Feedback on v0.7.3

Buzz Aldrin's Space Program Manager (SPM) Road to the Moon is the ultimate game of space exploration.

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jgf1123
Corporal - 5 cm Pak 38
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Feedback on v0.7.3

Post by jgf1123 » Tue Nov 05, 2013 7:52 am

Here are my notes from tonight:

1) SET Center: It's unclear what some things mean. What's the star for? What's the lightbulb mean? That's the sort of thing that should be in the ? help button or delayed hover text. Also, it would be really great if there was a way to get the exact numbers for the stats because anything from 80 to 89 displays as 8 boxes. What quantize it this much in the first place?

I'm pretty sure I have 11 SETs in the basic building that says it only holds 10.

You should either use a scrolling window (all personnel on one page, but you have scroll to see them) or display as many items as possible on one page (without scrolling) and then flip pages to see more, but not both; otherwise you force the user to navigate two sets of controls to do the same job: look at personnel. The former option seems to be more common, and I think it is the better choice.

1.5) Hiring: It would be nice to have a sorting or filtering system so players can find the hires they're looking for.

Are salaries tied to anything? I'm basically ignoring it and hiring people based on stats.

The hiring text should be changed to warn the player this is their only chance to hire this year.

2) Headquarters: It takes way too many clicks to navigate to a particular mission. While I understand you have a hierarchy of location -> category -> program -> mission -> configuration, I think most of the time players are concentrated on a relatively small number of projects at a time, and so that's what they want at their fingertips.

Since reliability progress slows as it gets higher, it would be nice to have a way of projecting reliability past the next season. Even one more season would do. This would help with scheduling of missions.

3) Mission Configuration: Since earning prestige is key to the game, it would be good if somewhere players were told how they earn prestige. The "(1st), (2nd), (3rd)" isn't self-explanatory, though I assume old BARIS players get it.

Also, the past tense in "Goals Achieved" implies that the player has already earned those goals. This should probably be replaced with a 0/3 or something. Maybe even, if the player clicks or hovers, they go to the page where they see the goals.

Mission Control Layout uses "Booster" and "Flight Director." These terms do not appear on the stats for Flight Controllers. Either "Booster" or "Propulsion" should be changed to fit the other. I'm not even sure what "Flight Director" does besides require another Flight Controller. Also, in the Mission Step screen, the Flight Controllers Involved are represented with an icon and no verbal description of what skills are important.

3.5) When a Program Category is unavailable, it tells you what goals need to be met to open it. However, if a mission configuration is unavailable, I don't know how to find out what goals need to be unlocked. If it's simply, "do the mission above," a small arrow would be helpful.

4) Main screen: 3.1955 may get interpreted as March 1955, then people wonder where 4-12 went. Suggest picking 3 seasons and using those names.

5) Schedule Mission: My guess is that the button to automatically assign personnel goes through each job in turn and picks the best person from those remaining. This can be suboptimal if one person is the best choice for more than one spot. The button should search for the combination that maximizes the likelihood of success. For example, in the extended Sputnik mission, the only Flight Controller that seems to matter is the Spacecraft Systems person, yet it seems the Booster person is selected first.

Also, the Mission Control Layout for Sputnik uses "Trajectory" and a compass icon, but the skill used is "Spaceplane Systems." For X-15, the selection screen says "Space Plane Systems" but while selecting personnel the "Crew and Payloads" skill is highlighted. I'm very confused now.

6) It would be nice if personnel skills changed over time, as people tend to do when they work for years in a field. Skills they use should tend to go up while skills they do not use tend to go down.

7) One of the keys in BARIS was managing what launch vehicles were allowed for which missions. It was part of making your operation lean and efficient, with rocket selection affecting your choice of modules and vice versa. This seems pretty much ignored in BASPM since most missions have their own rocket which has to be R&D'd afresh. I'm not complaining that more SETs are needed for R&D; I'm saying that part of the strategy of the game is missing because these are key decisions removed from the player's plate, and the game is less as a result.

Nacho84
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Re: Feedback on v0.7.3

Post by Nacho84 » Tue Nov 05, 2013 9:53 pm

Hello jgf1123,

Thank you for the feedback. Apologies, even though I read all posts, I don't have the time to answer each one of them point by point, so I'll answer some of your points if that's OK.

Regarding the SET center, the lightbulb is the 'Learning Capacity' of the individual. The 'Star' indicates whether the employee has been sent to advanced training. These features have not been implemented yet, but obviously they are in the roadmap. Personnel skills will change with time, that's on the roadmap as well.

I'll create at some point a sticky post in the forum explaining some of the game internals. In a nutshell, the Flight Controllers only kick-in if there's been a failure with the components (think of them as a 'saving throw' from Dungeons & Dragons). The Flight Director's skills have an impact on that calculation.

Regarding 7), we're trying to come up with a solution in order to allow the use of any rocket for any payload (provided that the rocket has enough power to deploy the payload :) ). I'm still not very happy about the idea of showing an animation where the rocket and the payload doesn't match with what you selected. BARIS kinda got away with it, but I'm not very happy about doing that. Eventually we'll figure out how to sort it, but yes, several players have expressed dissatisfaction with the fact that they are not able to mix and match boosters and payloads, so we will address that at some point.

Cheers,
Ignacio Liverotti
Lead Developer of Buzz Aldrin's Space Program Manager

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Altarotw
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Re: Feedback on v0.7.3

Post by Altarotw » Wed Nov 06, 2013 7:48 am

Regarding 7), we're trying to come up with a solution in order to allow the use of any rocket for any payload (provided that the rocket has enough power to deploy the payload ). I'm still not very happy about the idea of showing an animation where the rocket and the payload doesn't match with what you selected. BARIS kinda got away with it, but I'm not very happy about doing that. Eventually we'll figure out how to sort it, but yes, several players have expressed dissatisfaction with the fact that they are not able to mix and match boosters and payloads, so we will address that at some point.
HALLLELUYAAH :D

Italianfan88
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Re: Feedback on v0.7.3

Post by Italianfan88 » Wed Nov 06, 2013 12:29 pm

Altarotw wrote:
Regarding 7), we're trying to come up with a solution in order to allow the use of any rocket for any payload (provided that the rocket has enough power to deploy the payload ). I'm still not very happy about the idea of showing an animation where the rocket and the payload doesn't match with what you selected. BARIS kinda got away with it, but I'm not very happy about doing that. Eventually we'll figure out how to sort it, but yes, several players have expressed dissatisfaction with the fact that they are not able to mix and match boosters and payloads, so we will address that at some point.
HALLLELUYAAH :D
I hope that will be implemented while keeping the border between carrier rockets and man-rated rockets. I don't know if one of the latter might be used to launch a probe or some other cargo, but no space agency worthy of its name would launch a capsule on a non man-rated booster.

kokubokan25
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Re: Feedback on v0.7.3

Post by kokubokan25 » Wed Nov 06, 2013 1:31 pm

Regarding 7), we're trying to come up with a solution in order to allow the use of any rocket for any payload (provided that the rocket has enough power to deploy the payload :) ). I'm still not very happy about the idea of showing an animation where the rocket and the payload doesn't match with what you selected. BARIS kinda got away with it, but I'm not very happy about doing that. Eventually we'll figure out how to sort it, but yes, several players have expressed dissatisfaction with the fact that they are not able to mix and match boosters and payloads, so we will address that at some point.
Yipieeeee!! Great news...

stile86
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Re: Feedback on v0.7.3

Post by stile86 » Sat Nov 09, 2013 2:39 am

Yes, good to hear.
I am enjoying the early game as it is and I can see how it is still challenging. However the ability to decide on your launch vehicle would add a huge amount to the possibilities and definitely increase the game appeal in my opinion.

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