Extended Edition Android Beta Test and Feedback!

@AdmirlGeezer: I cannot speak to the bugs noted with the exception of selecting difficulty level...this doesn't take 5 seconds, but there is a noticeable lag when there wasn't one prior to the update. I do very much agree with all the points made by the poster. The auto-focus to the item/enemy in the sector is highly annoying...especially if you are dropping into a tense situation and need to do a full assessment. I also agree with other posters that Death Rays are OP.

I love the update that was made and can't wait for the rest of the update to be pushed out! Keep up the awesome work!

@AdmiralGeezer: Thanks for the quick reply and involvement! Big Grin Yep, that was my report.

Wishing you luck and looking forward for the PC version, I will definitely buy it!

As for the device characteristics, regarding the about-5-sec lag, mine is Oysters T34 ( http://tablet-pcs.ru/language/english/index1104.html ) - does not look too slow, but idk, various things can happen. Thought I'd just report it.

I will play the game more and see what's up with the save games, if I could reproduce something, I'll report back and try to provide more details if something happens!

Currently yeah, I find the game very enjoyable, especially when self-imposing some limitations (as somebody already noticed) - like use no fighters and other! Hmm I wonder if these limitations could be expressed differently, like one could pick them up at the start for example like "no fighters for player" + "weapons can only be bought", and that would really remove the things from the game, giving additional score or stuff... idk however, if it's worth implementing, and can be not very easy, depending on games code architecture.. but there's definitely something in this concept of limitation!

Also, while at it - some more things I've noticed:

1. If I'm docking fighters and warp out during the process, then if some fighters got smaller in size, they just travel with me, but being smaller in size Big Grin not a big problem, but looks funny

2. Sometimes weapons are misplaced from the ship upon warp-in/warp-out for a moment. Also not a problem, but looks funny. Probably, their position is not updated correctly. I had similar issues when I was coding games with the Entity Component Systems architecture, and some components could become out of sync because the positional system updated the positional components in no particular order and sometimes parents (like ship) were updated after children (like weapons) in a single frame. It caused effects just like this. But then I sorted the positional update depending on the amount of parents that the entity hierarchical component provided, so that the objects lower on the hierarchy would always be updated after the ones that are higher. And since parenting did not change often, caching the simple tiny value on a hierarchy change would even eliminate most of the lookup. Idk if that's the case though and you're using the ECS architeture at all Smile but that'd make sense if you did.

3. All ships of the same class are named similarly. Maybe that's intentional, but then ships have no names. Looks a bit odd Smile

4. Scrolling through ships in player inventory screen is done with some [<] [>] on-screen buttons, which is not UX-friendly, since there can only be 3 ships, so there's no point in making the list scrollable, so if I want to get to ship 3 (and the window always opens on ship 1), I have to scroll through the ship 2 Smile

5. Idk if it has been fixed with the update, but when I had 3 ships already in my fleet, then if I wanted to buy a new one instead of some that I had already, the game would not show the ships price, so I could not make the decision if I am ready to sell the ship and buy the other one.

6. Would be cool if not all ships were available from the start, and there were some special ships that could be bought somewhere on some stations or found derelict... that would make a bigger sense of property of the fleet and immersion. just ideas ideas Smile

Hmm, somehow the edit post button does not work for me.. opens a page with an empty place. Wanted to add to point 4 - that making distinct buttons for each ship, like [1] [2] [3] or something more fancy would be better. If later there'd be a possibility of having significantly more ships, then this too will not be the best option, but the scrollable list as it is now would be even worse Smile

A few more things:

1. Situation: I targeted an enemy ship with all weapons (the segmented circle icon appeared over him), then warped out of the system for repairs, then warped back in - the circle is still upon the enemy, but he is not targeted! If I press on him again, the targeting is red, so when I press the "lock all weapons" again, the actual lock happens. Expeceted: So either the icon has to disappear (coz no actual lock is in effect) or the lock should be real.

2. The tractor beam icon is the same as the laser icon, which seriously hinders my ships systems readout. The icon is ok for the laser, but the tractor beam better have some other icon.

3. I cannot target my ships for separate enemy ships - the lock-on happens for weapon type, not for a ship... probably the targeting interface needs an improvement. It is neat in its current form, but it is not really effective. If I have like 2 ships, then it is normal if I would want to split their efforts and target different enemies, but this is impossible now. Maybe the targeting interface can be improved. And to enable better targeting, maybe the game could pause while the targeting interface is open so I could give all orders without hassle.

4. When I have 3 carriers, each with 2 fighter bays, it makes up for 1 + 6 taps to simply target all fighters on an enemy ship and 1 more tap to cancel the targeting interface. This is often the case and tapping all the buttons over and over again is not very fun. Probably an "All fighters" button could be useful.

5. The health bar can disappear if the ship is near the bottom screen edge or partly hidden if it is close to left/right screen edges. Would be cool if it would move itself in a way to be still readable.

6. The targeting circle changes its size with zoom which makes it hardly usable on maximum zoom-out. All in all, considering this and the points stated above, the targeting interface really requries some update on part of the UX.

7. Would be nice to put more accent on tactical splitting of the players fleet, like make more sense in controlling the ships separately. There's already the ability to move the ships out of formation, but the game really does not want you to do so because it will make it as uncomfortable as possible. The formation mechanism could be reworked, with less assumption that the player will always have the ships in formation. For example, there could be a special in-game menu to assume formation around the main ship, and quick buttons to focus on a particular ship quickly. Removing the implication that the player ships should always move in formation would open the road to much reacher tactical modelling of situations and scenarios...

I apologize for posting that much stuff, reports and ideas, but that's the feedback forum and these are the impressions that I got while playing the game, so I just say them. Of course I want Harbinger to be better and better, so I just report and tell my POVs but all is up to you, BugByte Smile

Thanks for the great fun!

You won't believe but there's more. I think I will use continuous numbering.

8. When I have 2 tractor beams on a ship, they always target the same fighter. This is meaningless, they must target different fighters if available.

9. Why don't point defense attack asteroids?

10. Why do weapons always turn back to their "frontal" heading? What is the point of this? Most logically the weapon must remain tracking the target, turning away from it just to turn back again in a couple of seconds when it is ready to fire again is dumb Big Grin

11. Targeting ray weapons on a big ship in the absense of fighters will make tractor beams fire at the ship, which is meaningless since they do no damage and don't tow the ship.

@noncom. Wow, some serious feedback there, Commander Smile Thank you, it is much appreciated.

To answer some of your questions:

3. Well, yep Smile
5. Definitely bad design, we will tackle this at some point.
9. We want the asteroid field to be a suspense for the player if health is low. If point defense would shoot at the asteroids and do enough damage to kill them there wouldn't be much to be afraid of in that sector.
10. Uh, it is probably the crew in the ships doing that! We blame them!

per 9 - Well, I get that the asteroids are kinda a suspense generator. But making the defences shoot them is not a bad idea - real ships would always shoot them, especially if their ammo is infinite. Actually, making the defences shoot the asteroids would even add suspense and create a good visual effect. This would in no way harm the menacing character of the asteroid sector. Some asteroids can have tonns of HP so that however the point defences fire at them, they won't be able to break them, but this will add much visual logic to the situation. And, on the other hand, if, say, 1-3 of 10 asteroids would have the HP low enough to be destroyed by weapons, this would also increase the enterntainment. Like, there could be a very inspiring situation when I, having like 1% of my HP, with an asteroid flying at me, and engine almost recharged, manage to break the rock down, and get out of the sector just before the next one flies in my place. That's suspense too, and it will leave much less sense of predetermination and make me consider myself lucky and increase the involvement with the game.

Also, as an idea - some event like "micrometeorites" can be created for some of the meteorites, just like there's the storm even in the sector. The micrometiorites cannot be avoided and will definitely make some damage.

per 10 - I was wrong, I am sorry. It was late in the night and I was getting sleepy Smile The weapons do track enemy ships. The situation that I described was happening when the targeted ship was destroyed. I.e. I have 5 fighters around me and 1 big laser. After the laser destroys a fighter, it returns to the heading direction and only starts tracking the next fighter when it recharges... imho targeting should be independant of recharging because the couple of seconds wasted on turning the weapon can be the difference between life and death sometimes.

Also, after a warp-in, some weapons rotate around the circle once, returning back to their frontal heading. It looks like initially they are aligned with the ship direction and then they try to find the shortest arc to turn to their own frontal direction, but the program fails to calculate the shortest arc and sometimes chooses the wrong one, so weapons often just circle around on a warp-in. This looks very funny, please fix this Smile I know the triginometry and the atan thing and arcs and stuff can be a real pain, so I don't blame you, but if this is fixed, it will seriously add to the visual solidity of the game. I am sure it's some rogue minus sign somewhere in calculations that causes it to choose the wrong arc - I have experimented and it always depends on the ship heading and in which quarter of the circle the weapons are facing - for example, if the ship direction is in the I quarter, the weapons that should face the IV quarter are always the ones who get affected by this "bug". Or this effect can be removed as a whole by simply keeping weapons always aligned to their own nominal frontal heading. Its cosmetics so idk if it's worth investing time, but OTOH cosmetics is a whole industry out there..

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12. When warping in on an autotravel which gets cancelled by an unexpected hostile presense, the text says "AUTOTRAVEL CANCELED, HOSTILES PRESENT!", and the words "autotravel canceled, hostiles" are on the first line and the word "present" is on the second. The whole text is aligned left. I think it is more logical to simply separate two phrases on two lines and make the text alignment central, like
|........HOSTILES PRESENT!........|

13. I'm playing with BSE Achilles now and have 2 gatlings installed on the front point defense mounts. Surprisingly, but when I am trying to approach an enemy that fires missiles at me, to get in range of my devastating lasers, Achilles simply keeps accepting the missile punches in the nose, the two gatlings remain silent - their firing arcs do not cover the prefrontal area. This is really disappointing since Achilles is a warship and having no point defense at its nose is strange because warships *have to* approach their targets, they cannot allow themselves to stay aside, showing only one side to the enemy like carriers. This misfeat can be considered a part of gameplay, but it really does not have much logic behind it..

All in all, it is very hard to judge on weapons arcs and range. Often it is a game of guessing if I have turned enough and am close enough for a particular weapon to be able to target an enemy. Although with time I get some habit with how to align the ship to target the enemies, it's not that easy with various kinds of ships and their arcs.. but idk, maybe it's a part of gameplay that requires developing the prediction skill.

14. I had a mission with 3 objectives and one of them was to find an item, and it was a Distress Signal Beacon. I have found it, but not yet completed the other points of the mission. And when I was on a starbase, I tried to sell it, the game said "Are you really want to sell a mission item?" - ok, good. But then I found another beacon, stacked it with the mission item and tried to sell - it sold without a question. Idk if it would have any consequences on my mission, but I bought it back and finished the other two tasks of the mission and received the reward. So, this stacking of mission items is a bit misleading.. what if I would sell it by mistake and forget? Idk if the mission would be considered complete.

15. My mission included finding a storm sector, but it did not specify which one, it had "???" instead of the sector name. I suppose this means "any new, yet undiscovered, storm sector"? Because I had one discovered already, and I simply had to discover one more for the mission to be completed.

16. When accepting a mission, there's a list of objectives on the left. If I click an objective, it becomes green on the map on the right. This is good, but if I scroll the list, *without* picking another one, the green turns back to red although the objective is still selected. It should remain green unless deselected explicitly or another one is selected.

17. In addition to 16 - the map with objectives shows only systems of interest for the mission, omitting all the rest of the map.. idk if this is good.. feels a bit disorienting, but the main peculiarity is that sometimes little parts of irrelevant systems still get in the view. Looks like you cover the map with a black quad and simply cut out circles around the relevant systems with alpha from the black texture, so that if a part of something else gets in the circle, it becomes visible. Idk if all this is intended or not, but I thought I'd mention it as a bit strange thing to see.

18. On the main map the mission-important systems are signed with an exclamation mark - this is good. However, there's no way to know, which exactly mission(s) does this exclamation mark belong to. Also, when listing through a missions objectives, the map scrolls, trying to put a particular system in the (center of?) the view, but it does not really work well, I get the impression that the centered system is not really in the center, but sometimes left to it or even a bit more misplaced. Maybe some better centering or an additional visual indication would be good...

19. Make more enemy fighters! Systems with more enemy fighters.. or something else with fighters.. because I always play on hard and the enemy fighters, be them alone or with bigger ships are always no more than merely a hindrance. It's been just a time or two that schillae plasmatic fighters posessed a real threat to me.. Playing on hard with a non-carrier warship usually creates the closest systems with 2-3 weakest fighters, and then just like 1-2 warships.. but this is sad.. een 5 fighters are nothing... it's hard level after all.. make me retreat to the base a couple more times... make me think of a strategy.. it's roguelike right?

20. Enemies have become smarter - they're travelling more, trying to spread their presense.. but they are disorganized.. what if some sectors be of a particular interest and enemies desperately wanted to be present in there and protect? For example, they could be mining something. Currently they just travel by 1-2 ships in a line, so I simply sit and wait and kill them 1 by 1 in a row.. And if I kill all enemies in their sector of interest, they might be wanting it back and fighting for it.. so for example, if humans would begin installing their presence in the sector, I'd have to protect them.. and would get additional points for holding our presence in the sector.. like king of the hill or something.. just trying to think of a more complex topology for AIs global map behavior...

Add to 15: however, when I was scrolling through the mission objectives, the map was autocentering on the strom sector that I have already discovered (sector A), not the one (sector B) that I travelled to later to finish the mission. There could be no mistake that the game was showing the wrong sector, since the sector B was far away from A and was off-screen when the mission interface was showing me sector A as the target for the mission. Idk, however, how game can show a sector for a mission, if it says that the sector is "???", but what I described is what I have experienced during this play.

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