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Job timers need to be lowered


Zombiedude101

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I've played SS13 on and off across the last 10 years. I'm not 100% familiar with all the departments (Medical never really interested me, and usually preferred Engineering / Robotics to Sec) but jesus christ ihe job timers / requirements are at insane levels right now. Some job roles basically require 3-4 actual real life days spent ingame as specific roles to play them. I completely get you don't want greenhorns jumping straight into Sec / Command roles, and I myself am glad to have had a few rounds getting back into things with SS14's mechanics, but come on, it should not take literal weeks of ingame time to able to access roles.

This is a particular frustration for me as I get a fairly limited chance to play - a few hours on the weekend maybe, otherwise maybe 30-90 mins on some weeknights if I'm lucky. It shouldn't be a fucking grind if I just want to play Atmos, Chemist etc.

 

Please, drop the timers to sensible levels.

Edited by Zombiedude101
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  • Zombiedude101 changed the title to Job timers need to be lowered
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Role timers are high because the standard needs to be high. SS14 has a mix of very dedicated players, people who come and go, and people playing the game for the first time. And I've been there, we all have at one point or another when we started the game and worked in a single department until we unlocked that first head role, but when we did we were masters of the entire department as a head. A month or two ago the timers were even higher, I think it was like 6 hours in each command role to unlock Capt, but I think that by having large role timers we are able to ensure that the quality of each shift is relatively the same. 

Battle for engineering, colorized 2023

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They were lower before, they were increased for a reason. The amount of times I've seen CE players not know what to do including setting up the AME or solars or even know how to fix something was common.

And the high time for senior roles is to teach people. So players who've dedicated a lot to that role can teach others.

Unlocking base roles isn't that bad. You can get it done overtime. 

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3 hours ago, kaishiba said:

They were lower before, they were increased for a reason. The amount of times I've seen CE players not know what to do including setting up the AME or solars or even know how to fix something was common.

And the high time for senior roles is to teach people. So players who've dedicated a lot to that role can teach others.

Unlocking base roles isn't that bad. You can get it done overtime. 

I agree with having some timers in, and the senior roles also kinda make sense in that context, but I still think it is insane that as someone with limited ability to play as long as some of the younger players here do I'm unlikely to ever touch anything beyond the base roles for literal months.

Given the banning policy here is so unforgiving anyway, surely the shit / asshole players who abuse these jobs can be dealt with accordingly?

Again, it doesn't seem right I basically need to play for the equivalent of 4 IRL days back to back to be able to play Cyborg. Or that I'll likely never be able to play Captain because I'm not really into mainline Science or Medical and therefore won't clock up the hours required there.

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8 minutes ago, Zombiedude101 said:

I agree with having some timers in, and the senior roles also kinda make sense in that context, but I still think it is insane that as someone with limited ability to play as long as some of the younger players here do I'm unlikely to ever touch anything beyond the base roles for literal months.

Given the banning policy here is so unforgiving anyway, surely the shit / asshole players who abuse these jobs can be dealt with accordingly?

Again, it doesn't seem right I basically need to play for the equivalent of 4 IRL days back to back to be able to play Cyborg. Or that I'll likely never be able to play Captain because I'm not really into mainline Science or Medical and therefore won't clock up the hours required there.

Personally as someone with no time to play as much as I have before (medical issues) I don't see what's wrong with having the role timers as they are. People will get the roles overtime and they have normally. I'd honestly rather have a Captain who knows what they're doing over one that doesn't know how to save someone in medical when it's dire for them to do so.

Overtime people will get the roles they want eventually. 

I don't think handing it off for admins to handle ALL cases like that is right. It was quite common to have shift after shift be completely borked by a couple of heads. Some people don't even ahelp them. Change was to lessen the load on that.

Bans are unforgiving to those who deserve it.

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Job timers are fine and could be increased even further for all I care.

The reason why is rather simple. Too often do I meet Heads who have zero fucking clue what they're doing. And no, do be a head role you don't need to just know how 2 fix a wire in engineering or whatever. You should have some very BASIC leadership skills. Disagreement in your department? Handle it. Another department steps on your boys' toes? Tell them to go through you or the captain. Crisis situation like nukies? Don't play action hero, tell your people what they need to do. Coordinate your team. A head of a department being terrible can legitimately ruin the fun for the entire department and just cause self-antag levels of grief.

I meet a HoS not knowing that lawyers aren't part of security, CEs with no clue how atmospherics work, CMOs who can't get a single easy revive done in several minutes and so on and so forth every day I play on Wizden. IMHO the bar for reporting people for "extreme incompetence" should be lowered, we need to get more of these people a job ban or their playtime deducted.

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I heavily disagree with lowering the role times.

These should be raised in all honesty. As many people have stated, the number of people in important roles who simply haven't even figured out what their job is supposed to entail, let alone how to do it. Is staggering.

Lowering role time entry for any role, lowers the entry requirements and standard of all heads. Whether you want it to or not.

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On 9/17/2023 at 1:52 PM, RyanStrudfelt said:

I heavily disagree with lowering the role times.

These should be raised in all honesty. As many people have stated, the number of people in important roles who simply haven't even figured out what their job is supposed to entail, let alone how to do it. Is staggering.

Lowering role time entry for any role, lowers the entry requirements and standard of all heads. Whether you want it to or not.

What I have found in my own playing of the game is that role timers, on a fundamental level, really don't do what the game designers want them to do.

I get why they're there. But, I can also tell you the exact reason why raising then won't fix anything. Or, frankly, why lowering then wouldn't harm anything either.

The problem is with the idea of role timers themselves, on several levels. The idea being that time spent in a role equals knowledge/skill increase in role. But, when you really understand what's going on here, that's not even what role timers really do. The actual idea is that time spent in an adjacent role equals knowledge/skill increase to the adjacent role.

This is idea only works under one specific mindset. That being, players who want to unlock new roles are actively trying to learn the adjacent role they are next to in the same department.

If the player is not trying to do this. And instead, let's say, just wants to cheese the timer to unlock the next role, the entire concept of role timers falls apart entirely at its very foundation.

I will now list all the problems with role timers and why they don't do what the game designers are delusionally hoping they will do. Feel free to ignore me now. But, when the timers are inevitably raised again because "the number of people in important roles who simply haven't even figured out what their job is supposed to entail, let alone how to do it. Is staggering." and it still doesn't work, you can then think back on my post and realize that I was right, and why.

A: Role timers fail to teach players how to do their job.

See, there are several ways to learn how to do a job. One is reading about it. Another is watching a video about it. Another is playing an interactive tutorial about it. Another is just plain and simply playing the job directly.

The problem with role timers is the assumption that players are actively trying to be aware enough of other people doing different jobs around them in the same department to learn how to do that job. Which, of course, usually how absolutely nothing (or very little) to do with the job that they are actually playing. And, as such, really does not naturally warrant their attention to paying attention to these other players. It's like the expectation is that job skills, knowledge, experience will just seep into the player about Job B while player is playing Job A in the same department via some sort of proximity osmosis. It doesn't. Why would it?

A good example of this is when I was a kid and played with my action figures and Game Boy in the back seat of the car while my parents drove places. I never really looked up to pay attention to how driving worked. Why would I? My job wasn't to drive. My job was to be good in the back seat and keep myself entertained and not a distraction to the driver. Once my parents asked, while teaching me to to drive, how it was that I knew nothing about driving after riding with them all those years. My response, logically of course, was that I didn't know I was supposed to be paying attention to that. You never told me that. So, I had to learn to drive from scratch.

Same thing with work. All those years I worked as a Cashier, I never paid much real attention to how the Customer Service Desk was ran. I mean, logically, why would/should I have? I was the Cashier, not the Customer Service Desk. Even though both are the same department, "Front End." It wasn't until I got up into the Customer Service Desk that I then set to work on actually learning how my new job position of Customer Service Desk Worked from mostly scratch.

SS14 works the same way. There is no reason to assume why someone playing Paramedic would ever even think to pay attention to what the Chemist or Doctor is doing. Why would/should he? That's not his job. His job is being the Paramedic. Why waste time learning the job you're not actively doing right now? It makes no logical sense.

Same goes for every job position, really. Why would the Doctor be paying attention to the CMO? He's not the CMO. Why would the Security Officer be paying attention to what the Warden is doing? Why would the Detective be paying attention to what the HOS is doing? Detective and HOS are entirely different jobs requiring entirely different skills. Why would Atmos be paying attention to what other Engineers are doing? It's called the division of labor. All you really need to know to do you job well is what it takes to do your job well. This, in most cases, takes learning nothing to precious little about what anyone else's job entails; even in the same department.

You don't learn new jobs by watching other people do them. You learn new jobs by doing them yourself. Yet, the job timer system denies you this entirely. It forces you to play one role, while at the exact same time expecting you to be paying attention to an entirely different (and usually mostly/entirely unrelated) role, while never even bothering to tell you that this is what you're supposed to be doing. This 'somehow' (again, the bad assumption of skill learning by proximity osmosis) is supposed to teach new players something. Not exactly a surprise to me that it doesn't...

B: Role timers only 'work' if people are trying to learn the roles.

So, let's say, if someone is trying to pay attention to other unrelated jobs in their same department while also doing their own job while never being told this is what they're supposed to even be doing in the first place (gasp for breathe) then, yes, they might indeed pick up on some basic facts about proximity jobs along the way.

But... what about people who just want to learn the new job by directly doing it so badly that they... you know.......... just plain and simply cheese the job timers? Like, you know, do the bare minimum of what their actual job requires to not get yelled at/banned but otherwise just hang out at the bar or wherever else until the arbitrary egg timer goes off? What, exactly, stops people from doing this? Oh yeah, nothing.

Thus, no matter how long you make job timers, people can always just cheese them. They can't go afk. But, you know, you don't have to go afk to cheese them. You just have to ride out the clock, no matter how long it is set for, until you unlock your goal. What you'll learn about the new job by doing this, of course, (no matter how long you set the timers to) is going to be practically nothing. Again, just a few basic facts and that's it.

 

C: Learning to do the work of subordinates doesn't teach you how to delegate as a department head, no matter how long you set the role timers for.

Delegation is more than just learning how to do each job in a specific department. It's also learning how to manage people are varying skill levels beneath you. It's a constant game of people skills meats spinning plates. In this way, for example, learning Doctor, Chem, Paramedic, teaches you absolutely nothing about how to be a CMO. Instead, it teaches you how to be a Doctor, Chem, and Paramedic. And while yes, I do agree, the CMO should know how to do every job within medical (just like every department head should know how to do every job in their department) learning each of these roles doesn't teach you how to delegate subordinates; which, really, is your actual job now. You just moved up to middle management. Yes, and management, you should know how the cash register works. But, learning how the cash register works doesn't teach you the people skills and multitasking skills required to coordinate your subordinate cashiers. That's an entirely different and unrelated skill set to being a cashier. It also doesn't teach you how to interact with your bosses in your new, higher, position; just like in SS14. Your a CMO now, a department head, so... like, who's my equal? Who's my superior. Yes, there are charts in the wiki that shows you this. But, nothing about a role unlock naturally teaches you from nothing other than time spent playing subordinate roles exactly what the social graces are of interacting with superiors, subordinates, equals. These are all things you learn over time naturally through... you know... doing. Actually playing the role. Not things you learn by playing the subordinate roles that unlocked the superior roles.

D: Outside of Liltenhead's videos, nothing really teaches you how to play this game.

Yes, there is the wiki and in game guide. But, that's reading. So, let's be honest with each other, almost nobody outside of the hardest of the hard core RPG fans are going to read to learn how to play a game. They're just... not.

So, this leaves Liltenhead's videos and learning from other people around you.

D1: Learning from other people around you only works for subordinate roles. There is no other CMO or HOS around to tell you how to do these jobs. (Unless someone is handing out ID upgrades like pancakes.)

D2: Most people in game, while trying to be nice and meaning well, don't usually teach you how to do your job well. As in, they're not thorough enough. After all, they have their own jobs to do and their job really isn't to teach you how to do your job. They do enough to get you started, then basically leave you to figure out the rest on your own.

E: Job Timers do not translate to outside of Network Servers.

While I enjoy playing on Wizard Severs, I don't enjoy being locked into them. But, I'm not going to play out of network servers if I have to unlock everything all over again. I would suggest out of network servers massively reduce or delete role timers because they (along with low population) are a major reason I don't play on them. I assume this is true for other people as well.

 

 

So, here are some examples of what I mean. Even under your new timers, I can be a CMO. I have no idea how to be a CMO. I don't even really know how to be a Doctor. When I learned 'how to be a Doctor' all anyone ever bothered to teach me was how to scan people and pop pills into peoples' mouths. So, bicar for brute, derma for burn, dylo for poison. I spent all shift standing in the hallways scanning people, and popping two pills into their mouth for the correct damage category. (At least, I think these are right. Sometimes I still get them confused. Whoopsy Doopsy.) I also gathered that zapping people with the paddles sometimes saves them.

So, I stand in entry to med. Scan people. Pop in two pills. If people are crit or dead, I try to defib once or twice. If that doesn't work, I hope there is a Doctor around who knows how to actually be a Doctor. If not, well, that person is just dead now because I have on idea what else to do.

I tried to help other doctors, but even when I say out loud what pills I'm putting into the patient, medical is so hectic that they accuse me of not calling out pills even when I do. So, that pisses me off. I'm clearly just in the way. So, no, I don't stay around to watch what they're doing to save these people. I either go out to the med lobby to pop more pills into easier patients to treat. Or, say F this, and go spend the rest of my shift drinking in the bar.

As Chemist, I learned how to make these pills myself from the Liltenhead video and the in game guide for the recipes. Poop out a batch of the pills, spend about 10-20 min in bar, come back to poop out more of those pills if needed, go back to bar; lather, rinse repeat.

Because I 'learned how to play Doctor' and 'learned how to play Chemist' I am now, by your own role timer standards, qualified to play CMO. Now... lean in real close for this one. (Whispers quietly into your ear) "Do you really think I'm qualified to play CMO?"

Oh, and by the way, if you raise the role timers again, I'll just keep doing what I've always done as Doctor and Chemist and the job will just unlock for me naturally over time. Will I have learned any better how to be a Doctor, or a Chemist, or a CMO this way? No, of course not. But the role will unlock for me again... Mwahaha!

See the problem with role timers? They don't teach anything. They're an egg timer to be ran down to get to new roles. They're not a teaching agent. This, coming from me; who actually did take time to watch Liltenhead's videos to actually try to learn new roles. Which, honestly, is more effort than you'll see from a lot of casual players who will do nothing but cheese the egg timers and not even bother trying to educate themselves at all. At the very least, I made an initial real effort to at least learn some of the basics of each new role that I played.

Here's another example. When I unlocked Captain before the timers were extended out, I had no idea how to play Captain. I had to keep asking the department heads around me what to do. Why? Because playing other roles taught me absolutely nothing about how to play Captain. Again, if it isn't obvious by now, extending the timers doesn't teach me anything else. When I eventually unlock Captain again when the new timers run down, I will be just as clueless as before as to how to play Captain. Making we wait longer for the position doesn't teach me through proximity skill osmosis how to be a better Captain. Actually, you know, playing the role does that. The thing your timers keep denying from me. Will I make a lot of mistakes? You bet I will. Nothing in the game yet has told me how to play this new role. But, I'm never going to learn from other roles that are completely unrelated. I'm only ever going to learn from videos and actual hands on doing; trial and error. The longer you keep me from higher level roles; the longer you're postponing my learning, not helping me to learn.

I don't know what the solution is to teaching more people how to play this game better. But, upping the egg timers isn't it.

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I'll go ahead and give you the real answer, but there is no easy way to implament it and so you're not going to like it.

If you want to treat the higher roles in this game like real jobs... then you're going to have to treat them like real jobs...

Another example would be to treat them like getting a driver's license.

So, let's go through it.

1: Require players seeking a new job position to watch Liltenhead's videos on that role. (There is nothing else out there that teaches players how to play the game and basically nobody is going to read to learn how to play a game.)

2: Take away job timers as they are now. Instead, treat it like Driver's License log entries. When I learned how to drive, I had to log so many hours of driving with a parent in the car. As well as log many hours with a driving instructor who talked with us and showed us videos (going back to step 1.) We also has 'student driver' on the back of the instructor's car.

Current job timers are borked because playing Job A teaches you nothing about Job B. The more a players wastes time playing Doctor, the longer the player is going learning nothing about how to be the CMO.

So, instead, here are a couple solutions to that. First, let them play as the CMO. Second, put a 'student driver' icon next to them that let's everyone know they're new and don't really know what they're doing. Third, allow for 2 CMO's in the occasion. That way the 'student driver' CMO can ask a qualified CMO for guidance. It looks like you're kind of already setting this up with the elder/experienced positions that were newly created. But, really have an experienced CMO teaching the acting, student CMO.

This is your new job timers. Logging the hours played as student CMO, student HOS, etc with an accompanying instructor.

3: Give them a test on knowledge comprehension.

All of these are better answers than 'just keep making the timers longer and do nothing to teach anyone anything and they'll somehow just absorb knowledge from around them for some unknown reason nobody is bothers to define.'

This creates a class system where players who were here from the start or from SS13 days are always going to bitch to get the timers raised again every time they encounter people in lead roles who are not prepared for them. Locking newcomers to subordinate roles and keeping them from ever trying learning lead roles through actual trial and error experiences.

Or, simply put, doing nothing to teach new players how to play the game does nothing to teach new players how to play the game.

Increasing the role timers, how they are now, in and of itself, does nothing to teach new players how to play the game. All it does it make the problem 'vanish' for a while until the new players chew through the new timer. It's a mindless, bandaid solution to the problem.

If new player didn't learn how to play the new role from the game failing to teach them how to play the new role after spending 5 hours with it; what is 10 more hours of the game doing nothing to teach them the new role going to do? Yes, of course, teach them nothing about doing the new role.

Dropping new players into a complex game that deeply mirrors actual jobs in its complexity and doing nothing to teach them how to do these jobs and then setting egg timers for them on how long they played adjacent, subordinate roles that are not even the actual job that they are trying to learn does nothing to teach them how to learn the new job.

I don't even think completely removing the egg timers is a full solution. It would be better than having them, in the sense that at least people could learn new roles from trial and error unlike how the egg timers work now. But, there needs to a real education solution here. Interactive, in-game tutorials with accompanying videos, and a new 'student driver with a teacher' egg timer that actually let's people dip their toes into the new role they are trying to learn.

These are hands on jobs and nothing about the lack of education and current egg timers does anything to teach players how to do these jobs. The egg timers are too easy to cheese and there is no real education system outside of Liltenhead's videos.

Here's how I learned how to play the game.

Step 1: Cheese a job timer to open up the job I want to play.

Step 2: Watch Liltenhead's video on the job to teach me the basics about the new job.

Step 3: Ask people around me for more information if Liltenhead's videos on the job didn't cover something.

I didn't even bother trying to learn from 'proximity osmosis' because of two reasons.

1: Nice people are too busy doing their own job to teach you anything more than the basics (of which Liltenhead's videos do a better job at than these nice people because they are already too busy with their own jobs.)

2: The not nice people are too busy with their own jobs and just make me feel like I'm in the way and yell at me.

So 'trying to learn by spending egg timer hours watching those around you' doesn't work for me and so I just cheesed the egg timers and jumped in with Youtube videos instead. Now that you raised the egg timers, I'm just going to repeat that same process again for the same exact reasons. So... what did raising the egg timers achieve?

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i don't have time to read all of that above but ill say this from the admin side

role timers were visited multiple times with varying lengths and we tried to take the following things into consideration:

  • Is the timer enough time to give a reasonable buffer to learn the basic functions and expectations of a job, even if they aren't actively taught
  • For security, is the timer enough time to ensure the player can play the game at a basic level before they can play the role
  • For heads, is it enough time to ensure that person is both reasonably competent at the game and fairly competent in the functions/workings/expectations of their department and personnel

The timers we have now were fairly well extended from the initial pass of 90-120 minutes for most roles/heads. We ran into significant issue with heads of staff who had only ever played their subordinate roles and jumped on the head position immediately, not knowing virtually anything about the game or department. Dealing with incompetent station leaders is an extreme administrative hassle due to needing to sort out the incompetent from the malicious and dealing with the resulting fallout of that player's mismanagement (i.e heads of staff trying to start riots).

We recognize that you begin to hit significant diminishing returns the longer timers are, which is why they're not higher. At some point a player is going to refuse or avoid learning more, or more time in the role won't help them learn anything. I tried to think on the following guidelines while I was suggesting timers to the team:

  • Learner roles (to unlock basic roles): some players come with experience from other servers or SS13, so 1-2 hours (1-3 rounds) is enough to ensure they get the basics even if coming from a different server. For a player with no experience they can spend up to 8 hours if they aren't confident in the main role.
  • Basic department roles (to unlock head roles): 5-8 hours (something like 4-10 rounds depending on length) is generally enough to ensure that player has a good grasp of the general workflow or expectations of that function. It also hopefully lets them interact with an experienced head of their department to get an idea of what an experienced head should do.
  • Head of Staff roles: Also have an overall playtime requirement of 30 hours across the entire game. Heads of staff manage the whole station and run whole departments, and we frequently had aforementioned issues with players who knew nothing but playing Engineer and failing to realize other things go on outside of engineering.
  • Security: Is unique since it is the most mechanically demanding (combat-wise), socially demanding (defusing situations and talking to other players), and knowledge demanding (rules of engagement and server ruleset) job. Security has additional minimum playtime requirements in the game before you can play Cadet, which also helps curb terrible security players.

As for other solutions that were spitballed, I remember:

  • Admins evaluating player's performance - Massive administrative burden, not at all feasible or worthwhile to keep up with
  • Players evaluating player's performance - favoritism and not indicative of learning
  • Automatically administered tests after playtime met - Probably the best but needs tests programmed and designed, tests have to keep up with job content, and the test answers if not sufficiently randomized would be easy to give out the answers to
  • Automatically detected milestones - Difficult to detect, needs extensive programming, may not apply to all situations, needs admin oversight in that case
  • No role timers - incompetent/stupid people sign up for important jobs and griefers get instant access to the most destructive jobs on the station

In short, role timers are in a relevant and good place right now. They are unlikely to be changed. Personally I don't think you miss out on a lot playing a line-level role.

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  • 2 months later...
On 9/19/2023 at 8:11 AM, EVIL_ED said:

What I have found in my own playing of the game is that role timers, on a fundamental level, really don't do what the game designers want them to do.

I get why they're there. But, I can also tell you the exact reason why raising then won't fix anything. Or, frankly, why lowering then wouldn't harm anything either.

The problem is with the idea of role timers themselves, on several levels. The idea being that time spent in a role equals knowledge/skill increase in role. But, when you really understand what's going on here, that's not even what role timers really do. The actual idea is that time spent in an adjacent role equals knowledge/skill increase to the adjacent role.

This is idea only works under one specific mindset. That being, players who want to unlock new roles are actively trying to learn the adjacent role they are next to in the same department.

If the player is not trying to do this. And instead, let's say, just wants to cheese the timer to unlock the next role, the entire concept of role timers falls apart entirely at its very foundation.

I will now list all the problems with role timers and why they don't do what the game designers are delusionally hoping they will do. Feel free to ignore me now. But, when the timers are inevitably raised again because "the number of people in important roles who simply haven't even figured out what their job is supposed to entail, let alone how to do it. Is staggering." and it still doesn't work, you can then think back on my post and realize that I was right, and why.

A: Role timers fail to teach players how to do their job.

See, there are several ways to learn how to do a job. One is reading about it. Another is watching a video about it. Another is playing an interactive tutorial about it. Another is just plain and simply playing the job directly.

The problem with role timers is the assumption that players are actively trying to be aware enough of other people doing different jobs around them in the same department to learn how to do that job. Which, of course, usually how absolutely nothing (or very little) to do with the job that they are actually playing. And, as such, really does not naturally warrant their attention to paying attention to these other players. It's like the expectation is that job skills, knowledge, experience will just seep into the player about Job B while player is playing Job A in the same department via some sort of proximity osmosis. It doesn't. Why would it?

A good example of this is when I was a kid and played with my action figures and Game Boy in the back seat of the car while my parents drove places. I never really looked up to pay attention to how driving worked. Why would I? My job wasn't to drive. My job was to be good in the back seat and keep myself entertained and not a distraction to the driver. Once my parents asked, while teaching me to to drive, how it was that I knew nothing about driving after riding with them all those years. My response, logically of course, was that I didn't know I was supposed to be paying attention to that. You never told me that. So, I had to learn to drive from scratch.

Same thing with work. All those years I worked as a Cashier, I never paid much real attention to how the Customer Service Desk was ran. I mean, logically, why would/should I have? I was the Cashier, not the Customer Service Desk. Even though both are the same department, "Front End." It wasn't until I got up into the Customer Service Desk that I then set to work on actually learning how my new job position of Customer Service Desk Worked from mostly scratch.

SS14 works the same way. There is no reason to assume why someone playing Paramedic would ever even think to pay attention to what the Chemist or Doctor is doing. Why would/should he? That's not his job. His job is being the Paramedic. Why waste time learning the job you're not actively doing right now? It makes no logical sense.

Same goes for every job position, really. Why would the Doctor be paying attention to the CMO? He's not the CMO. Why would the Security Officer be paying attention to what the Warden is doing? Why would the Detective be paying attention to what the HOS is doing? Detective and HOS are entirely different jobs requiring entirely different skills. Why would Atmos be paying attention to what other Engineers are doing? It's called the division of labor. All you really need to know to do you job well is what it takes to do your job well. This, in most cases, takes learning nothing to precious little about what anyone else's job entails; even in the same department.

You don't learn new jobs by watching other people do them. You learn new jobs by doing them yourself. Yet, the job timer system denies you this entirely. It forces you to play one role, while at the exact same time expecting you to be paying attention to an entirely different (and usually mostly/entirely unrelated) role, while never even bothering to tell you that this is what you're supposed to be doing. This 'somehow' (again, the bad assumption of skill learning by proximity osmosis) is supposed to teach new players something. Not exactly a surprise to me that it doesn't...

B: Role timers only 'work' if people are trying to learn the roles.

So, let's say, if someone is trying to pay attention to other unrelated jobs in their same department while also doing their own job while never being told this is what they're supposed to even be doing in the first place (gasp for breathe) then, yes, they might indeed pick up on some basic facts about proximity jobs along the way.

But... what about people who just want to learn the new job by directly doing it so badly that they... you know.......... just plain and simply cheese the job timers? Like, you know, do the bare minimum of what their actual job requires to not get yelled at/banned but otherwise just hang out at the bar or wherever else until the arbitrary egg timer goes off? What, exactly, stops people from doing this? Oh yeah, nothing.

Thus, no matter how long you make job timers, people can always just cheese them. They can't go afk. But, you know, you don't have to go afk to cheese them. You just have to ride out the clock, no matter how long it is set for, until you unlock your goal. What you'll learn about the new job by doing this, of course, (no matter how long you set the timers to) is going to be practically nothing. Again, just a few basic facts and that's it.

 

C: Learning to do the work of subordinates doesn't teach you how to delegate as a department head, no matter how long you set the role timers for.

Delegation is more than just learning how to do each job in a specific department. It's also learning how to manage people are varying skill levels beneath you. It's a constant game of people skills meats spinning plates. In this way, for example, learning Doctor, Chem, Paramedic, teaches you absolutely nothing about how to be a CMO. Instead, it teaches you how to be a Doctor, Chem, and Paramedic. And while yes, I do agree, the CMO should know how to do every job within medical (just like every department head should know how to do every job in their department) learning each of these roles doesn't teach you how to delegate subordinates; which, really, is your actual job now. You just moved up to middle management. Yes, and management, you should know how the cash register works. But, learning how the cash register works doesn't teach you the people skills and multitasking skills required to coordinate your subordinate cashiers. That's an entirely different and unrelated skill set to being a cashier. It also doesn't teach you how to interact with your bosses in your new, higher, position; just like in SS14. Your a CMO now, a department head, so... like, who's my equal? Who's my superior. Yes, there are charts in the wiki that shows you this. But, nothing about a role unlock naturally teaches you from nothing other than time spent playing subordinate roles exactly what the social graces are of interacting with superiors, subordinates, equals. These are all things you learn over time naturally through... you know... doing. Actually playing the role. Not things you learn by playing the subordinate roles that unlocked the superior roles.

D: Outside of Liltenhead's videos, nothing really teaches you how to play this game.

Yes, there is the wiki and in game guide. But, that's reading. So, let's be honest with each other, almost nobody outside of the hardest of the hard core RPG fans are going to read to learn how to play a game. They're just... not.

So, this leaves Liltenhead's videos and learning from other people around you.

D1: Learning from other people around you only works for subordinate roles. There is no other CMO or HOS around to tell you how to do these jobs. (Unless someone is handing out ID upgrades like pancakes.)

D2: Most people in game, while trying to be nice and meaning well, don't usually teach you how to do your job well. As in, they're not thorough enough. After all, they have their own jobs to do and their job really isn't to teach you how to do your job. They do enough to get you started, then basically leave you to figure out the rest on your own.

E: Job Timers do not translate to outside of Network Servers.

While I enjoy playing on Wizard Severs, I don't enjoy being locked into them. But, I'm not going to play out of network servers if I have to unlock everything all over again. I would suggest out of network servers massively reduce or delete role timers because they (along with low population) are a major reason I don't play on them. I assume this is true for other people as well.

 

 

So, here are some examples of what I mean. Even under your new timers, I can be a CMO. I have no idea how to be a CMO. I don't even really know how to be a Doctor. When I learned 'how to be a Doctor' all anyone ever bothered to teach me was how to scan people and pop pills into peoples' mouths. So, bicar for brute, derma for burn, dylo for poison. I spent all shift standing in the hallways scanning people, and popping two pills into their mouth for the correct damage category. (At least, I think these are right. Sometimes I still get them confused. Whoopsy Doopsy.) I also gathered that zapping people with the paddles sometimes saves them.

So, I stand in entry to med. Scan people. Pop in two pills. If people are crit or dead, I try to defib once or twice. If that doesn't work, I hope there is a Doctor around who knows how to actually be a Doctor. If not, well, that person is just dead now because I have on idea what else to do.

I tried to help other doctors, but even when I say out loud what pills I'm putting into the patient, medical is so hectic that they accuse me of not calling out pills even when I do. So, that pisses me off. I'm clearly just in the way. So, no, I don't stay around to watch what they're doing to save these people. I either go out to the med lobby to pop more pills into easier patients to treat. Or, say F this, and go spend the rest of my shift drinking in the bar.

As Chemist, I learned how to make these pills myself from the Liltenhead video and the in game guide for the recipes. Poop out a batch of the pills, spend about 10-20 min in bar, come back to poop out more of those pills if needed, go back to bar; lather, rinse repeat.

Because I 'learned how to play Doctor' and 'learned how to play Chemist' I am now, by your own role timer standards, qualified to play CMO. Now... lean in real close for this one. (Whispers quietly into your ear) "Do you really think I'm qualified to play CMO?"

Oh, and by the way, if you raise the role timers again, I'll just keep doing what I've always done as Doctor and Chemist and the job will just unlock for me naturally over time. Will I have learned any better how to be a Doctor, or a Chemist, or a CMO this way? No, of course not. But the role will unlock for me again... Mwahaha!

See the problem with role timers? They don't teach anything. They're an egg timer to be ran down to get to new roles. They're not a teaching agent. This, coming from me; who actually did take time to watch Liltenhead's videos to actually try to learn new roles. Which, honestly, is more effort than you'll see from a lot of casual players who will do nothing but cheese the egg timers and not even bother trying to educate themselves at all. At the very least, I made an initial real effort to at least learn some of the basics of each new role that I played.

Here's another example. When I unlocked Captain before the timers were extended out, I had no idea how to play Captain. I had to keep asking the department heads around me what to do. Why? Because playing other roles taught me absolutely nothing about how to play Captain. Again, if it isn't obvious by now, extending the timers doesn't teach me anything else. When I eventually unlock Captain again when the new timers run down, I will be just as clueless as before as to how to play Captain. Making we wait longer for the position doesn't teach me through proximity skill osmosis how to be a better Captain. Actually, you know, playing the role does that. The thing your timers keep denying from me. Will I make a lot of mistakes? You bet I will. Nothing in the game yet has told me how to play this new role. But, I'm never going to learn from other roles that are completely unrelated. I'm only ever going to learn from videos and actual hands on doing; trial and error. The longer you keep me from higher level roles; the longer you're postponing my learning, not helping me to learn.

I don't know what the solution is to teaching more people how to play this game better. But, upping the egg timers isn't it.

i read all of that and i agree. But i dont think theres a real way to solve all of that even with the student cmo example because what if the student cmo just goes rogue? 

 

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