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Beta patch 3 up for Rome 2: Total War

Sunday, 22nd September 2013 02:06 GMT By Phil Owen

Rome 2 is a technical mess, but Creative Assembly is working to try to make that not be. Evidence of said work is now available in a new beta patch, which can be accessed from the betas tab in the Rome 2 properties window. Patch notes inside.

Note: apparently this update is causing some issues with alt+tabbing and changing resolution, thus the beta designation. Notes:
Technical and Performance Issues

Significant improvements to multiplayer campaign speed, which is now limited by the slowest players machine.
Frame Rate improvements on Campaign map on low spec Core2 Duo cpu’s in windowed mode.
Fix for lock-ups reported on loading into battle in DirectX9.
Frame Rate improvements on Campaign map across all configurations when setting Effects Quality to Low or High.
Fix for minor stutters & terrain rendering glitches on some gpu’s when rendering the terrain.
Fixed a bug in the Graphics Benchmark frame rate display that reported the wrong per-frame time.
LAN multiplayer modes are now accessible when Steam is in Offline mode.
Fix for graphics crash caused by changing the games screen resolution shortly after loading a new Campaign.
Fix for a crash when performing an agent action on a wounded/assassinated unit in Campaign modes.
Further campaign map optimisations.
Optimised fire and smoke effects on the campaign map (improving the frames per second on all graphics setting, especially during the late gameplay where all faction territories are revealed)
Fix in Multiplayer Campaign, after Player 1 offers diplomacy to Player 2, Player 2 made a counter offer, then cancelled the offer, which caused the game to lock up for Player 1.
Fix to prevent the games user interface from flickering when SLI is enabled.
Improved culling on the campaign map to prevent props (e.g. the pyramids) from disappearing when the camera was set to certain angles.
Improved the desktop icon for Total War: ROME II to support multiple resolutions.

Gameplay Improvements

When the player is attacked whilst in a minor settlement (not provincial capital), a new “Sally Forth” button is available on the pre-battle panel to fight the attackers in an open field battle.
All armies that are forced to retreat, and then are attacked, no longer have a *Baggage Train battle. It is a normal open field battle with any campaign generated penalties applied as before.
When an army in forced march is attacked on the Campaign Map, an ambush battle is now triggered, rather than a baggage train Victory Point battle .
Combined battles where there is no navy in the defending alliance do not have *Victory Points/Baggage Trains.
Combined battles where the defender has a navy will retain their Victory Point.
Victory Points have had their capture time increased by 3x their previous length.
Attacking AI is now more likely to prioritise taking Victory Points in Siege Battles / City Assault Battles.
AI controlled Agents are now more likely to act upon the player’s settlements instead of standing around outside of them.
Fixed issue in battle AI which prevented siege assault groups from responding to nearby threats.
Fixed timing issue in battle AI which could cause the attacking AI in port sieges to stop updating.
Substantially reduced free hits from enemies in battles, when moving a unit through enemy units (without attacking them), so units can disengage with less penalty.
Smaller and depleted AI controlled forces are now less likely to survive auto-resolved battles in Campaign modes.
Cavalry can no longer capture Victory Points in battles while mounted. They can still neutralise the Victory Points if they were previously in enemy control, and capture Victory Points when dismounted.
The size / radius of capture points has been increased in Coastal battles.
Fix for some instances of passive AI during River Crossing battles, when the AI is defending.
Fixed issue which prevented reinforcement artillery ships deploying.
Fixed issue in Siege Battles where the AI attempted to use breaches and gates which they could not reach.
In Battles, the number of ranks now factor into bracing mass bonus for collision system, i.e. thin lines will make you lose your bracing bonus against cavalry charges from the front
Fixed chasing down of routers at the end of battles, so they engage in combat more often and can be killed more easily.
Satrapies can no longer sign peace treaties with the enemies of their overlord (but still able to automatically make peace if their overlord signs a peace treaty with the enemy) in Campaign modes.
Snow ground type now replaces grass in snow attrition areas of the battle map.
Units in Testudo formation will now respond to an order to attack city gates in a City Assault battles.
Men throwing torches to ignite gates in battles, now have less chance of failing to throw their torches and hit the gate, if ordered more than once to ignite the same gate.
AI houses can no longer secure promotions without first meeting the required age and rank in Campaign modes.
Removed old concealed by distance logic, that was incompatible with the newer visibility system. For example, units that are visible at range could look like they were hidden on their user interface, when they could be seen.
Pikemen can move out of melee when pike phalanx is active in battles. For example, If only one of the pikeman is attacked, the entire unit will no longer start to be unresponsive to orders.
Improved responsiveness of Siege Equipment when dropped and picked back up multiple times.
In Campaign modes, the number of siege equipment entries is now capped to be the length of the siege – 1
Further improvements to AI collision detection with Deployables in battle.
Units that charge while in formation (e.g. block formation) stop sooner on contact with the enemy, to reduce “blobbing” where units converge into a disorganised brawl.
Fixed bug with missile units on ships not firing on enemies reliably during battles.
Fixed bug with ship artillery not firing on buildings reliably in battles.
Fix for ships surviving on the campaign map after sinking on the battle map.
Fix missile ships getting stuck when targeting land units just outside of their range.
Reduced the chance of AI (enemy) reinforcements and the players reinforcements joining a battle from the same location and therefore engaging in combat instantly in battles from Campaign modes.

Balancing Changes

Hit points for all units have been increased in combat.
Melee defence has been reduced for most melee cavalry units and for some elite infantry units.
Reduced melee weapon damage in battles, and increased melee defence from shields.
Various trait effects are now working as intended.
Improved pike weapon damage balancing in battles.
Fatigue for running and being in combat has been increased in battles.
Further tweaks and rebalancing has been made to unit morale in battles.
Elite infantry morale has been reduced slightly during battles.
Experience level thresholds have been increased for units.
Special ability cool down times have been re-balanced in battles.
Building costs have been updated to reflect the changes in building effects in Campaign modes.
Morale bonuses from training and religious building chains have been reduced in Campaign modes. Instead, these buildings now give more varied bonuses to the units.
Cost of experience bonuses for Custom and Multiplayer battles have been reduced.
Squalor and food consumption have been rebalanced (reduction for higher-level buildings) in Campaign modes.
The Headhunt ability has been re-balanced in battles.
The charge bonus for Celtic, Briton and Germanic units have been reduced.
The masses of horses and men on the battlefield have been made more reasonable.
Reduced the mass of camel units in battle.

Usability Improvements

The Balance Of Power bar on the Diplomacy screen now shows the correct ratio, rather than just 50/50.
Improved the desynchronisation detection in Multiplayer Campaign mode, and players are now given a popup message when a desynchronisation has occurred, with the options to resynchronise the game to continue, or quit the game.
When the host leaves the team lobby in Quick Battle multiplayer mode, a new host is found.
Improved multiplayer compatibility between players who own the Greek States DLC and those who don’t.
In Multiplayer Ambush Battles, if Player 1 clicks the “Start Battle” button, and the Player 2 waits for the timer to run out for the battle to start, Player 2 will no longer be locked into Cinematic Mode with limited user interface controls.
All battles now end 5 seconds after the victory is decided (This used to be 10 seconds).
In Multiplayer Land Battles, when deployment is over, enemy armies will no longer be visible, when they are supposed to be hidden, for a couple of seconds before fading out.
In Multiplayer battles, a player who has conceded defeat will now turn into a spectator. They can then exit the battle if they want to.
Fix for battle music getting paused while in slow battle speed.
When on the campaign map, if an agent is placed close to the edge of an enemy settlement as it expands (builds a building in a construction slot) the agent is now teleported out of the way of the expansion, so they do not become stuck within the settlement. If the agent was already stuck in an expanded settlement before this update, they will remain stuck, and have to be disbanded. This update will prevent this situation from happening in the future.
Slightly improve combat responsiveness and animations for formation attacks in battles.
Fixed bug with ship artillery not firing at all after using first-person mode in battles.
The Attacking Testudo can no longer be activated in melee during battles.
Battering rams moves out the way correctly after battering a gate down in battles.
The Tortoise battering ram animation has been tweaked slightly so it collides with walls better, at the point of impact when a wall is destroyed.
Multiple waypoints displayed for units in siege equipment, as previously only 1 was displayed.
Selecting Dismount on mounted units continuously during deployment in battles will move the units towards their last ordered position less after dismounting.
During battles, if a cavalry unit is ordered to move to a location, and then ordered to dismount, the men will now dismount but not continue to move to the previously ordered location.
The number of arrows is now correctly depleted when units fire whilst moving during battles.
Correct bonuses are now being applied to units from Workshop buildings.
Fixed bug with pike phalanx not getting back into pike stance after running.
Charge bonuses are now correctly applied to units recruited in certain provinces.
Projectile impact effects hitting units and buildings are now positioned more accurately.
Improved fire effects for buildings, siege vehicles and deployables during battles.
Improved some visual effects for during battles. Better burnt version of buildings with burning embers, and running water down roofs and vertical surfaces in rain.
Damaged visual effects have been improved on the campaign.
Fixed Briton Chariot unit attributes.
Fix for Scythian horse unit variation.
The achievements “Noble Master”, “Spymaster” and “Champion of the Gods” now unlock sooner after their requirements have been met.
Fix for the Campaign map terrain disappearing when repeatedly toggling between the Campaign Map and Campaign Tactical Map.
Province level bonuses (such as edicts with food bonuses) are now taken into account in the food level displayed in a province overview in Campaign modes.
Settlement labels on the campaign map are now positioned more accurately and no longer get offset from the settlements.
In the Province panel in Campaign modes, provinces can now be sorted by their level of food production.
Several Eastern buildings now correctly consume food (instead of either not consuming anything or giving contradicting public order effects) in Campaign modes.
The Qanat building (in the Eastern agricultural chain) now produces a small amount of food in campaign mode.
The warning message that informs the player that they are not researching any technology when they press the “End Turn” button in Single Player Campaigns is now also displayed in Multiplayer Campaigns.
The players armies in Ambush stance will no longer move by themselves in Campaign modes, which happened on rare occasions.
Fix for user interface bug showing the wrong tax level on the Province Details panel when the “Tax province” button was ticked in Campaign modes.
Culture conversion coming from some characters now correctly shows up as “character” in the culture tooltip, no longer as “building”.
In Campaign modes, the culture that Consecrated Grounds belong to is now displayed in their title, to make it clearer why they need to be converted.
The “Reduces slave population decline” icon in the information panel when placing the mouse over the “Slave Trader” in the Commons buildings section in Campaign modes is now displayed as green instead of red (as it’s a positive affect).
The first building in the equipment chain (E.g. Workshop for Hellenic, Quartermaster for Eastern etc.) can no longer be bypassed by converting from another faction’s equipment chain without researching.
Technologies are now required to create the Level 4 Jewelsmith building, to prevent an exploit.
Improved ship melee/ramming target selection in battles.
Fixed boarding mode button state issues when attempting to board a ship in battle.
In battles, men who have already boarded an enemy ship no longer jump into the sea once their ship has started to sink or back onto their sinking ship. (Men who remain on the sinking ship still jump into the water.)
Improved Advisor lip sync in various pieces of advice in Campaign modes.
Clicking the “Square” special ability as a unit is attempting to man a siege tower will no longer stick the siege tower to that unit in battles.
When an agent is selected in Campaign mode, and the player right clicks on a settlement to sabotage the enemy, the menu will no longer act erratically.
When the player had a subject to deal with in the politics screen and the subject had an infamy effect, this effect once seen persisted in being shown for all other characters even if the subject is dismissed. This has been fixed.
Fix for some misaligned text on a tooltip displayed when a settlement with a port is blockaded by an enemy, and the player selects the enemy and places the mouse over the settlement.
Improved small glitches with Campaign selection markers and Forced March visual effects sometimes being displayed in the wrong positions when units move.
Fixed some inconsistent ability names for General Skill Types.
In Campaign mode, Roman “Basilica of X” temples have now been renamed to “Precinct of X”.
Tooltip regarding the “Armoured Siege Units” technology bonus effects on pre-siege vehicles (all variants of Galleries, Siege Towers, Ladders and Battering Rams) is now clearer.
Fixed the tooltip when placing the mouse over the Columns I, II and III for War Exercises, Warrior Code, Tribal Economy and Druidic Council technology trees in the Technology Panel in Campaign modes.
Two pieces of advice from the Battlefield Advisor relating to flanking were mixed up in Italian and Spanish. These have now been corrected.
Fixed a couple of instances where what the Battlefield Advisors was saying did not match the text displayed in Spanish.
Some steep terrain in a Greek Minor Port battle map has been levelled out, to stop ships from going under the beach when they disembark.
Improvements to the wall connectivity in a Greek Port battle map.
Boiling oil poured from gate houses in battles will look better where it intersects with the ground.
Improved impact animations when pig carcasses hit the ground when fired as poison rounds form artillery in battles.
While crossing rivers in battles, units footsteps now default to mud sounds instead of water sounds.
Fix for a small hole in the terrain in a Greek Minor Port battle map.
When the player is defending in a siege battle from Campaign mode, and the enemy partially capture a Victory Point on the battle map, then the player re-gains control of the Victory Point, the Battlefield Advisor will no longer say “Our enemy have lost a victory point”.
Fix for the Battlefield Advisor sometimes referring to the players own reinforcements as “Enemy Reinforcements” during battles.
Added some localisation text and audio fixes for French, Italian, German, Spanish, Czech, Russian, Polish and Turkish.
Added Stonehenge back to the custom battle map at these coordinates 0.137, 0238 (Iska).
Fixed typo on ‘Conscription’ edict in English.
Improved culling of certain rocks on the battlefield.
Added French, Italian, German and Spanish localisation to the word “Settlement” in the Agent Action Panel in Campaign modes.
Various text and grammar fixes for the Campaign user interface.

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14 Comments

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  1. DSB

    10/10 Masterpiece.

    Ride on, games press.

    #1 10 months ago
  2. GrimRita

    @1 It does make you wonder just how corrupt the games media are. And ‘Victory points’ are a huge slap in the fucking face to any RTS/Strategy lover in an attempt to dumb down this dreadful game.

    I get having the in a city but in the middle of a field?!!! CA really have lost their way and Rome 2 deserves to burn in hell

    Just remember folks if you are ever thinking of buying a game from Sega again – ready or not, they will just release it on the date they announced, even if it is a beta version.

    #2 10 months ago
  3. Sethos

    CA really dropped the ball on this one. Game is so simplified it could be played using a 360 controller.

    #3 10 months ago
  4. traumadisaster

    Dont get the hate. Its like complaining about tire wear on a sports car. The experience is like none other so minor issues stand out. I have had a spectacular time and would not trade the past weeks with rome for 3-6 months without it while in further development.

    #4 10 months ago
  5. Sethos

    #4 Because you are a casual tard that hasn’t really played any of the other games.

    #5 10 months ago
  6. GrimRita

    @4 then this must be your first TW game or, you are a Sims lover for which Rome 2 appeals to. Angry Joe’s review http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_QK-lcW8a8 explains just how bad this game is.

    And this video shows just how fucking stupid the AI is. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5gCGrovLF7Y

    CA and Sega have done nothing but lie pre-launch and the fact that they bribed the games media with advertising spend or whatever else, to ensure this was given 8-10/10s just shows how desperate they are.

    Game is utter shit and not a real Total War game

    #6 10 months ago
  7. DSB

    @2 I don’t know how much I believe in corruption, but at the very least it just seems like some people didn’t actually play the game.

    I guess that’s the good thing about a game like Rome II. It’s so broken that anyone who has actually played it for an hour or two, should really be aware of the fucking bugs, so it’s a given that any reviewer who fails to mention them isn’t doing his or her fucking job.

    It doesn’t make the profession look good when about half of the reviewers registering on Metacritic completely fail to get their facts straight, that’s for sure.

    http://www.computerandvideogames.com/427086/total-war-rome-ii-review-strategy-on-an-epic-scale-review/

    That review is by far the most damning that I’ve seen in a while. It basically reads like something you’d put on the back of the DVD cover. What ripe fucking hackery.

    #7 10 months ago
  8. GrimRita

    @8 Its future publishing. The most corrupt bastards out there. Just hand them over some advertising money and they will provide you a high review score.

    I’m still trying to find the depth they speak of, especially when so many features have been STRIPPED OUT. Huge battles are over within minutes and just look at those bull shots.

    I’ve a damn high spec PC and I can’t get my graphics to come anywhere close!

    Their summary makes me chuckle ‘new players may be overwhelmed’ just LOL. You can play this crap with your eyes closed and still win. One dude http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6KfEddfUjI managed to kick 5000 units butts with just 300 elephants against the ROME army. Enough said.

    #8 10 months ago
  9. DSB

    @8 I was shocked by the look of it. I just bought a GTX 770 and it really should be up to the job.

    I’m alright with the framerate dropping on “ultra”, but I’m not fine with ultra looking like crap. It practically looks like Empire.

    It’s just piss poor optimization. The game clearly wasn’t finished.

    #9 10 months ago
  10. darkened

    Haters haters haters. I have a medium power i7 920 cpu, 6gb ram, and a decent GTX 580, i run the game on max settings and experience no slow down. (If it’s there, i sure can’t notice it)

    The game has not been dumbed down. I’ve played almost every single total war starting from shogun. The game finally has a user interface that is accessible. Good user experience means not burying stuff in myriads of menus and buttons and pop ups.

    Victory points in levels actually makes complete sense, it’s actually how real world battles occur. By conquering key locations, you win the battle. By holding key locations, it completely changes the battle ground and changes offensive vs defensive. After units would become dug into any location, retaking any point is substantially more difficult and would require separate military actions, it’s not something you would execute in the same individual battle.

    Is there room for improvements in areas? Absolutely.

    Is the game broken, dumbed down, or unworthy of the Total War brand? Absolutely NOT.

    #10 10 months ago
  11. sebastien rivas

    I bought it, I tried, and yes it is really clunky at mechanic gameplay but also sometimes when transitioning from full cinematic and back to gameplay, the screen stays black.

    Lastly, I was hoping for more order mechanics while fighting.

    At this stage, it sounds like I am bound to win no matter how foolish fighting tactic I use or do if I have ever so slightly or prominent superiority in numbers.

    Obviously, the dev never had a Q/A to begin with.

    #11 10 months ago
  12. GrimRita

    @10 hasnt been dumbed down? You must be playing another game, or a CA/Sega Puppet.

    Shogun 2 had lots of online stuff, Clans, Your own General – Where is this in Rome 2? STRIPPED OUT

    TW has been known for its cutscenes, Rome especially for it’s General speeches – Where is it now? STRIPPED OUT

    Wheres the Skill trees seen in Shogun 2? – STRIPPED OUT

    The Politics seen in Rome, the complex Diplomacy, the Trading – ALL DUMBED DOWN

    If you like victory points, you must be one of the stupid people that CA are reaching out to, so I am happy for you. I can’t remember any battle where you need to capture a fucking flag in the middle of a fucking field.

    Therefore, it removes any kind of strategy, because you can’t use choke points, you dont need to use your brain – you just need to capture a stupid retard dumbed down FLAG within 30 seconds to win a battle, despite your Legions fighting to the death elsewhere but if the flag is lost, you LOSE.

    I totally get them being within the City walls, but and open field?!!!! The fact that CA have rushed out 3 major updates, proves that the game IS broken. Now crawl back to CA/Sega please.

    @11 The game is a mess. Angry Joes review is SO spot on at just how poor this game is and showcases just how stupid the AI is.

    #12 10 months ago
  13. Pezhetairos

    @ 12 So first I want to say that I dont mean any offense.

    You’re attacking people for not having the same opinion about the state of the game as you do, and call them “puppets” or “stupid”. Despite the fact that insulting someone doesnt make your point any more valid, I would agree on the issue of the victory points on open fields.

    Regarding your other mentioned issues:

    -Skill tree is set in the encyclopedia now, still there

    -I play TW since shogun1 and I dont see how the diplomacy has been dumbed down, there’s nothing missing but the “bribe army” or “buy region” part, and if you want to have your whole economic numbers about what resource and what income you get from who and where, its still there

    -That battle you posted about the elephants is Total War logic just like it has been in Rome 1: super heavy shock cavalry smashes infantry formations, keep throwing fire javelins -> army routed (and in the video it was just standard legionnaires)

    -Your accusation regarding the reviews COULD be true, however MAYBE there have been SOME reviewers thinking that some issues of the game can be patched, but I dont know for certain so i’m just guessing.

    No offense, but if the game enrages you so much, then stay away from it. After all, there are people who like the game, and not just “casual SIMS players”.

    Personally I think the launch was pretty screwed up and CA needs to make sure the game works properly for everybody and stupid ideas like the flags or inability to capture regions which are being blockaded by port by another faction for the last 50 rounds, should get fixed. But with every patch they get closer to a worthy sequel. At least IMHO

    Again, I mean no disrespect, I merely want to voice another opinion.

    #13 10 months ago
  14. GrimRita

    @13 I am staying away from it. I haven’t touched it in days because I have uninstalled it from my computer. But the fact is I have wasted £30 on this shit. And I am sorry, anyone who thinks that a victory point in an open field is a good idea – IS stupid. Plain and simple.

    Total War was built on a foundation of huge battles, the ability to deploy your troops in a way to make best use of your surroundings, not to fight over some stupid dumb arse flag.

    Rome 2 is nothing more than a Steam line, dumbed down, feature stripping mess which will probably be a good solid game in 6 months….so why didnt they wait 6 months?!

    #14 10 months ago