Various Nonsensicals

Making Things Right Concerning Yays

Rate this Entry
A while back, the LittleBigPlanet 3 yay button was moved from the main screen to the reviews screen. Actually, it was quite a while back. When was it? September? Yet the matter has once again appeared on my personal radar. Tweets and a poll on twitter. Posts on this very forum. I think I even dreamed about it last night. However, it was the twitter poll that started the process of me really putting thought into this again. Now I have words to say.

Let me preface these words with a few others stating that the following is entirely my opinion based on largely unfounded judgments brought about by little to no research. I do not claim to personally know the motives of Sumo Digital or the feelings of a community I have largely never met.

Now, with that pesky lack of credibility out of the way, allow me to explain exactly why Sumo Digital decided to move the yay button to a less visible location and why people have the reaction they do.

Back to that poll. It was run by @COGMONKEY, otherwise known as ARD, Keeper of Mr. Key and Grounds at Sackinima. It asked a simple question: Where should the yay button be? The results were as follows.

It wasn’t exactly a complicated question. I think those results are pretty conclusive. Sure, it was an optional poll (the statistician’s favorite) with all of 58 results. Though, that might actually be large enough to act as a good representation of the LBP3 community. How many people play this game anyway? Like 203? 204?

Regardless, I think it is pretty safe to say that the data supports the hypothesis that people are pretty unhappy with the current location of the yay button.

Never argue with the data!

I participated in that poll myself. I saw it posted and initially carried on with my life until I saw another tweet from Ard saying that the results were worth a look. Intrigued, I went back and decided to enter a choice so that I could see the results. I selected “where it used to be” mostly because it was the first choice (again, this poll is irrefutable) but also because I thought I wanted the yay back where it was. However, once I answered and began thinking about it, I couldn’t help but feel like something was off. Did I make the right choice?

Did I!?

I get why it was moved in the first place. It’s no coincidence that the yay was removed from the main screen at the same time the Level Recommendation system came into play. Those recommendations are based on hearts, so the developer wanted to make sure people would start focusing their button pressing energies onto something that they considered to actually be useful. People are generally less likely to give a heart unless they really like the level and it is truly good.

Or, you know.

Either this would concentrate greatness into the recommendation system, or the heart would lose value as everyone just uses it in place of a yay for all situations, effectively leading to heart inflation.

Contrary to popular belief, that is not a good thing.

But what were the odds of that happening? No, Sumo Digital was playing the long game in an attempt to make finding halfway decent levels online easier than ever.

I don’t really have a problem with this. Not a huge one anyway. It was annoying and I didn’t really want to be forced to change my system for rating levels for no other reason that because the developer said it was good for me. Who do they think they are, my mom!?

Ultimately, it was just a nuisance. Yes, it would make perfect sense to remove the yay button for that purpose. Except the yay button wasn’t removed. It was moved. Which begs the question, Why?

I can’t help but feel like this was an *** covering maneuver. An attempt to have the cake and still divide it up between the multitude until everyone has had their fill. Think about it. What did moving the yay button really accomplish? It makes it less likely for people to use it of course, which was the point as ideally they would use a heart instead. But removing the button would have done the same thing.

The advantage of keeping the yay button, but removing it from sight, is the ability to keep the easy response to criticism about the change. “Does it really take that much longer to go to reviews and press the button there? Is this really worth making a big deal about?” Those are hypothetical of course, but they are so rational it’s almost sinister. It effectively gives an out to any complaint about it. Features weren’t removed, the option is still there. You and anyone else that want to use yays are just too lazy to risk the minor chance of arthritis from extra thumb movement. And if other people aren’t yaying a level, it is because they really didn’t want or need to do so.

This bothers me on principle. Not because that argument has happened. Actually, I think the only “official” response I can think of having seen was the question of “What’s wrong with just using hearts” which is actually weaker because hearts and yays have historically not meant anything close to the same thing. If they did, then there would have been no reason to change it anyway because using hearts will yield exactly the same results.

This bothers me because the game is now heavily implying that yays are wrong. There is a feature that feels like the developer and the game are telling me I shouldn’t use. That extra bit of time to get to it is punishment for using the feature.

Why is it there then? If we’re not supposed to yay levels, then don’t have an option to yay levels. Don’t try to tell a kid that they can play with any toy they want but then move the one they pick away until they finally grab the one you like.

I almost want to say that Sumo needs to woman the **** up and stand by their decision to try to make the community better. And by almost, I mean I just said it. If people complain, then there is a valid reason why it was done. It doesn’t necessarily mean it is correct, but it is valid.

And that is what this blog post is all about. I made a mistake when I answered that poll. I chose poorly. Now I need to rectify the situation. The results of Ard’s poll should really be more of a 72% where it used to be, 0% where it is now, and 28% removed completely. I apologize for damaging the integrity of that otherwise flawless poll. I will choose my answer more carefully next time. Assuming my face hasn’t melted off or anything.

At the end of the day though, the whole yay thing still isn’t a huge deal for me. Of everything concerning LittleBigPlanet 3, this is not the one where I would choose to make my stand.

Do you want to know what really grinds my gears about LBP3?

I mean, other than this guy.

Answer me this. Why do I have pass by (depending on direction) levels the staff like, levels a computer thinks other people I know like and think I should play, levels I have already played, levels I have already said I liked, and various versions of things a computer thinks everyone else played and liked before I finally reach the levels that I already said I want to play?

Answer me that.


  1. mirjanneke's Avatar
    About the yay

    I want it back in place (yes, I do take the time to yay)
    But because of what the Yay means to me, and others perhaps
    A Yay is for a level which is not good enough to heart, but the time and effort a creator put in it deserves some support
    Hearts, Yays and reviews are the only reward a creator gets for his hard work
    None of these should be removed, or made harder to get

    About your last bit, you're absolutely right
  2. xxMATEOSxx's Avatar
    True. It definitely would have been a good idea to keep it where it was. But barring that, they could at least handle its removal properly.