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RE: HPS new games - 12/8/2011 11:24:27 PM   
BAL


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From: West of the Missouri
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Your concern for my financial well-being is touching (and a little creepy ) but I think I'm still going to wait for an opinion or review from someone who has actually played Tiger Unleashed before I make up my mind.

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Post #: 241
RE: HPS new games - 12/8/2011 11:31:31 PM   
RyanCrierie


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Joined: 10/14/2005
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quote:

ORIGINAL: BAL
Your concern for my financial well-being is touching (and a little creepy )


Point of Attack 2 was that emotionally scarring to the part of my brain that deals with monetary value point assignments, that I want others to avoid this fate.

Here are some screenies:

POA2 Screenie

Tigers Unleashed Screenie

--------

Tigers Unleashed Scenario Select

POA2 Scenario Select

Sure, a few new options, like variable ending turns and editable FOW, but you can see the basic heritage behind this 'game'.

The original MSRP was $79.95. Then they hastily lowered it down to $59.95 by removing such useful things as map editors in the basic install (though you can still download them from their site).

Honestly, I'm not seeing the money's value for this; particularly since the game engine was paid for by Point of Attack 2, which was developed under a US Air Force Contract, so costs were low already....so where did the money go? Booze and hookers?

< Message edited by RyanCrierie -- 12/8/2011 11:33:59 PM >


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Post #: 242
RE: HPS new games - 12/8/2011 11:47:50 PM   
BAL


Posts: 222
Joined: 9/1/2002
From: West of the Missouri
Status: offline
$39.99 at NWS.

Sorry you had such mind-damaging experience with POA2 but I really think it's only fair to reserve judgment on TU until it actually is released and someone out there has sit down and played it. I know the history of POA2 and normally I would buy something like TU right away but given that it "is" based on POA2 I'm going to hold off until I have more info. I don't think it's fair to automatically condemn it pre-release just because it is based on the POA2 engine. I'll leave it at that.

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Post #: 243
RE: HPS new games - 12/9/2011 1:05:54 AM   
Perturabo


Posts: 2368
Joined: 11/17/2007
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quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker


quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker


quote:

ORIGINAL: Prince of Eckmühl

quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

One thing that I don't understand, though is why they didn't try to adopt some consistent, simple art style instead of mixing flat background with shaded trees and houses.

Still, I'd take an ugly game with great mechanics over a game with good graphics that is mechanically regressive.

One possibility that you might want to consider is that the developer is truckin' down a path such that the graphics are 100% open to being modified. While this certainly wasn't the case with the previous titles, the option could actually produce a decent looking game, community add-ons being what they've proved to be in the past.



True, but it seems that a lot of developers/publishers etc etc are taking the easy way out. Charge an arm and a leg for a game and let the modding community finish it....

What easy way out? Do you know any other games that have the features of Tigers Unleashed? And who's going to fund these graphics? All the 200 people who want to play a realistic wargame?


I'm talking in generalities...I did say a lot of dev/pub.....not just HPS
And thats talking the big boys too, not just indie ones.

And i am sure there are way more than 200 people waiting to buy it. If it was such a niche product HPS would have gone the way of the Dodo bird long ago......

Judging by the complete lack of a PoA2 community, I wouldn't be surprised. The game seems to be a niche in a niche in a niche and so hardcore that many people who consider themselves hardcore can't play it.

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

Tillers games under the HPS umbrella had decent graphics.....why the regression?

Probably because they required lesser effort in other departments and were more popular.


Sorry, don't buy it...... I doubt if Scott put all that effort into making a game that sells less than 200 copies... He knows his client base......

So, how much of them are there? Enough to justify 6 years of development?


Why ask me? Go ask them.....Im guessing that, like every company, HPS makes games to make money and not for any altruistic reasons...

If they did, they'd make games with minimum amount of work required and maximum audience, even in their niche, not making a sequel to something that is one of the most complex and most disliked wargames ever that additionally is considered to be most buggy. Judging by how PoA2 is one of his three most favourite wargames ever and another of these three is an eastern front game, I think that the most logical answer is that he's making it because he wants to play it.
And I don't think that existence of a publisher that is in business for over 10 years and has 60 titles that it's currently selling depends on one game that was being made on pre-existing engine by the company owner himself for 6 years.

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Post #: 244
RE: HPS new games - 12/9/2011 2:05:45 AM   
jomni


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Actually a game that is similar to POA2 is Flashpoint Germany.  Don't laugh.  POA2 may be light years away with regards to complexity and simulation fidelity.  But FPG shows us how POA2 should work (nifty UI, clearly layed out tables, fun scenarios, very stable).

But I won't stop anyone from picking up TU. It's their money anyway if they are interested in a detailed east front game, then it's worth a gamble. Just be aware of POA2's history and current state.

< Message edited by jomni -- 12/9/2011 2:07:27 AM >


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Post #: 245
RE: HPS new games - 12/9/2011 2:51:57 AM   
Prince of Eckmühl


Posts: 2454
Joined: 6/25/2006
From: Texas
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quote:

ORIGINAL: RyanCrierie

Mods can look like that because modders are doing this unofficially and aren't getting paid for it. So they can kinda sorta get away with using commercial profile artists' work in their mod packs.

For example, a lot of Volcano's soldier side profiles use the artwork of Ron Volstad, or whichever artists that Osprey Publishing is using in that particular monograph.

If HPS wanted to use Ron Volstad's artwork, they would have to sign a copyright agreement and pay Volstad a set fee for a certain number of uses.

That said...They could have long ago scrounged up some money and arranged to have some graphics artists create modernish artwork for all the major unit/branch types of major armies that they would own the copyright too..


Ryan, IIRC, you did some really nice art for Carriers at War. More than once, as I've gaped in horror at the truly awful artwork that shipped with Midway, I thought that the game would benefit mightily from a little TLC, RyanCrierie style. If you're a professional artist, I'd suspect that it would really cheese you off to see HPS slumming away, as you'd think that they can do better by their customers than has proved to be the case.

quote:

But they didn't, similar to how Tiller's games keep using the same game engine framework that was a bit clunky, but acceptable back in 1998 -- without any real user interface improvements.

It's why I really don't buy HPS games unless the subject matter of that particular release interests me intensely.

All that I can says is that I hear you. However, I think that it's important to acknowledge that Guadalcanal and Midway didn't exist back then. Rather, they appear to be completely different games than those that emerged in the mid-nineties. Or am I wrong in that regard? The only parallel that comes to mind is Age of Sail.

And I see a salient virtue in everything that Tiller has done with his Campaign Series games, that being that they are continually being brought up to a common standard, and in almost every instance, a standard that is significantly better than that which preceded it.

Thoughts?

Edit: I make reference to "Campaign Series" games above. In doing so, I was referring to the "Panzer Campaigns" and "Naval Campaigns" games.


< Message edited by Prince of Eckmühl -- 12/9/2011 3:12:23 AM >


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Post #: 246
RE: HPS new games - 12/9/2011 10:40:41 AM   
RyanCrierie


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Prince of EckmühlRyan, IIRC, you did some really nice art for Carriers at War.


I'm surprised you remember that. That was a while ago.

The problem is that while I color in my side profiles myself, and shade the artwork by hand; I still rely on a base line drawing to start off my art.

Most of the times, I just quick google the internet to find a large enough side drawing to start from. I couldn't get artwork based on that into a shipped game, because I don't know the copyright status of that base drawing.

On the other hand...for some cases where the aircraft in question is obscure as hell, I fall back on using the drawings found in U.S. Navy Standard Aircraft Characteristics / Performance Reports; which due to being done by the US Navy, are public domain, but they're of a lower quality (thicker lines, don't show panel lines). Those I essentially own the copyright to; as would anyone who did anything based on those drawings.

quote:

All that I can says is that I hear you. However, I think that it's important to acknowledge that Guadalcanal and Midway didn't exist back then. Rather, they appear to be completely different games than those that emerged in the mid-nineties. Or am I wrong in that regard? The only parallel that comes to mind is Age of Sail.


Point. However, if you put Guadalcanal side by side against Age of Sail in 2D mode, you'd be hard pressed to distinguish the game engine(s) being used.

Granted, The Operational Art of War III's basic game engine dates from that period as well, with TOAW I being released in what, 1998?

However, that game engine has aged much better, with the graphics being updated to 24 bit color in a recent patch; and the design was much more intuitive, making full use of context-sensitive right click menus.

With context sensitive right click menus, you don't need to clutter up your user interface with useless buttons to:

Switch Between Travel Mode
Save Movement Costs
Dig In

etc.

You just right click on the unit in question, and select that option on the pop up menu.

Additionally, unit movement, which makes up a large part of any wargame is just handled better in TOAW.

In TOAW you:

1.) Left Click on a Unit to Select it.
2.) Move your mouse cursor to where you want the unit to move. As you move the cursor you see an arrow appear on the map, along with estimated move costs.
3.) Right Click when the cursor falls on the destination you want. Your unit moves.

In HPS/Tiller games, you:

1.) Left Click on a Unit/Stack to select it.
2.) Put Cursor over Adjacent Hex.
3.) Right Click.
4.) Place Cursor over Next hex to move to.
5.) Right Click.
6.) Place Cursor over Next hex to move to.
7.) Right Click.
8.) Place Cursor over Next hex to move to.
9.) Right Click.
10.) Repeat as necessary.

I vaguely recalled that there was a way to move longer distances, and it took about a minute of looking in the User Manual to find the 'drag and drop' method of movement, in which you:

1.) Left Click on Unit/Stack to select it.
2.) While Holding down the Left Mouse Button, drag your cursor over where you want to move.
3.) Release Left Mouse Button, unit moves there.

This has several flaws compared to the TOAW method:

1.) It's not intuitive, I had to look in the manual to find it.
2.) It requires you to hold down a mouse button, as opposed to simply dragging the cursor.
3.) It doesn't show estimated movement costs.

quote:

And I see a salient virtue in everything that Tiller has done with his Campaign Series games, that being that they are continually being brought up to a common standard, and in almost every instance, a standard that is significantly better than that which preceded it.


Well yes, you do get continuing support if you own a game -- it's nice to see my copy of Fulda Gap '85 being updated to support the Chemicals and Tactical Nuclear Weapons rules introduced in Danube Front '85...

...but the game interface and graphics stubbornly remain stuck in 1998/1999, while the rest of the wargaming world has moved on, particularly Matrix.

Some Sidenotes:

Sidenote: With Matrix Games Downloads, I don't need the CD in the drive, as opposed to HPS Games, which still has CD Checks -- an important consideration if I'm travelling with my laptop, or using a netbook without a CD drive.

Sidenote II: I loaded Fulda Gap 85 onto my computer, only to find that the help files (HLP) were...incompatible with Windows 7! I had to load up Windows XP mode in order to read them!

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Post #: 247
RE: HPS new games - 12/9/2011 3:06:48 PM   
mgarnett

 

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quote:


Some Sidenotes:

Sidenote: With Matrix Games Downloads, I don't need the CD in the drive, as opposed to HPS Games, which still has CD Checks -- an important consideration if I'm travelling with my laptop, or using a netbook without a CD drive.

Sidenote II: I loaded Fulda Gap 85 onto my computer, only to find that the help files (HLP) were...incompatible with Windows 7! I had to load up Windows XP mode in order to read them!


In relation to the CD checks, patches are being released on a rolling basis that remove the CD check. I think any pathes released from about 12 - 18 months ago do this. HPS have stated that they will do all the games eventually but it my take a while.

In relation to the help file, Microsoft released a patch for Windows 7 to allow the viewing of older help files and is available at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/917607. Having said this, future HPS games are being released with PDF help files only. PDF help files are also available for all older titles.

Cheers

Mark

(in reply to RyanCrierie)
Post #: 248
RE: HPS new games - 12/9/2011 6:04:39 PM   
apathetic lurker

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker


quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker


quote:

ORIGINAL: Prince of Eckmühl

quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

One thing that I don't understand, though is why they didn't try to adopt some consistent, simple art style instead of mixing flat background with shaded trees and houses.

Still, I'd take an ugly game with great mechanics over a game with good graphics that is mechanically regressive.

One possibility that you might want to consider is that the developer is truckin' down a path such that the graphics are 100% open to being modified. While this certainly wasn't the case with the previous titles, the option could actually produce a decent looking game, community add-ons being what they've proved to be in the past.



True, but it seems that a lot of developers/publishers etc etc are taking the easy way out. Charge an arm and a leg for a game and let the modding community finish it....

What easy way out? Do you know any other games that have the features of Tigers Unleashed? And who's going to fund these graphics? All the 200 people who want to play a realistic wargame?


I'm talking in generalities...I did say a lot of dev/pub.....not just HPS
And thats talking the big boys too, not just indie ones.

And i am sure there are way more than 200 people waiting to buy it. If it was such a niche product HPS would have gone the way of the Dodo bird long ago......

Judging by the complete lack of a PoA2 community, I wouldn't be surprised. The game seems to be a niche in a niche in a niche and so hardcore that many people who consider themselves hardcore can't play it.

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

Tillers games under the HPS umbrella had decent graphics.....why the regression?

Probably because they required lesser effort in other departments and were more popular.


Sorry, don't buy it...... I doubt if Scott put all that effort into making a game that sells less than 200 copies... He knows his client base......

So, how much of them are there? Enough to justify 6 years of development?


Why ask me? Go ask them.....Im guessing that, like every company, HPS makes games to make money and not for any altruistic reasons...

If they did, they'd make games with minimum amount of work required and maximum audience, even in their niche, not making a sequel to something that is one of the most complex and most disliked wargames ever that additionally is considered to be most buggy. Judging by how PoA2 is one of his three most favourite wargames ever and another of these three is an eastern front game, I think that the most logical answer is that he's making it because he wants to play it.
And I don't think that existence of a publisher that is in business for over 10 years and has 60 titles that it's currently selling depends on one game that was being made on pre-existing engine by the company owner himself for 6 years.


Still, making games that deal with the eastern front sell disregarding the worth. 10 years and 60 games? That means he knows what hes doing..If he didnt he'd be out of business 50 + games ago. So while he might be making a niche game based on a old not well liked game he is not doing it just so he can play it. More than likely but he fully expects people to buy it.

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Post #: 249
RE: HPS new games - 12/9/2011 6:42:39 PM   
apathetic lurker

 

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But we are wasting too much time discussing a game that a significant majority here will probably never buy.....Im going back to my man-cave with all my new Matrix goodies....Disability sucks ! Except for all the available gaming hours...lol

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Post #: 250
RE: HPS new games - 12/9/2011 11:59:06 PM   
Perturabo


Posts: 2368
Joined: 11/17/2007
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker


quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker


quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

quote:

ORIGINAL: Perturabo

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

True, but it seems that a lot of developers/publishers etc etc are taking the easy way out. Charge an arm and a leg for a game and let the modding community finish it....

What easy way out? Do you know any other games that have the features of Tigers Unleashed? And who's going to fund these graphics? All the 200 people who want to play a realistic wargame?


I'm talking in generalities...I did say a lot of dev/pub.....not just HPS
And thats talking the big boys too, not just indie ones.

And i am sure there are way more than 200 people waiting to buy it. If it was such a niche product HPS would have gone the way of the Dodo bird long ago......

Judging by the complete lack of a PoA2 community, I wouldn't be surprised. The game seems to be a niche in a niche in a niche and so hardcore that many people who consider themselves hardcore can't play it.

quote:

ORIGINAL: apathetic lurker

Tillers games under the HPS umbrella had decent graphics.....why the regression?

Probably because they required lesser effort in other departments and were more popular.


Sorry, don't buy it...... I doubt if Scott put all that effort into making a game that sells less than 200 copies... He knows his client base......

So, how much of them are there? Enough to justify 6 years of development?


Why ask me? Go ask them.....Im guessing that, like every company, HPS makes games to make money and not for any altruistic reasons...

If they did, they'd make games with minimum amount of work required and maximum audience, even in their niche, not making a sequel to something that is one of the most complex and most disliked wargames ever that additionally is considered to be most buggy. Judging by how PoA2 is one of his three most favourite wargames ever and another of these three is an eastern front game, I think that the most logical answer is that he's making it because he wants to play it.
And I don't think that existence of a publisher that is in business for over 10 years and has 60 titles that it's currently selling depends on one game that was being made on pre-existing engine by the company owner himself for 6 years.


Still, making games that deal with the eastern front sell disregarding the worth. 10 years and 60 games? That means he knows what hes doing..If he didnt he'd be out of business 50 + games ago. So while he might be making a niche game based on a old not well liked game he is not doing it just so he can play it. More than likely but he fully expects people to buy it.

If I understand correctly, most of these games were made by John Tiller and other developers, not by him. His job is being a president of a publisher company (if he's not doing it after another job or besides being retired) and his last game was PoA2. Developing a game when already having a paid job is different from doing it to pay for bills and food. You can afford doing something that otherwise wouldn't be profitable enough to keep you afloat (like for example making a game that takes more time to complete than games from the other series they make but may sell ten times less).
Also, the border between hobby and business can often be pretty thin when it comes to wargames. From what I have heard here that many of wargame developers are volunteers or part-time workers.
I think the main reason why the game looks like it looks is that predicted amount of customers isn't high enough to allow both covering the costs of publishing the game, bringing some income to the dev and paying to a good artist at the same time.

That's why I don't think that expecting good graphics from this kind of niche in a niche in a niche games and complaining about "being ripped off" isn't really reasonable.

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They should ask themselves why people who finish schools burned out due to mobbing aren't receiving high enough compensations to not seek vengeance.

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Post #: 251
RE: HPS new games - 12/10/2011 3:34:28 AM   
Rosseau

 

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I read at some point that Tigers Unleashed price dropped to $59.95. I pre-ordered it for $39.95 at NWS. Then I read that they may have cut out the editors to cheapen the product. You gotta explain to people what they are getting, and the info on this game prior to release was/is all over the map, pardon the pun.

EDIT: It's up on HPS's site, and it is looking very good.

< Message edited by rosseau -- 12/10/2011 3:48:59 AM >

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Post #: 252
RE: HPS new games - 12/10/2011 3:50:30 AM   
junk2drive


Posts: 12907
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From: Arizona West Coast
Status: offline
Supposedly what they cut out was not ready for prime time and will be available for free in a little while.

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Post #: 253
RE: HPS new games - 1/6/2012 3:47:46 PM   
Redmarkus5


Posts: 4304
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From: 0.00
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Bought it out of curiosity yesterday. Played a few scenarios:

1. Very complex and clunky interface.
2. 1980s graphics, but we knew that. The map is just plain as hell.
3. Lots of options for the player and a lot of depth.
4. Slow turns while the AI processes everything.
5. Lacking smaller scenarios (say a PzGr Platoon vs. a couple of squads) for byte battles to learn the game system.
6. Creating own scenarios appears not to be trivial.
7. Armoured Brigade offers more for free, but I don't like the era - I hope he builds a WW2 east front version.
8. Lack of a campaign mode means that the scenarios have little context - no units carry over, no career path of any kind...

I haven't booted it up today, but I will probably play around with it a bit more.

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Post #: 254
RE: HPS new games - 1/6/2012 8:49:08 PM   
Jeffrey H.


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From: San Diego, Ca.
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Whoops, crosspost. Sorry !

< Message edited by Jeffrey H. -- 1/6/2012 8:50:46 PM >


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Post #: 255
RE: HPS new games - 1/6/2012 10:07:13 PM   
Mobius


Posts: 10184
Joined: 6/30/2006
From: California
Status: online
quote:

ORIGINAL: RyanCrierie
Most of the times, I just quick google the internet to find a large enough side drawing to start from. I couldn't get artwork based on that into a shipped game, because I don't know the copyright status of that base drawing.
Ryan, some artists hide tells in their drawings. I found a number of tank drawing by Zaloga have the wrong number of teeth in the drive sprockets. So if one used his drawings verbatim he could tell that it was copied.

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