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Star Citizen - Fishing for Space Whales


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  • 2 months later...

It's amazing that developers introduce mechanics like this without thinking through the implications, it shows a weird naivety towards human nature or the way that (some) people play online games. It's strange that they even implemented this idea. Like, the whole idea of Star Citizen I thought was that it's this fantasy world of space travel and adventure where you go from nothing to having these lovely spaceships with all the bourgeois mod cons that you can pretend to live on. I don't see how being killed and robbed is part of that fantasy. 

 

I can see how the risk of losing everything might spice things up, but living in fear of the space bullies coming in and taking your crisps every breaktime doesn't sound like much fun. I sort of get the space fantasy bit, even if I'm not on board with Star Citizen - I played Elite Dangerous for ages and that was a big part of the appeal, but the griefing in E:D was horrendous, even if some of it was quite imaginative and commendably in-universe griefing. This sounds nightmarish.

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It's because whoever is in charge isn't a designer. They're not saying "What impact will adding this mechanic have on the rest of the world?", they're just adding things they think sound cool or unique. Then these systems are exploited, or interact in unexpected ways, and break the game. 

 

Star Citizen is the antithesis of good game design. Adding dumb minutiae rather than focussing on the core loop.

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1 hour ago, K said:

I can see how the risk of losing everything might spice things up, but living in fear of the space bullies coming in and taking your crisps every breaktime doesn't sound like much fun. I sort of get the space fantasy bit, even if I'm not on board with Star Citizen - I played Elite Dangerous for ages and that was a big part of the appeal, but the griefing in E:D was horrendous, even if some of it was quite imaginative and commendably in-universe griefing. This sounds nightmarish.

 

It's because a lot of the things that you can buy protect you from the harshness of the mechanics - get a ship blown up? If you're a new player you'll lose it forever, but if you bought it with real money before the game launched you'll always be able to get it back for an insurance cost.

 

Every conception of mechanics is like this, they sell people housing plots and then sell a $400 big cluster bomber designed to destroy bases and then sell a big anti-air gun platform to take them out (none of which is in game). They create a problem and then sell players the solution.

 

The backers never complain (except in a situation like this where they can lose their paid for subscriber gear) because like Bitcoin, a big-but-never-admitted-openly appeal of the ponzi scheme is "get in early and you can be the boot stamping on the human face". You'll have more advanced ships and more powerful instant-kill weapons to destroy the plebs, and the prices will only go up so you can wallet warrior but they can't.

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5 hours ago, JohnC said:

The ability to overdose on sci-fi health potions seems such an odd thing to even think about putting in. 

 

It's because they wrote out all these massive posts about how deep their careers would be and how they'd be games unto themselves. This is what they promised for health and healing, for instance:

 

Spoiler

- 10 areas of the body can be damaged in four different states
- Damage is visual, also can be determined through diagnostics
- Limb damage reduces weapon handling and movement
- Hard to instantly kill a player, they get downed and can be revived
- Can be dragged by other players, or drag yourself
- Healing in the field is limited, you can't be restored to full health

– Medical profession, like all professions, is something that you can be skilled at and get better at. it will require skill. not just push a button and done.
- Need to travel to a medical bay to be fully healed
- Some ships have medical bays that work like stations with medical bays
- Players can respawn in any medical bay, including ships medical bays
- You can bleed out
- If you eject, you live, if you don't, you lose a life.

- If you disconnect you autopilot
- Each character has a number of deaths they can be revived from
- Characters will bear scars from deaths
- Characters can extend their number of lives with missions and money
- Lose all of your lives and you must roll up a new one

- NPCs will be unique and can also perma-die
- Characters can lose limbs and replace them with cybernetic ones
- Medical procedures can get you transplants if you don't like the aesthetics and are prepared to pay
- Character creation is in-world, first character is in a bathroom, second at a funeral for the first
- Reputation and faction alliances pass on to your new character, but slightly diminished
- Possessions can be passed onto the new character
- Shooting ejection pods or ejected players in space has a big penalty
- Ship modules will decrease chances of life-loss with better ejection systems and automation
- You can be captured and sold into slavery with consequences, this does not count as a deaths

 

And for the last 10 years they've had absolutely no interest in fleshing out any of these game systems, instead just focusing on shinies and redoing the graphics over and over.

 

But now they've got this outside investment that's holding them to deliver, and what they promised is massively ambitious and probably impossible given they've already spunked a decade and hundreds of millions of dollars up the wall, so they're all being replaced with "gameplay beams", you fire a beam to shoot, to mine, to heal, to repair, etc.

 

Shooting a beam is the easiest development for your FPS engine. But because the backers would revolt, they have to add a bunch of caveats and some counterplay to give the illusion of depth.

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On 13/07/2015 at 09:59, Lorfarius said:

And they just delayed the FPS module didn't they? I can understand why some people are starting to think there's something dodgy going on.

 

6 years later and I'm in my 40's! They were right young man, no Star Citizen for you and at least you have Game Pass on the far off horizon.

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I find it amazing how the original pitch for Star Citizen was "they don't make these types of games any more, and we'll make the best one!" - and since then there's been an entire generation of space flight games, hardcore sims, classic 90s action game with sim trappings style games, even Captain Blood style exploration + weirdness with No Mans Sky.

 

And Star Citizen has slowly morphed in to an esoteric 90s MMORPG.

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6 minutes ago, merrychan said:

I can only liken the feeling of a Star Citizen fan to how overly optimistic I was as having a CD32 as my only games console (with none of the cool stuff that turned it into a fully functioning A1200).

 

Decent port of Wing Commander for CD32 though, funnily enough.

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15 minutes ago, layten said:

You have to give them some credit for how forward thinking it has all been. I mean, they were selling JPG's long before NFT's were cool.

 

Yes, I was telling a friend of mine who's gotten really excited about some NFT equivalent-sounding game called Star Atlas (in which case they've developed and created a pile of NFTs and seemingly no even roadmap for the game they belong to) and suggesting he could dial his expectation down.

 

I notice the new Digital Foundry podcast has a large section on Star Citizen. They seem quite uncritically excited about it.

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13 minutes ago, Ste Pickford said:

Imagine inventing an amazing futuristic world, where you can implement anything you want, but instead of creating a Culture-like, scarcity-free utopia of pure freedom and unlimited expression, you recreate all the horrors of the modern capitalist world we live in, with uneven resource distribution, haves and have-nots, VIP lounges at the spaceport, the need for health insurance, etc.

 

Mind boggling.

 

Telling thee, there's going to be so many post mortems of this game.

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1 hour ago, Uncle Mike said:

 

 

I notice the new Digital Foundry podcast has a large section on Star Citizen. They seem quite uncritically excited about it.

They have had this tendency for a bit, I think Alex Battaglia might have over invested in it a bit? That is the only excuse I can see for the smooth ride they give it.

 

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5 hours ago, RipePlums said:

It's because whoever is in charge isn't a designer. They're not saying "What impact will adding this mechanic have on the rest of the world?", they're just adding things they think sound cool or unique. Then these systems are exploited, or interact in unexpected ways, and break the game. 

 

Star Citizen is the antithesis of good game design. Adding dumb minutiae rather than focussing on the core loop.


It also helps if your game is eternally in alpha so that you can keep promising to fix things on the actual release which you know is never coming.

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