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Discussion in 'Civ4 - Fall from Heaven' started by Kael, Feb 15, 2006.

  1. CCRunner

    CCRunner Deity

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
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    3,132
    Just downloaded the mod last night (my first that worked) and I have to say, it's amazing! Great job everybody who worked on it.

    My only regret is that I discovered this on finals week and I was up till two in the morning last night and intend to do the same tonight.
     
  2. Nikis-Knight

    Nikis-Knight Deity

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    Orange County, CA
    Your academic advisor probably wishes I wouldn't tell you there is a new version coming in a day (or less).
    Glad to have you aboard, though.
     
  3. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    Apr 27, 2004
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    New Zealand
    Been hearing about this mod for a while, so thought it was time that I tried it out at last. Currently in the middle of downloading it, and I'll play it later tonight. ;)
     
  4. Thunder_Gr

    Thunder_Gr Emperor

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    Well, you do this in a difficult period. Balancing changes and AI improvements induce a great deal of bug propability after each patch. If you wish to play just for enjoyment, you should wait a week or two.
     
  5. Asthix

    Asthix Prognosticator

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    Dec 6, 2008
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    Minneapolis
    A big Thank you to the whole mod team. You have my support and enthusiasm behind your efforts on AI improvement.
     
  6. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    It doesn't matter, I'm still enjoying the game immensely anyway. :)

    By the way, how do we know when there's a new patch released for download? The forum doesn't seem to contain any threads or posts that are very clear about this. I'm surprised it's not in the FAQ. :confused:
     
  7. Grey Fox

    Grey Fox Master of Points

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    Kael posts in the bug thread and in the Fall From Heaven II (main thread in the mod forum somewhere) everytime a new patch is released. He also keeps the bug threads first post updated with a change log of everything fixed for the next patch.
     
  8. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    Okay, thanks. I'll check it out, and subscribe to that thread. :)
     
  9. Gelvan

    Gelvan Prince

    Joined:
    May 11, 2002
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    I'm not completely sure that this is true (more is worse).
    In my humble opinion as a player - not a designer of games - I was always very excited, when I saw any game, that offered more options, more spells, more possibilities.
    The counter argument to excitement is of course strategy. You have a point if you say that chess for example has lived for about 3000 years now - unchanged with only 6 different "units". Even though it's simplified for the max, and even though you can make new strategies even today 3000 years later -> in my opinion it gets boring.
    Maybe I don't see the inherit strength of chess like people who play this every day, but after half an hour most often it get's like "oh please get my king" - at least for me.
    What's so impressing with FFH2 is the neverending stream of possibilities. You can play as Elohim with 7 different choices religion wise (ok 2 of them make no sense, but: so what?) you can have different mages with different spell spheres every time you play - AND if you're through with it, you just can start the same procedure on another map type or with another civilization.
    This is great. Because it means: choices.

    Sure enough for a designer who wants to produce a stable product, that dosn't have to much uber units and kind of a logic with the research/goodie-ratio diversity also makes for unearthly long procedures of play testing.

    This argument, (imho), is not so strong, because there are now thousands of players, who contribute sometime more, sometimes less on the forum, what they think about new options. Maybe the discussion about rage is a bad example - but I think it's a good example, becaue it shows, that people really care. Sure, we're not playtesters who do reports like in the industries, but regarding post 1 of this thread I think what all the addicted reported for the last 4 years was good by itself, to (further) help the team to produce the most amazing, diverse and logical computer game, ever produced.

    This makes me wonder, if point 5 isn't just, well, kind of a myth, to produce thousands of generic games that really are *simple*. FFH2 offers much more options as Civ4, immense more options than Spore (meh), even more than Master of Magic which was till nowadays one of the rulers in this genre. (though in MoM there was more magic I think). This makes it strong.

    this is not meant as an offense. It's only some thoughts of a gamer - not a developer, not a playtester (officially ;)), not a designer, just my thoughts about games in general and strategy games in detail.

    I think Fall Further and Orbi Mod show that more is not merely worse, it's just - more. that said I'm completely happy with FFH2's complexity. There IS Fall Further and Orbi and maybe one day Magisters mod for people like me. And the "main game" shall be stable and "complete" (one day ;)). It makes it easier for new players and mod-modders. But, I think FFH2 should be the standard for the industry. Every strategy game should be compared to FFH2 regarding complexity.

    And I hope one day someone with money in his pockets takes the liscence of MoM and gives it to Kael and his team to create MoM 2. :)

    It's only the question, if it is nescessary to teach the AI everything. You could argue that it's cheating by the player if it can't do the same things. But If there is a popular spell, who really enhances the feeling of the game, should it be cut, only because the AI can't use it? Why not make a spell two-sided: normal effect for the human player and another effect (like a summoned unit or something like that) for the AI. This would balance it, but increase diversity for the human. Don't think the AI cares that much about it.
     
  10. Kael

    Kael Deity

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    You raise good points. If we have a scale with incrediably complex on one end, and increidably simple on the other I dont think anyone would like either of those extremes. So its not as simple as saying it should be one way or the other. Instead we deal in the specific of the grey area between, but there is no magic point that is a perfect combination of the two. Instead there is a lot of personal preferences which controls rather you would like more or less complexity.

    So understanding that it is simply about complex or not, but about how much complexity we set some rules to guide us. We tend to focus on the ruel to try to avoid complexity where ever possible because as game designers its a lot of fun to develop complex systems. So we have to curtail that instinct to some degree. It is just as valid to say that we cant over simplify to the point where the game becomes dull, we want depth, we want layers, we want the players to be constantly surprised with new things. But since the very process of game design is inherently adding complexity there is little fear of that.

    So our trick is to keep all the good things we get from complexity, without suffering any of the bad things (hard learning curve, confusing game play, to many options that the player doesnt know what to do or it doesnt seem to matter what the player does, game is to hard, we introduce more bugs as features step on other features, etc). Thats where the real game design work happens, and Im pretty happy with our progress there.

    This is also not a completely yes or no question. We have made this exception in some cases where it makes since. And we have cut spells, spell ideas and entire features because the AI would never understand them (or it wasnt worth the effort to teach the AI to understand them). Whatever we are considering is viewed as a whole. If we think that having it in offers so much fun that its worth the hit we take with the AI then we do it. If we think that the negative of the AI not understanding the function is greater than the fun of adding the feature then we remove it.

    Let me give an example on both points, supply trains.

    Some people have considered that your units should get generally weaker the longer they spend in enemy lands. To counter this effect you could build supply trains and send them to your attacking units to negate the effect. This adds a layer of complexity to the game and it would be difficult to get the AI to understand it (both to send the supply wagins along and to protect them effectivly).

    Most people would agree that this wouldn't be fun. Its needless detail that forces the player into micromanagement without any specific thrill of having accomplished anything. Some players would love it, as I mentioned complexity is a personal preference. But its not that just adding in this layer makes the game better. It gives an additional thing to learn, an additional thing to discover, but that doesnt make it worthwhile.

    For the Ai it would take significant work to get the Ai to use the mechanic well. More importantly the Ai's inability to use it well would result in a considerable advantage for the player. Even though this idea would be added anyway, the Ai issues alone would be enough to crush it. But if we decided that the idea itself would be kinda nice, with this sort of AI effect and requirement it would be dropped.
     
  11. Gelvan

    Gelvan Prince

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    Thank you for answering, you gave me some great insights in game design.
    And also in my own view of the topic. :)

    and you're right, Attrition is not the thing I would like.

    btw. there should be an option for the barbarians: acting intelligent (V 0.40 behavior) and normal (like in civ4), because this "intelligent acting" is really very difficult for beginners. But it's so great, that everyone who get's the hang of it (build warriors) just loves it. or maybe tie it to the difficulty level. So Chieftain would be more about "learning about all the stuff" instead of fighting barbarians and Warlord and higher would be "the real thing".
     
  12. xaosseed

    xaosseed Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2009
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    Location:
    I move a lot
    Fall From Heaven 2, one of the best things ever. I've been a Civ fan since Civ I and FFH is just great.

    I have about two years of sitting in a compound in Africa ahead of me, with FFH2, the scenarios and then all the modmods, it looks like I'll be cheerfully occupied for sometime to come.

    Just as I reach a point where I've a hell of a lot of time on my hands, narrow-band net connection and no freedom to travel I find all this - I must have done something really nice for someone in a previous life :)
     
  13. Kael

    Kael Deity

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    Good to hear. And welcome to civfanatics!
     
  14. xienwolf

    xienwolf Deity

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    Location! Location!
    Yeah I kinda wished I had been into modding while I was stuck on watch in the service for hours on end. Though if I ever got caught with my laptop I would have been in quite some trouble (hrm.. mod on printouts, type up later, or mod on cell phone, massage thumbs later....?)
     
  15. Nokturne

    Nokturne Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
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    I'm here because FFH rocks. :D

    Seriously, though, I've lost hours upon hours over the years to Civ I, Civ II, Alpha Centauri and Civ IV (never did manage to get into Civ III). Then, just when I've grown pretty much tired of BTS, FFH comes along.

    I love what's been done with the game mechanics and the huge amount of complexity there is to get your teeth into. I love the fact that all the civilisations and religions are so different, as well. I think what impressed me most, though, is that you've managed to create a rich and detailed fantasy world that isn't riddled with clichés (unlike 99.9% of other games out there). I don't know how you managed it, but if that's not just cause for congratulations, I don't know what is. :goodjob:
     
  16. VincentCecelia

    VincentCecelia Chieftain

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    Dec 31, 2004
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    I am here cuz original civ 4, bts and warlords bored me after the initial rush to mid game. Late game was simply tiresome. I came looking for a bit of chaos, multiple options to do something and variety between civs that need different strategies...and I found it in FFH. Thank you
     
  17. Sporkbomb

    Sporkbomb Screaming Mayan

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    Jun 18, 2008
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    And it really isn't even a serious one. I used to not like how long Ancient era took, but now I understand the army building advantage it gives. The only complaint I have is that my favorite map style from Civ4, Oasis, is far more difficult (because of the movement penalties), and therefore less playable, unless you are the Malakim, in which case it is insanely easy.

    Like I said, not really a complaint, because everything else about the mod is fantastic. If I really want an Oasis game, I just play BtS
     
  18. Trojan Sheep

    Trojan Sheep Chu Bosu

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
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    173
    I just recently came back to Civ after a rather long hiatus, and I'm really impressed with how much you guys have done. FFH looked good last time I played it, but now it is just plain fantastic. Many kudos to the whole team, your dedication to this project makes many professional development teams look uninspired by comparison.
     
  19. JonathanStrange

    JonathanStrange PrinceWithA1000Enemies

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    Finally after years of playing Civ and FFH2, I decided to say Thanks. So: "Thanks!"
     
  20. Cpt.JackSparrow

    Cpt.JackSparrow Chieftain

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    Feb 8, 2009
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    Dicovered this mod only a weak ago, and since then spend more time with it than with sleep, work or anything else. i even brushed my teeth i front of the pc so i could play a few more turns before going to bed :D

    This mod simply is the best thing i've ever come across since i play pc games :eek: And we talk about 12 years here, with all the great classics. Of course i was a civ-fan before ffh2 (play since civII), but i never got so crazy about it as with ffh2.

    I like the great variety it offers, the very different courses you can take with your civilization and just the whole design of this fantastic magic world full of creatures, demons and wonders. I am a fan of this sort of fantasyworlds since i can remember, and now you have combined it with one of my most favourite games! :bowdown:

    I'm playing as the Sheaim at the moment. Never thought that bringing about armageddon could be so much fun! :D :devil:
     

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