I didn’t have a lot of time today due to “real” work but I did have a chance to re-visit one of my highlights from last year the National Film and Television School Game Development Students.
Firstly I spoke to Rose and Dr Timothy Kalifmann who are producing a game called MISFOLDED which is a delightful and dark story of Alzheimers.
Secondly I spoke to OIC (Obviously Inappropriate Content) The Game.
MISFOLDED had some really touching moments in it and beautiful graphics I don’t want to say too much less I spoil it. The game-play is a fairly straight forward, and a little slow with the game waiting for you to maybe take in the scene fully before moving on. However the story and the emotions it makes you feel definitely makes it worth your time.
OIC is a very unique game as well as a bit of a satirical political statement on Censorship in a less liberal society. The idea of the game is that you’re a game tester and have to spot potential inappropriate content as directed by your company’s management as well as “the supreme leader”. The actual game-play is divided in to 2 halves. The 1st part where you’re playing a fairly compelling if basic side scroll-er whilst looking for and taking screenshots of issues. The second part is unique as far as I am aware in that you’re at your desktop logging the bugs whilst getting instant messages or emails from people as well as news from your government’s political office.
Crew Members Director of Pest Control : Ashley Devine – DrToxic Head of health and safety : Ben Moss-Woodward – Cmdr Eid LeWeise Chief Bar Steward : Grant Woolcott – Cmdr Psykokow (In)Human Resources Director : Shan – Cmdr Shanaeri Knight Extruder Operator : Andy Barnes – Cmdr Kurgol
Crew Members Director of Pest Control : Ashley Devine – DrToxic Head of health and safety : Ben Moss-Woodward – Cmdr Eid LeWeise Chief Archivist : Colin Ford – Cmdr phoenix_dfire Chief Bar Steward : Grant Woolcott – Cmdr Psykokow (In)Human Resources Director : Shan – Cmdr Shanaeri Knight Extruder Operator : Andy Barnes – Cmdr Kurgol Man with a Mission : Adam Bourke-Waite (Frontier) Shunt Ed : Will Flanagan (Frontier)
Thargoid Attack Status – Thanks to Factabulous has collected data, provided by commanders using the the eagle eye network, and produced a list of possible thargoid targets. To help stop thargoid station attacks, check out this thread.
Soloing a Cyclops in an Imperial Eagle! – The Anti Xeno Initiative have done it again. Cmdr Gluttony Fang soloed a Cycopse with just an Imperial Eagle (but with a Guardian Gauss Cannon).Community Corner
The (Non) Return of the Code – The Code have claimed they have never left (although they have been very quiet). Word of warning to all traders, you will get three challenges and if you do not comply then they will attack. If you don’t get your three challenges, then the attacker is not from the code. Normally these guys role play ok, but it’s better to lose a little cargo and have a bit of RP than the rebuy + cargo loss.
Crew Members Director of Pest Control : Ashley Devine – DrToxic Head of health and safety : Ben Moss-Woodward – Cmdr Eid LeWeise 2nd Technician : Chris Forrester – Cmdr Fozza Chief Bar Steward : Grant Woolcott – Cmdr Psykokow (In)Human Resources Director : Shan – Cmdr Shanaeri Senior Community Manager : Edward Lewis
Crew Members Station Commander : Allen Stroud Director of Pest Control : Ashley Devine – DrToxic Head of health and safety : Ben Moss-Woodward – Cmdr Eid LeWeise Chief Archivist : Colin Ford – Cmdr phoenix_dfire Chief Bar Steward : Grant Woolcott – Cmdr Psykokow (In)Human Resources Director : Shan – Cmdr Shanaeri Space Loach Mouthpiece : Sandro Sammarco
Main Discussion Crime and Punishment with Sandro Sammarco
This is a snapshot of the design process and thinking and is not representative of what may actually be delivered
Design principles behind C&P
What is the philosophy behind the C&P design? You have already mentioned it is to simplify, but more specifically is it to prevent certain sorts of play(if so what?), discourage other sorts of play, bring people back to open or to improve the criminal experience?
Two factors, There’s the simplification aspect. It’s not to re-invent the wheel.
We just want to shore up the consequences, and make them harder to avoid and more robust.
Not trying to please everyone, It’s not to “attack” a way of playing, discourage or encourage just to make it better and support the original intentions.
All roles need to be as fun as possible, just not equal in challenge.
What does success look like? How will Frontier measure how successful the changes have been in an empirical way?
Empirical success is that criminals still exist and accept consequences of their actions. Combat logging, Ramming etc cannot be fully solved by C&P and will need the karma system to address further.
Measured and reasoned Feedback is essential to measuring success, especially during these feedback phases
How close do you think you are to meeting those objectives at a design level?
Lots of excellent feedback and has “already” paid it’s way. Feedback has already identified gaps and improvements are being incorporated based on player feedback. So great progress has been made, and it’s probably got another couple of weeks.
Realising no ETA etc, will these changes come all at once or be phased over the beyond updates? E.g at frontier expo the ATR was mentioned for Q1
Likely to be a big bang launch in Q1. No ETA etc etc though
Lots of bravado re:ATR… Not going to be true for everyone. Superpowered but not insta-kill. They can bend the rules, not break them.
Imagine a fully engineered ship That’s the base level. For example, A cascade or drag muntion style beam laser..
The higher the notoriety the more intense the ATR response. They will aim to take out an individual and will be able to defend themselves
ATR may be able to be killed, but will keep coming and coming. The question it will ask the player is “How long do you want to stay around until you die”
Ways in which ATR can chase you across systems in the same faction are being investigated.
Impact on Community Questions
Do you think certain ways players play the game has historically been harmful to both the community and the number of players who now play or want to buy the game. If so, specifically, how will these changes improve this?
It’s a conundrum. Historically and intentionally the game has been left open to player interpretation and try to avoid judgement, That’s not to say there are no consequences and the game will respond to that
There is also a covenant between player and developer where the player has to abide by the rules. And we accept it’s not the full picture, but it should be an improvement from where we are now.
It’s a balance between locking down the game so it’s no fun or opening it too much.
Not a huge amount of criminal players with huge amount of money, but data says being attacked and killed in open is rarer than the perception.
Previously the fines have been avoided, with the new system the impact will be higher because they are a lot harder to avoid and so eventually will have an effect.
Additional fines will increase the rebuy penalty so it all adds up. Other systems such as karma will also affect things
Player choice, open, Private Group or solo are all equally valid.
Can you explain how the new bounty hunting mechanic could work. What’s to stop friends kill trading or even selling their bounty for real money outside of game if the values become significant?
The bounty that is claimed and the rebuy bounty are different things. So while bounty hunting will be made more lucrative, it will be balanced to avoid this.
The concept of reducing a victim’s rebuy and increasing the attackers is at the moment fairly compelling as it increases the sense of justice.
Will any fines or bounties be commander based, rather than ship based(e.g interstellar bounties)
It’s an interesting debate. But there proba”thye devprebly wouldn’t be. One of the reasons why it’s on a ship is because it opens the player up to other professions, whilst still adding a penalty
interstellar bounties will be pretty horrifying, so probably no need for pilots federation bounties. But balancing will be needed.
The current system differentiates between player murders and NPC murders. The proposed system seems to dilute this distinction, why the change?
It’s felt that the consequences for ship destruction should be the same. It’s nicer it’s simpler whilst still recognising there needs to be a sense of justice for the player.
The hope is this system will reduce the instances of combat logging
Impact on Consensual PvP, player events, and criminality as a profession etc
Any chance of having CQC style arenas/pvp centric mega-ships etc in anarchy systems to assist in consensual PvP. I.e give consensual PvP outside of CQC some love?
Should be possible using existing assets although some assets are already in place already. So could be looked at, where players make their own rules .
Piracy and PvP in general have been mentioned as needing improvement. Is smuggling on the list also?
Smuggling is a core role in the game, but is being reviewed as part of beyond. They would like to be improved in two ways. The black market and mechanical changes to improve gameplay.
Other factors are involved in how successful your smuggling is such as your in system rep and how ‘prestigious” your ship is
How will player run events, such a demolition derbies be affected by these changes(frequent ramming, getting the station annoyed on purpose just for funsies. etc)
It’s fun seeing the crazy events players come up with. Report crimes off and anarchy systems will still work and should not be much difference. But will need to be looked at in case by case basis.
One can imagine how crimes are not affected in wings, could also apply in squadrons….
Possible exploits, loopholes etc questions
How are you going to prevent mischievous players “getting in the way of other ships’ weapons in order to get the other a bounty etc?
While the system is harsher. The friendly fire threshold will be increased, as as a new reckless weapons offense which will impose a fine, not a bounty.
Is there a potential issue in having a nice collection of freshly clean(and freshly poorer) players in a detention centre that are just ripe to being killed again and again in a place where other ‘naughty’ players have been sent?
Fastest possible ATR response will be present, may be worthwhile having instant attack function while being in your own instance until you jump away. In other words security in the detention system will be tight.
What would happen if you filled a detention ship up to the max number of ships you can store there(e.g filled it with sidewinders)
It’s an interesting idea. In theory there are several solutions from upping the limit, forced moving of ships all the way to giving the player a choice of what ship they want to lose to make room
For the first time perhaps(outside of the BGS). The size of my credit balance and rate in which I can earn credits can now affect others players. Is this a worry?
It’s an interesting question, that is quite a moral conundrum, but in general punishments based on assets
Please could you explain again the power play changes, they seemed more complex than those currently in place.
Accidentally shooting before a scan ends no hull damage. I.E. Shield Dmg Only. – Fine
Accidentally shooting before a scan ends with hull damage -Fine
Accidentally ramming a ship without destroying it – fine maybe bounty
Shooting a clean/non scanned ship with and inflicting hull damage – bounty
Killing skimmers – fine… bounty.. fine
Shooting people in an SRV – all of the above 😉
Smuggling illegal goods -fine
Loitering or docking without permission – All of the above 😉
Killing a clean NPC as part of a mission -Bounty
Carrying wanted passenger – Bounty
Killing clean player not PP aligned – Jail
Killing multiple clean players not PP aligned – All of the above 😉
Killing the same player repeatedly within a defined time period – All of the above 😉
Remote Outpost Games is a podcast celebrating the best video games in history, stranding industry figures on a remote getaway and asking them to justify which 5 games they would take with them to await rescue.
In this episode, hosts Christopher Jarvis and John Stabler talk to Peter McLaren, Creative Director of Massive Damage, to talk through his favourite games as well as own game: Halcyon 6. H6 was funded through Kickstarter and has recently had a massive update in the new “Lightspeed Edition.” Listen now and enjoy!
Download the episode directly from here.
On Friday I went to a Panel on the Past, Present and Future of XCOM with Julian Gollop, the original creator of X-COM: UFO Defense , and Jake Solomon, creative director of the current XCOM. At the panel I bumped into Cmdr Wishblend and spoke to her about the highlight’s of her day.
On Saturday and Sunday I spoke to a lot of the Smaller Developers including a lot of Masters students from the NFTS. These students have had roughtly 5 months to develop and build their ideas before their presentations at EGX, although they have until Chrismas to finish their project
Not every project has a website up and running for their work, especially those of the National Film and Television School, but where websites are available I’ll like them in the show notes.
Please remember that all of the audio was recorded live at the convention in a noisy environment, so I’ll apologise in advance for any audio issues.
I had the chance to explore so many great games at EGX this year. Falling Sky, even though it’s a student project has a really great feel to it and I’m really interested in where Jonathan Nielssen takes it. I absolutely adored Jo Paterson’s music in May. Sunless Skies, 2000 to 1 and The Town Of Light I found myself getting immediately immersed in and I could have so easily played them for hours, which of course you can’t have at a convention, but I’ll definately be picking these up and playing some more of them when I have some free time!
With the Release of the new Elite: Dangerous novel Premonition, Chief Archivist Colin ‘PhoenixDfire’ Ford has a chat with Author Drew Wagar about how difficult it was to write, ‘THAT’ event and it’s aftermath and plans for the future.