I can’t comment too much on the NPE, as I’ve been playing for a couple of years, and while not Community born, I have this very good friend called Google, who I talk to on a very regular basis. As such, I’d pretty much picked up the basics, by the time I’d worked through the existing tutorials.
That said, there are a couple of things I’d suggest for the NPE:
On the mining tutorial, don’t have them mine Veldspar. Pick one of the mission ores instead, so they don’t go to an asteroid belt and mine it there, then wonder why they can’t hand the mission in. It’s a minor change, but one that should relieve one frustration.
I would have mentioned exploration, but the changes should take care of most of the issues.
Add ‘medals’ for completing the tutorials. Have them being private by default, but easy to make public. A graduation certificate would be nice too. (Maybe one for the epic arc, Maybe a ‘Friend of the Sisters’ thing.) Everyone likes medals. And it’s a handy way to say ‘I’ve actually spent the time and learnt about the game’
Not Quite So New Player Experience
Then we get to the meat of this blog post. The Not Quite So New Player Experience. There are some things that the game really doesn’t teach. PI. Fleets. Invention. Research. Contacts. Standings. Logistics. Those things that you pretty much need to go to an out of game source to learn about. While I don’t want to get rid of those sources, I don’t like that you have to go to them. It’d be great if ‘advanced’ tutorials could be added. Some, perhaps, with videos showing what you have to do. That’d be handy for, say, PI.
Can you imagine a tutorial where you have to fly a Logi frigate, and keep an NPC repped up? Or an energy transfer on them. Lock it away so you can only start it when you have certain skills. It’s not as good as flying with another player, but it is a start.
Something that explains why ME research is important, and why you don’t need to keep researching something into the ground.
They’ll never be a replacement for learning from other players. But they can be somewhere to point people, so you have a clue that they have a basic grounding.
And certificates/medals you can give to anyone would be good. As well as corporation defined ones, for things like doctrine fits. So it’s easy to see what people are capable of flying. Just have public, private, corporation and standing defined viewing levels.
Once Crest access for the character sheet (read only) is opened up, I’m seriously considering writing up something to do just that, along with passcode based viewing. If I do, I’ll open source it, though I’d hope people would trust me to have temporary access to their sheets. (Only store the certs they have. Update when they access)