Featured Items
Games
Software Demos News Recommended
Posts in "All News" channel about:

Napoleon: Total War Collection

Show posts for all products, not just Napoleon: Total War Collection
Announcement - Valve
Save 50 to 75%* on Total War Titles and master history during the Total War Week!

Steam Trading Cards Now Available for Medieval, Empire, Napoleon, and Rome.

Plus, pre-purchase Total War: Rome II and receive the laurel wreath in Team Fortress 2. Wearing the laurel wreath unlocks a special "Romebot" invasion in Mann vs Machine mode.

*No discount on pre-purchase titles. Offer ends August 26th at 10am pacific.
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Face Off: Is the RTS genre dying?">is rts genre dying?







Last week, Ironclad Games’ director and co-owner Blair Fraser called the RTS genre “a dying market.” The genre convention of base building is “done,” Fraser says, and while a handful of games like Company of Heroes “may be profitable,” it’s his belief that RTSes are “very niche.”



Hearing these comments from a strategy studio we respect sparked our own discussion: what’s the state of real-time strategy? In this Face Off debate, T.J. and Evan talk about the health of the genre, and debate whether its popularity has waned to never return, or if it’s actually seeing a resurgence.



Jump over to the next page for more opinions from the PC Gamer community, and make your own arguments in the comments. Debate team captains: construct additional arguments.



Evan: Let’s be clear: this isn’t something that I or we are rooting for. We love RTSes. Command & Conquer was one of my formative games. But the decline of real-time strategy as a popular experience is indisputable. RTS has shrank from the smorgasbord of experiences it offered in the ‘90s and early ‘00s—the era of Warcraft, Age of Empires, Ground Control, Homeworld, and Total Annihilation. I don’t think there’s any hope for a comeback.



TJ: Oh ye of little faith. Well, I’m sure you expected I’d play the eSports card. So... bam! There it is, on the table. All of the most popular eSports are either traditional RTSes, or spins on traditional RTSes. Competitive strategy gaming is drawing millions of viewers in hundreds of countries. How can you say a genre that’s driving that kind of revolution is dying? It looks vibrant and energetic from where I’m sitting.



Evan: The eSports “revolution” you’re describing can be attributed to the increased access to fast, high-quality internet video. eSports is in a better state than it was in the age of DSL and dial-up, sure, but StarCraft is the only conventional RTS with any success as an eSport.



TJ: So far. We’re only two and a half years in. That’s like saying sports were dead back when all they had was Throw the Rock Through the Hoop.



Evan: I’m glad to see eSports doing as well as it is. But really, this is about what we play and pay for, not about what we spectate. It’s about how few games are being made in a genre we used to count as a pillar of PC gaming. Most RTS studios are either closing or scrambling to change their core competency. Relic released a shooter in 2011. Petroglyph laid off 19 people in December and saw its game, End of Nations, brought in-house by its publisher. Sins of a Dark Age, which was initially pitched as an RTS-meets-MOBA, just ditched a “Commander Mode” RTS component that seemed promising. And Gas Powered Games, after declaring that it’d stop adding new content to Age of Empires Online, and after laying off most of its employees, is clinging to a Kickstarter campaign that seems doomed.



I don’t want to see any of these studios shuttered. We need independent, creative groups like Gas Powered in the industry. But this is simply not a healthy genre. Real-time strategy doesn’t have enough fans to support it.



TJ: I don’t have the numbers in front of me, but I would be really, genuinely surprised if there were actually fewer total people playing RTS than in the days of WarCraft III. Gaming, and even PC gaming specifically, have only gained traction since then. Huge traction. I think the fans are definitely there. If anything is dying, it’s the idea that RTSes should be given the same treatment, as shooters or action games, whose audiences have grown faster.



If anything, not enough devs have caught on to how you make and market an RTS in the modern market. You don’t spend Call of Duty money on an these things. And that’s hardly a stubborn enough problem that it would leave us without “any hope for a comeback.”



Evan: Not enough devs have “caught on” because it’s such a challenge for an RTS to make the money of a modern budget back. Again, look at Age of Empires Online. Its parent games were beloved and immensely popular. It reinvented itself as a free game. Gas Powered abandoned it just eight months after release. Very few people are playing it.



Should base-building be retired as a game mechanic? Will Kickstarter allow more studios to market RTS games directly to the people that want them?



TJ: I pin the failure of AOEO on a weak launch. There just wasn’t enough content—and only two factions? Really? If it had launched as the fleshed-out experience it became, I think it would have had a lot more success. Once the gaming masses have decided your game is lackluster, there’s not a lot you can do to bring them back.



Evan: I don’t know... if a free Age of Empires can’t make it, what chance do lesser-knowns like End of Nations have of surviving? I expect a similar fate for the next Command & Conquer, which will also be free to play. Face it: all the recent experiments with RTS have failed.



TJ: So did all the experimentations with human flight for hundreds of years. And they’ve only failed if your definition is pretty narrow.



Evan: This isn’t science—it’s business, and consumers continue to leave the genre. I think a lot of those people are flocking to a genre that was originally a spin-off of Warcraft III. Dota 2 and League of Legends are more popular and successful than StarCraft because designers realized that most people are intimidated by base building and managing a whole army.



TJ: Most people don’t play PC games (in the core audience sense) in the first place. What I’m saying is that RTS is a niche, but it’s no smaller of a niche, in terms of number of players, than it was in the glory days when it represented a higher percentage, because there just weren’t as many gamers. And if you want to talk about consumers expressing themselves, look no further than the 2.2-million-dollar Planetary Annihilation Kickstarter. That’s about as RTS as RTS gets, and it shows that there’s still plenty of vitality in the space beyond the traditional model of publishers bent on spending more than they can make back on these types of games.



Evan: Planetary Annihilation looks terrific! Like any rational human, I’m looking forward to weaponizing asteroids. But Planetary’s “success” is still just 44,000 people. Compare that to another recent spiritual successor made by another small studio—MechWarrior Online, which made 5 million dollars through its pre-order program. Mech games aren’t exactly mainstream—publishers have been afraid to back them for a decade.



Calling RTS a niche is accurate, I guess. But compared to the “glory days,” as you’ve labeled them, I think the genre as it exists now is a clump of lifeboats that’ve escaped from the capsized Titanic.



TJ: You’re comparing apples to robots here. Pre-orders and Kickstarter aren’t necessarily the same thing. I’m not arguing that RTS is as lucrative a genre as, say, shooters or action games. But there are plenty of people on those lifeboats to start a thriving island society. Which is arguably what PC gaming is: a series of thriving, passionate communities.



Evan: Perhaps that island society of yours can gather enough resources to build a second base, tech up, then construct air units. I hope they won’t have to resort to cannibalism.



For more opinions on PC gaming, follow Evan, T.J., and PC Gamer on Twitter. On the next page: more opinions from the community.







Here’s what folks on Twitter wrote back when we asked the following:



@pcgamer no way its dead. It's the best genre by far and the crowning area of pc dominance.— Hilander (@Canisrah) February 4, 2013



@pcgamer We may never see another Age of Empires, but we have Planetary Annihilation, CoH, DoW, SC, and MOBAs. Gimme Homeworld 3!— Josh B (@Branstetter87) February 4, 2013





@pcgamer not dead, but shrinking. By listening too intently to the hardcore crowd, fun simplicity has become overwhelming complexity.— Ryan Aleson (@TacticalGenius) February 5, 2013





@pcgamer RTS genre is alive more than in past, just look at Planetary Annihilation – one of the most funded games on Kickstarter!— Adam Wayland (@AdamWayland86) February 6, 2013





@pcgamer It is a genre in decline in terms of IPs and also game scale. Dying not necessarily but more like small and established.— Alexander Lai(@Lex_Lai) February 4, 2013





@pcgamer It's dying because of the repetitive formulas that every new game has. It's like the state of MMOs, no MMORPG can compete with WoW.— Jesús Jiménez-Lara (@MrVariaZ) February 4, 2013





@pcgamer RTS is not a dying market. It is, was and always will be a niche market. Some people them but most people hate them— Chris Thieblot (@christhieblot) February 5, 2013



@pcgamer Single player games are dying, RTSes are dying, adventure games are dying... nobody tell Valve, Uber, or Telltale!— Jacob Dieffenbach (@dieffenbachj) February 4, 2013





@pcgamer Traditional RTS games translate poorly to consoles, and few devs making PC exclusives outside major franchises.— Eric Watson (@RogueWatson) February 5, 2013



@pcgamer I love my rts games. There the first games I ever played and I don't plan on stopping any time soon.— Scott Ratter (@napatakking) February 5, 2013
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Shocked Roman suddenly realises he’s in a videogame in latest Rome 2 screenshots">Total War Rome 2 shocked Roman







Total War: Rome 2 soldiers are made up of between 6000 and 7000 polygons lead designer, James Russell, explained recently at the Eurogamer Expo. Artillery projectiles in Rome 2 are made up of more polygons then a Rome 1 soldier has. If you put enough polygons into these characters and layer on enough AI subroutines than there's always a danger that one of your chaps can become sentient and kick his way out of the matrix. Luckily for humanity this soldier is having his existential crisis in front of a team of rampaging war elephants, one of the top five worst situations in which to have an existential crisis. See his predicament in more detail in the screenshots below.















Announcement - Valve
In celebration of the new Steam Workshop for Total War: Shogun 2, save 25% off the entire Total War Franchise and even bigger saving on select Total War titles each day, now through October 1st at 10am Pacific Time.

Today only, save 75% off Napoleon: Total War and Empire: Total War. Owners of these two titles will also receive the Stovepipe Shako for the Sniper and Foppish Physician for the Medic in Team Fortress 2 and the Imperial Tricorne in Spiral Knights.

Check out the Total War Master Collection for even bigger savings and a collection of Total War inspired items to use in Team Fortress 2 and Spiral Knights!

Total War: Shogun 2 Workshop
A thousand battles, a thousand victories, but are they yours?
Create, discover and download historical battle scenarios, multiplayer maps and the most popular and accomplished mods. Or try out Total War TEd editor to create and upload your own.

The "best Total War yet" just got better. Today The Creative Assembly has launched the Total War™: SHOGUN 2 Assembly Kit; a suite of tools that enables ground-up modification of the entire Total War™: SHOGUN 2 product family. This release also includes an update to TEd (the existing Battle Map Editor), which enables Steam Workshop integration and the ability to create scripted single-player historical battles. A sample historical battle, custom-built by The Creative Assembly, is available now on Steam to give new modders a convenient starting point.

Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for more great deals and special offers.


PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Total War: Shogun 2 to get Steam Workshop support, deeper mod tools planned">Total War Shogun 2 Saints and Heroes musket men







Accounts of this week's Creative Assembly mod summit have been hitting Total War community forums, with word of Steam Workshop support for Total War: Shogun 2 and plans for an upgraded set of CA-developed mod tools that will let modders tweak campaign and model files.



The creator of The Great War mod, "Mitch," posted a detailed account of the meeting, in which some of the most prolific Total War modders in the world got to meet top CA talent like Shogun 2 lead designer Jamie Ferguson. According to Mitch, the presentation revealed that "there will be Steam Workshop intergration" for Shogun 2. "People will be able to create and upload their own historical battles and have others download them."



There's also mention of new model conversion software and a "campaign reprocessor" that will let tweakers "edit the most desired areas of modding, the campaign and the models."



You can read the full account of the day at the TWCenter forums. The Creative Assembly kickstarted their program to support modders earlier this year with the release of the free Shogun 2 map editor.
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Total War: Rome 2 trailer shows first in-game footage">Rome 2







Ouch! I've never seen someone get crushed with the head of a massive statue before, but this is WAR. The new Rome 2 trailer shows the first in-engine footage of the siege of Carthage. Legions of troops pour onto the beaches, wash into the streets and break against the grey, craggy fury of an elephant charge. It's a short teaser for a longer fly-through video of the siege that The Creative Assembly are keeping locked safely away in their trailer Trireme, but it offers a heady glimpse of the updated engine. Don't let me keep you. The video is right here ready to go.



PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Total War Darthmod creator retires">Darthmod Shogun 2







Nick "Darth Vader" Thomadis has announced that there won't be any more follow ups to the popular Darthmod series of mods for Total War after receiving no invite to The Creative Assembly's upcoming modders' summit. "There will be some support for older games, if needed, as all my mods are complete now but there will be not a new DarthMod for new Total War games and of course not for the upcoming RTW2," said Thomadis on Facebook.



"Do not worry about the future of the current DarthMods. They will stay and will be probably somewhat more improved. Maybe now I will have more time to play them."



The Empire, Napoleon and Shogun 2 versions of Darthmod offer some of the most comprehensive player-made updates to Total War games in recent years. They've gained a reputation for being ruthless, difficult and beautiful. Dozens of collaborators have updated each edition with layers of audio, visual and AI updates, making Darthmod a go-to choice for players looking for extra challenge from Total War. Thomadis mentions that Darthmod for Shogun 2 has amassed quarter of a million downloads since its release in March.



If you fancy trying Darthmod out, Moddb has the latest versions of the Darthmod updates for Shogun 2, Empire: Total War and Napoleon.
PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Total War Battles: Shogun out now on PC">Total War Battles Shogun







If you don't have an iOS device, you may not have heard of The Creative Assembly's mobile take on Total War. How on Earth do you fit the scale and spectacle of a Total War campaign onto a smartphone? Well, you can't, so Total War Battles tries to offer an entirely different take. It merges building and combat onto battlefields overlaid by grids of hexes. You can channel your troops down lanes drawn across the map and harvest resources with structures placed nearby. It's designed to be quick and easy to jump into, two qualities that Total War titles have traditionally lacked.



Sega's blurb boasts a ten hour campaign with bonus challenge missions. The visuals have been spruced up for the big screen and the PC version will come with bonus concept art showing off TWB's loud, colourful style.



Total War Battles is available now on Steam for $7.99 / £4.99 / EUR 9.99. Find out more on the Total War Battles site, and get a feel for how it plays in this here trailer:



Announcement - Valve
The Steam Summer Sale continues today with huge savings throughout the store!

Today's Daily Deals Include:

Don't forget to check back for a new Community Choice vote every 8 hours and new Flash sales throughout the day! You can also grab the Steam mobile app to make sure you never miss any great deals while you're on the go!

Complete information on all the savings, Flash Sales, Community Choice Votes and more may be found on www.steampowered.com.

PC Gamer
rel="bookmark"
title="Permanent Link to Napoleon: Total War Darthmod update has “enhanced Battle AI that awaits to crush you”">Napoleon Darthmod







The latest update to the Mythos Edition of the marvellous Darthmod project for Napoleon: Total War has landed according to ModDB, which makes this a good excuse to highlight Darthmod for any Total War players who haven't considered modding the game at all just yet.



The infamously challenging has gradually added more and more units to Napoleon, and has tuned the AI to be more aggressive and tougher to beat. Installing it will add 191 new land units, 14 new naval units and extra visual effects that make Napoleon's battlefields smokier, bloodier and more explosive. The mod also increases unit sizes and includes a campaign that supports 40 unit armies. The AI has been overhauled to use its generals more carefully, and combat has been rebalanced to make melee more decisive.



Those changes have been around for a month or so, but Darth Vader and co. have been busy tweaking the mod to make it better. Today's tweaks sharpen up the AI even more. Check out the full summary of the many, many changes Darthmod Napoleon makes on its TWCenter page. And check out the latest changelog, for version 2.5+++ below.



Version 2.5+++ "Mythos Edition" (17/7/2012)



Fix of broadside damage being too weak.

Improved melee and animation mechanics for even more cinematic and realistic engagements. The AI is affected very positively and now should behave better and be more responsive.

Adjusted the Formation AI and now the BAI should be more effective overall:

The AI now forms proper double lines, more suitable for the 40 Unit battles engagements.

The AI now can defend more efficiently and artillery fires at the advancing human army without hesitations.

The AI should attack not too stretched out and more coordinated.

Managing properly the formation offsets now the BAI can attack more efficiently by exploiting the weakness of the human player, that is the ability to control many fronts at the same time and musket/charge at will. In short, the AI moves much more decisively in the battlefield and should provoke much more casualties to the human player.

CAI should now be much more mobile and eager to defend borders/settlements/cities and also to invade.

Rank fire has less fire delay.

Melee penetration enhanced to the maximum cinematic level.



 
...

Search
Archive
2014
Sep   Aug   Jul   Jun   May   Apr  
Mar   Feb   Jan  
Archives By Year
2014   2013   2012   2011   2010  
2009   2008   2007   2006   2005  
2004   2003   2002