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snipey

WW2OL has one thing that other games do not: a big map. Play to your strength.

81 posts in this topic

In retrospect, the thing that made this game great was opening up a large map of immense scale. You watch any youtube video of people trying it out, and that is the first thing that they are amazed by. It's the SCALE! Ever since the brigade system, we mostly just have CP battles. I understand the move in that direction, it's what the majority of gamers wanted. They wanted to jump into the action quick. But this severely crippled the scale of your game by making combat focused on small areas of the map. It's the same criticism I have for all modern FPS games.

I've been playing a newer game called Hell Let Loose. I also picked up Post Scriptum, another squad based game only a year old. They have decent sized maps, but the mentality of the gamer is just to spawn at the closest point and rush into combat like it's call of duty.  These games don't give incentive to spread out onto the field. Why? Because of the focus of capturing small points on the map. They do the same thing WW2OL does, give the gamer the option to just rush into instant combat from local spawn points.  The rest of the map, is for the most part, never used. Games like Hell Let Loose, Post Scriptum, ect... if you read comments, people always complain about walking. They hate having patience and tactics. I think patient players are what made this game great. It was the magic we once experienced. The scouting and the reward of actually finding the enemy on a massive map and eliminating him. Coming across a group of EI between a town and FB, not a stream of people spawning from an FMS. Modern gamers will call any FPS that involves more than a couple minutes of walking a "walking simulator" and that is always how that audience will view your game. That audience is and was always meant to be playing games like call of duty and battlefield. They want to log in for a few minutes and have thick brainless action. Not tactically employ their brains in the sprawling fields of europe on a large scaled map. 

So, screw them. You can't keep up with their instant gratification simulator. Your engine is outdated. Your graphics are weak. But you still have a big map. There still is a small niche of tactical gamers that like to be patient and employ tactics and scale. That RTS gamer that wants to get on the ground in a simulation. Tons of potential for strategy and tactics. Use it. Give incentive for more fighting in the field .  I say reduce the amount of spawn points. Depots are boring. Fighting over CP buildings are boring. I can get that in any other game that does it better. What I can't get in those games, are large scaled maneuvers across a big map. Let's bring back tactical patience and slow down the combat. Let's get people walking between cities and driving trucks full of infantry again. Let's get paradrops actually being worth while again. Let's use this big map we have and get the fights out in the field more.

Right now, it seems like every game in this genre of military FPS simulation, is nothing but Spawn and Capture Point online. It should be more about SEARCH AND DESTROY. I know all these things I've said are easier said than done, but I would just like to point out that WW2OL has a strength that no other game has: It's scale. Use it. Stop trying to be like those other arcade games and flip the script. Just a food for thought. I know back in the old days we had a big population and we are hanging on by a thread here in terms of player base. But you are fighting a losing battle by trying to be like other games. You have to use your strength. Then, if you can show what makes a big scaled MMO like this special, then who knows? Maybe someone would back the game for a 2.0?

Edited by snipey
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Yeah, the CPs have always been wrong. Capture points should always have been spread out over the map. Towns were indeed logisitical hubs (crossroads, rail, etc), and that should have been part of the game from day 1 as well, then make captures all over. Every crossroad, every place that is commanding., every bridge (and no supply crosses bridges unless intact/owned.

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This a great post... Considered and thoughtful....

The sense of maneuver and scale are somewhat lost...

This game has an asset no other existing game has, it's a shame not to capitalize on this amazing feature.. 

Population really hobbles the ability to take advantage of the map but looking to the future is critical to survival...

Thanks for your perspective....

Cheers Monty

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My daisy chained spawnable concept is designed to split the difference.  You HAVE to give the twitch players what they want, reliably.  A front line which is always 'hot' does this.  My proposal also opens up the rest of the map, by creating action between towns which generally does not see much at this point. 

I don't know that I think we need to dispense with the CPs altogether.  Once the front gets to the town you have street fighting and that would have been part of the war, too.  Instead, once a real front line exists, make it so that the FMS or FRUs cannot be created on the other side of the front line.  Thus, you could put up a FMS on your side of the town, but not on the side the enemy holds.

 

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6 minutes ago, pfmosquito said:

My daisy chained spawnable concept is designed to split the difference.  You HAVE to give the twitch players what they want, reliably.  A front line which is always 'hot' does this.  My proposal also opens up the rest of the map, by creating action between towns which generally does not see much at this point. 

I don't know that I think we need to dispense with the CPs altogether.  Once the front gets to the town you have street fighting and that would have been part of the war, too.  Instead, once a real front line exists, make it so that the FMS or FRUs cannot be created on the other side of the front line.  Thus, you could put up a FMS on your side of the town, but not on the side the enemy holds.

 

Yea, I like this idea.

I have suggested, and I still think it makes sense, to remove the faux "Brigades" (they are not remotely brigade strength), and replace them with real sized units more amenable to the player population (it can always increase with server pop, perhaps). Have your CPs all over the map (country houses, the house-compound used as one of the bunkers, gas stations at a crossroad, whatever, make them different structures for more interest). Single CPs can have at most a platoon flag on them, for combat gameplay sake, like the Garrisons, each that has no official unit could have a standard squad (LMG/SMG/8rifles (French slightly different)). The platoons would be heavy platoons, because they'd have a few extra units. 2 regular squads (1 SMG, 1 LMG, 8 rifles for UK/Ger, and France gets 1 LMG, 10 rifles, 1 grenadier), and fill out the platoon with a special squad that has an extra SMG in place of a rifle, and 1 of the additional units in game replacing other rifles (gren, mortar, sapper, engie, sniper). These platoons can also have maybe 2 small ATGs and 1 small AAA. Other unit types would be platoon sized as well, armor platoons, armored inf, etc. Same number of troops as the current game, perhaps, but smaller groups. Losing the CP means those units are lost in some fashion (come back in X hours as resupply).

These units could stack at some level, a small number of platoons (2?) per CP, and so any attack in mass would ahve the fun feeling of defeating a force, then taking that ground, vs a grind as 20 defenders spend 200+ units serially, a few minutes at a time each.

If we assume that each CP gets 2-4 AI (1-2 LMG, 1-2 ATG, some with AAA instead of the previous 2), and that that AI could be player-placed, it would be pretty interesting.

For instant action, there could be a button to spawn you someplace where the AI is actively shooting the appropriate unit (armor for ATG, inf for inf), then EWS if no AI has shot in the last X seconds.

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Doc ran a series of scenarios called Bloody Battles, where I think he was trying out new concepts for regional battle, maybe for RA, who knows.

 

In any event that experience really stuck with me in opening up the map, I found myself driving tanks for ambushes three towns over cause I knew they would be doing something out there.   That's what got me going on the NAO concept.

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A game system that allows attackers to observe where the defenders are, then attack somewhere else, amounts to a perversion of " a large map of immense scale".

It's fine to utilize the big map as long as the attack is where the defenders are concentrated and ready.

The existing game, in which defenders arrive after the attackers and are never fully ready, is junk. It bears no relationship to realism. 

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the game can't thrive with such a small niche customer base though, it's good that it's been able to last this long.

the development limbo, being forced to a volunteer staff, and relying on fundraising campaigns isn't a measure of sucess.

 

the "instant action" 30-60min crowd need to be catered to for the game to survive. the focus on logistic/realism/historic gameplay in the past 6 months has brought CRS to their worst income ever.

don't know what's their plan to thrive, but just to survive the masses need to be attracted and satisfied

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1 hour ago, major0noob said:

the game can't thrive with such a small niche customer base though, it's good that it's been able to last this long.

the development limbo, being forced to a volunteer staff, and relying on fundraising campaigns isn't a measure of sucess.

 

the "instant action" 30-60min crowd need to be catered to for the game to survive. the focus on logistic/realism/historic gameplay in the past 6 months has brought CRS to their worst income ever.

don't know what's their plan to thrive, but just to survive the masses need to be attracted and satisfied

I disagree, the focus has not been logistic or realism. It has been about trying to balance sides and cater toward the casual crowd. It's been about trying to make this a fast paced red vs. blue game trying to make it so that both sides are "balanced" when that should not be the focus. Should be simulation in my opinion. Either way, you can't compete with modern games that cater toward that. That's also not what WW2OL was intended to be.  Or at least that was never my impression. Early days was full of people who wanted to simulate realistic world war 2 battles. Not spawn in a mobile spawn and run and gun over capture points. Just my 2 cents. 

Edited by snipey
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2 hours ago, jwilly said:

The existing game, in which defenders arrive after the attackers and are never fully ready, is junk. It bears no relationship to realism. 

This.

 

1 hour ago, major0noob said:

the "instant action" 30-60min crowd need to be catered to for the game to survive. the focus on logistic/realism/historic gameplay in the past 6 months has brought CRS to their worst income ever.

There has literally never been a focus on realism, except maybe attempts at penetration physics at some point. Literally every addition to gameplay has in fact be anti-realism.

You seem to think that not allowing some weapon vs another until "tier whatever" represents onerous realism? You think the game even has logisitcs at all (and if it did it would bear any relationship to the real world)? When was the last time you saw any gameplay that even felt slightly historical, when literally every single battle is a defense after the fact, with the enemy coming from all sides at once?

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you are right that the game's strength is its scale (number of concurrent players and engagement distances), it is one of the only MMOFPS

that has not been the focus though, not in a long time if ever

even now absolute numerical balance takes priority over greater scale, i.e. the devs and community think a 30 vs. 30 game server is preferable to a 120 vs. 90 server

new things get added to the game but aircraft visual distance is only a few kilometers, and armor combat becomes almost unplayable past 2km...and that's just the game engine, like you said the gameplay itself does not support fights outside of towns 

7 hours ago, snipey said:

Give incentive for more fighting in the field...What I can't get in those games, are large scaled maneuvers across a big map. Let's bring back tactical patience and slow down the combat. Let's get people walking between cities and driving trucks full of infantry again. Let's get paradrops actually being worth while again. Let's use this big map we have and get the fights out in the field more.

large scale maneuvers aren't happening with global spawn delay that counts every unit the same

with current pop levels right now if you take even fifteen players out of the fight to go do overstock or something you are crippling your team

spawn delay like this has overwhelming support from the devs and community so yeah it's not going anywhere

large scale maneuvers also require large guilds that log in all at once, and don't switch sides every 30 minutes (to be good sports and play the "underpop" lol), another element that is not wanted here

and absolutely no one is going to take time to plan a big operation, get their guild online, and then take a cross-country drive for 30 minutes if there's a possibility that they won't even be able to get an AO to capture town, so the AO system also needs work

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8 minutes ago, david06 said:

large scale maneuvers also require large guilds that log in all at once, and don't switch sides every 30 minutes (to be good sports and play the "underpop" lol), another element that is not wanted here

It's certainly not encouraged by the way the game works to switch sides, so in that sense you are right, but 60 v 30 always wins, so that doesn't help, either.

8 minutes ago, david06 said:

and absolutely no one is going to take time to plan a big operation, get their guild online, and then take a cross-country drive for 30 minutes if there's a possibility that they won't even be able to get an AO to capture town, so the AO system also needs work

The point of an "AO" is for it to appear long enough ahead of time for the defenders to plan their defense as well as the attackers have.

Seriously.

Right now, everyone moves all the pieces such that the AO is the last thing that happens. Storm the town BEFORE the defense can stop it, indeed before they can roll out of their cushy beds (instead of just looking up from their foxhole as they should).

This is 100% wrong-headed. AOs should be set well in advance, with maybe a couple false ones. Well in advance meaning if it's gonna take 30 minutes of XC driving, then that's how far in advance the AO should be---or longer. If 1 Brigade is attacking a garrison, then the garrison should get to deploy as any sane CO would, not knowing exactly when an attack would come. Reinforcements coming from the town/road? How long from the nearest brigade to town at driving speeds with traffic, and possibly walking for troops? A few hours? That's how long the garrison has to hold, or they lose (they likely lose, obviously).

Edited by tater

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2 hours ago, tater said:

There has literally never been a focus on realism, except maybe attempts at penetration physics at some point. Literally every addition to gameplay has in fact be anti-realism.

You seem to think that not allowing some weapon vs another until "tier whatever" represents onerous realism? You think the game even has logisitcs at all (and if it did it would bear any relationship to the real world)? When was the last time you saw any gameplay that even felt slightly historical, when literally every single battle is a defense after the fact, with the enemy coming from all sides at once?

the 1/2 autos and removing panzers from flags comes to mind, then there's the spawn development being driven to simulate logistics more than provide gameplay.

the realistic ToE had the rats admitting gameplay does not matter, they straight up said so.

 

the sim/historic crowd is unable to fund the game... it's a tiny market (small enough that i can recognize tags in other games). what's the point of having the largest map ever if there's nobody to play with.

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31 minutes ago, major0noob said:

the 1/2 autos and removing panzers from flags comes to mind, then there's the spawn development being driven to simulate logistics more than provide gameplay.

Don't even know what 1/2 autos means.

Removing pz from brigades? Anything involving equipment is very, very low on the order of importance for realism in this game.

31 minutes ago, major0noob said:

the realistic ToE had the rats admitting gameplay does not matter, they straight up said so.

 

Except the ToE isn't realistic.

If it was, it would improve things. A German squad (gruppe) was pretty much identical to a UK Rifle Section until 1943 (except the Germans had a vastly better MG, and the brits had a better rifle). 1 SMG, 1 LMG, 8 rifles. The French had 12 guys, but 1 was LMG, the rest were all rifles, one fitted as a grenadier. A realistic ToE would include gameplay changes so that if you were in a town with 20 German inf, you'd expect ~2 of them to be MP40s, 2 MG34s, and most of the rest Kar98s. Maybe 1-2 of the rifles swapped for a mortar or something. A UK group of the same number, same thing. Roughly. In '43 the Germans end up swapping a couple rifles for SMGs in many gruppe.

That requires small spawn lists, and you spawn them to zero, then they refill with the next Squad. The goal should be the right balance of units in game at a given AO---roughly, not perfectly. Instead, it's pretty much all SMGs in town until they are gone.

The same would be true for tanks, if a certain model was 80% of tanks, then that's what we should see in a given AO.

Those changes would actually improve the game, not hurt it.

 

31 minutes ago, major0noob said:

the sim/historic crowd is unable to fund the game... it's a tiny market (small enough that i can recognize tags in other games). what's the point of having the largest map ever if there's nobody to play with.

What's the point in having a huge map, when all the fights are 360 degree, full mixtures of friend and foe deathmatches?

Other FPS games are better at being FPS games for deathmatches.

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*** the realistic ToE 

I'm all for historical as much as we can; but yes, we must remember it is a game first and some things must be relaxed.

I think brits had like 160 DDs in WWII, axis max 40 ish.  Should we implement that in game?  No.

But, I have no problem with brits getting 44 (maybe even 48?) DDs to axis 40 if that is how it worked out.

It's historical (brits had and get more) but not game breaking.

 

Edited by delems

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*** Instead, it's pretty much all SMGs in town until they are gone.

I had an idea where the town spawn list would be broke into 3 companies - seen from the spawn in window.

And, HC would have to activate a company for it to be used by players. (only 1 at a time, unless one was under 50%, then 2nd could be activated)

Then, only 1/3 the SMGs would be available at a time.

But, there are issues with that too - HC would just activate a different company soon as SMGs ran out of first one.... or no HC on... or players would complain they are stuck with rifles when 2 more companies are available.

But, I get your point and have thought about that too - everyone just spawns SMGs / LMGs till gone, then rifles; that is a bit unrealistic.

Though, I think many players are learning not to do that, they are using rifles more.

 

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24 minutes ago, tater said:

What's the point in having a huge map, when all the fights are 360 degree, full mixtures of friend and foe deathmatches?

Other FPS games are better at being FPS games for deathmatches.

lesser of evils... nothing or chaos

gameplay or reenactment

 

sounds like you have some fundamental issues with the game, beyond what anyone's talking about. most of that stuff is impossible to develop.

in the meantime, the current wwii:ol has some basic issues that can be worked on. if they're ever addressed...

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Its a great vision. The only way to achieve it though is to get together with like minded folks, do a gofundme drive, get together with the Rats (they have the big map engine) and make WW2ol Ostfront, North Africa, or Pacific.

GL!

 

Edited by biggles4

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7 hours ago, major0noob said:

sounds like you have some fundamental issues with the game, beyond what anyone's talking about. most of that stuff is impossible to develop.

in the meantime, the current wwii:ol has some basic issues that can be worked on. if they're ever addressed...

There have been many suggestions for ages about how to mitigate this.

Start by making an on-sides code for MSPs.

8 hours ago, delems said:

I had an idea where the town spawn list would be broke into 3 companies - seen from the spawn in window.

And, HC would have to activate a company for it to be used by players. (only 1 at a time, unless one was under 50%, then 2nd could be activated)

Then, only 1/3 the SMGs would be available at a time.

Still not right, I'd say make the unit of spawning a squad, it's far closer to what we see population wise in game. Spawn til squad is all in game, then a new squad appears in list. If a squad is too small, then a platoon (3 SMGs, 3 LMGs, early in the war, 43+ for Germans it would then be 9 SMGs, 3 LMGs (but the US 44+ would get 2 BARs and 2 SMG per squad as became typical).

8 hours ago, delems said:

I think brits had like 160 DDs in WWII, axis max 40 ish.  Should we implement that in game?  No.

The RN had more like 400. The US built almost 800 DD/DE during the war (and we built 140 carriers (mostly escort types)).

Any time someone mentions historical, or logistics, this is the elephant in the room. It also goes to what units are available to pick for the sides, "good enough" works when you make an effectively infinite number of something, and "best" doesn't matter if you only make a few, and you can't even keep those running.

I'm willing for the sake of the game to not be that historical. :)

 

I'd add that I noted something about maps in a couple other posts. The GPS maps we all have, and the fact that they are SHARED is a huge problem. Not just for "realism," but for gameplay. It results in players being able to be far more spread out, because they can see where people have died, they can know where to go, or where NOT to go. Fog of war makes everything better. It encourages unit cohesion by rewarding it. I'd get rid of the skulls. I'd get rid of icons past some very short range, honestly. I'd not put player position on the map (just origin, but let the player drag the map to center where they think they are), and I'd not let map contacts be shared unless next to someone else (then the 2 maps sync), or if the units both have radios. More fog of war.

 

Edited by tater
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11 hours ago, tater said:

 but 60 v 30 always wins

not at all

good units in good positions beats out masses of bad units, especially bad units spawning from bad positions

the average depot fight or army base camp should show you this

11 hours ago, tater said:

Right now, everyone moves all the pieces such that the AO is the last thing that happens. Storm the town BEFORE the defense can stop it, indeed before they can roll out of their cushy beds (instead of just looking up from their foxhole as they should).

This is 100% wrong-headed. AOs should be set well in advance, with maybe a couple false ones. Well in advance meaning if it's gonna take 30 minutes of XC driving, then that's how far in advance the AO should be---or longer. If 1 Brigade is attacking a garrison, then the garrison should get to deploy as any sane CO would, not knowing exactly when an attack would come. Reinforcements coming from the town/road? How long from the nearest brigade to town at driving speeds with traffic, and possibly walking for troops? A few hours? That's how long the garrison has to hold, or they lose (they likely lose, obviously).

the attackers are the content creators 

the reason why there is almost no one playing this game is because there is no quality content, or content at all (lowpop hours)

the focus should not be on limitations and roadblocks for attackers

if you want strategy and defense maybe you should consider the possibility of "defense in depth" and stop focusing on how to guarantee a hard defense of the first town, and more on the counter attack from the town behind the one that just got surprised

this is supposed to be a large-scale coherent map, not a series of isolated matches right?

now that town supply is in a town can get rolled and the attacker doesn't get a free trip to the factories

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I appreciate all of the perspectives being discussed here.  But, at the risk of coming off as arrogant, I've already provided the basic answer:  an actual front line, where twitch players can ALWAYS be sure they will be able to scratch their itch.

It can be laid down right on top of everything else.  No need to mess with anything else at this point.

More players solves all problems.  A lot of what has happened to the game since 2001 when I joined was designed to compensate for a drop in player count.  The people who remain, or come and stay, have tasted the awesomeness that this game can be.  But it takes time and some investment of 'tactical patience' to enjoy the very best parts.  Win the twitch players without driving off the true believers, and the numbers will go up, and stay up.  When they are up, and stay up, we will find that many of the issues we debate today are moot.  When they are up, and stay up, we will be better positioned to tweak the tension between 'historical realism/simulation' and the requirements of a game.

But the chief requirement of a game like this is that players, old or new, need to be able to get into the action, all the time.

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27 minutes ago, david06 said:

not at all

good units in good positions beats out masses of bad units, especially bad units spawning from bad positions

the average depot fight or army base camp should show you this

A seriously underpop side (within an AO/DO, much less the entire map) doesn't get units in good positions. They end up on the defensive, and literally respond to the first EWS (you have to notice it, despawn from elsewhere, make a mission, then spawn in, which might take a couple minutes) to find the attack has already started. In reality, you would not be running out from a barracks or depot, December 7 style (only with an invasion force already landed), you'd be where your CO defensively arrayed you before any attack in most cases.

 

27 minutes ago, david06 said:

the attackers are the content creators

Battles are fun, soft caps aren't. Deathmatches are not what I think ww2ol is for, but at least if they feel even/winnable, they can be not as awful.

 

27 minutes ago, david06 said:

the reason why there is almost no one playing this game is because there is no quality content, or content at all (lowpop hours)

the focus should not be on limitations and roadblocks for attackers

Attacks should be limited in a way that reflects the units on the larger map. 2 brigades vs 1 would realistically result in an attack with 2:1 odds.

How about we break the brigades up (they are not remotely real brigades, anyway), and require that the OP side stack attacks in a way that is relative to their OP? So if they are 1.5:1 in numbers, to get an AO, they need to stack 1.5 as many attacking units as defending units to get an AO? Say a DO town as 1 unit (whatever the smaller size is, say a Company). The attacker has 1 Company in each of three towns that borders this DO, so they could not attack from there (that would be 2:1). If the DO had 2 Companies, however, then the AO could be set, it would be 3 vs 2, the defenders are undermanned, but they have the right balance of supply, at least.

27 minutes ago, david06 said:

if you want strategy and defense maybe you should consider the possibility of "defense in depth" and stop focusing on how to guarantee a hard defense of the first town, and more on the counter attack from the town behind the one that just got surprised

1. If the town has a Brigade in it, then that town should be a hard defense, and the troops would be in the field. If 2 defenders show up, and the town gets rolled, that gives lie to the idea it ever had the largest troop unit in game there.

2. The UP side cannot do defense in depth if they cannot even defend with a Brigade, because they have no players. All that matters is local players. 3 guys lose to 20. Each defense takes a minimum number of players to defend as the game is, at least 1 guard per CP, for example.

27 minutes ago, david06 said:

this is supposed to be a large-scale coherent map, not a series of isolated matches right?

now that town supply is in a town can get rolled and the attacker doesn't get a free trip to the factories

There are only enough players for usually squad actions, sometimes maybe platoon actions. Isolated matches is the entire point. The map only exists for context.

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Realistically, there should be "front lines" across the entire front, with the two sides dug in and facing each other a km or so apart. It should be impossible for a bunch of infantry or an armored car to just drive around an opposing-side position to attack it from the back.  

There aren't enough players to simulate the defensive lines at towns, let alone the lines between towns. 

We know that CRS's original game-concept was that fighting would be at and immediately adjacent to towns.

Why shouldn't there be pairs of impermeable, undefeatable AI "front lines" between the front line towns, stopping say a km or two out, to channel the fighting where it belongs?

Then there'd be no need for location-aware rules on where spawn points could be set up...at least for vehicle based ones. You could set one up anyplace you could get to. The enemy would do the location limiting for you.

Edited by jwilly
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29 minutes ago, tater said:

There are only enough players for usually squad actions, sometimes maybe platoon actions. Isolated matches is the entire point. The map only exists for context.

Whoa nelly.  I could buy a lot of what you're selling but not this.  I would agree that the current nodal spawn castle fight plus AO effectively creates this, but if nothing else the air guys have to fly over that map and arrive at the combat area in one piece, and just cause HCs tend to spread AOs around for supply and FB state purposes doesn't mean the game can't have regional fights or at least armor columns/interdiction going on.  Used to happen a lot more, pop is more of a reason for lack of that not game design.

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