Discussion in 'PC/Console Game Discussion' started by Rorschach, Nov 16, 2012.
What podcast are you on?
Sorry, Astromarine had me and
Kat on the Broken podcast. We harped on about his game for a good while.
Uhhh... there's a Broken Forum podcast? I need to find this.... linky, anyone?
Nope. You're looking at big differences in complexity and resources spent.
And the fact that in one of the games it takes 2-5 seconds to preform any screen transition, which the UI will force you to make several of.
Historically there's a cycle of adding new functions, then bug fixing, and then performance improvements. I'm hopeful they're about done with the bug fixing and will be looking at improving performance soon. The right click to start missions on a fleet is pretty intolerable in big games.
There's been three patches over the past week. They've fixed the problems with slow screen transitions and slow response when right clicking a fleet among other things.
Here's almost 40 minutes of me blabbing about empire management.
Nice videos man, I'll totally post about 'em in tomorrow's news entry. :)
So, I've been trying it out for a few hours now. I think that with the slower pace they are trying to set a more serious tone, which, I think, is a great direction to take. This game is trying to avoid the twitchy nature of other 4X games, where rushing to best planets and to the best tech is the de facto immediate goal for everyone. Instead, there are checks and balances, and a sense of gravity for your actions. There's no fucking around with micromanaging small ships here and there, rocketing back and forth between planets (like in SOASE, which got ridiculous at some point), but you carefully set up fleets with admirals, matching their skills with the right tools. And then they embark upon missions with a clear strategic purpose.
Ships don't get built on a mass production conveyer belts the moment new tech is out, obsoleting everything that came before it, but instead you have to build an expensive prototype first. For some tech you have no idea whether you can do it, and you need to study it first to get a better picture. And afterwards it might never get perfected and becomes a money sink until you have to scrap the entire thing. Shit doesn't always go as predicted. All of these concepts are familiar to us from real life, creating a more believable ambiance around your efforts.
Getting new tech is rare, and building ships is expensive, which sets a pace where you can get used to certain paradigms in combat. Tactics and thinking of how to utilize your ships in the best way is more meaningful since there is no quick path to superior firepower. I'm glad to see for once that the first weapons of the game actually gets some use, and are not obsolete after five turns.
And then, when you actually do get some juicy new tech, you need to plan carefully for which ships you try it out and how it would affect fleet compositions. For instance getting shields is a big moment, and it is exciting to try them out for the first time and seeing how it affects the outcome. I don't remember the last time when I experienced that in a space strategy game.
This game is horrible in communicating what the hell is going on, and you lose the narrative of the gameplay easily (in which MOO1 + 2 are still superior). Everything just feels convoluted. The biggest problem is of course the bad UI, coupled with a lack of understanding the economics of communication. Sometimes you need to have "less" of something to make the key elements more prominent. Now it is a mess. You don't know what matters and what doesn't. And the worst is the occasional feeling when you can't find the things you think is important.
Quick besserwisser treatment would include one strong producer who would keep the obviously overscoped production in check and focus on getting the basic moment to moment user experience solid, and a lead designer who understands how to engage the player with meaningful choices at the right time, and knows how the gameplay narrative should flow.
To me, as a space game fan, playing this is frustrating because I can see how this could've been a great game. For now, Distant Worlds is still the king of modern 4x games.
Well said man. :-)
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