How can we get more people to play Dominion?
Let me get this out of the way before anything else: This thread is not about adding ranked Dominion. It's about increasing the player-base
So over the past few weeks (actually months now, but more active in the past few weeks) I've been asking people why they like SR over Dominion, or why they don't play Dominion.
My sources for answers have been:
1) In game after/during SR games
2) League Forums
3) Third party forums (team liquid, lag.tv, etcetc)
4) Debates with friends (online and real life) who play SR, Dominion, or both.
Trying to have civil conversations with people about it seemed to enrage people in game and on league forums, but they were open to conversation on third party websites and for friendly debates.
For example, in games, my replies were more "dominion is for bads" and "dominion sucks" without giving any real information. I put these players into the "lost cause" category as they have tunnel visioned on their favorite gametype and don't care about other games at all.
So without further delay, I shall tell you my findings.
The top reasons why people don't play Dominion [no particular order]:
1) Unaware of it's existence and/or no idea how to play or the mechanics behind the game.
2) Had a bad experience after a few games and went back to some familiar grounds (back to SR)
3) Have a strong belief that only players who are bad at League of Legends play there because they're bad at SR so they have to go to Dominion to be good (child-like logic here, can be ignored most of the time).
Top reasons why people refuse to play Dominion [people who don't fall into the above category]:
1) There is no competitive aspect (even after showing them DominateDominion) and don't see a reason to actually play it. Oh, and don't even get me started on the people who laugh and think I'm joking when I say there is a competitive scene
2) It requires no skill to play and all it requires is a zerg rush to a capture point
3) It's unbalanced to the point where the entire game type is broken. (most people claiming this had NO evidence to back up these claims, others would name non-op champions like Rammus and consider Teemo/Kassadin not OP at all)
4) Cursor bug. Even if a fix is found by third party or self-fix on your end, most players don't know any information on this at all
5) The map is treated as a "testing" grounds. A place to try out builds and should not be taken seriously. More people take Proving grounds ARAM more seriously than Dominion and Twisted Treeline combined.
So what can we conclude from this information?
The mass player-base of League is misinformed of what Dominion actually is and how to play it. A lot of things I hear about Dominion are untrue or just straight out lies. Someone told me Poppy was OP on Dominion, but isn't she OP everywhere? It seems that rumors started and spread from people into full blown lies without any fact checking or research.
What can the Community of Dominion do to increase players to the Dominion queue?
Aside from the things we are already doing (which includes a website dedicated to Dominion by the community (dominatedominion.com), in-depth guides that people will gladly link if someone asks for help, in-game discussion area ("dominatedominion" chat), a more friendly and inviting community on the league forums, and adding in a form of competitive play (DD tournament)) we can look for new ways to introduce players to the game..
Talk to your friends in real life or people you meet in game and try to convince them to try out Dominion. I may recommend a smurf level 30 account so they're not stuck playing people way above their skill level. Talk to them on skype and try to help them learn the game.
But as community members and not employees of Riot, there's only so much we can do. Which brings me to my next point
Getting Riot to help us promote our game type
Next time you're at a League of Legends event, or a League of Legends panel, or something in real life where employees who change the game will be present, ask them about Dominion and their thoughts on it. Ask them to help it get the attention it deserves. But please be civil about it, there's no need to rage IRL over questions.
There are some employees who actually DO care about Dominion (Kyr0/Nome/Rival to name a few) and know about as much of the game as us higher-level players do. I'm not asking you to bug these guys, they're doing their job and they're doing it correctly. Bug people who are known in the Summoners Rift community. People like Lyte and Phreak. Push a Dominion tutorial map if you can't think of anything to talk to them about.
A stupid and hopeless idea I had:
So I had this idea a few weeks back but never really voiced it. What if we got a big name streamer or someone popular on the internet (like people from a pro SR team or someone from a popular stream/youtube channel) to help our cause? To push the game of Dominion up from the depths of darkness? It seems the biggest lack to Dominion right now (as Nome is doing an amazing job with the updates) is publicity.
Stupid idea, but it never hurts to suggest, right?
Anyways in closing..
Do you have any information to add? Any ideas to suggest?
Does anyone remember when Dominion was announced, people would say 'dota/hon, u mad?" because they didn't have this game mode..? Now everyone treats it like some step child that **** blocks you when ever you make a move on your lady.
We gotta punch them all in the face, cap'n!
You could try aggregating public stats across all champions to show that Dominion is indeed not horrendously imbalanced. I think right now people are going to be too concerned with S3 changes though. We should probably put together video tutorials on how to play Dominion... maybe that'll be my next project.
Like what Sauron said, there needs to be Dominion tutorials. Riot provides none, so none of the new people know how to play it. When there are good, easily accessible and reliable demonstrations of how to play Dom, I think some growth will begin.
Edit - After reading the post below mine, I decided to chime in again here. I'm teaching middle school boys in South Korea right now, and as you can imagine, League is massively huge. They've all found my summoner profile and whatnot and wondered why I play Dominion instead of Classic. Their opinion of Dom? Paraphrasing but, "it's just people running around killing each other and there's no point."
I think most people see Dominion as it is because of how it was released. Just look for some of the Rioters and "pros" and how they play the release map. They had no idea how to play and were sending 5 bot or people wandered off to fight 1v3. It hurt to watch. Riot needs to do a re-release video/stream of Dominion's great players that know what to do, and make a big deal about it. Dominion just got off on the wrong foot because people saw people playing aimlessly, fix that, and it should bring in more players.
And Sauron, you should start thinking of how the S3 patch is going to change Dominion so you can update your guide in a few weeks once everything is figured out :)
Disabling BFT until they fix it would be a great start. I've just quit until they do. The balance is just completely out of control now.
The rubber banding mechanic feels cheap and out of place in a competitive game. Why get penalized for having a good early game? Also, you level faster than you build items. This makes bruiser comps practically unstoppable.
I do agree though, I hate being over 150 points ahead only to have to draw it back even for having a tower for less than half as long as we did.
Removing the "no points lost under 150" needs to go as well. If you beat some down that hard they should still be required to think about a solution rather than just throw bodies at a point until the player there is dead.
But then the question is how can we get these videos out to people who don't play Dominion or have previously given up on it? The easiest answer would be to get some kind of support from a big name streamer or to put it on RiotGameInc's youtube channel.
Also, unrelated but to the people saying "I don't like objective games"... isn't summoners rift an objective game? It reminds me of "Assault" from Unreal Tournament '99
anyways trolling aside that would be pretty cool aprticularly one that covers Dominon's viable team compositions.
I think for the most part people want to feel endorsed by the LoL 'pros' and currently that isn't quite happening with dominion. Tutorials from its top players, as well as FAQs and the sort will help a lot after S3 is launched. I think the coverage people are doing with DD is awesome and very entertaining--I hope they keep it up!
I joined this game a few months ago because of friends and really didn't know what dominion was before stumbling on some info on this forum. I probably wouldn't have ever queued or taken it more serious if I hadn't---they don't, and convincing them became totally futile over time. I imagine a lot of people have fun playing dominion, but don't really have the readily made access to info about its mechanics and stuff to really deviate much from playing other modes. The funfactor is definitely there, but I think its a combination of the mode lacking an endorsement from 'well known players' and people not seeing the purposeful aspect/strategies that exist from playing it.
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