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Re-work Common: A Thread

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by tomdroid, May 10, 2020.

  1. Blue_Bit

    Blue_Bit Petty Officer First Class

    If you want people to use the more niche methods of communication, why not focus on improving those instead of removing common? There's nothing stopping anyone from using fax/email/chat rooms/etc. right now, but almost nobody chooses to do it because they're slow, clunky, and generally unpleasant to use and common isn't. And like lavillastrangiato said, removing common would isolate departments from each other even more than they already are.

    And 100% this:
  2. flying_loulou

    flying_loulou Senior Enlisted Advisor

    Alternatively we could get rid of the common channel on the headsets, but make it still accessible on shortwaves (handheld) radios and intercomms. This way you'd encourage the use of the other means of communication while still keeping a fairly accessible common channel (plus using the handheld feels immersive, at least to me).
  3. tomdroid

    tomdroid Game Radmin Game Administrator

    That's what I'm suggesting. : P
  4. Paradoxon

    Paradoxon Retired Staff

    Because people always go for the easiest solution, and nothing is easier than typing "; something" and having everyone instantaneously receive your message. You can do anything you want with the other methods of comms in the game, if it's not exactly like general comms work, it will still be "slow, clunky, and generally unpleasant to use". And the whole point of this proposal is to make communications slightly more difficult, to bring back some relevance to notions such as physical proximity, hardware availability, time of reaction and so on.

    I don't want to go into a long drawn debates on Bay's flaws and strengths and where the gameplay should go, but in my opinion, some things make the players' lives too easy and actually harm the gameplay on the way. One of these things was death, which was made irrelevant by cloning. We replaced cloning with neural laces to make things more difficult, then removed the laces when it proved to be still too forgiving, and it was a good step. I truly believe that communications should go through a similar transformation, and that the experience on the long run would prove to be more pleasant and engaging.
    Jovaniph, YodaDoge, Imienny and 2 others like this.
  5. Wmeacham

    Wmeacham Bartender

    So the borgos are on a subspace frequency, But are the radios using regular radio wave? If that's the case i think we should add radio boosters per deck, that can be sabotaged. When sabotaged, radios on that deck have poor reception, Broken or missing words, While in the maintenance tunnels, Or surrounded by reinforced walls, causing multiple transmissions to get messages through sometimes. The engneering staff can even build auxiliary boosters to Boost comms.

    Thus making radios slightly unreliable but able to be balanced, Some other forms of communication will be more reliable, such as email, (Usually)No missing words in an email.
    Last edited: May 15, 2020
    Shadowtail117 likes this.
  6. CubecsMelody

    CubecsMelody Petty Officer First Class

    As somebody who is enlisted and about to go through basic training in a naval force, aka a reddit expert, i can say from the shit knowledge i have already that this is actually a bit more accurate to how Military Naval vessels work, there is no way to just have a chat with somebody on the other side of the ship casually,
    Most important rooms just have some form of intercom wich is manned by someone that gives status reports and makes the entire room aware of some order. If something comes up, a general announcement system is used, like the one we already have on bay "yo bishes, we in combat mode -captain". Departmental Radio channels already take up that "room to room" comm system pretty well.
    In real life, you cant call for help if your in a flooding/ burning or otherwise broken section of the ship, you rely on the fact that your kamerad hasnt forgotten you and that they went to the nearest e-intercom to call out the damage. "common" is an emergency frequency and you will get thrown off the ship with a demotion if you shitpost over it for. Other information is normally pre-set through symbols on the walls. "this door remains closed if the fore section is flooded" symbol, "this door remains closed if in combat" symbol.
    Another thing, the captain technically doesnt have access to all radio channels, his ensigns forward his commands to all sections that need it, the captain is focused on keeping the ship in battle.
    NOW this is also military shenaangning and not space exploration.
    If everyone can still hear the Common freq on their headsets, making a simple announcement like "hey we need people for an expidititititititon" wont go unnoticed. instead of an "Emergency Frequency" its an "We got something slightly important to say" frequency,wich is a guess the point of this.
    besides, people are still going to stand near an intercom and shittalk completly disregarding the fact that they are technically speaking infront of an officer who should NJP them out the arse and back for speaking unproffesionally!
    this thread is making me loose my mind, you made me think about something i didnt toooomm. you did this to me tom, i will use a newborn child as a baseball because of you tommmm. how does make you feeeeeeell tooooom!? Æ
    in conclusion,yes.
    Don_Piano, tomdroid and Shadowtail117 like this.
  7. Sweedle

    Sweedle Game Moderator

    I think Faustico in particular really hit on the argument against removing it, but I just wanted to add a few of my thoughts.

    As others have said, removing common would make things more realistic. I don't dispute that - I have no experience being on a ship, but I trust those who do. However, there are times where realism has to take a backseat for gameplay reasons. It's realistic that I could fire two guns at once, but for gameplay reasons, I can't. Common exists to bridge a gap that a real, fully-staffed ship would rarely need (inter-departmental communication, which in theory would be head of staff level). In addition, it helps to compensate for things like the fact that our voices only carry as far as our eyes work. If someone leaves something behind, realistically you could shout at them once they turn the corner, but in this game, you can't - instead, you use the radio.

    In addition, this is, by nature, a social game. As important as context is for progressing the round (as Faustico noted), it's doubly important for just making things engaging (as Lavillastrangiato said). I've been playing medical almost exclusively - I know how boring silence can be. Chatting with people is a great way to pass the time, and the common radio channel provides an open avenue to do that.

    Which brings me to my final point: common promotes equity and makes things easier for new players to become established players. In a post-common world, I don't envision one IRC chatroom shared by the whole ship, captain to janitor; instead, I would imagine existing inter-departmental friend groups would make their own IRC channels, and stick to there (NB: This is not a discussion of whether these groups are good or bad). Bald Thirty, our favorite Martian janitor, doesn't know where to ask where the closet is, ICly. Maybe they stumble to an intercom and ask there - after all, they're used to being able to chat over common - and immediately everyone jumps down their throat for using an emergency channel.

    I believe the state of communications right now strikes a satisfactory balance between realism and gameplay, with its bias toward the social aspect.
  8. Brosaurus

    Brosaurus Assistant

    Absolutely in favour, both realismwise as well as gameplaywise I'd enjoy the change. Intercoms and handhelds would still fill the void, and I would enjoy there actually being a proper communications system instead of everyone speaking to everyone at all times. Would encourage other means of communications and thus rp.
    Don_Piano likes this.
  9. CubecsMelody

    CubecsMelody Petty Officer First Class

    maybe, a good alternative would be to have a common channel and an emergency broadcast channel. the common channel can be de-activated by players in their radio by a simple button push if they want to. common would be demoted to an 'Casual/ Off-duty/ Freetime' chat channel, while the 'Ship broadcast' channel can be used to still ask important questions like "hey anyone up for going on an expedition".
    i dont think that common should be restricted that harshly that someone asking where something is on the ship gets punished.
    Maybe, there should be some IC restrictions on the common channel, instead of gameplay ones. Officers who are a bit more harsh when people start to shittalk or something like that. Maybe command should get the option to disable certain comm channels from the bridge via a simple button press if some channel gets cluttered with unneeded info.
    I personally am on neither side of the argument, i can see both sides points and i wouldnt mind if either win. Maybe testing the removed common over a weekend would give much needed feedback on how the rounds would actually play out and how players enjoy this.
  10. Getbrecked

    Getbrecked Bartender

    I think this is a great idea that would enrich roleplay, but I think it could disrupt a few things. Although antagonists would have a much easier time if their victim couldn't yell ";HELP D3 MAINT (insert name here) ROGUE HE HURT MY FEELINGS", I'm concerned that stunning and dragging the victim into maintenance where they now can't get help at all might make it too easy for the antagonist. After all, there are plenty of ways to disable the victim's access to common (Stunning and taking their headset, EMP, or just destroying Telecomms beforehand).

    I'm going to stay neutral as well, but I wouldn't be opposed to testing it as a custom event or something.
  11. Skylark

    Skylark Sol Gov Pilot

    It's a wonderful idea!
  12. Grustic

    Grustic Bartender

    This would make rounds awfully lonely on low pop shifts, but I could see it working at peak population. Maybe make it an admin option.
  13. Kozak411

    Kozak411 Bartender

    Hello! I'm mostly neutral on this, with one little misgiving. A few people, I think Tom and two others, mentioned this being good for Ensigns (Bridge Officers), giving them more to do! But this isn't really viable right now, because BOs don't have access to any channels except Command, Exploration and Engineering by default; the only way we even get security is through handheld radios! While this is well and good, considering common can act as a sort of middle-ground right now, if you want BOs to fill in as a more command-liason role when heads aren't available or are busy, then they should be given more channels!
    Wmeacham and lavillastrangiato like this.