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Total War: PHARAOH

Lacrymas

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Pathfinder: Wrath
How about Field of Glory: Empires?
I haven't played it, but from what I've seen it's not super good. It has the same problem a lot of 4X and Grand Strategy games have where you can simply outproduce your enemies and the battles end up lopsided and thus not engaging.
shiterine also locks 90% of their games behind dlc paywall
Not entirely true. The games which end up becoming popular do get a lot of DLC and support, but that's not really problematic. The actually good games are good even without DLC, like FoG and Gladius, so the DLC is adding on top of a strong foundation. Also, get stuff on sale. It's not uncommon that a Slitherine game with 5 years worth of DLC is 50 Euro for everything when on sale. I've gotten every FoG2 DLC for 25 Euro combined (and got the base game for free). Slitherine's DLC practices have been exaggeratedly vilified and are nowhere near real stinkers like Paradox, the Sims, Total Warhammer and so on.
 

Gromoer

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Is Gladius any good? Been keeping an eye for it for quite some time, but something holds me from buying it.
 

Harthwain

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Slitherine's DLC practices have been exaggeratedly vilified and are nowhere near real stinkers like Paradox, the Sims, Total Warhammer and so on.
They aren't "exaggeratedly vilified". It just feels shitty to have to pay double/separately to get what people think ought to be a single product. Personally I think I am going to get Field of Glory: Kingdoms, but I will probably pass on their tactical "module". Evenmoreso considering I am not too fond of the visual side of the game (looks like cheap 3D to me). I would take a good 2D instead in a heartbeat (this is Takeda from 2001):



Or look up Wars of the Roses and Medieval Battle: Europe from HexWar Games. Both look more appealing visually to me than any Field of Glory game (maybe because of the models being less "blocky").
 

Lacrymas

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Slitherine's DLC practices have been exaggeratedly vilified and are nowhere near real stinkers like Paradox, the Sims, Total Warhammer and so on.
Personally I think I am going to get Field of Glory: Kingdoms,
...but FoG2 ("the tactical module") is the good one. As for what people are considering "a single product", that's quite subjective.
 

Gromoer

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Can you please sell me this FoG2 please? I checked up some gameplay video: guy basically spent 10 minutes to move his 20 or 30 regiments one step forward. I get it, it’s tactics and shit, but I just didn’t catch the meat.
 

Lacrymas

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Pathfinder: Wrath
Can you please sell me this FoG2 please? I checked up some gameplay video: guy basically spent 10 minutes to move his 20 or 30 regiments one step forward. I get it, it’s tactics and shit, but I just didn’t catch the meat.
It's got diverse factions from the Bronze Age up to (but excluding) Medieval times that need different tactics to be effective. You have a variety of unit types, including some artillery. Positioning and terrain are extremely important and how maneuverable a unit is matters a whole lot. You have to think at least a turn in advance due to this. You fight for morale breaks instead of just annihilating the enemy. You can't fill your entire army with ranged units and destroy everything. It's not an easy game at all and once you learn how to beat the AI, there's a very good AI mod to spice everything back up. There are constantly multiplayer tournaments being organized and it's an amazing PvP experience. Multiplayer can be played very casually as it features a built-in PBEM server. The base game is currently 7 Euro on GOG.
 
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Theodora

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It's kinda sad. I was kind of looking forward to an Egyptian-themed game. Had not played one of those in a long while.

Oh well... I'm sure I can use my money for something better.
I feel bad for the Sofia studio. Looks like they did their best with a poor situation, but the result is still lacking. Go shitty corporate mandates.
 

Nutmeg

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It's kinda sad. I was kind of looking forward to an Egyptian-themed game. Had not played one of those in a long while.

Oh well... I'm sure I can use my money for something better.
Get Fields of Glory 2 with the Swifter Than Eagles DLC if you want a good game where you can play Bronze Age Egypt.
shiterine also locks 90% of their games behind dlc paywall
Paying for games is a choice, just saying. It's not like paying for a game makes any difference to the workers who actually made the games, only the rent seekers looking to profit from their labor. Even if you believe otherwise you can find a middle ground where you pay for the base game but choose not the pay for the DLC.
 

RobotSquirrel

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Did I sound surprised?
i wasn't talking about you, I was talking about the steam community. My reaction has been everytime this happens "first time?", said the same in the cities skylines 2 forums lol. Its obvious to us what's going on, I wish people were smarter.
 
Vatnik Wumao
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Paying for games is a choice, just saying. It's not like paying for a game makes any difference to the workers who actually made the games, only the rent seekers looking to profit from their labor. Even if you believe otherwise you can find a middle ground where you pay for the base game but choose not the pay for the DLC.
For companies like CA, paying for just the main game is no longer enough. They need you to buy DLC. TW3K was dropped because china players refused to buy DLC. Selling DLC has become a fundamental part of their business model.
 
Vatnik Wumao
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If empire 2 is ever made, it will have a grand total of three factions, each with three hero characters. Every additional faction will be DLC.
 

Axioms

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FoG2 is a great game. It has a very unique tactical system that is lots of fun. Are there some issues? Sure. But it has much higher mechanical verisimilitude than Total War. You need to commit your units to actually make attacks which alone puts it miles ahead of most other tactical games. The line of battle, flanking, facing, morale, and unit quality mechanics are all great and the point buy is good as well. The unit type differentiation also pretty unique. Infantry weight class matters, armament and armor matter. Cavalry plays far more like it did historically than any other mainstream tactical game. Skirmishers and cavalry both have to sort things out among themselves before engaging the units stuck in melee. Also ranged and artillery are more logical and you have to actually think about how you employ them, and the height system is also unique both for ranged and melee combat.

I think you could add some more granularity in some aspects and still keep the parts that are special but it works great as is.
 

Nutmeg

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It's a pretty literal transplant of a for-tabletop ruleset. Which is why I made a thread in the general gaming forum asking for other such games, alas not much participation.
 

Harthwain

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...but FoG2 ("the tactical module") is the good one.
It is decent, but it lacks the kind of continuity the strategy layer can offer.

As for what people are considering "a single product", that's quite subjective.
Not at this point. First of all - tactical battles are a standard in most strategy games. Secondly - they literally have a strategy game under the same name which integrates tactical games. By now they should know how to make it into a complete, seamless, package. Trying to sell it separately will come off as scummy sales tactic.
 

Konjad

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Paying for games is a choice, just saying. It's not like paying for a game makes any difference to the workers who actually made the games, only the rent seekers looking to profit from their labor. Even if you believe otherwise you can find a middle ground where you pay for the base game but choose not the pay for the DLC.
For companies like CA, paying for just the main game is no longer enough. They need you to buy DLC. TW3K was dropped because china players refused to buy DLC. Selling DLC has become a fundamental part of their business model.
TW3K was one of the best games they made on the strategic layer and it had the best diplomacy of all total war series (funnily enough, typical to CA since they finally made it good they dropped it from the next game and just went back to retard diplomacy).

The main problem why Chinese weren't buying DLCs is simple. All the DLCs were shit (though that's typical for any modern TW). DLCs gave you different starting years with different starting positions (factions having less or more land at the start)... an that's it. They didn't even bother making new units or unique factions (yellow turban rebellion aka day 1 DLC that was clearly cut from the base game to sell it excluded).

Players kept asking CA to make an expansion about actual Three Kingdoms like the game's dog damn title, but CA refused making only those shitty low effort trash and then pulled the plug because Chinese refused to pay for one day's work with a price of a quarter the game (unlike westerners who will shill any money for their cringehammer kobold reskin).

I have almost all the DLCs for three kingdoms and I checked each DLC once and quickly abandoned because they are all shit. If you buy 3K then do not bother paying for DLCs or buying it in a bundle with DLCs, just get the base game (which is quite good, I spent a hundred hours in it).
 

Nutmeg

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I haven't played it, but from what I've seen it's not super good. It has the same problem a lot of 4X and Grand Strategy games have where you can simply outproduce your enemies and the battles end up lopsided and thus not engaging.
Indeed. There's a paradox in two layer strategy and tactics games which is the better you do strategically, the less challenging and thus more boring and busy-worky the tactics layer becomes.

It has been "solved" by at least one game I can think of (the original X-COM (1994) where the idea was that the alien enemy would grow in power faster than the player could even if they played perfectly, so the tactical layer only gets more challenging over time), but it remains the most common problem in games of this kind.
 
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Space Satan

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I remember that CA's excuse for abysmal AI for Empire was that their employee, who developed AI interactions left the company mid-developement and when obvious questions were asked they disclosed that they had exactly ONE guy who programmed strategy layer AI and had to start anew - they did not make it to release. SO mismanagement and lack of reality check problems were present even then.
 

Konjad

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I remember that CA's excuse for abysmal AI for Empire was that their employee, who developed AI interactions left the company mid-developement and when obvious questions were asked they disclosed that they had exactly ONE guy who programmed strategy layer AI and had to start anew - they did not make it to release. SO mismanagement and lack of reality check problems were present even then.
tbh most games have one dude for AI, because AI doesn't sell that well as kewl graphics etc.

Even the Stalker's AI (A-life or whatever it was called) was done by one dude (too bad he got killed in Ukraine, he was writing AI for Stalker 2 as well)
 

thesecret1

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I remember that CA's excuse for abysmal AI for Empire was that their employee, who developed AI interactions left the company mid-developement and when obvious questions were asked they disclosed that they had exactly ONE guy who programmed strategy layer AI and had to start anew - they did not make it to release. SO mismanagement and lack of reality check problems were present even then.
tbh most games have one dude for AI, because AI doesn't sell that well as kewl graphics etc.

Even the Stalker's AI (A-life or whatever it was called) was done by one dude (too bad he got killed in Ukraine, he was writing AI for Stalker 2 as well)
The actual reason is that AI is difficult to split between multiple people. The teams working on AI are often small and depending on one or two dudes.
 

Space Satan

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tbh most games have one dude for AI, because AI doesn't sell that well as kewl graphics etc.
They they get what they deserve because literally the first thing every sane big company and institution do when planning some big project is predicting replacement in case of sunned illness, leaving or any other case for key personnel. If you can't do basics then do not enter where big boys playing.
 

thesecret1

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tbh most games have one dude for AI, because AI doesn't sell that well as kewl graphics etc.
They they get what they deserve because literally the first thing every sane big company and institution do when planning some big project is predicting replacement in case of sunned illness, leaving or any other case for key personnel. If you can't do basics then do not enter where big boys playing.
Everyone knows this, but it's difficult to actually do anything about it when it comes to programming, especially concerning complex modules. I've seen attempts to have multiple people "responsible" for the same areas of code (result: one dude took it upon himself, the second had some vague idea about what the code was supposed to do), to have the one who programmed it teach others (result: they forget it before the day is over because they don't actually need to know it at the moment), to extensively document it (result: documentation is outdated before the week is over, OR the programmer spends half his work time updating documentation), or asking everyone to "review the code" of everyone before its submitted to repo (result: nobody does it because it's a pain in the ass).

In the end, the only thing that made it better was to strictly enforce a uniform coding style to that when a dude leaves, his code is at least easy to read, but cases where a dude leaves, a new guy takes over, decides the previous dude's code is weird and shit, and starts coding the whole thing again still unfortunately do happen.
 

Space Satan

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The actual reason is that AI is difficult to split between multiple people. The teams working on AI are often small and depending on one or two dudes.
Bullshit. Bare minimum is two people for important field and there alwys should be ones assistents n training. I saw projects fail because some guys gone nuts, had srous sickness, or abruptly leaving companies. All this talk about "irreplacebable" personnel is bullshit and excuses for failing to plan ahead and organize the work. And more often greed, when someone want to save some buck by relying on one particular guy.
 

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