The reason why I split this post in two parts was because the remaining features I promised to write about were either unfinished concepts, or not that solid on our list, so they could be pushed around in case something more important turns up. (Well that, and the fact that it would have been terribly long.) A lot stuff happened since Part 1 that can influence our priorities in the development of Perpetuum, most importantly: player feedback.

Apart from the forum, which probably plays the most important role in this, there was Episode #7 of the Incoming Transmission podcast (thanks again Gremrod & Kalsius for doing it!). Gremrod asked me beforehand what topic I would suggest for them to discuss, and since there have been some talks about when Alliances/Conglomerates will be implemented, I told him this would be something we’d like to hear about before we do it. So, among other topics, they talked about a proposed alliance feature and while everyone throws around their ideas and suggestions (noted!), the majority seemed to agree that currently an alliance feature would be premature with the current playerbase, and we should rather focus on improving current corporation features. We also discussed it and agree, so that’s what we’ll do.

Unfortunately this will delay artillery and second-generation weaponry, but I think we can agree that it’s better to improve current features first, rather than drop another variable into the complex formula that is PvP combat, creating even more balancing issues to deal with.

Corporation management improvements

In the last patch we’ve made remote production processes visible on monitoring panels. This was only the first step, and we intend to merge all your production jobs in one common monitoring panel. This in turn will pave the way for the much requested corporation-created production processes, complete with production rights, logs, and source/target storage options.

Another relatively complex idea we have in store is a system where corporation leaders have a place to plan jobs, operations and events for their members. We call this corporate projects.

It will sortof work like an agenda: you think of a goal for your corporation, and optionally set a deadline. Members can then opt in to help the cause, and their efforts will be of course logged and displayed for everyone in the corporation to see. Goals can be anything from mining a hundred million titan ore, to delivering a few kernels for your research department, reaching a simple income goal, or even a number of PvP kills. Naturally you will also be able to set rewards for these goals.

I’m sure with the right tools you guys can be much more creative than what we can think of right now. If it turns out as it should, the system will be loose enough to simply use it for organizing any kind of corporation events, or keeping track of salaries as well.

Account reset changes

Again? Yeah, admittedly we overshot a little bit with the last account reset revamp. Sure, it was a bliss for those with a “misplanned” character, but in the wrong hands it’s a dangerous tool which hurts the persistence of the game.

So we’ll try to bring you a solution, where beginner players who realized their mistakes they made at character creation don’t have to delete that character in order to refine their attributes or extensions.

Spark teleport

As mentioned earlier, the spark teleport system will allow you to teleport yourself without any robots or equipment from one terminal to another.

The system will work with the help of spark teleport nodes: at any given time you can have a maximum of 3 of these nodes placed at the terminal or outpost of your liking. This creates unique teleport channels which you (and only you) can use to move your spark from any other terminal to those locations. Of course both using a spark teleport and changing the configuration will have a cooldown limit in order to make it not too overpowered and you can also expect it to be a small NIC sink.

Waypoints and routes

Hot on the trail of the geoscan result folders, we’ll introduce the same system for waypoints as well, with a little twist. You will not only be able to organize them, but with the proper sorting they will make up waypoint routes.

In its first iteration, these routes will probably be used by a not-that-bright autopilot system which will simply walk a straight line between waypoints, so its uses will be pretty much limited to highways and main roads without any blockings. (Later we might bring in some pathfinding AI as well.) Using the pre-made and stored routes will be as simple as selecting one while on the terrain and activating the autopilot, which will then start to walk towards the first or nearest waypoint of the route.

Of course this won’t make you travel faster, but it will help those doing the same transport routes over and over and allow them to do something else meanwhile, like checking the market, or trolling on general chat.

We heard you like pink robots

Some of you may think that this seems to contradict the “more important features” statement I made above, but since the core mechanics which make robot paintjobs possible have been in the game for a while now, it doesn’t really take away much development time. We just missed a sensible game mechanic for it, which I’ll be presenting now.

Actually this is a very bad example. Please do not do this. Please.

Painting robots will be as simple as fitting a module on them: the equipment window will get a second tab, where you’ll see 8 color slots. There you will drag&drop paint items of different colors and mix them how you like - the result will be instantly visible on the 3D preview of your robot. Drop a red and a green paint, and you’ll get yellow. Drop another red after those and you’ll get orange. Add one black and you’ll get brown. Pretty straightforward I guess.

The paint color items itself will be available in the energy credit shops soon to come, and will include the basic red, blue, green, black and white colors that you can mix freely. However, beyond the paint colors you’ll also need a paintjob token if you want that color to stick to your robot.

As mentioned in the first part of this blog, this will be a microtransaction feature: for a small fee you’ll be able to purchase packages of multiple paintjob tokens that you can use to finalize colors on your robot. The exact pricing is yet to be announced, but since robots are pretty short-lived and packing one will also make it revert to its default color (just like paint decay), it probably won’t be too heavy on your wallets. (And refreshing an old paintjob with the same color will be probably for free.)

This system has also the advantage that those players who don’t care about the color of their robots can still participate in the economy of paint items, even if only to sell them on the market.

All the small things

Of course these are not the only plans we have, but at this point it would be too early to write in detail about them, simply because we have to collect all the ingredients before we can present you the full meal. Some of these already reach beyond our summer-list, but in order to make room for some healthy theory-crafting, here is a short menu: geoscan result trading, dynamic mineral nodes, free camera and other camera improvements, persistent (SQL-based) field containers, improved NPC AI with different behaviors, random assignment objectives, titles/achievements and more.

Bah, again nothing about player-built structures *grmbl* - I hear from the back rows. Yes, thank you for your question, that concept is alive and in the works, but still has a long way to go. While it’s one of our priorities, we don’t want to leave you with nothing in the meantime. But as mentioned in an earlier post, the target time for that is still the end of this year.

Comments for this post

1 Arga

I think we were hoping for something a little more visionary and forward looking of the game as a whole, and not specifically about Pink bots. Its nice to hear that these features are more likely to be implemented, but nothing in this post is new information.

2 Alexander

It's nice to have an official post about coming changes but most of us can gather what's happening from the forums and part 1. I am very surprised that these changes will take some time to be introduced as they're not complex PVP features but are mostly addons like viewing all production within the corporation and painting robots. Given that all the data is already there and it's just a matter of displaying it I am very suprised.

A little disappointed but please that at least the features are being worked on.. even if it is taking time.

3 Alkanys

I'm very disappointed about paiting ( have to pay )

4 DEV Zoom

Arga, visionary and forward-looking was this one I'd say: http://blog.perpetuum-online.com/posts/2011-02-15-the-future-of-perpetuum/

It's only 4 months old, and is still more or less actual. Not sure what kind of visionary ideas you've expected but the farther future depends on the implementation and reception of these concepts. You can't really make solid plans that much ahead, and build upon concepts that are not even in the game yet. This is especially true in a sandbox.

5 Taomm

Pink robots, microtransactions..
Where are players and non-empty market?
Online stable 300-
...

6 Dan

what about rolling back assaults and eccm changes you've made (DEV Calvin said something about that on public forums)? "Microtransaction" are you preparing yourself to go f2p? :P

7 vegemite

Actually after http://www.eveonline.com/ingameboard.asp?a=topic&threadID=1536210 it's really not the time to implement microtransactions IMHO

8 Arga

How about some information on where the syndicate stands currently with the Nian Empire? We just invaded 6 more Islands, and other then a few protectors, we havn't heard anything more about it. I would think they would be noticing us by now.

And how about Earth, how much energy have we sent back to them so far?

9 DEV Zoom

Dan: I didn't want to re-iterate what DEV Calvin said, and it's beyond the topic of this particular post.

And no, we have no plans of going f2p, nor we have any intentions of selling anything affecting gameplay. Following certain news, if someone wasn't yet convinced what consequences even the idea of this has, there is a quite scary example out there. But it's not like every microtransaction model in every MMO will cease to exist in mass panic.

10 DEV Zoom

Arga: we had a public call recently for a storyteller position and I'm glad to tell you that it has been filled, so we're working on the much needed expansion of the Perpetuum universe in terms of lore as well.

11 Arga

Excellent, crack the whip on the new guy :)

12 vegemite

ok, let's see. you said you don't ''have any intentions of selling anything affecting gameplay'' -- for instance Global Agenda devs implemented microtransactions in their game so you can spend real cash to make your character look cool without trying to earn tokens ingame, just pay and you're cool-looking, this probably made me not even willing to play this game anymore, just this! i like GA, but subconsciously I will not play. yes your mta do not affect the gameplay, but subconsciously it pushes away potential subscribers.. i am just trying to say..you have less than 300 ppl online, (while GA has like 1000) again, it is not the time to implement microtransactions, it is time to bring more active, interested in the game, people.

13 vegemite

don't take me wrong, I love your game, I mean it! after trying Perpetuum, all the games I was waiting the release day for, doomed forever for me, I don't wait for any mmo to release, I just want this game to be! It id unique, it is something that happened in my life..I just do not understand why so few people play it.. :(

14 DEV Zoom

Luckily we do (at least partly) and are working on it :)

15 Gremrod

With what is going on right now in the other game about RMT shop just dropped in etc and the rumor of other items that could be sold.

I would hope for sure AC doesn't make the same mistake as CCP.

Are you sure the game is ready for a MT system, even if it is just custometic stuff?

16 DEV Zoom

I understand your concerns, but what really makes a game ready for a MT system?

A certain number of subscribers? When the system goes wrong for whatever reason, that will only mean more disappointed players.

A stable ingame market? Would be a valid point if the MT item would have any direct connection to it, but it isn't the case here.

It's not like we want to push it out next week. We announced it now so it can boil down enough and we can see the feedback of our players, before we take the step.

Admittedly, in light of those recent events out there, our timing could have been better. However I have promised to write about paintjobs and omitting the MT part would have just created the same future trust issues that those guys are facing now.

17 Gasoline

I would like to remind you that many of the new players are here because they found out that EVE is going to add items that are not vanity in theyr MT store. Please, guys, do not make the same mistake - add only vanity items.

18 Annihilator

im Sure you wont make the same mistake as Gamigo/Reakktor with paintjobs (1-2€ per paintcan, and you need 5 of them for a whole ship - and the average usingtime of a ship module during leveling up is 2 hours)

ah, delay of second generation weapons :(

can you post a screenshot of a pink ictus how it would really look? (im especially concerned about the arms)

19 MoBIoS

I do think that MT´s are not a very good idea as well and i agree partly with vegemite.
It gives the game a somewhat stale flavour.

Microtransactions clearly a -1 by me.

20 Paragon

Actually, I'd prefer that if you do do cosmetic stuff, that it will not connect to the in-game economy at all. Keep the MT market as far from the game market as possible. Example: be sure to remove any and all paint jobs before an object is resold so it doesn't become part of the in-game value.

21 Jelan

+1 to what paragon said, don't allow any transference of MT items otherwise you'll create an income source, free nic

22 Annihilator

"Example: be sure to remove any and all paint jobs before an object is resold so it doesn't become part of the in-game value."

thats hard. in this case it would mean that colored robots have to be personalized and can't be moved through corp storages (=no corp insurance)

for any other form of trade robots need to be packaged:
"...packing one will also make it revert to its default color"

23 Savant

Aw man, MT? Really?

I haven't been playing Perpetuum since January anyway, just keeping an active account ticking over, so it's not going to be a hard decision to cancel my sub.

I'm sure you'll have plenty of people who don't care because you say it will only be limited to vanity items. But I don't find it acceptable to feel like a second class citizen in an MMO I'm already paying a subscription fee for. Double dipping is not cool.

You can say it will be limited to vanity items too, but the likes of CCP and Blizzard have made such promises and broken them as well. You don't have a better reputation than they did.

24 Arga

There's just a inherint difference with micro-t in a sandbox game then with thempark games.

I would rather the paint was player created, needing some of those many unused plants in the game. Sandbox = player generated items.

I'm not opposed to a MT store in general, but as i think about it, it either has to be integral part of the sandbox or not at be all.

25 Sciencegeek123

Really? MT? I just left EVE after 3 years because of that. -_- back to the drawing board I guess.

26 BugSplat

Persistent cans... NO! For gods sakes NO!

Eve space, especially around belts, was so littered with persistent cans that for years you could not see past the litter to mine or reach the gate.

ALWAYS, always give cans a timer, or some other way for them to disappear from the terrain.

Besides which, if cans are persistent, they'll point a great big huge neon finger at rich mineral nodes.

27 DEV Zoom

Ok, I see how this could be misinterpreted.

By persistent I meant that for example containers will live through a server restart too, contrary to now. They are not handled via the SQL database, and only reside in server memory. The change will also allow to interact with items in containers (like splitting/stacking).

But the timers will remain.

28 Laarsa Nisiqtu

I just want to mention that the new majority of your playerbase is built off a massive outcry against MT's (among other things, but it was the straw that broke the camels back). I understand it generates income, there is no regarding this from a business perspective. Though MT's have never caused overall satisfaction in any game. They always end up causing an underlying amount of scorn.

Many of us will continue to move until we find a place to stay, as long as MT's are out of the game, I love the concept and I've subbed 3 months on 1 account and 1 month on another, after playing the game for only two days.

Unfortunately, if we move to MT's, I'll just move on again and avoid the perception of being nickle and dimed.

29 Neuk Vherok

If we must, in the end, accept that every single gaming genre is leaning toward MT's currently, and probably will forever.

Can we just get the promise, in writing, that you won't aim to rip us off with MT's, nor will you ever allow them to be more than vanity items?

I know that alone may be asking too much, but that's enough for me to stick around for the very long term...

30 DEV Zoom

I'll start with the straight answer: no, we do not plan or intend to introduce any MT items that affect gameplay or disturb our strict level playing field policy in any way.

We have a manifesto on our site that we have offered to the press at the time we launched, but I guess there is no harm making it public here as well:

http://www.perpetuum-online.com/Media:Manifesto

It's no coincidence that the level playing field is mentioned in the very beginning. We take that very seriously, because we think that it is one of the main driving forces behind a healthy sandbox world with a dynamic healthy economy.

Obviously many of you have been burnt by false promises which results in general distrust towards game companies. I'm not here to ask your trust, how could I, this is just a devblog, not a contract. I'm merely asking you to judge us by our past, present and future actions. We are very much aware what happens when you play with the trust of your customers.

31 LLIAXTEP

Could you implement one small but very useful feature - ability to bind controls to mouse buttons. It may be very useful for people who have mouse with 5 or more buttons.

32 Evangel

When your new-found population discovers that MT has entered the game... well, I'll put it this way; these folks, just a couple of days ago dropped their pitchforks and torches to come to PO. I'm pretty sure they remember where they put them.

My advice, just don't. It's worse than bad timing, it's incredibly bad timing. The flood of new subscriptions you've gotten the past few days should help offset any gains you hoped to make off MT anyway. If nothing else, put this off for 6 months and see what they have to say about MT once they get settled in.

33 Siddy

Talk about bad timing, rather than having micro transaction, bind it to energy credits or something.

34 Marlona Sky

MT for vanity only please. The moment it goes beyond that, I'll leave this game too. Just saying.

So far I ? Perp!

35 Braal

Im not a fan of MT. But to be fair, we din't have to pay for the game at all. Only for the sub. So if they can get some cash für some fluffy stuff with the MT and don't harm the "real" economy, then its not all that bad. Still I like to point out, that I like to pay for the Game and sub and thats it.

36 Mali Noora

I'm new, but I'm gonna say something anyway:
PO has never told us (EVE in Exile folks) that they were not going to do MT. They have said that it is all about Vanity, and that they will not destroy the sandbox/very strict level playing field environment. MTs will me Micro, not Macro, and 100% optional.
They haven't lied, they HAVE listened - to the point of instant fixes for new players (thanks for the Titan Ore, btw!), and they are actually in-game (you can see them and you know who they are, even!)
*\o/* GO, TEAM!

37 Rage

Hey it is your game and I am happy to find another sandbox to play in honestly. You wanna sell paintjobs and fuzzy dice for the cockpits hey I will even buy some just to support the game in general principal. Just make it worth the money :) If a paint job is 70$ it better be a porsche red laquer thats has been buffed out after a year of cure time :)

I see a friggin Monocle ...I'm out lol

But seriously lot of fun so far playing and the welcome has been really, really nice.

38 Brutorans

I have no major issues with an MT store provided it remains vanity only, i took this stance with EVE and i take it with Perp.

Mali: the major issues with EVE were more than just the NeX store and Arum. It was the lack of communication, unclear goals, disdain towards the players and the focus on short term gains that made the rest of use rage.

Many of us played for 8 years or more. Thats not common in any game, much less a hugely complex one. I can see my self playing Perp for years as i did with eve provided the level of dev interaction remains similar to what i have experienced over the last few days.

For a bitter MMO vet, this has been a refreshing experience.

39 Tazca

Like said above, the timing isn't bad for any ex-EVE player who is serious about quitting EVE, because for many ex-EVE guys, the (non-vanity) MT-shop in itself wasn't the thing (Too many people think it's only because of the MT-shop and its outrageous prices), but the hassle surrounding it.
CCP ignoring community (and CSM), not denying the possibility of non-vanity items, Incarna/CQ (performance problems, loss of function), 99$ 3rd party app fee (commercial license, you have to pay this also if you receive donations), misallocation of development resources (core game left to rot, in favour of Incarna/DUST/etc), leaked internal magazine ("Greed is good!", confirmed legit), Hilmar email ("let's look at what they do, and not what they say", unconfirmed, maybe not legit.) and the list goes on.

As PO devs have now denied the possibility of gameplay effecting items (ever), I don't have any real problem with the shop. With one third cheaper sub than most MMO games, I can see easily see myself spending some euros in the shop on monthly basis.

As long as PO developers are serious about the community , I trust that things are done in the favour of the community (hellooo CCP?!).
Not hiding/postponing MT-shop details (in order to get more subs from ex-EVE influx) is a good step in our long endeavour of developer-community transparency and co-operation.

40 Hecate eART6

Just remove it altogether. Can't you find a suiting in-game solution to paintjobs, scrap them.

41 Rhaejen

RAAAAAAAAAAGGEEEE!

just kidding. as others have said if it's just for vanity items then i'm ok with it and will keep re-upping my sub here.

42 Segreto

MT angers so many players. Why would you implement it in any spirit of gaming? If you were totally ftp like DDO or EQ2, then you would have reason, but you're not. You charge for monthly play. You need to make that month totally fair and without selling wins. I'd like to experience the sandbox experience that eludes every other game for the long haul. If youre going to sell wins, let us know now. let us know now what you are going to sell. I don't want to give my money or hopes to any company that promises fair on one hand, and is planning on grabbing money for wins with the other.

43 Grevous

For all us bittervets that came across, well at least we know their intentions from the offset. Its not like they are springing it out of nowhere on us. Not like what we have left. I guess we justhave to placetrust in some developers. Aside from anything this is a small independent games company developing a fun game with a low sub cost. I'm sure a few people will want to chip in a bit to ensure survivability of the game plus the opportunity to pop pink robots!!

44 Damfoose

Being a bitter EvE vet over 6 years playing im happy to find another sandbox to rummage in that has a decent learning curve, As for MT well as we've been told it will only be for paint jobs and to occasional fluffy dice so go for it just don't let MT give peeps the opportunity to be able to buy their ubber crawlers...
As for the game it's really good fun Devs are doing a great job and they actually listen to their player base.

45 Paragon

Will the MT-for-paint result in either of these:
1) Perma-painted ships being resold with perma-paint intact.
2) MT-purchased tokens being salable on the in-game market for NIC.

Either of those means official MT-for-NIC trade is part of the game. That's bad. (Mmmmkay?)

46 DEV Zoom

1) Robots sold on the market have to be packaged, and packaging will make them lose the paint. However if we solve the problem of being able to direct trade equipped robots in the future, that will mean that paint will remain, but of course only until the new owner gets it destroyed.

2) Tokens won't be an ingame item, so they won't be in connection with the ingame economy.

47 Akasun

why are the paint jobs using an additive colour system (RGB)? shouldn't they be using a subtractive one (CMYK)? if a paint job were to make your robot into a shining beacon, on the other hand, that would actually make sense...

48 Philion Salvilines

LOL Microtransactions???? I just ran from them from EVE... after playing it for 6 years...

SERIOUSLY?????
Are there any games where I can pay one stupid monthly fee and get all the features included?

If Pertpetuum gets MT, even those not-game changing i quit... just as most of the recent influx of players from EVE does...
Any MT will sooner or later lead to game changing stuff. That is my opinion and the opinion of many. Period.

Avatar Creations guys - please don't do it.

49 Mr Trap

Can all the little kids please stop screaming?
What's the big deal? It's PAINT.

50 Philion Salvilines

@Mr Trap - it is called voicing your opinion. It is a kind of thing you can see in democratic countries. Cultured countries. Where people say what they do not like and are not afraid to do so.

Part of being cultured is also respecting the opinion of others. Anything else you wanted to add?

51 srike doubter

I was raised not to respect the opinions of others and that you should be fearful of expressing an opinion (especially if it is stupid). It is a cultural value for my people; so you are a bigot if you think I should respect your opinion.

That said, this is PAINT folks. As an eve exile, the Dev's word that MT are vanity only is good enough for me.

52 Natalie Waters

"Are there any games where I can pay one stupid monthly fee and get all the features included?"

Tell me about it. Whenever a sub-required game adds a cash shop, I lose interest, even if it's vanity-only. Especially in a sandbox game, where more toys in the game means more to do, more players, more of an economy.

I get disappointed in the developers for going the easy route. Instead of implementing a way to create the vanity items into the game (with all the new skills, mats, and production lines that would require), I feel like they're telling us, "Well, yeah, we could do all that, but that's *work*. We'd rather just have money instead."

53 SyberSmoke

1. I am on the trial and looking to pay for this title. I know this is a little old...but hey, might as well.

2. I have played MANY mmo's and am a game designer of Pencil and Paper Role Playing Games...so I am aware of allot.

SO, those said I am a little hesitant when it comes to MT shops especially with games that are Pay to Play. One of the big selling points for me is the reduced price, good for my wallet. But I also know that I LOVE to customize things. Heck if I could swap out legs and such, I would. But a MT shot also playes into the competitive side of things...and when I am paying to play...I wana relax a little and not feel the other guy has something I can not get myself. It is a game, not a job and deffinetly not my life. I have other games that fill that role.

54 SyberSmoke

Bad send button...BAD!

I understand that a game company needs to make money. I understand we the players would like to pay nothing. What about meeting in the middle?

Like say a player gets a couple tokens for their sub for free. After that they have to pay. After all...for some that will be enough, and others the taste will drive them to pony up. Any way...sorry to double comment...bad button.

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