TL;DR: Publish drop rates. It protects people from addictive gambling-like behaviors and ensures you are in line with the spirit of many of the restrictions on “loot boxes” and such. It’s also the right thing to do for your players in general
Puzzle Quest 3 is, IMO, skirting very close to the line of what is allowable for in-app purchase content. Those rules exist for a reason: to protect players, especially (but not limited to) minors, from addictive gambling behaviors connected to real money.
For example, the Google Play Store developer policies have the following requirement:
Apps and games offering mechanisms to receive randomized virtual items from a purchase including, but not limited to, “loot boxes” must clearly disclose the odds of receiving those items in advance of, and in close and timely proximity to, that purchase.
(And that’s not even getting into more specific regional regulations around real-money transactions.)
Here’s the main flow that I know of where a lack of drop tables causes a real-money related issue in PQ3:
- Buy crowns
- Use crowns to buy gems
- Use gems to refresh shop until you can get access to items that are hard to come by (right now, glyphs especially as well as relics)
- Oops where did my money go
Whether or not the current flow violates the exact criteria outlined in the Play Store developer policies isn’t for me to say.
However, even putting aside the potential policy issue, it’s also the right thing to do for your players.
I’m much more discouraged using, say, Mutiny to craft tickets when I have no idea what the actual frequency she crafts dungeon tickets is. Even if the rate is low, I would find it much less frustrating to get so many skirmish tickets if I actually knew the drop rate going in.
Likewise, I don’t currently have much incentive to farm dungeons because the only drop rate we have any insight into is the rate of chest rarity. We don’t know how chest rarity or level impacts what is inside of said chest, other than what players have painstakingly data-gathered.
It really comes down to: would you rather have people spending their time (especially in Early Access!) playing the game and giving substantive feedback about its content… or tracking unpublished drop rates in spreadsheets so that they can make informed decisions about how to spend their time and currency in game?
Choice seems obvious to me.