Scott Hardie | July 31, 2004
In the recent past, players resisted the idea of having multiple goos per week. I think it was because they liked having a full seven days to guess at each goo, even if most players usually only needed seven seconds.

It dawned on me this week how the game could have the freshness of a new goo every weekday, but still allow players ample time to guess: Have five goos up at once, each one designated for the weekday it was put up. When Monday came, I would reveal the answer for the previous Monday goo and publish a new one, but the other four goos would remain active.

This would allow us to have a much wider selection of celebrities, the freshness of new content daily, and more room for player requests. I think it would also diminish the competitive element of the game, partially restoring some sense of the goo game as a fun activity on the web instead of a challenge to be overcome. The downside is that it would require more work from me, though I could automate publication and thus do all my work for the week on Sunday afternoon. Now that I have so much less free time, I'm designing the new site to require less work from me each week, not more. It would also throw the site records out of whack -- it has taken us six years to see the first 350 goos, but we would double that amount within a year and a half on the new plan. Suddenly the major accomplishment of earning the Big C is worth a fraction of its value.

What do you think of this idea? I'd be willing to try it on a trial basis for one round, when the new site is ready in a couple of months. We also don't have to do a new goo five days a week, it could be every two days or every three, though it seems to be the game is best with five or only one. What do you think?

Anna Gregoline | July 31, 2004
I personally love the idea.

Steve West | August 1, 2004
Mes compliments au chef. In the year I've participated, each change has been an improvement.

Erik Bates | August 1, 2004
I say give it a shot. If it doesn't work, we can always go back.

Scott Horowitz | August 2, 2004
It's a good idea. I get the goo (or don't get it) on the first day, and then have to wait a whole week for another. If you do it this way though, I think you should increase the amount of towers a player has to complete in order to win. Because, theoretically, a player could win within 3 weeks.

Erik Bates | August 2, 2004
Or change the point system again.

Scott Hardie | August 2, 2004
Yeah, it would switch to something like 1 point per correct guess, first person with 50 points wins, something like that. With a shift to daily play, there's a reemphasis on the game being something fun to do each day, instead of a competition. But I think I said that already.

Dave Mitzman | August 26, 2004
The Mitz likes, however the only downside is that people will get to higher numbers of goos in a shorter amount of time instead of spending several years playing to get to the top (i.e. 200 goos correct).

Erik Bates | August 26, 2004
Aye, and the MItz likes being in that elite squad :)

Scott Hardie | August 26, 2004
We're confirmed for daily goos, starting in mid-October, two weeks after the current round ends.

For the scoring system, I wanted something with the strategy of the towers system, but capable of handling many more goos. Enter the "grid" system: A 10x10 grid of empty spaces, and each correct guess fills one empty space on the grid, but each incorrect guess wipes out the four spaces adjacent to it. By default, the site will just choose a random empty space for each correct guess you enter, but the more competitive players can turn on grid control for themselves and choose each space. (I get the sense that 1/3, or even as little as 1/4 of the playership doesn't take the competition seriously, so I don't want to distract the less-interested players with a complicated scoring system that doesn't matter to them.)

Themed rounds: It's a lot harder to do these, and I think there can't be another Goo World Tour like the first. (I could do each week of seven goos in a new country, but it still won't be like the first tour.) However, I love Jackie's idea of taking the goo game through time, and I might modify it for one round of 100 goos so that each goo represents one year in the twentieth century. What do you think?

Scott Hardie | August 26, 2004
Just curious: Have I said too much? Would you prefer the new site to be a surprise like this site overhaul was last fall? Because I can say less, or more. Maybe I'm just so wrapped up in the redesign work that this seems like a big deal to me and none of you care much. :-)

Steve West | August 26, 2004
I myself receive a vicarious thrill over your enthusiasm for your site. I can only restate how much I appreciate your effort and time consuming committment to this site. Thank you.

Scott Hardie | August 27, 2004
You are welcome!

[Now to see that you get that next incorrect guess right after all, wink wink...]

Jackie Mason | August 27, 2004
[hidden by request]


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