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  #551  
Old March 27th, 2012, 02:50 PM

shatner shatner is offline
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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

Yeah, here's my contribution to a CoE3 thread from another forum:


Conquest of Elysium is actually pretty underwhelming. I was stoked at first but having soaked six or so evenings into it, I can say that it feels a little flat. The various factions are interesting and they really do play quite differently from one another, and trying them out has been the main thing that's been holding my interest so far. However, the game is incredibly unforgiving about going into combat without enough troops/support/mage power. That all-encompassing fact makes the early game quite slow and punishing and the mid game feel kinda the same regardless of faction.

The thing is, for almost all nations, troops are expensive and hard to come by (5 bottom of the barrel spearmen cost 50 gold and in the beginning you are generating 3-4gp/turn). You will lose 2-3 troops in a good battle and often times more than that if bad luck so much as glances at you. That means it takes a long time to build up your forces to critical mass so you can conquer without taking inordinate losses. Also, your two starting commanders are, for almost all nations, indispensable (the game is more-or-less about your head commander's rise to power and losing him is generally cause to call it quits), which is fine except that combat is always an all-or-nothing affair where both sides fight to the death and, unlike Dominions 3, there is no running away and regrouping later if you underestimated your opponent or had a run of bad luck. Therefore, the game heavily, heavily incentives conservative play which I find a little boring. Plus, it really doesn't feel like the AI knows how to play this game, so I'm often playing against indie-mobs and opponents who flail around more-or-less at random.

Since it lacks almost all commander scripting, all troop placement (and troop scripting) and nearly all research, I find combat to be mostly just getting enough dudes to overwhelm the enemy. If it had even half the tactical depth of Dom3 I could see myself enjoying it a lot more. Once the joy of discovery runs out, there doesn't seem to be much left to sustain the player's interest.

I don't know. Maybe I need to give it more time to grow on me... some games are like that. Or maybe it'll take Illwinter a few feedback cycles to get the game in it's proper form (Dom3 has certainly undergone extensive changes over it's lifespan). Regardless, I'm leaving it alone for now.
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  #552  
Old March 27th, 2012, 03:05 PM
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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

Quote:
Originally Posted by elmokki View Post
I'm very dissapointed. The game has very good potential, I give it that. Commanders (mainly mages and big things, but still) feel more personal than in Dom 3 due to being so much more important and I kind of like the square based map with settlements and wilderness as opposed to Dom 3's every province being a settlement. It's also kind of nice to have very varying mechanics for each "nation".

But, first of all the controls are horrible. In Dominions 3 it's tolerable that we can't queue movement (so that it automatically provided nothing major happens nearby continues next turn) because apart from very late game it isn't that big of an issue as generally you don't have to spend that many turns moving, and even if you do there aren't that many commanders. In CoE3 you have to be moving things all the time and it's very frustrating to move things 10 squares by clicking at the map every time for 10 turns in a row. Turns are so much shorter. There are also minor gripes with the UI, but in general that's the major thing bugging me.

Secondly there's far too much pointless micromanagement. You can only hire troops from those big settlements so it's a lot of micromanagement if you wish to garrison your mines and villages so that some random snake won't take over a big city alone. Alternatively you can hunt down things, but it's even more micromanagement with coms. I don't have anything against micromanagement when I feel it has interesting effects, but here it's just frustrating.

Gameplaywise the game starts fairly slow since (depending on the "nation") you might not be able to do much at all to anything near you. Especially some of the "nations" have a HUGE luck factor in with what they start near to. For some it's a lesser issue though.

I would've wished the combat to have more tactical choices as opposed to "choose list of what spells my mages can cast if they feel like it". Dominions 3 style scriptable combat would've suited this game equally well with some modifications due to smaller numbers of units in general. That said I would've wished the whole game to have somewhat more tactical and strategic choices.

In general I have to sadly say that this was pretty much a waste for my money. Illwinter, however, can fix a lot of this with patches if they wish to. Given good tools to help with the annoying micromanagement of defending your settlements from snakes and bears this might be a somewhat enjoyable game. Oh, and anyway, I've gotten enough enjoyment from Dominions 3 to not mind this being a waste of money.
Just a couple points.

-You can move your armies by using the number pad, not just the mouse. That might be useful? I personally prefer the mouse, but most people I've talked to don't.

-Picking different eras to play effects what kinds and how many "monsters" wander around the map. So that might change your level of enjoyment. It feels a lot less annoying when your mine is taking over by a chimera instead of a deer.

-Its important not to think of CoE3 as a 4X game like Dominions. It isn't. If you're expecting that type of gameplay you will be very, very disapointed. It is a roguelike with armies instead of just single characters. The randomness is a feature. Sometimes you'll have easy games due to a nice starting position, sometimes you'll be defeated by a wandering monster in your first year. Its all just a part of the experience. It seems to be just as much about exploration of the land and discovery of the mythos as it is about conquest.
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  #553  
Old March 28th, 2012, 10:43 AM
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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

I don't think I would call it a roguelike. Random maps do not a roguelike make. It is missing a lot of the complexity, I would expect in a roguelike. (from what I have seen).

It just looks like Homm without the fancy graphics and tactical combat, and more nation diversity.
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  #554  
Old March 28th, 2012, 01:02 PM

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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

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Originally Posted by Soyweiser View Post
I don't think I would call it a roguelike. Random maps do not a roguelike make. It is missing a lot of the complexity, I would expect in a roguelike. (from what I have seen).

It just looks like Homm without the fancy graphics and tactical combat, and more nation diversity.
This is pretty close to what I think. There's no complexity in any part of the game, but it isn't streamlined enough to be brilliant in simplicity either.
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  #555  
Old March 28th, 2012, 02:34 PM
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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

I generally agree w/ shatner & elmokki points. I think this is good criticism and should be taken as such.

I'm not disappointed since I set my expectations appropriately once I understood IW didn't make CoE3 to be a lightweight dom and b/c the game fits nicely into the (avg.) 5 mins per day time slot I have for it.

I don't assume CoE3 has stellar success market wise. I get it, IW develop what they feel like and that's great. However, If they were to start feeling like developing dom-IV I think it stands much better chances to be a (FTBS) niche hit.

Whatever they do, at least dom-III is in much much better state than MoM was when it was abandoned so I expect to keep enjoying it for years to come
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  #556  
Old March 28th, 2012, 04:52 PM
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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

Quote:
Originally Posted by shatner View Post
Plus, it really doesn't feel like the AI knows how to play this game, so I'm often playing against indie-mobs and opponents who flail around more-or-less at random.
The AI within Dom_3 is also poor, despite the vast amount of updates to this game over the years there's been virtually no improvements with the AI opponents. Sure there's been improvements with what happens during a battle, but not with the thinking/actions of the AI opponents themselves. I mean since Dominions_2 the AI opponents still send their "pretenders" to the arena death match yet nothing has been done to fix it. That's just one of many examples.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Soyweiser View Post
It just looks like Homm without the fancy graphics and tactical combat, and more nation diversity.
I personally don't need fancy graphics having played games like dwarf fortress and nethack, but developer(s) should always take a step forward from any previous game they've released instead of a step backwards as seen within CoE_3.
Quote:
Originally Posted by WraithLord View Post
I don't assume CoE3 has stellar success market wise. I get it, IW develop what they feel like and that's great.
Actually there's many developers who have the "develop whatever they feel like" personality and create a game with almost zero research or customer input. My theory is because they are able to create games the sense of power gives many of them a 'know-it-all' way of thinking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WraithLord View Post
Whatever they do, at least dom-III is in much much better state than MoM was when it was abandoned so I expect to keep enjoying it for years to come
Agreed, like many other great abandoned games Dominions_3 will forever exist on my computer along with a few others. One nice thing about Dwarf Fortress is the developer has made it his lifework... so it will continue to evolve. The Newb Pack has made it easy to add graphics and sound to the game.
http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=59026.0

He's also been planning to move towards 64bit and multi_threading which is a good sign he's thinking of a computer game for tomorrow... instead of the fading present.
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  #557  
Old March 28th, 2012, 11:38 PM
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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

NTJedi, what about the visuals do you think are a step backwards since Dom3?
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  #558  
Old March 29th, 2012, 03:28 AM

elmokki elmokki is offline
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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

I'm not him but I can answer it too!

Sprites are (mostly) better but that's the only improvement. Combat looked a lot better in Dom3 with actual flying things and background and actual army positions (not AAA game level looks obviously, but better). Lastly it's completely due to game mechanics, but beautiful Dom3 maps are a lot more beautiful than CoE3 maps. That, however should not be a surprise to anyone. Of course a beautifully drawn freeform image looks better than tile based map.

Oh yeah, by the way, what's up with combat not being skippable before the combat window is already open? I'd much rather just get a list of "these battles happened, wanna look?" like Dominions 3.
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  #559  
Old March 29th, 2012, 04:20 AM

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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

You can do that if you use the battlereports command line switch.
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  #560  
Old March 29th, 2012, 06:13 AM
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Default Re: Conquest of Elysium 3 dev log

I'm not bashing CoE3. I'm just saying, I would not think of it as a roguelike. But the roguelike genre is hard to define.
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