Master of Magic is a classic example of how a broken and unbalanced game can still be great and IMO, it is great in large part due to its broken and unbalanced nature. I don’t want them to balance MoM, or stop the Artifact/Superhero/Lucky Halfling/what-have-you quasi-exploit strategies that make the original such a great a joy. If that means no multiplayer, FUCK IT. In fact, if they “balance” the game to enable non-whinging multi-player, I will boycott. There are plenty of balanced multi-player games and that’s a perfectly valid gameplay choice. But MoM was heroically unbalanced and unbroken and great. And it was great BECAUSE it was unbalanced and broken. It’s a rare example of the exception to normal paradigms and I strongly oppose any effort to “fix” MoM other than a graphics, UI and AI upgrade (and the AI upgrade IMO should be technical not making the AI able to deal with all the brokeness - this is a game where the Chick Parabola is inherent and necessary.)
I have not played Caster of Magic so I cannot comment on those particular changes. If they make sense and don’t harm the broken awesomeness of the original, great. But I’m really strongly opposed to “fixing” MoM in the name of balance.
Balance is great and necessary in many games, but not ALL games. Let me enjoy this classic broken masterpiece in a revived form.
Damnit. And get off my lawn, too.
(Vitreol generalized and not directed at any particular person, other than “game ruining balance freaks who are ON MY LAWN.”)
MoM is pretty much the canonical example of how balance != fun.
Caster of Magic is less broken in some of the obvious ways, but you still get to have things like flying invisible warships if you so choose. You just don’t get like net-mana-producing artificers or 11-death Wraith starts or what have you. Which, honestly, those turbo-broken things are pretty dumb outside of the first time you rofl your way through a game with them.
Mostly CoM has just better AI that does less obviously dumb stuff, and fewer straight-up-not-working spells, and stuff like that. I’m not Captain Balance by any means, and I’m very much pro-CoM (and especially CoMW).
That all said, with any luck they’ll make this reasonably moddable/extendable so it can grow beyond the nearly 1:1 remake it’s apparently set to be.
Yeah, I have no interest in multiplayer and I’m bummed when a good single player game is compromised by a need to be multi-player.
But that’s not my concern at all here. I have great memories of playing the original when if first came out, and it was a blast. But I also have memories of pulling it out more recently, knowing the game well, and it being shockingly boring, because it was just a matter of finding all the enemy cities to take over.
[quote=“Adam_B, post:525, topic:143154”]
honestly, those turbo-broken things are pretty dumb outside of the first time you rofl your way through a game with them.
I don’t understand people arguing for broken balance. If I know certain things are extremely OP, I will immediately head for them and avoid other things that are weaker. I therefore a. don’t get to experience the full spectrum of the game’s design, b. win effortlessly because I know the best way to do so c. don’t have to think much, and thinking is what strategy games are about. Basically you’re guaranteeing that the only gameplay available is a first exploratory phase to find the most OP strategies (and many players have already explored this game in the 90s), followed by a casual, non-challenging phase when wanting to netflix and chill.
Sure, do them the first time for a game, then next time try something different. The great thing about MoM was that there were so many broken mechanics you could mix and match with. Also the game was very unfair towards the player and the AI would regularly gang up on you. The player needed a real edge.
Some people are using the term ‘broken mechanics’ to refer to hugely unbalanced strategies (that are clearly better than others).
Others to refer to ‘strategies that the AI can’t deal with’.
If a game has ‘many broken mechanics’, it doesn’t mean the first meaning. If it has many, of grossly equal power, surely the game is decently balanced. In other words, they actually want to say ‘the AI is bad, as it cannot counter most player strategies’. Like not being able to deal with flying armies well, or with invisible units, etc.
caster of magic for windows has an ai that will actively use and counter overpowered strategies. it is much better balanced than original mom. i also play it less often because, while more challenging, it is frequently less fun than seeing if i can make my latest crazy idea work in mom. you generally cant make your latest crazy idea work in caster of magic
Just speaking for myself, but I find that in Caster, overly powerful strategies have an expiration date. Seems to me you can do things in the early game that steamroller anyone nearby, but then you run into rivals that have the next era of spells (uncommons) and now that great strategy will barely keep you even, so you need something new. And this repeats itself again in the rare and very rare spell eras.
For me, this is more fun. I can go to town on a rival or two, but no sense of “game already over.” There’s pressure to gain all the advantage I can quickly, because I may need all that advantage to maintain upper hand in the next era.
I’d also add that especially for the later eras, Caster prevents my planning ahead what my next strategy is going to be. Depends on what spells I find, and what my next circle of rivals turns out to have.
However, I recognize that lots of gamers get a lot of fun out of dealing with a dangerous game world with crushing strategies – broken ones, in the current parlance. And I have no desire to deny those gamers their entertainment.
(I also think that one reason for differing reactions to Caster is how death magic oriented you are. Many incredibly powerful death magic strategies in the original, but in Caster the AI is particularly good at countering death magic, and most of the best strategies I know of do not use it.)
Honestly while I’m jazzed as hell for this remastered MoM - having played/looked into CoM quite a bit since it dropped on Steam last year, I’m really hoping that we can make that work in MoM (officially and eventually, or unofficially).
i enjoy both games for different reasons. com requires knowing all of the insidious strategies and making plans on how to deal with them during game set up. if you dont have a plan for ranged cockatrices stoning your troops your playthrough will be brief. this can be fun for me, the planning ahead of time, but it also severely restricts my options. i can’t play high men and life magic because despite being great fighters, their units will die in heaps against said ranged cockatrices.
mom is not tuned to fight fire with fire. rather it throws huge amounts of less discriminate resource advantages at you, and you can possibly overcome that with smarts. or a thousand combinations of units, heroes, spells, and items. but you arent going to face with your own tactics, and thats a type of fun i like more.
its great to have both options, and mom on impossible still beats most of the things i try. i can guarantee that i win in a dozen ways, but thats not the fun part. the fun is seeing if i can do it just with longbows and no heroes and razing any cities that i take that arent high elf. or whatever crazy thing i can think of.
Coming back to this, I think what people really want to say when they mention how they liked how it was unbalanced/broken, I think what the really mean is “I like how impactful or meaningful each thing felt’, and not 'I sincerely hope the AI is dumb as rocks!”.
In other games you enchant an unit for +1 attack, and it’s a buff that barely can be noticed. In MoM an early buff in an unit could double its value.
In another games summoning a pair of of magical units could be the equivalent of just two more units, that didn’t have to go through the recruit pool/your treasure, in MoM rushing a decent summon spell and summoning a pair of units could change how the midgame evolved by themselves allowing to conquer cities that would be out of reach otherwise.
In the late game the same, you could feel the ever increasing scale of power or how definitive some global enchantment were, while in other games it seems they try to not to do anything too drastic.
That’s what people like, for your spells and units to be impactful, without needing to do 40 of them.