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Old 07-05-2012, 02:26 PM
Bluddy Bluddy is offline
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 2,060
Default Quest feedback post 0.906

I played a session recently, and I'm very pleased by the way the sector tends to be at war now. It makes for a very lively game. However, there are a few issues that seem to dominate now IMO:

1. It seems that any race that is at war with you is due to be destroyed by quest escalation. All you have to do is NOT help a race, and it'll be haunted by problem after problem. Some of these problems will be fixed (randomly), but most will just escalate. It seems like the sector simply cannot do without a Drox operative to fix their problems. This is a deeper issue: how much of an impact should your actions have? How much of an impact should your non-action have? If your quest-solving is essential to the success of a race, then those races that aren't helped by you will fail.

My suggestion is to make tangible ways for races to deal with quests. As soon as a race has a problem, they'll try to dispatch one of their ships to deal with that problem. The ETA of the ship will show up in your quest log as a timer counting down. If the ship is taken out by an enemy or by a monster, the ETA will become blank. The race might try to send another ship if it has the resources for it. The idea here is that races can take care of their own problems, and you want to either do the quest before them or sabotage them by (for example) taking out said ships. This means that races you aren't helping don't just get plagued by quests if you do nothing: you have to ACTIVELY sabotage their quests, which makes things much more interesting as well. It also means that large races can take care of their problems more easily than small races: with huge fleets, large races don't need you -- it's just a matter of racing to finish the quest before they do. Small races have fewer ships and thus are less likely to finish quests.

Additionally, ships that finish quests for their race could get XP and upgrade.

2. With war constantly in the background (as it should be), it's even more obvious that political quests are missing. The races are fighting, and all you get is quests to terraform planet X or quell a rebellion in planet Y. We need quests that make us part of the action. Quests to remove a blockade on a planet, or enforce a blockade on a planet, or to rescue a precious cargo ship, or a crucial planet, or to destroy an incoming fleet etc. Again, the races will try to do these things with their own ships, but they might fail or be sabotaged.

3. This is a more minor point, but still deserving of consideration. Planets are currently just numbers or points. They're not strategic enough. I think something like a chain of supply would really make things more interesting. A central planet linking all other planets of a particular race would be crucial to defend (or attack), since it would prevent the race from sending supplies between its other planets. This kind of thing would really improve the feeling of a strategic war, rather than randomly taking out planets.
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Old 07-05-2012, 02:44 PM
jonasan jonasan is offline
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 70

interesting ideas bluddy. I like the concept of races sending ships to complete missions - and the active sabotage of said ships sounds brilliant.

i'm with you completely on political missions - the war is the feature and i really want to play an active interesting role in it. Also makes more sense in terms of the sector goal to have missions which lead more directly to just 1 race standing...

agreed on planets - better now that the ships move to attack - but as you say it needs more 'layers' of strategy - and also appropriate rewards (relation/exp/cash)..

For example, in my most recent sector i have been taking out worlds of 2 races in the end game and almost without the help of my allies, and wiped out those races (7 or so worlds). The fact that the defensive fleet tries to engage is good - but due to their AI and max speed most importantly you end up just kiting the fleet in circles around the planet as you attack the world and not them.

I would really like to see every planet (once it has a defensive fleet) have an impenetrable force field which is generated from the lead/biggest ship of the defensive fleet - in this way you would have to engage and destroy (at least 1) of the defensive fleet before taking out the planet. The more established and important the world, the bigger the flagship of the defensive armarda - i.e. the stronger the 'planetary shield'. This would also stop monsters knocking of worlds too quickly and grinding the planet health bar down with similar tactics that negate the value of the defensive fleet.

and a further thought on this idea - if you could pull the lead defensive ship far away from the world with your tractor beam then that would also bring down the shield for your allies to strike!
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Old 07-09-2012, 01:24 AM
Bluddy Bluddy is offline
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 2,060

OK this is post-0.907 feedback:

- Quests seem to have minimal impact once your ally is stronger. After my allied race gets big enough, I don't care about quelling rebellions anymore -- I just do it for the money when I absolutely have to. My ally seems to be doing fine without my help.

- Monsters are fairly boring to fight; races are fun to fight. The most interesting thing I've found is to go after your allied race's enemies. If you're allied with a strong race (which is the smart thing to do, and is the likely situation since you've been helping them) then they don't need your help to fight their enemies, but it's still the most fun to do that. I'd say these are the most enjoyable things I've encountered so far in the game: defending one of my chosen race's planets from attack, or going after an enemy planet. Too bad it currently means ignoring the quests.

- You can't take on more than 3 race ships at a time -- they have serious shields and armor and are just too strong. So you end up going back and forth: attacking, then retreating to another system, healing up by an allied planet, then attacking again, until your allied race has a foothold in the enemy system, at which point you just retreat to your ally's planet whenever you need to. The only way you can defeat an enemy planet seems to be by timing your attack with your ally's attacks (if they have any defenses.). It's really fun taking on a freshly built enemy colony though, or intercepting the enemy just as he sends an attack fleet.

- I barely equip any new items, because I lack the slots or the power or both. What I do instead is that I just upgrade my items slightly by a few points at a time. So I'll find a thruster that's slightly stronger and with a slightly higher power usage, and I'll upgrade to that. All my items inch up slowly, because there's no way I can give up my basic equipment at this stage (level 15) to try something new.

- I never find better items by fighting monsters (and I mean never). All my improved items come from planets. The chance of finding something better in combat is just too small.

- The item rarity system is not a great fit for the game IMO. In DC/DoP, you had 2 main stats to boost: weapon damage and armor. For armor, you have 10 slots or so, which meant that you didn't have to worry about the primary stat (armor) and could instead get items with high extra stats, which is what the more rare items give you. Your weapon had the same problem as here, which is that you needed to get a weapon that was as strong as possible. Fortunately there were many ways for weapons to be stronger, with lots of weapon modifiers.

In Drox, every item gives you something different, and you really need to maximize the base amount you can get per item, whether it's power, or armor, or attack, or whatever. Because you don't get any spare slots to fill up with more of the same item, you have to make that item count for as much as possible. So the only things you care about are the main stat of the item and its power consumption. This means that the rarity system: common, uncommon, rare, very rare etc is mostly irrelevant. Even if an item has some good extra modifiers, I can't count on those modifiers because I'll soon want to upgrade that one item to something with a stronger base stat and then I'll lose all the extra modifiers. This is very much unlike DC, where I could keep a piece of armor that gave me extra boosts but weak armor because other armor pieces would make up for it. Bottom line -- I think the rarity system doesn't indicate much as far as Drox is concerned.
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