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Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 2:48:29 PM   
jscott991


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I have been watching this game for a while now and have noticed that only one real review is up (that I could find) and its decidedly negative, though the author admits a bias against it from the start. Wargamer, Armchair general, and Out of 8 don't seem to have reviews yet.

I'm a touch wary of the game because the simplified economy seems too simple (you really should be able to improve your economy outside of conquest and I've read on here that you can't) and the complex economy seems a bit too complicated, plus I've seen some outlandish maps (Turkey owning everything), but that happens in EU3 too if a player is "irresponsible" so its not as big a deal.

Anyway, any insights on the state of reviews would be helpful.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 4:26:50 PM   
barbarossa2

 

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Haha... JScott991.

You are right.  The maps which some of the testers have put up showing Turkey owning everything are a bit of a turn off for me too.  I like to play "realistic games", and I think everyone knows that Turkey shouldn't own half of Europe by 1808 (or ANYTIME in the 19th century).  In fact, no power would have. However, there are some players who get a kick out of placing all of Europe under their heel, and I see why WCS has to cater to them too.

However, remember that in western Europe, other than the partition of Poland, for 150 years before the French Revolution, the LARGEST single land transfer that I can think of ("annexation"--not handing minor nations back and forth) was the annexation of Silesia by Prussia from Austria. If anyone knows better, please tell me, because things like this are very interesting to me. Eastern Europe may be different with the Austrian reconquest of Hungary from the Ottomans. I am getting a book on this war (series of wars) next week, when I will be curious to see how fast this occurred.

If a "historically sensitive" player is playing solo and wants more historical results, you can have your own house rule to not use "total war" unless playing as France, and then only once perhaps (I think that the total war concept was developed to facilitate what happened historically in Spain after the French invasion, but think it falls a little from the mark).

I prefer playing PBEM, and in a PBEM, one could (IMHO-should) use the house rule that total war cannot be declared.  OR, that most players cannot declare it, except for France (using it once).

In my opinion, if you like "realistic" historical gaming, liked AH's "War and Peace", "Empires in Arms", or are just plain into pre-20th century gaming, you will like this game.  But I suggest you wait for some other people to post here to see what they say.

In my opinion, the two strongest points of the game are: 1) its treaty system (which will have the few problems with it ironed out by patch 1--hopefully due out soon), and 2) its political system which differentiates between conquered, annexed, and protectorate status.  Great stuff.  Yes, there are some things which I would have done differently, and you can find a list in my 8/10 review elsewhere.  But, on the whole, it is my favorite strategy game in years.

B2 :)



< Message edited by barbarossa2 -- 5/5/2009 8:04:51 PM >

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 5:27:24 PM   
Gil R.


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jscott991,
There are definitely reviews being prepared at sites that are generally interested in games like COG:EE. I don't know when those would appear, but they're in the works. (I'd note that there are links to reviews of the original COG in the COG forum. Since the game has only been improved since then, those would give you at least some idea.)

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 6:57:25 PM   
jscott991


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Well, Guns of August was a huge letdown for me, so I'm in the market for a strategy game to replace EU3 (I'm just burned out on it).  Though I'm really in the mood for 18th century warfare featuring Frederick, Daun, and Maria Theresia, such a game doesn't exist (yet), so this seemed a nice substitute to play out Wars of Austrian Revenge.

I guess I'll wait for some more reviews.  I have serious concerns about the economy and the ease of conquest, just based on perusing the forum.

< Message edited by jscott991 -- 5/5/2009 7:27:12 PM >

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 7:10:35 PM   
barbarossa2

 

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jscott,

What kinds of concerns about the economy?

If you are worried about ease of conquest, you should really, really get into a PBEM.  I play games against the computer merely as practice, because there is no way that a computer opponent which doesn't have a $50,000,000 AI, supported by MIT will offer a human a serious challenge without cheating.  PBEM is a blast.  The diplomatic options in this game are amazing.

-B2

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 7:31:14 PM   
jscott991


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Well, that adds another concern then, because I don't PBEM.  I only play solo games.  So if the AI is no challenge without cheating, then that's a major issue. 

I've read all I can about the simple economy and found that it's probably too simplistic for my tastes.  There is a whole thread on the front page about how you can't do anything to improve your simplified economy except conquer territory.  That's too "Risk" for me.  However, micromanaging a ton of goods to make money also might have limited appeal.  Victoria from Paradox did itself in by focusing too much on abstract economic micromanagement.  Frankly, if a game is going to have lots of micro-details, they had better be somewhat historical in feel, because otherwise what's the point?

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 7:43:52 PM   
Moltke71


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My review will be up at Wargamer in two or three weeks.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 7:45:38 PM   
barbarossa2

 

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:) Well, I don't know what kind of economy you like to play.  So I don't know if you would like it or not.  That's something I can't help you with.  I do know that after a few days I got the hang of it and enjoyed the advanced economy.  I wouldn't play the simple economy, though some people probably like it.  To get into the game, I basically turned on all of the economy/trade advisors and forced myself to learn the combat side of things, then, as I got more and more comfortable with that, I started dabbling in the full economy, which is a bit complex, but that's why I like it. 

Concerning the AI, it seems more competent than anything that has come my way in Total War: Medieval/Medieval2/Empire.  The AI is not a complaint of mine here.  I simply play very little against a computer once I have a "feel" for the game.  It's just a preference.  You would have to ask others on their AI experience too.  But I am a TOUGH/forgiving AI customer.  I KNOW we can't program machines to outthink humans on less than $50,000,000, so I forgive the computer game companies and find human opponents whenever possible.  Of course, DECENT AI helps.  And I feel that CoG:EE has that.

< Message edited by barbarossa2 -- 5/5/2009 7:52:59 PM >

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 7:59:03 PM   
Hard Sarge


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The maps which some of the testers have put up showing Turkey owning everything are a bit of a turn off for me too.  I like to play "realistic games", and I think everyone knows that Turkey shouldn't own half of Europe by 1808 (or ANYTIME in the 19th century)

boy, you guys are Ruff :)

my game was in response to the complaints that you can't play Turkey and have any chance of winning


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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 8:02:30 PM   
barbarossa2

 

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Cool Sarge :)

Don't worry about me.  I am a bit odd.  Don't consider me to be your normal gamer.  I like hard, hard, hard gaming. :)

Sarge, you're doin' your job right.  Most people wanna conquer Europe. I didn't complain about Turkey being impossible to play. But you know, it had been in constant decline in Europe since the siege of Vienna in 1683.

How does one cater to both markets (people who want to conquer all of Europe AND people who want to struggle 20 years for a few provences)??? By having a lot of optional rules on scenario start up. Kind of like check boxes. I think AGEOD does a good job with this.

-B2

< Message edited by barbarossa2 -- 5/5/2009 11:17:20 PM >

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/5/2009 8:37:23 PM   
jscott991


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Hard Sarge

The maps which some of the testers have put up showing Turkey owning everything are a bit of a turn off for me too.  I like to play "realistic games", and I think everyone knows that Turkey shouldn't own half of Europe by 1808 (or ANYTIME in the 19th century)

boy, you guys are Ruff :)

my game was in response to the complaints that you can't play Turkey and have any chance of winning



The fact that it's possible isn't a major plus for someone who is more interested in historical accuracy than playability. :)

What it did suggest to me though is that regaining Silesia from Prussia might be too easy (ala EU3, where Prussia can be kicked around by Austria without much trouble) since if the AI can't beat Turkey as Austria and Prussia, can it really defeat a human Austria?

The primary reason for me to buy the game would be to play Austria (maybe a little France), but that would only be fun if it is was sort of difficult.

I'm on the fence. It might not be fair, but Guns of August has made me both hesitant and eager to try Matrix-published games. Still, either this or Forge of Freedom or both is probably inevitable. I just wish I had more information, which is why I started the thread.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/6/2009 2:40:58 AM   
Gil R.


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jscott991,
Remember that there are different scenarios, some of which certainly are tougher on Austria than others. And as for Hard Sarge's accomplishment of taking over as the Ottomans, he has an amazing ability to take over anything he wants. In FOF, for example, he would play as the Confederates and capture most of the Union just to see if he could, and I don't believe anyone else has done that. So you can't judge either game based solely on what he's able to accomplish.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/6/2009 3:18:44 AM   
jscott991


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Well, I bought it; partly because of barbarossa's case for it and partly because I needed something to do.

However, I can't figure out how to change the default resolution, which leads me to believe you can't.  And it is quite ugly at whatever the default resolution is (it almost looks like 800x600, which is quite out of date). 

Edit: Its 1024x768, fixed. So that answers that. I'll get used to it. Now to just learn how to play.

< Message edited by jscott991 -- 5/6/2009 3:25:31 AM >

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/6/2009 12:17:57 PM   
Hard Sarge


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Good, I glad you got it, and I hope you enjoy it (FoF is great too :)

what I was trying to say is, there were complaints about being able to play Turkey, so in my game, I went out of my way, to bash and trash whom ever I could, and to take everything I could, to show, that even Turkey can put up a fight if played with (it is a lot of work, believe me)

for playing vs a AI Turkey, if you got your hands full, or are busy elsewhere, Turkey can still put a hurting on you, as France, one of my first moves is to get Turkey into the war, I have seen them goble up a good chunk of the Ossites (but to be honest, Russian tends to forget about me, and turn on the Turks, and screw things up)

everything being prefect, the game is very easy to play, but, most times, the different AI players, don't like to play as you would hope, that Nation you got such good relations with, maybe the one trying to form a group, to declare war on you (it pays to check the treaties every once in a while, you may be surprised at what is going on behind your back)

plus, we are working on what the players on the forum, see as mistakes or things being wrong, so don't worry about speaking up, or asking questions




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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/6/2009 1:47:55 PM   
jscott991


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Well, two to three hours in, one of my concerns seems justified; the simple economy is too simple.  As Austria, I built a few depots to prevent my units from foraging and one infantry and was already running a deficit.  So then I'm left wondering, what now?  If you can't build up your economy and you can't build more units because you are running a deficit already, suddenly a very complicated and full game seems a little empty.

The advanced economy, though, was way over my head for the first evening, so I'll have to start completely over later today.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/6/2009 2:56:16 PM   
morganbj


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There's an advanced economy guide in the making that will help you out.  Stay tuned.

But, I've never had serious cash problems with the simple economy (in fact, my personal opinion is that there's too much of it) , so I wonder what the problem is for you.  Too many depots?  I'm curious.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/6/2009 2:59:37 PM   
barbarossa2

 

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Seriously, stick with the advanced economy.  Use everything else as a learning tool to get to that point. At first I thought I was going to play ONLY the simple economy when I got the game, because I had heard from a friend it was too complex. Well, when I acutally bought the game, I took a breath and decided that I would not play the simple economy at all--because I didn't want to get used to it and then think the advanced economy was insurmountable. Instead I went for the slow immersion, knowing it would take me 3-4 evenings or even 5 to get the general hang of it. I started my first advanced economy games with Sweden, so I wouldn't have to keep track of as much.

Interestingly, the friend who thought the advanced economy was too complex in CoG came over for a hotseat evening after I had learned it. After just a few turns of him watching me do my turns with the advanced economy, he decided he loved it and that it was easy. He is now a proud owner of CoG:EE and is spreading the word himself.

Ease yourself into the advanced economy and don't expect to be able to master it in the first 3-4 evenings of play.  I would just leave on your trade advisor.  Deal with learning trade last IMHO.

It is now actually, my favorite economy system in a strategic level game.  I prefer it over the "building based" approach of the Total War series.  And there is just enough mystery in the declining returns system of the advanced economy that I really, really enjoy it.  I much prefer it over a system where you know exactly what you are going to get out of it. 

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask. :)

< Message edited by barbarossa2 -- 5/6/2009 3:09:40 PM >

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/6/2009 3:14:51 PM   
jscott991


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In the 1803 scenario (I was trying to find a scenario where Austria starts at peace) I built a depot in Venetia because of the huge foraging casualties expected and another depot in Moravia to allow me to mass troops for an invasion of Silesia.  I also built one infantry.  I believe these moves pushed Austria's small gold surplus into a small deficit.

I didn't want to use the simple economy either for the very reason that it can't be improved outside of conquest, but I also don't have a hard copy of the manual or a guide on the advanced economy, so I thought it might be wise to try it as I learned the map, how to just click on units (I still can't figure out to merge two armies), etc.  However, as I said, I ran out of stuff to do on the second turn, unless I wanted to go to war.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/6/2009 5:41:36 PM   
Gil R.


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jscott991,
It's good to see that you took the plunge.

I can vouch for bjmorgan's guide to the Advanced Economy, which is very readable and gives the advice one needs to get going with that. So I'm sure you'll find that a big help.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/6/2009 10:17:11 PM   
Mus

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: barbarossa2

I didn't complain about Turkey being impossible to play.


I dont think anyone did.

My complaint about Turkey was the severity of the economic gimping (massive extra money and development time for Turks) and the effect that would have on Turkey being able to compete in a game versus HUMAN opponents who will intelligently develop their countries over time and exploit Turkeys inability to develop in kind.

As an example in our 1804 game as Turkey (in fact this is what brought up the complaint about the new Turkish economic development rules) I had to spend 100+ money and wait nearly 2 years (thats with Development slider almost maxed) to develop factories in Bursa sufficient to build artillery units, only to find out there are unwritten requirements of having 2 barracks levels in a province to build artillery. So thats another 200+ money and another over 2 years before I will be able to build artillery.

Add on the fact that human opponents can plunder Turkish territory causing damage Turkey can never recover from and the economic rule is a little too exploitable by intelligent opponents.

My complaint was never about Turkey versus the AI and I repeatedly stated that in the original thread.

I think a better way to retard Turkish growth is give them a sliding amount of permanent waste to represent the corruption in their system that can be reduced over time but probably never eliminated.

< Message edited by Mus -- 5/7/2009 12:26:39 AM >

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/8/2009 6:12:00 PM   
jscott991


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To close out this thread, for those who like me were on the fence, don't purchase this game unless you are prepared to play PBEM almost exclusively, or can tolerate excessive, outlandish, and very noticeable AI cheating on all but the lowest difficulty settings.

The AI will receive enormous economic bonuses (we're talking bonuses that produce AI treasuries in the thousands of gold, while the player has a balance in the low hundreds, especially at the start of the game), plus bonuses during combat that I haven't done much research on (but the poster "dude" seems to have).

Read threads about the AI gold levels very carefully before purchasing this game and hopefully wait for a credible Web site to call the game and its designers to task for this shortcut.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/8/2009 7:40:17 PM   
Anthropoid


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To build on Jscott's post: indeed, don't buy this game if you actually want to have to learn any complexity, cope with a steep learning curve, or deal with any actual challenges to total victory. There are plenty of 'easy' games out there where victory for the human against AI is more or less assured at all difficulty levels and which have lots more fancy graphics with explosions, and blood and gore

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/8/2009 8:00:56 PM   
jscott991


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You are arguing that a game whose AI requires massive influx of resources to be competitive is somehow more complicated than games that don't take this kind of shortcut (like Galactic Civilizations for one)?

It's kind of the opposite.  This level of cheating is only needed in a game looking for a shortcut to a truely satisfying single player experience.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/8/2009 8:12:01 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991
You are arguing that a game whose AI requires massive influx of resources to be competitive is somehow more complicated than games that don't take this kind of shortcut (like Galactic Civilizations for one)?

It's kind of the opposite.  This level of cheating is only needed in a game looking for a shortcut to a truely satisfying single player experience.


That's simply not true. The game does not require those bonuses. Why don't you give it a try at one of the lowest levels without bonuses and see how it does? I think it will still give you a pretty good game.

I think you're jumping to quite a few conclusions for having just started playing the game.

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/8/2009 8:41:11 PM   
Anthropoid


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Haven't played Gal Civ, but did hear a buddy at another forum tout it. Is that a really good game?

I had the impression it was an MMOG though? Is that not true?

Better, even MUCH better AI in human-vs-computer engines out there (e.g., Gal Civ) may well be true. I wouldn't try to argue that the AI in COGEE is 'the best' out there.

Given the specific focus of the game, and the small team of guys who have developed it, I'd be surprised if that was the case. In short, I'd guess you are right, and there are better AIs out there.

But that is not the point underlying either the theme of your recent posts, nor the explicit message you have chosen to convey (in your signature and in multiple posts that are starting to border on spamming with the same message being conveyed multiple times). The point is not whether COGEE is NOT the best out there; the point is that the COGEE is at least on a par with AI in _many_ comparable games out there and is arguably _better_ than many AIs out there.

You are recommending to other gamers that they "not buy" the game cause it "is strictly for PBEM" or that it has a "terrible AI." I am here to disagree with you on that point, and there are a lot of us on here whom I suspect will concur with me, and disagree with you. I'm sure all of us are happy to hear you out, and agree to disagree in a civil way, but it seems to me you are verging over into the 'angry tirade poster' approach, so you might consider that feedback. Sure, the AI in COGEE is less than perfect; I can empathize with some frustration. Heck! I started a thread on here a while back where I complained about how easy it is to capture whole fleets with blockades! It is just that doing it in a way that seems spiteful, rash, or mean spirited to the developers, testers or fan community generally does not go over very well.

The fact that there are games in which the engine/topic/design etc. all synergize into a game with an AI that is "better" than the one in COGEE does not make COGEE unworthy of consideration. It simply means that you have jumped quickly to the conclusion that you do not like the game because it does not meet your expectations. Sorry to hear that, but then that happens to all of us from time to time. If you consider some of the suggestions being offered for how to play it differently maybe you can still get some fun out of it after all? Unless of course you are dead set in your conclusion that it is "worthless to you."

I bought Age of Empires, installed it, played it for a few hours and then just plain uninstalled and put it on the shelf. I'll probably never play it ever again. Do you see me on the AE sites badmouthing the game? What purpose would that serve exactly?

Now if I thought it was a brilliant game design that just needed to be modded, fixed, retooled, etc., and I went on their sites to post lots of criticisms combined with constuctive suggestions that would be something else entirely . . .

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/8/2009 9:47:23 PM   
jscott991


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I'm bitter that I purchased the game after doing so much research, without waiting for a proper review, only to discover that something I was fairly certain was not true (the AI cheating on the normal difficulty level) is, in fact, true and that the developer confirmed this in a short post in a thread that I missed.

If I seem like I'm spamming, sorry.  But I won't apologize for making this issue more widely known.  If this were made more clear, I wouldn't own the game and I wouldn't be here "spamming."

The fact is that the documentation and information I could find implied or explicitly stated that bonuses were granted on higher difficulty levels.  I already had qualms about the AI from the Turkey AAR and some other maps where I saw most of Europe conquered in a strange way.  Several posters assured me those results were anomalous, some articulate individuals made great cases for the game, and forum moderators were helpful.  So I took the plunge, when I should have waited. 

In some ways it's my fault for not finding ericbabe's post on cheating.  But I still think that it is not unjustified to feel a bit like this information was concealed unnecessarily.  If the AI required the bonuses on such a plethora of difficulty level, say so.  I'm not the only poster to have only found this out by careful investigation within the game.

Probably shortly, my anger will die down, I'll throw the game aside, and you'll never have to deal with me again (of course, Matrix/WCS will have my money, so they will be the true winners).

Edit: I won't post anymore about this topic here. I will say that I usually don't mind wasting money on strategy games I don't like, because the genre needs support.

< Message edited by jscott991 -- 5/8/2009 9:57:00 PM >

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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/8/2009 10:34:01 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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I really, truly don't understand your logic. It's clear that the AI getting some resource bonuses really bothers you, even though that's standard in most strategy games. It's also a fact that there is a level that you can play on where the AI gets no resource bonuses and is still the same AI in other respects. If the resource bonuses are what is getting you worked up, then just play at the lowest level. Problem solved. I'm sorry the documentation didn't make clear which level had no bonuses, but the forum responses have.

If you think we enjoy having unhappy customers, you're wrong. I just wish you'd hear what folks are trying to tell you.

Regards,

- Erik

< Message edited by Erik Rutins -- 5/8/2009 10:46:50 PM >


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RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/8/2009 10:53:11 PM   
jscott991


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I do hear what you are saying, but it's not all that clear, which is partly my fault.

1. The AI receives bonuses on all difficulty levels above the lowest, which contrasts with the documentation which states that bonuses occur only above normal.  So, the AI is on an unlevel playing field on all difficulty levels, except one, right?

2. The documentation says that the player receives bonuses on levels below normal.  That's pretty typical for a strategy game.  Is that true?

If both of those things are true, where is the balanced game?  Where is the game where the AI is operating at the same economic level as me?  It isn't normal, despite the documentation.

Is it the easiest level? 

(in reply to Erik Rutins)
Post #: 28
RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/9/2009 5:08:54 AM   
Mus

 

Posts: 1759
Joined: 11/13/2005
Status: offline
Easiest.

(in reply to jscott991)
Post #: 29
RE: Are there any reviews available for CoG:EE - 5/9/2009 4:50:16 PM   
jscott991


Posts: 530
Joined: 4/23/2009
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Mus

Easiest.


No, you're wrong.

On Easiest I am receiving huge economic bonuses, just like the AI on normal.

So I ask again, where is the fair game? Where is the game where I'm playing by the same rules as the AI.

There is no fair game is there? On every difficulty level, someone is cheating. The AI cheats on normal. And I'm cheating on Easiest and Easier.

And yet, people are surprised I'm upset over this? I don't know what to say.

< Message edited by jscott991 -- 5/9/2009 4:54:06 PM >

(in reply to Mus)
Post #: 30
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