RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (Full Version)

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MarchingThruGeorgia -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (1/10/2013 3:43:35 PM)

quote:

So learn to be a "commander" not a min/maxer or a control freak.

That is excellent advice.




dougb -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (2/9/2013 6:23:24 PM)

Trying to play the headquarters in the saddle mode and sadly I think this mode is just completely broken. In the Heth scenario with Davis' and Archer's brigades I sent orders for Davis to attack. He didn't. At first he didn't move at all and then he moved his regiments to a central point and then just sat there. I'd orderd him to attack in double line formation (brigade).

I've played this about 5 times and have gotten completely fed up with it. Part of the problem may be that the documentation is pretty wretched. There's no hint in the documentation about the sequence you're supposed to put the orders in, as indicated in one of the tips posts in the Sourge of War forum. I think there may be a sequence for other orders aside from the move orders but the documentation is no help when utilizing the hits mode. And yes I've checked the forum thread over at scourge or war but unfortunately nothing there has provided a solution.

The general idea of the game looks great - I really like what the designer attempted. It just doesn't seem to work properly.

Doug




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (2/10/2013 11:52:03 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: dougb

Trying to play the headquarters in the saddle mode and sadly I think this mode is just completely broken. In the Heth scenario with Davis' and Archer's brigades I sent orders for Davis to attack. He didn't. At first he didn't move at all and then he moved his regiments to a central point and then just sat there. I'd orderd him to attack in double line formation (brigade).

I've played this about 5 times and have gotten completely fed up with it. Part of the problem may be that the documentation is pretty wretched. There's no hint in the documentation about the sequence you're supposed to put the orders in, as indicated in one of the tips posts in the Sourge of War forum. I think there may be a sequence for other orders aside from the move orders but the documentation is no help when utilizing the hits mode. And yes I've checked the forum thread over at scourge or war but unfortunately nothing there has provided a solution.

The general idea of the game looks great - I really like what the designer attempted. It just doesn't seem to work properly.

Doug


+1 to this. Great concept but too many flaws for the game to stay long on my hard drive. Also, the graphics are pretty dated compared to what else is out there on the market covering other eras.




dougb -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (2/10/2013 2:31:49 PM)

I'm not that bothered re: the graphics - yes they aren't up to the standards of the Total War Series but the game concept to my mind is far superior. The one thing missing from the Hits graphically is a telescope to allow division and corps commanders, standing a distance from the front lines, a way to zoom in as they would have historically had some ability to do.

The other issue besides the problem with issuing commands is the crazy conga line that develops as noted by many. The AI could do with some further development. It's a very ambitious design that often comes close to realizing its potential only to have one of those jarring moments (units faced in opposite direction from enemy in front, no action taken on orders even when you are right beside subordinates etc.) rear their head and completely break the immersion.

Unfortunately given the small size of the war gaming market it's very difficult for even theses labors of love to be developed to the level of shine that would produce something truly outstanding. I'd love to see what a new version could accomplish with some of the issues cleaned up.

Doug




MarchingThruGeorgia -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (2/10/2013 4:47:14 PM)

quote:

I'm not that bothered re: the graphics - yes they aren't up to the standards of the Total War Series but the game concept to my mind is far superior. The one thing missing from the Hits graphically is a telescope to allow division and corps commanders, standing a distance from the front lines, a way to zoom in as they would have historically had some ability to do.

To zoom the view, press the 'Z' key. There are 2 zoom levels.

quote:

Trying to play the headquarters in the saddle mode and sadly I think this mode is just completely broken. In the Heth scenario with Davis' and Archer's brigades I sent orders for Davis to attack. He didn't. At first he didn't move at all and then he moved his regiments to a central point and then just sat there. I'd orderd him to attack in double line formation (brigade).

I've played this about 5 times and have gotten completely fed up with it. Part of the problem may be that the documentation is pretty wretched. There's no hint in the documentation about the sequence you're supposed to put the orders in, as indicated in one of the tips posts in the Sourge of War forum. I think there may be a sequence for other orders aside from the move orders but the documentation is no help when utilizing the hits mode. And yes I've checked the forum thread over at scourge or war but unfortunately nothing there has provided a solution

Actually the courier system works fairly well once the player learns all its nuances. I've used it exclusively for years. Here is a link to an AAR I wrote a while ago explaining how to write orders and what to expect.
Courier Tutorial
The problem you referred to concerning a brigade not moving may have to do with a long known bug in the game. To bypass it, just go to the Date&Time tab on the courier screen and select the current time, (the first one), then write your order. You only have to do this once in a game.




dougb -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (2/10/2013 6:06:13 PM)

Much appreciated - I'll try those suggestions. This is a game I really want to work!

Doug




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (2/10/2013 8:49:42 PM)

The conga line really killed it for me. Fix that and support higher resolutions - meaning give me high quality unit graphics at high resolution - and I'll become a fan again.




dougb -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (2/10/2013 11:07:32 PM)

Tried the suggestions and it was much better - Archer's Brigade seemed to go way over to the right for some reason (still attacked) but I finally got Davis to attack. Zoom was a big help too. Thanks very much again!

Redmarkus I'd really like to see less of the conga line as well although for the most part what I saw in my last try was fairly good. I just love the c inception that the game presents in hits mode where you have to issue orders and then wait, although there's still the possibility of riding up and intervening directly. The terrain and this mode really helps me to appreciate just how difficult maintaining command and control was back then.

Doug




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (3/20/2013 3:39:39 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: dougb

Tried the suggestions and it was much better - Archer's Brigade seemed to go way over to the right for some reason (still attacked) but I finally got Davis to attack. Zoom was a big help too. Thanks very much again!

Redmarkus I'd really like to see less of the conga line as well although for the most part what I saw in my last try was fairly good. I just love the c inception that the game presents in hits mode where you have to issue orders and then wait, although there's still the possibility of riding up and intervening directly. The terrain and this mode really helps me to appreciate just how difficult maintaining command and control was back then.

Doug


Yes - don't get me wrong. I think this game engine has the potential to be the best thing out there in this genre. It's just those two issues (graphics and the conga) that prevented me from really enjoying it.




wodin -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (3/20/2013 4:10:31 PM)

Sometimes I think well made crisp and clear abstract units are better..so your imagination can fly. One reason I feel games when i was younger dragged me in more immersion wise was due to the simple graphics. I think graphics that are trying to look my realistic but aren't of the highest quality can be far worse than something more abstract.

Check Bil's video demonstrations for instance...I really love the style and it's 1:1 scale as if you look close you can see the lines divided up..thats one soldier. Put them in the real units colours..I'm happy.

http://www.bilhardenberger.com/game-development.html


quote:

ORIGINAL: redmarkus4

The conga line really killed it for me. Fix that and support higher resolutions - meaning give me high quality unit graphics at high resolution - and I'll become a fan again.




Garnier -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (3/20/2013 4:24:19 PM)

quote:

Sometimes I think well made crisp and clear abstract units are better..so your imagination can fly. One reason I feel games when i was younger dragged me in more immersion wise was due to the simple graphics. I think graphics that are trying to look my realistic but aren't of the highest quality can be far worse than something more abstract.

I completely agree with this!

Another thing that's most important is to have *consistent* graphics. I think a lot of graphical immersion is lost when some of the graphics look realistic and others look abstract.

SOW to me looks a lot like toy soldiers on a diorama. I don't picture each figure I see being one soldier -- when I look at a line I imagine what the real line would look like. Some newer games that try their hardest to look realistic lose this abstraction, and since they aren't perfect, they fail at the one thing they are trying to do. (Not saying all new graphics are bad, but a lot of games nowadays are less graphically immersive than those of the late 90s.)




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (3/31/2013 5:46:32 PM)

Videos 2 and 3 illustrate the point I was trying to make in another post about how period troops actually drilled and wheeled around their left or right guide - Bill has got it exactly right. In fact, you don't really need to research lots of old manuals to understand the fundamentals of this as most modern military drill parades still follow many of the same basic principles - there's only so many ways a body of troops can move and stay in formation.

Does anyone recall a 1980s game called Napoleonics? This was way before Sid Meyer came along. It used blocks similar to Bill's as troops and after about 5 minutes playing you started to 'see' the troops as if each block really was a unit of several hundred men.

This approach is so much better for representing Napoleonic or Civil War battlefields than the sprites approach, especially if it's combined with a solid strategic-level map for decision making.




Hurrying Heinz -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (5/6/2013 10:17:16 AM)

I know it flies in the face of accepted wisdom , but effective use of TC is the trick. develop your own SOPs and after hundreds of hours of practice it all becomes second nature, the game is superb !!




Garnier -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (5/7/2013 2:16:21 AM)

quote:

I know it flies in the face of accepted wisdom , but effective use of TC is the trick. develop your own SOPs and after hundreds of hours of practice it all becomes second nature, the game is superb !!
Yup, with TC you can get your men to do exactly what you want. They won't always do what you want in response to a given order, but with practice and experimenting -- obviously if you try nothing new you'll learn nothing new -- you learn what orders to give to get them to do what you want.




Hurrying Heinz -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (5/7/2013 7:27:44 AM)

I try to work on de-evolving the tc function if you will. My fav command level is div. First thing I do is hit the OB button , scrolling across and Tcing all brigade and battery commanders. You then respond as the situation develops,obviously( once im fully engaged all brigades will be unTcd,more or less , except maybe a reserve , always keep batteries Tcd) get use to using the ob buttons without referencing the units on map and always issue orders in the same sequence.( make sure its the correct sequence!). This of course requires you know your chain of command really well...leader characteristics impact hugely and to get the most out of the sim you need to realize this. I might not be the greatest tactically but control is not a problem and if you're not getting it you,re not trying hard enough. I tend to issue orders in flurries , never becomes a clickfest. Anyway...just my two cents worth , just hate to see guys struggling to get into it.




RebBugler -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (5/7/2013 6:01:37 PM)

You might want to try the commands 'tcofficers' and 'Atcommoff', these will save time scrolling through the OB. They can either be set on your keyboard or, as I use them, modded to my toolbar...Bugles and Flags.

Your progress with learning the game is admirable, good to hear some other responses besides just frustration. There are many tools available with SOW to help provide immersion and enjoyment, just gotta figure out what to use for your preferred style of play.




Hurrying Heinz -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (5/8/2013 12:58:21 AM)

Had your toolbar a while reb - highly recommended - although i must admit i didnt realise the above functionality - the split keys are a bit of a spin to. Just wondering if there is a thread or otherwise explaining fully all your new commands. its been six months since i got into sow and coming across this thread has stirred the juices. this time I'ii get the roundtops. ( your toolbar isnt compatible with gb- correct? )




RebBugler -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (5/8/2013 6:14:31 AM)

Thanks for the toolbar plug...too bad you didn't know those functions existed, my bad. Maybe one of these days I'll get all the functions diagrammed and explained.[8|]

As you know, stock scenarios can't be played with mods. Still they can be renamed and placed in mod form, try this already produced mod for that purpose:
http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3187632




Hurrying Heinz -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (5/8/2013 11:24:53 AM)

excellent reb , thankyou. It is a hell of a piece of work (the toolbar that is) , dont think youve gotten enough credit for it. Im an old lurker coming in from the cold but have been with the game since "take command days" Im familiar with your contribution to the game from the norbsoft forums. For me SOW is one of the top three wargaming franchises out there. Go team.




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/15/2013 6:43:34 PM)

Taking command doesn't stop the 'conga line' dance - for me at least. All I am asking for is an infantry movement model based on real life. I don't think I should need '100s of hours of practice' in order to make one formation of troops wheel left or right around their left or right marker.

Of course, if your market is restricted to Grognards with hundred of extra hours to spare, then more power to you. Just go ahead and ignore this bumbling customer.




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/15/2013 8:43:01 PM)

So I re-installed on a new PC after deactivating on the old one. Successfully reactivated then installed Patch 1.50, Antietam, Pipe Creek and Chancellors, then patch to the 1.6 beta.

Now, when I start the game I only have the option of playing two tutorials - none of the battles appears on the menu. IIRC the tutorials were optional? How do I get the battles to show up?




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/15/2013 9:06:58 PM)

Also, there's no MODS option in the menu. It says version 1.6 on the main screen. Everything worked fine on the old PC. Running Windows 7.




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/16/2013 9:14:15 AM)

OK, I need to post a partial apology here.

After several frustrated attempts, I finally read on a post in the NorbSoft forums that I need to DL to MATRIX version of the base game and register that etc. I had been running my NorbSoft base game with the Matrix expansions on top, assuming they were all from the same Dev and would work together. They don't. Needs a sticky in this forum maybe?

So, it all works fine now, patched up to 1.6 with all expansions loaded.

The unit graphics do seem a lot better - IIRC there's also an edit I can do to the ini file (?) to set them even higher? Anyone know where the instructions are for that?

TC-ing does reduce the conga line activity now, although I do still see some of it when ordering a brigade to about face - all the guys on the right ran over to the left and vice versa. But the conga line stuff in the face of the enemy has gone, which is a great step forward for me.

The only thing puzzling me is that the game ran fine on my old PC with the NorbSoft base game plus Matrix expansions on top... Something to do with it only being at 1.5 on the old machine?

Finally, I have Sprites set at 1-to-1 because I have 32 Gigs of RAM and widescreen and I want to use that. The remaining conga activity might be related to that setting I guess?




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/16/2013 4:01:59 PM)

Here are two examples of what I am experiencing. In both cases I have taken command of the units from the AI.

Case 1. Simple 'Left Wheel' ordered.

(200kb file size limit? Seriously? It's 2013...)

[image]local://upfiles/27287/E51590FBD6AB48FBA0C44833651028E5.jpg[/image]




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/16/2013 4:03:14 PM)

Case 2. Left Flank move ordered along a fence line.

[image]local://upfiles/27287/F36B73EDC0F346E589373730FEC7E78E.jpg[/image]




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/16/2013 4:09:44 PM)

We're doin' the Conga, doin' the Conga, doin' the Conga Dance, Yeah!

[image]local://upfiles/27287/403287983F014A869A50F9C6D337D379.jpg[/image]




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/16/2013 4:18:54 PM)

Then, amazingly...!

[image]local://upfiles/27287/4C0A74CA1C884F19B5096BB53DBD81FE.jpg[/image]




redmarkus4 -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/26/2013 5:23:20 PM)

Well, the 161 patch appears to have removed the conga line problem - at least in my first test battle. There are still some quirks, but unit movement is much more realistic than before. Thanks guys.




JiminyJickers -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (6/27/2013 9:09:18 PM)

That would be good news, I have been waiting for that to be fixed before getting back into it.




Queeg -> RE: Great Game & Expected Frustration (7/3/2013 5:48:37 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: redmarkus4

Well, the 161 patch appears to have removed the conga line problem - at least in my first test battle. There are still some quirks, but unit movement is much more realistic than before. Thanks guys.


No noticeable improvement here, unfortunately. My last three battles have been more of the same congo dance routine. Very frustrating.

EDIT: Just tried another battle, which went much better. I reinstalled the new patch, so perhaps I wasn't playing with the patch before. [sm=crazy.gif]




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