Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

A little quiet round here (part 2)?

Expand Messages
  • John Ludlow
    Ok, we ve had like half the world and his dog join in recent weeks, but what must they think, what with all the millions of posts and everything? They must
    Message 1 of 6 , May 10, 2003
    • 0 Attachment
      Ok, we've had like half the world and his dog join in recent weeks, but what must they think, what with all the millions of posts and everything? They must think we're crazy... (hears voice echo back to him ;D).

      Heh, the list does seem a bit low on posts of late.

      So, how's about a discussion?

      Ok, what have I been playing? Well, it's been a mix of different games.

      Dungeon Siege on easy was polished off in a few days. I was mildly pleased that certain magic spells were available early on, and conventional weapons featured right up until the end of the game. I was a little disappointed by the inventory - it had a couple of good ideas, but these weren't implemented across the board. You could select spells by holding down the mouse button on the spell button. But this wasn't done for the weapons, which I think would have worked well. And spells had to be organised into 'books'. This meant that you'd get all your favourite spells in one book, and not bother with any others. But in the end it was just too short.

      Medieval is basically Shogun, but better, in most respects. But I have one gripe which shows that even the smallest niggle can spoil a game. On the battle interface in Shogun, if you selected two units and left-dragged, they would line up together, stretching and changing their own formation to fit into the larger group. But in Medieval, while this happens sometimes, it often doesn't. So you wanted a long line of two spear units, stretching two men deep across the landscape. You could end up with that, but you could also end up with one unit in a line, and the other still in a six-rank block formation (or even both in block formation), leaving a large gap in your battle line. I haven't yet worked out the rules that they use to decide this, so it all seems hit and miss. Tsk

      Europa Universalis 2 (not a period I normally take much of an interest in, but what the hell... It's a much talked-about game). It's generally good. I like the way the interface guides you through the game, explaining why things happen. But the UI design itself is a little awkward, I think. But the generous tooltips help alleviate this. One thing about the game is that everything takes so long... You can speed the game up, but ridiculously, this requires you to open the game options. I never really felt this about the Total War games, perhaps because there's just more action.

      Ground Control and Homeworld Cataclysm both seem pretty standard, although rush tactics in Ground Control don't happen much.

      Now that it's gone gold, I can tell you about the beta of Eve I was testing a few weeks ago. The game has a lot of potential - the world is big, deep and rendered in all the proper scale. But Eve falls flat on its butt in technical terms - every button seems to send messages back to the server, which makes it all very sloooow. The concept of gangs - groups of players who can work together - is implemented. But it feels like it should be taken much further. Early on in the game, the only thing you'll be doing is mining asteroids, as you're too small-time to do anything else. And guess what - mining's boring. It wouldn't be so bad if after you upgrade your ship, the mining ended. But you'll be thinking about cargo space more than weaponry for a long, long time. Of course you can take courier missions, as long as they don't pass through low security systems.

      Ok, what else?

      I've been playing Kohan: Battles of Ahriman a bit. I really like some of the ideas it presents (such as the support costs being more important than initial costs, and the idea of support elements), even though at its heart, it's a standard RTS.

      Close Combat 5 has featured on my list of games as well, with its nice representation of WW2 combat.

      Raven Shield is something of an acquired taste - if you liked the earlier games, you should be ok. But to me the AI still seems a little weak - most obviously on one of the training missions.

      I've not bothered to play MOO3 much lately, instead waiting for the GalCiv demo to see if it is any better. I've heard good reports, but Stardock seem strangely averse to actually releasing a demo. Since this game would have to make up for MOO3 and redeem the galactic empire building genre as a whole, I want to make sure it's up to the job.

      One game that was not afraid of the try-before-you-buy ethic (but perhaps should have been) is IG3:Genesis. Looks great, and the games plays well. Or at least it would, if it wasn't for the absolutely criminally godawful interface design. Apparently, the tutorial (not in the demo) makes it all a lot clearer, so I might look into it on budget.

      I'm toying with the idea of going back to AOW2, SimCity 4, Parkan, and Project Eden.

      In the meantime, I'll mention two shareware game demos I've taken a look at. At www.garagegames.com, there's Chain Reaction, a puzzle game where you make machines in order to get a monster to a designated area. Kinda like Lemmings, but different. Yes.

      At www.colobot.com, there's Colobot, a game that involves programming robots in real time.

      So what's everyone else been doing?

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Johan Andersson
      ... ctrl+ and ctrl- are the shortcuts to speed up/down time.
      Message 2 of 6 , May 10, 2003
      • 0 Attachment
        > Europa Universalis 2 (not a period I normally take much of an interest in, but what the hell... It's a much talked-about game). It's generally good. I like the way the interface guides you through the game, explaining why things happen. But the UI design itself is a little awkward, I think. But the generous tooltips help alleviate this. One thing about the game is that everything takes so long... You can speed the game up, but ridiculously, this requires you to open the game options. I never really felt this about the Total War games, perhaps because there's just more action.


        ctrl+ and ctrl- are the shortcuts to speed up/down time.
      • John Ludlow
        ... Ah, right. Thanks for that.
        Message 3 of 6 , May 10, 2003
        • 0 Attachment
          > ctrl+ and ctrl- are the shortcuts to speed up/down time.
          Ah, right. Thanks for that.
        • Brandon J. Van Every
          ... Yeah... quite honestly, the death of this list has coincided with me, uuuh, not posting all the time anymore and, uuuh, spending the past 6 months coding
          Message 4 of 6 , May 12, 2003
          • 0 Attachment
            > From: John Ludlow [mailto:johnludlow_uk@...]
            >
            > Heh, the list does seem a bit low on posts of late.

            Yeah... quite honestly, the death of this list has coincided with me,
            uuuh, not posting all the time anymore and, uuuh, spending the past 6
            months coding rather than talking. What little game design discussion
            energy I've had has gone to c.g.d.design and maybe the odd other list
            here and there. I had a binge of discussion on c.g.d.design recently of
            fairly unimportant subjects... or maybe they started out important, but
            became drivel from flogging dead horses even more to death than the
            dead. Erm.

            Things I'm thinking about lately?

            1) technology is black hole. It should not be confused with game
            design.

            2) "Is this important to gamedom?" is my current metric for innovation
            in game design. Titles that don't articulate an answer to this basic
            question might make someone money, but as game designers they're a waste
            of our time. A new industry title, "Game Regurgitator," perhaps?

            3) Indie game desginers are the only people capable of radical change in
            game design. Game designers working in mainstream corporate
            environments will never have the authority to do anything bold, not
            until indies show the way to profit. And, unfortunately, a lot of
            indies will go broke paving that road. Nobody promised that radical
            change will automatically yield profitable or successful change.


            Cheers, www.3DProgrammer.com
            Brandon Van Every Seattle, WA

            20% of the world is real.
            80% is gobbledygook we make up inside our own heads.
          • shadowspawn
            yea been busy on the same token, doesn t mean i don t read. all i do is work with q3 mods/level design, been busy with doom3-like engines and tenebrae as of
            Message 5 of 6 , May 13, 2003
            • 0 Attachment
              yea been busy on the same token, doesn't mean i don't read. all i do is work
              with q3 mods/level design, been busy with doom3-like engines and tenebrae as
              of late.

              i don't agree with all of those points per se, but it does have it's
              validity. there are some really cool things out in the wild, and I suppose
              you can say that cellulose is never going to expand technology wise either,
              but the movies on it still baffle the mind. games are nothing but an
              extension and projection of the player to whats in my mind. if people like
              em, ok. if not, oh well. as long as I like it that's all that counts.

              what else ya gonna do? prefab games? hrmph.

              ----- Original Message -----
              From: "Brandon J. Van Every" <vanevery@...>
              To: <gamedesign-l@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Monday, May 12, 2003 3:56 AM
              Subject: RE: [gamedesign-l] A little quiet round here (part 2)?


              | > From: John Ludlow [mailto:johnludlow_uk@...]
              | >
              | > Heh, the list does seem a bit low on posts of late.
              |
              | Yeah... quite honestly, the death of this list has coincided with me,
              | uuuh, not posting all the time anymore and, uuuh, spending the past 6
              | months coding rather than talking. What little game design discussion
              | energy I've had has gone to c.g.d.design and maybe the odd other list
              | here and there. I had a binge of discussion on c.g.d.design recently of
              | fairly unimportant subjects... or maybe they started out important, but
              | became drivel from flogging dead horses even more to death than the
              | dead. Erm.
              |
              | Things I'm thinking about lately?
              |
              | 1) technology is black hole. It should not be confused with game
              | design.
              |
              | 2) "Is this important to gamedom?" is my current metric for innovation
              | in game design. Titles that don't articulate an answer to this basic
              | question might make someone money, but as game designers they're a waste
              | of our time. A new industry title, "Game Regurgitator," perhaps?
              |
              | 3) Indie game desginers are the only people capable of radical change in
              | game design. Game designers working in mainstream corporate
              | environments will never have the authority to do anything bold, not
              | until indies show the way to profit. And, unfortunately, a lot of
              | indies will go broke paving that road. Nobody promised that radical
              | change will automatically yield profitable or successful change.
              |
              |
              | Cheers, www.3DProgrammer.com
              | Brandon Van Every Seattle, WA
              |
              | 20% of the world is real.
              | 80% is gobbledygook we make up inside our own heads.
              |
            • John Ludlow
              Hmmm, I feel a little differently. While it s not necassary for everyone on the planet to fall madly in love with a game I ve developed, I would like at least
              Message 6 of 6 , May 13, 2003
              • 0 Attachment
                Hmmm, I feel a little differently. While it's not necassary for everyone on
                the planet to fall madly in love with a game I've developed, I would like at
                least someone to think it's ok.
                ----- Original Message -----
                From: "shadowspawn" <shadowspawn@...>
                To: <gamedesign-l@yahoogroups.com>
                Sent: Tuesday, May 13, 2003 9:23 PM
                Subject: Re: [gamedesign-l] A little quiet round here (part 2)?


                > yea been busy on the same token, doesn't mean i don't read. all i do is
                work
                > with q3 mods/level design, been busy with doom3-like engines and tenebrae
                as
                > of late.
                >
                > i don't agree with all of those points per se, but it does have it's
                > validity. there are some really cool things out in the wild, and I suppose
                > you can say that cellulose is never going to expand technology wise
                either,
                > but the movies on it still baffle the mind. games are nothing but an
                > extension and projection of the player to whats in my mind. if people like
                > em, ok. if not, oh well. as long as I like it that's all that counts.
                >
                > what else ya gonna do? prefab games? hrmph.
                >
                > ----- Original Message -----
                > From: "Brandon J. Van Every" <vanevery@...>
                > To: <gamedesign-l@yahoogroups.com>
                > Sent: Monday, May 12, 2003 3:56 AM
                > Subject: RE: [gamedesign-l] A little quiet round here (part 2)?
                >
                >
                > | > From: John Ludlow [mailto:johnludlow_uk@...]
                > | >
                > | > Heh, the list does seem a bit low on posts of late.
                > |
                > | Yeah... quite honestly, the death of this list has coincided with me,
                > | uuuh, not posting all the time anymore and, uuuh, spending the past 6
                > | months coding rather than talking. What little game design discussion
                > | energy I've had has gone to c.g.d.design and maybe the odd other list
                > | here and there. I had a binge of discussion on c.g.d.design recently of
                > | fairly unimportant subjects... or maybe they started out important, but
                > | became drivel from flogging dead horses even more to death than the
                > | dead. Erm.
                > |
                > | Things I'm thinking about lately?
                > |
                > | 1) technology is black hole. It should not be confused with game
                > | design.
                > |
                > | 2) "Is this important to gamedom?" is my current metric for innovation
                > | in game design. Titles that don't articulate an answer to this basic
                > | question might make someone money, but as game designers they're a waste
                > | of our time. A new industry title, "Game Regurgitator," perhaps?
                > |
                > | 3) Indie game desginers are the only people capable of radical change in
                > | game design. Game designers working in mainstream corporate
                > | environments will never have the authority to do anything bold, not
                > | until indies show the way to profit. And, unfortunately, a lot of
                > | indies will go broke paving that road. Nobody promised that radical
                > | change will automatically yield profitable or successful change.
                > |
                > |
                > | Cheers, www.3DProgrammer.com
                > | Brandon Van Every Seattle, WA
                > |
                > | 20% of the world is real.
                > | 80% is gobbledygook we make up inside our own heads.
                > |
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > http://groups.yahoo.com/group/gamedesign-l/
                >
                > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                >
              Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.