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GIngneer21B

Frustration.....

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I had high hopes for TOW2. The game promised to have improved AI behavior, improved damage modeling, new campaigns, etc. After several days of playing, my initial impression is that the game hasn't changed all that much from TOW1. It seems like the exact same problems that ruined the first game are still here:

1) Campaign missions. How frustrating is it to micromanage your units for hours on end only to have your troops overrun because the enemy nearly always has a 2:1 ratio (or worse) in troops and armor? All games need to strike a balance between realism and fun/playability. Well, this is game is neither. Is it realistic to ask my four panzers and two squads of infantry to take a village that has two squads of infantry in buildings, three AT guns covering the avenues of approach, and four tank destroyers roaming around? It is suicide, especially given the game doesn't model smoke properly and off-map artillery is rare.

2) AI. I understand that no AI is ever perfect, but how many times do I have to watch my tanks take the worst path to the enemy? How many times do I have to watch a tank drive in reverse toward the enemy, or stop moving with the hull facing 90 degrees away from the enemy? How hard would it be to code it so tank crews did their best to have the front of the tank always face the enemy? I shouldn't have to always micromanage that. Worse, it is almost like the developers realize the AI isn't that good, and so the give the CPU player more units to compensate.

3) Sight lines. One of the most annoying things about the first game was micromanaging a tank to get just close enough to shoot at an enemy. Nothing is more frustrating then watching an AT plink your tanks while your tanks cannot shoot back. It's very simple: if an AT gun has sightlines to shoot at the turret of my tank, and my tank has sighted the AT gun, my tank should be able to shoot back. In addition, enemy AT guns routinely sight my crawling infantry at over 600 meters, while I cannot spot the AT gun. Really? Ten soldiers can't figure out where the shots are coming from, yet the AT gun can see my men? Did the game not model binoculars?

4) Low frame rates. The game runs like crap, regardless of my video settings. A quick glance at the forums made me feel better - obviously I'm not the only one with this problem. Then I felt worse, as there doesn't seem to be an easy fix. More bad coding, apparently.

Given the limitations, assaulting an objective eventually comes down to one of two outcomes. One, you pray that your off-map artillery (if you have any) hits enough of the enemy AT guns (that you hopefully have spotted) to allow your troops to use actual tactics, or two, you bull rush the village with all your infantry and tanks and pray. Bull-rushing usually ends up with your tanks driving past AT guns only to be hit by random bazooka shots, while 90 percent of your infantry is cut down because they stop running halfway to the objective.

What makes this all so frustrating is that TOW2, like TOW1, has so much potential. I've glossed over a few other frustrations (one Brit tank?) but regardless, the game feels unfinished. As a consumer, in addition to frustration, I feel somewhat cheated. Who did the playtesting before this game was released? Did they not notice the problems? I would never buy a car with a faulty engine or a house with faulty wiring, and yet I'm not supposed to be frustrated when I buy a game with faulty AI? Frustrating, Battlefront.

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GIngneer21B, too many points to answer in detail....

In my opinion, the AI in TOW2 is much better, but you still have to micro-manage your troops. It did take me a while to accept that this is how (I think!) you need to approach TOW 1/2. As for the odds, yes, it can be tough, but that surely is 'realistic'. It is also do-able (and I speak as a fairly rubbish player).

If you do accept that this is a micro-management game, then some of the problems you point out shouldn't arise, i.e. don't just let you tanks find their way, plot way-points; put them on hold to stop movement, etc. I'm not saying the AI is perfect, and at times I also get frustrated (usually my fault), but this is a very different game to anything else I have played.

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IMHO, the AI is pretty decent with one glaring exception: The Laser Accuracy of AI is very unreal and in my opinion degrades the game.

When an AT gun can take out a medium tank sprinting at full speed more than 1Km (1000 meters) away with a single shot, it ruins it for me. I mean even today's weapons including tomahawk missiles and patriot batteries don't have the accuracy of these WWII tanks and guns!

Last I checked the historical references, guns weren't equipped with GPS systems! I understand that the game is trying to compensate for the AI by giving it upper accuracy but that is somehow cheating. I much rather AI have more units and more troops than this unrealistic laser accuracy. It kills the realness of the game. It is funny when a AT gun takes out a motorcycle from 1500 meters away with a single shot! Even the best WWII snipers couldn't accomplish this with their rifles and most advance telescope optics!

I hope they tune it down and keep it real on their next releases.

Other than that, AI is fine.

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Agree with all the comments.

Given the need to micromanage, this game for me needs to played at platoon level and no more.

Also, when AFVs are around, infantry is almost redundant. This is clearly historically true to a certain extent, especially in the early war years, when infantry AT weapons were basic, but I still find it frustrating that AFVs manage to spot my infantry hiding in buildings with their status set to "Ambush".

Also frustrating, as posited above, is the AI taking out individual infantrymen with ATGs at long distances - in defensive scenarios ATGs would surely not reveal their carefully-selected positions for the sake of one section leader (with good "Scout" skills) over 500m away. Moreover they often take him out with the first shot.

In my opinion, this is either a game for AFVs vs AFVs/ATGs or pure infantry vs infantry, both ideally at no more than platoon level, in order to allow the degree of micromanagement that the game requires and indeed deserves given the high level of individual unit detail and modelling.

ToW2 is distinctly better than ToW, IMHO, but the play balance and scenario setting needs to be altered a little to alow the game to live up to its strengths, and the default campaign (Centauro included) does not achieve this.

Casualty rates well above 70% for infantry do not reflect what actually happened (often) in WWII unless I'm mistaken.

My twopenny's worth.

R

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Low frame rates. The game runs like crap, regardless of my video settings. A quick glance at the forums made me feel better - obviously I'm not the only one with this problem. Then I felt worse, as there doesn't seem to be an easy fix. More bad coding, apparently.

Bad coding?? This game graphicly runs so smooth it's sick. Two things. Get a better computer or try different drivers for your adapter(s). I love it when people like you fork out a measly fifty dollars and then feel like it's thier God given right to insult the rest of us with some greasy opinion of how ****ty a game is. **** off. Go make your own damn game you ****ing wig. What a whiner.

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I never tried TOW1 but decided to give TOW2 a try when Centauro came out. I also wanted to fill in the time until a WW2 CM or BOTB comes out, and I've been pleasantly surprised. It runs like a charm on my system (Win7 ult 64-bit, phenom quad, 8800 GS). Granted, you DO have to micromanage to keep your troops from doing stupid things, and I'm anxious to try out the balance mod I've seen here once it's been updated for the vehicle names or whatever. It should add to the overall feel.

I'm happy I checked it out instead of getting the Vista patches for CM, which was the other option. I can deal with the RT stuff as long as it's pausible and it actually seems well suited for this.

Cheers

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What strikes me, just as in TOW1, is the wildly unbalanced and insanely difficult scenarious.

It is NOT fun to try and beat 16 panzers including 3 tigers with 3 m10 with depleted ammo.

Its frustrating.

Gameengine itself is splendid.

But trying to enhance the longevity of the game by making it over difficult instead of adding more and better mission is just...cheap.

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Hello,

i agree that there is alot of micromanagement. But.... this game is called "Theatre of War 2".... and if you know the first part you should knew what you will get.

By the way everyone can try the demoversions around the net so there is not a real point to argue about the points.

This game is far from beeing perfect. But its a good game and worth its price. In times of playing hyped games like COD, Ruse, Order of War and so on.... its very exciting to play a squad based strategy game like this.

greets

rav

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If You think You can NOT manage the scenario given, even on "easy" then You can still edit the mission with the help of the mission and camapign editor that came with the game and add some aditional assets to your force.

eg. a strong tank or additional AT-AA Guns, or HMGs or change the type of tank to a "stronger" one e.g. Stuart --> Lee or Pz. IIIj L/42 --> Pz IVG -

This will spoil the campaign a little but it might help you in a few scenarios where You think they are to difficult. You can even add some Arty or Air support - it is rather easy - or an allied force that assists You but is not under Your command. - but make a copy of the original scenario before You do any changes if you want to play the camaign another time in the future with its original settings.

For me it is great fun to do a little "modding" of these scenarios ;)

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I had high hopes for TOW2. The game promised to have improved AI behavior, improved damage modeling, new campaigns, etc. After several days of playing, my initial impression is that the game hasn't changed all that much from TOW1. It seems like the exact same problems that ruined the first game are still here......

Well, I just downloaded the Russian version demo of the new Kursk game and it looks like everthing you just described has been carried over. Like the other ToW games, it is simply screaming with potential, but looks like it might falls short once again. Now I know its just a demo, but im getting a bad feeling about it.

Try doing anything with infantry is simply a joke. They get cut down and the auto-pause keeps bringing you back to where the soldier died. Im trying to move forward wuith my tanks, but keep getting shot backswards... very frustrating.

There has been a delay, so maybe some of these points may be addressed.

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