Played Rise of Nations recently. Installed it, very excited and all that. Only to discover it's not dated well at all, it's rather imbalanced and not anywhere near as good as I remember. Still I would like a modern game in that style.
Though at this point, I just bought myself a disc copy of Rise of Legends a few days ago, so I'm hoping to get into that now. ;P
Personally, I loved Rise of Legends, but I suppose it's a matter of taste.
I loved the combination of Steampunky stuff, arabian fantasy and aztec aliens.
I recently got my hands on a copy of Metal Fatigue, after not having been able to play it when it first came out years ago. And, niggling issues with getting the game to run on a modern system aside, I'm surprised that some of the concepts in the game didn't take off. Namely the fact that each map is split up into 3 battlefields rather than a single one, and all 3 of them interact with each other. As a rundown, you've got the underground map, the surface, and orbit.
For the underground map you have to build elevators using a special unit, which also burrows through the rock and dirt to make new routes and expand the passable terrain for everything else. You can build almost every building underground, but the biggest units you can use down there are your tanks. The surface is where everything can be used or built, and it's your generic RTS map for the most part. Orbit consists of a few orbital platforms that you can build everything on, but they're small so you really don't want to be building an entire base up there. And while you can use every unit in orbit if you want to, the only units that are really worth having up there are your units that can fly. The reason for this is that unless you can fly, you have to be teleported up to orbit using two orbital relays, and then you're stuck on whichever asteroid you come out onto. But if you can fly you can transition between orbit and surface without any help, and you can move between the asteroids once you're up there.
Having those 3 levels of play is great. It really makes you keep an eye on everything, because you'll never know when someone will suddenly drop out of orbit and directly into the middle of your base with a giant robot army or unleash a horde of tanks from below. You have to prioritize your involvement in each area, and just because you wipe someone out on the surface doesn't mean you won't have to deal with a massive army underground where the fighting is a whole lot harder because of unit restrictions.
Of course, Metal Fatigue has some pretty major issues based around the gameplay, like the fact that the game revolves around customizable giant robots and so almost everything but the giant robots are useless, but the concept of a 3-layer battlefield like that is something that I love and which hasn't really been done since. I also love the fact that you can capture pieces of enemy equipment and reverse-engineer them so that you can produce them on your own. I know other games have had that mechanic, but in Metal Fatigue it's based on salvaging the half-destroyed parts left over after a battle rather than capturing buildings or units outright. So that was a nice change as well.
Loved me some Metal Fatigue.
Heh, I liked Rise of Legends because it got rid of some of the unnecessary cruft from RoN (like 42 resource types or whatever).
Also, clockwork spiders.
I think people are also too quick to gloss over the non-superficial differences. Saying stuff like "it's the same game, but with different units", as if a different roster couldn't possibly have a significant impact on the gameplay possibilities.
Yeah, but it isn't going to improve anytime soon regardless of how well SC2 does.
You have to wait for big-budget games all the time because RTS games are unnecessarily hard and expensive to make. They never really bridged the gap between making a mod and making a standalone product that plays differently from the base game. For a well-established genre where 2D is perfectly acceptable, that is pretty sad. Someone can make a perfectly good FPS focusing only on design and art because everything else is done extremely well with readily available technologies.
Also, it doesn't help that the general public isn't qualified enough to recognize a good traditional RTS. It is composed of 2 things:
1) using resources effectively (choosing whether to make more workers, more troops, or more technology)
2) using military effectively (choosing which units to put in which place at which time)
A game's quality is determined solely by how smooth and balanced these decisions are.
The mechanics of a traditional RTS are so boring that reviewers and random noobs start complaining when it's that transparent. They want innovation and reinventions of the wheel. They don't realize that the problem with strategy games is that nobody wants to learn random crap when the gameplay is never going to go beyond those 2 choices. Generic is good because it makes it easy to switch from one game to another without some 10 hour learning process.
I'm sure tons of people have designs for games to present those 2 choices. They'll just never get made because they don't have the resources to write an entire engine, UI, AI, and matchmaking system largely from scratch.
mickygor, Battlefield 3
Otmer, League of Legends EUW
Bastiat, Planetside 2, Miller NC
I'm failing to writing a blog, specifically about playing games the wrong way
I play Stronghold and Stronghold Crusader every now and then. Probably some of the more awesome RTSes ever made. I love how easy it is to destroy an attacking army with a few bowmen on a wall and some brazier.
EDIT: Oh, recently got the Theatre of War Collection on Gamersgate. I really like it. It seems really thoughtful and pretty realistically modeled. I like that each vehicle/mounted gun has to have people assigned to them, and that they can get scared off of their assigned station, can bail out of tanks when they're destroyed, only get killed one at a time, rather than taking all of the units with the station, etc.
Then there are things like trenches...
I haven't played much, but it's really deep, and while it's more "set group, tactical combat" than a traditional RTS, it's pretty awesome.
Last edited by johnki; 13-07-2012 at 10:02 PM.
With Toy Soldiers being $2.50 on the Steam sale right now, I'm tempted to get it to see what it's like, but I also don't really want to spend money on it since I've got my reservations about it originally being a console RTS.
Does anyone have any experience with it? Is it actually a good RTS or does it suffer like all other console-based RTS games? Does it use the mind-shatteringly bad Games for Windows Live since it's an Xbox port?
I would just get it for that price and use Xliveless.
Well, I just looked at the wikipedia article to see how the gameplay is, and it sounds like it's really just a tower defense game rather than an RTS when it comes to the PC version. The xbox version was the same way but it had 2 player vs. for multiplayer, which would allow for a TD game to be RTS-like, while the PC version only has the single player stuff which just amounts to defending yourself from waves of enemies with no attacking on your part.
So it looks like the game is going to be a pass for me. I like TD games, but they just get old so fast once you've figured out the game's particular formula. Which is a shame since you don't see too many games based in a WWI-style setting.
It is a tower defense game. I've never heard toy soldiers called an RTS.
Fair enough. Damn misleading advertising!
If I want a World War I fix I play rise of nations, with the era locked to the (I think) Industrial era.
Damn this thread and curse you all.
/scrounges up his RTS games and installs