Elite Dangerous’ Gnosis community storyline goes awry over ‘godmoding’

    
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If Elite Dangerous has disappointed you with its handling of player events in the past, this week’s situation probably isn’t going to endear you to it further.

Apparently, Frontier decided to work a developer lore plotline in with a player-driven storyline that saw a charter ship, the Gnosis, and its accompanying 11,000 players plot a course for the Cone Sector, a location they were never intended to be allowed to go but for Frontier’s intervention. “Working with Canonns’ event in mind, we decided to weave the event into the large game narrative, and the arrival of a threatening new Thargoid variant – the terrifying Hydra that some commanders woefully encountered recently,” the studio said.

Then an in-universe GalNet lore article emerged with the news that the Gnosis had been stranded in the wake of a Thargoid attack along the way. There was just one problem: That event hadn’t actually happened, or at least, hadn’t happened yet.

Frontier has admitted that the in-universe news blurb was released prematurely, but players are grumpy that the event was – I’ll use our tipster’s epic word – effectively “scuppered” by the inadvertent post, and worse, appeared to show that participants’ actions were never intended to have any impact on the outcome, effectively creating a “godmoding” situation.

Here’s the key bit of Frontier’s apology for the mess.

“Now, we are aware that the premature release of the GalNet article (‘Gnosis Stranded’) caused speculation and concern from the community. It spoke of events that had not yet had any consequence or implication in-game, and as this occurred in the early hours of the morning, had no explanation from the team. We have investigated why that article went live at the wrong time and corrected the community site’s GalNet news feed so that it won’t break embargo in the future. We are also aware that there are a few issues causing problems for Commanders at the current location of the Gnosis. The team are actively investigating and correcting those issues. Some of those issues are already fixed, while others are being addressed and a fix is in progress currently. Please visit the following thread for the current status update on these issues. We would like to thank all of the Commanders who have provided their feedback – and pledged to aid the Gnosis in its defence against the alien threat and the terrifying new Thargoid variant. We would also like to take this opportunity to apologise for the confusion and bugs within this event but we are hugely grateful to the many thousands of Commanders who came together to make the event possible and become a part of history.”

Redditors are more than a bit put out by the situation; some are rewriting the lore, some are still warning of bugs, and others are trying to find a silver lining by taking control of the rest of the event.

Source: Official forums. With thanks to Stuart!
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Kayweg

I’m afraid the only “lore” that’s being build upon here, is Frontier’s continued inadequacy in their attempts at GM’ing and running such “events”.
That however is going to be a rich lore to look back at when all is said and done.
And it’s a shame when you consider the things they actually are good at.
Without even being sarcastic, i can say that this mess comes as no surprise, it’s just how the mess would unfold that wasn’t clear.

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Tobasco da Gama

I’m amazed that some people still buy the “reserved for future content” dodge. Since when did FDev ever open up a permit-locked system when introducing new stuff instead of just unceremoniously plopping it in existing systems (like they did with Thargoid/Guardian surface sites and Guardian Beacons).

CapnLan
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CapnLan

I’ve been laughing all morning at this. This is why I don’t bother with their awful “narrative” and community events like this. They always find a way to mess it up. The fact that 11,000 people signed on for this and then got burned leaves me shaking my head as the player base still hasn’t learned this lesson. All of this comes on the heels of them cutting back on the next big update.

I honestly wish they would just drop all of this nonsense and focus purely on building out the game’s sandbox elements. I haven’t actually played Elite in over 2 months now because there’s just nothing to really do while they waste time with this. Sigh.

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Tobasco da Gama

Bingo. Their idea of “narrative” is completely asinine. They’ve taken like two years to play out “aliens show up, then attack”. Best to just give it up and flesh out the sandbox, since it’s clear that the community is far more capable of generating narrative content than anybody at FDev.

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Ken from Chicago

ELITE DANGEROUS should take a page or three from STAR TREK ONLINE. STO has had great stories that not only fit the Star Trek lore but are great stories in and of themselves, from one-off missions to multi-part arcs to their Iconian War arc that stitched together FIVE YEARS of missions. In addition, STO has the Foundry which allows Player-created missions. Yeah, some are ok or dreck, but some are really good stories and fun to play.

If it’s taking Frontier Development a long time to create missions, open it up to players. That was the tradition of 1990s when ELITE came out where game modders were able to enhance a game or even do total makeovers of games.

laelgon
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laelgon

Frontier screwed the pooch on this one, hard. A lot of people returned to check this out, and made the hours long trip out to the ship in question. They control where the Gnosis is allowed to go, and if they were never going to let it travel to an inaccessible region of space they should never have approved it in the first place. Instead they let it get hyped for weeks, only to have it be a complete waste of time. Frontier needed to earn some community good will after announcing the features being cut from the Q4 update, and instead they just made it worse.