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Author Topic: Should i give up on rts games?  (Read 2680 times)
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Xmann
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« on: August 10, 2006, 03:16:06 AM »

I think my problem is that i have ADD when it comes to gaming.  Most games i play are action oriented.  I'll mix in a few rpg's here and there, but they gotta be more action oriented.  

I think this is where rts games and me differ.  I just lose interest in the "stratgey aspect".  I want all my forces and i want them immediately and all i want to do is rush and overpower my enemies.  Depending on the games, this works alot of times.  However, i have little success in multiplayer or a more balanced game.  Every strategy game i have tried online has been a rush competition and i get slaughtered before i get anywhere.  Easy gets too easy and hard is too hard against the computer AI.  I need to find a happy medium.  .

So this is where my discussion begins.  I want to play strategy games and enjoy them.  I have tried and enjoy only a couple.  I really liked the AoE3 demo, but never bought the retail.  I tried and tried to like EE2, but the difficulty eventually got me (i actually spent more hours playing this than any other rts).  I played and somewhat enjoyed BfME2.  This is one of those, easy was too easy and hard was too hard for me.  Never tried Rise of Legends or Nations.  And surprisingly never tried Warhammer or Warcraft.

But i've played the Company of Heros demo and really really like it.  This is what got me thinking about how to approach strategy games and changing my style to enjoy them more.  However, i can see myself losing interest in this one as well by creaming the cpu on easy and them creaming me on hard.

So what is some opinions here?  Is there something i'm not getting?  Micromanaging is a pain to me because i lose interest.  However, theres gotta be a way to learn to be more efficient and not feel overwhelmed.  

I want to like strategy games, but i always lose the desire to continue.   Anyone else feel this way?  What should i do?
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« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2006, 04:55:04 AM »

There is a big hole where strategy gaming used to be.  Thankfully, there are some great tactical games coming up this year and early next that should plug the hole.  You just gotta wait it out. slywink
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« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2006, 05:08:11 AM »

Have you tried Settlers or Majesty type of stategy?   Those are games where you do not directly control your meeples.  Majesty was very cool, you could "Suggest" what you want them to do with bonuses, but they carried on normally without you.

Settlers 2 10th Anniversary Edition is coming out this year.  I recommend checking out the demo, it is a relaxing and interesting game with very little micromanagement in the traditional sense! (since you don't directly control each meeple)

http://www.3dgamers.com/games/settlers2ng/downloads/

If you've never played one of the original Settlers (not Heritage of Kings), then you may find this primer handy to figure out what the heck to do when you get in it.

http://marnold.fortunecity.com/Introduction/Basics/basics.htm#
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« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2006, 05:37:38 AM »

What's a meeple?
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Kobra
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« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2006, 05:44:57 AM »

Meeple = Follower.  Its a term from the Carcassone series of board games (Amazing games).

This is what they look like;



I generally call peons in RTS games meeples out of habit.  biggrin
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« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2006, 05:52:47 AM »

I just noticed Xmann that this is in General Gaming.  It says it's for multiplatform but basically people just talk about board games so I'm going to move it to PC Gaming so it'll get some eyeballs.
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Xmann
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« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2006, 06:26:47 AM »

Hmm, never played Settlers, although i do remember it quite well,  gonna check out that demo when i get home.

Kobra, if memory serves me correct, you play rts games frequently.  i also remember you giving me some pointers with BFME 2 a few months back that was helpful.  i really wanted to like that game alot, but it was one of those too easy on easy and too hard on hard for me.  

if i can't figure something out in a few gaming sessions i give up, which is what i did with BFME2.  i might consider picking that up again with some more tips.  it's a game i constantly think about wishing i would have taken more time with.

how is Company of Heros shaping up anyways?  i guess i'm just really wanting to find a rts i can stick with that.
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« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2006, 11:59:36 AM »

Xmann -  Out of curiosity, do you enjoy the campaigns or the skirmish modes of RTS games?  I'm not sure if you enjoy playing with others, but I know for quite a few people, when they team up with another player, they find much more enjoyment in RTS games, because normally there is more to consider than just yourself.  Strategy and teamwork really take the genre to a new level for some people.  Playing co-op over a lan or over the internet against the computer can be tons of fun if you find the right people to play with.

CoH is shaping up nicely I think.  The fact is, Relic knows Strategy Games, and they are very good at improving the genre as time goes on.  This is a really great team-type game also, where combined arms and combined tactics are immensely rewarding.  

As far as feeling "overwhelmed" goes... I think part of that is the fault of the games themselves.  Some RTS games just give too much of a "reward" to players who micromanage like banshees.  

In short, don't give up.
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« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2006, 02:10:02 PM »

Unfortunately your desires and frustrations are diametrically opposed in the current state of the genre.  You want something fast-paced and action-y, but don't want micromanagement.  In current RTSes, micromanagement is the source of 'action.'

See, when someone complains about micromanagement, they're usually referred to a handful of games:  the Kohan series and Rise of Nations, pretty much.  The problem with these games is that they're totally incompatible with what you just said you were interested in:

-Kohan's combat is all automatic, you just build your batallions of units and when their zone of control overlaps an enemy zone of control or an enemy building, combat begins automatically.  The player has practically no control over the combat beyond being able to order a retreat -- pretty boring imo.

-Rise of Nations is basically Civilization: The RTS.  It's very hard to play at any speed faster than "Slow," and takes, on average, 2-3 hours to go from your initial village to victory.  However, the AI is actually pretty good, and is very tweakable.  You have direct control over combat and everything like most RTSes, so there is micro involved, but the thing about Rise of Nations is, your skill at building infrastructure, managing resources, and microing combat are all pretty much equally important.  If you're good at one of them, chances are you can make up for lacking ability in another.  It's a fantastic game which gets even better with the expansion, but it takes forever and, like I said, you basically have to play it at a slow or very slow gamespeed, else you'll be overwhelmed with options.

-Someone mentioned Majesty.  Majesty is definitely not compatible with what you're interested in -- the whole point of the game is that you have no control over the units on the map, instead you control them by offering incentives in the form of bounties to move to a certain area or kill a certain monster.  Interesting, but not action-y in the least.

Anyway, Xmann, while what you want is sort of impossible, there are some games that manage to do a good job at minimizing micromanagement without making the game boring:

-Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War is incredibly action-packed and visceral, plus units are controlled as squadrons, so while you might see thirty or fourty individuals onscreen, you only have to manage 5-6 actual units.  I'd say this is your best bet, because the micro in WH40k is satisfying without being overwhelming.

-Dragonshard is another option -- you basically build and control a Dungeons and Dragons party who are disguised as various units, and use them to explore dugeons for cash income and power boosters which will fund your eventual destruction of the opponent.  A very interesting take on the resource gathering aspect of RTSes, plus, like WH40k, the micro in the game is rewarding without overwhelming you.

-Battlezone is really freakin' old by now, but it's still an awesome title.  Basically it's an RTS which you control from the ground -- you actually have a little human avatar who can man any vehicle and fight alongside your units to victory.  There is no tactical map, and thus no micromanagement -- all orders are given from first-person view.   It probably looks pretty old by modern standards, and I don't know how it does with WinXP, but it's probably dirt cheap if you can find it.
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« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2006, 02:47:07 PM »

Grab Close Combat 5.  There's no micromanaging-it's all tactics.  I'm getting back into it now and I'm looking for people to play.
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« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2006, 03:38:10 PM »

Actually, I found Rise of Legends to be pretty good medium.  You have to attack pretty early and you get your big boy units pretty fast.  When I played 1v1's vs Orpheo they tend to end in 20 minutes or so and we're bringing the big guns out.  You can get a large army out and it's not that much of a pain to manage it.
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« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2006, 04:39:46 PM »

Quote from: "Xmann"
Hmm, never played Settlers, although i do remember it quite well,  gonna check out that demo when i get home.

Kobra, if memory serves me correct, you play rts games frequently.  i also remember you giving me some pointers with BFME 2 a few months back that was helpful.  i really wanted to like that game alot, but it was one of those too easy on easy and too hard on hard for me.  

if i can't figure something out in a few gaming sessions i give up, which is what i did with BFME2.  i might consider picking that up again with some more tips.  it's a game i constantly think about wishing i would have taken more time with.

how is Company of Heros shaping up anyways?  i guess i'm just really wanting to find a rts i can stick with that.


For BFME2 what you need is Clords mod, whicih slows down the game, makes each unit more valuable, and improves the AI to the point easy is "Fun, yet offers challenge".  Clords turns BFME2 into more of a game of planning and strategy than micromanagement rush - its a win mod for me.

http://mevault.ign.com/View.php?view=BFME2Mods.Detail&id=52012&id=150

The current state in RTS, like a few point out here, is pretty micro-heavy imo.  While Company of Heroes is a superb game, and is shaping up nicely, it is still a fairly heavy micro game. I play a few friends in COH and I can get smashed to bits by a couple buddies that are micro fanatics. Some have said COH plays too fast, I tend to side with these folk and want a generally slower, more tactical pace to the matter.

Tough call, but yeah, I will use the cliche "Kohan" recommendation as well.  I still play them (Ahrimans Gift), because they are so non-micro.
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« Reply #12 on: August 10, 2006, 05:44:55 PM »

Quote
For BFME2 what you need is Clords mod, whicih slows down the game, makes each unit more valuable, and improves the AI to the point easy is "Fun, yet offers challenge". Clords turns BFME2 into more of a game of planning and strategy than micromanagement rush - its a win mod for me.


How much does it slow down the game?  I really enjoyed BFME2 a lot, but the speed of the game got old a bit fast.  I wanted to sit back and enjoy the units more, the great graphics, the building options, etc.  But BFME 2 turned into way to much of a rush feast, and that annoyed me in the end.
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« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2006, 05:53:00 PM »

Quote from: "Scott"
Quote
For BFME2 what you need is Clords mod, whicih slows down the game, makes each unit more valuable, and improves the AI to the point easy is "Fun, yet offers challenge". Clords turns BFME2 into more of a game of planning and strategy than micromanagement rush - its a win mod for me.


How much does it slow down the game?  I really enjoyed BFME2 a lot, but the speed of the game got old a bit fast.  I wanted to sit back and enjoy the units more, the great graphics, the building options, etc.  But BFME 2 turned into way to much of a rush feast, and that annoyed me in the end.


Clords doesn't slow down the game in the sense that everything takes longer.  But what it does is make units tougher and more important, and make buildigns require siege to take down.  Thus, walls become important, and able to withstand any potential early rush.

The effect of this is that games are much more strategic, and you have time to enjoy your units, upgrade them, and manage them more closely.  After this mod, early rushes become quite useless because you just don't have the siege you need to bust down walls.

Battles feel more "Epic" and "Movie Like" after this mod.
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« Reply #14 on: August 10, 2006, 05:56:58 PM »

I heard that the latest patch in development is taking a few of the Clords enhancements to heart.  I know wall hitpoints got a big boost.  

I'm pretty pessimistic though.
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« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2006, 08:11:13 PM »

Lockdown, i usually play a couple missions in the campaigns, but skirmishes are what i like best.  I never play mp because like i said, i get crushed and never learn a thing.

The problem with playing with a partner is my gaming times are sporadic, so getting together with someone usually doesn't work.  I'd love to spend time with someone to learn the ropes and battle together, but i can't keep dates and times 90% of the time.

LE, i might give the Warhammer demo a shot and see what i think.  I had eyed Dragonshard when it was released, but i read alot of complaining about micromanaging that it scared me away from trying it.  Never considered it more after that.

SuperHiro, i'd like to hear more opinions on RoL.  I never played RoN, and as always i'm reading conflicting discussions about RoL.  I like the idea of getting to the big stuff fast.....but is it a rush race?  Thats what i hate with rts games.  If you dont know the rush sequence like your opponent does, you're history.  Somehow there has got to be a happy medium.  Sell me more on RoL.

Kobra, i'm very interested in BFME2 again now that you've mentioned that mod.  My main beef with the game was the difficulty.  I could easily beat the computer AI on easy, but once i stepped up the difficulty, i had no chance.  There was no in-between for me.  I hated getting rushed by the AI and all the time i took to build my reinforcements were destroyed within seconds.  I'm curious about BFME2 if this mod changes things.

Thanks again for all the remarks.  I see a little light at the end of the tunnel now smile
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« Reply #16 on: August 11, 2006, 08:36:32 PM »

Xmann, see that's the thing.  The best way to get to the big stuff really fast is to get set up really fast.  RoL really facilitates the whole "setting up really fast thing".  It's not really a rush race, but the rush is a very viable tactic.  It's more like, expect combat throughout every stage of the game. But it's not as bad as I'm making it out to be.  

See, the beauty of RoL's design, IMO, is that it rewards you for playing the way you usually do.  There's "dominances" that you can gain by doing ingame stuff, and it's a really cool mechanic.  For instance, if you rush early to kill your opponents miners, you might gain the "Raiding Dominance", which gives you the power to stop all combat for 15 seconds.  Which gives you, the rusher, a great way to retreat your rushing units, so they live.

If you would rather go hardcore teching, there's Research Dominance, which gives you the power of summoning troops at will, which is awesome because you just spent most of your resources teching as opposed to making troops.  And there's military dominance, which lets you convert enemy troops (making your army bigger) and resource dominance (which you get by accumulating resources); which lets you fire off a quick healing power to your troops.  And you can lose/gain these dominances as the games go on.

A rush CAN hurt you, esspecially if the guy knows what he's doing.  He can cripple your econ and by the time you catch up he's got a much bigger army.  But it's not like, 2 minutes into the game and he's rushing 900 zealots on you.  You can push back a rush pretty easily.  

And the maps are really cool, BHG adds like thingies in them that change gameplay.  Like a huge tower that summons a gigantic robot gorilla (oh god I hate that gorilla).
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« Reply #17 on: August 12, 2006, 10:28:10 PM »

Quote from: Xmann on August 10, 2006, 08:11:13 PM

Kobra, i'm very interested in BFME2 again now that you've mentioned that mod.  My main beef with the game was the difficulty.  I could easily beat the computer AI on easy, but once i stepped up the difficulty, i had no chance.  There was no in-between for me.  I hated getting rushed by the AI and all the time i took to build my reinforcements were destroyed within seconds.  I'm curious about BFME2 if this mod changes things.

Clords completely overhauls most of the backend of the game, the AI becomes very wise, but not overly difficult, and does things that make more sense.. It simulates a real player much better than most AI IMO, Clord is a genius AI programmer.  I can't wait for the expansion to it.

As for Rise of Legends, I think BHG really dropped the ball on that one.
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