Hi, got 5 hours down now and have some feedback and suggestion.
1st: Ai prioritizing. The Ai needs to get a lot smarter at handling what it needs to be doing. Is there an emergency, than the characters shouldn't just run past it. One of the crew might be dying on the floor and they just run past him/her. No-one goes to visit the medical bay, so I ended up on every game I started with a lot of people limping around.
There is also the issue with Ai not building things unless the object in question is set to be prioritized. So I end up just having to double click everything I want to be built. Also, if I am not to have control over the Ai characters, they really need to better prioritize their own needs.
2nd: Player feedback. As a gamedev myself I can see what you're going for with having as much as possible of the feedback be visual ques and as much as possible be with the context sensitive mouse prompt(I'll get to that too). But it is just not enough. There really needs to be some onscreen icons if I have disabled something, some progress bars when the Ai is building something, a build queue list of sorts to see what is being worked on by the Ai. Because at present I as a player have no idea what is going on. I just have to set up stuff and hope that they get done. I'm all for theme hospital style games were you don't have direct control over the characters, but there really should be some kind of job-assignment system. Assign a person to be a builder, a medic etc. Also maybe see in the window when you mouse over them what they are focused on atm. Ex. "going to get some sleep". The e-mail system is neat for getting insight to what they are in need of, but there really needs to be more. All in all there needs to be more useful information available to the player. Other things like how much power the base/rooms uses would be great to know instead of having that be in an e-mail at a random time. This information might be available when you build that wall screen, I wouldn't know because they never bothered building it.
Other things that would be nice to know is what is the build cost of things. At present I have no idea. Also how much build materials do I have.
In general, as a player who has no direct control, more information is needed. And it needs to be streamlined and accessible.4
3rd: Mouse pointer context menus. I do like the idea of it, but it need some work. It is just too many buttons and the dotted visuals make it hard to intuitively know what is the front and back of stuff. My suggestion is to turn of zoom when in build mode, and have the mouse wheel either rotate the object or scroll through the menu, and have Q & E do rotation. The R & T for rotation or mouse click just feels awkward.
4th: More management control. It goes back to the player feedback in some ways, but at present I don't feel like I am managing much at all. I don't know what things cost, I don't know what I have and I don't know what I need( apart from I need to mine more). This leaves me wondering what is going on, what can I do, what can't I do etc. It just leaves me terribly frustrated.
1. Sometimes when I build a door they just build it half finished with only the door frame being finished. They never complete it and the pop-up text just says that it is still being built. This leads to temperature drop.
2. Doors not closing when they are facing into the mind out caves. The other doors might close, but the ones facing the caves just sits open letting all the heat out.
3. Ai clustering and getting stuck. I had several Ais cluster in front of the smelter and just getting stuck there. Had worked just fine until I build a second smelter on the back side of the first one. The Ai clustered on the input side.
I love these types of games and I love the premise of this game. But it does need to be more streamlined before it is even close to prime time. All in all it is just frustrating to even try to play this at the moment, but as a fellow dev I can see the gem hiding behind all the stuff that hasn't been ironed out or even built in the code yet. So keep at it! I'll be sure to keep trying this out when ever you patch it, and I'll be damn sure to come knocking with feedback
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