From: Third rock from the Sun.
Wow, this is interesting news. Also it appears we will get Steam keys if bought from Matrix, so that's nice.
I think it's the right move of you guys - there are plenty of wargamers on Steam who I am sure will appreciate it. As long as you get good visibility in the first days after launch.
It would help if you actually made a good-looking intro movie to play instead of just having the tutorials, they are not all that inspiring
Workshop support is very cool. I assume at least scenarios will be available. But I wonder about UI/map mods and if so, how they will need to be packaged and so on to make sure they don't overwrite each others files. Workshop mods are updated automatically, so even if you do manual changes to a mod locally, once the modder updated, it will be downloaded again. I guess it remains to be seen how well it will work...
As to playing offline - depends how you define it. I would define Offline as "not having to launch the Steam client before starting the game". NOT "being able to play without an internet connection" - which really is an edge case these days. But I would appreciate having the ability to launch the game without first waiting for Steam, basically using Steam as a way to update the game. In technical terms, if steam_api.dll is loaded and required to start, it is NOT offline IMO.
And please let us launch the game without first starting the horrible "Matrix launcher". That thing is an abomination. Just add a launch parameter to allow us to enter the game directly.
You can launch any Steam game from a desktop shortcut. And if you really don't want to see the Matrix launcher you can go to your TOAW folder and make a shortcut for the Opart executable.