Frontier gives us a first look at squadrons
The first look at squadrons is here! With some fresh info released, Frontier also opened up the focused feedback forums for squadron commentaries and suggestions.
It’s worth mentioning that these are initial ideas and subject to change before the Q4 update (which introduces Squadrons.) Also please remember, more topics related to Squadrons will be added to the official forum in the coming weeks.
What is a Squadron?
A Squadron is a group of Commanders who want to band together and organise themselves in-game. This might be to play together, or to focus on certain types of gameplay such as bounty hunting, Community Goals, or perhaps rescuing Commanders who find themselves out of fuel.
The idea of Squadrons is to provide a series of features that support multiplayer organisation and gameplay. In this Focused Feedback forum, we’ll be covering the creation and management of Squadrons.
How do I create a Squadron?
Once Squadrons are introduced they will have their own full screen GUI page. When opening this without having joined a Squadron you will have the option to search for a Squadron to join or to create your own. Creating your own Squadron will involve paying a credit fee (amount to be decided) and then setting the following values.
- Squadron name: This has to be a unique name that cannot be changed once the Squadron is created.
- Squadron ID: A short ID or tag.
- Language: The primary language the Squadron will communicate in.
- Attitude: Choose from a pre-set list of attitudes. The list is currently – Relaxed, Family, and Devoted.
- Tags: Each Squadron will be able to select a few tags from a wider list. This list includes elements such as “PvP”, “Bounty Hunting” and timezones such as “UTC+3”.
- Superpower: Choose one of the following: Empire, Federation, Alliance or Independent.
The list of tags is a work in progress.
Once all of these values have been set and the Commander is happy, the credit fee is paid and the Squadron is created. The Commander who creates the Squadron will be automatically assigned as the Squadron leader.
How do I find/join a Squadron?
As I mentioned previously, if a Commander accesses the Squadron page and is not currently part of Squadron, they will have the option to search for one to join. Using the same fields as listed above the Commander can search by whatever is important to them and will receive a list of Squadrons based on that criteria.
The Commander will be able to look a set of Squadron statistics and use this to decide which Squadron they want to apply to.
Once the Commander finds a Squadron they like, they can send an application. This application will include a small amount of text that, by default, will include some information on the Commander (highest Elite rank, for example) but can also be edited if required.
The Squadron Leader (and Officers) will be able to see a list of all Commander applicants and, at this point, can send the applicants an invite. Both the invitee and inviter must be online at the same time for the invitation to be sent and accepted. This option to invite will also be available on other areas of the HUD where Commanders can select other Commanders, for example a Commander’s friend list.
Frontier is currently considering capping Squadron membership at 250 Commanders, but this might change depending on player feedback.
Can I leave a Squadron?
Commanders can leave a Squadron at any time. If a leader chooses to leave a Squadron then they must pass the leadership mantle onto another Commander. If all members leave a Squadron then it will be disbanded and any assets the Squadron holds will also be lost.
The only time the leader can leave and not pass on the mantle of leader is when they are the last member to leave (and the Squadron is disbanded).
The Squadron hierarchy and privileges
There are three classes of Squadron member and these are:
- Leader: The Squadron Leader has all privileges and can set which privileges officers have.
- Officer: The Officers have whatever privileges the leader has set for them.
- Pilot: This is the standard level, and the majority of Squadron members will be pilots. They have whatever privileges the leader has set for them.
What privileges can the leader set?
The Squadron leader can set the following privileges:
- Officers can invite Commanders into the Squadron (yes/no) (greyed out if new members cannot join)
- Officers can kick Pilots from the Squadron (yes/no)
- Officers can plot a jump for a Fleet Carrier (yes/no)
- Officers can select purchase upgrades for a Fleet Carrier (yes/no)
- Officers can set the ‘Message of the Day’ (yes/no)
This is the current list of privileges but Frontier expects to add more as development progresses and they discover the need for them!
One of the most important features that Squadrons adds is the ability for groups of Commanders to communicate with each other. Squadron facilitates this with the following features:
Group Comms – A new feature that will be used by Squadrons is group comms, this will add channels and other functionality to the chat panel. When a Squadron is created, the Squadron channel and the Squadron officer channel (which is only available to Officers and the Leader) are automatically created and any Squadron members are added to the relevant channels. This allows Squadron members to communicate regardless of where they are in the galaxy.
The Feed – The Squadron overview page (which becomes available once a Commander joins a Squadron) will have a list of automated posts that are added to a feed. This feed will provide essential feedback on the Squadron, the fleet carrier and their activities. For example when a player joins the Squadron a message will automatically be added to the feed. The feed is limited to a certain amount of posts (amount TBD). Those members with the correct privileges will also be able to add a message of the day to the feed, the latest message will always remain stickied to the top of the feed. This provides a place for Officers to provides orders for the rest of the Squadron.
Frontier is also investigating the possibility of an external Squadrons website.
The Fleet Carrier
As you might have noticed above, it will be possible for Squadrons to possess a Fleet Carrier. Frontier will be devoting an entire Focused Feedback thread to Squadron Fleet Carriers in the future.
Squadrons and factions
Some groups will want to align their Squadron with a faction. It is currently being looked at how Frontier can make this work and allow Squadrons to ‘fly the flag’ of a faction.
If you’re up for discussion or interested in posting any feedback or suggestions, you can do it on the official focused feedback subforum.