I think their is a major problem with the entire philosophy of the new content that boils down to the player not feeling very 'rewarded' for their effort. The old STFs gave amazing rewards both for a long term grind (EDCs) and instant gratification (loot drops) and even helped get you closer to your refining cap of purple rock.
Compare that to all the latest content. STFs no longer drop loot bags with sweet purple Mk XIIs instead you get a single green crap drop from the end boss.
Fleet Mark content always sucked reward wise the only reason we put up with it was because it was a very minor part of your daily activity usually.
The Romulan Mark content gives what, ten or twenty marks and a single digit fleet mark reward. Doff missions have better payout.
The old Fleet Actions I think are the most lively queue events and the reason is simple, decent rewards.
A grind is all well and good but a player needs that instant gratification reward AND needs to feel like they are making progress not trending water. Right now the mentality is we need to keep up with the time gates and let the rest burn at best. I'm not going to sit here and bludgeon the time gate with the 'really stupid idea' dead horse stick instead I'll focus on rewards.
- EVERY SINGLE QUEUE EVENT NEEDS TO HAVE A PURPLE ROCK REWARD NO MATTER WHAT. We like purple rocks.
- Fleet Marks need to be easier to earn.
- Every event needs an 'instant gratification' reward loot bag. I don't care if it is tied to an optional or even if the loot is flavored. Would anyone complain if a loot bag of say 1-3 white doffs dropped for each player in a Fleet Mark event? Or even a bag with 20k EC worth of commodities? WE LIKE RANDOM PRIZES
Bold and caps the important bits. And cryptic, hire a Sociologist or Psychologist be the best freaking move you ever made. Even a captainoblivous would see that as a good idea
Know what I've noticed since S7? The massive drop in quality of the average STF.
I've done 8 per day for the last week for 56 space stfs total (not touching ground now that there is no need to do it for the ground tech) and out of those 56, 54 were trolled. The rest of the players seemed to be inexperienced judging by their rainbow builds. Chat in PVE has pretty much died. In those 56 stfs 12 had any kind of chat other than me saying things like "Negh up" or "5 W". No heals flying round (as I predicted would happen when I heard of the incremental timer being introduced all those months ago)
It's like almost every single one of the old hands simply stopped playing stfs. All my friends have basically stopped playing them completely. In PESTF I've seen little activity, in ESTF channel I've seen even less activity. Ground has certainly died imo due to the lack of reason to do it. The loot is the same, so why waste time and effort when space stfs *could* take half the time and give the same rewards? Maybe we might be able to revitalize them by bringing back specific drops, stuff like your xii weapon tech in CGE that you could then hand in as a project via rep. The drop would be kind of a "win the lottery" thing that rarely happens, but still happens just enough to entice people with the chance of getting the gear early. Maybe.
Ladies and gentlemen, STF is dead.
I agree with bareel, although as a sociology student I would suggest go with the sociologist
Here lately I dread logging in. It just seems like work. Sometimes I just say "I will play later" and just put it off and not even play at all. I can make my daily dilithium, but it takes a lot longer. I have cut back on contributing to my fleet. Not because I want to but because all my time is waste doing the dilithium grind. We have 400+ members and usually our projects fill up in 2 minutes, but now it takes a few hours or so. The main thing we are missing are Fleet Marks. Nobody is grinding them anymore. They are doing Omega and Romulan marks. I don't know if slowing starbase progression down was the Dev's intent, but it sure is working. Plus with the addition of the embassy (aka money pit) just adds to the grind.
I can totally understand why larger fleets are seeing an increase in members. The smaller fleets are finally realizing the big picture and calling it quits. There is so much grind to be done that small fleets are going to be a thing of the past.
I have held off spending any more money until I see how it all turns out. Give them a chance to make a few changes here and there. Dilithium was at 133 per Zen earlier today, not far from the 100 I predict it will be at unless they do something. So it is just a wait and see game for me right now.