Anno 2070 Catch All (Demo available)

So has anyone bitten the bullet yet? I'd like to hear real-world impressions. So far, my resolve has held (two whole days, huzzah.) but I'm sure some enabling would go a long way.

I've got a solid block of time set aside to really dig into it tonight, so I'll let you know what I think about it when I have a little time to do a write-up.

Amazon has the download for $39, not sure if it can be activated on Steam though. I'm still gonna wait a bit though.

Anno 2070 - Amazon

So I’ve spend some time in the campaign and gotten a better feel for the game beyond what the demo showed us. The short version is: If you liked Dawn of Discovery, you’ll definitely like this one.

It not not reinventing the wheel in any sense, but the developer has done a lot of smart things to add depth to the mechanics from Anno 1404. For one, there’s three factions in the game:

The Tycoons, who generally have buildings that take up less space, and have a straighter path to advancing the population as far as tech goes. They also put out much more pollution and have less effective ways of dealing with it. Since farm production and population happiness (and therefore your tax income) are both effected by your level of pollution, this means you get to the top fast, but once you’re there you are heavily bogged down with inefficiencies you need to clean up. They also get really solid trade and combat ships.

There’s the Ecos, who need lots of space. Tons of it. Think the farms from DoD all over the place. Plus many of their buildings have huge “effectiveness radii” that cause them to reduce in productivity if they overlap with buildings of the same type. They create little pollution as you’d expect, and have the best techs for dealing with it. They get speedy hovercrafts and great utility ships.

Lastly there’s the Techs. They are expensive, and don’t provide much revenue as a return on investment. They also have by far the most complex path to advancement. But they get some very unique special buildings, the best subs and can settle underwater.

That’s right, you have submarine colonies in this game, Rapture-style. Sure it’s expensive as hell, but there’s many things that can only be acquired under the waves.

So far in the campaign I’ve been able to build two of the three in any given mission. I haven’t tried the sandbox mode yet, so I’m not sure if you have to chose or if you can use all three.

So that’s the game itself, but I want to talk about the other area that a lot of effort went into, all of it outside the game proper. Blue Byte really went out of their way to put in tons of online and community features. It would almost be worth comparing to Battle.net in Starcraft 2.

There’s worldwide stat tracking of everything you could imagine; There’s public votes that determine what bonuses or penalties you get during missions, even the single player campaign; There’s Facebook and Twitter integration; There’s quests that will turn up in the sandbox or scenario mode that get updated weekly; There’s even surprisingly good multi-player matchmaker where you can tell it what kind of player you’re looking for. Want to fight to the death? Or build up peacefully with a trading partner? Or how about some diplomacy and sabotage while you race for monuments? The matchmaker is set up for all of this.

There’s been a few bugs (Setting off my virus scanner for instance. No fix yet!) and launch pains (Overloaded servers make logging-in slow as molasses), but I’m definitely having fun with it. Hopefully I can try out more modes later so I can really see everything.

I like the Anno games and expect to like 2070. I received it yesterday.
I plan to start a GWJ group for the game on Steam. If I can, I"ll call it GWJ2070. Please join with me!

Got the name. This is the first time I've started a Steam group, so I may not have done it right. Did not make this a public group. Ask me, and I'll invite you.

Would like to have a nice image for the group. Please contribute one if you can.

DanyBoy, would you like to be an admin for the group too?

One criticism I have of the Anno games is that many of the fine points of the game are undocumented. A major part of the difficulty of the game is that you don't know how many of these production chains to build to supply that many people of the other social groups. One thing I'd like to do is document all those issues precisely so the game will be less of a PiTA to play.

For some reason, not many GWJers have taken to the Anno games. Will this one be different?

Wow, the online aspect of this game is very interesting. The voting system is pretty freaking cool.

Of course everyone is voting for the robot though. That doesn't seem like a good idea--based on the science fiction I've seen in my life anyway.

I got this yesterday. I hope to be on later this afternoon - probably after a little Skyrim.

I've enjoyed the Anno games and expect this one to be similar. Should be a nice add to my laptop-playable collection.

Add me to the group - Moggy123 - please.

Destructoid review here. Very favorable.

Story-hungry players might feel unfulfilled by the campaign, but Anno 2070's mechanics provide enough food that their bellies will be bloated by the time they move on to another game. While it may bewilder players new to the genre with the sheer complexity of it all, Anno 2070 succeeds at giving the decade-old series a fantastic makeover. Fans of the franchise will feel right at home as the formula hasn't changed all that much, but the myriad additions and improvements have been expertly crafted to fit right into the core gameplay. Moreover, it manages to do what A Nightmare on Elm Street may have done to you as a child: you won't want to go to sleep and when you do, you'll dream of even more efficient island layouts to try out the next day.

I was put off by the demo. I mean, I'm not expecting these things to be realistic simulators of future life, but the one building you're asking me to put up before anything else is a still? That's the basis of future society? And they don't even bother to let me bring along any plump helmets...

kazooka wrote:

I was put off by the demo. I mean, I'm not expecting these things to be realistic simulators of future life, but the one building you're asking me to put up before anything else is a still? That's the basis of future society? And they don't even bother to let me bring along any plump helmets...

Salt, Cod, and booze make the world go round. Will pick this up once Skyrim releases me from its clutches.

So is there some hidden ratio or something that can prevent residences from upgrading? I'm playing a continuous map and I have a few level 1 buildings - all nicely provisioned - that won't upgrade. I add some more level 1 buildings and the other level 1 buildings start to upgrade.

I can't see why I shouldn't be able to have all my buildings upgrade if they're satisfied.

They won't. No matter how well provided for, your entire city will never advance to the highest level, there will always be a few houses at the lower levels. Use this as an opportunity to not provide everything to everyone. Focus on a core which gets all their needs met, and leave the fringes to their fate.

DanyBoy wrote:

They won't. No matter how well provided for, your entire city will never advance to the highest level, there will always be a few houses at the lower levels. Use this as an opportunity to not provide everything to everyone. Focus on a core which gets all their needs met, and leave the fringes to their fate.

Stunning realism!

kazooka wrote:

I was put off by the demo. I mean, I'm not expecting these things to be realistic simulators of future life, but the one building you're asking me to put up before anything else is a still? That's the basis of future society? And they don't even bother to let me bring along any plump helmets...

In all seriousness, alcohol was a major step in building civilization. Some serious archeologists have even suggested it was why we invented agriculture in the first place.

And it pains me to say that, as I don't drink myself and find drunk people obnoxious.

I've put in about 14 hrs already and I'm hooked. It improves on almost everything in Anno 1404 and looks amazing. I'll post some more in-depth thoughts soon.

Here is a link to my screenshots (in Postcard view, but you get the idea )
http://steamcommunity.com/id/APErebu...

My current city (in my single player game)
IMAGE(http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/650998799321998464/052AF4C91B4BF55D53AF895F800F1F71879F2FA8/)

Underwater looks amazing
IMAGE(http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/650998151608416549/527D666B61CF30092638EFF3255F593C0B35CCFD/)

I really like the camera transition from land to water, even if it sneaks up on me sometimes.

Trying to hold off for the Christmas Steam sale because my pile is massive as is, but those screens are making it awfully tempting and I do need a diversion until SWTOR comes out.

So what's the actual DRM status on this thing?

It uses UPlay, requires a connection to start the game, but if the connection drops out it won't kick you out of a single-player game.

One of the things I love about Elder Geek is that they review a lot of strategy games (like Paradox titles) in video format. You just don't see that many other places.

That video is probably the most tempting thing I've seen to date. The reviewer warns of the steep learning curve due to the lack of tutorial. Earlier this year, I got Anno 1404 for half price (or less) from GamersGate and played it for maybe 20-25 hours, which is probably just scratching the surface for this type of game. I wonder if that limited time with the previous game will make up for the lack of tutorial in 2070.

Regardless, if it's discounted by at least 50% on the upcoming Steam sale, I'll be even more tempted to pull the trigger.

MeatMan wrote:

That video is probably the most tempting thing I've seen to date. The reviewer warns of the steep learning curve due to the lack of tutorial. Earlier this year, I got Anno 1404 for half price (or less) from GamersGate and played it for maybe 20-25 hours, which is probably just scratching the surface for this type of game. I wonder if that limited time with the previous game will make up for the lack of tutorial in 2070.

Regardless, if it's discounted by at least 50% on the upcoming Steam sale, I'll be even more tempted to pull the trigger.

According to Tom Chick:

The second issue -- that you must constantly have something to admire -- is a matter of information and/or graphics. Anno 2070 has both. This is a very above-board system for the most part. It gives you information through panels, tooltips, icons for special effects, map filters, and meticulous online documentation. But, as with the previous Anno games, the information isn't always easy to find. The most disappointing thing about Anno 2070 is that the interface hasn't improved when it comes to troubleshooting production problems.

I take that to mean that, yes, playing previous games will help, but probably not as much as one would like.

He also just wrote an article about the underwater stuff: http://www.quartertothree.com/fp/201...

So, combat. I have kind of a mixed opinion on combat. First and foremost, it kind of sucks. It just isn't very interesting, but I love the complexity and depth of the decisions and infrastructure involved in having a military.

There doesn't seem to be much of a real benefit to attacking someone (unless your objective is to destroy them), so how I see it, the only practical reason to have a military is for defense. Except even the most basic military units are top-tier items that require an extensive supply chain to produce. They're also phenomenally expensive to maintain (the lowest level aircraft costs 50, the Viper ship costs 60, etc.). So basically, if you want to have a military you need to dedicate a huge amount of resources exclusively to that, at the expense of other aspects of your economy.

The other reason I like it is that I kind of hate building large armies in these kinds of games and Anno 2070 gives me a legitimate reason not to.

Yeah, in Anno 1404 I gave up on the campaign once combat became mandatory, and stuck to the more peaceful scenarios and the sandbox mode.

requires a connection to start the game

Screw that. What the f*ck is the point of a single player game that needs Internet to run? The reason I usually WANT to play a single player game is because the Internet isn't working.

f*ckheads.

Game isnt bad. I like the art/graphic direction (yes, it is basically a future skin on the old Anno game - which isnt a bad thing). The unlockables and titles are a nice touch. The three factions have different ways to get to the same end goal. Not exactly Alpha Centauri 2, but it has that tech vs. Jesus Cleat wearers feel. Working my way through the campaign which is really the tutorial. Previous Anno game experiences help in certain mechanics, but play the SP campaign and you will get that XP. Same as every other Anno game. The SP campaign is actually one big tutorial campaign that gives you the tools to play the various sandbox modes and the "missions".

While I am interested in this, I do hope this isn't the future course of Anno games. I hope the next Anno is a fantasy game.

Malor wrote:
requires a connection to start the game

Screw that. What the f*ck is the point of a single player game that needs Internet to run? The reason I usually WANT to play a single player game is because the Internet isn't working.

f*ckheads.

Well, the justification I can see here is the who metagame thing. Not saying it's right, just that it's there.

Malor wrote:
requires a connection to start the game

Screw that. What the f*ck is the point of a single player game that needs Internet to run? The reason I usually WANT to play a single player game is because the Internet isn't working.

f*ckheads.

Tell us how you really feel, Malor.