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Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Southern Storm?

 
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All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> Flashpoint Campaigns Series >> Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Southern Storm? Page: [1]
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Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Southern St... - 7/11/2018 11:33:12 PM   
Aekar

 

Posts: 2
Joined: 7/11/2018
Status: offline
Hello guys,


It seems that the community is just awesome!
So I thought I could bother you with such newbie questions.
One is about "getting the game", and the other is about "getting to mod the game".



TLDR: Should I get the game or should I wait?

The game is very tempting.

I am a hardcore strategy-gamer, I've always been attracted to wargames too. But I fail at them. Combat Mission saw me lose poor men and poor tanks (but I loved it nevertheless..). And I am speaking even about the first mission of any Combat Mission system.

On a more wargamey genre I got Advanced Tactics Gold but failed to love it (for now!). Also I often dislike IGOUGO systems, because I feel we are unrealistically destroying the enemy. I also tend to dislike "strategic puzzles" too once "they just become this" and make us win games with 0 losses as long as we do things in a specific order in a turn-based strategy. I like realistic combat simulations. Feeling the effect of a hard campaign, getting casualties, adjusting decisions, versus a good AI.

My comfort zone was well into Hearts of Iron 3, not HOI4 because in HO4 I find the AI too dumb. I loved "Wargame Red Dragon" and the previous one because of their units, setting, unit profiles.

For all these reasons "Flashpoint Red Storm" looks lovely, very detailed. I can easily grasp what it's getting at and why, and how to order units around and still "get a feeling" of the front. The new system looks great to me.


In the end the questions are:


a) I would like to know the quality of the AI, if it lasts, if it does not send its units to suicide. The demonstration video on Steam makes me think it suicides its great tanks for no great reason.
b) Should I get it?
c) But even if (b) is YES, should I not wait for Southern Storm instead?


Should I mod it, even if it's from 2014? or should I wait?



Also, I am a passionate modder.
Just released a playable campaign set for Armageddon (can't link it; slitherine account is old but matrix account is less than 7 days) and works on another for Sanctus Reach. I like to try to make huge mods (to "reach for the stars").
Red Storm sounds tempting to me because of modding possibilities.

c) The game has been released in 2014. Should I purchase it to mod this one, or wait for Southern Storm instead?

d) question to the devs or the ones who know: how convertible would be a mod for Red Storm, if porting it to Southern Storm?


Thanks a great lot to anyone who would reply :)


< Message edited by Aekar -- 7/11/2018 11:38:05 PM >
Post #: 1
RE: Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Souther... - 7/12/2018 1:07:14 AM   
CapnDarwin


Posts: 7133
Joined: 2/12/2005
From: Newark, OH
Status: offline
Aekar,

Let me see if I can answer these questions. First the one about the game.

A). The AI is very dynamic and does not cheat. It runs an internal OODA loop looks at various courses of action and then orders units to do their things. Is it perfect? No. Is it a good attacking AI and has replayability? Yes. I've played A Time to Dance about 200+ times to test things and at cons and the AI will always do something unexpected. So there is no chess game here. Once the AI makes contact and sees your forces it replans in order to best make its objectives. On the defensive side, it is okay. We are working to improve both aspects in the next version of the Cold Wars game engine with Southern Storm. Can AI units get out of position and run into a meat grinder. Yes, they can. So will you at times. In most of the scenarios, the Soviets are on the offensive and their doctrine is to take ground. That's what the game tries to do.

B). Sure. It's a fun game, quick to learn with the Quick Start and Tutorial guide, Great support here and on Steam from the community. Plus if you are shrewd, you can wait for the next sale and save some coin.

C). Depends on how long you want to wait to play. We are currently looking at Q1 of next year to release if things smooth out with all the various RL stuff the team has been dealing with. The new game will be easier to learn with RS under your belt, but we hope to make the new game engine and documentation even more user-friendly.

Modding. That where I got started back in the late 70s. Didn't even have a name back then. Red Storm was released in October of 2013 and we've had 14 major updates with new features, bug fixes, and tweaks to the game engine. Now the questions:

C). You will be able to mod both. Red Storm is very moddable and the new game engine will be as well and hopefully even more so in areas. Right now you can make scenarios, campaigns, change sounds, change art, modify data, and even do some map stuff depending on your level of interest.

D). The basic answer for some things is portable with some rework. Art assets in the new game engine have been enlarged. Data files have a new structure and a vastly increased number of special abilities to cover more systems and effects. Scenarios and campaigns would need to be basically rebuilt in the new editors to be able to use all the new features. Maps would also need to be reprocessed to have values and certain new features also work. We should also have some better documentation this time around to help support modding and also making new scenarios and scenario variations. We are really hoping to have a much bigger 3rd party community with this new engine.

I hope that covers your questions. If you have more let us know.



_____________________________

Work on Southern Storm continues! We are a bit behind where we want to be, but hang in there.

Cap'n Darwin aka Jim Snyder
On Target Simulations

(in reply to Aekar)
Post #: 2
RE: Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Souther... - 7/12/2018 12:22:17 PM   
Aekar

 

Posts: 2
Joined: 7/11/2018
Status: offline
Thank you Captain Darwin!

Very detailed answer, and I love it :)
I was really eager this morning to see if someone in the community would help me.

I will delve into the modding guides released to check about possibilities in modding units etc.
Speaking about this, do you have released information about how to create units?
I saw modding guides topics covering maps, scenarios, arts, and sounds.

(in reply to CapnDarwin)
Post #: 3
RE: Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Souther... - 7/12/2018 1:38:24 PM   
CapnDarwin


Posts: 7133
Joined: 2/12/2005
From: Newark, OH
Status: offline
Here is a data modding guide written by OTS Team Member Charles Belva. It covers a number of the ins and outs of editing data files in Red Storm. It's not 100 percent complete, but at least he got something out there when I was too busy. Just rename the file by removing the ".txt" to make it a PDF again.



Attachment (1)

_____________________________

Work on Southern Storm continues! We are a bit behind where we want to be, but hang in there.

Cap'n Darwin aka Jim Snyder
On Target Simulations

(in reply to Aekar)
Post #: 4
RE: Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Souther... - 7/15/2018 1:24:58 AM   
IronMikeGolf

 

Posts: 834
Joined: 3/19/2010
Status: offline
Some things to keep in mind before buying this game:
1. One of the design goals of this game is to put the players in the shoes of the command and staff of a unit that is battalion size or larger. So, the players don't get to tell tanks and infantry platoon what to shoot at. You can set targets for indirect fires and close air support.
2. To win, you must plan and you must avoid being surprised.
a. Analyze the terrain and you mission to come up with possible enemy courses of action
b. Plan the use of your reconnaissance elements to confirm/deny these enemy courses of action.
c. Plan to destroy enemy reconnaissance elements to deny the enemy information. As soon as enemy recce sees your units, artillery will soon be hitting them
d. Make plans for the enemy courses of action. Your recce must confirm/deny enemy plans early enough for you to execute your counter plan.
3. Understand that we try very hard to have realistic friction in the game. Unit's do not immediately execute orders (except the first turn and the turn of arrival for reinforcements). Depending on the situation (EW level, how rested the unit is as well as the HQs in that unit's chain of command, whether it is in radio range, etc), it can take as little as 5 minutes or over an hour for a unit to begin executing an order.
4. Given the above point, if the AI goes a route you have not anticipated and you are surprised, you will likely not have enough time to re-orient your combat power.
5. The AI will react to you, as Capn Darwin said above. If you put up a good fight and stop an attack on one axis, the AI may send follow on units a different way. The AI make pick a different objective. The AI may re-attack on the same axis.
6. One last bit of advice is to make the effort to synchronize things. You have to position artillery far enough forward early enough so they can support your tanks and infantry when they make contact. On an individual unit basis, your artillery will be the biggest killers. Make sure they all don't need to be resupplied at the same time.

_____________________________

Jeff
Sua Sponte

(in reply to CapnDarwin)
Post #: 5
RE: Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Souther... - 7/21/2018 5:47:20 AM   
nukkxx


Posts: 1911
Joined: 2/3/2005
Status: offline
I find the AI very very competent and the game very well balanced. In many scenarios, and despite my best efforts, I can't get better than a marginal success but most of the time it will be a draw (contested battle).
The game is extremely fun. I like the way it's played.
a) Analyse the situation by taking into account all parameters (weaponery, terrain, morale, etc)
b) then give your orders to your troops and then watch the raging battle !
c) And again, repeat a) and b) until the end of the battle.

As said above, it's not like other wargames. in FPRS you are the commander. You give orders and then watch. You don't order your counters to strike this or that enemy unit. Your troops will decide by themselves according the context (terrain, visibility, etc). In FPRS you give global/macro orders and then watch the battle. And often, your troops wont be able to follow your orders! The game is brilliant.

For me it's one of the best wargames ever developed, if not the best.
So I would not hesitate a second and would buy both FCRS and FCSS.
Anyway, unless I missed something, it seems that FCSS is not supposed to be released before the end of the year or early next year ?

< Message edited by nukkxx -- 7/21/2018 5:53:52 AM >

(in reply to IronMikeGolf)
Post #: 6
RE: Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Souther... - 7/21/2018 12:39:50 PM   
CapnDarwin


Posts: 7133
Joined: 2/12/2005
From: Newark, OH
Status: offline
Welcome back Nukkxx. Thanks for the kind words!

_____________________________

Work on Southern Storm continues! We are a bit behind where we want to be, but hang in there.

Cap'n Darwin aka Jim Snyder
On Target Simulations

(in reply to nukkxx)
Post #: 7
RE: Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Souther... - 7/22/2018 1:44:07 PM   
pzgndr

 

Posts: 2438
Joined: 3/18/2004
From: Maryland
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: IronMikeGolf
3. Understand that we try very hard to have realistic friction in the game. Unit's do not immediately execute orders (except the first turn and the turn of arrival for reinforcements). Depending on the situation (EW level, how rested the unit is as well as the HQs in that unit's chain of command, whether it is in radio range, etc), it can take as little as 5 minutes or over an hour for a unit to begin executing an order.


While I greatly appreciate the intent to model more realistic friction, the lack of basic SOPs to simply "shoot & scoot" and the inability to place a maneuver unit "On Call" for more rapid execution of an order leads to many unrealistically inflexible situations. I like the game but this aspect is a sore point. I know this is being reconsidered for Southern Storm and I look forward to improvements in this area. There has to be some additional recognition of pre-planning and SOPs that the player can adjust, as a real-life commander can do, to allow for greater flexibility. Of course, a "change of mission" during the scenario where you are directing units to stop what they're already doing and go do something else in a different direction, that's different and the current friction model for orders delay is more realistic in that situation.

quote:

5. The AI will react to you, as Capn Darwin said above. If you put up a good fight and stop an attack on one axis, the AI may send follow on units a different way. The AI make pick a different objective. The AI may re-attack on the same axis.


Agreed, and this is good, but I would really like to see the AI have some more flexibility to act on its own to attack on a different axis. For replayability. I'd like to fight the recon/counter-recon battle to determine what the AI is doing and then be able to react to the AI. It works both ways in real life. I am interested to see what Southern Storm does to improve upon the AI's COAs.

Back to the OP. It's a good game and worth playing. You just have to play perhaps a bit more conservatively and anticipate the friction as modeled.

(in reply to IronMikeGolf)
Post #: 8
RE: Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Souther... - 7/22/2018 11:15:44 PM   
MikeJ19


Posts: 1928
Joined: 1/29/2014
From: Ottawa, Canada
Status: offline
Aekar,

This is a very fun game with a very good AI and a good community. I am really looking forward to the arrival of Southern Storm, but have enjoyed the scenarios of this version!

All the best,

_____________________________

Mike

Retired Gunner

(in reply to pzgndr)
Post #: 9
RE: Should I purchase and mod this? or wait for Souther... - 7/23/2018 1:01:00 PM   
nukkxx


Posts: 1911
Joined: 2/3/2005
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: CapnDarwin

Welcome back Nukkxx. Thanks for the kind words!


Thank you CapnDarwin ! But you know, I've never been too far away since the first version of the game. Yes, I'm talking about the great ancestor, Flashpoint Germany back in 2005 (or so). And I've been playing FPRS regularly since the release date and I hugely appreciate all the continuous development you guys made since the initial release. Total Respect !
Flashpoint Campaign is One of the very rare game that is always on my HD (and probably will always be).
Can't wait for Southern Storm :-) But don't rush guys, the current FP Red Storm game is a great challenge and its replayability is, like chess, near infinite.

(in reply to CapnDarwin)
Post #: 10
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