Dear Mr.Uzelac, and of course all the staff who worked on this game.
I'm a long time turn based combat and strategy game fan. Playing similar games since my first ever strategy game Storm Across Europe by SSI from 1989. Played almost all Panzer General games, Battle Isles, Civ series and pretty much everything similar. First of all thanks for a great game. I read through the suggestions thread and decided to give my own suggestions. If I repeated a previosuly given suggestion, I apologise. Please note that all suggestions are based on single player game play experience.
This game is very good as it is. However the need for suggestion is to make it an all time hit. The best thing of internet age is that, developers can co-operate with fan base and improve their games vastly. I decided to break my suggestions down to couple of groups.
1- Great parts of the game, that should not be changed at least fundamentally
Difficulty level is good and can(and should) even be increased. We all love a challenge. If you can not handle this, there are far easier games out there. I'm paying (I paid) 30 USD for a challenge.
Very smooth game engine.It is very fast and AI is acceptable. If you can improve it better.
Very elegant minimalist menu and unit design.
Great tool tips and very easy to use UI. If you played any similar game before, you can play right off the box without reading manual.
Not possible to save during scenario. This is great. I hate people saving/loading for each move to beat the game. If you lose you lose. You must try again from the begining. This can also be prevented by recording the outcome of last 5-10 moves, and applying them regardless of save. i.e. you attack and lose and even if you exit and reload, the outcome will be same. Civ4 was using this as an option.
2- UI or general interface suggestions
An option to show supply lines at all times. Supply lines is critical to this game (same as real warfare) so seeing them at all times is important.
Ghost movement. To use ctrl or similar modifier with mouse button to see if you can attack when you move and odds. I think this has been mentioned several times.
3- Gameplay suggestions for current game
Partisans are pretty much useless, they can be changed for a different bonus.
Bridge option is also pretty much useless. This can be given directly to engineering units. For example if they are beside a river hex, the next turn they can be considered a bridge. (similar to real warfare. Engineering brigades construct floating bridges)
This game has all the potential to be the game of the next decade in my opinion. But it need several new features implemented. I really would like to see this game develop into a commerical success for the developer and entertainment success for the player base. Following suggestions may be very hard to implement. Maybe even a new game has to be devolped, but if you can pull it off, you can have a long lasting game that will satisfy us in the years to come and sustain you as the developer commercially.
Adopt a DLC campaign pack policy. For example WW2 opening campaign.(1939-40), or North Africa campaign. This DLC can include special units (1-or 2 through the new campaign) This will also give you the commercial incentive to continue making new campaigns and keep players interest in the game. After this you can consider Step 2 for future major patch(es) or even a bigger game based on UoC.
Major pathces or a new game with following design implementations
-Campaign long units. People love to have a unit with elite experience and use it in the next scenario as a key strategic advantage. They like protecting them, and this will increase playability as they will need to change strategy based on this. They can be limited in number per campaign (i.e. 2) or elite level experience may be required to make it eligible for a custom unit. The AI can agressively attack these custom units, to force the player into protecting them or sacrificing them.
-Military leaders with applicable bonuses (i.e. Rommel for + armor mobility or Vasilevsky for + defense) They can be limited per scenario and pre-attached to certain units instead of the player choosing them. This is a much loved aspect of turn based games.
-Artillery Units. This may be hard to do with game balance and everything but, artillery is a major game changer in warfare. (more so in WW2)
-Air Warfare. Same as artillery but, if you are doing a WW2 wargame, you can not simply use air as support force. Artillery and air warfare can be very hard to add but, it will give a bigger depth to this beautiful game.
-Less rng. I hate attacking at great advantage, only to see half my regiment destroyed because of rng. If I'm attacking from a certain point at a certain time because the conditions are favorable to me. Rng can not be ruled out but its impact should be less. i.e. I deploy an artillery attached unit in a forest, bring it close to a unit, do not attack to wait for next turn to deploy artillery, then attack at advantage of artillery and half my army is destroyed even though the odds show %80 chance of enemy retreat. I can understand it happening at %50 odds, as I'm taking a risk but at almost certain victory?
-Fog of War and ambush and surprise. Fog of War is very good and realistic. In warfare(WW2 era not today) you don't usually know what is going on except the front lines where you have visual contact. You can use intelligence (spying) to learn some bits of information. Partisan asset can be replaced with intelligence asset to remove some of fog of war. Due to non-save nature of UoC, you can hit an ambush inside the Fog of War from a prepared unit and lose a prized unit. However you must take the risk or try to send a recon unit. This also increases the importance of recon units, which can have higher retreat chance, saving them from certain destruction. Also if implemented air units can clear some fog of war in their movement path.
I'm sorry maybe it is too long but, really this is the first time I devoted so much time to write in detail for such a topic. The reason is simple. I want to have a game that I can play for years and see it grow like Civ and its many reincarnations.
Even if you skipped most of the post do read this:
Adopt a DLC campaign pack policy. For example WW2 opening campaign.(1939-40), or North Africa campaign. These DLC's can include special units (1-or 2 through the new campaign) This will also give you the commercial incentive to continue making new campaigns and keep players interest in the game. The game is too short as it is and can be shelved after a few weeks play especially if you will not be doing multiplayer.