I have noticed many more tournaments over the last five days, and it is much appreciated! Today, during Christmas break, there are only two, but I have so much co-op to work on (especially with the new release coops) that its not really an issue.
A little feedback from the FFA tournament yesterday. There was a newer player in my first game. He was SO excited to play it, and he actually won the first round, knocking off myself and one other player. What fun that was for him. I'm guessing this player will be online a lot more now and continue to play. And the credit for this goes to whoever created that free FFA for him to play in. Maybe now he becomes a premium member.
I'm glad ice brought up sit-n-go's and I'll give my quick take on them. When I used to play a lot of online poker I almost exclusively played SNG's so I am very familiar with the format and obviously much enjoyed its use for a different sort of game.
Some of the complications surrounding SNG's on this site:
1) There is a high cost associated with them, so most players on here realistically understand it could take forever to fill one up.
2) If you have signed up for one, you pretty much have to wait until it starts, because if you are playing another game or a coop and it starts, you are kinda screwed cause you gotta quit one. Most people would rather play a coop or free to play than wait for 1,2, 3+ hours for a SNG to fill.
3) Some players, like myself, are so used to seeing nobody in the SNG lobby that we don't even check it. If I was aware that there were 5 or more people waiting in an SNG, I would probably join as well. But because I am so conditioned to seeing 0 people waiting, I don't even check that lobby.
I don't really have a solution for these problems, but I'll throw some ideas off the wall. Again, cheaper entry fees. Perhaps a four-person FFA SNG. Four is much quicker to fill, and I think new players who are scared to spend points for tournaments out of fear they will get owned, may feel they stand more of a chance in FFA. E.G. Look at that new player who beat me and another player yesterday (although I was 1st in kills
One other thing game management might be experiencing right now is that the new players who do stick around, sign up for memberships, and buy some points may spend most of their initial points on packs of cards and therefore not have much left for tournaments now. I spent many of my initial points on cards, and until I got my monthly membership packs and points was somewhat low.
It may be a good idea to keep running lots of free tournaments for a couple months, while newer players spend most of their points building their decks and learning the game. I think its scary for a new player to risk points on a tournament until he feels he has a good grasp of the game and a solid deck (for constructed tourneys).
This game clearly took an initial investment, and I think it would be worthwhile to continue to invest a little more, simply in the area of free tournaments, to attract a lot of players, and after you have many players on this site slowly remove the free tournaments. Don't be too concerned about giving away free cards right now, as unless you are giving away the elite cards I don't think it makes much difference. It would be worthwhile to boost the system with an influx of cards and packs (by lowering entry costs, running free tournaments, increasing prizes). Online games require a vibrant economy, and while you may give out a bit more early on to boost the economy, as soon as the population reaches a sustainable level you should begin to restrict the free cards and packs given out.