Chosen Space – Probably not your best choice

Before I start and not sure if there’s a disclaimer on this site. The views expressed here are purely my own and don’t necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the owner of this site.

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted on this game, and given my glowing review from when I first started, it saddens me to give such a critical review. This has been prompted by growing discord with decisions made by the developer and his following blindly suggestions made by some members of it’s community, whose sole interest is to change game mechanics to suit their own agenda.

So let’s start with what has happened since I first started playing. I had settled into the role of trader and eventually ran for planetary leader of the one of 84 planets available as a choice. Won’t go much into the details of how you win an election, as this post is more a rant. There was a bug with starbases in the game, which allowed you to store unlimited amounts of items. Person and faction I was running against was using this exploit to in effect win the elections. Sad thing is, the developer took several months to fix the bug, and that was almost the end of CS for me, as I didn’t see any other viable career for me in the game.

Now, there was always some conflict in the game, and an opening appeared in the special operations branch of the faction. All hush hush at what was actually done, but I joined that group and was given several warships to complete tasks we were assigned to do. In peacetime, we’d track and kill targets that were a nuisance to the faction and in war time, we’d gather Intel and provide support for our militia. Our faction was primarily an economic based faction, but when war broke out that activity would cease and everyone was called to arms. Our tasks usually involved finding targets, knocking out shields or knocking ships out of docks for others to kill. Game mechanics were heavily in favor of the attacker, and at that time, if you were running a script to run an operation called scrubbing ions, you were pretty much guaranteed to get away. The developer eventually made a good change there and got rid of that, replacing with something more realistic based on the output of your ship, with trails from larger output ships lasting longer.

After a few wars, more changes were made among them a multi-faction feature. It was more a hindrance than a feature which allowed you to switch factions at will and attack under the flag of an alternate faction. That went on for some time and during that time, game was leaking players like a sieve with more leaving than joining. It was also becoming apparent that resources and items owned by players was piling up. This is just my opinion, but under the guise of game being hacked, the developer decided to wipe out everyones resources stored in their starbases. Unless you had already assembled your ores and resources into ship parts and had them stored in your dry dock or shipyard, all was lost. No ships are physical assets were lost, as the developer claimed that was backed up and that all the hacker managed to do was delete contents of the storage bases. How convenient!

Ships have always been expensive to make and buy in the game, given that you need to vote to acquire the points or donate real life money, severely unbalancing things for the casual gamer, or someone who can’t afford to donate. Several changes were made on how points were earned. One such change was to no longer give out points in the several games that were being run by the developer and to give them out just in the hub account which was linked to all the games being run. That effectively forced people to chose just one game, and pretty much killing off most of the less popular games. Now I had mentioned earlier some good changes were made regarding combat. Unfortunately it came at a price added to cost of ships. New devices were introduced called externals to make ships more expensive, but also easier to get away. Changes were also made to the game mechanics of beacons, the way a faction knows ships of other members are being attacked. Now operations outside of planetary systems only had beacons sent out to ships in the actual area of operation. And the already unfavorable advantage to attacker gets tipped even more in their favor.

Now back to the community and some player’s self serving interests in suggestions under the guise of game improvements. Eventually the multi-faction feature got removed. Well that’s what the developer says… It really just go renamed to ambassadorship, where you can be ambassador to another faction. Here lies the stupidity of the whole system. There is a limit on how many factions you can join as ambassador, but an entire faction can become ambassador in another faction. Now wait, being ambassador to a faction comes with features, I’d sooner call exploits. As ambassador to a faction, you’re granted free passage through that factions minefields. So you’re free to attack anyone you wish with full diplomatic immunity and should they follow you through any such minefield. Now even worst, and I won’t mention factions here. Minefields were present for over a year, without anyone bringing up that there may be a problem with size of fields built. A new war breaks out, and a faction that hasn’t yet used minefields decides they should look into them as a defensive option and once deployed, it now becomes an issue that minefields are over powered and for the good of the game!

It was a great game while it lasted, but it’s just not fun to play any longer! I’d suggest if you play one of the developer’s other dying games, specifically Interstellar War or Galactic Fleets, you Google “The Lacuna Expanse” and give that a shot. Unfortunately if Chosen Space is what you’re into, the recommended game will unlikely interest you.

ELF – Eternal Lifetime Feud?

The ban has now reached the 600 day mark…

It’s quite admirable that Dragelet has stuck to his principles, and continues to deny me access to the only remaining SST server, yet still refuses to divulge the reason for the ban.

But that is where my admiration now ends… I now consider his server an abomination to the memories I had of SST.

SST began as a BBS text game, but you have destroyed it’s heritage by disabling this method of play… and your reason why? It’s the source of all things evil… bots, scripts, clients? Or is it because those were the tools that you used to rape and pillage the original SST game, and you’re worried someone may use your own tactics against your server?

I’ve been wondering why Ray shutdown his server and has been unavailable to explain why… I’m beginning to suspect that he was embarrassed that he didn’t do anything to prevent you from ruining the game.

So to wrap it up, if you’re a real die hard SST fan, treasure your memories of SST as there no longer exists any game servers that continues the true spirit of the game, and that the creator of the game would be proud of.

ELF challenge!

It’s now been over 500 days since I was banned from ELF.

But by using my mystical knowledge of proxies I do pop in there on occasions. :P

My interest in all things SST is fading slowly… I’ve found a new online game to play that is consuming a lot of my spare time. The player community is extremely active and the game developer hasn’t abandonded his creations.

But I digress, back to ELF… I noticed a lot of familiar names listed on the history page. Seems a lot of players who disappeared in the last couple of years of TLF have started to reappear. ELF is doing a great job of continuing the SST legacy.

Now for my challenge… or should I say challenges?
There’s less than 3 days to go in the 000 game. I’ve logged my ship in (ANONYMOUS) and have left it parked somewhere.

  • Challenge 1: Find my ship!
  • Challenge 2: Get the kill shot on my ship!
  • The prize? Well… you’ll get exclusive bragging rights that you’ve found and/or killed my ship.

    Cheers,
    KRY

    Updates

    Yes, the site does look different… I’m going to try out a few different themes until I find one that I like…

    Most themes leave a signature at the bottom of the page, if you see one you like leave a comment… if you hate it leave a comment…

    I may or may not take your comments into consideration :P

    Cheers,
    Kry

    SST Nostalgia

    In celebration of their 10th birthday, Google has for a limited time pulled out of their archive the oldest index of the web they have. This index goes back to the end of 2001. Being curious, I decided to do a search of ‘starshiptraders’ to see what I would find:

    Starship Traders Webgame: A free online realtime multiplayer …
    StarshipTraders.com. (There are 7 players online @ 02:29 KST). If you are a new
    player please read the information below. Enter your name or a pseudonym: …
    http://199.44.248.254:1880/ – View old version on the Internet Archive

    For a limited time you can go here: http://www.google.com/search2001.html and search the web as it was back in 2001. Click on ‘View old version on the Internet Archive’ to see any page found as it was cached back in 2001. I found the log in page for the game as well as the team page for Game 000. I believe the search will be up for the month of October so be sure to check it soon, and look up starshiptraders for a little SST Nostalgia.

    SST Revival?

    With the ELF game now being the only game in town, it looks like it is now finally getting some traction with more than 100 logins every day. It’s nice to put geographic locations to the various players with the help of the login history page. It is however, amusing or sad depending on how you look at things, that the more things change, the more they stay the same. It appears that the fear of client use there is also gaining traction, despite the fact that is highly unlikely to be even happening! With the game now being a browser only game, many of the browser related bugs are now coming to the surface.

    One such bug is the game reset bug which occurs when an impatient browser user is the person who initiates the reset. Fortunately for ELF, the games being reset are run on a fast server (ie. not likely shared or virtualized)and have relatively small active maps. Unlike when the game is initiated through a telnet/client connection, the browser user gets no notification that a game reset has been started. Believing that the browser has hung, logging back into the game before map creation is completed, aborts the message clearing step before it has a chance to run. There is at least one work around that I can think of, but I’ll leave that as an exercise for the game admin.

    It’s certainly worth dropping into the game for the entertainment ;)

    TLF-20080726 Rankings

    The final TLF ranks (ever!)

    I’ve been putting off posting these results… it just doesn’t seem right that a game I’ve invested half a decade into could be so easily erased.

    As this is a special occasion, I’ve decided to show more ships & teams on the summary page than normal…

    Congrats to the dedicated members of team MSS… though it’s a score bug ship, unless Ray comes out of hiding and deems it an invalid score, REEF1 is clearly superior to all of us! :P
    And having a team ranking of #7 is something to be proud of.

    I’m very pleased that 7 of my original ships made it into the top 11 (The Robottt ships were donated to me by Q when I joined DBD) and that team MPE, under the guidance of the resourceful Captain Bestark, maintained our #1 position to the very end.

    To all the people that have ever played TLF…

    Thanks for the memories, it’s been an honor to play with most (some?) of you!

    PS This site will be maintained by me for as long as I can… It’s exact future is still yet to be determined.

    ______Player_Name_______ ____Title+Level____Team  Rank Ship __Score__ _Region_
    REEF1                    Mercenary+2        [MSS]   1* SBa 2987644026  400001s
    KREAKY                   +Overlord+         [MPE]   2* HFr 1781102286  200001s
    KRANKY                   +Overlord+         [MPE]   3* HFr 1771587739  880001s
    KRAFTY                   +Overlord+         [MPE]   4* HFr 1711101499  640001s
    KREEPY                   +Overlord+         [MPE]   5* HFr 1695892012 1720001s
    MAGELITE                 +Overlord+         [MPE]   6* HFr 1681876570  480001s
    NX-74205                 U.S.S. Defiant     [B.M]   7* HFr 1651448411 1120001s
    LONE FOX                 A lonely universe? [MPE]   8* HFr 1649467130 1120001s
    KRISPY                   +Overlord+         [MPE]   9* HFr 1568534537  200001s
    ROBOTTT8                 +Overlord+         [MPE]  10* HFr 1549356183  280001s
    KRAZY                    +Overlord+         [MPE]  11* HFr 1544997591 1600001s
    RED OCTOBER              THE HUNT FOR       [B.M]  12* HFr 1530980443 1120001s
    GHOSTFURY                iNvISiBle fUrY     [RIP]  13* HFr 1527258855 1120001s
    RIGEL                    Betelgeuse?        [MPE]  14* HFr 1522605193 1120001s
    HODDING CARTER III       +Overlord+         [RIP]  15* HFr 1499827609 1120001s
    NCC 1701E                Make it so #1...   [B.M]  16* HFr 1491679205 1120001s
    FLAMEFURY                Tyrant+0           [RIP]  17* HFr 1490138914 1120001s
    QUALITY                  Quantity?          [B.M]  18* HFr 1489206035 1120001s
    NATIONAL                 Secret?            [MPE]  19* HFr 1489040003 1120001s
    

    ______________Team_Name________________  Abbrev.  Rank   Score (1000s)
    Mercantile Partners Empire                [MPE]      1      69929567
    Netrek                                    [NET]      2      54767045
    The Commonwealth                          [TCW]      3      39655326
    Resting in Pieces                         [RIP]      4      30933828
    The Void's Devourers                      [TVD]      5      26068594
    Blood Money                               [B.M]      6      25936959
    Microsoft Sucks                           [MSS]      7      22869893
    The Varangian Guard                       [TVG]      8      20079614
    Followers Of Bob                          [FOB]      9      18728277
    Doc's Retired Ships                       [DOC]     10      15558841
    

    End of an era

    That’s it, the IOResort server is no longer responding as of 15:00 AEST (+10:00).

    I grabbed a copy of the rankings about 4 hours ago, which I’ll post later today. If anyone has a newer version let me know.

    Farewell TLF & TLR! It’s been a blast!

    On a related note, Space Tryant has also disappeared.

    TLR-20080622-13W Rankings

    That’s it for another round (and potentially the last full round ever)…

    The newcomers in LOD put up one hell of a struggle this round and made sure that RDC had to work hard for this win!

    The next round has started, the doors are still apparently open, so everyone should get online now! If we’re playing, Ray may feel guilty about pulling the pin. :P

    ______Player_Name_______ ____Title+Level____Gang  Rank Pack __Score__ _Region_
    BESTARK                  +Czar+             [RDC]   1  CFp  422065143  Siarnaq
    KRAZY                    +Czar+             [RDC]   2  Fpa  418999283     Rhea
    GUMBY                    +Czar+             [RDC]   3  CFp  391783792  Siarnaq
    STARFURY                 +Czar+             [RDC]   4  CFp  381281498  Siarnaq
    TRESCA                   Self-fueled Only!  [LOD]   5  CFp  379478828   Bianca
    SINCRO                   Gatekeeper         [LOD]   6  CFp  371805920   Bianca
    FASHAD                   +Czar+             [LOD]   7  CFp  371599763   Bianca
    TIERCE                   Imperial Guardsman [LOD]   8  CFp  367473397   Bianca
    POKEY                    +Czar+             [RDC]   9  CFp  365430356  Siarnaq
    KRANKY                   +Czar+             [RDC]  10  JFp  357858754     Rhea
    

    ______________Gang_Name________________  Abbrev.  Rank   Score (1000s)
    Resort Development Cooperative            [RDC]      1       2860864
    Lords of Devastation                      [LOD]      2       2045958
    United Earth Federation                   [UEF]      3        146602