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Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea

 
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Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/18/2008 7:02:48 AM   
Michael the Pole


Posts: 680
Joined: 10/30/2004
From: Houston, Texas
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November 16, 2008
I have just wasted 8 days of playing time on a 1939 campaign of the WWII/RTV v1.21.4 public beta. Imagine my horror on re-entering the forum and discovering that 1.21.5 beta has been released, and then my frustration at my inability to discover any readme or any other indicator of just exactly what the 1.21.5 contains.
Since I am unable to determine what, if anything, the design team concerned itself with repairing, I will assume that my concerns remain essentially unaddressed and will write the message that I have been composing in my mind for the last 4 or 5 days. I ask pardon for any problem I cover that has been taken care of. It seems to me that the latest patch is another attempt to rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic by trying to fix the ground game while ignoring the 250 foot gash in the hull that are the naval and air games.
With the exception of those few juveniles out there (you know who you are) who believe that WWII consists of the Battles of First Smolensk to Second Kursk with some obscure minor explosions and scuffles taking place out in the unknown darkness on the periphery of the Solar System, it has been widely acknowledged in this forum that there are MAJOR flaws with the game that have to be addressed, and SOON! Most of the really stupid "house rules” can be traced to these problems. Despite the repeated requests that these problems be addressed, there has been nothing but roaring, echoing silence from the designers. I'm writing to inform the designers (and any poor ignorant victims who have not yet wasted their $50 on this turkey) that their continued silence on these issues has reached the level at which I am fed up, and will not waste another minute of my valuable gaming time until they publicly tell us what issues they intend to correct. I am going to number my concerns to more easily enable simple replies.
1) IMO the major problem with the game is the complete inability of the three major combat forces (air, naval and to a lesser extent ground forces) to interact. The absolute immunity of naval forces from air forces has so totally warped the game system that several of the most interesting and important campaigns and battles of the War have completely disappeared (i.e. Norway, the aerial Battle of Britain, the invasion of Crete and the entire campaign for the control of the Central Med and Malta, the Battle of the Atlantic, etc. etc etc...) Many of the worst "house rules" are instituted to hide this problem (more on this later!) Several excellent and easily implemented fixes for this disaster have been put forward in this forum, but the design team has not even bothered to acknowledge the posts, much less indicated that they intend to repair it. This verges on professional malpractice (if such a thing was possible for game designers. Perhaps, considering that it has cost all of us the equivalent of $50, fraud would be a more accurate description!) There are a number of specific problems with how airpower is addressed within the game, and I will be happy to justify my opinions in further posts if desired (because this one is going to be so VERY long.) Additionally, I believe that a number of other members of this forum can easily add to my list:
1a) I feel that the basic combat system for aircraft can be easily modified to solve most of the "problems inherent in the system" (where have I heard that before?) Adding buttons (missions) for activated air units for "Strategic Bombing" and "Anti-shipping" missions (for air units located in coastal hexes - which would identify the Naval Zone they would effect), and "Anti-transportation" missions (if the idea proposed to place railroads on the map for supply purposes is implemented) would go a long way to adding a third dimension to the game.
1b) Aircraft carriers should act as normal naval vessels with a surface strength of 4 and starting air strength of 4. After all, CVs were essentially weak when faced with other naval units, and their major strength was the effect of their air wings. However, most carrier air wings numbered fewer than 100 aircraft (and non-American carriers carried fewer than that. When you consider that an "air army" as currently used in the game (USAAC 8th Air Force, RAF Bomber and Fighter Commands, German Luftflottes all numbered, at one point or another, over 1000 aircraft each) giving a carrier an air strength of "4" is quite generous. However, the current value of "12" is utterly ridiculous. Carrier aircraft historically performed all of the proposed missions (precedent available on request.)
1c) One effect of my proposed air/naval unit changes would be an encouragement to buy and maintain a much larger number of smaller air units to enable the accomplishment of many more air missions, rather than have one or two air armies stomping around the map like dinosaurs. I think that this would greatly increase play value.
2) The current system of "house rule" is inexcusable, as they represent a cheap and easy CHEAT to enable the game to supervent the effect of the game systems inability to recreate events that we know should be POSSIBLE, but should not be inevitable. The more of them that are necessary show how seriously flawed the game system is. I will list the few that stuck in my mind during my recent attempt to play the 1939 campaign game, I invite or players to add to this list. I'll try to briefly demonstrate how they could be replaced by fixes to the system.
2a) The "Malta effect" event can be eliminated by introducing the air forces rules suggested in #1, above.
2b) The "Allied paralysis" event can be fixed by increasing the starting tech level for the Germans armor, artillery and air forces by one. I believe that there is strong historical evidence to support this fix.
2c) Additionally, the German tech level for surface vessels should start at one higher than the British navy, as well. (There is plenty of evidence that the Admiralty absolutely refused to engage Bismarck or Tripitz with fewer than 2, and preferably 3, King George V class battleships, and the same applied to the German 8 inch cruisers vs. allied cruisers. As far as the R class battleships went, Churchill repeatedly described them as "floating coffins.")
2d) The "Hitler destroys the Maginot line" event is historically absurd. Not only did the Germans make great use of the Maginot Line against Patton and the U.S. Third Army in 1944-45, but the French Army reoccupied the Line after the end of the war, and continues to use part of the Line to this day for a command post. I defy the designers to give ANY historical justification for this event.
2e) The mandatory "Russia declares war" event in January '42 is almost as unjustified as the Maginot Line rule. Surely the designers realize that Stalin was so TERRIFIED of the German Army and Air force that he authorized his Foreign Minister Molotov to essentially offer Hitler the entire store in Spring 1941 in an attempt to buy any more time possible. He was so convinced that the USSR would be quickly destroyed in a war against Hitler that he refused to listen to any warnings of a German impending attack (from any source whatsoever, either Churchill, the Soviet NKVD, his best intelligence agents such as Richard Sorge, or the Soviet Air force.) When the Germans attacked in June '41, he actually retreated into psychotic catatonia so severe that he refused to so much as answer the telephone for a period of at least 5 days, until someone pointed out that they were all doomed if he didn't pull his head out. To imagine that Stalin would voluntarily attack the Germans less than 6 months later is so unthinkable as too induce speechless amazement! A simple solution is to slowly increase the war level of the Soviet economy by 5% per turn beginning in June 1940, reaching 120% sometime in 1943 (possibly randomizing the rate to provide a fog of war effect.) There should also be a negative effect on German political unrest to simulate the Anti-Comintern priority of the Nazi Party. See # 2g, below.
2f) The same reasoning applies to the automatic declaration of war by the United States. Both Roosevelt and even more Churchill were deeply worried that Hitler would not declare war as required by his Axis Pact agreement with Japan following Pearl Harbor because both Allied leaders KNEW that the U. S. Senate would certainly refuse to do so without a previous declaration from the Nazis. A better way to handle it is to both increase American Naval activity in the Western Atlantic turn by turn, while slowly increasing social unrest in Germany until it declares war. This increased unrest should be slower than that induced by failure to attack the USSR.
2g) There must be a way to add to social unrest in every country, eventually resulting in a coup against the wartime regime. The drumbeat of defeats suffered by the Churchill regime culminating in the loss of Singapore in Jan '42 would probably have resulted in a vote of no confidence if the English had lost Egypt and or the Suez Canal before the entry of the U. S. into the war. Another example is the coup attempt against Hitler in 1944. It would be vastly superior to add such a system of positive or negative movement of the social unrest system than the present house rule system.
2h) The house rule restricting entry to the Baltic to the player controlling Copenhagen is equally ridiculous and could easily be replaced by adding the naval/air rules suggested above.
3) There are many flaws in the naval rules (in addition to the changes that would allow interaction with aircraft.)
3a) There must be a better way to handle tactical combat between naval vessels than the current random system. The frustration involved in sending the first German carrier to sea accompanied by 12 small vessels and 3 battleships only to see it attacked and sunk by a pair of British cruisers is akin to having your grandmother mugged outside a police station by a pair of thirteen year old gang bangers. I put my ability to suspend disbelief up against anyone’s, but C'MON!
3b) Despite common belief, all naval vessels are not created equal. A 14 inch gun battlewagon was essentially helpless in the face of a submarine torpedo as was shown over and over again from the Royal Oak to the attack of the Italian mini subs at Alexandria. Watching the Repulse and Renown sweep through the German sub flotillas like lawn mowers on a golf green is almost as bad as 3a (above!)
3c) The repair of warships may rank as the worst abomination in the game. Serious damage might easily take months or years to effect, and could only be accomplished in a very limited number of ports. I realize that this may be shocking news to you guys, but this is a COMPUTER game! Games have managed to delay the return of damaged units for reasonable periods of time to simulate repairs going all the way back to hand drawn paper counters. Ports should be differentiated by their importance and capacity and repairs only allowed in the most important. Repairs should also take at least a month for each point of damage repaired.
3c) Differentiating the value of each port (say from 1 - 4, with any coastal hex being a one, up to 4 for major naval bases with permanent dry-docks such as Brest, Toulon or Kiel) would allow for attempts to destroy port facilities, and would replicate the stranding of major units such as what happened to the French battleships in North Africa or the Tripitz in Norway. By allowing most or all coastal hexes to have some small port capacity (even if to simulate dragging supply in over the beaches) you could avoid situations such as I discovered when I moved a German Luftflotte onto Rhodes prepatory to an air assault of Cyprus only to be told that the unit couldn't be supplied and have it stuck there like Brer Rabbit stuck to the Tar Baby.
3d) The current complete inability to have any knowledge of enemy naval strength in a sea zone is totally inaccurate. Perhaps maintaining an air unit in a naval zone should permit you at least general knowledge of the enemy’s naval strength.

Having purposely waited 24 hours before submitting this post, I have cooled off enough to try to end it on a more positive note. Road to Victory has SO much promise to be more than the usual shopping carts across the steppes game. A small amount of work could add a real simulation of the air war, with the Luftwaffe going after British production and ports, the USAAC trying to destroy the German rail net in occupied France prior to Overlord, desperate land/sea and air campaigns to control Norway or the Central Med while a rat fight is waged with knives and broken ships over control of Malta, German railroad troops desperately trying to push their railheads into Russia before the winter sets in. We could have a real Battle of the Atlantic fought over three years in a way that would give the player the sensation that Churchill felt when he said that the war against the wolf packs was the only time he had ever really despaired over the final outcome of the war. It could be a GREAT game, a game people would play and talk about for years.
But you have to tell us that you're going to try to make this more than sitting around, waiting for Fell Barbarosa. Because, I've had it. I'm not going to throw more of my limited gaming time down the rat hole after my 50 bucks. This is my challenge to the design team. I'd like you to address each point in this post, acknowledge that you see a problem, and make a commitment to fix it.
Because, otherwise I'll just deres RTV from my hard drive, send in my review to Gamespot, and wait for World in Flames to come out.
Post #: 1
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/18/2008 8:03:41 AM   
doomtrader


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There was some slight change in the game engine between 1.21.4 and 1.21.5 which prevent from CTD, but no new fixes or features.



There might be talked a lot about naval and air system in the game.
Indeed it is not perfect for everybody and some of you might be disapointed but it is WAD.


I'm sorry to say that, but Road to Victory was designed as a game mainly focused over land operations. Personaly I never take care about navy and air forces as long as I don't have to.

What I can say is that without major changes in the engine there are no chances to improve how does air and naval combat works. I must say that some of your proposition are really good but I don't think we will be able to implement it.

(in reply to Michael the Pole)
Post #: 2
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/18/2008 12:52:40 PM   
gwgardner

 

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Dittoes to Michael the Pole.

Doomtrader and developers: while it's your option to focus on the land war, the advertising for the game should emphasize that limitation.  

If your statement that changes won't be made is definitive, then you should drastically reduce the price of the game.

(in reply to doomtrader)
Post #: 3
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/18/2008 1:15:23 PM   
doomtrader


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Joined: 7/22/2008
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gwgardner, I won't say that focusing on land operations is a limitation and I think it's a "half empty half full glass" debate.

Anyway, now we are going to focus over new patch improving AI.
Other changes are not going to be announced before that.

But I'm really doubtfull are there any changes in Naval and Air mechanics are possible. But of course will take a look can something be improved or tweaked.

(in reply to gwgardner)
Post #: 4
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/18/2008 1:31:43 PM   
Michael the Pole


Posts: 680
Joined: 10/30/2004
From: Houston, Texas
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: doomtrader

There was some slight change in the game engine between 1.21.4 and 1.21.5 which prevent from CTD, but no new fixes or features.



There might be talked a lot about naval and air system in the game.
Indeed it is not perfect for everybody and some of you might be disapointed but it is WAD.


I'm sorry to say that, but Road to Victory was designed as a game mainly focused over land operations. Personaly I never take care about navy and air forces as long as I don't have to.

What I can say is that without major changes in the engine there are no chances to improve how does air and naval combat works. I must say that some of your proposition are really good but I don't think we will be able to implement it.

It is no surprise to us that you never care about navy or air. Given your comments, what I said about fraud stands. We all deserve our money back, and all prospective buyers should be warned that the description given on the Matrix website is an errant misrepresentation of the game. If you want to play the kind of game where you can slide little plastic tanks around the floor while making growling and banging sounds, its been done a hundred times before and done a lot better. I recomend Panzergruppe Guderian or "Kursk." They were designed sometime around 1982.
Sean D and Erik R, do you associate yourselves with doomtraders comments concerning the design goals of this game?
I intend to spend my time between now and the publication of World in Flames writing reviews of this rip off in every gaming web site I can find. I HAVE BEEN ROBBED!

(in reply to doomtrader)
Post #: 5
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/18/2008 1:48:41 PM   
doomtrader


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Joined: 7/22/2008
From: Poland
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Michael, could you please point me which line of the game description?

I think that the game has everything what is described here:
http://www.digitalriver.com/dr/sat5/ec_Main.Entry17C?SID=50505&SP=10023&CID=120628&PID=969916&PN=1&V1=969916&CUR=978&DSP=&PGRP=0&ABCODE=&CACHE_ID=120628
could be found in the game.

I'm sorry you don't like it. Of course I can understand that the game has missed your expectations and you can feel unsatisfied. We really trying to make this game better, but we are not able to make a completly other game.

If you really think that some of the game aspects needs to be fixed or tweaked I can propose you to join the beta team. We are looking for people who can support us with constructive criticism.

(in reply to Michael the Pole)
Post #: 6
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/18/2008 3:50:53 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

Posts: 32914
Joined: 3/28/2000
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Hi Michael,

I agree that WW2:RTV is a game with a lot of potential and I also agree that in some areas it needs improvement. However, I disagree with you that the game was misrepresented or that you were in any way "robbed". This is a new game from a new developer, covering WW2 Grand Strategy and was presented as such. Also, the v1.21.5 update as with all updates includes readme notes that list the changes. These are available by clicking the readme button on the last screen of the update installer and also via a link in your Start Menu program folder. In this case, it was just a CTD fix since the previous beta update.

You present some good ideas on how the game could be improved in terms of the interaction between the land, air and naval arms. I agree with doomtrader that you should consider helping with the post-release beta testing if your schedule allows and if you think you can keep your cool. Contrary to your impression, the developers are continually working to improve WW2:RTV and a number of significant enhancements are in the works. If you'd like to get some early feedback to them on those changes, the best way is to join the beta team and give your input. We prioritized overall AI improvements as the most important since we feel those would result in the biggest game improvement for the most customers.

WW2's design does indeed focus on land warfare, but that doesn't mean that there isn't room for any gameplay changes. I'll discuss the ideas presented here with the developers and see if we can find some common ground. This team is committed to improving WW2:RTV and continuing to develop wargames in the future as well. The main thing comes down to finding what can be done within the existing design without breaking things or rewriting the game. Post-release updates have within their scope enhancements, improvements, fixes, adjustments, tweaks, additional content, etc.

Regards,

- Erik

< Message edited by Erik Rutins -- 11/18/2008 3:51:20 PM >


_____________________________

Erik Rutins
Director of Product Development


For official support, please use our Help Desk: http://www.matrixgames.com/helpdesk/

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(in reply to doomtrader)
Post #: 7
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/22/2008 9:00:34 PM   
Forwarn45

 

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If it helps in any way, I thought I'd mention that I've been reading the forum for this game off and on and am interested in it, but have not purchased it at this point. If the issues with the interaction between naval and air forces were addressed, I would be much more inclined to buy the game.

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 8
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/23/2008 7:18:41 AM   
prinzeugen

 

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this game is a turkey.... when i pay 50 bucks for a game i expect it to work.... im not here to help the developers fix it... so they can make another 50 bucks on some dumb fool... games that dont work are never fixed... because it should never have been released... with intention of being "fixed".... i have tried every patch so far... nothing has been fixed.... but every time i get my hopes up... this game does not work even in the limited scope it was "designed" for...

(in reply to Forwarn45)
Post #: 9
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 11/23/2008 11:25:36 AM   
doomtrader


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Joined: 7/22/2008
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quote:

ORIGINAL: prinzeugen

this game is a turkey.... when i pay 50 bucks for a game i expect it to work.... im not here to help the developers fix it... so they can make another 50 bucks on some dumb fool... games that dont work are never fixed... because it should never have been released... with intention of being "fixed".... i have tried every patch so far... nothing has been fixed.... but every time i get my hopes up... this game does not work even in the limited scope it was "designed" for...


Prinzeugen,
once again I'm asking you for a savegame or, ConsoleOut.txt file.
You are repeating that the game is not working but refusing to say what is wrong.
Without it I'm not able to fix the game.

So please, if you are planning to keep your opinion that the game is not working, please attache some files with description what is wrong.

(in reply to prinzeugen)
Post #: 10
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/13/2009 7:09:09 PM   
Michael the Pole


Posts: 680
Joined: 10/30/2004
From: Houston, Texas
Status: offline
Erik
I wanted to wait until I had cooled down before replying to your post. I didnt realize at the time that it would take two months
I guess that my primary disagreement with your reply is that we had been making complaints/suggestions about the lack of scope of the game for quite a while, and the developers had never bothered to address them. I'm speaking about the problems with the interaction (actualy, the total lack of interaction) between naval units and air forces. The reason for that finally became apparent after my final post when doomtrader admitted that he didn't care very much about anything but pushing armored units around, preferebly in the USSR. You'll notice that ALL of our comments about the unreproducability of many of the really critical campaigns of WWII such as Norway and the Med, and the truly stupid house rules such as the destruction of the Maginot Line or the manditory Soviet declaration of war on Germany have STILL gone completely unanswered.
I have been waiting patiently for the next patch, with steadily decreasing hope that the developers will do something to make the game be what it was suppoded to be (and was sold as) ie. a grand strategic simulation of WWII. Because, as it is right now, IT IS SCIENCE FICTION, NOT HISTORY.

_____________________________

"One scoundrel is a disgrace, two is a law-firm, and three or more is a Congress." B. Franklin

Mike

A tribute to my heroes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fRU2tlE5m8

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 11
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/13/2009 7:36:17 PM   
doomtrader


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Hello Michael,

I'm hoping your anger calmed down a little bit.

We are working over another large update (and I mean LARGE).
I'm trying to push the AI trough little more historical outcomes, but you still shouldn't expect replaying history.
We are hearing to the voice of community (and your's too) and trying to make the game better, so there will be some interaction between navy and air, but the game still will be focused on land operations (however we will try to make the naval battles little less duckhunting).


Also I see a little inconsisten in your post. You don't like the mandatory historical event's but you want History.

Anyway I'm completly redesigning the events (making them from scratch), and many new features will be added. I think within a month we will be able to provide you with more informations.


BTW: Did you played the Overlord scenario?

(in reply to Michael the Pole)
Post #: 12
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/13/2009 9:51:50 PM   
pasternakski


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quote:

ORIGINAL: doomtrader
You don't like the mandatory historical event's but you want History.

I can't sit quietly and read this anymore.

First, let me say that I bought this game very soon after it was published, and I was as disappointed as anyone else with the obvious lack of completion. There's been a lot of this in wargame publishing lately (one of my favorite publishers, AGEod, has suffered through its own horror story with its WWI title), and it really needs to stop. This is the primary reason I have imposed a rule on my buying habits not to acquire a new game until a minimum of six months after it sees the light of day. You want my money, give me reasonably finished products. It's as simple as that. No more, "Yes, we know your new toilet doesn't flush properly and your house filled up with sewage, but be patient, we're working on improving it" for me.

That said, I need to add that I like this game, and I am liking it more with each improvement. I think doomtrader and company are on the right track, and this will evolve into an excellent "light" rendition of WWII in Europe.

Now, then. This business of historicity has been discussed to death elsewhere, but nobody other than those calling for it seems interested in understanding what we are saying. I am in full accord with Michael the Pole on this, and here's why.

I don't want games that just replicate historical events. That would be silly. We all, as gamers, want the "what ifs" and the "could I have done better than my historical counterpart."

This last is the key. I want my wargames to plug me into situations based completely (or at least largely) on the facts as they existed at the moment the game begins. Then, it's "sink or swim with what you've got." Add to this some options drawn from what was historically possible within a reasonable framework, and I'm a happy boy.

Wholesale changes derived from some desire to let players wander around in some dream world where "everything is beautiful, and nothing hurts" that allows the player to ignore the historical realities faced by those who guided and fought the actual events are not what I want from "historical simulations."

I hope that is clear. I know that I am a dinosaur, and that the "I haven't bought this game yet, and I won't unless I can mod it to my heart's content" crowd have pretty much taken over the computer wargaming landscape. That doesn't stop me from continuing to express my wishes and to specify what I expect for my cash.


_____________________________

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

(in reply to doomtrader)
Post #: 13
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/14/2009 12:50:27 AM   
Michael the Pole


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Joined: 10/30/2004
From: Houston, Texas
Status: offline
Also I see a little inconsisten in your post. You don't like the mandatory historical event's but you want History.

Anyway I'm completly redesigning the events (making them from scratch), and many new features will be added. I think within a month we will be able to provide you with more informations.


BTW: Did you played the Overlord scenario?
[/quote]

My dear comrade Doomtrader,
As you might be able to tell from my avatar, it breaks my very heart when I have to write anything negative about this game, or perhaps more acurately, about its designers. I would gladly contribute as many hours as would be useful to insure that a Polish game, particularly about WWII is a roaring success. That may be why I get so upset when it seems to me that ya'll are taking the easy way out of making this game all that it can be. So now I'm going to stand up and give this to you as straight as I possibly can.
History can only be discribed as truth. It is not any particular statement that is convenient for the author. It would have been so much easier for our Fatherland if we could swallow the horrid Russian (may they all rot in Hell forever) lie about Katyn Forest. But convenience does not qualify as history. So get this...
The Maginot Line was not destroyed by Hitler after the fall of France. It was used by the Nazis to stop Patton's Third Army in 1944, was reoccupied by the French Army after the war, and was in use by the French as nuclear hardened command posts well into the 1980s. I assume that you put in the "house rule " about its destruction because you didnt want to have to decide how to handle it after "Overlord/Cobra." But it is not true. It is not history.
It is universily acknowledged that Stalin was so terrified of the Wehrmacht that he suffered a catatonic fit that lasted for four or five days following their initial attack. To imagine that he would voluntarily mount an attack, a mere six months later, without a single supporting ally on the continent of Europe, against that same Germany might have been convenient for you as a game designer, but it is not history.
I could go on and on, as I did in my original post, but it's all there for anyone who wants to read it.
That's why I object to the house rules. They are sloppy, inaccurate shortcuts put in by you designers to ease your problems with the complexities that made WWII interesting.
As for the other difficulties we have been discusing for months, I strongly believe that the ideas and suggestions offered by gwgardner, cpdeyoung, lancerunolfsson, and yes, by myself, among many others would go a long way twoards making this game what it purports to be, a grand strategic simulation of the war. If you're not interested in the other campaigns, ask for assistance. I for one would be willing to work for many hours to save this game. I still feel that my idea of adding an anti-shipping button and a strategic bombing button to air units orders as suggested in my 10/25 post would be an elegant solution to the interactivity problem.
What I object to is writing this stuff and having it ignored. I suggest that you review the posts that gwgardner and others have posted and make some acknowledgement that you realize the problems that we're trying to tell you about. There are entirely too many of them that are unanswered. I really want you guys to be universily acknowledged as having created the last word in WWII gaming. Let us help!
And a quick aside to Pasternakski. Try reading the "World in Flames" forum on this board. That community has been working on its game for at least four years and are determined to get it right. There has recently been a HUGE arguement about publishing an acknowledged Beta version to polish the rules. Very refreshing to this old grognard.

< Message edited by Michael the Pole -- 1/14/2009 2:29:15 AM >


_____________________________

"One scoundrel is a disgrace, two is a law-firm, and three or more is a Congress." B. Franklin

Mike

A tribute to my heroes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fRU2tlE5m8

(in reply to doomtrader)
Post #: 14
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/14/2009 2:54:35 AM   
cpdeyoung


Posts: 3134
Joined: 7/17/2007
From: South Carolina, USA
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Dear Michael,

I think one of the problems we face with "our game" community is that it is not very large, and does not have that longer time horizon.  I agree with many of your points.  The "destruction of the Maginot Line" baffles me too.  I am very much in favor of a more detailed, reworked naval module, and I see the need for air power to be included in this module.  I agree the house rule events need to be rethought, and Doomtrader says he is in the process of doing so.  There is nothing like a open beta to try these out, but it must be a pretty long beta, and that can be hard to accept. I would like to see these changes worked in carefully with much concern for simulation veracity, and play balance.  I will have to look at the "World in Flames" site to see their community in action, but I also want to direct you to the "John Tiller's Campaign Series" site, where about six months ago there was a ferment over rule changes.  This ferment has subsided, and the rules were accepted quite generally, but for awhile fur was flying.  JTCS is a mature game, and under continuous improvement, but this game does not yet have that heritage.  Change is hard, and there are some differing opinions about which way the game should go.  The developers have many voices to listen to, and the priorities expressed by board members tend to be conflicting.  Thus a rewrite of the naval module conflicts with strident calls for a stronger AI.

I am very glad I found this game, and very glad to see your offer to help improve it.  I think it can be the game we want, with community involvement, and continuous improvement, but we need a lot of dedicated gamers to get to that point, and considerable time.

Chuck

(in reply to Michael the Pole)
Post #: 15
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/14/2009 3:11:48 AM   
Michael the Pole


Posts: 680
Joined: 10/30/2004
From: Houston, Texas
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Dear Chuck,
Couldn't agree with you more, and as the man says, "if I didn't care so much, I wouldn't be so pissed!"
I will check out the site you recomend. One of the things that the WWW has given us is a universe so large that it is difficult (if not impossible) to be aware of everything that we should be watching. An excellent example of this is a post from "World in Flames" that pointed me to a site called "Hexwars.com" They have re-worked thirty or so of the old SPI games from my younger days and they are available for hot seat or PBEM. Spent last weekend having my head beat in by Wellington and Blucher at Napoleons Last Battles.
As I said, my underlying complaint is all the time that people like you, gwgardner and myself put in trying to work out fixes for the air and naval games without the courtesy of a single reply, finally only to be told that "we really weren't interested in the naval or air campaigns" and that a game that was supposedly a grand strategic simulation of WWII didn't need to be able to simulate the Battle of Britain, the Battle of the Atlantic, Crete, Malta, Norway, etc, etc.
All the best

_____________________________

"One scoundrel is a disgrace, two is a law-firm, and three or more is a Congress." B. Franklin

Mike

A tribute to my heroes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fRU2tlE5m8

(in reply to cpdeyoung)
Post #: 16
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/14/2009 3:41:55 AM   
cpdeyoung


Posts: 3134
Joined: 7/17/2007
From: South Carolina, USA
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Speaking of Hexwars, Gary Gardner pointed me to "Computer War in Europe" which is a computer version, no AI, of the SPI game.  Do I dare get into that?  Yikes.

Interesting thing about the JTCS community is that there is a group called the "BETA Brigade" led by a mapmaker, Jason Petho, from Canada.  He is a cartographer, specializing in military maps, including ones for "Armchair General" magazine.  He watches over the game like a baby, and his fellow Brigade members are responsible for much of the progress.  They are modders, and I believe have access to source code, but they can not, or do not build new executables.  Their mods are all done from outside, from data side.  When code is changed, and I am not sure when this happens, I am sure they have a lot to say.  WW2:RtV is moddable too, and we have had some ZoC mods, and such about.

Chuck

(in reply to Michael the Pole)
Post #: 17
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/14/2009 4:44:25 AM   
gwgardner

 

Posts: 3419
Joined: 4/7/2006
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quote:

ORIGINAL: doomtrader

We are hearing to the voice of community (and your's too) and trying to make the game better, so there will be some interaction between navy and air, but the game still will be focused on land operations (however we will try to make the naval battles little less duckhunting).



There is hope yet!

I agree with Michael: a little more feedback on a more timely basis would go a long way in mollifying us 'kibitzers'. Now was it SO hard for you to hint that some air/naval interaction was in the offing?

The game is good enough to keep someone like me playing it, even though I see some serious faults in it. Thanks for the continued commitment to improving it. I hope it pays off in sales.

(in reply to doomtrader)
Post #: 18
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/14/2009 9:03:00 AM   
doomtrader


Posts: 5320
Joined: 7/22/2008
From: Poland
Status: offline
Guys, I really found your opinions and propositions valuable. Unfortunately not everything can be done with the game. The thing is that we were not responsible for designing engine and the game. You can belive me or not but our programmers are really pissed on me for number of tasks I put on them for next update, and some of them are completly new functionalities. If you are interested please join our beta team. It's completly free and it does not hurt. ;) As Chuck already said. Not everything can be done or changed. We have limited amount of resources and our own view, we have also game engine with it's own limits. There is also a moment when you have to say, enough we can't add more as it will be completly new and what is even more important different game. Personally I found the game as a very potential. It's has got great modding possibility and what is very important for me, as a modder (my gamedev adventure started with Paradox games). To summarize, we are not deaf for your voices. We have to check and agree is something can or can't be done. I'm really hoping that you will be pleased with the next update as it will improve the game much.

(in reply to gwgardner)
Post #: 19
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/14/2009 2:23:48 PM   
Michael the Pole


Posts: 680
Joined: 10/30/2004
From: Houston, Texas
Status: offline
Ya'll notice that there is still no explanation of the totally non-historical house rules? I reiterate, for anyone thinking of buying this game, it is science fiction, not history.
And Doom, what you ARE responsible for is giving people what you told them you were selling! A "Grand Strategic" game about WWII in Europe that can't recreate half of the campaigns of that war is a fraud.

< Message edited by Michael the Pole -- 1/14/2009 2:35:33 PM >


_____________________________

"One scoundrel is a disgrace, two is a law-firm, and three or more is a Congress." B. Franklin

Mike

A tribute to my heroes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fRU2tlE5m8

(in reply to doomtrader)
Post #: 20
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/14/2009 3:05:33 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

Posts: 32914
Joined: 3/28/2000
From: Vermont, USA
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Michael,

quote:

ORIGINAL: Michael the Pole
Ya'll notice that there is still no explanation of the totally non-historical house rules? I reiterate, for anyone thinking of buying this game, it is science fiction, not history.
And Doom, what you ARE responsible for is giving people what you told them you were selling! A "Grand Strategic" game about WWII in Europe that can't recreate half of the campaigns of that war is a fraud.


It's standard practice not to discuss the smallest details of an update before it's released. Doomtrader already mentioned that the events are being redone, he already mentioned that they're looking at some air and naval interaction. Did you read all that? If you're interested in more details, I'd suggest you channel that energy into becoming a member of the testing team and helping these guys develop the game in the direction you want.

Regards,

- Erik


_____________________________

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Director of Product Development


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(in reply to Michael the Pole)
Post #: 21
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/24/2009 8:54:43 PM   
iancarmichael

 

Posts: 5
Joined: 1/24/2009
Status: offline
Michael,

Thanks for leading the charge on this.  I too feel ripped off after paying $50.00 for this game.  I found doomtraders comment "gwgardner, I won't say that focusing on land operations is a limitation and I think it's a "half empty half full glass" debate" ironic, in that, like a glass half full this is half a game.

Personally, I don't care much about the house rules, they may be a bit silly, but they are not show stoppers.  THE show stopper is the inability for naval/air interaction.  As you stated many times, this warps the game and turns it from a complete historical simulation to a half game, or science fiction. 

Perhaps it would be better if the entier western theatre was abstracted and the game simply focused on the eastern front where air/naval air interaction was limited.

To paraphrase the polish airborne commander in the movie A Bridge to Far, I promise to be properly extatic if the other half of the game is added in subsequent updates.  I mean when, of course.

Ian
 

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 22
Relax - 1/24/2009 8:58:08 PM   
balto

 

Posts: 711
Joined: 3/4/2006
From: Maryland
Status: offline
The game is brand new.  Doomtrader is active and supportive.  Just like any good game, it takes a few patches to smooth things out.  So hang in there, it will get better. 

(in reply to iancarmichael)
Post #: 23
RE: Relax - 1/24/2009 10:13:50 PM   
doomtrader


Posts: 5320
Joined: 7/22/2008
From: Poland
Status: offline
Hello Ian.

We are doing our best to make this game better.

I'm really hoping that you will like new changes in the game.

Next update will bring many new features. Also some air/naval interaction.

(in reply to balto)
Post #: 24
RE: Relax - 1/25/2009 1:43:35 AM   
sabre1


Posts: 1928
Joined: 8/15/2001
From: CA
Status: offline
 

(in reply to doomtrader)
Post #: 25
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/25/2009 12:51:35 PM   
mi1291

 

Posts: 427
Joined: 11/29/2005
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: iancarmichael

Perhaps it would be better if the entier western theatre was abstracted and the game simply focused on the eastern front where air/naval air interaction was limited.


I ever think this game could be the War in Russia successor.
But Develepers think different.

The strange thing, as WWII strategy game, they put their product in a crowed market segment when we (wargamer's comunity)awaiting for a WiR's succcessor more than 10 years....



< Message edited by mi1291 -- 1/25/2009 10:31:21 PM >

(in reply to iancarmichael)
Post #: 26
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/25/2009 1:57:58 PM   
cpdeyoung


Posts: 3134
Joined: 7/17/2007
From: South Carolina, USA
Status: offline
I think the two fronts are too closely linked to separate them.  In my PBEM I am very pleased with the balance between my east and west fronts.  The alternative might force the west front into a "historical" event time lock. Thus an "event" would trigger a withdrawal of N strength points durring Kursk because the "Operation Husky" event fired. I would much rather defend in the west than have Hitler do it for me.  The German army in the East was handicapped by poor decisions in the West, think Tunis.  In the PBEM Gary has taken Gibraltar which makes "Husky" much more difficult.  I really have been playing "War in Russia" since 6/22/1941, but I do not have to play it under the pressure of the decisions and outcomes in the West.  If you want conflict in the East I have had many turns of it.

Chuck

(in reply to mi1291)
Post #: 27
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/25/2009 7:40:44 PM   
Michael the Pole


Posts: 680
Joined: 10/30/2004
From: Houston, Texas
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: cpdeyoung

I think the two fronts are too closely linked to separate them.  In my PBEM I am very pleased with the balance between my east and west fronts.  The alternative might force the west front into a "historical" event time lock. Thus an "event" would trigger a withdrawal of N strength points durring Kursk because the "Operation Husky" event fired. I would much rather defend in the west than have Hitler do it for me.  The German army in the East was handicapped by poor decisions in the West, think Tunis.  In the PBEM Gary has taken Gibraltar which makes "Husky" much more difficult.  I really have been playing "War in Russia" since 6/22/1941, but I do not have to play it under the pressure of the decisions and outcomes in the West.  If you want conflict in the East I have had many turns of it.

Chuck


Chuck, I hate to repeat myself, but the entire war (from the German point of view) was a disaster, brought about solely by idiotic Fuhrerentscheidung. I will name just one, which would never have been made by ANY rational German leader, and which, if rejected, would have, unquestionably, won the war for the Germans. And for those of you who maintain that the game is hopelessly unbalanced in the favor of the Allies, imagine the effect that making (or not making) this same choice would have on the game.

Imagine that Hitler stabs the Japs in the back and refuses to declare war on the United States in Dec, 1941. Churchill and Roosevelt were sick with fear that Hitler would do just that. The result for Hitler would have been some political complaint at home (oh dear!) for losing yet another ally. I'm sure it would have cost him about 15 seconds of concern. The results for the Allies would have been catastrophic. Admiral King and General MacArthur would have led the "Pacific Firsters" to victory over Roosevelt and General Marshal, and the American war effort would have concentrated 110% on Japan. It might even have led to the termination of Lend Lease, which Roosevelt had only been very narrowly allowed to implement because we got a number of extremely valuable base leases that we need to secure our DEFENSIVE perimeter in the Atlantic. And believe me, thats exactly how they were sold to the Senate, as defensive bases. With our own war to fight, with Americans fighting and dying in Asia, Churchill would just have to fight his own war, and there wouldn't have been an old screwdriver surplus in the arsenal, much less the three hundred Shermans that Roosevelt literaly took out of the hands of the 2nd Armored Division to send to the British in North Africa to save the Suez Canal from Rommel!
Americans have a hard time remembering how strongly isolationist the US Congress was on December 6, 1941. Without Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt and Churchill werent going to get another DIME from people like Arthur Vandenburg, Charles Lindbergh and Robert McCormick. (To give you an idea of how wide spread the "America First" movement was, John Kennedy sent them a contribution along with a letter describing how vital their work was!) And once we were mugged by the Japanese Navy the whole country went nuts. (I love Halsey's comment that when he was finished, the only place Japanese would be spoken would be in hell!) (This is the correct attitude to carry into a war. ed.)
Hitler didn't declare war until December 11. Churchill says that they were the four worst days of his life. If Hitler had kept his temper for just another 6 months (and remember that American ships and aircraft had been shooting at Germans in the Western Atlantic since September 1941) the United States would have been irrevokably commited to the destruction of Japan, and Churchill would have been stareing at the loss of Singapore, another failed campaign in the Middle East (possibly with the loss of Egypt and the Suez Canal -- remember those 300 Shermans!), the Australians and New Zealanders withdrawing their (very badly needed) divisions to defend their homelands while screaming for air, naval and troop reinforcement from the mother country. He would have been doomed and the vote of confidence that he passed in early 1942 would very easily have gone the other way.
And, remember that US aid to the Soviet Union was predicated on America being at war with Germany.
So, if your'e concerned about play balance, Doomtrader has already told us that there is going to be a change (although we dont yet know what change) in the automatic American declaration of war in December 1941.


_____________________________

"One scoundrel is a disgrace, two is a law-firm, and three or more is a Congress." B. Franklin

Mike

A tribute to my heroes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fRU2tlE5m8

(in reply to cpdeyoung)
Post #: 28
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/25/2009 9:26:50 PM   
James Ward

 

Posts: 1072
Joined: 5/9/2000
From: Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Michael the Pole


quote:

ORIGINAL: cpdeyoung

I think the two fronts are too closely linked to separate them.  In my PBEM I am very pleased with the balance between my east and west fronts.  The alternative might force the west front into a "historical" event time lock. Thus an "event" would trigger a withdrawal of N strength points durring Kursk because the "Operation Husky" event fired. I would much rather defend in the west than have Hitler do it for me.  The German army in the East was handicapped by poor decisions in the West, think Tunis.  In the PBEM Gary has taken Gibraltar which makes "Husky" much more difficult.  I really have been playing "War in Russia" since 6/22/1941, but I do not have to play it under the pressure of the decisions and outcomes in the West.  If you want conflict in the East I have had many turns of it.

Chuck


Chuck, I hate to repeat myself, but the entire war (from the German point of view) was a disaster, brought about solely by idiotic Fuhrerentscheidung. I will name just one, which would never have been made by ANY rational German leader, and which, if rejected, would have, unquestionably, won the war for the Germans. And for those of you who maintain that the game is hopelessly unbalanced in the favor of the Allies, imagine the effect that making (or not making) this same choice would have on the game.

Imagine that Hitler stabs the Japs in the back and refuses to declare war on the United States in Dec, 1941. Churchill and Roosevelt were sick with fear that Hitler would do just that. The result for Hitler would have been some political complaint at home (oh dear!) for losing yet another ally. I'm sure it would have cost him about 15 seconds of concern. The results for the Allies would have been catastrophic. Admiral King and General MacArthur would have led the "Pacific Firsters" to victory over Roosevelt and General Marshal, and the American war effort would have concentrated 110% on Japan. It might even have led to the termination of Lend Lease, which Roosevelt had only been very narrowly allowed to implement because we got a number of extremely valuable base leases that we need to secure our DEFENSIVE perimeter in the Atlantic. And believe me, thats exactly how they were sold to the Senate, as defensive bases. With our own war to fight, with Americans fighting and dying in Asia, Churchill would just have to fight his own war, and there wouldn't have been an old screwdriver surplus in the arsenal, much less the three hundred Shermans that Roosevelt literaly took out of the hands of the 2nd Armored Division to send to the British in North Africa to save the Suez Canal from Rommel!
Americans have a hard time remembering how strongly isolationist the US Congress was on December 6, 1941. Without Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt and Churchill werent going to get another DIME from people like Arthur Vandenburg, Charles Lindbergh and Robert McCormick. (To give you an idea of how wide spread the "America First" movement was, John Kennedy sent them a contribution along with a letter describing how vital their work was!) And once we were mugged by the Japanese Navy the whole country went nuts. (I love Halsey's comment that when he was finished, the only place Japanese would be spoken would be in hell!) (This is the correct attitude to carry into a war. ed.)
Hitler didn't declare war until December 11. Churchill says that they were the four worst days of his life. If Hitler had kept his temper for just another 6 months (and remember that American ships and aircraft had been shooting at Germans in the Western Atlantic since September 1941) the United States would have been irrevokably commited to the destruction of Japan, and Churchill would have been stareing at the loss of Singapore, another failed campaign in the Middle East (possibly with the loss of Egypt and the Suez Canal -- remember those 300 Shermans!), the Australians and New Zealanders withdrawing their (very badly needed) divisions to defend their homelands while screaming for air, naval and troop reinforcement from the mother country. He would have been doomed and the vote of confidence that he passed in early 1942 would very easily have gone the other way.
And, remember that US aid to the Soviet Union was predicated on America being at war with Germany.
So, if your'e concerned about play balance, Doomtrader has already told us that there is going to be a change (although we dont yet know what change) in the automatic American declaration of war in December 1941.




I don't have a problem with the timing of US entry, it's the strength of the USA at entry that is unbelievable. Slow down the USA juggernaught and you solve a big balance problem. Make the entry variable, perhaps tied to successes or failures of certain nations to keep everyone guessing but WWII without the USA just isn't!

(in reply to Michael the Pole)
Post #: 29
RE: Frankly, I'm fed up to the point of nausea - 1/25/2009 10:09:10 PM   
Michael the Pole


Posts: 680
Joined: 10/30/2004
From: Houston, Texas
Status: offline
quote:



I don't have a problem with the timing of US entry, it's the strength of the USA at entry that is unbelievable. Slow down the USA juggernaught and you solve a big balance problem. Make the entry variable, perhaps tied to successes or failures of certain nations to keep everyone guessing but WWII without the USA just isn't!



Marty, you may be aware that Glenn and I are PBEM a 1939 campaign with the "Uxbridge Variation," (USA starts with -1350 PP.) Its late April 1940 now, and I expect that the USA will break even sometime in May and become a real country again. We're going to maintain the 50pp lend/lease limit, but that will just result in higher US tech levels and unit numbers. Its a zero sum game, after all. You shove on one end of the equasion and the other end just goes up!
The thing to remember about American entry into the war is that it's a German decision. If we had a realistic political/social unrest system, it'd be easy enough to give the Germans a unrest penalty for every turn after Pearl Harbor. But as it is now, hell, I don't even know how to find out what my countries unrest number is now, much less know what effect it has if it declines (or is it increased?)


< Message edited by Michael the Pole -- 1/25/2009 10:12:03 PM >


_____________________________

"One scoundrel is a disgrace, two is a law-firm, and three or more is a Congress." B. Franklin

Mike

A tribute to my heroes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fRU2tlE5m8

(in reply to James Ward)
Post #: 30
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