Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,212
# 31
03-18-2013, 03:31 PM
I'm starting to wonder to myself if 'revamp' is necessarily the right word.

Consider this: if the exploration system had been receiving regular updates (a new mechanic here, a couple of new missions there), would it be in its current state? It's been three years; we could have had a lot of new stuff by now.

I mean, is there any particular reason that we couldn't get a foundry hook up right now (OK not literally 'right now', but soon), rather than in months or years? Make a special sub-foundry specifically for exploration missions, and add those to what's already there.

New dev crafted missions could be added as and when; they don't necessarily need to wait for some big update to all be put in at once. Perhaps sometimes, as new and improved content goes in, old content could come out; so that the new stuff isn't lost in the crowd.

If the exploration sectors themselves got a revamp, that wouldn't necessarily impact the content that can be found in them, would it? It didn't with the sector space revamps anyway. It could be done as a standalone thing.

They could perhaps even be used as a testing environment. Since typical exploration missions can simply be abandoned without consequence should something go wrong, it probably wouldn't break the game. People would be free to just give up and find a different mission to do.

This is just me wondering about stuff; but I guess there is a suggestion here.

Suggestion 14

Don't try to do everything at once. Tackling it as one big problem is just going to slow things down. Exploration has needed attention for quite a while; no need to wait for Season 10 or 11.
Exploration suggestions thread - give it a read

BTW, you'd pronounce it 'Cap'n Manks'

I protest the removal of exploration clusters
Lieutenant
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 54
# 32
03-18-2013, 04:47 PM
When I hear 'what could we do to add more Star Trekky exploration into our game', my mind immediately goes to 'throw more negative space wedgies at players.' Not sure what a negative space wedgie is? Here ya go -> http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.ph...iveSpaceWedgie

How to translate those sorts of ideas into interactive, interesting game play? That I'm less sure about.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 144
# 33
03-18-2013, 04:54 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by tau41 View Post
When I hear 'what could we do to add more Star Trekky exploration into our game', my mind immediately goes to 'throw more negative space wedgies at players.' Not sure what a negative space wedgie is? Here ya go -> http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.ph...iveSpaceWedgie

How to translate those sorts of ideas into interactive, interesting game play? That I'm less sure about.
I don't think it really matters, to be honest.

The lack of any kind of actual 'exploration' has been lamented, complained about, creatively criticized and suggested since before (yes, before) launch.

There has been talk of a reworking of exploration since people (me included) started talking about how horribly repetitive and UN-explorative "exploration" mission were back in Beta over 3 years ago.

Guys, the game is what it is. I'd love to see a lot of things revamped (developer, for a start), but I have no faith it's going to ever happen.
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,212
# 34
03-18-2013, 08:14 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by tau41 View Post
When I hear 'what could we do to add more Star Trekky exploration into our game', my mind immediately goes to 'throw more negative space wedgies at players.' Not sure what a negative space wedgie is? Here ya go -> http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.ph...iveSpaceWedgie

How to translate those sorts of ideas into interactive, interesting game play? That I'm less sure about.
Heh. 'Negative space wedgies'.

Well, yeah. 'Enemy of the Week' sort of stuff. That is what the bulk of Trek episodes revolved around after all. Nothing to say they couldn't try something bigger from time to time of course; but generally, yeah, 'negative space wedgies'.
Exploration suggestions thread - give it a read

BTW, you'd pronounce it 'Cap'n Manks'

I protest the removal of exploration clusters
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,212
# 35
03-19-2013, 01:20 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by stelakkh View Post
I don't think it really matters, to be honest.

The lack of any kind of actual 'exploration' has been lamented, complained about, creatively criticized and suggested since before (yes, before) launch.

There has been talk of a reworking of exploration since people (me included) started talking about how horribly repetitive and UN-explorative "exploration" mission were back in Beta over 3 years ago.

Guys, the game is what it is. I'd love to see a lot of things revamped (developer, for a start), but I have no faith it's going to ever happen.
Thankfully, 'faith' is not required here; just dreams and wishes. People are welcome to add 'but I don't expect it to ever happen' to their posts should they feel it necessary.

Personally, I find coming up with ideas to be fun.

Speaking of... This ended getting its own thread, but I came up with it for this one; so I guess it deserves a link at least - Adding more gameplay to our gameplay.

It didn't really catch on; but then, my threads usually don't (next one is going in general discussion I swear...).
Exploration suggestions thread - give it a read

BTW, you'd pronounce it 'Cap'n Manks'

I protest the removal of exploration clusters

Last edited by capnmanx; 03-19-2013 at 01:26 PM.
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,212
# 36
04-03-2013, 08:16 AM
Suggestion 15

Random terrain. Now, I know that maps made with the Genesis system can have their faults (buildings floating over big holes in the ground, enemies dropping through the floor, buried objectives, and so on); however, something like a simple survey mission wouldn't necessarily need any of that stuff. If we accept that the ability to 'boldly go where no one has gone before' is one of the goals of exploration, then having places that are literally brand new furthers that goal.

Sure, someone might get stuck down a hole, but that's just one of the perils of exploring; at least they can beam themselves out of it (maybe include a 'site to site transport to beam in point' option, just in case).

If there are no physical objectives, then those objectives can't be made unreachable. Just wandering around the map taking sensor readings, to see what turns up, would be a fairly safe activity (to clarify: click the scan button at any random point, and a list of nearby stuff is presented; anything that might be of value or interest is simply present in the scan results of a given area, rather than being an actual game object).

There could be wild critters serving as enemies on some of these maps to mix things up a little (just random: are there critters? yes/no, if 'yes' are they hostile? yes/no); but since they wouldn't be objectives, it wouldn't really matter if any of them got stuck somewhere.

---EDIT---

To clarify: this would just be one thing among many, rather like the 'Aid the Planet' missions; I'm not suggesting that all exploration should be like this.
Exploration suggestions thread - give it a read

BTW, you'd pronounce it 'Cap'n Manks'

I protest the removal of exploration clusters

Last edited by capnmanx; 04-03-2013 at 08:38 AM.
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 3,281
# 37
04-17-2013, 06:22 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by capnmanx View Post
Suggestion 15

*snip*
I dunno about random terrain. There's a fine balance between realism and entertainment. Getting stuck in holes, even if you can beam yourself out, doesn't sound like a lot of fun to me. I do like the critters idea, though.

Also, this thread needed a bump.
"It's not safe out here. It's wondrous, with treasures to satiate desires both subtle and gross. But it's not for the timid."
-- Q
Career Officer
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 574
# 38
04-18-2013, 07:31 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by capnmanx View Post
OK, got another one.

Suggestion 5

Take a page out of Mass Effect 1's book, and introduce some large open ground maps that can be explored by vehicle (and, obviously, introduce ground vehicles). These maps need not be as busy(? detailed? cluttered?) as existing ground maps; in fact, for the sake of decent driving conditions, probably should not be (don't need my buggy stuck down a ravine, or up a tree).

If the driving were done well, you might get people heading out into the unknown just so they can try to find some decent dunes to race around on (or use as ramps for stunts).

The game could really do with something like this; I can't honestly say I've ever felt like I was really exploring on the ground. I was too boxed in, too directed, and from a decent vantage point, could usually see everywhere it is possible to go.


---EDIT---

It occurs to me that this could be a way for Cryptic to use exploration to make a little extra money. Say there was one free vehicle that was little more than a way of getting around a bit faster (like the Argo from Nemesis), and then a whole bunch of more exciting vehicles in the z-store. Hover vehicles, armoured vehicles, vehicles that are faster, or have turbos, or jump boosters, etc. Seems like Champions is doing that; so why not STO?

If combined with Suggestion 4, it could lead to fleets forming their own racing leagues or something; adding incentive to getting better vehicles.
Yes! I was just thinking the other day we should have ground maps that would allow us to use an Argo type vehicle. Plus, I like that last thought there about racing leagues. Perhaps a planet with a race track. A new form of PvP!


See my suggestions to revamp playable factions at: FACTION REVAMP: A PROPOSAL TO CRYPTIC STUDIOS
Career Officer
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 574
# 39
04-18-2013, 07:47 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by capnmanx View Post
I know, I shouldn't be bumping my own thread; but there's no point me adding something in an edit if nobody is going to see it now is there?

Suggestion 6

The Nemesis system from Cryptic's other MMO Champions, for those who don't know, is a feature that allows you to create your own arch-enemys. Something like that could be adapted for STO.

I don't suggest we actually be able to make our own enemies (that would be weird); but suppose a nemesis could be generated by the system. More accurately, a recurring NPC who might show up whenever you enter his/her native region (so, potentially, one such character for each exploration zone); this NPC might be an enemy or ally, depending on the nature of your early encounters.
I really like this! No, we totally should be able to make our own enemy: name, look, everything. Our own personal Tomalok or Gul Dukat. I love it! The Nemesis can be from an established race/faction in-game or use the Alien option to create a unique enemy. As you said, Champions already has this system established, surely it can be ported to STO.

Quote:
Originally Posted by capnmanx View Post
Suggestion 7

This one is probably a little less reasonable, but I think it still needs said: more 'generic' ships. All of the aliens I encounter in exploration zones, that don't belong to a major faction, fly exactly the same ships. This gets old pretty quickly.

I would suggest making customizable 'neutral' ships, not unlike players ships; make a few basic frames, and a bunch of parts to hang off them. The parts don't all need to be completely unique, slightly modified parts off of existing ships would probably do for some of it. Add some 'alien' hull materials, maybe make deflector and nacelle glowy separate variables for the sake of variety; that sort of thing.

In keeping with my earlier suggestions, I would suggest that the game remember what a particular species was flying when they were encountered by the player, for the sake of consistency; some sort of code attached to the player character. Player encountered species x, with ship configuration 2, components 7 1 4 6, skin 3, etc. So it knows what to put that species in if the player runs into them again.
Agree with this as well, and it could also fall under the Nemesis option, especially if you've chosen to create an Alien race as a Nemesis.

Quote:
Originally Posted by capnmanx View Post
Suggestion 8

Expanding on the idea behind Suggestion 7, it'd be nice if the lesser powers of the galaxy weren't all using the same 'off the shelf' gear as the major factions. I have no idea if this is possible in STO, but suppose it were possible to assemble unique weapons from an assortment of common parts.

Say, for example, there were 10 barrels, 10 shoulder stocks, 10 scopes, and so on, and these components could be thrown together any which way to produce all new weapons. I suppose there could be corresponding parts for each weapon type, so that designing a rifle would also design an assault weapon and a pistol to match. Maybe with a few optional, decorative, bits a pieces to help spread the material out a little. Maybe a variety of different skins that can be applied to them too.

It might be a good bit of work to pull off; but once it were done, new sets of weapons could be assembled in minutes, making giving each race a unique look a simple (and quick) matter.

A selection of armour like tailor options for them would help too; the addition of body armour sections, or tactical gear, could make most costume choices look a bit more martial. If it worked, it would make it easier to assemble an outfit that looked like a military uniform, so they don't have to look so same-y.
Again, agreed, and could also fall under the Nemesis option. In addition to different looks of equipment, you could determine their energy types, what types of weapons this new enemy uses.


See my suggestions to revamp playable factions at: FACTION REVAMP: A PROPOSAL TO CRYPTIC STUDIOS
Career Officer
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 574
# 40
04-18-2013, 07:59 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycoticvulcan View Post
I would love to be able to make exploration missions in the Foundry, which then come up at random in Exploration Clusters. I know some people don't like Foundry missions, so there could be a setting where they can "disable" Foundry missions in Exploration Clusters and just play the randomly-generated ones like the ones suggested here.
This could definitely work and solve the problem of Cryptic not having the time to create all of this new Exploration content. Of course, they'd have to be approved by Cryptic and then specially coded to trigger on an Exploration map, so that we don't get missions that make no sense popping up wherever we happen to be. They would also have to have minimum and maximum time limits on these missions. I've heard some Foundry missions are ridiculously long.


See my suggestions to revamp playable factions at: FACTION REVAMP: A PROPOSAL TO CRYPTIC STUDIOS
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