Squadrons: Live Stream Summary

Thanks to all round good egg Stuart GT on Reddit, here is a summary of the details taken from last night’s live stream with Adam Bourke-Waite.  A summarised version of this information will appear in due course on the Beyond: Chapter 4 page. Please note: This is just the first part of the discussion on Squadrons, more will follow in due course.

  • Squadrons ≃ “guilds”, and a multiplayer organisation tool, to enhance and organise existing gameplay
  • Not being designed around Solo CMDRs, being designed around groups of CMDRs
  • Leaders/Officers will not gain benefits (credits, resources)
  • Minimum requirement for creating a Squadron = 1 CMDR
  • Minimum requirement for many Squadron features (e.g. getting a Carrier) = “a number of CMDRs”
  • Squadron names can be reserved for existing player groups, to prevent name-sniping
  • Squadron name will be permanent upon its creation, and must be unique
  • Will a deleted-Squadron’s name be available again = don’t know, will check with server, gameplay teams
  • Will rank be a requirement for Squadron creation = no
  • Custom decals/logos for Squadrons = not at the moment
  • Squadron-creation fee hasn’t been set yet – want to prevent Squadron-creation spam yet still allow smalls groups to create them
  • Invitations can be disabled, i.e. “this Squadron is not accepting new members”
  • Squadron page will be accessible in-cockpit, and similarly sized to Starport Services
  • While creating a Squadron costs a credit fee, joining one is free
  • 250 cap increase being discussed amongst the devs (design, server, gameplay teams)
  • Squadron alliances/connections being discussed amongst the devs (design, server, gameplay teams)
  • Potential for both the cap increase and alliances/connections to be added
  • Minor faction and Powerplay allegiances/ties not being talked about yet, but aren’t a no
  • Squadron bank is not being discussed now (will be during main Carrier feedback)
  • Wings will stay the same
  • Plenty of Squadron selectable “tags” available to help filtering/searching (e.g. search & rescue, PvP, timezones, Conlonia) and want more suggestions
  • Each Squadron will have a 4 character ID to appear *somewhere* with CMDR names for identification
  • Instancing will not be changed to allow 250+ CMDRs in same instance, but…
  • …will be easier for members to join the same instance as they’ll have high matchmaking priority
  • Squadrons and notoriety? Will be discussed at a later point
  • Will Squadron chat have a back history, to read when you go online = no
  • Squadron “rank” count (3 so far – Leader, Officers, Pilots) increase being discussed amongst the devs (design, server, gameplay teams)
  • Officers privileges are fully-customisable anyway, so different officers in same Squadron can have different roles
  • Those ranks will not be renamable
  • Carrier is a very large ship that members can dock with
  • Carrier can jump if a large enough amount of a “resource” is collected
  • Carrier movement not restricted to weekly server tick, can jump whenever enough “resource” is collected
  • Can have a Squadron without a Carrier
  • Squadron “beacon” for pointing members to a place/meetup is being discussed amongst the devs (design, server, gameplay teams)
  • Stickied Squadron chat message-of-the-day can contain instructions/details/whatever
  • Squadron comms will be text
  • Squadrons and their comms are not cross-platform
  • Non-members can visit and see another Squadron’s Carrier, visibly identify its upgrades, but cannot dock at it
  • Nobody can create more than one Squadron
  • Edge-cases of Squadron leadership (inactive, wiped save, etc) being discussed by the devteam
  • Squadron-created missions = no
  • Squadron comms might be cross-gamemode, i.e. messaging across Open/Group/Solo
  • Will Squadron members be visible on the Galaxy map, cross-gamemode = being discussed amongst the devteam
  • Squadron page will contain statistics, roster, Carrier details, info & chat feeds, etc
  • Can you hide your Squadron ID = don’t know, will discuss amongst the devteam
  • More information on Carriers in the future
  • Will it be possible to walk around in the Carrier = no, it will not be introducing SpaceLegs
  • Carriers can be customised, details to be announced in future
  • Carriers are of Megaship scale, and cost will be paid for by the Squadron, not specifically the Leader
  • Edward Lewis keeps sabotaging the stream: first no audio, and the lights keep switching off
  • Will Squadrons be able to have a description = no (initially), hoping the tagging system will be enough
  • Will the feed contain news for bragging rights, PvP kills, etc = give your feedback on what you want in the feed

Focused Feedback: Live Stream

Frontier have announced a Live stream for this evening (Thursday 10th May 2018) to discuss the first part of the feedback for the Squadrons feature which is coming in quarter 4. You can follow it from 6pm BST with Senior Designer Adam Bourke-Waite here.

Focused Feedback: Squadrons

On Tuesday 8th May Frontier announced the opening of the Focused Feedback Forum for first part of Squadrons discussion. You can find the forum here. If you’ve not read or participated in the Focused feedback before, maybe take a look at the Golden Rule thread first! Below is a rundown of the first part of the discussion on Squadrons.

What is a Squadron?

A Squadron is a group of Commanders who want to band together and organise themselves in-game. This might be to play together, or to focus on certain types of gameplay such as bounty hunting, Community Goals, or perhaps rescuing Commanders who find themselves out of fuel.

The idea of Squadrons is to provide a series of features that support multiplayer organisation and gameplay. In this Focused Feedback forum, we’ll be covering the creation and management of Squadrons.

How do I create a Squadron?

Once Squadrons are introduced they will have their own full screen GUI page. When opening this without having joined a Squadron you will have the option to search for a Squadron to join or to create your own. Creating your own Squadron will involve paying a credit fee (amount to be decided) and then setting the following values.

Squadron name: This has to be a unique name that cannot be changed once the Squadron is created.
Squadron ID: A short ID or tag.
Language: The primary language the Squadron will communicate in.
Attitude: Choose from a pre-set list of attitudes. The list is currently – Relaxed, Family, and Devoted.
Tags: Each Squadron will be able to select a few tags from a wider list. This list includes elements such as “PvP”, “Bounty Hunting” and timezones such as “UTC+3”.
Superpower: Choose one of the following: Empire, Federation, Alliance or Independent.

Our list of tags is a work in progress, what tags would you be keen to see?

Once all of these values have been set and the Commander is happy, the credit fee is paid and the Squadron is created. The Commander who creates the Squadron will be automatically assigned as the Squadron leader.

How do I find/join a Squadron?

As I mentioned previously, if a Commander accesses the Squadron page and is not currently part of Squadron, they will have the option to search for one to join. Using the same fields as listed above the Commander can search by whatever is important to them and will receive a list of Squadrons based on that criteria.

The Commander will be able to look a set of Squadron statistics and use this to decide which Squadron they want to apply to.

Once the Commander finds a Squadron they like, they can send an application. This application will include a small amount of text that, by default, will include some information on the Commander (highest Elite rank, for example) but can also be edited if required.

The Squadron Leader (and Officers) will be able to see a list of all Commander applicants and, at this point, can send the applicants an invite. Both the invitee and inviter must be online at the same time for the invitation to be sent and accepted. This option to invite will also be available on other areas of the HUD where Commanders can select other Commanders, for example a Commander’s friend list.

We are currently considering capping Squadron membership at 250 Commanders, but we’re interested to hear your feedback on the matter.

Can I leave a Squadron?

Commanders can leave a Squadron at any time. If a leader chooses to leave a Squadron then they must pass the leadership mantle onto another Commander. If all members leave a Squadron then it will be disbanded and any assets the Squadron holds will also be lost.

The only time the leader can leave and not pass on the mantle of leader is when they are the last member to leave (and the Squadron is disbanded).

The Squadron hierarchy and privileges.

You may have noticed above that I have referred to both the Squadron Leader and Officers.

There are three classes of Squadron member and these are:

Leader: The Squadron Leader has all privileges and can set which privileges officers have.
Officer: The Officers have whatever privileges the leader has set for them.
Pilot: This is the standard level, and the majority of Squadron members will be pilots. They have whatever privileges the leader has set for them.

What privileges can the leader set?

The Squadron leader can set the following privileges:

  • Officers can invite Commanders into the Squadron (yes/no) (greyed out if new members cannot join)
  • Officers can kick Pilots from the Squadron (yes/no)
  • Officers can plot a jump for a Fleet Carrier (yes/no)
  • Officers can select purchase upgrades for a Fleet Carrier (yes/no)
  • Officers can set the ‘Message of the Day’ (yes/no)

This is the current list of privileges but we expect to add more as development progresses and we discover the need for them!

Squadron communication

One of the most important features that Squadrons adds is the ability for groups of Commanders to communicate with each other. Squadron facilitates this with the following features:

Group Comms – A new feature that will be used by Squadrons is group comms, this will add channels and other functionality to the chat panel. When a Squadron is created, the Squadron channel and the Squadron officer channel (which is only available to Officers and the Leader) are automatically created and any Squadron members are added to the relevant channels. This allows Squadron members to communicate regardless of where they are in the galaxy.

The Feed – The Squadron overview page (which becomes available once a Commander joins a Squadron) will have a list of automated posts that are added to a feed. This feed will provide essential feedback on the Squadron, the fleet carrier and their activities. For example when a player joins the Squadron a message will automatically be added to the feed. The feed is limited to a certain amount of posts (amount TBD). Those members with the correct privileges will also be able to add a message of the day to the feed, the latest message will always remain stickied to the top of the feed. This provides a place for Officers to provides orders for the rest of the Squadron.

We are investigating the possibility of an external Squadrons website. We would love to hear what functionality you would like to see on a Squadrons website.

The Fleet Carrier

As you might have noticed above, it will be possible for Squadrons to possess a Fleet Carrier. We will be devoting an entire Focused Feedback thread to Squadron Fleet Carriers, so please refrain from discussing it at this time.

Squadrons and factions

We are aware that some groups will want to align their Squadron with a faction. We are currently looking at how we can make this work and allow Squadrons to ‘fly the flag’ of a faction. This is something we will be discussing during a latter Focused Feedback thread, so please avoid discussing this for now.

If you don’t know the drill, this is where you come in!

You will see a few more threads regarding Squadrons in the near future.

To keep things sane, we want you to post specific issues that you think of in the issues thread and suggestions in the suggestions and support thread. This is also the place to comment if you feel the feature is in general, an improvement.

If you can think of specific details that are not described but that you think are important, pop these requests in the detail requests thread!

We’ll let this topic stew here for a while, at least a week, but it will very much depend on the feedback.

 

Focused Feedback Forums & Livestreams

Note: Date for Squadrons has been changed by Frontier to the 8th May.

On the 2nd May 2018 Frontier announced that the Focused Feedback Forums would be re-appearing for various topics. You can see the post here, or below. Links

“Greetings Commanders,

“While we’re hard at work on the next update for Elite Dangerous Beyond 3.1, we wanted to share our plans for the Focused Feedback Forum, and when you’ll see particular topics come up for discussion.

“The Focused Feedback Forum, for those who don’t know, is an area of the forum where we describe and explain our concepts for future features coming as part of Elite Dangerous Beyond. When the forum post goes live, we then welcome constructive and focused feedback from our community on each topic. Previous Focused Feedback Forum discussions have proven to be extremely useful for development, so we wanted to get things going as soon as possible in order to best consider your suggestions.

“We’d like to thank you again for all of your feedback across social media, the forums and direct messages. Although the Focused Feedback Forums give us a place to focus on specific topics, we still pass on every suggestion and comment to the development team for consideration.

“It’s important to note that the following list and dates are not final, and we have to allow for some flexibility. You may also see other topics pop up in addition to those listed below, we will keep you up to date when or if we’re adding any more discussion topics. Please note that the topics will overlap (as you can clearly see below) – this allows us to keep the discussion topics open for as long as possible, and gather as much information as we need. The main topic will be introduced, followed up by the inclusion and announcement of sub topics relating to the original discussion. As well as opening up the forums for discussion, we’ll also be hosting live streaming discussions with the developers on each topic. We’ll give you more information on these streams as we solidify the schedule.

Estimated start dates

Squadrons Discussion
8th May

Mining Discussion
28th May

Exploration/Codex 
18th June

“Thanks again for your continued support and feedback, we’re very excited to share our ideas with you.

“Ed and the Elite Dangerous team”