Ideas for objective-based gameplay
I have spent countless hours in survival/exploration games very similar to Space Engineers and I have some suggestions that I believe would make the game more appealing
Even with so many video tutorials the beginning is too hard for a new player.
A more linear gameplay with gradually unlocking blocks and completing some minor and major objectives and tasks along the way would be easier and more appealing to a new player.
- When you start you could have a planetary lander (as it is now) but for the first mission to find some ice and fill in the h2/o2 generator (to learn how this process works)
- Later you could attempt to build a small rover to explore the planet and find a specific resource (eg.iron) and gather a specific amount of it
- For later objectives/mission I believe would be to build a small base on the planet (first the power blocks, later the refinery etc as minor objectives along the way)
- Then as a bigger mission there could be an objective to leave the planet
- Later objectives could be to build other types of ship such as driller / fighters etc
Of course this is just a summary of the typical gameplay of other great exploration and survival games but it would make Space Engineers more appealing to a beginner and make the learning curve more gradual.
Finaly there should be in-game tutorials (in the form of notifications/messages) which are always more helpful than videos.
These all would be great additions but I believe what the game really lacks is later-game motives and missions that would extend the playtime.