Hey there readers, I’d like to welcome you to my first event review of 2017, where today I’m going to be talking, ok, crying into a giant tissue due to a dose of the holiday blues brought on by pixel pills, triangles, care packages and more. Or to put it simply the event that just was, Quahog’s Not So Silent Night. After 5 weeks of arcade madness it’s all over but for the poll, and hey I know we all uttered Game Over, over and over during this event. Nothing was handed to us as a gift in this, it was one tough event and I’m not sure many of us will be saying victory was ours this time!!!
Still on a high from the well executed Oz event, I must admit I skipped into this event with very high hopes. Retro Arcade characters are back in fashion thanks to movies such as Wreck-It-Ralph and Pixels, and I felt it was only a matter of time before FGQFS did an event featuring them, as so many of the Arcade characters had featured or been parodied on the TV Show.
Well it all started with a teaser from TinyCo and I suddenly felt like a kid at Christmas, honestly they couldn’t have come up with a better concept for a Christmas event, and soon we were all excited to be playing Quahog’s Not So Silent Night.
With the likes of Q*Bert and PAC-MAN they couldn’t go wrong could they? Well it turned out all the Waka, Waka, Waka, was actually a whack over the head for the players as this event may have hit the spot with the content but it soon hit the self destruct with the execution.
The event certainly started positively with Q*Bert as a freemium unlockable character, we all went a little daft for him but panic set in early as it felt like the amount of Stocking Stuffers needed to unlock him and Christmas Morning Peter was a little high. Also drop issues reared their ugly head, Giant Tissue anyone? So from Phase 1 we started to see players, including myself, fall behind. But hey Q*Bert was freemium so I felt this event was going to be another positive one. Oops, think I better trade in my crystal ball.
Suddenly we were into Phase 2 and having to decide whether to unlock Q*Bert or the Phase 2 freemium character Peaches first. Add into the mix a timed Monkey Kong and things got tough. Now I concentrated on unlocking Peaches, followed by Q*Bert, and didn’t place Monkey Kong until I was close to unlocking Peaches. And I was lucky to unlock them all but despite purchasing Baby Bobble Stewie, I was again behind, starting Phase 3 a day or so late. And sadly moderating the comments I realised I was lucky at that, as many players were still struggling to get into Phase 2 never mind complete it. And once there drop issues were slowing them down further. This event was now seeing a return to the bad old days, and all the fun and goodwill from the Oz event was being ripped apart.
Drops and glitches were starting to take a toll on the event and players alike. I can’t tell you how disappointed I was to see this, I know we all play for our own individual games, but if I get something in my game, I want everyone who puts in the sane effort to get it too, and to see so many players unable to progress really started to affect my enjoyment of the event.
By the time Phase 3 hit, bringing with it the premium PAC-MAN, and freemium Pixel Lois and 80’s Gamer Brian there was a gridlock, players locked out due to issues with the present plaza, and others stuck in Phase 2 due to drops for Peaches. I moved into Phase 3 and having purchased PAC-MAN at his discounted price, progressed quite smoothly compared to many others who found themselves stuck as they couldn’t unlock 8-Bit Lois.
Then there was another group of players stuck as they didn’t have Brian unlocked in their game yet, and yet another group of players were stuck as 80’s Gamer Brian’s character costume wouldn’t drop. So as Phase 4 hit, not many of us were ready to go thanks to Brian. But as it wasn’t really Brian’s fault I’m hoping you’ve all let him out the dog house by now.
And for me Phase 4 was a highlight as we finally got Rupert to unlock, not creepy Human Rupert, but cute, cuddly Rupert the bear. This should have been the highlight of the event, we should all have been feeling so happy we were farting rainbows.
Only problem was too many players were stuck in Phase 3 and getting anxious they weren’t going to get to Rupert.
Joining Rupert in Phase 4 was Black Jesus, and it was soon apparent he would be unlocked over the remainder of the event rather than a week, but there was a snag, to get one of his items you needed to unlock Baby Heimlich, but for most players only one character was available to get the Beach Balls needed to attack her, and she, Bonnie, was constantly trapped by the holiday blues. A lack of Glee Bears to cure her, Lois and Bruce coupled with a poor drop rate on triangles for Rupert saw the event completely stall for many players, including our own Lotty.
i seemed to get better drops and managed to unlock Rupert, albeit just as Phase 5 started. This let me crack on with getting Black Jesus and I was lucky to unlock him and even Onesie Mayor West with a few days to spare. But during Phase 5 I honestly felt I was just going through the motions, all the fun had been sucked out the event as everything was harder than it had to be, especially for a Christmas event. This really should have been a lot of fun, so how on earth did things go so wrong? You tell me addicts, that’s what these posts are for, your feedback.
So to sum up, yes I spent some clams, and yes I unlocked all the freemium characters & costumes, so why am I not sitting with a massive smiley on my face, well probably because I know I got lucky. Yes I play more than most due to my wretched sleep pattern but I still feel guilty I made it to the end of the event whilst some players were still stuck in Phases 3 & 4.
I’m disappointed that all the goodwill we saw during the Oz event has disappeared quicker than Monkey Kong up his scaffold. I’m disappointed that great content and animation has been overshadowed by game issues. I’m disappointed customer services seemed so overwhelmed they just sent generic response to every query. I’m disappointed I couldn’t do more to help players progress. I’m disappointed that many players said they were walking away from the game. Im disappointed that TinyCo didn’t seize the day and steal the best Chrustmas event crown as Tapped Out went into meltdown over its lack of Chrustnas spirit.
And finally I’m disappointed I’m writing a review like this, I like to see the bright side in things, but I couldn’t sit and write a deserved glowing review of There’s No Place About Quahog last month then not be just as honest in my review of Quahog’s Not So Silent Night.
Now by the time this post goes up, we will no doubt be into the next event. The system of starting a new event just as one finishes has served TinyCo well in the past. Basically because all the grumbling about the event that just ended is cut off by the madness of a new event. But I’m not so sure that will work this time as this event seems to have pushed many players towards the cliff and it’s going take something special to pull them back from the edge.
Now onto my breakdown, there was some positives, and I’ll start with them.
More Family Guy TV show linked content. As I said earlier many of the Arcade characters have been parodied in the TV show, as have Black Jesus and many of the Weekly Challenge prizes. On top of this we finally got Rupert in his original form. So plenty of Family Guy related content to keep us happy.
With regards to gameplay it was good to see less characters have multiple tasks for different drop items, although as the event went on I know there was still some crossover but that will always happen as core characters that were unlocked in the early Districts are used in events to allow newer players to join in events. I don’t think TinyCo quite got the balance quite in this event but I can see they tried as many drops came from buildings we purchased, so there was less burden on characters. But… well, for now let’s just say I’ll talk more about that in my what I didn’t like section.
The characters chosen for the event were really who any retro gamer would want, they really got this spot on, Q*Bert, PAC-MAN, Monkey Kong, Blinky. It’s like a who’s who of gaming, although a certain Italian plumber was missing, but hey they covered that by giving Chris a costume. Yes, many weren’t original characters but Family Guy parody versions, but I can understand why TinyCo played it this way and think they did a great job with the character choices and their visual tasks. Also a new character that has an ongoing clam drop task, something we’ve been asking for.
Cannot fault a thing here, top job as always. Every thing looked amazing.
Gold to see the FaceSpace Sets make a return. Long may this continue.
Nice to have a little side Questline that awarded clams again. But I’d love to see a small clam reward for completing any Questline, even just 1 or 2 and for the final main Questline in events how’s about a 10 clam reward for the few hardy souls who get there.
They seem to be taking on board issues that derailed previous events, for example Dream Levels were easy to move up, in previous events Levels have caused gridlock, remember Death at the Drive-In. Also little chance to win clam opening Q*Berts Pyramid Packs, I think I got about 25 free clams this way. I also got repetitive strain opening those parcels.
They seem to be making these premium buildings a regular occurrence, hope this continues. The Retro Arcade Christmas Tree was a great addition to the game.
We saw two in this event, firstly a discount off the clam price of PAC-MAN if you were an early purchaser. Very nice touch TinyCo. The second was a 20% off clam packages offered and as much as this was a good discount it was possibly offered at a bad time
And now to my thoughts on the problem areas that still seem raise their ugly heads in events.
It’s no mystery what my feelings on Mystery Boxes are, I continue to despair at the way TinyCo implements Mystery Boxes in events. Yes, I know we don’t need to buy them but to put an event character in a box that costs 130 clams and then fill it with materials that can repeat contines to show a bit of disregard for premium players. I think I’ve gone on enough in past about these so I shall say no more.
I found it bizarre TinyCo brought in Baby Heimlich as a boss and then made the Bonnie, th one character we all have who could drop the beach balls needed to defeat her also be afflicted by the Holiday Blues. This meant attacking past 1X was impossible for many players due to the fact Bauble Glee Bears were in short supply. A big error that severely impacted the later Phases.
Now the dialogue and tasks were fantastic, no issues at all there, but what I do find troublesome is having a character than needs unlocked being essential to completing each Phases Main Questline. This causes a delay in players getting new content and maybe needs looked at. I’ve said it before but I’m saying it again. Any delays in unlocking Q*Bert, Peaches, 80’s Gamer Brian, 8-Bit Lois, Rupert could all lead to gridlock and they did. Also using a character unlocked at a later district, such as Brian, in the Questline isn’t fair when you say players only need to be at Distruct 3 to take part. Also 80’s Gamer Brian should have had a fail safe to ensure he dropped in a Ghostly Gift before Phase 4 started. Players were stuck whilst they waited for a chance drop of the costume and this wasn’t fair as it held them back when they had done everything they could to be ready to progress. Also many of the side Questlines needed Bonnie who was trapped with the holiday blues, so no progress on these and an ever increasing task bar.
There continues to be no rhyme or reason to these, the event seemed to have way too many rare drops, whereas the unpopular uncommon drop all but disappeared. Were these problematic uncommon drops simply relabelled rare? And is that why issues plagued some of them. Also when every other player is telling you they are having a problem with the drops, you need to react and try to fix it. The words “as intended” have drove many an addict to join Bunny in the basement, please delete these two words them from your responses TinyCo.
The Present Plaza started well, who doesn’t love opening gifts but it soon became a source of grief as the drops weren’t good for many and for others trying to open anything in the Plaza saw there game freeze until TinyCo could fix it. Big thanks needs be given to Bunny for helping players get back in their games ASAP. But in general this was just more of something players have hated for a long time, gathering one item to try for another item to attack sone thing else.
The weekly challenges were once again in some ways toned down and very achievable for all players apart from throwing us a curve ball in Phase 4 with a “challenge” we had no control over as it depended on drops of Glee Bears which were random. Not cool TinyCo.
For the most part there was no surprises, everything you needed to do in each phase was spelt out early by simply moving through the first few parts of the main Questline for each Phase. But the timer on Monkey Kong caused anger as although they marked this on him if you placed him from the store, many placed him via the Questline and this didn’t highlight this. In the Oz event they showed common sense with the tornadoes whereas they seemed to throw this new found wisdom out when it came to the holiday blues. And having your screen jump to the holiday blues continually was a nuisance. The mixture of freemium to premium characters/costumes was fair in my mind, but the pricing of premium items, especially those that dropped Stocking Stuffers were outrageous. Also for an event that would span Christmas Day and New Years Day, no little gift built in for your loyal players TinyCo?
A 5 week event with some horrendous drop issues just felt like it needed an extension but in another way I just wanted it to end. The event had sucked the fun out of the game over many weeks. Every player who missed out on then should be given an opportunity to unlock Rupert and Black Jesus freemium whether it be through Tan Lines or some other way. Also basing a new event on the template of a previous event not only causes issues with repetition but it seems to pull coding issues along for the ride. Maybe time to create something new.
They seemed to be taking on board issues that derailed previous events during the Oz adventure, but every issue that could happen did in this event. I wouldn’t be surprised to see this voted the least popular event of 2016.
Currency buildings and character costumes are priced too high. But characters prices were fair in this.
There had been definite improvements in this area, but this seemed go into reverse in this event, whether this was due to the sheer volume of issues and complaints being sent in, or lack of staff over the holiday period I don’t know. But everyone seemed to be getting the same standard “as intended” response to their pleas for help. This only changed in final days when a new standard response started to surface. But nothing changed in the game, no changes, no help. No here’s 50 clams everybody to say sorry for the issues. It seemed like heads had been buried in the sand and would stay there until the event ended. Please don’t do this, come out, engage with us, we want the game to be good, we want keep playing.
So fellow addicts, that’s some of my thoughts, sorry they aren’t my usual upbeat musings, and as usual I want to stress they are just my thoughts, they in no way reflect what Bunny or Lotty felt about the event, to be honest I’m not sure I could post Lotty’s thoughts in a PG manner, lol.
Anyway that’s my ramblings, now I want you to tell me your thoughts. Cause I honestly do care about how fellow players get on. I’d like to know if you were lucky like me, or did you find yourself trapped in a vortex of failed drops and holiday blues. But please don’t turn this into a What the Deuce post by releasing all hell on earth in your comments as Bunny will throw me head first into the nearest Christmas tree recycling machine if you do. Please give us your feedback and thoughts in a gift wrapped way. Tell us what you liked, didn’t like? What you’d like to see more of, what you’d like to see less off. What your thoughts on five week events are? Share with us everything and anything you think would improve FGQFS. And if you can please take a minute to complete the end of event poll at the end of this event I’d be very grateful.
Now before I go there’s another couple of things I’ve got to say. Hey did I just hear you snore? No, okay then, well firstly thanks to every addict who took the time to read our ramblings during the event, shared hints or who just popped in to the comments to say Hi or Thank You. All much appreciated, you really are the reason writing for this site is so much fun.
And just incase you can’t see the poll or find it jumps about when you’re trying answer, here’s the direct link:
~ Russian Tigger