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Age of Empires III Heaven » Forums » General Discussions » Tactical formations are removed from AoE3??
Topic Subject:Tactical formations are removed from AoE3??
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posted 08-11-05 03:47 PM EDT (US)         
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Complex line formations are no longer an option as they presented too many problems for the player, but simple formations still hold an essential role in organizing your troops for proper arrangement.

It appears that the Tactical formations feature is removed from AoE3.

The Complex line formations mentioned above is commonly known as the "Tactical formations", a feature that gives defensive/offensive advantages to units when they are placed in certain formations.

The Simple formations refers to the basic formations used in previous age games, such as AoK and AoM, where the types of formations did not provide much, if any at all, strategic value.

posted 08-21-05 11:48 PM EDT (US)     101 / 113       


Micro should determine the victor not the one who won the game of paper rock scissors with formations, it's a very smart move. The games that give the total experience like Rome Total War might be better suited for those wanting the realism aspects.

Ever heard of countering?

posted 08-22-05 00:27 AM EDT (US)     102 / 113       


Ever heard of countering?

Countering works regardless of micro. That's how counter systems are designed.
posted 09-12-05 08:08 PM EDT (US)     103 / 113       
It is utterly unfair for ES to market its product using formations and then simply take them out under the excuse that it makes the game too complex. There are many players in this community that can handle the complexity of formations. I suggest (and kind of demand since I feel completly betrayed) that formations become an option than can be turned on and off. That way beginners won't suffer with them and advanced players won't suffer without them.
What ES has done is a bad marketing strategy, it takes away the trust and credibility that this community has given to them. I ask you to imagine what would have happened if ES took away God Powers a few months before the release of AOM. ES would have lost avid gamers, and most importantly, respect.

Instead, the SWARLING MASS OF CRAP model, that has been present in every other iteration of the Age formula is still in place. It is a shame they took it out.
Without formations, combat will basically remain a matter of sheer numbers.

I hope for the sake of the game, and the series really, since this will be the last instalement of Age games, that they keep formations. With formation AOE3 will be much more than without them.

posted 09-12-05 08:20 PM EDT (US)     104 / 113       
If any one in this topic agrees that the formations being taken out is a good idea ...i totally disagree.

The reason why i got interested in this AOE version was seeing in the vids the lined troops sending off volley after volley.

This type of combat is true to the era's also it make a good battle experience.

Since playing the demo the battles or "Bar Brawls" as ive come to call them look like a disordered mess. It difficult to control your troops, generally you loose them ALL and theres no atmosphere to the battles.

Also the control to make your troops hold in line formation would be better. If your units get the littlest sniff of an enermy then there off, like a dog to a rabbit!

Placing your troops in defence of a square formation doesn't work either. If you have up to 50 troops, thats a big square. Only 3 troops could be firing on the corner of the square.

Its not an issue of too much micro management! It's not difficult because thats ES's job to make it easy to understand and use.

Battles, Bar brawls more like! Lets introduce druncken louts into the game. The context of the battles will make more sense!

posted 09-13-05 03:31 AM EDT (US)     105 / 113       


It is utterly unfair for ES to market its product using formations and then simply take them out under the excuse that it makes the game too complex. There are many players in this community that can handle the complexity of formations. I suggest (and kind of demand since I feel completly betrayed) that formations become an option than can be turned on and off. That way beginners won't suffer with them and advanced players won't suffer without them.

Agreed though i highly doubt jsut becasue someone demands something ES will do it. I'll be surprised if they do it for the xpansion.

I agree that the combat looks sloopy as heck. There are always straglers running amuck. It really irritates me that some units of my group just go after units they see. Even after I use "defensive" formation.

Like one of the posters said earlier. The reason I was so interested in AOE3 was the tactical formation aspect of the game. RON used foramtions rather well to a degree. Really am dissapointed at ES for MArketing it and then say it's no fun. Let us decide and then turn it off. There is already a button for it anyway. "Advanced formations On/OFF"

[This message has been edited by Aged_Tenor (edited 09-13-2005 @ 03:39 AM).]

posted 09-13-05 08:37 AM EDT (US)     106 / 113       
I agree with the previous 3 posts. The lack of orderly formations in the demo undermines the basic nature of this age of combat.

What is particularly irritating is that once your troops "break" formation and just rush the enemy, you cannot just click back where they were to reform them. Doing that forms them up IN REVERSE FACING (pikes in rear, musketeers and archers, etc., in back). You then have to click further back, then click forward again to reform them which is a pain in the butt.

Also, even if you have your men under the "defend" simple formation, if you move them they form a "box" formation, rather than the line you wanted them to hold.

Bottom line: The formations as in the demo are awful. Either give us the original tactical formations, or give us something more useful than the simple ones now available.

posted 09-13-05 09:15 AM EDT (US)     107 / 113       
I think that the formations we have in the game right now are not too bad. Granted, I think that the volley, charge, and bombard formations would have looked cooler, but I think that the formations in the game do work for their purpose. Perhaps there could be a few changes to make the formations better, but overall, I don't believe they're just like AOK.

AOK: You have a group of archers, you come upon a group of knights and mangonels. You attack the mangonels from range while half your guys get wiped out from the magonel's attack, even though you put them in the spread out formation. Meanwhile, the knights have charged you, and begin decimating what's left of your ranks, taking advantage of your scattered state to flow between the ranks, hacking you down.

AOE3: You have a group of musketeers, you come upon a group of hussars and cannon. You fire a volley into the hussars, then turn on melee mode and charge towards the cannon, slicing it down, then, you turn your attention back to the husssars. You still have melee mode on, but you see that a bottleneck in the map is preventing most of your force from getting to the hussars to attack. You turn on range mode, signaling the soldiers that are too far away to use their bayonets to start shooting the soldiers from behind. Through your clever microing, you win the battle. Yaaayyy!

Now, you may say that I'm being a little biased, tweaking the above scenarios in my descriptions of them so that AOE3 comes out on top. But you have to admit, formations in AOK were just that, and only that. Formations. If your Longbowmen were up against a cavalry charge, changing their formation from Group to Box isn't really going to do anything. But in AOE3, the formation we choose can be better or worse against a certain attack! (i.e. Musketeers using their bayonets against cavalry when they get too close)

Now, I do believe that there are some things that can be tweaked, mainly, the Defensive formation. When you put your units in the defensive formation, they form a box as they walk. But, if you add cannon to the group of units, they all just bunch up in the standard formation (pikes in front, then archers, then cannon...). If this is a bug, then please, get it fixed before Release. But if it's by design, Doesn't it make much more sense to have the cannon go inside of the box? That was the one good thing about the Box formation in AOK, if you had a big enough infantry/cavalry to seige weapon ratio, the other units would form a protective barrier for the seige. That was great. So why not implement it in AOE3? It's only natural that the infantry would try to protect the cannon, so why does their cool little box formation go to hell when you add cannon into the mix?

All-in-all, I don't think that the lack of so-called Tactical Formations is going to break the game. I think that the game is still quite good, not perfect, but still quite good. As I said above, the formations that are in the game are tactical, if used correctly, and could be even better if tweaked a bit by ES before the release.

--Ian the Crux

[This message has been edited by Blackhair (edited 09-13-2005 @ 09:17 AM).]

posted 09-13-05 09:59 AM EDT (US)     108 / 113       
I an all honesty, with much respect to ES, they still want to make money. So I wouldn't be surprised that tactical formations will be in their next strategy game, even if that comes in 10 years. (Tired of AoE? Now something else?) I mean, it happend to big ships for example.
posted 09-13-05 10:28 AM EDT (US)     109 / 113       
if i select 10 pikes and do defense formation they make box. If i select 10 pikes and 1 canon and do defense they dont make box. Whats the use of the box when it doesnt work with cannons
posted 09-13-05 11:17 AM EDT (US)     110 / 113       
since when have formations been the difference between a win and a loose.

Come on, i tihnk i posted earlier, whats a few extra formations gonna do...

General Lecter
posted 09-13-05 12:28 PM EDT (US)     111 / 113       
I'd really have liked to see the complex formations shown in the videos, but if they hurt gameplay... ES might have done the best choice.
Anyway the actual formations need some changes IMO, and I am definitely missing the Aggresive/Defensive/Stay/Stop buttons from AoE2 and AoM. I want my units to stay in a spot of the map but I can't do anything to do that. The defensive formation makes an odd box, and it doesn't work with cannons...
I will live with the formations now avilable, but they need some tweaking...

[This message has been edited by General Lecter (edited 09-13-2005 @ 12:31 PM).]

posted 09-13-05 04:00 PM EDT (US)     112 / 113       
Maybe, maybe not it will be a good idea with advanced formations. But I think it will. Why could the Betaplayers think it was getting to hurt the gameplay, I think not. Not for me, I love to use different formations in games, who give you some negative sides but also positive.

I have just seen on a demovideo, where the formations was, and I can not see why the formations was bad or hurt the gameplay. It was the best I had seen, its to unbelivibal that you in ES have changed it.

After I have played the demo, and when I set them in "Defensive" it isn't always I want to have them to make a "box"! I just want them to be defensive, not to make a box when I move them the next time!!
So to make them in a twoline defensive position, I first have to set them in "Volley mode", then I place them were I want them to be, and then press the "Defensive mode" -button again.. When I then shall move them some few "metres" I have to set them in Volleymode, before I again set them to be defensive! Things like that hurts the gameplay much more!!

And ES, a person is not forced to use the formations is they think it will hurts the gameplay.. Cant you make a on/off button or something?

But anyway.. since noone in ES will will take the formations back.. Will it be to difficult to someone to make a "formations -mod"?

[This message has been edited by Luximinus (edited 09-13-2005 @ 04:08 PM).]

posted 09-13-05 05:09 PM EDT (US)     113 / 113       
Formations are in the game, I'm sure ES will refine them more for the final release. The ones in the demo are a bit buggy and hard to use but thats because its a demo.

Stop whining.

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