Jean, thanks for your favorable comments on FOF, which are always appreciated. Below are some responses.
Played Forge of Freedom for a bit. Couple of suggestions from a former game designer:
- The Misinterpret Command. I know it was probably designed to bring more realism to the game, but its a very frustrating frequent occurance. There are times when too much realism in a game negates it.
We're likely to tweak this to make it less common, especially since we're introducing whole new ways to frustrate the player! (Remember, though, that misinterpreting command is partly a function of unit quality, so it's more common early in the game.)
- I didnt like the inability to select units. I had to pass turn until I got the unit(S) I wanted to use.
Units can be selected at will. Completely different from FOF.
- Many times when a unit que's and their next to a enemy unit they would fire without command, and you wouldnt be able to issue a command to that unit. This should be removed. The player needs to be able to make choices. Again too much realism is not a good thing.
Under our new system, which some people will like and others might not (as your post suggests), the computer always decides on the target. This is because in the Civil War units would fire at the closest enemy unit, unless returning fire at enemy troops farther away. You would never (to my knowledge) have a situation in which a unit would deliberately aim at an enemy unit four "hexes" away when another was within two. Each turn, though, a unit can be fired upon by and return fire against multiple enemy units, so there will usually be a good chance that the computer targets the unit you would have. We view this approach as more realistic and, arguably, more challenging.
- The Mini Map needs to be a bit larger, more simpler and defined.
For now, at least, we're keeping it as it is. I think so far it is working well, and none of the testers has complained about it.
- Terrain needs to be a little bit more defined.
Not sure what you mean in particular, but I'd say it's much more defined. All sorts of new terrain types and features.
- The Brigade status bar (on the bottom) needs to be simpler and more alive. It needs to be more eye friendly. People today are all about a better UI. Look at how Microsoft, Google are replicating Apple's simple streamlined OS.
We're keeping this the same, at least for the first release. That sort of change involves a lot of graphics work. We've added a separate hierarchy box on the left side of the screen, though, that might solve some of your issues.
and to my #1 suggestion:
- Implement ZOOM. This is a must. Players need to have the ability to zoom in on a specific field of battle and zoom out and take it all in. All players prefer different resolutions of playing. Some enjoy seeing small parts of the battle field, while navigating the mini map, others enjoy the map zoomed out totally and ordering units from there... and then there are the middle people who prefer zooming in and out throughout the tactical map.
Zoom's been around for ages, added in one of our big patches. Use CTRL +/-.
West Civ: If you would me to help in game design Id be happy to help. I think your on the right track. I have much experience.
Thanks for your offer, but the game is mostly designed at this point, and we are too far along to do any major redesigning. If there's some aspect of the game that's widely hated -- which I don't really expect, but it's always possible -- we'd fix it in a patch, or else do a redesign for our next release and retrofit the changes.
< Message edited by Gil R. -- 4/17/2010 6:29:04 AM >
Michael Jordan plays ball. Charles Manson kills people. I torment eager potential customers by not sharing screenshots of "Brother Against Brother." Everyone has a talent.