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    Devblog 18th July, 2017 - End Goal Document Part 2

    Discussion in 'Game News' started by schema, Jul 18, 2017.

    1. schema

      schema Cat God

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      Greetings, citizens ~


      This week it’s the Explorer’s turn, the 2nd part of our “End Goals document”.

      List of player roles:

      ~ Builder
      ~ Explorer
      ~ Industrialist
      ~ Trader
      ~ Fighter
      ~ Imperialist


      In the previous dev blog, there was some misconception on what our intentions were with these 6 player “roles”, we would like to clarify on that first.

      For us, the “roles” represent player archetypes, extremely one-sided examples of what a specific type of player might want to do. We use those mindsets or “roles” to determine what we can add to StarMade to make that area of gameplay possible as a whole, making each role an enjoyable experience on its own.

      Any everyday player will naturally fall under several roles and play the game however they want. These roles are not forced in any way, and are not even mentioned anywhere else outside the end goal document. They are just something we’re using internally to get structure in a long list of gameplay directions and features.


      Explorer

      In contrast with the Builder role, the exploration aspect of StarMade is currently not well developed. This role is for the players who like exploring a game world and uncovering mysteries, lore and interesting areas along their journey.

      Flying out and discovering different places in the universe is “exploration”, but so is exploring every gameplay aspect of the game.

      Not only do you find new places but also new block systems and how those influence your play style. However, we don’t have to delve deeper into this particular gameplay aspect, as it is already addressed in the “Builder” role and the following dev blogs.

      Here, we only focus on the game world and what it has to offer for the Explorer.


      Universe diversity

      Before throwing yourself into the unknown, you need something worth exploring first. We want to create a dynamic world that has a limited amount of interesting areas, and danger in between. Exploration itself would be encouraged in multiple ways.

      ~ Resources: Restructuring the universe to condense most resources into relatively small areas will make them stand out much more than the generic space surrounding it. Uncommon resource rich regions will automatically become points of contention, and therefore points of interest where players, as well as NPCs will be drawn to.

      The end result is that, without adding anything else, only a relatively small area of a galaxy is worth exploring and anything in between could be filled with some hurdle to overcome to add some variation to the vast emptiness of space.

      ~ Content: These points of interests would, in addition to its resource richness, contain much more to increase its exploration value.
      This could be anything, ranging from different stellar objects to treasures and loot. Examples could be moons, nebulae, gas giants, different types of stars (supernova), black/white holes, and other abnormalities each with their own effects. Fauna and flora could add greatly to this system too, but would be an add-on feature.

      ~ Out-of-ship exploration is a whole other chapter: stations, ships, planets, dungeons, caves and fauna add countless possibilities for adding unique content. Upgrades to astronaut equipment could be found and crafted with these resources, encouraging you to leave your ship’s safety and gather those few materials you need by hand.

      ~ NPC Factions: Their primary role is to fill the universe with history and lore, making it feel alive where every NPC owned entity would have real astronauts walking around. Some of these factions need some extra diversity to make them stand out more to make it easier for a player to align to at least one of them.

      ~ Danger: Natural hazards, hostile factions and other dangerous anomalies would need to be added to restrict the amount of freedom a player has when exploring. The extra challenge is sorely needed yet should not become a nuisance. The main requirement for this to work properly would be to have a structured galaxy where certain areas are always easily accessible with little to no dangers.​


      Universe Interaction

      ~ Quest and Reward system: Quests, either given by NPC’s or triggered automatically (finding a log book), will point the player to new and other interesting areas. Although finishing the quest would give rewards, they mostly serve to encourage the player to go beyond what they already know. Additional progression can also be given with collectibles or rare decorative items, introducing some more lore.

      ~ Events: Generated events like battles, trading routes, raids, space creatures, mysterious faction appearances and supernovae will add more immersion and life to an artificial universe, and making sure the player encounters them without having to actively search them out. As an option, we could have end-game events to spice things up when a SP or MP world starts becoming stale.

      ~ End-game: Several entities in the game (prominently NPC factions) will not only provide events, but also a real challenge for anyone. The farther the player goes “out”, the more dangerous it will get to the player with the void being the most dangerous area.

      ~ Map information: The current interface that shows you what the galaxy looks like has no level of detail system, overflowing players with tons of information they don’t need.

      With the point of interest system, where only a handful of systems contain most interesting parts, we can hide and show that information from the player. We can also rely on graphical elements to attract players as nebulas and giant stars would easily be seen on the map.

      As each point of interest would be unique in some way, it would also be information worth trading with other players or NPC factions.

      ~ Transportation: How balanced the thrusters and jump drives are right now is unclear, mostly because the third option, Warp gates, are far from usable. The warp gate is supposed to be the ultimate traveling mechanic to get from one to another that has a huge setup cost in comparison as its downside.

      Besides generated old/deactivated warp gates, the player and NPC created ones suffer from an issue where they are too easily destroyed. It will take some testing to narrow down which areas need to be altered to alleviate this issue.​


      One galaxy to rule them all

      Procedural generation, the tool that allows us to create an infinite world comes with a large downside that mainly affects exploration. Everything you see and encounter along the way, is generated content and you will see the same over and over again. Not only that, but the recurring patterns devalue every little handcrafted piece.

      We cannot avoid this issue, yet we can mitigate the problem.

      The starting galaxy, with perhaps a few islands of stars, is big enough to create an unique enough environment for a player to enjoy.
      The trick isn’t necessarily to create enough content to fill it up, but to spread it out properly and make sure the player does not see it all in one day. It is also why we are focusing on these points of interests, as those act as small islands in an endless ocean.​


      What’s next?

      A few higher priority bugs were found in the pre-build version that we fixed now. Currently we’re doing some additional pre-release testing to make sure there are no other remaining high priority issues.

      In case you’re interested in helping us out with some testing, make sure to check out our pre-release post here. Remember to always use a separate installation for preview builds as they may potentially include game-breaking issues.

      If you come across anything new that doesn’t work or you believe you’ve located a new bug, report that here to help us out: Report a Bug (Release Candidate)


      As always, thank you for playing StarMade!

      ~ The Schine Team
       
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    2. aRottenKomquat

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      I once visited Sagittarius A* in Elite: Dangerous. Hoping there are epic journeys to be had like that in StarMade someday!
       
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    3. Zerefette

      Zerefette <|°_°|>

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      First of all, I like that resources and places are getting concentrated so players will have a reason to group and interact.
      Second, warp gates are too easy to track, also having them a not station entity could be fun, warpships new meta.
       
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    4. Zyrr

      Zyrr Chronic Troublemaker

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      I feel like Schine has a weird fetish with putting the important information in the third paragraph.

      For the sake of brevity I'm not going to post exactly what I said before again; it's in the last thread which has been linked in the OP for those curious. What I said still applies, if not more now, due to how their explanation has been worded. I'm hoping it's just a language barrier but it doesn't really seem to be so. That said, Schine is characteristically indifferent to criticism so I suppose all that can be done is hope they can salvage something after the dust settles.
       
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    5. Lecic

      Lecic Convicted Lancake Abuser

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      More shit we already know and absolutely nothing of substance besides finally confirming what the entire community already knows which is that you need to limit the game to one galaxy for it to be enjoyable

      Still waiting on these things to be more than "we're for good game play and against bad gameplay!"

      I would rather we go back to the dev blogs talking about actual concrete features we'll be getting soon. These things are like 5 short paragraphs each and half of those are duplicates from the previous one. Could these seriously not have been condensed into 1 or 2 dev blogs max?
       
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    6. AlabasterJazz

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      I'm hoping that this means that Exploration will be a major focus of development, it really is the only barrier preventing from enjoying this game to it's full potential

      Does this mean that Starmade is going to develop and officially support add-on content? All aboard the hype-train!

      Perhaps a warpgate-only shield block that produces infinite shield energy while active? How to balance the shield block duration is another story - I suggest a relatively rare consumable fuel source that has to be replenished from time to time. Wargate is invulnerable as long as it is continuously refueled.
      --- Updated post (merge), Jul 18, 2017, Original Post Date: Jul 18, 2017 ---
      I know it's right there in your title, but trolling these posts just to cause chaos is no longer entertaining...
      --- Updated post (merge), Jul 18, 2017 ---
      While it's your right to complain, I'm not sure what you hope to achieve with your overly aggressive and abrasive way of doing so. Could you not achieve the same without being rude? Or are you intentionally trying to come off as an asshole? The way you go on about their ability to do things makes me think that you believe you would be far superior at developing a game and communicating to it's community, so why don't you go and do it? Post back here with details of "Lecic's awesome space game" so we can all see how well it's doing? Until then, why not just tone it down a bit, and voice your opinion in a constructive manner

      There is likely going to be 1 post for each "role" and perhaps a summary tying it all together, and then back to the regularly scheduled dev blogs. This is not information "everyone" in the community knows, so I'm glad they are presenting it this way.
       
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    7. tr0njonen

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      Maybe I just missed something, but the implication is that other galaxies will still be present, yes? In that case would they just be remixes of the "original" galaxy? Or is the universe update killing off different galaxies in favor of one big one?

      Hyper violent space whales?
       
    8. nightrune

      nightrune Wizard/Developer/Project Manager

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      We'll mostly be focusing on the same size universe we have now, other galaxies function has been discussed at length but is not set in stone. Many changes are happening in this phase where we update the Galaxy so we'd like to see how those shake down first, before we plan too far ahead.
       
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    9. Lecic

      Lecic Convicted Lancake Abuser

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      No. You and I have both been on these forums for over 4 years. You should know that rainbows and flowers do not work on Schine.

      Yes. 4 years of experience have taught me that the only way to get Schine to even listen to you is to hound them about it. They will ignore you or brush you off if you are a pansy about it. You need to be an asshole about the game's problems to get Schine to fix them. I have done this in the past and I will continue to do it, because it works and it is the only thing that works.

      Nice strawman. I'm not allowed to criticize a shitty job because I haven't done it myself? But sure, put me in any of the non-coding/art positions you have open, Schine. Balance and PR, I pretty much know for a fact I could do that shit better than half of you. Most of you haven't even actually played the game in years. Consider this my official Schine application.
       
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    10. Oblivionburn

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      It all sounds pretty awesome! Looking forward to exploring interesting planets and anomalies with a rag-tag crew of NPCs I've hired... should be very Star-Trek-ish :D
       
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    11. Matt_Bradock

      Matt_Bradock The Shrink

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      And that, ladies and gentlemen, is a Lecic who absolutely had it with generic BS from developers.
       
    12. Zyrr

      Zyrr Chronic Troublemaker

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      Do you genuinely think I'm trolling?

      Christ, I knew Schine Internet Defense Force members were delusional, but I didn't think they were actually disconnected from reality.
       
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    13. alterintel

      alterintel moderator

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      I'm starting to get the same feeling as LecicLecic on this one.
      Before I was soo looking forward to reading the End Goal Document (not Documents). But now that I've read two of them, I'm just looking forward to them being finished so that we can see some real Dev Blog stuff again. There really isn't anything of substance, maybe a tid bit or two. I feel like I'm just getting stringed along. Don't get me wrong, I really appreciate the weekly communications, but I feel like it's being rationed. Kind of like a TV series where the whole season has already been made and the episodes are then aired at a later date. At this rate we wont have any new info (from a Dev's point of view) for at least 4 or 5 weeks. This makes me very sad. I feel like I'm in a one sided relationship and I'm just being strung along.

      From what I've seen in this webisode I'm liking what I'm seeing. But next time I hope I see less canned info and more fresh info.
       
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    14. AlabasterJazz

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      It is plain to see that you have orders of magnitude more experience in these forums than I do, however if intolerable rudeness is effective it shouldn't be, and I feel that the community as a whole would benefit from a more civilized forum. We get it, you're fed up with the current state of things, and are trying like hell, the only way you know how, to try and fix it. It's commendable really, when you care so much about something that you fight so hard to try and fix it. You should know that it is no longer coming off as constructive, and it has reached the point where other community members are calling you out on it; you would never even be considered for a PR role until you can demonstrate an ability to convey your thoughts professionally. You DO make valid points but the crux of it is lost in the manner you're saying it. Be tactful and assertive, not aggressive and rude; in no other area of life would this be remotely tolerable except on internet forums.

      As for the strawman, well certainly your ability to effectively criticize someone else' work is limited by your own experience. There is much more to game development and community PR than simply bending to the few most vocal members, especially if a community discovers that rudeness, or any toxic behavior actually works. I have seen time and time again constant complaining about every new bit of information Shine releases that it is a wonder that they continue to release any new info at all. So now I am being vocal about it: Continue complaining if you feel it works - and continue to hound them if you feel it is necessary. Even swearing, when done to strongly emphasize a critical point would be acceptable. But do keep in mind, that not everyone follows every bit of development as closely as you appear to do, and so these broad-strokes announcements are meant for the standard user, not for over-active members like yourself. Continue to fight the good fight on specific topics, but also let the information flow to the average user. They are not making this game for your single benefit and others actually appreciate the generic top-down view of things to come.
       
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    15. Lancake

      Lancake Head of Testing

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      The end game documents were normally going to be included with the usual dev blog news. Unfortunately in the last 2 weeks, there has been little to no news besides "we're working on getting a release ready" which is a bunch of boring testing and equally boring bug fixes.

      We can't simply talk about concrete future features either, as talking about them is much much faster than actually making them. We would have the same issue where we run out of things to say.

      Thanks for giving neutral/constructive feedback though, we'll have to reconsider what to do with this.
       
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    16. AlabasterJazz

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      When your original argument is that you do not want to be locked in to specific roles, and then Shine explicitly states that you will not be locked into specific roles, and then you continue to explain how disappointed you are that it seems that you will be locked into specific roles it either comes off as trolling, an acute language barrier, or steadfast reluctance to receive new information and reevaluate your initial thoughts.

      And while I don't consider myself any form of "Schine Defense Force" I do feel that this game has amazing potential and am excited for what the game will offer in the end. As such, the End-Goal document is quite helpful to see what final goals the team has planned. Is it generic at this level? Yeah... It's supposed to be. Is this all info that exists in bits here-and-there-within the forums? Perhaps, I'm not digging through it all to find out. This is a great way to put everything in one place for easy viewing.
       
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    17. JinM

      Joined:
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      Why not have warp-holes like we have blackholes to transport players?

      These warpholes are buildable in sectors where no station is present, and cost faction points to opperate. They are non-block entities that don't suck in ships like black-holes, but work just the same when you fly through them. To build a warp-hole you need an exploration ship, and the bigger the block count of the "warpholebuildingblock"-modules on the ship, the bigger and farther reaching the warp-hole will be.

      To spice it up, it would be funny, if a warphole would only transport you a percentage of the way, if the ship flying through the hole is too big (so you can have different sized holes, and different distance holes with diversing faction point cost for them).
       
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    18. Zyrr

      Zyrr Chronic Troublemaker

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      You missed my point then. Not really surprising but I guess I'll re-elaborate for everyone else that doesn't understand, deliberately or not.

      Schine needs to figure out what on earth it wants to do. You either make your game with rigid roles or you don't do roles at all, there's no in-between that works out. It doesn't matter how they quantify it or rationalise it, if you design your game from the perspective of players having roles, that's the crop you're going to reap - a game where players are supposed to have roles. It makes sense from the architect's angle, of course, but that's not how everyone sees it. If you don't force players to do something, they won't do it - so any balance you try to create based on these roles (which is an intrinsic part of creating game features) will be shattered. Not only that, but the pieces of your puzzle won't fit together when you design part of the game to work one way and another to work in another way. It doesn't flow, and it feels exactly like how it was designed - in pieces that don't mesh.

      I don't care what way Schine goes, full sandbox or rigid MMO roles - I just want them to bloody choose one already and stop toeing the line.

      As for what else you've said, the information from these dev posts are so generic Walmart peddles it under the Great Value brand. It's not just that it's been said before, it's that the information is so self-explanatory it doesn't even need to be said. See here.

      "The starting galaxy can provide all the content that is necessary to the player provided we create the content and space it out."

      It's utterly groundbreaking insider info, top secret, I tell you! The players will be entertained if we give them entertainment! W O W ! An absolutely incredible, world-first insight that was definitely worth the wait to read.

      ---

      But since everyone seems to think critique is trolling, let me be absolutely crystal clear. I want the game to succeed and I want Schine to share pertinent information with the community so we can provide a wide range of opinions and suggestions back. But this isn't any of that, it's just word spam with a couple new trinkets sprinkled in like an Easter Egg hunt.

      Like I said before, Schine. Condense your documents. Find your main points and goals. Make them concise so that they can be explained in the absolute minimum amount of words necessary. Put it into one devblog. Post it. Read the responses and don't cherry pick the four posts that agree 100% with you and use it as evidence that everything is fine the way it is.
       
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    19. JinM

      Joined:
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      Some guys here seem to dislike the vague style of the end-goal documents. Actually those end-goals are not written down in one place (and easy to find) allready and really helpful for new players to understand where Starmade is heading. They give a way clearer impression than the content provided from Shine before.

      As for the abundance of clear facts...Are clear facts stuff like: next comes the power update, then maybe new planets, and also some improved npc factions or some different weapon systems? They allready talked about that. Even farther reaching facts are not possible in a game like that. I like shine that they don't do it the Notch way, and promisse stuff like an API or more water content as Notch did some years ago! That makes them appear more serious to me. But who listens to me anyway...
       
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    20. Lecic

      Lecic Convicted Lancake Abuser

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      Gee wizz, people provide criticism of things they don't like or find useless? How dare they!

      Do you want the game to improve or not? You don't get there by never criticising.
       
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