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Author Topic: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes  (Read 217480 times)

Gothars

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #345 on: December 07, 2015, 02:49:03 PM »

I've been thinking about the "transponder on smuggling" stuff - considering inspections when there's any suspicion of smuggling. Adding "or inhospitable" to that might make sense, too.
 Customs also charging tolls - once you're being watched, that is - might do the job, though.

Please don't overdo it, though :) Suspicion triggered inspections seem like something a genuine smuggler character could commonly face as part of his challenge. But a bounty hunter who's just getting some supplies on the black market when they're not available legally shouldn't be stopped henceforth. I think its better to err on the side of giving the player a little too much advantage through smuggling than risking to annoy him all the time with inspections.
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Voyager I

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #346 on: December 07, 2015, 02:51:52 PM »

It's also just become kind of a gaming convention over the years that consequences don't really stick to the player character.  The penalty for murder in most games that even care about those things is usually a modest fine, after which your crimes are entirely forgotten by society, and if you happen to kill a few guards before they can coerce you into compliance then it's no big deal; the fine just gets bigger.

Now suddenly we're in a game where some harmless organ smuggling can get you put on the serious naughty list, and you won't get off without putting in some serious work.  This definitely isn't a bad thing, but the game may want to be more forward in letting people know that their expectations may need to be reevaluated.
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Zhentar

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #347 on: December 07, 2015, 05:55:38 PM »

I'm in a pursuit, fleeing from a significantly superior pirate force. I give the "retreat" order to a Cerberus, piloted by a 'Steady' officer. Rather than doing anything vaguely resembling a retreat, the ship does a u-turn and dives into the opposing forces, and 10 seconds later it's disabled. That was definitely NOT the intent of my retreat order...


edit: Also, I think I've only seen a tempest for sale once in all my .7 game time. What file do I have to edit to make the things show up on the market occasionally!?
« Last Edit: December 07, 2015, 07:08:20 PM by Zhentar »
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Voyager I

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #348 on: December 07, 2015, 07:36:02 PM »

This is starting to look like a new bug; the significant majority of officers I've seen available so far have had aggressive personalities.  My first officer has hit level 20 and I have yet to hire a second despite hitting up every planet I see because they have consistently had unusable personalities.  In fact, I think I've only seen one steady personality on this entire playthrough (who I didn't hire, because was level 7 with bad skills).

I'm also paying the -5 rep/month Knights of Ludd tax, though that's fairly manageable overall.
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Alex

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #349 on: December 07, 2015, 08:07:06 PM »

This is starting to look like a new bug; the significant majority of officers I've seen available so far have had aggressive personalities.  My first officer has hit level 20 and I have yet to hire a second despite hitting up every planet I see because they have consistently had unusable personalities.  In fact, I think I've only seen one steady personality on this entire playthrough (who I didn't hire, because was level 7 with bad skills).

That sounds odd, hmm. Tri-Tachyon markets should have a roughly 2:2:1 ratio for cautious/steady/aggressive, with a few timid sprinkled in. Hegemony is a bit more even between steady and aggressive. Not seeing anything that looks off in the code that picks personalities, and it hasn't changed recently/has worked in the past. Possibly just bad luck?
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Dri

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #350 on: December 07, 2015, 08:12:08 PM »

Seems normal to me. I have 2 aggressive, one cautious and 5 steady. Almost all were hired from Jangala or Asharu.
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Voyager I

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #351 on: December 07, 2015, 10:18:00 PM »

This is starting to look like a new bug; the significant majority of officers I've seen available so far have had aggressive personalities.  My first officer has hit level 20 and I have yet to hire a second despite hitting up every planet I see because they have consistently had unusable personalities.  In fact, I think I've only seen one steady personality on this entire playthrough (who I didn't hire, because was level 7 with bad skills).

That sounds odd, hmm. Tri-Tachyon markets should have a roughly 2:2:1 ratio for cautious/steady/aggressive, with a few timid sprinkled in. Hegemony is a bit more even between steady and aggressive. Not seeing anything that looks off in the code that picks personalities, and it hasn't changed recently/has worked in the past. Possibly just bad luck?

I'm also playing Tri-Tachyon for this playthough, so I've been mostly hitting up their stations and Independents.  It's an odd outcome for sure, but I've probably still only seen maybe ten officers in my playthrough so far so I guess I'll chalk this one up to the joys of small sample sizes.  If I make it through another fives hours of the same I'll make another post.

Thanks for taking the time to check, anyhow! 
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Alex

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #352 on: December 07, 2015, 10:30:31 PM »

I'm also playing Tri-Tachyon for this playthough, so I've been mostly hitting up their stations and Independents.  It's an odd outcome for sure, but I've probably still only seen maybe ten officers in my playthrough so far so I guess I'll chalk this one up to the joys of small sample sizes.  If I make it through another fives hours of the same I'll make another post.

Thanks for taking the time to check, anyhow! 

Thanks for keeping an eye out and letting me know :)
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Voyager I

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #353 on: December 07, 2015, 11:07:30 PM »

Happy to help!  In case it wasn't implicit, I'm very happy with the game as it is and with the direction it's moving in the future.

Here's a question I have about a long-term design goal.  What mechanics do you see around the player absorbing losses in a more complete version of the game?  Right now I'm a fairly shameless savescummer because loss is so devastating.  Unless you have a significant nest-egg banked or a spare fleet in storage, one wipe can be a practical game reset in terms of material progression.  Even if it's not something so extreme, with the current scarcity of ships and equipment, losing a high-end ship like a Tempest comes with no guarantee that you'll get to own one again in the foreseeable future, meaning you might be permanently out a gameplay option.  I don't want to play like this, but I'll often F9 over something as trivial as a Lasher with a Light Needler on it blowing up just because of how long it will take to find a new one (though nowadays I mostly just avoid putting rare weapons on frigates, which might be the intended dynamic).

The game that Starsector seems to draw the closest parallels to is Mount & Blade, another game I enjoyed.  Getting a well-developed army wiped out was a frustrating experience that often undid hours of work, but I would usually stick with the outcome because there was a clear, viable path towards recovery.  The player escaped captivity with their horse and gear, meaning they kept a significant portion of their material progression and were capable of winning small encounters by themselves (which was necessary, since training new recruits usually meant doing all the work for a few battles) and you always knew you would be able to find more recruits and get back what you had lost.  Similarly, it was annoying when one of your elite cavalrymen got themselves killed in a trivial battle mopping up river bandits or some such, but it was nothing worth quickloading over since none of your troops were irreplaceable, even if some of them took some work to develop

Nothing's strictly irreplaceable in the current version of Starsector, but plenty of things are currently rare enough that the difference becomes rather fine.  In a game where the player generally isn't in direct control of whether or not any individual ship survives a battle, this can lead to either excessive frustration for the player, or players being driven to play in ways that violate the core gameplay experience.  Restarting a player who is already struggling with the early game difficulty curve (as demonstrated by them dying) in a shuttle almost seems like some kind of cruel joke.


To make another analogy, it seems like the game is meant to handle loss like XCOM; sometimes your best soldier dies, and it's a bad thing with meaningful consequences, but you deal with it and keep on going and working around loss is a core part of the game.  Right now it works like Baldur's Gate, where your favorite party member dying is essentially a Game Over condition that results in your most recent save being loaded.  I want to play a Starsector where sometimes I lose ships and battles and that loss becomes part of the narrative for my story, and I'm pretty sure that's also how you want people to play Starsector, so I'm curious as to what your plans are to make that part of the experience a bit more sustainable in the future.

I'm imagining industry might tie into this (ie, you find the blueprint for [cool thing] and gain the ability to make them yourself at some significant cost, so losing a fun toy doesn't mean it's gone forever) and I understand if I'm asking too far forward for there to be any concrete answers, but it seems almost certain that this is something you have thoughts on.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2015, 11:11:12 PM by Voyager I »
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Alex

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #354 on: December 07, 2015, 11:56:26 PM »

Happy to help!  In case it wasn't implicit, I'm very happy with the game as it is and with the direction it's moving in the future.

Thanks for the kind words :)

Spoiler
Here's a question I have about a long-term design goal.  What mechanics do you see around the player absorbing losses in a more complete version of the game?  Right now I'm a fairly shameless savescummer because loss is so devastating.  Unless you have a significant nest-egg banked or a spare fleet in storage, one wipe can be a practical game reset in terms of material progression.  Even if it's not something so extreme, with the current scarcity of ships and equipment, losing a high-end ship like a Tempest comes with no guarantee that you'll get to own one again in the foreseeable future, meaning you might be permanently out a gameplay option.  I don't want to play like this, but I'll often F9 over something as trivial as a Lasher with a Light Needler on it blowing up just because of how long it will take to find a new one (though nowadays I mostly just avoid putting rare weapons on frigates, which might be the intended dynamic).

The game that Starsector seems to draw the closest parallels to is Mount & Blade, another game I enjoyed.  Getting a well-developed army wiped out was a frustrating experience that often undid hours of work, but I would usually stick with the outcome because there was a clear, viable path towards recovery.  The player escaped captivity with their horse and gear, meaning they kept a significant portion of their material progression and were capable of winning small encounters by themselves (which was necessary, since training new recruits usually meant doing all the work for a few battles) and you always knew you would be able to find more recruits and get back what you had lost.  Similarly, it was annoying when one of your elite cavalrymen got themselves killed in a trivial battle mopping up river bandits or some such, but it was nothing worth quickloading over since none of your troops were irreplaceable, even if some of them took some work to develop

Nothing's strictly irreplaceable in the current version of Starsector, but plenty of things are currently rare enough that the difference becomes rather fine.  In a game where the player generally isn't in direct control of whether or not any individual ship survives a battle, this can lead to either excessive frustration for the player, or players being driven to play in ways that violate the core gameplay experience.  Restarting a player who is already struggling with the early game difficulty curve (as demonstrated by them dying) in a shuttle almost seems like some kind of cruel joke.


To make another analogy, it seems like the game is meant to handle loss like XCOM; sometimes your best soldier dies, and it's a bad thing with meaningful consequences, but you deal with it and keep on going and working around loss is a core part of the game.  Right now it works like Baldur's Gate, where your favorite party member dying is essentially a Game Over condition that results in your most recent save being loaded.  I want to play a Starsector where sometimes I lose ships and battles and that loss becomes part of the narrative for my story, and I'm pretty sure that's also how you want people to play Starsector, so I'm curious as to what your plans are to make that part of the experience a bit more sustainable in the future.

I'm imagining industry might tie into this (ie, you find the blueprint for [cool thing] and gain the ability to make them yourself at some significant cost, so losing a fun toy doesn't mean it's gone forever) and I understand if I'm asking too far forward for there to be any concrete answers, but it seems almost certain that this is something you have thoughts on.
[close]

As you say, it can't be anything concrete, but I think a big part of the answer is going to be the player having high-level goals. The player's fleet is a tool, but right now the only goal the player has is to make that tool better, and so any damage sustained by it really hurts. It's exactly counter to what you're trying to achieve at any given time. But suppose you're trying to defend your fledgling outpost, or finish some kind of story mission, or... really, anything where the outcome doesn't compare so easily against your fleet's losses. Some kind of accomplishment along a different axis than just making your fleet better.

To continue with a Mount & Blade analogy, if you lose most of your army but manage to take a castle, that may well be worth it. If you lose most your army while trying to level it up, that's just a failure.

Running around the Sector trying to find specific shinies is what one does now because that's almost the only thing to do. I think once you can accomplish concrete and lasting things with your fleet, it should become less about having the perfect fleet and more about having one that can do the job, and whether it's got a needler or a light AC in a small ballistic slot somewhere won't matter as much.

Will have to see exactly how things work out, though. This makes sense to me in theory, but there's a reason they call it theory.
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FooF

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #355 on: December 08, 2015, 06:58:35 AM »

I don't think you're far off, though, if you are at all. Right now the game lacks "permanence:" anything you do can be undone or replicated given enough time/credits. Lose a Wolf? Replace the hull, find the exact weapons, refit it identically and said Wolf is replaced identically. You can even put the same officer in it and re-name it to the old one. Nothing is inherently unique. When the game revolves around the fleet, as you rightfully said, the Wolf, its crew, its weapons, etc. isn't important so much as the ideal of having a fast harasser in the fleet. In fact, that's what we're really chasing at present: some Platonic ideal fleet that we've all cooked up in our own minds (and debate over ad nauseum!) If we ever get close enough to our thoughts of perfection, the game has little else to offer.

However, when overarching goals like creating outposts, going on quests, discovering jump points, etc. that have permanent effects on the game come to the fore, losing the Wolf or chasing after the ideal of fleet perfection no longer has the same allure. If losing a huge battlegroup meant opening up a new part of the sector (with new systems/ships/weapons/factions, etc.), then you're right: that's an acceptable loss. I might save-scum to have fewer losses but if the battle appears unwinnable by the standards of today (i.e. zero-losses), I'll move-on, especially if the next phase of the game promises newer/better ways of playing (i.e. new ships, new weapons, more income, trade, etc.) That carrot-on-a-stick doesn't exist yet, though. I'm sure it is in the works or planned somewhere down the line.

I don't think that's "theory" per se: it's been done proven plenty of times before in other games but for SS, there is risk in moving on from what has worked (and worked quite well, IMO). I, for one, would love to see more lasting/permanent decisions in the game and more dynamism in the sector at-large.

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Bastion.Systems

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #356 on: December 08, 2015, 07:28:19 AM »

Having played .7.1 for some time, I feel like the amount of supplies needed to repair/get the fleet battle-ready is way too much. In early-game your cargo capacity/monetary situation is not good enough to carry enough supplies for more than one battle. In some systems you may not have any friendly systems so the only place you can get supplies may be the black market and even there the base amount is 50, in some the price supplies can be horridly inflated, going for upwards of 400c. , often too less to get your ships battle ready. And when you try to escape the supply-bare system you are hit with numerous malfunctions that will lower your CR to such lows that you might need hundreds of supplies to repair at the station, costing you a fortune.
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Megas

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #357 on: December 08, 2015, 07:53:37 AM »

To add to the previous post, it is easy to hit the 25 ship limit late in the game (but not well into endgame when player can afford cruisers and battleships), when it may be more economical to use destroyer and frigate fleets, which leave little room for freighters (to loot and carry supplies you need) and/or additional room for boarded ships.  The limit needs to expanded to 30 or 35 ships.

Quote
in some the price supplies can be horridly inflated, going for upwards of 400c.
I would love to see such places.  I saw a few at the upper 200s, in which I sell as much as I can spare.  This is the kind of opportunistic trade I exploit.  No need to bother with commodities that do not maintain your war fleet, aside from maybe organs.

One time, I saw supplies sell for 9 credits, but I could not exploit it because I had insufficient cargo space to carry much more, and I could not afford to spend credits on another ship for more space (and I might have been at the 25 ship limit anyway so I could not buy a ship even if I wanted to).
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Bastion.Systems

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #358 on: December 08, 2015, 08:07:24 AM »

The high cost to combat makes trading take the most of your early game time. I mean the money you get from commissions is laughably small, way too little pay for the supplies and the opportunity cost to get more supplies. It's far easier to make money transporting goods.

Also joining in battles gives you near nothing while still costing you everything, maybe up the rewards/loot a bit to make it actually worth it.

Combat should be more rewarding to the player as it's the fun part of the game, realizing that you spent far more credits than you gained in a epic fleet-fight feels wrong.
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Dri

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Re: Starsector 0.7.1a (Released) Patch Notes
« Reply #359 on: December 08, 2015, 08:12:41 AM »

High-tech ships cost a lot more to deploy than others as Medusa is like 20% CR while the Enforcer is just 12% CR per battle. You run with pure High-tech fleets? I have 3 frigates, 4 destroyers and 2 cruisers in my fleet and its only costing me 2.4 supplies per day to run around with all that.

You really should take some points into the Leadership tree for the reduced ship supply cost if you're having issues with supplies.
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