The beta for the “Power Play” Update 1.3 just went live this week, and it looks like it should add quite a bit of nuance to the game. Frontier Developments definitely seems anxious for player feedback and have already made several changes to the beta based on that feedback. Mind you, I’m just reading the forums and reddit; I can’t access the beta as I did not support the Kickstarter.
Power Play is already adding a handful of things that were on my wishlist, but I certainly have more. Things which potentially have an affect on my game on a daily basis, based on the way I am currently playing anyway. Here are my Top 4 as of today:
I play probably 99% of the time the Mobius private group. I wish there was a “global” (galactic?) channel for when you’re playing in Private Group mode. Currently there is only Local, Wing, or Direct messaging another player. I see Mobius pilots from time to time (especially this week as many of us are working on the bounty hunting Community Goal) but it sure would be nice to be able to chat with them at will. Supercruise is by far one of the most boring aspects of the game, you’re just sitting there aiming at your destination, twiddling your thumbs. In an MMO, the “boring” or “downtime” aspects of the game is especially where I want to see players chatting, whether I only read it or if I participate in the conversations. Makes the game feel more “alive.” Elite isn’t an MMO per se but I see no reason a larger scale chat couldn’t be feasible.
Power Play is adding a live GalNet stream to our ships so we can keep up on current news, so taking that into consideration I see no reason a Galactic Relay Chat (GRC) could not be a game feature. I almost never play in Open but I suppose that makes (even more?) sense there, as well. Conversation and coordination. Hell, right now I am up for promotion within both the Federation and the Empire, but those promotions are to assassinate generals who are flying elite Anacondas. I doubt I can pull that off solo, but there’s no way in-game to recruit assistance.
Power Play is adding Cargo/Mining (collection) drones, Fuel Transfer drones, and Prospector drones. I’m going out on a limb and assuming that the fuel transfer drones allow a player with drones equipped to fly to another player who has ran out of fuel and transfer some fuel to him? I’d like to see Repair drones added as well. Just yesterday while working on the Community Goal, an Anaconda (forget the pilot rank, might have been elite because he was crazy good) targeted and destroyed my Viper’s thrusters. So I went spinning off into space, the rest of my ship fully healthy but no thrusters to get myself to a station. I tried the Reboot/Repair option (added in the 1.2 Wings update) but that also repeatedly failed to fix the thrusters. So I had no choice but to self-destruct, losing roughly 4 million credits in bounties plus the re-buy cost for my Viper.
Wouldn’t it have been nice if upon reaching 0% on my thrusters, my ship had sent out a distress beacon over N light years and a player or NPC could get a job to come repair me? Repair (and Fuel Transfer also) jobs could be added to the revamped mission structure and would be an additional path for non-combat jobs for both credits and potentially reputation as well, if the customer was a high-ranking NPC (or player?) in whatever faction. Starpoint Gemini 2 has a lot of jobs to repair structures, so why can’t Elite have jobs to repair ships? I’d say to even tow the ship back to port but apparently in 1200 years we still haven’t invented tractor beams.
I currently have two ships: the Viper which I use for bounty hunting, and a Lakon Type 6 Transporter which I recently bought for trading. I bought the Type 6 at whatever system the Community Goal was a couple weeks ago, which means that’s now a permanent “home” base. Though as it turns out, it’s a rather inconvenient location for doing anything other than the one trade route someone gave me. I would love to have the ability to pay a fee to have my ship transported to a system of my choosing. It can take real-time, and either require that I fly a different ship or that I be offline during the transport. Either is fine by me. I like having choices, and what I’m finding is that apparently I should have done a ton of homework out of game and decided on a “home” system before buying a second ship. I wish there was some means of accommodating the transportation of player ships at a cost. I don’t think there are any player ships capable of transporting another ship so that would have to be an NPC function.
Power Play is adding progress bars so you can see how close to the next rank of Combat, Trade or Explorer you are but I haven’t heard anything about actually notifying the player that a new rank has been achieved. Either a simple notification from your ship’s computer or GalNet or whatever would suffice, but if they really wanted to beef things up, perhaps a special job to officially attain the new rank? I see promotion missions for the major powers (as I mentioned above, I’m due for both Federation and Empire promotions) so why not additional job paths for non-Power-related ranks? Regardless, seriously, at a bare minimum there should be some sort of notification so the player can do a little “yay me!” right then and there, instead of when he randomly happens to check that panel and notices the change.
Just this morning I saw my Combat rank is now Expert. No clue exactly when that happened; either last night or this morning. I think? Would have been great to have been notified of that!