Yeah I left that from my last post but for a good reason. If it’s not sure, if it’s not clear then don’t talk about it. I learned that. Now I can say for sure it’s happening before beta release so here it is.

Features creep?

As I get closer to the “official release” I get more and more nervous and I keep asking myself “what will keep players playing?” and that gets me nervous. That gets me nervous because I’m alone and don’t have a lot of experience but also because I don’t build MMOs that just let players slide down a slope. I build MMOs that ask players to find their own fun and that feels dangerous. That feels dangerous because throw a bunch of quests to players and even if they hate it a good bunch of them will stick to the end. You know… Just to say to got to the end.

Well since I don’t get any fun from that … it’s not the kind of games I want to make. I want to make games that don’t have an end. I want to make games that give some freedom. Of course not everyone will get fun from that. That’s not the point. I just believe enough people can get fun from games with more freedom that I won’t have to get myself another day job. Place your bets.

Alliance’s space station

Well at one point or another something like that was going to be added but I just wasn’t sure it would be in the game for beta release.

If you like that will be one of the endgames of Star Corsairs. Hopefully players will allow me to create many more endgames but this is the first. I already said that I never played any endgame content as a MMO player so why would I even think about that? Well because that endgame won’t require anything. The way Star Corsairs is built you can jump into the “endgame” right at the start if you have some people to help you. You don’t have to grind to level whatever before being able to enjoy that.

So what will alliance’s space stations do? Bragging rights. Basically. But more important an easy way to have fun with friends… and possibly foes… “friendly foes” I hope but hey…

Those space stations will be like characters you must level up. To level up an alliance’s space station you will have to create alliance’s missions summoning aliens that will attack your space station. The higher level your space station is the more challenging the mission will be and the more dangerous it will be to lose your space station in the process. But isn’t it lame to lose your alliance’s space station? Well there’s a need to have some risk to get the adrenaline flowing! And if you want rewards you will have to risk a bit. I’ll keep the rewards secrets for now as yes you guessed it… it’s not final yet.

Those events will be like raids I guess but raids that don’t have any level requirement. Maybe you can just assume a support role by “healing” (ugh… I hate that word for a sci-fi MMO but that’s the easiest way to understand what you will be able to do) your friends with a cheap spaceship or maybe you can be assigned to build new defense turrets. No matter what the spaceship you have you will be able to participate. This means that from day one you can help your alliance to get your space station to the next level! Great isn’t it?…

And what about PvP?

Oh the headaches I had about PvP in Star Corsairs… First idea? Mini EVE Online… Bad idea. Too hardcore. EVE Online is already doing a fine job for this type of players anyway. Better idea? Issue challenges to other alliances.

I have no freaking idea how to make a MMORTS work with real-time destroyable objectives (well it’s not an RTS but EVE Online IMHO plays like an MMORTS when it comes to space stations that can be destroyed). SWG had vulnerability times (meaning you could destroy a base during a 1 hour time span) but bases were so meaningless that the whole concept just felt like it was thrown out the window at the last-minute.

Planetside? Everything was always in danger so it was just a matter of who is online the most… Really not fun if you try to appeal to more casual players. So what is that magnificent answer of mine?… Well nothing magnificent really. Just something that makes sense. Let players have PvP if they want to and let players who want to have PvP have the biggest bragging rights… Or something like this…

“We will pull down the shield of our space station for 2 hours Wednesday so come challenge us if you think you can beat us. The stakes are at 1,000 credits per spaceships”. Yeah I’m just basically allowing team deathmatch instead of having a real totally fully sandbox hardcore world. And that’s for the best I think. There’s no PvP concept I’d like to create that I’d like to play so I’m going with something I’d like to play even if it’s a bit less exciting to create. Want to make some credits by destroying other players? You’ll have to risk some credits yourself.

PvP is consensual. Always. But those risking the most gets to claim control over space sectors. What do you get for claiming control over space sectors? That’s to come. But honestly people don’t need much to get into PvP. Just knowing they can defeat other people is often enough. And for the kind of game I want to create it’s the only way I can go. I want people to have fun when they can have fun. I don’t want to force people into the game just because they need to defend a space station. Don’t do PvP for some time and you’ll lose your benefits. That’s all. You won’t lose your “work”. You only risk what you can humanly risk. I surely won’t penalize someone just because he/she needs to spend more time with their kids some night they should be defending their space station. That’s just stupid. And since the majority of gamers is now over 30 most of them probably don’t have the same time a 16 years old have to spend on a game. Again my point is to create opportunities to have fun when you have time to have fun.

There’s nothing new here

Yeah I know. You can associate everything I’ve said here to some game or another. That’s just how I’ll handle it but that’s also how I think not much space MMOs are handling it. I won’t get everything right I’m sure. That’s not the point. I’m just trying to combine some of the last 30 years or more into my own recipe. So far I think it’s fun and all I’m hoping is that enough people will think it’s fun too so I can keep improving this game on a full-time basis. No glory no fame just doing what I like to do…