Self-Solving Problems

Sometimes, things just manage to work themselves out even if you hadn’t expected them to.

While searching around Sector 3 for something to do, I ran across Docur’s Court, a little town northeast of Dieseltown with not much in the way of merchants but plenty of missions for a player at my level, including a lengthy chain that ends with a drop of a riot helmet and shoulder pads better than the ones I had. As luck would have it, the riot helmet attaches in the head and mouth slots and provides better stats than the mask/construction helmet combo I was wearing previously, and because I already have the invisible hat, it’s bye-bye mask issue, no more having to wait for G1 to finally get around to offering invisible armor for the mouth slot. Talk about killing two birds with one stone!

I’m currently crafting the second-to-last component of my dune buggy, so I hope to have that done over the next couple of days. Thing is, I’m about halfway to level 32, but I have feeling that I’m going to probably run out of missions in Docur’s Court long before I get to level 35. Papermill and Warhall both offer level 35 stuff as well, so I know that once I hit that level I’ll have plenty to do, but I suspect that my trip back to Sector 2 has merely been delayed, not cancelled, as a result of finding this town. Then again, who knows? This game has a habit of surprising me in certain ways so I suppose I’ll have to do some more mission hunting in Sector 3 before I head back to Sector 2. I did discover a small camp of mercenaries outside Brekshire with a few missions to do there, so maybe I’ll stumble across more stuff like that.

Ah well, it’s a lazy Sunday with nothing on the agenda other than writing this post and playing some Fallen Earth, so I’m going back in-game. See ya out there!

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The Invisible Gap

I’m level 31 now, pretty much done with Dieseltown, and I’m discovering that with the exception of a couple of repeatable missions there and some in Sector 2, as well as the stuff in the Sector 2 conflict towns I never got around to, I’ve pretty much run out of stuff to do, at least for the moment.

Earlier today, I rode up to Banker’s Hole, the Sector 3 Traveler faction town and the next logical place for me to look for stuff to do, and discovered that there’s really nothing for me there until I hit level 35. On the same run, I also hit Chem Town and found the same thing. Right now, I’m in a Banker’s Hole crafting facility waiting for the engine of my dune buggy to finish, but I plan to make trips to Papermill and Warhall, the two places suggested to me by NPC’s I did stuff for in Dieseltown, before I head back west. I’m hoping I find some stuff to do in those places at my current level, but if not then I think it’s back to Sector 2 for a while to retry some conflict towns I didn’t do too well in a few levels ago, as well as much better and more profitable scavenging.

At this point, my main focus is getting my dune buggy finished. It took a while to get all the knowledges done and I’ve learned through experience that it’s always better to get all of those done first, before I start crafting the actual item, so I don’t have to waste pack space and weight or vault slots lugging around parts that I can’t use until I get all the knowledges done anyway.

It’s kind of weird actually. I really never had this problem in Sector 2, and Sector 1 had so much stuff to do that I doubt I got even two thirds of it done. You’d think there’d be more for a player at my level to do in Sector 3. Well, hopefully it’s there and I just haven’t found it yet. I suppose we’ll see.

*****

As I’m sure you’ve noticed, posting has been a bit light this week, and that’s for the obvious reason, Thanksgiving. Hopefully I’ll have more time to post here over the next few weeks, but no promises. RL’s getting busier and busier with no end in sight for the immediate future. As I’ve said before, light posting doesn’t mean I’ve bailed on FEB, it just means that other things are taking up my time for a while.

This too, shall pass.

Drifting

I’m officially a member of the Drifters now, which is a very cool thing. Seems like a pretty great bunch of folks and I’m excited about being in a clan for the first time since I returned to to the game. We’re going to have our first new contributor any time now (when he publishes his first post) and I’m certainly looking forward to that. Don’t forget that if you want to become a contributor here, just drop me an email at bekkajai@gmail.com and I’ll get you set up. Anything and everything relevant to FE is welcome.

*****

Today was a very post-apocalyptic day. I did some missions and scavenging in and around The Dump and Windfarm and afterward a couple of missions in Blaine I’d missed the first time around to get myself up to level 30. During all that though, I decided to log out a couple of times and watch The Road Warrior and Beyond Thunderdome while I was waiting for some crafting to finish. I swear, FE should have some kind of Thunderdome-style PvP event. After all, it’s not like there aren’t a lot of things in this game very reminiscent of or even directly taken from the Mad Max movies so that should certainly not be a issue. I can hear the chants now, “Two clones enter, one clone leaves! Two clones enter, one clone leaves!”. I think they could probably leave out the gyrocopters though.

Along the same lines, I would like to see some deeper, more complex storylines explored in this game, though. There’s so much to work with, after all.

I finally hit level 30 about an hour ago as I write this, so tomorrow’s mission will be a trip into Sector 3 to do some missions in Dieseltown. I’ve also started the process of preparing to build a dune buggy. Of course first I have to get the relevant level 2 knowledges done so that’s what I’m working on right now. At the rate I’m going, I think I’ll be ready to actually build the thing in a few days, assuming real life doesn’t intrude and slow me down, which is a very good possibility in a holiday week.

Alright, that’s enough for now, it’s time for bed. Tomorrow, I start Sector 3. Cool beans.

Conflict Can Be Fun…Or Not

So, now that I’ve done Kristo’s Rest, which included having to buy Scrap Wires on the auction to finish the final mission there, I’ve been trying to get the missions in the conflict towns done. The last Kristo’s Rest mission sent me to Dieseltown, but I quickly discovered that there’s nothing for me to do there until I hit level 30 so I headed back to Sector 2. I dinged 29 earlier today, but I wanted to see if I could get some of the conflict towns done, especially since Hollister Point rewarded my efforts with access to some pretty spiffy armor from the faction merchant there.

I got a couple of missions done at The Dump earlier, but this one player kept coming after me and killing me. I was able to do some pretty significant damage and almost killed him once, but eventually that got old and not very productive so I headed toward Windfarm to see what I could accomplish there. As luck would have it, real life intruded at that point so I had to stop playing and deal with it. I’ll jump back in later and hopefully it won’t take me too much longer to ding level 30.

*****

Y’know, I have to say I’m thoroughly unimpressed with the way G1’s been marketing this game since they took over. First they offer that stupid invisible armor and don’t even offer it for the slots players actually care about, now their latest brainstorm is this idiotic contest they’re running where you have to collect these computer parts in order to win a mid-level PC. Despite the fact that I already own a slightly higher than mid-level PC I might be interested in this if it didn’t require you to basically stop playing the game and run around collecting these parts in order to have the most and win the PC.

For a game that’s rated 17+ and played by a lot of adults, this is a really dumb way to run a contest. Just how does G1 think players are paying for this game? Adults have responsibilities like going to work and taking care of family needs. Most of us can’t just sit in front of our computers for hours and hours collecting these parts, so we’re going to be at a significant disadvantage to kids who have nothing else to do but run around the wasteland all day looking for these things.

It seems to me that G1 needs to take a minute and get to know and understand their player base a little better before they roll out any more of their marketing schemes. They need to figure out exactly who’s playing this game, what our wants and needs are, and market FE accordingly. Right now it seems like G1 is marketing this game as if it were all kids, not adults, playing. Anyone who takes the time to read the forums knows very well that that’s just not the case. This is America, not Japan.

It would have made far more sense if G1 had run this contest more like a lottery, with each computer part representing a chance at winning the prizes. At least that way players would feel it was worthwhile to try to collect the parts, instead feeling like I do, that it’s just a waste of time because there’s guaranteed to be some kid who sits in front of his PC for hours and hours I don’t have to devote to this contest in order to collect a bazillion parts for a shot at the PC. In addition, the way this contest is designed, you have to essentially stop playing the actual game and focus on collecting parts if you want even a chance of winning it. That doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. It’s not what I play Fallen Earth for.

It seems pretty obvious to me that G1 still has a lot to learn about marketing adult games to American players. It’s a pity that despite their name it’s clearly not gamers that this company is putting first.

Wandering…

For really the first time since I began playing this game, I don’t have a clear idea of what I’m going to do next.

I managed to fix my faction problem with the Techs quite accidentally. I was doing Hollister Point and came in when the Travelers had control, but then control went to the Techs while I was there right in the middle of a mission. I also managed to upgrade several pieces of armor while I was doing those missions. Apparently when I turned in the faction mission you get in the tunnels there, it was enough to put my faction with the Techs back to green. Noticing that, I immediately rode over to Picus Ridge and started doing missions there. I’m now balanced just about perfectly, mainly Traveler with a roughly equal amount of green faction with both the Techs and the CHOTA.  Not bad for level 28 I suppose.

On a whim I decided to go back to Sector 1 for a little while, but I’m quickly realizing that the missions I didn’t do back there aren’t paying off very well now. Right now, I’m in Embry Crossroads, mainly because I knew it was a place where I hadn’t done the missions. Thing is, I’m two-shotting everything and it’s barely worth the effort. I think when I log in next I’ll try something a bit further north.

*****

Ok, so I broke down and got the invisible hat. I’d already unlocked the head wardrobe slots, and even though the mask thing is still an issue, the hat I’m wearing right now is an ugly yellow hardhat so even with the mask still visible just getting rid of the hat is an improvement. I also got the back group of slots unlocked and invisible shoulders. I”m wearing these really ugly white athletic pads with my mostly black outfit so I decided those had to go too.

Yeah, I know…on the one hand, considering what I’ve said about the invisible armor it seems kind of hypocritical to then turn around and go buy some. Maybe it is and maybe it isn’t, but the reality is that it brings me closer to the way I want my toon to look. I could make a stand on principle here, but that’s not why I play Fallen Earth. I play to have fun. Once I can make my face look the way I want it to I’ll be happier.

 

How Annoying Is This?

I’ve been going around Sector 2 trying to finish up missions I couldn’t do the first time around. I just finished the one where I had to kill three local leaders in Last Stop  for Ben Carson. When I completed that one, Ben Carson told me I should go visit Miller Grantham in Trader’s Flat. I never did mark where the Last Stop fast travel pod was so instead I headed back up to New Flagstaff, scavenging along the way to make some chips, and fast traveled to Trader’s Flat from there.

When I got to Trader’s Flat I spent a while looking for Miller Grantham and finally found him in the ruins of an old church. When I tried to talk to him, his response indicated that I needed to be level 40 (I’m currently level 27) in order to do his mission.

Now, Trader’s Flat is deep into Sector 3 so it makes sense that the missions there would be at that level, but shouldn’t there have been some sort of indication that this would be a level 40 mission so I didn’t end up spending 1500 chips on fast travel for no good reason? Yeah, sure, fast travel is totally a chip sink put in so that players will have to spend more time scavenging to keep themselves flush, but come on now! The way it was written, Ben Carson’s suggestion to go up there seemed to indicate that it was the immediate next step in that quest chain, not something I’d have to gain 13 more levels before doing. I don’t have a problem with waiting until I’m the right level to get to the next step in a quest chain, but I do have a problem with being led to believe that I should go up there immediately.

Had this been before the advent of fast travel or even just before I’d had Trader’s Flat as one of my registered destinations, this would have involved a long road trip into Sector 3. As it is, I’m out 1500 chips for no good reason, an expense I could have avoided if the dialog had included something that indicated that I’d have to achieve a higher level before I attempted this.

It’s not like other missions don’t have this. There was one I just did that specifically said it as for level 25+. It just seems a kind of cheap way to get mid-level players to go out into the wilds of Sector 3 before they really have a good reason to with no useful benefit to be gained from making the trip.

Maybe this is a leftover from the Icarus days that didn’t take into account new missions chains and/or requirements. I don’t know. All I know is that it was a royal pain in the ass.

Ah well, I guess it’s back to cleaning up Sector 2. I’ve still got plenty to do there.

More soon.

Somebody’s Not Being A Good Listener

When my brother and sister-in-law admonish my 8-year-old twin nephews to pay attention, they often use the phrase I’ve titled this post with. As anyone who plays Fallen Earth knows, however, it’s not just young kids who need to hear it from time to time.

G1 went live with their new invisible armor in the premium shop today, and anyone who’s been paying attention to the forum discussions on this topic knows that the G1 folks either haven’t been paying attention to what’s being said there or they just don’t give a shit what the players want, only what the suits apparently believe will generate the most cash for G1. Thing is, it’s usually what the players want most that they’re going to be willing to shell out for. It boils down to that classic maxim of of marketing and salesmanship: Give the people what they want.

What the people want, as has been expressed repeatedly on the forums, is a way to turn off the appearance of ugly pieces of armor which don’t fit the visual concept a player has of their own toon, particularly (in my own case) masks, and (for others) arm and thigh armor. So what do we get from G1? Legs, torso, hats, boots…everything we didn’t ask for and nothing that we did. Is this really the kind of clueless marketing we can expect from G1 in the future? If so, I suspect they’re going to quickly discover that they’re generating a lot less sales in the premium shop than they probably could be if they just paid attention to what their players are actually asking for.

Another thing that’s been repeatedly asked for but not made available is the ability to buy premium game time with G1 credits, something I’ve discussed here before. It amazes me that G1 seems to refuse to make this available as it would surely generate more premium game time sales.

Personally, I just don’t get it. From both a gamer’s perspective and a marketing perspective it makes no sense to me why G1 apparently isn’t willing to sell the things that players are actually asking for, the things that would almost certainly generate plenty of sales, and instead seems to be going the route of trying to nickel and dime the player base for stuff many find only marginally attractive, if at all. If they truly want to maximize profits from Fallen Earth, why aren’t they offering the items and services that their own player base, you know, the people paying the bills, is actually asking for? It’s almost like they want to piss off players and sink Fallen Earth before it’s barely out of the gate as a free-to-play game.

I think I speak for a lot of Fallen Earth players here when I say: “You want my money, G1? Sell me what I tell you I want, not what your marketing people think I might want. Pay attention to me and what I want from this game to help make it the best possible experience, not what makes sense to some corporate marketing executive who probably doesn’t even play the game.”

You want this game to be successful as free-to-play, G1? The solution is really no more complicated than that.