Science currently has two problems, one major and one minor.
There currently exists no way to continuously get discovery research as scientists. In order to gain discovery research, you either need to create a toxin bomb (which can only be used once to generate research) or depend on the miners/exploration crew for scanning. This is not a problem unto itself; the issue arises when the scientists, miners, or exploration crew are unable or unwilling to do these tasks. Given we are a server aimed at new players, we should expect rounds where this will occur.
Science currently has a lot of downtime where scientists need to wait for something to complete, but can’t or wont leave to do other things. This can come from waiting for enough general research to be discovered, waiting for enough gas to move while making a toxin bomb, or waiting for slimes to eat the monkeys. This is good for pacing, but it would be nice for that downtime to be potentially useful in some way.
Given these two problems, here are my two proposed solutions to these problems:
Scientists should have access to a minigame, or collection of minigames, on a console or their tablet/laptop. The minigames will be quick puzzles that, when completed, generate a small amount of discovery points. They should not be too difficult (or should allow players to choose their own difficulty), but should remain time consuming and require the attention of the player. The amount of discovery points generated should be large enough to make the puzzles worth it, but not too large as to make scanning or toxin bombing redundant.
Scientists should be given a project to construct/optimize that will generate discovery points over time. The closest comparison would be the Supermatter engine. Scientists will have to set up this project, which would be prone to failure and likely require human intervention, and can also be optimized to generate a large amount of discovery. This could reward skilled/experienced scientists who know how to set up the Perfect! discovery project, but can result in making scanning or toxin bombing redundant. I do think a well-optimized discovery project should be the most optimal solution for generating discovery points, but it should be the hardest to obtain, and potentially not worth it if there is a round-ending antagonist (like clock cult, blob, nuke ops, etc.) or if miners/exploration crew/toxins are already doing a good job. Unlike solution 1, this solution may not solve the problem of downtime.
Of these two, solution 1 is probably the easiest to implement and balance, and would also be the most inviting for new players. Solution 2 would probably be the most rewarding for scientists, and wouldn’t be too much of a departure from mechanics that players would already be familiar with in SS13. Perhaps both should be implemented, since they don’t necessarily conflict with each other.
This is all presuming problems 1 and 2 are valid problems, which they might not be. Perhaps it’s good that science is balanced around access to discovery points being somewhat restricted. I’m of the opinion that science should have something to do to deal with a lack of discovery points, particularly for new players who are unfamiliar with discover points and how to acquire them from toxin bombing.
Option two already exists in some sense as you’re able to toggle radiation collectors and tesla coils to generate research points by using a multitool (with rad collectors requiring tanks of tritium, IIRC). While I’m not sure if this generates regular research or discovery research, it can’t be too hard to implement it.
I’m pretty sure the RnD server literally does that. Anyway it dose not matter because you get enough DR points from the maxcap.
Correct. And it’s more then enough for T5 and like 3/4 of the entire tree.
Downtime is not the issue if you know what you are doing. The real problem is that the current RnD system is shallow, repetitive and boring. It has no variation and no skill required. You maxcap and you are done. Not to mention the nonexistent RP incentives most jobs suffer from.
Anyway talking here is pointless. Unless you want to learn to code you are wasting your time.
Since this is tied to Exploration crew, the removal and how everything’s gonna be moved to miners i recommend you also post/rea on the Discussion Github post by Bacon: Exploration Crew Job Removal Proposal so you can also get an idea on what’s gonna be like when explorers are gone, and that they mentioned xenoarcheology as a solution/mini game help for DR and RP
But yeah having more stuff being capable of generate DR/RP would be the best, because even know that we have Explorers the best option is to get someone that makes a Toxin bomb and miners scaning megafauna, because the miners points outweights the input that explorers make (unless they get lucky and scan the cube and radar simplemob + pandora)
The RnD server does not generate discovery research, only general research.
This is not friendly to newer players who do not know how to make a good maxcap. A lot can go wrong, and it depends on having either a good understanding of atmospherics, or for an experienced player to show you how to do it. This isn’t always available, and I would know because it took many rounds before someone on Acacia walked through the process for me.
If there was a simpler alternative, then I would be more in agreement with these statements. However, there isn’t, hence why I’m suggesting one.
I do want to learn to code. Either way, this place is for suggestions to improve the game. We all have our own ideas, not all of us are capable of implementing them, and not all of us know what the problems with each suggestion will be. I dare say, whether or not I want to learn to code, talking here is not a waste of time and is exactly what Beestation forum users and moderators expect me to do. Why insist it is a waste of time?
I might be wrong on the RnD server, but again in the current state it dose not matter.
We are new player friendly, not new player coddling. Balancing the game mechanics around new players is not a good idea. I was going to mention this, but it seemed self evident to me.
No. I mean it’s a waste of time if you think your ideas will get implemented by someone else. If you have an idea that you wish to get feedback on that might be useful. But, also probably not as most people are biased and they lack any understanding of proper game design anyway.
The real way to add a feature is to learn to code and then talk with the people that merge things and get their approval. If you do that you can basically make and entire department for yourself lol.
This is why I said new player friendly, not balanced around new players. While mechanics should absolutely be balanced around experienced players, they should also be accessible for new players and give them some ability to contribute meaningfully to the game/their role, even if they can’t do so as effectively as experienced players. This is why I emphasize in solution 1 that the puzzle minigames should not be as effective as toxin bombing or scanning.
That’s what I’m intending to do here.
My ideas are only my ideas, and other people are likely to have their own ideas and perspectives. They will likely see things I can’t, and offer ideas I never thought of. I don’t care if some or most of them will be bad, because at least some of them will be very useful.
Why? I get that’s the expected process, but I’m not sure why it’s wrong or wasteful of me to go to the community first and see how they feel and get feedback from them first. Maintainers have a lot of things to do, and I don’t want to give them a half-assed idea I thought of on the spot without first talking to other players and seeing how they feel about it.
I also think toxin’s should be nerfed/made harder, tbh.
You mentioned when scientists are “unable or unwilling to do these tasks”, but a single scientist can bang out a research maxcap in 10 minutes, build like 4 extra research servers by the 15 minute mark and get all but the locked research shortly after.
I propose research points should take twice as much of an explosion to get. As it stands a theoretical shockwave radius of about 4700-4800 can get to the research cap. Getting here is relatively simple and limiting compared to how complex you can get with TTV’s to maximise it’s power! My proposed rebalancing would prevent toxins from getting all the discovery research at once, because the easy way would only yield half as many points and the hard way would either take research and mining to be done and get better thermo machines, or more time/work using space cooled heat exchangers.
Get people to discover a better tritium to oxygen ratio, find ways to get hotter plasma, experiment with different gases like hyper-noblium or stimulum. Bonus points, try to force atmos dweebs and toxin nerds (I main both it’s fine for me to say this) to work together!
I don’t believe this would be a good idea as it stands, since I also believe we need more drawn out rounds and other ways to get research.
As for the concerns of the server being beginner friendly, I think a larger variety would be important but also maybe a better wiki, maybe with some integration with some of the great guides on the forum would help. Plus, teaching people who actually want to learn is pretty cool imo.
This post is incredibly biased, since I hold the record for largest ttv explosion, take with a grain of salt