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Congratulations Battlefront on perhaps the best computer wargame to date . In the last few days i have had some of the best wargaming experiences in over twenty years of pushing round carboard counters and clicking away with the old mouse .

But Sirs this is still a long way from any where nearing perfection as you have stated in the excellent manual no one will ever make a truly realistic combat simulation/game nor will they please us all at the same time . Fault can and will be found no matter how good the product .

I could list here many many areas with which i myself am not happy with in CM ( most have allready been covered anyway ).

But today i would like to point out to you what i regard as the hysterical reaction that criticism of this GAME draws from certain people reading though the threads on this and other forums and using the chat rooms i am left with the impression there is a organised effort to stamp out constructive , civilised and informed debate on how and perhaps where you at battlefront could improve your product both for us the CONSUMER and ultimately you the SELLER.

lets all get a grip take this product for what it is a game hopefully a game that will come to rival or better the original SL/ASL but do remember after all gentlemen it is only a game .

sincerely J L SIMPSON

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It's just that nowadays it's the required answer to any newbie first post.

BTW, you're right.

But you got to know that in the past, some of the "critics" were a bit aggresive and unlawful.

So I guess we are a little bit trigger happy about that game.

You also forgot one thing which is very important since it's the dreaded Human Factor.

The good ol' "We were there" symptom.

Which reminds me that since it's your first post and you hadn't been assimilated yet, there is no good reason why I should try to contribute something useful in here.

Back in the Pool with me...


Will you trade your Peng for a box of Seanachai?

[This message has been edited by PawBroon (edited 10-03-2000).]

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I agree with ... most of your points. However, I disagree with your perception that there is an organized effort to squelch constructive criticism and debate. I think there are probably a few sycophants about that will hear no wrong spoken of their favorite game (and every game in every genre has a few of this sort), but by and large I think people here on the forum (and at BTS) are more than willing to entertain suggestions, criticisms and comments.

Things start to break down when people: (a) mistakenly assume that something they would like to see is something most would like to see; (B) mistakenly assume that adding a feature that has been popular in other games would necessarily be in the best interest of BTS; © have gross misconceptions about how difficult particular changes would be to implement in CM, and refuse to accept the estimates of the world's only experts on this topic (BTS); (d) make "reality" arguments based on "gut feeling" rather than on qualitative, emperical data; or (e) fundamentally misunderstand the nature of CM (in game scope, focus, player role, or nature of under-the-hood computation).

There are many threads where civil and informative discussions have delved into both esoteric details and fundamental design decisions. Some of these have resulted in changes, while others have not. Sadly, there are also many threads where people have spiralled out of control.


Leland J. Tankersley

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Although for the most part the discussions are fairly civil, there is a rather high level of intolerance here about opinions that the game has problems of realism.

BTS freely admit that the game is not perfect, but Steve insists that such things are "bugs" that can be corrected by programming. Now Steve is the designer and has a right to his opinion and I guess that he SHOULD lean a bit on the defensive side, but he has a coterie of defenders who take it upon themsleves to attack any suggestion that could be interpreted as an attack on the game, sometimes resorting to questionable debating techniques distorting the views of those who disagree with them.

That is why today I began a thread on the war-historical usenet forum about the unrealistic aspects of the game. I said that starting such a thread here would be tantamount to yelling "God does not exist and the Pope is a sodomist" at a Papal audience at the Vatican.

I have no idea if thre is an organized effort to stifle criticism, but I can understand how one could get the impression that there is.


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The difficulty you are seeing is when two groups with different standards of proof clash. In previous almost wholly subjective, 2D games without a true physics model it was very possible to argue over giving a +1 to a tank gun that people felt was over modelled. That is because the tank gun was in no way modelled in an objective form. Because CM adopted from the beginning a more historical based game, with an active physics model it suddenly became possible to use objective reasoning in the system. So, many people would like to see more than just a gut feeling leading a move to change the game -- or a single flawed test, or any single peice of evidence taken out of context. This is not being a sycophant for BTS - but wanting this game to live by a higher standard.

The difficulty is that a higher standard means higher hurdles and certain methods to "prove" or "disprove" something, methods that are not often well taught in schools, and whose difficulty make them unpopular. For example, I have articles that Vitamin A deficiency in Axis troops reduced eyesight acuity, so I could wave this article in the air and ask for my -1 applied by all tank to hits. But I would not have build any trail of evidence, I would have not found any data that relates to eyesight versus tank accuracy, and I have not created a mathematical model that can be used by the game designers to make a change.

In other words, the establishment of objective measures in a game (for the first time for ballistics) also "ups the anti" in making changes. Capricious or slanted changes are going to have to take fire and rightfully so. Even well modelled and thought out changes need this peer review. Otherwise we will be lining up +1 and -1 all day long to account for changes we thing might effect the game and we loose the reality based system that has been created by Charles and Steve.

I might add this makes anyone who wants to change the game work a bit harder to develop an argument, but this is an important factor is a game where the BTS staff listens so closely to its customers.

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