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RE: Distant Worlds Universe on the 4X Gaming Podcast

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RE: Distant Worlds Universe on the 4X Gaming Podcast - 10/18/2017 12:50:08 AM   


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All the best,

Off topic - loved the Dom4 Multiplayer FFA. Congrats on the win.

(in reply to tortugapower)
Post #: 31
RE: Distant Worlds Universe on the 4X Gaming Podcast - 10/19/2017 12:14:42 PM   
Erik Rutins


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Joined: 3/28/2000
From: Vermont, USA
Status: online

Hi tortugapower,


ORIGINAL: tortugapower
Distant Worlds is an extremely polarizing topic for 4X gamers. Why is this?

Interesting - it was never particularly polarizing here on our forums, but it's interesting to hear that it is elsewhere. I suppose some of this is just folks defending their favorite game, whichever that may be, but I think the differences in gameplay, production values and the bounce-off effect probably do have a lot to do with that.


The Interface
When people then dislike DW and are compelled to have a strong reaction against it, the reason why the interface is so maligned (to an unfair degree, I agree) is that it's an easy target. "I don't like this game, let me look for reasons why!" ... "Oh, well, what the hell am I even looking at! This interface is garbage!" I'm going to ask Kirkus to come in and explain his viewpoint about the interface in more detail. I know that he has some experience with designing GUIs, and that might also explain his brutal stance against it.

Thanks, as noted above, the more specific feedback we get the better.


My own gripes with interface: Ctrl+right_click and then select from a menu is rough for ship actions. I think it would be better if the standard right-click for a sensible default (move/attack) -- more or less implemented, feedback to the user on order submitted could be better -- and then a hotkey for other options (e.g. press "b" with a ship selected and click on a planet brings up a quick "build what?" menu, just like the current Ctrl-click options). I do remember that ctrl-right_click ends up hurting the finger which must press Ctrl constantly haha. More generally, people will want to see an updated interface that "looks smoother". I don't know what that means, as I play and enjoy Aurora 4X so I'm completely fine with this one, but... maybe Kirkus can tell you.

Agreed on Ctrl+Right Click and more hotkeys.


The Economy
I have almost no complaints about this. I don't think it's reasonable to have the level of abstraction so small that individual traders have wealth. The one thing I've seen mentioned that holds water is that blockading someone's resource increases the price of that good throughout the whole galaxy, based on supply/demand. I don't know the exact mechanics, but that's a fair point.

Agree that the galactic price system was a weak point.


I personally don't mind the lack of dev diaries, as I see it as a choice to dedicate that time on game development itself instead. Conversely, one great reason to do dev diaries is for the introspection it requires. I've found this in my own work, and I'm sure it comes as no surprise that taking some time to formulate your design decisions on a topic into words forces you to reflect heavily on it. Even doing a dev diary and then never publishing it would be a helpful exercise. But, "at what cost?" Time is finite, sadly. Maybe you could ask the devs from a game that did dev diaries whether they are worth the time?

Yes, in the past it's been largely a choice between what to spend time on, but there are also a few other reasons. I expect for DW2 we will do a few though in the lead up to release to help explain our choices. We've certainly had plenty of internal discussions that amount to the equivalent for ourselves.


Thanks for taking the time to listen to the podcast.

Thanks for taking the time to do it and also for the reply.


- Erik


Erik Rutins
Director of Product Development

For official support, please use our Help Desk:

Freedom is not Free.

(in reply to tortugapower)
Post #: 32
RE: Distant Worlds Universe on the 4X Gaming Podcast - 10/19/2017 4:56:49 PM   


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Joined: 4/10/2011
Status: offline
The economy is the most mysterious and unintuitive aspect of the game for me.
I've always thought it would be nice to have a transaction log showing how & where all the money comes & goes.
The log would have a date stamp, location of transaction, amount (state or private), and a brief description.
The ability to see more detailed economic cause & effect in the early game would eliminate a lot of frustration (especially for first-time players).
Obviously, the log would become less 'readable' as the empire's development level grows and an option to turn transaction logging off would be prudent.

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 33
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