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Age of Empires III Heaven » Forums » General Discussions » Tactical formations are removed from AoE3??
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Topic Subject:Tactical formations are removed from AoE3??
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Alexandergreat3
Skirmisher
posted 08-11-05 03:47 PM EDT (US)         
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Quote:

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.

AuthorReplies:
Alexandergreat3
Skirmisher
posted 08-12-05 02:29 AM EDT (US)     51 / 113       

Quote:

If your units get massacred because you weren't looking at just the right moment its a luckfest. It's not a matter of strategy or micro, its whether or not you were at the right place at the right time.

No, it's not because it's a luckfest -- it's because you're doing a bad job as a commander of your troops!

Quote:

No matter what the game, if you ignore your troops and your opponent pays attention to his, you will suffer very heavy losses.


Quote:

It isn't related to whether your keeping track of what formation your units are in

Oh yes it is. A player with slighter better econ can mindlessly spam out better upgraded units and would suffer minimal losses, but if formation bonuses are there, he can no longer do that without getting mowed down now can he?

Quote:

where's the thinking and adapting if everone knows formation A beats formation B beats formation C beats formation A?

Totally illogical!

Based on your reasoning, that is like saying "where is the thinking and adapting if everyone knows Cav > cannons > pike"...

Total nonsense.

Doggiedoodle
Skirmisher
posted 08-12-05 02:53 AM EDT (US)     52 / 113       

Quote:

No, it's not because it's a luckfest -- it's because you're doing a bad job as a commander of your troops!


Luckfests are when what happens is up to chance, if looking away for a second while your army isnt even moving means you get slaughtered by formation bonuses it becomes entirely up to chance, it is therefore a luckfest.

Quote:

Oh yes it is. A player with slighter better econ can mindlessly spam out better upgraded units and would suffer minimal losses, but if formation bonuses are there, he can no longer do that without getting mowed down now can he?


A player with a slightly better economy can't mindlessly spam out more units than you, that player would need a much better economy for that. In order to counter a larger force you have micromanage better. You shouldnt be able to counter a larger force with the single click of the button, that isn't any more microing than using attack move.

Quote:

Totally illogical!

Based on your reasoning, that is like saying "where is the thinking and adapting if everyone knows Cav > cannons > pike"...

Total nonsense.


There is no thinking and adapting when Cav>cannons>pikes>cav. The thinking and adapting is when you confront a mixed force such as Cav + cannons. You have to figure out what force you're going to use to take out both. If your opponent is using all the same units, countering them is reflex not thought. Now you aren't nearly as likely to run into a mix of different formations.
steace43
Skirmisher
posted 08-12-05 03:39 AM EDT (US)     53 / 113       

Quote:

Luckfests are when what happens is up to chance, if looking away for a second while your army isnt even moving means you get slaughtered by formation bonuses it becomes entirely up to chance, it is therefore a luckfest.


Ever heard of an surprise attack?

Quote:

A player with a slightly better economy can't mindlessly spam out more units than you, that player would need a much better economy for that. In order to counter a larger force you have micromanage better. You shouldnt be able to counter a larger force with the single click of the button, that isn't any more microing than using attack move.


It's not just a 'single click of the button', it's deciding wich of the different buttons to click. Following your logic, EVERYTHING can be described as 'a single click on the button'.

Quote:

You have to figure out what force you're going to use to take out both. If your opponent is using all the same units, countering them is reflex not thought. Now you aren't nearly as likely to run into a mix of different formations.


Why shouldn't the enemy be able to set up some of his troops in formation A and some in formation B? If he does, then you need to think just as much about how to attack him with as little losses as possible, so you have too choose not just WICH units that you should use to attack his cav+cannon, but also wich FORMATION is the best to use so that you expose so few weaknesses as possible, while exploiting as many of the enemy weaknesses as possible.
ancient_chicken
Skirmisher
posted 08-12-05 06:46 AM EDT (US)     54 / 113       
The American and Native American guerrilla tactics worked very well against formations, since they would sneak up (micromanaging your units out of the line of sight) with fast units, attack quickly, and run away. The army would be hurt a little, but since they were in formations they couldn't move too quickly. Then, the Native Americans would strike another point, and run away...
etc...

(\__/) Bunny want YOU to put him in your sig...
( o.o )
( > < )
schildpad
Skirmisher
posted 08-12-05 07:13 AM EDT (US)     55 / 113       
so if i am correct no more volley and charges?
steace43
Skirmisher
posted 08-12-05 07:49 AM EDT (US)     56 / 113       
And no more bonuses for attacking rear/flank.
Kumar Shah
Skirmisher
posted 08-12-05 09:22 AM EDT (US)     57 / 113       

You can still charge, infact you still have to manually give commands for musketeers to charge.

You don't need bonuses for flanking and a rear charge, if you are able to pull it of sucessfully, you have an advantage anyway.

I can see why complex formations would have hindered the game, as JcL stated, it wouldn't have felt like an Age game anymore as after the first 5 mins all you would be doing is changing the formations around. At the same time, the basic formations are still in there and using them is still essential.


Can you do the Double Yoda?
A sexual move, where you do a double backflip, insert your penis into the orifice of choice, and scream, "Afraid are you?"
Mokon
Skirmisher
posted 08-12-05 09:23 AM EDT (US)     58 / 113       

Quote:

Luckfests are when what happens is up to chance, if looking away for a second while your army isnt even moving means you get slaughtered by formation bonuses it becomes entirely up to chance, it is therefore a luckfest.

Guys guys guys..... neither is a "luckfest". it just comes down to the old way takes more skill to use... when there are no formations u must control the unit level, AND the tactical level, while conversly when formations are implimented u must only control the tactical level. Neither are luck fests but one does take more skill

Mokon | | | AoE3 Rate 2200~ | | |
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  • InferiorBeing
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 09:29 AM EDT (US)     59 / 113       
    Firstly, the formations' historic actual effectiveness can well be argued, but that did not stop them from being used. No, no matter how chaotic and messy war is, they DID NOT just break formations. Formations were an integral part of any commander's strategy. So, no. They actually fought that way. Read any soldier's journal you can find. Search through a lot of history books. It's a fact. I'm sure that formation coherency did decrease drastically when in combat, and volley fire was hardly possible after the first salvo, but if the soldiers started swirlingmassofcrapping, most modern history books would be a little off. There are lots of facts and soldiers' journals on the internet. Prove me wrong, and I shall admit it and stand corrected.

    Anyway, no I still don't think microing in itself is very strategic at all. And don't give me any of that "You make it sound like microers are stupid!" Nonsense. You knew JUST WELL what I meant.

    And formations would be based on pure luck if the different formations would beat each other? Erm... Are you serious? That's just like saying that the way the different soldier classes beat each other is based on pure luck!

    [This message has been edited by InferiorBeing (edited 08-12-2005 @ 09:30 AM).]

    Kumar Shah
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 09:34 AM EDT (US)     60 / 113       
    If you don't find good microing a part of strategy in playing Age games I don't know what to say...

    Can you do the Double Yoda?
    A sexual move, where you do a double backflip, insert your penis into the orifice of choice, and scream, "Afraid are you?"
    InferiorBeing
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 09:40 AM EDT (US)     61 / 113       
    I find michroing an essential part of AOE gameplay, but don't call it very strategic. It's just like going for a headshot in any shooting game and call yourself strategic for choosing a headshot above a normal shot. Pretty lame comparision I know, but I'm sure you get my point. I think the word "Strategy" is one of the most overused term in most RTSs. Just like "Tactical teamplay and extreme realism!" Is the most overused term in multiplayer shooters.

    [This message has been edited by InferiorBeing (edited 08-12-2005 @ 09:47 AM).]

    Mokon
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 09:48 AM EDT (US)     62 / 113       

    Quote:

    I find michroing an essential part of AOE gameplay, but don't call it very strategic.

    See in all honestly i think when ppl first sit down to rts's that is what they think, i mean hey i remember back in my aok days when i first found hg i remember reading experts and being like wow those guys are dumb. But really when it comes down to it RTS games have an extreme amount of strategical, and tactical (which micro is much more approriatly called) thought. For instance one of the old time great tactical movements is crossing the t. You know what, u can do that in RTS games, and u know what it is extremly useful

    Look at this link for more examples...
    http://aoe3.heavengames.com/cgi-bin/forums/display.cgi?action=ct&f=1,22562,,all
    now i stopped that post because most ppl were misunderstanding me and thinking i wanted it added to aoe3 when i was really saying it alrdy IS in RTS games.

    EDIT

    Quote:

    It's just like going for a headshot in any shooting game and call yourself strategic for choosing a headshot above a normal shot. Pretty lame comparision I know, but I'm sure you get my point. I think the word "Strategy" is one of the most overused term in most RTSs. Just like "Tactical teamplay and extreme realism!" Is the most overused term in multiplayer shooters.


    Ok an edit for ur edit the thing is at lower level of play ok the game can be unstrategic... but at the top levels it is extremly strategic..... it is sorta like chess i guess. If u dont understand chess it might look like a simple and stupid game, but oh boy when u get down to it it is anything but that

    Mokon | | | AoE3 Rate 2200~ | | |
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  • [This message has been edited by Mokon (edited 08-12-2005 @ 09:50 AM).]

    InferiorBeing
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 09:57 AM EDT (US)     63 / 113       
    What I meant by that edit about the headshots is that michroing can be so obvious at times it's hardly any surpise that they do what they do. No creativity. Yes, we all know Swordsmen beats Pikemen. Therefore it's no suprise to anyone when I attack your Pikemen with my Swordsmen.
    Kumar Shah
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 10:15 AM EDT (US)     64 / 113       

    Quote:

    What I meant by that edit about the headshots is that michroing can be so obvious at times it's hardly any surpise that they do what they do. No creativity. Yes, we all know Swordsmen beats Pikemen. Therefore it's no suprise to anyone when I attack your Pikemen with my Swordsmen.

    But thats not really the microing we are talking about. Think about microing in terms of flanking - you need to micro your cavalry to the flanks succesfully, microing your raiders - hit and run tactics you need to micro your hussars or cav archers, in the heat of battle microing your cavalry to the artillery, microing your musketeers to the cavalry and then charging them manually. And these add both tactical and strategic elements to the game.

    The more obvious strategy is in terms of HC and the cards you choose for shipments, etc.


    Can you do the Double Yoda?
    A sexual move, where you do a double backflip, insert your penis into the orifice of choice, and scream, "Afraid are you?"
    InferiorBeing
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 10:25 AM EDT (US)     65 / 113       
    In my mind, michroing is moving every different unit to counter every different enemy unit, retreating them and just simply moving them manually. Moving cavalry to charge enemy batteries is what I consider pretty obvious stuff. Just as moving pikemen to intercept the cavalry. Still, I personally don't consider this "Michroing", as it is on a much higher level than move A away from B because B is too strong. Look at Warcraft. That's what I mostly think of when I hear about michro. When thinking of strategy, the word "Creativety" comes to mind. Attacking trebuchets with horses in AOE is not creative. Flanking pikemen with equites in R:TW is not creative. That's not saying that both these games are wholly unstrategic.

    Oh, and Mokon? Cool thread!

    [This message has been edited by InferiorBeing (edited 08-12-2005 @ 10:29 AM).]

    Tolar
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 10:51 AM EDT (US)     66 / 113       
    Please tell me trample is still there otherwise it's just back to calvery running up to a huge group and stopping then they start hacking like troops are weeds and slowly push though. I want it where they run over the poor peeps.
    And I loved the idea of defence formation where pike men and musketeers would kneel down and prop there pikes/bayonets for a calvery charge I was looking so forward to it i don't know where I saw it but there was a screenshot where pikemen were in a box formation around a cannon and had there pikes proped up for a musketeer charge anyone got that screen?

    [This message has been edited by Tolar (edited 08-12-2005 @ 10:53 AM).]

    Doggiedoodle
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 11:06 AM EDT (US)     67 / 113       
    You have a very narrow view of microing then. It isn't just about running away its about how you run away and with what units, with ranged vs close combat you retreat so you get a bigger distance then fire until they get close enough for you to repeat the process, if you are too slow you have to resort to focus firing and if needed pull units that are getting hit out of the line(assuming the ai automatically retargets something nearer), that's just one simple instance, it varies far more. Someone said that tactics would be a more appropriate term for microing than strategy, they're probably right as tactics generally refer to what is done in specific battles, however there is a strategic element behind every tactic and if you can't see that it isn't worth arguing it with you.

    Quote:

    Ever heard of an surprise attack?


    Surprise attacks require one shot kills to be effective, one hit kills should never be in effect because they would ruin gameplay. gameplay>realism. The closest you'll get to a surprise attack is an early unexpected rush before they get any untis out.

    Quote:

    It's not just a 'single click of the button', it's deciding wich of the different buttons to click. Following your logic, EVERYTHING can be described as 'a single click on the button'.


    Changing the formation to one that will give you a better bonus is no more microing than attack move, when you give specific commands to a dozen units in a matter of seconds it is much more intensive than clicking a single button and getting some kind of bonus for it.

    Quote:

    Why shouldn't the enemy be able to set up some of his troops in formation A and some in formation B? If he does, then you need to think just as much about how to attack him with as little losses as possible, so you have too choose not just WICH units that you should use to attack his cav+cannon, but also wich FORMATION is the best to use so that you expose so few weaknesses as possible, while exploiting as many of the enemy weaknesses as possible.


    Formations are generally used to achieve a specific goal such as protecting certain units, mixing formations would be detrimental to that goal so most people wouldnt mix them. The best formation to use against area of effect attacks is whatever they have for spreading units out, that's common sense and you don't need a bonus to successfully use such a formation.

    As for the basic formations, I sincerely hope they work like AOK formations because its going to really suck if my units in formation stand around waiting for a building to come to them before they attack it.

    [This message has been edited by Doggiedoodle (edited 08-12-2005 @ 11:07 AM).]

    Kumar Shah
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 11:09 AM EDT (US)     68 / 113       

    Quote:


    Please tell me trample is still there otherwise it's just back to calvery running up to a huge group and stopping then they start hacking like troops are weeds and slowly push though. I want it where they run over the poor peeps.
    p.

    From ES Sandyman, who probably knows history better than most of us here:

    Quote:

    I'm going to have to state here as clearly as possible that the movie version of Cavalry riding down helpless infantry was NOT REALITY.
    Throughout history, massed cavalry has been generally inferior to massed infantry. Cavalry is effective against open-order infantry (basically, light troops such as archers) or against the flanks or rear of heavy infantry, but the image of the mighty horseman riding down helpless soldiers is just not the way it was.

    In the Middle Ages there was a time when infantry (mostly just militia) was so crappy and cavalry (i.e., knights) so heavily armed that they could sometimes defeat massed infantry, but even then it was rare. With the development of trained infantry even that went away. I challenge anyone to name me a battle where cavalry was used in a frontal assault on trained close-order infantry successfully. I can't think of a single case offhand.


    Can you do the Double Yoda?
    A sexual move, where you do a double backflip, insert your penis into the orifice of choice, and scream, "Afraid are you?"
    InferiorBeing
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 11:19 AM EDT (US)     69 / 113       
    As long as michroing doesn't have any creativety that's noticeable about it, it still doesn't strike me as very clever. All you've said about running away and how you run away resorting to focus fire etc sounds like pretty obvious choices to me. I'm not thinking "Wow, he's smart!" After watching anyone like that. Sure, it's better than "Running B away from A", but as long as we're down to individuals it sounds like a big michro hassle to me. Although pretty clever michro hassle.

    But seriously, come on! Let's see if I've interpeded your post correctly. Example of smart Michro: Ahem; You take ranged units... MOVES them AWAY from close combat units, fires, then MOVES THEM AWAY AGAIN! Wow! The tactical brilliance!

    [This message has been edited by InferiorBeing (edited 08-12-2005 @ 11:30 AM).]

    Doggiedoodle
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 11:31 AM EDT (US)     70 / 113       
    Its spelled micro. And there is no creativity in strategy, you don't go "oh he's creative mixing dragoons with cannon" strategy is about logically determining your next decision and that kind of choice is involved in microing all the time. I can list many different actions that are part of micro, they all seem obvious when you think about them but most people don't think about them.
    ES_DeathShrimp
    VIP
    posted 08-12-05 11:41 AM EDT (US)     71 / 113       
    Strategy is how you win a war. Tactics is what you use to carry out tactics. Strategy is planning. Tactics is execution. In an RTS, rushing or booming are strategies. Tasking your cavalry behind the infantry to attack the artillery is tactics. Strategies change very slowly over the course of history. Tactics change constantly. Tanks require very different tactics than cavalry, but the strategies do not need to be any different.

    AOE3 offers plenty of strategy. I think it's our most strategic game. For exampple, choosing which Deck to use has a huge affect on your strategy.

    We also wanted to offer more tactics. We wanted to offer players new ways of commanding their cavalry to engage the artillery. We wanted the player to feel more like the leader of the army rather than every single unit on the field. We're still doing that, but in a less ambitious way than we originally set out to do.

    We still have formations, and they do more than in AOK. You can still force your Musketeers to fight with bayonets, or put your Halberdiers into Cover mode to shield them from ranged attacks. What we backed off was some of the more controversial formation controls.

    Changing formations felt sluggish to some players. They missed the instant responsiveness of issuing a command to their units. Breaking and reforming locked armies was an extra step before a battle that distracted players. Players felt cheated when they failed to optimally wheel a formation in the right direction. Did they deserve to lose the fight? Sure. Were they outplayed? Yep. Was it fun? For too many playtesters, it wasn't. Could we have made it fun eventually? Sure. But there's a lot we wanted to do with this game.

    Like Lysimachus and others have vouched, there is a lot to do in a game of AOE3. Having time to execute that kind of tactical control just isn't available. True, we simplified some of the early economic micro to buy room for combat control. But we also filled that space with other features, like the Home City, more buildings, Treasures and Trading Posts. And you still will lose every game if you don't pay attention to combat. This was not the case in AOK where setting a gather point in an enemy town and just spamming units was an effective strategy.

    You still have to micromanage your military units. A lot. More so than our previous games. That may disappoint some players, but it just goes with a game that has artillery who are powerful at range but weak hand-to-hand.

    InferiorBeing
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 12:03 PM EDT (US)     72 / 113       
    Firstly, thanks for sorting out the differences between tactics and strategy. Still, I'm pretty sure you got my point! You people talk a lot about taking choices and how they affect gameplay. Still, sounds a bit static to me. Which Deck to choose etc. I know that micro is the way to play this game and I'm fine with it, but I don't consider it a supreme display of intelligence. I like to think of a strategical, tactical or what ever was the word for it -player to be thoughtful in some way or other when he does something right. A microer is what I'd rather consider as skilled in other ways. Just don't even try to convince me that it comes on par with super-clever tactics. I too have played the game.

    Note that I'm not talking about AOEIII most of the time. That's why I said strategy about choosing decks *Seems* pretty static. I'm not gonna openly bitch about it since I haven't even played the game, let alone seen it in action apart from a few short low-quality gameplay vids.

    There's another thing I feel like sorting out as well. I'm not actually talking about how I wish the game to be like. I've ALLREADY SAID that lots of formations, actively affecting gameplay would look pretty misplaced in AOEIII. I even wanted formations mostly for the *Look* of it. It has very few units so there wouldn't be many batallions running around on the field except for maybe one or two. I assume. (Perhaps one of the playtesters can prove me wrong here.). All I was/am talking about is the principle of tactics, strategy and micro in AOE games like AOK and AOM. Allthough I never quite liked AOM. Too few units.

    BTW, about how I spelled "Micro" wrong, don't lecture a Norwegian about how to speak English unless if it's completely incoherent. I'm allready pretty adept for a European. Anyway, I have changed it now.

    Also, I'm pretty happy the way things are with formations now. They still move in formation, and apparently there are ways to keep the units in formation. All I really hoped for. All I hope now is that the AI player will use formations like this as well.

    [This message has been edited by InferiorBeing (edited 08-12-2005 @ 01:06 PM).]

    Tolar
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 01:09 PM EDT (US)     73 / 113       
    We keep doubting and DS keeps reassuring us, how long are we gonna do this before we learn? sorry ES.
    marksman1416
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 01:29 PM EDT (US)     74 / 113       
    I hope they keep the fomations from AOK because I like to use them. I found that the formation that is supposed to protect the units from siege units from the splash damage doesnt work with onagers in AOK.
    InferiorBeing
    Skirmisher
    posted 08-12-05 01:30 PM EDT (US)     75 / 113       
    Well, they said they were going to drop TACTICAL formations, but for all I know you might still be able to change normal formations.

    [This message has been edited by InferiorBeing (edited 08-12-2005 @ 01:32 PM).]

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