The server I'm in recently merged for the second time. In the two servers that were merged there was one allegiance that controlled King's Landing, all of the Paramounts, the vast majority of the other locking Seats of Power. In the other one an alliance of two allegiances did the same. So, I'm sure it'll come as a shock to everyone, that when the merge happened we have an alliance of those same three allegiances controlling -- yep, you guessed it -- King's Landing, all the Paramounts and the vast majority of all locking Seats of Power. In the course of that you have some oddities, namely Winterfell being held by a T3, Dragonstone by a T4, The Dreadfort by a T3 as well as a smattering of 3 star and lower controlled by T4s.
The combination of the recent changes that dramatically increase high spenders' power relative to everyone else, the continued failure of the banner limits to have any teeth and the lack of any meaningful mechanic to enforce a reversion to the mean ensures that at a certain point -- basically a couple of weeks after the Seats all open -- the game board is kind of locked. Sure, we'll have people attacking 2.5 and 3 star Seats, but I seriously doubt that anything will happen above that. I can tell that with the recent PvP event, including a pack that increases the rally size limit, an event that increased march size and rally size timed to coincide with the 3 and 3.5 star Seats being locked the designers are interested in pushing Paramounts and King's Landing to change hands. The unfortunate part is that due to other structural issues with the Seats all it served to do is drive further consolidation.
I've tracked the charts for the game in the Google Play Store and I see this is up to something like #4 in terms of revenue. So the strategy of playing to the whales appears to be working. These are folks who will continue to spend in order to stay ahead of the others in the same category. Though I imagine the use of pack loaders and shared accounts is also pretty rampant in this group, so it's hard to truly get a handle on that. But for everyone else if the outcomes at Seats of Power is a foregone conclusion which, given the advantages that size brings, it will be then there is no point in risking significant resources to attack or hold one. Without the resource sink that combat represents there's no point in continuing to spend once you get to a certain point. Without the show to be a driver of new users, with a declining user base due to focusing solely on the large spenders the game will be -- is in? -- decline. At a certain point it becomes a death spiral as the only people left are the ones who can't see beyond their sunk costs and the server consolidation forces them together.
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