What do you think?

#1 Edited by The_Drizzle (624 posts) -

After reaching Level 3 and trying a co-op level I have a feeling this game has a lot of potential. It's definitely AoE that's for sure, but I'm still trying to figure out how their "pay" options figure into the game as a whole, 
 
Fellow duders, how are you finding the game?

#2 Posted by Detrian (1126 posts) -

With that price point and how they are launching content it's going to bomb, hard. 
 
It IS fun. There's new mechanics both inside and outside combat that are quite cool and the game feels modern without losing too much of the classic AoE feel which is awesome but :

a) 20 dollars per "premium" (aka full featured) civilization is dumb.  

b) To be competitive in pvp you need a premium civilization thanks to all the gear/ abilities / technology that's locked to free users. You will also miss content even in "single player" since even some tutorial quests reward you stuff you can't use if you are a free user.

c) 90% of achievements for the game are tied to premium and you can actually lose the chance to get achievements if you advance too much into the game as a free user, requiring you to start all over again in a new server if you want the achievements (once you have gotten premium, that is). 

d) Finally and probably worst: They are asking you to make the choice when only 2 out of 4 civs are out.
 
End results? If you are a casual player you are boned because premium users will fuck you up, if you are willing to pay for at least one civ you are also boned because you only have half the options available right now and if you are a hardcore AoE fan you are super boned because you'd have to pay 80 dollars just to have all civs ready to play. Not to mention the extra costs of their "booster packs" that feature other game modes and unit enhancing stuff that can also be potentially more powerful than what you normally get, making you lose the edge again even if you already gave them money.
 
Will you be able to get at least some 4 hours out of free play for each civ without too much hassle? Yes, you will. But it will be a bunch of tutorial stuff, a few more interesting missions and then after that the game becomes much more inaccessible unless you pay.

#3 Posted by Symox (5 posts) -

Very much agreed! Make an extremely addicting game then lock away most the content. Bit of a con.

#4 Posted by Silver-Streak (1338 posts) -

The game is very interesting. Their idea of "microtransactions" made the Starcraft 2 "Buy our game 3 times" thing sound reasonable. That's crazy.

#5 Posted by The_Drizzle (624 posts) -
@Detrian said:
With that price point and how they are launching content it's going to bomb, hard. 
 
It IS fun. There's new mechanics both inside and outside combat that are quite cool and the game feels modern without losing too much of the classic AoE feel which is awesome but :

a) 20 dollars per "premium" (aka full featured) civilization is dumb.  

b) To be competitive in pvp you need a premium civilization thanks to all the gear/ abilities / technology that's locked to free users. You will also miss content even in "single player" since even some tutorial quests reward you stuff you can't use if you are a free user. c) 90% of achievements for the game are tied to premium and you can actually lose the chance to get achievements if you advance too much into the game as a free user, requiring you to start all over again in a new server if you want the achievements (once you have gotten premium, that is).  d) Finally and probably worst: They are asking you to make the choice when only 2 out of 4 civs are out.  End results? If you are a casual player you are boned because premium users will fuck you up, if you are willing to pay for at least one civ you are also boned because you only have half the options available right now and if you are a hardcore AoE fan you are super boned because you'd have to pay 80 dollars just to have all civs ready to play. Not to mention the extra costs of their "booster packs" that feature other game modes and unit enhancing stuff that can also be potentially more powerful than what you normally get, making you lose the edge again even if you already gave them money.   Will you be able to get at least some 4 hours out of free play for each civ without too much hassle? Yes, you will. But it will be a bunch of tutorial stuff, a few more interesting missions and then after that the game becomes much more inaccessible unless you pay.
Ah ok thanks for breaking it down, when i checked the marketplace it seemed a bit clutter and i had no idea what anything was. So $20 bucks just for a civ? 
#6 Posted by TaliciaDragonsong (8698 posts) -

I think that Windows Live shit needs to install without problems.
 
But its not, so sod it.

#7 Posted by damswedon (3175 posts) -

Not bad.

It feels like a cool mix of Civilization and Age of Empires.

#8 Posted by Purple_Proletarius (170 posts) -

They really need a LoL model. Content that is reasonably priced, but also accessible through time investment. It sucks cause I think the core gameplay and addiction component are there.

#9 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7613 posts) -

Great game, terrible pricing structure.

Hearing that the different civilizations are essentially completely separate campaigns makes it seem a bit more reasonable.. But it costs far more than a standard retail game for much less content, they need to sort this out if they want the game to take off.

#10 Edited by Detrian (1126 posts) -
@The_Drizzle said:

@Detrian said:
Ah ok thanks for breaking it down, when i checked the marketplace it seemed a bit clutter and i had no idea what anything was. So $20 bucks just for a civ? 

Yes. There's an introductory offer of 40 bucks for both civs and you get the defense of Crete booster for free (10 bucks separate), it's kind of like a horde mode I guess. 
 
There's also 2 packs for each civ with statues and plants and stuff to make your city look nicer for 5 bucks each and a hundred dollar "season pass" that gives you access to all DLC content released during the first 6 months as soon as it's available.
 
Edit: That's for the US though. I think everyone else pays 25 US dollars for civs cause Microsoft's approach seem to be "fuck the international market".
#11 Posted by Emilio (3380 posts) -

I really like it. I'm kinda sad I can't just hit up a giant battle against the CPU, but I'm having a good time. 
Sucks that you don't get all of the game. I think I'll squeeze every drop of the free* game play before I even think of giving them a single nickel.

#12 Posted by wolf_blitzer85 (5250 posts) -

@TaliciaDragonsong said:

I think that Windows Live shit needs to install without problems. But its not, so sod it.

What issues are you having? Not sure if it matters, but if you haven't yet, try installing the GFW marketplace client. I remember everything was being super retarded for me until I did a reinstall of that. Since then, I haven't had a single problem.

I will say I wish it was clean like Steam. It's a bitch to just search for games through the client. Although, I did just find out I apparently owned AoE III complete pack which was a pleasant surprise.

#13 Posted by Subjugation (4718 posts) -

Civs should not be $20 each. I have a feeling the majority of the market will agree with me in thinking that price is steep. Even at $10 each I'd still be hesitant. Their pricing model needs work. It will be a real shame if they hamstring their success by making this critical mistake.

#14 Posted by ESWAT (54 posts) -

@Detrian said:

With that price point and how they are launching content it's going to bomb, hard.

It IS fun. There's new mechanics both inside and outside combat that are quite cool and the game feels modern without losing too much of the classic AoE feel which is awesome but :

a) 20 dollars per "premium" (aka full featured) civilization is dumb.

b) To be competitive in pvp you need a premium civilization thanks to all the gear/ abilities / technology that's locked to free users. You will also miss content even in "single player" since even some tutorial quests reward you stuff you can't use if you are a free user. c) 90% of achievements for the game are tied to premium and you can actually lose the chance to get achievements if you advance too much into the game as a free user, requiring you to start all over again in a new server if you want the achievements (once you have gotten premium, that is). d) Finally and probably worst: They are asking you to make the choice when only 2 out of 4 civs are out. End results? If you are a casual player you are boned because premium users will fuck you up, if you are willing to pay for at least one civ you are also boned because you only have half the options available right now and if you are a hardcore AoE fan you are super boned because you'd have to pay 80 dollars just to have all civs ready to play. Not to mention the extra costs of their "booster packs" that feature other game modes and unit enhancing stuff that can also be potentially more powerful than what you normally get, making you lose the edge again even if you already gave them money. Will you be able to get at least some 4 hours out of free play for each civ without too much hassle? Yes, you will. But it will be a bunch of tutorial stuff, a few more interesting missions and then after that the game becomes much more inaccessible unless you pay.

This is pretty much how I feel at the moment. What’s also a shame is the lack of a Vanilla PvP or F2P vs. F2P option for PvP. I would probably get Premium just to stay competitive in PvP, but all the games I’ve tried so far I got ROFLstomped by Premium players 20 levels above me and decked out with Rare items. That pretty much killed most of the interest I had in PvP since I can’t really gauge how enjoyable a balanced game would actually be like.

#15 Posted by TaliciaDragonsong (8698 posts) -
@wolf_blitzer85 said:

@TaliciaDragonsong said:

I think that Windows Live shit needs to install without problems. But its not, so sod it.

What issues are you having? Not sure if it matters, but if you haven't yet, try installing the GFW marketplace client. I remember everything was being super retarded for me until I did a reinstall of that. Since then, I haven't had a single problem.

I will say I wish it was clean like Steam. It's a bitch to just search for games through the client. Although, I did just find out I apparently owned AoE III complete pack which was a pleasant surprise.

I tried reinstalling, tried the hotfixes available, followed some guides and what not, but it keeps telling me some package is out of date.
I spend more then an hour on it and no free game is worth that.
But thanks for trying to help out, I'll get back to it someday perhaps.
#16 Posted by Pinworm45 (4088 posts) -
@Eujin said:

The game is very interesting. Their idea of "microtransactions" made the Starcraft 2 "Buy our game 3 times" thing sound reasonable. That's crazy.

People still think this?
#17 Edited by wolf_blitzer85 (5250 posts) -

Well been checking it out. Looks good and seems kinda fun. However, I am getting this really weird chopiness when scrolling around. Graphics settings don't seem to matter, and it seems like it's only an issue when I'm scrolling to different areas on the map. When I scroll back to where I was, the game all of a sudden smooths up and everything is fine, then it comes back as soon as I start scrolling to another area. Kind of annoying, but not game breaking.

Edit: Okay if anyone else is having this problem, try turning your shader level down to medium, and switch to window mode. The game looks the same but runs soooo much smoother now.

#18 Edited by ryanwho (12082 posts) -

I'm not sure who this is supposed to appeal to. It reminds me of Sim City Societies. I don't see this pulling in the Farmville and The Sims type people and I loved the old AOE games and this kind of did nothing for me. So Idunno. I don't think there's a middle ground between the casual market and people interested in RTSs with events and technology derived from real world history.

#19 Posted by Silver-Streak (1338 posts) -

@Pinworm45: Yep. I feel that despite the length of the Terran Campaign, the game should not have been $60. It was an awesome game that does feel like a partial chunk out of a whole. I'm sure those that play SC2 mostly for the multiplayer were happy.

I prefer the campaign, but that's me.

OPINIONS

#20 Posted by Marokai (2808 posts) -

I played it for a short while just now, just to give it a shot, and I think it's really neat. The problem is, there's no way in hell I'm paying 20 dollars for a civ, and now I have an achievement on my profile. So I'm hoping they drop the price once they realize they're being crazy.
 
Also, the people in the chat suck. But hey, it's an MMO.

#21 Posted by amomjc (977 posts) -

I like it a lot and am looking forward to some of the premium content when I get to end of the free parts. I don't really mind micro transactions and I am going to just buy the 6-month content sub and just get a lot of content at once. I think they are handling it all pretty well and the PVP is handled well.

#22 Posted by NickL (2246 posts) -

I got into the beta and it seemed incredibly boring then (I only played a couple hours tho)

#23 Posted by tactis (353 posts) -

I think their business model is pretty much broken, I dont understand why anyone if they already bought one $20 premium civilization would ever buy another $20 civ. I mean your capital cities are all specific to each civilization, which means if I want to play as the Greeks I got to go and build up another capital city do more of the same type of quests and build more of the same buildings which I already did in my Egyptian civilization. It just seems like a really strange business model to me and $20 per civ is pretty crazy imo. But the game is pretty fun so far.

#24 Posted by selbie (1844 posts) -

The best thing about this is that it plays just like AoE2. That's about as much as I was hoping for this game. I just hope the co-op stuff isn't hindered by the premium content.

#25 Posted by ShockD (2393 posts) -

Does anybody knows if it has anything in common with the previous games of the franchise (except the name of course)?

#26 Posted by Marokai (2808 posts) -
@antikorper said:
Does anybody knows if it has anything in common with the previous games of the franchise (except the name of course)?
The missions are basically exactly like old school AoE, yeah. Resource collection functions exactly like Age of Empires 2 and the treasure guardian stuff is right out of Age of Empires 3. The art style is certainly different, but the core gameplay of the quests are exactly Age of Empires.
#27 Posted by project343 (2812 posts) -

@The_Drizzle: While I haven't played the game, I think they should have opted for something more akin to Valve's approach to F2P with Team Fortress 2. The primary barrier to entry for gamers in these games is simple: do I spend money on this product? If someone spends any money in their store, they have have that "premium" version of the game unlocked. It's a brilliant solution.

The initial problem with Team Fortress 2 was that barrier to money investment--should I spend money on this thing? I already loved Team Fortress 2 (Xbox 360) prior, but was I really willing to go down the microtransaction route? Well, my first purchase was to unlock the account and get my most anticipated weapon. After that, I found money constantly leaving my Steam wallet over this game.

Microsoft needs to smarten up. I wouldn't spend anything over $4.99 on a F2P game in a single purchase. They need to go the way of Valve.

#28 Posted by subyman (589 posts) -

It seems okay. I don't like how it forces you to start purchasing add-ons right off the bat. 45 mins in and there was already a quest reward I could not use without paying 20 dollars. It kind of derails the fun at that point.

#29 Posted by Polizei (30 posts) -

I'm enjoying my time with it so far (2 hours in) Feels good to be playing an actual new game for once... This summer drought is killing me!

#30 Posted by akzo (64 posts) -

I've really been enjoying it.  Old school AoE fan, first online expierience with a game was AoE2.  Spent 20 bucks on a "premium Civ" and will more than get my money's worth.  Enjoy how the role playing elements are included.  It's a slower pace RTS compared to Starcraft and it's ilk. 
 
If you enjoy this, you might also want to try Rise of Nations.  You can probably get it cheap somewhere, it's about a ten year old game not sure how well it has held up.  Great game, similar to AoE. 

#31 Posted by haffy (673 posts) -

What do people think of the single player? I'm level 13 on it now and the single player is just feeling like a complete grind for items and such.  
 
I want to play more of the PvP because I found that pretty fun. But the different levels and items in 1v1's seem kind of crazy considering it's an RTS. Also level 25 for ranked seems along way off.

#32 Edited by DeeGee (2113 posts) -

I think it's great. It has just as much content as a $60 game, but it's free. No idea why people are saying that they lock you out of a majority of the content. Ranked PVP and blue/purple loot is the only thing you don't get. I've seen four pieces of blue loot so far, and I'm level 20.

As for the price point, the great majority of RTS games have three different sides and cost $60. Hmm, I wonder what that would cost if you could buy each side for $20? Red Alert 3 has much less content then this game, but nobody complained that game was overpriced.

It comes down to people not getting onboard with their transaction style. It's different, it's not exactly micro, and people don't understand that concept. A free to play game? Well, naturally all free to play games must have $5 transactions for hats or bag spaces, right? Why does this game think it can charge $20 for literally hours and hours of content? It should be $5 like all the other games! Or not.

#33 Posted by G0rd0nFr33m4n (762 posts) -
@Marokai
 
I can not understand this hate for the $20 civ ..... games cost money to make... most people only use 1 faction and stick with it when playing these types of games.  $20 is a lot cheaper than $60, and if you're smart, you can always wait for a civ sale.  
 
I bought premium greek, I am having a lot of fun, and I will buy the egypt civ as well WHEN it goes on sale I'm guessing a few months from now when the other 2 civs are released.  I find the pricing to be perfectly fine, especially considering I can always just play a civ, have some fun, and NEVER buy it if I don't want to. I have never EVER heard anyone say they equally played all 3 factions with a game like Starcraft 2, so I find the way this game to be structured to be fine.  
 
Also I have played games that I have found a lot less fun for more than $20, just saying. 
#34 Posted by keyhunter (3207 posts) -

I really like AOE and so I paid the 40 beans for the 2 civs, and will pay the other 40 beans for the other 2 civs. 

#35 Posted by Kratch (367 posts) -

@Purple_Proletarius said:

They really need a LoL model. Content that is reasonably priced, but also accessible through time investment. It sucks cause I think the core gameplay and addiction component are there.

Agreed. League of Legends is a great model for free to play because everything that has to do with gameplay (meaning anything besides cosmetic skins) can be unlocked by just playing tons of the game. If a game is good enough, people are going to shell out the microtransactions to get the stuff a little faster, and the people who don't pay are still populating your game and can still eventually play everything. I have friends who love LoL who have never spent a dime, and I have friends who love it and have dropped over a hundred dollars on it. Both of them are happy with the model.

#36 Posted by Beomoose (675 posts) -

I'm really sad/disappointed/pissed at the particular flavor of F2P AoEO is sporting. I can totally get on board with putting civs, specific units, and high-level gear into the "paid" section. But it feels like they've gone a bit too far. For example they decided that premium content loot was GREAT advertising for a premium civ, so I'm getting effing bombarded with stuff I can't use. Hell usable loot in general is challenging to come by with a free civ, my level 12 greek guys have shirts and that's it.

#37 Posted by Binman88 (3684 posts) -

I want to like it, but playing it only makes me yearn for AOE2. I can't really justify putting money into this one knowing that everything I want from this and more is available in the copy of AOE2 I've owned for ten years. There seems to be much less of an emphasis on the historical stuff in this one too, which kinda spoils it for me.

#38 Posted by Wandrecanada (402 posts) -

As someone who ended up buying one of the $20 dollar premium civs I can tell you that I'm liking the game a lot. It's a very odd combination of RTS and MMO where things like loot, crafting and trading are also a core element of the game. For people annoyed at the price structure you really have to remember that each $20 civ is a unique campaign, tileset and unit set that you level up all the way from 1 to 40. Spending 20 bucks will actually get you the full game experience that even most $50-$60 RTS games cannot deliver because of their rigid model. That's $20 one time for something that will probably last you 40 hours if you somehow just blew through content.

Realistically most people would probably opt for one $20 purchase for the lifespan of their play. People who want to invest more for PvP or trade diversity will pay more for options in what civ they field. As for the free players it's possible to go through the campaign without touching the stores but it'll likely be slightly harder and you'll need to spend a lot more time getting there. I mean you're getting a full sized RTS for free... they gotta have some kind of carrot.

#39 Posted by frotty (2 posts) -

First off, I'm going to compare this directly to starcraft2's pay model. In SC2, you jump into PVP right away and get 1 out of 3 campaigns for $60. In AOEO you can buy 1 of the 2 races for $20, a "booster pack" for $10. Some decorative extras for $5. There is also the $99 to get all content for 6 months, which includes 2 more races/campaigns. Compare that to $180 for playing all 3 SC2 campaigns and possibly access to "new units?"  I will say that those campaigns will feel more like different games than AOEO, for sure, but the AOEO campaigns aren't exactly cut and paste.
 
Now, people moaning about "releveling" a race and how in previous AOE games you got all the races up front, etc. That's understandable but this is a bit more persistent in that you can send all of the leftover items that you never equipped to yourself to use on your other races. In fact, that's encouraged as as you do the greek campaign you might get egyptian items. You also have limits on what tradeskill materials you can produce (there are a handful of materials makers producing on a timer, but you have to choose the material you want to make and the advanced ones are limited so you can't even produce them all). While this encourages trading, it encourages having multiple civs on the same server more.
 
Each campaign is *long.* You can't beat the game in a day or two like you could with offline versions. And they are unique enough, there will obviously be the "try out this unit" type missions that are similar for each race, but there is some variety thrown in there on the special story missions.
 
The coop matchmaking is interesting, you click the coop button and your quest is automatically linked in the LFG channel. Someone else can click it and join you to make it easier. As the game gets harder, you will basically NEED coop, or, you can grind out repeatable quests that you've already beaten until you outlevel / outgear the quest to solo it. There is also an "elite" toggle for the repeatables to add difficulty and reward. Yes, at some point you've "done all the missions" and now you get to do repeatables. Again, cue the multiple races value + advantage. 
 
It is worthy to mention that premium essentially unlocks the ability to craft more and better consumables which allows you to solo quests easier. The consumables are game breakers (but only PVE). Literally a consumable will spawn 30 units, or an entire fortress. The game isn't exactly balanced around them, but any mission I just want to steamroll through I will use at least one consumable.
 
Every area has its own currency that buys recipes or items that give you a bit more power. Again, if you play both greek and egyptian, you can trade certain items to yourself. 
 
The problems with it (aside from $$$ = power)
Matchmaking is junk. You can be level 5 and will matchmake with a level 25, who will stomp on you. Yeah, you'll get the "lol i beat the premium who sucked with my nonpremium, lower level" but the check is simple: would you beat yourself if you played premium vs. non-premium? Premium should win handily, they produce faster, do more damage and have access to more counters. Raw math.
 
People saying "waiting till 25 for rated battles, waaah" are completely wrong. Presumably this will be fixed, but you will just risk losses unless you are 40. The matchmaking is simply that  bad.  Hitting 25 and going rated just to go against a full epic 40 is what happens now, and it isn't fun.
  


So really, I can understand people doing cost analysis on the game. It isn't as easy as "it's worth it for just one civ!!!" because you get a *ton* of advantage from having 2 civs, and having the booster pack which is essentially free epics once you're high enough and know how to win.
 
So the problem is while it is free to play, you're playing a severely crippled game that you might enjoy trodding through the single player campaign on, but if you pay $40 you get materials and items advantage (yay rng drops and being able to do 2 time-locked repeatables a day) $50 or $100 you will simply be more powerful. I can understand people not wanting to support that system where you are basically paying cash for power.  It really is as clear cut as "oh, you won that battle because you had a +20% damage weapon on the dudes where i had 19% and mine died first."
 
I will say, however, that the campaigns *are* different enough to me to warrant buying each race and releveling them, so I basically see it as buying an engaging $20 game 4 times with 6 months of bonus content (the boosters are nice, i don't care about the decorative stuff at all). I've bought worse new $20 games. The nagware of literally getting a quest reward that's a pop-up ad to buy the premium is a joke, and unnecessary. It will turn people off from the game more than it encourages those to buy. They'll not need much reminder when they get stomped on or an inventory full of things they can't do or use.
 
Summary: you can enjoy the game for free, but you'll be nagged and if you're going to devote any time to the game it is worthwhile to purchase at least one premium civ. If you're going to spend a month or two playing it, getting both right now is fine. But if it sucks you in at that point, you'll just end up regretting not purchasing the $100 deal. That's how this ploy works. I'm not saying it is valuable, I am saying that if you feel like you wouldn't mind levelling all of the civs to 40 the $100 version is well worth it as buying a $17 game every month for 6 months.

#40 Posted by Scotto (1171 posts) -

@Marokai said:

I played it for a short while just now, just to give it a shot, and I think it's really neat. The problem is, there's no way in hell I'm paying 20 dollars for a civ, and now I have an achievement on my profile. So I'm hoping they drop the price once they realize they're being crazy. Also, the people in the chat suck. But hey, it's an MMO.

The thing is - and the thing most people don't seem to remember - is that you're NOT only paying $20 for the civ. You're also unlocking advisors (along with the special advisor units), all of the achievements, rare and epic gear, ranked PvP, and everything else that goes along with having a premium civ.

This game could get expensive if you plan on playing a ton with every civ that comes out, but for the 90% of people who will probably main as one civ for 90% of their playtime? It's fine. And if you simply want to try other civilizations, you will be able to.

I completely understand why they charge $20 for a civ, because they know full well that the vast majority of players aren't going to buy more than one or two of them. People find their civ of choice, and then focus on it.

I'm really enjoying my time with this game so far, and I think it will only get better once they start releasing significant patches to rebalance things a bit, expand on the PvP aspects of the game, maybe add things like an auction house, and so on. It's a great start. I also love the (apparently divisive) visuals - the colourful and cartoony look works perfectly for AoE, and the animations are great.

- Scott

#41 Posted by Jimbo (9772 posts) -

I dislike this payment model too much to be interested, regardless of how good the game is, but if they released a 'pure' SP-only version for a reasonable price then I'd consider it. It's not really a cost or value issue, I just hate feeling like I'm playing a shop instead of a game.

#42 Posted by makari (594 posts) -

It's kind of strange. The price you pay is definitely tied to how much you like the game, in the end. The most a lot of people will spend on this game is $20. Leveling one premium civ to max and kitting it out like a boss is a large time and effort investment, I think most people will feel they got their $20 worth if they liked the game enough to throw the money down in the first place. From there, it's just about how much you like the game. If you like it enough that you want to level another civ up to max, well, you got your $20 worth out of the first one so it stands to reason that you'll get $20 worth out of the other right?

To be honest, it would have been better if it was $20 for the first and a bit less for each subsequent rather than $20 each since you are playing pretty much the same content over with a different ruleset. But hey, if you love the game enough to want to do it all over again more power to you, and if you don't then they aren't charging you for content you don't want to play.

Pragmatism, bitches.

(PS: I'm insane and got the season pass. Don't ask me why, I don't know either. I'll tell you if I regret it in 6 months)

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