At long last! I, for one, have been desperate for this for a long time.
The changes sound pretty interesting, looking forward to seeing how it all works in practice, what the new reality and balance of lab research and its profitability will be like going forward, and all that.
edited by Tsar Koschei on 10/21/2021
Yeah,I found out only today. Happy for faster research progress. Less happy with non-discardable lab cards.
Because cards are no longer discardable, I would like it if the number of lab cards drawn is the same as the size of your lodging. Maybe do additional quests at the Lab or University to unlock it, once conditions are met.
[quote=fishandchips]Yeah,I found out only today. Happy for faster research progress. Less happy with non-discardable lab cards.[/quote]Well, it only happened today, so finding out earlier wasn’t really an option.
And I can understand having all the lab cards non-discardable in principle, since practically the only possible solutions to get rid of card flipping were either that or eliminating the card deck altogether. What remains to be seen now is whether they’ve succeeded in actually making the cards balanced and the new system attractive to play through.
My first impression is that it’s fun and I’m enjoying it. There’s certainly a lot more to do, both in the sense that there’s a ton more cards, but also that you’re not just monotonously getting the one number to go up. There are other resources to balance, which means making decisions, so gameplay is actually interactive. We’ll see how long the honeymoon period lasts and what the "optimal" playstyle looks like, but it’s a much better clicking-to-thinking ratio than it used to be.
Some of the options are also just fun. I’m finally using my 13 Shapeling Arts to literally wrap my brain around a problem! Early today I got a new labcoat, and now I’ve used it so much that it’s an old labcoat! Unwise ideas!
First impression is fairly neutral. Not bad.
I like the novelty of new cards and stuff to do (I suppose it would get boring in time), but honestly I am pretty sure it will end up to be a bit "too much" in the long term. Once you’ve read all the storylets and stuff I am afraid it would all end up being another min-max clickfest.
I don’t mind the not discardable cards, it’s fair, what I can’t stand (and cannot stand before) are the 3-card limit: it’s still very tight. It was the most frustrating and boring aspect of laboratory before and still it is.
Anyway, I think there is some balancing to do. For example, in "Draw on your Knowledge of the Red Science" all the option give 32 research, with "Resolve a paradox" not having any Watchful check, just "Artisan Studies 2" unlock condition.
It doesn’t feel good to me. What’s the point in the other options? Diffult check (<100%) for a very old player with top-notch AORS+Watchful gear, Impossible Theorem or other fate-locked condition, for just the same reward?
edited by Frenzgyn on 10/21/2021
Well, so much for abusing Cider to grind Night Whispers with Cantigaster Venom. It was fun while it lasted. This new system seems pretty fun and much better than the original.
Okay but are you kidding me. The struggling artist adds an undiscardable bad card??? It was bad enough when he was just taking an assistant slot. Is he seriously always going to be a punishment for those who romanced him?
I’m quite fond of the struggling artist and I can always use the extra honey from the new card.
I am wondering though whether it’s time to spend fate on a fourth lab assistant. I think I’ll rotate through all my unused ones to see what they bring before deciding, but thoughts from others welcome.
Mixed feelings so far. Can’t say that specialists became more useful.
[quote=Waterpls]Mixed feelings so far. Can’t say that specialists became more useful.[/quote]This is my impression at a glance as well. Someone needs to actually run EPA with all the variables but my feeling is that rather than specialists being genuinely useful with the new mechanic, it’s more a case of being forced to struggle through their cards when they block the hand (and cancelling the optional cards ASAP in each project). I had actually kept a full lab thus far in spite of the additional card discards it involved, but now I’m feeling a lot of pressure to kick out everyone except the spider lady and my student. I’m also not quite clear on whether or not overall research speed got nerfed here.
My impression is that Specialists outside their specialty can still be good contributors, but it takes finesse. And in particular there are some traps you can fall into.
If you have Unlikely Connections, then out-of-expertise Specialists can produce a healthy amount of research (21 per action at EL 7), plus an… Unexpected Result? Forget which. Those Unexpected Results (or whatever) are worth 10 research a piece.
Here are the things: It’s very easy to dismiss for the entire project the main reliable source of Unlikely Connections. And you can turn in Unexpected Results once, all of them at a time in a single action, but only once per project.
I think that nets out to a pretty beefy research output. But only if managed correctly. The difference between proper care and tending vs sub-optimal ends up being pretty stark.
The problem with the unexpected results and unwise ideas is that it’s entirely down to luck whether you get any use out of them. I’ve done a handful of projects now under the new system and I’ve managed to cash in my unexpected results precisely once. And in that case the research result was certainly good, since I handed in five at a go, but it was so late into the project that much of the research was lost over the project cap.
The rest of the times they were basically worthless, and this luck-based mechanic is more than a bit annoying given the actions you need to spend gaining very subpar research in order to accumulate these resources. I haven’t drawn the card to use unwise ideas even once yet, all of them have been wasted for me. All in all these mechanics seem like they would probably even out better on longer projects, but they’re far too unpredictable on short ones, which makes them a pain in the neck to manage.
The unavoidable epiphanies are rather good, though.
It’s not quite true that you can’t get rid of cards. There are a few cards that you can choose to remove from your deck until the end of the current experiment.
Yeah, but you still need to play the card in order to do that, and if you do it too early you risk getting hamstrung with your specialists and no good way to cycle them out of your hand.
I dislike the changes, personally, but this is coming from someone relatively new to the lab and parabola (lab is at 4 or 5, haven’t started making perfumed gunpowder yet). Before, I was consistently getting 10 or 11 progress with students, now, with no changes on my end, it’s only 6 progress most of the time. My watchful is at 170 without modifiers, so perhaps the purpose of this change was to discourage players from using the lab until they’re firmly at 200+? Seems strange but I was having a lot of fun with it until today. Now I don’t even want to go into the lab anymore because the research gains are so bad.
Also, what’s up with the Pot of Violant ink card? Success gives me only 6 progress but failure gives me double that? That card literally shows up constantly.
All in all, very disappointing from my point of view. Perhaps it will be better if I come back in a few months after I’ve hit 200+. My feedback as far as the most frustrating thing about this change and the lab in general is having to constantly switch gears on all of these un-disposable cards between persuasive, watchful, winning, losing, secondary stats, etc.
edited by Henna Rivers on 10/21/2021
True. FB’s solution may not be ideal, but it at least presents new problems to wrestle with.
[quote=Henna Rivers]My watchful is at 170 without modifiers, so perhaps the purpose of this change was to discourage players from using the lab until they’re firmly at 200+? Seems strange but I was having a lot of fun with it until today. Now I don’t even want to go into the lab anymore because the research gains are so bad.[/quote]Unless you’ve suddenly started failing on your checks I would imagine this is more likely tied to how you have your lab set up than your watchful stat. Upgrades, staff, etc. Or are you talking about the actions that get you unlikely connections, unexpected results, etc? As discussed above, getting proper use out of those is a task in itself.
From the perspective of an endgame player, the issue for me is whether reliably getting around 30-40 research per action under the previous model is properly compensated in the new one, where it’s not uncommon now to have to accept actions that are only worth some 10-15 research, but occasionally there are opportunities to progress faster than before. I’m not so sure it is, but I guess time will tell.
Also, what’s up with the Pot of Violant ink card? Success gives me only 6 progress but failure gives me double that? That card literally shows up constantly.[/quote]
Tried with my alt, basically now it’s depressing: 6 progress with A Scholar of the Correspondence 10, it was one of the sweetest bonus before and the only reason I grinded ASotC to 10 on my alt.
The card is worth up to 40 research. Upgrade your lab and raise correspondence to 21.
Kind of tempted to switch professions so I can draw it.