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Armchair General praises Final Blitzkrieg


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8 hours ago, IanL said:

Can you imagine the fun of direct targeting a building form 200m out with the full rack of rockets.

Hmmm. I'm not sure if it was used as a direct fire weapon. I haven't read much about how it was utilized and I have always assumed it was only used in indirect fire. I also assumed that it was mounted on Shermans to give it more mobility for fluid advances and to provide some area saturation support for troops on the move.

Michael

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On 2/27/2017 at 4:25 PM, Erwin said:

The strange thing is that the only person who seems to care about this is you.  Not expecting you to be visiting here long.

I'm sure that really matters, given the sample size. How about you ask any of the...oh wait. It's almost like there isn't anyone else anywhere actually discussing this game.

 

 

 

On 2/27/2017 at 6:04 PM, Michael Emrys said:

But it could easily also mean a dilution of effort as more people mean more disagreements over what directions the game should pursue. There is an optimum size population for any endeavor. Too few and matters stagnate. Too many and it all dissolves into chaos. So far, CM appears to be hitting it about right.

Michael

 

I'm not sure CM will rocket to the level of popularity wherein there's a  schism within the community about what features need to be added. That's a terrible excuse. Instead, one can look objectively at metrics like popularity- and see this game has next to zero presence. And if that does happens, that's a wild and incredible thing for BF as a company.

 

 

On 2/27/2017 at 6:38 PM, Baneman said:

Well, I don't know - how "niche" and/or "complex" is Crusader Kings regarded as being ?

Because there's a huge difference between a grand strategy title and a game that's modelling every bullet etc.


No active subreddit ? That's a damn poor show !
You have identified a major shortcoming of Combat Mission. Go ye forth and create one then - we will all be grateful.

 

CK2 isn't really seen as being niche anymore which is the point. The genre, for the longest time was, and tbh outside of CK2 sort of still is.

 

Underlying mechanical engine complexity doesn't really matter. There are plenty of games *more* complex than CM both complex in terms of engine mechanics, and in term of gameplay systems that are considerably more popular and quite a bit more visible than CM. Look to a game like ARMA, that up until ARMA2 was released was basically an extremely niche "nerd" game that has since grown into one of the largest, most popular and simple best games of the entire genre- if not PC gaming in general. It hasn't lost complexity. It hasn't lost community involvement.  In fact there was an entire standalone non-ARMA game launched based entirely off of the contributions of the community. 

 

Wanna know how much I've spent on Operation Flashpoint/ARMA as a whole? And that doesn't even consider the mechanics other games adopted from ARMA, making them in turn better as a whole.

 

I don't accept your narrative that CM is "only for" or "will only be played by" stuffy old grognards.

 

 

 

 

 

On 2/27/2017 at 6:48 PM, niall78 said:

I had to look up what a 'subreddit' was.

Now that I have I can see how having CM on a subreddit would massively increase my enjoyment of the game. :rolleyes:

 

 

 

This is a game developed by 1 guy, and it only recently jumped onto steam. (I've bought this game several times as well)

 

https://www.reddit.com/r/RimWorld/

 

40,000 reddit subscribers.

200+ users browsing

There are nearly as many users browsing that sub as there are the *entire forum population of  The Few Good Men*.

 

The second hit on youtube for Rimworld has almost 300,000 views and is 2 months old.

 

Ithikial's best video? 1/10th the views and is 4 years old. Searching for "combat mission red thunder" doesn't return a *single video* with more than 25,000 views. Black sea has a handful over 50. Interestingly a 9 year old Shock Force video broke 300,00 and two CM Touch videos broke 200,000.

On 2/27/2017 at 7:16 PM, Rinaldi said:

For the record, it in fact does have a subreddit - just not very active, nor do I ever expect it to be.

The way reddit works, it won't gain any real traction without admin support, and a healthy community independent of the site; like any forum. His temper tantrum is basically white noise, in short.

There's better platforms for discussion of the game, like here, or at SIMHQ.

 

The inactive forum is *indicative* of a problem, not the reason. 

 

On 2/27/2017 at 5:28 PM, Rinaldi said:

If CKII is complex than what a time it is the be alive. ? Entertaining? Certainly, but not complex, even if you're memeing as a no name Greek Duke. 

 

CKII has but one sole advantage over CM: I can systemically and ruthlessly exterminate the nobility of England and replace them with my Norman yes-men. BFC is sorely lacking in this feature. I am holding out hope for a patch. 

 

CKII has a considerable learning curve and a large amount of mechanical complexity. Just because it *can* be used for shenanigans and memes doesn't make that untrue. 

 

CKII is a stodgy game about medieval power politics, where combat takes a distant backseat to electing council and assigning peerage. That should be a recipe for "niche" if I've ever heard one.

 

Glancing HE shells off of the sides of a tank resulting in the cowering infantry nearby being blown apart or shredding buildings with AGS-17 should be at the top of the list of "hell yeah that's cool".

Edited by rooibos
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7 minutes ago, rooibos said:

...one can look objectively at metrics like popularity- and see this game has next to zero presence.

It has gobs of presence with me. As long as BFC is happy to keep turning out finely crafted games, I'll be happy to keep buying them. And that's really all I care about. The rest is just noise.

Michael

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6 minutes ago, Michael Emrys said:

It has gobs of presence with me. As long as BFC is happy to keep turning out finely crafted games, I'll be happy to keep buying them. And that's really all I care about. The rest is just noise.

Michael

 

That's defeatist and counterproductive. If you're fine with struggling to find opponents, a tiny selection of maps and mods and a company uninterested in modernizing, that's fine. But it's a disservice to the exceptional product itself, and inconsiderate of the product it can be.

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I gotta say that I think I understand where rooibos is coming from. I'd love for there to be an auto update function which downloads new maps, battles, and campaigns (all vetted and tested by BFC). The same for opponents. (Well, except the vetting part. Hmmm...maybe that's a good idea.)

Better/more press would also be good.

Meantime, I can't argue with BFC's approach: they're still in business and still creating more games, while many others have gone under.

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7 minutes ago, c3k said:

I gotta say that I think I understand where rooibos is coming from. I'd love for there to be an auto update function which downloads new maps, battles, and campaigns (all vetted and tested by BFC). The same for opponents. (Well, except the vetting part. Hmmm...maybe that's a good idea.)

Better/more press would also be good.

Meantime, I can't argue with BFC's approach: they're still in business and still creating more games, while many others have gone under.

I'll chime in by saying that I think that all of us (well 99% at least) all want BFC to continue to do well and produce more games for us to enjoy. We all know that they are a business and will only continue to survive as long as they continue to make money, and that if they had a ton of money dumped on them, it would (likely) make making more games faster a reality. (Ignoring all the various logistics and such, the basic equation is the more money a company has= the more productive it can become)

Rooibos and others who have commented on this on the forum all essentially say the same thing; if BFC increased publicity, it would increase sales, which would then allow them to expand as a company and make more games faster. The reality is different and more complicated than that, but that is the general outcome they are pushing for. Again, I think everyone here wants the best for BFC, people just have different ideas about how to go about doing that. 

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Yes I agree largely with what Rooibos is saying, especially from the exposure angle.

I'm still amazed at how popular HOI4, Graviteam tactics, and even Command Ops 2 now! are selling on Steam. People play these complicated games now, this is not as niche as everyone seems to think so on here, its bizarre.

 

Take a look at the respective community hubs and all of the activity they get and compare that to here.

Edited by Raptorx7
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31 minutes ago, IICptMillerII said:

I'll chime in by saying that I think that all of us (well 99% at least) all want BFC to continue to do well and produce more games for us to enjoy. We all know that they are a business and will only continue to survive as long as they continue to make money, and that if they had a ton of money dumped on them, it would (likely) make making more games faster a reality. (Ignoring all the various logistics and such, the basic equation is the more money a company has= the more productive it can become)

Rooibos and others who have commented on this on the forum all essentially say the same thing; if BFC increased publicity, it would increase sales, which would then allow them to expand as a company and make more games faster. The reality is different and more complicated than that, but that is the general outcome they are pushing for. Again, I think everyone here wants the best for BFC, people just have different ideas about how to go about doing that. 

 

Absolutely. 

I can't help but feel jaded when the people in charge of the game treat it like some back shelf secret they're ashamed of. Or like some teenage band who are just too cool for "selling out" and as a result, you never get to see them play shows and when they do, they're in the singer's weird uncle's garage and no one else shows up. And merchandise? Good luck, they're not interested in a merch guy because "that's the way they've always done it". You're welcome to screenprint your own Scuttlebutts Tshirts though.  Hey maybe they'll even sign it for you if you go to the one show a year they perform... that is, if you even hear about when it's happening.

 

I've got a half dozen friends that won't touch this game with a 10-foot pole because of its archaic downloader and lack of opponent browser.  They would absolutely play it, and play it often, if perhaps I were to drunkenly purchase it for their Steam (or GOG or what have you) inventory- as I, and many others have done a countless number of times for other games. And that's not even including internet friends/friends from other games who you might look to get into it (sorry Funtimesguy666 from that weird forum I post on, I'm not buying you CM as it is now. If it were two clicks of my mouse then yeah, you'd have a copy already) or simply benefit from seeing people on their Friends List playing it.

 

Even a small increase in active player base not only means more people to play with, but more content. More maps, more scenarios etc. It's exponential really- more content being generated in turns generates more content. More DARs/AARs/Lets plays which means more visibility as a result.  Plus, players who may be on the fence and might feel sort of blase about the game, see positive work being done and more players involved. Someone who bought the game on a whim and has no way to connect to others, or sees that at any given time there's maybe a half dozen opponents looking for games isn't going to go that extra step and might "oh lame this game is dead". Someone who logs in and sees 100 opponents available thinks "oh wow this might be worth sticking to". 

Edited by rooibos
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1 hour ago, rooibos said:

 

That's defeatist and counterproductive. If you're fine with struggling to find opponents, a tiny selection of maps and mods and a company uninterested in modernizing, that's fine. But it's a disservice to the exceptional product itself, and inconsiderate of the product it can be.

Sure is funny, All these years, never had a problem finding a good player to play against. never have run out of battles because I can create my own and make my own maps also. And create the exact events I am interested in.  So what is your problem, need someone to spoon feed it to you.

Plus, what is there to say if  BF followed your path, things might not improve, but actually get worse. Because, making games for the masses does not mean focusing on quality, its a focus on quantity. And in general you can put out much lower quality and still get masses that will play.  If that was their goal, I doubt the game would stay at the level it is.

Anyway, you are just another guy with a rant in a list of many that have come before, you will also likely fade away as many of those before have done. You don't appreciate what this game offers, you just need it to be something else in which it is not. Your interest will fade. May I be the first to say good Bye, For those of us here that have been around for a long time , we know what we have , we appreciate it for what it is , and pretty much accept whatever BF decides to do.  The only event I care about is Bf continuing to find a way to do what they do, if they stop, there is nothing out there to replace what they have. Sure does not sound like a game needing more funding to me, since none of the big dogs will produce anything like it.

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13 minutes ago, slysniper said:

Plus, what is there to say if  BF followed your path, things might not improve, but actually get worse. Because, making games for the masses does not mean focusing on quality, its a focus on quantity. And in general you can put out much lower quality and still get masses that will play.  If that was their goal, I doubt the game would stay at the level it is.

Anyway, you are just another guy with a rant in a list of many that have come before, you will also likely fade away as many of those before have done. You don't appreciate what this game offers, you just need it to be something else in which it is not. Your interest will fade. May I be the first to say good Bye, For those of us here that have been around for a long time , we know what we have , we appreciate it for what it is , and pretty much accept whatever BF decides to do.  The only event I care about is Bf continuing to find a way to do what they do, if they stop, there is nothing out there to replace what they have. Sure does not sound like a game needing more funding to me, since none of the big dogs will produce anything like it.

Right on!

Michael

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Who said anything about making a game for the masses?

Releasing the games that already exist on another platform does not equal that, stop making strawmen. Not to mention trying to say this guy hates the game just because he wants it to have more exposure?

If you took a minute and read what he wrote he said he liked the game a great deal and wants to see it become more popular, I think YOU are the problem here.

Edited by Raptorx7
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3 minutes ago, slysniper said:

Plus, what is there to say if  BF followed your path, things might not improve, but actually get worse. Because, making games for the masses does not mean focusing on quality, its a focus on quantity. And in general you can put out much lower quality and still get masses that will play.  If that was their goal, I doubt the game would stay at the level it is.

 

You've created a strawman here. No one espoused "dumbing down" of the game.

 

It's not a realistic scenario, because not only does it not need to happen, but in fact, outside of AAA Titles, it's not always the case. ARMA3, complicated as it can be- especially with people (as myself) who use full milsim mods, is leaps and bounds above its earliest predecessor. ARMA3 is also an order of magnitude more popular than its progenitor.

 

You're using "oh but popularity will make the game bad" as an argument as to why the game can't be more popular, which is a false argument, full stop.

 

3 minutes ago, slysniper said:

. You don't appreciate what this game offers.

 

 

1 hour ago, rooibos said:

 

it's a disservice to the exceptional product itself, and inconsiderate of the product it can be.

 

 

 

 

 

 

3 minutes ago, slysniper said:

you just need it to be something else in which it is not.

 

I have no interest, beyond minor bug-nitpicking, in changing the game.

 

 

3 minutes ago, slysniper said:

there is nothing out there to replace what they have. Sure does not sound like a game needing more funding to me, since none of the big dogs will produce anything like it.

None of the "big dogs" even know this product exists and if the game vaporizes and the studio disappears, we're left with nothing. No legacy. No studios out there aspiring to build what CM once had. (There aren't any doing that now either)

 

 

 

 

https://www.reddit.com/r/baldursgate/

This is a 17,000 member strong, moderately active community dedicated to a 17 year old game that hasn't had proper support in years.  The company folded three years after its release.

 

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1 hour ago, rooibos said:

 

Absolutely. 

I can't help but feel jaded when the people in charge of the game treat it like some back shelf secret they're ashamed of.

I can agree with quite a few things you've said, but this not so much.  BF focuses their limited resources in a way they feel makes the most sense for their business and ya gotta admit their longevity is impressive.  Suggesting they allocate their resources differently will get you nowhere.  Helping to contribute to their reach however is extremely welcome.

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I've been with the game series since shortly after the original CMBO release, I've been saying (in my way) the same kind of things for years and years and I'm still around. I am usually met with one form or another of dismissal or contempt for questioning the game developers in any way. It's very off putting to say the least but yeah, expand the base, gain more revenue, allocate partial new funds to a better user experience... sure would be nice... but I've told a "million" times it's not going to happen. "Stagnate and accept" is the mantra, take it or leave it works as well.

The game as an enitiy has such amazing potential beyond what it is now but most here don't seem interested. For most here, who have either been here a long time, or don't play too many other games it just is what it is, and they don't really appear to look beyond the CM bubble to see what it could be, or even care. /sigh

Edited by AstroCat
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3 hours ago, Michael Emrys said:

And still the master of puritan hypocrisy. That's what I love about the English.

:D

Michael

Haha... Brilliant as per usual. Although I suspect what my Granddad Paddy loved about the English was the fact that in the 1930's they would pay him for putting on a uniform, when there were no jobs to be had back home in the Irish Free State.

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22 minutes ago, AstroCat said:

The game as an enitiy has such amazing potential beyond what it is now but most here don't seem interested. For most here, who have either been here a long time, or don't play too many other games it just is what it is, and they don't really appear to look beyond the CM bubble to see what it could be, or even care. /sigh

Or, just perhaps. We have looked "beyond the CM bubble" and have played "other games" but have found them lacking in some way. And also we are happy with the way Steve and the boys run BFC. And how they design and sell their games. If we believed in stagnation and accepting anything that is put before us, we'd all still be sat at our mother's knee playing snakes and ladders. 

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The basic concept seems to be that increasing exposure will lead to increased sales. That increased sales will lead to increased revenues. Increased revenues will lead to better download/purchase experiences and better oppo/map/battle matching/download experiences.

Or, that last part goes first and leads to the rest.

I'm not sure that any of the above statements are factually correct. Nor do I know if BFC has the resources to test the hypotheses and, if any of them are wrong, still survive.

I do know that BFC has repeatedly discussed how Steam (which would open up a huge potential market) has onerous requirements which BFC finds to be a dealbreaker. (Note that the big "if" is whether a potential market leads to actual increased sales, enough to offset the expenses/burdens that come with a Steam agreement.)

Any of the above takes resources. (Time, money, effort, energy, creativity: if they're being used for marketing, downloading, server upgrades, vetting battles/maps, etc., they're not being used for the game engine.) None of us know how much surplus resources BFC has, other than by extrapolating that we can assume Steve and Charles, et alia, would like to live like billionaires using $100s to light their cigars. In their judgment, they should not expend resources towards the points rooibos has made. (Sure, their judgment may wrong, but that judgment has been shown to be correct when looked at in light of their longevity.)

I'd love to see 400,000 viewers on the forum as a daily count. (No, JK, posting 400,000 times from 1 person is NOT the same as 1 post times 400,000 people. ;) )

So, if BFC cannot/won't increase exposure, who will? Have you contacted your favorite game blogger/magazine/forum?

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I have done more than my share to help gain exposure to the CM series through the years and those requirements Steam used to have are much less demanding now.

A large number of potential new customers won't touch CM not just because it looks comparatively bad, runs bad and it's UI is outdated and unfriendly but mainly over all the other "dings" it is not accessible (bad website, confusing patches/upgrades, no steam access, etc...). People can generally forgive the outdated graphics and sound, slow performance (although this is a real issue) and even the rough UI... it's the other part that is the real deal killer... barriers of access. 

Edited by AstroCat
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Fan tears a strip off fan, because first fan wants more people to find and play game they both love.  Nuts!

Meanwhile outside the CM bubble a generation of gamers spends billions of dollars on Steam, GoG.com etc and is barely aware that software is available anywhere else.

When I built my gaming PC back in 2011, after being away from games for a decade or so, I was suspicious of Steam and bought Rise of Flight and Arma 2 on CD.

That lasted about 6 weeks before I realised that things had moved on.  I now have I guess 100 or so titles, many of a type that I probably wouldn't have considered back in the day when I purchased CDs.  As any Steam user will tell you, the shop is always open :) .  Buy a game, go and get another beer, come back and it's installed.

Edited by Jock Tamson
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Oh don't get me wrong, I'm a huge fan of Steam - and I continue to believe it is lunacy to not have this series on Steam. I find the dev arguments and reasons as to why its not unconvincing.

I just don't believe it will necessarily lead to good exposure; objectively good sims are very 1:0 on Steam depending on who gets to review it first. I remember SABOW initially got horrible sales and reviews because 'how 2 m60 reeeeeeeeeeeee' made up 60 percent of the initial reviews. Exposure isn't inherently good and the crowd is fickle. I'm speaking generally, however. I think Raptor has good reason for his optimism, a lot of titles that aren't realistic but look like they are would make a good gateway drug for younger players (like us) into CM. The other barrier to a new player base is the price; not many 24 or 25 year olds are going to drop 80 dollars on what they may ultimately view as a timesink (even if, and they often are, taken with the demos). That's not a knock against the pricing, just a statement of reality.

These same gamers on a budget will take risks on AAA games or 'sit and wait' because we know they'll be 60 percent off for a bit within one to two years of release on Steam. They get their foot in the door cheap, get hooked, are willing to shell out more $$$ later because they know its quality. That's how it worked for myself and Graviteam. I bought the base game for a steal on sale and eventually paid the DLC full price when I realized I had purchased a gem of a wargame.

 

Edited by Rinaldi
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It's simply a fact of life that when one tries to appeal to a larger mass market, then quality goes down the toilet as more and more people start complaining about even more stuff as in "why doesn't this play like "Battlefield X"? 

Next, these new people will want CM to be a MMORPG.

There is a reason that of all the hardcore wargame developers BF is the ONLY company to survive.  Plenty of others tried to go the "expand our market" route.  Where are they now?  Out of bidness, that's where.

BF is doing something that no one else has been able to accomplish.  Just like great movies are ruined by know-nothing studio executives who think that their "great idea" will improve something that is already brilliant - there will always be people who know nothing about the realities of game development who think that they know better.  But why ruin a winning formula.

Presumably if an idea is so good, one can invest in it oneself and prove it.

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