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 Post subject: Mad Minute Games Bull Run
PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2005 4:57 pm 
Gentlemen of the club (and the rest of you),

Today is a great day in history. For a pittance (US $19.99) I picked up the above game. I know the programmer, and tested with him in the past. Now, mind you it is real time, but not an unmanagable click fest. Full 3d to boot.

So far I'm enjoying it immensely.

Published by Activision with the History Channel - but please don't confuse this title with the poor offering of GB they put out. This is head and shoulders above that, and IMHO betters the Sid Meier CW games.

Note that the game does not yet support PBEM or IP, but Norb and the other developers want it in. This game was 3 years in the making, and some features will be added later - like a campaign.

More later, but so far I find this game to have high potential, especially when campaign and PBEM is eventually implimented.

http://madminutegames.com/

Lt Gen Bill Braddock, 1/2/3 ANV


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2005 6:55 pm 
Bill,

Thanks for the review. I've been following this game for a number of months and am glad to hear a good opinion from someone who has finaly played it now that it is out. I plan to keep my eyes open on the local shelves and grab it if I see it. For $20 there isn't much to lose. I've wasted more money on things that probably produced less enjoyment! :)

Can you give us a more in depth review when you have time?

Regards,
Captain Alan Lynn
3rd Battery "Jacksonville Greys"
4th Div, II Corps, AoA
God bless <><


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2005 3:22 am 
Sure. I need to toy around with the engine some more. I can tell you a little about the artillery. Guess what? Shell, shot, shrapnel and cannister, complete with airbursts where appropriate. The artillery is in batteries of 4-6, with L/C/R sections of two guns each (center for 6 gun batteries). Unlimbering takes about one game minute after they get intto position, then the guns take a bit to adjust. Artillery is not overwhelming, and can be overrun, captured and used against you, so protect it. You also must know when to limber and hit the road - and deciding it's time when the enemy charge starts won't work. It takes what seems like an eternity to limber up.

Oh, almost forgot. You can give move orders and use the roads (select the general, click the destination, select 'road column', then select 'use roads' button) and your regiments will prepare to go, waiting for their place in column before stepping off. A nice touch is you hear the tooters 'fife and drumming' your troops along.

While I'm on it, the background noises are excellent also - cicadas, crickets, some birds, etc. These noises dissapear into the din of battle, adding to the effect.




Lt Gen Bill Braddock, 1/2/3 ANV


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2005 4:22 am 
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Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2001 1:11 pm
Posts: 149
Location: USA
I just received my copy in the mail yesterday, and I failed miserably in the last phase of the tutorial. My brigade's job was to protect the Division's left flank, and the Rebs got behind me without my knowing it.
I was impressed with the fact that the enemy AI will attempt to work a regiment around your flank if you are not careful. I'll give more of my impressions on the game as I get a chance to play it more. That might be awhile, since I've been extremely busy with "real life" lately, but from my initial impressions it looks like I will enjoy this game a lot.

-Capt. Brett Schulte 2nd Bde, 1st Div., III Corps, AotM, ACWGC
http://www.brettschulte.net/hps_acw.htm


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 7:55 am 
More -

I REALLY like this game. The first RTS that I've seen using a minute as a minute. You can speed up the game a mite, but only if no battle is in progress. There's no pressure to constantly zip around the map, as a 15 minute march takes *gasp* fifteen minutes! Playing as a division commander or higher, your orders are dispatched by riders, and your subordinates issue their orders the same way, if appropriate. The commanders act realistically, and the AI is actually intelligent. The bastard AI (in conjunction with a high initiative / ability BG) jumped on the opportunity to rush a gap I left in the battle line as I fell back too quickly. My relief did not fill the gap fast enough, and I was blamed (rightfully) for allowing the line to be broken. ( Major loss)

I cannot wait for the expansion of this engine. Oh, and did I mention, EVERYTHING IS MODDABLE and the source is supplied, as is a utility to package your scenarios. So, want to make a Rev War game of it? Nappy, anyone? The onlt thing you cannot easily change is the map - the developers do not have the rights to distribute that program, and it's been described by them as more ornery than a snake bit biddy with a hangover.

Lt Gen Bill Braddock, 1/2/3 ANV


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 12:26 pm 
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Site Admin

Joined: Tue May 22, 2001 4:46 pm
Posts: 564
Location: Canada
Based your input I just ordered it. I am looking forward to trying it out.

Best Regards,

General Pierre D.
CSA Reserve Corps
President, ACWGC


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 4:31 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2001 1:11 pm
Posts: 149
Location: USA
Here's my updated take on the game as well after managing to win each of the four brigade scenarios. I'm with Bill. I LOVE this game. Pierre and anyone else who has ordered it won't be sorry, especially for $20. As Bill says, the game is real time, so five seconds in real life is five seconds in the game. Most scenarios can be played out in about 45 minutes if you follow your orders correctly. If you don't, it could take much longer. I was routed as Burnside and had to rely on other Union brigades to clear my objective area of Rebs before I could rally my boys and then limp forward to take possession. That one took about 1.5 hours or so over two sittings, but I learned my lesson! I haven't graduated to the Division or Army command yet, but my understanding of the way it works is that you must send couriers to any of your subordinates who are located greater than 50 yards away from you. Apparently, if you try to micromanage regiments at these higher levels you will more than likely lose as other areas of your lines go neglected.

The graphics are pretty good, especially when you consider that this game was created by two guys in their spare time. And as Bill also mentioned, this thing is wide open as far as modding goes. The designers were even kind enough to place everything in .csv (spreadsheet) and text files to make the modding that much easier on everyone. There are a few glitches every now and then with the AI. I once saw a Rebel courier (I was playing as the Rebs, using Evans' Brigade) go through my lines and disappear somewhere behind the Union lines facing me. I did see him come scurrying back quite some time later. It is my understanding that they wish to eventually make the map editor easier to use and eventually release it to the public. As of now, they are actively looking for people to create Second Bull Run scenarios. I think I might give it a go if someone else comes up with a useable order of battle. My only problem is that I've never been able to find decent regimental strengths for Second Bull Run.

Anyway, I've rambled on enough. After I've moved on to Division level (one or two more Brigade-level wins oughta do it) I'll give my impressions there.

-Capt. Brett Schulte 2nd Bde, 1st Div., III Corps, AotM, ACWGC
http://www.brettschulte.net/hps_acw.htm


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2005 12:43 am 
Well, you've already sold it to me Brett.[:D] Just waiting on it to arrive from across the pond.

Col.2nd Brig
"English Guard"
2nd Div,II,Corps,
AoA.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2005 2:20 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 4:32 am
Posts: 1643
Location: USA
I got the game and was hoping to be able to comment on it. Unfortunately[:(], they really mean those minimum specs. When they say it requires a video card with 128MB you better have one if you don't want to watch flicker and crashes[xx(]. Be sure to check their site for the minimum computer requirements and make sure yours passes muster[^].

Col. Kennon Whitehead
Chatham Grays
III Corps, AoM (CSA)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2005 3:45 am 
I will say that so far I am not a big fan of this game.....I have found the interface tough to get used to....I don't like the way the zoom and unzoom feature works.....I am often spending my time just trying to see things from a perspective that gives me some....I definatly will suspend judgement until I get more competent, but I don't see it becoming one of my favorites....as for the specs, it will not run on my 2.6 gig P4 (HP Pavillion) with 512mgs of Ram....did the test suggested, and yet it still won't run....it does run on a slightly lesser computer though 2.0 Gig P4 (Generic puter). For some reason it does not run on either HP Puter.....HMMMMM.....Oh well.....I will say this, I do recomend that ya'll buy the game....most will probably like it better than I do, at at 20 bucks you risk little by doing so......plus, if you want more designers to get into our niche, you better support the ones who do.....I always do......Regards, Hank


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2005 5:00 am 
Hank, your HP computer probably has integrated graphics, most HP computers do (or did, I'm getting older). That is definitely a no-no for this game. You need at least a 64 meg video card.

<blockquote id="quote"><font size="3" face="book antiqua" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by Jefferson H. Davis</i>
<br />I will say that so far I am not a big fan of this game.....I have found the interface tough to get used to....I don't like the way the zoom and unzoom feature works.....I am often spending my time just trying to see things from a perspective that gives me some....I definatly will suspend judgement until I get more competent, but I don't see it becoming one of my favorites....as for the specs, it will not run on my 2.6 gig P4 (HP Pavillion) with 512mgs of Ram....did the test suggested, and yet it still won't run....it does run on a slightly lesser computer though 2.0 Gig P4 (Generic puter). For some reason it does not run on either HP Puter.....HMMMMM.....Oh well.....I will say this, I do recomend that ya'll buy the game....most will probably like it better than I do, at at 20 bucks you risk little by doing so......plus, if you want more designers to get into our niche, you better support the ones who do.....I always do......Regards, Hank
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

Lt Gen Bill Braddock, 1/2/III ANV


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2005 5:00 am 
I just got this game yesterday. I haven't played enough of it yet to make an honest or complete review but I do have a few thoughts. For me, to like this better than SMG, it will have to have multiplayer support. Then and only then can it come close to be compared with SMG for thats where SMG showed its teeth.

The graphics on this game are quite nice given the price. The one negative I have noticed so far is the compass in your HUD. I may be missing something but in the first training tutuorial when you're ordered west after routing the first troops the compass looked to be showing west as one way when it was actually the other. I caught this quick enough but I would like to see this a little clearer. Overall my first impression is good especially for the money.

BG Mike Smith
3/3ANV
[url="http://convolutedmuse.blogspot.com//"]Convoluted Muse Me[/url]


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2005 5:07 am 
Min spec is 64 megs on your vid card. Leave the option settings at medium, an maybe turn off the trees if you don't have a 128 meg card. I only use the trees if I follow a unit through the woods - just so I can get the feeling of walking into unexpected fire. Flicker can be helped by changing your windows 'hardware acceleration' setting, especially if you notice mouse cursor flicker. Down if it's at max, up or down if it's not.
<blockquote id="quote"><font size="3" face="book antiqua" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by KWhitehead</i>
<br />I got the game and was hoping to be able to comment on it. Unfortunately[:(], they really mean those minimum specs. When they say it requires a video card with 128MB you better have one if you don't want to watch flicker and crashes[xx(]. Be sure to check their site for the minimum computer requirements and make sure yours passes muster[^].

Col. Kennon Whitehead
Chatham Grays
III Corps, AoM (CSA)
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

Lt Gen Bill Braddock, 1/2/III ANV


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2005 5:18 am 
Mike,
Someone at the forums has already modded the compass. Check in the mods section. You can also mod it easily yourself. The file is in the toolbars folder, I believe. Also note that your waypoint (where you were ordered to go) appears as a star over the objective. Tilt your view point up and look around until you see it. You can avoid the compass entirely if you want.

Once MP is implemented, this game will easily supplant SM games. I suggested to the design team that they investigate doing something like Combat Mission for a PBEM.

<blockquote id="quote"><font size="3" face="book antiqua" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by Michael Smith</i>
<br />I just got this game yesterday. I haven't played enough of it yet to make an honest or complete review but I do have a few thoughts. For me, to like this better than SMG, it will have to have multiplayer support. Then and only then can it come close to be compared with SMG for thats where SMG showed its teeth.

The graphics on this game are quite nice given the price. The one negative I have noticed so far is the compass in your HUD. I may be missing something but in the first training tutuorial when you're ordered west after routing the first troops the compass looked to be showing west as one way when it was actually the other. I caught this quick enough but I would like to see this a little clearer. Overall my first impression is good especially for the money.

BG Mike Smith
3/3ANV
[url="http://convolutedmuse.blogspot.com//"]Convoluted Muse Me[/url]






<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

Lt Gen Bill Braddock, 1/2/III ANV


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2005 7:29 am 
Bill,

Thanks for the heads up, I'll definitely check the forum and look for the star you mentioned. :-)

BG Mike Smith
3/3ANV
[url="http://convolutedmuse.blogspot.com//"]Convoluted Muse Me[/url]


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