LBA2 is one of the first games I ever ever ever played. It came with our first ever PC, as part of the “Family Pack” along with other classics like Need For Speed 2 and… er… I don’t remember what else. Probably classics. Family classics.
Haven’t played it for ages, of course, and certainly haven’t ever blogged more than oblique mentions of it. I played the original Little Big Adventure a while ago and found it thoroughly traumatic, but LBA2 has always had a firm place in my heart. It’s not as traumatic.
I’ve maintained for a while now that I don’t actually like strategy games. I’m rubbish at them, I’m terrible at thinking beyond the short-term. My undying love belongs to the relentless, reflexive action of the shooter and the obsessive-compulsive inventory tetris of the RPG and the romance sub-plots shoehorned into both.
But I played Supreme Commander: Forged Alliance recently and… I enjoyed it. I was not good at it, but I muddled through on Normal difficulty. I like building bases. I like telling the units to mine resources and then build structures and build units. I don’t know why.
Here then, is another foray into the annals of RTS games that once piqued my interest. Can I find some answers in Earth 2150: Lost Souls?
So, several months after I actually got the physical box of the game, I finally managed to play Wolfenstein: The New Order, all thanks to a horrendous, mandatory, 10GB patch — 10GB being one month’s download cap, meaning I had to let it download in stages… over months. Because Steam couldn’t possibly let me play the game unpatched, no sirree.
Bah, first world problem. I have some shooting to do.
We’ve been through the cellular automata algorithm before. I said some things back then that were mostly theory — things I’ve now been able to test in the wild.
So how does one take a grid of noise and turn it into a functional RPG? Well, lucky for you, I’m getting close…
The main problem with my game development right now is that I’m just not clever enough to do the things that I’m trying to do. Bot obstacle avoidance is a very complex problem and, while parts of my approach are fine, the whole thing starts to wobble as I layer on more and more features.
Maybe it’ll all be fine in reality; my scratchpad level is, after all, festooned with obstacles deliberately placed to stress and confuse the system. Maybe once I build real patrol routes on real levels things will be much smoother.
I am beginning to wonder if I’m punching too far above my weight, though — and what will happen when I finally get knocked out.
First impressions are tough things to get right, and Shadow of Mordor really drops the ball. A vomit-inducingly narrow field of view? Awful laggy, acceleration-ridden camera movement? Insane information overload and everything is a pre-rendered cutscene? (No wonder it’s 50GB big, they’re all bloody videos.)
You’ve just tumbled off a cliff, son. Care to attempt a recovery?