Playtests

edited April 2016 in EmptyEpsilon
We tried today a game with 7 players and 1 DM. We played around 5 hours.

image

It was great.
Still there was a few issues and bugs :

Build 2016_04_28:

Helm :
- Jump should go farther and jump distance should be tweakable in the game master menu. In most scenario 50km isn't enough to go to your objective. Resulting in a slow gameplay that make players lose interest in the game.
- the "km" units also seems wierd to all players. I've heard parsecs used during the game.

Weapon : Weapon should be able to setup shields also. This station is already the one to put the shield on and it would relieve the engineer a bit.

Science :
Bug - Science cannot select a station from a probe view to know it’s position, distance and inclination with current ship. In fact science can't scan anything from the probe view...
- Players asked if there should there be frequency options for stations too ?

Relay :
- According to the players, this is the station that need the most attention. It's ok, but definitely less active than the other stations. We came out with an idea to improve it : Waypoints.
- As for ships, there should be different types of waypoint ranging from different colors. Sme waypoint could be used to show sign of ennemies, others for stations, for objectives, or for different purpose described by player. the 3 first should be seen by everybody in the same faction. The number of waypoint per ship could be limited. In this way, relay players would serve as "explorers" or "advisers" for their ship and other players ship.
- Waypoint should appear in every screen, around the round map view. This way, relay would actively serve during combat an while moving between objectives, providing support and information for other stations by the use of waypoints. Quick mockup of the concept :
image
- Waypoint serving for many players could show information entered by the relay player. (ex : WP1 : 2 strikers and 1 base; or : Watch out, black whole!). Relay player would simply be prompted when creating the WP to add info, or if selecting it, be able to add or change info.
- That way, relay players would offer a great service to most stations, but also to 1player ships (fighters) by giving them info and directions through waypoints.


1 player ship :
- There should be an option for a large view as in relay.
- We also added a jump module on the single ship for it is lost and wont be of used in any scenario because of distance.
- The ability for a fighter to dock onto another ship is expected a lot from players.

Game master :
- a player hailing a npc ship should open a talk with the game master. Otherwise if the Npc ships are not pre-programmed in the scenario, opening comms with the npcs is one way only.
- when adding new tubes to a ship, we should also have the ability to change the tube orientation.
- we lack the ability to create ressource pod (or any quest items actually). A ressource pod with tweaking of the ressource into the pod would be great (energy, missiles, repair).

General issue :

- Bug : 2 ships on the same faction have to be docked in the same time on a station to buy from it. But will only have the option tu buy from one of them (ex: fighter options instead of cruiser options). We had to destroy the 2nd ship in order to make it work properly.
- When looking for a server, if clicking "connect" while no server is selected, the game would crash and have to be forced quitted.
- Players with less competent laptop have seen issues and their game closed a few times.


UI issues or needs:

1. Everybody asked to change the « alert » look, it takes too much place in the screen. It should only be on the side. The Relay player love to use it, but it bothered everybody else. Ruining this experience for everybody.

2. A global message that is too long appear out of the box. Global message also do not show for a very long time on the main screen... most of the time it s so short, it isn't seen by most players.

3. Ability to change ship “callsign”, the same way you can change “ship name”. Having a friendly player ship called K-PL239 does not seems right at all.

4. Bug : Probes sent by ship A appear sent by ship B

5. The ship in engineering looks crappy compared to the rest of the Ui.

----
That's it for now ! well probably try the game again next week.
Thanks for the quick build !

Comments

  • Whoha, lots of stuff.
    Helm :
    - Jump should go farther and jump distance should be tweakable in the game master menu. In most scenario 50km isn't enough to go to your objective. Resulting in a slow gameplay that make players lose interest in the game.
    - the "km" units also seems wierd to all players. I've heard parsecs used during the game.
    The 50km range limit is intentional. The scenario I wrote actually makes use of the fact that you cannot reach your destination in a single jump. However, I also noticed the problems with it that people where just waiting when traveling happened.

    km will most likely be called "u" (units) in the future. See the planet discussion for details. Parsecs are huge, so I'm not a fan of those.

    Weapon : Weapon should be able to setup shields also. This station is already the one to put the shield on and it would relieve the engineer a bit.
    I initially put it on engineering to encourage communication between weapons and engineering. However, in practice this means shield re-calibrations never happen. So this could be a good change to make.
    Science :
    Bug - Science cannot select a station from a probe view to know it’s position, distance and inclination with current ship. In fact science can't scan anything from the probe view...
    - Players asked if there should there be frequency options for stations too ?
    The probe view things are a clear bug. I'll have a look. The whole idea was that you can extend the science parts with this. Making interaction between relay and science interesting. (I cleaned up some of that code, that most likely broke this feature)

    Stations will most likely be a variation of ships in the future. The boundary of what can be done with ships and what's special about stations is slipping quite quickly. So that makes all ship features available for stations as well. But this does require quite a bit of work.

    Relay :
    - According to the players, this is the station that need the most attention. It's ok, but definitely less active than the other stations. We came out with an idea to improve it : Waypoints.
    - As for ships, there should be different types of waypoint ranging from different colors. Sme waypoint could be used to show sign of ennemies, others for stations, for objectives, or for different purpose described by player. the 3 first should be seen by everybody in the same faction. The number of waypoint per ship could be limited. In this way, relay players would serve as "explorers" or "advisers" for their ship and other players ship.
    - Waypoint should appear in every screen, around the round map view. This way, relay would actively serve during combat an while moving between objectives, providing support and information for other stations by the use of waypoints. Quick mockup of the concept :
    image
    - Waypoint serving for many players could show information entered by the relay player. (ex : WP1 : 2 strikers and 1 base; or : Watch out, black whole!). Relay player would simply be prompted when creating the WP to add info, or if selecting it, be able to add or change info.
    - That way, relay players would offer a great service to most stations, but also to 1player ships (fighters) by giving them info and directions through waypoints.
    I like these waypoint ideas. So expect them in the future!
    Relay does need attention as a job yes. But it's not as bad as the Artemis comms job ;-)

    1 player ship :
    - There should be an option for a large view as in relay.
    - We also added a jump module on the single ship for it is lost and wont be of used in any scenario because of distance.
    - The ability for a fighter to dock onto another ship is expected a lot from players.
    Lack of a relay like view in 1 player ship is intentional. You are a small interceptor and you should be receiving detailed info from the mothership.
    Ship2ship docking ground work has been done, but it's not enabled in the default ships yet. I will work on this after the new ship templates are done.
    This will mean you can dock to your mother ship, and the mother ship can jump with you attached.

    Game master :
    - a player hailing a npc ship should open a talk with the game master. Otherwise if the Npc ships are not pre-programmed in the scenario, opening comms with the npcs is one way only.
    - when adding new tubes to a ship, we should also have the ability to change the tube orientation.
    - we lack the ability to create ressource pod (or any quest items actually). A ressource pod with tweaking of the ressource into the pod would be great (energy, missiles, repair).
    "intercepting comms" is a planned feature, but it requires some more work. The new "comms as dialog popups" is the groundwork for this.

    As tube rotations where recently added, the GM screen hasn't had the love for this yet.

    Supply drops from GM is a VERY good idea. (Why haven't I done this yet?!?)

    General issue :

    - Bug : 2 ships on the same faction have to be docked in the same time on a station to buy from it. But will only have the option tu buy from one of them (ex: fighter options instead of cruiser options). We had to destroy the 2nd ship in order to make it work properly.
    - When looking for a server, if clicking "connect" while no server is selected, the game would crash and have to be forced quitted.
    - Players with less competent laptop have seen issues and their game closed a few times.
    If on windows, can you send me the crash report file? I do not get a crash if I do not select a server.

    I'll have a check of the comms script.

    UI issues or needs:

    1. Everybody asked to change the « alert » look, it takes too much place in the screen. It should only be on the side. The Relay player love to use it, but it bothered everybody else. Ruining this experience for everybody.
    See the UI rework topic, some work as a concept has been done, but it has not been put in the game yet.
    For your next game, give the captain a brick. Tell the relay officer that the brick will be applied if he abuses the alert state.

    2. A global message that is too long appear out of the box. Global message also do not show for a very long time on the main screen... most of the time it s so short, it isn't seen by most players.
    Noticed these problems as well. But I generally use it for very short and simple messages.

    3. Ability to change ship “callsign”, the same way you can change “ship name”. Having a friendly player ship called K-PL239 does not seems right at all.
    Should be easy.

    4. Bug : Probes sent by ship A appear sent by ship B
    Appear how?

    5. The ship in engineering looks crappy compared to the rest of the Ui.
    Yes...


  • Hey there !

    We made a few new tests this week. Playing with 4 players (3 who never played before), around 10 hours in 2 evenings. We had a chance to try most ships and scenarios. I’ll try to sum our experience in the following points.

    image



    Build 2016_05_22

    0. New players

    3 New players and everyone were amazed by the game, but they were reluctant at first. They’ve seen some Artemis video showing the bridge in some live action and got more interest, to say the least. I suppose having a better video showing the action of the game, and maybe presenting briefly the different stations, would be great in order to attract new players and ease their learning curve.


    1. Issues and bugs

    1.1 - Full screen + extended display : Toggling “full screen” with the game playing on a second monitor sends the image back to the first monitor. We could extend the game to the screen, but we still had the grey bar on top of it…. I didn’t have the same issue using a mac.

    1.2 - Science + Mac : still, tactical and science shows nothing if I play the game on a mac. The game runs through Wine.


    2. UI suggestions

    First, I must say that the new implementations of Waypoints in the Helm screen, the missiles tubes oriented on the sides and other modifications you made in the last weeks are a bliss and was welcome by every player. Great job !

    2.1- Alert symbol : The new alert symbol is less problematic than the last one, but could still be improved. It takes to much place on the engineer station.

    2.2- Planet and space debris : they were asked by the players and would help to feel this battle-space universe.

    2.3- Explosion and space debris : What if, when you destroy a ship, it left a flock of debris floating around. Theses would act as small asteroids and add an evolving complexity to the battlefield. And after a huge battle, you would have al these debris as a remembrance of the great experience you just add.

    2.4- There should be a way to change sound level and music while playing the game.


    Stations


    3. Helm :

    3.1- Combat maneuvers : I suggest to have the “front maneuver” goes from front to back, as the left-right slider. In fact, why not in a 360° way as a joystick.

    image

    3.2- Waypoints Great job with the waypoints, it helps a lot :). But obviously, the science officer is less needed to determine jump parameters as the Relay may put a waypoint indicating roughly the direction to helm, then guess the distance with the main grid on the relay screen.

    3.3- Docking onto other ship : change the docking system every ship could dock on another ship, and allowing docked ships to jump together. Docking in that way would also serve scenario purpose and pave the road for a latter boarding feature.


    4. Weapons :

    4.1 - The players had some trouble with missile locking. It seemed to be not so accurate and some time felt weird.

    4.2 - HVLI : it is said that it is supposed to block enemy missiles but it never seemed to work. Maybe add a larger radius of effect agains missiles. I suppose those could be seen as heat signature to remove the missiles from it’s present course. Or simply as a barrier to make other missiles explode into the air.

    4.3 - Waypoints : Maybe add them in weapon as well, and maybe also science. Relay officer act mostly as a captain second hand to deliver information across the stations. It’s easier to direct the crew to a certain waypoint than a changing heading orientation.

    4.4 - 90° increments : In order to shoot side missiles correctly, you have to be perpendicular to your target. Meaning that the weapon officer has to direct the helm a correct heading to deliver mass destruction. But there is no indication of that “ 90° ” perfect angle. Leading to player losing time guessing the approximate, maybe ok, inclination… all of this in the heat of battle. I would suggest to add a small line on the edge of the radar of the weapon station, indicating the tube orientation.

    image




    5. Science :

    5.1 - Radar and magnetic fields : I don’t quite remember the meaning of each colored line (red, blue, green) around the radar view but I think it could be enhanced in a few ways. In many scenarios, we struggled for quite some time to find the very last enemy ship wandering somewhere in the galaxy. We then stop at a station and send infinite probes in hopes of finding the one that keep us playing… to the point of going in the GM screen in order to know where to look… This is not working. Science should be able to have a hint of the nearest enemy at all time.

    I suggest that we add a new functionality to science that would allow the officer to chose the “frequency” of the radar in order to show different info. That info would not be “vague” but instead very precise but selective :

    - General : Actual view, a mix of most things.
    - Electromagnetic : Nearest ship and station. (friendly ship could be green, station blue and unknown red)
    - Nuclear : Nukes aboard and mines (in a way to know if there is danger ahead)
    - Gravity fields : Black hole and worm hole, + planets and stars when it gets added, ships jumping.
    - Resonance trace : Warp jammer, warping ship, warp trace and jump traces. (this would be a new feature, leaving a trace behind the ship that would fade over time, shown only on the science screen.)
    - Cloaking : why not… ? a frequency that would render the ship unnoticeable by other player radars. (maybe except if they are on that very frequency)

    These frequencies would also come with a caption resuming the lines description.


    image


    5.2 - Probe view : I suggest it also shows the “magnetic fields” on the side of the screen as does the radar view. (with or without the implementation I just suggested.)



    6. Relay :

    6.1 - Probes : why not buy them the same way as missiles ?

    6.2 - There should be a sound when receiving a transmission. On the relay AND on the main screen.

    6.3 - Asking for support or supply from a station is really neat… but in reality it is mostly useless except to defend that very station. This is so because ally ships do not warp or jump. They are so slow you have to plan you support need half an hour before it get there. I suggest that when you ask for support it -always- jump right onto the waypoint you selected. Stations could then have a range of action (50u) forcing the player to choose the nearest station, or to go to a rendez-vous point midway.

  • 7 Other :

    7.1 - Mining asteroids to repair hull : Actually preparing a broken hull is quite a mess, you have to wait a very long time, or go back to a station (that may be far away). Mining and asteroid may be a way to offer a fun alternative. It could randomly give either hull repair or energy. It could even be activated by science to not overcharge the weapon or helm. We talked earlier of tractor beams as a way to improve science… it could work the same way as the “asteroid mining”. Here’s my suggestion :

    7.2 - Tractor beam
    “ A science multitool to mine asteroids and debris, analyse anomalies and pull ships ”
    When selecting an asteroid, debris, ship, resonance trace, the “tractor beam” button would change to, respectively, “mine”, “salvage”, “pull ship” and “analyse”.
    Ui look : as a beam but blue and uninterrupted.

    Mine - Generate a random amount of energy or hull upon completion. (15 seconds)
    Salvage - Destroy the debris. Generate a random amount of energy or hull. (15 seconds)
    Pull ship - Pull targeted ship at a speed of 5u/min (or the normal impulse amount)
    Analyse - Analyse the resonance trace from a jump or warp and gives a hint of the ship actual position. (15 seconds)

    Add a slider in the engineering station : “tractor beam”. Giving more energy would decrease usage time (as for jump prep) or augment the pulling speed.

    If it is easier, I suppose we could separate these features in two : “tractor beam” and “mining ray”


    8. GM

    8.1 - If possible, add the possibility of many “game masters” in the game, not just for the server. If not possible, add a new “alternative option”, a GM that could not add or move feature, but that could communicate with every player.

    8.2 - in the “create menu”, add : Debris, and resonance trace.


    9. Scenarios

    9.1 Beacon of light series - enemies are very slow and “escorting the transport ship” takes almost an hour. The ally ship coming to retrieve the ship is too slow, and the kralors move too slowly too.

    9.2 The edge-of-space - The beam is tilted weirdly and the missile tube shoot on the left side only.

    9.3 In many scenarios - at some point, finding the last enemy to destroy in order to complete que quest sequence is very disappointing. Hence even more the idea to improve the science scanner.

    9.4 Surrounded do not offer a “victory” completion when all ship are done with. (I suppose other do the same also)

    ——————

    One again, it was great ! We will probably play again next week with new players.

    Continue the good work :D
  • edited May 2016
    0. 3 New players and everyone were amazed by the game, but they were reluctant at first. They’ve seen some Artemis video showing the bridge in some live action and got more interest, to say the least. I suppose having a better video showing the action of the game, and maybe presenting briefly the different stations, would be great in order to attract new players and ease their learning curve.
    Would be good to have. But I suck at those things. I'll see if I can have someone record some footage this saterday. But I'm not any good at video editing.
    1.1 - Full screen + extended display : Toggling “full screen” with the game playing on a second monitor sends the image back to the first monitor. We could extend the game to the screen, but we still had the grey bar on top of it…. I didn’t have the same issue using a mac.
    Not much I can do there. SFML simply does not understand multi-monitor setups yet.
    1.2 - Science + Mac : still, tactical and science shows nothing if I play the game on a mac. The game runs through Wine.
    There is an issue on the issue tracker about this. It has to do with an OpenGL extension that SFML uses and that is not supported on Mac.
    2.1- Alert symbol : The new alert symbol is less problematic than the last one, but could still be improved. It takes to much place on the engineer station.
    It's placeholder art, but at least it is an improvement. There where some suggestions in the design overhaul topic.
    2.2- Planet and space debris : they were asked by the players and would help to feel this battle-space universe.
    Kwadroke was working on a planet patch. Not sure what happened to it. I might pick this up soon. Planets isn't that hard. Space debris would require quite a few extra 3D models I am afraid.
    2.3- Explosion and space debris : What if, when you destroy a ship, it left a flock of debris floating around. Theses would act as small asteroids and add an evolving complexity to the battlefield. And after a huge battle, you would have al these debris as a remembrance of the great experience you just add.
    Sort of the problem of the space debris of 2.2, lots of models needed. And ships have very different colors, meaning it would look off if the debris does not match the ship color.
    2.4- There should be a way to change sound level and music while playing the game.
    Yes.
    3.1- Combat maneuvers : I suggest to have the “front maneuver” goes from front to back, as the left-right slider. In fact, why not in a 360° way as a joystick.
    It's intentional that you cannot boost backwards. The latest code does contain a change on this however, now it allows forwards and sidewards movement at the same time. Can still use some graphical improvements, but it now takes up a bit less space on the UI, and is easier to use.
    3.2- Waypoints Great job with the waypoints, it helps a lot :). But obviously, the science officer is less needed to determine jump parameters as the Relay may put a waypoint indicating roughly the direction to helm, then guess the distance with the main grid on the relay screen.
    In our games we now noticed that relay does the long range (>30U) distances, and science does the detailed jumps.
    3.3- Docking onto other ship : change the docking system every ship could dock on another ship, and allowing docked ships to jump together. Docking in that way would also serve scenario purpose and pave the road for a latter boarding feature.
    Work in progress is done on this. I want not every ship to dock on to every ship. But I do want carriers, that smaller ships can dock to and jump with. But still have some details to fix. I also want variable jump drive max distance in this case.
    4.1 - The players had some trouble with missile locking. It seemed to be not so accurate and some time felt weird.
    The aim leads the target, so it actual calculates a firing solution. I think this works quite well on medium to slow ships, but on the fast fighters it causes quite some jittering.
    Is that what you mean?
    4.2 - HVLI : it is said that it is supposed to block enemy missiles but it never seemed to work. Maybe add a larger radius of effect agains missiles. I suppose those could be seen as heat signature to remove the missiles from it’s present course. Or simply as a barrier to make other missiles explode into the air.
    Not sure where it says that, as it does not block missiles.
    4.3 - Waypoints : Maybe add them in weapon as well, and maybe also science. Relay officer act mostly as a captain second hand to deliver information across the stations. It’s easier to direct the crew to a certain waypoint than a changing heading orientation.
    Science has waypoints. Only weapons has not. Cause they don't really have a need for them.
    4.4 - 90° increments : In order to shoot side missiles correctly, you have to be perpendicular to your target. Meaning that the weapon officer has to direct the helm a correct heading to deliver mass destruction. But there is no indication of that “ 90° ” perfect angle. Leading to player losing time guessing the approximate, maybe ok, inclination… all of this in the heat of battle. I would suggest to add a small line on the edge of the radar of the weapon station, indicating the tube orientation.
    How about some indicators on helms to show which angle tubes are at?
  • edited May 2016
    5.1 - Radar and magnetic fields : I don’t quite remember the meaning of each colored line (red, blue, green) around the radar view but I think it could be enhanced in a few ways. In many scenarios, we struggled for quite some time to find the very last enemy ship wandering somewhere in the galaxy. We then stop at a station and send infinite probes in hopes of finding the one that keep us playing… to the point of going in the GM screen in order to know where to look… This is not working. Science should be able to have a hint of the nearest enemy at all time.
    The "ships flying off into nowhere" is more of an AI issue. Most likely this was a fighter right? The fighter AI can back off to recharge shields, but it shouldn't fly off too far.
    I suggest that we add a new functionality to science that would allow the officer to chose the “frequency” of the radar in order to show different info. That info would not be “vague” but instead very precise but selective :

    - General : Actual view, a mix of most things.
    - Electromagnetic : Nearest ship and station. (friendly ship could be green, station blue and unknown red)
    - Nuclear : Nukes aboard and mines (in a way to know if there is danger ahead)
    - Gravity fields : Black hole and worm hole, + planets and stars when it gets added, ships jumping.
    - Resonance trace : Warp jammer, warping ship, warp trace and jump traces. (this would be a new feature, leaving a trace behind the ship that would fade over time, shown only on the science screen.)
    - Cloaking : why not… ? a frequency that would render the ship unnoticeable by other player radars. (maybe except if they are on that very frequency)
    Not sure, does add a whole bunch of extra complexity, with not that much actual gameplay I think...
    (I already made a button that science can press that opens the proper database page for a ship type. So that helps in figuring out threat levels)
    I'm not a fan of cloaking, after experiencing it in Artemis it just caused shitloads of confusion, and was seen as a bug instead of a feature.
    5.2 - Probe view : I suggest it also shows the “magnetic fields” on the side of the screen as does the radar view. (with or without the implementation I just suggested.)
    Easy. Will do.
    6.1 - Probes : why not buy them the same way as missiles ?
    Initially implemented them as a quick simple thing to test if this was a valuable addition to the game. It looks like it is, so it can be intigrated better. This would be a good suggestion.
    6.2 - There should be a sound when receiving a transmission. On the relay AND on the main screen.
    Audio implementation is a bit of a mess, so I'll have to check how feasable this is.
    6.3 - Asking for support or supply from a station is really neat… but in reality it is mostly useless except to defend that very station. This is so because ally ships do not warp or jump. They are so slow you have to plan you support need half an hour before it get there. I suggest that when you ask for support it -always- jump right onto the waypoint you selected. Stations could then have a range of action (50u) forcing the player to choose the nearest station, or to go to a rendez-vous point midway.
    I'll have to revisit this mechanic. But right now I don't think it is that bad. You just have to plan ahead. However, due to the low "class" ship that you get, it's not that useful to have backup.
    7.1 - Mining asteroids to repair hull : Actually preparing a broken hull is quite a mess, you have to wait a very long time, or go back to a station (that may be far away). Mining and asteroid may be a way to offer a fun alternative. It could randomly give either hull repair or energy. It could even be activated by science to not overcharge the weapon or helm. We talked earlier of tractor beams as a way to improve science… it could work the same way as the “asteroid mining”. Here’s my suggestion :

    7.2 - Tractor beam
    “ A science multitool to mine asteroids and debris, analyse anomalies and pull ships ”
    When selecting an asteroid, debris, ship, resonance trace, the “tractor beam” button would change to, respectively, “mine”, “salvage”, “pull ship” and “analyse”.
    Ui look : as a beam but blue and uninterrupted.

    Mine - Generate a random amount of energy or hull upon completion. (15 seconds)
    Salvage - Destroy the debris. Generate a random amount of energy or hull. (15 seconds)
    Pull ship - Pull targeted ship at a speed of 5u/min (or the normal impulse amount)
    Analyse - Analyse the resonance trace from a jump or warp and gives a hint of the ship actual position. (15 seconds)

    Add a slider in the engineering station : “tractor beam”. Giving more energy would decrease usage time (as for jump prep) or augment the pulling speed.

    If it is easier, I suppose we could separate these features in two : “tractor beam” and “mining ray”
    I'll have to think about it, and talk it over with Nallath. Might give relay more to do. But could also just add a mechanic that the rest has to wait on...
    (Instead of giving "random" things, it can give pre-determened things, random per object, and science can first scan which gives what)
    8.1 - If possible, add the possibility of many “game masters” in the game, not just for the server. If not possible, add a new “alternative option”, a GM that could not add or move feature, but that could communicate with every player.
    GM is locked to the server as it accesses a lot of internals. A "GM chat" screen could be made, but it is some work to get that working. Will become more intressting to do this once I made it so the GM can intercept comms.
    9.1 Beacon of light series - enemies are very slow and “escorting the transport ship” takes almost an hour. The ally ship coming to retrieve the ship is too slow, and the kralors move too slowly too.
    Noticed this myself, already updated the code for the next version. (I just moved the transport close with the GM screen to work around it)
    9.2 The edge-of-space - The beam is tilted weirdly and the missile tube shoot on the left side only.
    I'll check it, didn't play this scenario much yet.
    9.3 In many scenarios - at some point, finding the last enemy to destroy in order to complete que quest sequence is very disappointing. Hence even more the idea to improve the science scanner.
    Once again, I think this is the fighter AI not being "aggressive" enough.
    9.4 Surrounded do not offer a “victory” completion when all ship are done with. (I suppose other do the same also)
    Surrounded and Battlefield currently lack victory conditions. They where more written as examples/tests.
  • daid said:

    2.2- Planet and space debris : they were asked by the players and would help to feel this battle-space universe.

    Kwadroke was working on a planet patch. Not sure what happened to it. I might pick this up soon. Planets isn't that hard.
    Yeah, I need to get back to that.
  • edited June 2016
    > Space debris would require quite a few extra 3D models I am afraid.

    I found this model pack that seem to fit quite well : https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models/space/spacecraft-sci-fi/shipwrecks

    I think it is from the same model artist as some model you recently added. The color themes match properly. I don’t know how is your current cash balance, but if you are in need, I would gladly contribute for new elements like this.

    For a start, we could use the generic grey one, or the rusted one.

    —————

    >> 4.1 - The players had some trouble with missile locking. It seemed to be not so accurate and some time felt weird.

    >The aim leads the target, so it actual calculates a firing solution. I think this works quite well on medium to slow ships, but on the fast fighters it causes quite some jittering.
    Is that what you mean?

    Sometime the weapon is supposed to be locked but do not really follow it’s target I suppose. I wasn’t playing this so’ll check this issue more carefully next playtest.

    Also, when you seem to be close to your target, the targeting line seems to bug and turns 135° as if it were able to shoot it. It looks buggy somehow. I’ll try to send you a screenshot soon.

    —————

    >>4.2 - HVLI : it is said that it is supposed to block enemy missiles but it never seemed to work. Maybe add a larger radius of effect agains missiles. I suppose those could be seen as heat signature to remove the missiles from it’s present course. Or simply as a barrier to make other missiles explode into the air.
    >Not sure where it says that, as it does not block missiles.

    I didn’t play weapon so maybe my players simply tougth it was a “missile barrier” even if it isn’t.
    If it is something not to complicated to code, I think it would be amazing to add :)

    (BSG using its weapon battery to make a missile barrier)

    image

    I realised also that the homing missile deals 35dmg, while the HVLI deals 35, in 7 shots of 5. Since there is no locking on HVLI and it is difficult to always touch your target, do you think we should either augment the number of bullets or augment its damage so that if you manage to get all of them to hit (which is a feat if you are not close enough) you deal more damage ? just a thought.

    —————

    >>4.4 - 90° increments : In order to shoot side missiles correctly, you have to be perpendicular to your target. Meaning that the weapon officer has to direct the helm a correct heading to deliver mass destruction. But there is no indication of that “ 90° ” perfect angle. Leading to player losing time guessing the approximate, maybe ok, inclination… all of this in the heat of battle. I would suggest to add a small line on the edge of the radar of the weapon station, indicating the tube orientation.
    >How about some indicators on helms to show which angle tubes are at?

    Actually, I realised that the implementation of sideways missile tubes added a lot to the game in the way weapons and helm are now force to work closely together. It gets really interesting on the bridge. I think the indicators would be better if it was only on the weapon station and had to be transmitted to helm as headings. But yeah, if we are looking for an easier communication it could be on both.

    —————

    >>5.1 - Radar and magnetic fields : I don’t quite remember the meaning of each colored line (red, blue, green) around the radar view but I think it could be enhanced in a few ways. In many scenarios, we struggled for quite some time to find the very last enemy ship wandering somewhere in the galaxy. We then stop at a station and send infinite probes in hopes of finding the one that keep us playing… to the point of going in the GM screen in order to know where to look… This is not working. Science should be able to have a hint of the nearest enemy at all time.
    >The "ships flying off into nowhere" is more of an AI issue. Most likely this was a fighter right? The fighter AI can back off to recharge shields, but it shouldn't fly off too far.

    No, it was a phobos cruiser if I remember well. The problem is mostly that when you don’t know where to look, or if for instance, you jumped out quickly and now can’t find back where was the enemy… it can become problematic.

    Regarding the radar frequency… maybe we could simply have the explanation of each line either directly on the science screen (as I proposed in the first post of this second review), or at least on the web site in the page explaining the station.


    If one of those lines indicated only unknown or enemy vessel/station, it would serve the problem explained earlier.

    On a Ui perspective, have you ever thought of having the radar with a rotation scanning line ?

    —————

    >>7.1 - 7.2
    >I'll have to think about it, and talk it over with Nallath. Might give relay more to do. But could also just add a mechanic that the rest has to wait on...
    (Instead of giving "random" things, it can give pre-determened things, random per object, and science can first scan which gives what)

    In our game I realised 3 moments when the team has to wait :
    When making multiple jumps (but this isn’t really the worse)
    When relay is looking for info or the captain is thinking where to go next.
    But the one that happen the most : when you have to repair/regenerate energy. Then only engineer do something, allocating engineers and dropping energy usage on all station. If that part of the game was more involing for everybody I think it would be great. You would have to go onto an asteroid belt or ship graveyard, move around the floating objects, mine them etc. I think it also add a lot to the game to add a “scavenging” element ( firefly fan here maybe? ) and mining to be able to continue on your journey (BSG).

    —————

    We will have another playtest tomorrow and will try with 2 or 3 ships if we have enough people. If you were planning to make a new release soon, that could be a good time to try the new implementations.

    Thanks a lot :)



  • On a Ui perspective, have you ever thought of having the radar with a rotation scanning line ?
    I had, removed it, didn't work at all from a gameplay perspective.
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