How FD undermined their own creation

The Engineers is the problem. With the engineers any possible balance in the game went out the window.
Inflated not only jump ranges, but weapons and ship defences to a ridiculous degree and put them behind a grindwall you have to hold your nose to scale.
Most of the games problems could be fixed by simply getting rid of the engineers.
But i know FD thinks they need the grind to get people hooked in order sell store trinkets.
Nah,

Having engineered a couple of hundred (yes, really) modules in the last couple of weeks, I've come to the conclusion that everything up to G4 engineering is frivolously trivial for anybody who's dipping into a diverse range of gameplay elements.

You'd have to willfully ignore opportunities to obtain mat's and scans in order to not have everything necessary for G1 to G4 upgrades immediately to hand.

G5, OTOH, does require a bit of effort, and that effort is usually tedious.
Given that G4 mod's currently (as a rule) equate roughly to what people could previously expect from G5 mod's, the current engineering system is mostly plain-sailing.
 
The Engineers is the problem. With the engineers any possible balance in the game went out the window.
Inflated not only jump ranges, but weapons and ship defences to a ridiculous degree and put them behind a grindwall you have to hold your nose to scale.
Most of the games problems could be fixed by simply getting rid of the engineers.
But i know FD thinks they need the grind to get people hooked in order sell store trinkets.
I think you make a good point, although personally I would have preferred sidegrades rather than straight upgrades. It is only a problem in freeform PvP though, where there is a strong desire to make a ship as safe as possible at the expense of utility.

I like the idea of being able to customise my ship, but as usual min/maxers push the envelope & the rest of us have to follow.

I think if we were able to easily see what mods our opponent had (player or npc) it might help.
 
Nah,

Having engineered a couple of hundred (yes, really) modules in the last couple of weeks, I've come to the conclusion that everything up to G4 engineering is frivolously trivial for anybody who's dipping into a diverse range of gameplay elements.

You'd have to willfully ignore opportunities to obtain mat's and scans in order to not have everything necessary for G1 to G4 upgrades immediately to hand.

G5, OTOH, does require a bit of effort, and that effort is usually tedious.
Given that G4 mod's currently (as a rule) equate roughly to what people could previously expect from G5 mod's, the current engineering system is mostly plain-sailing.
What did the engineers do to the games balance?
Ridiculous jump ranges and weapons and defences actually harm the games playability imo.
Yesterday, i and some of my squadmates did some weapons and shield testing. All of us who particpated had shields and defences that would have allowed us to make a sandwich, catch up on the news, feed the cat and still come back in time to high wake out having never fired a shot in self defense.
 
The dev post that the FSS is it and that FD are happy with it and have no intention to reinstate anything like the ADS is the confirmation that I needed to finally acknowledge that it's unlikely that I'll log in again. It's been 6 months already.
I only came back to the forum because the balls-up they made with the last update breaking the FSS meant there was a slim chance that it would be revisited.

ED is still my favourite space game, I just can't bring myself to play it while the FSS is a mandatory gate to exploration.
It certainly did go a lot more pew pew than I'd hoped for somewhere along the way, and many opportunities have been missed to add better and more engaging tools for non-combat roles.

Sections of the forum cut FD a lot of slack, hoping that the Q4 exploration update would finally provide functionality worthy of the role, so to instead be presented with something that I personally just don't find compelling in any way is bad enough, for it to be obligatory is just the final nail in the coffin.

Game over man ;)
I'd just go and try what it's like. I did the whole Distant Worlds 2 thing and during the journey the way I used the FSS changed and I adapted to it. I found awesome things with it on a few planets, and once I learned how to interpret a system on one glance it didn't even took more time when I was in a hurry and just wanted to grab candy from the cake.
Just imagine it has always been there.
 
What did the engineers do to the games balance?
Ridiculous jump ranges and weapons and defences actually harm the games playability imo.
Yesterday, i and some of my squadmates did some weapons and shield testing. All of us who particpated had shields and defences that would have allowed us to make a sandwich, catch up on the news, feed the cat and still come back in time to high wake out having never fired a shot in self defense.
I was addressing the "grind wall" complaint.

As for "balance", I dunno.
From a mostly PvE perspective, I like having engineered weapons and modules.
If I didn't have them, I'd find combat achingly long-winded and tedious.
If engineering was removed from the game, they'd need to rebalance a helluva lot of other stuff (NPCs, mission requirements, BGS stuff etc) to compensate.
 
I was addressing the "grind wall" complaint.

As for "balance", I dunno.
From a mostly PvE perspective, I like having engineered weapons and modules.
If I didn't have them, I'd find combat achingly long-winded and tedious.
If engineering was removed from the game, they'd need to rebalance a helluva lot of other stuff (NPCs, mission requirements, BGS stuff etc) to compensate.
It would be an even playing field, NPCs and humans alike. That sounds like a lot more fun that what we have now.

Sometimes i do cargo runs in my type 9 for the excitment, there is at least a small chance of dying even to an NPC.
 
Your exploration wouldn't be restricted by what others did.... unless any kind of "fog of war" system was incredibly poorly implemented.

You couldn't have a system that just flat-out refused to let people visit undiscovered systems because that'd mean nobody could visit them in order to discover them.

All it'd probably mean would be that you wouldn't be able to just click on a random star on the galmap and plot a route to it.
When you reached the edge of "charted space" the galmap might, perhaps, only show you stars as far away as your ship could jump, and then you'd have to pick one, jump to it and then take another look at the galmap to make your next jump.

Sure, that'd make things like trips to Colonia slow going at first but eventually players would chart a well-trodden path along the route and, with a few additional tweaks, the whole thing could have been more engaging so that you wouldn't really care if a journey was slower.
That sounds horrible honestly, like a road trip you'd have to navigate 1 intersection at a time. I'm having trouble envisioning an implementation in which the mechanic feels worthwhile as opposed to bloated by guesswork. It's certainly engaging as you described it by the definition that you have to engage with it on each jump, but I have a hard time imagining it being good/fun.
 
The Engineers is the problem. With the engineers any possible balance in the game went out the window.
Inflated not only jump ranges, but weapons and ship defences to a ridiculous degree and put them behind a grindwall you have to hold your nose to scale.
Most of the games problems could be fixed by simply getting rid of the engineers.
But i know FD thinks they need the grind to get people hooked in order sell store trinkets.
Engineers surely didn't make ED a better game imho.
I think it would've kept the game far more authentic without the engineers and adding a seperate module for farther jumps which would need some extra gameplay to charge or only a certain fixed very long distance jump.
Our galaxy is so incredibly huge that even in ten years only a tiny fraction will be visited, a special module to make it easier to get to distant regions would be a nice addition imho.

Engineering in general just makes stock or plain A graded ships obsolete so you're kinda forced to engage with the mats grind in order to get your ship viable.
A graded ships were fine pre engineers imho and made the balance way more......balanced.
I for one definitely didn't get more fun when i.e. cleaning out a HazRes after the introduction of the engineers.
At first it was funny how you could own a complete HazRes with a heavily engineered ship but it got very dull rather quick.

Imho we would never have missed engineering if it wasn't introduced, I might be wrong but engineers was never a thing we as player were craving for like planetary landings/activities, legs, etc.
 
It would be an even playing field, NPCs and humans alike. That sounds like a lot more fun that what we have now.

Sometimes i do cargo runs in my type 9 for the excitment, there is at least a small chance of dying even to an NPC.
True enough but, OTOH, why would I even consider taking on a massacre mission to kill 72 pirates for a couple of million credits if I'd struggle to explode one of them?

CZs are, to me, an indicator of how PvE combat without engineering would be.... and it's not pretty.
I can take an unengineered Vulture into a CZ and I can survive there indefinitely.
I can't explode anything though.
Even if I target, say, a Viper, I'll simply shoot at it and shoot at it (and shoot at it some more) and eventually I'll either fall asleep or I'll run out of ammo.
That doesn't make for exciting gaming.
 
That sounds horrible honestly, like a road trip you'd have to navigate 1 intersection at a time. I'm having trouble envisioning an implementation in which the mechanic feels worthwhile as opposed to bloated by guesswork. It's certainly engaging as you described it by the definition that you have to engage with it on each jump, but I have a hard time imagining it being good/fun.
So make it a system that shows you information out to 250 Ly but make the data further away 'fuzzier'. You wouldn't be guessing every jump that way, and you'd be able to see where star density was dropping off before you go down a dead end.

Or make brighter stars visible from further away, so you can pick a direction but still have to hope that there are dimmer stars that fill in the gaps.

Not that it matters, since FDev's 'vision' for exploration seems to be "Everyone go real fast see shiny shiny make money"
 
That sounds horrible honestly, like a road trip you'd have to navigate 1 intersection at a time. I'm having trouble envisioning an implementation in which the mechanic feels worthwhile as opposed to bloated by guesswork. It's certainly engaging as you described it by the definition that you have to engage with it on each jump, but I have a hard time imagining it being good/fun.
Depends, I guess.

If you're taking a road-trip, you're taking it along a road.
Somebody had to build that road so you could take your trip.
The route had to be surveyed, obstacles had to be overcome, hazards had to be avoided and then, eventually the road gets built so you can take your trip.

That's exactly what you, as an explorer, would be responsible for doing in ED so that others could take their "road trip" along a trail that you blazed.

Granted, it wouldn't be especially interesting in the current ED universe but, as I said, I'd like to see more environmental hazards put into the game - as well as the tools to overcome them - which'd make every jump potentially interesting.
 
True enough but, OTOH, why would I even consider taking on a massacre mission to kill 72 pirates for a couple of million credits if I'd struggle to explode one of them?

CZs are, to me, an indicator of how PvE combat without engineering would be.... and it's not pretty.
I can take an unengineered Vulture into a CZ and I can survive there indefinitely.
I can't explode anything though.
Even if I target, say, a Viper, I'll simply shoot at it and shoot at it (and shoot at it some more) and eventually I'll either fall asleep or I'll run out of ammo.
That doesn't make for exciting gaming.
Yeah it would certainly be more challenging without engineering and the npcs have engineering now too.
Without engineering, it would be more about skill, combat would be riskier and something you would need think about before and during the engagement.

Now i can take my engineered corvette on a wing assassination mission with no help, put the throttle in the blue and just blast away at the target till it dies. I might lose a few percentage of hull, but there is virtually no chance of dying. Thats just wrong. Group combat missions should require group effort and some thought and planning, and entail some risk.
 
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And I can remember a time when no TV had a remote control...

There was no ADHD back then.

Yeah, they dumbed everything down to please the masses
 
Now i can take my engineered corvette on a wing assassination mission with no help, put the throttle in the blue and just blast away at the target till it dies. I might lose a few percentage of hull, but there is virtually no chance of dying. Thats just wrong. Group combat missions should require group effort and some thought and planning.
See, this is kind of going OT now but I think that's something FDev screwed up.

Wing missions (especially combat ones) should never have just been about needing more ships to explode tougher opponents.
Do that and you always risk creating a situation where 4 newbies, winged up, still haven't got a hope or, conversely, where a lone veteran can do the job without breaking a sweat (and then get paid a quarter of what they should get for doing it).

Instead, wing missions should involve strategic goals that NEED multiple ships to achieve their objectives.

You might get a mission to raid a shipyard, for example, and to succeed you need one ship to keep shooting at a shield-generator to disrupt it, one other ship to protect the ship that's disrupting the shield generator and then a couple more ships to shoot at whatever the shield-generator was protecting... and deal with any hostile ships.

Alternatively, how about a planetary mission where one ship has to destroy some objective at one location in order to open the gate at another location 20km away so that somebody can go inside in an SRV and complete the objective while other ships protect the SRV?

Those are the sort of things wing-missions should have involved.
IMO.
 
Engineering was introduced because people wanted aspects of a space MORPG added to the WWI space dog fighter simulation / trading game Elite has always been. That means "grinding" for materials to upgrade equipment, in addition to the ship customisation with the module classes. Holo-Me is part of the same mindset - as MORPGers we want to play with dress-up dolls, as a generalisation.

You don't like it? Tough, really. That's what you asked for early on. And here it is. It can obviously be improved, as you can see for other online RPGs such as WoW, which despite 15 years running still keeps changing things.

Hopefully FDEV will toy with the components of the game (Powerplay, Engineers, exploration, ...) and add new detail to it without continuing to inflate things. But I surely hope they won't dramatically roll back stuff. I am sick of semi-annual reset button that expansions often bring to games.

:D S
 
If engineering was removed from the game, they'd need to rebalance a helluva lot of other stuff (NPCs, mission requirements, BGS stuff etc) to compensate.
I for one would've like this a lot more then introducing a method to op each and every ship pve speaking.
If they would've done something about the then present balance they could've spent the time and resources they put into engineers in more depth regarding planetary activities, Thargoid and Guardian story and whatnot.

Sure it can be fun to experiment with engineering and special effects but in the end the only result of what you're after is the most overpowered ship, which eventualy gets boring because of it being so overpowered.

Engineers are here to stay so whining about them won't help but introducing them was a poor design choice imho.
Unless every aspect was better balanced overall and other features weren't so half developed.
 
So make it a system that shows you information out to 250 Ly but make the data further away 'fuzzier'. You wouldn't be guessing every jump that way, and you'd be able to see where star density was dropping off before you go down a dead end.

Or make brighter stars visible from further away, so you can pick a direction but still have to hope that there are dimmer stars that fill in the gaps.

Not that it matters, since FDev's 'vision' for exploration seems to be "Everyone go real fast see shiny shiny make money"
The upside of that is that the exploration system is more tolerable for more people. For instance those not into sightseeing rather than cartography (Or for those who just want the deed done for other reasons). Granted the path-finding aspects are weak, but how much mystery would be expected in star maps in 3305?

Really asking, not being facetious.

Depends, I guess.

If you're taking a road-trip, you're taking it along a road.
Somebody had to build that road so you could take your trip.
The route had to be surveyed, obstacles had to be overcome, hazards had to be avoided and then, eventually the road gets built so you can take your trip.

That's exactly what you, as an explorer, would be responsible for doing in ED so that others could take their "road trip" along a trail that you blazed.

Granted, it wouldn't be especially interesting in the current ED universe but, as I said, I'd like to see more environmental hazards put into the game - as well as the tools to overcome them - which'd make every jump potentially interesting.
Conversely without a road it's a matter of pointing at the thing and going. And as you state ED is a flat landscape for the most part. As it is it's just adding frequent map checks rather than interest.
 
Can't stop noticing a lot of nostalgia for the times when a well rested horse was the fastest mean to reach from point A to point B
Then people invented the train.
As someone who has been playing a lot of Red Dead Redemption 2 lately, I prefer the horse (except when I stow away on a train and can experience the ride instead of just fast travel).

To the OP, when I first started playing Elite, I had no idea there was a route plotter. I thought I had to manually work out my way from point A to B like original Elite. I played the game this way for a couple of weeks before discovering the route plotter. I must admit, I think I enjoyed the game more before I knew the RP existed...
 
Sure it can be fun to experiment with engineering and special effects but in the end the only result of what you're after is the most overpowered ship, which eventualy gets boring because of it being so overpowered.

Engineers are here to stay so whining about them won't help but introducing them was a poor design choice imho.
Unless every aspect was better balanced overall and other features weren't so half developed.
Personally, I think the only problem with Engineers is that there's almost never a down-side to a mod' - at least when used knowledgeably.

I would have rather had a system that allowed you to mix & match different aspects of engineering but where, if you went too far in any one direction, you'd end up with a seriously limited ship.

To use RPGs as an analogy, if you had 20 skill-points to spend, you probably wouldn't want to sink all of them into "Physical Combat" because there's going to be times when you need stamina, or stealth, or speechcraft, or magic, or intelligence etc.
To create a viable character capable of doing all the stuff in the game, you need to distribute the skill-points around a variety of things.

Ironically, a system like this would have been superb in ED, specifically, because... we can own more than one ship.

If you wanted to build a dedicated canyon-racer you could focus all your engineering on speed, even though it meant your ship was garbage at everything else.
You could build an exploration ship with a big jump-range but, again, it'd be hopeless at other things.

Granted, you could build a devastatingly powerful combat ship too but, with a properly implemented system, it'd have such massive shortcomings that, at the very least, you'd always need to wing-up so that other ships could help mitigate the faults of your ship.
 
In reply to the OP, I pointed this out during Beta (or whenever we first had access to the entire galaxy). I even made a thread* in the DDF detailing how a pathfinding/exploration mechanic could function, but my pleadings fell on deaf ears.

It was quite a long proposal, so I won't repeat it here, but the pathfinding part consisted of systems beyond the bubble not being accessible by default. To open up a new system, an Explorer (who needs to equip with dedicated scanning gear and purchase/carry a limited number of nav beacons) would be required to triangulate the position of a target system by visiting a number of already accessible stars, and performing a Stellar Scan in each, whilst pointing their ship at the target star (they would need to find it in the starfield each time, so the ability to eyeball accurately is a developed skill). Each Stellar Scan returns spectral analysis data as well as distance, so matching this data at each triangulation position gives confidence that the correct star has been scanned.
At any point, an 'Exploration Jump'** could be carried out, but the more scans collected, the more accurate the Exploration Jump. If too few, then the Explorer would emerge several million ls from the star. With more, the Explorer would emerge progressively closer to the star. Scans from widely-spaced star systems help accuracy also - think of terrestrial surveying with a theodolite).
To complete the activity, the Explorer would then need to get within a certain distance from the target star after the Exploration Jump, deploy one of their nav beacons, and then activate it (at which point it becomes invulnarable like the other existing beacons).
The new system wouldn't be accessible to other commanders until the Explorer sells this nav data to UC. The limit on nav beacons (subject to cargo space) requires the Explorer to revist the bubble periodically to restock.

The proposal was more detailed than above, but that's the gist of it.

Some liked it, some didn't understand it, some hated it, but FD never responded, and I soon realised the it was too late anyway - players don't like things being taken away, even if it's the ability to disregard the 150,000 systems in the bubble and grind their way to the further reaches of the galaxy.

Then weeks/months later, somebody in the forums asked about the ability of visiting other galaxies (400 billion systems wasn't enough it seems), and it occured to me that if FD introduced a limited range galactic hyperspace jump device that could barely reach the Large Magnellic Clouds, my proposal could be implemented there, and those that like things the way they are could stay in the Milky Way and get First Discovered tags on the remaining 399,999,000,000 unvisited systems***

I don't hold out any hope that my idea will even materialise though. There are probably technical reasons that limit what FD can do.

* During a brief window when we could make new threads in the DDF
** An unguided hyperspace jump, without the benefit and safety of a nav beacon at the target star
*** Approx
 
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