Hello respectful developers.
I have been playing for several weeks on a KatherineOfSky community server (3 iterations). As we had pretty much different experiences some of points should be looked at. I was focusing on woodworks but still did participate in much other stuff around. ShaydenMac might remember the Sacred Grove Tree house she visited on a live stream. Everything below is my personal opinion.
Don't get me wrong the game itself is pretty awesome. This post is here mostly to summarize issues I have encountered and make a suggestions to fix them and make the game even better.
This is most used part in the game so being convenient is a must here.
I do like the idea of linked inventories however there are some issues here.
- Newly placed storages are automaticly linked which does mess up existing setups. If they are linked automatically they should be added at the bottom of existing link lists at least.
- You can only set up one checkbox for a link - on or off. But it would be much better to have two - linked for input and linked for output. While desired result can almost be achieved by sorting inventories order it will still put produced items into input container if output is filled
- An option to prevent linking set srorage at all other entities would be nice as well. A nice example would be Shelf Cabinets which just spam your lists. Such containers would just not list in the "linked inventories" or show as collapsed at the bottom of the list but you will still be able to access them directly.
- An option to sort linked inventories is definitely missing. Be it by distance or by name. Right now inventories are appearing in a random order which is not good.
- An option to unload all storage to linked inventories is definitely missing. A use case would be a cart. When you get to your storage area you need to manually drag all slots to free slots in your storage area while you could just press a button and it all could be unloaded following generic linked inventories rules like the crafting tables do. An option to automaticly unload to linked inventories would also be welcome. It would allow creation of automatic unload areas and distribution containers
- An option to quickly transfer a stack of items is also appreciated. Something like Shift+Rightclick is most welcome. The behaviour would be pretty clear - If used in object's inventory with backpack open - transfer to backpack. Else to linked inventories. If used in a linked inventory - transfer to main inventory. If used in Backpack - transfer to main inventory.
- An option to lock position of main inventory in an object while scrolling down linked inventories.
Skills and balance
As I have said I mained woodworking. Here lies my main experience. However I have touched many more skills as well to understand the balance.
- Construction skills seam to be very bad as an idea. Most of people will not take them as they will not benefit their professions. Even further, people like to mix materials for their houses which would require even more skills to be picked for this matter. Having in mind that beauty of the house does not directly benefit house owner all it does is making most of buildings look dull. On KoS server all construction options were available to all players regardless of specialization and it payed off - people start building awesome houses and it might become their own ingame fun. So I do not think that even moving them into the same category as the material production will work. Imo these should just go.
- Calculation of housing skillpoints softcap based on room material is also not really good idea as it also limits people's creativity. However it might drive overall economy progress. So I think it should not just calculate middle of the room material tiers but should work similar to current crafting tables requirements - for example you need 50 tier 2 materials for the cap be on tier 2 level no matter how many lower tier materials are used above that.
- Efficiency skill line cap at 80% is rediculous. Especially last points which plain double efficiency themselves. This just makes using specialty without capped efficiency absolutely economically disastrous. On KoS server the last experiment was to reduce efficiency cap to 60% with much smaller last steps. There were 8 efficiency tiers with last 4 adding up 5% each. I do not advocate the number of tiers but such reasonable gains let people even without efficiency feel competitive as they can simply "brute force" materials into the result but still reach the goal. With 80% you lose 5 (!) times more materials which is just insane. I feel like overall material cost for crafting should be halved while efficiency be capped at 60% which would balance end result but will be less painful for people starting their specialty. For the sake of truth I have to admit that experiment did not work nice on Cooking as obviously people do consume food per their items gathered so doubling required materials for food given multiple production steps netted food being out of control. That is why I proposed halving initial recipe costs to mitigate it.
- We did use Better Logging mod on the server and I have to admit that logging without this mod is a disaster. The main culprit is Wood Pulps that are just a black hole of calorie consumption. We had wood pulp clearing at 20 calories and even so without AOE effect of Wood Pulp Cleaner it was a major pain. Not saying about other actions like stumps etc. So some ways to make the job easier is welcome. I saw people mentioning like Chainsaws - most welcome. Also anything that could pick up logs/stones/farming stuff in bulk is also most welcome.
- There is a real problem in balance between gathering specialties (logging, mining, gathering) and crafting ones. And the culprit is, again, calories. If one wants to use high tier food (pretty expensive) this is a disaster for gatherers which dump their calories like mad, and crafters that lose their calories passively really slow. This makes balancing players between professions really hard as gatherers have progressively higher expenses when server progresses. I am not sure how can this be balanced at all.
- Fishing has near to no use. I hope this will be fixed by adding mid to late game recipes using fish products.
- Paper Milling is another skill with marginal use. I think it should be moved into Woodworking instead of having it as a separate specialty. Bookshelves are nice but not that nice to dump a specialty on a server with high cooperation. Also it has a bug having several skill levels while only level 1 has some use.
- Farmers most of time ignore Farming skill itself and use Gathering instead. Something went wrong here.
Other general issues
- Object collision physics. While the idea is pretty nice sometime several objects colliding result in some items get abnormal speeds and shoot away with great speeds. These include: big piles of stone/ore, tree logs, carts (yeah have a space flight pulling a cart between tree sapplings). So definitely there should be a limit on speed that can be gained as a result of collision and also collision physics should reduce momentum of objects with every collision and not multiply it. This also results in ore jumping out of mines and trees producing abnormal amounts of Wood Pulp while flying after being chopped down.
- Tree maturity time. I do understand that intention of developers was to show how bad chopping trees down should be. But being a most responsible forester as I was I did gather most seeds possible and replanted more than I fell them. Yet still only with halved maturity times compared to vanilla (2 days for a birch for example) I could end up having a replenishable forestry. Can't mention how worse it gets in a single player game where timers are the same but server does not run overnight etc making all plants growth a disaster.
- Harvesting tree seeds is a real pain (yeah I feel myself a Monkey King). Maybe consider something easier?
- Big Shovel. This. Game just can't be played without it. No.
- Road Building requires Digging blocks to be replaced with a road. A damn hard process having in mind previous issue.
- Road Building Tool and a Bow could get more advanced versions to save calories and most of all increased durability. Also something like a Bulldozer which would dig dirt in a straight line is well appreciated by road builders. Speeking of which we still can't find a proper place in the economy for road builders. While everyone needs roads noone personally does not want to fund it. So something like crowdfunding projects might be introduced into the game.
- Speaking of woodworking. Woodworking just loses sense starting at midgame. After buying a set of furniture woodworking becomes absolete as a profession ans a player who dedicated much time doing this has to drop it looking to be helpful for more endgame skills like Oil, Electronics etc. So there should be more production chains involving wood products in the endgame including higher tiers of building blocks. Also it would make much more sense if all logs should require Hewing before being used in crafting at all (as well as stack to 20 like all other blocks do including simple Logs. This would let people store less versions of materials and remove the need of "recycling" hewn logs into simple Logs as it is done in a mod. Same is for boards - they should be produced out of hewn logs like Sawmill does - with a common carpentry table.
- Adding up to the previous issue I would suggest introducing air pollution filters. This device would have input and output pipes and would use Charcoal as an expendable filtering material. This would give woodworking and Lumber in particular another purpose - filter production - which would be pretty useful in endgame as endgame machiles produce a ton of pollution. As an option expended filters might be stored similar to Tailings but not have ground pollution spread like those, just taking space.
- Tailings take too much space. Looking that 1 block = 4 units of ore they will produce 8 blocks of tailings. Tailings are a problem as they are and their number just gets out of control.
- There is always problem with light. It is so dark in the night or in the mines that you are forced to tune that brightness to 400% every night or it is too hard to provide enough light by ingame means. All light sources consume too much fuel to make enough light all around where you go. Some ambient light should be added to make nights lighter and amount of fuel consumed by lights should be dramatically decreased or removed completely. This is especially painful on network servers as you can't even theoretically effect daytime (could just rewind in single player in a bed sleeping for example) but not on a server.
- Trees seam to ignore overcrowding and enviroment. You can plant a tree just next to another or even make a solid fence of those with no problems.
- Water flow problems. I can't understand or effect water flow in those rivers. I have met multiple instances of rivers having empty tiles along enges (which should definitely contain water) and ways to control water flow to make artificial irrigation. Actually any control over soil moisture is welcome.
- More of a cosmetic issue with tree leafs getting inside buildings.
- When dragging item stack the popup hint often stays in the way (as its logic lets it stay to be able to mouse over its contents). So grabbing and moving a stack of items should remove/disable item popups so you can easily complete your action.
- When creating a stone ramp down the mine the stone boulders (a part of a stone block model) pop out between ramp blocks. Looks disgusting as the boulder itself with no ramp. Should be more steep edge.
Oh man enough for today. Took too much time already.
Watching KatherineOfSky youtube and experiencing stuff myself in solo play I do see that any kind of timelapse is really missing from the game.
At some point the time it takes to accumulate required materials and skillpoints is just too big and you have to just afk for some time just to wait things finish.
Another problem we see is with lights. It is just too damn dark around and using fuel in all kinds of torches is just too expensive.
So it makes sense to use beds to sleep until morning with timelapsed simulation. We are solving two tasks - the desperate need for lights AND time to finish up production and get those skillpoints.
Cause it is not fun to afk grind stuff.
Sure thing servers won't do that as you have to remain competetive and fair for everyone. But you can still use a bed for graceful logoff which will let a player accumulate skillpoints at higher rate compared to logoff at a random position.
I just bought Eco after watching some great vids on Youtube.
I started playing but after a single several hour session I noticed several annoying things about how the game actually works.
The first thing I was annoyed with is absence of PAUSE feature. While there are no dangers in the world of Eco for a player right now it seams obvious to be able to pause the game if you want to go afk for some time. Even in multiplayer game PAUSE seams like an obvious addition in the game that kinda pushes you in the back by a ticking asteroid timer.
The second one kinda costed me quite some nerves. You just don't have a simple SAVE button nowhere in the game... Just Disconnect and Quit... Now that is embarassing... I would understand if the game had SAVE AND QUIT button like Minecraft does but in its current state I just don't get it.
I do understand that even in solo play mode game runs a server in the background and the client joins it. But that should be much more clear for a player.
Besides I would really like to have control of savegames. I do understand that a player should experience the consequences of his actions without a way to roll them back but this is a really bad approach in the gaming IMO. This is a dev choice but still I would like to see server settings about autosave interval or clearly explained rules about this.
By trial and error I did figure out that simple QUIT will power server down and save your world. But this should be much more clear for a single player mode. I am not saying about total absence of in-game information about setting up your own standalone server.
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