Heroes 6: ooookay?? (rant, really)

The new Heroes games produced by Ubisoft. Please specify which game you are referring to in your post.

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LongDarkBlues
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Postby LongDarkBlues » Jan 30 2011, 17:11

Kranyum wrote:lol LongDarkBlues ur such a fanboy hahahaha
If that's how you are reading this, then the meaning seems to have escaped you. Or would it make more sense to you if I say in 14-year-old troll speak? lol U R dum, k boi lololol?

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Postby Pitsu » Jan 30 2011, 18:19

The opening post is perhaps indeed a bit to superficial, emotional and without factual support, but as many I am too concerned about the game. As said before, based on previous experiences one can make predict the future with a certain percent of success. And this is not the first Homm in development and not the first game for Ubi either. Below are some, but not all concerns that i have and also though why I think so and, in some cases, how it should IMO be.
-------------------------------------------

The root of several troubles is the lore. In contrary to MM games in HoMM the lore has never been very strong. That is particularly true for the first installments that started it all. Even more, as already implied by the Forge crisis, the lore may, on the contrary, damage the game. Heroes 6 seems to be developed too much based on the lore. Lets see:

*Initial release will have five factions. Maybe i have misunderstood something, but the number is five not because of optimal balance/variety/development schedule, but because of sexual activity of a fictional Sir Griffin (not Peter).

*Many creatures in town lineups make perfect sense for the official lore. Their uniqueness, however, may cause problems for mapmakers what want an alternative storyline. Good and simple modding tools are required to balance the official-lore-orientedness of H6. Otherwise the longevity of H6 will suffer as H5 due to problems making custom maps.

*According to rumors there will be no other singleplayer map than the campaign at game release.

*It is subjective, but IMO compared to gameplay and mechanics that are most important, there is unproportionally much lore info released. It suggest (although not confirm) that the priorities are awkward.


Graphics and game design

In H5 they tried to build a virtual reality world. It is great that they have realized some of its problems and are now aiming to keep everything visible without camera gymnastics. Yet, based on screenshots, it is doubtful that they have grasped all that can be improved. Some thoughts again:

*On a strategic map everything with strategic value should be easy to see and identify. Identification seems still a problem. Units are not towering over terrain like for instance in Civilization series, but they are mainly visible due to a blue circle around them. Maybe it is only because I am new to the game, but after seeing such circle it is still very hard to identify many troops as they are too small or transparent/camouflaged. OK, you do not want to ruin the “realistic” proportions of units and environment. How about replacing the otherworldly circle with a big flag, circling birds or something more atmospheric that signals the presence of monsters and identify them with ease. Or if you cannot make an atmospheric highlight, why not “zounds of sisters” text instead a weird highlight and need to right-click? You try to build a nice virtual reality and then ruin it with an un-atmospheric user interface on some reason. I’d say better cut the realism a bit, but keep the atmosphere.

*Minor graphic issue. To have the details of trees and other objects visible and most things in realistic proportions makes the map seemingly small. A war between continents feels more like a war between islands. What distance does a hero travel in day when comparing the distance with the measurements of trees? 100m per day? It kind of suggests a children play around a hill or glade and makes you desire huge maps where distances are indeed heroic and war has a global feeling.

*Resource thing I have commented elsewhere. Briefly: reducing the number of resources does reduce potential strategies. However, how much of the potential strategic combinations is actually usable depends on implementation details. They certainly have made balancing things more easy for themselves. If they take maximum out of four resource system, it may be more fun than a not well implemented seven resource system. Reasoning that they gave “all factions competing for the same resource” made me feel like they cannot see further than their nose or all maps are going to be very limited. First, there already are resources that everyone is competing for and adding one changes little in principle (e.g. the resource cut adds nothing if everything else is kept as before. The key to competition is elsewhere.) Secondly, in most maps in older games one ended up controlling up to tens of towns of different type and everyone had use to every resource. A better analysis of this issue from their side would certainly be welcome and perhaps convince some doubters or help themselves to improve it.

*There has been interesting initiative by asking feedback on forts system and which multiplayer modes are desired. There could be more such and possibly more feedback on feedback too. Right now it is confusing on what reason these were asked and other things are kept in secret.

damn, now i am tired of writing.
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Postby Kranyum » Jan 30 2011, 18:47

tress wrote:
... "a lot of stuff"


ok my friend, instead of pinpointing all my affirmations and dismissing them with shallow remarks how about if you tried to give me some rational reasons as to why the game should be exciting.

As an example of what I mean, I'm gonna defend Diablo3 from the claims you do in your post with just a few points:
Stuff to be excited in D3 (non-exhaustive list):

* Awesome New Graphics (H6 graphics are not that far from H5 so no novelty there)
* New hero classes
* New hero skills - much more synergy, more ways to kill
* Excelent polish of the classes - each class feels unique with a very distinct gameplay
* Impovement of monsters and encounters - combo monsters, ambushes etc
* Variety (runes, skills, gear all make for so many different possible builds)
* PVP Arena
* A better Gear system (BoE items, Scalable Sets, class specific looks)

I wont go further. Even if some of these might not appeal to you, one can rationally understand that the game is selling its strong points.
Please do the same about heroes.

If that's how you are reading this, then the meaning seems to have escaped you. Or would it make more sense to you if I say in 14-year-old troll speak? lol U R dum, k boi lololol?


Same answer as above. All you said so far is:
"Have faith the game is good"
"Wait until its done"
"You are wrong"

Some facts please.

The opening post is perhaps indeed a bit to superficial, emotional and without factual support, but as many I am too concerned about the game. As said before, based on previous experiences one can make predict the future with a certain percent of success. And this is not the first Homm in development and not the first game for Ubi either. Below are some, but not all concerns that i have and also though why I think so and, in some cases, how it should IMO be.


Precisely.
I will spend some time and write my opinions about what's wrong with the things that have transpired and the issues with such a design in a little while when I get some more free time.But you've nailed to the head exactly some of the stuff I had in mind.I dont see any reference to how exactly they have improved the gameplay. Slamming in some new units is just not enough.

* Towns must have synergy, a unit must be in an alignment to create combos and strategies, not just look cool
* Different towns have to play differently, otherwize there is no point in having different towns. If all races press wait while their archers kill the mobs there's not much point to it. I liked how Heroes 4 brought a touch of variety with the schools of magic and some units in H5 that spiced up the battlefield (Blood Furies, Trapper Goblins, Hydras)
* Combat System, same thing. Initiative was great why was it axed? Heroes on the battlefield, another great thing, why completely forgo it? Retaliation System - cuz I think we can all agree that Simultaneous Retaliations are much more balanced that Post-Attack Retaliation - how was this addressed? Creeping? Is it any different that wait-wait-wait-shoot-cast-wait-wait-wait etc...
* Maps: are there any mirrored multiplayer maps? Any single player maps? Random Map Generator? How did they improve the AI from the previous installments (which sucked ass hard). Without good AI the game will die really fast.
* Multiplayer: are they bringing back simultaneous turns. How was multiplayer improved. Any solution found to the fact that a 1v1 game lasts for 8hours+? How is the pvp balance taken care of?

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Postby sezerp » Jan 30 2011, 21:16

Elvin wrote:@Kranyum
Many won't consider that what they see is but a fraction of the game, they will just take a look at a screenshot and say that the adventure map is empty. Just because the screenshot is.


So you say that what Soft: Ubi publishes is in no way representative of the actual game? :|

Disclamer: I wait for this game. If nothing else, I am courious how the core/elite/champion thing works out.

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Postby Tress » Jan 30 2011, 22:42

As an example of what I mean, I'm gonna defend Diablo3 from the claims you do in your post with just a few points:
Stuff to be excited in D3 (non-exhaustive list):


Well that you mention is applie to homm 6 as well, and can be bellited in context of d3 just as well. Objectivelly speaking it doesnt matter if class is named sorrceres or wizard or witch doctor, what matter is how it plays. Of course some dynamic will change but I dont think that core archetype will change that much. Diablo in fact is really bad example. Its a game where gameplay itself is good enough (although I am personally not a fan although I was avid wow player) to not be changed. In fact if somone at blizz would actually thinking of radically changing diablo, players would lynch them. Other changes however are minor. BOE items, runes, etc that isnt exactly world breaking, of course it changes some dynamic but still.
In such context I believe homm6 brings alot more changes like new resource system, and accent on unique faction abilities.
Please do the same about heroes.


New resource system
New unit system
abilities to convert cities.
Unique racial abilities

Can continue for a while.

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Postby Elvin » Jan 30 2011, 23:04

[quote="Kranyum"]
* Towns must have synergy, a unit must be in an alignment to create combos and strategies, not just look cool
- Yes they do. Ofc some towns are more about synergy than others - demons are not good with teamwork ;)

* Different towns have to play differently, otherwize there is no point in having different towns. If all races press wait while their archers kill the mobs there's not much point to it. I liked how Heroes 4 brought a touch of variety with the schools of magic and some units in H5 that spiced up the battlefield (Blood Furies, Trapper Goblins, Hydras)
- You can bet on that.

* Combat System, same thing. Initiative was great why was it axed? Heroes on the battlefield, another great thing, why completely forgo it? Retaliation System - cuz I think we can all agree that Simultaneous Retaliations are much more balanced that Post-Attack Retaliation - how was this addressed? Creeping? Is it any different that wait-wait-wait-shoot-cast-wait-wait-wait etc...
- Many features are a matter of taste, while I did like initiative I hated sim retaliations and heroes on battlefield. First because it sucked(:P), second because it was horribly unbalanced and also annoying to have to drag your dead hero back to town in case he did die. Now some clarifications.

Initiative is still in the game but like H4 worked, high init units play first but still once per turn. There are a lot of ways to affect it.
Heroes won't be in battlefield but their presence will be felt in various ways, not just direct attacks.
Retaliation system is like always except slaughters like the ones we got in H5 will not happen again.
Creeping should be more interesting with the new unit recruitment mechanics and being able to pick the skills you want when you want.

* Maps: are there any mirrored multiplayer maps? Any single player maps? Random Map Generator? How did they improve the AI from the previous installments (which sucked ass hard). Without good AI the game will die really fast.
Atm there are 10 multiplayer maps but more are planned to be available for download on the game's release. Also if the map editor is ready it will be released before the game so that mapmakers can start working on it. There will be no RMG because they are tryinng to prepare as good a map aditor as possible. Nothing is known of AI atm.
I, for one, am dying to find out what colour they paint Michael's toenails.
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Postby MattII » Jan 31 2011, 3:42

I wonder who's more whiny, those whining about the game, or those whining about the people whining about the game.

LongDarkBlues wrote:Regardless, this whole 'thin end of the wedge' thing is total paranoid anti-progress nonsense. It basically boils down to 'change is scary.'
Oh, so there's something wrong with being conservative? Oh, and I'm not scared of what they're doing, I just don't like it, and it is the thin end of the wedge, they're pulling things that have been in since H1, like the 3 rare resources, the fact that troops no longer affect your movement speed, you can no longer nuisance-grab enemy mines, or at least not on most maps, the map is beginning to look more and more like a RPG than a TSB.
This is H3:
[img]http://www.interfilm.md/imagebucket/41843_F75AE638CA83929830.jpg[/img]

And this is H5:
[img]http://www.celestialheavens.com/images/screenshots/homm5/sylvan/homm5_shot40.jpg[/img]

In H3 the heroes are obviously icons for the army, in H5 they look like that flaming army, what with the map scale.

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Postby intipacha » Jan 31 2011, 7:20

the amount of 'soul' and life present in the art of H3 is just amazing.

especially compared with this H5 screen, which is actually even LESS realistic, not to mention sterile, boring, and.. i'm sorry, but... ugly.

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Postby ThunderTitan » Jan 31 2011, 8:24

intipacha wrote:especially compared with this H5 screen, which is actually even LESS realistic, not to mention sterile, boring, and.. i'm sorry, but... ugly.


Heh... i remember when some people said that the graphics where pretty good for H5... it shows that most people here don't play many other genres...
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Postby ThunderTitan » Jan 31 2011, 8:33

Elvin wrote:@Kranyum
That or they don't take your topic seriously enough. No offense but you are too critical when knowing too little and that's all LongDarkBlues is trying to say.


And he's doing it by positioning himself at the opposite extreme end of the debate...

Kranyum's post are way too mired in emotion but LongDarkBlues rebuttals are pretty "shut up and let the game have everything you don't like in it, maybe you'll like it anyway"...

Elvin wrote:Many won't consider that what they see is but a fraction of the game, they will just take a look at a screenshot and say that the adventure map is empty. Just because the screenshot is.


As i noted on that thread, it probably has more to do with hero size relative to the adventure map and also with the fact that 3D maps have lower max sizes (they certainly did in H5). It's not just a "h6 sucks" knee-jerk reaction, it does appear to be more space left empty at first glance...


Kranyum wrote:* Awesome New Graphics (H6 graphics are not that far from H5 so no novelty there)


For Diablo 3... man you guys are funny.

Also, i'm pretty sure class specific looks where in D2 for armour too...
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Postby Metathron » Jan 31 2011, 17:15

MattII wrote:And this is H5:
[img]http://www.celestialheavens.com/images/screenshots/homm5/sylvan/homm5_shot40.jpg[/img]

In H3 the heroes are obviously icons for the army, in H5 they look like that flaming army, what with the map scale.


Is the game forcing you to zoom in to the max?
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Postby Kranyum » Jan 31 2011, 19:17

MattII wrote:I wonder who's more whiny, those whining about the game, or those whining about the people whining about the game.

LongDarkBlues wrote:Regardless, this whole 'thin end of the wedge' thing is total paranoid anti-progress nonsense. It basically boils down to 'change is scary.'
Oh, so there's something wrong with being conservative? Oh, and I'm not scared of what they're doing, I just don't like it, and it is the thin end of the wedge, they're pulling things that have been in since H1, like the 3 rare resources, the fact that troops no longer affect your movement speed, you can no longer nuisance-grab enemy mines, or at least not on most maps, the map is beginning to look more and more like a RPG than a TSB.
This is H3:
[img]http://www.interfilm.md/imagebucket/41843_F75AE638CA83929830.jpg[/img]

And this is H5:
[img]http://www.celestialheavens.com/images/screenshots/homm5/sylvan/homm5_shot40.jpg[/img]

In H3 the heroes are obviously icons for the army, in H5 they look like that flaming army, what with the map scale.


Funny how with H3's lower resolution and 2d graphics we can fit more stuff in one screen than in Heroes 5.

Larger screen is better for Strategy while cheesy graphics is just cheesy graphics

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Postby MattII » Jan 31 2011, 20:15

Metathron wrote:Is the game forcing you to zoom in to the max?
No, but the map still looks closer to a RPG scale than a TBS one.

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Postby Tress » Jan 31 2011, 20:39

What sort of arguments are those. Map is scalable for any need, as long as it is practical it's ok. I often keep zoom close in too but when i need to see more I zoom back
More imoportant matter is that engine doesnt handle many trees at once too well, and thus any elf themed map gets fps hit when outzoomed. But as i heard HOMM6 will use other engine, and hopefully more suited for such needs. After all homm5 used silent storm engine that was shaped for tactical battles in urban setting(and even then it was rather slow)

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Postby MattII » Jan 31 2011, 21:54

It was hard to hide things in H3, it's a lot easier here, and the map being scalable doesn't take away from the fact that in H5 (and H6) adventuring looks like the hero's going for a stroll in the park, now dragging an army across mile after mile of wilderness.

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Postby LongDarkBlues » Jan 31 2011, 22:34

omg H5 is so zoomed in.

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Postby Kranyum » Jan 31 2011, 23:09

still more stuff in the H3 screen :)

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Postby MattII » Jan 31 2011, 23:37

If you have to make everything glowy to get it noticed, then the terrain is too big.

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Postby LongDarkBlues » Jan 31 2011, 23:45

Kranyum wrote:still more stuff in the H3 screen :)

Really? Because I see:
3 resource mines on H3, 2 on H5
4 enemies on H5, 3 on H3,
12 pickups on H5, 0 on H3
3 objects to visit on H5, 3 objects to visit on H3
H3 has a town, but there's ample room on H5's if the designer had wanted to - there's 2 huge mountains on there.

MattII wrote:If you have to make everything glowy to get it noticed, then the terrain is too big.

The H6 guys said they were specifically designing the game to prevent losing objects on the environment, so they are aware of that, at least.

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Postby MattII » Feb 1 2011, 4:09

LongDarkBlues wrote:The H6 guys said they were specifically designing the game to prevent losing objects on the environment, so they are aware of that, at least.
Yeah, and they're doing it by making all the resources/artefacts glowy and sticking player symbols over all the mines, real sophisticated.


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