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Author Topic: EECH - Poor GAMECENTER Review - Some observations
Sean Tudor
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Member # 563

posted 08-20-2000 07:01 PM     Profile for Sean Tudor     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Firstly Gamecenter has just posted a review of EECH at
http://www.gamecenter.com/Reviews/Item/0,6,0-4625,00.html?st.gc.fd.pc.i

The reviewer is Marc Dultz and he gave EECH 7/10. The score isn't too bad but the actual content of his review is questionnable. I have quoted parts of the review below :

"There is also a wide array of playing options to choose from, including several multimission skirmish actions set in Taiwan, Lebanon, and Yemen, as well as three semidynamic campaign games."

If you had played the game more than 30 minutes Marc you would have discovered a fully dynamic campaign included with EECH.

"Unfortunately, you'll still need to access the instrumentation panel with a keyboard, because Razorworks doesn't believe in implementing a mouse-activated cockpit."

Hmm in this day and age of programmable HOTAS controllers I can't really see the justification for this comment. In the thick of battle I don't necessarily want to be stuffing around trying to click a function in the 3D cockpit.

It is ok to do this in Janes F/A-18 since the action isn't as immediate as in EECH.

"The designers made a conscious decision to omit a training mode from the game, and, for some unknown reason, stripped out the basic rules of flying a gunship from the instruction manual. So, if you're a newbie to flight simulations, you had better bone up on flying a gunship elsewhere, because you're certainly not going to get any hands-on training here. Frankly, I'm not sure why this was done, but suffice it to say that it was an imprudent decision, given the complexity of the game and intricacies of helicopter combat."

Actually even without a training mode EECH is one of the easiest flight simulations to learn to fly. It is far easier than say the helo in FS2000 which is directed at the mainstream market. The avionics certainly are no where near as complex as some other sims on the market.

"In addition, Razorworks seems to prefer pouring all of its energies into a product's gameplay and in-game graphics, while paying little heed to such eccentricities as introductory cinematic segues. This isn't necessarily a bad thing; most gamers tend to watch the video sequences once or twice before hitting the escape key. However, when you take into consideration the fact that the CD duplicator failed to incorporate all of the audio tracks that were supposedly included on the master CD, then players are greeted with nothing more than a simple game menu screen at the program's start-up. Again, this may seem picayune, but it's something that could have been addressed in an everyday focus group and somehow handled differently."

Here we see Marc Dultz's true preference - cinematics. I honestly don't think Marc was the best person to review this title. It would also seem that Marc is becoming too mainstream and commercial as is the rest of the Gamecenter website. "Focus groups" ?! I rest my case.

This would seem to be in line with the rest of their "policies" regarding flight sims as their biased "Five Dying Game Genres" article revealed. Unfortunately these genres don't fit into Gamecenter's nice neat console slot and therefore they really have no interest in such game genres.

"The time compression feature doesn't auto-disengage when the action heats up, so when players fly into a hot spot, they get shot down and fail to complete their mission. And then there's the quirky autopilot, which will occasionally have trouble following the waypoint indicators and even more difficulty auto-landing the helicopter. On several occasions, I had to disable the autopilot and make a risky manual landing with a heavily damaged aircraft. Fortunately, the game comes equipped with a cheat key, which lets players re-arm, refuel, and repair their aircraft with a simple keystroke combination."

This says it all really. I have never had any trouble with autopilot and waypoints. Obviously if your helo is damaged then autopilot won't work. Marc Dultz also seems to favour cheat keys. It is obvious that Marc would rather have been playing something else - first person shooters maybe ?

"Comanche Versus Hokum is undoubtedly one of the most robust helicopter simulations on the market right now. It gives players a sense of what it's like to fly and fight at treetop level on today's ultra-modern battlefield. However, its flaws keep it from feeling like a complete, well-rounded gaming experience. For experts, this game is a must-have, but some of the more cumbersome aspects may scare away those who are not die-hard fans of helicopter simulations."

Oh well I suppose Marc had to be positive in his wrapup otherwise he would have 1,000 screaming hardcore fanatics breathing down his neck - right Marc ?

Let me also state that absolutely NO MENTION was made of the core of EECH - the dynamic campaign or its many aspects or even the radio communications.

This is a very poor review and it is obvious the author really has no interest - or Gamecenter - with the product. The review hardly touches on many of the detailed aspects that make EECH a worthwhile gaming experience.

The review is rushed and contains factual errors and ommissions by the author.

My score of Marc Dultz's "Review" ? 3/10.

Very poor form Marc / Gamecenter.


Posts: 123 | From: Sydney, Australia | Registered: Oct 1999  |  IP: Logged
LeadHead
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Member # 184

posted 08-21-2000 07:50 AM     Profile for LeadHead   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Sean Tudor:


Actually even without a training mode EECH is one of the easiest flight simulations to learn to fly. It is far easier than say the helo in FS2000 which is directed at the mainstream market. The avionics certainly are no where near as complex as some other sims on the market.

Easy to fly? Well, perhaps compared to FS2000 whose helo model is notorious for its difficulty but out of all combat chopper sims I know, this is definately the hardest one to fly.
Longbow 2 is easy compared to EECH and so is Team Apache...

------------------
Lead-Head's Simulation Site:
http://fly.to/lead-head


Posts: 775 | From: PiteŚ, Norrbotten, Sweden. | Registered: Sep 1999  |  IP: Logged
Sean Tudor
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Member # 563

posted 08-21-2000 07:44 PM     Profile for Sean Tudor     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
EECH has one of the most forgiving flight models around.

I don't know what everyone finds so hard about it - pull back on the collective and push forward on the joystick.

Maybe I am assuming too much ?


Posts: 123 | From: Sydney, Australia | Registered: Oct 1999  |  IP: Logged
Shadowcat
unregistered

posted 08-22-2000 07:19 AM       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Sean Tudor:
"...as well as three semidynamic campaign games."

If you had played the game more than 30 minutes Marc you would have discovered a fully dynamic campaign included with EECH.


I don't own EECH... there are semi-dynamic campaigns _and_ a fully dynamic campaign (vague terms that they are!)? or is he calling the 'fully' dynamic campaigns 'semi-dynamic'?

quote:

"Unfortunately, you'll still need to access the instrumentation panel with a keyboard, because Razorworks doesn't believe in implementing a mouse-activated cockpit."

Hmm in this day and age of programmable HOTAS controllers I can't really see the justification for this comment. In the thick of battle I don't necessarily want to be stuffing around trying to click a function in the 3D cockpit.


I've never wanted clickable cockpits very much, but most of us sure don't own HOTAS controllers. I know you want to criticise the review, but remember that it's not just the hardcore crowd that this sim is aimed at -- if it were, Razorworks couldn't possibly make back their investment; the hardcore simmers just don't have the numbers to pay for a game on their own. (Not even close, I'd imagine.)

quote:

"The designers made a conscious decision to omit a training mode from the game, and, for some unknown reason, stripped out the basic rules of flying a gunship from the instruction manual. So, if you're a newbie to flight simulations, you had better bone up on flying a gunship elsewhere, because you're certainly not going to get any hands-on training here. Frankly, I'm not sure why this was done, but suffice it to say that it was an imprudent decision, given the complexity of the game and intricacies of helicopter combat."

Actually even without a training mode EECH is one of the easiest flight simulations to learn to fly. It is far easier than say the helo in FS2000 which is directed at the mainstream market. The avionics certainly are no where near as complex as some other sims on the market.


Be that as it may, again this sim is not aimed only at experienced simmers such as yourself. This comment of the reviewer was totally justified in my opinion -- to exclude both training missions _and_ training instructions in the manual is absolute madness.

Of course, as you point out, he then goes on to complain about cinematic sequences. Sheesh!!

I do agree with most of your comments, but I felt you were being critical for the sake of being critical on occasion.


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LeadHead
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Member # 184

posted 08-22-2000 10:54 AM     Profile for LeadHead   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Sean Tudor:
EECH has one of the most forgiving flight models around.

I don't know what everyone finds so hard about it - pull back on the collective and push forward on the joystick.

Maybe I am assuming too much ?


I don't know why but I have serious trouble flying EECH at anything else than slow or full forward speed.

Also there's something wrong with the turns.
It sort of handles like in the slow speed registry even at relatively high speeds. That is, even a slight bank requires either a massive pull back on the stick or a drastic increase in collective (rather the later). In all other sims, the helo is much more flowing in minor banks.

I can't get rid of the feeling that all lift is suddenly lost as soon as a bank a little.

Weird...

------------------
Lead-Head's Simulation Site:
http://fly.to/lead-head


Posts: 775 | From: PiteŚ, Norrbotten, Sweden. | Registered: Sep 1999  |  IP: Logged
Sean Tudor
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Member # 563

posted 08-22-2000 08:07 PM     Profile for Sean Tudor     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hi LeadHead,

I haven't had any problems with losing altitude in the turns - again I simply increase the collective.

Are you using a decent throttle control ? Maybe that is why you are finding it difficult.

I am using an F16-FLCS and F16-TQS with Bob Church's Digital Chip modification.

Works beautifully in EECH.

Cheers,
Sean.


Posts: 123 | From: Sydney, Australia | Registered: Oct 1999  |  IP: Logged
Reaper
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Member # 964

posted 08-23-2000 10:32 PM     Profile for Reaper     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Speaking of reviews, I read one today on gamsmania.com. It was a good review actually, but in every instance of the game's title, they called it "Enemy Engaged: Apache vs. Hokum." I emailed them about it and they have corrected it since then.
Posts: 335 | From: US | Registered: Nov 1999  |  IP: Logged

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