few million schoolboys and build something called "Clash of ...." (I have a 5th grader at home ;-)

But I doubt that 5th graders will be too interested about a sailing game.

VR hate SO rankings because they feel it steals money from them. People play to see their name on top of a list, and if they can see it on a top of free list it makes no sense to get on the paid list.

But I don't see how exactly the cards merge the SO and AO player groups. 5% (ot 10% with foils) extra speed is still extra speed, everything else being equal.

Personally I don't think that you need a barrel of gold and stack of cards to keep people engaged in a sailing game, because we already have the stack of cards Mother Nature and NOAA throws at us every 6 hours or so.

P.S. Waypoints are also billed incrementally like the programmer.
Post by iconPost by Nicky761 | 2017-09-25 | 01:43:45
My natural tendency is to dislike change. I knew how to use the old version, and I didn't see a need to change. Therefore, its easy to focus on the negatives. I sail with twa turned on at least 90% of the time and like to have a schedule set for 24 hours in case I can't get to the Internet. I also like to experiment with different courses and change my mind a lot. If I try to use VR3 in this manner, I'll burn through large numbers of program cards that only come in Nav Packs. I'm not going to spend that kind of money.

However, I can see how the new system is more attractive to SO sailors, since they can get some of the functions that previously cost money. It will not make them equal since the boat will be slower unless you pay for the extra sails etc. However, having a few waypoints will allow them to sleep more and still be competitive.

I'm willing to keep an open mind for some period of time and see what happens. Maybe they can adjust which cards they give away to make them more useable. What am I going to do with the 8 Help cards I have other than sell them back?

As Toppen said, one of the biggest problems is a lack of communication. At this point I'm hoping VR is listening and we will see some of the problems addressed. However, since they've shut down the forum and don't answer help emails, I don't see much indication they want to communicate with the users.
Post by iconPost by karriv | 2017-09-25 | 09:55:40
Actually I think the cards system makes a bigger difference between people who don't want to spend money and people who do.

I see that this game has two aspects which decide how good one does:

1. Choosing the correct strategy (= route)
2. Implementing that strategy to the smallest detail

Now, the first item is similarly available to anyone. The difference between "SO" and "AO" comes from the second item. From now on there's going to be a continuum from not spending any money and being able to use a few programmations or waypoints per day, or spending a ton of cash and being able to use really a lot of programmations. Believe me, it makes a difference if you know the bearing you want to use for VMC sailing and then have the correct heading for each iteration. I've been racing at sailonline.org where the boat position is updated several times per minute. There the differences arise from adjusting your course up to 20 times per hour, making tiny adjustments of 0.1 degrees.

My two cents on how I think this game should done: The two items I mention are the things to compete in. Anything else should be made as easy as possible. As Cvetan said, Mother Nature deals a random enough hand of cards, an more importantly, that hand is the same for everyone. No need to add any other dimension of lottery. Naturally this game needs to be financed somehow. I think the earlier system of options was good. If Many Players want to introduce a way to collect a more stable stream of revenues, they could consider the Candy Bar system which was present in the edition Cvetan mentioned.
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