Tim James

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  1. Episode 247: Korsun Pocket

    I assume you know Battlefront is at a lower level. Battalions I think? I was actually just looking at Kharkov since it seems to be the latest iteration of the engine and their design. It's only one scenario**, but that's actually a selling point to me, and the $20 sale price is amazingly just right. ** I think they threw in a few freebies like they did for Korsun with the Bulge scenario. I'm currently playing FCRS as well. Starting to come around to it a bit.
  2. Episode 253: From Tabletop to PC

    I think the previous discussion on the physicality of boardgame rules was years ago on Lock 'n Load: Heroes of Stalingrad. I went back and listened after it came out recently (though now I'm doubting myself...) Anyway, the same issue Bruce mentioned about not emphasizing the modifiers is present in LnL. I definitely just checked the percentage and clicked to fire. I read the rules and they went in one ear and out the other. Only after about 15 scenarios did I absorb enough to feel like I was exploring some depth to the system. It was still fun but seemed like a missed opportunity. I feel like iOS boardgames, especially when it comes to asynchronous multiplayer, force me to understand the mechanics than PC games that try to help me with convenience.
  3. From all I could find on Google after a minute, he was at least working as a unit design lead at some point. I can't find anything from when he was hired as an AI tester. I did find a QT3 thread on TMA episode 3 from 2009 where I mention it. So I either saw it somewhere at that point or I was mistaken. That thread also held a discussion about AI. Five years later, we're back where we always were. And I'm still forgetting that guy's name.
  4. Fascinating news from Bruce about the AI: http://www.quartertothree.com/fp/2014/02/03/drive-moscow-drifts-back-onto-ipad-whole-new-ai/ If it's evaluating thousands of moves, I wonder if they have a chess AI going now? I think Soren mentioned there could be problems with that kind of thing in a wargame. I'm curious to see how it works out. I was a little puzzled by the comments about AI in the games industry in general. I liked the theory that the people most knowledgeable about the game make the best AI designers. Naturally, people like that are in high demand for the next game in development, so they can't spend a year working on AI, just from a business perspective. And yet, I think of someone like Creative Assembly. They've iterated all these times, and people still complain about AI generals throwing their lives away. The community helps -- but what's odd is they hired the guy who made the great Medieval AI mods, and the released games still have issues. That seems like just the type of inexpensive tester/tweaker that a big business ought to hire to avoid complaints about the AI. But it still doesn't help at release. I guess we just have to wait for patches.
  5. Episode 245: Auld Lang Zerg

    It's hard for me to mourn the death of traditional RTS games because I don't understand how anyone wants to play them anymore. Obviously we all have our own personal tastes, but my own consideration for them dropped off a cliff the last year or two. Especially in single player, I can't imagine building bases and managing peons for each new scenario. Bleh. I played Rise of Nations for the first time this year. That might have been my final sendoff for traditional RTS, and a lot of that had to do with the dynamic campaign. Wargame showed me the way forward. RTS is dead, long live RTS.
  6. I guess I'm one of those people Bruce mentioned might be a little less inclined to play the 3rd or 4th iteration of the Crisis in Command series, since I'll feel like I've "done that" already. I'm not really sure what anyone can expect from me though. I'm trying to keep up with 20 different genres, and my time is dwindling fast. I have to make some cuts somewhere. Some people might stick with what they know, but I'd rather leave what I know in a cherished place and try to find new amazing things. I'll still buy El Alamein. The price and accessability is good enough that it's no big loss if I never get the time to dig into it.
  7. Episode 247: Korsun Pocket

    No, but Unity of Command (PC) and Battle of the Bulge (iOS) count. Try them.
  8. Episode 247: Korsun Pocket

    Sorry spelk, your confusion may be my fault. I didn't mean you should play that scenario until you mastered it. Just once or twice to practice putting it all together from the tutorial and manual. I have no idea if that scenario is balanced. Just dive into the eastern side scenario using the tips in that guide and the sequence of events I suggested in my post. I turned fog of war off for that one to get used to it.
  9. Episode 247: Korsun Pocket

    Yes, that's a good guide. I forgot about it. I think they include that on PDF on CD.
  10. Episode 247: Korsun Pocket

    I went from Unity of Command to this game last year and I really enjoyed it. I posted a new player guide at QT3. This should be everything you need to go from zero experience with the game to understanding what you need to do on the first few turns of the giant full campaign map.
  11. Episode 232: Sid Meier's Gettysburg!

    I'm not so sure this game is worth playing in 2013. I've been trying to force myself into Antietam for a few weeks now. It's just too old, and I'm someone who usually loves playing important retro games I missed at the time. The graphics are too jumbled to make anything out. Most of the interface is a dead end historically. The animations are poor. And of course the camera scrolls too fast. (Protip: on the menu bar at the top of the screen, click Game, then Preferences, then disable edge scroll, and use shift-C repeatedly to center your view on your mouse cursor.) It was worth playing an hour to learn how some of the systems work. You could also watch some gameplay on YouTube, most likely created by someone who is better at the controls. I just don't think it's smart to spend a lot of time and money unless you're certain you'll commit to it no matter what.
  12. Episode 201: Best of the Guests 2012

    I have to quibble with the discussion about Battle of the Bulge as well. Someone mentioned that there's not enough to do on each turn. Although you can only make one move, I agonize over it a lot like midgame tactics in chess. I easily spend 3-4 minutes on it like any other "chunky" asynchronous multiplayer game where I have a lot of moves to make each turn. Then just when I think I'm ready to move, I remember some other quirk of the situation that forces me to change my plan. And I waste so much time staring at the map while I wait for my opponent. It's just like staring at a chess board. I was also very skeptical about the number of turns per day. I thought it would take forever to play a game. It's still quite slow if you can only trade one turn with your opponent. It helps if you can throw a few back and forth each night. At least it's playable, unlike, say, a 4 player game of Le Havre on iOS. I'm sorry to hear about the sales numbers, if that's true. I'm going to head right over to their forum and make a suggestion.