Author Topic: Big Chihuahua coming  (Read 17666 times)

Alan W

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Big Chihuahua coming
« on: March 04, 2011, 01:36:48 PM »
I'll be implementing an upgrade to the Chihuahua site soon, with some new features.

The main innovation will be ten-letter puzzles. There'll be a new daily puzzle, using ten letters, alongside the Standard and Challenge puzzles. Naturally, there'll be a ten-letter word possible in every puzzle. Ten letters will also become an option in "Your puzzles".

I'm thinking of giving the new daily puzzle a starting time 12 hours different from the current ones. So it would start around the middle of the day in Europe, very early in the morning in the Americas and in the evening in the Asia-Pacific region. Currently there's a huge upsurge in activity on the site every 24 hours when the new puzzles are up. But the time when this happens - midnight GMT - was an arbitrary choice, and presumably isn't the most convenient time for everybody. So I thought having a series of puzzles starting at a different time would probably suit some players quite well.

Any thoughts?
Alan Walker
Creator of Lexigame websites

Tom44

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2011, 03:11:10 PM »
I like the idea of a different starting time for each puzzle - like (pick a location) Midnight for standard, 8 AM for challenge, 4 PM for 10-letter.  That way you can come to the site multiple times and find a new puzzle.  I generally get to the puzzles about 2 hours before they close at which time my wife interrupts me for dinner.  It'd be nice to have longer on a puzzle.

Thanks Alan.  Grand idea.
Stevens Point, WI

tess

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2011, 07:48:22 PM »
Dear Alan,
Personally I think that 11am is too late for the Chihuahua games in Australia.. If I'm going out I cant play them till I come home and I cant play them before I go out either which is usually about 10am.
Otherwise I do enjoy you're games and find them a challenge. Im sure the 10 letter one will be an even bigger one.
Lynne Elliott
Blue Mts
NSW

technomc

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2011, 11:43:57 PM »
Ours, in the YUK change at Midnight [or 1 a.m.] which is infinately more inconvenient than 11a.m., because i am either in bed or when i'm working [monday - friday] i seldom get the chance to devote any real time until my lunch break at 1 p.m. , but whatever time it comes on we all still get 24 hours to do it....

So Alan, staggering the start times is a great idea...and i don't mind either way...

10 letter words??  Oh Lordy...where will i find the time???

Keep up the good work Viral....and thanks for everything.  :)

TRex

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2011, 05:29:45 AM »
The current start time (1800/1900 local for me) is great for me, but I know it can't be for a lot of people. Thus, spreading out the new time would probably be more fair and convenient. It would also probably spread out the server load. (I sometimes have problems with accessing the puzzle right at 0000 UTC.)

The down side of another Chihuahua game is the temptation to spend even more time at it instead of doing more productive things! (Entirely my own fault, though!)

Slightly off topic -- I was wondering if something could be introduced where players who were the first to get a star or rosette or trophy might have those icons rendered in a different colour or somehow distinguished as a reward for being the first? (Probably way too much work, but an idea anyway.)

I also want to express my thanks for such a wonderful place to exercise the grey cells. It has become the only game I play and I look forward to it each evening.

biggerbirdbrain

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2011, 09:18:40 AM »
Alan, that is a brilliant idea. Better times to play, more letters to play with .... and more new words to add to the lexicon! YAY!  :-V

rhino

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2011, 11:16:11 AM »
Great idea Alan.  And the staggered upload times will reflect the true world-wide participation in and appreciation of the game.

Keep thinlking up new challenges for us ...

Rhino  :o
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ada

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2011, 11:26:59 AM »
I guess if we all had a best time to start the puzzles there would be 200 different start times.   First past the post is hardly fair when our English friends currently have to be up at midnight to compete.  Chihuahua is addictive fun; far superior to the paper versions of the letter game.  I am grateful to Alan for creating it and doing such a wonderful job.  

We don't really need to go to work, shop, garden, cook, do housework or study, do we?  Hours often fly by when I should really be doing something else.  Good thing now then that I have to go to work and only get an hour to play before I leave.  

A ten letter Chihauhua?  (And what is this going to be called: "Chihauhuas" in line with the 10 letters?)  Oh, no Alan no Alan no Alan no......
Ada

ilandrah

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2011, 01:31:44 PM »
With 24 hours to complete a puzzle, the start time doesn't really make any difference to me. It doesn't matter to me if I am one of the last to begin. I will probably still only come once a day and have a go at all the available words at once.
Often being a late comer means that others have hit the top of the leader board, but can also let me know if there are any rare 9 letter words available. It also sets more of a target for me, knowing that others have easily exceeded my score often prompts me to keep looking for words that I have not noticed.
Can someone explain why it is important to them to be here when the puzzles first open?

The ten letters sounds like a great addition and should prove challenging.

Alan W

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2011, 02:25:19 PM »
Whatever the reason, there certainly is a surge of players at the hour of the new puzzles. The attached chart shows the traffic on this website over the past seven days. The seven evenly-spaced spikes are at the release of the daily puzzles.

One of the considerations in my mind is the spreading of the load, as TRex mentions.
Alan Walker
Creator of Lexigame websites

ilandrah

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2011, 02:49:23 PM »
I understand the need to distribute server load, but I don't understand why so many players are opting to hit the boards as soon as they open.
The answer to this questioin may help to determine the best course of action, particuarly as having the 'my puzzles' section, where one can play a new game at any time, doesn't seem to have had a significant impact on spreading peak times.
Personally, I am just curious as to the psychology behind the peak, it is not the way my mind works apparently, but something does drive others to schedule their days in such a way as to be here for the opening of the puzzle.
I find that interesting.

birdy

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2011, 03:46:49 PM »
I wonder if the spike is caused by the people who come to the game just before it changes, hoping to think of just a few more words before it closes, and then they stay on to start the new game.  I've done that myself.

Hobbit

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2011, 11:16:20 PM »
As there is no chance of my joining the clever folks at the top of the leader board, the timing of the puzzle is not an issue for me.  I count myself lucky when I get a rosette!  I agree with Ada - Chihuahua is addictive fun.  I man (should that be woman?!) a reception desk at work so when things are slow and no patients are coming along Chihuahua is a very welcome diversion! I can dip in and out during the day.
Keep up the brilliant work Alan.  :-C   I drive a Toyota IQ which is a bit like a Noddy car.  When I'm driving I pretend I'm really in a red convertible sports car.  That's why I love the little guy in the red car!

nineoaks

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #13 on: March 06, 2011, 05:08:04 AM »
Dear Alan:

I like the idea of the staggered start times. Right now, the new Chi appears at 4pm, in a few weeks it will be 5pm. This means that dinner preparation gets short shrift at our house unless I am able to use serious self-restraint and wait until the evening to play. :)  I think the reason some of us enjoy playing just as the puzzle appears is the feeling of being 'in the chase,' at least that is sometimes true for me.

I am lukewarm regarding the 'super-sizing' of the puzzle to ten letters. Not sure what would be the point of this. Just think, if the puzzle allowed 45 letters, we'd at last have a reason to use Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis. and develop repetitive motion disorders.

Ha! Just my ha'penny's worth of opinion.

Thanks, Alan, for your wonderful work and creativity.

nineoaks

Alan W

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Re: Big Chihuahua coming
« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2011, 04:14:25 PM »
Nineoaks, I've been trying out some 10-letter puzzles, and I don't have any strong impressions about how they compare with the 9-letter puzzles, as a playing experience.

They will tend to have more words, but this won't necessarily mean they take longer to play. I suspect most of us spend a lot of time looking for those last few words. This may not change very much.

One thing that some regular players might appreciate is seeing some new words: the 10-letter words obviously, but there will also probably be some shorter words appearing in puzzles for the first time.

Those who try the new puzzles once they start will make up their own minds about them. All the existing 9-letter options will continue of course, with 10-letter puzzles as an extra option.

TRex, are you crazy? You want to bring in a new award that will give more incentive to people to pile onto the site whenever a new puzzle starts up?  ;)

Actually, the first to get a rosette or trophy do get a reward now - they will be on top of the scoreboard for the life of the puzzle. More precisely, the first trophy winner is on the top of the board in the rare-words-inclusive view, and the first rosette winner is on top in the rare-words-excluded view. Perhaps this is one of the carrots that gets people to the site at puzzle start time.
Alan Walker
Creator of Lexigame websites