Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by CDarklock » Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:50 pm

McDuff wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:35 pm
There are various ways you could find out. Someone also suggested Compilatron could run an "experiment" getting you to do more pollution and then saying "oops, turns out you're gonna lose this base."
Why would that experiment make sense, though? It's one thing to ask where you get the data, and then it's another thing to ask why you go get it. Like most people don't know anything about electrolysis, because who cares. And then some people, for some reason, have a legitimate need to go learn about it - so they do. But if you don't ever get a reason, you never go learn about it.

The first series of attack waves is a good reason to go learn, but before that, it just looks like the natives are unfriendly. If you were to ask me to speculate on why the biters attacked the wreckage of the ship, I would immediately conjecture that it was low-frequency sound waves; they were impacted and agitated by the vibration of the planet at the time of the physical impact. It's only after they attack a different, separate site - where there was no physical impact - that I would start saying "it must be something else."

And what experiment is he conducting to figure out that it's pollution, anyway? It's not like you could say "let's do an experiment on what makes monkeys angry" without having a monkey.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by McDuff » Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:13 pm

CDarklock wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:50 pm
McDuff wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:35 pm
There are various ways you could find out. Someone also suggested Compilatron could run an "experiment" getting you to do more pollution and then saying "oops, turns out you're gonna lose this base."
Why would that experiment make sense, though? It's one thing to ask where you get the data, and then it's another thing to ask why you go get it. Like most people don't know anything about electrolysis, because who cares. And then some people, for some reason, have a legitimate need to go learn about it - so they do. But if you don't ever get a reason, you never go learn about it.

The first series of attack waves is a good reason to go learn, but before that, it just looks like the natives are unfriendly. If you were to ask me to speculate on why the biters attacked the wreckage of the ship, I would immediately conjecture that it was low-frequency sound waves; they were impacted and agitated by the vibration of the planet at the time of the physical impact. It's only after they attack a different, separate site - where there was no physical impact - that I would start saying "it must be something else."

And what experiment is he conducting to figure out that it's pollution, anyway? It's not like you could say "let's do an experiment on what makes monkeys angry" without having a monkey.
OK. Fine.

Here's the problem we're looking to solve here. Veteran players know about the pollution mechanic. New players don't know about the pollution mechanic. It's a very important mechanic, especially in this campaign, so we're trying to find a way to tell them.

I don't understand your objection to telling the player about a really important mechanic? Suggest an alternative way for them to find out, OK, but not "nope people should have this hidden from them" - literally, why?

There's nothing more frustrating than having something happen in a game that makes no sense.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by CDarklock » Tue Mar 05, 2019 2:23 pm

McDuff wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:13 pm
Here's the problem we're looking to solve here. Veteran players know about the pollution mechanic. New players don't know about the pollution mechanic. It's a very important mechanic, especially in this campaign, so we're trying to find a way to tell them.
Is it a problem, though?

Does knowing about pollution make things better or more fun for the new player?

Because if it doesn't, there's no good reason to do it.

And if there's no good reason to do it, "we didn't do it" is not a problem.

So what do you think they will do differently if you tell them?

If they're not going to do anything differently, it doesn't matter.

If what they do makes things worse, it is better not to tell them.

If what they do is not fun, it is better not to tell them.

It seems to me that the actual problem here is veteran players knowing about pollution, but thinking it doesn't matter for absolutely no reason, and needing someone to tell them explicitly "oh by the way pollution still matters."

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by sunnyskies » Tue Mar 05, 2019 2:53 pm

CDarklock wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 2:23 pm
It seems to me that the actual problem here is veteran players knowing about pollution, but thinking it doesn't matter for absolutely no reason, and needing someone to tell them explicitly "oh by the way pollution still matters."
The sound of the hammer hitting the nail on the head.

I have a sneaky hunch that if this new campaign had been delayed a couple weeks until the old playerbase had adapted to the v.16 to v.17 changes, there wouldn’t be this much backlash.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by McDuff » Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:06 pm

CDarklock wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 2:23 pm
McDuff wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:13 pm
Here's the problem we're looking to solve here. Veteran players know about the pollution mechanic. New players don't know about the pollution mechanic. It's a very important mechanic, especially in this campaign, so we're trying to find a way to tell them.
Is it a problem, though?
Yes. The campaign mechanic explicitly uses pollution, but you'd never know that unless you came to the forums. Showing how A leads to B is good. Weird how you don't think that's true in a game which is all about chains of causality.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by CDarklock » Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:23 pm

sunnyskies wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 2:53 pm
I have a sneaky hunch that if this new campaign had been delayed a couple weeks until the old playerbase had adapted to the v.16 to v.17 changes, there wouldn’t be this much backlash.
Combat is... a lot more important in 0.17 freeplay. I don't know how many people have started a new world on default settings in 0.17, but it's a major change, and tbh I don't think I'd be this able to handle it if I hadn't started out with the campaign. Freeplay is certainly easier than the campaign, on the combat front, if you make the right choices and go the right directions... but if you scoot close enough to a base, the attacks aren't all that different. They put the pressure on in the campaign, but the attacks in freeplay feel very much like the early attacks when you first start the final research in the campaign.
McDuff wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:06 pm
The campaign mechanic explicitly uses pollution, but you'd never know that unless you came to the forums.
Again, how does knowing that change the way you play? Once you know the game is using pollution to scale attacks, does the campaign become better and more fun?
Showing how A leads to B is good. Weird how you don't think that's true in a game which is all about chains of causality.
Then why doesn't the campaign tell you about power?

When the player is told to put up a steam engine, surely he should be told about how the fluid system works, and how the offshore pump puts water in the boiler through a pipe which is then heated up to produce steam which is converted into electricity by the steam engine and then all your various machines consume that electricity? We don't teach about water, or about steam, or about electricity, or about brownouts and blackouts.

I submit that the reason we do not teach this is likely that the complexity would confuse and frighten the player at this early stage, and besides most players will never need to know about it. Nobody is going to hook up too many boilers to their pump, or too many steam engines to their boilers, and nobody is going to ramp up production past 900 KW. If they do, they undoubtedly understand that what they are doing is abnormal.

Isn't it the same for pollution?

You're probably going to have between 100 and 200 pollution, adding up all your ratings, if you build what you need to build and maybe a little more for extra combat preparation. So if you tune the game to have the desired level of difficulty when pollution is at that level, you don't have to tell the player this is the level to keep pollution at. You can just leave them alone, and they will probably end up right in that range. If they don't, they probably know what they are doing, or at the very least that what they are doing is abnormal.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by McDuff » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:22 pm

CDarklock wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:23 pm

Then why doesn't the campaign tell you about power?

When the player is told to put up a steam engine, surely he should be told about how the fluid system works, and how the offshore pump puts water in the boiler through a pipe which is then heated up to produce steam which is converted into electricity by the steam engine and then all your various machines consume that electricity? We don't teach about water, or about steam, or about electricity, or about brownouts and blackouts.
These mechanisms are *visible*. You put a pipe down and can see the water in it. If you want you can mouse over the pipes. If you do end up going into brownouts you can go "hmm, what's going on here?" and figure it out from the information presented.

The pollution mechanic is entirely invisible unless you know about it.

You don't need to get told the numbers. "Making pollution triggers biter attacks. More pollution = more biters."

That's it. That's all it needs. Just that piece of information.

You get that "water is heated by a boiler to make steam" because you put down something called a pump on water and then something called a boiler which needs water and then something called a steam engine and you can absolutely figure it out from the contextual clues.

What's the advantage of hiding this information from a player? Other than having them be weirdly frustrated when they don't know what they're doing wrong?

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by McDuff » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:25 pm

CDarklock wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:23 pm

Again, how does knowing that change the way you play? Once you know the game is using pollution to scale attacks, does the campaign become better and more fun?
It means you can alter the way you play.

"I'm producing more things, which means I should expect more biter attacks, which means I need to upgrade my defense"

"I can turn off some of these things to cut down on pollution, hopefully that will cut down on the biters."

Both of these things are valid decisions and you won't make them if you don't know that's the mechanism the game is using.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by BlueTemplar » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:29 pm

Pollution is still visible : Various burners emit smoke, and buildings show the pollution numbers (do they in the "tutorial" too? in both phases?).
(But it's probably not nearly visible enough for a new player to easily make the link on his own between it and biter behavior.)

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Koub » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:29 pm

I hop into the discussion just to tell that, in my opinion, a tutorial and a campaign are two very different things :

- A tutorial is there to teach the player whatever is not obvious in the game (and the more diverse the player base is, the more things can be not-so-obvious) : core concepts, game mechanics, GUI specificities, ...
- A campaign is there to challenge a player's skills, strategy, inventivity, knowledge of the game mechanics, ... It's there to see to what extend what has been taught during the tutorial has been mastered.

Both are fundamentally different things. A tutorial can be embedded within a campaign, teaching the appropriate bits whenever they become useful during the campaign's unfolding. But the other way round doesn't really make sense : one can't challenge the player's mastery in the game every time a piece of know-how is delivered to him/her.

I can't imagine a tutorial where the last part is "fight this end-game raid boss", or "win this scenario where all odds are against you". I expect a campaign to extend far beyond the tutorial, raising progressively in difficulty, to a final apex of challenge.

I haven't had the chance to test by myself, but I understand current 0.17 experience does not match what I described above, does it ?
Koub - Please consider English is not my native language.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by BlueTemplar » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:34 pm

Phase 1 is totally "tutorial", Phase 2... well, there's a lot of debate about what it is ! :lol:

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by CDarklock » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:46 pm

McDuff wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:22 pm
These mechanisms are *visible*. You put a pipe down and can see the water in it.
When does the campaign ever tell the player to craft and place a pipe?
The pollution mechanic is entirely invisible unless you know about it.
There's a pollution number on literally everything that pollutes. There's a button on the map display, enabled by default, that says "pollution." If you are new to the game and don't know what anything is, you will at the very least read the word "pollution" on tooltips and in the map screen in the process of figuring out how to use these things. You will also quite likely wonder what that big black cloud developing over your stuff is.

This is every bit as visible and accessible as the power system.
What's the advantage of hiding this information from a player?
It's not hidden, we're just not talking about it. I don't have a problem with telling the player about pollution. If someone wants to do that, sure, fine. In fact, you can do that. You can write a beginner's guide to pollution and hand it out anywhere you like. Post it in the forum. Put it on the wiki. Run a bunch of Facebook ads. Knock yourself out.

But, again: what is the benefit of telling them?

I keep asking you that, and you keep demanding a justification for not doing the thing you want. Well, because someone would have to do it. Why should someone do it? What rational justification is there for someone else to spend their time and energy doing what you want?

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by CDarklock » Tue Mar 05, 2019 5:14 pm

McDuff wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:25 pm
"I'm producing more things, which means I should expect more biter attacks, which means I need to upgrade my defense"
Why are you producing more things? You've been told to make sure your defences are strong enough and then go see what Compy wants. Once he tells you to research the logistics science technology, what more things do you need to produce?
"I can turn off some of these things to cut down on pollution, hopefully that will cut down on the biters."
Does this... work? I know it works to not build things before the biters show up, or to take them down before beginning the research. But does it actually reduce the strength of the next biter attack wave to pull down some of your production?

How much can you reduce your pollution by pulling down production? You have an absolute floor of 27, for the boiler to power the lab. You're probably running at about 150-200 before the attacks begin. I don't see it going much below 100, if you're still producing ammo and don't have your science packs pre-crafted.

I should probably test this.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by naed » Tue Mar 05, 2019 5:34 pm

CDarklock wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:46 pm
I keep asking you that, and you keep demanding a justification for not doing the thing you want. Well, because someone would have to do it. Why should someone do it? What rational justification is there for someone else to spend their time and energy doing what you want?
And i would like to add something (that you seem too polite to mention).

Why should things be changed when the people demanding change are (seemingly) unwilling to asses their own bias/assumptions?

Now, please, do not misunderstand what i am saying. There is no ill intent in my words.

Reading through the release threads since 0.17 was released. There are a fair amount of people that are quite .. steadfast that their understanding is the "right" one.

Questionting why that is, why people are so steadfast about things while wanting others to change for them. That is one of the important things. Because the moment it is possible to get those groups of people to engage/question their own assumptions. You will have the tutorial to end all tutorials.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by CDarklock » Tue Mar 05, 2019 5:43 pm

naed wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 5:34 pm
Why should things be changed when the people demanding change are (seemingly) unwilling to asses their own bias/assumptions?
Agreed, but you have to ask why they want things changed, or you're equally guilty. (Not accusing. Just observing. Generic-you, not personal-you. Damn English and its imprecise second-person pronouns.)

When someone has something they want, but they can't tell you why, it doesn't mean they have no reason. They may just not know how to articulate it.

It's really important to approach it from a perspective of "they have got a reason, what is it?" - because it might be a really good one.

Sometimes when you dig really hard and make people mad, you find out you're the idiot and you've been wrong all along. That's not fun, but it's important. ;)

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by BlueTemplar » Tue Mar 05, 2019 5:59 pm

CDarklock wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:46 pm
There's a button on the map display, enabled by default, that says "pollution."
IIRC it's NOT available by default.
(Which is why I said that a new player might not figure it out.)

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by CDarklock » Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:02 pm

BlueTemplar wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 5:59 pm
CDarklock wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:46 pm
There's a button on the map display, enabled by default, that says "pollution."
IIRC it's NOT available by default.
(Which is why I said that a new player might not figure it out.)
I started a new campaign this morning, and it's got the "pollution" filter on in the map display. The button's certainly there in any case.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by BlueTemplar » Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:04 pm

Derp, I wanted to say "NOT enabled by default".

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by CDarklock » Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:07 pm

BlueTemplar wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:04 pm
Derp, I wanted to say "NOT enabled by default".
I think it's enabled, too. I don't remember turning it on. Hold on while I check, watch for edit.

EDIT: Yeah, on by default.
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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by naed » Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:14 pm

CDarklock wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 5:43 pm
Agreed, but you have to ask why they want things changed, or you're equally guilty. (Not accusing. Just observing. Generic-you, not personal-you. Damn English and its imprecise second-person pronouns.)

When someone has something they want, but they can't tell you why, it doesn't mean they have no reason. They may just not know how to articulate it.

It's really important to approach it from a perspective of "they have got a reason, what is it?" - because it might be a really good one.

Sometimes when you dig really hard and make people mad, you find out you're the idiot and you've been wrong all along. That's not fun, but it's important. ;)
Absolutely.

My post was merely an attempt at voicing the disconnect between the major "camps" in this debate.

(sidenote: It is quite pleasant to see a distinct lack of "you are stupid" etc comments in the debate on this)

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