I am making the following two items available in my own Web space until Matrix posts it.
(1) BFTB one page keyboard reference
(2) BFTB scenario complexity analysis (both as an XLS for you to manipulate and a PDF for those who don't use spreadsheets)
I would also like to share some analysis of the scenarios as to what you get in BFTB:
36/343/106 duration in hours
62/655/258 total units
3/22/12 Axis objectives
3/25/13 Allied objectives
And how this compares with COTA:
24/209/102 duration in hours
29/326/146 total units
2/17/8 Axis objectives
2/29/10 Allied objectives
Just eye balling this data, I can say that the biggest growth in complexity with BFTB has been a substantial growth in the number of units commanded and a moderate increase in the number of objectives per scenario. I should note that since the engine provides for hiearchical command through AI agents, the player complexity of say doubling the number of units in a scenario tends to scale much better for the player than traditional "command every unit" or "stack based" war games.
This should also help those who want to get a sense of what you get with your BFTB purchase. Note: that each scenario may include random force deployments, variable reinforcement arrivals, non-scripted AI that is unlikely to do the same thing every time, and quite a number of parameters which you can tweak to make things harder or easier on a per scenario basis.
I just completed a similar analysis for HTTR (raw data to be posted shortly in the HTTR forum). So, if you care to compare:
12/230/83 duration in hours
26/700/251 total units
2/18/9 Axis objectives
2/18/9 Allied objectives
I think the most interesting thing which I see here is that HTTR well exceeded COTA in terms of pushing scenarios with high unit counts. And the average number of units is comparable to BFTB. However, it is worth noting that HTTR offered a lot more smaller scenarios than BFTB. Where as on the whole BFTB has not too many small scenarios. HTTR's average pulled up by 6-8 very large scenarios.
It might be interesting to compute the "normalized unit complexity" of these three games. I would define that as total units in all scenarios divided by the total duration of all scenarios. My guess is that BFTB would score quite a bit higher in the rating. Oh, well ... an exercise for another day.
Off now to add HTTR to my comparative BFTB performance testing suite ...
MORE NEW STUFF
Here are some further statistics.
Total playable simulated scenario hours delivered with each game:
These numbers are so close, it would almost seem that someone planned this. But, as far as I know, that's not the case.
NOTE: This is really a minimal value, since this assuming a single play from just one side with only one set of balance adjustment options.
I am finally ready to compute my normalized complexity metric for each game.
Assumption: For the purpose of this analysis, all units are assumed to be present at the start of each scenario which is not the case. However, a more accurate calculation taking into consideration of arrival times is beyond my manual methods of analysis.
(1) Let N be the scenario index.
(2) Let M be the simulated scenario hours.
(3) Let U be the scenario units for both sides.
(4) Then ( ( SUM(M*U)[N] ) / SUM(M)[N] ) / 2 yields the average number of units commanded by the player during simulated hour.
Results (a player command complexity metric):
Well, I think this is really interesting. It clearly shows that of the three games, COTA has the lowest level of play command complexity and that HTTR has the highest level of player command complexity. Rather interesting as BFTB has the best UI tools for managing player command complexity.
Additionally, there was some discussion elsewhere of which game would be the best for players who prefer smaller force sizes. COTA would appear to be the winner in that regard. And if you put aside improved features, then HTTR would seem to be the game for mega-battles.
Another interesting conclusion might be when combined with performance benchmarking that COTA is the best of three games for very low spec systems. Yes, HTTR was less CPU intensive than the other two games, but not by a factor of 2X.
Now, a further interesting result might be to gather the area (square kilometers) covered by each scenario and once again weight the unit counts by this new metric. So far, we have looked at complexity by time. However, complexity by space and time might also prove to be quite interesting.
DISCLAIMER: All of these calculations and conclusions have not been independently verified and are subject to incorrect assumptions, math errors, and plain old human error.
< Message edited by MarkShot -- 6/8/2010 10:02:13 PM >
Never more! (I've had enough. Sliterine has raised mediocrity to an art form!)