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How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918?

 
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How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/2/2012 1:00:34 PM   
ulver

 

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My impression is that they both seem to be little gems going for abstracted simplicity over chrome and get the “feel” of the Great War just about right. I may be biased given that I have been playing Guns of August for years and believe it to be one of the very best games dealing with the Great War but so far I still think GOA has the edge. Don’t get me wrong: Commander: The Great War looks much better, has a vastly superior interface as so far the AI seems better but I think the abstracted navel system, the Free Setup, a very restrictive Fog of war, and the fact that you had to pay for offensives made it feel slightly more true to the period and offered better replay ability – I fear that could be a problem here with the fixed setup.

This is early days yet and having finally beaten the AI I have placed my first multiplayer challenge (someone accept please :)) – so in a sense I haven’t played the game at all really but I already fear that we will soon see some pretty standard mandatory opening moves develop. Here it would be interesting if players had to pick war plan options secretly varied the setup or even allow for a deployment phase where we could deploy as wanted. Should immensely improve replay value. If this becomes a smashing success I would love to see an expansion with a pre-war diplomatic and warplanes phase that would vary setup and possible even shuffle the entry of minors – a few could plausibly have flipped and Greece could easily have entered – in fact she formally did eventually.
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/2/2012 2:14:40 PM   
Jestre

 

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Personnally I didn't like GOA's HQ activation system and soon lost interest in the game. CTGW has me addicted, love the game, most fun wargame I have played in years.

(in reply to ulver)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/2/2012 3:35:14 PM   
benjerry

 

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I agree that adding some form of "custom setup", preferably with some (customizable?) limitations could add a lot to the longevity of multiplayer.

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/2/2012 8:36:34 PM   
J P Falcon

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Jestre

Personnally I didn't like GOA's HQ activation system and soon lost interest in the game. CTGW has me addicted, love the game, most fun wargame I have played in years.


It's funny how different gamers have such opposite views because I have loved the HQ activation system in GoA as it forced you to plan your attacks carefully and not allow you to throw everything into the pot at once. I do not want to turn this forum into a GoA one, but I just felt it was necessary to offer an alternate opinion where now we can simply let this matter drop.

(in reply to Jestre)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/2/2012 9:03:04 PM   
benjerry

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: J P Falcon

It's funny how different gamers have such opposite views because I have loved the HQ activation system in GoA as it forced you to plan your attacks carefully and not allow you to throw everything into the pot at once. I do not want to turn this forum into a GoA one, but I just felt it was necessary to offer an alternate opinion where now we can simply let this matter drop.


I think the board can survive one comparison thread, especially as it´s civil (especially by internet standards! ;) ).

I also kind of liked the activation system, but this game does feel more cohesive and polished overall. Also, ammunition gives at least a slight limit on major late-game offensives. (Perhaps a modder could add similar considerations by making all attacks use ammo, etc? - might be cool...)

(in reply to J P Falcon)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/2/2012 9:16:08 PM   
J P Falcon

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: benjerry


quote:

ORIGINAL: J P Falcon

It's funny how different gamers have such opposite views because I have loved the HQ activation system in GoA as it forced you to plan your attacks carefully and not allow you to throw everything into the pot at once. I do not want to turn this forum into a GoA one, but I just felt it was necessary to offer an alternate opinion where now we can simply let this matter drop.


I think the board can survive one comparison thread, especially as it´s civil (especially by internet standards! ;) ).

I also kind of liked the activation system, but this game does feel more cohesive and polished overall. Also, ammunition gives at least a slight limit on major late-game offensives. (Perhaps a modder could add similar considerations by making all attacks use ammo, etc? - might be cool...)



I think overall you are right in your comparison. I have played most WWI strategic level game out there. For depth and complexity, nothing beats Ageod's World War One Gold. For a varied number of scenarios, including a complete WWII campaign, nothing beats Battlefront's Strategic Command WWI. For a more lean mean WWI fighting machine nothing beats GoA. And finally, Commander - The Great War manages to combine many of the elements of the previous games into a fine package.

I will admit that I am biased in regards to Frank Hunter's GOA because I believe he treaded on ground that many feared to go. His game paved the way for all designers to understand that it was possible to make a good and entertaining game on WWI.

(in reply to benjerry)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/3/2012 4:56:25 PM   
jscott991


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I've played GoA dozens of times over the last year (and more if you count when I first bought it) and the activation system is something you have to get used to.

I will say that it completely rules out historical results in 1914 and 1918. The Germans simply can't match their initial progress using Frank's activation system, and that's a major problem. If, in order to accurately simulate the war's middle years it can't model its early and late years, then something is off.

GoA also has serious balance of forces issues. The size of the Austrian army is radically understated and the Russian front is not accurately modeled at all (the Czar can form a continuous front in 1914, something that didn't happen until 1915 at the earliest in the real war). Russia's supply problems are vastly under simulated. GoA's balance of forces is far too heavily skewed to the Allies.

The map in GoA is also not that great. The first time an AI Italy threatens Munich by punching through the Alps, you know something is off.

That being said, GoA is addictive and has an elegant interface. I've considered getting Commander, but off-site reviews have kept me from taking the plunge (well, that and Crusader Kings 2).

(in reply to J P Falcon)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/3/2012 6:30:01 PM   
jwduquette1

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: J P Falcon

It's funny how different gamers have such opposite views because I have loved the HQ activation system in GoA as it forced you to plan your attacks carefully and not allow you to throw everything into the pot at once. I do not want to turn this forum into a GoA one, but I just felt it was necessary to offer an alternate opinion where now we can simply let this matter drop.


I havent played GoA, but I thought your comment about HQ activation forcing players into actually planning attacks a potentially interesting, fun & 'immersive' aspect of game management in GoA.

Regarding the game mechanics of "Commander The Great War", I've found that as the War begins to stalemate on the Western Front -- and even at times on the Eastern front if either sides begins getting serious entrenchments -- that use of bombardment and artillery units becomes the management tool players have to deal with when planning attacks. Artillery unit management, and to an even greater degree Artillery ammunition supply management, force players into pre-planning and prioritizing attacks and counterattacks. Both Artillery units and Artillery munitions also become critical aspects of production planning. Moreover artillery units aren't cheap nor is expanding artillery ammunition production.

< Message edited by jwduquette1 -- 12/3/2012 6:36:53 PM >

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/3/2012 8:50:41 PM   
Orm


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991
I've considered getting Commander, but off-site reviews have kept me from taking the plunge

As I understand it Commander - The Great War has had several false bad reviews. Maybe you encountered some of those?

See for more info: http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3214007

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(in reply to jscott991)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/10/2012 8:56:38 PM   
ulver

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991

I've played GoA dozens of times over the last year (and more if you count when I first bought it) and the activation system is something you have to get used to.

I will say that it completely rules out historical results in 1914 and 1918. The Germans simply can't match their initial progress using Frank's activation system, and that's a major problem. If, in order to accurately simulate the war's middle years it can't model its early and late years, then something is off.

GoA also has serious balance of forces issues. The size of the Austrian army is radically understated and the Russian front is not accurately modeled at all (the Czar can form a continuous front in 1914, something that didn't happen until 1915 at the earliest in the real war). Russia's supply problems are vastly under simulated. GoA's balance of forces is far too heavily skewed to the Allies.

The map in GoA is also not that great. The first time an AI Italy threatens Munich by punching through the Alps, you know something is off.


I have to say I disagree about the inability of GOA to simulate 1918. The games I played that far ended up with a very fluid and mobile endgame. See for instance this AAR “Ulver vs. Geoffrey or Germany goes east while France goes to the Desert “

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=1902732

That being said you are absolutely correct that it is quite unbalanced in favor of the Entente. Although arguably that is quite historical – if they failed to win in 1914 that Central Powers always had the odds stacked against them. Only the complete collapse of Russia allowed a brief window of opportunity in 1918.

You are so right about the map of northern Italy with the traditional German offensive across the alps – really needs some impassable hex sider.

In the final analysis Commander – the Great War has the edge in interface and polish. Much more user friendly and intuitive while it does the navel war just terrible and really lack a diplomacy aspect. In terms of Replay value my money is also on GOA in virtue of it’s free setup and the fact that declaring war on Belgium is optional.

Allowing a free setup and a pre-war diplomacy phase really would help a lot there.



(in reply to jscott991)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/11/2012 5:14:13 PM   
jack54


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ulver

In the final analysis Commander – the Great War has the edge in interface and polish. Much more user friendly and intuitive while it does the navel war just terrible and really lack a diplomacy aspect. In terms of Replay value my money is also on GOA in virtue of it’s free setup and the fact that declaring war on Belgium is optional.

Allowing a free setup and a pre-war diplomacy phase really would help a lot there.



I have to agree... I really do enjoy both games... GOA's naval interface is very difficult for me but GOA has 'STACKING', which I love and is almost a pre-requisite for me.
That being said Commander – the Great War is great fun so far.

< Message edited by jack54 -- 12/11/2012 5:39:50 PM >


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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/11/2012 7:54:38 PM   
jscott991


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GoA really needs an editor that actually allows you to change the composition of forces. The size of the Russian army (way too large) and the Austrian army (way too small) should be able to be tweaked.

But the larger problem with GoA, and a problem with Commander:TGW based on what I read on the forum, is that 1914 can't be modeled at all. The movement system absolutely prohibits you from matching Germany's progress in the opening month. The cap on movement speed is completely unrealistic (how on Earth did Frank think Napoleon accomplished his campaigns 100 years before WWI if armies can only move a few miles each month in 1914).

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/11/2012 10:30:05 PM   
Myrddraal

 

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quote:

and a problem with Commander:TGW based on what I read on the forum

I really recommend you read some of the AARs on this forum. You will see that in CTGW good players can match (and outmatch) the historical German advance. I'm sure the players here will back me up.

Entrenchment builds up over time and only if the defending units are idle. By moving fast and keeping up the attack, the CP player can keep the western front mobile at the start of the war long enough to make significant advances.

< Message edited by Myrddraal -- 12/11/2012 10:31:35 PM >

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/12/2012 12:21:34 PM   
Jestre

 

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I would also stipulate that GOA goes too far in making the game mirror real life at the expense of playability and enjoyment. At least for me it did.

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/12/2012 3:14:59 PM   
jscott991


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GoA doesn't mirror real life at all. It's a complete abstraction that doesn't even do a good job at simulating the actual ebb and flow of the war. You can't duplicate the German blitzes in 1914 and 1915 (just try to take over all of Poland in a single month). The Central Powers are at a huge disadvantage in terms of balance of forces (Russia's army is enormous and Austria's is pitifully small).

If you think GoA is too much of a simulation and TGW is more "fun" then I really hesitate to imagine what resemblance TGW has to the actual war.

(in reply to Jestre)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/12/2012 3:15:58 PM   
jscott991


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Myrddraal

quote:

and a problem with Commander:TGW based on what I read on the forum

I really recommend you read some of the AARs on this forum. You will see that in CTGW good players can match (and outmatch) the historical German advance. I'm sure the players here will back me up.


It shouldn't take a good player to match the German advance, given that the historical breakthroughs were made by incompetents such as Moltke and Kluck.

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/12/2012 4:12:21 PM   
warspite1


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991


quote:

ORIGINAL: Myrddraal

quote:

and a problem with Commander:TGW based on what I read on the forum

I really recommend you read some of the AARs on this forum. You will see that in CTGW good players can match (and outmatch) the historical German advance. I'm sure the players here will back me up.


It shouldn't take a good player to match the German advance, given that the historical breakthroughs were made by incompetents such as Moltke and Kluck.
warspite1

Er right... so you want a game where newbs can get to one hex of Paris as the norm and therefore a good player will be in Paris in time for tea and medals?

Good idea - Commander The Great War 1914-1914.... or should that be:

Kommandant. Ze Grosse krieg 1914 - 1914.

I agree with Myrddraal's comment above btw.

The only problem I have with the game is that when I play as the Entente Paris falls easily, and when I'm in charge of the Central Powers, the Germans don't get anywhere near the French capital.... Can you fix this anomaly please chaps - the game is obviously broken....

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/12/2012 4:17:49 PM   
Myrddraal

 

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Man... you're hard to convince! If we made it so 'bad players' could match the CP advance, we'd be (rightly) accused of creating an imbalanced game.

On the Slith forums a group of modders are currently debating whether it needs to be made harder for the CP to advance in France in 1914. According to one poster there it "is too easy for a competent CP player to take Paris and push France out of the war by early 1915 at the last".

I'm just worried that you're judging CTGW by GoA standards. If GoA didn't necessarily do things well that's no reflection on CTGW. Really, I'm not pretending that CTGW is perfect, but it certainly does not share this particular issue with GoA. Like I said, I'm sure players here who have the game can back me up on that.

< Message edited by Myrddraal -- 12/12/2012 4:24:07 PM >

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/12/2012 4:19:35 PM   
warspite1


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Myrddraal

Man... you're hard to convince! If we made it so 'bad players' could match the CP advance, we'd be (rightly) accused of creating an imbalanced game.

warspite1

See first sentence of post 17

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/12/2012 4:24:10 PM   
Amaranthus


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jscott991, just buy the game already and try it. It's only $40 bucks, and you're clearly a WWI afficionado and an avid wargamer, so you're sure to get *something* out of it. It's just not worth vacillating over.

Lordz have produced a terrific product from which I've already derived dozens of hours of fun - this is Grand Strategy at its best, provided you can accept a certain level of abstraction (I not only accept it, I require it in order to strike the playability vs realism balance). They and other independent wargame-developing studios really do deserve the support of our community for their efforts. You may end up loving CTGW, or you may just find it 'okay', depending on your tastes (I guarantee you won't dislike it).

But for all the above reasons and more, it's really worth the purchase.

(in reply to warspite1)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/12/2012 4:26:06 PM   
warspite1


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Amaranthus

jscott991, just buy the game already and try it. It's only $40 bucks, and you're clearly a WWI afficionado and an avid wargamer, so you're sure to get *something* out of it. It's just not worth vacillating over.

Lordz have produced a terrific product from which I've already derived dozens of hours of fun - this is Grand Strategy at its best, provided you can accept a certain level of abstraction (I not only accept it, I require it in order to strike the playability vs realism balance). They and other independent wargame-developing studios really do deserve the support of our community for their efforts. You may end up loving CTGW, or you may just find it 'okay', depending on your tastes (I guarantee you won't dislike it).

But for all the above reasons and more, it's really worth the purchase.
warspite1

+1

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/12/2012 4:39:58 PM   
Jestre

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991

GoA doesn't mirror real life at all. It's a complete abstraction that doesn't even do a good job at simulating the actual ebb and flow of the war. You can't duplicate the German blitzes in 1914 and 1915 (just try to take over all of Poland in a single month). The Central Powers are at a huge disadvantage in terms of balance of forces (Russia's army is enormous and Austria's is pitifully small).

If you think GoA is too much of a simulation and TGW is more "fun" then I really hesitate to imagine what resemblance TGW has to the actual war.



GOA implemented an HQ activation system to arbitrarily limit German offensive operations. This was a gamey move to reflect more acurately the progression of the war, hence to "mirror real life".

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/13/2012 3:51:44 AM   
H Gilmer

 

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I know it will probably never ever happen and even if it did, it would be years because I know they are working on a big project right now, but I wish the WiTE guys did a very similar type game for WW1 as WiTE is for WW2. I'd be shelling out all sorts of money for that.

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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/13/2012 10:54:41 AM   
Keke


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quote:

ORIGINAL: H Gilmer

I know it will probably never ever happen and even if it did, it would be years because I know they are working on a big project right now, but I wish the WiTE guys did a very similar type game for WW1 as WiTE is for WW2. I'd be shelling out all sorts of money for that.


Well, in my humble opinion WiTE is a boardgame (hexes, igo-ugo) gone bonkers with all the detail. AI can't handle it. The game engine, doped with all sorts of pseudo-realism, produces weirdness and a lot of bugs. CTGW's simplicity is just ingenious.


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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/13/2012 11:56:02 AM   
catwhoorg


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Simple, effective, fun. (and durn addictive)

That more or less follows the historical flood of the initial war.

How it goes beyond that is down to the players.

(in reply to Keke)
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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/19/2012 6:23:22 PM   
jscott991


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Amaranthus

jscott991, just buy the game already and try it. It's only $40 bucks, and you're clearly a WWI afficionado and an avid wargamer, so you're sure to get *something* out of it. It's just not worth vacillating over.

Lordz have produced a terrific product from which I've already derived dozens of hours of fun - this is Grand Strategy at its best, provided you can accept a certain level of abstraction (I not only accept it, I require it in order to strike the playability vs realism balance). They and other independent wargame-developing studios really do deserve the support of our community for their efforts. You may end up loving CTGW, or you may just find it 'okay', depending on your tastes (I guarantee you won't dislike it).

But for all the above reasons and more, it's really worth the purchase.


I prefer the devil I know I guess. I know that GoA loves the Allies/Entente. I'm not comfortable with this game's portrayal of the Central Powers. I've yet to find a post by a new-ish player saying "Serbia is too weak" or "It's too easy to duplicate Germany's advance in 1914/1915." I have no interest in another game that thinks Belgium, Tsarist Russia, and Serbia are the world's greatest military powers.

< Message edited by jscott991 -- 12/19/2012 6:24:41 PM >

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Post #: 26
RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/19/2012 6:33:59 PM   
Keke


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991

I prefer the devil I know I guess. I know that GoA loves the Allies/Entente. I'm not comfortable with this game's portrayal of the Central Powers. I've yet to find a post by a new-ish player saying "Serbia is too weak" or "It's too easy to duplicate Germany's advance in 1914/1915." I have no interest in another game that thinks Belgium, Tsarist Russia, and Serbia are the world's greatest military powers.


What are you actually complaining about?



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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/19/2012 6:35:46 PM   
Lord Zimoa


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quote:

I have no interest in another game that thinks Belgium, Tsarist Russia, and Serbia are the world's greatest military powers.


Well I think we got this right in CTGW, Belgium is not a real problem, it main function is too delay the CP long enough for the Entente to manage the Western front and bring in their resources and manpower to stabilize the front in the West, but it will never hold.

Russia is vulnerable because of its long front and has not the best units or good starting technology, it is vulnerable to morale drops when carnage get too heavy or suffers from prolonged defeats, but it has a big pool of manpower.

Serbia can be a little "be-atch", as it has some well entrenched and hilly, mountainous terrain as a starting advantage, but limited manpower reserves, technology upgrade possibilities or economic leverage. It can succumb, but good fighters, so need some attention to be defeated completely.

< Message edited by Lord Zimoa -- 12/19/2012 6:40:08 PM >


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RE: How does this compare with Guns of August 1914 – 1918? - 12/19/2012 10:14:17 PM   
ParaB

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991
I have no interest in another game that thinks Belgium, Tsarist Russia, and Serbia are the world's greatest military powers.


Neither do I. But was has that got to do with CTGW?

I've only been playing since last weekend and have already achieved FAR better than historical results with the Central Powers.

(in reply to jscott991)
Post #: 29
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