Since Cryptic would be ridiculous to not have someone monitoring this thread, I'm going to break this down easily for them.
Problem: Fleets are progressing too quickly after Foundry fleet mark repeatables are introduced.
Solution: Put fleet marks in other content. If you want me to tag epohhs for 4 hours for a reasonable amount of fleet marks, I'll tag epohhs. If you want me to afk in pvp to get fleet marks, I'll afk in pvp to get fleet marks. If you want me to do STFs for fleet marks, I'll do STFs. If you want me to afk in fleet actions, I'll afk in fleet actions.
What Is Not A Solution: Relying on the Season 6 PvE content for fleet marks, relying on that additional 10k CXP for fleet marks.
Problem: People aren't playing Foundry missions enough. The Foundry missions people do end up being farming or semi-farming missions.
Solution: Put something worthwhile in them that will make people want to do them. I didn't start doing Foundry missions until the fleet mark repeatable was introduced. If you expect me to do those missions for dilithium when I can easily get dilithium elsewhere, then I'm not going to do Foundry missions. Spotlight or otherwise.
Alternative Solution: Get over it. Players will inevitably find some way to exploit or streamline Foundry missions outside of the 'spirit' of the Foundry. You can either spend development time and labor hours trying to stop those players over the lifespan of the game, or you can geld the Foundry as a viable source of valuable currency or items and put them elsewhere. There is no honor system on the internet, stop trying to expect people to go on the honor system when it comes to your games.
Problem: The fleet mark repeatable for the Foundry is a temporary solution to gather data and see where improvements can be made elsewhere to get fleets 'right where we want them' when it comes to fleet progression.
Solution: I don't care. You don't take away a temporary solution without putting in an alternative solution at the same time. You already have the data of what happens when the only sources of fleet marks are doffing and the season 6 pve queued content. That data isn't going to change. What is happening right now is jerking around the players and the fleets.
P.S.: All the outrage in this instance is completely justified.
I think most of the problem with the queue events is the randomness of the rewards that is given. You can spend 20 minutes to get in to 40 minute long Star base fleet defense and only come out with only getting 17 marks for the time. There needs to be more incentive to do to the fleet events either in increase in the amount of marks they give or reduction in cool down timers for the events.
You're happy now but you're going to cry in a few days because people will start to farm long story missions with a long average playtime to get max rewards with the minimum investment in time, skipping all dialogs and stuff like that.
To get a fair reward for everyone you'll have to devote at least half of your mission to combat, because it can't be skipped. Now diplomacy missions are dead.
Somehow I doubt that folks will farm dilithium with as much of a passion. There are so many quick ways to get it that zooming through a diplomacy mission is more time consuming than walking to exchange, buying contraband and turning it for 2000 dilithium. Or going to SFA and taking a quiz that google answers.
You could be right though. Two of my missions could really suffer, to the point that those who read them don't get rewarded properly and those that "f" through them get bonus rewards.
However, I have a plan if that does happen. It's not too hard to put up an invisible wall that comes down based on a timer mechanic. If somebody "f"s through my diplomacy missions, I'll just make them waiting for 4 minutes before they can get to the door to transition to a different map. Players who take time to read, won't notice.
Here's the problem I see with limiting Fleet Marks to Fleet-only missions, especially the KDF faction.
We have players for the KDF, but not enough to fire off a PvE queue.
"Well, the public will fill in the rest."
That's the problem...the overall population on the KDF is too low to ensure PvE queues will pop off.
As far as we are into our 'base (Tier IV, working on Comms Array upgrade), we'll have to keep 5 players running constantly for FM.
Cryptic, forcing people onto certain grinds almost permanently is not the way to keep players. They will leave because it's the only thing to do.
No variety = no fun.
Leave the FMs in Foundry, perhaps at a limited amount like 10-15 per mission and perhaps let the FM amount scale to number of team members (10-15 for 1 player, 25-30 per player for 2 team members, 30-35 for 3, 45-50 for 4, 50-60 for 5 as an example). Or increase the amount of FMs we can get for the Starbase/Embassy dailies (again, to scale with team size).
But forcing people into the PvE queues and forcing KDF players to grind almost exclusively for fleet marks will be bad for everyone involved. I wouldn't be surprised to see the KDF diminish in numbers even further because of this (though I hope not).
I dont understand the concept of constant nerfs to the foundry rewards to keep them unappealing. Yes, foundry is meant to be an experience with player made content, but overall an MMORPG is a grindfest regardless of how the game is built. Constant changing of the reward to a narrow-minded structure so the Devs can feel content is a big no-no.
What's wrong with rewarding fleet marks? This doesn't make the missions and "experience" unique, rather bland and boring, as every little thing has to be done specifically.
If thats the case, remove the choice of lockboxes in the mission reward structure.
I wouldn't even be bothered so much by this if that Tholian ground adventure zone gave reasonable rewards for the time put into it by the way. I'd be quite happy to play for marks there if you were willing to give out even a semi-reasonable amount.
Hopefully that (and other methods) will be buffed severely to bring them in line with reality. I've done some of those with fleetmates before, but we quit because the time commitment vs. reward is so silly.
If it just all goes to PvP, well, that's incredibly sad. I can't think of anything less interesting in MMO's than PvP and the kind of mutants that tend to gravitate to it as a full time hobby.
"We are smart." - Grebnedlog
Member of Alliance Central Command/boq botlhra'ghom