View Full Version : The Problem With NWAC: Why it isn't Fleet Command
05-10-2012, 01:05 AM
Yes, there are bugs. There are performance problems. The graphics represent only a marginal improvement over its late-1990s predecessor from Jane's; the animations and effects are actually a step back in a lot of cases, notably ordnance firing and impact. And yes, it's hobbled by not only these issues, but by a number of questionable design decisions.
But the main problem with this game is the lack of any sign of intelligence, initiative, or responsiveness on the part of individual units. In Fleet Command, if you gave an attack order, the platform or aircraft was generally pretty good about positioning itself to engage, selecting the correct munition type and quantity, and prosecuting the target to destruction. In NWAC, most of those steps are up to you; units, no matter what offensive posture is ordered, engage enemies either too late or not at all if left to their own devices. Establishing CAPs is pretty much useless, because you generally have to manually order any sort of interdiction. STS, STA, and ATS engagements suffer from the same problem.
I like the fact that NWAC does give you the option of determining the type, range, and quantity of munitions deployed by your units; I hate the fact that the units require these explicit instructions for any hope of efficacy. This game is about fleet command and keeping track of dozens of air, surface, and subsurface platforms; I don't want to worry that my pilots and officers don't know how to do their job. This is to say nothing of the issues surrounding air-to-air refueling, aircraft fuel levels after an RTB order, and the lack of an "identify track" order.
Until unit AI is improved, this game will not feel like a true command simulation.
It's a shame, too, because I was really looking forward to NWAC as a successor to one of my favorite sims of all time.
05-10-2012, 01:18 PM
Seems to me the 'problem' with NWAC is that it isn't Fleet Command, or Command, or any of the other projects that look a bit similar. :har:
05-10-2012, 01:55 PM
I just met up with another NWAC player and we had to play Harpoon ANW instead because neither of us could get NWAC to stop crashing long enough for a match.
NWAC is making ANW look good. That's something I thought I would never find myself saying. :rotfl2:
05-10-2012, 07:27 PM
That's the thing. It tries to be a JFC remake--a naval warfare simulation that has the accessibility that something like Harpoon (which admittedly I haven't tried, due to trepidation at its complexity) lacks, along with 3D visuals. Unfortunately the visuals are awful, but that wouldn't be a dealbreaker if the simulation aspect actually simulated the behavior of real units in combat.
I haven't had problems from a technical standpoint, but I also haven't tried multiplayer. The campaign isn't particularly good, though, plus the lame and clichéd 'story' elements are both unnecessary and distracting.
I'm hoping this game gets the love it deserves in the form of patching and modding, otherwise I'll be sticking with JFCw/NWP for a while.
On that note, how much more complex is Larry Bond's stuff than Jane's/NWAC?
05-10-2012, 07:59 PM
On that note, how much more complex is Larry Bond's stuff than Jane's/NWAC?
You can check out the demos for yourself.
If you prefer, you can check out videos in comparison of the two:
Both HCE and ANW are a fair deal more complex than NWAC.
05-19-2012, 12:05 PM
The problem with NWAC : I lost $ 20 :dead:
05-26-2012, 10:52 PM
Yes, there are bugs. There are performance problems. The graphics represent only a marginal improvement over its late-1990s predecessor from Jane's; the animations and effects are actually a step back in a lot of cases, notably ordnance firing and impact.
I'm guessing you haven't played Jane's Fleet Command in a very, very long time? I know I was thinking something similar at first, but since I have it in my Steam library (with NWP installed), I fired it up and...
...Holy Crap, NW:AC is *LIGHT YEARS* ahead of it.
I assure you, you are suffering from nostalgia bias and nothing more.
I mean, forget the fact that I lose half my screen with JFC (it does not support modern LCD widescreen displays, NW:AC does), but it also has awful 16-bit color banding on ANY color transition (JFC uses a 16-bit render pipeline, while NW:AC is obviously 32-bit).
And let's not even talk about model polygons...NW:AC is generally about twice as many polys per model, sometimes much more. And the textures are a LOT higher resolution.
I'll grant the animations are definitely somewhat limited in NW:AC compared to JFC, but...eh...it's not as big a deal to me. Would be nice, to be sure. But how often are you looking at the 3d window fullscreen? In both JFC and NW:AC, it's just there for scenery/effect, so the fact that NW:AC actually can fit my monitor and the map doesn't have horrible color banding (since that is the primary interface to the game) is MUCH more important.
Oh, and on my current system, with both games installed, I can start from my desktop and be running a mission 18.6 seconds (timed it on the iPhone) in NW:AC, and it takes me 40.1 seconds to do the same in JFC. It not only looks worse, but it's poorly coded!
(Now, all that said, your points on the gameplay are dead on. If we could have JFC gameplay with NW:AC's graphics, I'd be a very happy camper, indeed! Although the UI elements of NW:AC are definitely a bit...well, more than a bit...easier to use, too, so...let's keep that, as well...)
07-05-2012, 08:11 AM
I like the grouping of units in NWAC so that you can, for example, order a "4-ship" flight as a single unit. I'd like it better if the regroup function worked for after individual aircraft leave the formation.
NWAC probably has a better sensor model under-the-hood. It's difficult to see.
EDIT: just to give some more credit where credit is due, they added fire effects to their damage model, which is a nice touch. It seems they knock a % point off the burning ship every so often. It's still way behind the damage model of, say, Silent Hunter, but it's an improvement over the SCS games.
Other than that, I really feel like FC was better. Animations, attacks, AI, audio... and even though NWAC has better models, there aren't nearly enough of them (they have to use the AMRAAM and Harpoon for just about every missile!)
07-06-2012, 10:43 PM
I'd like it better if the regroup function worked for after individual aircraft leave the formation.
NWAC has a lot of problems, but I do not believe that this is one of them. I find that the re-join function works. Althought it may be a bit slow, it usually works eventually.
07-14-2012, 11:38 PM
Biggest problem for me is it does not work on my computer.
07-15-2012, 08:32 AM
It's honestly no surprise FC had more features since they had about 10x the dev team and was a USN contractor before that.
08-02-2012, 11:16 PM
Well, I finally bought it. So far it's working fine for me, though I haven't figured out the scenario editor yet, and there's still no savegame feature. I can't see much difference from the Demo, but I hope the Dev's will keep working on it, seems to have potential.
Captain Rockwell Torry:hmmm:
08-03-2012, 03:45 AM
Just wait until you get 3 hours into a campaign scenario and you lose control over everything as your time compression goes berserk or you end in a freeze/CTD. :/\\!!
If you want an MP opponent, I can give you a match.
10-16-2013, 11:27 AM
I guess, it is an Original game that was not built on a felony, stolen property.
It is somehow genuine, and a lot of genuine games have sometimes difficult beginnings.
In one hand, part of the source codes have been released for the public today, which is good.
In another hand some punks might come up with patchs that will ruin the game because some might perceive NWAC as a threat to their profitable project.
To be continued!
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