The goal of this post is to draw attention to the side of Elite players that want to take a more peaceful, friendly and/or research-oriented approach to the Thargoids.
I will try to suggest a very simple idea, the purpose of which is to:
Be as easy to implement as possible, especially given how busy the devs are with Odyssey at the moment.
Be as non-interfering as possible with the current game narrative and gameplay
Gauge how many players are interested in the aforementioned type of activity
I will also include a poll link
Ideally, if many people use this barely-consequential but trackable feature, the developers will see whether expanding the game towards a thargoid-“friendly” approach is worth it. In other words, this is not the only pro-thargoid idea I have and want, but it’s the best starting point I could think of.
I think this idea would give players an excellent bone to chew on until Odyssey comes out fully.
Now, for the idea:
As observed by a number of independent researchers, Thargoid NPC ships have a hidden reputation bar for the Thargoid faction. Each player has a reputation with the “Thargoid” faction, like they would with any other faction. This reputation meter goes down when you kill Thargoids and it goes up (or at least used to, during a short-lived bug in 2.4) when you drop good cargo to a Thargoid Interceptor.
My idea is to re-implement the removed bug as an intentional feature and have it work like this:
– If a player drops cargo to an Interceptor, their rep increases (this probably already happens behind the scenes)
– If a player has a high enough reputation, they enter the “friendly zone”
If a player is in the friendly zone, the thargoids’ behavior changes in the following way:
– Interceptors collecting cargo from the friendly player have a chance to drop 1 Thargoid-related cargo. This can range from occupied escape pods, to tissue samples, maybe even a heart. If the biological cargo doesn’t make sense (I can see why) maybe they can drop, uhhh.. maybe Tritium? Maybe on average 1 canister of Tritium/other-useful-cargo per 5 tons of Meta-Alloys? The specific numbers are obviously Frontier’s call
– Thargoid Scouts are no longer immediately hostile to friendly players. They will be initially neutral like interceptors and will slowly orbit the player(s) (or do whatever they do when they idle) until a non-friendly player appears.
The problem with this idea is that it would require a change in how Thargoids’ aggro works. Currently if a Thargoid is mad, she’s mad at every player in the instance. For this to flawlessly work, Thargoids would have to differentiate between hostile and non-hostile players. Thankfully, for the strict purpose of gauging player interest in pro-Thargoid activity, this change is not required right away.
The removed bug suggests that “cargo dropped to Interceptors” might be a trackable statistic, which Frontier can use to gauge player interest.