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Re: Doing it for 20 years

Postby Wallas » Sat May 17, 2008 7:41 am

critter wrote:you may have to come up with a newer engine.


but will it support vista ?
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Postby Robjess » Sat May 17, 2008 1:54 pm

Im running Vista at the moment and it seems to work fine. Apart from an issue with the automailer - which I assume will be corrected prior to release - it runs perfectly.
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Postby Kingpin » Tue May 20, 2008 2:21 am

I've seen a few comments made that the new game is 1 scenario with 16 turns. Is that true?
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Postby Robjess » Tue May 20, 2008 10:28 am

The new game has one complete Battle - Kharkov which is 16 turns long. In addition to this there are several variants of the main battle..

I know that this may have been a stumbling point for some people but I have to tell you that this new engine really does inspire me.. this one is a winner.
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Postby Kingpin » Tue May 20, 2008 12:20 pm

Robjess wrote:The new game has one complete Battle - Kharkov which is 16 turns long. In addition to this there are several variants of the main battle..

I know that this may have been a stumbling point for some people but I have to tell you that this new engine really does inspire me.. this one is a winner.


The engine inspires but the scenario doesn't?

16 turns does seem quite short even if they are on a grand scale.

Either way. Like I said before, I'll buy it and give it a fair shot.
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Postby Brubaker » Tue May 20, 2008 12:43 pm

Wow, hot thread. This baby is smokin! 8)

I'd just like to say a couple of points.

Firstly, I'm a bit surprised that people feel SSG doesn't communicate with their customers. I think their participation on these forums is excellent and I can guarantee those folk that do not have access to the 'unlisted' testers forum, that their participation there is in virtually EVERY thread. So they do listen and take feedback, it is just not necessarily that obvious to all.

Secondly I think in all fairness you should give them the benefit of the doubt about new releases and scenarios. Gregor has stated what they will be doing and I think that the company has should have enough respect within the community to be taken at their word. Stay tune for more info on that...

Thirdly, we criticise the hell out of Battlefront based on our own narrow experiences but as I have learned of late there is a whole other (non-english speaking) world out there that also purchase the games and discuss them on their own forums. Battlefront enjoys popularity throughout Europe and Asia despite the fact we don't see or hear about it. This may be more of a refelction on us than Battlefront.

Lastly, I concur with Chris and Rob about the quality of this new engine. I think it will be the game of choice for creating scenarios. It truly does have it all I think.


Cheers

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Postby sorcerer » Wed May 21, 2008 6:14 am

All the regulars are back! :) It seems the draw of the Eastern Front is a big one for many! So you guys at SSG have definitely got that one right.

My first thoughts are: great a new game with the main scenario on the Eastern Front. Not particularly knowledgeable about the more detailed history of this particular battle but looking forward to learning more.

Like Steve said near the start of this thread, this will kind of like be the last chance of these games with me. So here is what I think:

1. Great we're back on the Eastern Front! (Have I mentioned that already? :wink: )

2. NONE of the discussions have yet even mentioned anything about balance. Balance of the victory points! Yes I want a good game, but a good game can become great and fun if both sides can win. I want to be fighting over that last little village, making a last ditch assault at poor odds, and NOT going into the scenario (cough Overlord) knowing that unless I get a Fantassin like para drop I'm doing to be 600 points down.

TAO was balanced, KP was balanced, Overlord was 600 points in favour of the Germans and the scenarios from BiI seem unbalanced too. Please make it balanced!

3. I'm not keen on the varient idea. It seems to be the same thing again except you can // can't move units here and there. I think that maybe one or two smaller scenarios from sections of the line would be better. In your article you say it is the successor to BF because you can have units from two scales. Maybe you could prove this from release! Have one or two smaller scale battles from certain points of the line. And if you do stick to the varients then they will all have to be balanced! And that I would imagine is time consuming but vital to avoid the situation of: oh I got Russian variant 6 but he got German varient 3, so I've lost.

4. I'm sure I read somewhere this will be the base for the next two or three releases. Hmm I wonder what they are going to be? Stalingrad, Moscow, Demyansk, re-done V Luki, Crimea? What better way to drum up sales that perhaps announce the next title if it is sufficiently draw dropping. That way people get this title to prepare and learn the new system ready to the big title. It also might allow a few people to see past the $50 for one 16 turn scenario. I'm sure these forums would be buzzing again with Kharkov games in a big anticipation of the next releases.

Just what I think.
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Postby critter » Wed May 21, 2008 2:48 pm

I agree alot with Sorcerer
East front is the way to go! On balance I believe alott of its who your playing..But I too want it down to the wire..I want the games to give me the setup at the start of the battle and let it go where it may from there.
IMHO BF and DB are seperate systems, and should be treated as such.

As i stated before IMHO DB has pretty well evolved to maturity.
We got pretty much all we need in the system to fight operational Regt sized land battles. To a person the people that I play buy BII to get the up graded experince or buy the earilier games for more of the same.
I disagree with SSG position that they won't sell games redoing old stuff.
Imagine KP with AA Guns that work. Pontoon's.. placing new minefields and strong points. It will be a "hopping" thread as we all go back and rethink our stratagys.
NOW think of it with a new killer AI..One that doesn't do stupid stuff like put all incoming new div's in the same hex..Or split its div's up.
Think of Markert Garden..Kursk..Karkov sens. taken by SSG and if not redone by themselves..released with their stamp of approval and the new killer AI added. Karkov is a great sen. Try and play it solo..It crashes..Surely one of the trinity can fix this.
How about a Pacific game on "The canal" with Rob's Leyte game added as a bonus. I'd do Leyte as a campaign game. Japs invade then defend it in 45. Robs already done 3/4 the work.
Bru your games are great..and while it may be so Fallgleb is the rage in France..Go to almost any of the non SSG advertized sites or blogs and I think you'll see ppl saying the same things.
The AI is weak and the Co. pretty well disregards its customers.
SSG you say its hard to go back so far. Whats your plan reguarding BF? It's your last release. Is it moving on/up to Karkov?
Here's a thought..Karkov sounds like you cld start a new line of Am. Civil War games. Cannons shooting more than ! Hex.... Ao's are Div or Corps commanders command ranges. Hmmmmm
Last edited by critter on Fri May 23, 2008 12:29 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Brubaker » Thu May 22, 2008 11:01 am

I think that the addition of Operational Areas and 'cards' is going to make a BIG differnce in DotD. It will for the first time it will apply real operational pressures to the use of formations. Gregor has discussed this at length in other threads.

What the addition operational areas means is that the AI now has smaller more manageable blocks that stack ogether to create the whole, so if one piece needs altering it can be done without dramatically affecting the entire package. This makes the construct (and operation) of the AI much better and easier to manage.


One of the major differences between the 'old' engine (KP,BiN,BiI) and the 'new' (BF, DotD) is the complexity of the editor. In the 'old' engine it was easier to construct a battle that played okay than with the current editor. This factor is what (I believe) put a lot of people off, including me, because I am often time-short etc. Therefore the old engine was more rewarding in the short term.

But, an it is a huge BUT, what I and likely most other people have not realised is that the complexity of the new editor creates MUCH BETTER quality games. The additional effort put into a battle will produce a far better result in the long term. It just requires a bit more work to do so.

The way the games are played in similar. I think those of us that 'grew up' with TAO and onwards got used to the simplified way the games played. Now they are a bit more complex and it was rejected by some. But if you look around there is a growing belief in the system. Look at Ian's Prokhorovka game. Now if that isn't an example of what can be done with the system then there has never been one. Imagine that game with zones of operations and wild cards that guarunateed you never really new what the AI was going to do (or another player).

It is a wonderful system. If I sound like a fanboy it is because I am really excited about the game at present. Value for money for scenarios and detail and the like? I'll leave that to others to debate. I read someone's post somewhere (Matrix?) that complained about lack of detail and that they were not learning enough from the game. And I went away and thought o myself what a dreadful wargame Advanced Third Reich was because of lack of detail right? :roll: There are some games out there that model the elevation of every cannon and the trajectory of its shot down to the last centimetre and I applaud that. But I find those kind of games as dry as dry. Give me SSG everytime.

Cheers

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Imagine??

Postby critter » Thu May 22, 2008 11:40 am

Can't imagane Ian's game...BF doesn't port to Karkov.
I don't believe its a question of complexity..Its a question of going tactical..
As I've said before..It may well take a over haul on the DB series engine. I doubt you'll hear a complaint on a better AI or easier Sen. generator. Just leave it Regt sized.
I believe the ol' cash cow's got some milk in her still
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Re: Imagine??

Postby Brubaker » Thu May 22, 2008 12:14 pm

critter wrote:Can't imagane Ian's game...BF doesn't port to Karkov.


I don't know why you think that Critter :?: It is true that BF scenarios cannot be played in the new engine directly because the new engine has additional features that would not read BF data correctly, but I see no reason why BF scenarios cannot be 'ported' over. I would have to check on that but to my knowledge a BF scenario could be loaded into the new engine and adjustements made to 'make it fit' from there, in the same way a KP scenario could be loaded into Italy and made to work with adjustments.

PS. And I would be VERY surprised if Ian isn't working on that as we speak....
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Postby Noakesy » Thu May 22, 2008 5:14 pm

Maybe I should post this somewhere else, but the work Ian has done looks great, and I like the scenarios chosen for BF but they just didn't play very well (in this I mean Novorossisk and Saipan in particular which offered some promise but were hugely disappointing). If OMG, Gazala and Crusader port over to DotD system then that's good news, but (and here's the nasty bit) can we move stacks as a whole in DotD or is it going to be individual units again? I understand the rationale for the individual units, but it's just so much hard work, and turns the games into a Tillerfest type game where you have just too many units to move.
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Postby Brubaker » Thu May 22, 2008 7:01 pm

You can't move stacks it is true, and I was a huge critic of that 'problem'. But I think now I have ssen the light. The problem wasn't so much that you couldn't move stacks but that the scenario designers (including me) were perhaps trying to model the wrong battles? I don't know. The old V4V games were single piece only moves, and noone I heard ever complained about that. I think we were just so used to playing the DB system one way that we were unwilling to change. Grognards, who, us? Lets face it, if you want to win at these games you move the damn pieces one at a time anyway. I have found this out with Gelb. If I just moved stacks then Zanekin is going to whup me ass again.

I think the real trick to the engine being popular is the scenario design. A lot of people have criticised DotD for only having one scenario, but I personally think that is much better than having multiple but at a lesser quality. Look at your comments about the Battlefront scens.

I guess I have a lot of faith in these guys, but of course I am not paying for the game I suppose. I just think they have too much talent to let a few punters knock them around. A lot of whinging goes on but scarce little constructive criticism. I have found myself designing scenarios there will always be someone saying "naw this is sh**" but you have to put that aside and move forward and stick to your beliefs. SSG know they have a good product with Battlefront, and an even better one with Kharkov. It has just taken a little while for people to 'adapt' engines. I am truly excited about what is on the horizon and just hope that people will stay the course and see what unfolds.

Oh, and of course, for every one of us that comments here there are a dozen lurkers who don't. Eric Young once told me I was "one of those letter writers" back before posting was commonplace I guess. I suppose he was right. I hear them on the radio each day too :wink:

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Postby Gen Alexandra » Thu May 22, 2008 7:29 pm

Bru, your so right...On the Front I agree, you move your counter one at a time, but what about the supporting units?

Take your own Fall Gleb scenario for instance, how time consuming would it be for us (the player) to move whole divisions from the entry points to the battlefront, the enjoyment in the game is the Battlefront!.

Ian has designed a master piece of that I have no doubt, but imagine the the time consumed in moving all those pieces up to the front and supporting positions. Perhaps DotD will not require that amount of work, as from what I have seen so far it looks like a compact look at the Battlefront without vast areas of map in which to move arriving units (where stack movement would benefit).

Likewise I have a lot of faith in SSG, to produce what I want and I have found, contrary to the Matrix site, that they indeed do listen.

If DotD looks as good as it does, then I think that is the natural evolution of BF and that cannot be a bad thing.

Coming from an engineering background where I develop new products, one thing I have learnt is that for every one ready to put an opinion into a new idea there are half a dozen more ready to rubbish it behind your back!

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Postby Ian » Thu May 22, 2008 8:37 pm

Hi Guys

I can only speak for BF engine…

When I did the Prokhorovka scenario some gamers did raise the fact that units are free to move around the map in an unhistorical manner. This surprised me as it was the last type of criticism I expected. But it is a valid and important point.

With AO in Kharkov engine the true historical situation can be recreated more accurately. The new AO will be an important feature with my current project, based on the German summer offensive during 1942 in the Caucasus.

Stacks…yes I found this to be true. Moving so many units around can be time consuming. This I only realized when play testing my own scenario. The solution would be create smaller sized scenarios. The disadvantage for me however is a narrow view of the battle. By this I mean that conducting a military operation successfully, will most often depend on placing your forces at the right place at the right time.
To quote Heinz Guderian “Logistics is the ball and chain of armored warfare”

What I will do differently in future scen is to use regiment level units instead of battalions.

PS. I would most definitely port the Prokhorovka scenario to the Kharkov engine once it has been released. I did try a test run at this and it worked fine from what I could see. And as Bru mention there will be some adjustments necessary to make it work. For example adding AO.
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