SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

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Crabman
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SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Crabman » Fri Sep 18, 2015 4:14 pm

The new update for BotB on iOS is a HUGE disappointment,it was a silky smooth 60fps experience before the update (even down to my old 4s) and now it's - sorry to say that - a sluggish mess (on my Air 2!!).Felt naturally home on ipad before but now it feels like a bad PC port.

I'm not really surprised though.I was afraid this could happen when i read that the game(s) get a new multiplatform engine.I wish i could roll back to the old version but i don't have the IPA anymore.

I definitely won't update DoM and DF if they get similar updates.You can read more player impressions in the comments here:

aah well...i have no permission to post links :roll:

Anyway,i wanted to point to the latest BotB news on Pocket Tactics.

Redwing6891
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Redwing6891 » Fri Sep 18, 2015 6:42 pm

Crabman, I agree with you. Before the latest update it was a native iOS app that ran perfectly and was designed to work on all iOS platforms. I played it on iPad, iPad mini and iPhone 5 - all versions were excellent.

Unfortunately like you I updated today. Curiosity killed the cat - or in this case the game. You're right, now it's like a bad PC port of the 1.x version, certainly not the latest 2.0 which brought the design in line with Moscow and El Alamein. It's jerky, the music and sound effects are off (terrible loops), and whats more, to decipher the interface you need a microscope. Battery drain is amazing - 50% in just 40 min on iPhone 5. I also have my doubts about the AI - it's not as sharp as before. You just wonder who did the testing on iOS devices - or if there was any.

I really wished I hadn't updated because the only thing you can do with this version is delete it. I'm still hoping they'll fix it, though I posted this morning and since then - resounding silence.
:(

mboog12
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by mboog12 » Fri Sep 18, 2015 6:52 pm

We've replied to a lot of the places that updates will follow, especially for IOS.
Some of the rough edges that are still present on IOS devices will be resolved in a few packs.

Pitta
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Pitta » Fri Sep 18, 2015 7:34 pm

I've been asked to paste a post of mine by Sitlherine on these forums where the devs can actually better see complaints and I happily comply.
I do not want to be harsh, but I've been too very disappointed by the update of my favorite game.
I hope that things will get better with updates but I already rolled back to the previous version.
I'll try the new one when I'll read it's better.

Keep in mind BotB is one of my favorite games ever and when I heard Siltherine that we all love was to resurrect the game I was in awe.

This is pasted and slightly edited for clarity from another forum (Pocket Tactics).

I'm at loss of words too.

I was really happy to see the Siltherine we all love was about to resurrect my favorite strategy game ever (slick, fast, fun, with the right amount of depth and randomness IMHO) but really...I do not know.
I'm on iPad Air, iOS 9.
Game is really sluggish...the intro is almost silent and transition with the splash screen is amateurish.
But ok, I'll never see it again.
The game itself is sluggish while before was super slick....sounds are all messed up and even incorrect (you shouldn't hear airplanes till Christmas or so).
The combat animations are off (the upper tank have the smoke above, not sure how it was before but I never noticed they were this off, they aren't silky smooth as before too and they do not blend as before).
You hear too many clicks too (the switch click sound, not sure why).
Last nail in the coffin....the async engine is totally gone.
No gamecenter, no friends invites and apparently no native notifications (this is pending...my friends have yet to find my game and enter with a handmade password).
I appreciate they wanted to upgrade the AI (which seems to be improved but it's too early for me to say) and have cross platform but the loss of the GC async (which worked flawlessly) is really too much IMHO.
And the engine must be tweaked big time to be comparable to the previous one.

Also gone, the super cool ending movie recap...which I hoped would have gained iOS9 replaykit functionality.
Also gone, Twitter share as far as I can see.

I won't give up hope and I wrote all this hoping for improvements, but meanwhile I rolled back to previous version.
Smooth as silk, my friends are all there and multiplayer is fast and immediate as before.

mboog12
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by mboog12 » Fri Sep 18, 2015 7:41 pm

Thank you for posting this feedback.
Most of them we will fix. The one thing from your feedback that we cannot do anything about is the multiplayer system.
We want to offer cross-platform functionality, and we can't do that using game center.

Cheers

Redwing6891
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Redwing6891 » Fri Sep 18, 2015 8:11 pm

Couldn't agree with you more, Pitta. Huge disappointment. I have posted issues and screenshots on several other threads. Shenandoah games used to be my regular commute companions, Bulge in particular, on my iPhone. Now - not so much.

It's good of the developers to respond here and promise action, which really is appreciated. However - how could we get to this point in the first place?

We went from a perfect iOS product to beta testing stage as an update! I suppose to some extent that shows how much of the original Shenandoah Studio philosophy (make great games for iOS) survives one year after the takeover. The company's Schwerpunkt has shifted well away from iOS. And you can't be good at everything. The whole multi-platform concept as such is flawed. I would have thought the corresponding quote of Frederick the Great would be well known to and heeded by a strategy games developer.

I wish I could roll back - but I don't have the old version anymore.
Last edited by Redwing6891 on Fri Sep 18, 2015 8:43 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Pitta
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Pitta » Fri Sep 18, 2015 8:31 pm

Thanks for looking into these issues.

As for the multiplayer system...I understand but I'm not sure I'll ever 'accept' it.
The loss of the async notifications and friends list are huge in a game that has in its fastness and accessibility some of its strongest points.
BotB is great because you can take your turn in a matter of seconds after looking at the board wherever you are...the actual system cancels that.

While cross platform is nice I really think someday you should develop a system with proper native notifications on iOS instead of mail system, which is fine on PC but it's really incoventient on iOS (GC is handy but not mandatory).

I'll look forward next updates!!!!

Pitta
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Pitta » Fri Sep 18, 2015 8:48 pm

I would like to add something about sounds.

I saw it as already mentioned elsewhere but I would like to add they are all messed up too.

One of the best thing of the original game was the athmosfere conveyed also by the sounds.
You could feel in the freezing Adrennes watching the map and hearing just the wind blowing.
Now you constantly hear tanks moving, footsteps, an omnipresent weird 'switch click' sound which is really distracting.
Even more important, I clearly heard the airplanes sounds ealry in the game, which is wrong....in the original game you hear those only late in the campaign, when the clear weather kicks in....it's very important and fundamental to gameplay....if you use Axis and hear that sound....well, if you played the game you know what I mean.

Hope it helps!!!

IainMcNeil
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by IainMcNeil » Fri Sep 18, 2015 9:59 pm

Thanks for all the feedback. This is the first step and we're looking for which direction to the things so we're very interested in your feedback.

If we added push notifications to multiplayer would this help?

We're also exploring a way to make the game more persistent in multiplayer in other games which we might be able to add here. It basically means you can stay in game while your opponent moves.

Please give us all your feedback and anything you think is different from before that you'd like to see. We had to re-write the game from scratch and many things are not documented and so we may have missed some things.

Rosseau
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Rosseau » Fri Sep 18, 2015 10:30 pm

There's no doubt all your gripes are valid and will certainly be corrected. I'd be pissed, too. Best to stop reading now... :wink:

My personal feeling (who cares what I think?) is real wargames are played on a modern PC, not some kind of tablet that will just strain your eyes. Combat Mission came out on a platform, but it wasn't the real Combat Mission - more of a joke.

Ravenmark is a nice platform-like release, for example. But it can't hold a candle to the PC releases like Legendary Heroes, etc. Hopefully, the developers will continue to introduce introductory level platform games, as well as those for more experienced wargamers. Not just to sell junk platform games, but to get the mainstream market more interested in the wargame genre. I see this happening already on Steam, and it is good.

I would just hate to see devs jump on the quick-buck platform train. I did buy BotB though, as it got great reviews. Maybe the best I've ever read on a platform wargame.

Pitta
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Pitta » Fri Sep 18, 2015 10:47 pm

(I really appreciate your commitment to the game and understand things doesn't always go as planned and why certain choices).

Push notifications would really help to bring back the old glorious BotB in the new dress.
It's the core of the whole async experience, which is truly enjoyed and makes sense only on mobile devices (the perfect medium for these kind of fast head to head games IMHO).

Right now the old BotB system, which is the standard GC provided one, was close to perfection (while still improvable).

These the key features:

Instant turn notification: you receive the notification, you press it and bam! You're inside the actual game ready to take your turn. (No mail, no links, no opening apps, no logins, no searches....just play).
A distinctive non intrusive custom sound.
If your opponent took his turn while you still were on the map, you would see it realtime (and probably lose next hour, see further).
If you are in a game (solo or multi) and someone took his turn in another game...you are notified inside the game and you can switch to that game instantly.
GC has also your friend list always avaible, and you can invite and see who is playing what constantly (this is neat but eventually not mandatory....still a list of recent opponent or a friend list would be cool).

Improvements:
Custom icon
Seeing the actual opponent in the turn notification (the GC BotB display only the type of game and the day....useless as you will see it anyway in a sec).

These are on top of my mind would really help the current multiplayer implementation which is really PC-centric (I might be utterly wrong but I always thought you overstimated the appeal for iOS gamers of cross platform play....PC gamers are not 'made for async'.....every time I tried it was painful).

Two usual scenarios (at least for me) with the old BotB:

It's so fast and immediate, requiring just a glance to the map, you can take your turn wherever you are doing it several times during the day, on every pause.
But when you lay down in bed and you receive a notification, take your turn and see your opponent panzer division moving....you are guaranteed to get no sleep.
It's the best of the two worlds.

Hope it helps!!!

Crabman
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Crabman » Sat Sep 19, 2015 8:32 am

It's good to read that they want to improve this game but there is something that i just don't understand:how could they even release this version?Were they hoping nobody cares?The fps went down from 60' to 20 or so.Did no one of the beta tester compared this to the old version?

@Rosseau:oh how i"like"this "real (war)games should be played on PC" nonsense...The crisis in command series were made for touch screen and they play absolutely brilliant there.No doubt this is still the best way to enjoy this games but you are right:who cares what you think :wink:

IainMcNeil
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by IainMcNeil » Sat Sep 19, 2015 9:30 am

Lets not get in to a PC vs iOS debate. Everyone should be able to enjoy the way the game the way they want.

Right now it seems performance is one of the main issues and how multiplayer works. We'll look at both of those. Believe it not performance was not mentioned. I played the game a lot and didn't notice either. I think I may have been too focussed on winning the scenario… which is a good sign!

Crabman
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Crabman » Sat Sep 19, 2015 11:11 am

Thanks for your quick reply.I apologize if my postings might sound a little rude,it just shows how i love the CiC games :)

Happycat
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Re: SO disappointed after latest update (iOS)

Post by Happycat » Thu Sep 24, 2015 4:40 am

I am not an iOS user, so can't comment on the issues in any specific or useful way. What I can say is that my years of working with Slitherine as a tester, proof reader/editor and moderator have taught me that Slitherine never, and I mean NEVER, leaves customers in the lurch. There is no doubt whatsoever in my mind that issues capable of being resolved will be resolved.

Having read through many of the iOS related posts throughout the "Bulge" threads, I can certainly see why iOS users are frustrated. I applaud the overwhelming majority who have identified problems in a constructive and relatively calm way. My suggestion would be to continue identifying issues that you find, and bring them forward (avoiding duplication, if possible---a quick search on the threads will often reveal that a problem is already identified).

Hang in there iOS players----give Slitherine a chance to prove to you that all that I have just said is true :)
Chance favours the prepared mind.

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