Feedback after my first real gameplay session

#1

Hi folks,

Just had a little play around in the beta to get some first impressions for the game. This is what I experienced in the first hour or so with only a couple of tries previously in the dev cycle.

In combat the hud is very busy. There really should be a way to filter all of these target reticules. I could follow my main target most of the time but occasionally it was lost to the sea of red and blue target soup. Couple of ideas here. In an interceptor you’ll generally not be fighting capital vessels so why not have an option to select which class of ship you’re hunting. In an interceptor I only want to kill bombers and other interceptors so I would choose these from a checklist. In order to avoid the larger ships, just have a proximity warning. This will clear up so much room on the screen space.

(I know I’m going to get flak for this one but…) The controls seem overly sluggish. Lots of mouse paddling and looping around in circles. I get this is aiming for more of a simulation but in games like elite, it still feels like a simulation whilst also feeling sharp and responsive. I have no suggestion for how to fix this, only that my gut reaction to the controls was it was a bit of a chore. I wasn’t a leaf on the wind. Also I’ve said this before but the ship still seems to handle in an extremely similar way on planets as it does in space. Surely it should feel dramatically different and give you a very different experience in space and different atmospheres.

This could just be me being a complete newb but when my ship was damaged and I escaped the fight, I couldn’t figure out how to repair. I’m not sure if there is a repair option or not but I went to a friendly station, landed and I still had sparks and fires all over the shop. On the topic of repair, is there any option to repair friendly stations and bases? Surely that should be a thing?

It does seem a little weird that a station blows up without ever firing a single shot at it. Wouldn’t it be better to clear the defending ships and then luke skywalker it like the death star? Either that or take out weak points on the station? You could have a shield which lasts unitl surrounding vessels are destroyed. Once you’ve taken them out you can blow up the station or something?

I’m aware it’ll have a tutorial at some point but this game needs a tutorial. I need to be told what is possible in the game and what isn’t possible.

Talking now about core gameplay. It curdled a little for me because it seems to be a mix of “jump in and play, run, die, respawn shooter” but with a really steep learning curve heavy simulation control method. They don’t seem to gel all that well. In response to that I think it would be really good to have micro missions where you can escort / destroy a convoy to a station. Resupply a station or base to get it up and running again after destruction. Resource collection from previous battlefields or asteroids. Mine clearance in preparation for a battle. These sorts of extra curricular activities could expand on the core gameplay making the whole experience richer and less repetative. Also it would give you something extra to achieve if you tire of respawning and flying to a battle.

Where the game excels is in the graphics. I’ve never seen such large space battles. The dust and debris are excellent. Planets look incredible from space. Flying down onto planets is also a joy but doesn’t really take as central a role as I thought it would. I mean this game could very feasibly exist without planetary bases at all. Even so, arriving at a planet is a real experience and I loved every second of it. I like the warp system. It’s easy to switch between locations and the change in speed / scale is implimented really well.

So overall TL/DR:
Hud feels too busy in large battles
Controls aren’t a joy, they’re more of a chore
Repair systems should be a thing
Destructable bases should need damage to blow up
Tutorial
Extra objectives needed to enrich gameplay
Graphics are wonderful
Warp system is made really well

What does everyone else think?

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#2

Excellent feedback, this is exactly what is needed.

I’m curious to know what control scheme you had. It seems like you had the automatic, which has the virtual joystick similar to E:D. You’d probably fair better with the Direct Flight mode, which makes the inty much easier to fly imo.

Otherwise, the inty is experiencing growing pains, so it isn’t 100% yet. It’s a hot topic atm.

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#3

AH! I wasn’t aware of the direct flight mode. I’ll give that a little try and post back. Also need to try the joystick controls. Will configure and report back.

#4

You can repair and resupply near allied corvettes (1 km range. The corvette must not be under attack. The nearest corvette is indicated with a wrench icon) or in an allied hangar. It must be one for your ship class (small for interceptor and bomber, medium for corvette, capital for everything else).
See Tutorial for Beginners for more details.

Not at the moment. I am unsure what would be the impact on match duration, but we could have at least the possibility to repair turrets like we do for capital ships.

There is little incentive to bother flying to planets beyond enjoying the scenery, it is quite a waste at the moment.

I don’t stick around after a critical battle victory so I never noticed that, but it makes sense to not just have the station self-destruct.

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#5

I saw the wrench and was wondering why I didn’t repair when I was nearby. I guess it was under attack. I imagine it’s hard to find one which isn’t in the middle of a massive battle though.

The anecdote in my original post was in one such hangar. I wonder why it didn’t work? Maybe I need to try it again.

This is the first post I read when trying to find out what I was supposed to be doing :slight_smile:
Thank you for all the help and info!

#6

Yeah no problem. You switch control modes by pressing f4 in-game. :wink:

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#7

Yeah unfortunately hangars don’t seem to work for repair.

Also bases on planets don’t explode without shooting them. Two things clarified :slight_smile:

This is why we need a tutorial! :smiley:

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#8

We’re are actively working on this, the HUD will be a major area of focus over the next few months.

The problem is that our ships aren’t actually aerodynamic - they fly by having extraordinarily powerful engines so, mathematically speaking, atmospheric flight becomes surprisingly similar to space flight. The engines are so powerful they are simply pushing all of the air out of the way, with the hull of the ship being strong and heat resistance enough to survive this, whereas in space there happens to be no air. Aerodynamic forces would make the ship uncontrollable - except we have stability thrusters all over our ships and a flight computer that automatically compensates for this as well as gravity. The net effect is that atmospheric flight is a little bit different than space but not a radically different experience.

This is our single biggest problem right now and we’re absolutely aware of it. The game is obviously still very much a work in progress and all I can tell you at this juncture is that we’re working on it and while it won’t change overnight we’re confident we can address many/all of the points you raise here by final release.

Overall I think your assessment of the game is spot on, much of what you’ve said jives with our internal discussions, we just need the time/resources to address these issues and I think you’ll be satisfied with the final product.

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