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Yogi the Great -> Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/22/2012 2:01:57 PM)

Just got the game yesterday one of those must haves for me. Let me first make clear this thread not meant as a gripe and I do suggest anyone interested in Civil War games buy it.

Love the graphics and the feel of the game. I had a game called Shattered Union that was not as good but had some similarities as far as movement so I expected similar "frustration". Perhaps it will come in time for this old grognard but I find that trying to figure out the sequence of when, how and to where units move is going to be the most frustarting part. I think I am ordering the command group and perhaps no one or only the commander moves and then struggle to figure just which buttons in what order I have to press. Learning that the arrows after the order is made don't mean the exact spot where the unit will be. Learn that the commander often goes out front the "lines" and then you have to move him back. Sometimes the units seem to have a mind of their own and decide to set up somewhere else. Setting up behind those fences or other spots you want to be seems to become a real challange to get them eactly where you want them as they set up well behind, in front and/or stradle such items. Must need that perfect touch?

Again I like the game and expect many hours of play. Maybe someday I will actually figure out how to handle such frustrations.

If anybody has some good tips on this, would love to see them.




Mikesla -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/22/2012 2:15:51 PM)

Hi Yogi the Great.

With everything, it takes time, and SOW is no exception. Believe me when I say that you will get accustomed too playing SOWgb. I have been playing SOWgb for over two years now, and I am still learning.

also, the Multiplayer aspect of SOWgb is simply brilliant.




Erik Rutins -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/22/2012 9:23:41 PM)

Hi Yogi,

Did you start by going through the in-game tutorials? If not, I would absolutely recommend those and a read through the manual.

Regards,

- Erik




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/22/2012 9:43:08 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

Hi Yogi,

Did you start by going through the in-game tutorials? If not, I would absolutely recommend those and a read through the manual.

Regards,

- Erik


I've been playing the game for a few years and I don't think anything in the tutorials addresses the specific points that Yogi has listed. Great game and I just purchased both expansions, but Yogi has accurately captured a few of the main gripes I have with the engine.

Next release needs to fix these points:

1. Units need to 'lock-on' to cover so that once I tell a unit to form up behind a wall, it stays there and doesn't keep shifting around every time the enemy moves a few degrees. Units should have a minimum 90 degree arc of fire that allows them to engage multiple targets to their front without changing their position. Total War gets this exactly right.

2. The silly feature of all the men on either flank of a Regt having to switch positions from L-R and R-L under fire in order for the Regt to adopt a line formation needs to be fixed.

3. If I tell a Bde to march in column, it should remain in column until engaged, in range of a spotted enemy unit or ordered to adopt line. Too much snaking around all over the place.

Hopefully, now that Matrix are involved the Devs will have some extra revenue and motivation to fix those long-standing 'features'.




Mikesla -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/22/2012 9:54:52 PM)

Hi.

I'm could be off the mark here but have you tried using the TC (Take Command from A.I) option so that your troops would obey your commands?





RebBugler -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 4:18:41 AM)

quote:

I've been playing the game for a few years and I don't think anything in the tutorials addresses the specific points that Yogi has listed. Great game and I just purchased both expansions, but Yogi has accurately captured a few of the main gripes I have with the engine.

Next release needs to fix these points:

1. Units need to 'lock-on' to cover so that once I tell a unit to form up behind a wall, it stays there and doesn't keep shifting around every time the enemy moves a few degrees. Units should have a minimum 90 degree arc of fire that allows them to engage multiple targets to their front without changing their position. Total War gets this exactly right.

2. The silly feature of all the men on either flank of a Regt having to switch positions from L-R and R-L under fire in order for the Regt to adopt a line formation needs to be fixed.

3. If I tell a Bde to march in column, it should remain in column until engaged, in range of a spotted enemy unit or ordered to adopt line. Too much snaking around all over the place.

Hopefully, now that Matrix are involved the Devs will have some extra revenue and motivation to fix those long-standing 'features'.


Yeah, this isn't tutorial learning related, and, TC is not a good solution and/or fix

1) Yes, this needs to be a feature/fix, it will be submitted
2) This one will be tough, it's nagged us since before release. It will probably take a rewrite of some formations, if not all, but it will be submitted
3) This has been submitted but rejected because of gameplay preferences, plus, it can be modded in using hold form column formations.

Thanks for the input...




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 9:18:01 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Mikesla

Hi.

I'm could be off the mark here but have you tried using the TC (Take Command from A.I) option so that your troops would obey your commands?




Thanks. That's fine at Brigade level, but once you get into a Div or Corps level battle it doesn't help much. I generally stick to the Bde-level battles which are superb.




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 9:20:22 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: RebBugler

quote:

I've been playing the game for a few years and I don't think anything in the tutorials addresses the specific points that Yogi has listed. Great game and I just purchased both expansions, but Yogi has accurately captured a few of the main gripes I have with the engine.

Next release needs to fix these points:

1. Units need to 'lock-on' to cover so that once I tell a unit to form up behind a wall, it stays there and doesn't keep shifting around every time the enemy moves a few degrees. Units should have a minimum 90 degree arc of fire that allows them to engage multiple targets to their front without changing their position. Total War gets this exactly right.

2. The silly feature of all the men on either flank of a Regt having to switch positions from L-R and R-L under fire in order for the Regt to adopt a line formation needs to be fixed.

3. If I tell a Bde to march in column, it should remain in column until engaged, in range of a spotted enemy unit or ordered to adopt line. Too much snaking around all over the place.

Hopefully, now that Matrix are involved the Devs will have some extra revenue and motivation to fix those long-standing 'features'.


Yeah, this isn't tutorial learning related, and, TC is not a good solution and/or fix

1) Yes, this needs to be a feature/fix, it will be submitted
2) This one will be tough, it's nagged us since before release. It will probably take a rewrite of some formations, if not all, but it will be submitted
3) This has been submitted but rejected because of gameplay preferences, plus, it can be modded in using hold form column formations.

Thanks for the input...


And thank you for the prompt and open feedback sir!

Can you tell me how the hold column formations mod works? Is it something I can download, or do I need to edit a file locally? Hot key?




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 9:26:02 AM)

With respect to point 2 (the L-R issue) I was thinking that when movement is plotted, an 'objective line' would be plotted - as in TW or Sid Meyers GB. Each unit would have a left and right marker (the leftmost man and rightmost man) as we used to have when drilling in the military. Units in Line would march straight ahead by marching with reference to the unit's centre, wheel left around the left Marker and wheel right around the right Marker. Units in column would move through each 'point' (4 sprites wide) on the ground taken by the officer leading the column. The kind of logic used to move fleets around in Stormeagles Jutland would work just as well on a Civil War battlefield...

Something like that anyway.




Kipper -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 1:57:05 PM)

I played the first two games but had to give up on them, as it turned into a frenzy of micromanagement as formations did not go where they were supposed to, constantly pulling back leaders from solo kamikaze runs into enemy formations etc. and I did not see any improvement in the SOW demo. Always wound up having to take command from the AI of most formations. It turned into a Command & Conquer clickfest on steroids.

I would also love to hear how experienced players get around this, as I would love to enjoy this game and to be fair to it, it's obvious many do. I suspect just beyond these problems lies my dream game! I will stay on the fence for now anyhow.




Yogi the Great -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 2:36:56 PM)

Thanks everyone for the comments. Nice to know too that it isn't just me. I have had a heck of a time trying to get units to go where I want, in the proper formation and the proper place.

I think the comments from redmarkus4 are very valid and better explain some of the frustration I was talking about. It would also help with the "realism" feel of the game if the troops actually could properly form a line behind fences, walls, ditch lines etc. and stop the automatic unrealistic moves. Also my cavalry has gotten on and off theeir horses so many times without me doing anything to cause it it was a bit distracting if nothing else. Also as described in the one AAR they love to charge even when they should be holding. Now I am not a programmer so I have no idea how difficult, expensive or possible it may be to "fix" these items. The earlier game I mentioned in the first post had these same types of issues. I have also found that trying to click on the unit you want and/or then double click a point for it to go to doesn't always register and you may have to do it several times before you get what you want.

Ok once again to end on the good things, very interesting game, fun to watch, worth the purchase and great potential. However I do feel that the "frustration factors" might end up being enough of a turn off to some to not buy expansions or future games based on the mechanics if the game can't be more responsive to some of what has been discussed. Like some previous games I have had, once the initial fun and new factor wears off, I would hate to have frustration make it be one more game collecting dust. Right now I am just enjoying it.




RebBugler -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 3:31:55 PM)

quote:

Can you tell me how the hold column formations mod works? Is it something I can download, or do I need to edit a file locally? Hot key?


I have it modded into my Bugles and Flags toolbar. Also, it can be assigned to the keyboard.




RebBugler -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 3:54:55 PM)

quote:

It would also help with the "realism" feel of the game if the troops actually could properly form a line behind fences, walls, ditch lines etc. and stop the automatic unrealistic moves. Also my cavalry has gotten on and off theeir horses so many times without me doing anything to cause it it was a bit distracting if nothing else. Also as described in the one AAR they love to charge even when they should be holding. Now I am not a programmer so I have no idea how difficult, expensive or possible it may be to "fix" these items. The earlier game I mentioned in the first post had these same types of issues. I have also found that trying to click on the unit you want and/or then double click a point for it to go to doesn't always register and you may have to do it several times before you get what you want.


Yeah, I hear ya.

Wrapping on the walls and fences would be a major improvement, it has been submitted along with the other similar request of maintaining positions on support objects.

Cavalry is constantly being code adjusted, maybe we'll get it right for everyone's tastes eventually, a work in progress if you will.

Control, yes control. This is my main focus for change, being on the inside, to make a difference in how the game plays on the player's end. I'm a pain in the butt for Norb about this. For me TC is not the answer, it works but then demands for way too much micromanagement or your units are toast. I'll keep jabbing, maybe I'll get some hits.




Mikesla -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 4:45:16 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: redmarkus4


quote:

ORIGINAL: Mikesla

Hi.

I'm could be off the mark here but have you tried using the TC (Take Command from A.I) option so that your troops would obey your commands?




Thanks. That's fine at Brigade level, but once you get into a Div or Corps level battle it doesn't help much. I generally stick to the Bde-level battles which are superb.


I know what you mean. Anything over Brigade can get pretty tiresome BUT what I do if I have to micromanage my troops is, if I have to TC any of my regiments, I assign them each a Hotkey so that all I need to do is select that key, and have them do exactly what I want them to do with very little fuss. This way I can now micromanage even Corps if need be.

Cheers.




RebBugler -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 5:03:23 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: redmarkus4

With respect to point 2 (the L-R issue) I was thinking that when movement is plotted, an 'objective line' would be plotted - as in TW or Sid Meyers GB. Each unit would have a left and right marker (the leftmost man and rightmost man) as we used to have when drilling in the military. Units in Line would march straight ahead by marching with reference to the unit's centre, wheel left around the left Marker and wheel right around the right Marker. Units in column would move through each 'point' (4 sprites wide) on the ground taken by the officer leading the column. The kind of logic used to move fleets around in Stormeagles Jutland would work just as well on a Civil War battlefield...

Something like that anyway.


This has been added to the submission,

Thanks for your input




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/23/2012 7:27:59 PM)

Deleted




RebBugler -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/24/2012 5:59:31 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: Kipper

I played the first two games but had to give up on them, as it turned into a frenzy of micromanagement as formations did not go where they were supposed to, constantly pulling back leaders from solo kamikaze runs into enemy formations etc. and I did not see any improvement in the SOW demo. Always wound up having to take command from the AI of most formations. It turned into a Command & Conquer clickfest on steroids.

I would also love to hear how experienced players get around this, as I would love to enjoy this game and to be fair to it, it's obvious many do. I suspect just beyond these problems lies my dream game! I will stay on the fence for now anyhow.


And again I say, yeah, I hear ya

I agree with your points, and frankly, to be a successful General and score those coveted Major Victories, a lot of micromanagement is necessary. Still, lots of folks like this, you're in there doing it, not just a coach on the sidelines, or just giving orders, and watching it play out. It's intense, and the immersion as you go about your tasks is unmatched by games of this genre.

Sure, the suicide officers can be a pain, but this has been improved. More experienced officers avoid this much better, let them work their troops. The less experienced officers tend to love dying, but they're lousy at command anyway, so you just TC them, park them in a safe place, and guide their regiments. Once engaged, regiments will do their job, and not wander off or be useless. You learn to micromanage what needs it, which officers and units need your guidance, and which to trust on their own.

I have never felt the game to be a click fest or frenzy as some have put it, but you do have to work, learn your units capabilities, and play smart to learn how to be a good and successful General.

Formation setups can be stubborn at times, but you don't have to TC anymore. We have a new command called 'attackmarch' which replaces the old TC necessities. Units obey attackmarch commands, they go into the eye of the tiger, but not as zombies, you can send them and leave them. Can't guarantee they'll survive, but they will obey, and won't stop until they bump heads with the enemy.

Anyway, enough promo for tonight. We're continually working on that 'Dream Game'. We're getting closer, it's not there yet, but it's better than yesteryear, and I am confident that it will continue to improve toward that perfection of historical realism we all demand.






RCH -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/24/2012 3:17:48 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Kipper

I played the first two games but had to give up on them, as it turned into a frenzy of micromanagement as formations did not go where they were supposed to, constantly pulling back leaders from solo kamikaze runs into enemy formations etc. and I did not see any improvement in the SOW demo. Always wound up having to take command from the AI of most formations. It turned into a Command & Conquer clickfest on steroids.

I would also love to hear how experienced players get around this, as I would love to enjoy this game and to be fair to it, it's obvious many do. I suspect just beyond these problems lies my dream game! I will stay on the fence for now anyhow.


One of the great strengths of the game is that you can command as many troops as you wish or as few. The AI will control all troops that you chose not to. Now getting to know the AI and how it works will help in playing the game.
While learning the game a player should keep to a single brigade and smaller battles. I have played battles where all I "took" to command was a battery of artillery. One way that I still play the game is I play a large sandbox game, but only take a brigade and try my best to help my side win.
If you want to micromanage you can. If you don't and just want to give general orders and sit back you can do that too. If you just want to command a single brigade or a single division you can do that.

Anyway this is one of the best games out. One of the reasons for this is the many ways the game can be played. If you want a challenge try a HITS game.




Joe D. -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/25/2012 12:35:15 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: Yogi the Great

Love the graphics and the feel of the game. I had a game called Shattered Union that was not as good but had some similarities as far as movement so I expected similar "frustration". Perhaps it will come in time for this old grognard but I find that trying to figure out the sequence of when, how and to where units move is going to be the most frustarting part. I think I am ordering the command group and perhaps no one or only the commander moves and then struggle to figure just which buttons in what order I have to press ...

If anybody has some good tips on this, would love to see them.


Under the older TC, I would simply ensure that (1) the Cdr was well to the rear of his formation before it began to move and (2) that I haven't detached -- broken chain icons in TC -- any of his units before giving orders to move en mass.

Another criticism of this engine was that very aggressive Cdr's, if left to their own, would simply keep attacking regardless of their diminishing lines of men; in TC, I would set aggressive Div Cdrs to "Probe" so that brigades only advanced to the outer ranges of their firing effectiveness.

Of course, I don't know if any of these options remain in SoW.

Most other games simply add a modifier giving aggressive cdrs an attack bonus.




MarchingThruGeorgia -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/25/2012 4:11:09 PM)

quote:

Another criticism of this engine was that very aggressive Cdr's, if left to their own, would simply keep attacking regardless of their diminishing lines of men; in TC, I would set aggressive Div Cdrs to "Probe" so that brigades only advanced to the outer ranges of their firing effectiveness.
Of course, I don't know if any of these options remain in SoW.


Yes, setting the stance is also in SOW. It is very important to do so too. You must know your subordinate's strengths and weaknesses and use them accordingly. If you have a bold commander, giving him a stance of defend will prevent him from acting like Conan the barbarian. Of course if you want Conan, tell him to attack. [;)]




Joe D. -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/26/2012 1:36:48 PM)

"Succession is futile," or did you mean "Secession is futile"?

I also assume it's an allusion to Star Trek's Borg?




PizzaMan -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/26/2012 7:34:19 PM)

Full Disclosure: I have not played the game.

Opinion: 1) If Cavalry does not have orders, they will dismount. It keeps the horses fresh, and prevents the trooper from being an easy target. 2) If infantry in column does not have orders they will break ranks. It keeps the soldiers fresh to sit, seek shade, fetch water, than to stand in one place fatiguing in the sun. Ever been to Gettysburg in July?




Yogi the Great -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/29/2012 7:29:42 PM)

FRUSTRATION GROWS

It's probably me. I have enjoyed watching the beautiful game and battles. As I said in first post it was a must buy for me. But it also continues to show me why I don't like real time games. Click-fest term used by many in describing it is very true. As you get older the reflexes aren't there either and of course as you concentrate on one point of battle you find while you were doing that another point went to hell because you couldn't see it in time to properly do anything about it. Take control of a unit and move it, but when you come back apparently some other command you made (or AI made) has sent it to something else. As mentioned by others the constent shift of lines done by the game without you does get out of hand. I also agree fully with those about not being able to do any orders when the game is in pause. I bought the game in part because it advertised the pause feature but while it pauses there is nothing you can do. Zoom in, out, up, down, left, right, swivel and then try to find where things are isn't all that easy for click challenged people like me. Tired of clicking on the flags multiple times before it works and again trying to click to move maybe a half dozen times for it to register. And of course too much to worry about so busy trying to order units monitoring other factors get lost. Just as you think after hundreds of clicks you have it, your line starts running away.

Anyway I don't regret the purchase and understand why many will love the game. I will keep trying for awhile I haven't given up, but it looks like one more lesson learned for this old grognard to stay away from real time frustration in the future. I think many of you will discount the "frustration" factor as invalid personal opinion and I can understand that. On the other hand there will be those who share in it and stay away. If I but victory aside, I can at least enjoy watching the battles take place.




Jim_NSD -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/29/2012 8:46:39 PM)

This may be more of a design philosophy issue. The game is intended to be a simulation of command in the Civil War. One of the significant design choices is the respect for the chain of command. The intent is that you should be issuing orders only one or at most two levels down the chain of command. So as a division CO, you would primarily be ordering your brigade CO's and in some OOB's artillery batteries. If as division CO you order a regiment someplace, that order will be superseded the next time the Brigade CO issues orders. You may choose to detach a regiment for a special mission but then it is your responsibility until you attach the unit back to its regular CO. If you are trying to direct the movement of every single regiment in your division, then it will turn into a giant clickfest. But that is not how command normally worked in the CW. Each CO got their orders and executed them within their understanding of the intent and to the extent of their skill as a CO. Some were good and some got a lot of good soldiers killed showing that they had no business in uniform. We have tried to build that into the design as well so checking out the skill level of your subordinate commanders and units can improve your ability to put units where they will be most effective. My suggestion is to step back a bit and let your subordinate commanders execute their orders.

-Jim




RebBugler -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/29/2012 8:57:52 PM)

quote:

I think many of you will discount the "frustration" factor as invalid personal opinion and I can understand that. On the other hand there will be those who share in it and stay away.


Nope, I understand it completely. I'm on the inside pluggin for better player control...without TC. Try my Bugles and Flags mod. The toolbar is designed for better control, thus, less frustration.

In the meantime, I'll be busy trying to persuade the Fog of War majority on the team to ease up and help gameplay from the player's perspective. My next big push for player control is to strengthen the command 'No Orders', and make it stick when it is applied. So, units will obey COMPLETELY without the need for TC, which requires or usually results in that infamous click fest, micromanagement, that manifests into your title - FRUSTRATION GROWS




Blaugrana -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/29/2012 9:16:23 PM)

RCH gave a reply on another thread that, I hope, may help with your frustrations, Yogi. I'll quote most relevant bits:
quote:

ORIGINAL: RCH
.... if you use the Courier&Maps mod, the game will pause while you use the written order courier screen

The only drawback is that the official scenarios cannot be played using mods. [...] Those scenarios are available to be played unranked. [using another mod or by some tweaking under the hood]

HTH




RCH -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/30/2012 6:28:50 AM)

Yogi,

There are a number of players who all they like to play is the single brigade. That will give you 4 or 5 regiments, this way you can focus on just those regiments. Fire up a sandbox division size and grab a single brigade. When I play Sp that is usually how I play. Let the AI control the rest. When I play past the division level I let the AI have some control over the troops. It is not just you there is a lot going on.




oldspec4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/30/2012 11:22:24 AM)

FYI for those (like me) that play the AI at division/brigade level within a battle..another option is to play multiplayer in offline mode.

The sequence is something like this: select MP-host-scenario game-select scenario-select commander-set officer-launch.

RebBugler may be able to provide the appropriate link back to the SOW forum for details.




Yogi the Great -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/30/2012 4:23:06 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: RCH

Yogi,

There are a number of players who all they like to play is the single brigade. That will give you 4 or 5 regiments, this way you can focus on just those regiments. Fire up a sandbox division size and grab a single brigade. When I play Sp that is usually how I play. Let the AI control the rest. When I play past the division level I let the AI have some control over the troops. It is not just you there is a lot going on.


Makes sense RCH. Thanks to everyone else too for the comments. By the way I have had a number of games with tutorials some of which were very helpful. The Division tutorial on this game gave very little help. Considers actually stopping, giving reasonable instructions and let the "learner" then follow those instruictions. I don't think I missed anything but this basically just gave you a division and said go to it. A courier message telling you to go somewhere or take something or move etc without telling you how to do it is of little help. Basically I felt the only help of the tutorial is to just let you falter around while you try to discover how to actually do things on your own.

To Jim_NSD Thanks for the input, I understand your point and why some would find it fun to do. I'm just a gamer trying to play a game without being burdened by frustrating and distracting complications. Maybe they should consider an option that gives the easier control to the player and an option to add the complications for those like you who enjoy the micro-management. Just a thought.




RebBugler -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (9/30/2012 5:30:10 PM)

quote:

To Jim_NSD Thanks for the input, I understand your point and why some would find it fun to do. I'm just a gamer trying to play a game without being burdened by frustrating and distracting complications. Maybe they should consider an option that gives the easier control to the player and an option to add the complications for those like you who enjoy the micro-management. Just a thought.


Ha, you've just met the ranking member of the "Fog of War majority" I'm trying to convince to include player control gameplay options.




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