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Old 08-14-2010, 05:40 AM   #1
Lightsleeper
 
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Your opinion on the game

What's your first impression on the game?

How do you like the gameplay?

What do you like the most? / What is the worst feature?

Last edited by Lightsleeper: 08-14-2010 at 07:25 AM.
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Old 08-15-2010, 02:26 PM   #2
Elvenshae
 
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First Impression: It's a Paradox game, alright. Lots of little, ling details that are fun to obsess over, lots of screens that would work better as bar / line charts, understanding your economy is absolutely key, and it lacks the coats of polish that differentiate AAA games from A or AA games - but it also seems to be getting some good post-launch patch support, so some of that might get better (adding the specifics of the ship upgrades to the tooltips is the sort of thing I'm talking about). I expect Paradox games to be flawed gems which nonetheless manage to soak up inordinate amounts of my time, and C:CotA does not dissapoint! (See also Mount and Blade, especially, and I can read AARs from Crusader Kings / EU / Vic all day.)

Gameplay: Fun! The automated trade route interface is a welcome sight. Timing things seems to be somewhat finicky - you have to be really careful about when you buy a building so that you don't run low enough on current funds to keep your trade empire functioning; in other words, the game is all about managing your working capital! Ship-to-ship battles can be ridiculously time-consuming affairs (in Sim speed, start a battle with an opposing force which just decides to run, and enjoy the 1-hour-uncompressed / 15-minute-compressed stern chase in 0-3kn winds), but when they aren't, they're top-notch. Lack of polish shows here, with three immediate issues:

1) The "End Battle" button which shows up when you decide to not let an enemy flee can obscure several of the ship command buttons, making it hard to, for example, tell your ships to form a line. It also never goes away, meaning that after you finally claw your way up to the opponent and are busy reducing his sailplan the violent way, you can still decide to just end the battle. (I've never actually clicked on it, so I don't know what happens when you do; I'm assuming it just ends the battle in the same way as if you'd pressed it 10 minutes prior.)

2) The tooltip text gets messed up if you change the ships' orders (e.g., changing to the Line Abreast command puts it at the bottom of the stack, but it retains the Line Astern tooltip text). This happens for each of the command medallions whenever you change them, making it important to memorize the symbols rather than trust the text.

3) Ships' Sails: The ships' sails do not seem to adjust based on their point of sail. Purely cosmetic, assuming the underlying calcs are all doing their work, but it would add a lot to the visuals of the game.

4) Really weak aside: Can someone look into the animation / model of the ship's commanding officer (at least in the Cutters)? The way he's holding his hand when gesturing for his sailors to settle down is a bit ... off.

Best / Worst Features: The advisors seems to have an unusual idea of how much money you actually have. The military advisor routinely asks for things like "Build 3 garrisons" (180K) or "Build 10 more military ships" (100K minimum if all you build is basic cutters, which also requires a shipyard in the colonies). Meanwhile, the trade advisor is asking you to please, please, please trade enough to make a 4K profit this year, please?

The best feature, despite my complaints up-post, is the ability to have large, multi-ship engagements - and I haven't even gotten into any serious fleet actions, yet. When the sea combat is working (and not devolving into a snooze-inducing stern-chase), it really, really works. 3 cutters vs. a caravel and its escorts is fun to play out. I love managing my magazines during a battle - I've only got enough chain for three more broadsides; take them now, and potentially slow him down and dismast him, or wait until I get closer and get pounded a bit longer with his round-shot? Marines having an effect in ship-to-ship combat is neat. Wish there were chase armaments, though.

Last edited by Elvenshae: 08-15-2010 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 08-16-2010, 12:01 AM   #3
Lightsleeper
 
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Thank you for good and constructive post!

I'll write up notes about the issues you brought up, so we can fix them and I'll find you a quick solution to the "End battle" button, if steam allows modding that .txt file.

Last edited by Lightsleeper: 08-16-2010 at 02:11 AM.
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Old 08-16-2010, 05:13 AM   #4
Lightsleeper
 
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Uh oh, almost forgot, but here is what I promised:

Data\Locales\en\tactical_RTS.txt

Line 142: y = pnl_actions.y - 100 >>> y = pnl_actions.y - 200
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Old 08-16-2010, 11:00 PM   #5
Elvenshae
 
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Thanks for the quick text fix; I assume that that just moves the End Battle button up? If so, that'll help a lot!
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Old 08-17-2010, 02:15 AM   #6
Lightsleeper
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elvenshae View Post
Thanks for the quick text fix; I assume that that just moves the End Battle button up? If so, that'll help a lot!
Yes, that moves it up. If it is not enough, you can move it further up.

If there is other GUI issues, just ask. I'll post quick fixes.
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