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Need more reviews like this...

Discussion in 'CivBE - General Discussions' started by markusbeutel, Oct 26, 2014.

  1. markusbeutel

    markusbeutel NiGHTS

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    ...to ensure higher quality/standards for the future of the Civilization series. Lauding the game in its current state doesn't do anyone any good - and it's part of the reason why the AI is still abysmal.

    http://www.quartertothree.com/fp/20...t-quite-get-beyond-civilization-v/#more-33473


    While you might not agree with his final score (2/5), this is the first review I've read where I got the impression that the reviewer actually sunk a decent amount of hours into the game. He goes into details that are merely glossed over or not even mentioned in the majority of 'professional' reviews that have seen BE average around 8/10 overall.

    Mainly agree with his points regarding how the problems of Civ V haven't been fixed, while additional layers of complexity have been added, resulting in the AI's continued, poor performance.
     
  2. Thormodr

    Thormodr Servant of Civ Supporter

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    It was an excellent review and I appreciate Quarter to Three's honesty.

    His honesty (as well as other reviewers) caused Victory Point Games, a company that makes boardgames, to pull one of their products (Villainous Vikings) to be fixed and then re-released at a later date as it wasn't up to the company's very high standards.

    I greatly admire Quarter to Three and Victory Point Games for their honesty and integrity.
     
  3. AriochIV

    AriochIV Colonial Ninja

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    I think his conclusion is unnecessarily harsh (2 out of 5? come on!), but all of his criticisms are right on the nose.
     
  4. marioflag

    marioflag History Addict

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    As i said in the other thread about press reviews this guy has some sort of angst against Firaxis games. I wouldn't say he is also an honest reviewer because he considered Elemental from Stardock better than Civilization V, and i think most of you know how this game was released.
    Giving also a vote of 2/5 is also ridiculous, people can have different tastes about games but a score so low can not be justified.
     
  5. Thormodr

    Thormodr Servant of Civ Supporter

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    Well, if all his criticisms are right on the nose then a 2 out of 5 is accurate.

    The opposite of love is not hate but indifference.

    I do honestly feel that Tom Chick wants a better game. Sugar coating a review is not going to prompt Firaxis to make the necessary changes. Hopefully, Firaxis takes the review to heart as Victory Point Games did for their quite tepid review. (They got three out of five stars.)

    http://www.quartertothree.com/fp/2014/08/30/villainous-vikings-can-plunder-world-hour/
     
  6. GeoModder

    GeoModder Deity

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    The reviewer certainly likes prose.
     
  7. markusbeutel

    markusbeutel NiGHTS

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    Wouldn't say that, he reviewed XCOM favourably (4/5), albeit his review of Elemental was a bit off. If you follow his site more closely though, his Civ V review seems partially skewed because he lists Civ V as his most disappointing game of the year when it was originally released.

    He expected something out of Civ V and got something entirely different, but at least he played the game - which is evident from his valid criticisms and in depth reviews.

    On the other side of the equation, for every Tom Chick, there's a dozen mass-marketing machine gaming website, that expect something out of the Civ series based on its pedigree, and fail to invest any sort of play-time into their reviews, resulting in a plethora of initial Civ V reviews that didn't even mention the atrocious AI.

    The truth lies somewhere in the middle, probably - but unfortunately there's far less Tom Chicks in the world, which is why, 5 years later, the AI in BE still blows.
     
  8. GoodSarmatian

    GoodSarmatian Jokerfied Western Male

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    The game has obvious issues, but it is still enjoyable. While comparing it to previous civ releases would be damning with faint praise, all the bugs I encountered are just small annoyances and the performance is much better than in fully patched Civ 5, especially on massive maps. The end game gets a bit tedious, but at least the AI now knows how to go for a victory and move ranged units before shooting. Diplomacy is unfortunately barely a factor and trade routes need a better overview, but I'm confident that Firaxis will make big improvements through patches over the next weeks.
     
  9. Thormodr

    Thormodr Servant of Civ Supporter

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    Stardock is on the right track with their games. Their company philosophy is much better as well. No longer the hire up to make a game when fire them all when the game is finished. They now have a permanent staff and are treated humanely which is quite unusual for the industry.

    They are now working with and consulting with people that have worked on Civs 1 through 5, including Soren Johnson as well as an ex-Battle Net engineer and the makers of Age of Empires 3. They are also teaming up Oxide Games, the producers of an upcoming awe inspiring 64 bit engine. Check out the demo:

    http://www.gameinformer.com/b/news/archive/2014/01/31/nitrous-engines-star-swarm-demo-now-available-on-steam.aspx


    Firaxis needs to license this engine for Civ VI. They need to be thinking big.


    BTW, Legendary Heroes is quite a good game. Because Elemental bombed, I got it for free. I respect Stardock's integrity to make things right. They are trending up.

    Anyway, Tom Chick is a breath of fresh air. I appreciate a reviewer that isn't going to lie to you and slap a 90+ on a game just because it is AAA. The industry needs more Tom Chicks and less butt kissers.
     
  10. Camikaze

    Camikaze Administrator Administrator

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    I agree with Arioch - a lot of what he said was quite insightful and seemed fairly accurate, but his assessment of how those flaws impact on the enjoyment of the game isn't the same as my assessment. The cumulative effect of the problems he identifies don't necessarily have to add up to 2 out of 5. Apparently it did for him, and that's fair enough. Not all games are for everybody. But it's entirely possible to recognise those flaws and still find the game quite enjoyable, and worth a higher rating.

    IIRC, Oxide Games is essentially comprised of people who built the Civ5 engine.
     
  11. Thormodr

    Thormodr Servant of Civ Supporter

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    Spot on.
     
  12. Lord Tirian

    Lord Tirian Erratic Poster

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    Yeah, that's exactly why the obsession with scores is a bit problematic, they don't reflect tastes. And seeing how well Civ5 sells and is consistently in the top played games on Steam, the average 4X player seems to like it.

    That said, while I like Civ:BE a lot, Chick's review nails definite problems and is a good analysis of the game's problems. I'm very much looking forward to Rock, Paper, Shotgun's review, they tend to be good analyses as well.
     
  13. Thormodr

    Thormodr Servant of Civ Supporter

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    Well, when I see 90s being thrown at the game, I feel the same sort of reaction in the opposite direction, then. :)

    Agree to disagree. C'est la vie.

    Anyway, hoping they'll take his honest criticisms to heart and improve the game. :)
     
  14. markusbeutel

    markusbeutel NiGHTS

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    Shameless self-plug ;)

    http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2011/09/09/mods-and-ends-civilization-v-nights/#more-73124
     
  15. Thormodr

    Thormodr Servant of Civ Supporter

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    32 bit engines are quite constrained in what they can do. Civilization 5 was certainly held back in many areas by this. (eg. No huge maps and rather slow (to put it kindly) turn times.)

    Here's a good article by Derek Paxton on the subject:

    http://www.pcgamesn.com/stardocks-derek-paxton-explains-how-new-64-bit-engine-can-revitalize-strategy-gaming/page/0/1

    64 bit Engines make a whole world of possibilities open up for the designers as well as the modders. I sincerely hope that Firaxis will go to a 64 bit engine for Civ VI and hopefully their familiarity with the Oxide Games staff will help them team up.
     
  16. Lord Tirian

    Lord Tirian Erratic Poster

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    Hah! :goodjob:

    Though off-topic and risking being annoying: will NiGHTS come back at some point, never really got to dig into it and always heard great things about it?

    I never really got to play it, my interest in Civ5 dropped rapidly after the release and when G+K (and then BNW) brought me back, NiGHTS stopped being updated by the time I had in interest in mods again. :(
     
  17. markusbeutel

    markusbeutel NiGHTS

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    No worries - the last update was for Gods and Kings, and it was more or less complete as far as my vision for it was concerned. I've attempted multiple times to tackle a BNW update, but the more time I put into it, I kept getting the impression that Nights + BNW was just cramming too much into a single package.

    Having said that it's probably 60-70% done at this point, but couldn't say if I'll ever release it...

    I will say that if even if you've lost interest in CIV V, Nights + G+K's (make sure to disable BNW), is going to feel like a completely new experience. I'd consider it more of an expansion than BNW to be quite honest - but again, I'm biased.

    End of shameless promotion and back to thread topic. :)
     
  18. Mustakrakish

    Mustakrakish In 'Node' We Trust

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    Whoa whoa whoa... What does he mean by that:

    "This was two notches above the even difficulty level, and three notches above the default."

    Isn't the default (norma) the "even" difficulty?
     
  19. markusbeutel

    markusbeutel NiGHTS

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    Would have to go through the XML for the difficulty levels and see where the AI bonuses kick in and to what degree. I'd bet they'll have tweaked these levels quite a bit from CIV V to compensate for more complex areas of the game that the AI will have difficulty with like Affinities and the Tech Web.

    And going by CIV V, never assume that default = a level playing field where the AI doesn't get bonuses... :crazyeye:
     
  20. Thander

    Thander Warlord

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    I agree that a 2/5 is probably a little low. I'd put it at least 3/5 myself just based on the demo. I would expect that to go up to 4/5 after a few balance patches.

    It may be different in the full game, but this is how it is in the demo:
    Sputnik - Beginner
    Mercury - Normal (default)
    Vostok - Moderate
    Gemini - Hard
    Soyuz - Very Hard
    Apollo - Impossibly Hard

    He probably considers Moderate to be "even difficulty". That would mean he was playing on Soyuz - Very Hard. I agree with you that Mercury is the one that is balanced, but maybe he just went off the name "Moderate".
     

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