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Author Topic: Feedback #1  (Read 3384 times)

Ryan390

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Feedback #1
« on: June 11, 2019, 05:26:15 AM »

    Hi Guys,

    After coming back to the game many years since its early conception - I've put quite a lot of hours into Star Sector and managed to "finish" a play through.
    In terms of finish I really mean I have a huge fleet ranging from paragon to pretty much every other ship type.

    Most are in storage as I can only fit 30 ships in my fleet at a given time (More on this in a second)
    Also I have a max level character (level 50) - max number of colonies based on my character build.
    Not to mention finish the story currently on offer (more on this later also)

    That being said, I'm still playing my save as there is loads more stuff I want to do in the Sector. 
    The concept of "finish" is really a relative concept, based on one's ambitions within the game..

    Anyway...
    I thought it's probably a good idea to give some feedback, some of it may help.
    I'm hoping most of the concepts I mention are felt by other people, I don't want to go against the grain of where this amazing product is heading.
    Personally, I don't believe in expecting huge features to be realistically implemented.

    So, I'm keeping my feedback / suggestions to be purely based on what experiences I had as a player.
    These should be fairly (hopefully) easy to implement, if not that's totally fine just ignore them!  :)

    Ok!

    • Story.. I know, I know... we all want it, hopefully. I can't wait to see what happens next, there's so much that can be done with the story / lore!
      This will naturally develop in time, so I almost didn't want to mention it. However I feel it's probably the main thing I'd like to see drive forward.
      Apologies for mentioning this, good luck on the implementation! I look forward to something big happening. Shake up our beloved Sector and blow our minds!
    • Maximum character level - I hit this level pretty fast I guess, does it need to be capped at 50? Raising this can only promote people playing longer?
      I didn't realise the cap was at 50, I'd of put more skill points into colony management otherwise. I'm surprised that I can't hire an extra Administrator, but I look after 10 officers.
      The officer cap at level 20 is fine, I don't see any issues with this itself personally.
    • Maximum fleet deployment points (300) - This limitation seemed a bit like a smoking gun. Is there a reason for this limitation, in terms of performance reasons?
      When a players fleet gets larger and larger it becomes difficult to deploy anything other than the first few capital ships. Bigger battles are more fun too.  ;D
    • Fleet deployment handy-cap (similar to above) This happens when a bigger fleet attacks a smaller fleet, causing the smaller fleet to be able to deploy less than the bigger fleet.
      I'll be honest I dislike this mechanic the most out of all. It makes getting ambushed by an armada even worse than it already is when your at a size disadvantage.
      I'd suggest back tracking on this mechanic, for a level playing field. Then, increasing the deployment cap to at least 500 for both sides.

    That's enough for now I guess. There are other things I'd like to mention but these above are the most obvious that I can see.
    I noticed the pattern of suggestions I had are really around increasing some of the limits which are currently imposed.

    There's probably a good reason for some of them, I'm guessing.
    We can't have "unlimited" amount of ships on the screen at any given time obviously.

    However, if a new player can hit these max levels pretty quick then I feel raising them is a fairly quick solution to this.
     


« Last Edit: June 11, 2019, 05:36:55 AM by Ryan390 »
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Megas

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2019, 05:45:13 AM »

#1) I want more story too, if it means we finally have a victory condition that says you win the game if you beat it, or a soul-crushing "GAME OVER" if you lose like when all your cities get nuked in Missile Command or you die in Nethack without any life-saving effects.  Also, I like to have threats that require all of the colonies resources to deal with.

#2) I thought 50 was enough in 0.9a, but with new industry limits (that require more colonies if you do not abuse cores) and other annoyances in 0.9.1a, I feel like 50 is not enough.  Now I wish the cap was 55 or 60.  Especially now that wealth progression is slower because ships and colonies are more expensive than last release.

#3)  Map size is for performance reasons.  At 500, it slows down my computer if the fight is between two big carrier fleets.  With the current 5v5 Conquest or Atlas 2 spam favored by the enemy, it runs just fine.
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Alex

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2019, 10:22:15 AM »

Story.. I know, I know... we all want it, hopefully. I can't wait to see what happens next, there's so much that can be done with the story / lore!
This will naturally develop in time, so I almost didn't want to mention it. However I feel it's probably the main thing I'd like to see drive forward.
Apologies for mentioning this, good luck on the implementation! I look forward to something big happening. Shake up our beloved Sector and blow our minds!

No worries, and thank you! Yeah, I'm very excited about adding more story-stuff as well; needless to say there are some specific plans, but I don't want to talk about them :)


Maximum character level - I hit this level pretty fast I guess, does it need to be capped at 50? Raising this can only promote people playing longer?
I didn't realise the cap was at 50, I'd of put more skill points into colony management otherwise. I'm surprised that I can't hire an extra Administrator, but I look after 10 officers.
The officer cap at level 20 is fine, I don't see any issues with this itself personally. [/li][/list]

Wanted to mention that I've got something in mind that should give a bit more of a feeling of progression past the maximum level, but, again, don't want to get into the details. I'll probably talk about it in the next blog post or two.

Maximum fleet deployment points (300) - This limitation seemed a bit like a smoking gun. Is there a reason for this limitation, in terms of performance reasons?
When a players fleet gets larger and larger it becomes difficult to deploy anything other than the first few capital ships. Bigger battles are more fun too.  ;D

Just to make sure this is clear, if you go to Settings -> Gameplay tab, you can increase battle size up to 500. It is indeed for performance reasons.
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Serenitis

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2019, 10:57:22 AM »

This is a personally held conviction of mine, so others may not agree:
I do not belive there needs to be a maximum level cap for the player.
If the player wants to invest the non-trivial amount of time and effort required in order to completely fill in the skills tree, why should they not be allowed to do so?
They are getting something positive from the experience in continual character growth (otherwise they wouldn't be doing it), and it has zero effect on anyone else's experience.

It's not something you can just do casually either, so all the 'extra' skills above lv.<cap #> are not exactly freebies. You have to put in a fair amount of effort to get them.
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Alex

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2019, 11:09:56 AM »

Just design-wise - and this is a general point, not specific to the skill system or even Starsector - if you can eventually get everything, then what you to get becomes a less interesting choice.

If the player wants to invest the non-trivial amount of time and effort required in order to completely fill in the skills tree, why should they not be allowed to do so?

Yep, and this is why the level cap is easy to edit in settings.json. It's basically my way of saying "this probably isn't the best idea and may break things, but if you really want to, go for it".
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Ryan390

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2019, 02:56:00 AM »

Good responses Alex!

I'm looking forward to the next few updates..
I can't believe I didn't notice the deployment cap size increase in the options..

That's going to make things more interesting for sure..
Hopefully, when things story wise really get going, it won't require a game re-start, but no worries if it does, things like that can't be helped I guess!


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Megas

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2019, 06:37:54 AM »

I believe in a hard cap because some players feel compelled to grind for perfection, and rewards those willing to waste lots of time grinding for that perfect game.

However, now that Starsector 0.9.1a progresses slower except for level gain, I reach level 50 before endgame, unlike in 0.9a.  Now, it is somewhere between 0.8.x where you hit level 40 in midgame, and 0.9a where you hit level 50 right before endgame.  Today, with slower wealth and colony progression, I hit level cap a significant time before I have endgame fleet and large enough self-sufficient colonies.  Player needs to fight more to get the income to buy more expensive ships and colonies.  It also takes longer to grow colonies, now that Growth Incentives is practically one-half of a Free Port.
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Paul_Kauphart

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2019, 07:10:50 AM »

Hello, I recently restarted a playthrough, after a long period of not touching the game. I removed the hard cap on player level, because I do want to have most of everything by the end of this session, and because I'll probably spend a lot of time fooling around the world even after I'm well into end game.
Even after removing the hard cap, I find that I'm still thinking every skill point I get very carefully, because I know the next one will be even more difficult to get. And just rearranging the order I get these points would drastically change the course of the game.
If getting all the skills was easy to do quickly, I agree that would remove the point of having to choose, but right now the experience curve negates that.
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Megas

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2019, 07:22:08 AM »

Leveling up past 60 is very slow.  On the other hand, player can probably level up to 55 before reaching endgame this release.

With much harsher colony limits, either player must get colony skills or use alpha cores.  I am tempted to think the Pather bug is deliberate, so that players are expected to use alpha cores as administrators and ignore Industry to get all of the combat skills to stand up to the capital spam of the current release.

Back in 0.9a, colony skills were a luxury because you only needed one world, maybe two if you are unlucky.  Now you need three colonies minimum at best, and you probably need four, maybe five if you are really unlucky with planet spawning.  Plus, planets need high resources to meet colonies' elevated demand.  +1 with Industrial Planning, or +2 without (ouch!)
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Serenitis

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2019, 09:14:49 AM »

I believe in a hard cap because some players feel compelled to grind for perfection, and rewards those willing to waste lots of time grinding for that perfect game.
On the other side:
I believe in no cap because some players like the feeling of growth regardless of direction or increase in ability, and feel like the game is stagnant and boring once the player character stops growing and no longer gains any benefit from doing things.

We're all different.
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FooF

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2019, 10:17:36 AM »

There was a mod I grabbed awhile ago that decreases the near-exponential rise in XP needed per level past 50 and I think it's a good soft-cap solution. Can't remember the name.

I do like feeling progress, even if its minimal. That I can still squeeze out a few levels means that combat (huge fights, really) is what will fuel further progress. It actually makes me want to pick the biggest fights I can. I think that is perfectly appropriate for end-game content.
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Megas

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2019, 10:23:18 AM »

I am very interested to see the next planned skill revamp.  All of tweaking to the current skill system will not mean much if Alex does something like six skills per tree, weaker officers, and other stuff.  Hopefully, no more dead aptitudes.
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Alex

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #12 on: June 12, 2019, 11:40:27 AM »

That's going to make things more interesting for sure..
Hopefully, when things story wise really get going, it won't require a game re-start, but no worries if it does, things like that can't be helped I guess!

Ah, I can promise it'll require a restart! Just too many things change for that to make sense, unfortunately.

Hello, I recently restarted a playthrough, after a long period of not touching the game. I removed the hard cap on player level, because I do want to have most of everything by the end of this session, and because I'll probably spend a lot of time fooling around the world even after I'm well into end game.
Even after removing the hard cap, I find that I'm still thinking every skill point I get very carefully, because I know the next one will be even more difficult to get. And just rearranging the order I get these points would drastically change the course of the game.
If getting all the skills was easy to do quickly, I agree that would remove the point of having to choose, but right now the experience curve negates that.
I believe in a hard cap because some players feel compelled to grind for perfection, and rewards those willing to waste lots of time grinding for that perfect game.
On the other side:
I believe in no cap because some players like the feeling of growth regardless of direction or increase in ability, and feel like the game is stagnant and boring once the player character stops growing and no longer gains any benefit from doing things.

We're all different.
There was a mod I grabbed awhile ago that decreases the near-exponential rise in XP needed per level past 50 and I think it's a good soft-cap solution. Can't remember the name.

I do like feeling progress, even if its minimal. That I can still squeeze out a few levels means that combat (huge fights, really) is what will fuel further progress. It actually makes me want to pick the biggest fights I can. I think that is perfectly appropriate for end-game content.

Thank you for your feedback! I do think that some of the ... stuff I don't want to talk about quite yet ... will help with a feeling of progression after the level cap, but will keep the max level configurable, anyway. That's a fairly low-effort thing, so even if for various design reasons I don't think it's a good default, I'm happy to provide the option for those that prefer it.

(And, yeah, to Megas' point, "compelled to grind" is indeed another reason. I kind of see levelling up as an early and midgame thing, where when you get to the lategame, you've got your build set, and are worrying about other things. Which isn't to say that it's objectively superior or the only way to go and so on, just how I'm approaching it.)
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Midnight Kitsune

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #13 on: June 12, 2019, 11:10:37 PM »

My issue with the cap is that it basically forces builds and causes more min-maxing than an uncapped system.I see many people that don't take combat skills or even suggest to others not to take it due to the fact that combat skills are able to be used by officers while no one but the player character can take the fleet wide buffs.
Combine this with the skill taxes and a full on hard cap and you get things where people move from taking things that are nice in the early game, like d mod reductions and combat skills, to just having to tough stuff out and playing as a weaker version of an AI officer. And while skipping combat skills might be easy for us vets, SS is very unfriendly to newbie players

I've said it before and I'll say it again: I HATE being the damn cheerleader for my team while my AI officers get to play with all the suped up skills and ships...
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SCC

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Re: Feedback #1
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2019, 12:52:43 AM »

The other issue with combat skills is that they buff the player. I've seen many people struggling to get their performance better than AI's, especially early on, and to them combat skills will naturally be of lesser importance. Combat skills are also a bit of a gamble, since if you don't find a good ship for yourself (which varies depending on the playstyle, but ships with the biggest payoff are also the rarest), they feel wasted and not much better than an AI officer. It might be hard to justify spending skillpoints on combat skills, if they have to compete with more useful ones.
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