Akalabeth

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About Akalabeth

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  1. Huge fan of all the X-Wing games (except XvT) but one thing I only realized much later is that it wasn't even Lucasarts who made the games but rather Totally Games, developers of other titles like Secret Weapons of the Luftwaft. Have to say my opinion of Lucasarts dropped after knowing that. The other game I played that they actually developed was Dark Forces, which to me was so reliant on recycling things from the movies that it ended up falling pretty flat. Literally all the enemies in dark forces (except the Dark Troopers themselves) are just anything they could take from the movies, whereas the X-Wing and Tie Fighter games added so many new craft, many of which have since become canon. Lucasarts is supposed to have a great pedigree in adventure games but I've yet to delve into any of those titles. I've tried several times to get into Master of Magic but find it very difficult with the graphics and interface. Though I can still easily slide into a game of Master of Orion 1 with no qualms whatsoever. Jagged Alliance 1 is another game I simply can't get into, I don't understand why paid mercenaries don't have proper guns at the start and I need to acquire these through the missions themselves. I understand that it's for the progression but thematically it's bonkers.
  2. Episode 326: State of the RTS

    Map Control, Co-operation and Tactics can apply to pretty much any team-based multiplayer game. Those aren't useful comparisons. Development of Assets? Do you actually "develop" assets in RTS games,? You build assets yes. And together those assets collectively can be a different form, but if I want to upgrade a Space Marine how many options do I really have? And how free am I to create assets as I wish or do those assets have pre-requisites to be built? Do I need a barracks before I can build a garage? And in terms of the core gameplay concept, an RTS game is not about asset management, it's about Economy. Build an economy through asset creation, expand an economy through exploration and map control, win through destruction of the enemy economy. There is no economy in your traditional Lords Management. In a game like Dota 2 there's passive gold collection but the collection of additional gold and XP requires resource collection either from NPC mobs or enemy players. Being efficient in gathering resources is dependent on map cycling, which is more akin to cycling through a multiplayer FPS map collecting power-ups than it is collecting lumber and stone from static resource points. So yeah I still maintain that drawing a line of comparison between Lords Managements and RTS is an erroneous one. Is it just because DOTA started as a WC3 mod? But WC3 is not a traditional RTS from the outset, with its heavy focus on heroes. I think part of it is that people correlate the decline of the RTS with the rise of the Lords Management, and figure there must be some causality, but did the RTS genre ever have the same number of players as the mainstream Lords Managements? I kind of doubt it.
  3. Episode 326: State of the RTS

    This episode is ancient, but are the podcast peeps still of the opinion that RTS players have gone to Lords Management? Or that RTSes have suffered because the rise of Lords ManagementS? RTS games are about micromanaging multiple units in a battle, but if you actually play a Lords Management, the characters that require you to play multiple units are among the least popular in the game (at least in Dota2). I'm thinking Visage, Chen, Lone Druid, Broodmother, Naga Siren, Arc Warden, Brew Master, they're all bottom 10 in most played. To me the Lords Management is more like an Action RPG, like Diablo, than an RTS. EDIT - Why was M-O-B-A replaced with Lords Management? Who uses that title aside from the podcast on this site? What an uneccessary mouthful of words.
  4. Just watching the time lapse map on Wikipedia, I don't know how you could have a systemic 3 kingdoms game with a historical outcome. There are so many factions at start, and so many also seem to flip from one colour to another at different points- presumably from re-organization or new leadership, which is not typical in most strategy games. I guess you would just ignore the pre-220 kingdoms outright. Maybe the later era of strife, the 16 kingdoms, would be an interesting setting for a game also.
  5. Episode 460: Looking Ahead to 2019

    Starship Dimensions (Jeff Russel) has the Super Star Destroyer at 19km and the ISD at 1.6 km. Even the thumbnail you got for the podcast has the SSD absolutely dwarfs the ISDs (as you can see the ISD in front of it, therefore closer). I don't think it would be playable at the movie scale. I played Xenonauts, or some of it, recently - the first game, but it suffers from some of the same problems as Xcom1 in my opinion - namely small squad sizes. In the original xcom, the first craft you took could take what, 12-14 troopers? In Xenonauts the helicopter you get can only carry around 8 guys or 6 with a tank. Just not enough troops in my opinion to really embrace the attrition warfare. Also in that game I found myself broke all the time. Probably user error, but trying to have a few bases to cover about half the earth and then I can't even hire people or buy planes.
  6. When you say it's a 4X just about war, isn't it comparable to say the old Warlords games? I played one of those, I think the third one, and if I remember correctly it was all just about building units and smashing the other guy.
  7. Episode 457: A Look Back at 2018

    Played ITB a bit more, I warmed up to it after I realized I could unlock other squads and that they were not achievement dependent. I think the game's limitations really show when you're using the same squad all the time and continued enjoyment is heavily dependent upon taking different combinations of mechs, pilots & add-ons. But after taking about 12 tries to win with the first set of mechs, I won the game first time every time with all the other squads save Zenith which took two goes. This is on normal with four islands. Apparently paying to upgrade mechs, not buy expensive non-class items, is the way to do it. Didn't bother with the secret squad. That said, the game is enjoyable in the sense that you can do a battle quickly, and a campaign is fairly short. But it does still feel quite simple and when your whole squad gets webbed up it's really frustrating. Also as a minor quibble, I don't get why I can't judo throw a bug into another bug, you'd think that would be an obvious tactic.
  8. Episode 457: A Look Back at 2018

    Once again will disagree with the 3MA podcast. Into the Breach simply didn't hit with me, it's a game where contrary to how it appears, the player is "losing initiative" mostly all the time and on the defensive 100% of the time. Thinking that the player has the advantage for knowing enemy attacks before they happen and moving and attacking in response falls apart when you realize that the player's team isn't just the mechs, it's also all of the buildings. And all of those buildings effectively "move first", thereby allowing the enemy to have his way with them. In tabletop, it sucks to lose initiative all the time and in the game Into the Breach it's no different.
  9. Homeworld Emergence is the re-released expansion for HW1, previously called Cataclysm, but Cataclysm no longer because of World of Warcraft. Though I don't understand why they need to re-name it when HW: Cataclysm came first. It's on GOG. Not sure about other stores.
  10. Episode 453: Black Hawk Down and Zulu

    I gave this episode a pass. Movie discussion is fine and all but should probably be a separate podcast.
  11. Episode 413: Myth

    This podcast helps explain why Halo was originally going to be an RTS. Though I thought the best bungie game was Oni?
  12. Episode 415: Endless Space 2 Revisited

    Funny that the one guy says he's sick of single tech slots and wanting sliders and yet that's exactly what the original Master of Orion had. Six techs researched at the same time with sliders denoting how much goes to which. This single tech stuff comes from Civilization, and its unfortunate that MOO2 decided to copy it or go that way because it's laid out the structure for games decades on.
  13. Cool to hear VGA Planets mentioned in this episode. Played that game quite a bit back in the day. Speaking of which that game does have websites, or had websites, which ran games- both vanilla and modded. Like circus maximus. Why wouldn't Dominion have something similar? Also funny how Troy says he doesn't have any final thoughts and then proceeds to give a bunch of final thoughts.
  14. I disagree that Moo1 is simply "civilization in space", the game's systems are so far removed from civ's that they don't really have a lot in common. Its sequel on the other hand, Moo2, certainly was a step from Moo1 into a direction more like civilization particularly in the way tech is researched and planets are managed. I loved Moo1 and only played Moo2 much later, but like some of the comments above, I really bounced off it. Planetary management, gaming pacing and fleet battles were all major steps down for me. I remain baffled as to why of the two games, Moo2 is the more popular and the more influential. I can only assume it is because the game and its successors are more civ-like in their execution.
  15. I can't say that game disappointed me, but it certainly didn't keep me playing either. While the strategic elements seemed okay, the battles were absolutely comical. I remembered trying to run a battle where I seemingly out-gunned the enemy but after about 10 minutes of the fleets trading shots, most ships were still at full shields and if anything my ships were getting the worst of it. So I hit "auto resolve" and am rewarded with a crushing victory over my opponents. Didn't make any sense to me at all but that's about the time I stopped playing. That said I don't connect with a lot of the speakers opinions. Rob for example is also a big Alpha Centauri fan if I'm not mistaken, but when I've tried multiple times to get into that game I simply cannot get into it. The visuals are weird, sound effects even weirder, and the backstory I just sort of bounced off. Only lasting memory is the sound of the mindworms attacking me with a sound effect that sounds nothing like an attack, but instead like some odd, alien vaccuum cleaner.