Of course purchasing MC's doesn't purchase SPWAW…and perhaps some people have spent US$100 on their MC's…being an Australian with delivery I have spent closer over AUD$300…is there a game out there that costs that much? Sure I would like a new version of SPWAW…a lot of people have spent money on MC's would , but that doesn't make it worth maintaining further…
Paul has said responses to MC's have been poor…to get income from SPWAW Matrix have to build MC's, which have a significant cost overhead in themselves…at US$25 each, after production costs, they get less than $20…after business overheads your probably looking at $10…if they sell 2000, that comes to $20,000…which is the cost of a good developer for about 10 weeks…that would barely pay for the cost of the "bug" fixes…let alone the cost of the MC that would have to be built to go with it…MC's, like the SPWAW updates, have all been built free as a gift to us fans by people who care…matrix has now become a business concern, so is there anyway that matrix, as a financial concern, can afford to keep developing a product which is nothing but a financial drain and an emotional strain on the company and its staff.
As Les_the_Sarge says, let's wait for Combat Leader…if I am going to pay anymore, it isn't for an update to a venerable game for which the main failings are that the conceptual premise on which the game was built is too complex for the AI to work with. SPWAW is a great moderator of PBEM or H2H games, where both sides are human…but as an AI vs human game it fails dismally…the AI has no tactical versatility, all it can do in attack is charge forward into the human players waiting guns, and in defense form a front-line which takes virtually no consideration of the macro-terrain…find one end and you can pull it undone like a loose thread. Scenarios, including those in MC's, are better but generally end-up relying on the AI receiving an advantage in forces to create an even game…how many times have I found that in attack, the defenders actually have more units than me…no commander would willingly commit his forces without a 2:1 local superiority…but you can in SPWAW cause the AI is so stupid…this often makes AI opponent scenarios disastrous for PBEM, because it gives the AI-surrogate opponent an unreal advantage in units.
These, to me, are the real bugs in SPWAW, and they can't be fixed without a new game engine, hence Combat Leader.
What has frequently come out in forums is that the "bug" fixes requested are not programming errors or system design glitches that need to be fixed. Instead they are about changing game parameters to fit different player preferences. Along the may the last few real bugs have been fixed (like the synch and jugo bugs), either by code or game process. These changes to game parameters have meant some changes to code, which risks more bugs…that means lots and lots and LOTS of testing to minimise them, then follow-up builds to patch any more that are found…it just isn't worthwhile continuing to band-aid an old system when it is past its use-by date. The only way to go forward is by building a new game engine that resolves problems
SPWAW has gone through many updates…versions 4, 5, 6 and 7 are really variations of the same game on the same game engine…each version worked on its own merits as a game…each version has changed slightly the game management system based on player requests…version 4 infantry was overly vulnerable when fired at from close range; so version 5/6 made them tougher in cover and introduced overrun/melee to avoid it taking 20 turns to eliminate routed infantry; version 6 had armour shot routines that failed to reflect armour quality/type/ammo, so version 7 was implemented to resolve that. All these versions are playable in themselves…95% of the effort that went into each release was enhancement, 5% was bug fixes…better to spend that 95% enhancement effort on a new game.