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Dilemma - 8/1/2008 10:16:42 PM   
JudgeDredd


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I have very much a dilemma on my hands.

Kharkov:Disaster on the Donetz
Making History:The Calm Before the Storm
WWII:Road to Victory

I have enough funds for one game.

I have been looking at both KDotD and WWIR2V forums, keeping an eye on both.

And then Making History Gold turns up at $19.99!!

Now, I have been looking at Making History for quite some time and never took the plunge. I don't know why...maybe because I already have a game like that (HoI2 with add ons).

I've been watching DotD very, very carefully. One of the problems is lack of content (or what I perceive to be lack of content). The other is CaW....bought it and was disgusted with the content to be honest. But, on the other hand, I like the sound of the AoO...the Areas of Operation. It means you have to work within the limits of superior commend, ergo, it's putting you firmly in the shoes of the tactical commander and therefore making your role quite clear (something games are forgetting to do nowadays). Still...it's only 1 scenario of 16 turns!!! That's a small game for £30.99 ($62)

And then there's the new kid on the block...WWII:R2V. What to say!! I thought C:EaW was Panzer General on steroids! This thing has FAR more hexes so offers a more tactical approach. Problem is, AI. It seems a little week in places...maybe a bit too early to take the plunge. But £25.99 ($52)??

Well, well, well....what a dilemma.

I'm very, very tempted with all 3.
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RE: Dilemma - 8/1/2008 10:26:41 PM   
dave74

 

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just my opinion JD, but making history is a bit whacky - all sorts of non-historical stuff happens. WW2 RTV - Map is huge - ai needs a bit work, but i think this will be a great game. havent played the other one.

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RE: Dilemma - 8/1/2008 10:34:30 PM   
JudgeDredd


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I know...but whacky can be fun...especially if I know it's not historical. A few surprises can be sprung...maybe the UK will join Germany in an EU take over???

I do really like the sound of R2V...but I have the money now, and for me, it doesn't seem ready....if I can hold on (which I'm not prone to!!) then maybe, just maybe it can grab my cash....

But stil...Making History for £10 ($20)!!! R2V will cost me £21 ($42)! Over double!! And I DO like Area/Region strategy games...I think (tactically?) the AI makes better decisions because of the fewer decisions it has to make!

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RE: Dilemma - 8/1/2008 10:58:26 PM   
06 Maestro


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Judge

You already know my opinion on one of those titles, and I have not tried the other two. There are all sorts of subjective reasons to buy a game or not. How about having a different reason- trying something new and perhaps help an outfit out a little.
I have never had an SSG game. The graphics in the older games were a little rough on my eyes, but the Kharkov game looks somewhat different. It actually looks like a good game, a good game that is suffering from the stigma of having only one scenario.

I’m thinking of giving that game a try, I’ll make you a deal; you buy SSG’s Kharkov, and I will do the same as soon as you let me know you got it.

Deal?

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RE: Dilemma - 8/1/2008 11:27:13 PM   
06 Maestro


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I just read the H. Bolter critique. This dampens my enthusiasm somewhat, but the above offer still stands.


One should keep in mind that BftB will be released soon, That one must be budgeted in (for me, anyway).

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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 12:25:18 AM   
Veldor


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It should be easy to decide on Making History.. It has a demo.

Download and play it some, then decide.

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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 1:21:17 AM   
Terl


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Judge,  why not try the demo of Making History?  They have one available.  That way you can rule it in or out.

EDIT: D'oh, I see Veldor said that already.... sigh...

< Message edited by Terl -- 8/2/2008 1:22:15 AM >

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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 7:36:00 AM   
JudgeDredd


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Tried the demo and, as with all demos, found it very dry and droll...I hate text based, non interactive demos. I find it very, very hard to stay awake.

GG:WbtS has excellent tutorials. Video based and whilst they could've got Mariella Frostrop to do the voice over which would've increased their appeal ten fold, at least they DO have video tutorials. They are still non interactive, but I find the spoken/videoed demo far, far more interesting than those horrible text demos.

So the demo is probably what has put me off buying it in the past!! (Kind of adds mortar to Erik's demo theory!)

As for your offer Maestro...I don't know....£30 for a 16 turn scenario??? I kind of like giving them the message that I won't subscribe to such meagre content...I don't give a crap how much research has gone into the game...full price for less than half a game seems very,very steep.

In this crazy world of continued inflating prices and oil companies continuing to rip me off (half yearly profits of £6Bn for BP and £4Bn for Shell), along with the gas and electric companies jumping on the band wagon and rising costs of food, I have less money to spend.

I really don't know at the moment. Like I said...I really, really am torn between the 3.

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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 7:41:29 AM   
JudgeDredd


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As for BftB...most definitely a purchase for me...on release. I know the engine and I know the series and they are great games.

If they had just reduced the cost of DotD to £20, I would have bought by now...for no other reason than to give SSG's new game and new system a go...alas, they didn't...they priced it, in my eyes, way too high. That £30 turns into £35 with tax for my country...for a 16 turn scenario that's a lot of money!! I know I keep harping on about that, but value for money IS very important. It might be value for money....alas, due to the price point, it looks like I will never know.

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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 7:47:25 AM   
pasternakski


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Hiya, JD. Here's my latest take on WWII-RtV, if it's any help to you.

It's fun in the same way the ugly girl you used to take out parking was fun. You liked the fooling around, but you didn't want any of your friends to know you were with her. It's still a little raw, and they've got to fix some stuff, but it's not fatal nonsense.

It's simple, and errs if at all on the side of simplification. I like that about it. It makes no pretensions to being the "latest and the greatest." The AI is adequate, and the representation of WWII in Europe on the strategic level is good enough, kind of like microwave popcorn if you can't get the real thing.

This is why I bought it. I never have liked games that take themselves too seriously. This one doesn't. It's satisfyingly long, so that if you enjoy the epic feeling of being in charge of a major chunk of history on one side or the other, you can have that.

I don't really have any complaints about it (I have a UI problem that does not prevent playing the game and is probably related to something simple that I will eventually figure out).

One thing, though. If you are a modder, you better wait until they come out with something moddable, because this, as it stands, is only minimally so. You can fiddle around a little with the graphics, but that's just about it. Also, this game is tailor made for those who like to play solo against the computer. They may change that as time goes along, but it really has that old late-1980s-early-1990s SSI feel to it.

< Message edited by pasternakski -- 8/2/2008 7:52:27 AM >


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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 9:55:48 AM   
Widell


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quote:

ORIGINAL: pasternakski
One thing, though. If you are a modder, you better wait until they come out with something moddable, because this, as it stands, is only minimally so. You can fiddle around a little with the graphics, but that's just about it.


I thought you could do more with the CSV/XML files, and that it was only the map that was not moddable right now? I may be wrong since I have only based that on the discussions on the WWII:Road to War forum and does not yet own the game.

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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 4:57:22 PM   
06 Maestro


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quote:

ORIGINAL: JudgeDredd


As for your offer Maestro...I don't know....£30 for a 16 turn scenario??? I kind of like giving them the message that I won't subscribe to such meagre content...I don't give a crap how much research has gone into the game...full price for less than half a game seems very,very steep.

In this crazy world of continued inflating prices and oil companies continuing to rip me off (half yearly profits of £6Bn for BP and £4Bn for Shell), along with the gas and electric companies jumping on the band wagon and rising costs of food, I have less money to spend.



I agree DotD is too expensive for the one scenario. That is too bad, as I think it is the better game of the 3. As I have never had a SSG title, I have a curiosity about the game. I will just wait until the next one.

I also concur with your economic view-so thanks for saving me 50 bucks.

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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 6:35:53 PM   
pasternakski


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Widell

quote:

ORIGINAL: pasternakski
One thing, though. If you are a modder, you better wait until they come out with something moddable, because this, as it stands, is only minimally so. You can fiddle around a little with the graphics, but that's just about it.


I thought you could do more with the CSV/XML files, and that it was only the map that was not moddable right now? I may be wrong since I have only based that on the discussions on the WWII:Road to War forum and does not yet own the game.


You're right about that, come to think of it. I don't know the extent to which you confuse the AI by making wholesale changes, though, and you very likely can break a game designed this way pretty easily.

So, I plan for now to enjoy it for what it is and wait for clearer guidance from the devs before fooling around with those Excel files. If you do, back up the original, of course.

_____________________________

Put my faith in the people
And the people let me down.
So, I turned the other way,
And I carry on anyhow.

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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 7:44:52 PM   
Veldor


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quote:

ORIGINAL: JudgeDredd
GG:WbtS has excellent tutorials. Video based and whilst they could've got Mariella Frostrop to do the voice over which would've increased their appeal ten fold, at least they DO have video tutorials. They are still non interactive, but I find the spoken/videoed demo far, far more interesting than those horrible text demos.

So the demo is probably what has put me off buying it in the past!! (Kind of adds mortar to Erik's demo theory!)


You just said it yourself. The problem wasn't the demo, it was that it was a BAD demo (Entirely Text Based). It's also not so great a game to begin with.

Personally that's what pisses me off about a lot of these computer wargames. I play for fun, and thats precisely why I quit board wargaming because I didn't want to spend 2 days reading before I could play a new game and actually enjoy it. With any other genre the game is taught to me (And yes there are some very complicated games amongst them). Its only after you've gotten to like the game and play it a couple days where you then have to pick up the manual to dig out those little intricasies that now matter to you.

The issue with the text based/boring demo is that you have EVEN LESS reason to go through the drudgering because you haven't had to sink $$$ into it.

Honestly half of what makes some of these games so hard to learn are the poor interfaces. If the interface is intuitive you've eliminated half the challenge and now its only the game mechanics/rules you need to teach..

I didn't like the demo either...

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RE: Dilemma - 8/2/2008 9:21:01 PM   
Son_of_Montfort


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JD,

I'll weigh in here. BTW, I love Paster's comment about the "ugly girl you used to park with," has to be the best game review analogy I have ever read!

I liked Making History, but sort of for the same reason Paster said about WWII:RtV. It was fun, simple (sort of) and has the potential for ahistorical madness. Sure, WWII games are fun, but they tend to start "in media res" and don't leave open for the very unplausible but fun... like say... a Mexican-Germano Alliance and a South of the Border invasion of the US by the Axis. I would look at MH as a sort of simplified Hearts of Iron 2, lots of options, grand strategy, but broad brush style gameplay. Unfortunately, it didn't stick with me a long time, and once I won the war as the Germans (by Atomic bombing Washington, D.C., forcing the British into becoming a puppet facist state, and atom bombing Japan - who would not ally with me) I never really wanted to go back and play. I did try to be the Russians and spread communism, but I got distracted like a racoon to a shiny object by some other game. It has all sorts of fun things you can do, but actually following WWII is harder than one would thing - I could not get Italy to stay allied with me and Japan was against me, for instance. Of course, this was all early on, and the game has been patched much since.

I would not buy DotD. I am very much over the Decisive Battles engine, and I feel that these games just haven't advanced much in the past few years. Nothing against the developers, but I always feel that the bang for the buck here is a bit low - limited scenarios, promises of new "modder created" maps (which never really materialize lately), same strange cross between board game and computer game that leaves me cruching stat numbers (which is nice, but I tend to plan all my moves depending on those numbers they given on the units, which leads to me feel like I am watching someone else playing). Just not my thing I guess, especially at the prices.

Now WWII:RtV is interesting. I like the look, but I am a bit irritated at the limited resolutions available. Had there been a 1440x900 (for my laptop) I probably would have bought it out the gate. I don't own SC2 or its expansion (which do support higher and widescreen resolutions) but the games just look so similar that I would tempted to get SC2 over WWII:RtV if I bought right now. I know there are sizable differences in the gameplay, but fact of the matter is that they are the same basic genre, with the same basic plot and scenario, with similar execution. Now that map on WWII:RtV is pretty awesome, but is it enough to offset eye-strain due to blurry resolution scaling?

Frankly, I am getting a little tired of games that have people say things like - "while limited now, this has the potential to be great," or "several things are broken, but with patches, this game will be a classic," or "modders might turn this decent game into an epic one." I have heard these things about almost all three of the games above (particularly lately about WWII:RtV) and I always feel a bit uneasy with that type of gamble.

BTW, if it wouldn't be more than the cost of a new one, I would certainly mail my MH DVD to you - but I would think the overseas mailing would be prohibitive, especially since this is the vanilla version and the Gold version is only $19.99.

EDIT: One major question, what do you mean by MH having a text based, non-interactive demo? I remember playing a demo that allowed you to play several turns of the full game as the Axis (or maybe China). Is this no longer there? This says that you get one single play scenario with the demo...

SoM


< Message edited by Son_of_Montfort -- 8/2/2008 9:27:11 PM >


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RE: Dilemma - 8/3/2008 1:57:39 PM   
JudgeDredd


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Yeah...sorry...the demo is interactive. I just find text based demos making my eyes bleed!

One great feature of Memoir '44 I found was on the website...a video on how to play. Very helpful, intuitive and a pleasure to watch.

I'm going to leave these games at the moment.

Like I said, I like the idea of areas of operation in DotD, but it just costs too much. If that had been £20, I would have bought it already I think. But imo, it's not worth the price tag. Making History? I kept looking at it...tried the demo a few times over the course of the last year or so...I like the look of the game. But I think I'll regret buying it...even at £10!! And R2V is just too new and has the problems that come with new games.

I'm enjoying my rekindled love for board wargames. Memoir 44 has a great card system to make the scenarios play different each time. I played my 7 year old daughter yesterday at the Sword Beach scenario, and she handed me back my arse!! I had 3 tank units (of 3 tanks) and by the time she had won, I had 1 tank left! I STILL had units in the sea and the ones that were on the beach were decimated! The die were just not rolling for me and were for her. She had artillery also which is pretty devastating. Luckily, I had an Air Power card and used it to take em out...but the game was lost by then!


< Message edited by JudgeDredd -- 8/4/2008 4:30:10 PM >

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RE: Dilemma - 8/3/2008 2:06:50 PM   
Zakhal


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WWII:Road to Victory  was fun for 8 hours playing as allies (easymode), I became a fan of the polish developer (he has other global ww2 game in development) and now Im waiting for a patch before trying the hardmode (axis). As for rest of the games Im not even remotely interested. I bought sc2 + 2 addons from battlefront with summersale (-30% pricecut) and Im playing them now. SC2 is a good complimentary to ww2rtv just like commander europe.


< Message edited by Zakhal -- 8/3/2008 2:08:52 PM >


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RE: Dilemma - 8/4/2008 4:26:07 PM   
105mm Howitzer


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Oddly enough, it's really tough to win as the allies with Sword. You move in, get decimated, move in again, get plastered...oh wait, that's what kind of happened anyways.


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RE: Dilemma - 8/4/2008 4:38:18 PM   
JudgeDredd


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Well, there's a -2 roll for tanks against bunkers! So you only ever get to roll one die for tanks against bunkers.

She had two arty pieces in a bunker, so they were a real swine to get rid of. I had a barrage card to play (4 die roll against any target and disregarding any penalties), so I used it against her arty and the die showed 1 soldier, 1 star, 1 tank and a flag!!! well, if I read the rules right, then I can only take out her arty if I roll a grenade, so she only had to retreat one space!

In the end I think it was an air strike that managed to get rid of her artillery.

One of the problems, I think, is the length of the game. The first time we played, I hadn't read the victory conditions for Pegasus Bridge and we played until it was all over. Sword, we played for the proper duration...until one side got 5 medals...and it seemed to be over pretty quickly. Like I said, though, the die were rolling well for her.

Every night I get home she's like "Dad, are we going to play the army game?" and I said no last night, too tired...she said "But you promised" and made me play...she loves it!!

Of course, I can always take some solice in the fact that I'm choosing her cards to play for her, so I am really winning...even when I'm losing...it's a win win for me

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RE: Dilemma - 8/4/2008 5:13:00 PM   
undercovergeek

 

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keep your money, carry on with your WitP practice, and wait for WiF

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RE: Dilemma - 8/4/2008 9:13:43 PM   
Son_of_Montfort


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Memoir is great fun! Maybe if you take a bit of a trip to Marseille after October, you can meet up with me and we can play a few games! 

Actually though, the Vassal version might be workable, I wonder how nice it is?

Bah, WitP... that game is not a game as much as it is an actual logistics excercise for warfare. The navy should use PBEM to plan actual future warfare...

SoM


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RE: Dilemma - 8/4/2008 10:28:39 PM   
JudgeDredd


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Really, really enjoying Memoir...although my daughter is getting a rather big head, beating me again tonight 

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RE: Dilemma - 8/5/2008 1:11:55 PM   
105mm Howitzer


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JD, you might do well to check out the expansion packs; Eastern Front ( introducing everybody's favorites, the Italians. Snow rules, extra terrain tiles, etc..or the Pacific expansion, and of course, the original one, the Terrain pack. Combined these add a lot more realism and flexibility to the system.

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RE: Dilemma - 8/5/2008 1:28:10 PM   
JudgeDredd


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I can see me migrating quite fast to Tide of Iron...I heard that is solitaire also, is that correct?

Saying that, I mean going to ToI for myself...my daughter likes to play Memoir and I think it's a great engine. Very "lite" as alluded to here and in other posts, but I'm very, very glad I spent the money. I'm back to board gaming...although I will always be playing computer games also.

You know what's funny though....I never ever really got the sense of achievement of setting up units in a computer game as I do with boardgaming. o me setting up Memoir is a pleasure...I always found the setup of computer games "first turns" to be an incredible chore. I was always very pleased when I fired up a scenario in a game and it was setup reasonably well, requiring (preferably) no input from me!

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RE: Dilemma - 8/5/2008 2:15:56 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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Glad to hear that it's working out well for you.

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