vexed wrote:I am trying to figure out why people play those type of maps, knowing that they will have a adverse playing experience with them because with those type of maps, things can get really, really slow.
Got it. Cuts to the heart of a long-standing, prime issue. I will start by reframing the question.
Why have a few score diehard MPers outta the million plus that have procured the game over the last 14 years, insisted on playing the game in a manner it was NEVER concieved, designed and built for ?
To that re-framing let me posit these corallaries:
Let that tiny minority follow their blissful insistence but let them not dictate the core development of the game.
It would be very useful to identify the reasons why the majority of the million plus don't cotton to WZ MP as it exists.
As far as game modes contribute to longevity, WZ MP mode has NOT kept the game alive for 14 years. CAM and SKI modes have. Again it would be useful to identify the reasons for that.
There are a number of reasons for that initial re-frameing question and set of corrolaries, but I am only gonna state one obvious practical consideration at this time. To truly rectify the shortfall issues that manifest in this type MP gameplay(high-oil, flat, 8-10 player maps) you'd have to port WZ to a new game engine and supporting MP scheme. The other reasons I'll get to in due course and they go to the core of the gameplay WZ WAS originally designed for which is also totally consistent with the tech level of its war machine, unlike this minority insistence to shoe-horn gameplay into the tacs of a primitive war machine tech level.
Reg312's motivation breakdown is an instructive matrix to deconstruct so let's give it a go. Along the way we'll also address my re-framing question in greater detail, along with the 3 corrolaries.
Reg312 wrote:here is some reasons why high-oil:
- grand battles. people like grand battles.
Include me in that group! The clash of grand armies. An awe-inspiring game play experience, without a doubt.
The only thing for me is that when I want that type strat & tac war gameplay experience I don't turn to WZ.
I'll just mention one strat game designed for grand army battles that I go to for that kind of experience because it was designed and built from the ground up to provide that type gameplay experience.
Right off the top the battle engine is built to handle 57,000 combat units
This successfull franchise is still going strong after 13 years and a dozen iterations (main games in different historical eras up to the 18th century plus expansion packs throughout). Of course I'm refering to the Total War
But you say - "Wait ! the Total War games donot include high-tech, modern warfare, like WW 2."
That's because the WW 2 game market is super saturated. Why enter that over crowded market when you've already sucessfully carved out historical military eras that have hardly been touched to create the gameplay experience of grand armies engaging in massive battles.
And now we move on to other reason the "Total War" series has stuck to the Pre-WW 2 era
After WW 2, warfare begins to subsume doctrine that is reflective of certain high-tech that CHANGES the way war is waged from all previous eras and ushers in 21st Century Century
maneuver warfare which is NOT, I repeat not, the monolithic frontline of grand armies massively clashing. 21st century warfare is actually the END of that way of conducting warfare.
We are already well into 21st century, high-tech, warfare which is paralled by the high tech war machine in WZ 2100. WZ was concieved, designed and built (up to a point, which we'll get to shortly) to wage 21st century warfare.
Where WZ falls short of fully realizing waging 21st century war is a consequence not of failed vision, design or intent but rather the two-pronged curtailment in the dev of WZ's 21st century warfare components by way of economic constraints imposed by it's publisher-distributor and by the SW-HW tech constraints of '97-'98. None of these constraints exist any longer. Indeed, replacing WZ script with the JS API is the single HUGEst step in removing some of the main constraints (the others would be reconstituted camera scheme and UI widgets).
What is 21st century warfare ?
It is, in brief, coordinated multi-vector, variable velocity, maneuver enabled by high tech that didn't exist pre-WW 2.... same high-tech incorporated by Pumpkin in the fictional 22nd century world of WZ. But the key is more granular "Command / Control" because what results from power without that degree of control is the pre-WW 2 type warfare that the "Total War" franchise is king of and that WZ will never excell at - nor need it or should it. This is as much a core part of WZs unique identity as a strategy game as are its massive tech tree and unit design GPM..... it just never gets formally acknowledged as such.
For a fuller explication of 21st century warfare you can get a start here:
How this translates and relates to key curtailed WZ GPMs is covered elsewhere in exhaustive detail along with the direct relationship to the new JS API, enhanced camera scheme and reconstituted UI widgets.
- team-play. 5x5 low-oil game is quite equal to 1x1 on high oil.
Covered in above section.
- massive using of various tech. in low-oil many games ends with twin mg.
Pumpkin's attempt to deal with this was by offering the option to start a game at T2 or T3 instead of trying to play through T1-T3 in a single game.
- artillery playable only on high-oil.
- defensive style playable on high oil. On low-oil defensive tactic is unplayable mostly.
- more intuitive play. You just build base and make armies and fight. At low-oil your first move is truck race for oil.
With the advent of v.3.2 the technology will be in place to begin to fully realize Pumpkin's 21st century warfare original design goals that were curtailed and scaled back for the reasons detailed above. These reasons amount to the shortfalls I mentioned in my previous post that created the conditions that mappers and MPers have endeavored to adapt to over the last 14 years which has resulted in no significant active audience growth over the intitial retail release (which prompted Eidos to pull the plug after 3 months of under performance)inspite of the million plus units distributed over those 14 years. The game has been free for years and it still doesn't have the audience it merits for the same reasons it didn't when it cost $30-$40 bucks in '99 - to wit, key 21st century war making GPM components remain in thier curtailed state.
Now if v.3.2 begins to fully realize Pumpkin's original 21st century warfare GPM designs it doesn't mean those who want to play the game as if it were designed like the "Total War" franchise for WW 2 and earlier monolithic frontline maneuver can't continue to play it in that fashion. They still will be able to. But what it will mean is that there will be thousands upon thousands of new MPers that will dl the game and hang around to thoroughly enjoy playing it in true 21st century warfare fashion . And as result of that WZ will finally achieve the popularity and attention in the greater RTS world that drove Pumpkin to create it in the first place to stand apart from all other RTSs.