A demand to Frontier Developments to change the emphasis of development on Elite Dangerous

A demand to Frontier Developments to change the emphasis of development on Elite Dangerous

17 августа 2017 г.
Frontier Developments plc
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Автор: Denis Petrov

We, a community of Elite Dangerous players, are making a call for a change of emphasis of project development towards faster correction of existing problems, expanding the game mechanics, more effective work of the QA-department and more open project development and informing the community about the current state of work.

At this moment the development of Elite Dangerous has a lot of problems connected to the game mechanics, critical errors and gameplay in general. The community was repeatedly sending to Frontier Development their suggestions on project improvement and their gaming experience, using the official forums, social networks and the official support service. However, in most cases these suggestions remain unheeded, and critical updates which are fixing the bugs are coming very rarely, often many month later. A less significant but equally important fixes are even much longer to expect.

Another very important problem, is a lack of real progression in the project over the past year. Since the release of 2.1 The Engineers - update, we don’t observe any important updates to the gameplay. Released updates - 2.2 The Guardians and 2.3 The Commanders haven’t brought any new experience and gameplay mechanics expansion. The additional elements, such as fighters and multicrew haven’t brought any benefits to players, except maybe a very small part and therefore don’t impact overall gaming experience hence not necessary. The community does not receive information about further development plans, has no clue about what to expect from the project in the future, and as a result, loses trust in the development team.

Other elements, that are positioned as one of the most important parts in most of the latest updates, are basically only a cosmetic content - various 3D-models and scripted scenes, which allegedly can be accidentally found in different regions of space. Most often such content is placed in easy accessible locations, and served in portions at a certain time, favorable to developers, and is followed by massives of story text on official channels. A lot of such elements, that were supposed to become full and interesting storylines, have got abandoned or forgotten with time. It makes one wonder, do such elements really an important part of gameplay, or are created specifically to delay the time before next updates.

The current gameplay mechanics also do not implement claimed features of the project. Here is the main list of problems noted by the community. This list is not complete and it can be expanded with lots of other noticed elements:

  1. A BGS system that does not have any real purpose. System do not bring to players any benefits. Players who are trying to use the system and play a role in it are facing with a problem of a lack of understanding the mechanism. Also rules here are constantly changed and corrected without any mentions from development team. The efforts of players who are trying to achieve its goals, are often disappear because of these uncontrolled processes, which significantly worsen the overall experience. Ultimately it repels the player from this part of the gameplay and/or from the game in general.
  2. Unbalanced PvP where player in most cases are unable to protect themselves during the attacks or to avoid them, and the attacker do not receive absolutely no punishment. As a preventive measure against possible attacks is using the private groups and solo mode. They bring even more disbalance into gameplay, making the gaming experience worse, reduce the possibility of socialization, make a mess in BGS, and create a lot of other problems. At the same time those player who want to participate in PvP-combat are not getting any profit or evolvement of their game experience from such activity. The only group of players who are interested in PvP at this moment are so-called “griffers” who are trying in every way to harm other players and to prevent them of having fun from the gameplay.
  3. Full absence of necessity to interact with other players. The game, claimed as a multiplayer project, practically isn’t, due to a complete lack of necessity in interaction between players. Basically there is no trading, no item exchange, there is no need to help each other, to cooperate and to perform joint tasks. All operations can be easily dealt alone.
  4. Absence of faction control mechanics. The players who are trying to play Elite Dangerous as an online-project are facing another problem - an absence of any unions in the game. The system of factions that is proposed to replace classic clans and guilds can not be positioned as such, because the player is not a part of this faction, do not get any benefits, can not control it, affects it only indirectly with mechanisms that are unknown or regularly changed by development team.
  5. Complete absence of support for players, who want to play a role of a space explorer. For three years since the release of the project such players have got very few new mechanics and content extensions. The game, that is primarily focused on exploration is giving nearly nothing new for its entire time of existence to such players. This space is completely empty and contains only lifeless and practically identical rocks, as in the form of planets, and in the form of objects on their surfaces. The level of variety is minimal, and in the most cases is not remarkable, and the best you can find here are very rare bugs of generation.
  6. A game feature called Community Goals (CG), that is designed to diversify the gaming experience, unite the players in order to perform common tasks, and to develop the general plot, for current moment is not used for its intended purpose. This mechanic is put on stream and is applied at any convenient opportunity, because the game do not have other tools to create events. In this moment these tasks are very primitive, boring and do not bring any benefits for most players. Besides, there are good reasons to believe that rare cases of launching such Community Goals, that must somehow influence the development of the storyline in reality does not do this. And the slightest opportunity to prevent the success of such events is completely suppressed by the introduction of artificial restrictions.

The community of Elite Dangerous players urging the developers at Frontier Developments and David Braben personally, to take in account all the above remarks and to pay more attention to the desire of their community. More opened development will contribute to greater trust from the community.

Remember, we remain true to you because we love what you did in the past. But we cannot stay true indefinitely, if you will continue to push us away from you.

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