2019-07-15 19:21:56

Most of the time, when a fleet scatters, they scatter to the nearest compass points around whatever they hit. At that point, once you have found one, you have found them all through the uses of the n key.
If they scatter all across known space, it's honestly just easier to write off the fleet, use whatever detections you got and maybe if you're lucky you will grab a few and get them to a safe port. Also make use of your capital ships when you can!

The easiest way I have found to do things is to jump through all your colonies with K and Shift K, make sure all your ships are fleeted up, or at least, if they are not, they are waiting to be, and use of V to see if that unit has any orders, or shift V on a location to see if anything has autopilot set to that location.

Shift V is really useful when fleet 108 gets disbanded, but you don't remember which fleet 108 was, so just check all the places which you had fleets going to with shift V.

Example:

Fleet 108 gets disbanded. Me, being the forgetful person have three current objectives. One, fleet headed to Wevoca, one headed to Gehenna, and one to Bolivar. I know my fleet to bolivar is fine because it is massive and will be held together if it comes across a hazard. My other two though it could be different because they were colonization fleets and not quite so robust, so I go to Wevoca hit shift V, nope, fleet 105 is still on course, so it must be Gehenna. So I go to Gehenna, then start walking my view around the map until I get to wherever I launched from and find my missing fleet.

Alternatively, if you are feeling ambitious, if you knew the composition of the fleet, cycle through with y, to a type of ship, colony ship for instance, and then go through with S since that will only focus on unfleeted colony ships.

Spoilers again maybe:

Ships only move north south east or west. You will not move on slopes, or northeast, northwest southeast southwest. Plan accordingly.

thanks,
Michael

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2019-07-15 21:00:36

Aaron here.

For Dark, have you been launching the games using the shortcuts, or via the launch what ever.exe file? E.g. Launch_eks.exe? The launcher is what starts Guidedog Client. You may run ExpandingKnownSpace.exe directly but if Guidedog isn't running it won't be able to access it. You should be able to sign in during or shortly after the game if it is behaving as intended, but you would receive a notification about that. Your stats show up as a Lightning Game, so I wonder did you pick that manually, or did you have to hit escape on the activation screen and skip all the way past that process.

Oh, on second thought, thee escape to continue thing would be the same if you haven't purchased yet, and so not so obvious.

Sorry, I haven't woke up properly today.

Lastly, the last line of your stats are all 0's because it was unable to save the win or loss to the account, as you explained.

As for your suggestions, some good ones here. We'll definitely consider these, especially since some of this was already on the road map but we had to side line them or else we wouldn't ever get this crazy thing out. Fleet scattering is definitely a, well, you know what lol. The battleship will help prevent that in most but not all cases. The hazard that caused it will be reported in detections review menu, so the d hotkey will probably list it and you may press enter there to visit the location where it happened. Ideally, the scattered ships are nearby, but if they spread out all across known space, as Jeremy said, your sensor net just got grown, may as well either write them off or plan something different for them.

Thanks for your interest!

Valiant Galaxy Associates Company, owned by Aaron Spears and Jeremy Brown develops and markets audiogames for the Blind and Low Vision markets.

2019-07-15 21:18:40

Ok, let me respond to a few of the issues.  Although, Michael it looks like has been doing my job for me.

SLJ:

I know this isn't the same thing as what you're asking, but you can modify how quickly the voice pauses between words in the settings menu. Perhaps not 100% helpful, but I find that once I set the voice settings differently from the default settings, I like them better.    As to the messages, the most important ones can be reviewed with the d hot key in movement phase.  This will tell you ship detections, hazards your ships hit last round, planets the enemy has colonized that you possessed, and a few other items.

Unfortunately, creating a review of each item command would slow the game down a lot in a big game. We had a text log being created for beta testing purposes, and the performance did go down significantly with that activated.  That said, it's something we'd be willing to implement again if enough customers want  it, and we could probably arrange an option to use it or not in settings.

Dark:

It is a learning curve.  It took our testers a month or so to get the hang of it, though they didn't have all the tools in the final version of the game.  Michael's suggestions about fleet scatter are useful as his suggestions about v and shift v.  As to ships awaiting orders.

The system I use for this is to group ships for different purposes, and this is actually partialy how the AI handles things.  So for instance, I might group ships on a planet to a fleet, use that fleet as a defense fleet.  The next ships I buy on that planet, I group together as a fleet to go colonize the next planet over. So on and so forth.  It isn't perhaps as elegant as your o shift o idea, but again, in a long game you can run into thousands of ships on the board.  A lot of the logging/saving information things are the best compromise we found between performance, playability  and smoothe operation.

As to the sound scape issues: I strongly encourage anyone who wants a larger sound scape to play a game of eks set on the highest difficulty they can manage, then to play it on military victory condition only, and defensive mode for the AI.  I think this will illustrate why we didn't go this route in the best way.  Colonization sounds could be added, and wouldn't be a big deal.  However, explosions or other things at the end of battles or when fleets are disbanded can be very annoying.  If you've ever had 100 destroyers scattered by a hazard then had to wait through dozens of reports of what happens to them and where they end up, along with the hazard noises that inevitably accompany this, then you will understand.  We're not opposed to adding more sounds, but we consciously avoided this for the player's benefit, not to deny you an audio game.

In answer to your rendezvous question there's no way to tell multiple ships all over the board where to go currently.  However, if you have say three ships close to each other, you can use shift a or control to make them all go to the same place, fleet them up, gather up the next set, etc.  Shift a allows you to choose a destination then hit enter at the destination making a selected ship or fleet go directly there.  Control a allows all ships in the square to go to the same location using the same format control a then enter on the destination. 

Your lightning game looked good.  Lightning game made a good demo mode for  the game, but it is not indicative of how the whole game plays in the way I would have preferred.  However, it avoids giving you a good start on a game, then stopping and saying neener neener buy the game, which is also annoying.

We are listening guys, and we are discussing the issues brought up.

As to GDG issues, I"m not sure what that could be other than your Windows Defender messing with the Guidedog client.  I hate to suggest it, cause you're already having so many issues, but you might try downloading the client again, reinstalling, and putting it in with your audiogames and see if that fixes the   issues.  Annoying, but I personally don't have a clue beyond that.  Course, I"m not the computer savvy part of this team.

Thanks again folks, we appreciate all the feedback negative and positive, and we like that people are taking an interest.  I hope a few people try buying it and see the fuller game experience. I might play through a game and post stats and highlights here.  Also, if any ambitious users do buy the game and want to post a video of the play, it might be very useful to others. 

As I said in the tips and tricks section in the documentation, you don't need all the hot keys, but a number of them are useful, and learning those dozen or score are really helpful.

Jeremy

Valiant Galaxy Associates Company, owned by Aaron Spears and Jeremy Brown develops and markets audiogames for the Blind and Low Vision markets.

2019-07-15 22:11:10

If nobody has done it by this Thursday, I can throw a quick demo together and put it in dropbox.

Dark, I had suggested adding some sort of comment system in order to remember what your fleets were doing, but as I played and they added more features, I found it became a lot less necessary. With my playstyle, I may have a thousand ships on the board, but they are combined into maybe at most four massive fleets. Jeremy uses much smaller faster-moving fleets but a lot more, but still probably no more than three or four objectives at a time, and less if we can get away with it. Still, autopilot is amazing, and I will set a fleet then forget about it until it either disbands or gets where it is going, both of which notify me at the resolution phase of the round.

thanks,
Michael

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2019-07-16 03:46:00

Ok, see it's so good, the designer didn't even know about this. lol.

Ok, Daark, I was rereadingthe documentation, and in a section Aaron amended, I found this, which will somewhat answer your rendezvous question in a different way than I did.

Shift+A and Ctrl+A are intercompatible from any number of locations, but to a single destination at a time. You may select all ships on one square using Ctrl+A or Shift+A, then add more ships from other locations using shift+A and or ctrl+A. Once you've got all units you want selected, pressing enter at their destination will set them all up to convene there. When setting various ships and fleets to more than one destination, it is necessary to mark the ones for a single destination, then press enter at the destination before marking another set and pressing enter elsewhere.


I hope that helps somewhat.  I've been doing it the hard way smile

Take care,

Jeremy

Valiant Galaxy Associates Company, owned by Aaron Spears and Jeremy Brown develops and markets audiogames for the Blind and Low Vision markets.

2019-07-16 05:31:29

@28,  like i said, the game is playable and i  purchased it few hours ago.
but i did not receive my account fully access, i don't know why.
about the sound,  you maybe  look at the same kind of game like starcraft, and reasonmoon, for this theme, or in  audio games, soundrts have  great mod and sounds, and i need control  like 8  kinds  of unit and each kind have about 30, it should be like 250, i do agree that maybe  down some speed, but  sounds is ok, so this is  the point.
what about the game is i  suggest a grouping ship and can give a custom name,so you can know your group easier, like name A stands for attack, i can give name A1, A2 and so on, E for explore them E1 and E2, and can use a hotkey like number key to get to each group and use hotkey F to switch the grouping item, it should help.

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2019-07-16 08:33:45

Hi.
@drums61999 and @VGA:
Thanks for your informative replies. I'll give it an other try and do my best to understand how the game works. Sounds like the game is much more complex than I thought. big_smile
Sorry to say but: Windows Defender is a pest. It keeps changing settings randomly when it's being updated. I chose other solutions because I simply won't spend my time fighting against this damn program, which always try to take the control.

Best regards SLJ.
If you like the post, then please give it a thumps up.
Feel free to contact me privately if you have something in mind. If you do so, then please send me a mail instead of using the private message on the forum, since I don't check those very often.
Happy gaming... :D

2019-07-16 10:15:21

I am realy realy so sorry to say, that the selfvoicing makes this totaly unplayable for me. I will not go deeper with this cause it would be a little unfair. I will only say one thing.
It is like you would deliver the game with its own triangular blue screen with green letters.

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2019-07-16 11:00:30

I've played a few lightning games and will likely be purchasing soon. One quality of life feature I'd like to see, for all VGA games, is to have a way to return to the main menu after completing a game. It's kind of silly to have to exit the program and relaunch if you want to play again.

2019-07-16 11:56:43

Hi and thanks for the info.

I was running the game with the shortcut in the start menu which did indeed lead to launch.exe (I checked). 
though oddly enough this morning it seems to be working, and I was given the guide dog client window to login, so  goodness only knows.

Usually when windows firewall objects to something I get a bling and a notification asking me if I want to let a program through, as happened with Crazy party for example.

Oddly enough I've not had issues with Windows defender  accept the problem with BGT games, which is easy to solve by creating an exceptions folder, so this is slightly confusing me. I wonder if perhaps Malware bites is causing the problem?  I usually just have the free version and run scans occasionally, but at the moment I've got a trial of the full version, running which includes real time pprotection and has objected to a couple of websites and other things I've run into, and I suspect is a bit more zealous than windows defender in blocking things it does not like.

Either way, it seems to be working this morning which is craaaazy! so I wcan try a couple more games and see how they go.

I'm still getting used to shortcuts and likely forgetting what v actually does, so I'll give that a try.
With sounds, while I understand you not necessarily wanting sounds for each and everything that's going on, at the same time the game does feel a bit too plane right now, especially compared to the audio for something like interceptor.

You could consider giving audio warnings for first event of a given type in a given set of alerts, or for certain menus and situations, for example colonisation, fleet scattering etc.

Well I'll give the game another try today and see how things work out.

With our dreaming and singing, Ceaseless and sorrowless we! The glory about us clinging Of the glorious futures we see,
Our souls with high music ringing; O men! It must ever be
That we dwell in our dreaming and singing, A little apart from ye. (Arthur O'Shaughnessy 1873.)

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2019-07-16 12:26:53

Snow,

Please contact us using our email form on the web site, give us your gdg user name and any messages you're getting about the account not being activated, and we'll talk to Dentin and make sure this gets straightened out.

Also, your suggestion about labeling fleets was made during beta test.  We had this in our bucket list until late in the process when the beta testers suggested that they didn't think it was necessary after all.  It is definitely something we can easily put back into the mix as a possible update.

Firefly: I understand the frustration with the voice, and can only say that we like using it and refer you to the FAQ for our reasoning.  This is going to be a large turn off for many people, but for now, we're committed to staying with this.

Dark:

Glad you got it working at least on a pro tem basis. 

As to your suggestion about first events that's a possibility.  Fleet scattering already gets notified as it's only caused by hazards.  However, point taken, and we'll discuss it.

SLJ:

Thanks for giving it another try.  It is an extremely complex game in some ways.  As I said elsewhere the demo is a good way to show how the game works, but it's not indicative of a full version game.  Lightninng game focuses on colonization, and the fastest way to play it is to buy only colony ships and spread out as fast and as far as possible ignoring enemy ships.

In the regular game, this is a viable solution for about the first 8 or 9 turns, but usually by ten or twelve, the AI has begun finding your forces, and if you haven't been escorting ships, or at least building up defense fleets, things will get hairy very quickly.

One last side note:

There's three places in the documentation where a subset of hot  keys are listed.  A very subpar set imo is the one in quickstart.  That is enough to play, but not much more.  The one in tips and tricks number 17 is much better.  The hot key section itself, while it is long, could be copied, pasted, and cut down to just the ones you want to use a lot.  For us and the betas, we had to get used to hot keys incrementally, and as shown by my unawareness of the extra functionality Aaron had coded for shift a and control a, there's some things that not all of us were using. 

Great suggestions, and we appreciate it.  i'll be interested to see the reaction of people who have purchased the full game and completed a full game outside of lightning mode.

Jeremy

Valiant Galaxy Associates Company, owned by Aaron Spears and Jeremy Brown develops and markets audiogames for the Blind and Low Vision markets.

2019-07-16 12:48:00

Interestingly enough, I thought exactly the same thing as far as colony ships go, indeed towards the end of this game I was trying to make a strike force to do an attack by moving my fleets to a central point, but it didn't quite work out that way and I just ended up using cash on battle ships I didn't need, but hay I still won, buahahahaha!

One suggestion I do have, is it'd be nice to distinguish at a glance when a fleet does or does not have a colony ship attached by looking at the fleet, since when I've got six or seven fleets and some have reached their destinations and some have not, its a trifle difficult to remember when one has got a colony ship and when one hasn't, especially since obviously a fleet needs a new colony ship once its colonised a planet.

So for  example "friendly colonisation fleet one" which then just changes to "friendly fleet one" when it has done its colonising.

Theoretically the same could be done for battle ships, with "war fleet" but obviously in the lightning game I've not really played long enough for it to make a major difference as yet.

Actually this game was rather fun, albeit some very stupid enemy ships decided to switch sides whilst sitting next to massive enemy fleets, so I lost ships that I really shouldn't big_smile.

Game Statistics for Playthrough of VGA Expanding Known Space, Version (21).

The player beat the game! woohoo!

The game lasted 36 minutes 54 seconds  and ended on Tuesday, July 16, 2019 at 11:37 AM.

The war between you (the solarian federation) and the enemy (the interstellar union) started in 2850 and ended in 2852 (10 turns, with the solarian federation victorious.
Game was in normal difficulty. Mission lightning game was enabled.
The enemy was in normal mode.
the solarian federation finished with 7 colonies (17%) with the most ever held  being 7. the interstellar union finished with 4 colonies (10%) with the most ever held being 4.
the solarian federation colonized 0 of 1 asteroid belts, 1 of 7 space stations, 2 of 3 ice planets, 2 of 7 volcanic planets, 0 of 4 ocean planets and 2 of 18 earth type planets.
the interstellar union colonized 0 of 1 asteroid belts, 0 of 7 space stations, 0 of 3 ice planets, 1 of 7 volcanic planets, 0 of 4 ocean planets and 3 of 18 earth type planets.
At the end, the solarian federation was making 50 credits for 13% of the total income, the interstellar union was making 51 credits for 13% of the total income.
the solarian federation made a total of 423 credits, the interstellar union made a total of 420.
the solarian federation spent 0 on intelligence gathering, the interstellar union spent 20.
the solarian federation purchased 15 interceptors, 4 destroyers, 7 frigates, 3 cruisers, 4 battle ships and 8 colony ships for a total of 41.
the interstellar union purchased 27 interceptors, 9 destroyers, 0 frigates, 12 cruisers, 0 battle ships and 3 colony ships for a total of 51.
the solarian federation lost 1 interceptors, 2 destroyers, 0 frigates, 1 cruisers, 0 battle ships and 1 colony ships for a total of 5 (4 lost in combat, 1 lost to hazards).
the interstellar union lost 0 interceptors, 0 destroyers, 0 frigates, 0 cruisers, 0 battle ships and 0 colony ships for a total of 0 (0 lost in combat, 0 lost to hazards).
the solarian federation lost 0 ships to changing loyalties, the interstellar union lost 4.
you have won 0 military, 0 colonization, 0 economic, 0 capital control and 1 mission victories and you have lost 0 military, 0 colonization, 0 economic, 0 capital control and 0 missions for a total of 1 wins, 0 losses.

With our dreaming and singing, Ceaseless and sorrowless we! The glory about us clinging Of the glorious futures we see,
Our souls with high music ringing; O men! It must ever be
That we dwell in our dreaming and singing, A little apart from ye. (Arthur O'Shaughnessy 1873.)

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2019-07-16 13:29:51

I'm posting this because I think it might illustrate some of the points I'm wanting to make.  In the game I just played, I was repeatedly attacked by large fleets, mostly composed of battleships.  the AI loves battleships.  It was actually this AI strategy that got me more interested in using them. 

This game was played in ouch that’s not fair mode.  This mode gives the AI two of every type of ship on each of its three starting planets for a total of 36 ships.  The AI also gets a multiplier of 2.5 times the normal credits in this mode each turn.  I began play with Earth, Terra Nova, and Einstein Station.  This gave me an initial starting income of 32 credits per turn.  I got extremely lucky with my placement.  Zion was two squares south of Earth, Vesta was two south and two east.  Darling was one north and two west, and Gehenna was three north.  With my other two planets, not so lucky.  Bubba was two north and one east of Terra Nova, but Einstein station was on the edge of the board and only 3 west and 1 south from Terra nova. 

My strategy was to build nothing but colony ships for the first 8 turns or so.  I spread out quickly, and managed to have about 100 credits a turn and 8 or 9 planets by the end of turn 10.  I had started defending Terra nova and Earth by then, placing battleships, cruisers, and other ships there.  I continued expanding, though as I got more credits, I began escorting colony ships as I was seeing enemy fleets by this time.  During the last quarter of the game I found Bolivar, but was only able to launch one aborted attack on it.  By contrast, the AI found Earth and launched 5 attacks on it.  I managed to repel all of them, but it was a near thing in one case.  He also occupied several of my planets which denied me the credits from them.  I reached colonization victory condition and kept pushing to try and colonize new planets, or at least frustrate his movements.  I managed to colonize Ultima Station on the last turn of the game, and he did the same with planet Bubba.  However, since both of these occurred in the last round, they were not able to become full colonizations and therefore are not reflected in the statistics below.

Game Statistics for Playthrough of VGA Expanding Known Space, Version (21).

The player beat the game! woohoo!

The game lasted 45 minutes  and ended on Tuesday, July 16, 2019 at 6:12 AM.

The war between you (the solarian federation) and the enemy (the interstellar union) started in 2850 and ended in 2856 (27 turns, with the solarian federation victorious.
Game was in ouch that's really not fair difficulty.
Military victory condition was assigned - was not met
Colonization victory condition was assigned (60%) - the solarian federation met this condition with 60% for 4 seasons
Economic victory condition was assigned (60%) - was not met
Capital Control victory condition was assigned - was not met
The enemy was in normal mode.
the solarian federation finished with 24 colonies (60%) with the most ever held  being 25. the interstellar union finished with 7 colonies (17%) with the most ever held being 9.
the solarian federation colonized 0 of 1 asteroid belts, 3 of 7 space stations, 3 of 3 ice planets, 6 of 7 volcanic planets, 2 of 4 ocean planets and 10 of 18 earth type planets.
the interstellar union colonized 0 of 1 asteroid belts, 1 of 7 space stations, 0 of 3 ice planets, 0 of 7 volcanic planets, 1 of 4 ocean planets and 5 of 18 earth type planets.
At the end, the solarian federation was making 224 credits for 58% of the total income, the interstellar union was making 200 credits for 20% of the total income.
the solarian federation made a total of 3983 credits, the interstellar union made a total of 4536.
the solarian federation spent 0 on intelligence gathering, the interstellar union spent 130.
the solarian federation purchased 114 interceptors, 87 destroyers, 18 frigates, 47 cruisers, 63 battle ships and 35 colony ships for a total of 364.
the interstellar union purchased 51 interceptors, 8 destroyers, 35 frigates, 7 cruisers, 142 battle ships and 16 colony ships for a total of 259.
the solarian federation lost 27 interceptors, 32 destroyers, 6 frigates, 9 cruisers, 10 battle ships and 7 colony ships for a total of 91 (87 lost in combat, 4 lost to hazards).
the interstellar union lost 25 interceptors, 7 destroyers, 9 frigates, 5 cruisers, 78 battle ships and 4 colony ships for a total of 128 (118 lost in combat, 10 lost to hazards).
the solarian federation lost 0 ships to changing loyalties, the interstellar union lost 1.
you have won 0 military, 1 colonization, 0 economic, 0 capital control and 23 mission victories and you have lost 0 military, 0 colonization, 0 economic, 0 capital control and 9 missions for a total of 1 wins, 0 losses.

A couple of things to notice here.  I didn't bother with gather intelligence in this game.  I do use it, but it's best when you have five credits left overe, and no real need for another interceptor at the time.  Gather intelligence can tell you what the AI is spending, how much it's spending on certain activities, location of planets or hazards, or give you a slight edge in the next round's combat.  That said, as you can see by looking at the AI expenditure, it can be a drain on your resources over a long time.  However, if you're getting 2.5 times your normal credits? why not?  Further, the AI concentrates on big ships that move slow.  That provides opportunities for the player.  bTW, we didn't intend to have the AI emphasize this way, this was an unexpected side effect of the algorithm we used.  however, it is an effective strategy, so we left it in place.  As you can see, I stole two of the AI's colonies from it, which helps, especially in higher difficulties.  Between that and spreading out so quickly, this allowed me to out colonize the AI.

Hope this helps to give a better notion of game play.  My time is exceptionally short.  Our beta team generally runs longer, though I think it's mostly to their insistence on overwhelming firepower.  I tend to use a lot of small forces and stay on the move, hitting where there's a weakness or an opening, and then moving on.  Both strategies work btw.

Take care,

Jeremy

Valiant Galaxy Associates Company, owned by Aaron Spears and Jeremy Brown develops and markets audiogames for the Blind and Low Vision markets.

2019-07-16 13:42:42

That was a really quick game, and Jeremy beat it quickly enough that it didn't have 2000 bbattleships to his couple hundred.
A few keystrokes I use all the time are:
A, shift A, control A (all the autopilot commands), C and shift c (fleet composition and enemy fleet composition), the damage keys (I get these confused if I'm not actually playing so look them up), E, F, Q, S, and y (ship selection keys).

It is also good to note that you can move ships with either shift or control arrows, and you will see them move in realtime rather than setting autopilot. Useful if your fleet is in range of a destination, but could be possibly blocked by enemy forces before it can get there.

thanks,
Michael

Thumbs up

2019-07-16 14:26:17

Interesting stuff, and nice to see how a  full game would work.

I seem to have got the strategy for the lightning game, but obviously since that isn't the full game I can't compair too much, still, since in my last game I managed to slaughter the AI I probably am at the stage now where I need to decide to buy the game or not to get more experience.

One thing you might consider in demo terms, is perhaps a quick mission where the player could get combat experience, since  with the lightning game being what it is, I haven't really seen how fights work as yet. For example, I assume that its wise to station battle ships on planets since they can attack an enemy fleet in the next square along.

I still would like that o and shift o command to go through ships that need orders, but using more of the map commands and less of the menus did help me get a handle on things.

Either way here are the game stats:

Game Statistics for Playthrough of VGA Expanding Known Space, Version (21).

The player beat the game! woohoo!

The game lasted 32 minutes 30 seconds  and ended on Tuesday, July 16, 2019 at 1:21 PM.

The war between you (the solarian federation) and the enemy (the interstellar union) started in 2850 and ended in 2852 (10 turns, with the solarian federation victorious.
Game was in normal difficulty. Mission lightning game was enabled.
The enemy was in normal mode.
the solarian federation finished with 9 colonies (22%) with the most ever held  being 9. the interstellar union finished with 3 colonies (7%) with the most ever held being 3.
the solarian federation colonized 0 of 1 asteroid belts, 2 of 7 space stations, 0 of 3 ice planets, 2 of 7 volcanic planets, 0 of 4 ocean planets and 5 of 18 earth type planets.
the interstellar union colonized 0 of 1 asteroid belts, 1 of 7 space stations, 0 of 3 ice planets, 0 of 7 volcanic planets, 0 of 4 ocean planets and 2 of 18 earth type planets.
At the end, the solarian federation was making 91 credits for 24% of the total income, the interstellar union was making 32 credits for 8% of the total income.
the solarian federation made a total of 482 credits, the interstellar union made a total of 323.
the solarian federation spent 0 on intelligence gathering, the interstellar union spent 20.
the solarian federation purchased 14 interceptors, 11 destroyers, 12 frigates, 0 cruisers, 3 battle ships and 10 colony ships for a total of 50.
the interstellar union purchased 21 interceptors, 12 destroyers, 0 frigates, 8 cruisers, 0 battle ships and 1 colony ships for a total of 42.
the solarian federation lost 0 interceptors, 1 destroyers, 1 frigates, 0 cruisers, 0 battle ships and 0 colony ships for a total of 2 (0 lost in combat, 2 lost to hazards).
the interstellar union lost 0 interceptors, 0 destroyers, 0 frigates, 0 cruisers, 0 battle ships and 0 colony ships for a total of 0 (0 lost in combat, 0 lost to hazards).
the solarian federation lost 1 ships to changing loyalties, the interstellar union lost 0.
you have won 0 military, 0 colonization, 0 economic, 0 capital control and 2 mission victories and you have lost 0 military, 0 colonization, 0 economic, 0 capital control and 0 missions for a total of 2 wins, 0 losses.

With our dreaming and singing, Ceaseless and sorrowless we! The glory about us clinging Of the glorious futures we see,
Our souls with high music ringing; O men! It must ever be
That we dwell in our dreaming and singing, A little apart from ye. (Arthur O'Shaughnessy 1873.)

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2019-07-16 14:47:25

@VGA... with the fullest respect, but in my opinion you're not taking some of the playerbase's issues/requests into consideration.
For example, there have been posts regarding the flexibility of usable screenreaders in all of your games including this 1, as well as the voice that comes with them not being of the best quality, [to put it bluntly].
Then there are the problems regarding GDG, the main being the verification and constant requirement  of internet to play your games.
I respect that you are the developers of the games, but I also think improvement is needed where GDG is concerned, especially since we're supporting you also by buying them.

Though our eyes may fail, our ears prevail!
Don't forget to thumb up my posts :)

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2019-07-16 14:48:11

@VGA, i already sent a contact  mail using the application that   on the VGA website.
i do agree with dark, i said sound because  consider  the team using it in the interceptor, anyways  this is a good game, but, uhh,  because lag the ability  , i'm  not good at this kind of things, the problem is, i have more planet, but credits is not in lightning game, heh.

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2019-07-16 14:57:20

@Snow, the lightning game is unfortunately a little too easy to win it seems since the AI doesn't try to out colonise you or change its tactics too much for the game's objective.
Just build at least one colony ship a turn, look around each of your planets for uncolonised planets, send a fleet with your colony ship to an uncolonised planet, then wait until you can build a colony ship on that planet, add to the fleet and send it somewhere else, rinse and repeat.

I strongly suspect the main game is much more difficult in terms of tactics.
In particular, I am not sure from the lightning game how exactly fleet combat works since there haven't really been that many fights so far.

It might be helpful in the future to have a quick  mode specifically designed for combat experience, for example  ten turn game where the two capital planets are close together and the winner is the one with the most kills.

With our dreaming and singing, Ceaseless and sorrowless we! The glory about us clinging Of the glorious futures we see,
Our souls with high music ringing; O men! It must ever be
That we dwell in our dreaming and singing, A little apart from ye. (Arthur O'Shaughnessy 1873.)

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2019-07-16 17:33:11

Snow,
When last I had looked I hadn't seen your email.  We'll be sure to get on that asap.

Supersayan,

Oops, I forgot to look at your spelling of your handle before I started, my apologies.  We take it seriously, however, we also committed to this course for good reasons.  We also know that a number of people are fine with the self-voicing option.  Having both options creates double the code work for very little return.  Since there's only one of us coding, this will delay games even more, and for very little gain most likely.  That said, it's not off the table, it is just not something we have chosen to do in any of the four games released thus far, other than partially in Yellowbonnet.

As to the GDG usage, again, we have good reasons for using it.  It is a work in progress, but I believe if you look at a number of other game companies payment systems, it's no worse nor no better.  If you don't like either the voice nor the internet connection, then you're free to vote with your feet.  I'll be sad to lose someone who plays the games, but this point has been raised, and argued each time, and like religion it's mostly a matter of opinion.  If you want to play while in a car, internet connection is a problem.  If you want to have Sapi self-voicing is a problem.  Otherwise, they aren't issues.

I hate to be blunt about it, but frankly, it is what it is.  Aaron didn't put hours of work into the voicing not to use it.  We don't really wish to spend extra months writing in extra Sapi commands, and GDG connection accomplishes a number of things that we would otherwise have to use crappy hacks for. 

Dark:

Lightning game can result in combat and in a greater AI challenge on higher difficulty levels.  If you'd like I can play a lightning game on insane mode and show you the differences.  Lightning mode is perhaps not the best demo for combat, but the other short one is close quarters combat, and that one would be a slaughterfest for a new player.  I felt it would be too discouraging for players to play the demo and immediately get taken out. 

If players want to be immediately taken out, we can possibly add that as a second demo option in a later update.

The only other real choice would be to allow a game on normal mode and shut it down after 10 or 15 turns, which would be most unsatisfactory to me.  one of my biggest complaints when I played Time of Conflict's demo was that I would just start to get somewhere then hit the 100 turn limit. 

With all of the above issues excluding Snow's, all of these issues are places where compromises had to be made.  Compromises by definition don't please everyone.

Thanks for the feedback, it's appreciated.

Take care,

Jeremy

Valiant Galaxy Associates Company, owned by Aaron Spears and Jeremy Brown develops and markets audiogames for the Blind and Low Vision markets.

2019-07-16 17:48:18

Hi.
I hate to say this, but:
I think I've started to realise that this game isn't for me. Not saying that it is a bad game though.
I just read through the documentation again, trying to understand how the game works. I just simply don't get the basics. I start a new game, place my ships on Earth, because I don't know what else to do and why. Then I make a few random purchases, and finally sit there on the map, don't know what to do, don't know where to move and why. I only see my own three planets when arrowing around the map. But when pressing A, lots of other planets and stations are mentioned. I even don't know what is in focus when pressing A. It doesn't seem to be the planet I have selected with the arrow keys. So I'm just confused, and I have no idea on what's going on. All the information just feels overwhelming to me.
I feel stupid because I just don't get the basics of the gameplay. The manual just confuses me. I think I just have to realise that the game is not for me. It's simply too difficult for me to get the basics of the gameplay which is sad, because the game seems to be great when you have learned the basics.
What really frustrates me is that I'm finding it that difficult to just learn the basics. Normally, I don't find it that difficult to learn new games... smile

Best regards SLJ.
If you like the post, then please give it a thumps up.
Feel free to contact me privately if you have something in mind. If you do so, then please send me a mail instead of using the private message on the forum, since I don't check those very often.
Happy gaming... :D

2019-07-16 21:11:03

SLJ,

This might not help you, but I'll post this for anyone else it might.

When you first begin the game, placing your entire defense fleet on Earth is a good move.

The first few rounds you should purchase primarily colony ships.

If you hit the h key, you find Earth automatically.  You can use the n key to see what planets are nearby, or you can scroll two spaces to the east or west or north or south and scroll back and forth in five block lines with Earth as your central point.  In this example, if Earth is at 3,3 then you would start at 1,1 go to 5,1 then drop down a line, scroll back to 1,2 then do the same thing until you are at 5,5.

Then to look at the surroundings of the other two colonies use k and go to each planet in turn and look.  You want to send colonies to your nearest planets to those three colonies.  If you don't see any, which is possible, but highly unlikely, send colony ships out in a random direction.  You will find planets eventually.

If you then wish to check progress on your colony ships in later turns, you can hit y until you hear colony ships, then hit s to scroll through each ship.  V will show you the autonav destination on the ship if you have set one, n will show you what is within two squares of that ship.  In any menu, such as nearby, detection, goto, etc, hitting enter on a destination planet, ship, or square will take you to that location.

You're not the only person that has had this trouble.  We had one beta tester who dropped out because he had similar problems.  I skyped with him to try and over come the issues, and I'd be happy to correspond with you privately over email or skype chat if that might help. 

Strategy games of this complexity are not for everybody, and if it's giving you trouble, it's possible it's just not worth your time.  Alternatively, wait until someone videos it, and try it again.

I tried to make the documentation as clear as possible, but I designed the game, and no doubt did not explain things in the best way for all people. 

I hope this helps someone later.

Michael included a list earlier, but let me again list the hot keys I use most often:
escape in menus to rehear what ships I have left to place or that I have purchased.
Arrow keys to explore. Shift arrow to move ships and fleets.
shift a for single ships and fleet or control a to autonav ships or fleets.
c and shift c for composition of fleets. c is for your own, shift c for enemy fleets.
d for the detection menu
e for the fleet management menu.
f and shift f to cycle through fleets.
h for homing to capital planet
k for cycling through colonies
q for cycling through ships and fleets on a square
t for seeing current progress
v to see where a ship or fleet is going.
y followed by s to locate specific ships and what they are doing
z to see currently set mission and victory conditions as I play a lot of random missions.

If you add n for nearby scan and m for more information in there for newer players, I think that gets the vast majority of hot keys you really need for the game.  There's a lot of other functionality that is useful: control g to go to a specific square, r and shift r to see and go to largest concentrations of enemy or your ships, the shift v and control v keys Michael mentioned.

Take care,

Jeremy

Valiant Galaxy Associates Company, owned by Aaron Spears and Jeremy Brown develops and markets audiogames for the Blind and Low Vision markets.

2019-07-16 22:43:14

There are two reasons I will not be trying/buying this game. First, the association with guidedog games. I will not support a platform with that name, or any game that uses it. The second is the self voicing and lack of a sapi or screen reader option.

Pain is life and life is pain.

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2019-07-16 23:40:44

As for the internet connectivity, I would suggest looking into a system where it stores an activation locally for a period of time, say 30 days, during which time it doesn't need to connect. Then a person would only need internet once a month and would make things like playing in a car or plane much more viable.

2019-07-16 23:58:58

Right, after a little fiddling, here are my thoughts.
First, again,the voice. I'm sorry, but honestly it's just bad. I understand that you want to save coding time ETC, but the accent of whoever did the voice is really, really dificult to understand and headache inducing over long periods of times. I really only managed to play for an hour before having to call it quits, even after purchasing the game, because my brain just couldn't handle trying to figure out what was being said anymore. This isn't meant as a bash at whoever recorded the voice, but for example I had one of my friends who is not a native English speaker mess around with this and they just couldn't follow at all even if they really concentrated. The game already has the ability to output to Sapi, really how much extra coding would it be to make all text output to sapi rather than just planet descriptions?
As for the actual game play, it's neat with a few minor annoyances. Firstly, like some others, I wish there were a way to name fleets, or for fleets to gain automatic names based on what was in them, E.G: wolfpack if the fleet was only destroyers, or battle fleet if it contained battleships, ETC.
Next, scattering ships is really frustrating. For example, I had a quick strike fleet of 50 destroyers set up. When it scattered, I suddenly had destroyers all over the map, with realistically no non-frustrating way to get them all back to where I needed them. I understand that this is sort of the intention, but to make it easier on the player, could all scattered ships have autonav automatically set on them to all group back up one unit away from where they scattered (to avoid the hazard that scattered them).
Also, something in the documentation to tell the player about planetary occupation would be nice, I only discovered this through trial and error.

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2019-07-17 01:27:48

Rashid,

As to scattering, that's why battleships are the way they are.  I've hit that destroyer fleet issue many many times myself, and I hear your cries.  As Michael said, I usually give up on a fleet at that point.  If I have a fleet that is that important, that it shouldn't scatter, I invest in at least one battle ship and suck up the fact that it'll be slower.  If the hazard doesn't scatter a fleet all across the map, in that situation, I usually build three or four smaller destroyer fleets and send them on to a rendezvous or on to their destination depending on what the purpose of that fleet was.

As to the documentation, good point, that's something that should be added.  It was simply an oversight.  I'll make sure to add that some time in the next few days.

Take care,

Jeremy

Valiant Galaxy Associates Company, owned by Aaron Spears and Jeremy Brown develops and markets audiogames for the Blind and Low Vision markets.