General Alpha feedback and discussion

#21

Some observations…

  1. I don’t know what loads before the main menu and what loads afterwards, but would it not make sense to have the stuff that loads after the menu continue loading while sat at the main menu? So if you sit at the main menu for a while, when you finally chose to enter the game, the assets have already loaded and you jump straight in?

  2. I think increasing the contrast between the energy and shield bars and the background of the bars would be good.
    The left side is how it is currently, on the right side I have reduced the opacity of the background bar and increased the saturation of the foreground bar.

    Additionally, in the heat of battle (which is when at-a-glance readability is critical) surely players will be more concerned about their shield and energy than their speed and hull?
    Why then are the shield and energy bars a) slightly narrower and b) further from the middle of the hud? Surely they should be the other way around?

  3. A bug rather than opinion: In Target control mode, the ship remains controllable when powering up for warp. In Direct control mode, input is ignored while powering up for warp. Retaining control is essential as in Direct mode the ship keeps rotating unless input is provided to counter it.

8 Likes
#22

I was struggling to place what was up with those HUD indicators, but you’ve hit the nail on the head. Thanks.

2 Likes
#23

Hello guys,
i’ve just installed the Alpha, but i can’t play!
I launch the game, the loading image (the sunset image) appears; after that a planet is shown, and it says i have to press a button to continue.
I click with the mouse, and i’m back to the loading image again.
Once it has loaded i see an image of a galaxy and can move a cursor around, but there is nothing to select. It’s just a 2d galaxy. So I press “Space to respawn”, but i spawn as a spectator. I hit “Esc”, but none of the options let me join the game.
What is wrong here? :wink:

I took part in the last Alpha weekend (months ago), and back then the game started with me and my ship in the hangar, ready to fly.

#24

Maybe all your teams spawns are dead, change the team in the launcher and try again.

#25

Thank you for your answer, i think you’re close to the right answer.

My launcher was set to join the blue team.
When i was in spectator mode, the TAB button wouldn’t show me anything. But i used ESC to cycle the team.
After that i was in the green team, but still spectator. But at least now TAB would work and show me the scoreboard, and i could see that there is no blue team at all :wink:
I cycled the team again and joined red. Finally i started in the hangar and could start the engines…

So i quit the game and set the launcher to join “Green” on start.

And guess what. It let me start as spectator again… :confused:

I don’t know if the game is supposed to behave that way, but it’s very confusing and not user friendly at all…

#26

Okay, yes, there are only two teams now, red and green.
The option to choose blue team should be disabled in the launcher.

The game always starts in spectator mode now, you can choose the station you want to spawn at and spawn then.

1 Like
#27

How and where?
When i joined in the non-existant blue team, a galaxy map was shown to me, even though the map was empty and there was nothing to select.

Now i start in the green team, and this map is not shown to me at all. I just start the game as a spectator, with no option to choose anything at all.
It says to press “space” to respan, so i do that. But i just respawn as spectator of the same npc.
Also, the TAB button doesn’t work…

i dont’t know… is all that normal??

#28

Tab doesnt work in spectator mode.
Right mouse click and left mouse click should switch stations (if there are any left).
Just use the red team in the launcher and try again.
Its probably because all spawns have been destroyed and there are currently no win conditions that end the match at that time I guess.

1 Like
#29

yes, starting in red team works.

still, any new user who starts in the “wrong” team will just feel lost like i did, because he does not know what to do to play the game…

anyway, i’ll go to sleep now, and make a fresh start tomorrow… :slight_smile:

1 Like
#30

That’s because you joined the game in a state where the green team was about to lose, and didn’t have any stations/spawns anymore. So the green team has nothing to show, stays in spectator mode forever. Victory conditions should have detected it and ended the match but I guess there was a bug with it.

The blue team does not exist at the moment ( but can in the future, which is why it isn’t disabled in the launcher ). You then get a random team between red and green, but if it picked green, obviously you’re back to square one stuck in spectator mode.

The match has restarted, so try to join the game now in the green team, you’ll see it behaves the same way than the red team ( showing spawn points for your team ).

#31

Latest patch/hotfix looks good. Not sure if having all spawns destroyed is a good win condition, though it’s an obvious one. And it’s hard to see a way round it. It seems to suggest that a quick way to win is go around quickly bombing all the hangars without bothering with any other objectives.

Could we work towards hangars being protected by other modules? Or perhaps they regenerate if other modules are not taken out first?

Also, I’m going to start a campaign :grin:
#bringbackthering
I know it was mentioned there were various technical issues with the planetary ring, but it’s one of the engine’s most spectacular features and Alpha backers haven’t played with it yet! I miss it… :heart_eyes:

1 Like
#32

Rings will come back when I have some time to investigate how to do server collisions with the asteroids ( in a performant way ).

You could target hangars from the start of the game, but you’re unlikely to do heavy damage in the smaller ships. And in capital ships you’d get quickly killed by the defense towers / stations. It’d be interesting to see if a team could succeed as a “rush” scenario, but right now I’m unsure it is a viable strategy.

It can happen more natural towards the mid-game when many defense modules are already dead, and capships are more free to attack the spawns. But then it’s the responsability of the defending team to protect them :wink:

Once we add more feedback on which stations or modules are currently under attack, it’ll be easier to know where to protect your team assets.

Also, keep in mind that at some point all stations will have shields, so capital ships won’t easily be able to attack them from the early stages of the match.

Will there be asteroids?
0.3.0.1 Feedback
#33

I was able to get on a for a little bit this week and shoot down a few NPCs.

I know someone mentioned the velocity direction indicator. It’s contrast needs to be ramped up big time. Half the time I can’t even find it and if you’re near any surfaces(planets, stations, etc) it gets lost to the point where it’s impossible to see.

Can you spot it? It’s about 2 crosshairs straight down from the crosshair. In the gap the station outcrop makes. It should definitely be brighter and something that can be seen at a glance. Otherwise we’re guessing what direction we are heading. It needs to be just as bright as the selected target indicator.

I also saw some weird rendering artifacts but this was last week…may have been fixed haven’t tried to spawn there since.

Otherwise I had fun trying to shoot things. Maybe update the keyboard layout? I still have no idea how to lock and fire missiles. I’m pretty sure chaffs aren’t on there either but I read somewhere that it’s lalt.

2 Likes
#34

Those are not rendering artifacts, your camera is below the ground!

7 Likes
#35

Hey so I remember talking with I think Lomsor about the way capital ships work in Battlescape, and he reminded me that they are super rough at the moment. I’m not really sure if INS has a direction they’ve decided on, but let me give you the run down on how I think they should work in the future as they get developed.

First of all, I want to say that I am pretty much going to compare this directly to World of Warships but in 3D space. Thats the TL;DR.

But basically right now, capital ships are not really that fun or skillful to play. I mean sure you kill lots of things, but it doesnt really feel like you accomplished anything, and its also not very fun for the bombers or interceptors trying to combat them.

Secondly, there isn’t a good way for skilled and daring capital ship captains to out maneuver or out smart their opponents. This is because all of the guns are auto aim and are basically point, and hold down LMB until target dies.

And finally, the capital ships arent different enough. They dont feel like they have defined roles on the battlefield. The destroyer is better than the bomber, the cruiser is better than the destroyer, etc. Its all about money. But I think a more nuanced system should be implemented.

So now I bring us back to the world of warships comparison: Imagine this, a destroyer in battlescape could be a fast, light, but weak capital ship used to escort the bigger cruisers by providing anti-fighter support through flak cannons, and by housing a large armament of torpedoes for handling capital ship fleet battles. Its machine gun and laser armament is light, and aside from the torpedoes has very little in the way of ship to ship combat capabilities.

Opposite that, a cruiser would have very little in the way of flak cannons (very little if any anti-fighter/bomber defenses) but a large armament of ballistic and laser weaponry, along with a small complement of torpedoes. The cruiser is slow, well armored, and heavy. Its role is to smash through enemy capital ships, station defenses (turrets), and to destroy enemy installations too powerful for strike craft.

Obviously, all of this is subject to INS’ vision, but these are just examples of what kind of a role a capital ship can play that isnt just “weaker cruiser” or “stronger destroyer”.

On the flak cannons: these will be AUTOMATED POINT DEFENSE SYSTEMS that will automatically target the closest enemy STRIKE CRAFT. They will have limited range (for example 2.5 km for cruisers, 5km for destroyers) and poor accuracy at range, but unlimited power/ammo. They will do zero damage to and will not even attempt to fire at capital ships. They should do light damage to strike craft, but should be able to quickly eliminate a strike craft should it try to linger where it shouldn’t be.

If you’ve ever played world of warships, this is like the anti aircraft weaponry in that game.

Also, all the turrets that are on the ships currently should be manually controlled and manually fired. LMB can remain an “alpha strike” button where all available guns will fire in the desired direction, but i think each weapon group should have its own button. I think the top row numbers should be remapped to weapon groups and the preset throttles should be moved to numpad by default. Outside of warp, preset speed isnt necessary to be quickly accessed in my opinion, especially with scroll wheel already performing a similar function.

Making the guns manual aim (with lead indicators still of course) means that capital ships without automated point defense systems will find it extremely tough to survive in large battles without support, and also it means that clever captains can out maneuver their opponents (by flying extremely fast at weird angles past the target while firing, etc). We already have visual indicators of our current turret facing direction, so now we just need to refine that UI component into something that shows turret readiness better to the user, and voila problem solved.

Alright, closing statement here, I didnt proofread this at all, im on a fuckin lake in a log cabin resort living it up and I CBA to make it look all nice or pretty sounding, so I hope my stream of consciousness writing kind of got the point across. I got the inspiration to post this by reading in the other feedback thread about a capital ship fight. I think stuff needs to change about the way they operate before beta launches, but I feel like you guys already know that.

Cheers homies

4 Likes
#36

There is one problem with your proposal: it doesn’t take into account players customizations. Especially the part about cruisers having little to no anti-fighter protection. Basically you need to take into account that players can customize their weapons loadouts. It can somehow be done via hardpoint classes( giving bigger hardpoints to the cruiser, and lighter ones to the destroyer ).

I have seen many people suggest that the main / heavy guns are manually aimed for capital ships, instead of just being a variant of the smaller automatic turrets. I’ll probably experiment with that in a future patch. I just hope that capital ships players won’t become too busy if in addition to target selection and positionning, they also have to manual aim their main weapons…

1 Like
#37

Are independent shield sections still planned?
If so, manually controlling guns would probably be too much to handle in addition with positioning (firing arcs an shield section exposition management, in 3d).

#38

isnt the frantic pace of it part of the fun? and remember with the flak guns they wont need to worry about shooting strike craft, they will just focus on shooting capital ships which shouldnt be too hard. i didnt know hardpoint customization would be a thing but i think player customization should probably be limited to certain things to keep each ship class feeling unique im instead of a straight upgrade. just my 2 centa

#39

I agree with the sentiment of wanting the capitals (and all ships) to be distinct. If one is clearly better then that removes a choice from the player.
They should all have pros and cons.

However I disagree with the idea that this should be achieved by limiting the ability of the Cruiser to mount anti-strike craft weapons.

The Cruiser should have a much higher mass than the Destroyer and as a result accelerate much slower and have a bigger sensor signature rendering it more easily detectable.

Massive hardpoints for mounting anti-capital/anti-structure weapons should overlap with a bunch of smaller hardpoints (or be incompatible with them by some other means) meaning the player must decide how to load out the ship. “If I mount a massive weapon there, I’ll have less anti-strike weapons covering that angle.”

It’s all about giving the player meaningful decisions to make, not taking them away.

Regarding automatic anti-strike-craft weapons, ‘flak cannons’, no new weapons are required - Let the player designate their light/medium weapon groups as auto or manual and switch modes on the fly.
If set to automatic, they would function similarly to how @LyskTrevise described. Additionally, as has been described in many threads before, the capital pilot should be able to prioritise targets for the automatics, though the UI work required for this may make it a nice-to-have.

1 Like
#40

I’m all for manually aimed turrets. What’s tricky is making the flight controls work at the same time.
However, it would help eliminate the sense of hopelessness when you’re flying a destroyer and a cruiser starts bombarding you with automatic accuracy. Manual aiming would allow for more misses and give destroyers a chance to evade. Cruisers can rely on brute force.

Players should also definitely be given choice about what caliber of weapons to load. But there is no inherent problem with cruisers being stronger than destroyers in that department, if destroyers are more flexible with their weapons.