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About santabear

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  • Birthday 03/07/1957
  1. Liam and John, When you're discussing the British AF vs. the Luftwaffe, don't forget Kammhuber. Even though he was a lower-ranking officer, he designed Germany's (effective) air defence.
  2. The concept of plunder is a kludge to simplify a lot of factors. But creating a game in which the attacker is trying to protect defending units and the defender is trying to sacrifice them is way out of whack...no matter how it's "explained." I'm sure it will be fixed--soon. (But didn't the play testers run into this problem?) Why create a new thread? Why not? To paraphrase Churchill: What is the point of having a forum if it's not a place to bring true statements before the public? I recall that guy had to make his point more than once--maybe he's not a bad precedent?
  3. Well, how many MPPs would be required to successfully research an atom bomb? And then how many more would be required to build one? By keeping the costs high, the number of bombs would remain small. There could also be a certain per cent chance of a dud/fizzle. The biggest problem I see with SC/SC2 and atomic weapons is that these devices are more political tools than actual weapons of war. Their primary purpose is to exert influence on political decisions. It seems that is hard to model. How would you factor an atomic bomb into the formula that decides when Germany surrenders? And it seems that you might get some very un-realistic feeling games from using it. SB
  4. Even in the demo, AI seems to occasionally view air fleets as front-line units. They show up 1 or 2 hexes behind the lines and get wiped out on the next turn. Flying a unit onto the mine behind the Maginot line seems to be his preferred mode of self-immolation as the Germans invade France.
  5. I have some "issues" with SC2 graphics, but as someone who has played a LOT of SC1 against AI, I have to say that I agree with Blashy, et. al. on this point. I've only played the demo so far, so I haven't tried the editor, but I'm sure that rather than try to balance a game vs. AI just using the entry system (or via hard patches), I would think of making changes in the editor to make the game more AI friendly. Part of playing SC well is learning the GAME. It takes some time, but once you get the hang of it some of these sorts of things will make more sense, I think. If you try the amphibious thing vs. someone who knows what they're doing, you should expect that on the turn you invade a counterattacking force will be operated into some town just out of spotting range. On the next turn (when the invading troops are out of supply) they're going to get fairly well beaten up. The real AI problem is that a human player can tempt AI into trying invasions and then whomping up on him, not the other way around. (Hide counterattacking units, have naval or air units hiding to destroy the transports, etc.) Finally, the concept behind the editor in this game is fantastic. "Realism" in a "what if" historical game is in the mind of the player. We can all make the game feel more "realistic," depending on how each of us interprets WWII. It really is a brilliantly conceived way of doing things. SB
  6. Actually, Bill, the grid really drives me away from this game. It might be a small nit to you, but it will likely keep a die-hard SC1 fan from buying this game and that's very disappointing to me. If you think that's small. OK. I don't know about TOAW and CWIF--I'm talking about your game, and how I perceive it. And it's my money. Bye, SB
  7. I've posted it elsewhere, but this is a good place to re-state this: The current map has perspective problems (at least in the lowest resolution setting). In order to create proper perspective, the grid squares MUST get smaller as the map recedes into the distance (they don't--they're all the same size). Visually the front (nearest) part of the current map seems to sit on a horizontal table. But moving further away (or toward the top), the map seems to curve upward so that distant objects are above the nearer ones, NOT BEHIND THEM WHERE THEY SHOULD BE if viewed on an angle. In order to get the 45-degree perspecive properly, there also should be different sized figures--smaller in the distance, larger when nearer. (And why are the flags and parachutes larger than tanks and airplanes?) I don't care if it's 2D or 3D, but right now it's neither (sort of 2.5D), and it's visually disturbing. Turning off the grid helps--then there is just the perspective problem of the size of the playing pieces--but hopefully this can be addressed in a later version somehow. SB [ April 08, 2006, 09:43 PM: Message edited by: santabear ]
  8. Blashy, I agree, just as bids could be used to "fix" the cookie cutter problem. SC2 is more complex, therefore more variations, therefore it's more difficult to find the pathway through the maze. But one is there, unless the game randomly regenerates itself every time it's played (which it can't).
  9. I would echo JimmyCribbs's point: I've got a nice laptop--the game runs fine--but can only get the smallest map size on my screen. Situational awareness is a minor problem; what's worse is that the perspective of the map is very screwy at that resolution. The squares of the grid stay the same size when actually they should get smaller as the map (attempts to) recede into the distance. Right now, it looks like the map has a top and bottom, rather than a front (closer to the player) and back (further away) on the low resolution setting. When that's combined with the figurines-on-bases sort of counters, it looks like the pieces will slide off the game board at any time. (Hubert must have developed virtual Velcro). A mod, zoom, patch, whatever would definitely help! @Jimmy: It helps to turn off the grid.
  10. No, the SC "cookie cutter" is the technique that was developed and mentioned above. No doubt the "new cookie-cutter" will emerge in time. After all, this is just a computer program, and clever minds will find ways to exploit its weaknesses.
  11. Well, people have varying priorities in their lives and perhaps Strategic Command is enjoyable but not the top priority for some folks. Perhaps some people even ENJOY playing against the AI. If we follow the logic of "you can't build a good AI so why try?" there's no reason to work to devlop anything. And if we're going to try to develop one, there has to be some level of criticism from the end-users. Maybe some of the "AI crowd" will be able to say "I was one of the people who helped the computer wargame industry create good AIs." Of course human opponents can dream up all kinds of things that AI can't, but not every general who fought WWII was Rommel, Patton or Manstein. There were unimaginative, incompetent generals back then, too. And it's not like every human player is really creative and interesting to play either. I'd prefer that newbies play agianst the AI until they understand the game and are comfortable with the mechanices of things before playing against humans and making dumber mistakes than the AI would. AI is a good, reliable punching bag that can really refine a gameplayer's technique. It's an important part of a computer wargame to me, and if SC2 did NOT have an AI built in I would not buy it.
  12. Dirtweasle, Supply lines can't run through enemy-colored hexes. Anything mobile can cut off supply to vast enemy areas once it's loose in the "backfield." Make a hole, get behind them, cut off supply, then destroy the out-of-supply units. It works against anything that wants to stand and fight, even if it's in a city. "The engine of the tank is no less a weapon than the gun." --Guderian
  13. All of these are good points, but the fact remains that if someone doesn't like the interface, the graphics or the general feel of the demo it's unlikely that they will like the game. It's also true that there are some of us in here who had critical comments about SC1 that ultimately led to that game being refined somewhat. It's not helpful to say "great game" when there are obviously some things that need to be refined. Rather, (as someone has pointed out) it's a good thing for folks in here to be honest about their concerns. We all want the game to be successful with the largest possible audience, and getting some constructive criticsm will help make that happen. So, yes, "it's just a demo," but Battlefront and Hubert stand to make or lose money based on how this demo is received. I think constructive criticism is helpful to everyone. SB
  14. Hubert, Thanks for your response. The manual helps a lot...as does your hint about the undo. And I'm finding that it's easier to visualize the movement with the grid turned off at the moment. I actually fought a pretty good D-day battle, and I'm beginning to see how this is a great improvement over SC1. Thanks again, SB
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