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This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2020 9:46 am
by jonnieb57
It cannot just be me. I have been wargaming for over 45 years and am a former Army officer. In this game there are just so many things that seem "off".

Tank units are facing off against one another and the odds are simply impossible. Pz. IIIs that are keeping Shermans at bay and destroying them in greater numbers on equal terrain? I could go on and on, but anyone who has played this game thus far knows what I mean. There is a LOT of work needed here!

Encirclement is really broken. How can a unit be out of supply when one hex from its´ supply base and no enemy ZOC in the picture? I keep scratching my head.

PBEM - Just pick a bunch of paras and drop in on all of the targets and collect points and ...... what!? The realism here is killed - tactical setups that would make sense elsewhere are garbage here. The balancing is poor.

Supply system - why is it even here? It does not work. Troops almost never run out of anything.

The AI counter-attacks in ridiculous fashion - here I can take advantage of the banzai AI, bait it with some unit and make well-entrenched units charge out into the open!

The scenario designer is POOR - BAD - HORRIBLE. There is no way at present to design and create a useable scenario. It is absolutely an Alpha version that should not have been released yet.

I used to like PC.... this one will need a LOT of fixing until I begin to like it.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2020 11:12 am
by WookieeDavidson
The scenario designer is POOR - BAD - HORRIBLE. There is no way at present to design and create a useable scenario. It is absolutely an Alpha version that should not have been released yet.
it can be improved, but i think the scenario designer is fine... a lot of the things you'll need to learn to increase the effectiveness of the editor is LUA scripting

but as a scenario designer i think its alright

Also is this really the place to vent your frustration with the game itself? in the "scenario design" part of the forums

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2020 4:36 pm
by PoorOldSpike
jonnieb57 wrote:
Tue Jun 23, 2020 9:46 am
It cannot just be me. I have been wargaming for over 45 years and am a former Army officer...
I used to like PC.... this one will need a LOT of fixing until I begin to like it.

Whoa General, I've been figure/board/computer gaming for about 45 years too and would rate PC2 as one of the best games I've seen in all that time..:)
Remember, it can be played in many ways, eg singleplayer/multiplayer/scenarios/campaigns/random generated battles, and you can also use a bunch of "house rules", to play in a way that floats your personal boat.
Personally I'm a random generator nut and it blows my socks off, I've already played two 3-hour battles today and it's still only 5:30 pm, plenty of time for a third and fourth, but will take a break to watch The Waltons- "John-Boy raises peoples eyebrows when he develops a crush on the new schoolmarm who is older than him"....hmm sounds good, it's about time he had some action.

Below: a blast from the past round about 1980, Gaz Newton is on the left and I'm the sad freak on the right with our boardgame collection, 3 years later I bought my first computer (Sinclair ZX Spectrum) and we switched to computer gaming but he vanished soon after, last I heard he'd got himself a Thai bride.

Image

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2020 7:10 pm
by Retributarr
jonnieb57 wrote:
Tue Jun 23, 2020 9:46 am
It cannot just be me. I have been wargaming for over 45 years and am a former Army officer. In this game there are just so many things that seem "off".

The AI counter-attacks in ridiculous fashion - here I can take advantage of the banzai AI, bait it with some unit and make well-entrenched units charge out into the open!

The scenario designer is POOR - BAD - HORRIBLE. There is no way at present to design and create a useable scenario. It is absolutely an Alpha version that should not have been released yet.

I used to like PC.... this one will need a LOT of fixing until I begin to like it.
A'hem!... "Mon-Kapitan" jonnieb57 :
It's refreshing to see someone... "Speak his Mind"... it's so good to see that perhaps you could mercifully 'Volunteer' your accumulated wealth of experience... as a consultant service to work with and help our struggling 'Scenario Designer'... to quantum-leap his design approach!.

So far... I think that he is "not too-bad", but? yes... we could use/stand some improvements... so? why-not... step-up and volunteer yourself to see if they will give you a shot-at-it?.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2020 8:21 pm
by Patrick Ward
Retributarr wrote:
Tue Jun 23, 2020 7:10 pm
jonnieb57 wrote:
Tue Jun 23, 2020 9:46 am
It cannot just be me. I have been wargaming for over 45 years and am a former Army officer. In this game there are just so many things that seem "off".

The AI counter-attacks in ridiculous fashion - here I can take advantage of the banzai AI, bait it with some unit and make well-entrenched units charge out into the open!

The scenario designer is POOR - BAD - HORRIBLE. There is no way at present to design and create a useable scenario. It is absolutely an Alpha version that should not have been released yet.

I used to like PC.... this one will need a LOT of fixing until I begin to like it.
A'hem!... "Mon-Kapitan" jonnieb57 :
It's refreshing to see someone... "Speak his Mind"... it's so good to see that perhaps you could mercifully 'Volunteer' your accumulated wealth of experience... as a consultant service to work with and help our struggling 'Scenario Designer'... to quantum-leap his design approach!.

So far... I think that he is "not too-bad", but? yes... we could use/stand some improvements... so? why-not... step-up and volunteer yourself to see if they will give you a shot-at-it?.
Ret .. he's not talking about the actual human scenario designers .. he's talking about the editor. That same one that was used to make all the scenarios and campaigns and that's currently being used by plenty of other people. Yes there needs to be some LUA information added and the workflow is a little esoteric for a beginner but it IS a work in progress and will continue to develop as scenarios and modding require. The requirements for Spain alone have resulted in a large amount of extra LUA functionality being added.

P

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2020 8:38 pm
by Retributarr
"Patrick Ward!"... thanks for explaining the 'Real-Situation' to me!.

I'm sorry if I had "Mubble with my Throught"... what I evidently thought that I was trying to express in response to his comment... 'was not' it seems... a reality of the intention of the complaint.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2020 9:16 pm
by fluffybunnyuk
As for the AI, thats a pretty universal complaint about most games. What we really want is a person to play a campaign against. but having them do all the work of being the losing side. The AI isnt a bad proxy for a real person.
The sad truth is that AI hasnt really improved beyond machine learning theory since the 1960s. Sure we have faster processors, and some better algorithms, but on the whole the improvement is marginal at best.
For a long time i've argued regarding most strategy/tactical games that what is really needed is an AI engine like a chess engine running on a separate core just optimized for, and processing the games AI.
It needs sufficient time to learn by playing scenarios millions of times by itself, and tens of thousands of times against people to build up basic concepts of whats best.
Of course the problem with this is that smaller developers cant afford the resources, or the time. So we're left with what we have.

One of the best moves i feel would be to reach out to the community through modders by opening up the AI. I'd happily sit down and work through the computers evaluation of moves, if it meant putting an AI mod out there for improved AI. This of course depends on whether the AI is hard coded into the binary or more flexibly accessed through a library or module, and could thus be made available via a script.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2020 11:59 pm
by Patrick Ward
We did that with Field of Glory and quite an interesting AI variation was spawned.

As for a chess engine .. chess is many orders of magnitude simpler than almost any other wargame, especially Panzercorps. When we were developing the AI for the original Crisis in Command games our AI coder ( who could beat anyone he played against ), did do a whole ton of machine learning and developed multiple personalities to provide different experiences instead of difficulties. At the time it was a relatively new idea in that size of game and our major hurdle in the end was, as you say, time. We just couldn't run enough iterations and the iPad didn't have the horsepower to run through the filtered posibilities without considerable time delay. No one wants to sit there waiting for the AI to decide how it wants to move 1 unit. Multiply that by the dozens in Panzercorps with all the variations in terrain, masses of different stats, weather etc. and its clear that if you don't want to be waiting for half an hour you have to compromise.

But like everything it's a work in progress and will be developed and improved upon over time.

Pat

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Wed Jun 24, 2020 12:39 am
by eddieballgame
Amazing how opinions of this game can have a wide range of praise to complaints.
Personally, I think this game is 'Game of the Year' material.
Of course, my 40+ years of board & computer gaming with & without human opponents is all I have for...experience to influence me.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Wed Jun 24, 2020 2:52 am
by fluffybunnyuk
Patrick Ward wrote:
Tue Jun 23, 2020 11:59 pm
But like everything it's a work in progress and will be developed and improved upon over time.

Pat
Naturally.

As for me I thoroughly enjoy the game in many different playstyles. The games only been out a couple of months. The developers have listened to comment, released patches, fixed an awful lot of things. They have even implemented some suggestions they like. I'm deeply impressed. Theres alot of developers who wouldnt.

What gives it replayability for me is the extra dimensions. The first time i played i didnt know the difference between close, and open ground. Now i run around maps with spotters looking for nice things to capture, save money, and eek out the little things.
Only a couple of days ago, after maybe 50 runs at norway north and trying to smash the enemy with arty, and strat bombers, did i do a no to both run. I went with 1AA , 3 pioneers, and something like 13 mountaineers. Not only did i sustain less damage, but i got the map finished in record time for me by a long way. For me those out of the box ideas, the thought process, and the eureka moment of discovery is what makes this game a pleasure.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Wed Jun 24, 2020 11:20 am
by PoorOldSpike
fluffybunnyuk wrote:
Tue Jun 23, 2020 9:16 pm
As for the AI, thats a pretty universal complaint about most games.The sad truth is that AI hasnt really improved beyond machine learning theory since the 1960s..
Agreed, I've never, ever, seen any game by any manufacturer in which the AI opponent has given me a hard time.

Suggestions-
1- One of the most unrealistic things in all games (including PC2) is when AI units attack at suicidally-low odds and get wiped out, so I think game designers should programme the AI not to do that..:)
2-If an AI unit has suffered heavy losses, it should be programmed to withdraw from the front line to recover its strength rather than hang around like a sitting duck.
3- The AI should be programmed to always leave a static garrison unit in key objectives (especially rear-area objs) to prevent the human player slipping a recon unit through the lines to walk in unopposed.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Thu Jun 25, 2020 7:39 am
by Horseman
PoorOldSpike wrote:
Wed Jun 24, 2020 11:20 am
fluffybunnyuk wrote:
Tue Jun 23, 2020 9:16 pm
As for the AI, thats a pretty universal complaint about most games.The sad truth is that AI hasnt really improved beyond machine learning theory since the 1960s..
Agreed, I've never, ever, seen any game by any manufacturer in which the AI opponent has given me a hard time.

Suggestions-
1- One of the most unrealistic things in all games (including PC2) is when AI units attack at suicidally-low odds and get wiped out, so I think game designers should programme the AI not to do that..:)
2-If an AI unit has suffered heavy losses, it should be programmed to withdraw from the front line to recover its strength rather than hang around like a sitting duck.
3- The AI should be programmed to always leave a static garrison unit in key objectives (especially rear-area objs) to prevent the human player slipping a recon unit through the lines to walk in unopposed.
I agree - I've never seen an AI that could reliably beat me because it out thought me! That's why the vast majority of games give "cheats" to the AI as the difficulty increases.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Thu Jul 02, 2020 3:00 pm
by OldFocker
I think it's a bit strong to say the game has a useless designer! I would, however, concur with other comments about the AI. As someone who did modest programming years ago I am mystified why PC2 enemy units appear to make no checking in their vicinity of enemy units and strengths. This is not difficult to implement. As with the original PC, it is easy to lure out enemy units from secure positions. If well entrenched and defending a position they should in most cases stay put. The enemy is also prone to ridiculous 'heroic' acts of attacking strong units with their own 1 or 2 strength units with which they cannot hope to survive (an exception perhaps if they are Japanese fighting in the Pacific!).

The game may have a few flaws but overall I cannot think of a better tactical WW2 game around right now. My favourite used to be Steel Panthers but it only received limited updates (where the Panther seemed to have magical properties!).

As for computer games cheating...I've experienced this for years with them imposing artificial difficulties if you get too good! Well, at least it seemed that way.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Thu Jul 02, 2020 9:32 pm
by Patrick Ward
OldFocker wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 3:00 pm
I think it's a bit strong to say the game has a useless designer!
To be fair to the OP, he's not talking about the game designer but the scenario editor.

Pat

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Thu Jul 02, 2020 11:05 pm
by OldFocker
Patrick Ward wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 9:32 pm
To be fair to the OP, he's not talking about the game designer but the scenario editor.
Er...I know that, hence my response.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Thu Jul 02, 2020 11:43 pm
by Retributarr
OldFocker wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 11:05 pm
Patrick Ward wrote:
Thu Jul 02, 2020 9:32 pm
To be fair to the OP, he's not talking about the game designer but the scenario editor.
Er...I know that, hence my response.
"OldFocker!"... you should have responded as "Mussolini" would have... by saying... "Whatsa Matta for'a You'a Hey!.

Translated as...
I know that you believe you think you understand what it is that i said... but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant!.

Re: This is not a finished game - poor realism, balance and a useless designer

Posted: Fri Jul 03, 2020 3:25 pm
by OldFocker
Ja! Ist alles fery interestink...!