Why DoW3 doesn't make players exciting?
Part I - Why DoW3 don't make players exciting?
I think there are 2 main reasons of it.
Reason 1 - There is almost no "surprise/vivid" mechanic or technology in DoW3.
[A] In fact, Relic does introduce a lot of new mechanics in DoW3, like Cover Ability of Elite Unit and Scrap of Orks, but players just ignore those.
(1) They just want the environment cover and don't like other form of cover.
(2) They think the scrap mechanic is a burden. The scrap mechanic is kind of like the scrap in C&C generals, but it becomes a necessary step in Orks gameplay. It's no a choose between pick scrap and don't pick up scrap and it's a must pick up situation. So, what do players have to do is try to make all of their units pick up the scraps and then it becomes a burden.
[B] Not to mention the Shield Cover, a lot of don't like it, because it's not vivid enough compared to those cover in DoW2.
Reason 2 - The first impression of game design for players is a combination of other games.
[A] The art style part - It's like Diablo 3, LoL or DOTA2 in the first impression for players.
[B] The combat feeling part - it's like those traditional RTS, like SC2 or AoE2 in the first impression for players.
[C] The elite unit part - it's like those Heroes of MOBA games in the first impression for players.
Part II - What' the problem to make a W40K RTS game?
[A] I think the W40K is a difficult IP for developers to make good RTS games, due to the relationship among its lore, rule and RTS game design.
[B] How to make melee attack and range attack and cover system work well in the same game?
There is a problem in DoW2, the melee attack works not well, due to the garrison buildings, retreat function and suppression fire.
So, What does Relic do in DoW3?
(1) To make garrison buildings become the Shield Cover to let melee units can get in there and to counter garrison units.
(2) To remove the retreat function to let melee units can chase up the fleeing range units.
(3) To make suppression fire no longer ping down units to let melee units have chance to get close to range units.
[C] Squad Scale and Cover Scale
(1) The Squad scale in DoW1
(2) The Cover scale in DoW1
(3) The Cover scale in DoW2
(4) If Relic wants to make the Squad scale of DoW1 to fit in the cover in DoW2 and then they have to make the cover longer or larger.
(5) Those combination of Squad scale and Cover scale.
[D] The different between Crater Cover and Shield Cover.
(1) The Activate way.
The Crater Cover do not require to be captured to activate it, but Shield Cover does require to be captured to activate it.
(2) The Usage.
The Crater Cover provides Defense Buff to reduce receiving damage, but the Shield Cover provides a damage absorb function. The crater cover can not be destroyed, but the shield cover can be destroyed. The shield cover can block Walkers(vehicles) into the cover and only let melee infantry into the activated shield cover, but the crater cover can let any units come in.
(3) The Feeling.
The crater cover makes players feel "nature" and "reasonable", but shield cover can not let players feel "nature" and "reasonable".
[E] There are other difficulties and I will not write all of those in this article. What I want to express is players want those "surprise/vivid" mechanic or technology in DoW3, but due to those issues, there is a difficulty to make it for Relic.
Part III - The appropriate process of making a game.
[A] The appropriate process of making a game.
Honestly, I think the appropriate process of making a game is to design the mechanics first and then is to fill it with subject.
Nowaday, developers do the opposite direction, and I mean they catch the IP first and then try hard to think how to design mechanics for the IP and then it just makes them trap in the trap and makes them hard to make good new games.
I know there are fan bases with old IP, but every IP will run out its content, one day. We can stick on old IP, but it's hard for developers to develop good content in their new squeal for players.
[B] I think Relic can make new IP for their invention and don't have to use their old IP to realize their inventions.
To be continued........