With the season fast approaching, the launch of 2016 Bunt is around the corner. Now that we are in our third year of massive updates before opening day, I think we are starting to understand the impact that the new Bunt build can have on the rest of the apps.
I have a few open items that continue to be at the top of my mind, and I want to spend some time talking about where I hope they will go eventually. I think that for the first time, we have a big question of what the 2016 build will actually look like, as the team has kept things more close to their vest than years past.
Item 1 – Contests
Last year, points had some major issues. Even the team would say that is the part of the app they probably wish could have gone better. In my opinion, its more than just points – its the contest structure itself. As fun as the playoffs were, a 162 game season is a freaking grind. So much so that I think more effort is necessary in Bunt than in any of the other games. It has to be fresh, and the prizes have to reflect the effort needed to stay on board for all the games that are played.
Similarly, I would love to see more options that give some incentive to stay involved in contests without a huge time investment. Not every player can spend the time each day, but setting a lineup fantasy style would be easily taken care of. Balance is really important in that respect.
Item 2 – Scoring
I know that you cant just go and say that everything is going to change. You cant start from scratch. The unlimited switch structure for 2015 was helpful in equalizing value of pitchers vs hitters, but you still see a heavy value shift towards the ways of the past. I would love to be able to get more value out of position players who are valuable to the team in ways that arent just hits and HR vs the outs they record, and I think there are ways to do that.
The main reason Bunt is so interesting is because of the way users collect the cards to get the points, and I see so many cards that just exist to exist, even though the players are valuable to their teams.
Item 3 – Collection Display
As mentioned in a previous article, I hate that the new year basically removes all trace of the previous year from people’s minds. All that time to collect and hoard and its gone the second the update goes live. Sure, there are a lot of users that still reminisce, but as a whole, I think it needs to be better.
Users that have had a legacy in the game should have a chance to showcase their wares, and I think that adjusted filtering methods and categorization would do wonders for the trade value and spending year over year.
Item 4 – Legends
Baseball is as much about history as any of the major sports. Records, stats, and player personas live for centuries in this game, and I think that it would be awesome to get more legend based content in the game.
Huddle really took it to a new level this year by making Legends so premium in their availability, but has since opened it up more. The reaction people have to legends is huge, and with Bunt putting out much more retired content during the offseason, we see how important it has become. The great thing is, premium vs non-premium almost doesnt matter. People want more.
Item 5 – Marathon Setup
This was a hot topic in SWCT and Huddle, and I hope that Bunt has learned from their sister apps. Marathons can be a force in a game when set up to be a great chase, and lose some of that luster if the cards are too easy to get, or dont have a special factor to them.
Bunt’s marathons have been simple over the years, Editor’s Choice, Sigs, and stuff like that, and I hope that we continue to see them be a fun part of the everyday interaction that users have with the app. Marathons should remain a draw for the general user population, but that cant happen when there is no value in chasing them.
Stuff like award cards needs to be done in a special manner, and packout formats need to be spot on. With a great setup comes great chase.
Item 6 – Boxes
I just want these to continue. They are awesome in just about every way. My only issue is what happens when the premium content sells out. Hopefully there will be contingency plans for additional premium content to be added or the closing of that particular program. Dont let the stuff sit in a graveyard, have plans in place to keep the box fresh during the whole timer.
Item 7 – VIP
Huddle and Star Wars have both cancelled or never started the VIP program, probably because it is such a hefty weight on the staff to manage. All I have to say is that VIP should be a focus. Regardless of the insane commitment to make it happen, I hope there is some capacity to make it work. It adds incentive in ways that arent available other ways, and is a badge of honor for many users.
There is definitely much more content to come on Bunt 2016 – stay tuned in the coming days for more info!