After playing in version after a lot of patches I have to change my point of view. It still isn't the best game and still I don't think it's a good TW game. However there are some improvements and I quite enjoyed it.
CAMPAIGN IN GENERAL:+ Cultures
- various religions, cultures, definitely a TW trademark. There is a lot of factors responsible for growth or drop and cultures are located in the right places. Its pretty good step forward after Medieval and Empire.+ Good diplomacy window.
Nothing more to say. Its the biggest improvement since Medieval and Empire (although it makes game not only much more realistic but oddly... easier just like in Shogun)+ The game is much more focused on politics and generals than it was ever before.
Now player is not absolute tyrant who can do whatever he wishes, there are also political enemies, threat of rebellion (not only when happines is in bad shape) and need for political intrigue to gain power. And of course the traits, there are not only a lot of them, but now you can see a good reason behind gaining a one. They don't just come randomly as it was before.+ Seasons and terrain
- magnificient move, weather has its impact not only on battlefield but also in campaign map. And there are few types of every season based on local climate. And you can easily see which parts of terrain are good for defense or attack. Good one.+ New interface is amazing.
You can see everything that is important without any problem.- Limits on armies, agents and fleets.
And the fact that you can't create and army without general, so pretty much you can have only few armies, and you can't move or even recruit units without one. But... why? - Other factions are passive.
Biggest problems are rebelions and not the actual enemy. They declare wars and attack you very rarely. So basically if you are not a newbie, you will go through them softly as knife through butter. - AI does not create huge armies with big backup.
They create big amount of small armies running around and attacking cities with garrisons, and often with only small amount of strategic mind you are able to defeat that army with only garrison.- New province system.
It's neither good, nor bad, but as an "orthodox" player it's big joke and a pretty strange improvement for me.
UNITS:+ Highlighting differences between units.
They come in different types of armour which impacts on vulnerability (v.heavy, heavy, light). Besides quite the same types of close combat units, there are many more distance, horse and skirmishing units. + Mercenary units
- a lot of them, located perfectly on the map.+ Agents
- I like the fact that they are not only recruited in one purpose like in older TW games. They can kill enemy generals, sabotage enemy provinces or just help your generals and provinces. But still it's nothing new, just an idea from Shogun 2.+ Army traditions!- Generals and agents advancing tree.
What the hell is that? They decided that rather than having nice and easy to understand tree like in Shogun2 they prefer to focus on 3 traits that will give new abilities. But how can I now what does it really give? I don't know where I will end up advancing in authority or cunning section. I don't know what could gravitas give me. You can't plan ahead and see other abilities you are going to get when you will go one way or another. It is simply not clear enough.
Interface is ok... just a standard TW interface.+
Graphics are of course great...+
Great new movie camera, but... i will say more it later- I hate this whole new "buff" system.
In Empire it was fine, in Shogun there was small amount of "buffs", so it wasn't a big problem for me. But in this one. Hell no! It's not a MMO game, you can chill out with those that are not units formations (only ones that have right to exist, naturally formations have its advantages and disadvantages).- Frame rate drops-
Short and not inspiring/ballsy general speeches before battle.- Tragic AI
- even when you overwhelm them with distance units, enemy army can just stay still and simply do nothing. Or they will just charge on your army even though you have overwhelming close combat power. Or they can just run in circles like morons.- The other things are flags.
What the hell is with all those flags? I get it, in previous games there were flags, but only in strategic points of map and there was one flag or maybe in Shogun and Empire there were few more for gates and towers. Now there is a lot of them in cities, which leads us to another problem...- ... why AI doesnt even defend the flags?
I could easily fight with their units and at the same time just wondering around with one unit and get all the points with flags. And the AI didn't give a...crap about it.- Units charge and close combat are a disaster.
The unit collision is wrong, and after charging on enemy they don't stay in formation, which leads to having just a bunch of units pilling up in one place. I would like to see fighting animations but I couldn't even see one. To be honest I didn't see anything just chaos. As I said the new movie camera is great. Would be great, if I there was anything interesting to see.
THE REST:+ Soundtrack
- nothing unexpected, TW games always have some good background music.
+ Main menu is... just ok i guess.+ Steam Workshop!
This is one great thing. Mods are always good for the game, they fix problems and introduce new units, options, designs. It was great move.+
Guide pretty much teaches everything. It's just great.+
In game event movies are cool...-
... but no event movies for agents, which was a great, funny things, adding some spirit to previous games.-
They decided to squeeze the money out of players, by doing that many DLCs. You want to play fricking Sparta or famous Epirus? Of course you want! But it will cost you extra money. It's a surprise they didn't do Rome faction as a DLC...
Premiere version was ONE BIG MISTAKE and probably ONE BIG PILE OF.... Right now, after improvements, patches and some mods... it still is quite enjoyable game. But for me, as an "orthodox" in TW gameplay and a huge history fan... it doesn't work well after all hype it got. It was over-hyped and now I know that. I bought the premiere version, the price was too big for this game and now I know that. But was it worth to see for myself and did I have some fun. Yes I did. Indeed I did. :)