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About the new Command game


broncepulido
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Ok - experts- Someone drop in some more details and history for Red Pill, please. I have read reviews here. I play HC often, think I have bought but never really gotten into H3. I am aware of some of the differences.,

What if any compatibility does it maintain with HC? Could a HC scenario at all import there? This intrigues me a fair bit. Flash graphics ain't a big thing to me. If anything - I see and understand and love some of the openness of the HC 2003 scenarios/ platforms, etc.

thanks in advance

 

Red Pill was a working name for what has since become Command: Modern Air/Naval Operations (or CMANO).

 

Command obviously has historical roots in Harpoon, but it is not compatible with HC/HCE or H3/ANW.

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Anyone with experience in HCE or ANW should be able to take to CMANO pretty readily.

 

I am finding the game play pretty much consistent with my experience there.

 

The models are generally deeper, obviously, especially when it comes to logistics and such.

 

I am enjoying that particular element.

 

The initial release version also has some of the flaws/warts of HCE, e.g. RCS not determined by loadout.

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Of course, there are some gotcha's. Probably the biggest one is the formation editor. Harpoon's FE had some very rich features. CMANO's is pretty much for station keeping only. One symptom of this is that ASW platforms do not sprint/drift in the formation editor. In order to obtain this behavior, relative reference points must be used to set up an ASW patrol mission in the mission editor, not in the formation editor. I find this slightly cumbersome, although workable. Another issue is that the database is closed -- there will be no editor, although there are some facilities for unit modification in the scenario editor. What this means is that hypothetical platforms will not be available (for example, if one wanted to create a "Hunt for Red October" scenario).

 

Although it has been released, there are requested and planned features and improvements that make it feel a bit like a work in progress, which is fine by me, since some of those features will make it even more flexible and accurate. A good example might be a feature that is currently ahead in a feature poll that will implement altitude and speed changes for each waypoint in a plotted course. I can think of several other features that would make the sim more realistic or reduce the requirement for micromanagement in some situations, and the impression I get is that those may well be coming in the future.

 

In sum, although there are some things I would like to see improved or added, CMANO is definitely a worthy successor to Harpoon, and that is from a hard core Harpooner (both computer and paper versions).

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Another issue is that the database is closed -- there will be no editor.

I'm not entirely sure it has been locked down. On day 1 I modified existing units in a database and on day two I added a new aircraft. I successfully created and played a scenario with those units and they appeared to function normally. Whether there is some latent kill switch that would later kick in, I cannot say. I also haven't tested in the newer builds.

 

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/fb.asp?m=3417749

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It is certainly possible (as well as easy) to modify or add to the databases, as they are SQLite format, and any good RDBMS analyst can figure out the schema and record formats. The problem with doing this is twofold. First, such modifications violate Matrix's copyright, since they have publicly stated that they do not plan to allow user modifications of their databases, will not provide an editor, and will allow only such limited modifications as are provided in the scenario editor. Of course, this may not matter to some users, and I will be watching to see what happens (whether Matrix changes its policiy, or decides to enforce it, and possibly even adds some sort of DB verification) if and when modified databases start appearing.

 

Yes, I would certainly like to see such modifications officially sanctioned, even if they're not officially supported. However, for now, Matrix and the developers public statements seem to indicate that, even if it can be done, it is technically illegal.

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First, such modifications violate Matrix's copyright, since they have publicly stated that they do not plan to allow user modifications of their databases, will not provide an editor, and will allow only such limited modifications as are provided in the scenario editor.

I don't think that is true. It would be ethically wrong to modify one of the stock databases and redistribute it without attribution. I'm fairly certain there is no ethical or legal issue with creating your own database from scratch. Plus, it isn't Matrix with the issue, it is the Warfaresims guys in case someone stumble by and think it is Matrix's idea and wish, to exclude the database editor from distribution.

 

However, for now, Matrix and the developers public statements seem to indicate that, even if it can be done, it is technically illegal.

Again, highly doubtful making your own database is illegal. After reading the included license agreement, it is far more lax than anything I would have imagined the Warfaresims guys would have agreed to. I expect, if anything, Matrix pushed them towards openness once they became publisher (pure conjecture though).
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From the End User Agreement:

"You may not copy, reproduce, translate, decompile, reverse engineer, disassemble, modify, or create derivative
works from the assembled code or any part thereof."

So, it depends on whether their lawyers consider the databases part of the code base or not. Historically, they have been considered part of the copyrighted code, at least in cases I've followed. Immediately following the sentence above is material that also limits the use of the internal editor. It has sometimes been argued that some databases are expressions of fact and not subject to copyright. However, where the databases express such facts in a specific format upon which software behavior is based (rather than merely to convey such information to a reader), that particular expression has been held to be subject to copyright, at least in the cases I've seen (Disclaimer: I am *not* a laywer, just interested in the legal aspects of these issues).

 

As for creating your own database, as long as you did it from scratch, you might be okay (although it may be subject to the reverse-engineering or derivative prohibitions). However, modification of an existing one may violate the copyright.

 

At this point, I'm going to bow out of the discussion. I've stated what I know, or have read. My own opinion is that such modifications should be allowed, but whether they actually are or not is really up to how WarfareSims (or a court) chooses to interpret and enforce the license and how it applies to the databases involved. I'd just as soon leave it at that.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Hello.

 

A number of points.

 

1) On the whole "unfinished / work-in-progress" argument. I posted my position on this a while ago, on the Matrix forum: http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/fb.asp?m=3449564

Since that post, our (and our early customers') faith in Command has been fully justified. Command has sweeped the WOTY-2013 awards from multiple sources and totally dominates its genre. Is it, technically, still a "work in progress"? Of course it is - fixes, improvements and user-requested features & content are being added regularly (and by the same yardstick, Counterstrike is also a WIP). If you think that's a bad thing, look what happens to games that are not being worked on anymore.

 

2) Value vs price. I addressed this recently: http://www.subsim.com/radioroom/showpost.php?p=2174956&postcount=14 . In my view, and that of our thousands of satisfied-to-ecstatic customers, Command is a bargain.

 

3) DB editing. I explained the hows & whys recently: http://www.warfaresims.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=12431&p=50378#p50378 (that post also addresses the frequent "culture shock" of old Harpoon hands starting with Command, the different formation editor being a fair example).

 

We thank everyone who has voted their trust on us and our game by buying it, and we welcome the holdouts to give it a chance after considering its true value and overcoming the sticker shock. We're very excited by Command's soaring performance to date and we have even bigger plans for the future.

 

Thanks.

Edited by Dimitris
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Have started playing Command. It is awesome, simply amazing. The GUI, the map, the database, the AI, the possible level of micromanagement....outstanding. I can recommend it to anyone wo has played Harpoon or Fleet Command for decades. Besides Command I´m nowadays focused on GCB2, which also has a very good GUI and sharp AI.

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