AoE4 Base Build Gameplay. A New Hope for the Genre or just another Menace of too simplified design?
In my opinion the RTS main problem as genre, it did simply lost its ways and simply didn’t get better.
Sure units did learn in last decades some tricks, like go to cover behind other objects, switch weapons and activate magic abilities, but everything else didn’t really improve.
In case of modern games, Base Build isn’t the fun Part of the gameplay, due to be extremely simplified and developers not handle it well, there are various examples:
-You have no free base build
-You have no access to defense structures like Gates and Walls
-You have no variety, due to limited funds and map design
How is modern design supposed to be a good concept again?
You merely move a group, of very same units, to very same locations, that does get boring very fast.
These days you can barely afford 1 buildings to wait awhile for 1 unit, that’s embarrassing compared to old times.
Like the RPG character creation of Warrior “balanced” , Paladin “defense” , Barbarian "Offense, Rogue “fast”, Archer “ranged” the way you build your base, defines the gameplay experience.
Like have 1 of each building Barrack, Archery Range, Stable, Siege Workshop, Monastery, Castle
for a balanced army, or build not only several 5 Stables but also be able to produce from all of them lot of fast Knights. You have there a very big variety what kind of army you can create.
Just think of it, what was again the actual greatest achievement of our RTS genre in past 10 years ?
A yes, take something made like 20 years ago and make an HD, Definite, Reforged, Remastered Edition of it.
My concerns are for upcoming game:
1 AoE4 team has from Base Build point of view rather experience with “simple” strategy games.
2 these days “modern” design rather stands to make games simple and that’s does heavily contradict what is fun by RTS games.
3 “Modern” Different base build for each faction, does contradict gameplay variety. As it does enforce 1 play style, instead of be able to switch and change what you do.
4 It has been a while since we had RTS games, where you could very good use tactic to Turtle. Turtling is in modern games non exist, while in older games it offers to other people a lot of variety like have a siege warfare as the other player does build nice defenses to destroy.
5 By conditions of “modern” competitive multiplayer gameplay focused games, resources are often limited, to force people into fighting. That does contradict to build nice bases.
6 A lot of gameplay issues do come from Map designs, as those tend to be very similar to each other, because you have to make them very similar for “modern” competitive multiplayer. Worst thing ever, as it does take away gameplay variety.
So how should AoE4 base build be design and logically developed?