From: Silver City, NM USA
I've had the Matrix release since early on. As a matter of fact, I am using Version 1.00 with NO patches at all. If I could find Ver 1.01, I might try it. Back in the days of Talonsoft, I had every release of the Campaign Series that was available. The DCG was the one that gave headaches. When you tried to restart a campaign, it would give an error message. The Mickey Mouse fix from Talonsoft was to delete two of the saved files and, in effect, "skip" the next scenario. That worked, but it was a real PITA to do, and you never felt like you really played a complete game. The Matrix version has been rock solid for me, and I haven't experienced any crashes since I bought it.
The patch situation, however, has been one of my greatest disappointments with Matrix. Instead of setting the priority at fixing the remaining bugs in the game, Matrix seems to have gone down a different road and worked on tweaks that players have requested. To me, that seems like putting the donkey before the cart. The prime example of this is the bug left over from early Talonsoft days of certain units like command cars, HQ units, trucks, and other vehicles with large movement points, going back-and-forth-and-back-and-forth between two squares until they burn up all their movement points. This may seem like a relatively minor irritation, but when it happens multiple times in one turn, it can make that turn seem endlessly long.
Another problem for me is the changes that are made, not based on reality, but on what some users suggest as being a "good idea". If you play version 1.00 of the game in Beginner setting with the slider all the way to Axis advantage, you will find that Axis units are all but unbeatable. And with those settings that is the way it should be!! The same holds true if you move the slider all the way to the Allied side. I normally play with it dead in the middle. With each new patch two things seem to be happening. Many players are upset about how difficult it is to beat Germany. So the opposing units are getting "beefed up" with overly strong advantages geared to making it much easier for Allied units to win. A prime example of this is the "anti-tank artillery" change that was done in 1.03. That change was so negative to gameplay in DCG that in 1.04b they ended up boosting the replacement rates to help compensate for it. But there really wasn't anything wrong with the original artillery setting that Talonsoft used. It was a change done strictly to make some users happy.
The second item is the slider adjustment. After trying it out on five different versions of the game (1.00, 1.02, 1.02b, 1.03, 1.04), I definitely notice that someone is doing a lot of "adjusting" to the slider bar abilities. Maybe not directly, maybe it's just with the settings of the OOB.
But things have definitely changed since the Talonsoft style of adjustments. In Matrix version 1.00 it works very much like it did in the last Talonsoft release of the game. I dunno about 1.01. But 1.02 you start to see some changes, especially in killing power. In 1.03 and 1.04 the slider setting in a DCG doesn't seem to matter at all. I can move the slider all the way to the Axis side and get hammered by indirect fire anti-tank artillery and direct fire from relatively weak Soviet tanks vs Tiger tanks. If I put it in the middle the losses go up higher. If I move it all the way to the Allied side, I will be completely out of armored vehicles in about 5 turns.
None of what I say above applies to the slider use in single scenario use. So maybe the folks doing the tweaking are concentrating on single scenarios at the expense of DCG gameplay.
Something else I also notice is the earning of medals and victory points in DCG campaigns has gotten much more difficult than with the Talonsoft version of the game. Again, this could be due to the way each unit is being valued in the OOB. But back in the Talonsoft day I used to accumulate Iron Cross First and Second Class by the ton. And I even got a couple of the Knight's crosses. It was actually harder to get the lower ranking medals. That has been completely reversed. Getting fifteen awards of the lowest and second lowest medals doesn't exactly work wonders on a players morale.
< Message edited by Deputy -- 8/30/2008 10:07:49 PM >
John Tiller's Campaign Series