Splinterlands Development Update - September 2019

Hello out there to all ye adventurers in the Splinterlands...@yabapmatt here to let you know what to expect coming up in the game and what the heck we've been up to since our last update.

Things got a little sidetracked during the Steem Hard Fork issues over the past week, but it looks like that's behind us now so we're back to work on product development. We wanted to thank all of you for your patience and support during the downtime. We've learned a lot of lessons from the incidents and are working to reduce the impact on the game from similar issues in the future.

Million Monster Madness Tournament Update

As things would have it, the Steem blockchain halted right in the middle of our Million Monster Madness tournament with ~$300 in prizes to be paid out. We understand that a lot of you rearranged your schedules to be able to participate in this tournament, so to try to make it up to everyone we have decided to split 300,000 DEC among the 276 active participants in the tournament.

If you were active in the tournament (meaning you checked in), then you will receive approximately 1087 DEC sometime in the next few days. We also plan to reschedule the tournament and will let everyone know when that will be.

Daily Update Popup

Those of you reading this post likely don't have any trouble staying on top of what's going on in the Splinterlands. You probably know about Splintertalk, Peak Monsters and Herons Unlimited. But there are a significant number of players who don't regularly follow our Steem blog, or maybe don't even know about it, and are missing out on all of the other cool things Splinterlands has to offer!

In order to help address this, we're going to be adding a Daily Update popup into the game website that players will see approximately once per day after they log in. It will feature the latest updates from our blog as well as a "Did You Know?" section to help promote some of the other cool features and services related to the game.

Design credit goes to @nateaguila, as always!

It will also show details about your current quest status, ranked play status, and the next upcoming tournament so you can get a quick overview of where everything stands and what's happening when you first come to the site for the day.

Purchase Beta Packs with Dark Energy Crystals (DEC)!

Currently if you want to use DEC to purchase Beta packs you have to first transfer the DEC to either Steem Engine or Tron and sell it on the market for STEEM or TRX which you can then use to purchase the packs. This is an unnecessarily difficult process, so going forward we are going to be doing a limited-time trial of allowing Beta pack purchases directly with DEC.

The cost of each pack in DEC will still be $2 based on the current market price of DEC, just like when purchasing with any other cryptocurrency. It's important to note that DEC used to purchase Beta packs will not be burnt like it is for other in-game DEC purchases, but instead will go to Splinterlands as revenue for the business. We intend to put this DEC back into tournament prizes and/or save it to use for other promotional purposes. We never sell DEC either directly or through the markets.

We've been a little hesitant to do this in the past because you never know exactly how things like this will end up affecting the overall economy, but it's been a heavily requested feature and we think that it's important to give it a try. If the limited trial goes well then we'll plan to make the option available going forward for the remainder of the Beta packs and for purchases of future edition packs as well.

Archmage Arius Balance Update

Archmage Arius is one of the rarest and hardest to get cards in the game. Currently 53 out of a total of 90 have been found via the Mystery potions. He was also meant to be a very strong and sought after card in the game, however that has not turned out to be the case. As a result, we will be reducing his mana cost from 6 to 5 in hopes that he will start to appear more regularly on the battlefield.

Splinterlands Now Available in Russian!

Thanks to Splinterlands player @shenan and Danilla from cryptogamingpool.com, the Splinterlands game website has been fully translated into Russian!

We really appreciate the support and enthusiasm the game has received from the Russian community and are very happy to finally be able to allow them to experience it in their native language.

We look forward to being able to add even more language translations to the site in the future, so if you're able to help out with that, please contact us on discord!

Paid Starter Sets Will No Longer Give Cards

A little while back we made a change where Starter Sets obtained for free via a promo code would no longer give the player any cards. Instead anyone who has a starter set can now always use any of the 30 starter set cards in battle, whether or not they own them.

Going forward, this will be the case for all starter sets, both purchased and free. The primary reason for this change is that it's way too easy to profit off of buying starter sets. A number of people have been purchasing large numbers of starter sets and immediately dumping the cards on the market and then running bots to farm DEC and reward cards which are also then dumped on the markets. Currently it's possible to make your $10 back and much more very quickly and easily.

This is a very bad thing for the game if left unchecked as it will cause high inflation for the 30 starter set cards and lower market prices. Obviously we want people to be able to profit from the game, but it should require a good bit of time and/or monetary investment above and beyond just the $10 starter set.

Even without the cards, it's still more than worth it to purchase the starter set for $10 for anyone who can put the time, effort, and/or investment into the game. It unlocks the ability to participate in tournaments which have a steadily increasing pool of prizes, and in the ranked season play in which you can earn a significant amount of DEC and reward cards.

Updated Quest Potion Price and Reduced Quest Rewards

As discussed in the section above, it's currently much too easy to extract value from the game - which means extracing value from, you, the players - with a bare minimum of time or investment. This is something we take very seriously as it threatens the sustainability of the entire game economy.

Initially when we started the daily quests, we expected that you wouldn't be able to get farther than bronze league with the bare minimum starter set cards. As it turns out, it's quite easy to get well into Silver league with a minimal set of cards, which is allowing bots to farm reward cards at a higher rate than anticipated.

This has been further exacerbated by the addition of the quest potions, which, upon further examination, have been quite underpriced. As a result, the price of all levels of quest potion will be increased by 50% and the quest rewards for the Silver league tiers and the first two tiers of the Gold league will be reduced.

We understand that a number of people will likely be upset by these changes, but we hope that you will understand why they are important for the long term sustainability of the game. The current batch of reward cards are quickly running out, and we can't keep giving them away at the rate they have been going. This also leads us to the last and most exciting section of the update:

Introducing New Reward Cards!

As you may know, each Reward edition card has a limited number that will ever be printed based on the rarity. Currently the following four Reward cards are nearing that limit and will soon cease to be printed forever:

  1. Lord Arianthus (10,000 limit)
  2. Flame Imp (100,000 limit)
  3. Hobgoblin (100,000 limit)
  4. Mushroom Seer (100,000 limit)

These four cards will run out much sooner than other cards due to the fact that they were part of the original 10 reward cards released before the set size was increased to the current size of 30 cards, and there were fewer Legendary and Rare cards in the initial set than the other rarities relative to their drop rate in the game.

In any event, as soon as the cards hit their print limit noted above, they will no longer be printed ever again. This means that only around 900 max level versions of those cards will ever exist in the game. While this may seem like a lot given the current size of the player base, if we are successful in significantly growing the game these cards will be very hard to come by.

But enough with the #OldRewardCards, here's a sneak peak of what's going to be coming in to take their spots:

Furious Chicken

Despite being a mostly ridiculous card with an Enrage ability that will almost never get used, as the first and only zero mana cost card in the game the Furious Chicken should be an auto-include whenever you have a low mana cost match and a free spot available on your team!

Beetle Queen

Yes, you've read that right...the Fire splinter is getting a Tank Healer! The Queen also has a nice Magic attack and gets Inspire at max level to give a boost to the Melee attackers on your team.

Naga Windmaster

The Naga Windmaster has a new ability called "Headwinds" which reduces the Ranged attack damage of all enemy Monsters by 1 point (though it will never reduce it below 1). This should help the Water splinter fend off some of those nasty Prince Rennyn teams!

The windmaster also gets the Shatter ability which destroys all of the target's armor when hit with an attack, and Poison at max level which should make him a worthy addition to many Water splinter teams.

Unholy Spirit

At only 2 Mana this card is an unusually powerful legendary that should hopefully help breathe some life into the Death splinter. In addition to the new Headwinds ability described above, it has Flying, Demoralize, and another new ability called Blind, which reduces the hit chance of all enemy Melee and Ranged attacks by 15%.

For those of you about to call "OP" in the comments, keep in mind that it only has 1 Health, even at max level, so if it goes up against a Monster with Magic Reflect, or a card with Opportunity like the Fiendish Harpy, it's not going to last very long!

Beta Packs are Running Out!

We greatly appreciate the players sticking with us through the recent challenges and we're glad to put that behind us and look towards the future. Right now less than 15% of the Beta edition booster packs are remaining for sale. This will mark the first major hard end to a majority of the existing cards in the game, and it's an extremely exciting time to be a Splinterlands player. Whether it's for making a team right now or hodling into the future, we hope you partake in grabbing some packs before they're gone and joining one of the most promising games in all of crypto!

Stay tuned for more updates from the Splinterlands!

Steem Monsters / Splinterlands Contact Info:

Steem Monsters / Splinterlands Blog

Steem Monsters / Splinterlands Website

Steem Monsters / Splinterlands Discord

Steem Monsters / Splinterlands Telegram


greetings, @steemmonsters

When this cards will be done?? It will be given in a orb or beta pack?

thank you and have a nice day

these cards will be replaced with reward cards when they run out.
Its mentioned in the post btw. :)

thank you man!!! I am not so good to underestand all english!!!

thank you a lot

Is there any plans for new quests?

I love your devblog, thank you for keeping us informed!

This is awesome, I am very impressed with the innovation that @steemmonsters is bringing to the table... y'all always have 'another card up your sleeves...'.. in a good way! This post makes me foretell of a future where Steem is the most valuable blockchain... and 98% of it's utilization is Splinterlands! And and while Steem paved the way for Steem Monsters... Steem Monsters paved the way for Steem itself!!!! At least that's what this bird here told me, although generally he's pretty on the ball with things!!!


The eagle has spoken!!!1

@yabapmatt who are these small players that u talk about. I have lvl 4 summoners and i am stuck in silver 1/gold 3. My deck is not a cheap one either.

I'm not a fan of the smaller accounts having to suffer due to bots, but know that decisions were made after review and analysis. A lot of us will continue to help real players grow and climb out of those league.

Awesome reward cards! Finally a fire tank heal, woohoo! Furious chicken?! Lol. I can see it being used as the sacrificial chicken tank and being the first one to go.

I have lvl 4 summoners and i hang around silver 1 to gold 3 most of the time. I dont get who are these small players they are talk about? Lvl4 summoners are small players?

Small = The ones working their way up from scratch and can't invest a shitload of money ;0)

How much is shitload and how many people will do that? I have enough money but i got thr by not spending shitload on games. I still have invested at least few hundreds on this game. Atleast more than average spender.

I think a couple of hundreds is a lot to invest in a game, any game.
Definitely considering that only takes you to Gold 3.

Glad they changed their minds about reducing the rewards for the Silver and Gold league.

They did. Where's that announcement?

Edit: found it

Hi @mightypanda. Sorry if it was meant in the wrong way. The change would have impacted silver level accounts more and that may have been the wrong terminology. An update has been made and players in silver and gold won’t have their reward cards reduced so there is good news there!

I saw that they reverted the changes and thats great. I was just venting a little because i have recently spent quite a bit of money in my 2 accounts and they are still paired up with lvl1 bot accounts. They can stop bots all together but they dont want to as player base is quite small. I think they should just run thr own bots instead.

Yeah. It's quite difficult to reach gold with lvl4 summos. It's possible for max dec.
My dec is not max, yet that required a good amount of investment.

A lot of us will continue to help real players grow and climb out of those league.

True, but 1. it shouldn't be up to us and 2. maybe we're the fools for doing so. They obviously don't want those small, real players in the game...

Yes I agree @simplymike, but we became a team back with NRD because we all wanted to help others grow with us. We definitely won't lose sight of that because the alternative is to step over others to get to the top, and that's not what we do either. So we will continue to be honest fools!

There are ways for real players to continue to grow now with herons-unlimited, plus, we still help plenty of players with Team Possible. The problem is that these small accounts (bots) continue to create more smaller accounts, and I'm not even sure how else SM could combat the reward card issue besides the one they proposed.

My friend reached silver 3 in his first season. He's quickly on his way up up up.

If you are an engaged player, it really doesn't take much to move up in the game. Not as hard as it is to leave minnowhood in STEEM at least.

it really doesn't take much to move up in the game

Only a truckload of money....

(But good for your friend. I hope he will continue his journey)

It doesn't take more than 3 or 5 dollars to reach high silver.

@felipejoys, last time I checked, summoners were about $1 on the market. If one wants to build a deck that is only level 2, you need 3 summoners for each splinter. 3 x $1 x 5 splinters = $15. Only for the summoners...

Rental market is getting thin, and more expensive...

Rental market

It's still the best option available. There is no good tutorial and the interface isn't easy to deal with. If that can be fixed or if other alternatives can be offered, then problem solved. Oh and there's also epic summoners which are much cheaper.

If you don't like how rentals is the only alternative other than manual leases, you can offer support to different alternatives.

Shameless plug, my website https://steemmonsters.club has automated 7-day lease lotteries of cards from $0.30 to $6. Players can participate in the lotteries by just going there and clicking join. Next on our roadmap is free leases to subscribed members.

Cool thing you're doing. I found out about the site a couple of days ago.

Of course I like the rental market. It offers people a chance to play without having to invest a truckload of money. But I do see people upping their rental prices regularly. With the price of Steem being this low, renting might be cheap in USD, but it does take up quite some Steem.
$5 = 30 Steem at the time of writing... it's not that easy to come by these days. Not for a newcomer, at least.

I also like the herons-Unlimited system... I have a couple of decks in there too. And we have been doing this within Team Possible for almost a year now. (We don't have a script, like Tc, so everything is still done manually, lol).
That's how people like Faiyaz and hossainbd started to play.

However,... all these things have been set up by 3rd parties. The people from Peakmonsters, Tcpolymath, Team Possible, you,...

These new cards are insanely cool! Fire healer, heck yeah!

I think that’s my fav!

This is awesome! I like the economic changes but I am most excited about the new cards! I think that will really help changeup the meta, and the more cards in the long term, I think the more playability it adds. Keep up the great work :)

I really appreciate all the good work you are doing here and I love playing the game!

That being said the reward system change is still hitting me big in my account development. After investing about 1.100USD into the game which took me to the gold leagues, I felt like I finally reached a stage where I could keep growing (slowly but steadily) my account without investing too much more.

Couple of days later the reward card amount gets reduced and I'm gonna be stuck again because the remaining few of the current set go to the diamond/champion players and not to me as levelling material...

As I also invest not only a considerable amount of money, but also a lot of time in this I can't help but feel a bit disappointed.

Let me phrase a blasphemic question that we are all thinking: Why not ban bots?

Ps.: That chicken idea coming from Zelda? :-)


I can answer the last question quite easily. 'Cause it's a decentralized game, you can't ban anyone. If that was a possibility people would abandon the game pretty fast. The most you can do is work around the bots, disincentivize the behavior to a point where it's not worth it.

"'Cause it's a decentralized game, you can't ban anyone."

That does not make any sense. Even if it's running on decentralized resources, there is one source making the rules. Otherwise there could be no updates or changes to the game.

Rules and banning aren't the same thing. Just like Steem, you can change the reward mechanisms, but you can't exclude anyone from using the chain.

Maybe if there was a way to identify and tag bots, and then give human players the option to not play against bots.

not at the cost of the human legit players, SORRY

I never said anything about at the cost of human players. I was trying to explain why you can't just outright ban bots. This whole thing is uncharted territory, of course there will be bumps on the road of figuring it out.

Start working with rentals and support rental promotion.

Loving to see these new update and developments ! I have encountered more than usual bots that don’t even hide it as they all begin by th2c or something like that...
Keep updating and protecting real players 🙌🙌🙌

TH12 is human driven team of players.........

I didn’t know that, and they all have the same beginning steem username ? Thanks for the info ;)

Thanks for the update. Cool new cards.

You do leave me with a couple of questions, though...

  1. People will actually pay $10 for a starter deck that has no cards?
    Rare summoners cost about $1 each on the market these days....

  2. I get that you can't keep giving out reward cards at this rate, but why is only the number of cards for Silver and Gold 3 and 2 reduced? Wouldn't it make more sense (and wouldn't it be more fair) to reduce the number of cards given out in all leagues???

It's common knowledge that Splinterlands is favoring the big players, but isn't this a bit too obvious???

Wouldn't it make more sense (and wouldn't it be more fair) to reduce the number of cards given out in all leagues???

My thoughts exactly @simplymike. Everytime something is done to combat bots it always seem to be the lower players that take the hit.

Surely there must be another way.

And what about our Heron accounts? Doesn't this mean we'll be taking a big hit there too? Will it still be worth @tcpolymath running the service. I'm very interested to hear his thoughts.

Me too. But all people seem to care about in the Discord server are the new cards
Btw, just to make sure the tag arrives: it's @tcpolymath , without the dash ;0)

Yeah. I'd already corrected it and left a message on Discord cuz, as you say, all anyone seems to be talking about right now is the new cards. 😁

I don't know how to have thoughts based on "the quest rewards for the Silver league tiers and the first two tiers of the Gold league will be reduced" with no specifics.

On average each Reward card is worth about 94 DEC to a Heron account; you can figure out from that how much of a hit it will be once we find out what that actually means.

One thing I am very aware of, because some of them use Ottermaker, is how much some of the low-level botnets are pulling out of the game. I don't really understand why just pulling their starter pack rights when they're identified isn't an option, though. It seems like that would be more effective and also reduce the outgoing rewards considerably more than just cutting them for everyone.


I don't really understand why just pulling their starter pack rights when they're identified isn't an option, though. It seems like that would be more effective and also reduce the outgoing rewards considerably more than just cutting them for everyone.

Yep. That's the issue for me. It sounds from yaba's comments below that the lower players all get lumped into the same category as the bots which has happened before.

I want the bots stopped too. I actually consider myself an investor more than a player but this has stopped me in my tracks now.

i was planning on creating more Heron accounts but now I'm not sure. As you say we don't know the actual amount so can't work that out yet.

Maybe it would help if we saw some actual numbers . . . how much are the lower players (not the bots) taking out out of the game relative to their contribution and how little are the big players getting.

Also, it's not just about money. I've made a massive time contribution into the game too.

I don't disagree with the need for something to be done and I suppose, as a non dev, I just think there must be other solutions to reduce the bots.

First I will apologize for not discussing these changes with you and others before they were announced. Our communication can definitely use some work and I think that's a side effect of having a very small team juggling a ton of different things trying to keep this all moving in the right direction.

I guess if you can let me know your concerns here then I can consider and try to respond to them.

As for identifying and removing bots, there's really no way to do that short of doing KYC on every player. We could do that now but then they would just come back and adjust how they work to avoid whatever previous identification method we used. It's the same reason you can't ban bots on Steem.

Bots really aren't the problem. They can even be good and in general we should welcome them. The problem is when it's better to play many low level bot accounts than a single high level account. Getting to higher leagues and increasing your card levels should always be the best route to earning. Currently that's not really the case and it needs to be addressed.

Your Herons service is really fantastic and we are in no way trying to hurt that, we want to support it as much as we can. Please let me know how we can help you to make it better. For one thing, I'm planning to add that as one of the things shown in the "Did You Know?" section on the new daily popup.

Most of my developer concerns with the update are fiddly technical ones, like I'd like to know when exactly the new cards will launch and what their ID numbers are, and what specific changes you're making to the rewards.

As for identifying and removing bots, there's really no way to do that short of doing KYC on every player.

Something I can tell you from my poker experience: KYC is completely irrelevant to stopping bots, or even multiaccounters. It doesn't work. They have to get at it by pattern and timing analysis, which is also how you'd have to do it here. It's expensive, which is one reason I haven't suggested more actively that it should be done here if figuring out how to have an ecosystem that includes them doesn't work out.

Getting to higher leagues and increasing your card levels should always be the best route to earning.

I think this is incomplete. Yes, it's important to encourage progression, but you also have to make it available; if so much of the earnings are dedicated to higher leagues that the only way to get there is by spending thousands of dollars from scratch, then you lose the long tail of players who want to play and reinvest.

The key to keeping earnings in the game is that people should be able to use the earnings at their level to make psychologically satisfying progress toward the next level. When they feel like they can't, then they stop buying more cards and start cashing out.

As delighted as I am that card prices have been going up, as one of the top holders, I'm also seeing a lot of people giving up on their Silver accounts because they don't feel like they're making progress, either to try to turn them into a Heron for someone else to play, or selling off their own cards to play an account with cards owned by me or Aggroed or Neal. There's already a lot of frustration before this change, with it being really hard to use earnings to move ahead in the game. So I see this as likely making that problem worse.

It really doesn't hurt Herons unless it drastically reduces the demand for playing level 4 accounts, and then those owners don't upgrade them to level 5/6 accounts, which seems unlikely. Overall I would say on a purely selfish level this probably makes me a little bit more money, because it's mostly top players who reinvest their rewards in building Heron accounts.

But even though I'm not a free-2-play player here by any means, I still am at heart. All the money I've spent here came from the F2P/reinvestment cycle in other games, and I'm still F2P in way more games than not. So I feel strongly about not trapping those players into places where the only way they can grow is by cashing out and playing something else.

I've made hundreds of thousands of dollars that way. I want people to be able to do that within Splinterlands with patience and skill. One of the things that's very popular in poker, and draws in new players like nobody's business, is the bankroll-building challenge. Start with zero or $10 or $100 and blog or Twitch the hell out of turning it into $10k. I want to see that here, especially since Splinterlands has some real advantages over poker, like you can't just sit down and lose that first $100.


Can we talk about how to accomplish this on Discord? Again, not because it's private, but because I really want to understand and see how you think we can do things better and it's just going to take forever for that to happen going back and forth in comments. We can publish the whole conversation afterwards if you want.

I desperately need to sleep, but if you have time one of these next mornings you could DM me.


Good points @tcpolymath I especially like the last idea of the bankroll building challenge that would be a blast. One thing from your people getting frustrated comment earlier on is that with growth in the game not all cards are going to be meant to be owned. A year from now I certainly would hope that I own a lesser percentage of the cards ever made and if the game continues to grow the more new cards will add excitement and liquidity income to the game developers in the process. We have gotten conditioned that we all must own every single card as highly leveled as possible. That is not going to remain viable over time unless people start massive leasing accounts which would be good for everyone. The psychological effect of not owning virtually every single card is a "you problem," not a "game problem." Besides as these cards start hitting zero new production the older cards that this person is carrying in their (say for example) in their silver level accounts are going to carry a massive premium over time due to the difficulty of obtaining, that is if the game keeps growing. The days of us all being able to carry all 5 splinters fairly well stocked along with much if not all the dragon cards, promos, rewards, and betas pretty much all maxed are going to come to slow down if not an end at some point if the game keeps growing. In the end the growth of the game shown in increasing values is just about the best possible anecdotal PR spread for the game as just about anything. People want to hear far more about the "Blockchain game that has trading cards that tripled (+) in value," versus "the blockchain game that has cards that own within the game." Both are nice, but the first one is makes the ear burn a little more at minimum.

Bots are not good for mass adaption. Most "normies" hear the word bot and think I'm being cheated. Changing that mind set is likely not going to happen.

The new cards look like they will be popular. I think the Chicken card will come in handy in allot of situations.

I'm in favor of reward cuts as I have always thought and expressed that the rewards have been/are too generous. However I'm not a fan of the lower levels taken 100% of that hit. I personally think the rewards need to be reduced all the way up the league, more so at the top then bottom.

I always viewed the $10 starter as the initial fee to purchase the game so changing all the starter set codes to non-transferable cards to stop inflation/dumping of said cards makes sense to me.

I do see a big negative with changing paid starters to non transferable cards and that is, now the person who has little to spend needs to buy an extra summoner to get that level 1 summoner to level 2. That's a little unfair to the purchaser vs. the person who got a free starter pack.

How do I get a heron account? And how do I figure out if my cards are good enough for that.

Look at @herons-unlimited and/or come to https://discord.gg/hXpQsHC

In general we have a long waiting list to play gold accounts or higher, but silvers come up every couple of days, usually more at the beginning of a season.

To make accounts I require at least four playable elemental splinters at the equivalent of level 3 rare summoners. That seems to be the minimal place for keeping players at the moment.


Ultimately it's not how many cards you're getting but the value of them that matters. Everything we do is focused around increasing the value of the cards which helps all players. Many of the smaller accounts who are complaining are also earning a lot more than they spent on the game on a regular basis while most of the bigger players have put waaay more money into the game than they've taken out. So really in a way the bigger players are paying the smaller players and the smaller players are complaining about it.

I don't see that many small players complain about things they don't have a right to complain about, to be honest.
Things is... the gap is only going to get a lot wider... soon, there will be Bronze and diamond/champion,...

Ultimately it's not how many cards you're getting but the value of them that matters.

This is true if you look at the game purely as an extraction exercise, but for people trying to build up decks with reward cards, more cards -> more effectiveness -> more long-term earnings. If you give out fewer cards with higher prices it drastically slows down the timeline for developing an account to higher levels through earning and reinvestment, even if the card values in the two situations somehow come out the same. Those are presumably the small players you want to be encouraging, rather than the extraction-focused ones.


Sell the high priced cards and buy packs or lower priced ones that you need for your deck?

What lower-priced ones? These are already the lowest-priced cards in the game.


Feel free to message me on discord, might be easier to discuss there.

No offense, Matt, but if you want private discussions you could notify your third-party developers of changes ahead of time and ask what we think of them.

You dropped this on us publicly and I think discussion should stay that way.


People will actually pay $10 for a starter deck that has no cards?

Buying the starter set gives you access to the game. Not all games are free to play, many times people pay much more than $10 for a game. The difference here is that "buying" the game also allows you to participate in the tournaments to win all sorts of prizes and in ranked play in which you can earn DEC and reward cards.

Wouldn't it make more sense (and wouldn't it be more fair) to reduce the number of cards given out in all leagues?

I would argue that the payouts before this change were "unfair" because lower rated players with bare minimums of cards were able to earn disproportionate amounts of reward cards. This caused people to take advantage of the situation through bots and making many different accounts which ends up hurting the "big players" the most in the long run.

Taking away everything from the smaller accounts will hurt the entire game in the long run... but that's just my two cents.

Many people aren't taking advantage' of the situation and are genuinely trying to build a deck, which gets more difficult every day.

But you're the dev, dev.

Read my reply to gillianpearce's comment above. I think that might explain it better. Smaller accounts are making money on average just by playing. We love this and we want to encourage this, but at the same time, if they can make too much money then it gets taken advantage of and the whole game suffers.

This is the way it is with a decentralized game where items have real value. With typical games it doesn't matter, you can reward players of any level as much as you want and it doesn't threaten the game because the rewards have no value and are not transferable.

Here it's different. If we give too much to anyone for too little effort/investment then the whole thing will fail and your cards will be worth nothing. On the other hand if we're able to balance the rewards just right then prices will continue climbing and everyone, small and large, will stand to benefit.

So far I think we've done a pretty good job steering this ship in the right direction, but if you think otherwise you have the option to sell your cards, and for pretty good prices these days.

First... thanks for your patience, Matt. I appreciate it. i realize it's not the most fun thing to do to counter all that critique. Maybe I should lay low and let it sink in for a short while - wait till it's clear just how much you will be taking away, and what the effect on the players that don't have a truckload of money to invest will be.

I know onboarding people like j6969 is a dream come true, but a big part of your player base is different...

you have the option to sell your cards

You made me an addict, so that's not really an option ;0)

how much of a hit it could be. silver will probably be 1 card in a daily quest, and after some time of playing and getting the good old rusty most will not play daily quests. I feel i will wait till the end of the season and than just play my best deck and get what i can.

I think enabling pack purchases with DEC is a key part of this. A new player can now make something like a dollar a day with the starter set and then directly buy packs to quickly get up to level 4-5.

Then the grind sets in with the exponential nature of XP :).

Contrast that with the old system, where that was technically still possible, but you had to sell DEC at the bid for STEEMP, then pay 1% for STEEM, then buy packs.

"A new player can now make something like a dollar a day with the starter set"

I don't see how this could be possible. A new player holding just the starter set gets less than a quarter DEC for winning his game.

"Contrast that with the old system, where that was technically still possible, but you had to sell DEC at the bid for STEEMP, then pay 1% for STEEM, then buy packs."

Or you could just buy the boosters on Steem Engine with STEEMP.


I would also like to see the amount of cards/player reward per league. I get that there are less players in the higher leagues, but there are much greater rewards. So a simple equation to calculate ratios would be nice to see.

I'm sure they have the figures and can share.

But will they?

I doubt it. I play lvl 3 summoners and reach GOLD II and sometime GOLD I, so this will directly effect me.

I'm sure I've mentioned this before, but why not just add a "I am not a bot" varification like a lot of websites do. It may be a pain in the arse at first to "pick all screens with a car in" but it would quickly remove all not players. I'm sure between them they could even think of an even fast "proof of human" button

Captcha is not decentralized... or something like that. I know there's a reason why they won't do such a thing, but I'm not 100% sure what that reason was.

A couple of months ago, when i was still on my crusade to fight for the rights of the smaller players, they admitted they needed the bots to make sure people could play at any time of day... I don't know if that's still true, but looking at the players base, I think it is...

That’s what I was thinking throughout this bot convo - we need them cause sometimes I want to play when others don’t - still though, Splinterlands can have you play against their deck and that might be fun too.

If there was a way to identify bots (timing analysis and the like), human players could be given the option whether to play bots or not.

Wow, finally Tank Healer for Fire splinter. Meta is gonna change :D

Hell of an update! Beautiful game this is!

I feel like an idiot.. I have been buying Orbs out of my @ trying to get an Archmage Arius 🤦

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very nice


Can you combine the starter pack cards with owned cards?

No. They're "proxy" cards. When you actually own one of them, it replaces the proxy, which disappears until you stop owning any of that card.

So why not give them an account of these proxy cards that could play at a higher level while they're at it. They're giving $6-7 worth of cards they don't own for $10 ... why not give them $30 of cards they're getting $10 cash money give it a little bit of value. I mean the freely given out ones i can understand but the $30 ones give them a bit more ability to make it up the ranks. Like silver league or something.

Make it time limited... make it number of plays limited... make it go down in proportion to the rewards cards they receive. I'm just spitballing ideas. I'm not sure. But $10 for no actually owned cards is kinda weak sauce.

But $10 for no actually owned cards is kinda weak sauce.

Strongly disagree. The unexistent available information to climb efficiently is the real weak sauce, but it should be provided by the community, not necessarily by the game creators.

Amazing and MUCH needed cards for balance.
Beetle Queen is bringing a tank heal AND inspire to fire! Sick.
To balance that and to cool the Prince a bit, we get a new ability, blind.
But the best news from this new update is the new ability Headwinds. I called this and my guess for the -1 ranged attack ability was Hurricane.
Splinterlands keeps getting better and better.

As someone whose best deck I feel is death . . . WOOOHOOOO. Looking forward to getting that legendary and seeing how well it will work.

Honestly, I think Naga Windmaster will be more powerful than Unholy Spirit.

Great update!

Wow! Thanks for the update! Looking forward getting the new cards! 😎

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Yuhh finnally Splinterlands in Russian! 👍🎆

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Is this Unholy Spirit from The Exorcist move? :D

Hahaha... Im falling for the furious chicken already.. I hope I'll get that one soon

I am still not sure how the enrage feature works but I love the idea of having a zero mana chicken save the day.

Hahaha.. that would be funny @metzli. As a little guy who plays around bronze and silver..with the new reducing rewards, I don't want to know about any feature😁 let the champs take care of it

Looking at the new monsters, I would guess that one of the devs was traumatized by a chicken as a child.

It's a ploy to get us to buy more pack. They know we want to get our hands on the new goods 😁. Guess I will give in and buy a few more packs. Woot!

Adding more cards will further increse the complexity of the game .... with the new untamed comming up even more .... :)

I guess a lot of skill will be needed.

I am glad we were back. It was really like a nightmare and we could see how addicted everybody was to the game :D I am very happy to see "Beetle Queen" as a new card, because I always felt the fire splinter had not card that could revive the others again. Now it is coming... Keep the good work up!

Finally you can buy cards with DEC! Awesome new feature, well done!

I’m excited about that too. I’ve been selling my dec and now I want to save it again...

I have some heron accounts and when I read about the reduction of the reward I thought "this sucks." But when reading Matt, I see that what they do makes a lot of sense, however, there is a possibility that many players think that the game stopped being "profitable" and simply quit. Hopefully that doesn't happen.
otherwise, the real problem is still the bots and these measures will not affect them at all.

Wow simply amazing. I look forward to the additions keep up the exception work and innovation. What was once your achilles heal is now a major position of power and strength (referring to the reward card pools and DEC creation to help offset card inflation).

Archmage Arius ... As a result, we will be reducing his mana cost from 6 to 5 in hopes that he will start to appear more regularly on the battlefield.

That's great! Just recently I had some new ideas how to use a 6 mana Archmage, but now with only 5 mana, I guess it will turn our to be a deadly weapon.

Purchase Beta Packs with Dark Energy Crystals (DEC)!

Another great news. You are creative, hard working, and Steem Monsters is the best what could happen to the STEEM blockchain during these hard times.

Concerning my own 'Steem Monsters job' recently I am struggling to find enough time to finish the German translation of the game, but I keep doing it step by step (I decided - and hope you agree - that quality is more important than speed). Far more than half of it is already done.

~Smartsteem Curation Team

I love everything about this update :) Super stoked with the archmage adjustment, i think its very important to have such an ultra rare card in the card as a potential high value transaction will generate free PR for the game and be good for all of us.

Imagine a single card selling for 10k? Press galore!

Thanks for continuing to improve the game and the prospects for all stakeholders. I’m super impressed by the productivity and execution of this team

Congrats on all the success guys!

Wow! such awesome updates! I cant wait to get my hands on that Water splinter card Naga Windmaster , it will be a must have for the only team I own that has a maxed out Summoner Arlic Stormbringer , keep up the great work @steemmonsters , @yabapmatt , @aggroed . ❤👹👍

Interesting updates. I really the option to buy packs with DEC.

The fire tank healer is gonna change the game a lot

Awesome updates as always! What amazing new cards!!
062 - Phoenix (663px, 5fps).gif

I still wonder why none of the devs from other dapps take notes from what the steemmonsters team is doing. It is so rare to be able to trust a project that they will do what it right. I love everything about this update (as a silver/gold player who will get hit by getting less reward cards) and like how it's all reasoned in the post.

Keep it up and thanks again to @clove71 for giving me a starter kit promo code!

I wan that chicken card, I must have it LOL! epic update will take it for a test drive shortly

That's awesome about Archmage! I got one of those and I was super excited, but then I basically never won any match I used it on.

I want a maxed out furious chicken because that will be ridiculously hilarious.

Yep I have lofty goals.

@steemmonsters, Team so many updates, hope that every step will add value to Steemmonsters Journey.

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Interesting updates, although, I'm concerned about the guys that barely get in silver ranks like me. Should we pay the price bacause of farmer bots? it doesn't sound fair...

Splinterlands Now Available in Russian!
Thanks to Splinterlands player @shenan and Danilla from cryptogamingpool.com, the Splinterlands game website has been fully translated into Russian!

Thanks guys for the translation!

Even thought the drop in quest rewards will hit my bottom line, I like the update overall. The status popup is fantastic. The Beetle Queen is going to be amazing, and hopefully my Arius will get some more use now.

Daily Update Popup is quite a great feature and puts the focus for the players and keep them updated. What I would add to that is a GUILD section because I don't feel that this was greatly advertising and just didn't get off the ground as expected.
Hopefully you can make that happen!