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Author Topic: Introducing new people to the game  (Read 2838 times)
tomt
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Introducing new people to the game
« on: July 05, 2004, 07:28:15 am »

Hi!  I'm really glad to have stumbled across this forum.  Forgive me if I switch topics rather suddenly between paragraphs but I've got a lot to say now that I've found this place.

I've been itching to try and get some of my friends to try StarCon II, and they've been rather reluctant to because all I had (up to this point) was the old DOS version.  My main question is: Is the Ur-Quan Masters version complete enough and/or less buggy at this point to introduce new people to the game with minimum frustration?  Would players have any problems completing the game with it?  What background information should I give them?

I read about the missing opening/closing sequences and the Mycon homeworld issue, but that's easy enough to explain to them personally.  I've also got a PDF version of a manual and a text file that describes the historical leadup to the start of the game.  I didn't have that when I first started to play and boy did it supply a lot of missing context.

It's unusual for me to play the 3DO version because I was never used to hearing it with speech and the different music arrangements.  In a way I'm nostalgic for my old DOS version out of sheer stubborness.  Although realistically, it's not great for my friends to play because the space combat goes way too quickly on modern machines and the sound doesn't work in Windows.

Now that I've only just found out about the old planet lander credits cheat, I'm a little sorry to see it gone. Not that I'd give my friends a cheat - I think the need to explore for minerals is an important part of spacing out the narrative at the start of the game - it's more that part of my friends' reluctance to try the game is the time they'd have to spend gathering minerals before finally getting to the "meat" of the game.  Ah well.  Them's the breaks.

One of the reasons I really like SC2 is that it's one of the few action-adventure games that allows the turning off of the action!   I'm an adventure gamer at heart because I've never developed computer battle skills and it was so nice to find a game where you could let the computer play both sides for you.  And of course I like it for its thought-out story and characterization and writing, etc.

Reading around the web pages I get the impression SC3 was more of an action/resource-management type of game?  Not my sort of thing, and there seems to be a lot of disappointment over how it turned out.  Exactly how did it turn out?  Is there a page anywhere that summarizes the plot and what mysteries from SC2 get resolved?  I'm looking for closure.

Here's a question to anyone with the old DOS diskette version: is there a list of all the files that originally came with the game?  The copy I have came off someone else's hard drive, and there's a whole bunch of .MLE files and things, and I don't know which files they created and which ones were there to begin with.

And finally, something that just occured to me: why, after a battle, can you only collect the RU from your enemies' debris, and not from any of your own ships that got destroyed in the battle?
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Re: Introducing new people to the game
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2004, 08:51:01 am »

The current version of UQM is pretty much bug-free, I think.

From what I've heard of SC3, it was a mediocre game. It had a number of flaws, and fell much short of SC2. It mutilated the timeline somewhat and was filled with general stupidity, and is not generally considered canon in regards of the SC universe because of this. There is a list describing it's flaws in more detal, which can be found in the following URL:

http://www.classicgaming.com/starcontrol/sc3/sc3www.shtml
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Re: Introducing new people to the game
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2004, 02:05:21 pm »

The current version is VERY stable, only the odd crash here or two, nothing game breaking though.

SC3, having personally played it, was essentially a cash in.

They butchered the storyline, the timeline (as someone above pointed out) and a lot of the universe all at once.

By "resource management" they meant "Wait 3 hours to have enough fuel to go anywhere at all".

60% of the dialogue is lifted word for word from SC2 and any original content is often bland and uninspiring. There ARE a few gems here and there but they are like islands of chocolate in a sea of crap. Your charecter seems to have mental impediments of every kind. From simple deduction all the way to ordinary curiousity.


For example, when one race mentions dead warriors being able to "breed" your only conversational options are "Say WHAT?!" and "Uh, dude, thats not how breeding works". There is no "Thats interesting, can your culture breed even when dead?".

In SC2 you had the choice to be brash, intelligent, belligerent or stupid. SC3 tends to only allow you to be stupid or incredibly dense.

Another annoying point for me was the XChagger, a race of microscopic bacteria that had a kind of hive like intelligence. Bear with me on this. Consider that the very first race that they contacted, the Daktaklakplak (henceforth referred to as Daks from now on) enslave almost their entire race and generally insult and abuse them. Now. Consider that another race comes by. I personally would not be very trusting, and yet the XChagger join you right off the bat.

Sure, you may promise to fight against the Daks, but how do you know they are telling the truth? What if it's another ploy?

Enough of my ranting, time to finalise my points.

Storyline - Butchered, cut up, and generally violated. All mysteries solved. No new mysteries brought up. General inconsistencies with SC1 and SC2.

Gameplay - Terrible. The isometric melee is utterly horrid and I never figured out HOW to turn it back to 2D. Not even the manual points it out. The colony and resource management was dumbed down to the point where you only had to worry if you had enough.

If we were to compare Resource management in Civilasation (the ORIGINAL civ) to SC3, Civilisations resource management was infinitely more complicated.

Also, there was no real time limit. I let a game stagnate for over 700 days after the Crux was defeated and the Eternal1's (big undefeatable bad guy) never came.

Graphics - Bland. Far too many greys, the isometric view is pretty to look at but is overall too small and the perspective is so messed up that one can barely hit the enemy at times.

Overall final statement - There were some great ideas in this game. Their Implentation on the other hand was utterly horrid. Let this be a lesson to any of you corporate developers, please, consult your creative consultant and above all LISTEN to what he has to say.

If you want to know what SC3 could have been, I recommend getting the Warlok files. The amount they took his ideas and twisted them is shameful, not to mention the amount of times they consulted him, a grand total of 1 (one) time.

Final Comment, I promise, with summary if you didnt feel like reading ALL of the above.

SC3 was a let down in so many ways. By itself it does not have a leg to stand on. There were some good ideas that got butchered. The game could have been a lot better then it was if it didnt have that rushed through feeling in it. All in all, what looks good on paper may not be so good in reality.
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Re: Introducing new people to the game
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2004, 05:17:02 pm »

Just to correct some of Cronos' points:

The Captain does rescue the XChagger lost dynasties in the game, which I am sure means a great deal to them. And they can't lose anything by trusting the captain, since almost their entire species are lost and they have nothing to fight with.

Personally I don't see what is so horrible about the '3D' hyper melee, but if you don't like it, you can switch to 2D, even if Cronos doesn't know how.

And there is a timelimit. It isn't solid, meaning that it depends on what you do in the game. Once I exceeded the limit in about day 1150 and once around day 700.

There are many people who like SC3, and the only way for you to know if you like it, is to try it out for yourself.
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Re: Introducing new people to the gamea
« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2004, 05:29:04 pm »

OK ANOTHER SC3 SUCKS THREAD:

1.There were aliens that actually *disappeared* in sc3 without a notice!
first, where are the Umgah? Where are the Ilwrath? Where are the Thraddash? ok they had a fun war but destroying each other with no simple explanation is unproffesional  Cool  OK now the spathi are enslaved in their own slaveshield so how they suddenly appear in SC3? spoiler: and the supox dying before you could even see them is ridiculous.

2.In SC3 they tell you what happened to the Precursors and you can either laugh of the idea or cry

3.Spoiler: Vux as an experiment race is BAD and stupid, the whole point was that they hate humans now they love humans(?!)

4.It's been a while since I played but iirc you restore the mycon full sentience??? not sure tho but the precursor asks you "whats your opinion on the deep children" and you say they should be independent and sentient or something like that

5.The Ur-Quan Kzer-Za became pathatic creatures dumping the path of now and forever just like that.

6.The sc2 creatures look:
Good: Orz, Chmmr, Arilou, Ur-Quan, Vux
Avrg: Utwig, Mycon, Spathi, Precursor
Horrible: Syreen, Pkunk

It's not quite true there are no new mystories; The Orz constantly complained about the Syreen having *nasty tricks* on them and they dont tell you anything about it. The Orz also said the Syreen are controlling the alliance with their nasty tricks whole by themselves.

To be edited...

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Re: Introducing new people to the game
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2004, 05:43:12 pm »

You can play UQM pretty much like it was in dos, the voices can be turned off, and the old menus can be in place, rather than the 3DO ones. It's all in the manual, you basically just have to throw a few switches after the command line.

I have SC1 and 2 on a CD, they were released as a compilation once. Unforunately the CD currently resides in another city, so it'll be some time before I can put my hands on that.
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Re: Introducing new people to the game
« Reply #6 on: July 06, 2004, 12:38:23 am »

Slylendro, I believe the Chmmr, not knowing that the Spathi enslaved themselves, smashed the slave shield at the end of the war.  Honestly, if you were the Captain, would you tell the Chmmr not to do it?  Buggers deserve it for breaking their alliance. Tongue
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jabbrwock
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Re: Introducing new people to the game
« Reply #7 on: July 06, 2004, 06:54:44 pm »

Quote
Slylendro, I believe the Chmmr, not knowing that the Spathi enslaved themselves, smashed the slave shield at the end of the war.  Honestly, if you were the Captain, would you tell the Chmmr not to do it?  Buggers deserve it for breaking their alliance. Tongue


Dude, the Spathi made their *OWN* shield.  If the Chmmr smashed it, they could make another one.

Seriously, I can conceive of no rationale that is both true to the Star Control 1 and 2 image of the Spathi and involves them participating in an extremely dangerous affair like the expedition to the Kesseri Quadrant (sp?).  If anything, they'd be utterly ecstatic at the collapse of hyperspace - no way for the Ultimate Evil to approach them!

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Re: Introducing new people to the game
« Reply #8 on: July 06, 2004, 08:57:17 pm »

What would be the point of making a shield if they knew that someone had the tech to bring it down? I mean, by this time, earth probably knows how to bring down one thanks to the chmmr. The spathi would simply be trapping themselves on their planet.
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Tiberian
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Re: Introducing new people to the game
« Reply #9 on: July 06, 2004, 10:08:17 pm »

about the Spathi slave shield:

In SC3 the Spathi speaker told the story about it and said something like this: "You can try to think how we felt when the Chmmr suddenly appeared in orbit, popped our slave shield like a soap-balloon, called 'You are free' and left."
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Re: Introducing new people to the gamea
« Reply #10 on: July 06, 2004, 10:47:17 pm »

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It's not quite true there are no new mystories; The Orz constantly complained about the Syreen having *nasty tricks* on them and they dont tell you anything about it. The Orz also said the Syreen are controlling the alliance with their nasty tricks whole by themselves.


Given the way that the plot ends up going, it eventually turns out that when the Orz are complaining about the Syreen using *nasty tricks* to *dominion* the League, they're actually referring to psi *shields* applied to keep the *Orz* out.  Which, naturally, annoyed them.
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