Is Elemental enjoyable now?

By on January 5, 2011 4:51:26 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

gmot

Join Date 06/2006
+3

Is this game honestly enjoyable now? Should I buy it with the 1.1 patch, or wait for the next one? Are there still major issues preventing people from enjoying it? Looked at it back in the fall and decided to wait until some of the problems were worked out first - has that time come?

I like in-depth strategy games, perferably turn-based, with lots of playing options, but not obsessive micro-mangement. I've liked previous Stardock games - e.g. GC2, also Civ series, EU3, Distant Worlds, too many to mention going back to the Vic20 days.

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January 5, 2011 4:58:08 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting ,

I like in-depth strategy games, perferably turn-based, with lots of playing options, ...

Based solely on this, I would avoid it for now.  The "in-depth" and "lots of playing options" parts are still not there.

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January 5, 2011 5:03:40 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I believe it is fun and enjoyable but I won't be playing it long term in it's current state. I feel right now it gets a 6.5/10 on my enjoyment scale. Which is better than many games. HOMM5 got a 2. Dwarf fortress gives me a 8.5 and my fully modded morrowind gave me a 9 (Oblivion was a 7.5) while the fall from heaven 2 mod on civ 4 gave me a cool 8. Moo3 was a 4.5 and Moo2 was a 7.5. That's a very subjective assesment. Make of it what you will.

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January 5, 2011 5:29:26 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

The game is a bit shallow and bland atm. It needs a lot of love and attention to detail...balance and making choices matter more would be nice. It's fairly stable now, more so than it has ever been all though it still crashes reliably in later stages.

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January 5, 2011 5:31:39 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I give it about a 6.5 out of 10 too.  Its just bland, and incoherant right now, a lot of ideas that need polished and floating around in the game, it still needs some work before I can give it the ol'Xia recomendation. 

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January 5, 2011 5:46:23 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

It's not enjoyable (as per your description) yet. Wait until next big patch and check back then.

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January 5, 2011 5:55:17 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

It has many flaws, bugs, shortcomings etc.  But I find myself playing it for hours on end.  I even slog through the even more buggy and incomplete multi-player with a a friend.  I find it very fun, but I want more.

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January 5, 2011 6:27:25 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Yes and no.  It's tremendously better / more fun than it was, especially with the (strategic-only) AI improvements that haven't made it into an official patch yet (coming in the next patch).  That said, it has a lot of room for improvement - and it continues to rapidly improve.  If you wait a few months you'll get a much better game, and have a much lower risk of thinking 'meh' and shelving it.  On the other hand, it's pretty fun experiencing the evolution from terrible game to ok game and presumably to excellent game (for God's sake, they're hiring big-name talent for an already-released game, and have approved budget through at least the rest of the year!).  In other words, YMMV.

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January 5, 2011 7:01:34 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Thanks for the good replies. I might wait for the next patch, or I might dive in now - probably depends on whether I get bored with the other games on my plate... I usually like to have 2 or 3 on the go at any one time, and right now Distant Worlds is the only one I'm playing much of (besides stuff on my ipad).

Any idea on when the next major patch is tenatively scheduled?

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January 5, 2011 7:39:32 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Jon Shafer is going to love me.  I like playing Civ 5 and EWoM at the same time... Late in the game, when it starts to take 30-60 seconds between turns on Civ 5, I can usually get 3 or 4 turns in on EWoM.  (Remember my post asking Brad to teach Firaxis how to write multi-threaded AI?)

Oh, but that's not what you asked.  I'll just say "friends don't let friends buy this game ... yet" and leave it at that.

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January 5, 2011 8:16:07 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

It might be. I can't honestly say "yes" to the question because the content is old to me. So I don't have "fun" playing Elemental anymore, so much as I just push the systems and try new things.

If it's your first experience with the game, I would say you'll have fun, and then be where we are, waiting for more content/more fleshed out systems.

I still enjoy Elemental when I kick back in my chair and admire my empire. But that's the only real enjoyment I'm getting atm. City building isn't very satisfying, questing isn't very satisfying, champions aren't very satisfying, diplomacy ISNT satisfying, dynasties aren't very satisfying....

But I can only say all that because I've played 30+ games of Elemental.

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January 6, 2011 2:40:47 PM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

So I foolishly ignored most of the advice in this thread (which I asked for in the first place) and bought the game. Have played it a couple times and although it was a little baffling at first now am enjoying it. I like controlling the way the cities expand out and grow and the interesting mix of city building, exploration and resource issues.

The main issue I'm having is the UI - has some serious design flaws, which make it quite cryptic and hard to know how to do things. I used to design UIs for business apps and I have to say I see a quite a few "don't dos" in here. Inconsistent feedback to users, button placement, bad use of highlighting (e.g. when equipping)... And city management is a real pain. Those UI issues really account for my initial confusion - couldn't figure out how to do some pretty basic stuff. I'm probably post a thread about some of the main irritants after I've played some more.

Despite the UI issues, enjoying it so far!

 

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January 6, 2011 3:01:45 PM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

Yep the UI and some minor (holding thumb and forefinger quarter inch apart) issues aside Elemental is quite enjoyable. Being somewhat lazy (prefer to work smarter, not harder) would like to have a shortcut key to repeat last spell cast, especially terraforming spells.

Elemental also has a few eccentricities, like.. you order your Royal group to attack, and the focus immediately shifts to another group guarding a mine halfway across the map, like.. you suddenly hear the *crash crumple* sound of the dwellings upgrading (once for each hut/house) at the end of the turn..

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January 6, 2011 3:35:16 PM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

I'm obviously a little biased here, but I do think it's worth playing at this point. I played it pre-1.1 and it was, uh, really hard to enjoy back then. It's gotten a lot better, but there's still work to do. The UI is one of my biggest peeves right now as well, so I'll be delivering a nice, hefty list to Derek and co. soon.

Jon

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January 6, 2011 3:39:23 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

With the benefit of hindsight here's how I'd rate the game:

v1.0: 4 out of 10

v1.1: 6 out of 10

v1.11: 7 out of 10

It's getting there. I'm thinking v1.2 will bring it to an 8 out of 10.

My biggest pet peeves are the AI and the UI. The diplomacy part of the game still needs a lot work to get it to GalCiv II levels.  The UI is still very obscure. Jon, Derek, and I have spent some time going over it.  Luckily, the UI is all done with DesktopX (http://www.desktopx.net) so changing that isn't that labor intensive.  Mainly, we need to give players a lot more info.

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January 6, 2011 3:55:04 PM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

Very good to hear that you will be focusing on the UI but it won't stop me from enjoying the game now. Frankly, I haven't gotten far enough yet to see the issues with the AI, but GC2 is a good model.

Yes, easier access to info and one-click ability to do things (e.g. scroll through a list of my cities and build/train from that list) would be key.

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January 6, 2011 4:11:16 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

It's fairly entertaining, sure. But honestly, it's not really a great strategy game. Elemental is sorely lacking in strategic depth, and I have to say that it concerns me a little that the developers posting on the thread mention the interface and not game mechanics, though I guess that this doesn't necessarily mean that it's not on their radar.

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January 6, 2011 8:38:58 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I agree with LightofAbraxas. I haven't been able to play 1.11 yet, but even if all of a sudden the AI is great at playing the game, the game itself is still shallow as hell. There aren't any really interesting choices to make; strategy doesn't go any further than getting the best weapons and the best armor on as many guys as possible, quests are all variationson 'go there, kill something, get something', magic is only useful in the first part of the game, heroes are all pretty much the same, cities are all pretty much the same, factions are all pretty much the same, quests monsters and resources spawn at random making the world feel very generic, etc...

I'm not trying to be a dick here, I know you are working on some or most of these things. But even with a great AI and UI the game as it is right now wouldn't be very interesting.

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January 6, 2011 9:34:32 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

My only peeve is the tactical combat lacks real tactics.

 

I wish there were more options for units to use.

 

Defensive options

Setting against charges options.

Charging options.

 

right now all most units can do is move and attack or just range attack. :/

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January 6, 2011 9:41:55 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Well they are making a new tactical combat system for the first expansion, so that will probably be fixed..

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January 6, 2011 9:57:24 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Frogboy,
With the benefit of hindsight here's how I'd rate the game:

v1.0: 4 out of 10

v1.1: 6 out of 10

v1.11: 7 out of 10

It's getting there. I'm thinking v1.2 will bring it to an 8 out of 10.

My biggest pet peeves are the AI and the UI. The diplomacy part of the game still needs a lot work to get it to GalCiv II levels.  The UI is still very obscure. Jon, Derek, and I have spent some time going over it.  Luckily, the UI is all done with DesktopX (http://www.desktopx.net) so changing that isn't that labor intensive.  Mainly, we need to give players a lot more info.

now with the assortment of talent that is present i will hope that even if the scale is to 10 that you all are shooting for a 15 out of 10. i mean lets be honest everyone here in the community want elemental to be nothign short of epic. i know you want it as well brad. oh and keep up the good work we all have high hopes for 2011!

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January 7, 2011 12:10:47 AM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

Is this game honestly enjoyable now?

 Not for me...(played a few hundred hours in total between version 1.09e up till now...& theres nothing to keep me playing atm) I could go into more detail... but I allready ahve in other threads... no sense repeating it all here since they know at SD what needs work. ^^

... but I'm still hopefull that it will be in the future.

PS: Nice Avatar Jon.. the ominous all seeing eye... hahaha, guess I was wrong in that other thread.

 

 

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January 7, 2011 12:13:21 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I give it a 7,000 out of 10,000. I played a few games with Brad's build and enjoyed it. I was on a medium map, custom SOV, Gilden, max players, ridiculous all settings, where I had one city as a chokepoint with like 6 behind it safely protected. Instead of roflstomping the AI, I built that bad boy up to a fortress, trained some dragons, and rocked out an 11 man hero team. Wanted to experience the end game tech trees and such. Lo and behold, my fortress city suddenly lost a bunch of its buildings and I was like wtf just happened. Must be a bug. So I started building it up again and hot dawg, the was left with like 4 buildings. At this point I was like holy crap, is the tile limit all hosed? And then it dawned on me, sweet gildar, the AI cast Earthquake on my city not once, but twice! Kudos to the AI but then I realized I had no idea which AI did it and wished the UI had told me 1. my city was hit with earthquake and 2. who dun it? I then looked for the spell to make cities immune from offensive spells and realized that spell must have been removed in one of the patches cuz I couldn't find it. At any rate, I then proceeded to attack every AI city and raze them all. Must give those lands back to the monsters. Sweet justice.

Seriously though, my takeaways on that game:

1. Announcement in UI of enemy spell action against my city would have been nice
2. Telling me who did it would be cool too - cuz I just had to open up a can of whoop ass on 'em all
3. Please consider putting some kind of spell casting protection for cities back in there (If it's there and I missed it then I'm a dumbass)

Good work, Brad and crew. It's coming along.

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January 7, 2011 1:57:06 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting AlLanMandragoran,
And then it dawned on me, sweet gildar, the AI cast Earthquake on my city not once, but twice! Kudos to the AI but then I realized I had no idea which AI did it and wished the UI had told me 1. my city was hit with earthquake and 2. who dun it?

...

2. Telling me who did it would be cool too - cuz I just had to open up a can of whoop ass on 'em all

You know, I think it's debatable whether that would be a good idea. Imagine if they put in random events so that earthquakes and such could occur naturally, so not only would it be a mystery which player attacked your city, but you wouldn't even know whether it was a player at all or just bad luck. Of course if the same border city got hit several times, you'd get suspicious, but a smarter AI/player wouldn't be so obvious. You'd never quite be sure who if anyone to blame, it allows the AI (and players) to be frankly evil.

Even better if there was a sort of scrying spell that would reveal the source (if any) of the next negative event like an earthquake without letting the caster know that you know.

Urist McEarthmage: Shame about that earthquake that wrecked up your capital, eh?

The All-Seeing Scryer: Yess.. quite unfortunate. Let us hope you do not live to experience a similar tragedy. <secretly builds up armies near Urist's border.>

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January 7, 2011 2:12:33 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Frogboy,
With the benefit of hindsight here's how I'd rate the game:

v1.0: 4 out of 10

v1.1: 6 out of 10

v1.11: 7 out of 10

It's getting there. I'm thinking v1.2 will bring it to an 8 out of 10.

My biggest pet peeves are the AI and the UI. The diplomacy part of the game still needs a lot work to get it to GalCiv II levels.  The UI is still very obscure. Jon, Derek, and I have spent some time going over it.  Luckily, the UI is all done with DesktopX (http://www.desktopx.net) so changing that isn't that labor intensive.  Mainly, we need to give players a lot more info.

Brad, will you please do my next performance appraisal at work?

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