Making ED playable and long lasting, our take.

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Hello fellow commanders, my friend and I wish to share with you some thoughts regarding what we see as potential longevity of the game.


My friend commander Ceekay and I have been playing since the game released, we are not kids either Ceekay is in his 60s and I'm 59.


Issues


  • Game longevity
  • Core players are primarily from pre Beta or original release
  • Long term players can acquire any engineered ship with minimal effort
  • Friended players are noticeable by their absence.
  • Warcraft added new activities/quests on a regular basis to retain it’s player base
  • ED needs long term quests/CG/II not just several phases to keep player interest
Suggestions


  • Add serious module upgrades e.g. + 20 LY increase
  • Achievable only by multi-stage quests 20 + stages perhaps
  • The II/CG mechanism could be expanded significantly to accommodate this
  • The end result should be really worthwhile module or upgrade
  • The mega II/CG could have several smaller “payouts, modules etc” every 5 stages
The information can be found @ https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/primary-post-in-dangerous-discussion-forum-regarding-making-ed-more-playable.517296/
 
Interstellar initiatives are an interesting way of tying CGs together but as we've suggested they really don't go far enough and the module reward has so far been a little underwhelming ;)

There's a lot of game play mechanisms that could be tied together (Ram Tahs obelisk mission, Palins etc) mixed in with II/CGs could deliver several months of interesting gaming topped off with a decent module rewards.
 
Possibly the biggest problem Frontier now face is that they have turned a game that was intended to be long-lasting into a quick fix couple of weeks game for the type of player that wants to finish a game in 10 hours and post it on Facebook as some sort of achievement. It was never conceived as a short game, in fact the whole idea of having 400 billion star systems points to the initial idea of a timescale of years not weeks.
Sadly, as the forum shows, constant threads of how difficult this or that is have slowly eroded this idea to appease this type of gameplay. Why spend months exploring (even with the new quick scan features) for a pay-out of, say, 350 million when you can now asteroid mine for void opals and make a billion in less than two days? Which then enables any ship to be bought with no real effort. Thargoids were, in the original Elite, a rather unknown hardly encountered but deadly addition, in Horizons they are common place with a greatly accelerated storyline. The balance of the game has been lost, and there is no easy way to regain it.
Although the idea of delivering several months of interesting gameplay sounds just what the game now needs I don't think Frontier will show the same interest, after all they are a commercial company interested in sales at the end of the day which doesn't really fall in with one game lasting years.
If Raxxla really does exist in game then that is an ideal feature to spend months investigating but it seems that even this has been side-lined for the sake of sales.
 
The one concrete thing you suggest, a module for additional length hyperspace jumps is already in the game — as the guardian module. It was originally a long, long quest to get it. It’s still a fairly long quest. People complain about “grind”. They aren’t wrong, actually. I spent more than two weeks out at guardian sites — and I discover I still don’t have the right materials for the weapons I was going to buy!
 
The one concrete thing you suggest, a module for additional length hyperspace jumps is already in the game — as the guardian module. It was originally a long, long quest to get it. It’s still a fairly long quest. People complain about “grind”. They aren’t wrong, actually. I spent more than two weeks out at guardian sites — and I discover I still don’t have the right materials for the weapons I was going to buy!
I urge you all to read the rest here:
https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/primary-post-in-dangerous-discussion-forum-regarding-making-ed-more-playable.517296/







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We already have Anacondas that can go 81 LY jump ranges and your asking to make them 100 LY? We can already get to Colonia on a 70 LY jump range from Sol in 107 Jumps. Let not forget Hyperjump synthesis and neutron boost.

I don't think people care to read two different topics.
So, you're in the "leave things as they are because they're great". I would explain myself to you, but you'd just give me a headache, I'll just nod my head, thank you for you "ah hem" ......."input" and wave a cheerful bye bye to you

TAXI !
 
I see the op points.. Things can be achieved quickly now because the community complained of the grind. Problem of grind is not the time it requires but the repetition of boring gameplay. Getting 5 times the same blueprint is full time job not enjoyable activity.
I.I. are a let down but I didn't expect a lot from these. What you suggest for I.I. was something probably most players expected but again.. With Frontier NO...
 
So, you're in the "leave things as they are because they're great". I would explain myself to you, but you'd just give me a headache, I'll just nod my head, thank you for you "ah hem" ......."input" and wave a cheerful bye bye to you

TAXI !
So you want to make the galaxy seem a whole lot smaller. See Exploration it not about the Distance you jump. But how many systems you explore. With most mission they are so close It only one or 2 jumps away in an engineered ship.

Oh, enjoy the headache. Oh please watch the Video on my signature. It was using Neutron Stars. I think he also made it to Beagle Point in record time Whats your fastest time to beagle point?
"AlexBrentnall record time is 6 hours 35 minutes is my record, as I understand it that is the current fastest time."
 
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I think the OP has some valid points. The problem is that now ED is ported to consoles, and FD has to make the game work for those systems, and that player base(not making an attempt to degrade console players, play as you wish).

The guardian FSP is a good example another Commander brought up. Personally I found the "mini game" required to get it rather annoying. Then I find out I have to do 5 more times to unlock the rest of the guardian hardware. Guess what? Why would something like the FSB be behind that annoying obstacle? Shouldn't it be something that required exploration?

I do not envy FD and the position they have put themselves in. But keep giving them ideas, maybe one will stick.
 
Way to latch on the whole jump range thing though it was used as an example. If I understand it correctly, the actual idea is to have some desirable things and make getting them long mission chains that take a lot of work. Like if the Guardian structures where you can get blueprints from were somewhere near Beagle Point, and once you got those, you'd have to do another mission to figure out where you can decode them. Turns out that the guy is at Maia, but he want you to get some data from Formidine Rift first and so on.

Might be interesting, but I bet people would complain how grindy it was. Also I think the more cost effective way would be getting players to generate content somehow. For example, if squadrons could post a mission or two on behalf of the minor faction they support. Get some random player traffic to support their BSG efforts.
 
Hello fellow commanders, my friend and I wish to share with you some thoughts regarding what we see as potential longevity of the game.


My friend commander Ceekay and I have been playing since the game released, we are not kids either Ceekay is in his 60s and I'm 59.


Issues


  • Game longevity
  • Core players are primarily from pre Beta or original release
  • Long term players can acquire any engineered ship with minimal effort
  • Friended players are noticeable by their absence.
  • Warcraft added new activities/quests on a regular basis to retain it’s player base
  • ED needs long term quests/CG/II not just several phases to keep player interest
Suggestions


  • Add serious module upgrades e.g. + 20 LY increase
  • Achievable only by multi-stage quests 20 + stages perhaps
  • The II/CG mechanism could be expanded significantly to accommodate this
  • The end result should be really worthwhile module or upgrade
  • The mega II/CG could have several smaller “payouts, modules etc” every 5 stages
The information can be found @ https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/primary-post-in-dangerous-discussion-forum-regarding-making-ed-more-playable.517296/
I don't care at all about another jumprange increase.

For me longevity first and foremost means: V A R I A T I O N.
I have been saying this for a long time: Star systems in occupied space are too similar.

- There should be a difference in exterior station designs between the three major factions. Their general territories should feel different. Also different music themes when entering a system from a particular faction would help.

- Also station exteriors should refer to their function: Mining stations, military stations, industrial station, science stations etc. should have recognizable exteriors.

- Some unique stations might be added in the capital systems of each major faction.
 
Perhaps the +20 LY additional jump range wasn't the best example it was just a quick idea everyone could relate to, perhaps something like a thermal control module that made fitting more than two high thermal load weapons like Imp Hammers or Guardian Gauss cannons viable or adding Anaconda low mass hull tech to other ships or weapon cell banks that add say 20% to the PD's wep cap (use a slot, add heat , need power.............), there's plenty of potential goodies that we could come up with I'm sure.

You could consider this concept as almost a campaign mode something that you could play through with a number of small payoffs along the way and a really significant one if you complete all the challenges
 
Imho, I think the only way to make ED the game it should be, a game with a long playabilty, is to further develop existing features and story lines like the Thargoids, Guardians, Powerplay, etc.
To many features have been brought into the game and they suffer by their numbers because none of them are fully developed.

Sadly enough I think that Fdev will just continue on this road of introducing yet again more features in 2020 but leave the other majority and perhaps the new ones too half developed.

They've created a way to big sandbox of 400 billion stars to fill it with enough content to make it interesting for the player.
Other mechanics are required to make this gigantic sandbox accessable and enticing, jumpranges of 80 lightyears are just to small imho to open up this big open sandbox, special drives that could make you jump to other regions could help imho.
Getting to places is one thing though but what to do if you get there, right now there are a couple achievements to gain (wow) but besides that some nice screenshots and a loooong way traveling back are the only options you have.

Maybe this is what Fdev had in mind when they started developing ED but I for one think they made some questionable choices if they want this to be a ten year lasting game.
The half developed features and often monotonous gameplay just don't cut it anymore to make this a game for years to play.

Just my opinion.
 
I like the prospect of
  • Add serious module upgrades e.g. + 20 LY increase
  • Achievable only by multi-stage quests 20 + stages perhaps
that just works for me especially when a lore based story is baked in.

I quite liked the whole Guardians insertion into ED but the gameplay reality was <!good>
 
So you want to make the galaxy seem a whole lot smaller. See Exploration it not about the Distance you jump. But how many systems you explore. With most mission they are so close It only one or 2 jumps away in an engineered ship.

Oh, enjoy the headache. Oh please watch the Video on my signature. It was using Neutron Stars. I think he also made it to Beagle Point in record time Whats your fastest time to beagle point?
"AlexBrentnall record time is 6 hours 35 minutes is my record, as I understand it that is the current fastest time."
Is ED not playable and long-lasting now?

I mean, I was just spending my 27th week of in-game time playing it.
Pretty sure these two quotes encompass the idea being discussed, Conqrats to Drew who it appears plays the game as Frontier intended and could not care less who gets the biggest, fastest, most credits etc etc. But it is strange how this topic only appears after the game was ported to consols, perhaps, just perhaps console players require or have been directed to 'arcade' type games for so long that they expect every game to be the same. As for watching vids, why on earth would someone consider their experience to be of interest ? players make their own discoveries, just following someone else makes it even less worthwhile. Make your own mistakes and learn by them.
 
If I understand it correctly, the actual idea is to have some desirable things and make getting them long mission chains that take a lot of work.
That's my understanding of the suggestion, too.

Back in the original 2.1 release, getting a fully engineered ship was both desirable (including the +20 LY range, of course, on some builds, compared with previously obtainable maximums) and took a lot of work. Now it is much easier (has been made easier on at least five separate occasions), and still gets complained about as "too grindy".

(see also, Guardian Tech Broker unlocks)

I'm not sure adding on a whole new layer of it would be particularly popular. It might also be for a relatively small minority of players - Frontier will have the stats, of course, but I expect the proportion of players who do make fully-engineered fleets even now is fairly low.

Friended players are noticeable by their absence.
This may depend a lot on your friends list.

Mine consists of a mix of:
- people I was in a group with a while back
- people I went on a few exploration expeditions with a few years ago
- people I met at CGs
- people I saw around Colonia sometime
It's fairly large, because I basically accept all requests, and don't trim it.

With 3.3's new sorting features for it, it's easy to track back and see who's still logging in. Pretty consistently, 1 in 6 have logged in at least once in the last day, 1 in 2 in the last week. 5 in 6 in the last few months. Only 1 in 6 appear to have completely left. Now, of course, that won't be representative of players in general - but nor does it look like it's dying off: that pattern has been pretty consistent ever since 3.3 released.
 
I feel sorry for FDev, damned if they do damned if they don't sort of sorry.

Kids these days have everything NOW (I know, I got some....) and want the same from a game.

Alter Kampfer like me who remember knowledge needed a WALK to a LIBRARY back in the hallowed mists of antiquity, well, we like an immersive game where you have to DO stuff to get results......

Elite has to try to balance serious generational preference differences. And make moolah!!
 
Just my 2cr.

What strikes me in discussions on ED longevity (i.e. gameplay) is that they often focus on 'credits per hour', ship and module performance (faster bigger, better) or mission availability and material drop rates (RNG). Frontier themselves do this too. But those are just technical parameters of in-game assets. However, it fits Frontier's ubiquitous genre: the park/fleet/zoo management game. The player is expected to tinker endlessly with the technical aspects of their in-game assets to make them better at a limited set of in-game activities.

I think the big void in ED is player-driven gameplay. There are no facilities in-game for players to create a story or quest for themselves or for others. Take the Distant Worlds expeditions for example. They were planned and run almost entirely using out-of-game facilities. Or take squadrons:. they offer no functionality to put your squadron to work on some big task and track progress on it.

There is a limit to tinkering with in-game assets. At some point it becomes grotesk (IMNHO Engineers comes close to that in some cases). In an open world game like ED the creativity of players should be tapped into to prevent the game from going in circles. Frontier should not think that they can keep everyone entertained by forever adding "stuff". They must find a way to let players entertain each other in a positive way.

Unfortunately I'm not a game designer, so I don't have a ton of ideas to share. But maybe other games can provide some ideas. Seeing the recent developments, maybe Eve Online? I don't mean copying Eve Online mechanics but maybe some ideas and concepts behind it can be translated to ED.
 
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