SES_joe

"Experimental Test 002: Terrain As A Resource" – August 11th, 2017

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I've never played TAAR again after the first couple of hours.  Frankly, it's just not as fun - instead you're bumping into new limitations to get old things done.  And the thought of building a base is pretty much doomed.  How many zillions of canisters would that take?  And where would all the terrain come from? You pretty much have to excavate the equivalent of an underground base in order to construct an above-ground one. My find word is:  Remove or re-work.

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I've just had 2 hours of "sediment fun". To be honest, I miss it a bit in the current non-beta. Hope that we will see an improved and more balanced SAR version in the official branch soon! :)

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I wonder if I could get some perspective here...

I see this in the forums, and on the Steam comments section, and it makes me wonder...

Why do so many people act like the technology in Astroneer should have some parallel to the limits of technology of OUR world? I've seen comments like 'radiation poison, Matt Damon got lucky!' or '...seems too much like magic...' or the like, and I keep saying to myself 'Why do these people not recognize a few SMALL issues:

1) Astroneer takes place in a TOTALLY DIFFERENT STAR SYSTEM FROM WHERE THE ASTRONEERS' PEOPLE LIVE! The ability to travel to the stars isn't even REMOTELY within our technology. This fact alone should be enough to allow suspension of disbelief, as the tech necessary to MAKE such a journey requires a technology so far advanced from ours as to make the idea of a 'photonic tether line' being able to transfer air and power rapidly to an EVA suit no more difficult to swallow than a small 'lander' that can rapidly travel from planet to planet without all the complicated calculating of vectors, thrust, gravitic mass, planetary motion, deceleration, etc, etc...! Try doing that in Kerbal Space Program, and tell me how easy it is!

2) And this is even bigger to me... THERE IS NOTHING IN OUR TECHNOLOGY THAT COULD 'SUCK-UP' SOIL, PLANTS, ORES, etc, etc... Again, WHY do people see that, and have no problems with the Terrain Tool, then choke about a trickle rebound charge in such an EVA suit?? A 3D printer that prints out an EXTREMELY complex device in a matter of seconds, that's capable of driving and navigating across an alien world is fine, but harvesting the energy that would be released by ripping matter down to dust particles is too far?!?

Arthur C. Clarke said 'Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic'. If the fact that you are harvesting and utilizing resources on the surface of an alien world, in orbit around a star an unknown number of lightyears from your assumed homeworld (and that you would name the moon of most hospitable one 'Barren' should show you aren't from OUR Earth), that you can be instantly cloned back to life right after you die, that flying around to all the planets in that system only requires a small 'lander' (a device used to LAND, not make full rocket journeys), that complex devices can be manufactured out of a SINGLE RESOURCE, AND that you are extrapolating manufacturing technology from lumps of mysterious 'Research' materials that open like boxes (despite many of them looking like living plant matter)...if none of these cause you to say 'Hey now- this is getting a little too like magical technology, here!' then WHY would you balk about the technology needed to convert a mysterious 'Power' into matter and apply it to the surface of a planet??

To me, the WHOLE THING smacks of magical technology! And you know what? I like it like that. I WANT to do magical things with 'technology'. I WANT to ship out ores and refined materials and get different materials back, or maybe even monetary value applied to the debt I incurred by being given the chance to travel way out to the stars to harvest resources, so that I actually have a REASON to keep doing it! After all, if I have a 10Bil Unit debt racked up against me, but sending rockets back with 'magic' technology starts eroding that debt away, so that not only do I stand to eventually clear my debt, but I could return home a VERY wealthy( man...alien...thing?) Retired Astroneer! I WANT to have tech that defies the limits of modern technology, as that shows me that there is a REASON I can't REALLY be out there seeing alien worlds! Because I can't.

At the end of the day, that's the reason for playing games like Astroneer (not that there ARE any games like Astroneer)... Because really going to alien worlds IS impossible with our technology. And unless we discover some 'magical' tech, it will always be impossible. And that means I will never see weird trees that don't have roots, but don't blow over in sand storms. Marshmallow-looking plants that suddenly thrust out deadly spikes if you get too close. Or glowing green-filled bags that spew target-seeking gas able to poison a person though a suit capable of protecting from the vacuum of space... I don't want reality. Reality sucks. Reality says I'll likely only live another 10-15yrs at most. Reality says I'll never leave the Earth. Never see the bare stars shining hard against the total black of space. Reality says I'll never see another planet with my own eyes. Not even from orbit. I don't like reality, and I don't want it in my space games.

Please SystemEra. Don't let boneheads that want 'modern' tech in Astroneer have what they want. Give us MORE tech fantasy. Give us MORE machines that do things we could never do today... Please. Don't add food, sewage processing, picks and shovels, leaking space suits, radiation poisoning, 1.5 year flights between planets in the same system or any other 'reality'-based science limits just because someone (including anyone on your staff) wants to say 'this should be more difficult' or 'this will extend gameplay' or any other excuse. Anyone who wants the difficulty increased should automatically have to have permadeath. After all, THAT'S the ultimate 'real'. When you die, it's over. All you worked for, all you learned, is gone. That's the downer in reality, and I don't want it in my games that I play to 'escape' reality. Astroneer is a fun, cute spaceman game and I love it. It's not perfect, as you know, but it IS a lot of fun.

Hmm. This is rather long. Last question to sum up: Why DO people seem to want 'modern' technology logic in a game that is obviously far advanced technology, far 'future', and FAR from being anything from our world?

Thanks SystemEra for such a fun game, and thank you for your continued efforts. Keep up the great work!

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A quite long post @The Gray Mouser

I'm absolutely with you: this game should keep it's magic. I don't wont to go into details, but I also understand some inputs and comments. I personally think that the most important thing is to (a) keep things in balance and (b; at least as important) that the technology is understandable such that the players can somehow relate to the challenges and difficulties and find some ways around it based on real life experiences. The magic-level should therefore not get out of hand (and that is not what you suggested, I'm not complaining about your post :) ).

 

 

Just as an update to make my statement more clear. Think of a planet far away from the sun. There, the solar radiation is less wherefore the climate might be way colder. And everyone knows (depending on where he lives) that, if it is cold, everything is getting a bit more difficult and things are getting harder (e.g., physical activity). What we do in real life is to protect our-self with warm cloths and maybe take a hot tea.

Let's imagine that Astroneer adds this to the game. On these cold planets moving might be a bit harder, or one needs more energy or oxygen for the suite to and for the life-saving features of our little Astroneer. Providing some suite upgrades to get around these drawbacks is one idea, so offering options to upgrade the suite or to improve the situation by going deeper underground is "real life" but one peace of that "puzzle experiment" SES is heading for. From my point of view the solution can include magic advanced technologies, but the basic idea comes from real life.

That's the way of thinking I would like to see :)

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12 hours ago, reto said:

Let's imagine that Astroneer adds this to the game. On these cold planets moving might be a bit harder, or one needs more energy or oxygen for the suite to and for the life-saving features of our little Astroneer. Providing some suite upgrades to get around these drawbacks is one idea, so offering options to upgrade the suite or to improve the situation by going deeper underground is "real life" but one peace of that "puzzle experiment" SES is heading for. From my point of view the solution can include magic advanced technologies, but the basic idea comes from real life.

That's the way of thinking I would like to see :)

Something similar was suggested a few months ago and if I remember correctly it was tied to research. For example: research better suit tech to keep the Astroneer from freezing on Tundra, research anti-radiation tech so that he can survive on Radiated, etc. That would also be a good way to pace the game and gently nudge us into some kind of progression.

And I agree with @The Gray Mouser too, the Astroneer comes from a civilization with better tech and toys than we currently have, why limit him to 2017 tech? After all, we're playing ASTROneer stranded (?) on an alien planet, not Robinson Crusoe marooned on an island in the middle of the ocean with nothing but a pocket knife.

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Thanks guys... I'm glad I'm not alone in feeling this way about the game mechanics.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying I don't want ANYTHING to change, quite the contrary. As it currently sits, the player has to decide on some personal goal after the first couple of hours (after the initial scramble for resources to get your base going, and venturing out for enough tech to have better equipment), like I have one save where my goal was to collect one large storage (full of medium storage plates) of every kind of resource (I have posted a pic from that save elsewhere on the forums). In my current save, I'm trying to see what it's like to try to advance base modules (the ones machines are build on? Like the printer or vehicle bay) completely around Terran from my starting base. Collecting vast amounts of Resin, tunneling through mountains, trying to keep everything going forward at close to the default ground level... It's a real grind, but a definite challenge. In another, I built a base on every planet and Barren (that one gets rough because the location calculations for those remote bases starts messing with the Terrain Tool off Terran)...

So I'd definitely like to see some things added to give more concrete goals, or something specific to work toward, I just don't want to see tech limited because some people see other space games that add limits (like O2 shortage) and figure that ALL space games should have it, when most other games are based on advances to tech that are fairly easy to accept based on current tech. Astroneer threw that out the window by adding tech that is FAR beyond our own, but still having SOME of them (like still having to watch your O2 charge in your pack) so there is still a challenge that makes being on an alien world at least a LITTLE scary, and a challenge. Just like I'm glad that the devs have made clear there will be NO guns in the game, so it never devolves into a 'space shooter' game. And that for all it's about being in an alien (to you) star system, and being considered a 'space' game, that in actuality space doesn't really play a large part in the game. It's a means to getting to other planets. NOT a challenge to work out the thrust/orbit math enough to even MAKE IT to the next planet (that's what Kerbal Space is for)...

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Copying and pasting from https://astroneer.space :

Explore and exploit distant worlds in ASTRONEER – A game of aerospace industry and interplanetary exploration.

Astroneer is set during a 25th century gold rush where players must explore the frontiers of outer space, risking their lives and resources in harsh environments for the chance of striking it rich.

On this adventure, a player’s most useful tool is their ability to shape their world, altering the terrain and extracting valuable resources from planets, and moons. Resources can be traded or crafted into new tools, vehicles, and modules to create everything from massive industrial bases to mobile rover bases.

To anyone who finds the in-game technology unrealistic, they can look how much we progressed in the last 100 years and then try extrapolating to the 25th century. And it is made very clear that the game is about exploring, gathering resources and crafting/building. Not about killing monsters, fighting space pirates, or working out orbital mechanics.

Looking forward to building massive industrial bases!  9_9

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I know you guys are still testing this, and maybe someone already suggested this, but why don't you guys put a timer on the Sediment Filter?   I know you guys were worried about using the filter to farm more rare materials.  Instead, why don't you make it a timed feature?  This would mean you could have longer timers for more rare materials and ensure that astroneers still have motivation to gather materials the old fashioned way. 

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I personally did not like having to tear up most of the terrain around my base for soil. My habit of covering over mining holes so that the crazy rovers don't take a wrong turn and fall in required me to go father and farther away to consume mountains just for a little canister of dirt. Same goes for building ramps down into caverns. I do like the sediment filter idea, though. Not having any energy concerns from the backpack was convenient, but not challenging. Changed way too much of the game dynamics.

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8 hours ago, Truthseerguy said:

I personally did not like having to tear up most of the terrain around my base for soil. My habit of covering over mining holes so that the crazy rovers don't take a wrong turn and fall in required me to go father and farther away to consume mountains just for a little canister of dirt. Same goes for building ramps down into caverns. I do like the sediment filter idea, though. Not having any energy concerns from the backpack was convenient, but not challenging. Changed way too much of the game dynamics.

I am 100% with you. The idea is interesting, the implementation isn't.

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On 9/27/2017 at 3:26 AM, Truthseerguy said:

I personally did not like having to tear up most of the terrain around my base for soil. My habit of covering over mining holes so that the crazy rovers don't take a wrong turn and fall in required me to go father and farther away to consume mountains just for a little canister of dirt. Same goes for building ramps down into caverns. I do like the sediment filter idea, though. Not having any energy concerns from the backpack was convenient, but not challenging. Changed way too much of the game dynamics.

This.

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I kinda see it more positive with the sediment thing. Now you can actually build a mine and dig through it to get resources without creating holes on the surface.

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