about 1 month ago - SLG-Dennis - Direct link
We've been saying that a lot, but Eco is made for playing on public multiplayer servers, creating a society simulation that requires players to be actively involved, solve problems and compromise in their respective community that revolves around the three base design pillars of ecology, economy and governance. It has always been the goal to expand and intertwine professions - that is one of the key parts of what makes players able to be important parts of a server and create a functioning economy. That has been reflected in all communication since the Kickstarter campaign that was all about this and just recently again in the Eco 1.0 blog. Next update will focus on maintenance for buildings, tools, vehicles and work tables, as we also noted there - it's an important step to create a continuous demand on servers. Basically everything in Eco is configurable to create whatever experience you would like as well.

I fully understand not everything we implement is something that everyone is interested in, but Eco has always had a very diverse player base where interests between players differ vastly. We try to add something for everyone - but always within the mentioned design concept. Servers are able to provide unique experiences that can fit the interests of specific playergroups more than others and we hence do everything to support exactly that.
about 1 month ago - SLG-Dennis - Direct link
Originally posted by Inspektor: quote mason/carpenter: "I make only charcoal for my needs, cause its too much stress."
I know u think there should be guys that are mainly logger and sell that stuff so ppl that are mainly carpenter can craft things out but who in the name of god wants to play a videogame where u are only logger. whisky tango foxtrot.

We encourage specializing in a limited amount of specializations, which works best for getting a working economy going - that limit depends on server configuration and can be adjusted for the expected audience and their desired playstyle, which is exactly what community servers tend to do. You can find servers from limiting to just two skills, five skills, over just limiting skills that vertically integrate to servers with no limits or even extra speed in gaining specializations. We are aware that our server browser doesn't shine in providing the necessary information to find servers fitting your personal requirements best and are working on that as we speak. In the meanwhile the server ads on our different channels, especially Discord can help getting a better idea about the setup of a server.

Originally posted by Inspektor: U keep look at the server browser. it is 100% as the people here say. keep explaining your concept doesnt make anything better. If u have a diverese playerbase that doesnt mean u have to please them all. I mean how is it going? U think u make more people happy then sad? Do you have a player base? show me this awsome servers u keep saying that u see. i would love to join. By the Way, U Devs like the game vanilla? chopping trees literaly for hours only to craft literaly a little stuff, then walk around, negotiate and search for annother hour for a upgrade just that u can craft 100 boards in 2 hours instead of 4?

We can't please everyone, correct - there is just a general misconception where everyone naturally thinks they are the majority we need to please and what they think applies to everyone, while factually the feedback here on Steam is just one part of all feedback we receive, for example. (And that in itself isn't majorly negative either) That is absolutely normal and every game developer has to carefully gauge and interpret feedback.

As mentioned the server browser is being reworked, introducing recommended servers as well - there is a general problem of way too many servers existing, which together with the limited abilities of the browser makes it hard to find what one looks for. There is tons of well working servers, DadSpeed, Maiestas Haven, White Tiger, AWL, OPR, and so on. The vanilla official servers also work absolutely fine.

Originally posted by Captain Crispy Bacon: Oh, buy you know, I'm actually one of those people who wants to brainlessly be only miner or only farmer in this game, that's what I'm coming here for. And game DENIES ME THAT. It forces me to walk a whole world 10 times a day and play a walking simulator to get my job done and visit all the shops, it forces me to build a shop and a house and god knows what else. Instead of mindlesly mininig ores, which I want to do sometimes. So game not even good at that anymore...

Eco absolutely supports that playstyle and there is tons of people that like to specialize in just a single or two fields. Of course that naturally requires trade with others and that very trade is what keeps others on the server relevant - that is the very intention behind the game. If you like to do nothing else but mining, finding other people you can support with that profession is the best way to go, then you can focus on nothing else but mining and other people can take care of those things you don't like. That is actually a pretty common thing. I always tend to play Smelting / Advanced Smelting myself and the first thing when I start playing is looking for a miner to work together, either by direct trading cooperation or just grouping up in a town.

Originally posted by Inspektor: Example? To make logging less tedious and speed it up, so that the market has goods they mod the server with bigger stack size, more weight, faster plant growth, but now u don’t need to plant trees anymore and no one needs fertilizer. But without that mods, well try yourself to get somewhere if u have a life. But with that modding a whole profession gets almost useless.

Eco is not intended as a game you speed-race through in a few days which we try to stress with the 30 day timeline, such modifications typically make balance much worse and we do not recommend them. The time investment required is an intended part of the game balance, but it's supposed to spread out over time - which is also why the exhaustion feature has been a focus lately. Of course for players that have much more time to invest than others there is going to be a point where they can get softlocked by the progress of others depending on server settings, that is not a surprise though.

Originally posted by Inspektor: People that like trade and roleplay also not happy because there’s not enough on the market to make good trades or act like a society and workers don’t have time for politics and other stuff needed. People try to mod the game, but it ends up that the balance gets better in one point but way worse in other.

That again depends on the server and the involvment of players - multiple servers directly support players that do nothing else than driving around and trading things, having no own production at all, which is a creative solution for some problems described here. It allows players to do a very unique type of activity and saves others the need to do extensive trading themselves. Most of the problems you have encountered can and should be resolved this way by players, that is what Eco is about - you can incentivize putting goods to market via law system, for example. In Eco, players create their own game experience with the tools we provide. There is also the misconception that you would need to do all the things at once - we're seeing many players that for example only do politics and there is servers specifically supporting that by paying them a wage from tax money, allowing them to fully focus their endeavours on politics, which is again a player solution to a problem - and one that most countries did in real life as well, with politician being a "job".

Figuring out the measures that need to be taken to enable a healthy cohabitation, getting everything done and providing the best environment for most people in any given community is a goal of Eco. And since the settlement update you can do so on a much more local scale with fewer people than directly needing to figure things out for everyone on the server. The unique thing in Eco is the fact that players have that much influence on how a game goes, both in positive and negative. By simple adjustments like not taxing players that do not have taken specialties on sales, they can make a whole new trading profession and see the impacts that can have on everyone on the server. The law system was made for exactly that. Could we instead solve the problem by just allowing you to post buy and sell orders on a board and anyone can click "accept" and the traded stuff is immediately at your place? Yes, we could. But that's not what Eco is about. The whole description of a tragedy of the commons and a high focus on player interaction is not marketing speech, it is what we actually want to do.

Originally posted by Inspektor: Every working society here is a premade gov. So, a big part of what devs work on is never used because it’s just tedious.

That is a common approach of servers that have been around for a long time - it simulates the community that found together through playing on a server taking their achievements from prior cycles into further ones, not needing to start over again and is purposefully supported by the game. It is also how White-Tiger came into existance, as a simple vanilla server that did things from scratch until people got invested and took achievements into the next cycle. It goes into the direction Eco Infinite is intended to - persistent servers that never reset. Currently that is only realistically possible this way, but our development goes into a direction to make long-term servers the default experience.

I do fully understand where you come from and what gripes you do have with Eco and I get that you feel it's too hard to achieve a working society. And without a doubt, that is actually hard due to requiring players to step up, communicate and work together - and hence failure is a intended outcome in Eco that you take a learning experience from, it's not a skilltest, though. But that is what the game is ultimately about, players needing to find solutions to basic problems through organizing their communities together and most problems you have brought up (though nowhere all, I have taken multiple feedback points back to the development process) are problems that are intended to be solved by players and not game mechanical problems, especially as they do not appear if players work together to create functioning structures. If you don't like striving for that, there is many communities that already provide a working framework they have worked out over multiple cycles and servers that are constantly successful in doing so.

And I am also absolutely aware that a game that is made around the whole concept of players doing their best to keep in mind other opinions and playstyles, working together actively to make their forming community a place where everyone is having fun is not necessarily the most popular thing in games currently and requires some effort, but it is the unique type of game we wanted to make. Insofar you can call it a social experiment if you want to, it would certainly not be a misfitting description. Many people buy the game and love it for that unique experience we have tried to highlight in all communication about the game - that doesn't mean it has no problems we need to address (it certainly does), but there is some things that are just conceptually intended. And one of that is that Eco will always require players to figure out how to best solve problems in-game that can and are intended to be solved there and that failing to do so is a part of the game.

After all, the game is not finished yet either - professions aren't anywhere as fleshed out as they are ultimately supposed to be and all changes are iterative. All of them should cater to different people later on - some with a high amount of manual labour, others more for players that have less time and prefer a more crafting focused profession. There is also suggestions of making "Politican" and "Transport" and other things you can do without being a typical profession supported more by game mechanics themselves and we will definitely be looking into that. The Blacksmith profession for example has been introduced lately and we got a good amount of very valid feedback of the content of the profession being too little currently, which is absolutely true - but the Blacksmith will make many of the required items for maintenance in Update 10.3 and will then become a very valuable main profession. It's just better for us to release things part by part due to our development process.

Don't forget to feel free to bring things up directly in one of the developer streams, Jens can answer your questions directly. We also have the feedback tracker you can vote on any changes, suggestions that get the most votes have a good chance to get into the game: https://feedback.play.eco.