So, I'm really enjoying the season 2 stuff, and the mini games you've added are pretty cool (and fun. Can't stop playing dabo); But - Six months down the line and I'm still getting the same mission 2-3 times in a ROW in the exploration clusters?
C'mon guys, Variety is the spice of life. We need either more mission types in exploration missions, or at the VERY least better spacing between mission types (Preferably both). I just got 3 Aid the planet missions in a row, followed by one scan these mission followed by ANOTHER Aid the Planet mission. I mean, the Diplomatic XP was nice and all, but it gets pretty monotonous for that kind of thing to happen over, and over. I mean this is common in the clusters; and that ain't a good thing considering the new diplomatic xp type pretty much asks you to spend some time over there in order to advance to the next rank.
I love the cluster content, most of it is pretty conceptually cool; it's just frustrating to encounter the same mission over and over and over again back, to back, to back. I understand that if all you do is cluster missions, that you're going to get bored no matter what, I get that. I can understand the reasoning behind that even, I mean, you want players to get out there and experience more of the game then just one section of it. Right?
Even in such a situation though, it isn't fun to potentially run into the exact-same-mission 3 times in a row (Back to back to back), or even twice (back to back), In fact, it's borderline frustrating. I keep thinking to myself after literally running into a mission I JUST DID, "Really? Again? We REALLY need to scan the exact same item I just scanned in the last solar system I was in?" or "Man let me tell you, those scoodians really need entertainment provisions, four whole colonies within just light years of each other needed 'em."
Seriously, it Feels like one colony just rung the next one up.
"Hey, man, get this, the U.S.S. Eclipse is in the neighborhood and they're giving out entertainment provisions to anyone who asks. You have GOT to get some of THESE BOYEEE".
"oh HECKS yeah, wait, there they are now, let me get them on the other line..."
So, in closing; I urge you to delve a little deeper into the exploration clusters sometime in the future and make them somewhat less of a broken record, for the sake of fun (and the sanity of your players)
EDIT:: Also, it wouldn't hurt to allow open teaming in there. What I mean by that is, if you get two players who are going to end up doing the same mission, if they both have open team selected in their grouping options, why not throw 'em on the same map? (kinda like you do with epsiodes) It's all big and open and lonely out there. I realize the tech for this may be too complicated since maps are randomly-ish generated, but it can't hurt to throw the thought out there right?
EDIT2:: Pains me to think that it took me till NOW of all times to think of this, but MAN, ya'll got a WHOLE universe of strange to pull from, start looking at NASA's open files, look at science and physics news and start adding some creative license to spin some STORY outta that. You can do MUCH better then what is currently available.