I’m generally excited for the DLC and what additional features it could bring to the game, but I also have some concerns and objections with the Malta design. I find it’s generally cool to have them, and I’m familiar with their history as I worked on a mod about them for Empire: Total War.
People have been talking a lot about this sort of “Lamb of the Lord” unit that can accompany the Maltese explorer, which I don’t really like. Firstly, the Lamb of God in liturgical Christian denominations like Catholicism is not a physical entity: the Lamb is the symbolic representation of Jesus’s sacrifice dying on the cross. I find it crass to depict this symbol as just some unit that can get attacked and shot at, and sent around at orders to please the player.
They took out the Native American firepits because they were offensive and did not adequately represent the beliefs and cultures of the American Indigenous peoples. How, then, is it acceptable to mock and cartoonify a core belief of Western Christianity?
I also don’t like the way the unit models for Malta are shaping out to be, they look really out of place by the Industrial Age. The Knights of Malta existed as a military and sovereign political entity until Napoleon conquered Malta in 1798, and they kept up the military fashion and military organization of their contemporaries. They shouldn’t be wearing medieval garments and full-on armor like they do now. These are prints depicting the Order’s soldiers from the late-1700s, around about before the time of Napoleon’s invasion.
I hope MS will not stop supporting AoE3! It will be sad to leave the game like that without Poles and Danes in Europe, without Persia between Ottomans and Indians, without some other fan favorite civs like Korea and Brazil.
Im normally for historical accuracy but in this case, they are more unique rather than being very similar. Total War works very differently as an example, this is more of a representation than a 1:1 historical authenticity.
Right, they were part of a general pyramid of power where they were technically under Sicily, which was under Aragon, which was then a constituent part of the Kingdom of Spain. I had actually found it strange how one of the preview screenshots showed Spanish soldiers assaulting a Maltese fort! The Knights in history were one of the strongest assets to Spain’s maritime policy on the Mediterranean Sea, especially in regards to protecting maritime trade against Barbary Pirates.
I only would wish there would be an european map that do not have the Royal Houses, not even natives nor trade routes, just a green plain with most natural resources around, like some kind of open battlefield like culoden or something
I’ve seen a video showing off Historical Maps. They raise a problem:
In addition to wholly new models (and two Italian buildings), these maps have made use of existing campaign models for special scenario buildings, which include the same ones that has been turned into Maltese uniques.
This is the Maltese Commandery, using the model of the campaign building SPCFortCenter Command Post.
While this is the scenario building “Headquarters”, which is a shipment destination & militia site, and has scenario-specific techs to research. Yes, it’s the same model without change.
Worse still is the “Supply Cache”, a resource trickle building using the same model SPCXPAmmoStorehouse model as the Maltese Depot:
(The colorful tent is a “Command Post”, a Town Center that grants scenario-specific techs. Historical Maps also make frequent use of TPs for special functions.)
The Depot is such a uniquely destructive building that from a UX perspective, you want to condition players to develop a special reaction to it - either avoid or destroy on sight. The two are so different in function, they should not have the same model.
Like how the Maltese Hospital recolors the tent texture, ideally the Maltese uniques should have their textures recolored, both to make them more visually consistent with standard player buildings, and to differentiate them from special buildings, as we have seen above. That would be prudent game UX design.
(The Italian Wars map also has scenario buildings “Great Bank” and “Papal Embassy” using Lombard and Basilica models, both offering mercenaries and scenario-specific TEAM techs.)