I am posting a lot, sorry about that but I can‘t help but being excited even one month after announcement.
Today I would like to talk about the „randomness“ of SOASE:
One of my favorite aspects of this game was its „unrivalled“ scale and the random elements surely contributed to that. What exactly do I mean by that?
For instance the discovery of planetary artefacts, buffs and debuffs, the random maps and the resulting unpredictability of what would be the best strategy for a given match. In most RTS you would just learn, similar to chess or the likes, what gambits and openings are required for a specific map and read what the enemy does to counter it. Of course this is still present to some extend in SOASE but there is more variability. If the enemy is far due to map***** then one might go economy instead of hardcore rush. Spawned between two enemies? Prepare your… strategic competences. All that helped the original to become one of the best RTS ever made, so I would love to see that in the new instalment with additional flavors. The moving phase lines are a great idea and I hope it will add an additional layer of depth that is still fun to play with.
Additionally, more artefacts (they can severely impact on what strategy you might focus) would be great. With the trade artefact, even Advent trade was somewhat okay (even though I heard through the grapevine that the other races except for TEC would lose trade entirely?!) and with the culture artefact TEC could surprisingly well outculture some Advent Loyalists. More of those random buffs would be very much welcome, especially if there was a bigger variety. However, some artefacts were better than others so there might be different „tier“ lists and „greater“ artefacts and „lesser“ ones… but this is just me imagining things.
One last thing (and I will probably would receive a lot of negative responses from the most competitive players out there):
I believe one should only approximately be able to see the enemies „research level“. Some players can see from first glance what artefacts the enemy discovered or how many upgrades they purchased. If there was some way to conceal that, without losing too much strategic depth that would be great.
(e.g. I understand maybe for hull points, but for armor and shield mitigation and dmg this might sometimes be OP as it breaks the game if people do spreadsheets (sorry math ) to memorise when to engage in a fight and when not.) Personally, I think it would be better if it was more of a gamble if you took a fight against a certain fleet lets say midgame when technically you outfleet your enemy but if they were smart enough to have the needed upgrades, they would win. (If you see that beforehand, you will just not engage…) Or maybe make that visible by some research tech late game or something… it does not make much sense to see the enemies dmg output, armor etc from the start (without some industry espionage).
Last part was a bit rushed but I hope you get my point. What are your points on this?