Galaxy-Wide Cartographic Data for Explored Systems

One of the changes to exploration in "Beyond" is the ability to see anything already discovered by another CMDR in our system map, while hiding those planets not yet discovered. I love this! However, this network of shared cartographic data needs to be "unlocked" for each and every system by physically visiting the system and honking the horn.

I'm an American, and you all know that our country has been "discovered". But imagine if that knowledge was kept secret, and explorers from Europe knew our continent was here but had no idea if anyone had discovered it or not, because of "reasons". So explorer after explorer makes the long trip across the Atlantic to arrive here, only to be disappointed to find out, after all the work to get here, that America has indeed been fully discovered and mapped long ago.

Since this data is shared and available to us, I propose that we have access to the shared system maps of all discovered systems, regardless whether or not we have visited it, using the existing mechanic that allows us to buy system map data from a station. The availability of that data would show whether or not anybody has been to a system of interest. Since one would need to be at a station to buy this data (or even see if such data exists or not), it would require an explorer like me to plan ahead - I wouldn't be able to just go in some random direction and then see what systems around me are unexplored. Going out exploring would feel much more like a proper expedition rather than an Easter egg hunt.


BTW - I'm a frontier explorer, a "beachcomber" if you will, interested in systems in close proximity to the Bubble, so the advice, "Just go a few thousand LY out." doesn't help me. The current system of exploration is like a Roomba vaccum, where one system gets "swept" a dozen times, while the system next to it remains undiscovered, potentially forever. I'd like to see that change!


THIS POST WAS RECENTLY EDITED FOR CLARITY, BUT THE POINTS REMAIN THE SAME
 
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A reoccurring argument for bringing back the ADS is that some CMDRs want to be able to look the system they are in at a glance to see if there is anything interesting to visit - planets in strange orbits, etc. At first I was opposed to this, but I've come around to the idea of allowing the return of the ADS as a separate, optional module. I'll never use an ADS myself, assuming the FSS is here to stay, but I understand why some people want it back. Yes, I've teased them, calling them "space tourists", all in good fun. Now it's my turn to make a similar request.

One of the changes to exploration is the ability to see anything already discovered by another CMDR in our system map, while hiding those planets not yet discovered. I love this! However, this network of shared cartographic data needs to be "unlocked" for each and every system by physically visiting the system and honking the horn. Since this data is shared and available to us, I propose that we have access to the shared system maps of all discovered systems, regardless whether or not we have visited it.

My argument mirrors the ADS argument, but on a galactic scale. Some find the need to manually scan every planet in the FSS to be tedious. I find the need to visit every system to determine if it's been discovered or not to be tedious. I'm an American, and you all know that our country was "discovered" long ago. But imagine if that knowledge was kept secret, and explorers from Europe knew our continent was here but had no idea if anyone had discovered it or not, because of "reasons". So explorer after explorer makes the long trip across the Atlantic to arrive here, only to be disappointed to find out, after all the work to get here, that America has indeed been fully discovered and mapped long ago.

Some will say I'm looking for "easy mode", but think about it - finding undiscovered systems today is like what finding POIs was before the 3.3 update. Most people agree that the new tools for finding POIs is a great improvement. I'm looking for the same improvement for finding undiscovered systems. Discovery today is like the old Roomba vacuum cleaners that go over one spot 100 times while missing another spot altogether.

BTW - I'm a frontier explorer, interested in systems in close proximity to the Bubble, so the advice, "Just go a few thousand LY out." doesn't help me.

I'm all for quality of life and time efficiency, but I fear your suggestion would take away the very core of exploration. I am no lover of the FSS but showing me the systems not yet explored is really easy mode (sorry bud) but it is.

If I go to visit a nebula adn I make 100 jumps, I expect that all the jumps within 800ly of bubble are already explored, and I expect, given I didn't make a straight line to it, that as I progress further out, my 'chance' of landing in an unexplored system grow exponentially, and not randomly. Given that, I can look at the G-Map and make a predicition, that if I go down/up and then across to my ultimate destination, I can skip all the stuff that gets heavy traffic to that location.

That is the core of exploration, and of course that chaps who head the rift etc, but I think they're even in a different group. I'd call them the true explorers. Me going on a jaunt to Seagull Nebula is not exactly 'exploring' except to me as I may not have been there.

We need to keep an eye on the essence of the game and it's various arms and legs of game-play. I'm actually concerned right now, that mining for example has become a de-facto 'get rich' mechanic. Before we had players who found a system and some mechanic that lasted a week or 2. Now we have permanent fill your boots with credits with absolutely 0 risk.
 
I'm all for quality of life and time efficiency, but I fear your suggestion would take away the very core of exploration. I am no lover of the FSS but showing me the systems not yet explored is really easy mode (sorry bud) but it is.
I just want to make sure you understand what I'm asking for. If you do, and still feel that way, that's cool (I felt the same way about the ADS in the beginning).

I am not asking for system maps for unexplored systems. I'm asking for system maps for previously-explored systems. I live in America, and I can go to Google and pull up a map of England right now. I don't need to get on a plane and land in London in order to buy a map at the kiosk. That's because somebody has discovered and mapped England, and that data is shared. What I cannot do is pull up a map of Atlantis (the real one, not DCEU), because nobody has discovered and mapped Atlantis.

Having system maps for undiscovered (by anyone) systems would actually ruin the game for me! I just want to have maps of systems that someone else has discovered, because I personally want to "Go where no man has gone before" (but close to the Bubble). Heck, I would settle for the ability to filter the galaxy map by discovered vs. undiscovered systems.

I bring this up now because Frontier has officially added the "shared exploration data" to the Lore with this latest update, so it makes little sense not to have this data available. I'm even willing to pay credits for it via the current "buy system data" tools built into the game!
 
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I just want to make sure you understand what I'm asking for. If you do, and still feel that way, that's cool (I felt the same way about the ADS in the beginning).

I am not asking for system maps for unexplored systems. I'm asking for system maps for previously-explored systems. I live in America, and I can go to Google and pull up a map of England right now. I don't need to get on a plane and land in London in order to buy a map at the kiosk. That's because somebody has discovered and mapped England, and that data is shared. What I cannot do is pull up a map of Atlantis (the real one, not DCEU), because nobody has discovered and mapped Atlantis.

Having system maps for undiscovered (by anyone) systems would actually ruin the game for me! I just want to have maps of systems that someone else has discovered, because I personally want to "Go where no man has gone before" (but close to the Bubble). Heck, I would settle for the ability to filter the galaxy map by discovered vs. undiscovered systems.

I bring this up now because Frontier has officially added the "shared exploration data" to the Lore with this latest update, so it makes little sense not to have this data available. I'm even willing to pay credits for it via the current "buy system data" tools built into the game!
If the information has been sold then why not? Isnt alot of it available anyway via aps like ED discovery or whatever? Put a weeks delay on it showing up if people want that. But i can accept the point of exploration is to advance human knowlage.
 
I just want to make sure you understand what I'm asking for. If you do, and still feel that way, that's cool (I felt the same way about the ADS in the beginning).

I am not asking for system maps for unexplored systems. I'm asking for system maps for previously-explored systems. I live in America, and I can go to Google and pull up a map of England right now. I don't need to get on a plane and land in London in order to buy a map at the kiosk. That's because somebody has discovered and mapped England, and that data is shared. What I cannot do is pull up a map of Atlantis (the real one, not DCEU), because nobody has discovered and mapped Atlantis.

Having system maps for undiscovered (by anyone) systems would actually ruin the game for me! I just want to have maps of systems that someone else has discovered, because I personally want to "Go where no man has gone before" (but close to the Bubble). Heck, I would settle for the ability to filter the galaxy map by discovered vs. undiscovered systems.

I bring this up now because Frontier has officially added the "shared exploration data" to the Lore with this latest update, so it makes little sense not to have this data available. I'm even willing to pay credits for it via the current "buy system data" tools built into the game!
What percentage has been discovered so far? It's less than 1% right?

So we're talking about a mechanism so that you can jump quickly to the undiscovered bits close by, rather than go further out into the 99% undiscovered?
 
Old Duck - I'm still on the fence on this one.

I confess, it has always bothered me - a little - that *my* sold cartographic data just went into a vortex from where it never returned. It bothered me - a little - that the agency who bought my data, they must've bought it for a reason - but whatever that reason was - it wasn't to sell on to the next space pilot and therefore make a commodity out of that data. That weird notion has always bothered me.

I confess, it has also always bothered me - a little - that I can search the entire galaxy (from the comfort of my pilot chair from any location, whether docked at station, in SC, or parked on the dark side of a moon in the galactic core) using the gal map and see *exactly* where each and every single one of the hundred billion systems is physically located - with exact distances to all of its neighbours - and with information about what stars are located in each system - and yet, we have no information whether the system had been visited&honked&data brought back and sold in the bubble or not. I agree with you, ..This just appears to be daft.

It would make far, far more logical sense if the information that you desire was available in some way, shape, or form.


However...
I'm still unsure whether a galactic ADS would improve the game or not.

What level of detail would you propose that this device gives you? Do you want to just see a tag "honked" or "explored", or would you like to see the summed up detail of all the past scans of that system? Would you like to know the % of the system "first discovered" or the % of the system "first mapped" in order that you know beforehand that there is some % yet to discover? The list of questions is quite long...

Each of the answers to those questions bring up some interesting gameplay options...

If you just wanted a tag saying "visited" (meaning that some CMDR had "first discovery" of something within the system), then there may yet still be objects yet to discover in that system.

If you want to see the summed total discoveries, then this might not be complete and, again, there might be some objects yet to discover - but the negative side to this is that *you* might avoid it because it's been visited/part discovered, even thought there may be a pair of ELWs not yet honked or mapped, etc... so there is the potential to have hidden detail.

On the other hand, if you wanted a map *and the %scanned and/or %mapped - this also has implications.

Would you like to buy the data for a system when in space dock - but that has only been sold *directly* to that discrete space dock you're docked at, or would you like the summed data, with the notion that all data goes into a pan-humanity linked galactic map repository? Or would it be a Federation database for data sold at Fed stations, etc, or Power-Play flavoured distinctions?

So very many questions. And so many implications for what you would see with each answer.


That's the reason I remain on the fence, because there's so much to think about, analyse and form opinions on.

Discuss...
 
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What level of detail would you propose that this device gives you?
Having given it some reflection, I think using the existing mechanic that allows us to buy system map data from a station would be best. The availability of that data would show whether or not anybody has been to the system. It would require a credit (and time to click) commitment to actually "unlock" the map, thus reducing the "easy mode" aspect. Also, since one would need to be at a station to buy this data (or even see if such data exists or not), it would require an explorer like me to plan ahead - I wouldn't be able to just go in some random direction and then see what systems around me are unexplored. I do like a challenge, but I hate RNG, so this feels like a good balance.

Thoughts?
 
Amount of reachable systems is huge but still limited.
And I suspect that amount of unvisited reachable systems with the requested device will reduce drastically...

And eventually it would be good idea to protect last unvisited system from crowd of explorers.)
 
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Amount of reachable systems is huge but still limited.
And I suspect that amount of unvisited reachable systems with the requested device will reduce drastically...

And eventually it would be good idea to protect last unvisited system from crowd of explorers.)
Allow us to buy star charts of sectors with all data sold by other explorers. Half the money is given to those who explored it.
 
I would prefer a button that I press for a few seconds (5 maximum) which reveals all the planetary bodies in the entire Galaxy whether these systems have been previously visited or not.
 
I would be happy if we had access to data at the simplest level of just being able to select visisted systems by others as a filter option. We have a filter for ones we have visited and we should in theory have access to carto data turned in by other explorers, soooo why not have the ability to sync that data at a station so we can filter for completely unvisited systems.
 
I sort of agree, we sell the data and then where does it go? It makes sense that it becomes available to buy and should reveal everything that the others scanned in that system to be revealed, of course if they didn't get everything then that data would not be there. It would speed up the discovery of the galaxy though, I'm neither here nor there on the implications of that. But some would be against it because it sped things up.
 
It would speed up the discovery of the galaxy though, I'm neither here nor there on the implications of that. But some would be against it because it sped things up.
Yes it would. But with 400 billion systems, Frontier will run out of $$ before we run out of stars, LOL. What I want to see is a more logical expansion of our "explored bubbles". We are all just Roomba vacuums, hitting the same spots a dozen times while skipping over other spots, some undiscovered systems being incredibly close to the Bubble!
 
I just want to make sure you understand what I'm asking for. If you do, and still feel that way, that's cool (I felt the same way about the ADS in the beginning).

I am not asking for system maps for unexplored systems. I'm asking for system maps for previously-explored systems. I live in America, and I can go to Google and pull up a map of England right now. I don't need to get on a plane and land in London in order to buy a map at the kiosk. That's because somebody has discovered and mapped England, and that data is shared. What I cannot do is pull up a map of Atlantis (the real one, not DCEU), because nobody has discovered and mapped Atlantis.

Having system maps for undiscovered (by anyone) systems would actually ruin the game for me! I just want to have maps of systems that someone else has discovered, because I personally want to "Go where no man has gone before" (but close to the Bubble). Heck, I would settle for the ability to filter the galaxy map by discovered vs. undiscovered systems.

I bring this up now because Frontier has officially added the "shared exploration data" to the Lore with this latest update, so it makes little sense not to have this data available. I'm even willing to pay credits for it via the current "buy system data" tools built into the game!
Actually yes, I misunderstood :)

Well.. Being totally honest, I don't mind either way. If someone has charted it already then for sure, it's already known so there fore it is acceptable that galactic Navigations systems Incorporated would update all ships with it's new galactic maps. Just like my GPS gets updated with new maps. Without having to actually drive through Andorra or the Swiss Alps :)

So, yeh, it's certainly not unrealistic!

And certainly more believable than say my ships going completely unresponsive during hyper jump :)
 
I keep seeing this thread and I keep reading it one of two ways...

Either as a desire for nav-beacon like satellites with holographic billboards throughout the galaxy (Ads), or a dire warning of a galaxy-spanning outbreak of Acquired Immuno-Deficiency-Syndrome.

Both would be terrible, and neither are what this is about... but I keep reading it that way.

Maybe I’m just in a mood since NASA declined my proposal for the Whole Earth Tethered Frequency Attenuated Radio Telescope project, because they “couldn’t sell the acronym”.
 
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I think we should press a button for five seconds and it discovers every planet in every system in the galaxy. It will speed things up nicely. Then we can ask FDev to add in new galaxies so we can press the same button for five seconds to discover everything in those. But as there is estimated to be over 2 trillion galaxys out there it will take some time. Probably only get through less then 0.1% in my life time. Sounds fun.
 
Nice idea OP, and I like where you're coming from with this.

My only issue is what do we do with partially mapped systems? Would you still expect the system map to be available if the system isn't fully explored?

A partial map could be misleading if there's no indication to say whether it is a partial map or not.
Hiding a partial map would feel wrong if the exploration data is available for part of the system.

Anyway - I like the idea, and my concern above is minor at best.

+Rep.

Allow us to buy star charts of sectors with all data sold by other explorers. Half the money is given to those who explored it.
Again, another great idea in principle! However, I question how much it would really be used...?

Have some rep anyway.
 
Yes it would. But with 400 billion systems, Frontier will run out of $$ before we run out of stars, LOL. What I want to see is a more logical expansion of our "explored bubbles". We are all just Roomba vacuums, hitting the same spots a dozen times while skipping over other spots, some undiscovered systems being incredibly close to the Bubble!
Don't get me wrong I agree with your idea...I myself have found loads of undiscovered systems and a few water worlds less than a kylie from the bubble, I also don't get the "jump range" mantra of some explorers as I usually pick economical and even just manually select the nearest undiscovered system to visit via the nav panel. I'm in a 22 ly Python! More than enough for me.
 
Don't get me wrong I agree with your idea...I myself have found loads of undiscovered systems and a few water worlds less than a kylie from the bubble, I also don't get the "jump range" mantra of some explorers as I usually pick economical and even just manually select the nearest undiscovered system to visit via the nav panel. I'm in a 22 ly Python! More than enough for me.
That's what I'm doing relatively nearby Colonia - except in my Cutter for which 310 million space moneies was spent getting it shipped from the Bubble - and using economical routing and have found an ELW in this little jaunt already, amongst other niceties.

As for the OP, sounds like a good idea. I don't know if it would be practical to have every previously-explored system available in the galaxy map though, because for example, last time I checked (which was last year sometime!), the EDSM Nightly star system data dump was up at around 8 Gigabytes in size - and that's only for star systems explored and reported to EDSM, and not everyone reports back to EDSM. So imagine your game client having to download additional gigabytes of data so that the galaxy map could show previously-explored systems. Even being able to purchase system data instead might get to be an additional strain on FDEV's already apparently bursting-at-the-seams game servers/back-end.

So, although I love the idea, I suspect it might be too impractical for FDEV to implement.
 
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