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View Full Version : So how bad does Civ3: Play the World suck?


Darkstar
21-11-2002, 23:19:01
I'm just curious. It's rated 5 out of 10 by its rabid fans over at GameSpot. And they are making a patch for it because it "doesn't live up to the expectations that long term Firaxis customers expect from us." (Quote from the Jeff Briggs, the Big CEO of Firaxis).

Humm... *long term Firaxis customers* expectations? Now that's saying something!

Maybe it doesn't have *ENOUGH* game crashing bugs in it?

Venom
22-11-2002, 00:29:32
Wow I'm suprised Gamespot could even count to 5 with how far they've got their thumbs jammed up their asses.

Deacon
22-11-2002, 01:31:39
:)


Fascinating. Expectations from long-term customers. I expect psycho AI opponents who declare war all the time. And I expect to win every time.

Shining1
22-11-2002, 02:59:56
Reputation Shields at 10% and fallin', captain! She can't take much more of this!

Jon Miller part Deux
22-11-2002, 03:05:37
I don't know about the single player expereince

multiplay can be fun, but you can have no more than 3 people and ther eare problems with lag

the turnless mode is the worst, simulateous mode (As in smac) works as well as in smac, but you can onyl have 3 people (otherwise lag kills you)

Jon Miller

Shining1
22-11-2002, 03:06:45
In a TBS?!?

Jon Miller part Deux
22-11-2002, 03:11:39
yes

as far as I can tell that is why everyone is disappointed

the lag is horrid (the most hprrid I have ever seen)

Jon Miller

Mightytree
22-11-2002, 07:39:48
Lag! :lol: :lol:

Shining1
22-11-2002, 08:32:24
The one advantage that has ALWAYS occured to me about playing pseudo TBS games online is that you wouldn't have to deal with any lag...

moomin
22-11-2002, 08:49:11
Trust Firaxis to provide you with the worst of both worlds.

Resource Consumer
22-11-2002, 10:35:03
It gratifies me that this prooduct will now be enhanced.

Nav
22-11-2002, 11:04:40
a comment from MarkG on announcing the delay of MoO3 to fully test multiplayer..
Given the recent Civ3:PTW experience, MarkG feels like shouting "WE DONT CARE, WORK ON IT" :)

Nav
22-11-2002, 11:33:34
Gamespot Review scored 5.0 (http://gamespot.com/gamespot/stories/reviews/0,10867,2897110,00.html)
Play the World is little more than a few pleasant tweaks and a big pile of downloadable content dumped on a CD.

Venom
22-11-2002, 12:58:24
You could cut and paste that line for all their games.

Sendero Luminoso
22-11-2002, 14:45:35
You guys don't like Firaxis here, do you?

Venom
22-11-2002, 15:06:39
I like them, except for their shitty games and their egomaniacal programmers.

Totally Wired
22-11-2002, 15:13:07
Thhis thread on Poly may bring a reminiscent tear to the eyes of more than a few round here

http://apolyton.net/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=68248

Mightytree
22-11-2002, 16:13:12
*sniff*

Totally Wired
22-11-2002, 16:14:42
Takes you back, doesn't it.

MDA
22-11-2002, 17:12:11
...and their habit of forcing you to buy an expansion to get the fully functioning game that was supposed to be in the first box.

Shining1
22-11-2002, 18:11:00
No, you don't even get the fully functioning game with the expansion...

MDA
22-11-2002, 20:04:18
Good thing I didn't buy it, then.

Qaj the Fuzzy Love Worm
23-11-2002, 00:41:14
Now now, just wait for the enchantment. Or maybe the next one. Or the one after that. You'll see (eventually (maybe))!

LoD
23-11-2002, 08:04:49
Enchantment? Like an Anti-Bug Aura?

Darkstar
23-11-2002, 08:08:12
They'll quit enchanting it long before it's what they said it was... quality wise. If their past is any indicator of their future...

Shining1
23-11-2002, 09:15:02
No, if they do that, they won't have a future.

SMAC was Brian's little pet project, it worked well enough to get them some cash, and that's that. But this is CIV, the last remaining Sid Meier franchise, and if they fuck this up, they're finished.

(See 'It's a Dinosaur Game!' stuff for Sid's inability to make anything original and good these days.)

Darkstar
23-11-2002, 20:31:56
Shining1, I don't see them changing how they work, or their work environment. Merely changing their *PR*. PR costs very little, and turns what would normally be rabid mobs out for their blood to understanding fan boys. Hell, look at me an SSG, for example. :)

They can claim that Civ3 and PtW are *extremely* complex code, and they are a small shop, yadda yadda blah, working hard to improve, yadda yadda yadda.

What is going to happen with PtW is simple. They will patch it a couple of times. Then they'll evaluate wasting more money patching it further versus just going on to do the next thing (scenario expansion/add on edition for Civ3 or PtW). Being Civ, they may make one more enchantment pass, then drop it.

You forgot about SimGolf. Sid did SimGolf. 'Original, innovative, unique, good' gets tossed about for it. Even though it seems to merely by a Golf Tycoon, which they weren't the first to do... Maxis did that back in the early 90s.

There are enough fans of Civ and Civ style games, that Sid And The Gang can milk a Civ4. Heck, there's enough fans for Sid And The Gang to milk a SMAC2.

Why do I feel like a Firaxian episode coming on? Sid And The Gang... Humm....

Darkstar
23-11-2002, 20:38:17
Oh... I suspect the next game will be a MoO... Firaxis has stated and hinted they'd like to do that to fill out their Sweep of Time series. But maybe that was from Brian driving that? Time will tell...

I have been thinking Sid isn't so much 'creatively dried up' as he is just happy with all the offerings already available in the game world. He did manage to make a game about running a golf course, didn't he? When you are content with things, it's difficult to do something new. Need is the mother of invention... and your needs are met when you are content.

Shining1
24-11-2002, 06:33:48
PR only buys you so much. And a rabid mob is generally composed of people who care about an issue and can be rallied against it. You can turn a mob with sweetly worded arguements. Firaxis' real problem is the people who would never get that PR, who bought and played Civ, didn't find it very spectacular, bought and played play the world, found it crap, and have developed zero brand loyalty as a result.

People DO pay attention to the name of the developer (or at least the publisher) on the box. That's how Blizzard gets 4.5 million pre-orders for WarcraftIII to satisfy the initial demand. 5 games, 5 hits, people remember you.

Firaxis, however, is losing that kind of steam by not making good stuff. You're only as good as your last game, and if that's Sim-golf/Play the world, that's not great.

Civ and Play the World aren't remotely complex code. Okay, *I* couldn't program it, but compared to nearly every other game out there, they do some very basic stuff. The difficulty, if anywhere, is in the overall design and balancing of the whole thing, since you have so many different interactions. But a multiplayer TBS game that lags worse than any FPS or RTS? That's just shit.

The other danger facing them is that someone ELSE will make a working civ clone with proper multiplayer that steals their community. Civilisation was formerly unchallenged because it was considered that no-one else could do it better - is that still true?

Heh. If Brian's new RTS turns out to play slowly and has enough depth, you might see that as the new Civ. It's always sounded as though Brian was making an RTS for TBS gamers who were too intimidated by the frenetic play and troublesome micromanagement of the genre staples. And it covers a very Civ like sweep, too. Hell, it even has borders.

If MarkG and Apolyton start playing THAT, and love it, the Civ franchise would have a LOT of work to do to catch up.

Totally Wired
24-11-2002, 18:11:21
I am beginning to sound like a prophet here. Even though I took the rip, I always said that Brian could only go up and Sid was busted.

Interestingly, making a game about golf is really a sort of virtual lusting for retirement.:)

Shining1
24-11-2002, 18:42:19
"Up" is relative, though. He reached some pretty dizzy heights with CivII. I don't think that RoN is going to achieve quite the same level of godliness.

Totally Wired
24-11-2002, 19:13:52
"up" = up from where he descended to with SMAC:D

Totally Wired
24-11-2002, 19:14:36
down = where Sid is now in the gamegod cardboard box with Lurker's old socks

Deacon
25-11-2002, 04:24:29
I'd like to see a SMAC 2 with:

A new interface for loading cargo.

A new area weapon that has the destructive radius of the PB but doesn't flatten land or destroy cities.

Faster graphics.

Faster economics and expansion. Think "Ultra Rush".

AIs that try to keep up and survive.

A new interface for unit movement.



There's probably some stuff I missed....

Nav
25-11-2002, 11:59:35
new, unique and innovative bugs

Totally Wired
25-11-2002, 12:40:35
SMAC2 - are you serious.:eek:

They haven't got SMAC1 right yet...

Shining1
25-11-2002, 13:01:33
They'll never get SMAC1 right, Deacons right, best to move on to SMAC2.

Totally Wired
25-11-2002, 13:36:39
I won't play any game that does not have infinite range PBs

Funkodrom
25-11-2002, 14:31:04
PBs... Performance Bugs?

MDA
25-11-2002, 16:08:02
Colonization2... with infinite range PBs!

Take that London! :lol:

I still think someone should make a Colonization2 instead of another civ or moo. I'd buy it.

Nav
25-11-2002, 16:48:13
I could never play it properly. I kept allowing the english to beat me. ;)

Deacon
25-11-2002, 17:13:41
Those infinite range missiles used to be fun. I think only the AI could do it, though, so I had to let them pick the targets. But it made for good harassment.

Totally Wired
25-11-2002, 18:57:14
Yeah, it was just the cheating AI.

TAZ
25-11-2002, 19:40:23
Yeah!

No longer Trippin
25-11-2002, 20:01:00
Sid's just happy with his bank account, that's all DS.

RedFred
25-11-2002, 20:11:50
I wonder how tightly these games are copyright protected. The concepts in Civ2 and SMAC were great, but the execution wasn't quite there.

If another gaming house that could actually program came up with a Civ2 or SMAC clone that had a few hundred less bugs, and avoided infringing on existing copyrights, I'll bet they would have a hit on their hands.

Totally Wired
25-11-2002, 20:52:41
But it wouldn't be so much fun or community building which, these days, appears to be the Firaxis raison d'etre...

Deacon
25-11-2002, 22:33:06
Freeciv'll be the test.

No longer Trippin
26-11-2002, 00:18:22
How long has freeciv been in "development?" They are never going to get it finished.

Sean
26-11-2002, 00:23:14
Eh? They’ve passed version 1. Depends what you mean by finished, I guess: remember they aren’t looking to sell this in a box.

Darkstar
26-11-2002, 02:46:42
Programs can go on in development forever, so long as its users have more feature requests and bug reports, and the developers want to add in the features and kill the bugs.

There is no way that Firaxis is going to address anything else in SMAC. So best to hope they do a SMAC2...

RedFred
26-11-2002, 05:03:43
If I were betting, I'd give odds of about 3:1 against SMAC2 anytime soon.

Darkstar
26-11-2002, 05:25:42
As in, the next game Firaxis does, or as in, the next year or so?

RedFred
26-11-2002, 07:15:04
In this case, 'anytime soon' = For at least two years.

Deacon
26-11-2002, 08:55:58
Freeciv is getting better all the time. I haven't played it since before isometric view, but it had signs of promise. Sound and AIs capable of diplomacy are on the to-do list.

Shining1
26-11-2002, 10:06:39
In answer to RedFred's question: Not at all.

The only problem in the whole Civilisation: Call to Power saga was a massive legal fight over the name 'Civilisation'. There was never any challenge to the game type itself.

I think copyrighting any design material in a game these days is very difficult. Names are about the only things that people can get touchy about, names and characters. Since Civ is plucked straight out of a history book, there's very little that is the original work microprose.

You'd just have to call it something that is not Civ, like Empire of the World.

Totally Wired
26-11-2002, 11:58:22
"Sid Meier's Uncivilized"

Shining1
26-11-2002, 12:02:06
We know that...:)

No longer Trippin
26-11-2002, 20:21:47
To bad they don't there isn't some laws which require you to label a product how it performs, else all his games would be "Sid Meier's Scam 4, 5, 6, etc,"

BoltyBoy
27-11-2002, 02:14:36
What's with the Sid bashing? I thought Civilization and Railroad Tycoon were some of the best games I've ever played. Both are in my top 5-ish. I've not since lost as much time due to game as I did with these two.

Sure he's slacking a bit of late but you can't deny that the man opened up a whole new genre for games back in the day.

Sir Penguin
27-11-2002, 03:49:09
Long story :).

SP

Darkstar
27-11-2002, 04:37:27
BoltyBoy, yes I can deny that the man opened up new genres. Very easily. So :-P ~~~ ~ ~

Deacon
27-11-2002, 07:22:53
Civ is a very long story. It involves Avalon Hill, Microprose, Firaxis, and Activision. :)

I found out last week that reruns of GI Joe are on Cartoon Network now at 11:30p Central. That franchise died a horrible death during the 90s and it's all Hasbro's fault. Grrr...

MDA
27-11-2002, 20:11:18
I played the Civ board game a couple of times... honestly. Don't remember it too well, though.

Jon Miller part Deux
27-11-2002, 22:54:12
it is great

one of my all time favorite games

Jon Miller

Totally Wired
28-11-2002, 14:37:33
Originally posted by BoltyBoy
What's with the Sid bashing? I thought Civilization and Railroad Tycoon were some of the best games I've ever played. Both are in my top 5-ish. I've not since lost as much time due to game as I did with these two.

Sure he's slacking a bit of late but you can't deny that the man opened up a whole new genre for games back in the day.

to boldly bug where no man has bugged before

Shining1
28-11-2002, 15:21:56
It's a case of what has he done for us lately:).

BoltyBoy
28-11-2002, 22:32:31
He built the aquaducts.

Nav
28-11-2002, 22:41:18
the bugs were in Alpha Centauri, only 1 was noticable (the infinite range missile bugs), the rest only geeks would notice. I sure as hell didnt.

There I said it. Now shoot me. *cringes*

BoltyBoy
28-11-2002, 22:56:19
Hah!! See you scum, Sid rules the universe and thou whom shalt criticise his supremeness shalt be dealt an eternal damnation with the Devil!!!

Nav
28-11-2002, 23:10:07
though my post didnt imply that he ruled the universe. He has been dethroned, that is beyond a doubt. Just look at that Dinosaur game, and Civ II PtW.. and Sim Golf.

BoltyBoy
28-11-2002, 23:50:39
No no you have spoken and now you will lead us all to the promised land that is SidsVille. All hail the almighty Sid and thou shalt be redeemed from whatever it be that you shalt need redeeming from.

Sean
28-11-2002, 23:55:09
It appears a revolution could be going on.

Shining1
29-11-2002, 06:14:14
Will it be televised?

Nav: The memory leak slowdown in SMAC was hard not to notice... and very painful, eventually.

Totally Wired
29-11-2002, 09:58:22
What about the interceptor scrambles and CTD and....and....and....Darkstar your turn

Aredhran
29-11-2002, 10:05:36
Don't get him started, are you crazy ?

Resource Consumer
29-11-2002, 10:08:57
mention bugs and you all come out of the woodwork...

Deacon
29-11-2002, 10:48:31
I saw a good deal of exceptional stuff, and I was a casual player. Enemy units in my base, crashes that are preserved in saved games, oddness in the GUI after enabling the scenario editor, etc.

BoltyBoy
29-11-2002, 13:49:51
You sinners!

Well can you really put the blaim on Sid's shoulders? I mean the guy excels at coming up with novel game ideas but he is at the mercy of those around him, such as....

uno - Publishers insisting the game goes out on schedule, bugs or no bugs.
dos - Game testers not doing their job properly
trinco - incompetent programmers
quinquatro - bad project management
chinco - skeletons in the closet.

I can not remember any bugs with Civ or RR Tycoon so it's not like the guy decided one morning that he'd start incorporate bugs in to his next gaming project.

I think you should all be ashamed of yourselves. Go to your bedroom and don't come down until you're ready to apologise and clean your mouthes out - there'll be no more of that filthy anti-Sid foul language!

Resource Consumer
29-11-2002, 14:13:26
Hey! Sid did have the assistance of Brian the Bugmaster, that is acknowledged.

However, the Firaxis defence of the bug allegations in Alpha Centauri was that they were put in ex-post to create a community focus for the game and to enhance the gaming experience for all. No Kidding.

Deacon
29-11-2002, 23:54:06
:)

Nav
30-11-2002, 11:19:18
Originally posted by Shining1
Will it be televised?

Nav: The memory leak slowdown in SMAC was hard not to notice... and very painful, eventually. I don't remember having any problems with that, but then it has been a long time since I played the game.

Resource Consumer
30-11-2002, 13:18:15
It was hard to notice as the whole gameplay slowed to a crawl anyway by the end.

notyoueither
01-12-2002, 02:03:41
Would it be a bad idea to mention that there is a patch out that improves MP greatly?

Would it be a bad idea to mention that going at it in Simultaneous Mode with 3 or 4 other people is a hell of a lot of fun?

Oh well, just did. Anyway, it's not perfect yet, so you lot should feel free to continue the bitch fest.

Shining1
01-12-2002, 05:07:42
If it only works when you patch it, that's bad.

Glad to hear it's at least playable and that people are having fun, though.

Darkstar
01-12-2002, 09:39:21
I won't go a bug bashing. The issue isn't bugs in SMAC, it's Sid is over.

First off, Sid denies ever doing anything with SMAC... other then stamping his name on it. It was Brian's puppy all the way... the Civ2 engine stretched and grown. And SMAC was carried over to Civ3 originally, but once the new Civ3 team got into it, they said they replaced/rewrote the entire thing.

Sid's greatness was stealing other people's stuff and putting his name on it. That's according to Sid. If he wants to claim to be a minor Billy Gates, that's his business. His tales on 'Civilization' is that he had the board game, liked it, and let Bruce Shelly design the computer game, based on the board game. He just coded it as Bruce told him.

He says he lucked out in RRT and Pirates. He don't know what he did, other then make the game he wanted to play. He couldn't do that with Dinosaurs, so he gave up on it. He moved on to Golf Tycoon, got WW's (and EA's) permission to call it 'Sim', and he's happy with it. Lots of fun and just his kind of game these days.

Sid did do alright. But as long as he is *happy* with the games out there, he isn't going to be doing anything but playing them. He's said that over and over in the last 4 or 5 years. Sim Golf, he cranked out and quick, because he wanted to play 'Golf Tycoon'. Sid said he handed over Civ2 to Brian, cause he was bored. Sid wanted to do Civil War, and eventually he did. He showed up and goofef off with Dinos for a couple of years, until he wanted to play Sim Golf. What's next? Probably nothing interesting. Although the possibility exists that he lucks out.

There really is a major element of luck that is required to make a good game. Good basic idea, and not getting in the way of having fun while playing. Do that, and you are a good game maker. Make something that the public buys the hype over, and you are a successful game maker. You can argue that Sid will remain successful, but that is a hard sell to this group. Many of whom were Sid's fans from before his better known hits...

S1, it isn't unusual for games to only be playable, or finishable, once the first patch is applied to the game. That happens often when the product is rushed.

Shining1
01-12-2002, 09:45:25
I haven't played many that do that, though.

Darkstar
01-12-2002, 10:37:10
I have. It is common enough an occurance to help motivate me to only buy a game after it has been out a while. Let it get patched a few times, get out the most important bugs out of the play path.