I am pleased to announce that lishogi has surpassed its second anniversary.
The developers have made significant updates to the site, and in terms of functionality, it is better than any other shogi site.
On the other hand, I have the impression that the number of users is not increasing and even slightly decreasing.
I have a strong desire to use this site on a regular basis, but it is difficult to find a game to play.
Is there any excellent means to overcome the current situation, or should we think in the long span of five to ten years?
Please let me hear various opinions.
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
Like I said in one of my previous posts: Implementing Unrated Pieces Handicaps System to be more easily available even against completely random players. lishogi.org/forum/lishogi-feedback/make-casual-unrated-handicap-games-possible
My reason for it was also mentioned there.
There are a lot of issues to overcome, of course.
A MAIN part of it, affecting everything, is the chicken-and-egg problem of having low users. When a new user joins and sees there are no games available, they might not stay for very long, making even fewer users stick around. If there are games to be played, people will keep coming. For example, just now as I'm writing this, sdin.jp has about 50 shogi game rooms open. sdin.jp is a much, much, worse site than lishogi, yet the few users there bring in a few more users and it keeps rolling.
A solution to this would lie in us - to make sure there are games available and to be welcoming to new users.
Another issue is that lishogi seems to be very unknown in Japan, where 95%+ of the shogi players are. I'm not from Japan, so I can't speculate on why this is the case. It could be many shogi enthusiasts don't like to play online. It could be that there is nobody "important" to advocate for lishogi specifically. I know the JSA officially endorses 'Shogi Wars' - a blitz shogi app. And many of the professional players make videos and streams playing only on 'Shogi Wars'. Manao Kagawa for example.
A professional streaming or advocating for lishogi could be huge. Even if it was one of the large 'western chess' streamers (Hikaru Nakamura, for example) playing it for an hour or two in front of several thousand people could really breathe life into the userbase.
もうひとつの問題は、95％以上の将棋プレイヤーがいる日本では、将棋がとても知られていないようだということです。私は日本出身ではないので、この理由を推測することはできません。多くの将棋愛好家がオンライン対局を好まないからかもしれない。特に将棋を擁護する「重要な」人がいないのかもしれません。日本将棋連盟が電撃将棋アプリ「将棋ウォーズ」を公式に推奨しているのは知っている。そして、多くのプロ棋士が「Shogi Wars」だけでプレイする動画や配信を行っています。香川 愛生さんとかね。
shogi is an amazing game and lishogi seems to be the best site for it. i really agree that if some chess streamers showed it off, it could have a big effect on people's interest in the game/site
actually i just had a thought: is there a way to measure the time spent waiting for a game? right now, it feels strange to create a game, because i have no idea how long i will usually be waiting for a game.
however, if you could have a message on the front page like "average wait time for a game: X minutes," i would feel more comfortable creating a game because i would have some idea of how long i could be waiting. this could possibly make some people more likely to create a game.
@lilyhollow There is no way, I think, because we have few active players.
@LizardWizard There are a lot of cultures in Japan. Anime and Manga for one. Also, Japaneses are overworked (super-aging society), so adults rarely do have significant amount of time for their hobbies. Especially one that takes long time to be good at or play like Shogi. That is my opinion on the cause. Also,
Japaneses have their own Japanese sites, so they rarely use international sites.
or how about an optional audio signal when a new game appears in the lobby? so i'll notice right away when someone starts a new game, which means i can join it right away instead of missing it and keeping them waiting. more people might be willing to create a game in that situation, since they might not have to wait as long. perhaps one already exists, in which case, my mistake.
I think that could help if it is added to the notification preferences setting. However, I do believe that the suggested system is too minor and the effects are not significant enough to actually increase the active users base.
It is a nice feature to add if you have the time, but it is not that important and the Devs definitely have some other more important stuff to deal with: like adding the unrated public handicap system, or even, the ability to unilaterally adding the time to your opponent's clock to prevent them from losing by time out in correspondence games is also more important in my opinion.
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