HoMM6 gameplay discusion

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

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Postby Starbatron » Feb 16 2007, 20:40

I think I understand the point you were making, tumorbane, which isn't quite that you want a clone (though if you do, I have to agree with TT), but that changing too much at once can lead to some major difficulties. Of course, if games were given a decent amount of time to be debugged and streamlined for release, perhaps a bit more innovation and changes could be experimented with ;)

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Re: H 6

Postby tumorbane » Feb 19 2007, 19:06

ThunderTitan wrote:
So basicaly you want an add-on?


Well, it would be nice if it was a little more than that but not too much more. Ie. rather than a whole new spell system, just add some spells. Improve the graphics. More artifacts. New neutral monsters. Most importantly, improve the gameplay. Wouldn't we all just like to see the AI use the same resources we use, make their turn in 10 seconds, and kick our ass if we didn't do everything really well?

Include a great big campaign and a slew of good maps that come with the game. Who wouldn't be satisfied with that?

A lot of the other suggestions are interesting, but they just aren't HOMM.

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Postby Starbatron » Feb 19 2007, 19:48

Honestly, if you look at each HoMM game, you'll find that while many things are similar, each game does more than just add a few spells, new neutral monsters, and most maps and a big campaign. HoMM II was different than there, factions were added and changed, new creatures for each faction were added, the spell system was similar. HoMM IV did change a number of things; some of these changes were good. Some where less than good. However, factions were once again changed, spells were changed and a new spell system was changed. The same is true of HoMM V. I agree that the number of maps should be much larger than the initial release of HoMM V, and the format for the campaign, and the difficulty of the campaign should definitely be changed, but we do need more than that for a new HoMM game. Otherwise you do basically have a clone...which is a poor thing. :devious:

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Re: H 6

Postby ThunderTitan » Feb 19 2007, 20:12

tumorbane wrote:Well, it would be nice if it was a little more than that but not too much more. Ie. rather than a whole new spell system, just add some spells. Improve the graphics. More artifacts. New neutral monsters. Most importantly, improve the gameplay. Wouldn't we all just like to see the AI use the same resources we use, make their turn in 10 seconds, and kick our ass if we didn't do everything really well?


So you want an add-on and a better AI... my bad.
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Re: H 6

Postby tumorbane » Feb 19 2007, 20:50

ThunderTitan wrote: So you want an add-on and a better AI... my bad.


If you want to oversimplify it as such, then call it a massive add-on with better AI. I don't think it's fair to call something with a full campaign, lots of maps, and notable improvements "just an add-on."

Look at the evolution of Warcraft. Natural. No huge paradigm shifts from the original to WIII.

If HIV was just Wake of Gods with better graphics/maps, a good campaign, and a new faction or 2, it would've been infinitely better than the actual HIV.

It seems the PC video game industry feels it has to make a game that pushes the limits of the modern computer specs rather than using better technology to improve games. For example, Baldur's Gate 2 was basically universally loved and was a consensus Game of the Year. Then, we have to wait a few years for NWN which is really a poor sister of BG2. Oh yes, it had some very exciting new ideas and rules etc, but the radical changes made things worse, not better. That example might be a poor one b/c I think a lot of changes had to do with licensing issues, but those don't exist for the HOMM series so STICK WITH WHAT WORKS.

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Re: H 6

Postby ThunderTitan » Feb 19 2007, 21:15

tumorbane wrote:If you want to oversimplify it as such, then call it a massive add-on with better AI. I don't think it's fair to call something with a full campaign, lots of maps, and notable improvements "just an add-on."


What notable improvements?! New gen graphics and more spells/creatures etc? Only the new gen graphics can't be done in an exp.


tumorbane wrote:Look at the evolution of Warcraft. Natural. No huge paradigm shifts from the original to WIII.


Yeah, it's still a RTS... except part 3 has unique heros on the BF instead of just special units that just have a special name and extra health.



If HIV was just Wake of Gods with better graphics/maps, a good campaign, and a new faction or 2, it would've been infinitely better than the actual HIV.


You do know that WoG isn't H3 right? And it has hero-like commanders etc. Frankly WoG changed H3 as much as H4 was a change to it. Sure, H4 was rushed too much and half it's features were implemented pretty badly, but it still had the basic HoMM features.

The part that felt off was mostly because of the shoddy way stuff was balanced... definatly needed alot more polishing and stremlining of features and balancing.

Just look at how they're slowly implementing H4 features into H5 and the ppl that like 5 but bashed 4 aren't offended by them.

Why are ppl so stupid that they bash good ideeas because the game they were in was shoddy?


tumorbane wrote:but the radical changes made things worse, not better. but those don't exist for the HOMM series so STICK WITH WHAT WORKS.


Yeah, it's not like anyone complained about delayed retal exploiting, the skimpy skill sistem and other misc things like that.
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Re: H 6

Postby tumorbane » Feb 19 2007, 21:37

Yes, everything I want for HVI COULD be done in an expansion, but realistically, no one's going to put in the time for that much new content without full retail prices. And yes, if there's a game I love (and HIII definitely met that criteria), I would rather see continued new maps and minor tweaks/eternal expansions rather than change for change sake.

WOG still has the look and feel of HIII. The commander was ONE big thing to get used to, and I like it. HIV had that and a whole new and horrid spell system where nearly every battle for me was to see who could conjure the toughest creature, and yes, even that would've been tolerable if the gameplay worked. It didn't and that's my main complaint. It's a turn-based strategy game. Nothing is more important than balance and gameplay. Focus on that and the rest is gravy. Neglect that even a little to focus on nifty improvements and cool ideas and it all collapses.

(What is "delayed retal exploiting?")

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Postby winterfate » Feb 19 2007, 23:12

Units can (normally) retaliate once per turn.

Delayed retal exploiting is to attack the same unit repeatedly so it can't retaliate.

Or that's how i understand it at least :D.
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Postby sezerp » Feb 20 2007, 7:54

While I wouldn't mind HVI to be 'H5 deluxe' in terms of graphic engine, I would definitely like to see some new features. The only question for me is what new features. IMHO some of the Sauron's ideas go to far towards HoMM :Total War. Hell, my own 'loyalty' idea is perhaps going too far. (though I believe some kind of morale-like, random bonus applied to towns COULD be interesting and still 'Heroesy' enough)

But I'd love to see features, which will be more than just exp. pack, for example second type of hero for each town, with new skill tree. Yeah, the problem is to think of new unique class skills, but maybe that's not really necessary. After all, Training would work OK for Cleric, and Necromancy for a Death Knight. IMO the only racial skill that wouldn't work for second hero class is Warlocks' Irresistible Magic. But would be different for, say, Knight and Cleric, would be derived abilities.

Anyway, I guess we have still a lot of time before HVI is even announced, though I'm quite sure it will happen, given that HV sells were not too bad...

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Re: H 6

Postby ThunderTitan » Feb 20 2007, 13:30

tumorbane wrote:Neglect that even a little to focus on nifty improvements and cool ideas and it all collapses.


Neglect it so you can realese it faster and you get the same results. Actualy you get H4... hmmm.

tumorbane wrote:(What is "delayed retal exploiting?")


Ups... kinda combined 2 different complains into one. My bad. I meant that with the current retal system defense is useless and the attacker gets too much of an advantage.
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Postby tumorbane » Feb 20 2007, 15:16

Well, looks like we've found some common ground. I think the biggest difference is that you are more of an idealist and I am a realist (pessimist?). Of the grand changes that have been suggested, many of them would be exciting. The problem is, why does anyone have confidence that the game will be complete and balanced when it is released? There have been eternal complaints about this with HV and multiple patches with incremental improvement. As an aging player with limited time to devote, I grow weary of this process and would much rather see a good game be given new life then to have to learn a new game with only vague similarities to the game I liked, knowing that the new game probably will be broken/buggy/slow.

Interesting about the retaliation "exploit." I see the point, but to me that's just part of the game. Do you see it as unbalanced?

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Postby Starbatron » Feb 20 2007, 18:12

The problem is not that changes and new ideas can't be implemented and balanced well, but that companies often rush games out today without the proper amount of time to streamline and polish the game. Thus, you have HoMM V, which is correcting mistakes that should have been corrected before its initial release.

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Postby ThunderTitan » Feb 20 2007, 20:44

tumorbane wrote:As an aging player with limited time to devote, I grow weary of this process and would much rather see a good game be given new life then to have to learn a new game with only vague similarities to the game I liked, knowing that the new game probably will be broken/buggy/slow.


Or they could fix it before releasing it. Frankly i would have prefered if H4 came out a year later balanced and with minimal bugs.

Graphics are the only reason to make a sequel with the exact same features but more content instead on an expansion.

Interesting about the retaliation "exploit." I see the point, but to me that's just part of the game. Do you see it as unbalanced?


I find it annoying, which is worse. Every feature can be balanced, that doesn't make it good.
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Postby tumorbane » Feb 21 2007, 2:36

Sure. The problem is the companies always will be driven by cash flow, so they will always rush the games to market, especially now in the modern era of high-speed downloadable patches.

I might have found an H4 with another year to germinate playable.

Let's compromise. Have HVI come out my way in '08 to placate us and fill ubi/nival's coffers until HVII, with a million wonderous improvements is ready for prime time in 2012.

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Postby Akul » Feb 21 2007, 12:01

Ok, now that you have come to an agreement, may we return to the topic and discus JUST how the game should look like?
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Re: HoMM6 gameplay discusion

Postby Pitsu » Feb 21 2007, 18:58

Sauron wrote:-STRATEGY (adventure map gameplay)


I really would like the adventure map strategy to come back. To have like H1 and H2 many neutral towns and villages between your and your opponents starting castles. So that one could chose to where to expand, which cities to build up, which enemy cities to take first, how many heroes to hire for guarding the cities and so one. This part is IMO very minimalistic in H5.
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Postby Starbatron » Feb 22 2007, 19:54

I was just thinking the same thing the other day. What happened to all the neutral towns for expansion? So much of this game revolves around combatting an enemy hero but with little room to find neutral cities to expand and add another layer to the adventure map decisions.

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Postby tekeeee » Mar 6 2007, 21:34

Bah Heroes 5 was a safety step becuase they dare not risk making a change and it was bad so we all hate it and lose interest in HOMM
Heores 6 they are gonna be more liberal and maybe we will see some new features, maybe we will hate them

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Re: HoMM6 gameplay discusion

Postby Kristo » Mar 6 2007, 23:15

Pitsu wrote:I really would like the adventure map strategy to come back. To have like H1 and H2 many neutral towns and villages between your and your opponents starting castles. So that one could chose to where to expand, which cities to build up, which enemy cities to take first, how many heroes to hire for guarding the cities and so one. This part is IMO very minimalistic in H5.

I'll make an attempt to resurrect this thread by weighing in. The problem with the later games in the Heroes series (and why there aren't very many neutral towns) is scale. The graphics keep getting bigger and prettier, but the maps don't really scale with it. If you were to remake a Heroes II map tile for tile in Heroes V, you'd never be able to see through the canopy of trees. You have to throw in a lot of empty space so it looks pretty. (Don't get me wrong, mapmaking is an art - it should be pretty.) The side effect is that there isn't a whole lot of room for extra towns. If you crammed as many towns as I'd like to see in a Heroes V map, it'd look ridiculous. You could probably see three or four towns at once from any camera angle.

A normal map (i.e., non-story map) needs to have enough neutral towns to be strategically significant. A good medium map in Heroes II had at least one neutral town for every player in the game. Larger maps had more. After all, the players need to fight over something. Otherwise, it's just a contest of who has the fewest losses fighting wandering monsters.

So what's the solution? We can't really make the maps have any more tiles. Nobody plays the XL maps anymore because it grinds the game to a halt. I think the best approach is to simply make the graphics smaller. Towns don't need to take up 80-100 tiles (or however many it is now). In Heroes II the footprint of a town was more like 8 or 9 tiles. Besides, they've proven with Heroes V they can make artwork that scales well as you move the camera. So scale everything down by 50% or more. It will free up a lot more room to work on getting the strategic elements back into the gameplay.

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Postby Starbatron » Mar 7 2007, 15:34

Yes, this makes complete sense. Now, if we can only get Ubival to listen to this for the next game... :wall:


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