News Chapter Four - Exploration Reveal

I'm with Genar-Hofoen on this - it totally destroys how I explore.

But, given the positive response, I accept that I'm an outlier in this.
I guess I'll be shelving ED, while the rest of you have fun.

Enjoy yourselves without me :D
It destroys how I explore too. But now I'm looking forward to trying a new and better way of exploring.
I was responding to someone who responded to someone, didn't realize I was breaking a rule.
Shields for me are a requirement, but mostly to leave and enter the bubble again. And landing on high G worlds.
Liking what is presented so far but I have two questions,

  1. Are we going to see combined scanner racks

Unfortunately this is not planned at the current time.
Oh, come on! You know you have a bloat situation when it comes to internals already - heck, people complained back when the Diamondback Explorer was introduced, and since then tons more internal options have been introduced.

You've got TWO class 1 devices and less than a third (10 out of 36) of your ships even have class 1 slots. Allowing players to double up with a purchasable "Exploration" module" that can fit both (even at the cost of a class size, say, make it a class 3) seems like a viable option that reduces the waste on larger ships.

The original argument back in the Diamondback era was that players should have to make compromises and pick and choose (the Diamondback was a budget ship compared to the Asp after all), but the number of optional internals has only grown since then.

I mean, the Limpet situation is even more insane. Unless you're a fuel rat, you're not going to carry around a fuel launcher when a more useful collector limpet is available. It just makes sense to use larger slots to double up on those as well (ie a class 3 slot to carry two class 1 limpet controller - which, again, allows for a gameplay tradeoff like the scanner suggestion does).
Will player activity also show up on this system energy spectrum view? For example, will a Discovery Scanner honk by another player make them visible from across the system? Or if I'm mining in a ring with 25MW of mining gear on an Anaconda, will that generate an energy spike at my location for others to detect? Will a player-interdiction-initiated battle now create a Combat Emissions signal source dynamically?
USS will continue to expire and spawn at set intervals.

We aren't presenting any new information on the stellar bodies, but the new tools provide earlier and easier access to data we already presented in the system map.

For example:

These gravitational anomalies represent the gravity produced by stellar bodies and are used to help guide players towards their possible locations.
Wait... That example picture of yours shows a gas giant with information for resources... Does that mean we can harvest resources from gas giants somehow?!? Please yes.
This is very interesting. On the one hand, it seems as if it will slow down what explorers currently do. On the other, it appears it will actually add some skill requirement to exploration. Taking a step back and trying to look at it objectively, currently there is very little process difference between most exploration and travelling. See what has been said about boring systems, of which there are many, the process for most who identify as explorers is just one step different from a fast traveller...opening system map after honking, look for water worlds, ammonia worlds, and earthlikes, then move on.

As it is right now, exploration, and things that count towards exploration rank can be, and are quite frequently done as a passive activity while doing the main activity of travelling somewhere.

These changes seem as if they are going to make a hard differentiation between travelling and exploration. Exploration will become a more deliberate and involved activity that won't easily be done as a side effect of other primary activities.

My biggest concern is probably that it does not seem as if there is going to be much difference when it comes to rewards. Not necessarily credits, but actual rewarding things to find, cool new planetary features, data we can collect and science the hell out of to form hypotheses with reproducible results. More effort for the same result is always a tough razor to walk. That said, if it helps with actually finding things like volcanism more reliable, more process driven as opposed to random brute force mkI eyeball searching, and if there are other things to find like that, then that will go along way towards offsetting the increased time.

Will Flanagan

Community Manager
So we can finally have 4 players mixed between both wings and multicrew?
I've updated the OP for better clarity on what was meant with that line: 'This allows wings or commanders in multi-crew to engage in exploration together, each earning credits and exploration rank and making the process more efficient.'
Please allow multicrew to exploration scan AND set a target for the helm.

It will suck if they can only scan, and then the helm has to open up all the discovery scanner stuff to select the target themselves anyway.
Even without honk? Why change that?
It's not a change, it's already how it works, starports and outposts are automatically discovered even if the body they are orbitting is not. Starports however are not, and you need to scan their planet before you can see them (it might also be that you auto discover them within 1000ls like various POIs, I'm not sure).
One more thought:

Any sort of exploration multicrew is going to feel hampered if we're locked out of using SRVs. Imagine going out to probe some planets, realizing you need more materials to synthesize them, and having to kick your multicrew mates so you can use the SRV to gather materials, rather than working together to do it.

Please, please, please find a way to make multicrew SRVs work.
I agree, we are due another SRV however they would have to remodel the docking hatch as it seems the existing 1 person srv only just fits. A ramp would be cool where you could drive into the cargo bay manually.
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I guess if we can discover and paint planets with probes without even moving your ship from the main star means supercruise agility is no longer a factor for exploration.

Think I might be taking my iCutter out more.
The probes sound like excellent game-play and additions, and I look forward to seeing how they work in action. The synthesis recipe will be key though - they really need to be able to be created from materials you can find out in the black, not have to rely on a stock of junk picked up from the Bubble, like heat-sinks. Being able to find geologic sites, etc will be a positive boon.

The non-rng USS's will be delightful!

The Discovery scanner I am less sure about. Marx & co have already articulated my misgivings about it, notably the amount of time it would take to use thoroughly to get the same effect as a current ADS honk. I have a feeling this might get very tedious after an initial novelty, and I hope there is some scope (!) for altering that behaviour. It's also suspiciously like the SRV wave scanner, which is not perhaps ideal.

Finally, I do fervently wish that there is going to be some form of Orrery in there somewhere. It would be a genuinely useful tool for travel within the system, and also a thing of great beauty which would show-case the immense level of astro-mechanical detail that has gone into the system generations. It really does not need to be jaw-droppingly gorgeous graphically, just place-holder "blobs" would deliver the functionality I would like to see. Please???....???
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It seems like you won't need to scan every body with probes, or even most, unless you want to.

You'll get the equivalent data/credits/"discovered by" that you currently get from the Detailed Surface Scanner by tracking down and zooming in on a planet with regular Discovery Scanner from anywhere in the system. So if you're looking for credits, materials lists, or discovery credit, you can get everything you get currently without using probes. You don't even need to carry a DSS now if you just want those things.

You only need the DSS and probes if you want to find specific sites of interest on the surface (or if you choose to collect the new "First Scanned by" credits) and the regular Discovery Scan will tell you if there's anything worth using the probes for.
That is precisely the thing I'm interested in. Credits and discovery tags are just secondary side effects to me. But if the new ADS scan can tells me if it's worth using probes on a body, then I guess it's fine.

Still digesting this. Many things seem great on paper, like finding planetary POIs and USSs and ring resources using scanners and probes.

Have mixed feelings regarding losing the system map on ADS scan though. While the new process does sound very cool on paper, I don't know if it will still sound cool after 100 or 1000 times, or if people will end up giving up scanning systems after the nth >60 body system scan.

I guess we'll know better in the beta. Nothing like trying it out.
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