This train of thought originally started from discussing with Redlotus :
Below is the reply which I’ve split in here to avoid going too off-topic on the previous thread :
I’ve struggled a bit about how to call this thread… it started out as “what would make me happier in Boundless” and as I edited and moved the order of paragraphs left and right, it became “how else could building be more rewarding?” or “how else could building be more relevant?”.
In Boundless, you build for very specific reasons :
- The artistic value, which is a very limited value, at the end of the day, as it will NOT pay for your beacon fuel or your portal fuel, or your world fuel.
- To build a shop to sell your stuff, or to have someone else sell their stuff
- To have an outpost to which you can warp to, to harvest some blocks or go on a hunt more easily
- To have a network of portals to connect several builds together
And… that’s pretty much it, aside from some niche reasons I forgot. I didn’t mention “base building” (making your workshop / bank of blocks and ressources) because that’s something pretty much everyone must have.
So anyway, when you only recognize yourself in one of those 4 categories, you got a pretty big handicap.
I thought about it earlier, about what really would’ve made me happier in Boundless, especially when looking at the time my friends and I recently spent on Valheim, and the time we will likely spend on Vintage Story, and the time we will definitely spend on Hytale.
I’ve been yammering on and on about a furniture update for so long, but the truth is that on its own, it wouldn’t be enough. It would be a band-aid. It’d make me wanna come back to the game, but only for a short while.
At our place, we built our workshop and our bank. And that was it.
Everything else we did was a set-piece, a zone to roleplay, to make up some fake Lore, because of the lack of official Boundless Lore. We would’ve loved to have more reasons to build places. And I’m not speaking of having contracts to build more things in the same 4 categories listed above.
I’m talking “ok so here’s our room where our character can sleep to get a buff, here’s the room where we craft THIS specific item, here’s where we purify the water”.
I came to several conclusions, such as :
What if Boundless had a harsher survival aspect (where rain/swimming gives you a debuff -as it does in Valheim- or where food rots when not kept in cold storage), maybe there could’ve been a niche in Boundless for people like me who simply enjoy to build houses and such.
For instance, imagine a version of Boundless where there’s a reason for you to not want to be out when it rains (a stacking debuff that decreases you running speed, starting small, which then affects your stamina…), or it’s night (hostile creatures spawning), or there’s environmental toxic fog(damage ticks over time) and instead of having a convenient skill point to ignore that, you can go indoor, find some shelter from it all. You could have beds which gives a buff, and maybe even gets registered as a potential checkpoint if you die later.
Being in a shelter near a good fire could gradually remove some debuffs, maybe give some protection against them for when you go back outside.
In such a version of the game, I think I’d be the man who’d build shelters for people.
Cue the Proclaimers.
WEATHER BUFFS/DEBUFFS :
I’ve mentioned above a running speed loss when raining… turns out I forgot I already suggested that in the past! Crazy, uh?
I’d imagine being near a good fire would negate the Rain and Snow debuffs.
ATLAS READER :
Now that’s a suggestion I already made in the past, and I’ll shamelessly put it back here as I think it could be used in many situations. It’d be a machine in which you could plug an atlas, and it would display a good view of the surroundings on a plane, like a hologram, above the machine. When interacting with the machine as a visitor, you’d get the map displayed in a window, while the owner would also get the slot to put/remove the atlas. This would be useful in the shelters I keep mentioning, but it could also be awesome in a shop that sells Atlasses.
WARP STONES :
What if there was a fuel-less alternative to portals, like Public warps where people can… well… warp to? Like, almost cost-free? Just spit-balling, there, but I guess the reason there even is portal fuel to begin with isn’t just the devs going “eh… F 'em ” and then laughing at our expense. I would think it’s because having portals which have to load and display a real-time view of what’s on the other side when you look at them is somewhat costly on the servers, at one point, so there has to be a limit.
But what if instead, there was something like the Touchstones of Creativerse?
< DING, Gob mentioned Creativerse yet again! >
No, I mean, if there was a block, you stand on top of it, interact with it, and it opens a list of other touchstones on the same world, and you can warp to them, free of charge.
You could of course interact with a touchstone you own to get the following option in case it’s supposed to be private :
[_] other players can warp to this stone
I think this could be an interesting way of re-thinking portal networks, maybe keeping portals to travel from planet A to planet B, and keeping travel from outpost A to outpost B on the same planet, to offer a way to your more casual player to still be connected to his stuff without having to farm oort shards.
I could see myself setting up a warp stone in a shelter for people to find it easily, naming the shelter from the region it’s located in, etc.
EDIT : cr@p… I already wrote down that suggestion too… o_o
CHEST LIMITATIONS :
Since ‘World of Warcraft : The Burning Crusade’ in 2006, WoW has had Guild Banks where you can set up rules such as “players from a given category (new members, friends, officers, guild master) can only take X stack of items from this chest per day” to prevent a new low-cred-level player from emptying the bank, while not limiting the officer if he needs to take all the food items for raid-night.
If this was a thing, I could see myself seeting up a chest of ‘free stuff’ in the aforementioned shelters.
I used to do that in Creativerse, but without the rules I mentioned, greedy players would take more than they need (read “everything”) and it would kill the system.
FREE TO USE CRAFTING STATIONS :
If crafting stations (workbench, refinery, etc) didn’t had the whole durability thing where you have to use a spanner on them every so often (which, honestly, serves 0 purpose except being an annoyance for the sake of it - and to give another use to spanners than the auto-door, harvest boon and such), and if you could set these crafting stations on “anyone can craft with them”, I could be that guy who puts free-to-use workshops for people out in the wild, in the aforementioned shelters.
Valheim does that. It’s simple : some props have a Comfort AoE bonus, per category. Say you put a wooden stool, you’ll get +1 comfort. You put down a chair, you get +2 comfort (the chair being valued at +2, but in the same category as the stool, it overrides the stool’s value, so you could have 1 chair and 2 stools, only the higher-valued items would count). Comfort isn’t a per-room or per-beacon value, it’s really about finding the exact block where all the Comfort AoE bonuses all converge.
In Valheim, Comfort is a buff that makes you health and stamina regen rate higher. The bigger the comfort score, the longer the Comfort buff lasts.
It’s simple, and it works. Great incentive to decorate your place. Even better if you have options.
GOLDEN BOOK :
If there was a ‘golden book’ feature for people to leave a quick tweet-long message to say “I love that place!” (which gets deleted after been read if that poses a technical problem) or even just a Like, even if that translates into no tangible gameplay benefit, I think I would’ve been more inclined to keep building. Y’know, login into my place, seeing “oh, a new like? that’s nice!”.
To this day, I still get people telling me they love what I did on Creativerse, because it outlasted me in the game. I think it’s wonderful to have a persistent world on which you can leave a lasting mark.
PREFAB MAKING / DUNGEON MAKING :
In this world, there are … well… I was gonna say “two types of players” all dramatic-like, with a cowboy accent, but uh… nah.
In this world, there’s an undefined amount of types of players, one of which is those who like to run into dungeons and kill things, and those who like to build these dungeons.
I like to think of myself as one who’d build such dungeons.
But first, the game must be designed to allow that.
If when I’m in the Sanctum, I had a small wing where I could access a magical portal leading to a Prefab Maker. Let’s say a platform representing the max size a prefab is allowed to be, and I’d be in creative mode with the ability to create said prefab. I’d have a UI with some basic options to indicate if it’s an underground prefab, a ceiling prefab, an underwater prefab, a surface prefab, if it’s rare, if it’s allowed to have a loot-chest, etc. And then I could upload it for someone to review it and MAYBE later add it in the roll-out of prefabs used in exo-worlds.
Ok, I have 0 idea how such a thing could work because I lack the know-how… but you get the idea. If I could, as a player, spend time creating prefabs to decorate future exo-worlds (in my case, it’d be ruins), I’d be that guy.
PROPS MODELING CONTESTS :
If there was occasionally (like once or twice a year) a contest like the body-paint one, where you can suggest an un-interactive object (whether it be through a concept-art or a 3D model properly created in 3DsMax) and the selected winner would be created by Wonderstruck (or if the 3D model is good enough, it could only be re-worked by Wonderstruck) to be added later in-game among other things. That would be a win-win, as players would get a higher chance to get something they want, even in times of content drought.
It’s been said many many many many times that it’d be awesome if you could blueprint something (like a small build, or part of a big build, part of a pattern to repeat it) and sell it. I think I would’ve been the kind of player who sells blueprints of his creations for people to use, whereas I hate to farm creatures and grind in mines to sell ores, meat, bones, plants. But selling something like a workshop design, for example, that’d be right up my alley.
PRESTIGE-LESS PERMANENT CROPS :
Again, shameless re-posting of a previous suggestion : the one reason I’m not using decorative crops in my builds is because they wither. What if we could spray a crop at any stage of growth with some sort of special fertilizer, and it would remove its ability to grand prestige in return of preventing it from going into a further growth stage, or to prevent it from withering?
I love making overgrown ruins, and I’d make A LOT more gardens if I had that.
REFRIGERATION SYSTEM :
Above, I mentioned “What if Boundless had a harsher survival aspect […] where food rots when not kept in cold storage”. Now you could think "eh, add a new type of chest, the fridge, which requires chill crystals as fuel to work. And yeah, that could work. Or you could make it so that ice/glacier blocks give a stacking cold debuff that impacts nearby players and items. Players would get a debuff gradually stacking that reduces movement speed and puts some kind of freezing texture on the corners of the screen. Food placed in nearby plinths/containers wouldn’t rot. Nearby crops wouldn’t grow. You could then design cold storage rooms to keep your perishable items in. Clever players would design them so that the food is impacted, but the player interacting with the containers isn’t.
When you build in Boundless, but you feel like you have nothing to build, when you start running in circles… that’s when the sad part really starts.
When you come to the conclusion that the only activity you should be doing if you wanted to do more in the game, is the only PvE activity available (meteor hunting), and when you find that activity to be super repetitive and boring… that’s the sad part.