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Megathread: Make Geoguessr Great Again!

Hello, today I'm writing this long message to make many suggestions and returns. I've been playing Geoguessr daily for like 2 years now, I have the Pro subscription, I've seen the major versions (the retro, the current one and the one between the retro and now) and I think I have enough experience now to suggest ideas to you to improve Geoguessr.



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1 • Make new official maps

It's been a long time we play with the same 20 maps. We can surely make custom ones, and it's what we do with custom maps with lot of points to simulate the behavior of an official map. But they usually disappear in the vast ocean of the custom maps, and most of the players will never play them. Having new official maps will add some fresh air to Geoguessr, and we have many countries or cities to officially explore!

Here are some ideas of areas that could be nice as official maps: Europe (not E.U), America, North America, South America, Africa, Asia, Oceania, France, Mexico, Italy, Chile, South Africa, Washington DC, Moscow, Thailand, California, New Zealand...


2 • Disable the needing of having an account to play custom maps


We can play official maps without accounts, why do we need one for custom maps? Many players are pushed away because of this. People will make an account only if they’re interested by the game, which usually happens after playing a bit, and there are thousand of custom maps while only 20 official maps exist. A lot of potential new players is lost there. Nowadays websites over-abuse of the forced account creation, please don’t be like them.

3 • Implement settings in challenge creation


Simply add some rules we can enable while creating a challenge, like when we can select a timer. “No movement” to prevent people from moving, “No photospheres” to disable them, “Only photospheres” to force them (maybe we have masochists there :p), “Limited movement” where you can’t move away from the starting place with a distance configuration (between something like 50m and the longest distance between two points on Earth, which is around 20.000km), “Easy mode” with the street names displayed in the street view (like on the Retro Geoguessr or in regular Streetview)... We can find more ideas, those are what I have in mind right now and it’s already a good start.


3.5 • Add different categories for average scores


This goes with the suggestion 3. If settings are added on challenge creation, we could have various categories for average scores: regular one (the current one), non-moving only…. I know some people that creates multiple accounts to keep their average score linked to a way they play (non timed, timed, no moving etc). With this, no needs for making more accounts. And let’s be honest: the current average score isn’t usefull… Mine is way lower than it should be because I mostly play non moving challenges since Google forced the blurry movement. And obviously, non moving challenge is way harder than moving challenge.


4 • Sort the tied scores by error distance


It happens very often that more than one player share the first place (usually by getting 25.000 points). I don’t know how Geoguessr decides who will be on the top of the leaderboard, but it should be sorted by the total error distance. It makes no sense to see someone first with 140m error distance and the second being second while having less error than the leader. This will give a nice interest into pinpointing precisely and be fair for who spent time to get very close.


5 • Improve the randomness of the game


This is mostly for the World map: please make something to get a bigger variety. The problem with the World map is that we are too often in large countries such as US, Brazil, Argentina, Russia or Australia. Not helping that US and Australia being filled with blurry pictures… Meanwhile we still have countries like South Korea, Guatemala, Sénégal,Ghana or Kirghizstan that are never picked because of their recent addition to Streetview or to their small size / Streetview coverage. Even Germany is present when it’s mostly photospheres… I don’t know how the game works (does it pick randomly on the Streetview coverage? Does it picks from a predefined list of thousand of places?) but it should be possible to change the bias toward smaller countries.


6 • Bring back the coloured pin for the player in the result screens


Before the big update that released the current website, the player had a different color for his pin, to quickly find his guess between all the other players. Now we all have the same default pin. I know Pro gives the possibility to change the picture in the pin, but I’m just talking about the color of the circle around it. This shouldn’t be a paid feature, it’s simply some Quality Of Life since it’s only visible for the user, not for all the other players.


7 • Bring back the ability to see more than one player in the intermediate result screens


Another good feature scrapped with the new website: the ability to see more than the current leader on the intermediate result screen (the one we see after every guess). Before we could see all the guesses for each round. Now we have to wait the final result screen to see them. It was a very nice thing and I suggest you put this back, showing up to the 10 best players (more would be too much crowded). Of course, this will need the previous suggestion, with the different color pin: one for the player, one for the current leader, and one for the other players.


8 • Bring back the clickable results


Before the big update, we could click on every result number and get a result screen displaying the game with only the guesses of one player (the one who got the score you clicked to display the result screen). Now we can see scores everywhere (in the main page with the activities, in the map activity…) but we can’t click on them to see the guesses. It’s something I personally miss from the old website.


9 • Add a “Save and continue” feature


Sometimes we have to leave in the middle of a game. Yes, we can restart the challenge on the round we stopped, but it would be nice to have the ability to save where we stopped and restart at this place, so we don’t need to redo all the travel. It would mostly be for non-timed games, where you can take your time exploring around, but that could be extended to timed challenges as well: you’ll have to save the timer in addition of the current place. This could be a nice addition to the Pro feature, with multiple save slots, while non-Pro users would only have a limited amount of save slots.


10 • Add a “Random maps” category


Currently we have 3 categories of maps: Official maps, Popular maps and Newest maps. That’s nice, but this limits the players on the most popular maps which will stay more popular than the other maps. Adding a fourth category displaying random maps will allow players to discover new maps to play only by randomly looking at what the category gives instead of searching things. They will find maps about places, themes… they would probably never have think before (and thus they would never search them).


11 • Increase the leaderboard length on map descriptions


I think that’s pretty obvious: displaying only the top 4 isn’t a lot. We could have way more, especially when the top 4 is filled with perfect scores. I use the leaderboard to gather data on my custom maps, seeing where players are placed on it, so the more we can see, the best it will be.


12 • Improve the Map Editor


We already made many suggestions on the forums: toggling photospheres on / off, display the amount of places, fix the problem with the slowness of the editor with thousand of points, add a polygon area selection etc. Itw would be since to finally see some update there. Also adding a scale on the map editor would be great too.


13 • Add a new tag on custom maps: Country


The idea there is to add a new parameter for custom maps: the country where it is. Map creators could select a country in a list, and this parameter could be used by the search engine. So, for example, if someone makes a custom map based on China, he will select China in the country list, and other players searching for China will be able to find it. Of course, this parameter will be optional, since all maps aren’t tied to a single country. Default choice would be World or something blank.

Another idea would be a “tags” field similar to what we can find on Youtube, where you can enter words related to the map, for searching purposes.


14 • Generate an official “weekly challenge”


A small idea that popped up in my head while writing this: a timed challenge automatically generated from any Official map by Geoguessr, which will stay for a week and easily visible on the site. Players can play it only once and can’t access the result screen without an account and without playing it first (for obvious cheating results). After a week, the player having the best score + the lower error distance would be the winner. No prize, this should stay something to do for the fun, no need to give more reason for cheating.


15 • Add more assets for custom map picture


With the latest big update you added some pictures for custom map customization (mountains, trees, floor color…). The choice is very limited though. Having more different pictures would be nice, even if it’s not a priority. We could even have an option to upload a picture (like the ones used on Official maps) but I can understand it would be too tedious to moderate on your side...


16 • Be more present toward your players 😀


We often have the feeling the dev team is not present. Sometimes it can pass weeks, even more, before having an answer here… I’m sure Geoguessr isn’t your main activity and source of revenue, and I’m not asking to have answers immediately or news everyday. But it would be nice to see more activity on the social networks. Look at the Twitter: the last message is 6 months old, and the latest interaction is a retweet 5 months ago. This gives the feeling the game is dead. It was nice to see you interacting on the subreddit too, after the latest big update! So I (and many others) hope we’ll see more activity in the future!


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I think I’m done for now. I know it’s a lot of suggestions, but I really hope this will help you develop Geoguessr more. Thank you for reading, hoping to see some of this wall of text becoming part of the Game 😀
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Comments

  • I've been playing since June 2013 and I can't agree more with all the points that KillerMapper mentioned. In recent months, I noticed a surge in Geoguessr's popularity by looking at how many people played the World map and I think it would be the ideal time for more features to be implemented to keep the current userbase and attract new players to the game.

    Sadly, Google hasn't been on our side this year with their new Maps and Street View features (blurry transitions, the new zooming update, etc.). On the other hand, Geoguessr still can be updated in a positive way that would make the fanbase happy and more interested in playing in the future.
    Pizza
  • Hi guys! This is one of the most comprehensive and excellent feedback we have ever received throughout the history of GeoGuessr. Thank you so much for taking the time to help us improve the game and tell us when you think we're moving in the wrong (or right) direction. We've been discussing this non-stop since the first post, we'll try to comment on every single bullet in here. I'll start with the first one:

    1) New official maps. This is all about priorities for us - I'm the first one to agree that this has been neglected in favor of other features and we'll try to improve on this area. Thanks for the list, our list with requested official maps have grown exponentially over time and that fact alone should have motivated us to act here.

    2) This has been a constant discussion within the GeoGuessr team since the introduction of pro accounts. I'll have to get back to you guys on this.

    3) We definitely want more settings in the challenge mode. Ironically, we've got most of the data and functionality to make it happen. It just haven't gotten enough attention recently.

    4) This is a no-brainer and this should definitely be the default behavior within all geoguessr multiplayer games. Thanks!


    Erland
  • Thanks for the answer. Looking forward the new updates from you!

    I also want to add another idea about the popular maps category: the ability to see the most popular maps from a certain time, like most popular maps from of the day, the week, the month, the year, forever.
    KillerMapper
  • Hello, any news for the next?

    I wanted to add another idea for timed challenges: a mode where the timer is not for each round but for the whole game. So if we make a 20 minute timer challenge, players will have 20 min to complete the 5 rounds. If the time runs out before, then the game will automatically apply the guess for the current round (or put 0 point if no guess was on the map) and apply 0 point to all the remaining rounds. That would add a nice strategic aspect to the game, where you need to make a choice between "do I spend time in the first rounds and hope the other rounds are going to be easier" and "I should rush the first ones and take time to pinpoint the last rounds".

    The only think that will need a rework is the way the game handles refresh / closed tabs, since in regular timed challenges it will just reset the timer for the current round. This can't stay like this for my game mode suggestion, obviously.

    Thank you for reading.
    KillerMapper

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