Sunday, November 07, 2004

Poll: What's next?

So, it's poll time, fitting since there have been several elections this year.

I have a few questions for you.

What would you like to see next for Rise of Nations?

Has the patch fixed the major problems, or has something been missed/ignored?

Would you rather another expansion to RoN or T&P, or would you prefer a whole new game (ie. Rise of Nations 2)?

I'm not sure how big a navy factors in your game, but myself I'd like to see some sort of Admiral unit introduced into the game, as well as allowing the Patriot unit to act as an admiral, just as it acts as a general.

As I play vs. the computer a lot, I've found a few of it's intricacies that could be fixed. The computer will always take a land route when possible, it will rarely build a navy unless it is required, on maps like East meets West for example. It does take advantage of fishing spots, but it won't take advantage of using it's navy to attack other fishing spots, oil platforms, or buildings near the coastline (cities, docks, towers, etc.). On a map like Mediterranean, you can build a city near the water, at a corner of the map. Build a tower above it (towards the enemy computer), and place a 4 to 6 ship navy in the water next to the tower. You can stop all of the early age rushes, even with cavalry and siege, that the computer sends your way. Instead of building a navy to counter yours, the computer will use it's siege to try to sink your boats, and even regular army units will stop to shoot at ships.

The computer also has an annoying tendancy to end the world with Armageddon. This stems more from the fact that the nuke counter does not count down until the nuke has finished, that is, when the giant mushroom cloud has disapated. The computer will almost always build the missile shield, as soon as it is built, any computers with nukes left will fire them, usually ending the world with several nuke strikes overkill. Either hard code it or create a script for it, but make it so the computer will NOT nuke once the counter reaches, say, 1 or 2. Leave it to the human players to end it all.

The computer can also be fooled by yoyo tactics, one human player can attract the ire of all the computer opponents by simply attacking the closest computer. When the computer armies begin showing up, the human player can then ask another human player to attack somewhere else. This will usually draw away the computers, and the human players can slowly destroy the computers piecemeal. Basically, better AI is what I am asking for, at least tactics-wise. The computer already does a great job at resource collection and use.

I also think an expanded difficulty level would be good, something tougher than toughest. And increase the number of players allowed, I think 12 is a good number for RTS games. Rise of Nations isn't that harsh on computers, at least, not mine. ;) Four extra players shouldn't cause that much trouble.

And as for the New Game vs. Expansion arguement, it comes down to how much money they want for it, and how much time they are going to spend on it. If they are willing to put lots of effort into revamping the game, make it a stand-alone, new game and I'll be willing to pay regular game price for it. If they are just going to call it an expansion, or they aren't willing to put the necessary development time into it, then don't be charging me full game price for it. It already boils my blood that crappy games can ask for 70 bucks (Canadian, heh, $69.99, but we all know it's 70), don't spoil RoN with a Sims-like number of expansions for 70 bucks each. If Big Huge Games does that, I'm going to go play Empire Earth II. :P

So, that's my say on that, now fill out the comments board just below there. That's it, you know you waaaaannnnnnaaaaa...