The Survey

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triumph
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Re: The Survey

Postby triumph » Wed 20 May 2015 19:08

bluuurrrr wrote:A few things I noticed in the survey.

Lots of questions directed on some of the obvious things we mention here which is a good sign. The zoom for example.

I noticed some questions related to pace - and I'm glad to see that because the game plays way to slow if you want to draw in new players. Some may like the slow pace - but those games tend to be dead end niche games when it's all said and done. The two RTS powerhouses that you should try to emulate play at a far quicker pace. AoA has that opportunity to break through to those legendary franchises but it must make a hard turn into the type of fast paced RTS offered by the CNC or Starcraft series. It's time to realize this is a game, not a 3 day simulation of war. Slim down in all areas - resourcing, units, buildings... make the game sleek and fast, easy to play and hard to master is the key (as oompah has said on here).

About pace, we don't know what they are comparing to. It's just a general question about our perception.
For example I found Generals, BFME2 and RA2 to be fast and I found COH and SC2 to be mind numbingly slow due to the way they build up. But here you are saying that SC is fast. Also, on day 2/3 when people figured out how marines worked with the capture mechanic the game completely changed as harassment could cull big eco, as in be super lethal.

If it was up to me - I'd do away with the mutliple resources. Keep it simple - call the one resource money and be done with it. It makes it very easy for new players to pick up and understand. "You need money to build things - you get money by resourcing oil" is far easier to explain than "Well you need to resource oil and aluminum, but when you build things, you have to have a mix of both, and then later you need rare metals". It's uneeded complication. I'd also pick up the pace of the game in all areas. Building times, speed of units, speed of resourcing. I'd combine this with a shrinking of the maps and streamlining the tier 1,2,3 units. That may mean combinbing buildings, keeping it simple as possible.




Games don't do well by removing economy. Streamlining it, sure but not outright removing it. We don't want to see CNC3 mistakes happen with rapid mass harvesting and no strategic choices to make about economy besides that. Also this title isn't using an XP system as a resource to promote battle, so just having a single, explicit resource means going more towards the tiberium wars path than other games. The thing about the resources is you want to promote ways to read the enemy. Currently, if scouting actually worked well then i would be able to get an eye on a players stores and read what they're able to do. If I see them expanding out to blue with a single or double refinery set up i can read what they want to do, and so on. But right now the game start throws a lot of things to do at people from zero seconds on. SC and CNC have a much smoother game start progression. SC gives players only an obvious choice and builds from there. CNC gives them two choices, but one obviously powerful economy route in the majority of the series games and situations. AOW was similar to CNC, just more men massing for the map control god at times. And AoA starts players off with 3 tasks and once you really know whats going on then you end up not quite sure if going for the blue is such a great idea from the start and that means a player rolling with the explicit could end themselves at between 0 and 30 seconds. Too complex. What does SC do? They make it obvious that a player will delay their second explicit resource for a little while.


I was ranked top 5 in Generals PVP first few months it was out.

In the private beta test I was 100 games in a row 1v1

so I have a pretty good point of reference.

Double war fac, sell the HQ, rush gatlings is how I won 100 in a row. I remember playing an EA dev who LOL'd when I sold my HQ - he said "dude you cant sell your HQ you just lost" - 3 minutes later when I had 20 gatlings crawling his base he just rage quit

I am not the one who said AoA is a spiritual successor to Generals, Alexi the lead designer of AoA did

Great story there. I love that kind of stuff.
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Re: The Survey

Postby bluuurrrr » Wed 20 May 2015 19:32

triumph wrote:About pace, we don't know what they are comparing to. It's just a general question about our perception.
For example I found Generals, BFME2 and RA2 to be fast and I found COH and SC2 to be mind numbingly slow due to the way they build up. But here you are saying that SC is fast. Also, on day 2/3 when people figured out how marines worked with the capture mechanic the game completely changed as harassment could cull big eco, as in be super lethal.


I think around Generals, RA3 - they hit the sweet spot of pace. COH and for that matter yes SC2 are far too slow. I think choke points really do a disservice to the pace of a game. I don't think SC fast, but I think it's faster than COH.


Games don't do well by removing economy. Streamlining it, sure but not outright removing it. We don't want to see CNC3 mistakes happen with rapid mass harvesting and no strategic choices to make about economy besides that. Also this title isn't using an XP system as a resource to promote battle, so just having a single, explicit resource means going more towards the tiberium wars path than other games. The thing about the resources is you want to promote ways to read the enemy. Currently, if scouting actually worked well then i would be able to get an eye on a players stores and read what they're able to do. If I see them expanding out to blue with a single or double refinery set up i can read what they want to do, and so on. But right now the game start throws a lot of things to do at people from zero seconds on. SC and CNC have a much smoother game start progression. SC gives players only an obvious choice and builds from there. CNC gives them two choices, but one obviously powerful economy route in the majority of the series games and situations. AOW was similar to CNC, just more men massing for the map control god at times. And AoA starts players off with 3 tasks and once you really know whats going on then you end up not quite sure if going for the blue is such a great idea from the start and that means a player rolling with the explicit could end themselves at between 0 and 30 seconds. Too complex. What does SC do? They make it obvious that a player will delay their second explicit resource for a little while.

I'm not saying removing economy. But I think most everyone agrees the economics of AOA are a wreck, and if it was me, I'd go to one type of resource, with some starting resource areas well defined and close by to your base, with others naturally progressing your expansion to the middle of the map. To me that RTS 101, and is the best way to promote the action in an action RTS. This also lowers the learning curve and barriers for new players - so that instead of spending time learning what universally is considered a mundane task in an RTS, resourcing... they jump right into the fun aspects of an RTS, which is building/managing units and attacking.

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Re: The Survey

Postby DarcReaver » Wed 20 May 2015 19:36

oompah wrote:well that was what I liked about Generals

You could rush - but a competent player could stalemate you

You could quick tech

you could expand

you could go with a mixed unit army

you could spam

It was all dependent on the situation

The competitive matches were never about spam, it was about expanding and flanking with the right mix of units for the situation. But you could risk it for a biscuit and do a balls out rush.

Lots of cool options, very fun, deep, rewarding experience but still very simple to grasp the core concepts.


Yes, this is called strategic depth, and all great RTS share a common high strategic depth. It doesn't matter if a game has a fast pace.

Let me give you a short example:

New game. You have 3 buildings: HQ, barracks, Tank factory. You can build 2 infantry units, 2 tanks and when you destroy the enemy HQ you win. All buildings are built in 3 secs, and infantry takes 5 secs to train. Tanks take 10 secs. Then you rush and after 5 shots the enemy HQ is down.

This game has a very fast pace, but it's boring. You have no options. People start playing it, maybe get good at rushing. And others will move on because it's boring after a while.

In Wc3 you have a slower pace, but the games are incredibly variable and intense. You could pick literally hundreds of different strategies and still win if executed properly. Same with CoH, but on a more tactical way (unit positioning, defensive/offensive starts etc.). Age of empires also has so many different options for playing.

This is what makes games great. And as long as players are busy doing stuff I don't care if I get my first tank to the enemy in 2 mins or in 5 mins. What's important is that I have fun while I'm building up my army.

@ top post: If you play "real" company of Heroes, the way it's intended you get action from minute one. If you play campy scheldt bridge maps it's your own fault. I've played thousands of CoH games and it never got boring. Each match was different.
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Re: The Survey

Postby bluuurrrr » Wed 20 May 2015 20:29

DarcReaver wrote:New game. You have 3 buildings: HQ, barracks, Tank factory. You can build 2 infantry units, 2 tanks and when you destroy the enemy HQ you win. All buildings are built in 3 secs, and infantry takes 5 secs to train. Tanks take 10 secs. Then you rush and after 5 shots the enemy HQ is down.


I'm not sure what game you are describing, but I don't think anyone here is supporting this. I mean maybe this happens when you play easy AI, but it's a bit of extreme example.

The fact is when you have a game that takes quite a bit of time to get actual units out - you are going to have a smaller player base of mainly interested niche players. COH at the very least had quite a bit of early game back and forth and it continued from there. The problem I had with COH was that the cascade of failure was far too big and took far too long. You could have a winner 10 minutes in but the game not finish until the 40th minute... with the loser really having no way to tilt the game back in their favor. The other big problem is eventually everyone figured out the few spots you had to win early in the game or else the game was basically decided... again due to that high cascade of failure.

This is what makes games great. And as long as players are busy doing stuff I don't care if I get my first tank to the enemy in 2 mins or in 5 mins. What's important is that I have fun while I'm building up my army.

What makes games popular is action, sure base simulator might be "great" for some, but if you want a player base that means you play different people all the time, you need an action RTS like Generals, which is why it's the holy grail that game devs continue to "mention" when asked about their games. There is a reason people still play it 10+ years after the release. It's low hanging fruit and I'm amazed a game developer simply hasn't copied it unit for unit... it's guaranteed money.

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Re: The Survey

Postby Salsifi » Wed 20 May 2015 20:41

Act of War is also played 10 years after the release... 2005 ;)

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Re: The Survey

Postby triumph » Wed 20 May 2015 20:46

@ top post: If you play "real" company of Heroes, the way it's intended you get action from minute one. If you play campy scheldt bridge maps it's your own fault. I've played thousands of CoH games and it never got boring. Each match was different.


Never said it lacked strategic choices. I said I didn't like the game built up. Getting to what I found to be fun was not fun. So I found an experience that kept me for so many more hours than COH automatching and all of its strategic depth. I found a WWII game that had a hell of a lot more action right from the 10-30 second mark.


I'm not saying removing economy. But I think most everyone agrees the economics of AOA are a wreck, and if it was me, I'd go to one type of resource, with some starting resource areas well defined and close by to your base, with others naturally progressing your expansion to the middle of the map.


What i think i am reading:
I only want one primary resource in the game.

What you're trying to express now:
I only want to see one primary resource in my main.

Am I hot or cold?
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Re: The Survey

Postby bluuurrrr » Wed 20 May 2015 20:50

Salsifi wrote:Act of War is also played 10 years after the release... 2005 ;)

Act of War sold maybe 700k copies

Generals was north of 3 million that we know of.

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Re: The Survey

Postby bluuurrrr » Wed 20 May 2015 20:54

triumph wrote:What i think i am reading:
I only want one primary resource in the game.

What you're trying to express now:
I only want to see one primary resource in my main.

Am I hot or cold?


1 primary resource in the game. While I have no doubt more hardcore RTS players would have no problem managing and understanding 2 or 3, I think in an action RTS environment, you are putting too much on the plate for new players chasing them away fairly early.

There is plenty to do in terms of the unit micro (and personally a ton you can do with community features) if you want to separate yourself as an RTS game, but I think adding multiple resource types into the game is a losing proposition if you want to expand the player base into the genre.

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Re: The Survey

Postby triumph » Wed 20 May 2015 21:32

You have to realize that with a single explicit primary there have to be a lot of other elements to make up for things. Gen powers are a prime example of this. But we digress, they want strategic depth through a multitude of resources. There are franchises that have this, work well, and sell pretty well too. It's now just a matter of how and when players interact with these resources to reduce confusion or ease the learning curve. Avoid designing pitfalls because strategic choices that are hard tend to be much more fun than falling into knowledge traps. And maximize strategic depth.
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Re: The Survey

Postby Henrik_VH » Wed 20 May 2015 21:54

Have Eugen mailed all the surveys yet? Cause I dont have it.
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