Not a good move Frontier - Fleet Carrier upkeep

I've been excited for two things lately: The next big game expansion whatever it is (but hopefully it includes space legs.) And Fleet carriers. I've been slowly coaxing my friends to start playing, and gotten a few past sidewinder stage.

But the news that fleet carriers require upkeep was crushing.

I can understand if maybe for game reasons (You dont want a bunch of abandoned ships floating around a server) you need some way to cull unused ships.

This is not the way. You could for example, if a ship isn't landed on for say two weeks to a month, cause that ship to be mothballed, meaning it's owner needs to log back on and re-activate it (WITHOUT a upkeep cost.) That makes sense. Boom the ship re-appears in the system it was last in, everything proceeds as normal. If other players are docked at that ship they can transfer to a nearby station or merely by logging in they either re-activate the ship, or temp reactivate it for 10 hours. (and they can always transfer their ships back off it.)

But the idea that the FCs will be "decommisioned" if they aren't constantly fed in terms of fuel or money or WHATEVER resource is just....offensive. I'm sure a bunch of people will jump on to say "Oh no it's cool" and hey, everybody's entitled to their opinion and gamestyle, but here's mine: I have a job. The idea of Elite becoming one is the WRONG direction for this game.
 
I think the direction is way better than squadrons owning fleet carriers, and having to grind for fuel, which was original concept. I think this method is to encourage only groups of players actually use the FC, but without a hard an fast rule - such as squadrons only! The upkeep/grind factor with added grind was there from the beginning, as far as I can remember.

Cheers
Simon
 
I must have missed something. Where did the info that FC's require upkeep and can be decommissioned come from?
From this article: https://www.pcgamer.com/elite-dangerous-is-finally-getting-fleet-carriers-in-june-with-beta-tests-next-month/

Confirmed here:

www.twitter.com/EliteDangerous/status/1243267247453417475


The tweet is the wrong idea. "You'd need a huge debt for that to happen!" I SHOULD NOT INCUR DEBT IN A VIDEO GAME I HAVE TO WORK OFF. That's the literal definition of WORK as opposed to FUN.

Like, no. NO. Just....No.

I find this especially frustrating because the devs have been against passive income in the game. But they're okay with passive debt!! Come on FDEV, you are better than this!
 
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Relevant comment from the article "Players will be able to trade while using the services, and carrier owners will be able to set tariffs on all goods traded on-board to support weekly upkeep costs. Those costs will include buying Tritium, a new fuel commodity that powers the ships. If owners consistently fall behind on their payments, the fleet carriers might, ultimately, be decommissioned and sold for parts."
 
The tweet is the wrong idea. "You'd need a huge debt for that to happen!" I SHOULD NOT INCUR DEBT IN A VIDEO GAME I HAVE TO WORK OFF. That's the literal definition of WORK as opposed to FUN.

Like, no. NO. Just....No.

I find this especially frustrating because the devs have been against passive income in the game. But they're okay with passive debt!! Come on FDEV, you are better than this!
Looks up from playing Animal Crossing.

Chuckles.

Goes back to being indebted to a capitalist raccoon.
 
I, too was really looking forward to this. I used to play Discovery Freelancer which allowed base building. They too had upkeep and I can tell you from experience, that it got really old, really fast.

I'll wait for the "live" stream to see what they say, but unless the upkeep is stunningly low, I'll probably be giving them a miss.
 
Here's something to consider...

Maybe this isn't upkeep. Maybe it's a financing option.

So we don't have to spend 5 billion all in one go, and can pay it off on a repayment structure until we get to the 5 billion and it finally becomes ours for good?

There's not enough information to say for sure it's "maintenance" or "upkeep" or whatever.
"Falling behind on your payments" sounds like a rental or financing to be.
 
I, too was really looking forward to this. I used to play Discovery Freelancer which allowed base building. They too had upkeep and I can tell you from experience, that it got really old, really fast.

I'll wait for the "live" stream to see what they say, but unless the upkeep is stunningly low, I'll probably be giving them a miss.

Agreed. Only for me it's really unless the upkeep is zero, it's a miss. Again, I understand I think the design intention to keep abandoned fleet carriers from occupying world space, but there are other ways to accomplish that without creating a burden of players: Aka the opposite of fun.

I LOVE elite, but it strays a little to close to feeling like work/a job already.
 
I must have missed something. Where did the info that FC's require upkeep and can be decommissioned come from?
The detail of the mechanisms were not actually published.
In the original concept video at the expo, it was suggested that a Squadron would be needed because of the huge investment, and requirements or fuel were more than one person. I was alluding to the new proposal being better because at least solo players are now catered for.

The lost forever bit is certainly new. But why buy one if you are not going to use one?

Simon
 
I find this especially frustrating because the devs have been against passive income in the game. But they're okay with passive debt!! Come on FDEV, you are better than this!
It sounds from the article ...
Relevant comment from the article "Players will be able to trade while using the services, and carrier owners will be able to set tariffs on all goods traded on-board to support weekly upkeep costs. Those costs will include buying Tritium, a new fuel commodity that powers the ships. If owners consistently fall behind on their payments, the fleet carriers might, ultimately, be decommissioned and sold for parts."
... that it might involve both passive income and passive debt.

But we'll need to wait for what the actual numbers are.
 
The detail of the mechanisms were not actually published.
In the original concept video at the expo, it was suggested that a Squadron would be needed because of the huge investment, and requirements or fuel were more than one person. I was alluding to the new proposal being better because at least solo players are now catered for.

The lost forever bit is certainly new. But why buy one if you are not going to use one?

Simon
The mechanisms are not totally known yet and are possibly still being tweaked. Which is why I think it's important now to speak up on it. I am not a single player, I have a small squadron. But we barely EVER play together, and most of my players are extremely casual who havent even unlocked engineers yet. So as a single player, I am not catered to.

Buy a carrier but never use it: Oh I WOULD use it. I would immediately move every ship I own into it and treat it as my home base. However, there's a difference between something I use in a game, and something I have to maintain in real time like a freaking tamagachi.

Example: I just migrated workspaces and computers, but hadn't moved over and setup my joysticks and elite setup for several months. I had a backlog of work to catch up on, and needed a few parts to make everthing work again.

So I just logged in today after not having played for around two and a half months. If I had known I had some bill accruing in game in real time, I never would have logged back in. Hard stop, right there, that would have been the end of my involvement with Elite. I LOVE Elite as being very close to the space game I have always dreamed of, but there are limits to my time and enjoyment.
 
It sounds from the article ...

... that it might involve both passive income and passive debt.

But we'll need to wait for what the actual numbers are.
That element of it has already basically been answered. You can set tariffs, and your squadron can do trading on your carrier (and possibly other players.) If people aren't trading with your carrier/your squadron, you won't be generating any income.

So players with smaller squadrons/solo players are basically left out of this benefit. If you can configure the carrier to be self maintaining there's zero point in having regular fees that have to be paid.
 
Punishing players for not playing is not a good or healthy gameplay motivator.

Even if the carrier can generate enough money to pay its own debts, I just have to log in to automatically pay them, I again, don't want it. The game is making a real world demand on my time: It's now something I HAVE to do unless I am willing to be penalized. Its one thing to not receive a reward for not playing. (Fable 2 generates income for you even when you arent playing. Fable 3 does not. So you are rewarded for playing, but you are not penalized for not playing, you are simply not rewarded for it.) It's another thing entirely to incur a penalty for not playing.
 
We haven't had any details yet...
From this article: https://www.pcgamer.com/elite-dangerous-is-finally-getting-fleet-carriers-in-june-with-beta-tests-next-month/

Confirmed here:




The tweet is the wrong idea. "You'd need a huge debt for that to happen!" I SHOULD NOT INCUR DEBT IN A VIDEO GAME I HAVE TO WORK OFF. That's the literal definition of WORK as opposed to FUN.

Like, no. NO. Just....No.

I find this especially frustrating because the devs have been against passive income in the game. But they're okay with passive debt!! Come on FDEV, you are better than this!
It really doesn't tell anything.

Look at the station model in the X-series. Stations have an upkeep to maintain there as well, but if you setup your market smart, the thing becomes functional for its environment and it will start paying for its own. Is that really so hard to imagine it might be something like this?

If you add stations to this game 24/7, you might want the things to become an addition to the environment, especially when it is getting wired to things like the BGS for instance. Or if it used to undermine the environment by starting a market with ridiculous prices, you are going to have to work for it, just like it is now. If you gonna dump the thing somewhere and forget about it what's the point of it to be there, from a functional point of view.

From a technical perspective, Frontier needs to keep track of the carriers, where they are, what they do, what the traffic does, how it influences the environment. Allowing stuff to be added and never to be removed is a resource leak de facto.

You might even get your money back. We simply know nothing at this point...
 
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Well, we will have to wait and see on exact details, but yes, its quite confusing.

I think if the reason is at least part technical, having FCs just mothball if someone doesn't log in for some time rather than full decomission, with reactivation upon login, it wouldn't be too bad, won't punish people for not playing, and should solve any technical issues.
 
That element of it has already basically been answered. You can set tariffs, and your squadron can do trading on your carrier (and possibly other players.) If people aren't trading with your carrier/your squadron, you won't be generating any income.

So players with smaller squadrons/solo players are basically left out of this benefit. If you can configure the carrier to be self maintaining there's zero point in having regular fees that have to be paid.
I think this in bold (my emphasis) is the caveat regarding FCs- remember originally they were for squadrons only. My guess is that FCs are designed around the idea of squadrons passively using the FC as a mobile hub. Its not impossible for a single player to do the same, but its very hard.
 
We kind of have this mechanic already with our current ships. If we stay logged into the game, sitting idly in space, eventually your ship runs out of fuel and it explodes. This is why the Fuel Rats tell you to log out of the game until they are in the system and can rescue you.

The difference between our ships and the Fleet Carrier is the Fleet Carrier still exists within the game when you log off (it doesn't de-spawn) therefore continually using fuel even when you're not logged in.

It wouldn't surprise me if other people (e.g. your friends) can help you maintain your Fleet Carrier when you're not playing which allows you to be offline for a while. Remember, this is an online game not an offline one where you can load a save from 3 years ago and I think the mechanic, if others can help, builds the community working together which I think is really cool.
 
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