... For me the atmosphere of a game decides whether it is a winner or not. AI must be solide of course, graphics are important, but a wargame must feel right.
I could not have defined my preferences better myself.
PCO still is a rough diamond, but if enough time and energy is invested it can be become an absolute classic.
Definitely this game is not complete. which is not a tragic problem if one could see a clear plan how and when does Matrix want to solve the:
1. Infantry model
2. Destructible terrain and Buildings
3. Bigger maps
What I see as a real problem is that Matrix is communicating very poor way. I have begged for information more than a day ago and me together with other people interested have not any answer yet. Even a timely communication about delays make better credit then no information at all.
I have red many rumors about PCO like having serious problems with coding, developers leaving and the game being dead as whole. If Matrix does not give information it will backfire. The game is already neglected in the gaming clubs. at least those few faithful should be informed properly IMHO.
Sorry for this but I believe it was time to write it. I would happily support PCO with my skills and limited time but I need to see a clear future If I invest my scarce gaming time into something.
Like many of you, summer is a busy time for the development team as well. All the things that summer means were multiplied by the development team working on the upgrade that became PCO for over 2 years. It was time for some of us to take a short break too.
1) Where is the game system going? Not sure yet. Current issues need patched first and foremost. Until the current issues are fixed I don't expect to see a roadmap to where PC is heading. The Western Front has always been the area most discussed. Now, whether that includes the 1930's - early 1940's and mid 1940's I have no idea.
2) Are there plans for expansions or further patches? Yes. I personally am working on an expansion and would support other ideas that have been discussed.
3) My own personal preferences are that the system moves towards a true construction kit. Will that mean a totally new engine? Don't know. Would I continue to support the PC engine in it's current format with improved infantry-artillery-CAS-AAA and destructible terrain. Yes, I would.
At the moment any comments you will get from us will all be our own personal preferences and nothing from the team; since the team is working on the patch and not anything for PCO future projects. Well, except the expansion I'm working on. That is an ongoing project at the moment.
What's interesting is that PC was considered dead for the 2+ years we were working on it and right up to the point of release we were being told how it would never be patched and the system was dead. The entire time Matrix was buying the code, having us continue work on it, and getting two new coders. One of which also didn't work out.
So, just because you don't see anything rippling across the top of the water doesn't mean that there aren't things moving under the water.
I've also been on your side of the line though.
There have been comments made about how poorly PCO is doing, and that I should maybe be embarrassed for my association with PCO. I'm curious about that. I've always heard, if you don't like something, go do it yourself. So, I/we did. And now, somehow I'm supposed to be embarrassed for that. I think most of that is simply gamer loyalty, since I used to be heavily associated with another game system.
Or maybe it's how PCO turned out that I'm supposed to be embarrassed about. In which case I don't get that either. We put two years worth of work into a game system that had issues. From where I sit, I'm far from being embarrassed about the results. We put a game together that lets as many of those that bought the original games as possible play the new one, as well as upgrading the new one so much as to supersede the older versions.
In the far future I wouldn't be surprised to see PC be replaced with a newer code. Will that be now? I don't know. Probably not.
I'd like to see the game made into a construction set. Where you simply use the tools put into the scenario/campaign/operation editor to depict whatever time frame you like. To use basic terrain textures to create any terrain on earth. Then simply add vehicles, infantry, artillery or air and FIGHT. Is that going to happen right now? I don't know. We seem to be slowly moving in that direction.
Is this the development team that can make all this happen? I think, with the improvements we made to PCO, that we could do it. But it's not just about the development team and what we want. This game series, above all others, is about wargamers and what they want. I've been very vocal about PCO. It's because I think it's far past the time where gamers have a say in what games are made. What features they have in them and how they play. Game companies complain about profits. The answer is simple; make games the GAMERS want. PCO has been touted as one of those rare games where that's happened and is continuing to happen. Which is all well and good, but PCO should be the first step in this process not the last. I think you'll find that's exactly where we are in the process. We are on the bottom step. The only way to go is up. We moved the series off the ground floor but we're still only on the first step. Think of what that means as to where this game series could go.
* PCO was made by gamers for gamers. It's not perfect but we never claimed it was. It was only ever intended to be a patch, then an upgrade and finally it became it's own game.
* The series is continuing to be patched and issues fine tuned. Especially the way the game operates on the different systems we all have.
* Graphics can, and will be, a lot better as Matrix determines that the system requirements include more modern machines than PC:OWS was designed to play on.
* Expansions are already being worked on. More are to come. The target date for my expansion is this current year.
* Once the patch is finished we can actually start to think of where PC goes from here.
I would personally like to thank every single one of you that has had any opinion, comment or suggestion that has to do with PCO. This game series was made by gamers for gamers. All your input is considered. We may not implement every suggestion but we discuss everyone of them. So, thanks for helping make PCO what is and hopefully we'll make another big leap forward with the next game in the series.
< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 8/8/2011 11:19:31 PM >
The most expensive thing in the world is free time.
Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.