What Would You Change About… Call of War?
We’re taking a look at Bytro Labs WW2 strategy MMO Call of War for our next article, where players rule their own country at the beginning of the war and are responsible for their own military and economic progression as battle lines are drawn and power hungry neighbours look to each other’s borders to see where they can expand to. Whilst there’s plenty we like, there’s a few things we’d love to see changed, and so we ask the question “What would you change about… Call of War?”
Combat in the game is generally quite uneventful. Whilst the game is a strategy and most of the thought process goes into number crunching and trying to position your units correctly for an offensive attack or a defensive counter, we feel the battles when they happen are somewhat lacking. Growing up on the Civilization franchise we love war strategy, but there’s nothing quite so satisfying as seeing your stack of doom roll up to an enemy force and the exchange of missile and bullet fire (or arrows and rocks if you’re still in the stone age). Call of War has enemies park up next to each other and then you get a resolution of the battle, it’s kind of boring and we’d like a little more excitement.
Steep-ish Learning Curve
A lot of responsibility is put on players to learn how to play. Whilst we don’t feel developers should have to hold the players hand throughout games, and there’s enough times where we’ve been frustrated at overly simple mechanics being treated like they’re really tough to grasp, Call of War is a bit of an exception as many of the mechanics aren’t quick to pick up. The game has plenty of popups and information windows, it has an extensive forum where players can find out how to play, but unfortunately the tutorial itself is a little on the limited side and basically says “Here’s how you do some basic stuff, now you have to go read a bunch of web pages to actually learn how to play”. Unfortunately you do have to go read these websites/forums if you want to learn, and you need to do it early on as a few wrong decisions in the early game can set you back immensely. We’d love a quick single player campaign where everything is sped up so players can experience a decent portion of gameplay, maybe not into the late game, but enough to get comfortable with all the mechanics before jumping into a real game against players.
We don’t like games that allow obvious advantages through real cash payments. It’s a bit of a trend with a lot of free to play games to put in place options for “pay to win”, knowing that some players are always going to try and pay for the advantage, and then those who don’t want to pay, but want to stay competitive, are almost coerced into having to part with their money. We don’t like that at all. In Call of War you can speed up tech tree research, speed up unit production, buy the morale for your cities to keep production up, and more. Whilst paying doesn’t guarantee a victory, if you know how to play then gold makes the game no longer an even playing field for players at the top, and to stay ahead paying gold becomes the norm. We’d prefer they stick with their “High Command” VIP account purchase, that gives some boosts and extra features, instead of pay to win elements through microtransactions.
The slow pace divides the player base. While we did say in our previous “What Do We Love About… Call of War?” article that we actually like the slow and steady pace of the game, it’s ideal if it’s the type of game where you just want to bob your head in every so often, giving you plenty of time to respond if someone sends an attack your way as it will generally take a long time to get to you. However, for the players that want to be more involved, your options are very limited and you generally can’t spend as much time playing as you might like before you run out of things to do, and it takes such a long time for anything to happen. We’d like to see some Civilization game speeds, where you can speed the game up 2x, 4x speed, etc., from research, production and movement times, giving players the chance to be a little more involved in the game if they wish to be.
They destroy everything. Literally. The problem with nukes is that players will always try and build them and they are always happy to drop them without a second thought, they’re used like any other military unit, but the ramifications of nuclear warfare are completely missing in the game. There’s no major penalty for the player dropping the nuke, but the one being hit by them can pretty much lose a city, or more, as there’s no limitation to how many nukes you can have. Add into the mix gold spending to rush research and production and you’ve suddenly got a disastrous end-game that can easily be dominated by gold spending-nuke dropping-warmongers. Nukes shouldn’t even be as prevalent as they are in this time period, so we’d personally like to see them removed from the game altogether.
So that’s what we’d change with Call of War, but more importantly what do you believe should be changed? What do you think could/should be added to improve the game? What would you add to your own personal wish list? Let us know what you think in the comments below!