It's been a week now since Rising Star announced the drastic changes to their Ego system. After the first changes several more followed during the week and they sure turned the whole game upside down. I've been playing the game for almost half a year now and I've seen many iterations but none of them changed the game nearly as fundamental as these most recent ones.
So after having tested the game's new reality for the last days, I'm now confident enough to answer the all-deciding question: Is it still worth your time?
Before I get into the details of these recent changes, let me first give a short introduction to the game to anybody who still has not heard of Rising Star!
Rising Star is an idle game at heart but one that comes with a lot of charm. The game puts you in the shoes of an aspiring musician that's dreaming of becoming the next big show some day. You start the game with nothing but your guitar and a desire to become famous. Since stardom (usually) doesn't happen overnight you have to slowly earn it with some first baby steps. Illegally perform in the streets until the cops drive you away or go to the open mic night and give it your best. Once you've gained some fans, you start to give a radio interview or perform in the local shopping mall.
The game is played one mission at a time. Each of these missions takes a different amount of time to complete, uses up more or less of your Energy, and awards you with a varying amount of Starbits. These Starbits are Rising Star's ingame currency and can be traded at Hive-Engine for Hive or other tokens.
And indeed, this trading was what made the drastic changes to the game necessary. After some initial investment into the game, advanced accounts could farm up to 100,000 Starbits or more a day or more doing 5 minute missions all day each day. Since 10,000 Starbits sold at about 5 Hive, this created quite the income and in turn made even more accounts start to farm Starbits with the sole purpose of selling them on the market.
While the Starbit price remained rather stable for several months, this obviously was not sustainable in the long run and thus some game changing adjustments had to be made. Let's have a look at the new reality of Rising Star. The ingame tooltip for Ego is explaining it perfectly, so here it is:
This completely changed the way the game has to be played. Prior to the introduction of permanent ego, there was basically only one way to play effectively: Run 5 minute missions whenever you are around to start them again right away, do a drum lesson for maximal skill gain when you are going to bed or you are away for a longer time. Of course you could have done other missions as well, but you'd always end up with a lower rate of Starbits gained compared to the strategy above.
With the new Ego system in place, this is no longer viable. Thanks to the exponentially growing Ego gain for repeating the same mission, you'd end up with an absurd increase to your ego every time you do the same mission again. Likewise, the Skill missions have been changed as well. Instead of some weak and one very powerful (drum) lesson, there are now missions for each set of instruments and another one for luck from vehicles.
These two changes really force you to put a lot more thought into what you are doing. Since all skill missions only last an hour, doing them in the night would be quite the waste. Instead, you have to do some during the day to combat the ever growing Ego. Other than that, you should alternate as much as possible between different missions, always monitoring the Ego gained per mission and factoring in the Starbits return you get.
This has, at least for me, lead to a more strategic approach to the game. I now constantly think about what the best mission would be right now. This is especially true since energy has now become an issue as well. Without 12x 5-minute missions every hour, the pizza gain has decreased a lot. Having several energy boosters for prolonged pizza droughts is now almost mandatory. So what I try to do is make the most out of the energy I have, combining longer high energy missions with short low energy missions to make sure I'm as close to 0% energy as possible before I use another energy booster.
So now that you know how the game has changed, let's get back to our initial question! Is Rising Star still worth your time?
In my personal opinion, it most definitely is! The game has become a lot more interesting to play thanks to the changes. There are now a lot of factors that you actually have to consider when choosing your mission. That made me play the game a lot more actively and it's a good thing in my opinion! Having all these different missions finally makes sense. Also, it's now so much more important to progress through the game because it allows you to start more different missions, thus giving you more ways to deal with the Ego gain.
There's a second dimension to it, one that is probably even more important than making the game itself more interesting. Thanks to these changes, Rising Star has become sustainable for a very long time. As long as the game is being developed actively and new cards are added to the game, it should flourish. Starbit inflation is no longer an issue, over time the amount of Starbits available in the market should even decrease quite a bit.
Sure, you are earning way less playing the game than you did before. Who doesn't enjoy earning Starbits worth 40 Hive or more on a single day? But it's important to understand that this just wasn't viable. Without these changes, Starbits would have been worth nothing at all over time and that would help no one.
Also, it's still possible to earn in the game if you want to go for it - I make roughly 30,000 Starbits a day, that's about 15 Hive. I don't think there are many competitors that could offer that return. Generally speaking though, these Starbits are probably better spent reinvested in the game. I'm really confident in the game's future, so most Starbits I earn go directly back to buying new cards or booster packs. I expect Rising Star to be around for years and I'm really looking forward to playing it!
That's all from me today. Please let me know in the comments how the changes are working for you, I'd love to hear how newer accounts are managing the Ego increase. Thank you all for reading and see you next time!
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