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Thread: A Matter of Pacing

  1. #11
    ooo, another thing you can do is have world features that just give you quests. Go to a certain area of the map and deal with a different world features to get a bigger reward or something. Build certain units, build a city on a certain tile, etc.

    You could also have world features that provide mercenary units or something :3

  2. #12
    We could do something like that in time possibly. It's an interesting suggestion.

    However, I do want to limit this post to addressing early game pacing issues
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  3. #13
    Neophyte Sorcerer
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    SK, Can
    I could only get behind auto-end-turn if it were optional. It's far too often that I wait until I've moved all of my troops to remember that I told myself last turn to remember to cast a city enchantment.

    I've only had a couple of hours over the weekend to start playing, but so far my game has gone into the 100+ turn mark. I haven't yet seen the army of neutrals, and food and gold management haven't yet turned painful. I'm slowly carving out a small kingdom, having expanded to 5 cities with minor garrisons while one larger army scouts out the world. I agree that nearby lairs are much more painful than they need to be, but I've reached the point now where I'm not horrifically overwhelmed by the enemies I'm encountering, as long as I remember not to jump into fights in areas that might have mundane-immune critters, as the wandering army isn't equipped with magic weapons and I feel that my spell skill isn't advancing enough, or the combat spells are too expensive, so that I'm not capable of supporting my troops in a very meaningful way.

    So, my game has gone more along the lines of:
    Move Spearman out of starting city to start scouting out nearby spot for new city
    Build buildings, more spearmen, and settlers
    Watch tiny scouting army get killed, be unable to meaningfully support them in combat
    Repeat a few times
    Shake head slowly at Engineer who has been working the same tile for over 20 turns and still hasn't built that road, sacrifice him to the Ancestor Insect Queens Who Watch From Above
    Kill nearby lairs that aren't teeming with level bajillion monsters who are immune to anything I can throw at them --more easily accomplished upon acquiring ranged units, as melee units seem close to pointless
    Keep constructing buildings and researching spells while looking for the locations to build the next handful of cities tomorrow.
    Pass out at some point due to long work day and lack of caffeine.

    I've had situations where my army does get stuck and is unable to move, unless I unstack them. Seems I can select one from the stack to move one square, then have the rest of the stack re-combine with the one that I just moved. Exiting the game and coming back to it later seemed to resolve that, however. Engineers also don't seem to be building roads even after a dozen turns. I also had a diplomacy screen keep popping up, and it seems more like Neve is reporting to me everything that she owns rather than offering any treaties--it's a fairly confusing screen for me at the moment with only a few hours' play.

    Part of the pacing may just be needing to have that sense of early accomplishment to make one want to click End Turn to get to the next one. Easier lairs could help, for sure, but the rewards for the lairs seem skewed, too. For instance, I took over a couple of lairs with five or six enemy units in them to be rewarded with a paltry 20 gold or less. Part of it may be the drag time between turns waiting for the neutral cities to move. I found that an animation and music change for researching new spells kept me going through the first several turns in MoM, whereas the simple pop-up icon so far in WoM isn't yet doing it for me.

  4. #14
    The only real pacing issue is that I sit and stare at my one city, my paltry army, and a whole lot of black map. If I was moving a scout unit around or could be plotting and thinking about where I want to expand to, then it wouldn't be so obvious of a pacing issue.

    When I'm just sitting there pressing a mouse button and watching a turn counter increment, I start thinking of all the better things I ought to be doing with my time.

    Any time you give the player a chance to sit and think about something besides the game, you exponentially increase the opportunities that they'll go do something else besides play your game.

  5. #15
    Yes, that does sum up the pacing issue. That's why I feel the world feature generator is going to help a great deal. (It will also make sure the reward in the feature matches the difficulty of conquering it.)
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  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron View Post
    Yes, that does sum up the pacing issue. That's why I feel the world feature generator is going to help a great deal. (It will also make sure the reward in the feature matches the difficulty of conquering it.)
    You killed a sprite and a wolf! You found the One Ring and a legion of invulnerable undead warriors to command.

  7. #17
    Mage of the Inner Tower War Troll's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    62 Troll Drive, Troll Town, Plane of Myrror
    Early pacing is really tricky; it has to suck you in but also be challenging. Quests are interesting but I feel at this stage they would be tacked on rather than given full attention, probably best for DLC. Simple survival I think can be fun enough especially if the siege battle battlemaps allow it (one of the reasons why I pushed it to be more AoW than MoM-like). One thing I'd like is a reward system for dealing with 'named' groups of roaming monsters, i.e led by a named creature e.g 'Ungash the Orc'. They could appear via a notification and be tracked in a list somewhere. They are more aggressive than normal stacks but you receive a set reward for dealing with them, such as a magical item, gold/mana, or reduce in unrest (everyone is relieved!), or positive diplomacy boost with other Sorcerer Lords.

  8. #18
    Arcane Candidate
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Personally I don't see this as so much of an issue. This is the way it was on MOM as well.
    For those who have not played MOM it might feel like slow, but try following:

    - Assign more citizen to production. Huge impact on your building times.
    - Put on fast movement. The animation time slows down the game alot.
    - Cast some premanent buff spells on your units(cast them in map mode, makes them upkeep spells that are always on), this way buff spells doesn't drain your skill in battle and you can propably have more units buffed.

    Yeah, pacing might need some work, but I don't think it's as bad as many suggest.

  9. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Hoverdog View Post
    With more units, upkeep starts to be a problem, and assigning more pops to farmers and upping taxes can hamper development. Then again, we could make players start with a bigger city or additional gold income.
    A bigger starting city may solve a few other problems too.
    My RPG Design and Theory Blog:

  10. #20
    Arcane Candidate
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron View Post

    [...] At the moment the early game goes something like this:

    Start building buildings.
    Send your starting armies out to explore.
    Find that your armies can't conquer any of the world features.
    Run your starting armies back to your starting city to fend off the hoards of incoming enemies.
    Turtle for maybe a hundred turns while you start to build a real army.
    OH ! That's a very exact description of the 10 games that I have started since 11 September's Steam release. And I thought that I was the problem as a clueless & incompetent WoM n00b !! Now I know : it currently is the only way to play during the first 100 turns. (I was so frustrated & bored by my "clueless incompetence" that I did not push beyond turn 110.)

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