Firstly, and hope this comes across as the as the complement I mean it to be, I just had an amazing time in my first game with the new expansion. All the new content gels so well with the rest of the game, making it feel so much more alive as you manage your empire. I am very pleased with the improvements to the AI, and I had a lot of fun exploring the new events and governments as I muddled my way through. Gifted never used to be a challenge for me, but the AI had some surprises this time leading to a map that was very dynamic and exciting.
Seriously, excellent effort and thank you for an amazing ride. It's a nice reminder of why GalCiv 3 is my most played game on steam. Intrigue also released in a very polished state from my experience, and that also deserves recognition. Lastly, I really like that the new features are more friendly to new players in how they are explained. It's a really solid step in the direction of helping new players ease into the game and understand what is required to have a great time.
Feedback on what isn't so great:
The most blatant sillyness was when the AI had its government ships zipping about the place, not contributing any of its powers where they could have been beneficial, like orbiting an important colony. See this wayward Prefect below for instance, which I found wandering outside Altarian space for no discernible reason:
The biggest issue and bit of feedback I have, and the item I want to see improved most is the battle camera. I have been posting about an issue since the launch of Crusade, where my capital ships bunch up and clip together in a really awkward and ugly manner that can really mar the experience of building some unique ships, and throwing them into epic fights. The issue is still present:
This really mars what is otherwise a great level of presentation, and it pales in comparison to the other large space 4X games going around at the moment; I think it even pales compared to many of the nicely presented, smaller indie 4X games that GalCiv competes for space with. This criticism extends to the camera which is really messy, very often. Awkward angles, awkward cuts, awkward controls. But when it works, it shows off the fantastic graphics and gives a player who has put in a lot of effort into their custom builds something to really look forward to. But then I get stuck with clumped up ships, or staring into the ass end of one of my capital ships where I can't see any of the cool pew pew.
Simply put, the combat camera, and visuals are in desperate need of some love! Please don't underestimate the importance of presentation in this genre. ES2, and Stellaris prove that enough people look well upon good presentation as being an important aspect of the experience, myself included.
A few other minor things on my wishlist are:
- Of course, more AI improvements. I love them! Great work Frogboy
- I would like to see more GNN bulletins, crisis events, and just misc events where possible. This game feels so alive right now, and I love it.
- More wonder improvements to fight over. Also, I would floated an idea of very special planets in another thread a while ago that may provide a special wonder, on a particularly unique and strange planet.
- I'm quite fond of the lore, can we have a few more official factions with animated portraits?
I'm excited for another play through. GalCiv is a game I am very passionate about and fond of, otherwise I wouldn't bother putting together a post like this. I cannot stress enough though, that the shortcomings and glitches with the combat presentation/system really need some urgent attention. I have been posting about the glitch in question since the launch of Crusade, and it does dampen my enthusiasm to see it still an issue a year later.
Otherwise, thank you Stardock for a great bit of new content