Update from Battlefront on future of CM

rocketman

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#21
That is beautiful. I wonder, in theory, if a great PC could run that kind of graphics, with CMs advanced combat calculations / simulation under the hood, in 3d environment to view from any camera angle, with a lot of infantry and tank units at the same time, with spotting mechanics and so on wothout grinding to a FPS halt?
 

eniced73

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#23
That is beautiful. I wonder, in theory, if a great PC could run that kind of graphics, with CMs advanced combat calculations / simulation under the hood, in 3d environment to view from any camera angle, with a lot of infantry and tank units at the same time, with spotting mechanics and so on wothout grinding to a FPS halt?
I don't think we will ever see CM with these type of graphics along with what you state above. Too small of a team and not enough "scratch" to make. GT is getting there. If only they would go to a turned based option and multiplayer!!
 

A Canadian Cat

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#26
That is beautiful. I wonder, in theory, if a great PC could run that kind of graphics, with CMs advanced combat calculations / simulation under the hood,
Not sure of course but CM is a custom engine written in 2006 for machines and cards of that era. If they were to do a major redesign they could start with a much more powerful base line system and if there were 3rd party engines that were up to snuff then they could take advantage of all the rendering optimizations that were already there. I would suspect that they could make the game prettier.
 

Ithikial

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#27
Not sure of course but CM is a custom engine written in 2006 for machines and cards of that era. If they were to do a major redesign they could start with a much more powerful base line system and if there were 3rd party engines that were up to snuff then they could take advantage of all the rendering optimizations that were already there. I would suspect that they could make the game prettier.
Whenever that big new engine comes along I just hope they are smart and port over the content where possible (not just models and artwork but also those time consuming scenarios). Even if it was a larger 'upgrade' I'd be happy. Doing all this work over the past decade and then going back to scratch to start all again seems like a waste for a small indy studio. Not to mention we'd likely be back in Normandy again rather than exploring a new theatre of operations.
 

Bulletpoint

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#28
That is beautiful. I wonder, in theory, if a great PC could run that kind of graphics, with CMs advanced combat calculations / simulation under the hood, in 3d environment to view from any camera angle, with a lot of infantry and tank units at the same time, with spotting mechanics and so on wothout grinding to a FPS halt?
I think World of Tanks already does ballistics simulation with regards to projectile velocity, armour plate penetration depending on angle of impact, effects of various ammo, etc. At least that's what people playing the game told me. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Most of Combat Mission's calculations are (or at least should be) done when you click "end turn" and wait for the little progress bar to fill up. That's a big advantage of having a turn-based game compared to a real-time one, and it wouldn't change even if they added graphics like these, because graphics are mostly handled by the GPU these days.

But hey, CM wouldn't need to look like World of Tanks... just a bit of particle effects behind a tank's tracks to make it look like it's kicking up snow and dirt would go a long way. Small stuff like this can make a big difference.
 

Odin

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#29
Do you think we'll ever see BF develop a CM3? If so, will they be able to port the improvements they made to CM2 over the years and push the game mechanics beyond what is currently on offer, or would it be a launch title which has much to be desired followed by another decade of incremental improvements? I'm starting to think BF may never try to tackle CM3.
 

Meat Grinder

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#30
Do you think we'll ever see BF develop a CM3? If so, will they be able to port the improvements they made to CM2 over the years and push the game mechanics beyond what is currently on offer, or would it be a launch title which has much to be desired followed by another decade of incremental improvements? I'm starting to think BF may never try to tackle CM3.
Difficult to prognosticate. In the meantime, I'll hope for a CM3 and keep trying to improve my CM2 game.
 
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Odin

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#32
What is wrong with incremental improvements? :)
I likethe fact that BF has improved the game over the years, but it would be better if they could be rolled out quicker. It took years to get a few things in CM2, like mounted infantry, which were included in the original CM1 game at release.
 

Bulletpoint

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#33
Do you think we'll ever see BF develop a CM3? If so, will they be able to port the improvements they made to CM2 over the years and push the game mechanics beyond what is currently on offer, or would it be a launch title which has much to be desired followed by another decade of incremental improvements? I'm starting to think BF may never try to tackle CM3.
I don't think they will ever create a CM3 that brings the series forward as much as CM2 did compared to CM1. Their business model seems to rely on very low fixed costs and then keeping that going by releasing content packs sold as separate games. The best we can hope for is probably incremental updates.

But that's of course their decision. Incremental updates would be fine with me, as long as the game keeps improving in a meaningful way at a meaningful speed. It just seems to me they don't have much ambition for the game any more.

New content is released extremely slowly, and patches are few and far between. There are other tiny game studios that release weekly or even sometimes daily patches to change bits and pieces. Before it became world famous, Minecraft used to be programmed by just one guy, but every time i started up the game, it seems there was a little update treat that fixed or improved something.

I don't have any ax to grind with Battlefront, I wish them all the best. The game is great, despite the many small issues. But I still have those 10 dollars in my pocket that I'm hoping to give them as soon as they patch CM 4.0 to address the issue of artillery flushing out dug-in defenders.
 

A Canadian Cat

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#34
I likethe fact that BF has improved the game over the years, but it would be better if they could be rolled out quicker. It took years to get a few things in CM2, like mounted infantry, which were included in the original CM1 game at release.
For sure faster would be better. Well at least a little bit anyway. In all honesty I have still not played through all the content that they have released so if the doubled their pace it might be to much - for me at any rate.
 

A Canadian Cat

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#35
I don't think they will ever create a CM3 that brings the series forward as much as CM2 did compared to CM1. Their business model seems to rely on very low fixed costs and then keeping that going by releasing content packs sold as separate games. The best we can hope for is probably incremental updates.
The only thing I can comment on is yes, their business model is to run with low fixed costs. They do that so they can continue with a positive cash flow for an indefinite period of time. Yes, that makes things slower but on the other hand they are likely to still be around in 10 years if that is what they desire. I cannot say I agree with your characterization of "content packs sold as separate games" because it is just a packaging issue. If the had designed their game engine to offer one big environment with content packs added to the base game forever then they would have had to still charge more for some of those content packs even if the name was not a "game" any more. The fact that their design necessitated releasing separate game families at certain points is an artifact of early development design decisions and they are what they are. This idea that if they changed that they would be releasing content packs quicker and somehow not cheating us by creating new games is just nonsense. If that was not what you meant then sorry for the mini rant :)

Having said that it would have been nice to have a single game to run all the content on that would be nice. But they felt that it just was not sustainable from a development point of view. It is what it is.

But that's of course their decision. Incremental updates would be fine with me, as long as the game keeps improving in a meaningful way at a meaningful speed. It just seems to me they don't have much ambition for the game any more.

New content is released extremely slowly, and patches are few and far between. There are other tiny game studios that release weekly or even sometimes daily patches to change bits and pieces. Before it became world famous, Minecraft used to be programmed by just one guy, but every time i started up the game, it seems there was a little update treat that fixed or improved something.

I don't have any ax to grind with Battlefront, I wish them all the best. The game is great, despite the many small issues. But I still have those 10 dollars in my pocket that I'm hoping to give them as soon as they patch CM 4.0 to address the issue of artillery flushing out dug-in defenders.
Re patches, yeah hard to fault you there at least with regard to the CM 4.0 artillery issue. There have been many bugs where rushing was not necessary but there have been a few that IMHO rose to the level of drop everything and fix now. I agree that more frequent patches would be nice. I don't think I would like to be at a place where every time I start a game it tells me there is a patch but more frequently than now would be nice I agree.
 

Bulletpoint

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#36
This idea that if they changed that they would be releasing content packs quicker and somehow not cheating us by creating new games is just nonsense. If that was not what you meant then sorry for the mini rant :)
Nope, that was not what I meant. I don't think they are "cheating" us, because at the end of the day, there's specific content delivered at a specific price point. That's fair enough. Whether they call those "games" or "update packs" is not important.

But I have to admit that even though I've been playing CMBN for years and enjoyed it very much, I still haven't bought any of the other games. Why wouldn't I? It's not as if I couldn't afford it if I really wanted to.

After thinking about this for a while, I think it comes down to two things:

1: I find that their new games rarely address previous shortcomings.

"CMFB, cool, is the building targeting issue solved? No? Oh ok. Do branches still block solid AP shot? Yes? Oh, ok."

2: I find new features often seem a bit undercooked.

"CMRT, flamethrowers, cool! Do they set fire to things? No? But tank riders! Awesome! Do they sensibly drop off when they take fire and the tank is holding still? No? Oh, ok.."

So in short, I end up feeling these are features I can live without. They are OK to have I guess, but not something that give me that feeling of "got to buy that". The result is that I end up not buying those new games - unfortunately! Because the basic gameplay is rock solid.

By the way, this is NOT a "Bash Battlefront" post. Just some musings about what keeps me, a very dedicated player, from investing more in the series.
 
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rocketman

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#37
My pet theory is that they are secretly working on the next engine on the side, so when they have released the upcoming modules for FI, RT, BS and CMSF2 they don't need to start from scratch with the new generation of CM. The issues that exist in the current engine that @Bulletpoint adress might be too time consuming and hard to fit into the current engine and they can devote that effort for the next instead.
 

Bulletpoint

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#38
My pet theory is that they are secretly working on the next engine on the side, so when they have released the upcoming modules for FI, RT, BS and CMSF2 they don't need to start from scratch with the new generation of CM. The issues that exist in the current engine that @Bulletpoint adress might be too time consuming and hard to fit into the current engine and they can devote that effort for the next instead.
I hope you're right. That would be an intelligent way to go about it.
 

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#40
I buy the new stuff so that I have a wider group of opponent to play against, like Meat Grinder I haven't played against the ai in a long time. Well that and I'm a sucker for new toys