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Opinion on the Test Version

Discussion in 'General' started by doncdxx, Jan 27, 2019.

  1. doncdxx Apprentice Engineer

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    372
    I went to offline mode on steam during the last test version so I could keep testing it after the test period was over. I figured that the short period would fill me with the "it's different" euphoria and cloud me from rational judgment. After playing a lot more, I believe I was right.

    Here's an opinion after playing the test version much more:

    The new blocks are cool. No complaints really. The survival kit feels a bit cheesy, but it makes sense for gameplay purposes. Survival kit also needs a disassemble option. If cannibalizing your spawn for parts, there's a shortage of storage space and disassembly would expedite the start through intelligent resource management.

    After playing with the VST, I'm elated by the changes. I think it still needs more, but it's a giant leap in the right direction.

    Progression is dull. I would love to see a thread dedicated to better suggestions on how to make progression more interesting. I'm sure it can be made more fun, I'm just not sure how.

    Really I have only a single thing I dislike about the test version, that starting stone grind. It requires so much stone that on 3-3-3 on a planet/moon start, it takes way too long to get enough stone to make a base capable of making the components to go further. I usually like to play on 1-1-1 but I find the stone grind is unbearable on anything less than 10-10-10. Maybe it's better with teamwork but, when playing alone, it's just awful. The space start is the only way I found enjoyable because at least I could expand on the starting ship to include the basic refinery and assembler. The moon start was the least annoying of the planet starts because the spawn was a wheeled vehicle I could put a drill on the the front and start mining stone as I drove in reverse over the surface.

    I really can't say enough about how dull that stone grind is. It takes forever feel even the smallest sense of accomplishment. For experienced players, it can be a but frustrating, but I imagine a new players to the game would just get irritated with it and quit playing to leave some sort of trash talking review.

    My suggestion:
    A disassemble option in the survival kit would go a long way to offset that irritation in the starting stone grind. Stripping unneeded parts off a ship and breaking them down to their raw materials to be reused for more pressing needs has always been a vital part of low-resource gameplay in SE. I've played enough minimalist start servers to say that with absolute confidence.
     
    • Informative Informative x 3
    • Agree Agree x 1
  2. vadersson Trainee Engineer

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    I fully agree that the stone grind and lack of storage space makes the planetary starts very boring. If the lander had more cargo capacity it would help, but given the slow production of starting ingots, it does take a long time to get started with very little vsristiovin opening moved. You basically must focus on energy and basic blocks.
    Maybe if the lander could scout about some as well...
     
  3. mojomann71 Senior Engineer

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    I kinda like the survival kit, but I do think the storage of it should be just a tad higher.
     
  4. Thrak Apprentice Engineer

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    I haven't been able to play with the new blocks yet. I was a little surprised that a "kit" doesn't come with any actual supplies.
     
  5. mojomann71 Senior Engineer

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    Maybe a better name for it would be emergency resource unit?
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. odizzido Junior Engineer

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    I haven’t checked out the new stuff yet but I suspect that people will quickly find new and better ways to progress through he stone stage you’re talking about and it will become common knowledge.

    Personally I think I would enjoy the new challenge of optimizing a start just as I enjoyed finding better ways of starting the escape from Mars scenario.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. Thermonuklear Junior Engineer

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    594
    Wow, that stone grind REALLY sucks. I just spawned a 400k boulder next to the survival kit. Made things bearable. The tech tree is kinda sucky. I think the blocks used on the rescue pod should be marked "built" right from the start. Took me a couple of hours to find out I have to build an O2/H2 generator to unlock more parts :D

    Edit: also eagerly waiting for people to abuse the hell out of the survival kit's stone enriching ability...
     
  8. tankmayvin Senior Engineer

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    2,862
    They did the worst thing imaginable for survival. Instead of making exciting content that forced you to design things to defeat or otherwise overcome: they turned the game into a tech tree and resource grind that ends up in the same spot it always did: with nothing to do.

    I’m really disappointed. We needed more survival content, but the stuff veteran players wanted to see was an economy and better encounters and better ways of interacting. Instead we got a grind and locked out tech-tree. I think most people will just turn these off and opt for the old-school start where you get a banana-boat or a lander and an functional tree.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2019
    • Agree Agree x 6
  9. mojomann71 Senior Engineer

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    @Thermonuklear there are already mods that abuse stone, so of course I am sure the survival kit will not be immune to same kind of mods.
     
  10. Thermonuklear Junior Engineer

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    Hmm, seems like all refineries produce a little iron, nickel and silicone from stone. Goodie.
     
  11. Spaceman Spiff Junior Engineer

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    These changes bring an entirely new meaning to the phrase “getting stoned.”

    I know, I know...my comments are getting boulder, but I only do it to rock this place. No, no...please don’t gravel at my feet in adoration.
     
    • Funny Funny x 6
  12. Burstar Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    404
    If you're hand bombing stone into the kit for resources it is a grind definitely. You can get to collector/drills if you're clever with the parts on the starter grids, but what gets me is that the staff are genuinely surprised you can do this. Like they want you to grind. :eek:

    What bothers me is that this iteration entertained the idea of the H2 Engine running on magic space fuel and now all the science illiterate are feeling validated and running with it. "Why can't I run my entire base off an O2/H2 generator and H2 engine, this is BS! H2 engines should totally ignore entropy and be as powerful as reactors! So what if the game cites Thermodynamics in the loading screen!". :(

    I get the game needs an engine, and the engine should be fun, but that is not the way to do it. To make H2 more plausible they need to nerf the charging rate of batteries so that fuel is competitive. Ie: Batteries discharge at 4.32 MW, but only charge at 1.08 MW at say 50% efficiency or trickle charge 256 KW at 80% (or whatever makes sense to everyone). :tu:
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  13. mojomann71 Senior Engineer

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    Think they went to the H2 Engine just to give more use for ice. I could be wrong but that is my theory! :)
     
  14. odizzido Junior Engineer

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    I agree. I think yours is possibly the first post I’ve used the agree button for.

    I think it’s a shame that the update didn’t contain more of an engineering focus but I do think the stone stage could at least have minor challenge so that’s something at least.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  15. tankmayvin Senior Engineer

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    2,862
    They never even properly balanced the original content, despite claiming they were rolling out changes as part of a balance patch: we never really saw additional balance patches. As far as I know things are still horribly out of whack between grid sizes, and even outputs between block types on different grids. Battery vs reactor balance has never been great. Weapons balance is awful. Mid-End game resource flooding is a problem as there is nothing to cost you resources because there is no combat or dangerous environment to cause attrition, but you can just keep collecting until the point your stuff is too heavy to move. It is incredibly disappointing that all we get in this update is another unbalanced block, and a grind.

    We waited so, so, so long for this. I haven't touched this game in about 2 years hoping for a meaningful survival game. And this is what they deliver after all this time?
    --- Automerge ---
    Once you can start mining and refining uranium at any scale, all other sources of power become irrelevant unless you are playing with some sort of house rules. The H2 engine is clearly a bandaid for planetary starts because it utterly sucked to rely entirely on solar + batteries until you could expand a bit. Especially if you have hostile critters enabled. Now that you can use Ice (is wind a thing yet?), it makes that aspect of the grind more tolerable.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  16. Stardriver907 Senior Engineer

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    2,467
    @mojomann71 is right, from what I can tell. They needed a cheap way to get power from ice cause, as you said, solar + batteries sucked. However, the wind turbine (which does not require "wind" so far...) was supposed to be the power source of choice for on a planet with atmosphere, and the hydrogen "generator" was supposed to be for where there was no "wind", yet ice was still plentiful. No one really cared about the science behind the technology because the only thing the "generator" is good for is making a "hot-rod truck", which we all know is an essential survival item ;)
     
  17. Spaceman Spiff Junior Engineer

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    Personally, my vehicle of choice is a hot-rod Lincoln...
     
  18. tankmayvin Senior Engineer

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    Yeah, for sure. Despite all claims to the contrary, and all of the claims about engineering, space "engineers" is very light on actual hard science. The H2 generator is no more egregious than the rest of the stuff to be honest.
     
  19. Calaban Junior Engineer

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    646
    I also thought the stone grind was a slow arduous problem, but suspected I was just "new at the process" and didnt have enough time to learn the new way of starting.

    So I locked myself in offline mode and continued to play around with "getting started" with stone in 3-2-2 on earth. After a few restarts trying different things, I figured it out.

    Starting in a landing pod with survival kit and hand tools basically requires me so scrap the lander for materials, and go hard core into rock excavation on my initial base. It really doesnt matter where I land, or what resources are near. I need to plunk down and start digging rock. This means large grid drills, rotors, and pistons. Not in clear out rmb mode, but actual nom nom drilling. Its "big diggery", and I love the fact that now I have to engineer machinery to get me going effectively.

    Big diggery results in pushing the starting engineer past the (hard to spot) point of gain when it comes to how fast the basic refinery eats stone and spits out those 3 base ingots, combined with how fast a large grid drill actually collects stone. Big Diggery keeps that speed machine working and not in fact sitting idle most of the time- as it would if if I were to trudge around hand drilling. This is the biggest result on "old way of playing" causing a slow progression.

    Trust me; setup a rotor drill thing to carve out an arc of a cliffside that extends over time, and you will have all the iron, nickel, and silicon you can dream of. And fast. You will in fact have trouble keeping your cargo boxes non-stuffed full in your newly found growth spurt. It will be a ramp up of "more pistons, more cargo, more refineries, more power. repeat" for that ONE drill that keeps you busy and productive as your excavation project takes off.

    At some point I realize "wow! Ive really overdone it" and that I have 500,000kg of stone waiting to get refined getting churned through by 4 basic refineries, thousands of kg of "the first 3" ores.. and I realize "this isnt home, this is just work site 1" and at this point I go look for ore patches. I setup similar Big Diggeries at ore patches now, with literal truckloads of materials (cant fly with this many ingots, need a truck) to instantly throw up refineries and drills and turbines and cargo somewhere else. My trucks have welders and respawns too, because- why not?

    And boom. A successful start. I love how the new survival mechanics pulled new concepts and approaches out of me. Now I making excavation contraptions. Now I need vehicles to haul tons of building materials. Now I need "several small bases" to commute between. Now my trucks are my respawn points. Flying is ok, but not the main point of gathering materials anymore. Its just "too little, too slow" that way, and I need to throw away such old notions. The "new way
    seems to be make the ingots on site, and haul the ingots-not the ore- around between multiple installations.

    And I approve. :)
     
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  20. Spaceman Spiff Junior Engineer

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    Dude, I dig what you're saying! :tu:
     
  21. Malware Master Engineer

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    Don't mock it 'till you try it :p The h2 engine is actually excellent for wheeled vehicles. I love it for that purpose. My first vehicle was a hydrogen powered drill rig. I added a bunch of batteries in reserve - turns out that was a waste of weight and materials. With 2 h2 engines it's got plenty of runtime. I never really cared much for wheeled vehicles before. I do now.

    Seems like I'll still have to do a battery pack based flying vehicle though, which I find a bit sad but at the same time can understand.

    Also @Calaban it's incredible, isn't it, how people are screaming for reasons to engineer, and when they get it, they complain that they have to engineer... :p Shows just how big a difference there is between people in the community, and showcases just how impossible Keen's task is...
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  22. Thermonuklear Junior Engineer

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    594
    Yup, I had tons of fun making a drill rig. A USEFUL STATIONARY DRILL RIG IN SURVIVAL! I've waited for this kinda gameplay since the devs introduced manual mode.
     
  23. PLPM Junior Engineer

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    829
    Congratulations, we have a one way engineering challenge, that does not translate further on when we have more materials, it sure is entertaining and requires planning, but it does not change the end game, and the end game IS the problem when it comes to being challenging. What keeps the game going is a whim to hoard more materials and keep expanding, but it´s very monotonous and you´d have to be actively sabotaging yourself to lose when you´re no longer on the hobo phase.

    People shouldn´t engineer complex contraptions because its just challenging to do them, we should have to, to overcome the enviorment and obstacles the game throws at us, right now we just slap a cockpit with thrusters and some drills and we´re set, why not make drills shake and throw around the grid while they´re digging? that way we have to either increase somehow the mass of the grid, or anchor ourselves to the asteroid/ground.

    An accidic planet atmosphere which damages terminal/computer blocks would require either to isolate safely those blocks or a welder that continually repairs them, not much, but would shake up our design layouts. (As well as resources that are not exclusive, but much easier to get there)

    Make meteor storms have a countdown of several minutes until they arrive, but make them last A LOT longer, and maybe play with having a crescendo within the storm that is unpredictable, this will give something that will stress the player and make him be on the lookout, first preparing for the count down, and then enduring until the peak where it gets pretty dangerous, thing is, the player will be able to keep drilling/building/doing his stuff as the meteors are spread out and not many, but once you realize that they´re ramping up, you´ve got to get out of there fast and if you´re too far out, well, make a hole in the ground with some equipment and pray.

    An Overhaul to combat ranges and weapons having roles, as well as attack craft and fighters having to actually endanger themselves to attack a large grid.

    The first and the second I think, are easy to do, I´ve done the last one myself, the middle two require more work, but they would add a good layer that is lacking, otherwise meteors are "Welp, guess I´m being getting bombarded now, *equips welder* I hope I dont get nicked" which makes you drop anything you´re doing and stand ready, which grinds to a halt gameplay.

    Anyways, I don´t doubt there are better ideas than this, but way the game plays has to change, what we´ve received is the same start, just on a smaller scale, that´s no "survival overhaul" worthy by itself.
     
  24. mojomann71 Senior Engineer

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    1,031
    They do have tool shake option. For smaller ships it can be quite severe, or it used to be. You would have to make changes to the ship to compensate. Also the more you mine the more your mass becomes adding another challenge of being able to move or if in gravity to stay up to get back to home. I do like your ideas, not slamming them at all, I just think the drill shake is already done. They could of course make it a bit more.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  25. PLPM Junior Engineer

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    829
    I haven´t drilled in a long time, last I remember was it being fairly tame if your grid was short and wide, although that probably has changed in all this time, I guess I have a new reason to boot up SE, thanks, but yeah, I pretty much want it to be impossible to drill properly if one´s grid is not anchored or has several gyros to counteract, or is very massive.

    ___

    I just tested it, the shakiness is mostly when your drill is on but not touching anything, once it does, my cockpit with a single drill and 10 thrusters is extremely stable, it works as well as I´d want for such a grid, more so since I slapped it in less than a minute. And the original shake is minimal.

    *Edit

    A while ago, if you mined by hand, rocks would launch you backwards and make it a pain and that could kill you, I want something similar with simple miners.
     
  26. mojomann71 Senior Engineer

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    1,031
    @PLPM sadly they removed the rock debris. Any rocks that you see floating(If using ship drills) are fake and disappear in just a few seconds. I miss the old way myself.
     
  27. PLPM Junior Engineer

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    829
    Yeah, so the shake would have to come from the drill itself and not the stones. Still, it should be a fairly simple thing to add, and it would make a good chunk of the game more engaging, than slapping something together, turning on your drills and pressing W. Which is arguably one of the most shallow parts of the game, along with default combat (with turrets)

    The combat overhaul is needed because PMWs are not viable for MP, they´re "dirty", they´re not good for performance, and they give a sizeable advantage to players over pirates an static defenses, they can´t be balanced... I love PMWs, they´re fun, but they are a workaround to the anemic turrets and weapons.
     
  28. Spaceman Spiff Junior Engineer

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    681
    I've always called any work beyond initial survival process, i.e., getting a source of power and oxygen, "empire building". But that's just me.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  29. Calaban Junior Engineer

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    646
    I remember the days when a tiny miner with just a cockpit, drill, 6 ions, a gyro and a prayer meant I was in for a rough time. It's not nearly so harsh anymore though.

    One good note now is that playing as we do in the current version of"just fly around and mine" will give you Z.E.R.O. results in the beta/ next update version.

    First off you are simply unable to slap a flying ship together. We won't get the extra generous starter ship to use as parts anymore. This means, if your goal is to build your "favorite atmo miner" like you have traditionally done for years now... You will find yourself spending hours trying to get even to the point where you have enough motors. You will find yourself frustrated in the aforementioned " Stone grind" others have endured, simply trying to play the old way.

    Even if you painfully get to the point of your "traditional atmo miner", you will come to another horrible realization: the mass/trust/power ratios you used to think were good enough are simply not so anymore. What used to fly full simply won't anymore (or-more likely will just crash horribly while trying) This is because ships no longer get the inventory multiplier. ( More accurately: the real mass division)

    This will result in you bringing back fewer is than your used to, and you will become frustrated that, again, progression seems slow.

    Then you figure you'll just spawn in space, so you can pool the resources from your two separate spots.. only to find out suicide medbay teleporting was apparently frowned upon this whole time, and now if you want to get to that ship or that Earth base, you'll have to fly there.

    So while this sounds like a nightmare, it's really just a self induced nightmare. The survival challenge is new, and different, and old habits will sting hard.

    This is a great sign that the survival game in the background of development is moving in a good direction.
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2019
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  30. PLPM Junior Engineer

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    829
    I wish space engineers 2 if there is, has world grid like ME, so we can actually conquer territory and wage war again those scumy pirates, and there´s more grandeour than just prospecting 2.0
    --- Automerge ---
    Well, to be fair, I never used the inventory multplier, so your magic does not work on me :p, and neither did I use flying miners in planets.
    Still, while now there is a more drawn out start and progression the end result is the same regarding the end game.

    I prefer the old game loop of early alpha in some ways, true to be told.