dybal wrote: ↑
Wed Mar 25, 2020 2:43 pm
I'm new to this game, but I see a natural progression: at first the game is too hard and the new player will seek ways deal with it and/or make it easier (that's what this particular topic is about...), but as his/her skills, kit and understanding improve, it gets too easy (and boring) and off go the crutches... until he/she installs SkilledNPCs, installs ShipConfiguration, tries the Adder start, etc.
I can't imagine the core game ever getting too easy when you can be attacked by upwards of 10 ships at a time. Granted, I don't have military shields yet, but as it is, even a couple ships can deplete your shields in seconds and start damaging your ship.
I completed all three parcel deliveries on time, for which I was paid pocket change. I'm still at the last system and I see that there's a cargo contract I can take. Someone wants 31t of computers delivered halfway across the galaxy for which they'll pay the princely sum of 1,340 credits! Which is only 60 credits less than I can make in a single run between Ensoreus and Isinor.
Honestly, the whole contract portion of the game seems unbalanced. The normal start gives players almost nothing and they have to build up their ship. To do that, they need money. At first, trading is the only viable option. If there were some contracts available to them that they could take, it would be a choice of whether to stick with the relatively safer, but slower method of trading, or take a risky contract for a bigger reward. Unfortunately, new players are virtually shut out of the contract system. All the cargo contracts are (usually, the 31t one is the first I've seen that I could accept) for more than the Cobra can carry and none of the passengers will accept you until you have a higher rating. The parcel contracts pay almost nothing for the distance that they want you to go. By the time players can afford a ship capable of carrying the quantities of cargo offered, or they have a high enough rating for passengers to ride with them, there's no real incentive to do either. By that point, they can make more money just trading.
I still want to make more money and I can now accept the cargo contract, but I would probably make about three times as much just trading along the way, so whats my incentive for taking the contract versus just trading? I mean if I want to beef up my bank account, taking the contract is basically a waste of time.
I guess the contracts offer some variety, but personally, I would have had the game scale the contracts according to the player's rating. For example, maybe there's a couple contracts at the start where someone wants 10t of machinery delivered to a system three jumps away, for which they'll pay 200 credits. Not a huge sum, but not a huge journey either. That way players could take the chance if they wanted to make money faster, rather than being forced to trade.
Even the mining laser is kind of pointless. I bought a couple for the side mounts and I've used them a couple times just for fun, but it takes way too long to hunt down and scoop the splinters for the little money you get for them. I know it was carried over from Elite, but even there using it for mining asteroids was a waste of time. It had a faster fire rate than in Oolite, so I used to use it in combat as an upgrade to the pulse laser until I could afford the beam laser.