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RE: Tutorial Thread - 2/15/2004 7:04:47 PM   
Tzar007


Posts: 761
Joined: 2/7/2004
From: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
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From Golf33:


quote:

if it's still giving the player real time VP and enemy strength data


You get real-time VP data for yourself and an approximation of the difference between yours and the enemy's.

You never get precise data on enemy strength until the game ends and you get to see the final dispositions. During the game you get intel reports based on your units' sightings that are frequently inaccurate and degrade heavily with age.

quote:

second-by second knowledge of enemy movements and force strengths, and instant communication between elements of your command structure


Not in this one mate! You do get sighting reports as soon as your units make contact, but they are very inaccurate in terms of type, strength and even location, and they only get updated as and when your units are in position to maintain contact and find out more information. This is no different from the enemy situation maps I've seen in artillery command posts, where you mark down contacts and the time last observed on a talc sheet using a red marker. If you make your plans based on the older contacts, you can expect to be a few hours behind the battle very quickly.

As Dave says, I think when you've had the chance to play HTTR a bit you'll find most of your desires are already well implemented in the game. I've had the embarrassing experience of the AI opponent, who I thought I'd battered into submission and driven off to the south, move around my flank and drive a brigade into the gap in my defences on the eastern flank. I issued orders to smash the penetration but the scenario ended before my troops got moving; instead of the decisive victory I was expecting, I got a marginal and nearly had to settle for a draw. This despite an overwhelming superiority at this point of something like 4:1 overall; the AI simply concentrated where I was not, and made me pay the price of not watching my flanks.

The main reason it was embarrassing, was because it was my scenario that I'd just finished writing and was playtesting for the first time! I knew exactly what the enemy had, and where and when it would arrive on the battlefield; I knew exactly what the enemy objectives were and how they would be prioritized; and I still got totally caught off-balance by an opponent who showed me what I expected to see, while actually doing something quite different. Anyone else playing that game would not know the enemy's starting strength, what reinforcements he had coming, or where and when they would arrive. He would not even know what objectives the enemy had.

Regards
33

(in reply to Tzar007)
Post #: 91
RE: Tutorial Thread - 2/15/2004 7:06:34 PM   
Tzar007


Posts: 761
Joined: 2/7/2004
From: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Status: offline
From Beery:


Okay, I know I promised to be quiet from here on, but this is some good info:

quote:

There is no attempt to blow bridges until the force assigned to deny the crossing is under attack, so by the time the enemy is trying to drop a bridge you have troops close enough to see what is going on anyway.


Good to know. This is not the impression I got from previous posts. It's still 'iffy' to know that an attempt to blow a bridge failed, and it definitely takes away from the tension of a crossing, but I guess I might be able to live with it given the above considerations. But I'll have to see it in action to get a real idea of whether it's within reasonable limits of realism or not.

quote:

Oddly enough the information on crossing point status was added because a lot of players of RDOA asked for it


It will never surprise me that many players want more information than they technically should have - it's human nature given today's culture of instant gratification, but it's important for the integrity of the simulation that such things are only offered as an option, and let those of us who want a realistic simulation have that option too.

quote:

Your impression of enemy strength comes from intel reports that are based solely on observations from your units and are usually realistically inaccurate...

The 'enemy destroyed' objective is a lot less informative than you'd think - it is very indirect and does not tell you how many men/vehicles/guns the enemy has lost, and absolutely doesn't tell you how many he has left or how many he had to start with...


All good things to know. Earlier posts most definitely gave me a different (and frightening) impression.

(in reply to Tzar007)
Post #: 92
RE: Tutorial Thread - 2/15/2004 7:07:35 PM   
Tzar007


Posts: 761
Joined: 2/7/2004
From: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Status: offline
From Keke:


quote:

I've been playing computer wargames for 23 years (I'll never forget my Intellivision - classic), and it never fails to frustrate me when I see computer wargames evolving so darned slowly when the possibilities for getting beyond the 2D 'you see everything, no fog of war' boardgame format are almost infinite.


Now could you tell me which recent operational level wargames have no fog of war?

(in reply to Tzar007)
Post #: 93
RE: Tutorial Thread - 2/15/2004 7:08:27 PM   
Tzar007


Posts: 761
Joined: 2/7/2004
From: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Status: offline
From Beery:


I don't think I ever said that any recent computer wargames have no fog of war (the quote you use is a generalization and refers to a boardgame format, not an actual computer game). My point was that many (if not all) recent computer wargames have unrealistically few concessions to fog of war. If you read my posts it's hard to get the wrong impression.

Please don't put words in my mouth. It makes you look like a flamer or a troll (and the fact that you're resurrecting this subject after we've all agreed to drop it makes you look even more like a troll). If you want to discuss the issue fairly, respond fairly to stuff I've said rather than twisting my words and making up straw men in an attempt to burn them down more easily.

I realise that my style of argument can be seen as very combative, and that it can strike some people as arrogant, but I'm trying to get at the truth and I'm trying to put forward strong arguments. This is just the style I've developed and it's not something I can just turn off. It's not meant to be disrespectful.

(in reply to Tzar007)
Post #: 94
RE: Tutorial Thread - 2/15/2004 7:08:59 PM   
Tzar007


Posts: 761
Joined: 2/7/2004
From: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Status: offline
From Keke:


I apologize if I appeared trollish, but your posts seemed a little bit weird to me, when you actually had never seen the game system in question.

(in reply to Tzar007)
Post #: 95
RE: Tutorial Thread - 2/15/2004 7:09:31 PM   
Tzar007


Posts: 761
Joined: 2/7/2004
From: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Status: offline
From Beery:


No need to apologise. For some reason my writing style tends to get on peoples' nerves. I don't know how to prevent it without watering down the force of my arguments (which is something that I just can't do in good conscience). I've tried various methods - one time I tried putting in lots of smiley faces, but people REALLY hated that.

I had seen descriptions of the game, and those descriptions were leading me to an understanding of what the product was in terms of certain features. While it's true that the proof of the pudding is in the eating, it's still possible to get a hint of the flavour by the aromas that emanate from the kitchen.

As it happens, it seems that the earlier descriptions I read largely gave me the wrong impression. But there are some areas that I still have qualms about. But I'm willing to reserve judgment until after I've given the game a good workout on my computer.

(in reply to Tzar007)
Post #: 96
RE: HTTR (mini-guide): Tutorial, AAR, tips! - 3/4/2004 3:47:21 PM   
MarkShot


Posts: 6606
Joined: 3/29/2003
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Ugo,

I know I said thank you already, but I just wanted to say it once again. You more than anyone made this recovery possible!

_____________________________

Panther Games (RDOA/HTTR/COTA/BFTB) Beta Tester

(in reply to MarkShot)
Post #: 97
RE: HTTR (mini-guide): Tutorial, AAR, tips! - 3/21/2004 4:06:55 PM   
MarkShot


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Joined: 3/29/2003
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I see that page views are going up on my tips thread quite a bit faster than this one.

Well, I just wanted to remind you folks that there is a lot of discourse on game tips in this thread too, but disguised as an AAR. :)

_____________________________

Panther Games (RDOA/HTTR/COTA/BFTB) Beta Tester

(in reply to MarkShot)
Post #: 98
RE: HTTR (mini-guide): Tutorial, AAR, tips! - 1/13/2006 12:22:55 AM   
MarkShot


Posts: 6606
Joined: 3/29/2003
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--- Public service announcement ---

See first post of this thread in green text.


_____________________________

Panther Games (RDOA/HTTR/COTA/BFTB) Beta Tester

(in reply to MarkShot)
Post #: 99
RE: HTTR (mini-guide): Tutorial, AAR, tips! - 2/25/2006 11:42:42 PM   
MarkShot


Posts: 6606
Joined: 3/29/2003
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--- Public service announcement ---

See first post of this thread in green text - Battle Planning Checklist.


_____________________________

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(in reply to MarkShot)
Post #: 100
RE: HTTR (mini-guide): Tutorial, AAR, tips! - 2/12/2007 1:04:51 PM   
rasnell

 

Posts: 83
Joined: 3/26/2006
Status: offline
Markshot:

You began this wonderful AAR almost exactly three years to today's date. I'm three years late in purchasing the game. I'm awaiting the arrival of HTTR this week. I decided to buy after posting my questions over in the thread called "Gunshy."

Thanks to the great responses on this forum, I've taken the plunge. I started with the RDOA demo, got the hang of the basics and then read this AAR again. I have a much greater understanding and will ease into HTTR before deciding on COTA.

Without at least having the RDOA demo to get an idea of this genre of war gaming, I never would have purchased -- especially not at $50 for COTA.

I'm just one consumer, but it's just a marketing tip for you folks. How can you ever hope to capture new customers or expand your base of fans if:

1. You don't offer a demo.
2. They've never tackled a war game before and are looking to understand the basics.
3. They feel intimidated because they're not grognards and yet the level of detail on these forums seem extraordinary.

The reality, after playing the RDOA demo, is that the game is not nearly as tough to understand once you see it for yourself. But I can see that it has a lot of offer and challenge you before you can master.

It's amazing how differently I read this AAR after the demo. Before, total intimidation. Looked way too hard. Saw Markshot as a grognard that no one could hope to equal. Now, I see how wonderful and thorough his AAR is and I really learned a lot about how to approach a bridge to avoid it blowing and a little bit more about managing artillery.

I'm still not completely clear on positioning and direct control vs. AI control of artillery, but I'm sure I'll get a better idea once the game, complete manual and actual playtime are in front of me.

You've picked up a new customer. Can't wait to try it. But it took a tremendous amount of research for me to get to this point. I bet many prospective customers don't take this much time and avoid war gaming unless it is arcade style. A look at sales might confirm this. Yet it makes more sense to support companies like yours that attempt to teach a little history, too.

(in reply to MarkShot)
Post #: 101
RE: HTTR (mini-guide): Tutorial, AAR, tips! - 2/12/2007 7:26:28 PM   
MarkShot


Posts: 6606
Joined: 3/29/2003
Status: offline
Rasnell,

Thanks for taking the time to write.

The Mini-Guides were written in what I call my "in the cockpit" style. I used to play flight sims online and was pretty good at it. I had a couple of strategy guides out and also regularly used to teach others online. Unlike the very generic conceptual work that can often be found on air combat, I tried to truely put the reader in the cockpit with me, answering questions like: What am I looking at in the game? What thing on the screen is my trigger point for executing something? How exactly do I use the games controls/features to execute? Effectively, how can one take general concepts that any flight simmer is exposed to like "energy management" and teach the player in a specific game how to on every turn pick on an ever increasing advantage on his opponent.

"in the cockpit" ... I think this accounts for my scary AAR style. I am trying to sit you down next to me while I play HTTR or COTA and have you see the game as I see it. Let you understand when, how, and why I reach a conclusion. Once I decide to take a conceptual action how exactly can it be achieved in the game.

But you are right, it scares people. That's why Eddy came up with the 5 minute video guide to COTA. The alternative to reading through 300 pages. :)

Demo:

(1) PG's research showed that the RDOA demo did little to help sell the game and possibly even created negative feedback.

(2) Given #1 and PG's limited resources, no future demos were planned. Although for those who are chomping at the bit to test drive the game, I tend to steer them towards the old RDOA demo.

Enjoy!

_____________________________

Panther Games (RDOA/HTTR/COTA/BFTB) Beta Tester

(in reply to rasnell)
Post #: 102
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