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 Suggested improvements 
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Selling plater

Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2014 1:17 pm
Posts: 5
Post Suggested improvements
Hi all,
First of all i'd like to say that i've followed Starters Orders since about SO2 and the development of the game over that time and enjoyment I have obtained from playing it have been enormous. I have recently started getting my teeth into SO7, I bought it pretty much as soon as it came out but it wasn't really playable at that time. As I have been playing recently I have noticed a few things that don't look right or could be tweaked to make the game playing experience even better. This is by no means criticism just a few things I have picked up on in the past few days:

[*] The schedule currently at the start of the flat season has too many 2yo maiden and novice races, some racecards have up to four races of this sort often at the same distance which seems a little unrealistic. The problem seems to lie in the months of March - June inclusive, it tends to settle down a little after that.

[*] I have found the breeding part of the game to be very difficult, I understand this has been pointed out so I won't do this point to death.

[*] Both the gallops feedback after a home gallop and the jockey feedback tend to be of limited use. Particularly on gallops feedback on the simple training game you just get told that each horse is "not lacking fitness right now." If it were possible it would be good to see jockeys both riding on the gallops and in races estimate a horses ideal distance, ground and maybe suggest a certain pacifier to help if applicable.

[*] I'm not really sure why many South African racedays are included in the British flat schedule. It seems a little unrealistic that a British trainer would send a horse to compete in a South African race.

[*] The "legends" aspect of the game is largely disappointing for me. The inclusion of Bullet Train (Frankel's pacemaker) is especially odd, he is no what I would call a legend. Legends for me are the likes of Dancing Brave, Brigadier Gerard, Sea The Stars, Galileo, Sea Pigeon, Best Mate, Red Rum, Istabraq, Desert Orchid etc. The only thing I have used the legends part of the game for is to include Frankel in my game then just wager all my money on him whenever he runs!! Easy way to build up your stable in a relatively short space of time!

[*] I'm currently unclear on the differences that each individual pacifier makes on a horse, if any. There are also pacifiers missing such as cheekpieces, eyeshields and tongue-ties.

[*] I feel that the current UK weather schedule is unrealistic, it is perhaps representative of the Summer of 2018, the best Summer in living memory but in the UK I live in it rains almost every day!! Ok, perhaps a slight overexaggeration but I don't think adverse weather happens enough in the game meaning you are left frustrated if a horse of yours prefers softer ground.

[*] Finally the jockeys and trainers could do with being updated, there are now too many retired jockeys and ones who aren't riding anymore.

Perhaps a few things for the developers to consider. If anyone knows how to edit any of these items such as jockey names please could you tell me how?

Thanks


Wed Oct 09, 2019 10:21 pm
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Handicapper

Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2018 7:30 am
Posts: 196
Post Re: Suggested improvements
3. I posted about this a few months back and there was a couple of comments in support of that as well.

4. You can build a modded schedule to include only the races you want if you like, or users like MJtags has a schedule built off of the 2019 season. There's lots of info about building a new schedule and new feature races in the Game Mods section and some stuff in the manual. If you do decide to make your own races, I highly recommend this post from SiriusChill who helped me sort out my schedule errors by teaching me about the SO6 featureRace format, which you can convert in the game to SO7, which is a lot easier than the format SO7 files use when you're typing out a lot of them: https://www.startersorders.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=152958#p152958. I've since done like 400 USA races and 100 NZ races that way.

5. You can use the Legend Editor to create new legends if you like. There's information about that in the instruction manual as well. It's actually really interesting to look at, because you get to modify the information that is hidden on all the other horses, like if they have a preferred track and when they mature. You could be really detailed about it. If you're concerned about how long Legends are in the game before they retire, never to be seen again, there is a checkbox for "legends repeat" on the Legends screen when loading up a new game.

6. No one knows the difference between the pacifiers. The easiest way is to just start by selecting the top one and then switch if there's no change. Unless the head lad specifically says the horse needs a pacifier, "Not settle" or agitation in the paddock is usually from other things. It could be they're just a hyped up colt, if the race is outside their internal preference (like a class too high or the pace is wrong), or there is a genetic component to it as well. That can be bred out of your line by not using horses that won't settle during races.

7. I'm not sure about the weather but I found that in the first season of the game, it's not as "settled" yet. I'm playing the Australian schedule and end up with a week of rain in January - which is usually when it's 40C. I've played other simulation games where the first year was always a bit out, so I wouldn't be surprised if it was just the simulation calculations working themselves out.

8. You can also mod the jockeys, trainers and even stables. SiriusChill has modded lists for the UK schedule I think, in their post in Game Mods. They also have a little visual change that adds increment lines to the horse stats, which is a godsend IMO. I'm pretty sure jockeys are as simple as changing the names if you just want different names, but you have to change things like weight and such if you want accuracy. As per the instructions in the manual, you have to check that the Legends don't have preferred trainers/jockeys and remove them before loading up a new jockey list.

So TL;DR mods are your friend in terms of schedules, races, jockeys, trainers, other stables and visual improvements. There's a nice race graphics improvement as well. Some people have done/are doing new versions of the racecourses themselves as well to make them more like real life. If you make any modifications to the data files, you have to start a new save game, but you can transfer your horses from your current game. Visual mods should kick in straight away.
I definitely support the idea of better training feedback at least - for jockey feedback, make sure your jockey has high honesty and he'll tell you stuff like "will be better over a shorter distance" or "we were outclassed".


Thu Oct 10, 2019 5:32 am
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Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2007 5:15 pm
Posts: 2128
Post Re: Suggested improvements
Quote:
The schedule currently at the start of the flat season has too many 2yo maiden and novice races, some racecards have up to four races of this sort often at the same distance which seems a little unrealistic. The problem seems to lie in the months of March - June inclusive, it tends to settle down a little after that.


This was done as a compromise to get horses running as a lot were remaining unraced.

Quote:
Finally the jockeys and trainers could do with being updated, there are now too many retired jockeys and ones who aren't riding anymore.


The jockeys and trainers are going to be updated (as mentioned elsewhere). Some trainers have been left in so the Legends are correct - Frankel/Henry Cecil but they (trainers) will probably be removed soon.


Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:50 am
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Handicapper

Joined: Thu Sep 08, 2016 3:57 pm
Posts: 374
Post Re: Suggested improvements
Pacifiers do not have any relation to real life usage near as I can tell (and figuring that out was even part of my second job once upon a time long ago).

The game has a flag / counter with pacifier setting. So, Your horse performing better in blinkers is genetic and inherited. If it got the inherited flag, it will do better with them. Same for the other two. If the horse benefits from one pacifier due to having the flag set to need it, the other two don't give any benefit at all.


Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:04 pm
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