I usually report to the "games finished" thread only when I have finished also expansion packs and such, so for now I finished the base game of Age of Empires 3
, and now moved to one (of the two) expansion packs, Warchiefs.
The base game wasn't that long, three acts, 8 missions in each so 24 missions in total. I would possibly even complain the game (single-player campaign) was a bit too short, but I guess it is fine as there are two expansion packs for it, which I presume add two more acts to the campaign.
I don't recall if AoE 1-2 were any longer, but somehow they felt like that. Or then I have just become so much better playing these games that I rushed through AoE 3.
I played AoE3 on Hard difficulty, and for my skills (and finding out about pausable gameplay) it was fine overall. There were a couple of tricky missions, especially the "Journey through the Andes" in Act 3 which was all about micromanagement and precise timing when to move your units, albeit I read somewhere that in case you don't care about achieving the secondary objective, you can also choose to just mostly run through the level to the goal before the pursuing enemies reach you.
The first mission in the Warchief expansion pack feels oddly hard though, maybe it is because you are restricted again to level 3 civilization and can't build gun towers. I just feel constantly overwhelmed by enemies attacking all the time from two sides, unable to set up good defenses. I think I've restarted this first Warchief mission for dozen times already.
Extra difficulty comes from the fact that there are now two enemy warchief's in my base who revive from time to time, so I have to keep several soldiers near them who "kill" them as soon as they revive so that they don't start causing damage to buildings and killing peasants. The enemy warchief's are similarly unkillable as your heroes, reviving after some time. I don't recall having similar problems in the base game where an enemy hero would end up in my homebase and I'd have to babysit (knock it out) it all the time. If there was some enemy hero, it would usually just stay in its homebase.
I presume that is Starcraft 2. Since I dropped it in disgust before because I felt the game was running too fast (and no way to slow down the gamespeed in Brutal), does it have pausable gameplay, ie. you can give commands in the paused mode? If yes, then I could consider continuing playing it.
That was a big revelation to me in Age of Empires 3. In it I also felt the game was at its busiest points too speedy, then I finally figured out somehow that you can indeed give commands in the paused mode.
For some reason it is not made apparent though. First of all there are two different kinds of paused modes (either press F10 to access menus, or press the actual Pause-button on the keyboard to get another paused mode), and giving commands works only in the latter paused mode. Also, in that mode, there is a big "PAUSED"-dialog box obstructing most of the view which is kinda silly when you are trying to give commands to units on your screen, having to scroll the screen so that those units are on the edges of the screen, away from that dialog box.
I recall you very much wanted the "paused gamemode" update for the new Homeworld game, so I presume to you that feature is quite important? Can you name some other RTS games where that pausable gamemode is available, just so that I know what to look for? Not sure if e.g. AoE 1-2 had that, if they did, I never used it but played them in realtime all the time.