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Thread: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

  1. #921
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    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by PikeStance View Post
    Remove the radar and floating flags and you will be surprise how well units can hide in the woods.
    Tried it. Well, a nice self-delusion… For the AI does never turn flags and radar off.

    The only effect is, that you are reminded to see your optometrist again, secondly loose more men, because you don't notice that they're shot at, and finally loose an entire battle, because you ordered pursuit to soon. So I turned flags and radar back on, hoping for a true line of sight feature imported from TWR II (which probably never happens, I know).

  2. #922

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Keinpferd View Post
    Tried it. Well, a nice self-delusion… For the AI does never turn flags and radar off.

    The only effect is, that you are reminded to see your optometrist again, secondly loose more men, because you don't notice that they're shot at, and finally loose an entire battle, because you ordered pursuit to soon. So I turned flags and radar back on, hoping for a true line of sight feature imported from TWR II (which probably never happens, I know).
    Actually, it was inteded to give you a nice ILLUSION. I never claimed it was a true line of sight. The only line of sight hindered was your own. You need to pay close attention to the movement of the troops. Plus, even though you may not see the enemy covered in the tree, your units could see them if they were in the line of sight, so they should not had just stood there unless you had their back to the enemy or you allowed the enemy to outflank you. Moreover, my battle mechanic makes pursuit en masse a wise move. If not, an exposed flank can proved problematic.

    On a aide note,... in a recent battle. The AI being fully aware of my disposition still chose poorly. maneuver my troops to be on top of the ridge. The left flank was the high plateau. After initially stopping the AI attack on my high ridge position (curious choice), I maneuver my best troops on a sweeping maneuver attacking his right flank situated on high plane. If I had played a human player, I seriously doubt this person would not had put the bulk of his/her men on that high plateau. More than likely, the battle would had shifted to my left as the human player would had tried to get around my exposed flank. The key would had been to wait until I made a mistake and created a gap in my lines in which to exploit. It would had been an altogether different battle and the AI was incapable even =knowing my disposition and the terrain could not had hoped to figure out. I think you are making too much of the AI's knowledge here.

  3. #923

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Absolutely, but this would also be true for Hungarian Grenadiers, who shouldn't refill their ranks in Northern Italy.
    another way how to look at casualties would be to consider them represent both killed and wounded... so some of men might recover from their wounds and join the parent unit, while some losses might get replaced from fresh troops who would arrive together with supplies..

  4. #924

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    I just upgraded from 4.5 beta2 to 4.5 and there seems to be no problem with the savegames, so I can continue my long running Prussian campaign.

    Jam, could you give some hints as to what changed since the beta2? This make it easier to assess the impact of those changes.

    Minor bugs/glitches I encountered:
    -Once when I recruited a general, about 10 generals popped up instead. I wasn't able to reproduce it, but I still kept the savegame just in case.
    -Most of the pirate ships are still overloaded so they drop men and in one case even guns as soon as the battel starts. Xebecs even start wavering immediately because of that. Xebecs drop to 83 men, Pirate Brigantines to 75 (and to 24 guns!), Galeys to 75 men.


    Some thoughts about balancing:

    Prussian Life Guards have inferior base stats compared to Prussian Grenadiers. Their only advantage is one extra chevron to begin with. According to their description they even lack the policing bonus and scary appearance ability of normal grenadiers! They are still the Life Guard and they should stand out even among the formidable Prussian Grenadiers.
    Also, they have lower base stats than other Guard regiments like Suisse, Coldstream and Preobrazhensky Guard. Imo that doesn't make any sense from a standpoint of realism: We all know that Prussia was reknown for the prowess and overall quality of their infantry units. So their prime units should be at least equal to those of other nations, if not slightly superior.
    Therefore I demand that Prussian Life Guard's base stats are raised from 2/3/8 to 3/3/9 or even 3/4/9 and that they receive the usual Grenadier abilities on top.
    I guess you might have been reluctant to make them too powerful because they are available from the very beginning? Well, if that's really a concern, I think it would be sufficient to let them start with only 3 chevrons at the beginning and upgrade them to 4 as soon as Grenadiers are available.

    I remember that you reintroduced Coehorn Mortars as a representation of heavy siege artillery. However, this doesn't work, so I suggest to ditch them again.
    Their lack of accuracy makes them useless even as a siege weapon: Their damage is immense, but it gets spread over all the bastion and most of the time they don't hit anything at all. I didn't even manage to breach the walls before the battle time was almost over and I had to retreat to a fullscale infantry attack.
    What's left is a completely unrealistic unit that tends to linger on late battlefields because the AI seems to like them a great deal. They usually don't do anything because they never hit. However, once they managed to score a lucky punch and killed 25(!) men.

    Finally, but I think most importantly: Light infantry has to be nerfed! Right now, it comes very close to breaking the game.
    I've said this before based in my experience in the cololonies. But being in a late campaign now where light infantry becomes available throughout Europe, I have to stress this point again.
    The first time I noticed that something isn't quite right was when two units of Austrian Pandours appeared in my flank, and they routed my (3 or 4 chevron) Musketeers in an instant. When I brought up some Grenadiers to take care of them, I was amazed that they got shot to peaces and routed soon after. Alright, I thought, and sent my Cuirassiers (also 3 or 4 chevrons) to ride them down. My jaw dropped when they were annihilated: they had lost half their men and were already wavering when they reached the enemy, started fleeing and less than 30 of 80 survived! End of the story: I had to bring up more infantry from the front and flanked them with cavalry.
    I did some testing in custom battles and they basically confirm my impressions: I sent Austrian Pandours (2 chevrons) against Prussian Grenadiers (3 chevrons) and the Grenadeirs got ripped to pieces. Pandours vs Cuirassiers (both 2 chevrons), it's the same thing: The Cuirassiers lose half(!) their men before closing in and get totally destroyed.
    Just for a comparison: If Cuirassiers frontally charge a battalion of 3 chevron Grenadiers, they lose about 10 before reaching the enemy lines.
    Suggestion that springs to mind: Finally give light infantry and sniper units proper (company) manpower: 40 men, 1/5 of a line infantry battalion! For elite units increase their cost (relative to numbers) and decrease reloading skill. For irregular light infantry units also lower accuracy, moral and reloading skill.
    It's very difficult to model light infantry and snipers in a way that is remotely appropriate with respect to their historic role. But to be honest: I'd rather make due without them than have them break the game like that. It just feels immsensely stupid if elite battalions get shredded to pieces by bands of irregular infantry that, historically, didn't play any decisive role in battle - at least not in the high 18th hundred era.

  5. #925
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    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Correggio View Post
    Prussian Life Guards have inferior base stats compared to Prussian Grenadiers. Their only advantage is one extra chevron to begin with. According to their description they even lack the policing bonus and scary appearance ability of normal grenadiers! They are still the Life Guard and they should stand out even among the formidable Prussian Grenadiers.
    […]
    Finally, but I think most importantly: Light infantry has to be nerfed! Right now, it comes very close to breaking the game.
    I agree about the Guards and do remember Pandours being a pain. But I'm not sure if they're particularly overpowered, or all Light Infantry in conclusion. I don't know, I played as Prussians up to the mid 1750ies, fought the Austrians, naturally, and maybe attributed it to Hard difficulty and this mod's even hardened Battle AI. If you look at some miracles of bravery a simple militia unit can perform, nothing surprises you anymore. This is probably a price a mod with a realist stance has to pay to "challenge" and "difficulty": low tier units fight incredibly well to make up for an AI, which still leaves much to be desired… Let's not blame the upright modders for it.

    Currently I'm in Egypt, with Napoleon Total War, not in RL, but I hope to come back to this mod soon, for other ETW mods are also not entirely bad, but this one here has a certain mature point to it and a "point" to make at all, opposite to a choiceless agglomeration of "everything" with a bit of all.

  6. #926

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    A correction, btw: I forgot to change the difficulty level in those tests mentioned above, so AI had bonuses. I just repeated it with correct settings: Pandours (2 chev) still kill Cuirassiers (2 chev). With Grenadiers, however, it's possible to beat them by closing in, but it's still very close and they lose at maximum musket range.
    I wasn't aware that the hardcoded/hidden AI bonuses still affect 1on1 combat that much...

    Still, I think that light infantry is way overpowered if they single-handedly own heavy cavalry that charges them, as well as line infantry in a prolonged exchange of fire within musket range.
    For me, this has nothing to do with challenge or difficulty because as human player, you can field those overpowered units yourself, if you so wish. Of course, if you play against at least hard battle AI, they won't be that unbalanced, but they'll still be unbalanced compared to other units. Also, to make a real difference in terms of AI vs human player, those units would have to come in greater numbers and earlier in the game. But all of that is beside the point because I very much doubt that JaM meant those units to serve as a AI vs human player handicap.
    Also note that I don't claim that they break the game in a sense that they're invincible. Of course they're not, you just have to work harder. The point is that it just feels incredibly stupid if your regular elite units take a beating from some light or irregular units that, historically, couldn't have done that in an open battle: It kills immersion and authentic feeling. And those are imo what this mod is all about and what makes it better than all the others.

  7. #927

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Troops in skirmish order ought to take a massive and immediate morale hit if even approached by cavalry. They certainly shouldn't be able to stand and shoot them out of the saddle let alone beat them in a melee.

  8. #928
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    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Correggio View Post
    Of course, if you play against at least hard battle AI, they won't be that unbalanced, but they'll still be unbalanced compared to other units.
    Yeah, and a unit should be balanced not only in relation to enemy unit types but also to your own. If your own elite forces feel frail compared to your own irregulars, a realism oriented mod shouldn't let that happen.

    Quote Originally Posted by Correggio View Post
    But all of that is beside the point because I very much doubt that JaM meant those units to serve as a AI vs human player handicap.
    I doubt it too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Correggio View Post
    […] It kills immersion and authentic feeling.
    Undeniable.

    I'd like to add to my positive feedback to this mod a little praise of the modded tech tree. The unmodded tech tree was an unhistorical, unimmersive, loveless pile of schitt! And as I'm currently playing NTW Darthmod and in comparison with other ETW mods, Empire Realism has achieved much on this part.

  9. #929

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    thanks guys for feedback, I will try to adjust it when i'm back working on this mod again. Right now, im busy with R2TR, but i might take a break from it for some time and do another release of ER in near future!

  10. #930

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Are there any other visible issues that would needs to be corrected? I'm considering releasing an update in next few days..

  11. #931
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    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Good to hear, that you keep this alive.

    My contribution to "issues" were mostly no big deal:

    Quote Originally Posted by Keinpferd View Post
    Saxony's flag is blackened (like some Alpha Channel problem, or something?).

    Infantrymen behind a wall have an unrealistically reduced arc of fire, as if there were in their original narrower close formation.

    Prussian Musceteers have slightly better stats than Fusileers. What's the rational behind that?

    Some prereqs in the tech tree seem confused, in the artillery branch, and in the sequence of bayonet improvements.

    "Advanced cavalry" comes late. Much time passes without Hussars. I wonder what the earliest day would be you could train them for the fist time, when you straight beeline for "Advanced Cavalry"?

    Where did the galleys go? I've only known that footnote of history since a few days, but in fact, Russias early fleet in the Northern War consisted to a considerable amount of galleys.

    A propos Great Northern War: The Swedes are very strong in my game.

    And the other big early war, the War of the Spanish Succession simply never takes place. This is certainly not the mistake of any mod, for around 1700 none of the factions is yet ready to field huge armies like the ones of Villars, Marlborough or Eugene of Savoy, but I'm missing it, anyway. I declared war on France and Spain as puny Prussia to get chevrons in Flanders and Lombardy, on my own, because the Austrians for a long time did absolutely nothing and attacked Poland eventually.
    The latter leads me to the question: Is it possible/moddable to cut only the money for the human player and alter the AI handicap in a way, that right at the beginning they do have the funds to field huge armies (like Marlborough's or Vilars') but at the same time without killing the AI's concern for empire building (improve the economy and so fourth…)?

    I think, the game is trapped in the misconstruction and misconception of a build-up strategy game, that TW games always attempted to be. They just inconsiderately repeated the usual setup, like what people expect from a turn-based strategy game: you and the AI start with little or nothing and will have to build primitive roads in the Lorraine or Provence first (right, that example is taken from NTW) As if they didn't have proper roads in 1700… This starting at almost zero is probably the reason why big time wars cannot occur early in the game (as they should true to history). If it was moddable, I would wish for not continuing the mimicry of other glorious build-up strategy games and instead simply trust in a realism and immersion and history approach.

    JaM, with your experience gained in NTW and TWR II, could you maybe bring us some of the code of these games to ETW, since it's the same engine? It would be a dream to see the line-of-sight of TWR II (the eyes!) in ETW. The graphical interface, the eyes hovering above treetops in the direction a unit looks out, is probably already far too much to ask, but the line-of-sight code itself must be somehow seeded in ETW, for the hiding-abilities. However, I guess, the true line-of-sight mechanism, which traces rays from the viewing eye of a unit to enemy units on the battle map and checks, whether the line-of-sight is obstructed or not, is hardcoded in TWR II, isn't it?

    And even the not entirely convincing "supply system" of NTW would be an improvement compared to the current No-replenishment-mod used in ER, that still lets the AI replenish on foreign ground and let them do the craziest moves on the campaign map. For example, I saw a Swedish army repelled by my brave Prussians flee into Saxony heading to Prague. They would replenish with lots of Budweiser and come back at me full strength from the south. And no, Saxony or Austria were neither Swedish allies nor protegees, they had only military access granted. In NTW, I would expect, that couldn't happen anymore.

  12. #932

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Keinpferd View Post
    The latter leads me to the question: Is it possible/moddable to cut only the money for the human player and alter the AI handicap in a way, that right at the beginning they do have the funds to field huge armies (like Marlborough's or Vilars') but at the same time without killing the AI's concern for empire building (improve the economy and so fourth…)?

    I think, the game is trapped in the misconstruction and misconception of a build-up strategy game, that TW games always attempted to be. They just inconsiderately repeated the usual setup, like what people expect from a turn-based strategy game: you and the AI start with little or nothing and will have to build primitive roads in the Lorraine or Provence first (right, that example is taken from NTW) As if they didn't have proper roads in 1700… This starting at almost zero is probably the reason why big time wars cannot occur early in the game (as they should true to history). If it was moddable, I would wish for not continuing the mimicry of other glorious build-up strategy games and instead simply trust in a realism and immersion and history approach.

    JaM, with your experience gained in NTW and TWR II, could you maybe bring us some of the code of these games to ETW, since it's the same engine? It would be a dream to see the line-of-sight of TWR II (the eyes!) in ETW. The graphical interface, the eyes hovering above treetops in the direction a unit looks out, is probably already far too much to ask, but the line-of-sight code itself must be somehow seeded in ETW, for the hiding-abilities. However, I guess, the true line-of-sight mechanism, which traces rays from the viewing eye of a unit to enemy units on the battle map and checks, whether the line-of-sight is obstructed or not, is hardcoded in TWR II, isn't it?

    And even the not entirely convincing "supply system" of NTW would be an improvement compared to the current No-replenishment-mod used in ER, that still lets the AI replenish on foreign ground and let them do the craziest moves on the campaign map. For example, I saw a Swedish army repelled by my brave Prussians flee into Saxony heading to Prague. They would replenish with lots of Budweiser and come back at me full strength from the south. And no, Saxony or Austria were neither Swedish allies nor protegees, they had only military access granted. In NTW, I would expect, that couldn't happen anymore.
    I understand what you arw saying but you picked a very poor example (Roads). The roads throughout the 18th century were very poor. So poor that agricultural and for the most part industrial development were stuck in a period of stagnation throughout this time period. The wealthy were landed aristocrats content earning their "fees" with little or no interest in enriching themselves more than they already were. Most successful industries at the time were actually state monopolies. Where Empire fails is the smallest skirmish type armies at start up. Also, Englisd army is twice as large relative to the UP and the UP is less than a 1/3 its actual size.

    Concerning the AI,... even in the best circumstances, the AI is barely god enough to make the best decision. For each layer you add, you decrease the AI's ability to cope. Taking aspects of a later games and assuming the AI in this game can handle is asking too much. The best you can hope for now is improve game play to make the game more challenging for you to aid AI to be more effective in beating you.

  13. #933

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    shogun TW 1 was difficult from start to finish,
    i think there is two things that set it aside ETW.

    Terrain, -it existed in STW, and had advantages for the defender, and AI would relentlessly exploit it just as the player. ( no, scratch that, it would seek to frikkin exploit it even more than the player, it was as much a battlefield chess game as a TW game !)
    the battlefield was much larger, the two armies could typically not see each other at the start of battle,
    and it was up to the attacker to seek out and charge the defender.

    The day would never come where AI would charge the player lest it was very favorable,
    like if it could catch the player in column/unprepared, or other favorable circumstances.
    Strangely AI would react to player disposition like if it was cunning,
    and react quickly and with resolve at that.
    beats me how the programmers could accomplish this ?
    I think this part is impossible to implement as an afterthought

    In ETW i can also typically attack piecemeal, destroying an army at a time,
    while in STW towards the endgame i could expect having to survive attacking & destroying 3 armies
    in order to take a new region, (very difficult in STW)
    this could possibly be implemented by making all armies in the same region as well as nearby regions
    joining the fight.

    BTW: why is it that AI dont retreat in neither campaign nor battle when it is unfavorable conditions ?
    i do it as a player with common sense so why dont AI ?
    ...on a 2nd thought that would ruin AR campaign altogether so that is actually a good thing for ETW
    Last edited by poa; November 25, 2014 at 10:53 AM.
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  14. #934
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    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by PikeStance View Post
    I understand what you arw saying but you picked a very poor example (Roads). The roads throughout the 18th century were very poor. So poor that agricultural and for the most part industrial development were stuck in a period of stagnation throughout this time period.
    […]
    Where Empire fails is the smallest skirmish type armies at start up. Also, Englisd army is twice as large relative to the UP and the UP is less than a 1/3 its actual size.
    @roads: Conceded, that roads were poor, they were at least there! In all narrative literatur of the 18th century with some kind of adventure to the plot, like Tom Jones by Fielding, three quarters of the story takes place on the road, in taverns or our well known coaching inns of ETW. I'm not sure about ETW, but in NTW many regions (in the most developed countries) have literally no roads at all in the beginning, not even lowest-tier! So, roads are a rather good example, don't you think?

    We players are asked to build primitive roads, because turn-basec strategy games are supposed to be like that in the minds of the CA game designers. They never developed a vision of a strategy game of their own but just walked in the trails of the genre. And probably never had to. Why question yourselves, when the real time battle side of the TW series has always knocked down players enough to sell the game, anyway, no matter how retarded some aspects of the strategy part remained. Satisfying sales numbers and positive ratings are not exactly a stimulus to self-criticism. Like a maximum pretty girl, that has no real need to develop her personality, because she will get plenty of love effordless, the underdeveloped strategy part is covered under a screen of real time battle joy. So much for that.

    (Or they consciously accepted, that the TW series excells in other areas, real time battles, and aware of that "tried their best" in the strategy game area.)

    Does that sound too negative? I'm not trying to say, that the C in CA is imposture. Just the above mentioned coaching inns! Or the overall nice selection of "18th century stuff", coaching inns, state gifts, rakes, duels, is proof enough, that the they have some sensitive people in their ranks, who catch the spirit of the era they are depicting. I only doubt, that these people have to decide much in that company – while the button maker must be the brother-in-law of the boss.

    Quote Originally Posted by poa View Post
    BTW: why is it that AI dont retreat in neither campaign nor battle when it is unfavorable conditions ?
    i do it as a player with common sense so why dont AI ?
    Yeah, we came across that before. That would be a big step, to teach the AI to leave the battlefield under certain circumstances. It may be annoying to lose precious time with loading screens with no other outcome than that the enemy retreated, but AI suicide is more annoying by all means.

    I know too little about modding to judge, but wouldn't it be easier to "borrow" some code from NTW and TWR II rather than Shogun I? Because if I understand correctly, ETW was the first game with a new engine, which NTW and Rome II still use.

  15. #935

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Im affraid there is no chance to add things from newer games into ETW. Only benefit it has, that now i have some completely new ideas about certain features, which i could adjust. I can look into CAI, but any changes there are usually quite random, so actual effect needs to be observed for some time.

    At this point, im considering doing some stats adjustments, i might do some adjustments to naval combat, and some changes to land combat as well, based on experience form R2 modding (here actually have quite a lot new things that i could do) I have much better understanding of armor and defense system used in ETW/NTW, which is quite different from R2, but it is actually possible to improve it a bit more.

    Anyway, what i would like to ask you is to post any obvious bugs that should be fixed. I will look through the thread to check for any already reported, anyway if there are any areas you think should be improved, let me know here.

    and regarding release date, i would do my best to have it ready during December, preferably in the first half, but it all depends on how much work i would actually had to do

  16. #936

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    JaM, I admire your effort to keep making this mod even better although it's the best we could hope for already, kudos!

    The only obvious bug I can think of are the overloaded Pirate ships. Xebec drops to 83 men, Galley to 75, Pirate Brigantine to 75 and 24 cannons at the start of battle. Other ships seem to be okay.

    Other minor things that can and should be fixed easily:
    -Ditch Coehorn mortars. As stated above, they can't serve as siege artillery because they don't hit. Yet AI likes them, so battlefields are haunted by an unrealistic unit!
    -3/3/9 for Prussian Life Guards!

    About balancing:
    -Nerf light infantry. See above.
    -Slight buff for artillery would be appreciated. I haven't thought about how to achieve that, but I think the role of artillery is not yet decisive enough.

    In case you're motivated to tinker with (new) units, I have some suggestions, especially concerning cavalry.

  17. #937

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Correggio View Post
    -Slight buff for artillery would be appreciated. I haven't thought about how to achieve that, but I think the role of artillery is not yet decisive enough
    I would dare to argue it is already quite overpowered even in reasonable sense. If you simply target units they are bit random since for some reason in ETW, NTW and STW2 artillery will always target the leftmost part of the formation, so depending where they are located they are quite likely to miss or only scrape only small portion of the line, but if you are willing to micromanage and give manual targets to artillery at the ground just before or behind the units and count reload time average so you know how to fine tune aim, it is perfectly possible to win 2-4 times larger force with light artillery assuming decent positions for the guns. My personal best so far was routing one cavalry and two line infantry with one volley of two batteries from oblique shot and killing their general as well.

    Bit of a paradox really though since without heavy management, they can feel somewhat lacking but if willing to take the extra management and it's almost the opposite.

  18. #938

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    thanks guys, i'll see what can be done. I also wanto to compact the pack into single file, for easier handling.

  19. #939

    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Fun part is, that after working on Rome 2, Empire data table seems so small, DB is way too simpler than it is in Rome 2, while a lot of things that are overcomplicated in R2, are quite simple and clear..

  20. #940
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    Default Re: Empire Realism - Feedback and General Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by JaM View Post
    Fun part is, that after working on Rome 2, Empire data table seems so small, DB is way too simpler than it is in Rome 2, while a lot of things that are overcomplicated in R2, are quite simple and clear..
    Funny, when I saw the number of packs in the data file I thought the opposite. But it's just surface I suppose.

    Hey as always, the realism features are very interesting. Here are just two things, I didn't see in the FAQ :

    _ I don't see any splash screen or signature that would confirm that I'm actually playing ER.

    _ Am I wrong, or did it ake more than two years for my army to go from Lyon to Paris ? Is it because theres no way to have more than two turns by year ?
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