Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
I get that they don't currently attach completion rewards to UGC missions, because they don't want people making Hello World missions and grinding them for free SP. However, Foundry has some fairly tight boundaries for how far afield you can go in setting mission objectives, and it seems like these limits could be used as a "feature" for letting authors make missions that would qualify for a completion reward.

For instance, you can't place kill encounters that are anything other than the usual Gang of Five mobs we find in all the standard mission chains. It seems like Foundry could reasonably allow a mission to qualify for a completion reward, as long as it included a minimum number of Kill Enemies encounters. This would suck for author's making non-killing missions, because theirs might be more fun and require more time or effort to complete, but would not qualify for a reward. But at least it would be something.

You could still put 25 mobs in one big room and have a mission where you just go in and mow them all down. But that's not so different from what the standard issue explore missions involve today, so there's no principled reason not to allow some reward for it. And requiring a minimum number of kill encounters seems like the simplest bar for the tool to enforce.

The reward should be a standard, set amount of SP, BOFF SP, and merits. It could likely never include emblems, because even if there were a way to flag a UGC mission as "daily," there's no limit of the number of unique daily missions that could exist. And since emblems = purple gear, any UGC that produced emblems (or any other merit currency) would be relentlessly exploited by gold farmers.

I would love to think there is some way to qualify a mission for a standard 10 DXP completion reward as well, since the diplomatic missions are far the shallowest and most tedious puddle of the content well. But I'm not sure what sort of rule could rationally allow this. The nonkilling objectives are just too easy to minimize by putting five "interacts" or "contacts" side by side in a room, requiring no action at all, that I'm not sure how you could guarantee even a minimal amount of effort or time to complete them.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
03-29-2011, 06:54 AM
I think a well known forumula required to produce a mission that could reward the player with something at the end would not be a bad idea at all. I probably wouldn't want the author to be able to choose the reward though, instead it could be something rewarded from a documented table of random rewards.

Another way to do something like this would be to have some form of 'foundry' reward tokens, perhaps like generic exploration marks which could be redeemed for gear of the players choosing.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
03-29-2011, 10:20 PM
I completely agree...

and to add, though this might be stretching it a bit...maybe authors who achieve a certain amount of high stars, say like 100 five stars or 200 four stars, would receive a small amount of atari tokens for the time we spent in creating the missions that are enjoyed.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
03-29-2011, 11:34 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elkysium View Post
I completely agree. and to add, though this might be stretching it a bit...maybe authors who achieve a certain amount of high stars, say like 100 five stars or 200 four stars, would receive a small amount of atari tokens for the time we spent in creating the missions that are enjoyed.
Cryptic has conclusively ruled in another thread that UGC can never involve any transfer of real-life money between players; and since AT are paid for with money, no AT rewards of any sort for authors ever. They never did, however, answer whether an award in emblems would be ok. Since it doesn't involve any possible exchange of real life money, it seems no different than, e.g., mailing the author a gift of an item (which Cryptic expressly approved as "ok" as a gesture of appreciation).

However, if this ever happened, it would probably have to be in the form of something like a completely optional, nominal 1-emblem "tip" that any player could leave for an author upon completing a mission. Charging anything for playing UGC would lead to violence in the streets here; and basing it on ratings leaves waaaaay to much potential for "rating farming."
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
03-29-2011, 11:56 PM
Meowbe the Crypticians (my new favorite species since Foundry is out lol) could review some of the really well done missions by players and include sum XP reward at least. However, I would strongly suggest that there should be no loot in any of the foundry missions as it is a golden spot for farmers right now. Go on Elite, have weak space mobs of Orions or whatever, kill them, eventually you get blue MK XI consoles (which you can only get through emblems or crafting usually) or weapons (which is as close as ideal, only purrple is better). This is not an exploit as is, it's a feature. That's why I'm mentioning it here.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
03-30-2011, 01:28 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkShrike View Post
Another way to do something like this would be to have some form of 'foundry' reward tokens, perhaps like generic exploration marks which could be redeemed for gear of the players choosing.
This could be a good idea. Someone else mentioned in another thread about rewarding the player like the B'Tran Cluster daily is at the moment, (0/3) missions completed for 3 Emblems. The difference would likely be in the time it takes to complete 3 missions from the Foundry, as these would easily be longer than how long it usually takes to do the B'Tran daily. Perhaps it could be implemented as a weekly, yet the tally would remain days/weeks later if you haven't completed them all.
I think Cryptic have to be careful with the idea of rewards. No rewards will have a deciding effect on the longevity of UGC, because no matter how good something is, a lack of rewarding the player will come back to bite them. There is only so much a player will do for the love of this system. Merits and Credits won't cut it, as anyone who is at the level cap (either recently or for a good time now) knows that we have plenty and its not difficult to continue to maintain and increase these either.
Emblems will help, and a separate UGC Mark system for unique rewards does sound very good indeed.
And this should also be issued in a way to those that do create good content too.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
03-30-2011, 01:40 AM
I think instead of trying to find a mission-specific approach, it might be better to create some kind of daily mission that tracks your Foundry Use.
  • You need to spend at least 1 hour with Foundry missions.
  • You need to play at least 2 different Foundry missions.
Theoretically this would still allow people sitting in 2 different Hello World missions each day and do nothing meaningful, but ultimately, that's not so bad - it's still one hour a player has to be subscribed to the game, and "farming" is limited to once per day, which is hardly abusable.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
03-30-2011, 05:27 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Green117 View Post
Emblems will help, and a separate UGC Mark system for unique rewards does sound very good indeed. And this should also be issued in a way to those that do create good content too.
Maybe they could award 1 emblem for 1 UGC mission per day; but I doubt they will, because everyone would complete that goal with the 30-second "Hello World" mission. For the minimal reward they could allow without opening up rampant farming of purple gear through trivial missions, it's not worth even putting the reward in. The ultimate problem is that emblems = purple gear = high cred shop food for gold farmers; they can't allow a player-controlled path to shorten the distance between those points.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
03-30-2011, 09:58 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Green117 View Post
Emblems will help, and a separate UGC Mark system for unique rewards does sound very good indeed.
And this should also be issued in a way to those that do create good content too.
My understanding is that they are looking into combining many of the currency systems of the game into one, which is a good idea since most of my characters eventually end up with lower order marks of exploration they no longer have any need for.

What I meant to represent with my idea of a marks reward for foundry content was to tie it into the exploration system. After all, isn't UGC just another form of 'exploration'? I j ust would want them to make certain that there was a way to prevent exploits of such a system. - e.g. Just like exploration marks you can only take the mission that rewards them based on a timer. Plus there should really be some documented formula that foundry authors could employ that would result in the system being able to tell you up front if the mission was worth marks for you.

Hopefully this wouldnt have to be tied into their being combat in the mission but there also needs to be a way to keep folks from abusing the click a glowie win a prize mechanic.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
03-30-2011, 01:16 PM
I completely agree with both of you (Darkshrike & Heezdedjim). Cryptic do have to be careful with how they implement rewards against the possible ways of abuse. Perhaps they could have certain missions selected each week, with completion of those resulting in some form of emblem/exploration marks. But then there is the downside to people only playing them, so other creators and missions get left out and that is something we don't want. Yet without rewarding the players in some way, like i have said, over time there is only so much love we can devote to this and without some form of reward, the interest could possibly start dropping. Our time needs to be rewarded in MMO's, this is why we do what we do, be it in STO or 5/6 nights a week of Wow raids or some other game.
As Uncle Ben once said, "with great power comes great responsibility". Cryptic have a very powerful tool and one that could really change the MMO scene. Yet the responsibility to controlling abuse, implement rewards, and continuing to build and maintain interest is going to take a lot of work indeed. The players and the creators, both need to be rewarded on some level or another. I am interested in what Cryptic have planned.
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