Elemental Game Review(s) Thread

One thread to hold them all!

By on August 22, 2010 3:53:48 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

lordkosc

Join Date 12/2006
+5

So as I did for my previous favorite game SoaSE, I'll be scouring the web for Elemental reviews and posting them here. That way there will be a single location where we can navigate to all the reviews of the game, for easy reference.

If you happen to find one I don't post, leave a comment below it in the following format:

  1. Site Name
  2. Score
  3. WWW Link

I hope this will be made sticky by someone from SD like my previous thread was in SoaSE.  

 

Metacritic Average

 

English Reviews:

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NEOSEEKER

9/10


http://www.neoseeker.com/Articles/Games/Reviews/elemental_war_of_magic/

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Eurogamer

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BIG Download

Verdict: Must Own

http://news.bigdownload.com/2010/09/07/review-elemental/

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IGN

6 / 10

http://pc.ign.com/articles/111/1117649p1.html

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Gameshark

C

http://www.gameshark.com/reviews/3607/p_0/Elemental-War-of-Magic-Review.htm

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Gamespot

4 / 10

http://www.gamespot.com/pc/strategy/elementalwarofmagic/review.html

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GamerNode

2 / 5

 http://gamernode.com/reviews/9442-elemental-war-of-magic/index.html

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GameInformer

6.5 / 10

http://gameinformer.com/games/elemental_war_of_magic/b/pc/archive/2010/08/31/review.aspx

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Giantbomb

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun

""At the moment, I think “unfinished” is too harsh a phrase. I’d lean towards “a bit shoddy”.""

http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2010/08/30/impressions-of-elemental-war-of-magic/

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Joystiq

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Destructoid

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PC Gamer

70 / 100

http://www.pcgamer.com/2010/09/02/elemental-war-of-magic-review/

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G4  X-Play

2/5

http://g4tv.com/games/pc/63836/Elemental-War-of-Magic/review/

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Shacknews

No score at this time.

http://www.shacknews.com/onearticle.x/65347

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1 UP

C+

http://www.1up.com/do/reviewPage?cId=3181116

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Fidgit

"I guarantee it's not going to be like anything you'll read from any other reviewer."

hhttp://fidgit.com/archives/2010/08/elemental_the_review.php

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RPGWatch

"Elemental is still 2-3 patches away from being ready for prime time.  When and if those patches are done, Elemental has the potential to be one of those few games that stays on your computer for years as a fun gaming experience."

http://www.rpgwatch.com/show/article?articleid=159&ref=0&id=412

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OutOfEight

5/8

http://www.outofeight.info/2010/08/elemental-war-of-magic-review.html

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GameEnema

6/10

www.gameenema.com/2.shtml

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GamePro

3.5/5

http://www.gamepro.com/article/reviews/216449/elemental-war-of-magic/

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Non-English Reviews:

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iPon

57%

http://ipon.hu/jatekok/elemental_war_of_magic_%E2%80%93_elementalis_bakloves/825/

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Meristation

6.5/10

http://www.meristation.com/v3/des_analisis.php?pic=PC&id=cw4c7d415c6ed86&idj=cw4911603a40884

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Gamestar

79/100

http://www.gamestar.de/spiele/elemental-war-of-magic/test/elemental_war_of_magic,44740,2317608.html

 

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August 22, 2010 3:58:34 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

http://fidgit.com/archives/2010/08/elemental_in_a_world_of_dragon.php <- game was rushed based on this review.

Although review is apparently confused in the ways of math: 5 * 1.25 * 1.5 = 9.37 rounded up = 9.4

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August 22, 2010 4:11:01 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

A shame, but unsurprising given the state of Beta 4. Still, Stardock have never disappointed with their dedication to patches and updates. I have no doubt that Elemental is going to shape up to be a fantastic game (especially if future expansions add content of the same quality as the GalCiv2 expansions) - but this will certainly have a detrimental effect on review scores.

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August 22, 2010 4:20:54 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Maffyew,
A shame, but unsurprising given the state of Beta 4. Still, Stardock have never disappointed with their dedication to patches and updates. I have no doubt that Elemental is going to shape up to be a fantastic game (especially if future expansions add content of the same quality as the GalCiv2 expansions) - but this will certainly have a detrimental effect on review scores.
Don't forget the review code that had to be pushed out is the "Gold" version, so even the Launch day 0 patched version is better then what the reviews are testing. Just food for thought.

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August 22, 2010 4:30:25 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I agree with TheProgress - my trust in the reviewer is slightly undermined by the fact that his argument is based on maths and he seems to have a poor grasp of the subject.

"But I see now that my error is mistakenly assuming that Elemental can do math. It has somehow decided that 50% + 25% = 88%."

Yes, when applied cumulatively, a 25% bonus on top of a 50% bonus DOES equal 88% (or rather 87.5 to be precise).

Still, there is the question as to why the bonus was applied twice...

Inscrutable

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August 22, 2010 4:39:38 AM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

He is not confused with math, he is applying the multiplier to the base amount not the new total.

You and Stardock:

5 * 1.25= 6.25

6.25 * 1.5 = 9.37 or 9.4

Reviewer:

5 * .25 = 1.25

5 * .50 = 2.5

5 + 1.25 + 2.5 = 8.75 or 8.8

Neither one is mathematically incorrect, and both assumptions could work, and I think i have seen in strategy games in the past.

 

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August 22, 2010 4:44:50 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Alright, here's the issue with the math... the reviewer thinks the game is supposed to do this:

where T is the total after multipliers

T = 5+ ((5*0.5) + (5*0.25))

this equals 8.75

The game actually (and I believe correctly) does this:

T = 5 * 1.5 * 1.25

which equals 9.375

The former takes the multipliers and applies them to the base individually and then adds the results to the total.  The latter makes everything cumulative... which is I believe how it should be done in the first place...

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August 22, 2010 4:47:55 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Inscrutable,
....

Still, there is the question as to why the bonus was applied twice...

Inscrutable

 

it was not : 9.4 * 88% = 8.272

9,4 + 8.27 = 17, 67

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August 22, 2010 4:49:59 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

If you look at two screen shots provided by the review concerning the city, the first one displays the research production of the city as 9.4 and not the second number of 17.6.

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August 22, 2010 4:57:40 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

The biggest thing he could find and talk about in length was a maths problem?

Okay....

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August 22, 2010 5:10:34 AM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

Quoting Thizzbaby,
The biggest thing he could find and talk about in length was a maths problem?

Okay....

You know I've encountered a few errors, math related, in games before. And while I think the other thread on this topic has gone out of their way to insult the reviewer, it is interesting that he spent so much time on this subject. I don't think most people dig that deep into the math, not unless something feels "off". I have no idea why he picked such a thing to focus on, especially since I think it's just a misunderstanding.

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August 22, 2010 5:11:45 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Thizzbaby,
The biggest thing he could find and talk about in length was a maths problem?

Okay....

 

It was a pretty dull review.

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August 22, 2010 5:25:03 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Apologies - I hadn't meant to be so sweepingly insulting in my comments (I re-drafted several times with the unintended result being tham my phrasing became more and more abrupt - damn phone wouldn't let me post my original wording!!!).

 

What I was trying to get across is that the reviewer's assertion that the maths is wrong is flawed - yes, both cumulative and additive methods would be equally viable in the game (I think Eve Onlline uses both methods in different places within the same game), but to claim that the maths is broken is a bit of a sweeping claim to make in a review.  To make this claim on the basis that the developer is using a different mathematical principal than the one the reviewer though was "correct" is, to say the very least, shaky.

 

More generally, I agree with Nesrie's point that it's impressive that the reviewer looked at the game in this sort of detail - most won't, I'm sure - but it doesn't really make for a good read!

 

Inscrutable

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August 22, 2010 5:39:48 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I believe Tom over on Fidgit is going to do a Game Diary on Elemental, so he will post a few days worth of commentary on his experience (hopefully after the 0 day patch for sure!), he did a game diary when he reviewed Red Dead Redemption awhile back ,that I really liked. 

Also he also almost never posts a score (number nor letter), just his over all opinion, so I will keep him out of the main topic thread, unless he chooses to post a score.

I was focusing on the big boys, IGN, Gamespot, Eurogamer, Giantbomb, Rock Paper Shotgun, Joystiq , Destructoid,  when I made this topic.

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August 22, 2010 5:41:17 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting ,

So as I did for my previous favorite game SoaSE, I'll be scouring the web for Elemental reviews and posting them here. That way there will be a single location where we can navigate to all the reviews of the game, for easy reference.



If you happen to find one I don't post, leave a comment below it in the following format:

Site Name

Score

WWW Link

I hope this will be made sticky by someone from SD like my previous thread was in SoaSE. 

Change the OP topic to "Elemental Maths".

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August 22, 2010 5:46:47 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

It wasn't actually a review was it? I don't know how they define their 'game diaries', but I'm pretty sure it wasn't a serious review. And I think he'll be doing more diaries of Elemental, so he might give a better impression in the next diary. The maths might seem to be an odd thing to focus on, but I think it makes sense in a game like this. After all, if the maths feels off (even if it actually isn't) it does make the game less fun to play.

Also, I'm pretty sure the '+25%' thing would confuse me. Wouldn't it be more intuitive to actually have it say '*25%' instead of +? I don't know how it's done properly, but to someone without any advanced maths knowledge, I would assume that you add percentages together in something like this.

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August 22, 2010 6:00:26 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Wintersong,



Change the OP topic to "Elemental Maths".

 

NO!    This thread got de-railed faster than a speeding bullet!

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August 22, 2010 6:04:12 AM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

Quoting lordkosc,



Quoting Wintersong,
reply 14



Change the OP topic to "Elemental Maths".


 

NO!    This thread got de-railed faster than a speeding bullet!

I don't think that this thread was de-railed. You talked about game reviews, and here is one. I think the review is premature and a little oddly focused, but there it is. 

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August 22, 2010 6:41:39 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Apart from the maths thing, it seemed a quite honest review.  A lot of the main reviewers tend to gloss over bad points of games (see Empire TW, Spore etc which both got glowing reviews but were slated by the community at large - also see MoO3), he's saying 'I don't get this, this doesn't make sense' and makes some useful points.  Did seem a bit depressed while writing though, maybe needed some sleep

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August 22, 2010 7:50:59 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Wilson999,
Also, I'm pretty sure the '+25%' thing would confuse me. Wouldn't it be more intuitive to actually have it say '*25%' instead of +? I don't know how it's done properly, but to someone without any advanced maths knowledge, I would assume that you add percentages together in something like this.

Yes. When you say +25%, you mean this:

Y = X + X*0.25

That is, take 25% of X and add it. If you get another 25% bonus, you do exactly the same thing and the two bonuses give you the same amount. (Or if you get five of them, the fifth one is adding the same amount as the first one still.)  Five of them looks roughly like this:

Y = X + X*0.25+ X*0.25+ X*0.25+ X*0.25+ X*0.25 = X + X*1.25

If X = 100, each 25% bonus adds 25. With five of them you wind up with Y = 225, which is 100 + 125% of 100. Every 25% bonus adds 25, no matter how many of them you get.

What Elemental is doing is this for the first bonus:

Y = X * 1.25

With one bonus it doesn't matter, but as you add more the value goes up. Five of them gives you this:

Y = X* 1.25* 1.25* 1.25* 1.25* 1.25

Starting with the same value of 100, in this case you'll wind up with 305. The first bonus is still worth 25, but the second one is worth 31, the third is worth 39, fourth is 49, and fifth is 61. What'll happen as you pile up more bonuses (and especially some larger ones) is the numbers will start scaling incredibly quickly.

Sufficied to say there's no adding going on there and the UI saying +25% isn't telling you what it's actually doing.

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August 22, 2010 8:33:00 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Wilson999,
It wasn't actually a review was it? I don't know how they define their 'game diaries'...

I think "first impressions" is the most appropriate designation.

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August 22, 2010 8:57:38 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Tridus,


Sufficied to say there's no adding going on there and the UI saying +25% isn't telling you what it's actually doing.

 

I disagree. You are adding a percentage of a total, and that makes the total change all the time. If you didn't, working with percentages and low numbers like this, would make no sense. To me, the +25% is acting exactly how I would be expecting it to; it is increasing the previous total by 25% - and not by 25% of some old total.

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August 22, 2010 9:39:42 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

It's not odd that Tom would focus on the math. He's a strategy gamer. And math is pretty important in strat games . I think he even use to work with Brad at one point.

 

*did some digging around found an old podcast...something about Brad's cyst and eggs hatching off of him.

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August 22, 2010 9:53:03 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Tom Chick is a terrific reviewer and a big fan of strategy games.  Not that he's the Word of God or anything, but as far as game reviewers get, he's about the best you can hope for.  There's no reason to slam him for discussing his frustrations while, as he puts it, trying to like the game.  Tom Chick and Brad are no strangers to each other, it's not as if Tom's out to do a hatchet job.

Also, this isn't a review.  This was his first early snippet of his thoughts with the game.  And you can't just say "Pff, a math problem!".  If a gun in a FPS is supposed to do 5.0 damage a shot, but instead does 50.0 damage a shot because of a misplaced decimal, it's a "math problem" but it's pretty significant in terms of gameplay!  It's even more critical for strategy games.  If numbers aren't being calculated like they should for research, production, income (NOTE: I'm NOT saying that's the case, just that's what Tom's thinking was), that's a pretty damn significant issue in a TBS.

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August 22, 2010 10:00:22 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting goodgimp,
  And you can't just say "Pff, a math problem!".  If a gun in a FPS is supposed to do 5.0 damage a shot, but instead does 50.0 damage a shot because of a misplaced decimal, it's a "math problem" but it's pretty significant in terms of gameplay! 

It's only a problem if it's inconsistent. If every gun in the game has the same misplaced decimal problem then the game still works fine, it just means the damage scale as a whole is higher than what you intended. I'm not sure this in particular would make much difference in Elemental; you'd be creating far more resources, but so would your opponents, so presumably the net effect would simply be a lot more units. Which is not, on the face of it, a bad thing ...

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August 22, 2010 10:06:38 AM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

To clarify the 'percentage' debate a bit further, this is what Elemental (as well as every RPG on the planet) is doing. Say,for instance, you have two +25% bonuses and one +30% stacking up, and let X be the base value:

S = X + (X * 0.25)

S = S + (S * 0.25)

S = S + (S * 0.30)

And then it uses S as the final value. Easy to compute, logical, and consistent with the Mathematic definition of percentage, win for all involved. And before you ask, no, the final result wouldn't change if you moved the 30% calculation to the middle or first line, nor if one (or more) of the percentages is negative either.

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