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Civ 3 vs Alpha Centauri (my take)

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  • #16
    one thing I hate about civ 3 is the horrible efficency ratings you get when you go to different landmasses, it would have been much better if they kept it like SMAC, where only energy/gold is affected by efficincy/coruption ad minerals/shuleds are, makes remot bases worthless ecasue they cant even build anything

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    • #17
      Again, you're wrong. ZoC's _do_ matter, they make it possible for me to hold a border without squatting units in every damend square, no matter how indefensible. Yes, they require intelligence to be circumvented, something most players will hopefully have, however, they also require additional resources to circumvent, either in the form of spies or boats or just plain time.
      Like you don't bring probe teams anyway.

      So you're content that an elite archer has a fair to middling chance of destroying a green tank? And besides, don't tell me the Civ3 tech-tree doesn't have any inordinately useful techs. The one that gives you legions springs to mind, since they utterly outclass any and all previous troops.
      I rarely rush for Iron Working. Only reason to do so is for an early aggressive war which I'm not too fond of. If not all out aggressive (which is impossible according to you) horsemen+spearmen is a better combo anyway. Swordsmen does not in any way outclass the other units. Fusion reactored units do however.

      But you _can't_ go both ways, since if you go purely military, your offensive stalls in the first heavily cultured city, and meanwhile your other tea-swilling neighbors are hemming in your borders and subverting your outlying provinces.
      Fine, I can go both ways. You might not be able to pull it off.

      Stuck having to wade uphill against an legion-armed foe with piddly archers, especially when I can't hold a border, protect my villagers, secure any conquests I might be fortunate enough to obtain, or prevent my other neighbors from rendering my citizens French is just not my idea of fun. But you're right, it's not all bad. There's those jaw-droppingly mediocre graphics to distract me from what a sorry, half-baked chore they made my favorite game into.
      Trade iron from a neighbour. Blitzkrieg your way to the iron. Or swarm him. Try playing the game a bit more before judging it, your critique tends to stem from your inability to counter the difficulties it throws at you. The reason I enjoy the game is because it's challenging, you seem to resent that.

      one thing I hate about civ 3 is the horrible efficency ratings you get when you go to different landmasses, it would have been much better if they kept it like SMAC, where only energy/gold is affected by efficincy/coruption ad minerals/shuleds are, makes remot bases worthless ecasue they cant even build anything
      I used to hate that too and before the patch that reduced the waste it was truly annoying. But now I kinda like it and if it bothers you too much you can always go commie. The good thing about it is that the game isn't over halfway through the game as in SMAC, partly thanks to waste.

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      • #18
        Not challenging, just dumbed down to the point where the AI's meager algorithm is interchangable with a human being. It's like going from a game of chess to tic-tac-toe. And I played the game enough to know that not only was it a huge step backward from SMAC, it was a huge step backward from CivII.

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        • #19
          I too was playing CivIII for several months but decided to come back to SMAX (it's like the mafia - it keeps pulling me back in). It really makes it fun again for a dozen games or so.

          The thing with CivIII is that it does get boring after a while. But I downloaded the Double Your Pleasure (DYP) mod and that really made the game more complex and fun again. I suggest you guys try it if you haven't yet.

          Also - In the editor (I refer to the Play the World version - non DYP) you can tweek several options. What I did was similar to what Ned mentioned about making the AI in SMAX more pacifist in the faction.txt files so it builds up better. I changed the build settings away from offensive types in the editor to more build and economic type settings and the computer seems to build up better and is more "robust" in the later game and harder to take out (at Monarch & Emperor level).

          My 2cents.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by CEO Aaron


            But you're right, it's not all bad. There's those jaw-droppingly mediocre graphics to distract me from what a sorry, half-baked chore they made my favorite game into.
            LOL...

            Me I prefer the amazing wonder movies. Make my heart go pit-a-pat.

            Seriously I can not echo strongly enough my disappointment in the CIV3 implementation. All that made SMAC great was inevitably discarded in favor of a more simplistic CIV1 model. Gives me a stong distaste for any future Firaxis offerings.
            "Just puttin on the foil" - Jeff Hanson

            “In a democracy, I realize you don’t need to talk to the top leader to know how the country feels. When I go to a dictatorship, I only have to talk to one person and that’s the dictator, because he speaks for all the people.” - Jimmy Carter

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            • #21
              Out of boredom at work today, I went over to the Firaxis website.

              The big news there is that they've made a deal with Atari where they now have the rights to go back and redo the old Sid games.

              So it doesn't look like anything "new" from Firaxis is something to worry about. Just rehashing old stuff and getting people to pay for it again. Seems to be Sid's business model these days. (Although if they ever get Colonization without a screwed up end-game I might be interested!)

              Can't believe they are going to try another expansion pak for Civ3. Of course, I never bought the first because in my mind I should have gotten MP for the first $50 I gave them. No way I was giving them another $30, and now they are going to try to get yet another $30. Yeah Right.

              BTW, what I've gone back to is CTP2. It apparently was quite modable, and some of the mods are very well done. And that bunch just got the source code to the game itself releasesd to them as open source. So you might set a reminder to yourself to go look what they've done with it in a few months.
              Fear not the path of truth for the lack of others walking it.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Artifex
                I was burnt out on civ 3 too..so I went looking or my SMAC disk..I misplaced it I have a bunch of stuff in storage and can't find it after 2 days of frantic searching. I found my Alien Crossfire disk but it said I need SMAC installed to play.
                So I went to my local PC stores and they all said its out of print.
                Oh well..I was wanting to play smac again but looks like I can't...
                If you have Alien Crossfire, don't give up yet!
                In the U.S., you should be able to find SMAC at almost every EB for $9.99 (jewel-cased, and the original manual is now a pdf on the CD). It is also included in several multi-game packages with names like "best strategy games", "classics", etc.
                I am on a mission to see how much coffee it takes to actually achieve time travel. :frantic:

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                • #23
                  Well, we can tell CEO Aaron is a bit bitter about losing with his 1337 Egyptian Chariot Rush.

                  I've played Civ III for a long time(over 30 games so far), but I just picked up a copy of Alpha Centauri and blasted through 2 games in one day, a Conquest win as Spartans on Specialist and a Transcend as Gaians on Talent.

                  The AI in both games is pretty dumb. That's where the human advantage comes in. But basically, each has advantages that the other lacks, and some disadvantags too:

                  Alpha Centauri:
                  +Highly customizable government forms
                  +Very customizable units
                  +Whole "fight against the planet" thing
                  +Very fast
                  +No need to build even half the buildings for each city, just tons and tons of supply crawlers
                  +Caravaning
                  +Random tech option
                  +Atrocities
                  +Voting for things other than Diplomatic Victory
                  +the entire structure of Diplomatic Victory
                  +Psi Combat
                  +Prototyping staggers unit development
                  +Forces you to divide forces by collateral damage
                  -Reactor types too important in combat
                  -Interface just kind of blows (the worst part, in my mind, is the difficulty in moving stacks and the counter-intuitive unit moving)
                  -Orbital Drops
                  -Crappy 3-D graphics
                  -No bargaining table, just have to accept what the AI gives you
                  -Fungus can be frustrating, especially to players who don't understand game mechanics
                  -I have no idea how the combat is calculated

                  Civ III
                  +Air Superiority can prevent bombing
                  +Lack of "essentials" makes game quite winnable without certain things
                  +Cool looking sprites reminiscent of 16 bit days of Chrono Trigger and Mario (a personal one, but still)
                  +Very, very intuitive interface that a three-year old could pick up in seconds (I've done the experiments)
                  +Streamlined, well, everything
                  +Unit upgrade trees less confusing
                  +Lumberjacking
                  +Lack of supply crawlers forces good city management
                  +Unit longevity increased, due to infrequency of upgrades
                  +Bargaining table rules
                  +Drafting
                  +Inability to win by comical and stupid "momentum"
                  +More Pre-Game customization
                  -Lack of customization of governments
                  -Lack of customization of units
                  -Games take much, much longer. Like in days rather than hours.
                  -SoD is over-effective
                  -Game can get very, very stressful
                  -Railroads are a bit too powerful


                  Well, that's my surface analysis. Hope it helps. Simply put, Civ III is a bit more of an economics game, where you need to terraform perfectly, rail at the right times, make sure you expand fast enough but not too fast at the beggining. More of a builder's game. Alpha Centauri is a bit less challenging, more of a relaxing game, where it's alot more forgiving.

                  That's just my opinion though.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by marc420
                    BTW, what I've gone back to is CTP2. It apparently was quite modable, and some of the mods are very well done. And that bunch just got the source code to the game itself releasesd to them as open source. So you might set a reminder to yourself to go look what they've done with it in a few months.
                    They got the source!?!? Damn, why didn't someone mention this... *runs for CtP2 forums*.

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