04/05/2021

Shintar's Galactic Seasons Diary, Week 1

As I predicted when the Seasons system was first announced, while I dislike the concept of being incentivised to repeat old content yet again, that doesn't necessarily prevent me from engaging with it and being somewhat entertained anyway. As such, I thought it would be interesting to keep a diary of my first week of completing my personal objectives to document my experiences with the whole thing.

Day 1:

When I inspected the new Galactic Seasons objectives lumped in with my Conquest, I was initially confused why they were marked as "pee zero". Only later did it dawn on me that it's probably meant to be PO and short for "personal objective".

My weeklies were the one to do three veteran flashpoints from a short list and three warzones. The warzones were easy enough for me to do and I decided to jump into a few matches on a lowbie mercenary. I only found out on the day of the patch that 6.3 also included the merging of the lowbie and midbie brackets, meaning that now all players from level 10 to 74 are lumped into matches together. I can't say I was happy to see that change, but the matchmaker was with me and I was lucky that evening, so that my team absolutely stomped the opposition in all three matches that I played. Also, the two missing Huttball maps are back, yay! I got into Quesh once.

A group of guildies was doing a quick Scum and Villainy story mode run since that was a weekly objective for many as well. I was asked if I wanted to join but declined since I didn't have that one. Instead I posted in the Discord channel dedicated to chatter about seasons objectives, which one of the other officers had set up with some foresight, and asked if anyone was interested in joining me for the flashpoints later. There were a couple of offers of assistance, though I found out shortly afterwards that apparently the flashpoint objective is currently bugged. Good thing I learned that before actively spending time on trying to complete it. I used the option to re-roll my second weekly and now got Scum too.

My daily objectives were to kill mobs on Alderaan or Balmorra as well as do three heroics there, which seemed nicely synergistic. I took my DvL Shadow to Balmorra since she also still had her class quest unfinished there, so I progressed it a bit and did the three heroics in the Colicoid area. I've never seen that place so thoroughly cleared out before, I actually had to fight people for spawns.

Completing all this allowed me to claim my first reward in the form of the new Kubaz companion, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that he had a short Alliance alert associated with him. For some reason I'd expected him to just be a clicky to unlock like the companions you can get from the Nightlife event.

Day 2:

We had previously assumed that you could re-roll weekly objectives more than once, but this turned out to be not the case, so I was "stuck" with operations for good or ill. Fortunately around lunch time another guildie with the same weekly decided to set up a Scum pug run (not many guildies were online). It was... an adventure, as pugs so often are, but we still completed the operation within the hour so it wasn't too bad.

I tackled the daily objectives in the evening and sadly they were less synergistic this time - but I wanted to at least give them a try once before re-rolling. One was to complete a GSF match, which was fine to me, though I got into a completely unbalanced death match on the losing side. It was over very quickly and I was the top performer on my team by having managed to earn one medal... everyone else finished on zero. Based on the general chatter about GSF, we seem to once again be back to the problem of Bioware adding extra incentives for participating to keep the queues popping, but this just ends up filling up the matches with people who hate Starfighter and may even intentionally decide to do nothing or even sabotage their own team by suiciding. I'm not sure what the solution to that is.

My other daily was to kill insectoids on Alderaan or Balmorra - and was already partially completed as it seemed to remember that I had killed a lot of bugs during my rampage the day before. So I went and did the Colicoid heroics again, this time on a different character - I could see now why the area had been so busy the day before, though it was a bit better that night. Still, killing 75 bugs specifically still felt like it took really long. I concluded that if I was going to do that one again I needed to find a better area to farm them in, with more weak mobs in it that are quick to kill.

Day 3:

One of my daily objectives was to kill enemies on "coreward worlds", specified as Alderaan, Balmorra, Corellia, Mek-Sha or Onderon. Something from the previous day must have carried over again because I was immediately on 63/75, significantly reducing the amount of killing required. Still, I couldn't quite decide on which planet to go to, so instead opted to go for my other objective first, which required me to do Black Hole dailies. Conveniently, this actually ended up also completing the other objective, as (somewhat to my surprise) the Black Hole did count as Corellia for the purposes of this particular counter, which is not something I expected. (I mean, yes, it's technically correct, but you never know with these planetary sub-zones.)

Day 4:

Got the same heroic objective as on day one, but this time combined with having to kill 75 insectoids on Alderaan in specific, so I went and did the three Killik heroics there. This time nothing had carried over and I had to kill the full 75 mobs to get credit, which felt quite tiresome, especially considering that the larvae didn't count. Not a fan of this whole insect theme so far.

Day 5:

I was not pleased to find myself saddled with the exact same daily objectives yet again, being asked to kill even more bugs. Deciding that nothing could be worse than dealing with more insectoids, I used a re-roll on that one and it changed to at least require only the killing of normal enemies. In order to not have to deal with Balmorra or Alderaan again, I opted to do three heroics on Corellia this time.

This was pretty relaxing, until I checked my progress about halfway through the third heroic and noticed that the counter was still on 0/3 - and that while the objective description listed several planets, the objective name actually specified Alderaan. I sighed to myself a little, finished off the last heroic on my Guardian tank, and since that had also completed her Conquest I relogged on my Gunslinger to go to Alderaan after all. At least the mob farming was done, so I could choose three heroics that were quick to do and required minimal killing.

When I completed the last one of these, I still didn't see a pop-up for the daily objective, so I checked my list, worried that I had messed up yet again, but it showed as completed. Now I'm not sure whether I just managed to miss the completion notification message or whether the three Corellia heroics had counted after all (which I definitely would have missed) and it was just the progression counter that was bugged. So confused.

Day 6:

When I saw that my daily objectives were to kill insectoids on Alderaan and to kill insectoids on Balmorra, I screamed. I immediately re-rolled the Balmorra one and got a generic "kill mobs on core worlds" instead, which I figured would at least synergise. Though I was then told by a guildie that the two bug objectives are currently also bugged in a weird way and if you have both they will complete at the same time if you just do one planet... or something. Who knows.

Since heroics weren't part of my requirements this time around, I decided to do some GSI dailies on Alderaan, since I remembered a couple of them taking place in areas full of non-elite Killiks. Unfortunately I'd forgotten just how much driving around they require. My daily objectives were actually long done before I finished the quests, especially the one to search for Big Red. The big thranta was unlocatable in two separate instances (yes, I checked all five spots in each), and I only found it in the fifth spot in the third instance I checked. Cannot recommend this particular experience.

Day 7:

This time my daily objectives consisted of GSF (yay) and yet more bug killing, which I immediately attempted to nope out of with a re-roll, and got lucky enough to get more Black Hole dailies instead. While these are hardly my favourite thing ever, they beat having to kill bugs for the fourth time.

For the GSF match I chose a random alt that had never even done a single match, so I probably ended up spending more time on purchasing and sorting out ships and components than on actually playing, but oh well. My team lost once again, but at least it was a fair and reasonably fun match. Basically we were all equally terrible, so that the match timer ran out with both teams only on twenty-something kills each, but at least it was close.

Impressions so far:

At the moment, Galactic Seasons features too many bugs of both kinds. I get that new releases are always a big buggy at the start, but when a system is all about offering rewards for completing content within a limited time window, being unable to do so because of bugs is extra annoying (even if the Seasons system has a considerable buffer for potential inactivity built in).

Also, it seems to me that the weeklies are skewed more towards group content while the dailies are more targeted towards the solo player, which would be fine if you could get by doing just one type, but you absolutely do need to do at least some of both to earn all the rewards in time. Given the nature of my play style, I was happy with my weeklies but the dailies to kill x mobs on a specific planet got old quite quickly and I barely seemed to get anything else, even when I used the re-roll option.

Funnily enough, when I went to the forums to check how other people felt about this, the first thread I found had the title "Galactic Seasons - Daily Priority Objectives - More Options Please!", so I thought hey, other people agree with me and think the same! Then I actually read it and the first few pages were mostly people complaining that one out of the eight listed potential daily objectives being "do a warzone" (wish I'd got that one!) was "forcing" them into PvP... good reminder of why the forums should never be approached with too high expectations.

Either way, I'm not hopeful that Bioware will make any major adjustments to things like the objective mix at this point beyond fixing obvious bugs. We'll see how long I can put up with the bug grind. At least next week should send me to different planets.

6 comments :

  1. None of it bugged for me luckily, but I didn't do the dailies, well, daily. I ignored the ops weekly because on Star Forge you seldom get the queue to pop and I'm not interested in sitting on fleet trying to get into a premade group. :sigh: (One of my pet peeves is the fact Swtor players often subvert the ops group finder to the detriment of the player base.)

    One thing I do hope they change is lowering the kill count. While killing 75 mobs doesn't take _that_ long, it is still a largish number and is a disincentive to do that daily when you first see it. 30 would feel better in my view.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Delfae @Star Forge4 May 2021 at 15:06

    Yeah, the bug thing gets old fast. I got lucky and just got Balmorra a couple days in a row, so I was able to run the Project Hexapod heroic on a couple alts to clear it. That said, running Alderaan heroics on my leveling sentinel proved a bit tricky with all the level 75s clearing out the place, but I was pleasantly surprised to see some of them trying to avoid the objective mobs so I (and other levelers) would have a shot.

    The warzone POs are weird right now because 6.3 merged lowbies and midbies into a single bracket. I still had fun taking a level 17 Vanguard into the queue (powered through with 2 losses and a win), but the bracket merge, coupled with the number of new people in the queue, has some people on my server quite upset about the whole thing. At least they only require completion for the POs, and not wins.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I tested the new system from the point of view of a new "story only" player.

    It happened to be, that everytime i was on an outer rim world, i needed to kill mobs on coreworlds. Everytime i was on one of the coreworlds, i had an objective on outer rim worlds.

    The dailies/weeklies with operations, flashpoints or pvp/gsf, i ignored.

    It turned out, that i needed a whole week of login points to get level 1 of galactic seasons done. I played approximately around two to four hours a day.

    Let's start week two. Wohooo.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To be fair, new story players aren't really the target audience for this. They've got plenty to do just experiencing and enjoying all the stories. Galactic Seasons' aim seems to be to engage and retain players who've done it all before.

      Delete
    2. yes, of course. story players are not the target audience.

      but it is strange to see, that a new player can finish a meta game like conquest 60 seconds after login, and another meta game like galactic seasons after 6 days.

      as you said, "I dislike the concept of being incentivised to repeat old content yet again",...

      what suits the definition of "repeat doing old content" more than story play?

      Delete
  4. Every day this week I also have gotten the objective to kill 75 insectoids on Balmorra. It's kind of getting annoying because I wouldn't mind them branching out to other planets. I also keep getting warzones. I too noticed the weekly objectives seem to be geared toward group content. So far most of my weeklies have been completing three fps.

    ReplyDelete

Share your opinion! Everyone is welcome, as long as things stay polite. No sign-in required. I also read comments on older posts, so don't be shy. :)