I realised what some of my current in game irritation was about; so thought, hold on stop carping all the time articulate maybe somebody can point out a flaws in your logic Zath old boy, or if not maybe a restating of some design concepts will be generally helpful. Cathartic for me in any case Not so much a suggestion as a thought exercise I thought we’d leave this here in general as I doubt a wall of text is gonna get read as a suggestion in any case. Maybe any specific ideas that get sparked maybe. We shall see.
The premise here is that each player race comes from a type 3+ Space-faring civilisation that has arrived in the Galaxy for various reasons from other locations. After a period of settling in the most advanced pockets of these races regain interstellar space capability and go about re founding their version of their parent worlds civilisation.
This to me implies the following:
- All races recognise the need for the expansion of their peoples
- They are prepared to defend there territory as needed
These two imperatives form the rational for all technologies and construction but this is where the interesting bit comes in: how does each race go about these imperatives.
Currently we have four races with up to 8 more planned. To make each race individual and therefore interesting we need for each to go about the business of intergalactic conquest and expansion in different ways.
Right now the only real differences is largely a matter of who has the biggest bad ass ships which is a terribly unsatisfying game to me and I suspect most others. If there are no reasons to play other than the current number one race then the Game design has largely failed and will rapidly become stale and is less likely to have enduring appeal.
And games with no staying power rarely generate money that covers their costs.
So lets look at each race and try and quantify some philosophical axis that can be used to frame adjustments to their own technology. The game started out talking about that but as time has gone on the lines have in my opinion blurred and the now the only race that truly stands out is the Syntis. Its almost as if we have a 2 race game once more as we did in A1 (that was Syntis & Humans BTW) Now its almost “Syntis vs the Organics”
I propose we abstract each race out to a number of ideals and design things like Tech tweaks and subsequently ship design tweaks accordingly. The ones I came up with are:
Agression <======> Caution
Expansion <======> Insularity
Ingenuity <======> Reliability
The First is the War & Diplomacy Axis . On a scale of 1 – 7 how likely are is this race to Attack another space-faring culture? Pretty obvious really but seriously how a people regard outsiders is a perfect way to see how they would slant their culture to reflect this?
Next is what I call the Adventuring Axis . Do they have a wanderlust (explorers) or do they consider it a chore to expand more than they absolutely must to gain access to additional resources.
Lastly is the Innovation Axis. Does this people constantly strive for better and newer Tech or do they concentrate on tried and trusted designs that they can manufacture swiftly. There is something to be said for both of course. But determining where a race fits itself on this scale again adds to the players ability to identify with them.
The Devs have been telling us they are suffering from a usability issue, of late. Basically too many new Invitees were quitting as they couldn’t get a handle on the game. Here I am thinking of not so much a tutorial setting but expanding the background on our current races and making them more individual with some pseudo history and making each one more identifiable to a new player especially.
Basically if you know Race “A” are warmongers and you like fighting you try them first. Basic stuff like that helps new guys get behind their game faster than is usually appreciated!
Outscape is supposed to be a strategy game so getting a base line to develop you individual strategy from is an imperative.
So using the three Axis above lets have a go at placing the current 4 races: Bearing in mind this is my wholly subjective opinion as how I see them. I expect and welcome differing feed back here. I play PR by choice and acknowledge my opinion of the other races is greatly reduced compared to them so welcome course corrections by fans of the other three.
As this post is already so long I thought I’d post our current races in their own post so folks can set off replies to them in the specific if they have ideas comments critiques of the basic template presented.