Krakob's feedback

Feedback and general discussion of Slime Rancher

Krakob's feedback

Postby Krakob » Thu Dec 17, 2015 8:52 am

I'll be posting feedback and whatnot here, although I'll naturally try to use the in-game bug report functionality as much as possible.

Computer specs:
  • OS: Windows 7 Ultimate SP1
  • GPU: Nvidia GTX 660 Ti
  • CPU: Intel i5 3570k (~3.5GHz, 4 cores)
  • RAM: 8GB DDR3
Last edited by Krakob on Thu Dec 17, 2015 9:25 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Gamepads in the options menu

Postby Krakob » Thu Dec 17, 2015 8:59 am

The first issue I noticed is that the options menu is very problematic when my Virtual Joy gamepads are activated. I run these to use GameCube controllers with my PC through this utility. The gamepad status is seen in the attachment. Even though I wasn't using the gamepad itself, this is what the vJoy gamepad defaults to when not in use. I'd also assume it's the default when the GameCube controllers are in use while not holding any axes. Note that the vJoy gamepads are not Xinput compatible.

The result on the options menu was that the active audio slider would constantly turn itself towards silence. In the input menu, I was unable to scroll down as the gamepad made it scroll upwards constantly.

For reference, I use a custom theme on Windows, which is why the window looks odd.
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Screenshot 2015-12-17 17.55.39.png
Screenshot 2015-12-17 17.55.39.png (13.69 KiB) Viewed 10192 times
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Re: Krakob's feedback

Postby Mike » Thu Dec 17, 2015 10:34 am

It's looking like our fairly simplistic gamepad handling approach is not working in many cases, including yours. Thanks for the info on that. I have a new plan but it's not a quick fix. Hopefully keyboard and mouse can still work for you for now... Alternately, an XBox or similar controller is very likely to work correctly.
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Re: Krakob's feedback

Postby Krakob » Thu Dec 17, 2015 10:37 am

Absolutely! I play twin stick games with a DS4 mapped through Input Mapper and I play first person games with mouse+keyboard anyway so it won't be a problem.
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First impressions

Postby Krakob » Fri Dec 18, 2015 5:01 pm

It's about 2 AM as of writing this so I'll just write down some key points and expand on them tomorrow if necessary.
  • The goal of the game feels very clouded. I know I can make money and upgrade my ranch or go and explore to find new areas but the means of getting there feel very unexplained, although I guess the general gist is that your aim is to feed the chubby slimes found in the wild to get their keys.
  • Part of this is that the tutorial seems to end quite abruptly, I felt like it could teach me a bit more about the game's mechanics such as the flashlight and whatnot. Exploration should be in the game world, not the keyboard menu.
  • Fullscreen and changing active window turns out to be an awful combination. Borderless window/windowed fullscreen would be wonderful.
  • Cats don't eat fruit!!
  • There's a jump boost you can do by shooting a big slime straight down to make it jump while you stand on it and then jumping while it's at its peak. I'm guessing it's a design oversight but I quite frankly like it, perhaps because I'm quite fond of rocket jumping in Team Fortress 2. Will post .gif demonstration.
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Boosted jump

Postby Krakob » Sat Dec 19, 2015 6:47 am

Here's a demonstration: https://gfycat.com/ShimmeringMerryBaldeagle

To do this, vac a slime, aim straight down, shoot, and if it doesn't collide with anything and is on even terrain it seems to 100% consistently bounce straight up with you on it. You can jump from it as well.
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Re: Krakob's feedback

Postby Dogrock » Sat Dec 19, 2015 11:57 am

Try doing this with a pair of largos. You can kind of juggle them to reach a decent height. Though it's pretty difficult unless you're using a wall or corner to limit how much the vacuum flings them around.

The opposite is also possible. When playing with three largos in a high wall coral I managed to catapult two of them over the wall to the Overgrowth area of the ranch. Fly free my slimes!
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Re: Krakob's feedback

Postby Nick » Sun Dec 20, 2015 12:43 pm

Ha, the largo bounce boost is something of a soft feature at the moment. We're very aware it's possible and kind of like it but not sure if it's here to stay as sometimes it can cause problems.
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Forums and wiki

Postby Krakob » Mon Dec 21, 2015 5:53 am

I see the forum is growing relatively quickly. Maybe you should consider adding several sections e.g. one for discussion and tips, one for announcements, one for feedback etc.

Additionally, what about making an official wiki? I'm not sure if there's any significant interest in one yet but I can imagine having a single one would be beneficial in the future. If you're not interested in your own hosting solution I believe gamepedia is a good choice.
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Re: Krakob's feedback

Postby AutofireII » Mon Dec 21, 2015 7:51 am

Oh, hey, it's Krakob! Hi, Krakob!

That Largo jump is a cool idea. I'll have to give it a spin.

Also, when you say that "Cats don't eat fruit!!", do you mean one of your Tabbies ate a fruit? Or you think that they should be able to eat fruit?
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Re: Krakob's feedback

Postby Krakob » Mon Dec 21, 2015 7:54 am

I thought they ate fruit in game. They don't. I'm not sure if it was patched or if I misinterpreted/misread the information when I first met them. Nevermind that.
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Bugs and feedback

Postby Krakob » Mon Dec 21, 2015 10:39 am

I've encountered a very problematic bug today. After moving my largos to new corals in the cave to prevent chicken accidents and giving them more space by reducing the amount of largos per coop, I've lost all but one pink tabby and one honey tabby.

I've sent bug reports from within the game explaining how I believe it's reproduced. Basically, having largos in the furthest corals and sleeping or just leaving and waiting seems to make them despawn. My roosteros also despawned, although they were in coops in the main area of the ranch. I believe the reason is either the same, or a bug relating to capping out on 12 hens.

This kind of sucks but it won't be a huge problem since I saved up a ton of plorts while waiting for the market to improve. Nevertheless I think I'll resume testing if this is fixed in 0.2.2 as I'm assuming it'll otherwise just keep on happening and I won't really be able to get further for now.

---

On to feedback:

I'm having a blast with the game. I love working on the ranch with upgrading and improving. The exploration is fun albeit a bit incomplete given that there are few areas. The jetpack kind of breaks it, allowing you to get on top of the high walls and flying between areas, sometimes to places which only have their geometry and textures; no entities at all. Currently I find the jetpack to not really add much, it kind of feels like throwing in a moon jump in Super Mario 64. Maybe that'll change with time and changes to the areas.

Regarding learning the game, I feel like it's poorly executed. It's a case of telling over showing in a lot of cases, e.g. with the slimepedia. I don't think I'd ever find out that honey plorts attract slimes strongly if the 'pedia didn't tell me, nor would I realise that water was the way to defeat tarr. I'd usually just try to throw them into the ocean if applicable or just shoot them away or run until I learned that you could water them. I also think more creativity should be encouraged. For example, I tried both shooting rock slimes and exploding slimes on tarr but neither worked, despite feeling like a very natural solution to the problem since these things after all hurt me.

So, instead of having a single solution presented through the slimepedia, I think it would be better to implement several solutions that the player can discover themselves. Given that exploration should be a large part of this game, I think it should be in terms of mechanics as well as with the world itself.

Regarding the ranch itself, I think the game could do a better job by showing the features of it as opposed to having letters (which are currently quite bugged it seems) about them. I didn't pay a bunch of attention to the letters and while I do think one of them mentions the shop for character upgrades, I didn't find it until Scirio pointed out that there is one and I started looking for it. Ironically, Scirio did not realise you could upgrade corals until I told him how.
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Some suggestions

Postby Krakob » Mon Dec 21, 2015 10:58 am

There's a lot of stuff I feel this game could use, here's a list:
  • gif recording customisation. Thanks to the wonders of webm, gfycat, imgur's gifv etc. you can even have a smooth 720p 30fps gif nowadays yet Slime Rancher's gifs are nowhere near that. Being able to change the settings for the .gifs to be able to make more use of your hardware and make higher quality content would be terrific. Settings I'd like to see are resolution, length, and format (gif or h.264 video). Maybe some quality settings could be incorporated as well.
  • Taming the evil. I think being able to actually make use of tarr would be cool, allowing for a high risk/high reward slime. Some of the harder to handle slimes are a bit problematic, sure, but they're not gonna kill you or wipe out your ranch unless you REALLY screw up. Tarr could. Tarr is too cool for morals.
  • Outward teleporters would be nice as it takes a while getting around the world, and will take even more time as it grows even more.
  • A wiring system of sorts could be interesting, allowing wiring of item input and output. For example, suppose you could wire the automatic plort harvesting to a silo to automatically deposit them there, etc. Maybe this would be too high of a reward for the effort, though.
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Ditto

Postby Hexlash » Mon Dec 21, 2015 1:29 pm

I have also had lots of issues with slimes disappearing in the Grotto. I don't even bother using it.
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Ditto used Transform. Ditto turned into Dogrock

Postby Krakob » Mon Dec 21, 2015 1:52 pm

Dogrock confirms it as well :(
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Fullscreen issues

Postby Krakob » Wed Dec 23, 2015 8:48 am

I'm sure you're more or less aware that fullscreen is a mess right now. Alt-tabbing means you can't tab back in, having any other window put itself on top equals a crash. Today I paused the game as I went to eat dinner and once I got back it had put itself in the background. Luckily it appears it auto saves but that felt like a close call. As mentioned earlier I'd love a windowed fullscreen mode.
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Farming balance

Postby Krakob » Wed Dec 23, 2015 8:52 am

After having tried to make a great ranch, I feel like farming is relatively pointless. In just a few minutes, I can get huge amounts of hens from the Overgrowth whereas if I try to grow that many hens, I'll get them way slower in addition to having to deal with the cap of 12. Similarly, I can go for a short expedition around the block to pick up fruit and veggies to gain way more than farming will get me. The only purpose I can see in it right now is growing Stone Hens and various rarer veggies and fruits. For example, I can see myself farming Mint Mangos for my Honey Phosphor Largos while relying on foraging for fruit once if I happen to run out as I can gain huge amounts in the area just outside the ranch.
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Farming

Postby coolm5224 » Wed Dec 23, 2015 8:59 am

Exactly, and even with max harvest upgrades, i feel like i only get like 3 fruits per harvest.
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Notes on plort balance

Postby Krakob » Wed Dec 23, 2015 10:19 am

The prices seem kind of off to me when looking at how hard or easy the slimes are to maintain. Thoughts on them all:
  • Pink: easy to maintain, low profit. Seems fair.
  • Rock: hard to get ahold of, a bit annoying to maintain largos but a modest profit, especially in the early game. That's pretty ok.
  • Tabby: about as easy to maintain as pink slimes, yet way more profitable. I think maybe having 50% more profit at the base price would be fair but it seems to me like it's somewhere around 100% if not more.
  • Phosphor: one of the more profitable slimes. Takes a decent investment to use as they'll need both sun protection and probably a roof (and preferably high walls to make sure they hit the roof less) but are easy to maintain. Seems like a fair balance, makes them very useful once you got more money flowing.
  • Boom: more or less like rock: they'll hurt you and it's a mild annoyance but these are a bit tougher and will hit you through coral walls. Having them as a high profit slime makes a lot of sense to me.
  • Honey: super profitable yet the drawback is hardly noticeable once you get automatic plort collection. I don't see why they should be so profitable.
  • Droplet: hard to maintain, hard to get, but make for a nice addition to a water pool you'll want in case of Tarr emergencies anyway. I was disappointed that you couldn't make largos with them but I find them to be pretty fair in balance, although maybe it should be a bit lower given the very low maintenance effort required.
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Ranch layout

Postby Krakob » Wed Dec 23, 2015 2:01 pm

Today I managed to finish my ranch, sort of. Since the extension areas are bugged, I have not started using them although I've fully upgraded things in them. This led me to realise that the placement of a few upgrades are less than desirable, with upgrade parts being right against the wall. It'd probably better to move them to more accessible places. The attachments shows a coral furthest in the grotto.

Anyhow, this got me thinking. I think the ranch would feel a lot more like your own if you'd actually design it on your own. As it stands now you get some plots so it's natural that you just eventually end up using them all in one way or another. I'm thinking it would be really sweet if you could at least place your own for things so as to define your own dimensions for things. Maybe a certain size could be required and having extra big corals would allow for certain features, etc. Imagine building a house in The Sims, I suppose.
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