Fractal Softworks Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  
Pages: [1] 2

Author Topic: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)  (Read 4587 times)

Morrokain

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1595
  • Megalith Dreadnought - Archean Order
    • View Profile
Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« on: September 23, 2016, 12:46:13 PM »

I actually have suggested this before a long time ago, but it is a lot more relevant with the procedural generation and exploration features taking shape so I will post it again.

If not already, the codex entries should have a *hidden* flag that only unflags when you find an item during the campaign.

This way, all weapons and ships, variants and skins are not just known by browsing the easily accessible codex and inadvertently finding spoilers - unless you have already encountered that ship/weapon before.

This not only makes the game a lot more fun since I am excited to find new things and new kinds of weapons I don't even know exist yet through exploration (and later technological re-discoveries that unlock new tech blueprints for the industry feature), but its also important for the potential addition of procedurally generated weapons, ships or even whole factions that are "in the codex" but not found every play through. New players could get pretty frustrated if they didn't know that beforehand.
Logged

Megas

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 8526
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2016, 02:21:59 PM »

Please, no.  The point of the Codex is the player can reference information of just about anything in the game, like an in-game encyclopedia or instructions manual, without the need to go to some wiki on the net.  I would have loved an in-game codex for other various games.  Having an unlockable codex means someone may needed to search the internet to research content if stuff is locked up and hidden.
Logged

Harmful Mechanic

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1092
  • For space is wide and good friends are too few.
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2016, 02:25:38 PM »

I wouldn't mind having this be true of the codex if accessed while in campaign, but not true of the main menu codex, since missions currently allow you to look at most of that stuff anyway.
Logged
People need societies, but they don't necessarily need nations.

Morrokain

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1595
  • Megalith Dreadnought - Archean Order
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2016, 03:22:06 PM »

Please, no.  The point of the Codex is the player can reference information of just about anything in the game, like an in-game encyclopedia or instructions manual, without the need to go to some wiki on the net.  I would have loved an in-game codex for other various games.  Having an unlockable codex means someone may needed to search the internet to research content if stuff is locked up and hidden.

Would be really easy to just have this be a setting: defaultCodexVisibility = true/false

Or, the hard way, a full blown option in the options menu.

Satisfies both preferences.

But imo you really can't have an exploration game where everything is visible in a compendium that is also brought up each time an item is referenced in game. Its just too easy to have things spoiled. For people like me, where one of the main selling points of the game is the "explore the sector for knowledge and profit" feature, I don't just want to come across little blurbs here and there about lore, and scattered randomized resources.

Sure, that is really awesome and I want that too, but I want to be able to find and build ships and weapons that would otherwise be "unknown" to the other major powers in the sector. And I really don't want that to boil down to seeing it in the codex and going:

 "Oh so that's how many skins there are of the Dominator, and it looks like these 3 factions use it because it has these skins. Oh and look that's a weapon I haven't seen before, what does it do? Gotcha. Well I guess the only mystery now is where to find the resources for it."

Not awful, but not really exploration as a feature either, at least not to me. Cookbook gathering with the only real secret potentially being the recipe is a closer description.
Now put that alongside:

*Near a previously unexplored region of space and come across a fleet*
Its a new faction of post collapse colonists that have banded together for survival in this lone region of space, with a powerful salvaged Domain-era weapon system on their otherwise unremarkable vessels. This weapon can be:

1) salvaged from their wreckage by defeating their ships (only found in this region of space)

2) manufactured through a high skill in technology and the relevant skill trees by "reverse engineering" the design

3) purchased from the faction upon receiving "favorable" status, etc.

Its the not knowing that makes exploration fun. If i know beforehand that this faction exists "somewhere" then its just a matter for methodically looking for it if I want the weapon that looks good. Since its a minor faction, maybe its not even generated every play-through. (I know procedural factions would be a lot of dev work, but with the system in place there is just a lot more room for growth there down the road)

 
« Last Edit: September 23, 2016, 03:24:30 PM by Morrokain »
Logged

Gothars

  • Global Moderator
  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 4260
  • Eschewing obfuscatory verbosity.
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2016, 03:31:48 PM »

I completely agree, and the coming update would probably be a good time for it. Otherwise I will have to avoid the Codex for the time being.

A codex overhaul is definitely planned, but if happens soon or in three years, who knows.
Logged
Arranging holidays in an embrace with the Starsector is priceless.

Midnight Kitsune

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 2697
  • Your Friendly Forum Friend
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2016, 04:02:02 PM »

...but if happens soon or in three years, who knows.
Why did you repeat yourself?

I'm of two minds on this. One part says no because I use it to look stuff up all the time. The other part of me says yes cause I want to explore and also I know from experience that many new players see all the stuff in the codex and get overloaded with information. So what not have it set up where you can view combat stuff (ships, systems, weapons, and fighters) but not lore stuff. Or have it configurable
Logged
Stop trying to balance the game around a few minmaxers...
Programming is like sex:
One mistake and you have to support it for the rest of your life.

2021 is 2020 won
2022 is 2020 too

Tired of having your game crash because of out of date mods? Then click here!
Spoiler
Get Version Checker today! Now with 90% less hassle! Simply toss it into your mod folder, activate the mod like a normal one and BINGO you will now be informed of any and all updates when you start SS campaign up!
[close]

Gothars

  • Global Moderator
  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 4260
  • Eschewing obfuscatory verbosity.
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2016, 04:47:47 PM »

A nice thing is it would instantly open a completely new game goal you could set yourself, in the vein of "Gotta Catch 'Em All". It could even be two stage, where you get the full information about a hull only after you have destroyed/owned it.
Logged
Arranging holidays in an embrace with the Starsector is priceless.

Wyvern

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 2594
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2016, 04:50:58 PM »

Reminds me of Escape Velocity Override, the second in the series; only the serious explorer would ever find the Emalgha, poor little aliens surrounded by the hostile Voinian empire... but they had the best anti-armor weapons in the game.  If you'd been able to see their ships and weapons in a codex entry before finding them, it would've really spoiled the exploration.

The Codex should start with just "common" ships and weapons, then add anything you acquire - or survive fighting against.  Dev mode would fully unlock everything, of course.

This is particularly a big deal for mods; I expect the vanilla game it wouldn't take too many times through the game to just get everything unlocked (and then it'd stay that way).  Though, could be interesting to have a bit of a completion bonus - perhaps finding all the Codex entries unlocks an art gallery of the various planet and station screens or something?  (Thinking about Metroid Prime here, where you got access to concept art if you scanned enough of the in-game information...)
Logged
Wyvern is 100% correct about the math.

Megas

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 8526
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2016, 04:57:57 PM »

Exploration is something to do once per game.  Afterwards, unlocking things via achievements gets in the way of other fun things, especially if I do a clean install after a hiatus later.
Logged

Morrokain

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1595
  • Megalith Dreadnought - Archean Order
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2016, 05:42:23 PM »

Exploration is something to do once per game.  Afterwards, unlocking things via achievements gets in the way of other fun things, especially if I do a clean install after a hiatus later.


Would be really easy to just have this be a setting: defaultCodexVisibility = true/false


Hm. This would take care of what you are concerned about, so doesn't mean it can't be a feature. A simple change can make it give you full info in-game like before.

Or make save files record codex flags since those ignore clean installs anyway.

Also, running the risk of nitpicking here, but, nothing suggested was about achievements. That's a separate topic altogether from exploration in this sense. If you mean achievements in the sense of "unlocking new content via player effort and time playing the game" then I kinda honestly beg to differ: that's the whole point of a game pretty much from the start, right?  :) Otherwise, with that mentality, just remove credits/rep/campaign completely and make it a combat simulator with access to everything all at once.

Taking away those elements necessarily hurts a game toting the features Starsector is.
Logged

Megas

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 8526
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2016, 07:03:10 PM »

Exploration is a form of achievement.  Achievements include more than exploration, but you get the idea.

An example of what I mean.  Whenever a new version of DoomRL get released and I clean install, I want to jump straight to some of the challenges like Angel of 100, but I cannot because I need to unlock them with various achievements.  Similarly, if I want to play Hardcore in Diablo II with a new BattleNet account, I need to beat the game with a character first.

I would not mind a "combat simulator".  Missions sort of do that, but they are too low-powered and the battles are generally set.  Campaign provides the best combat simulator environment, after acquiring tons of skills, ships, and weapons.

When I play a game, I like to research or gather info before I play.  I really dislike playing something like Angband or Nethack for hours or days only to get blindsided and permakilled by something I knew nothing about.  To me, reading spoilers or source code for many games is nothing more than reading the instructions manual, and I view the Codex in Starsector as said instructions manual of sorts.
Logged

Grievous69

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1068
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2016, 01:21:51 AM »

OP, I understand your way of thinking and why would you want it like that, but to me (and a handful of people) Codex is a place of valuable information that I use to compare things, look up something that interests me or maybe see how certain weapon or ship is correctly spelled so I can spawn it using Console commands. Having all that information hidden behind a grindwall is just silly. I mean, the simplest thing you can do is just not look at the Codex if it is a ''spoiler-manual'' to you.
Logged
Please don't take me too seriously.

Tartiflette

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 3039
  • Toss a coin to your Modder, O' valley of plenty
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #12 on: September 24, 2016, 03:37:59 AM »

I approve wholeheartedly with one caveat: most of the ships and weapons entries should be unlocked by default (since it should be common knowledge) and only really rare stuff missing.
Logged
 

borgrel

  • Captain
  • ****
  • Posts: 287
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #13 on: September 24, 2016, 09:52:48 AM »

some stuff unlockable, sure

all stuff ..... no!
after the 3rd or 4th reinstall of the game (OS reinstalls are so tedious) i'll look at how much i 'lost' just because i reinstalled and after calculating how many hours will be needed to 'replace' the hidden codex entries, i'll just uninstall the game and nvr look at it again

so will many, many, many, many other players

..........

you do NOT punish your most loyal players for reinstalling the game after a system crash!
Logged

Morrokain

  • Admiral
  • *****
  • Posts: 1595
  • Megalith Dreadnought - Archean Order
    • View Profile
Re: Unlockable Codex Entries (exploration)
« Reply #14 on: September 24, 2016, 11:45:48 AM »

Yeah the point really is to have the option and for the most rare stuff to be hidden from casual perusal.

I'm not saying you should discover "fuel" and get a codex entry, there should be common info already available.
Logged
Pages: [1] 2