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Processed Draw My Thing - AFK Timer

Discussion in 'Game Alterations' started by Goudge ✦, Jul 27, 2019.

  1. Mineplex's AFK timer, the mechanic that removes idle players from games, is essential in maintaining a fair playing field for all, and preventing stat boosting. However, it doesn't play well with games that require players to be relatively idle.

    The main game in which I find this to be a problem is Draw My Thing. When I play DMT, I generally start the game by finding a spot to stand where I have a good view of the drawing board, and stay there for pretty much the entire game. With the exception of when it is my turn to draw, I remain stationary almost for the entirety of the game. Therefore, I often get warned that I will be kicked for being idle if I do not move. In most games, this wouldn't be an issue. However, in a game where players are required to spend a lot of time with their chat open, this can be a bit of a problem.

    Yesterday, for example, I was kicked by the AFK timer because I had my chat open and was typing a rather long word. I physically did not have time to finish typing, close my chat, and move before being kicked. This is obviously frustrating as I clearly was not AFK, and I feel as though this should be fixed.

    What can be done?
    I do not believe the AFK timer should be removed in DMT, as it does serve an important purpose of removing actual AFK players who ruin the game and unfairly boost their stats. Instead, I have thought up a few different options to fix the issue of players who are typing getting kicked in DMT, while not removing the mechanic entirely.

    - Extend the warning time given before the player is kicked. This would allow players who are typing to finish their guess and still have time to move around, avoiding being kicked.
    - Automatically kick idle players who do not draw anything on the board during their turn instead. I feel as though this is a better way of dealing with AFK players in Draw My Thing, as it is a bigger hinderance to gameplay when the drawer is AFK rather than when the guessers are. This is also a better indicator of who is truly AFK, and will not punish players for simply not moving as they attempt to guess the words.
    - Allow players to type in chat in order to notify the system that they are not AFK. In a game that is largely focused on typing in chat, it seems ridiculous that the system would think that a player is AFK for doing just that. While I imagine this would require an overhaul of the AFK timer mechanics, I believe it should be able to tell that a player is not AFK if they are typing.

    I would love to hear your feedback on these suggestions, and would love to know if you have another solution that I did not mention. Do you believe the AFK timer should be altered in Draw My Thing? Let me know.

    Thanks for taking the time to read my suggestion!
    Posted Jul 27, 2019
    kim_crazy and ArxCitadel like this.
  2. Howdy!

    This idea is up and down for me. At first while reading, I was thinking that there is no way this should be implemented. This is due to the easily avoidable AFK kick, and how it is not hard at all to move once and a while when playing the game. Another reason I was not fully in agreement with you is the fact that many people do legitimately go AFK in Draw My Thing and this creates a problem for other users playing the game.

    However, with your suggestions at the end for making the AFK a little more friendly toward users, I think the ideas are great. The problem is, I do not believe it is worth the time spent by developers to implement these new verifying methods when it is very simple to just move every once in a while. Our AFK timer does give enough warning as it is, but I can see the desire for a longer time period.

    Overall, with these methods to be implemented in my eyes would not be the best way to spend our time fixing, and if it were to be fixed, it would be on a server scale, not just DMT. Although you bring up some good ideas, it's going to be a -1 for me. Thanks for reading :)
    Posted Jul 27, 2019
    Goudge ✦ likes this.
  3. Hello!

    I can most definitely agree as this can become frustrating when typing a word out in DMT. Personally, I run around and make guesses but I can see how this affects the more idle player. Additionally, DMT is a very fast guessing game and even a second can ruin your chances of guessing first. With that being said the more time a player has to finish typing before being AFK kicked, the more fair it is for every "type" of player.

    You have a +1 from me.
    Best of Luck
    Posted Jul 28, 2019
    Goudge ✦ likes this.
  4. As someone that plays DMT a lot and sometimes even gets kicked when I'm not even AFK. I definitely have to agree with this idea. If someone is typing in chat then there is no reason for them to be AFK kicked and I'd love to see this added. +1
    I've played over 600 games of DMT and it's very rare that I see AFK players in DMT. Although sometimes there are people who go AFK, it's not that common.

    The developers are supposed to implement new things and as you said, this is a good idea so it doesn't seem like it's not worth the time. Adding this will help many DMT players and DMT has quite a large community.
    Posted Jul 28, 2019,
    Last edited Jul 28, 2019
    Goudge ✦ likes this.
  5. Hello there!

    I'll give my opinion on each idea you had below.

    - Extend the warning time given before the player is kicked.
    Personally this just feels like the player would get more time to be afk in the game and I don't think this is a good thing. With the two remaining ideas I don't believe the afk warning timer should be extended.

    - Automatically kick idle players who do not draw anything on the board during their turn instead.
    Although I don't play DMT as much as I used to, afk players who don't draw are extremely frustrating and ruin the game for everyone so this would be a positive change to the game.

    - Allow players to type in chat in order to notify the system that they are not AFK
    The fact this system isn't in place confuses me especially since I have had afk warnings in cake wars when I've been sat at base and messaging the other players etc. Of course, it's there to stop people from afking and a simple script could be set up to let the player talk in chat once a minute or something like that but if something like this could be added it would be a great addition not just to DMT but to the whole server.

    Overall a +1 from me.

    ~ Zom
    Posted Jul 28, 2019
    Goudge ✦ likes this.
  6. Thanks for your response and feedback. I'm not saying that this is something that MUST be introduced as soon as possible, but I do feel as though it would be a nice quality-of-life update to the AFK timer and something that perhaps the devs should consider. I do agree with you that if these things were to be changed it should be on a server-wide scale, and in hindsight perhaps I should have focused my thread more on changing the whole system to recognize players typing as not being AFK.

    Thanks so much for this, I absolutely agree with everything you said. It is super frustrating to be kicked or even warned while you're typing, and I do think it is worth the developers' time to make these necessary changes to improve the overall player experience.

    Thanks for your detailed feedback, Zom!

    As for the point about a script being able to bypass being kicked by automatically typing in chat every few minutes or so, this is already a possibility with scripts that just slightly move a player every few minutes to avoid getting kicked.
    OP OP
    OP OP Posted Jul 29, 2019
    PieOrPi likes this.
  7. I’d really love to see all of these things being implemented, ESPECIALLY the last one, where typing in the chat means you aren’t afk. This is just plain old common sense since a game where you play mostly by typing should recognise when you’re typing to see that you aren’t AFK.

    Kicking people who don’t draw or move at all during their drawing turn would also be very welcome since chances are, they’ll just be afk kicked anyway soon enough and it’s two turns of drawing wasted.

    Huge +1 to this and I hope to see it put in as soon as possible.
    Posted Oct 25, 2019
  8. Heyo!

    I think this idea would be really helpful for DMT as a whole, and think it would be a great change. I know personally it is annoying to have to type out a long word, then be removed for "AFK", even though that wasn't the case at all. It ruins player's games most of the time, and really isn't too helpful in a game that mostly requires an "AFK" aspect to it. Although it would cause stat boosting, you have also seemed to figure out a way behind that, so I don't have any issues with this idea and would love to see it happen.

    I think the best solution out of all of these would just be a removal for no moving or drawing throughout the time, as typing in chat shouldn't count towards it (as this is not really needed when drawing). If players are not drawing or moving around after a little bit, it would be nice to have them removed and either tack on another turn at the end or just give nobody the point (though I like the first one more). The rest of your ideas could work as well, but I believe this one would be the best out of them all.

    Overall, I'm going to leave this at a +1 as it would be a good change for DMT, and most likely just help everybody out (while preventing stat boosting). Great alteration, have a nice day :)
    Posted Oct 25, 2019
  9. i personally love this. i've been kicked multiple times when i'm typing/or looking at the drawing board.
    however, there are some people who sit at the board for a while, trying to decide how to draw the word.
    i would recommend not instantly kicking people who don't draw, but maybe waiting 30s or so for them to do anything.
    otherwise, these are great ideas for DMT. +1
    Posted Nov 12, 2019
  10. Hey!

    It is a problem at Draw My Thing that you are getting kicked for being idle when you're just using a little long time while drawing, I would like to see a fix to this. You've brought up some nice solutions, but I have some suggestions.

    Extend the warning time given before the player is kicked

    Yes, this would be a solution, but there are some issues with it. This would give players who are AFK during the whole game more time until they're kicked from the game. I don't think that this should be an option for these players.

    Automatically kick idle players who do not draw anything on the board during their turn instead.

    I can see this working, and it would prevent AFK players in the game. My question is, how long would it take to get kicked while it's your turn to draw? My suggestion would be for 1-2 minutes. (Maybe more) It's very annoying to wait for an AFK player to be kicked while the player is drawing, so I like this solution.

    Allow players to type in chat in order to notify the system that they are not AFK

    Yes, I really like this idea. It really confuses me that the game only thinks that you are AFK when you're not moving, and not when you're typing in chat as well. We should have something that decides if you're AFK or not based on movement and typing, not only moving around. (Except for when you're the one to draw)

    Overall, I like the solutions you've brought up and I think that this would fix the issue with being kicked while you're not idle. +1 from me!
    Posted Nov 12, 2019
  11. As a lover of Draw My Thing, I have certainly had run-ins with the AFK timer. I agree with your idea of an extended timer. Although there is not lots of action involved, DMT can be a very intense and fast-paced minigame whilst competing with others to guess the word. Because of the active chat in this game, the AFK timer can sometimes be overlooked, especially when playing without sound. Extending the timer would certainly allow players to finish up typing and guess a word before being removed from the game.

    As for the automatic removal of idle players during their drawing turn, I see some problems. I think that it may be difficult to implement this feature and for the game to decipher who is truly idling and who is not. Because the chat mixed with the AFK timer can be so overwhelming, I have been kicked from the game for simply trying to figure out what I am supposed to be drawing. This ties in to your third suggestion.

    Although auto typers can sometimes be detected, I believe that the use of these will increase if the AFK timer is to be removed whilst players are typing. It would be amazing if the game was able to decipher between players guessing words and others just typing random characters in order to not be kicked from the game. If this was the case, I would be all for this alteration.

    I know that the AFK timer can be frustrating, but I also know that it is there for a reason. Although I would change a few things, I love this QoL suggestion and hope to see the developers tweak the AFK timer system a bit in the future.
    Posted Nov 27, 2019
  12. I don't play DMT that much but I have been playing it. I think this idea would be a great idea! People who are typing and getting kicked for not moving because they're always typing and trying to get answers is upsetting to people who do get kicked. I like the idea of giving a longer warning. And I also agree with the people who just come to the game and then when its there turn they do absolutely nothing, it's very frustrating. Overall I love this idea!! So I'm going to be leaving this at a +1.

    Good luck on the rest of your suggestions!
    Posted Dec 13, 2019
  13. In the GI discord, we have discussed these three ideas in-depth and we have decided that option 3 would be the best choice for the game. The reasoning behind our decision is as follows:

    Option 1 wouldn't be the most ideal. This is because 10 seconds is already enough time to move your mouse around to stop yourself from being afk kicked if you are paying attention. The only issue with this current afk timer length is that if, for example, you're tabbed out (because you've guessed the current word) and you don't have sounds on, you don't realise you are being afk kicked. However, in this situation, a longer afk timer wouldn't help solve this issue.

    Option 2 would be okay, but it's not as good as option 3. This is because the rounds vary in length if players guess the word, so the timer would be inconsistent - some people would be kicked after 1 minute and some people would be kicked after 20 seconds. That's not very fair and so we've decided that it's best to avoid it if we can.

    Option 3 is by far the most optimal choice. It just makes the most sense for a guessing game - typing is better than moving, since you are required to type to win, but you aren't required to move - and has the least drawbacks out of the three ideas.

    Unless someone comes up with a more optimal idea, we will be changing the afk timer to work as it does in option 3 and it will be implemented in the next DMT update.

    Processed - Approved by GI
    Posted Jul 24, 2020
    Goudge ✦ likes this.

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