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Topic Subject:What would you like to see in a Steam Re-release?
alincarpetman
Afreet
posted 11-11-13 04:08 PM EDT (US)         
As reported here and here, the rights to Rise of Legends and Rise of Nations (as well as other BHG and 38 Studios games) are going to be sold at an auction sometime in December 2013. Whoever buys the rights to this game will have the option to do something with it such as a simple digital re-release or something more.

This sounds interesting and I'm curious as to how this works and will turn out. I wonder how anyone from the public, if they can, find out about this when and after it happens. There is some more info at the official auction page here.

If we find out who bought the rights we could get in touch with them if possible. Steam and Gog.com are to options, both which have RON and ROL on wishlists.

You can also read a brief summary of BHG history here and some ideas for a crowdfund here.

[This message has been edited by alincarpetman (edited 08-13-2014 @ 12:56 PM).]

AuthorReplies:
alincarpetman
Afreet
posted 12-05-13 06:03 PM EDT (US)     1 / 12       
I posted a similar thread in the Rise of Nations forum here.

So this might mean ROL will be re-released on Steam, Gog, or some other way. It could be a simple re-release or maybe some people will be hired to add some things to the game which would be cool if they did that. If they read these and other forums there is interest and talent among the players of this game so spreading the word around and contacting whoever buys the rights might help to get something done besides a simple re-release like other games.

I thought it would be interesting to make a thread for anybody who wants to post their ideas and requests for an improved, expanded, etc Rise of Legends here if you're interested. Feel free to get as detailed as you want - again, if the people who buy the rights see there's some interest then maybe they might pay attention, so it's worth a try and all in good fun at least.

There have been similar posts scattered in various topics so searching and copy and pasting any relevant ideas can be done also.

So what would you like to see in a Rise of Legends re-release?

[This message has been edited by alincarpetman (edited 12-05-2013 @ 06:04 PM).]

alincarpetman
Afreet
posted 12-18-13 09:09 PM EDT (US)     2 / 12       
News update here - The rights to Rise of Legends and Rise of Nations were bought in the auction. No details yet but here's a quote: "Several properties actually were sold, however, including the Big Huge Games trademark, Rise of Nations, Rise of Legends and associated IP."
PCDania
Zekeling
(id: PCD)
posted 03-11-14 02:56 AM EDT (US)     3 / 12       
Let's see if I can get you to wake up, someone like to use you.

"Cats are the only animals that are both uber, pwns and 1337 at the same time." -King Euric
By reading this fine print your soul is now the exclusive property of HeavenGames.
alincarpetman
Afreet
posted 03-13-14 05:22 PM EDT (US)     4 / 12       
Basically the same issue that Rise of Nations has would be a request also for Rise of Legends:

As others have posted here: "Retain full mod-folder support like the current game, but also remove previous hardcoded unit, building, tech, map and faction limits so that there is more modders can do with the game. It would be great if modders could also create new tech and faction bonuses rather than having to use the current ones."

Also here's a random idea list, some of it may not be possible ever, some of it may be possible after full modding options are put in the game:

Game Menu Options
- when creating a Quick Battle game, add more game menu options for game settings - Rise of Nations has a lot more options such as:
Teams and Allies,
Map Style,
Map Size,
Game Speed,
Cannon Time,
Game Rules,
Game Mods,
Start With,
Resources,
Technology,
Reveal Map,
Population,
Rush Rules,
Start Age,
End Age,
Elimination,
Victory,
Wonder Victory,
Territory Goal,
Script options,
and 5 additional options:
Save To Profile,
Turbo Resources,
No Nation Powers,
No Unique Units,
and Cooperative AI.

Rise of Legends has far fewer game setup options than Rise of Nations - there is only:
Change Map,
Teams,
Rush Rules,
and 5 "Advanced" options:
Use Tournament Rules,
No Defeat When Capital Lost,
Sudden Death,
Allow Asymmetric Starts,
Random Teams.

- add a random map generator
- add more than 8 players to a game or map
- add more colors for players
- add an option to turn master units, nation powers and dominances on or off so people can play a simpler game only with regular units if they wish

In Game Options
- change the default camera zoom and field of view (zoom further out like in Rise of Nations)
- enable bridges to be destroyed, repaired, captured and open/close - it looks like the Vinci bridges are drawbridges which can be activated to open and close
- enable all buildings including cities and neutral sites to be able to be deleted and/or destroyed completely
- have the option to name your cities, units, heroes, captured sites, etc
- enable city districts that can be built anywhere without a parent city building - for example a military district can be placed anywhere on its own
- enable rotation of buildings when placing them on the map
- fix the Unit Stances button (which allows units to have an Aggressive, Defensive, Sentry or Passive stance) - when this button is clicked on it rapidly closes and the player can't select a stance unless you try many times or are very quick
- some players have mentioned unit pathfinding as a problem in skirmish and/or campaign modes, one example is the Alin campaign scenario #19 Mezekesh, Through A Glass Darkly - when inside the dark glass city some units walk to another area when commanded elsewhere
- when playing the campaign, sometimes the background music continues playing and overlaps with any cutscene music and voiceovers creating noise


Graphics Options and Gameplay
- even on max settings with or without anti-aliasing there are still jagged shapes and shadows, maybe a graphics fix for this
- texture stretching - better texture display for high elevation terrain in the scenario editor (the texture stretches/smudges/smears vertically for vertical landscapes instead of looking like natural rock for example, but this seems to be common in 3d rts games, terrain can't be built horizontally only vertically)
- add sky backgrounds (they are blank solid colors in the original game)
- have trees and plants stay and not disappear after units move through them - have them be a natural barrier
- add what other Steam Extended Edition titles such as Age of Empires 2 HD, Age of Mythology Extended Edition and Rise of Nations Extended Edition have if necessary
- add a functional water terrain if possible - the original game didn't have any water but has 2 water textures in the editor
- an unlabeled hi-res world map of Aio (the current ones are small and labeled or big and blurry)
- enliven the game more - for example Pirata City in the cutscene here and screenshot here looks more alive with different trees, buildings and units in and around the city as opposed to a lifeless still city in the Vinci campaign scenario #3 Pirata - Pirata Aerodrome, Battle of Pirata - it looks like the official release of Rise of Legends was a different game and there may have been more features originally intended but cut for a final release


Scenario Editor Options
- add a Script Editor like in Rise of Nations so modders can edit scripts easier
- add all map textures to one tileset to be used on any single map type (there are 13 map types available in the scenario editor but you can only use the textures that load with each map for itself so for example you can only use snow on a snow map and can't add that texture to a jungle map - there are however a few textures that appear on all maps if you look closely but they are the only ones)
- the 11 screen effects and 27 lightning options are already available for any map type, maybe make it possible to edit and add more lighting, weather, effects, etc
- be able to edit the new sky backgrounds
- be able to use white as a color to paint with, only black and other colors work but not white to make things lighter or completely white
- fix the prefab and timonium files that cause the editor to crash when being selected (prefabs: dark forest spire 02, timonium: desert dark glass bridge, e3 bridge destroyed, pirata demo, pirata lite, pirata city, bavarian steamfortress, dark forest temple, desert ruins 1-9, volcanic dark glass 1-3, volcanic mine 1, etc...)
- fix scenario editor crashes such as when a building is placed outside the camera view on a map, when a district is placed in a city and then undone,
- allow the prefabs to be edited to extract buildings and landscapes to be used apart from the timonium mines
- more terrain edit features such as tunneling, shaping at multiple angles (horizontally not just vertically) - in 1600 51 this screenshot it appears that there is an underground area under the sand behind Alin structure
- bigger map sizes and various shapes such as squares, long rectangles, etc instead of only circles - the game limits the maximum map size to be 128 and maximum height size to 40,000 in the scenario editor when creating a new map
- change the speed of units and give units run, jump, collect, etc special abilities or spells
- allow damaged and destroyed units and buildings to stay as un-capturable ruins (maybe after a certain time period) on the map and also make the ruins salvageable for resources or more expensive and longer to rebuild if recaptured after this time period
- change the color of timonium and make it finite
- create more resources like in Rise of Nations - metal, wood, farms, oil, info, etc
- edit existing wildlife, create new animals and habitats as there aren't that many in the original game, give them abilities and ai of their own
- edit existing plants, create new trees and plants as there aren't that many in the original game, give them abilities and ai of their own
- "create your own hero", hero pets, animal or machine mounts, "hero's lair" buildings, etc
- make an easier to use "create your own campaign" creator, world map, continents, storyline texts, etc
- more different types and sizes of bridges to cross over terrain
- in the scenario editor Cuotl temples can hover and fly like Fanes but not in-game
- allow buildings to be garrisoned in with or without a bonus and defense
- allow enemy buildings of a different nation to be captured to produce their units - in other rts games an "engineer" unit or other units capture building and then the building's respective units can be built (in the game cities can be captured but units can't be made and unit making buildings such as barracks can only be destroyed and not captured)
- allow the game's campaign scenario maps to be converted to multiplayer skirmish maps, at the moment it seems some features can be removed on a map but whenever a script is removed it crashes the editor - some players have asked for this to be able to play some of the campaign maps in a multiplayer skirmish mode
- allow more nations to be added and selectable from a map in the game menu - if you have played Motter's New Nations mod you can see there is a limit of 16 total selectable nations in the drop down menu, he has made more and they can't all be selected


Modding Options
- allow the full creation of custom nations
- add whatever existed of the Kahan, Skald, Kragar, etc from the unreleased Rise of Legends expansion so modders can use the data to create
- add whatever old content existed for any pre-release versions of the game or unused/changed features such as units, buildings, spells, graphics, game features, scripts, maps, etc - an example of one unit's original graphics that were recovered for re-use in a mod is the Vinci juggernaut tank
- there are a few missing maps listed in the demo and full game such as Heavy Iron and Ogre Ruins
- mod graphics of existing units, buildings, terrain, weather, etc
- finish the tall Cuotl jungle trees - have the graphics continue upwards to render an entire tree with a canopy and hanging vines
- create more lively cities with housing districts for population cap (Vinci "housing districts" can be found in the editor), and populate the cities with units such as citizens, traders, services, everyday people, etc
- heroes can dismount from their animal or machine at any time using a spell (such as in Lord of the Rings - Battle For Middle Earth 2)
- units and/or heroes can jump from cliff to cliff and fall down certain cliffs and areas
- units can fall down from the sky onto the ground either as an ability or get damaged and die
- Alin dragons can perch on top of structures, can sweep down and hit/grab/carry/units such as in Lord of the Rings - Battle for Middle Earth 2
- dead bodies, vehicles and structures stay on the field and decay slower, some will be permanent and can be salvaged for resources by miners/new special units/any units or restored and recaptured with a healing spell
- add a water terrain (rivers, lakes, ocean, underwater) gameplay, water units and cities floating on water and/or underwater (there are "ocean" and "river" textures in the editor)
- add or mod an air terrain (air up in the clouds) gameplay, mod air units to fly higher, enable flying cities and gameplay in the sky as an air-only map or air on any map with multiple elevation layers
- add a underground terrain (caves, caverns) gameplay, units, cities, maps, etc
- add an outer space terrain (space, moons, asteroids) gameplay, units, cities, maps, etc
- have the option to mod a Diablo 2-like rpg style game within an rts game, or a hybrid of both to create new gameplay
- have a multiplayer Conquer the World campaign mode - be able to select from any the campaign heroes on the campaign map to be played for both single and multiplayer against the ai or human players (for example you start as Doge from Venucci, or Distruzio in the Wastelands and make or break alliances in a turn-based part of the game on the world map and then play skirmish battles when contesting a territory)
- make different versions of the above multiplayer Conquer the World campaign mode - more diplomacy options, economy, trade routes, a Civilization-style game, etc
- maybe mod a turn-based only game on the campaign world map for turn based fans


Other Modding Info
- some of the above may be possible after Steamworks support is added for Rise of Legends so players can do some of the modding themselves
- some ideas for mods:
- import textures, terrain, units, buildings, powers, sounds, music, etc from other games to use in Rise of Legends sci-fi fantasy settings,
- create a "total conversion mod" for a "Rise of Nations 2", a more detailed 3d version of Rise of Nations using data from both games and others,
- check out other steampunk, 1001 arabian nights and ancient astronauts themes for ideas,
- check out related games for ideas,
- create existing scifi, fantasy, etc worlds inside the game such as Total Annihilation Kingdoms (rts videogame), John Carter of Mars (Barsoom book series and film), Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (manga series and anime film), other books, anime, films...


Expansion Options
- add the unfinished Kahan, Skald, Kragar, etc nations either finished or just add whatever data exists so modders can use it
- add whatever old content existed for any pre-release versions of the game or unused/changed features such as units, buildings, spells, graphics, game features, scripts, maps, etc - an example of one unit's original graphics that were recovered for re-use in a mod is the Vinci juggernaut tank
- add any unreleased material such as maps the creators used to make the promo screenshots, it would be cool to play some of those maps and use parts of them for scenarios


Tutorial Info
- update and expand the modding guides found here or write a new one for players interested in making maps, creating scenarios, and modding the game

[This message has been edited by alincarpetman (edited 01-18-2015 @ 08:59 PM).]

alincarpetman
Afreet
posted 03-13-14 07:17 PM EDT (US)     5 / 12       
Motter's scenario for Rise of Nations is here.
Motter's 3 mods for Rise of Legends are here and here.

Motter's various comments on what Rise of Legends needs:

- game bug fixes, spell bug fixes

- a random map generator

- a modpack that extracts all the game files for use in modding

"I had RON modding to a science, but can someone answer a few:

Hello, I have tried doing searches but there seems to be alot less info for this game as opposed to RON, but if any of my questions are in other threads sorry and please direct me there.

In RON map editor you could generate maps and then customize them to your liking, with this game it seems I have to build every map from scratch, maybe some like to do that, more power to ya, but it's to much for me, is there some map generation tool that I'm just not seeing that can generate a map with the resources, terrain, stuff like that already placed like in RON?

Is there a CTW .xml file like the one's found in RON where it would show all the map info the various territories in the campaign and you could mod the attributes, specifically I'd like add more hero points to territories, you can't even come close powering up all heroes.

As stated I have done my best to try and figure these things out on my own and will keep trying, but if someone could point me in the right direction that would be great. Thanks."

- "ROL is actually much more moddable than RON but the scripting language is very different so it's taking time to decipher it all. It seems the designers of this game just really "threw" this game out there in a rush, likely because of lack of interest or whatever so they just gave up, so many of the bug's in the game were just simple little one line fixes, and there are literally lines and lines of code that are hashed out, some for good reason because they don't work right and they even have notes from the programmer's indicating they intended to come back later and re-work it, but they just never did. Lots of the code works but was left out anyway like they just never got around to playtesting this game or something."

- "Unlike RON, in ROL the modpack didn't extract the unit/building graphics file, and this is something you need in order to create new graphics for units, you can create any new unit or building you want and give it whatever abilities you like, but getting a new graphic for it is the hard part."

- "They didn't extract the graphics file for us, as it is I'm trying to decipher it all in hex which is a pain, honestly I'd be happy if they'd just update the modpack to extract the rest of the files so we could edit them. I'm sure an experienced programmer could do in an hour what takes me days, but everything I know is self taught so it's slow going, but it's also fun learning so I keep at it."

- "however unlike RON there is not a full list of script commands and even the one's they do give have very poor descriptions of what they do, so I really had to do a lot of guess work to figure them out, and some I still don't know which is why it would be great to talk to some of the games designers."

- "As for mapmaking, sadly that is a pain in ROL, not sure why they didn't have a random generator like they did in RON but if you want to make a map you literally have to build it from scratch, which is likely why there are so few fan made maps out there for this game."

- "Big problem with new nations though is that you have to individually add them to each and every map, which is something everyone will have to do themselves on their computer, to include all of the map files would be to big of a file. WHY they did it that way I'll never know, likely would have been corrected with a patch if the game had been more popular."

- "I've found ROL seems to have different issues on different computers, I had to do a lot of hex editing to get the game to work right on my system, unfortunately the game was just rushed out and has lots of bugs"

- "ROL was rushed and then quickly abandoned, therefore there are lots of bugs in the game that will never be fixed by the game designers. These problems can be fixed but there is a catch."

- "The problems I have found with the game is it has different bugs on different systems, if you read my past reply's you will know I have a Dell and have found the same bugs on all Dell computers running Vista, I was able to find and fix the problem through hexing, which I likely could do for you as well except hexing is difficutlt and there is no way I could troubleshoot the problem without having your CPU physically here."

[This message has been edited by alincarpetman (edited 05-28-2017 @ 03:48 PM).]

alincarpetman
Afreet
posted 11-24-16 07:59 PM EDT (US)     6 / 12       
More comments on Rise of Legends features from interviews with Greypawn from BHG here

How big are the maps? 1vs1 etc. How many players will be able to play in one game?

Maps range in size from small to large, the small accomodating 2 players, and the large accomodating up to 8. Large maps contain approximately 128 screens of area at 1024x768 resolution.

My real question is, what kind of support do modders get, like what programs, tutorials, etc?

Rise of Legends will definitely feature a greater modding capability than Rise of Nations, making it easier to customize and add new content. From what I understand, we may also be releasing tools to add custom models as well, but that has not yet been announced. As for tutorials, that will probably fall into my realm, and while I can't promise anything concrete at the moment, I will certainly put it on my to-do list for post-launch.

What kind of mod tools will you ship with the game/after the game?

Rise of Legends is much more heavily mod-friendly due to its component nature, and allows for easy-to-make changes to xml files that affect global rules in-game. We'll be shipping RoL with a scenario/map editor that is quite robust, inasmuch as we're using it ourselves to create the game maps. We intend to support modding and custom scenario creation with tutorials and other resources on our website as well.

Is the map editor going to have events you can put in?

After you posed this question, I went and spent some time with our map editor people so I could give you a good answer. What I found out about our editor impressed me quite a bit. To answer your question, yes, it does have scripted events you can put it, and it does offer a WC3 style trigger scripting feature. The editor itself consists of several integral parts, a Quest Editor, a Map Editor, and a Scenario Editor all rolled into one package.

The quest editor features the ability to create custom quests for your scenario with objectives and even subquests, allowing you to go as far as to ping objectives on the minimap, conduct unit pathing and script custom events. The map editor is robust and feature-rich, making it a breeze to create immersive graphic environments with stunning depth. The scenario editor allows you to customize things like sounds played and vignettes played after a scenario is successful or failed. There are two basic ways of using the editor, easy mode, where you click and select events and triggers you want to use, or the advanced scripting mode, where you can actually write out and tweak the script to your heart's content.

What modeling software was used to create unit, buildings, ect? What tools will modders be able to use?

3D Studio Max and Adobe Photoshop as well as proprietary tools are heavily used to create the stunning units and maps of Rise of Legends. We'll be releasing tools and resources for use in modding and custom map creation post-release, though I'm not sure if any plugins will be included with those yet. There will be more on this in the future.
motter28218
Zekeling
posted 01-31-17 11:24 AM EDT (US)     7 / 12       
Just and FYI Alin, I learned this one shortly after I wrote that question, you could remove this:

1. Enabling CTW units, I know how to find them, but the fields are not the same as the one's found in unitrules, it appears to me that I'm just going to have to go in and create new templates for each hero in the regular unitrules using an existing hero, and then manually change the appropriate entries? This seems like a lot of work, I will do it if that's what it takes but isn't there an easier way?

[This message has been edited by motter28218 (edited 01-31-2017 @ 11:31 AM).]

alincarpetman
Afreet
posted 01-31-17 11:32 PM EDT (US)     8 / 12       
Rodmar18
Zekeling
posted 07-05-17 05:12 AM EDT (US)     9 / 12       
Hello there!

IMO, if a Steam release is ever to be out, they should really, really correct one of the major flaws of the Campaign mode to my eyes, that was never told about in the various game reviews that where published at game release... It's simply that the Campaign map management is horrible and it becomes boring fast.

By the way, there's no campaign part in the above list of changes. Is it because the Campaign is deemed not worth the time, and all the efforts should go to MP and skirmish modes? It's true that one of the in-game helps says that if you are inexperienced at RTS game, you should play the Campaign. Is it the sole reason we ought to play it?

Campaign map management:

1/ Not enough map rewards?

One of the problems is that you may get not enough experience points to upgrades all your heroes.
This one is listed somewhere (the proposal to add more XP to campaign maps) but I don't think it's important, provided other changes are done beforehand. Indeed, except in the case when you want to have only a limited time to play the game, or when the game offers you only a limited number of missions before the campaign finishes, you could afford to play several maps more than once, earning those XP to fully upgrade your heroes. The same goes for research points and upgrading your units. Of course, this implies that the campaign doesn't become utterly boring (see below)!


In the Vincy campaign, the trick is to let one of the Doge's puppet alive (or try and manage to lure the Doge far from Venucci), so that you'll loose territories and have to fight to retrieve them, until you earn points enough to fully upgrade. If the Doge is alone and cornered, it may prove more difficult to achieve this strategy. Indeed, just taking your time before killing the enemy heroes is enough, but that's become boring because all your missions will be played on the few Vinci skirmish maps, plus you loose all the original map bonuses if you let the enemy enter there first.


2/ Less playable maps than territories

The campaign mode was clearly released unpolished (unfinished). It becomes evident when some territories are played on "skirmish" maps instead of the beautiful, dedicated maps of some lucky territories like Pirata...


There are two kinds of territories in the campaign:
- the ones where the storyline presents you with a small, peculiar map, which is clearly not adapted to a great battle as in a skirmish mode (because the story urges you to perform a single action, like freeing the Doge's prisonners at Dirsi, rather than to conquer the land properly).
- the ones where the action takes place on a large enough map, where there is one or two enemy camps (and not just spawning buildings, like in Condottiere). These ones have been proposed as skirmish maps in other threads, and there's a guide to transform them into available skirmish maps.


I'm not against the fact that some skirmish maps (generally, maps with a lot of neutral cities) could be introduced in the campaign, but they could be much more "themed" to the territory and not just random. As in other RTS games, whenever the player really wants to play on skirmish maps, he can play skirmish mode instead of the campaign.


Change #1: ensure that each territory gets its own lore-consistent map.
Some might actually need two such maps: the small, original one, and a larger one, designed so as to fit a 1vs.1 or 1 vs.2 "skirmish" in mind, with or without neutrals. Ask map designers to compete for such a task whenever a dedicated map is lacking (or adapt fine existing user-made maps).


3/ Skirmish maps for all conquered territories

Granted, I didn't play RoN, but I don't understand why, once a territory has been conquered either by the player or the computer (e.g. the Doge or his puppets in Vinci's), the original map is gone for ever, even if it could have been replayable. Instead, you get the same few (four?) skirmish maps (1 vs. 1 with 4-10 neutral cities to seize). That means the same few (four?) tactics in a 10+ territories large strategic map! This is clearly exagerated, and indeed as for me, it kills the campaign's "replayability" (or rather, duration). To be short, there's no more incentive to battle in an already conquered territory than in a skirmish mode, save for the XP you may earn.


By the way, in some other games (Warlords & Warlords Battlecry) your campaign hero may take a pause and go fight in a skirmish whenever he wants, earning rewards as well, on new, special maps, before returning to his campaign. RoL (RoN?) invented the game where you always play on skirmish maps and still win the game, if you aren't fast enough to go there before the enemy. When this elements adds to the 1st one above (not enough XP and research points), the player has one goal to the mind: to finish the campaign as fast as possible (and to bad for the not upgraded heroes, they will be upgraded in the following campaign if you stay with the same few of them).


An example of this in my current Alin campaign: freeing three territories in a row (that is, making XP and research points), I played on only two different skirmish maps. The game knows well the fact because while the loading screen describes the skirmish map (e.g. The City of the Genies), the text info on the hero you are going to fight (e.g. Theben, the Dark Alin) tells you that his army is on the real territory you are entering (e.g. Dragons' Nest)...


Change #2: Once each territory gets a replayable version of its own, dedicated map (see change #1), have all subsequent battle on this territory played on this map. Some of the current few skirmish maps could be adapted for being such dedicated maps. For example, the one with 12 cities could be assigned to a rich, populated territory.


One the other hand, there could be "ambushes", rare random occasions where you get on a skirmish map on your way to the next territory. It would rahter be a small skirmish map to play, as its name tells, a skirmish. Upon defeat, the strategic move would be lost and player's turn would be passed. Upon victory, the player would have to enter again the aimed at territory (free from ambush) to play on this territory's map. The return on the strategic map could be by-passed as well, but that would mean two chained battles.


4/ No special reward for enemy conquered territory

I don't know if this derives from the 3rd point above, or if this is by design. What prevents a liberated land to reward you with all or part of the riches, technologies, and allies it would have granted you if you had came here before the enemy? Sometimes, the random skirmish maps that you get when entering an already conquered territory rewards you with 4 XP, and that's all (surely because the enemy closed/pillaged/spoiled all the mines/labs/ruins/temples/hermits?).


Change #3: Assign each territory two sets of reward.
First one goes for first time exploration (before the enemy), second one goes for first time successful exploration (after the enemy), either, a little or much less.


Possibly, a third set of reward could be granted after any subsequent victory in this territory, only to have the reward more diverse (instead of 4 XP from skirmish, it could be 2 XP and 1 army/building/research for the easier maps, depending on the theme of the territory).


5/ No reward for successfully defending a territory!

No comment. Defending is when you enter a territory that is yours at the same time of an enemy hero (you can tell by the arrows on the strategical map).


Change #4: perhaps another battle, and an enemy hero slain, are worth some XP? Or should we wait for the territory to be lost before liberating it for some XP?



Conclusion / TL;dR

The Campaign mode looks oversighted in the list of welcome changes in the case of a Steam release. IMO, it should deserve a real brainstorming and dedicated effort to correct one of the major flaws of this game, that is a non-replayable campaign mode (or a boring artificially lengthened campaign, as you prefer). At least, add variety and prevents the campagn form becoming boring by polishing the "map manager". I don't know if any of the changes I suggest can be readily implemented with the modders' tools, though.
Laachax
Zekeling
posted 07-10-17 04:46 PM EDT (US)     10 / 12       
Good points there. It always frustrated me with not enough unique maps for all the tiles. Now I wouldn't mind just a lot more skirmish maps if they weren't so darn boring to play, making a pseudo skirmish map with more emphasis on a goal than out right conquest would be nice.

I'd also like openGL and if possible vulkan renderers for linux and osx support. The game already runs beautifully on wine, especially on gallium9(Which for me nets better fps and less bugs than playing on native windows).

General bug fixes of course. But one thing I'm sure we can all agree on is fix the obnoxiously bad pathing, it's bad. No contest. Especially if you're used to a game like wc3 like I am where even spamming move commands won't send your army to crawl or confusion. And on that note army distribution could use a tweak, some units should definitely not front line. Also if really slow units are way ahead of very fast units, the very fast units should move at their maximum speed to catch up, not move as fast as the slowest. This is an insanely annoying aspect of RoL, and I honestly think it's one of its major downfalls.
Rodmar18
Zekeling
posted 07-13-17 03:22 AM EDT (US)     11 / 12       
@Laachax:
Yes, one themed skirmish map per territory would fit. But enlarged version of scenario maps would be fine too (more like 1vs.1 + 2 neutral cities maps)
I'll try and post some scenario maps' screenshots along with proposed changes to turn them into replayable "skirmish" ones.

On the unit formations, the position of each unit inside its formation seems to be governed by its "category": trooper, vehicle, siege, flyer, ... The trooper being in front line, vehicle being on the flank or second line, siege being on the rear, and flyers above. I don't think that the stance of a given unit (or its selected mode of attack), or the stance of the whole formation, can change that.

Also, even if we can arrange for a more coherent move, or at least a coherent laying at the destination place (first arranging the formation by selecting it and ordering a short move with a click-and-drag to give facing direction)... it's sure to broke at first obstacle during the true move, making moving formations very vulnerable (which may be quite exploited against the AI).




Since my first message, I've peered at a campaign file. It appears that each territory (or node) is assigned two maps: a scenario map, which apparently is played only if you first enter a still neutral, or a starting enemy territory; and a specified (not random) skirmish map, more or less themed.

To recall to those players who played the campaign a long time ago, what kind of feeling a newcommer may have, here are some data from the Alin campaign.

Node (territory) // Scenario map // Skirmish map

Desert's Edge // (owned) // (never lost)
Azar Harif // Defense of Azar Harif AC2 // (2)Kalahese Desert (game over if lost?)
Meeting Grounds // Tale of the Lost Vinci AC7 (Pulitore) // (4)Mount Tola
Bright Lands // Ruin Raiders AC3 // (2)Summer's Heat
Southern Dunes // Hundreds by Night AC11 (Belisari & Queen Salamanders) // (4)Dark Chasm
Ashen Waste // (4)Mount Tola // (4)Mount Tola
Shining Desert // (2)Summer's Heat // (2)Summer's Heat
Cold Sands // Goods Recovery (escort Vinci trucks) AC5 // (2)Summer's Heat
Temple Sands // The Ancient Temple AC6 (Marwan) // (2)Summer's Heat
Nest of Dragons // Nest of Dragons (Thuran) // (2)Elder's Rise
Valley of the Mad // Valley of the Mad AC9 // (2)Summer's Heat
The King's Crown // Split Forces AC8 // (4)Dark Chasm
Sanbar Flats // Shards of Corruption AC12 (Adromelek) // (2)Kalahese Desert
Fool's Path // (2)Kalahese Desert // (2)Kalahese Desert
City of Genies // (2)Elder's Rise // (2)Elder's Rise
Hellforge Mountains //Lava Pools AC13 (Damanhur) // (4)Mount Tola
Deepest Desert // The Sand Warden AC15 (Dakhla) // (2)Elder's Rise
Mezekesh // Though a Glass Darkly AC16 (final) // (2)Summer's Heat (not replayed)


Total: 19 territories & 19 scenario maps if 1st, introductionary battle is counted. Out of them, 3 can't be lost (Desert's Edge, Azar Harif, and Mezekesh, and thus replayed. This leaves 16 territories, of which, 4 are playing directly on 4 different skirmish maps (loosely related to the territories). Subsequent battles (and you need many to upgrade all your units and heroes, Alin and Vinci alike) are played on 5 different skirmish maps only: (2)Kalahese Desert, (2)Summer's Heat, (4)Mount Tola, (2)Elder's Rise), and (2)Dark Chasm.

[This message has been edited by Rodmar18 (edited 07-13-2017 @ 02:39 PM).]

alincarpetman
Afreet
posted 07-17-17 03:10 AM EDT (US)     12 / 12       
@Rodmar: A good analysis of the game campaign, here are my thoughts:
One of the problems is that you may get not enough experience points to upgrades all your heroes. ... The same goes for research points and upgrading your units.
Motter fixed the "missing Research and Military points bug" in his Expansion mod here:
- Game Bug Fixes: Cuotl and Alin campaigns will now award you your Research and Military points 5
- Alin and Cuotl now get more research points for building their districts plus Palace districts now award the proper research point bonus (it was disabled for some reason)
The campaign mode was clearly released unpolished (unfinished). It becomes evident when some territories are played on "skirmish" maps instead of the beautiful, dedicated maps of some lucky territories like Pirata...
Change #1: ensure that each territory gets its own lore-consistent map.
I noticed this too, I thought that maybe the devs put the skirmish maps in the campaign to give players "more practice" at the rts game, but we don't know for sure.

It would have felt more immersive if each scenario map was unique and populated like an rpg with characters, events, places, etc that we could explore and engage with.
But even maps like Pirata city feel unfinished - compare the Pirata city in the campaign scenario to the Pirata city in the cinematic video - the video looks and feels alive while the campaign scenario is more static.

I think one of the reasons for this may have been hardware limits because back in 2006 not everyone could play the game on maximum settings, so the default camera zoom is narrow and there are less units and buildings on maps because on older computers it would take more processor power to render smoothly.

Some of the campaign scenarios were very basic, and some feel like they are missing voice acting which would have made them better, but even some characters don't have any voicing such as Battaglion, Sawu, Dahkla, Damanhur, etc...
In general I think the devs had a deadline and ran out of time and money to finish the 3 campaigns in more detail as well as polish the game and add modding options.

And my problem with the Doge in the campaign - not once but twice we are denied the opportunity to imprison or kill him.
The first time he is missing from Venucci which also feels static and could have been a more animated city and battle with more action.
The second time he was supposed to be in the desert outside Mezekesh, his army is there but you only get to watch Giacomo fight the Doge in the next cinematic.
This makes the story feel anti-climactic. In my opinion the Doge should have been confronted in Venucci and then Giacomo and friends would follow the trail to Azar Harif, or at least you get to fight the Doge outside Mezekesh.

To summarize the "recycled plain campaign skirmish maps problem":
- The Vinci campaign uses a few simple skirmish maps
- The Alin campaign uses these a lot more due to the dark genies regularly re-spawning, forcing you to fight them over again many times
- The Cuotl campaign uses these maps as well but this 3rd campaign feels less developed than the first two and most of the Cuotl "lore maps" still feel like a skirmish rather than a unique setting with a story
- These simple skirmish maps are played even more if you try playing the campaign on the Tough difficulty setting, so it is more frustrating and boring
- Too much fighting and not enough exploring, engaging, voice acting, unique lore for maps, characters, stories and details
What prevents a liberated land to reward you with all or part of the riches, technologies, and allies it would have granted you if you had came here before the enemy?
This is also related to the lack of lore on some maps, why would the native population on each map need to be conquered over and over to progress the campaign story?
Some of the maps should have featured more independent cities, villages, areas, etc that you don't have to "conquer", you visit them and explore, engage, fulfill quests, listen to story/lore, etc.
I'll try and post some scenario maps' screenshots along with proposed changes to turn them into replayable "skirmish" ones.
We have tried before and we didn't succeed in converting the campaign maps to skirmish maps. On some of the maps we can't delete all the campaign scripting and content, only some of it.
So this is something which we need to try again, but you can still post ideas.


@Laachax:
I wouldn't mind just a lot more skirmish maps if they weren't so darn boring to play, making a pseudo skirmish map with more emphasis on a goal than out right conquest would be nice.
Yeah I feel the same and I think there are a lot of reasons for this. Some players just grow up and don't find video games that fun or interesting, they move on. Others return and find they need something more complex with variety, and so on.
I have some ideas for new types of maps such as DOTA-style for quick plays or more complex scenarios centered around exploring, maybe we can start separate threads to brainstorm ideas to improve various aspects of the game and then create guides and videos for our attempts to show others what's possible?

For some it's easy to create the landscape terrain part of the maps once you figure out the scenario editor, the scripting can be more difficult, but the main problem is the lack of a Random Map Generator like most rts games usually have (AOE2, AOM, etc). Rise of Nations had a simple one but ROL never got one which is why there are so few maps and players haven't made many maps from scratch. However the good news is that it may be possible to add a Random Map Generator for the User Patch project so things may change.
I'd also like openGL and if possible vulkan renderers for linux and osx support. The game already runs beautifully on wine, especially on gallium9(Which for me nets better fps and less bugs than playing on native windows).
LinuxOS+Wine+gallium9+ROL - I wonder if this covers most games or if some games need more tweaking? And what will openGL and vulkan renderers do?
Also if really slow units are way ahead of very fast units, the very fast units should move at their maximum speed to catch up, not move as fast as the slowest. This is an insanely annoying aspect of RoL, and I honestly think it's one of its major downfalls.
Are these units all in a group? For example slow siege units with fast infantry units? Most rts games make all the units in the group move the same speed as the slowest, for example AOE2.
However this may be possible to modify by adjusting the unit speeds in the xml files. I was able to adjust the speed of several units but I haven't tried adjusting "grouped speeds" or modding combined unit/group speed rules.


@Rodmar and Laachax: I also don't know if it's possible to mod the world campaign map with the current modding tools here. So far we know you can mod units, spells, buildings, graphics and xml.

One solution for the campaign problems is to work on the User Patch which will expand the features and modding capability so players can edit the official campaign how they want and create entirely new campaigns, regardless if there is or isn't a Steam EE.
If you have any skills or ideas you can post here.

[This message has been edited by alincarpetman (edited 07-17-2017 @ 03:32 AM).]

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