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Heya, I'm Elda King, a nerd from Brazil.

This is my "gameing alt"; my general account is @eldaking. Here I plan to mostly talk about games (both digital and tabletop), and have a more manageable timeline.

Looking around a bit, seems the devs are aware of the issues and working on it - they said some things will take a bit longer because of localization, which fair enough.

So certainly going to try it again.

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Elda King boosted

the cis should start expressing their gender without gendered terms. as a bit and as an exercise in gender exploration. I think they'd just be a lot more chill if they felt comfortable describing their gender as a hard rock album at sunset after a really sweaty run.

In case someone not familiar with the game is wondering: the system is exactly that - you draw a line in the map to spread your troops, assign whatever troops, and can then draw objectives on the map and they will try to advance/retreat to meet it. You can give a few other details, like how aggressive they should be, or tell them to prepare but wait for an order to start executing, or break it up in multiple steps.

It just doesn't work that well (though it is usable, I was exaggerating before) because the AI is very bad at executing those orders. It will miss opportunities, leave poorly defended breaches, spend too much time reorganizing, not use troop times all that well... a mess.

It isn't particularly bad or simplistic AI, but the mechanics of the game are just that much easier for a human player to deal with. So it looks really bad when you look closely, and because they are your troops you generally do. The AI is not competent enough to follow your orders, which breaks the magic.

So it ends up being an ok system, I actually enjoy it quite a lot, but it isn't as revolutionary as it could be. A lot of people downright hate it, and I have to admit they have a point.

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Hearts of Iron 4 kind of has some groundbreaking, innovative concepts that it doesn't fully realizes.

The entire thing where you just draw a frontline, assign troops and tell them to advance to this other line? That's genius. That's what every strategy game should aspire for. Especially HoI4, because it does not work at all in that game. xD

A neat thing about Hearts of Iron 4 is that each country has a "tech tree" based on plausible policies they could enact.

It's such a small, mundane thing (a tech tree like any other, a bunch of irrelevant decisions). But also such a big, novel, unique thing (use the tech tree model to differentiate countries and create huge sprawling political systems).

(The basic mechanics are solid, specializations and researches are cool. It's just the balance that is off - but in a real bad way.

I might give this a second try in the future, after a few big patches or perhaps an expansion.)

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It's all like that. You get events every few turns and they can be completely meaningless - affects all jungles, no jungles on the map.

But they could also be devastating, like require 200 extra stone to move forward and there are not 200 stone in the map.

I was trying to learn stuff over time, see if I could be prepared enough. Learn what are the events, the ruin effects, the biomes, the traits so that I could navigate around that. But it's all too potentially devastating and too high variance.

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There is a whole specialization out of remains/sacred sites/auras. There is a whole biome whose deal is having a lot of sacred sites. And, without any warning, a single event can shut all of that down with no recourse.

Without studying the random effects are so bad it is not even worth considering. You can spend 200 resources for things like replacing a bad trait with a good one (super good) or... healing everyone when you didn't take any damage. You can take 200 resources, but that could result in a "can't make potions" trait on your specialist potion maker.

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Actually, screw As Far As The Eye.

Just ragequit over an unavoidable event with 2 turns notice that deactivates all the sacred sites on the map. Quite early on the phase.

It's a sacred forest, it has like 10 of those, and I just spent some 20 turns researching the first 4 after training a worker specifically for that. I was trying to be careful and put resources because results can vary wildly.

Fuck it, every strategy is a losing strategy.

Half-serious game classification:

1) Action games are when enemy hits kill you straight away.
2) RPGs are when enemy hits reduce your hit points.
3) Strategy games are when enemy hits might kill or damage one of your many units.
4) Rhythm games are when you dance to the latest enemy hits.

Elda King boosted

You are a(n)...

Musing a bit about randomness and frustration in games (5/4) 

One more, elaborating on the last one:

Again, it's not about permadeath or unlocks or difficult games.

In Darkest Dungeon, when you get a total party kill, you are losing permanent resources you spent several runs accumulating - unlike Slay the Spire, or Hades, or Dead Cells, where you lose very little to nothing on a failed run.

This makes it necessary to deal with those "losses" or "deaths" as losing expendable resources, and not just as a failure. Which is a big deal - you are no longer taking damage to your hit points, you are taking damage to your character roster. You have moved into strategy game territory.

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Musing a bit about randomness and frustration in games (4/4) 

I guess XCOM is a bit like this as well.

But to be clear: I'm not talking about every roguelike, or difficult game, or game with a campaign/unlockables. Sometimes it is just about improving at the game, you have to restart a bunch but you are mostly supposed to get good and not die - it's not about managing the resources of your setbacks.

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Musing a bit about randomness and frustration in games (3/n) 

And a lot of that is making the player engage with the game on that larger level. Communicating what he is supposed to care about, while not sabotaging the smaller parts.

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Musing a bit about randomness and frustration in games (2/n) 

"Making the best of a bad situation" is kind of the whole point. Players engage with the game on a larger cycle: sometimes you lose, sometimes you win, but it's all part of an overarching game. You lose one run, you lose one squad, you lose one colonist... but it's not game over.

It is all very random and unpredictable, but over time it is all about the averages, so the player has a lot of control. And the mix of the constant risk, but overall progress, is the big deal of those games.

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Musing a bit about randomness and frustration in games (1/n) 

Some games have a lot of randomness, and in particular punishing randomness. Bad things will happen, things outside the control of the player, and sometimes even result in a loss.

Games like Rimworld, or Crusader Kings, or Darkest Dungeon. A whole lot of roguelikes and survival games, actually. Darkest Dungeon explicitly tells the player that the game is about "making the best of a bad situation".

It is also missing some basic conveniences that modern games use to make randomness less frustrating... and more welcoming to new players.

Re-rolling your starting crew, for example, so you don't have to restart (and aren't pressured to keep going) if you happen to get a super bad combination.

Or the lack of a confirmation when doing a very risky ruin search (can outright kill your worker!).

The game isn't too "hard" or "random"; without combat and with a lot of time, the bad traits and punishing events are the main pressure on the player. But I feel like it fails to communicate that.

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Hmm, tried a bit of As Far As The Eye, the super-cute nomad 4X(-ish).

The interface is more than a bit annoying, and makes the already very random things look completely arbitrary.

rant about shitty linux support for games 

Fuck it, a guy just said "no one promised the game would work forever".

Yeah, let me list all the things that were not promised.

Guess I should be glad a game did not steal my credit card number, because I'm pretty sure it didn't explicitly promise not to.

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rant about shitty linux support for games 

The thing about games as a service is that companies have to, you know, provide the service. I'd say it is the bare minimum.

So yeah, if you sold Linux support, you have to support Linux. Maybe you underestimated the cost, but after people already purchased the game it is too late to just not do it.

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Elekk: Gameing and Other Delightful Pursuits

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