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Another $.02

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I played Summit Strike for the first time recently, and it really brought me down: the music (Yemenese pro wrestling half-time show), the controls (like taxiing a Cessna), the limited squad controls, the 3-shots/1-kill ballistics, the time limits on some multiplayer games. I know this is not the XBox forum, but that bad experience has made me want to write about my hopes for GRAW/PC. I know this has been done ad nauseam already--but oh well. I'm going ahead anyway for my own satisfaction.

I play mainly GR single player. I am one of these weirdos who dislikes multiplayer games for the most part. There are so many people more skilled and rude than I, that playing online just isn't that fun for me. I like just about every SP mission (except M04 Stone Bell and the polling center mission in IT) and play them over and over again. Maybe I have a different concept of "replay value" than most people. To me, replay value does not mean that the game "plays differently" each time. Rather, it means that the game is "consistently rewarding"--regardless of whether the play differs from game to game. As anyone knows, the GR missions play out more or less the same every time. (The enemies start out in the same places and react predictably most of the time.) My play style, therefore, has evolved into what I call "floor exercises": a series of choreographed moves that I try to execute as well as possible. This differs from the game design's original intent, I think--the idea that you would make up new plans on the fly, react creatively. This is one of the game's original selling points--and something I'm truly interested in as a game concept. But the truth is that this doesn't happen in my style of play.

Frankly, there is little incentive to be tactically creative in GR. The AI-controlled teammates generally cannot be trusted to enter a dangerous area without my controlling them directly. Many games have this problem. I usually control one team for a while, get them in a safe position, then move to the next team. It's unusual for me to use all three teams at once--contrary to the game design's intent. The problem is that the AI-teammates don't see what I see. I see an enemy in the distance, but teammates don't. More importantly, I pretty much *know* where the enemies are and know where to look. (This is harder in some of the IT missions. IT03 comes to mind.) It would be pretty neat if I could indicate to my teammates where enemies are. I'd like two ways to do this--both by pointing and clicking in 1st person view and also via the command map. (I'd like to click points on the map that say, in effect, "there be monsters here.")

Another thing I do an awful lot of is saving and reloading. I save about every 5-60 seconds. If I get killed, I almost always reload. I don't like to finish a mission with casualties. I'm very glad that GR allows unlimited and guiltless saving and reloading. Even so, I'd like to cut down on the need. I've decided that about 1/3rd of my deaths are due to lack of peripheral vision. I would love to see some kind of solution for that. Nothing over the top, but maybe some kind of subtle indicator that flashes whenever you "think there's somebody there"--out of the "corner of your eye." Such an indicator would yield enough false positives so as not to be too much of an advantage. Plenty of deaths are unavoidable and should remain as such, but some peripheral vision-like thing is worth some consideration, I think.

There are a couple problems with the command map in classic GR, but I want to emphasize that, overall, it's a brilliant piece of game design. The problems are A) pixel-hunting. Sometimes (particularly on M14 Willow Bow), I click a point on the map that--for whatever reason--cannot accept a waypoint. Maybe it's a tree or a rock. The game chews it over for way too long, and finally decides not to draw the waypoint, and my soldiers sit idle when I'm not expecting this. B) When setting firing arcs, I want my men to get coverage of a particular location, not simply aim in a certain direction. Can't count how many times I've parked a sniper behind a berm or other obstruction invisible on the map. The sniper just lies there looking at the tree stump or whatever, and isn't providing the cover I thought he was.

And another thing: When spotting and sneaking up on a group of enemies, it would be really really cool if I could plan the takedown in detail in a couple of ways. Speaking of M14 Willow Bow--when you take the "north pass"? There are bad guys all over the place, but it's not hard to position your men for an ambush. The problem is that there's no good way to execute a really smooth ambush. I want two things: A) ability to "mark" enemies--to say, in effect, "I'll get the guy on the right, you get the guy on the left." (Perhaps accomplished with a Ctrl+Click.) This is where the need for richer intra-team communication comes in that I describe above--the ability to indicate somewhat precise enemy location to teammates. B) The ability to say, "don't fire until I fire." You can approximate this by using rule-of-engagement changes (going from recon to supress), but it's kind of clumsy because--if you switch to Recon ROE, your men will take cover--losing visual contact with enemies in the process. Again, I'm looking for a richer form of communication with AI teammates.

In summary, I'd like

- A richer form of communication with teammates: ability to indicate enemy locations/points of opposition, ability to time ambushes. ("Don't fire until I fire." "I'll take the guy on the left; you take the guy on the right" kind of stuff.)

- Ability to direct fire to a specific location, not simply aim in a certain direction. Team mates smart enough not to let obstacles obscure their line of sight to a target I've designated. (But also smart enough not to expose themselves too much in the process of acquiring target. Teammates shall alert me if they can't get a good view of the spot I've designated.)

- The music, packaging, voice acting, and overall packaging should be subdued, ominous. Mysterious but modest. The original GR music is mostly brilliant: spare, menacing. What a great development over the R6 music--a real sense that we'd come to a new gaming era. (BTW, great music on the Frostbite mod, whoever did that.) The voice acting in GR was pretty good, I thought--though of course I wish it was accented and nuanced for the various foreign specialists. It was good because it was so evenly toned, not hyped, not frightened. What I heard in Summit Strike was very junior high--a Johnny Quest nasality unbecoming the Ghosts.

Notice I don't care so much about weapons and graphics. Absolutely, I want good graphics, but I'm not, like, obsessed with it. Nor weapons. I could do without a first-person weapon view. Yeah, they look kinda cool, but I should be focused on the action ahead, not on the gun itself. I do value good weapon sounds. Everything on classic GR is pretty good already. (Oh, a better way to aim grenades would be nice. Add that to my list of wants.)


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Im a bit different, i am not sure i even beat any gr game, i know i have not beat RVS yet. I get a game and all i go for is the multiplayer, i love the idea of taking on another human, getting that headshot or a pistol shot while standing right behind them, its so great. The reason why i dont play solo like on GR or RVS is as you said, crapy AI...cant trust them! They always die so i get ######.

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Im a bit different, i am not sure i even beat any gr game, i know i have not beat RVS yet.  I get a game and all i go for is the multiplayer, i love the idea of taking on another human, getting that headshot or a pistol shot while standing right behind them, its so great. The reason why i dont play solo like on GR or RVS is as you said, crapy AI...cant trust them! They always die so i get ######.

Same here, I just don't get any sort of "kick" from killing AI. The idea of outsmarting a human somewhere is much more appealing to me. I actually didn't play a single mission through in SP.

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i see it a little different than all of you. while playing AI you can change how you play the game to your liking, if u like run and gun grab a saw and light the AI up. if you like it more tactical take a silenced m4 ( IT ) and move your squad around silently. on the Bf2 topic, most people dont play with a tactical sense. they will join a squad for the points, then ignore all commands given to him ( or her, i was just reading the "wether or not women characters should be in GRAW) and go off on their lonesome. but every once and a while you will get the only 32 people on the internet that have some sense of tactical gaming, and it is the best experience ever, you have squad on squad battles, calling in air support, ambushing enemy forces, and just kicking butt.

What I think GRAW needs is the ability to have "tactical" gaming dedicated servers

(dont know if i'm using dedicated in the right sense) where u must play tactical, and i dont know how you would determine how people were playing "tactical" perse, but if not theyould be kicked.

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I've always liked setting up an ambush in GR 1 and it's easily done, though not as good.

I would set fireteams, such as C is support, B are the silenced guys and A are the backup. I would switch to A and position my buddy somewhere. Then I would get C and B to move up, on opposite sides of the squad I'm attacking on RECON mode. When they spot an enemy they automatically lay down and report it. Then I check the map and tell C to move up again even after they spotted the enemies. After they're in perfect positions I let Bravo take the first shots (They're silenced) and soon thereafter I tell Charlie to go suppress. I'm always there to back them up just in case but I always loved setting up the AI teammates to kill the enemies like that. Almost always worked.

Anyways, what I'm getting to is that there's really no need to tell the AI who shoots who in a squad, maybe just for a sniper function. For example, you send the sniper out to scout he reports a squad and you tell him to shoot whoever seems to be leading them.

But with GR1 I never found a need for that. I do like the "wait until I fire before opening fire" idea.

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