An Urgent Message to Schine

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    Not too long ago, StarMade's ratings on Steam were at 'Mostly Positive'. Now, they're at 'Mixed' for overall and 'Mostly Negative' for most recent. The community is falling apart. It's easy to put the blame on the Weapons and Power updates for driving away old players, but the issue now is that complicated, unpolished game mechanics are preventing new players from integrating themselves into the game. I took the time to read a few of the most recent reviews, and they all complain about the same things: Overpowered pirates, complicated mechanics, half-finished features, and the excessive amount of grinding required to build anything.
    I understand that it's less work to add all content and then fix those systems once, without doing it every time new content comes out, but if new players look at the existing content and say "This has potential, but it's not good enough right now" you'll never get the support you need to move to that final, finished stage. I am excited for the Universe Update, especially the addition of music and new planets, but a quick glace at the Steam page shows that the majority of new players can't connect with the current game enough to stay. Once the Universe Update comes out, I hope you'll focus more on balancing and improving current systems, rather than creating new content. I have always recommended StarMade to others, and probably will continue to do so. But if you're going to attract new players, I believe that changes are going to have to be made to the development process.
    --Lokilog
    (On the other hand, your support team is incredible. They were willing to help me recover my account on a weekend in less than 24 hours.)
     
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    kiddan

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    Schine's goal isn't to draw more players in at this time. There are enough to test the game in its current state, so it's not worth introducing new players who can decide to avoid coming back later on. Schine is also saving multiple free promotional assets until Starmade reaches Beta, a point where they feel the game is suitable for most players to come and stay for more than what we have now.

    So while the small community can be alarming at times, everything seems to be going-to-plan for now.
     
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    Lokilog, as a new player, I can't agree with you more. Your comment of "This has potential, but it's not good enough right now" hits the nail on the head for me. I find my self wanting to do more with SM, but feel I'm wasting time with it until more 'kinks' get worked out. For me, it is so close to an 'Eve Online' alternative, I can't wait. Until then, I probably won't spend much time with it but periodically keep monitoring SM in hopes of development that will turn it into a highly addictive game!
     

    Thadius Faran

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    Schine's goal isn't to draw more players in at this time. There are enough to test the game in its current state, so it's not worth introducing new players who can decide to avoid coming back later on. Schine is also saving multiple free promotional assets until Starmade reaches Beta, a point where they feel the game is suitable for most players to come and stay for more than what we have now.

    So while the small community can be alarming at times, everything seems to be going-to-plan for now.
    The reputation it's slowly gaining will hurt it in the future, no amount of promotions will be able to save it when anyone who gets to the store page notices the massive amount of negative reviews
     

    klawxx

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    At least the forum are no longer swarming with PvPers with swords of fire trolling everyone that isn't one... To me, that what mainly brought me back.

    If I could make a second wish, it would be to make AI less stupid... Any time I spawn a Pirate ship it just fly away running on reverse, while eventually shooting for no effect...
     
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    Thadius Faran

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    At least the forum are no longer swarming with PvPers with swords of fire trolling everyone that isn't one... To me, that what mainly brought me back.

    If I could make a second wish, it would be to make IA less stupid... Any time I spawn a Pirate ship it just fly away running on reverse, while eventually shooting for no effect...
    ...You mean AI right?

    The PvPers were pretty much the last bastion of activity on this forum, I noticed a huge drop off in Shipyard posts a good while before the PvPers left due to various issues with the game and changes in moderation.

    I'm gonna admit, it's pretty depressing remembering how I could get 30 alerts a day on this site at one time, now it's a miracle if it's 5 a week.
     
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    [ WARNING: TEXT WALL ]

    The community is falling apart. It's easy to put the blame on the Weapons and Power updates for driving away old players, but the issue now is that complicated, unpolished game mechanics are preventing new players from integrating themselves into the game. I took the time to read a few of the most recent reviews, and they all complain about the same things: Overpowered pirates, complicated mechanics, half-finished features, and the excessive amount of grinding required to build anything.
    I understand that it's less work to add all content and then fix those systems once, without doing it every time new content comes out, but if new players look at the existing content and say "This has potential, but it's not good enough right now" you'll never get the support you need to move to that final, finished stage. I am excited for the Universe Update, especially the addition of music and new planets, but a quick glace at the Steam page shows that the majority of new players can't connect with the current game enough to stay. Once the Universe Update comes out, I hope you'll focus more on balancing and improving current systems, rather than creating new content. I have always recommended StarMade to others, and probably will continue to do so. But if you're going to attract new players, I believe that changes are going to have to be made to the development process.
    And who do you think pushed the metas and exploits that resulted in countermeasures that caused issues in the first place, and were so toxic that changes in moderation were necessary?

    Don't defend that disposable minority of the playerbase. Starmade PVP was made by PVPers. If the PVP dies, Starmade and it's remaining majority of players remains. Those that are here for just the PVP, that's their problem for having that unrealistic expectation of what SM is. That "last bastion" b.s. is just holier-than-though elitist crap that has no place in any community. The short-sighted and self-absorbed PVPer mindset, distilled into meta-junky mentality, produces this same rhetoric of gloom and doom that has pushed away players long before the recent changes in mechanics.

    Schine is playing the long game, as are the players who can openly acknowledge the need for experimentation and failures in a still-fluid game. Patience is what is lacking here. Starmade has no shortage of problems. Creating more problems is the specialty of pushy children who don't want to be constructive and want things fixed now, which is pointless since many of those fixes will be overridden or unnecessary later on anyways, swept away in the next stages of development. It might take years or even a decade to finish this game, all the better reason to keep those around who aren't juvenile trolls or angry, demanding adults. The mix of non-toxic veterans and a good ad campaign will instill new life to a playerbase that was never really supposed to be big at this stage in the first place (you can thank the Yogscast and subsequent Youtube coverage for that premature popularity).

    Exercise something other than doom-saying and ego-boosting, preferably patience and constructive criticism.


    P.S. The above response was intentionally harsh. Most players do not fall into the category of meta-junkies or trolls, and PVP/PVPers are not inherently negative or toxic. Take these paragraphs with a grain of salt and TRY not to take it personally.

    Starmade doesn't need many new players. It hasn't for some time (again, that sudden boost from Yogscast/Youtube gave it more than it needed). What it needs are better players, those who contribute to the game and existing community positively. That, or to rid itself of the existing toxicity (something that has been worked on to great effect). You can't expect to have a stable house on an unstable foundation, so before the walls or roof go up, SM needs to settle it's base. Part of that base must include players who do or are willing to understand the development process of games.

    You already hit the nail on the head when you said "it's less work to add all content and then fix those systems once, without doing it every time new content comes out", but what you didn't mention is that it is also better for the flow of development. Polished mechanics in a fluctuating game break. That's how it goes. If new players are complaining about the "unpolished" things, then they can come back later. If we lose them entirely, ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ they weren't going to handle the game well anyways, so why have them stay. The next set of potential players will come along, and the next, and the next. If that's too stretched out for you, then you can move on to something else, and like those other impatient players, return at a later date if you feel so inclined.


    Starmade isn't the family dog. It can be revived. <---
    wow look how totally supercalifragilisticexpialidociously edgy that is i almost cut myself typing it wow
     
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    And who do you think pushed the metas and exploits that resulted in countermeasures that caused issues in the first place, and were so toxic that changes in moderation were necessary?

    Don't defend that disposable minority of the playerbase. Starmade PVP was made by PVPers. If the PVP dies, Starmade and it's remaining majority of players remains. Those that are here for just the PVP, that's their problem for having that unrealistic expectation of what SM is. That "last bastion" b.s. is just holier-than-though elitist crap that has no place in any community. The short-sighted and self-absorbed PVPer mindset, distilled into meta-junky mentality, produces this same rhetoric of gloom and doom that has pushed away players long before the recent changes in mechanics.

    Schine is playing the long game, as are the players who can openly acknowledge the need for experimentation and failures in a still-fluid game. Patience is what is lacking here. Starmade has no shortage of problems. Creating more problems is the specialty of pushy children who don't want to be constructive and want things fixed now, which is pointless since many of those fixes will be overridden or unnecessary later on anyways, swept away in the next stages of development. It might take years or even a decade to finish this game, all the better reason to keep those around who aren't juvenile trolls or angry, demanding adults. The mix of non-toxic veterans and a good ad campaign will instill new life to a playerbase that was never really supposed to be big at this stage in the first place (you can thank the Yogscast and subsequent Youtube coverage for that premature popularity).

    Exercise something other than doom-saying and ego-boosting, preferably patience and constructive criticism.


    P.S. The above response was intentionally harsh. Most players do not fall into the category of meta-junkies or trolls, and PVP/PVPers are not inherently negative or toxic. Take these paragraphs with a grain of salt and TRY not to take it personally.

    Starmade doesn't need many new players. It hasn't for some time (again, that sudden boost from Yogscast/Youtube gave it more than it needed). What it needs are better players, those who contribute to the game and existing community positively. That, or to rid itself of the existing toxicity (something that has been worked on to great effect). You can't expect to have a stable house on an unstable foundation, so before the walls or roof go up, SM needs to settle it's base. Part of that base must include players who do or are willing to understand the development process of games.

    You already hit the nail on the head when you said "it's less work to add all content and then fix those systems once, without doing it every time new content comes out", but what you didn't mention is that it is also better for the flow of development. Polished mechanics in a fluctuating game break. That's how it goes. If new players are complaining about the "unpolished" things, then they can come back later. If we lose them entirely, ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ they weren't going to handle the game well anyways, so why have them stay. The next set of potential players will come along, and the next, and the next. If that's too stretched out for you, then you can move on to something else, and like those other impatient players, return at a later date if you feel so inclined.


    Starmade isn't the family dog. It can be revived. <---
    wow look how totally supercalifragilisticexpialidociously edgy that is i almost cut myself typing it wow
    Maji,
    Honestly, your post may have just convinced me to retract all that I have said. I'm obviously not going to delete this post, but I would like to say that I am not a PVPer and never have been. I've never built anything of significance or had particularly large ships. It is clear that I do not know enough about this situation to rant in the way I have. I guess I was fired up because I have never seen StarMade with such low ratings, ratings which alarm me about the future of this game. Thank you for pointing out my errors and correcting them to the best of your ability.
    -- Lokilog
     

    Thadius Faran

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    [ WARNING: TEXT WALL ]



    And who do you think pushed the metas and exploits that resulted in countermeasures that caused issues in the first place, and were so toxic that changes in moderation were necessary?

    Don't defend that disposable minority of the playerbase. Starmade PVP was made by PVPers. If the PVP dies, Starmade and it's remaining majority of players remains. Those that are here for just the PVP, that's their problem for having that unrealistic expectation of what SM is. That "last bastion" b.s. is just holier-than-though elitist crap that has no place in any community. The short-sighted and self-absorbed PVPer mindset, distilled into meta-junky mentality, produces this same rhetoric of gloom and doom that has pushed away players long before the recent changes in mechanics.

    Schine is playing the long game, as are the players who can openly acknowledge the need for experimentation and failures in a still-fluid game. Patience is what is lacking here. Starmade has no shortage of problems. Creating more problems is the specialty of pushy children who don't want to be constructive and want things fixed now, which is pointless since many of those fixes will be overridden or unnecessary later on anyways, swept away in the next stages of development. It might take years or even a decade to finish this game, all the better reason to keep those around who aren't juvenile trolls or angry, demanding adults. The mix of non-toxic veterans and a good ad campaign will instill new life to a playerbase that was never really supposed to be big at this stage in the first place (you can thank the Yogscast and subsequent Youtube coverage for that premature popularity).

    Exercise something other than doom-saying and ego-boosting, preferably patience and constructive criticism.


    P.S. The above response was intentionally harsh. Most players do not fall into the category of meta-junkies or trolls, and PVP/PVPers are not inherently negative or toxic. Take these paragraphs with a grain of salt and TRY not to take it personally.

    Starmade doesn't need many new players. It hasn't for some time (again, that sudden boost from Yogscast/Youtube gave it more than it needed). What it needs are better players, those who contribute to the game and existing community positively. That, or to rid itself of the existing toxicity (something that has been worked on to great effect). You can't expect to have a stable house on an unstable foundation, so before the walls or roof go up, SM needs to settle it's base. Part of that base must include players who do or are willing to understand the development process of games.

    You already hit the nail on the head when you said "it's less work to add all content and then fix those systems once, without doing it every time new content comes out", but what you didn't mention is that it is also better for the flow of development. Polished mechanics in a fluctuating game break. That's how it goes. If new players are complaining about the "unpolished" things, then they can come back later. If we lose them entirely, ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ they weren't going to handle the game well anyways, so why have them stay. The next set of potential players will come along, and the next, and the next. If that's too stretched out for you, then you can move on to something else, and like those other impatient players, return at a later date if you feel so inclined.


    Starmade isn't the family dog. It can be revived. <---
    wow look how totally supercalifragilisticexpialidociously edgy that is i almost cut myself typing it wow
    And yet we have the newest post by Schema basically agreeing that the direction of development lately may not have been the best direction...

    HMMMM
     
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    Edymnion

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    And yet we have the newest post by Schema basically agreeing that the direction of development lately may not have been the best direction...

    HMMMM
    Yup. And when did he come to that conclusion?

    When the toxic people were banned and the yelling stopped. When he stopped feeling defensive and could step back and look at things objectively. Aka, when people stopped making him dig his heels in to constantly defend his decisions and gave him a safe enough space to admit "Okay, maybe we did go too far".
     

    Thadius Faran

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    Yup. And when did he come to that conclusion?

    When the toxic people were banned and the yelling stopped. When he stopped feeling defensive and could step back and look at things objectively. Aka, when people stopped making him dig his heels in to constantly defend his decisions and gave him a safe enough space to admit "Okay, maybe we did go too far".
    I'm pretty sure you counted as part of that grouping of people and there's plenty of others that didnt get banned but rather gave up on the belief of StarMade ever actually growing.
     

    Crashmaster

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    [ WARNING: TEXT WALL ]



    And who do you think pushed the metas and exploits that resulted in countermeasures that caused issues in the first place, and were so toxic that changes in moderation were necessary?

    Don't defend that disposable minority of the playerbase. Starmade PVP was made by PVPers. If the PVP dies, Starmade and it's remaining majority of players remains. Those that are here for just the PVP, that's their problem for having that unrealistic expectation of what SM is. That "last bastion" b.s. is just holier-than-though elitist crap that has no place in any community. The short-sighted and self-absorbed PVPer mindset, distilled into meta-junky mentality, produces this same rhetoric of gloom and doom that has pushed away players long before the recent changes in mechanics.

    Schine is playing the long game, as are the players who can openly acknowledge the need for experimentation and failures in a still-fluid game. Patience is what is lacking here. Starmade has no shortage of problems. Creating more problems is the specialty of pushy children who don't want to be constructive and want things fixed now, which is pointless since many of those fixes will be overridden or unnecessary later on anyways, swept away in the next stages of development. It might take years or even a decade to finish this game, all the better reason to keep those around who aren't juvenile trolls or angry, demanding adults. The mix of non-toxic veterans and a good ad campaign will instill new life to a playerbase that was never really supposed to be big at this stage in the first place (you can thank the Yogscast and subsequent Youtube coverage for that premature popularity).
    Exercise something other than doom-saying and ego-boosting, preferably patience and constructive criticism.


    P.S. The above response was intentionally harsh. Most players do not fall into the category of meta-junkies or trolls, and PVP/PVPers are not inherently negative or toxic. Take these paragraphs with a grain of salt and TRY not to take it personally.

    Starmade doesn't need many new players. It hasn't for some time (again, that sudden boost from Yogscast/Youtube gave it more than it needed). What it needs are better players, those who contribute to the game and existing community positively. That, or to rid itself of the existing toxicity (something that has been worked on to great effect). You can't expect to have a stable house on an unstable foundation, so before the walls or roof go up, SM needs to settle it's base. Part of that base must include players who do or are willing to understand the development process of games.

    You already hit the nail on the head when you said "it's less work to add all content and then fix those systems once, without doing it every time new content comes out", but what you didn't mention is that it is also better for the flow of development. Polished mechanics in a fluctuating game break. That's how it goes. If new players are complaining about the "unpolished" things, then they can come back later. If we lose them entirely, ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ they weren't going to handle the game well anyways, so why have them stay. The next set of potential players will come along, and the next, and the next. If that's too stretched out for you, then you can move on to something else, and like those other impatient players, return at a later date if you feel so inclined.


    Starmade isn't the family dog. It can be revived. <---
    wow look how totally supercalifragilisticexpialidociously edgy that is i almost cut myself typing it wow
    Being intentionally harsh is being toxic, therefore I find much of your posted opinion hypocritical.
     

    Edymnion

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    I'm pretty sure you counted as part of that grouping of people and there's plenty of others that didnt get banned but rather gave up on the belief of StarMade ever actually growing.
    Hey, if I yelled it was at people to stop being asses. I never joined in on that "The devs are stoopid!" bandwagon, thank you very much.
     

    Thadius Faran

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    Hey, if I yelled it was at people to stop being asses. I never joined in on that "The devs are stoopid!" bandwagon, thank you very much.
    I'd argue you were equally as vicious, toxic and frustrating as those you perceived as enemies.
    It's a two way street my man.
     

    Edymnion

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    I'd argue you were equally as vicious, toxic and frustrating as those you perceived as enemies.
    It's a two way street my man.
    Yeah, I know my stance, probably everybody else does too. There's no point in discussing it now though as it'll only open up old wounds. Suffice it to say I'm still here, and I approve of the direction they are currently taking the game in.
     
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    TheDerpGamerX

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    I took the time to read a few of the most recent reviews, and they all complain about the same things: Overpowered pirates, complicated mechanics, half-finished features, and the excessive amount of grinding required to build anything.
    >Overpowered pirates
    wut

    unless youre playing on lvd i cant see how pirates could ever remotely be a threat to anyone

    though i agree with the rest of your points. the game is full of half finished stuff and broken promises, and the game can be a bit grindy at times, depending on the server youre on
     
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    [ WARNING: TEXT WALL ]



    And who do you think pushed the metas and exploits that resulted in countermeasures that caused issues in the first place, and were so toxic that changes in moderation were necessary?

    Don't defend that disposable minority of the playerbase. Starmade PVP was made by PVPers. If the PVP dies, Starmade and it's remaining majority of players remains. Those that are here for just the PVP, that's their problem for having that unrealistic expectation of what SM is. That "last bastion" b.s. is just holier-than-though elitist crap that has no place in any community. The short-sighted and self-absorbed PVPer mindset, distilled into meta-junky mentality, produces this same rhetoric of gloom and doom that has pushed away players long before the recent changes in mechanics.

    Schine is playing the long game, as are the players who can openly acknowledge the need for experimentation and failures in a still-fluid game. Patience is what is lacking here. Starmade has no shortage of problems. Creating more problems is the specialty of pushy children who don't want to be constructive and want things fixed now, which is pointless since many of those fixes will be overridden or unnecessary later on anyways, swept away in the next stages of development. It might take years or even a decade to finish this game, all the better reason to keep those around who aren't juvenile trolls or angry, demanding adults. The mix of non-toxic veterans and a good ad campaign will instill new life to a playerbase that was never really supposed to be big at this stage in the first place (you can thank the Yogscast and subsequent Youtube coverage for that premature popularity).

    Exercise something other than doom-saying and ego-boosting, preferably patience and constructive criticism.


    P.S. The above response was intentionally harsh. Most players do not fall into the category of meta-junkies or trolls, and PVP/PVPers are not inherently negative or toxic. Take these paragraphs with a grain of salt and TRY not to take it personally.

    Starmade doesn't need many new players. It hasn't for some time (again, that sudden boost from Yogscast/Youtube gave it more than it needed). What it needs are better players, those who contribute to the game and existing community positively. That, or to rid itself of the existing toxicity (something that has been worked on to great effect). You can't expect to have a stable house on an unstable foundation, so before the walls or roof go up, SM needs to settle it's base. Part of that base must include players who do or are willing to understand the development process of games.

    You already hit the nail on the head when you said "it's less work to add all content and then fix those systems once, without doing it every time new content comes out", but what you didn't mention is that it is also better for the flow of development. Polished mechanics in a fluctuating game break. That's how it goes. If new players are complaining about the "unpolished" things, then they can come back later. If we lose them entirely, ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ they weren't going to handle the game well anyways, so why have them stay. The next set of potential players will come along, and the next, and the next. If that's too stretched out for you, then you can move on to something else, and like those other impatient players, return at a later date if you feel so inclined.


    Starmade isn't the family dog. It can be revived. <---
    wow look how totally supercalifragilisticexpialidociously edgy that is i almost cut myself typing it wow
    Viewing your playerbase with such disdain usually doesn’t get you far. Furthermore OP has an excellent point in that even if the game does improve it’s still going to have that “mixed” review rating on Steam and almost everyone I know will give the game a hard pass on that basis alone.

    Not gonna deny there are some toxic people in skub (I would argue its more of a symptom than a cause of the decline here) but lumping everyone who likes to shoot at other people together as a “disposable minority” SCREAMS elitist snob.

    Ps dont preach about yogsswarm if you werent here for it. I had far more fun during that time period than I did during my latest bout of activity in this game.