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Its also easy to forget that CM:SF did not launch in the most fantastic condition. Even after the patches there were some built in issues that were problematic and that were really only resolved with the release of CM:BN.

If anyone remembers Scipio (who iirc did some solid UI modding). He and I had a QB wherein my poor British engineers were matched up against a platoon of T-72s to rather disastrous results. I think I managed to catch one in an ambush for an immobilization. Nearly 10 years later I can remember that match with startling clarity.

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CM:SF1 is the game in the series I put the most time into and its one of the reasons CM:SF2 was such a nice release. As CM:SF1 was almost immediately outclassed by CM:BN just in pure user friendliness. With the introduction of an actual QB system, removal of the ammo bar (which iirc applied to artillery?), and a likely other updates I've forgotten.

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Obligatory question for when this happens:  have you decided whether to issue Steam keys to current customers to let them transition over to that platform?   In case anyone hasn't used Steam and

I for one welcome the potential influx of new forum members. This forum could do with some fresh blood, otherwise it runs the risk of getting stale. And frankly I find the cliquish attitude a bit sad.

It'll be interesting to see how successful this is. Sacrificing CMSF2 to the gaping maw of Moloch might be worth it in increased brand awareness alone. I can't tell you how many times I've had this

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2 hours ago, MikeyD said:

I speculated that BFC had perhaps made the mistake of opening the CMx2 game engine chat board too early, giving posters a year and a half to build impossible cloud castle fantasy games in their heads that nobody could have satisfied. When they didn't get their first person shooter/strategic combo game with 60x km maps and a 'Matrix'-style neural plug-in feature they were devastated.

My thought was that folks who were huge fans of the CM1 system were in shock when CMSF was released as the CM2 system was actually a new system that merely looked similar to CM1 and (perhaps confusingly) was called the same.  I recall many of us felt a bit cheated - especially since the first version of CMSF was so buggy/unplayable.  It was very impressive that BF kept improving it until CMSF became a superb game.  That kind of honorable endeavor is very rare in the last few decades and BF deserves a huge amount of credit and customer loyalty because of that.

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1 hour ago, Erwin said:

My thought was that folks who were huge fans of the CM1 system were in shock when CMSF was released as the CM2 system was actually a new system that merely looked similar to CM1 and (perhaps confusingly) was called the same.  I recall many of us felt a bit cheated - especially since the first version of CMSF was so buggy/unplayable.  It was very impressive that BF kept improving it until CMSF became a superb game.  That kind of honorable endeavor is very rare in the last few decades and BF deserves a huge amount of credit and customer loyalty because of that.

Buggy yes, unplayable no. It might have helped that I never really played CMx1, but CMSF1 is what got me into CM. Sure there were some game breaking bugs, issues (QBs weren't viable, etc), but imo it showed great potential and they kept improving it.

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CMSF1 was theoretically playable.  But it had so many issues on release that to call it playable as a realistic tactical level game is a stretch.  BFC did a great job eventually fixing it up.  But it took a long time and a lot of gnashing of teeth.  There are still people on this board that refused to say there was anything wrong until years later and they will now fess up it was released too early.

I still look at CMSF1 as a beta that led to CMBN.

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4 hours ago, Thewood1 said:

 There are still people on this board that refused to say there was anything wrong until years later and they will now fess up it was released too early.

I don't know of any who thought CMSF1 didn't require any improvements.  The disagreement was between the "the game is an unmitigated disaster that nobody could possibly enjoy" and "hey, I really like this game and am loving it as is".  That's a bit of a different thing than people thinking there was NOTHING wrong with the initial release.  Obviously in hindsight CMSF1 was released too early as there were a number of technical problems that quickly came to light post release.  Not uncommon for newly released games, even ones with huge budgets.  Regrettable as it was, those problems were addressed very quickly (roughly a patch a month for 3 months).

That said, excepting those bit by some of the early technical glitches, CMSF1 was playable from the start.  In fact, flaws and all, at the point of release CMSF1 was way ahead of any other tactical wargame released before or even after.  Whatever perceived empirical shortcomings CMSF1 had in those first months had more to do with customer expectations (reasonable and unreasonable) about what CM2 had the potential to be, not relative to any other wargame out there because there wasn't anything else to effectively compare CM to.

Opinions about fun and other non-empirical aspects, of course, were a different matter and I've never EVER had a problem with people not finding CMSF1 "fun".  Each to his/her own, I've always said.  Most of the games those folks held so dear are considered boring by probably 99.9% of the gaming audience so a bit of introspection would have been nice.  Aside from confusing their personal sense of "fun" with everybody else's, the extreme haters of the day also took quite a bit of glee proclaiming CM2 a total failure, Battlefront's demise only days away, and that I (specifically) was about to be put in a padded room because I was so delusional about the state of things.  Obviously that's not quite how things turned out :) I do hope those guys who invested so much time and energy into being so hateful and spiteful about an f'n game, of all things, have come to understand they were the ones who needed a mental health reality check.

Since that time we've steadily improved the core engine because there is always room for improvement and we care about doing so.  These forums and our intrepid testers have provided much of the inspiration, if not specific suggestions, for those improvements.  We're a creative bunch with a huge imagination and lots of ambition, but without well considered feedback from our customers CM would be nowhere near as good today as it is.

Steve

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7 hours ago, Battlefront.com said:

That said, excepting those bit by some of the early technical glitches, CMSF1 was playable from the start. 

I don't know what technical glitches it had at first, but I bought the CMSF1 big bundle when it was sold on special. By then it was way behind the WWII games, but, even then and even being much more of a WWII fan, I had great fun with it.

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"Fun" is one of the things that irritates me the most, when applied to games. Computer games or boardgames really. I'm painfully aware that my tastes in games swings far heavier than the mean, so I obviously have a skewed view on things, but I still haven't heard a good definition of what "fun" actually is, when used as an objective measure.

More importantly, I can't imagine any other medium being held to that standard. "Sure, the Godfather is a well shot film, but it's not fun, is it?". Doing that for games seems incredibly limiting.

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2 hours ago, domfluff said:

"Fun" is one of the things that irritates me the most, when applied to games. Computer games or boardgames really. I'm painfully aware that my tastes in games swings far heavier than the mean, so I obviously have a skewed view on things, but I still haven't heard a good definition of what "fun" actually is, when used as an objective measure.

There are actually people who have tried to come up with a theory of what makes a game fun.

https://www.amazon.com/Theory-Game-Design-Raph-Koster/dp/1449363210

Long story short, their idea is that all games are about presenting the player with a series of meaningful decisions. If the decisions are not meaningful - important to success or failure -  the game is not fun.

In a racing game, decisions will be to turn left or right, and how much to accelerate or brake. In Combat Mission, it might be how to assault a hedgerow position or a village - a decision that is in itself broken down into more and more subdecisions.

One of the reasons CM is so fun (for a certain type of people like myself) is that it forces me to make a myriad of decisions, and that it punishes me really hard if I overlook something important. The tactical decisions are meaningful.

Edited by Bulletpoint
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Which is a good definition, because it's testable and measurable.

Like everything in game design though, definitions are firmly not agreed on, and that's the root of the frustration.

As another example, another peeve is a game's "weight". My preferred definition of "Weight" is "complexity of the decision tree". Lighter games can be (as one example) more random, because randomness limits how far you can search from a given position, and therefore prunes the decision tree to some extent. Again, that's something you can model and measure.

That means that Go is a "heavy" game, despite having about three rules. Something like Fluxx can produce fantastically complex boardstates, with a ton of stuff going on but since the whole is chaotic and pretty meaningless, the decision tree is extremely limited, and the game is "light", by that definition.

In practice though, "weight" has a ton of different definitions. I've seen people refer to some games as "heavy" because the iconography is hard to parse, because there are lots of pieces, or because the rulebook is above an arbitrary x pages in length, which are useless. It might well be that heavy games tend to have long rulebooks, but just labelling a tendency doesn't provide any insight to answer any future questions.


In terms of defining "fun" - I offer the game "dude". This is a party game, based on a deck of cards, which all have the word "dude" written on them, in different ways, fonts and styles. You draw one, and have to say the word "dude", in the manner presented on the card, or close to it. The rest of the table then need to guess which of the visible "dudes" you are trying to emulate.

Is that "fun"? It's firmly not a series of meaningful decisions. It's about as gloriously stupid as anything like that can be. I can certainly imagine people having fun playing that though (one imagines that being drunk or stoned probably helps more than a little), which I think mostly illustrates the problem with the term in use. If someone says "Is Combat Mission fun?" - it's not fun in the same way that saying "duuuuuude?!" could be fun.

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19 minutes ago, domfluff said:

Is that "fun"? It's firmly not a series of meaningful decisions.

Well in the dude game, I guess the decisions would be about what kind of voice and attitude to use. But most of the fun would come from being drunk and silly - and doing something a bit embarassing.

Arguing about fun, I think part of it is semantics. In my language, we only really use our word for fun about activities or events that are "ha ha funny". Watching a comedy show is fun. Going fishing usually isn't. But in English, 'fun' is more of a broad term for enjoyable activities.

 

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2 hours ago, Freyberg said:

I don't know what technical glitches it had at first, but I bought the CMSF1 big bundle when it was sold on special. By then it was way behind the WWII games, but, even then and even being much more of a WWII fan, I had great fun with it.

There were plenty! I remember floors and walls not working properly. You could shoot straight up to the top storey of a building.

My favorite one was a bug in the ammo count of destroyed vehicles which was not decreased when ammo cooked off. BMP3s and AAVs would explode for days 😅

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Anybody with enough sense to be able to blow their own nose should understand that "fun" is a very personal concept which the individual might not even be able to classify consistently.  For example, there was a period of a month or two where I played a bunch of different "castle defense" type games on my iPad.  I had a lot of "fun" with them for a while.  I probably haven't played such a game in 4 or 5 years because the "fun" factor wore off.  So if someone had asked me while playing "do you find this game fun?" my answer would have been an emphatic "YES!!".  But if you ask me about it today, my answer is a solid "Meh... it must have been a phase".

This sort of thing happens with all kinds of "arts".  There's endless numbers of movies and TV shows that I saw years ago that I have very fond memories of, but when I've seen them again I wondered if I must have been sniffing glue at the time because no way do I find them entertaining now.  Vice versa, there's been musical groups that I found "OK" at one time or another but then, for some reason, suddenly got into. 

This is all fine.  It's natural.  Variety is definitely the spice of life.  Which is why when I see someone say "Combat Mission is not fun" I don't think "that person is an idiot" (I need more evidence than just that!) because probably 99.9999% of the world's population would find Combat Mission "not fun".  Sure, most of the world is full of idiots, but liking Combat Mission is not a good litmus test.  A positive review of an Adam Sandler film is by far a much better indicator ;)

When CMSF1 came out some had a hard time because they felt entitled to find it fun.  Putting aside the unreasonable and egocentric nature of such demands, games are emotional so that was not a totally crazy response (as regrettable as it was).  The crazy stuff came after and, over time, went away.  Just like the doomsday cult leaders who continually state the world is going to end on such and such a date in such and such a way, they found a smaller audience to play fool to each time they missed the mark. 

Steve

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2 hours ago, Battlefront.com said:

Anybody with enough sense to be able to blow their own nose should understand that "fun" is a very personal concept which the individual might not even be able to classify consistently.  For example, there was a period of a month or two where I played a bunch of different "castle defense" type games on my iPad.  I had a lot of "fun" with them for a while.  I probably haven't played such a game in 4 or 5 years because the "fun" factor wore off.  So if someone had asked me while playing "do you find this game fun?" my answer would have been an emphatic "YES!!".  But if you ask me about it today, my answer is a solid "Meh... it must have been a phase".

This sort of thing happens with all kinds of "arts".  There's endless numbers of movies and TV shows that I saw years ago that I have very fond memories of, but when I've seen them again I wondered if I must have been sniffing glue at the time because no way do I find them entertaining now.  Vice versa, there's been musical groups that I found "OK" at one time or another but then, for some reason, suddenly got into. 

This is all fine.  It's natural.  Variety is definitely the spice of life.  Which is why when I see someone say "Combat Mission is not fun" I don't think "that person is an idiot" (I need more evidence than just that!) because probably 99.9999% of the world's population would find Combat Mission "not fun".  Sure, most of the world is full of idiots, but liking Combat Mission is not a good litmus test.  A positive review of an Adam Sandler film is by far a much better indicator ;)

When CMSF1 came out some had a hard time because they felt entitled to find it fun.  Putting aside the unreasonable and egocentric nature of such demands, games are emotional so that was not a totally crazy response (as regrettable as it was).  The crazy stuff came after and, over time, went away.  Just like the doomsday cult leaders who continually state the world is going to end on such and such a date in such and such a way, they found a smaller audience to play fool to each time they missed the mark. 

Steve

No 'like' button for this.  So 'LIKE'.

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3 hours ago, Battlefront.com said:

probably 99.9999% of the world's population would find Combat Mission "not fun".

I hope you're wrong about that Steve as it means only 7800 people might buy CM games, unless of course they are torturing themselves with things they don't find fun 😉.  You do of course have certain corporate customers who may not be allowed to admit to having fun.

More seriously (but not much more), I'm happy to be one of the 0.0001% that finds CM fun.  But as a fairly recent arrival it's more than just fun for me at the moment, more of an obsession...

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I have some memories of when I first tried CMSF.  I had purchased and played all the CMx1 games but because modern didn't appeal to me I didn't get CMSF.  One day a friend and I tried the CMSF demo in Real Time and it was way too fast for me to keep up with.  I then tried another demo scenario against the AI and I asked a few questions on the forum.  The first thing I recall asking about was something about not being able to move the view during a certain phase or something like that.  Maybe the view was frozen prior to movie playback and I said I wanted to be able to reposition the view prior to starting the playback?  I'm not sure.  I also asked what happened to the 'Blue Bar'.  Everyone on the forum was pleasant and respectful and I seem to recall that shortly after my questions Steve announced that the 'Blue Bar' was going to make a reappearance.  There was much rejoicing.

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4 hours ago, Vacilllator said:

I hope you're wrong about that Steve as it means only 7800 people might buy CM games, unless of course they are torturing themselves with things they don't find fun 😉.  You do of course have certain corporate customers who may not be allowed to admit to having fun.

Doh!  Well, that's what you get from a guy that doesn't find math fun :D

10 minutes ago, ASL Veteran said:

Is it just me or did the forums just change?  The layout looks different and the ability to edit a post seems to have dropped to less than a minute after posting or something.

I'm seeing double avatars for people, so my guess is the Forum Gods are using their powers at the moment.

Steve

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33 minutes ago, ASL Veteran said:

Is it just me or did the forums just change?  The layout looks different and the ability to edit a post seems to have dropped to less than a minute after posting or something.

edit is under three dots in upper right now.

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39 minutes ago, ASL Veteran said:

Is it just me or did the forums just change?  The layout looks different and the ability to edit a post seems to have dropped to less than a minute after posting or something.

Yes there was an 'update' and the board was down for a short while.  Not sure what it did though...

Ahh, thanks akd - the ubiqitous 3 dots arrives at the forum, plus a few visual changes.

Edited by Vacilllator
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5 hours ago, Vacilllator said:

I hope you're wrong about that Steve as it means only 7800 people might buy CM games, unless of course they are torturing themselves with things they don't find fun 😉.  You do of course have certain corporate customers who may not be allowed to admit to having fun.

More seriously (but not much more), I'm happy to be one of the 0.0001% that finds CM fun.  But as a fairly recent arrival it's more than just fun for me at the moment, more of an obsession...

100-99,9999=0,0001
0,0001*7.800.000.000 = 780.000

7.800 just didn't feel right 😉

(lol I ain't no math grog)

Edited by Lethaface
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