went to pico system, recieved message that a mining vessel is lost in one of the
asteroids, told to find it and escort it back to space dock.
5 seconds later, inspite of barely even moving towards the nearest asteroid, it tells me that i've found it!
i swoop the camera round and can't see it anywhere, then i receive the next message congratulating me for safely escorting it back to spacedock!
this is when i realise that it had been found and escorted by a group of players that i had been automatically joined to upon arrival! i just arrived after they had already done all the leg work and was rewarded with a mission completion!
does this qualify as a bug or is it a flaw in the game mechanics?
Many missions are team missions (you are grouped with others in the mission even if you don't choose to). If *they* find or complete something, so do you. So if you join a system where they're already in the process of completing it, you can potentially complete it before you get a chance to do a thing.
It is... until you get in with people who refuse to help at all and just sit at the edge waiting for you to do all of the work (and depending on the mission, possibly die a lot since you have no help). They should adjust it somewhat to prevent that problem, while keeping the basic method.