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[why are tac sim fans not jumping into ArmA ?]

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I know there is an Arma forum here, but it would make no sense to post this question over there. I was watching the vid that Rocky posted recently of the Project Reality mod for BF2, and I thought "this looks a lot like ArmA, just less complex".

I have to ask myself (or you guys) what possible reason could any tac sim fan (GR fan) have for not jumping into Arma? In my opinion the combat is absloute perfection, now that the bugs are cleaned up. Because this is not the Arma forum I won't go into what makes it so great, all I wanted to know is why we don't ALL play that regularly? I was a latecomer to Arma, not because I never had interest, but because until late last year I never bothered to look into it, all the while assuming it's probably just another lame shooter like CS or something. When I DID finally discovered it I was totally blown away. It is everything I ever dreamed a combat sim could be.

I can only assume the biggest reason not to play it is that it's not the same "quick fix" that GR offers. Arma requires more time per session (for the larger scale missions and higher level of detail with regards to character assignments and duties?

I can understand that, but you would truely blow my mind if someone here were to tell me they just don't like the sim, as apposed to "it's just too involved", or system requirements or something like that.

I will conceade this, that the #1 thing I have against Arma, and the reason I'm not more active there, is the lack of structure (campaign) and you seem to have to be willing to learn to edit the game to get the most out of it. Just one example, I had to edit many missions just to be able to load out PRIOR to starting the mission; the standard method of loadingout is having a weapon crate at your insertion zone, which is s t u p i d.

Edited by doubletap
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(Note: This is exclusively from a single player perspective)

My reason for not playing ArmA is fairly simple: I tried OFP1 and didn't like it. When ArmA reviews more or less unanimously described it as "OFP1.5" I just ignored it and never looked back.

A recent ArmA2 preview described Bohemia Interactives work as "high on features, low on polish", which I suppose sums up my sentiment pretty well. I really wanted to like OFP1. I felt the potential was almost endless; to pick up the baton where GR1 reached it's limitations. I absolutely loved the principle of the game, but the actual game left me sorely dissapointed.

It was just too clunky and awkeard. It felt like Bohemia Interactive had made a game with all these great ideas and features, but failed to stop and check if they actually worked in the game. It lacked focus and polish. In that respect, GR1 run rings around OFP1.

Since I'm a rotten FPS gamer to begin with, getting killed constantly is all the frustration I need. Having to tangle with the game itself is too much.

I do get good vibes about ArmA2 though, and in particular Lightspeeds plans to mod into a more "GR-like" experience.


krise madsen

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Missions are too long for me personally, and the graphics are sub standard.

If I had more time to devote to it, I dare so it's more detailed gameplay would become an attraction rather than a frustration.

That's my reasons for sticking with GR instead of Arma.

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Those are good reasons. Arma feels like it was developed just enough to supply the user with all the tools required to make his own game. You are therefore entirely dependent on the modding community, and can only hope someone makes missions and scenarios that you enjoy.

It is also crucial to connect with the right people to play with on a regular basis, an established squad that plays frequently, because you can forget about the SP altogether. Mainly because controlling your squad(s) is so overwhelming, ironically enough, because there is so much at your fingers.

The graphics may look sub standard if you don't have the rig to push it, I don't know. On my pc (specs listed below) the sim looks photorealistic, it's amazing. Though I have noticed videos - on youtube for example, usually look poor. I assume it's because features are set low so their machine can run the game and record with fraps. (?)

I only hope that as BI endeavors to produce a more polished, user freindly sim, they do not confuse that goal with reaching out to mainstream gamers. . . . . .

We all know how that story ends, don't we Capt Mitchell.

Edited by doubletap
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I play it settings on high, and while some scenes yes do look photo realistic, the movement of the character models isn't too good, and the urban settings look really bad.

Graphics don't bother some people, but for me personally, I like some decent eye candy along with the meat.

I saw a preview for ArmA2 and there was mention that the graphics still looked dated. If you can see past that, and have the time to devote, there is a rewarding game there though, I don't doubt that.

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The environment detail/effects (of ArmA) benefit from a higher end PC but the low-poly/low res stock characters/vehicles don't- regardless of your rig- without the use of a addon or two. Reportedly, ArmA2 will double up the detail of the models, and again reportedly without calling on more system resources.

The UI is awkward at first, and remains so even if you play the game consistently, so it is either something you learn to put up with or not. From the looks of the Command Bar and its use in various preview releases, it does not look as though ArmA2 will be any less dis-jointed. No branched command structure for the various controlled elements in sight- sad to see.

AI is a hit and a miss. In a one sense you have better control due to the simple one click ROE setup (as well as the stock FireTeam Switch) of GR/DS/IT but in ArmA, you can fine tune the orders for more flexibility, and as long as the mission is scripted for it, Team Switch for even more handholding. ArmA2 Micro-AI promises more self-motivating bots, but that is yet to be seen.

Stock ArmA fell flat on its face regarding audio. The default sounds, the spatial pattern, etc. seemed to be put in almost as an afterthought -requiring addons to be playable. The audio of GR (&:AW*) on the other hand were excellent out of the gate.

And then there are missions and the team makeup of the 2 games. GR was Special Forces like small unit actions where ArmA was regular line unit combined arms actions. Unfortunately, ArmA2 looks to be shifting to the SF side of the coin with the appearance of Team Razor -and the dreaded Cult of Personality of Hero Characters ala :AW*. Hopefully gameplay won't suffer because of that.

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Graphics don't bother some people, but for me personally, I like some decent eye candy along with the meat.

Yeah me too, to be sure, but we're still playing GR. ;)

When I'm playing, I'm so immersed that I don't even recognize the graphics being outdated. Same as with R6 and RvS.

As for reviews and previews, I always keep in mind that these are done by GAME gurus, people who for the most part look at games completely differently than I do, as a devoted fan of a particular genre, and of realism. These same people usually consider good/bad aspects the opposite of the way I see them. They look at graphics that are not as good as the latest scripted shooter, and totally overlook the fact that these graphics are as good as they can be while maintaining a playable framerate, due to the fact that Arma is a living breathing world, and far more resource demanding than a scripted interactive movie like COD.

I do get good vibes about ArmA2 though, and in particular Lightspeeds plans to mod into a more "GR-like" experience.

That would be the perfect game IMO. I would never leave the house.

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My own 2 cents,

I like both Ghost Recon and OFP equally, but for very different reasons.

Arma, i never liked, maybe because it was too similar to OFP that i played and modded to death, while running a lot less stable and less smoothly than OFP, additionally with all those "nextgen" effect, getting my eyes to bleed with the overdone HDR is not what i was looking for when i play a combat sim.

OFP unit control was clunky because of the animation system, but while ArmA improved the animations themselves and separated in some patch the weapon view from the 1st person view, it remained clunky, i always felt in command of a vehicle, not of a soldier (but not as much as the old Wargasm game).

Again, with all the scale and comprehensive content of OFP, plus some modding it was overall acceptable, but finding the same clunkiness in ArmA, just not interesting.

But more importantly, i never felt any immersion like in OFP, i imagine the very bad campaign and missions of the stock game were directly responsible of the lack of immersion.

That said, none of those 2 games had an immersion that was even half as impressive as what i feel in Ghost Recon, that is always even now the most immersive tacical combat sim i play and continue to enjoy every bit of firefight i get in it.

Now as a mostly offline player, a big annoyance is the ArmA AI, it is just bad on a tactical level as it was in OFP , unable to take cover with what could be seen as remotely an artificial intelligence (the AI just drop on the ground even if in the middle of nowhere or in town will never try to find cover).

This was excusable in OFP, being very new concept in its time, but when you compare it with Ghost Recon AI that is able to take hard or even light cover, lean from cover, try to grenade your position even without having a direct LOS to you, use suppression fire, can be suppressed, etc... ArmA AI is laughable and way less realistic than Ghost Recon.

In ArmA2 in one of the video, supposed to demonstrate their new "microAI", you can see a whole squad of AI going prone in the middle of a street, so even if they get their new AI to lean, they always lack the tactical awareness of the Ghost Recon AI.

On the penetration system, both OFP and ArmA are very arcade in comparison to the very deep and throughout Ghost Recon armor system, localised wounds , limping, etc... Ghost Recon is always way more realistic in that regard.

Map details, while OFP was a basically flat world without any accidented terrain, but as i said it was very ambitious for its time and so it was forgivable, terrain detail while improved a bit in ArmA is always nowhere as detailled as in Ghost Recon.

Certainly OFP/ArmA maps are way larger, use their satellite texturing, but Ghost Recon map system allow for a -very- lot more variation in mission situation, and the detail of the terrain is superior to OFP/ArmA ones that remained mostly flat without small hickups or accidented part.

The AI navigation is always way better.

In OFP it was possible to get the terrain as accidented as a Ghost Recon map when setting up the terrain detail to very high, but even NASA computers can't run it in real mission situation even today with such high setting, in ArmA it is not even possible anymore.

Overall, ArmA was a real disapointment to me, and i doubt ArmA2 will be any better for what i hope judging from the videos.

Luckily for me , there is always Ghost Recon and its extremely impressive stock and superb modder work to get into immersive firefights. And OFP run very smoothly and 100% stable with enough addon and mod content to keep me busy there for years to come.

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Here is my penny worth of thoughts.

Love GR, tolerate ArmA.

GR was easy to learn. Not too many buttons, very clean.

ArmA on the other hand can become very confusing in a short time as there is a button for everything.

The other thing I found playing ArmA for awhile was there was no real CQB. It was all snipe from long range.. run .. reposition .. snipe rinse and repeat. Then steal a vech, or the one you brought and finish the last few. Pffft. Im a CQB junkie.

At Alpha Squad we even tried tweaking a few things to allow for CQB but still ended up being thrashed.

I can't say ArmA is all bad as some of the concepts were kinda cool. tangos that actively flank. The bad side, fastest runners since Ben Johnson and they don't seem to tire like you do.

But not to ramble on and on, that's my penny.

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Let's see besides horrible running on most machines. ArmA is its own worst enemy. You can't just jump in and play. I mean have you tried completing Warfare or Evolution or ACe in an hour? No way possible and THAT's all that people are playing.

I mean i don't know about you all but I work for a living with a family and I can't drop 4 hours into a video game for 1 mission. A good day allows me to drop in and out of different missions and play. I don't get it these guys building these missions that you need a battalion to complete and frankly ArmA doesn't have the players to do it .

Then factor in all the different nations that wanna play their own mods (ADF,FDF,CWR ICARMA,Project85 ect ect) and you find your self in a sea of servers you cant meet the mod requirements for or if you do you can't understand the guys your playing with.

I love OFP. I support the FFUR team mods, WGL mod and GRAA 3.0 (those are for the guy who said he hated OFP, makes it a completely different game) but with all these you can grab like the Honk Kong mission pack or the TOW pack and play a few missions without dedicating a whole day to 1 mission.

I own Arma (twice actually) and Queen's Gambit. I would suggest Project Reality over ArmA anyday

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I have played GR online every Sunday with the same team for six years.

That is the main reason I haven't played much OFP(have a legit copy) or Arma(played the demo).

Both games are a full plate that require time devoted to them.

As Remmel Lawson use to say to women that were interested in him,

"Honey I love you but I just don't have the time."

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  • 2 weeks later...
I was a latecomer to Arma, not because I never had interest, but because until late last year I never bothered to look into it, all the while assuming it's probably just another lame shooter like CS or something. When I DID finally discovered it I was totally blown away. It is everything I ever dreamed a combat sim could be.

This is creepy - I could have made the EXACT same post myself. After I finally figured out how to play ArmA I too was completely blown away.

Things not to do in ArmA:

- play the demo

- play the SP campaign

Both are to be avoided - completely.

It took me a very long time to go from "Arma is a joke" to "nothing even comes close to this game".

Now, I play Arma most every day - alone with AI support. Doing a friendly co-op "pickup game" in Arma is a little "different", let's just say. As with most games, an organized group is best. I mostly play the Dynamic Sahrani custom mission where I take an AI squad in a chopper and fly to a random location in the Arma world on a randomly generated mission.

I also play the other custom, what I call, "super-missions" in solo co-op.



Joint Cooperations

The added functionality, randomness and dynamic qualities added to these missions by the large amounts of user-scripting is phenomenal.

I've been collecting a library of edited movies of my missions that I consider worth saving. In their entirety, they represent game functionality that other games just can't come close to. I frequently e-mail my movies to my "GR buddy" and literally blow him away.

I don't buy many of the arguments thrown up against Arma. I have no patience for complex games but I have no trouble playing Arma. I issue a few orders to my AI mates and that's about it. Regarding graphics, I send screenies of stunning vistas in Arma to my friends and again, totally blow them away. The use of HDR and post-processing is fantastic.

And yeah, I've modded initial loadouts and the contents of weapons crates and filled vehicle weapons caches and even expanded squad sizes by editing missions but I consider that very rewarding. It's impossible for mission-makers to please everyone.

So take heart Doubletap, I know EXACTLY what you're talking about and yes, it's completely possible to absolutely love GR and to also absolutely love Arma!

I'm waiting for the real sequel to GR to come and someday I'm sure it will. IMHO, GRAW/2 has nothing to do with GR. And to add some balance to this love-fest, no other game has the immersion of GR regardless of functionality. GR has a "soul", Arma is just a great game. Of course, all this is just one man's opinion.

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I cannot stand the personal or vehicle movement in ArmA.

When I'm doing dismounted movement I feel like I'm the gumby man moving around. It's just not smooth, and every movement takes too long to execute.

Vehicles are just too bulky and impossible to crew when AI is driving. The physics of the vehicles are kind of borked too. They slide around too much and it's just not realistic.

I've pretty much given up on PC gaming. I love GR, but after 6+ years of playing it, I'm kind of bored. I was given an Xbox 360 for xmas this past year and have started gaming through that. Found a game called Bad Company that has some great features. Realistic, no. But fully destructible environment with large maps - YES.

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I was a long standing and active member of a Classic Ghost Recon Squad, its still a great game when it was released it swayed me from OFP quite simply because it looked better... depite irrating "you can walk over this" bit of terrain and other foibles that the original host Recon had I loved it.

What Flashpoint has in spades, is support for modders and scripters unlike any other game I have seen, and its gotten better and better with VBS and Armed Assault. A built in mission editor, and a very powerful built in scripting language. Granted it still has some interesting quirks, but its easier to develop for than any other game I can immediately think of.

There is a vast array of additional third party addons weapons, vehicles, uniforms etc, as with all modding communities, quality can be variable, but there is plenty of wheat, as well as chaff.

Armed Assault looks better than OFP but still manages to have "that OFP look" to it, and I await with interest to see what ArmaII brings to us.

I only really play PvP or TvT so I can't comment much on the single player aspect, or on the coop side, I dislike fighting AI. They have a nasty tendancy of being bionic statutes something I've seen on GAW and Arma.

Thats my two-penneth.


Disclosure: I now mod for an Armed Assault tournament.

Edited by BarmyArmy
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I find myself playing a lot of ArmA lately (SPARTA have 2 main servers running the ACE Mod) and have to admit that to be honest I don't really like it much.

There are a multitude of reasons for this but I will try and list the main ones.

Movement - As people have stated before, there is something not quite right about the character movement in ArmA. This takes many forms, from the fact that actually moving around can be frustrating. I can't believe that there is anyone who has not had the famous 'Lets leap up and sprint a few paces out of this cover' when you just wanted to edge forward a few inches. Or the fact that if your running and need to hit the deck then it seems totally random when you will actually do it after pressing the key.

Hitboxes - How come I cant shoot through some netting but the AI can? Or I can see the target perfectly over this ridge but when I take a shot I hit the ridge line right in front of me alerting the enemy who seem to be able to hit me?

Vehicles - Are unresponsive, unrealistic and AI ones have a tendency to 'Warp' all over the place. Also I would still like to know how the machine gunners on UAZ's and Tanks manage to hit you from a good distance with the first or second round on a suppressive weapon.

CQB/FIBUA - This is dire in the extreme and is so bad on so many levels I cant even begin to explain it.

The main fault from my point of view is that ArmA is trying to be too many things to too many people. I honestly don't think vehicle and infantry games mix well (except when the vehicles are opfor targets as in GR). When you mix a FPS with player controlled vehicles in a 'Realistic' setting then both elements have to make compromises and this shows.

Why am I playing a lot of it you are probably thinking.

To be honest this is an indictment on the state of the PC games industry. I have GAME vouchers from the middle of last year (and more from xmas) that I can't spend. I go into GAME every weekend and amid a plethora of shiny new console titles is an ever shrinking PC section with NO new releases. Today in the Stoke store PC chart numbers 1-6 were all SIM ****** titles. Personally I don't want to play SIM-Escape the Recession (thats RL and I play computer games to escape that).

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I'd really like to see those......

My final edited movies are all under 20MB and look better than most anything you'll see on Youtube but uploading them to Photobucket TOTALLY kills the quality. Hit "full screen" button for a little improvment.

These two are simply scenarios I whipped up in the editor in about 10 minutes to see what the game was about...define the enemy and friendly forces and let em go at it:

Night Armor Battle (may be too dark depending on your LCD setup)

Battle Royale

The above are a little more exciting and glamorous than most missions. I'm not a vehicle guy - I don't drive any tanks or fly any jets and I only use the choppers for squad inserts. Almost all of my missions are infantry gruntwork. The movies below, especially the last one is much more typical than what I showed above. This is not me and 6 other disciplined co-op players here - it's just me and some AI:

Intertwined Missions Part 1

Intertwined Missions Part 2

The following is an 8-part movie of a "city" assault. Simply keep bumping up the part number (1 through 8 ) at the end of the URL to see the next part.

Chantico Assault

And here's one of running around like a chicken in a night urban battle. (may be quite dark on your LCD)

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ArmA can allow that much freedom in your missions and multiplayer co-op, its just a sad thing to see that arma can't handle the huge amount of data going on at the same time... If ArmA had a better graphics engine it would speed up things alot..

Things like vegetation and objects still need alot of work..

Where it comes to AI, i think arma was meant to be designed for human v human .. Every soldier (player) should have a role, squad_e's, pilots, medics, air support, artillery support, drivers, tank crew.. The list goes on.. The best thing would be to have tank battles online, where you have a driver, gunner and commander.. Now if they were all humans .. I would love to see that hapenning :)

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