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Author Topic: Brace for Collision  (Read 966 times)

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Offline Elaeis

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Brace for Collision
« on: 11/01/17, 06:19:45 PM »
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Esteemed pilots of Begeren Colony,

As we wind down the final days of our humble server and enter a new era of SWTOR, I felt it prudent to address the coming merger in regards to GSF as well as express my gratitude for being part of the unique community of pilots that once prospered here.   
 
Back in Begeren Colony's heyday many players in our GSF community abided by a code of conduct meant to help foster an environment that encouraged fairness, respect for one's opponent, and graciousness in winning or losing. In other words: sportsmanship.  As GSF matured it became evident to most of us that the growing disparity between veteran and novice players was becoming detrimental to the long term health of our game.  In an effort to sustain morale and encourage new players we discouraged overly aggressive players from 3-capping or harassing the enemy's spawn whenever it became obvious the opposing team was too inexperienced and too overwhelmed to defend themselves.

For a long time these unofficial rules became a mainstay for GSF on our server.  While there were pockets of players on other servers like Ebon Hawk that sometimes observed them I think it gained the most traction here on Begeren.  It distinguished our server from larger, notoriously cutthroat servers like Harbinger and The Red Eclipse.  As GSF stagnated from over 3 years of Dev neglect its popularity here gradually declined leaving what remained of its beleaguered community with little choice but to move to more populated servers, thus marking the end of the age of chivalry on Begeren. 

With the “United Forces” server merge just days away and Patch 5.5's long overdue overhaul to GSF finally in effect I admit I have mixed feelings of both excitement and wariness for what looms for us on the horizon.  I think most of us know the notoriety of Harbinger, but for those who have never flown there before prepare yourself for a culture shock.  While I am certainly looking forward to a substantially healthier queue with frequent pops day and night I also know that the newly formed Satele Shan server will be home to some of the absolute best and absolute worst the GSF community has to offer.  The matches there are going to be far more intense, challenging and far less forgiving than what anyone from Begeren may be used to:  highly skilled veterans, premades coordinating through voice, notoriously ruthless guilds, elitist trolls, more 12 vs. 12 matches in one day than folks from Begeren have seen in the past 2 years combined.  If I were to hazard a guess I would say that roughly 60% of the new server will be comprised of players from Harbinger with 30% from Begeren and around 10% from Bastion.  Unfortunately for us Begeren Colonists we are going to be the minority going in to our new home and I can't help but wonder how the community from Harbinger will receive us. 

Regardless, I remain cautiously optimistic about the server merge and look forward to the fun and challenge that lay ahead.  At the very least it will be interesting to be reunited with some familiar names who used to fly on Begeren.  The bygone era of fair play and sportsmanship that once existed on Begeren may be over but I will always respect those players who valued its importance. 
   

Hope to see you all in the skies.                   
 

« Last Edit: 11/01/17, 06:34:55 PM by Elaeis »
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Offline Iaera

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #1 on: 11/01/17, 06:55:29 PM »
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I've loved GSF ever since it was released. I expected a gimmicky mini-expansion that would serve as little more than a novelty to occasionally waste time with a la the original space missions, and instead what I got was an incredibly deep, intricate, and well-designed game that could have stood on its own as a standalone video game. I haven't played GSF much lately for several reasons, chief among them time (Tuesdays generally being my only free night anymore, which are dedicated to RP), but I still consider myself a GSF player even if I've only done about 3 matches in the past 6 months.

I greatly appreciate the community for it that developed on BC, with a lot of cool people just in it to have fun and enjoy some Star Wars. I'm glad we have folks like @Elaeis and @Niarra representing BC's aces. The new community will be... interesting. The more frequent pops will certainly be welcome on the occasions I do have time to play.

All that said, I won't shed any tears for the loss of the "no 3-cap" rule -- I've always thought it was condescending and only did more harm than good (in my experience, it's much harder to take one of two sats being turtled by gunships and bombers than it is to contest two of three sats being controlled by a team that is forced to be more reactive and mobile from trying to cover all three sats at once). I'll be interested to see how the new community trends shake out. Though I still haven't tried the new changes much, so I don't know how that's going to affect things either!
"For over a thousand generations the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic." - Obi-Wan Kenobi

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Iaera Farworlder - Jedi Master, lightsaber instructor, Jedi Custodum
Sibyl-ko Tanaji - ex-punk, fighter pilot, Argent Squadron
also many alts i never play ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ

Offline Nicohlas

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #2 on: 11/01/17, 07:27:16 PM »
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I made an effort to start doing GSF more starting at the beginning of this calendar year.  I'm very disappointed with the minimal progress I made developing my skills in this area of gameplay.  I attribute this largely to the infrequent queues, which never allowed me the opportunity to play with ship builds and crew and tactics to get a feel for all ship capabilities and weaknesses and fall into my "groove."  I regret that the influx of players from Harby and Bastion might be the final straw that sees me stop queueing for GSF for good.

We'll see.

Big shout out to @Iaera and @Niarra though for their patient instruction and the epic materials they've put together to try and teach newcomers to GSF.

Offline Elaeis

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #3 on: 11/03/17, 09:31:35 PM »
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I'm not sure I deserve it but I appreciate and thank you for the accolade, @Iaera, especially considering your own merit as one of BC's premier pilots.  We belonged to BC's 1st generation of pilots, which gave us considerably more time to hone our skills back when the queue wasn't on the Endangered Species List.

The "Unwritten Rules" have always been a friction point between people with opposing play styles.  I value player autonomy but I also knew that Begeren's shrinking GSF population wasn't doing itself any favors by continuously slaughtering newcomers to the game. My concern for keeping the queue healthy and alive is what motivated me to fly with a measure of discretion and restraint whenever facing a team of doomed 2-shippers.  However, whenever I felt it necessary to invoke the Unwritten Rules I always made sure to do it in the form of a suggestion or request and not a flagrant demand.  I always thought it silly for anybody to think they have authority to command anybody else during any kind of open PVP match.  Most of us will simply take what somebody says under consideration and either agree or disagree.  Anyhow, now that we're being merged with Harbinger (and possibly the dozen or so holdouts that comprise whatever is left of Bastion) the safety mittens can finally come off.       

Personally, I think the new changes are awesome.  The new patch has completely altered the landscape across all servers and it is evident that the Devs based a lot of these changes on player feedback.  On Harbinger and TRE, where a saturation of bombers and gunships were the norm, their dominance has been diminished by the rise of the strike fighter.  What I've seen happening is that strike fighters and their wide range of load-outs have made them significantly more effective against T2 scouts, gunships and bombers which has consequently brought more dog fighting back to the game.  Overall there is more movement and variety happening  which I find a welcome and refreshing change.  I think most of these changes have been positively received on the forums, but I haven't bothered to check in the last two or three weeks.  The newly updated Proton Torpedo has been a hot topic which is funny for me considering that lumbering missile system happened to be a mainstay on Elaeis's Pike.  As an ardent Pike/Quell pilot all these years I find my once heavily ridiculed missile boat to be suddenly back in vogue.   

@Nicohlas, I do hope you'll find the server merge a positive experience.  With the amount of CXP given for GSF and the time it takes to master a ship cut in half it won't take long for people to build up their ships and take them for a spin.  There are definitely going to be some frustrating matches against notorious GSF guilds like Shadowlands Reconnaissance Wing (SRW), but I think there will also be plenty of times throughout the week where there are going to be some nicely balanced matches between folks of all skill levels.





 
 

« Last Edit: 11/04/17, 08:51:40 PM by Elaeis »
"It's spelled just like it sounds."

Offline Iaera

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #4 on: 11/04/17, 01:53:30 AM »
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Glad to hear the changes seem to be working out well! While I'm a NovaDive pilot at heart, I always liked the Pike too, and it's good to see that the interceptor role seems to be taking shape. Gunships and the engagement limitations of proton torpedoes made it a hard playstyle to make work sometimes. I'm really interested in trying some of the new possibilities with strike fighters!
"For over a thousand generations the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic." - Obi-Wan Kenobi

Fiat justitia ruat clum

Iaera Farworlder - Jedi Master, lightsaber instructor, Jedi Custodum
Sibyl-ko Tanaji - ex-punk, fighter pilot, Argent Squadron
also many alts i never play ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ

Offline Niarra

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #5 on: 11/04/17, 03:21:59 PM »
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I think the changes made to GSF with the last update have been simply wonderful. At least the 3.5 year silence from the devs was broken with well thought-out quality game balancing changes. Because the queue on Begeren is unfortunately so anemic I haven't had a chance to test fly the changes as much as I'd like, but I've been flying on Harbinger a fair bit this week while I decorate strongholds over there, and it's obvious these changes have really altered the face of the game.

Even the meta-thumping diehards of the most condescending stripe have not only embraced the changes but are actively rolling almost all of the previously disparaged ships into their gameplay. While I'm not terribly concerned with validating the choices of that particular crowd, it's undeniable that in a PVP environment much depends on what the dedicated play-to-win set is number-crunching, and nowadays they are number-crunching in a way that really broadens even their picky definitions of the meta.

What that means for the more laid back player is that you're not going to be ridiculed anymore for flying striker fighters (and if you've never been ridiculed for flying a strike fighter, my guess would be you've only ever played on Begeren Colony, because on any other server flying a strike fighter was guaranteed to earn you heaps for vile scorn and personal attacks). And overall it means that GSF, even at the highest levels of competitive play, is seeing a lot more dogfighting and a lot less bomber/gunship balls. Finally, the full nuanced potential of all those component choices is starting to be felt as things like EMP Field and EMP Missile and Plasma Railgun and Quick-Charge Shield get the boosts they always needed, and the range of viable tactics being fielded is broadening and becoming much more dynamic. It's awesome.

But! Now that my excited babble about GSF's recent changes is done, I'd like to speak to the future that lies ahead for BC pilots once we're merged into Harbinger.

I think everyone already has some idea of how much more toxic the Harbinger community can be, particularly in the PVP arena. That's just as true for GSF as for anything else. On Begeren I frequently try to lead off matches with a "Have fun, everyone!" message in chat channel, and I know I'm not the only one. Our server is, overall, a friendly one, and our GSF environment is the most welcoming and least toxic of any of the servers out there (I've flown on many). A friendly "we're all here to have fun" attitude is definitely not what you're going to find in GSF on Harbinger. But when it comes to attitude, that's of course a matter of choice; we can choose to maintain our friendly dispositions, or choose not engage in chat wars, and try to remember what it is we love about the game in the first place. They might get us down if we let them, but we can try not to let them!

There's another aspect I wanted to give people a heads up about, though, and that's the level of gameplay. Generally speaking, if you stuck through the GSF learning curve already then you're probably of the disposition who doesn't mind some level of challenge. That's a spirit we will all definitely need to hold onto after the merge. GSF gameplay on Harbinger is a very different league from gameplay on Begeren.

Two years ago, the coordinated GSF guilds were spread out across a few servers; Shadowlands and Ebon Hawk and Harbinger and Red Eclipse all had healthy populations. Even then, gameplay was more competitive on those servers than on Begeren, but there was still some overlap of galaxies. But in the last year in particular the migration to Harbinger and Red Eclipse as the two GSF hubs has been very pronounced. Even as a lot of people bemoaned the bomber-spam tactics being seen on Harbinger, the fact remained that if you wanted frequent queue pops that's where you needed to be, and as such the most competitive server-hopping GSFers made Harbinger a home for at least some of their characters.

I get a couple matches in on Begeren and I generally feel pretty unstoppable. I get a couple matches in on Harbinger, and I feel like someone has been slamming my head repeatedly into a wall. It's a serious jump up in challenge, difficulty, and ruthlessness. When I fly on Harbinger, I'm reminded that no matter how much I might love GSF I just haven't put in the same amount of hours some players (with the benefit of a healthier server queue) have done. Going from being top of the pack to middle of the pack, with some nuance and finesse still to learn, is humbling. On Begeren, if I realize I'm taking damage I've generally gotten into the habit of staying put to get my final shots off, knowing that most of the time I'll be able to take some hits and still recover. On Harbinger, if I linger for even a second after realizing I'm being targeted it is almost guaranteed death; there's a mastery of TTK (time-to-kill) in a lot of the player base over there that is really impressive.

All of this is just to say - Begeren pilots are likely to find themselves suddenly thrown into a much deeper and much more crowded pool, on Harbinger. And there isn't going to be a lot of mercy or friendliness in the air to help them acclimatize. My advice to Begeren's pilots would be to remember how you felt in the beginning of GSF, make peace with the idea that you are going to feel like that all over again to some degree, and try to embrace the new challenge.

That being said, I don't think rising to a new challenge should have to mean that we adopt the less civil attitudes of much of the Harbinger PVP player base. (The "elite" GSF community likes to think they are more welcoming than the ground PVP community, but too often what that translates to is just exchanging crudity for condescension.) I think it might be fun for our BC.org GSFers to put a monthly (or whatever) night on the calendar for us to team up and fly together. We might get our butts soundly kicked, but at least we'll know we're flying with friends who can take their punches with good humor!
Niarra Reymark, Jedi Master and Diplomat // Derrad Reymark, Starfighter Ace and Softie // Jheva, Padawan and Pattern Reader // Yatei, Jedi Knight // Zelek Arr, Corn Grower
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Offline Iaera

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #6 on: 11/04/17, 03:30:11 PM »
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I'm all for a BC-patriot flight squadron! (insert cheeky nudge toward Custodum's dust-collecting Argent Squadron)

Depending on timing, I could probably clear another night off my schedule to dedicate to GSF, if there's interest.
"For over a thousand generations the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic." - Obi-Wan Kenobi

Fiat justitia ruat clum

Iaera Farworlder - Jedi Master, lightsaber instructor, Jedi Custodum
Sibyl-ko Tanaji - ex-punk, fighter pilot, Argent Squadron
also many alts i never play ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ

Offline Ela

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #7 on: 11/04/17, 03:39:23 PM »
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My advice to Begeren's pilots would be to remember how you felt in the beginning of GSF, make peace with the idea that you are going to feel like that all over again to some degree, and try to embrace the new challenge.

Such a lovely post, Niarra, and I can't wait to feel this again :)
| Alexandra 70 Sage | Meagan 70 Sharpshooter | Medley 70 Sentinel | Sariyah 70 Shadow |

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Offline Elaeis

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #8 on: 11/05/17, 10:42:44 AM »
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Adding a BC flight night to the Event calendar sounds like a fun idea.  If there is enough interest perhaps it's something we could schedule once or twice a month.  It would be nice to group up with some familiar names and see how we fare against the Harbinger majority.  It would be especially satisfying to demonstrate our collective quality to a few jerks out there who have been known to insult, ridicule and dismiss the folks from Begeren as "non-competitive".

I decided to follow up on an idea that came about a few months ago and design a "Starfighter's Lounge" stronghold to serve as a prospective hub for BC's pilot community.  It may not be required but considering the pile of strongholds that will be grandfathered in from Bastion and Harbinger I figured why the hell not?  I have a few alts on standby with some appropriate names for this project but that will ultimately depend on which names survive the server merge.  If people were interested just let me know and I'll be sure to send out some keys once it is finished.   




« Last Edit: 11/05/17, 11:03:48 AM by Elaeis »
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Offline Ela

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #9 on: 11/05/17, 11:42:53 AM »
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I decided to follow up on an idea that came about a few months ago and design a "Starfighter's Lounge" stronghold to serve as a prospective hub for BC's pilot community.  It may not be required but considering the pile of strongholds that will be grandfathered in from Bastion and Harbinger I figured why the hell not?  I have a few alts on standby with some appropriate names for this project but that will ultimately depend on which names survive the server merge.  If people were interested just let me know and I'll be sure to send out some keys once it is finished.

o.O

This could be a drop-in regular RP spot! No matter what, I'm am sooooo in. We'll have to chat after the smush on Tuesday, because I'm one of the few wierdos who sometimes hangs out at the Fleet Starfighter lounge when waiting for a pop.
| Alexandra 70 Sage | Meagan 70 Sharpshooter | Medley 70 Sentinel | Sariyah 70 Shadow |

@>~~~ SONG SQUADRON ~~~<@

Offline Karmic

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #10 on: 11/05/17, 01:01:49 PM »
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Adding a BC flight night to the Event calendar sounds like a fun idea.  If there is enough interest perhaps it's something we could schedule once or twice a month.  It would be nice to group up with some familiar names and see how we fare against the Harbinger majority.  It would be especially satisfying to demonstrate our collective quality to a few jerks out there who have been known to insult, ridicule and dismiss the folks from Begeren as "non-competitive".

I decided to follow up on an idea that came about a few months ago and design a "Starfighter's Lounge" stronghold to serve as a prospective hub for BC's pilot community.  It may not be required but considering the pile of strongholds that will be grandfathered in from Bastion and Harbinger I figured why the hell not?  I have a few alts on standby with some appropriate names for this project but that will ultimately depend on which names survive the server merge.  If people were interested just let me know and I'll be sure to send out some keys once it is finished.

ooh I bet the interior of the train would be good for that setup!  Course I don't know if you have any trains free... :)

Having a weekly BC Pilot night might also encourage some of us who like the idea of the GSF stuff and would be more likely to give it a try in a group of buddies.  It seems like fun to me - but entirely overwhelming to get started with lol.

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Offline Nicohlas

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #11 on: 11/05/17, 04:45:51 PM »
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Work schedule permitting, I'll attend any scheduled GSF night I can.

Offline Dassalya

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #12 on: 11/05/17, 06:31:11 PM »
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I'd like to attend when my availability lines up!
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Offline Noth

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #13 on: 11/05/17, 08:51:48 PM »
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Adding my vote that I'd love a GSF night, and the starfighter lounge! I am an utter newbie to it, I fly every once in a while, die a lot, enjoy it, and I have to admit that I'm... pretty anxious about the merge meaning getting thrown into a harsher, more competitive environment. The learning curve is opaque enough already. :( A regular night to fly with friends and/or do some lessons on building up your ships well would be very appreciated.
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Offline Iaera

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Re: Brace for Collision
« Reply #14 on: 11/06/17, 09:21:28 PM »
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So the merge should be done and finished by Wednesday night (assuming no catastrophic errors)... would anyone like to fly some inaugural Begeren Squadron flights to represent BC that evening?

If so, please post a reply here, and we'll see if we can get enough for a group or two! (I don't think Ops groups can GSF queue?) Of course everyone's hours vary, but let's shoot for some flying somewhere in the range of 5PM PST/8PM EST to 9PM PST/12AM EST. Obviously most folks probably can't be there for that full range, but I'll try to be there for most of that to invite and coordinate people!
"For over a thousand generations the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic." - Obi-Wan Kenobi

Fiat justitia ruat clum

Iaera Farworlder - Jedi Master, lightsaber instructor, Jedi Custodum
Sibyl-ko Tanaji - ex-punk, fighter pilot, Argent Squadron
also many alts i never play ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ