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Repost: Bravo, Nick!


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This is a repost of part of an email to a friend with who I often discuss game design with.  He was not a software engineer, but I was.

The battles are great.  This is why I have two unfinished campaigns STW2/DM and RTW2/DEI.  The campaign level is great, but the battles fail to require thought and have few tactical features or realities.  TW battles are the 20 page Reader's Digest version of Gone With Wind.

Don't let UGWC fool you into thinking it is "beer and pretzels".  It a serious "grog" game.  It looks like less because the UI is well done.  GROG games often have terrible UIs not due to realism, but to create the false impression of depth.  UGCW examples:

* Units smoothly transition between column and line without command based on the situation.

* Put engaged units close and they will shake out into a battle line without you having to micromanage it.

* You can draw non-linear battle lines which follow curving terrain features in 10 seconds.

* There are no WAYPOINTS.  Why?  You simply draw movement as you wish which means all types of curves which can cover follow cover or  lead to a surprise flank attack.

* The mouse cursors changes to match terrain when ordering movement so it is easy to have units end in the right terrain.

* Every unit you click on shows you its LOS by an unobtrusive bright/dim shading.  (no need for overlay modes).

I could go on.  But Nick, the designer, has proven there is no reason for serious war games to have horrible UIs.  Horrible UIs are not realism and they are not the cost we pay for the game play we want.

Edited by MarkShot
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