COSMOS missions have some great storyline elements, but have special mechanics which can make them hard to understand and end up frustrating some players.
The place could really use a map. When you jump in / talk to any agent in COSMOS for the first time, a helpful page could say “Ol’ Bob down the street pays top dollar for spaceship engine parts, but Gloria in the corner market has been cheated so many times you only get one chance with her. Also watch out for Slinky Slim, I’ve heard the gold mine he needs help with is really a rat-infested sewer.”
You will come into a system and see agents-in-space you can talk to, but many offerings have time limits, and the item you need may be unavailable due to competition and an unknown respawn timer, for a static area with the needed item. You may only get one opportunity with that agent to complete the mission, on the surface making it an RPG style “character advancing quest.”
That is a fair answer to the complaints about how many times we have to shoot Zor or rescue a Damsel, but many players new to the experience:
- who didn’t consult an out-of-game guidebook
- who didn’t obtain the completion item in advance (guide helps)
- who don’t think to check Contract listings for the item
- who are unwilling to pay the price a static-site farmer is charging
…may leave frustrated, and not explore other agents who have different mission types to offer. COSMOS variety can go un-tapped due to a bad first experience. “Oh well, at least I can count on the predictability of level-based missions.”
Different game play mechanics and puzzle elements (really intricate mechanics in the Sleeper Cache cosmic signature sites) outside the current level based mission experience are wanted in a revamp of those missions, low usage in CCP’s metrics for COSMOS missions doesn’t mean new and redesigned missions won’t work or taking elements from COSMOS is a bad idea.