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Starsector 0.95a is out! (03/26/21); Blog post: Of Slipstreams and Sensor Ghosts (09/24/21)

Author Topic: first question about the game and me  (Read 470 times)

SweetO

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first question about the game and me
« on: July 25, 2021, 10:02:44 AM »

Hi all. How's it goin'?


I have been playing for a couple dozen hours. Pretty quickly decided that 30% tariff is not reasonable and used the screw to turn it down to 10% (perhaps a bit too low). Atm I think that 17% would be a good spot. Scoured through about half the galaxy and @ lvl 13 currently. 1 colony 10^4 and built, what could be built (so far).

I did notice many things I could write pages about. But before I invest that sort of effort, I have one question for the beginning. It may be partly directed directly to the devs, but I don't know whether it may be answered by general knowledge of the community that I simply couldn't find yet.

Am I in the target group for this game (of course I'll give a little info about myself ;))
I...:
  • really like intelligent complexity. To the degree that I've taken wikis of games, real life sheets of paper and a calculator to figure out stuff
  • really like options and diversity in gameplay
  • really like steady and purposeful progression
  • OK with moderate levels of grind
  • do enjoy lengthy games (OK with few 100s of hours per session) depending on, of course, the previous points
  • tedious complexity is OK IF there is a point behind it (not for the Dev but a point for the player), and if it's worth it at the end of the line
  • really like tidy and optimized interfaces
  • really like logical reasoning behind the happenings in the game and the mechanics in general
  • like exploration

The question might sound dumb, but I see insane potential in this game. And since there are like 10+ years of development in this, I don't know whether some of the aspects are build just to run or whether they are purposefully constructed to be and stay like that. For that reason I'd first like to know if the game is supposed to be liked by someone like me.


Could somebody please help me with this assessment?
Thank you so much :D
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Gothars

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Re: first question about the game and me
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2021, 10:49:50 AM »

Hi Sweet0!

I'd say Sector checks all of these boxes. Keep in mind though, that the game is not finished, so especially in the progression department, there are some rough edges and dead ends.

The fact that you left out some core strenghts of the game in you list, and that you felt the need to modify the tariff system, makes me doubt that you are the main target audience, though. Is it possible that you are primarily interested in an economic sim? Starsector is not focused on that.
You did not mention the tactic and action focused combat gameplay at all, and this is the actual core of Starsector. Everything else is just meant to give context to the next space battle. You can of course enjoy the sides and avoid the main dish, but that might leave you wanting in the end.
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The game was completed 8 years ago and we get a free expansion every year.

Arranging holidays in an embrace with the Starsector is priceless.

SCC

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Re: first question about the game and me
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2021, 11:26:55 AM »

The target audience of Starsector is mainly people who like the combat. If you like the game's combat, it's going to be fine.

SweetO

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Re: first question about the game and me
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2021, 12:39:13 PM »

Hi Sweet0!

I'd say Sector checks all of these boxes. Keep in mind though, that the game is not finished, so especially in the progression department, there are some rough edges and dead ends.

The fact that you left out some core strenghts of the game in you list, and that you felt the need to modify the tariff system, makes me doubt that you are the main target audience, though. Is it possible that you are primarily interested in an economic sim? Starsector is not focused on that.
You did not mention the tactic and action focused combat gameplay at all, and this is the actual core of Starsector. Everything else is just meant to give context to the next space battle. You can of course enjoy the sides and avoid the main dish, but that might leave you wanting in the end.

Hi Gothars.

Thank you so much for the quick reply :D (and I've seen you too right now SCC. Thanks to you, too.)
I appreciate your choice of words.

It is not the case that I'm primarily interested in trading, it's because I'm bad (... yeah, I got the *'s for my first phrasing^^) at combat (since I'm a newb) and I created a choice of path to progression, that vanilla doesn't offer. I have quickly noticed, that the game is not balanced for trading.

Regarding the combat, I've also been watching YouTubers playing the game and the difference in knowledge and skill between them and me is quite apparent and totally fine (perhaps not the easiest to learn, but hard to master and definitively fun). The combat is the most fleshed out part of the game and it shows. You know and I know that you know, which is why I didn't mention it.

The things you mention are the main reason for me asking the question.
What I'm seeing right now in regard to my points is the following:
  • intelligent complexity. - The combat definitely has it
  • options and diversity in gameplay - neither are present, if there is only combat
  • really like steady and purposeful progression - although just changed in the current version of the game the skill-tree is fairly basic - and I'm not saying it's rubbish. It is appropriate for the scale of the game
  • OK with moderate levels of grind - There is the one main dish. If you get tired of that dish where do you go?
  • do enjoy lengthy games - Can't really judge any of that atm. Colony management is quite a conundrum to me right now. You're paying for everything but you own nothing, you bring missing resources for free and then get charged for the colony using it.... many extremely weird things happening. I'll see if I can make sens of it when I have more colonies.
  • rest is even more based on opinion...

The point I'm getting at is the following.
I see where the game is. Is dev planning to/working on catering to additional audiences by expanding and fleshing out other aspects (that are mostly already present in one way or another) or can no further focuses be expected in the future.

There are the 10+ years of dev and it seems to be coming closer to 1.0 (by number at least)...
« Last Edit: July 25, 2021, 12:45:16 PM by SweetO »
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SCC

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Re: first question about the game and me
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2021, 01:19:15 PM »

It is not the case that I'm primarily interested in trading, it's because I'm bad (... yeah, I got the *'s for my first phrasing^^) at combat (since I'm a newb) and I created a choice of path to progression, that vanilla doesn't offer. I have quickly noticed, that the game is not balanced for trading.
It's not that there's nothing besides combat, it's that the combat is the best thing about Starsector and if you don't like it, you probably will find the rest of the game a much harder sell.

options and diversity in gameplay - neither are present, if there is only combat
There is quite a choice when it comes to combat! More seriously, there's roughly three activities in the game you can do to make money: fighting (bounties, trade fleet ambushes, remnant hunting), exploring, trading (legal or not). Of those, I'd say it's the exploring that's most incentivised, since you can get ships, weapons, cash, hullmods while doing other things, and you can acquire blueprints through raiding, but colony items that aren't nanoforges or synchrotrons are only available through exploration. On top of that, exploration carries only moderate risk that you can mitigate by being careful.

really like steady and purposeful progression - although just changed in the current version of the game the skill-tree is fairly basic - and I'm not saying it's rubbish. It is appropriate for the scale of the game
There are also your fleet composition and your colonies that I would count for progression.

OK with moderate levels of grind - There is the one main dish. If you get tired of that dish where do you go?
I feel like this criticism isn't all that fair, considering there are other games focused on something, and if you get tired of that something, you typically go do something else.

SweetO

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Re: first question about the game and me
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2021, 02:49:30 PM »

Thank you for your Patience.
I'm trying hard not to waste your time.


Within the present scope of the game everything you say is true. I got a bit bold and hyperbolical with the statements because the first two replies to my original post were combat and combat :)

The library of games I played in my life is certainly limited. I tend to find the good games and then play them on and off for decades. But I think I'm right in saying that the vast majority of them do exactly one thing (sometimes not even well). And this is exactly the crux.
Because in those games there is by design no possibility of doing anything but the thing the game is made for.
Now, whether by accident or not, this game isn't like that.

While I see weaknesses of varying degree in everything but the combat, it is just a question of additional features being implemented to flesh out different playstyles without diluting what is already there. (edit: I'd like to add that one of the bigger mods for the game, aside from other things, apparently implements mining. To what degree and how I don't know but I feel like I'm not alone with the wish for more.)
For that to happen the developers just 1st: need to have the will, and 2nd: the resources.

And my second question remains, whether the devs are interested or already planning to expand the game in additional directions. Because it can be done. The game can accommodate all of that. That is why I consider this game to have potential on an insane level. The present solutions in part look like proxys, put in place to have a somewhat playable game during development.  But I can't be sure... there's no info I can find.

If either 1st or 2nd are insurmountable obstacles, saddened I will sooner or later disappear.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2021, 02:55:40 PM by SweetO »
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Gothars

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Re: first question about the game and me
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2021, 08:29:31 AM »

Well, I am pretty sure that Starsector will, that it has to, stay relativey focused on its core strenghts. I assume that any non-combat related mechanics might get redesigned, streamlined, made more elegant - but probably not be expanded in scope.

A likely exception is colony management, which lacks a endgame at the moment, and of course anything story related.

But as you said, there are plenty of mods that can help expand on any aspect of the game you are especially interested in.
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The game was completed 8 years ago and we get a free expansion every year.

Arranging holidays in an embrace with the Starsector is priceless.

robepriority

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Re: first question about the game and me
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2021, 12:47:58 PM »

To be fair, combat is 50 percent preparation and refitting. Even though I don't pilot my flagship, I'm still spending time optimizing my ships.