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Old 08-05-2008, 12:49 PM   #1
Sonarman
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Default Totem games "Ironclads"--- DEMO is up

Our friends in Russia Totem Games have released a demo for their upcoming ACW ironclads game. Check out the 22.5MB demo here
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Old 08-05-2008, 01:02 PM   #2
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22 megs?

Ah well, nothing to lose
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Old 08-05-2008, 05:35 PM   #3
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I've had interest in this. I will check it out. Pretty small eh?
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Old 08-05-2008, 05:44 PM   #4
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I can't even remember the last time a demo was only 22MB. You can't even get patches now-a-days smaller than 22MB. I think it is pretty cool how it is only 22MB. I never download demos anymore because I don't want to take up 500MB+ just to try a game.
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Old 08-05-2008, 06:03 PM   #5
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lol me too! I passed on a bunch of demos because they were a gig or more. Jesus. Anyway I just messed with this one and uh. Maybe it's just that the demo isn't very good, but I was not impressed. In fact I didn't know this was a turn based game. I'd imagine it would take a god awful long time to complete a large battle in this. I didn't finish the demo because the AI just kept running away from me as I followed and took shots. That went on for a good long while. Bored me, sorry Totem Games.
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Old 08-05-2008, 06:09 PM   #6
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To be honest, the screenshots are so meh that I won't even download it. I would actually prefer the demo to be somwhat larger because 22mb does really not sound like a very impressive product.

What happened to Storm Eagles Jutland btw? Shouldnt this have been out for half a year now?
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Old 08-05-2008, 07:14 PM   #7
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I think that Totem and Liquid Dragon (devs of Deadliest Catch Alaskan Storm) have both made the same mistake in their demos ie the demos are much too limited and do not give a enough idea of the scope of the game. In DCs case they only had one tutorial style mission with lots of annoying popups and a speedboat race. In Ironclads case they only have a single 2 ship fight playable from either side, they should have included a mission with multiple vessels on each side as well as this would give the user a much better idea of the strategy play.
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Old 08-06-2008, 01:58 AM   #8
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The scenario is Monitor vs. Virginia so small, local, nice wx and very limited scope so that might explain the 22 Mb download. Ships are nicely modelled with action plotted in 5-minute pulses and then played out in a couple of seconds. You can pause during movement to fire or change course and speed. I'm not a fan of the 'camera' user interface but for those who liked the GUI in Distant Guns may find much that is familier. After two battles, both combatants failed to show any visual damage which was a bit of a surprise.

Turn based with plotted movement resolved sequentially. After two tries with Virginia forced Monitor to withdraw, first time with 11% and second with 14% damage with Virginia taking 4% and 1% damage respectively. Scenario ends when a combatant move beyond the limits of the 2D battle map.

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Old 08-06-2008, 03:29 AM   #9
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1. A problem at a rate of a demo? I think that was not present. A problem in that that developers have accustomed players to big sizes of the games. It is sometimes inevitable. And more often simply speaks about unwillingness to optimize the product. Really you the size of the program thinks, what the more, the it is better? If so to us will not make the big work to increase the size of a demo up to absolute any. If will be 1 Gb you will be impressed more?



2. The player receives the same result as in history. It shows, that the ships and game system are capable to give realistic result. Without knowledge of an epoch, tactics and the ships will play difficultly. If you wish to feel the participant of the true war this will be game for you. And if you wish even times to feel the most invincible, magnificent, remarkable and so on with this there will be problems. Have got used to fast result, wish to win only? I understand it, but I do not support.

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Old 08-06-2008, 12:11 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Typical Russian
1. A problem at a rate of a demo? I think that was not present. A problem in that that developers have accustomed players to big sizes of the games. It is sometimes inevitable. And more often simply speaks about unwillingness to optimize the product. Really you the size of the program thinks, what the more, the it is better? If so to us will not make the big work to increase the size of a demo up to absolute any. If will be 1 Gb you will be impressed more?



2. The player receives the same result as in history. It shows, that the ships and game system are capable to give realistic result. Without knowledge of an epoch, tactics and the ships will play difficultly. If you wish to feel the participant of the true war this will be game for you. And if you wish even times to feel the most invincible, magnificent, remarkable and so on with this there will be problems. Have got used to fast result, wish to win only? I understand it, but I do not support.

Yours faithfully
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Am looking forward to final release, the demo seems to hit the highpoints and the subject cries out to be done well IMO. I plan on purchasing Ironclads: ACW.

Observations regarding the lack of visual damage came from the real Virginia had (by most accounts) lost her ventilators, funnel, boats and davits and was down by the head when Monitor drew off. In my second try successfully ramming Monitor fully broadside at full speed (a difficult evolution when the target is smaller, faster and handier) produced no visual or actual damage to Virginia at all. Historically rammers suffered along with the rammed.

Liked that a loss of speed takes some time to make up, a characteristic of steamships that is usually understated.

Liked that only those broadside guns that bear onto the target actually fire.

Wasn't impressed with the ambiant background sounds, they sounded more like a modern factory floor than a reciprocating steam engine.

Will the final version have any ship/shore actions, running past forts and the like?

Are there going to be usable wooden ships and 'tinclads'?

Is the game action purely tactical?

EDIT:
Just finished a 100-round action as Monitor, the demo ends after this time representing some 8+ hours real time. Learned to use her manouverability and speed advantage to stay (for the most part) on Virginia's starboard quarter where I hit her a total of 61-times (after I started keeping track), mostly at point-blank range (70+ % ph). She lost at least one-gun, her after pivot rifle because after about round 30 or so, it never fired back at all. At end game Virginia had only 2% damage.

It would appear that either 11" Dahlgren's are useless in Ironclad ACW terms or Virginia's (Depleted Uranium?) armour is immune to solid shot and any behind-armour effects from repeated hits.

I recall the old Great Naval Battles Vol 2 would not apply additional damage to areas that had already been hit although this was subsequently fixed on a patch. I wonder if what I saw here is a similar bug.

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Last edited by Randomizer; 08-06-2008 at 03:14 PM.
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Old 08-07-2008, 01:27 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Typical Russian
The player receives the same result as in history. It shows, that the ships and game system are capable to give realistic result. Without knowledge of an epoch, tactics and the ships will play difficultly. If you wish to feel the participant of the true war this will be game for you. And if you wish even times to feel the most invincible, magnificent, remarkable and so on with this there will be problems. Have got used to fast result, wish to win only? I understand it, but I do not support.

Yours faithfully
Totem Games
I can appreciate historical accuracy. The demo may have proved more interesting with a battle that didn't historically take hours of just two ships firing at each other with little effectiveness. Ok so some people may enjoy that I guess. I'm just saying, that particular battle is not very interesting to play turn by turn.

I may be interested to play if it were in real time with the ability to pause and go forward in time. To play that battle turn by turn was just repetitive and time consuming. When I played, all I did was follow the AI ship and fire at it. While that was happening the ship just kept running away as if it didn't want to fight. Not retreating mind you. It was moving in large circles as I followed and fired. I'm not a historian and not very knowledgeable of the tactics of that battle. However, I'd like to think it wasn't as silly as it played out for me in this demo.

I don't want to feel invincible. In fact, I wanted the AI to fight back. I was playing as the monitor by the way. The conflict may have been different if I played as Virginia, but I didn't stick around after that to try it.

In fact, I wonder why the game is turn based. Real time would be exciting to me. If there is option to play this game in real time I'm sorry but I did not know. I guess I'm going to have to read a preview because I only really know of this game what I played in the demo. The campaign may be fun.

That demo was boring. The game itself may be good, but I believe that demo did not show the game off very well. That demo has led me to think that the game itself may be just as boring.

But that's all just one persons opinion...
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Old 08-07-2008, 06:12 AM   #12
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2 Randomizer\

The explanatory:

Armor CSS Virginia = 4,5 in the iron armor + 26 in a wooden oak lining
Armor USS Monitor = 8 ” the iron armor

At use of a double charge of gunpowder by a round pig-iron kernel of Dahlgren guns in calibre of 11 inches (the weight of 62 kg, initial speed of 406 km/s) can punch approximately 5 inches of the iron armor. After that the kernel jams in a wooden lining under the armor.

Additional damages are not put to already destroyed parts of the ship.

The demo version has been released to estimate is how much correctly conducted our work above game. It is important to us to understand, that it is necessary to alter, and that it is necessary to leave without changes. I shall make the list for completion.

1. The Demo shows battle of two well protected ships. The most possible result of battle is a drawn game. It do not allow the player to appreciate game system as a whole, does not show flooding, fires. To play boringly.

Conclusion: to show battle of the several ships, the player should have an opportunity to destroy or drown the ships of the enemy. In a demo there should be wooden ships and ironclads.

2. To improve quality of sounds in game. The note: in game record of a sound of the steam machine from the true steamship is used. Quality and processing of a sound for game are not good enough.

3. The System of calculation of success in mission is not clear. From the text it is difficult to understand what side what has caused a loss.

Conclusion: to give detailed explanatories by estimation of results of mission.

Thanks for your help. Only so we can understand what game to you is necessary.

Maxim Ferapontov
Totem Games
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Old 08-07-2008, 06:29 AM   #13
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2 Ilpalazzo\

1. We as soon as possible shall make a new demo the version. In it the different ships will be accessible. We hope, that then game will not seem such boring.
2. Tactics of battle is dictated by TBS. The similar behaviour of the enemy in general is characteristic for games with step-by-step system. Especially it is appreciable in battle only two ships. Battles of greater number of the ships are more interesting. Fans of TBS games have remained are enough.
3. Campaign will be interesting. We very much try to make its such.
4. I got it. Our enemy - boredom!

Thanks for the correct and clever answer.
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Old 08-07-2008, 12:23 PM   #14
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I'm not quite sure what the game is trying to achieve.

The scope for any kind of tactics or strategy was very limited. In part this was
because of the very, very rigid, un-fluid way the game plays. the game game
me no feedback about what was happening. I never had the sense that I was
reacting to the AI or the AI was reacting to me, I never felt immersed in the
game. My choices didn't seam to make a lot of difference to the outcome as
long as I kept as many guns firing as I could. If there where other dynamics
at work then they where well hidden and not intuitive.

It is like controling robots, not being in command of a ship.

Move, fire, move, fire, move, fire, move, fire, move, fire, look at win/lose
screen. There isn't really much more to the demo.

That just isn't enough to engage the player for long.

The game really needs to have the player more involved.
Give the player more control, more to do. Some more micro-management.
Give the player some tough choices to make (other than move, fire!), some
traps to fall into. Give visual feedback about what is happening; damage
graphics are a good start.
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Old 08-07-2008, 08:03 PM   #15
Ilpalazzo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Typical Russian
2 Ilpalazzo\

1. We as soon as possible shall make a new demo the version. In it the different ships will be accessible. We hope, that then game will not seem such boring.
2. Tactics of battle is dictated by TBS. The similar behaviour of the enemy in general is characteristic for games with step-by-step system. Especially it is appreciable in battle only two ships. Battles of greater number of the ships are more interesting. Fans of TBS games have remained are enough.
3. Campaign will be interesting. We very much try to make its such.
4. I got it. Our enemy - boredom!

Thanks for the correct and clever answer.
Unless your being sarcastic that sounds great. A demo that shows a game off very well may get people to buy it.

What Letum just said is true. I can only hope that having more ships makes,"move, fire, move, fire" more interesting. Personally, I still think it would be better off in real time. What's the point of turn based when you wind up issuing the same few commands over and over. Perhaps there is more depth in the final game.
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