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Is the RTS genre dying?

#51Worknofun370Posted 11/16/2013 3:17:13 PM
Gynthaeres posted...


Here's the deal: All of those things are hampered by SC2's design.

The game has pretty bad pathfinding. Example: http://i.minus.com/iDYaOe1I1JYuZ.gif (the second zealot would just walk around to the other side, if the pathfinding were good). The competitive people may say that's by design. You have to micro your troops, and that increases the skill ceiling. But that doesn't change the fact that the pathfinding is bad, and if you're not interested in such artificial increases to the skill-cap, then that's one big turn-off.

The game also has a bunch of APM sinks. You can't autobuild workers, for example. Many abilities that could be put to autocast, are not. For Zerg, Inject Larva and, to a lesser extent, creep tumors, are both pretty anti-fun, designed to separate good players from bad, rather than because it's a good, engaging game element.

Custom games are marginally better, but they still tend to be hampered by things that come from design. Things like, lack of unit controls (Hold Fire / Return Fire / Fire At Will), lack of formation options, 100% unit accuracy at all times, the inability to move and attack at the same time, and so on.

The game also tended to drop modern innovations and variety, in favor of keeping the original SC1's style, and in favor of its competitive design. For example, lack of proper destructible terrain (as in, being able to blow the side of a cliff away, "destructible debris" that blocks an expansion doesn't count, it's just a glorified building), lack of cover options, lack of commanders (either in-game, like Dawn of War 2, or as a playstyle option, like Company of Heroes), and only the same three races we've had for about a decade and a half.


So to me, SC2 may be a great competitive game, absolutely. But if you're not interested in pure competitive play... well, it definitely falters there. I just wish we had more, better options. The other options are all getting old at this point.



Thank you for the clear and detailed answer.

I think you make some very fair and good points. For example, I don't really think the poor pathfinding is there completely by design, but do agree that it can be a turnoff to people who don't want to do some simple micro and that it can be used to the advantage of the more skilled.

I also completely agree that not putting certain abilities on auto cast can be a pain for beginners. But I don't agree that they should be auto-cast for balance reasons. Now if you want to argue they should have came to the table with a completely different plan, that's a fair point. Enabling auto-cast would not be an answer to that issue though.

I don't really think the issues you listed with custom games are that big of a deal, but at the same time understand if those are big deals for other people.


I certainly have zero issues with SC2 sticking to it's SC roots. That was certainly the right choice IMHO.
#52Worknofun370Posted 11/16/2013 3:19:50 PM
DerPancake posted...
Worknofun370 posted...


I truly did not understand what you meant, hence why I asked.

I don't really see where SC2 everything else plays second fiddle... I really don't. I also don't know how you make an RTS that isn't competitively focused... I mean, it's a strategy game.. what else are you suppose to do?

I understand disliking the campaign (I hated it at first, played it again later and really enjoyed it), but I was also talking about just playing 1 v 1 matches against the computer or similar. If your point was "The single player really sucked in SC2" I would understand though.

I guess the question I'm asking would be... what do you want from an RTS game?


I think he wants a game where you can build your empire and relax, some people hate when they are just building their base and bam they get rushed, its not fun for beginners. What I have seen is newer players like building their base and then fight when they are ready. Age of Empires series do well in this, they have modes where you don't fight until a certain limit or you can just play the classic matches where there is no rules.



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#53dekouPosted 11/16/2013 3:38:05 PM
Worknofun370 posted...
I guess the question I'm asking would be... what do you want from an RTS game?


1) A solid SP campaign with a good story
2) Innovation
3) Fun multiplayer

Warcraft 3 is a game that got all of these right IMO, which is why SC2 was a bit of a letdown.

I don't really see where SC2 everything else plays second fiddle... I really don't.


You can clearly see Blizzard was focused on e-sports and serious PvP when they made SC2. The campaign got some attention and pretty cutscenes, but felt very uninspired otherwise. They also didn't want to risk losing their existing fans by experimenting too much.

I also don't know how you make an RTS that isn't competitively focused... I mean, it's a strategy game.. what else are you suppose to do?


You'll nearly always be competing against something, but the whole game doesn't have to be balanced and built around fighting other players in fair matches. For example, there used to be a whole lot of RTS games that were focused entirely on SP campaigns, such as Earth 2150. Red Alert 2 and its like, too. They weren't particularly balanced or meant for e-sports, but had fun SP and supported MP matches well enough.

Basically, when I look at SC2, I don't see an exciting new game. I see the same old SC with some new units. It's not something I want to play. The new units aren't something I care about. It's boring.
#54Worknofun370Posted 11/17/2013 7:18:39 AM
dekou posted...


1) A solid SP campaign with a good story
2) Innovation
3) Fun multiplayer



#1 and #3 are very opinion specific,so it is tough to argue against those two.

Personally, as I mentioned already, I think SC2 fits #1 and #3. I loved the story in the SC2 campaign, including WotS. And of course I think the multiplayer is fun.

I do agree that SC2 "stayed to it's roots" and didn't venture too much from SC1. So it's not that innovative given the time.


You can clearly see Blizzard was focused on e-sports and serious PvP when they made SC2.


I think they were focused on balanced and competitiveness. Again, that does not necessarily mean it's focused on e-sports. SC1 was the same way, and that was really before e-sports time. So the argument you're making that it's all about e-sports just doesn't work for me.

A competitive balanced game != built for e-sports.


You'll nearly always be competing against something, but the whole game doesn't have to be balanced and built around fighting other players in fair matches. For example, there used to be a whole lot of RTS games that were focused entirely on SP campaigns, such as Earth 2150. Red Alert 2 and its like, too. They weren't particularly balanced or meant for e-sports, but had fun SP and supported MP matches well enough.


Why would you expect that in SC2? I mean, I understand there are RTS that are focused around single player more, and I guess that's a fair critique of SC2 if that's what you want from a RTS (and I did ask, what do you want from a RTS)

I also do not believe, even in the slightest, that the "whole game" is built around fighting other players. (I don't get how anyone who has played the single player could say that.)

I do believe the multiplayer is that way, and that's exactly how it should be for an RTS. Not necessarily competitively focused (as some said, no attacks until X minutes exist in other games). But balanced and fair.

Basically, when I look at SC2, I don't see an exciting new game. I see the same old SC with some new units. It's not something I want to play. The new units aren't something I care about. It's boring.


That is an extremely fair opinion to have. And if that was the statement right from the get go, I wouldn't have said a word.
#55CilymPosted 11/17/2013 9:54:05 AM
This topic has so many uninformed people it's ridiculous.
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#56ciraMegaSPosted 11/17/2013 10:28:54 AM
Cilym posted...
This topic has so many uninformed people it's ridiculous.


*I don't know what to say, so I'm just going to something vague*
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#57The cranky hermitPosted 11/17/2013 11:25:03 AM
I certainly have zero issues with SC2 sticking to it's SC roots. That was certainly the right choice IMHO.

If you're still talking about SC2's APM sinks, I'm not sure that SC was actually meant to be that way in the first place. I would like to think that the design goal was to give victory to the player with the better strategy (being a strategy game and all), but thanks to finite strategy options and the insane popularity of the game, the players inevitably exhausted the actual strategy portion and then it came down to who could click the fastest. It definitely had a lot more strategic depth than Warcraft 2 did, and I'm sure that was deliberate.

I don't consider myself an SC beginner, but the competitive scene has always felt rather impenetrable to me, largely due to the sheer APM requirements, and a good deal due to unit micromanagement. If my theory about SC is correct, then SC2 sticking to its "roots" could mean one of two things - either in the direction that was intended, or in the direction it wound up going.

I would have much rather seen SC2 flatten the APM skill somewhat and try to have more strategic depth. I think Warcraft III was rather successful at this, though also slower paced.
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#58ShebeskiiPosted 11/17/2013 11:44:50 AM(edited)
The cranky hermit posted...
I certainly have zero issues with SC2 sticking to it's SC roots. That was certainly the right choice IMHO.

If you're still talking about SC2's APM sinks, I'm not sure that SC was actually meant to be that way in the first place. I would like to think that the design goal was to give victory to the player with the better strategy (being a strategy game and all), but thanks to finite strategy options and the insane popularity of the game, the players inevitably exhausted the actual strategy portion and then it came down to who could click the fastest. It definitely had a lot more strategic depth than Warcraft 2 did, and I'm sure that was deliberate.

I don't consider myself an SC beginner, but the competitive scene has always felt rather impenetrable to me, largely due to the sheer APM requirements, and a good deal due to unit micromanagement. If my theory about SC is correct, then SC2 sticking to its "roots" could mean one of two things - either in the direction that was intended, or in the direction it wound up going.

I would have much rather seen SC2 flatten the APM skill somewhat and try to have more strategic depth. I think Warcraft III was rather successful at this, though also slower paced.


Goes to show how ignorant most people in this topic are, including this poster.

SC2 has significantly reduced APM requirements compared to SC1. It's actually -insane-. Their main goal was to make the game more strategic and accessible and they were successful.

Can any casual in this topic point to the massive mechanical and micro differences between the two games?

It still blows my mind that people think SC1 and SC2 are essentially the same.

There's significantly more differences between SC1 and SC2 than there is between Dawn of War (1 or 2) and Company of Heroes (1 or 2). DoW and CoH are essentially the same game in comparison.

How this is overlooked is beyond me. I think the anti-SC2 crowd is still back in 2010 talking about 1/3rd a game. Fools.
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#59The cranky hermitPosted 11/17/2013 9:34:49 PM
Goes to show how ignorant most people in this topic are, including this poster.

I am confused. You refer to *my* post, and it somehow shows how ignorant *other* posters in this thread are? Do you think the rest of this thread pre-approved of my message before I submitted it? I especially like how "including this poster" was tacked on as if not only it wasn't redundant, but also less important than claiming that it shows the ignorance of everyone but me.

In other words, it looks like you are saying "Cranky's post goes to show how ignorant everyone else is. It also goes to show how ignorant Cranky is." Just without referring to me by name because showing you don't care who I am makes you look so cool.

Their main goal was to make the game more strategic and accessible and they were successful.
Can any casual in this topic point to the massive mechanical and micro differences between the two games?

Then can you explain to me how not having Inject Larva on auto-cast makes SC2 more strategic and accessible? In the depths of my ignorance, I cannot find any such reason for this.

It still blows my mind that people think SC1 and SC2 are essentially the same.
There's significantly more differences between SC1 and SC2 than there is between Dawn of War (1 or 2) and Company of Heroes (1 or 2). DoW and CoH are essentially the same game in comparison.
How this is overlooked is beyond me.

Maybe it's overlooked because the similarities of DoW and CoH have precisely nothing to do with SC2?
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#60Worknofun370Posted 11/17/2013 9:49:49 PM(edited)
The cranky hermit posted...
I certainly have zero issues with SC2 sticking to it's SC roots. That was certainly the right choice IMHO.

If you're still talking about SC2's APM sinks, I'm not sure that SC was actually meant to be that way in the first place. I would like to think that the design goal was to give victory to the player with the better strategy (being a strategy game and all), but thanks to finite strategy options and the insane popularity of the game, the players inevitably exhausted the actual strategy portion and then it came down to who could click the fastest. It definitely had a lot more strategic depth than Warcraft 2 did, and I'm sure that was deliberate.


I'm not talking specifically about APM sinks. (although, I do believe they "fixed" a few of those. However APM still is very important) Just the overall style and feel of the game... which does include APM sink features. It's clearly a different game from before, but still very much so the same. It's really what the SC community was asking for (I can't remember how many times I heard "I just want some updated graphics" ) and blizzard agreed.


I don't consider myself an SC beginner, but the competitive scene has always felt rather impenetrable to me, largely due to the sheer APM requirements, and a good deal due to unit micromanagement. If my theory about SC is correct, then SC2 sticking to its "roots" could mean one of two things - either in the direction that was intended, or in the direction it wound up going.


Yes, the truly competitive scene (Grand Master level) is very difficult to break into without having a really high APM. I know of people in Master with sub 120 APMs, but even that is pretty rare.

I would have much rather seen SC2 flatten the APM skill somewhat and try to have more strategic depth. I think Warcraft III was rather successful at this, though also slower paced.


I don't know how you really do that while still making the game feel like SC1. I remember one of the key complaints many SC1 players had with WC3 was the slow pace feel of the game. Since so many people (and I could be wrong about that, it is anecdotal... but was pretty overwhelming anecdotal evidence) wanted SC2 to be like SC1... Those APM sinks sorta became a must to keep the feel and style of the game intact.

Then can you explain to me how not having Inject Larva on auto-cast makes SC2 more strategic and accessible? In the depths of my ignorance, I cannot find any such reason for this.


Doesn't make it more accessible, but it is a factor in strategy. Missing larva injects can be a big deal for zerg, and because of that putting it on auto-cast tilts the balance a bit too much. As I mentioned before, I don't know of a way to really fix that without re-vamping things.