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Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / AI Progressing - 10/15/2013 3:06:12 AM   
CarlVon

 

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Hi Everyone,

About a year ago I started building a tactical combat game (space). The progress have been very good. Me and some friends are now doing fleet combat. The game is a stable Beta. In the next few months I would like to find more players if anyone is interested let me know.

And yes... you finally get to run real capital ships.

http://www.spacesector.com/blog/forum/thread-965.html

Thanks.


< Message edited by CarlVon -- 1/12/2015 2:44:45 AM >
Post #: 1
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/15/2013 8:52:30 PM   
wings7


Posts: 4608
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From: Phoenix, Arizona
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Dan, looks promising! Keep us posted!

Patrick

(in reply to CarlVon)
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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/15/2013 10:14:04 PM   
CarlVon

 

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Thanks Patrick,

It really made me happy to get some feedback. We will finish up our current battle this week and then start planning the next phase. Would you know anyone that would be interested in a few months or so? Don't need many. From there I figure I can do a manual etc. And then get the server up and running full time so they can setup battles.

(in reply to wings7)
Post #: 3
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/15/2013 11:41:47 PM   
Twotribes


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Is it just battles? No strategic mode exploring and building and such?

(in reply to CarlVon)
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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/16/2013 12:09:56 AM   
CarlVon

 

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Hi Twotribes,

Yes it's a fleet combat game. But it scales so big at this point, I don't want to understate it, this kind of caught us off guard.

To answer your question, if we get enough players, we would love to build an empire level meta game above it.

I know those screenshots don't explain much -- I will make a package soon so you guys can understand. The game breaks in to a few parts, the Strategy, Operational and Tactics are much more rich and deep then we ever expected.

There are no force fields, so angles are VERY important. The flank is one of the worst things that can happen, if you expose your rear, it's terrible, because the engines cannot be armored as much. Sometimes if the fleets are large enough, it looks like line battle with the flanks trying to get side shots and cross angles. Its basically a knife fight, lots of things will get hit, you have to have a solid stomach for many maneuvers. I'm a pretty good raider myself, breaking lines etc. Anyone who can get good timing working during attacks can be devistating.

On the tactical level, knowing the ships, what they can do etc. is a must. But all levels of combat are critical. One of our guys is an excellent pilot, and it works, causing major damage. Even holding formation is tricky when someone pushes you around with a raid.

Kinda goes like this.

1. Strategic Deployment - Fleet Formation (Big Deal)
2. Strategic Plan - This quickly becomes less flexible as things progress, but it needs to be thought out a bit.
3. Operational Level - This is basically the part where you test each other, some times skirmish etc. The whole team will work together here to achieve position.
4. Tactical Level - Once you think you have the better position, many of the ships can accelerate at very quick speeds, this will catch your opponent by supprise, but it will also stiffen your speeds and commit you. Battleships are great, but take time to cool their guns, so they need support, frigates are fast as heck, assault frigate can charge with rail guns, but they need anti projectile support from our assault cruisers. This goes on and on as we can create new ships, but for now 4-5 is enough.

So far, bottom line: There are endless strategies and tactics, staggering some times. It's slow and calm at the start, and will quickly devolve in to a massive bloody knife fight :-)

Our current battle I will post up when we are done, fully annotated so people can see the things that happen. I don't really have anything to compare it too, the game never gets "bogged down", there is no where to hide, you HAVE to fight, no hiding in bunkers here. You can only flee in the first few minutes, if you know what your doing.


(in reply to Twotribes)
Post #: 5
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/16/2013 3:13:30 AM   
Perturabo


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Sounds very interesting. Any chances for posting screenshots here? The other forums has members-only attachment viewing.
Will it have an AI?

_____________________________

People shouldn't ask themselves why schools get shoot up.
They should ask themselves why people who finish schools burned out due to mobbing aren't receiving high enough compensations to not seek vengeance.

(in reply to CarlVon)
Post #: 6
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/16/2013 3:40:40 AM   
CarlVon

 

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Hi Perturabo,

Here's some images I have attached from our current (Medium-Small) Battle :-). We have positioned on each other and the southern force is striking me on my left flank, first stage is a projectile strike, then will come the lasers :-)

Battle Disposition, I think the southern force has a slight advantage, the battleships on my fleet (north) are a little far out.




Here's a close up of the east flank, I launch projectiles! The board should be scared of the fist.




He messed up his positioning and I scored a devistating hit on one of the frigate. Basically his cruisers (that have anti projectile) were to far away for atiquite protection. But it's FAR from over, this game has a nasty way of making you loose when you get over confident. In this, you can see the interface. Sorry almost too big. This hit was deadly because his CPU, Sensors and COMS are out, he cannot fire anymore. If sensors and CPU are down, and COMS is up, they can use the fleet data relay for target data, but loose either Sensor or CPU and COMMS and your disabled. Larger ships have Backup Systems :-)




Attachment (3)

< Message edited by CarlVon -- 10/16/2013 3:51:22 AM >

(in reply to Perturabo)
Post #: 7
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/16/2013 8:28:18 PM   
wings7


Posts: 4608
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From: Phoenix, Arizona
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: CarlVon

Thanks Patrick,

It really made me happy to get some feedback. We will finish up our current battle this week and then start planning the next phase. Would you know anyone that would be interested in a few months or so? Don't need many. From there I figure I can do a manual etc. And then get the server up and running full time so they can setup battles.


Dan, I personally don't know of anyone but I'm sure you will have some more responses here...good luck and thanks for all your hard work and dedication!

Patrick

(in reply to CarlVon)
Post #: 8
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/16/2013 11:05:26 PM   
CarlVon

 

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Thanks Patrick,

I will get some more things ready and let you know. Hopefully you can join us in the Glory! :-)

(in reply to wings7)
Post #: 9
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/16/2013 11:14:22 PM   
wodin


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From: England
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If this had an AI I'd be all over it..without one sorry but not interested.

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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing - 10/17/2013 2:13:46 AM   
CarlVon

 

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Thanks for the feedback Wodlin, it's appriciated.

Ya, at this point it is much too complex to do AI. Except for a good rush :-). It is hard to get people together to play a game.

That being said, the game is designed with busy lives in mind. It is "scalable" turn based and client / server. It also has full email integration so it can notify players when the turn is ready. It's nice because you can play a few rounds a night and take your time.

Just curious, would you be interested in an Empire Level meta game if there is also no AI?

Thanks!
Dan

(in reply to wodin)
Post #: 11
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/17/2013 3:15:15 AM   
Twotribes


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Make it hotseat able and I would be interested.

(in reply to CarlVon)
Post #: 12
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/17/2013 3:20:14 AM   
CarlVon

 

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Hi Twotribes,

Yes, it already is. All one would have to do is open 2x clients on the same computer and alternate. It is full client / server so you could do that or just play from 2x computers at once, once all users have ended their turn, the game cycles and all ships / firing etc runs.

I'm just starting to build the lobby system tonight :-). ie; Ability to choose an mission etc.

(in reply to Twotribes)
Post #: 13
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/17/2013 8:09:58 AM   
wodin


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From: England
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Empire meta game and hotseat is better than nothing..bu maybe Slitherine is interested and will invest and help you do an AI aswell?? If not I can ask Scot at HPS but I doubt they would be able to help with AI etc..

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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/17/2013 9:19:59 PM   
CarlVon

 

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Joined: 9/11/2012
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Thanks, perhaps AI can be something for the future. But for now the game plan:

1. Get a lobby system completed in the next month or so, so people wanting to give it try can login and shoot at each other, hot seat as well :-).
2. Get you guys a step by step of a good battle so you can see the scope etc.
3. Get some life flowing through, keep in mind we can basically design anything. The ship design system has no limits.
4. If the user base grows, I would like to start to move up one level to logistics (ie; starbases, supply lines etc) But that doesn't matter, need people playing and giving input first. My view will be pretty narrow right now.

(in reply to wodin)
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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/18/2013 5:05:13 AM   
Meanfcker


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I have played a couple of games with Dan through the development process.
This game is stinkin fun!
It is very difficult to perform a credible fake with Newtonian physics dictating every movement, and fake you must, in order to achieve superior concentration of force at the decisive point and the decisive moment.
This game looks deceptively simple, but it is complex and very cerebral.
The game starts out with everyone comfortable with 20 to 60 second cycle times, (this is dictated by the players, lowest preferred cycle time has precedence and will stop the game at that time, in order for ship orders to be changed, or not as the map dictates), and generally stays that way until everyone starts coming into range of the big guns! At that point the game usually starts to scale down to one second intervals (with 16000 m/s combined approach velocities). The lasers obviously have a optimal targeting range and things get very busy at that point.
For those of you who have bothered to read Mahan, this game is an awesome platform on which to try and emulate Monk, and De Ruyters and Suffren.
Very fun game, Dan has done some fine work here.
Wish I had more time to play. :-(
Meanie.

(in reply to CarlVon)
Post #: 16
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/18/2013 6:50:48 PM   
CarlVon

 

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Thanks Mean,

I look forward to getting back to our current fight soon. This is the fight that I'm taking screen shots of as we go. It should be a good one! If I can just take out 1 of your battleships my life would be complete :-).

(in reply to Meanfcker)
Post #: 17
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/18/2013 11:26:50 PM   
Meanfcker


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Think Asteroids, but these asteroids gather into groups and shoot back!

(in reply to CarlVon)
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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/19/2013 1:14:47 PM   
CarlVon

 

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We are just finishing up a big battle, I will post a full after action report for everyone's viewing. It's bloody :-).

(in reply to Meanfcker)
Post #: 19
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/19/2013 10:50:58 PM   
Stilletto

 

Posts: 119
Joined: 1/8/2003
From: Texas
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This looks very, very interesting. I would love to see an AI, but if not a good Empire level game on top of it would help a lot. Either way I will be watching your progress.

Had to come back and edit this and mention I never would have seen this if it wasn't for Wodin's Tactical Wargames Facebook page. Love that page wodin!!

< Message edited by Stilletto -- 10/19/2013 10:54:44 PM >


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When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout.

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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/19/2013 10:58:16 PM   
wodin


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Pleasure is all mine.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Stilletto


Had to come back and edit this and mention I never would have seen this if it wasn't for Wodin's Tactical Wargames Facebook page. Love that page wodin!!



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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/20/2013 7:53:47 AM   
CarlVon

 

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Thanks guys, also I really enjoyed Wodlin's facebooks page. Will have to keep an eye on it.

Before I go throwing a meta game over top of it, I hope you can join us when the server is up and running in a few weeks. You will find it rich with horrible decitions around every corner :-). From the Strategic to the tactical.

Here's a peek of the battle in it's current state, it has been amazing so far. I have to say, Mean is teaching me how to use the big ships, but I got a good raid in on one of his battleships.

You will get a play-by-play of how this mess came to be in about a week. As C-3P0 said, "The damage doesn't look as bad from up here", but many of these ships are hole ridden wrecks floating around. Many of the ships are exausted as well. It has been a bitter fight.

Also, the map is vector based, so it is possible to zoom in at any scale. But I moved it way out so you could see the general state.








Attachment (1)

< Message edited by CarlVon -- 10/20/2013 8:01:28 AM >

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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/20/2013 10:31:58 AM   
Hertston


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From: Cornwall, UK
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Stilletto

This looks very, very interesting. I would love to see an AI, but if not a good Empire level game on top of it would help a lot. Either way I will be watching your progress.


Likewise. Not interested in a meta game at all as there are plenty of options to scratch that particular itch, but I would like to see an AI opponent(s). Doesn't have to be an Honor Harrington or Black Jack Geary - just something to play against and try out a few strategies while learning how the game works before taking on human opponents.

(in reply to Stilletto)
Post #: 23
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/20/2013 12:27:23 PM   
Meanfcker


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I personally feel that Dan should keep making the game more user friendly and not bother with AI. Right now, The game is playable and fun. In this game, a particularly difficult decision is whether to shoot early and try pick off your opponents lasers, or to wait and try to give him the "meat cleaver in the face" (to quote Dan), that is to delay your shot until it is going to break into the core of the ship and try to get vital systems. After a shot, the lasers have a cool down period which acts as the cycle time. You may only get one good shot at your opponent, you really want to make it count. The AI could not be programmed to fight properly, and it would be almost impossible to teach the AI to smell a trap. This is why I can crush the AI in ATG on ++production level without even trying. The best way to learn what this game is all about is to have a one on one ship duel with another opponent. You will learn most of what you need to play, in a single ship fight. A skilled player does not have a very great advantage in single ship combat. Adding more ships simply adds confusion and the opportunity to catch you opponent with his wrong foot forward.

(in reply to Hertston)
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RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/20/2013 2:26:43 PM   
CarlVon

 

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That's correct Mean,

For example, the lobby system is almost done. I will setup some missions. One could just be 'fly a single ship around', that should get you the basics of flying on your own time. Next will be the duel, just find a buddy for hot seat and duke it out with a couple frigates. After that squad battle, 4 ships each, that's when it will get very interesting.

Oh, and I will build a good tutorial / manual soon. After the 'after action' report.

Once you read the after action report in a week or so, you will see why AI would be very difficult. Gunnery, (what Mean was talking about) is pretty basic to make an AI for, it's more flight that would be very hard. I would make it just charge you :-).

I highly agree with Hertston, the 4x game is done to death. I love them, but I have been looking for 20 years for a good Tactical game that can scale to full strategic etc. Once you see this, there so far is nothing like it. I have played everything from Rules of Enguagement on my Amiga to Begin to X3. Even Tacyon and Elite (on my C64).

Rules was great, but had seriously stupid AI and a boring combat model, finally after a few years I can finally command my CAPITAL ship and a 20+ fleet (it will scales to 100's of ships per fleet if you want), and take on an eager opponent in the cold harsh reality of space. :-)

Just a quick one on the other points:

Mean is a strategic level player, and such his mind always focuses on that. Seriously he could easily control 100+ ships by himself. It will be great fun for him to run a fleet vs say 3 or 4 of us mortals. :-) That being said we need to be clear about some points...

1. The UI is pretty easy to use, I think what Mean is referring to is more 'tools'. Which I'm working on as I type.

2. Ship to Ship tactics *DO* matter, a good pilot in the same ship 1-vs-1 can be a big difference. New pilots can lock their vectors too hard and provide their enemy who has more control a check mate on a side hit, and good gunnery is helpful as well.

3. On the larger side, to be more specific, the ability to hold a fleet and adjust formation is a major skill as well, but that is composed of the piloting on individual ships. Make no mistake, this is a Tactical level came that scales to strategic. This game will work for all levels.

< Message edited by CarlVon -- 10/20/2013 5:27:52 PM >

(in reply to Meanfcker)
Post #: 25
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/22/2013 2:46:51 AM   
Stilletto

 

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From: Texas
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Hertston


Likewise. Not interested in a meta game at all as there are plenty of options to scratch that particular itch, but I would like to see an AI opponent(s). Doesn't have to be an Honor Harrington or Black Jack Geary - just something to play against and try out a few strategies while learning how the game works before taking on human opponents.



It's funny that you mentioned Black Jack Geary. I was thinking about him and the In Death Ground series while typing that message. I've waited forever for a good tactical space combat game that was along those lines. I think the AI or anything other than the polished tactical game can wait until way last.

_____________________________

When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout.

"Ms. Betty has sharp thorns, but underneath is a delicate flower." -ltfightr

(in reply to Hertston)
Post #: 26
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/22/2013 6:14:32 AM   
Twotribes


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Without a means to simulate an economy and movement between stars all you have is a point buying battle. No strategy to that at all.

(in reply to CarlVon)
Post #: 27
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/22/2013 11:05:15 AM   
Meanfcker


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quote:

Without a means to simulate an economy and movement between stars all you have is a point buying battle. No strategy to that at all.

You would be surprised at how much thinking can go into one of these battles.
In one sense, right now we do just spend points and duke it out like Napoleon Total War, but even in that there is strategy. Should you take an offensive or defensive posture? Should you fake a defensive posture and launch a quick attack? Raid part of his fleet or try to talk him into a trap so you can get all of it?
One ship on one is pretty much just a tactical skirmish. Once the number of ships go up, the amount of skull sweat required goes up exponentially.
Meanie.

(in reply to Twotribes)
Post #: 28
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/22/2013 11:19:31 AM   
Perturabo


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A single system campaign mode could be interesting.

_____________________________

People shouldn't ask themselves why schools get shoot up.
They should ask themselves why people who finish schools burned out due to mobbing aren't receiving high enough compensations to not seek vengeance.

(in reply to Meanfcker)
Post #: 29
RE: Space / Tactical Fleet Combat Game / Progressing * ... - 10/22/2013 2:46:09 PM   
Stilletto

 

Posts: 119
Joined: 1/8/2003
From: Texas
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: CarlVon

That's correct Mean,

For example, the lobby system is almost done. I will setup some missions. One could just be 'fly a single ship around', that should get you the basics of flying on your own time. Next will be the duel, just find a buddy for hot seat and duke it out with a couple frigates. After that squad battle, 4 ships each, that's when it will get very interesting.

Oh, and I will build a good tutorial / manual soon. After the 'after action' report.

Once you read the after action report in a week or so, you will see why AI would be very difficult. Gunnery, (what Mean was talking about) is pretty basic to make an AI for, it's more flight that would be very hard. I would make it just charge you :-).

I highly agree with Hertston, the 4x game is done to death. I love them, but I have been looking for 20 years for a good Tactical game that can scale to full strategic etc. Once you see this, there so far is nothing like it. I have played everything from Rules of Enguagement on my Amiga to Begin to X3. Even Tacyon and Elite (on my C64).

Rules was great, but had seriously stupid AI and a boring combat model, finally after a few years I can finally command my CAPITAL ship and a 20+ fleet (it will scales to 100's of ships per fleet if you want), and take on an eager opponent in the cold harsh reality of space. :-)

Just a quick one on the other points:

Mean is a strategic level player, and such his mind always focuses on that. Seriously he could easily control 100+ ships by himself. It will be great fun for him to run a fleet vs say 3 or 4 of us mortals. :-) That being said we need to be clear about some points...

1. The UI is pretty easy to use, I think what Mean is referring to is more 'tools'. Which I'm working on as I type.

2. Ship to Ship tactics *DO* matter, a good pilot in the same ship 1-vs-1 can be a big difference. New pilots can lock their vectors too hard and provide their enemy who has more control a check mate on a side hit, and good gunnery is helpful as well.

3. On the larger side, to be more specific, the ability to hold a fleet and adjust formation is a major skill as well, but that is composed of the piloting on individual ships. Make no mistake, this is a Tactical level came that scales to strategic. This game will work for all levels.


So down to brass tacks. When are you going to release it and how much is it going to cost? Does it only support hotseat or will it work over a local LAN?

Thanks!



_____________________________

When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout.

"Ms. Betty has sharp thorns, but underneath is a delicate flower." -ltfightr

(in reply to CarlVon)
Post #: 30
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