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Questions/Feedback on ACJA thus far?


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#1
Namco_Bandai

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Hey all -

To those of you who were lucky enough to get to the stores yesterday to purchase ACJA, I hope you have been enjoying the online multiplayer modes, the new maps, and expanded arsenal of aircrafts. We want to make sure you are getting the most out of your playing experience so I want to open up this thread for gameplay/operating questions and feedback (positive or negative). Thoughts on the new maps, new control system, online modes, etc? Share them here!
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#2
Sinner101GR

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Before all of you start asking...

this account is a legitimate account from a guy who is involved with the Ace Combat team. Keep on topic...they want feedback.
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#3
Captain Haddock

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It would've been nice to have a release date here the same as the rest of the world so I don't sit around for a month reading about other people playing the game before I can buy it :huh:
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#4
Broth3r

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It would've been nice to have a release date here the same as the rest of the world so I don't sit around for a month reading about other people playing the game before I can buy it :huh:

I agree with this of course, but I do understand it's a globalized policy used by nearly all game, music and video enterprises. It's difficult to ask a single company to make a difference with this, even though I suffer from it.
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#5
ICEYOUCOLD

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I've played the game, it's solid just like any other AC game. But I do have one problem, some missions seem to be imitated from previous installments.

For example that desert mission (mission 19) in JA reminds me way to much of the desert missions in AC5 (mission 16).

I like the Enhanced Combat View, it'd be nice to see that return in Assault Horizon along with the CRA view.

Edited by ICEYOU, 01 September 2010 - 04:57 PM.

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#6
kuroi

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Things I liked with Joint Assault-

-Being able to change emblems (especially the emblems featured in previous games)

-The tuning system return which originally appeared in Ace Combat X, now for all aircraft (Forget AC6's DLC style, why not use this instead? For example, I honestly liked the F-14D Idolmaster's paintscheme, but I did not like at all how it performed)

-New missiles system, and the idea of having two special weapons, or two 'standard' missiles

-Six paint schemes for each aircraft (although I am disappointed that the first four are the exact ones used in ACX)

Things I disliked with Joint Assault

-AI in general. Either they seem to fly ridiculously slow making them easy gun kills, or you have a complete extreme such as the final enemy on the last mission that I simply found frustrating to even try to get a proper lock on to and hit at times.

-Gaviria's English voice sounds like he was voicing a villain in a children's cartoon, not an enemy pilot. Whenever I heard him speak, I sometimes wished that my PSP would conveniently skip over his dialogue

-How limited aircraft tuning seemed for real life aircraft (though I understand it was probably done for online balance)

-Personally, I just don't really like the idea too much that the game takes place in the real world rather than the fictional world that previous games took place in, but it's something minor. Would I be happy if there was a console game that took place in the fictional world again? Yes. Till then, I'm happy buying more Ace Combat games... as long as they keep me amused.
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#7
ICEYOUCOLD

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-AI in general. Either they seem to fly ridiculously slow making them easy gun kills, or you have a complete extreme such as the final enemy on the last mission that I simply found frustrating to even try to get a proper lock on to and hit at times.

THIS. . .

I understand that you guy's wanted to make the game easier, but was it really necessary?? I mean we already have a difficulty option.

EDIT: One more thing, fighting Sulejmani at the end of mission 21 was . . . incredibly HARD and CHEAP.

Edited by ICEYOU, 01 September 2010 - 04:56 PM.

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#8
Unstung

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Before all of you start asking...

this account is a legitimate account from a guy who is involved with the Ace Combat team. Keep on topic...they want feedback.

Geez.


And, Bandai, please improve the game's story for future Ace Combat games. The stories have been going downhill lately. The "Golden Axe" part of the original trailer was confusing and funny, which probably didn't help sales.
EDIT: I like how the game has 21 missions, which is more than the previous ones, but I really liked the number of missions in Ace Combat 5, 27+.

Edited by Unstung, 01 September 2010 - 04:59 PM.

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#9
Broth3r

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I understand that you guy's wanted to make the game easier, but was it really necessary?? I mean we already have a difficulty option.

I disagree, I actually think the AI is more difficult thank in other AC's, definitely more than in ACX.
The easiness in making gun kills comes from the ECV, but more importantly, to the improvements make to the gun, which brought it from incredibly difficult to use (without Sniper OS) in ACX to being in par with the gun's power in AC6.
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#10
ICEYOUCOLD

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I like how the game has 21 missions, which is more than the previous ones, but I really liked the number of missions in Ace Combat 5, 27+.

Yeah, please namco, keep all future AC titles nice and lengthy.

Also PROPS to the 3rd person view! I love the new physics, flying feels more fluid and natural IMO. Please implement these new physics in Assault horizon.

EDIT: Judging from the trailer it seems you already have. lol

Edited by ICEYOU, 01 September 2010 - 07:17 PM.

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#11
Raptor 1 'Dragonheart'

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It's actually better than I expected. I really like the emblem tool, but getting S ranks is harder than Mobius 1 in The Gauntlet (especially Sulejmani in the VARCOLAC). I haven't been able to use the Online feature, but it looks really fun and I can't wait to use it.
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#12
Valk

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I'm enjoying it, but as mentioned, the music and plot don't have that same sense of thematic melody/"reason" to them that the other AC games did. Bring back Strangereal after Assault Horizon, because there's only so much one can logically do in the real world. In addition, we HAVE difficulty options, but Ace is significantly easier in JA than any other AC to date, as most planes can take more than one hit and keep going, as opposed to ACX, where I was hard-pressed to tweak anything's survivability past one hit on Ace. This is in addition to the aforementioned AI issues; rarely did I have any issues gunning down a non-Ace pilot before the last couple of missions, and even then, it's as if the AI doesn't know how to react to long-range missile attacks (in Operation X, I can literally down every pilot before the final FALKEN, Fenrir, and XFA-27 by flying straight at them and launching XMAAs). If you must make these games easier to appeal to a wider audience, then make it easier on Normal and Easy. Don't make those of us who pride ourselves on S-ranking Ace feel like the challenge is all gone in any mission sans the more insane ones like SP02 Ace of Aces.

I do however like the wider variety of parts, paint schemes and weapons available, and really like the dynamic third-person camera, though I wish there was a way to "lock" it in place like older AC cameras. Still, I wish there was more rhyme or reason to how one unlocked parts, paint schemes, and weapons - apparently people are unlocking some things under completely different circumstances than other people are, which is frustrating when you just want that one Razgriz emblem and paint scheme. And online works incredibly well - I've had a blast flying around with fellow US and Japanese players for the past day. I would like to see a more extensive "request/respond to support" D-pad comm system, but at the same time I understand this is a limitation of the PSP and we couldn't have that without losing yaw control.

One other thing: that 747 mission? Don't EVER do that again unless it's an optional mission. For the love of god, just don't.
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#13
Vier

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It's a rock solid AC. The story was alright I guess, definitely better than AC6. Plane line-up, unlockable stuff etc is good. Challenging difficulty is also a PLUS in times where simplification is all the rage in gaming business. My complains:

-there are not enough enemies and NPCs: A huge war battle over San Francisco looks more like a little skirmish.
-flight physics: I think planes accelerate too fast and brake too slowly
-trying too hard with super weapons: the super weapons itself were not very original nor innovative, flying fortresses and giant cannons have been done too much. Trying to compensate this with sheer numbers was a big mistake.

Edited by Vier, 01 September 2010 - 11:42 PM.

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#14
draux

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Ive been enjoying it. Its not without its problems, but overall its a great Ace Combat. I really like all the new stuff. Total control over your load out is great. The new gameplay is way better IMO, and the depth of online play was unexpected for me. The plot was a little hokey, but its Gone with the Wind compared to AC6.

The only thing thats really irked me is that the audio can get muddy. There was a level where the soundtrack had lyrics, and there was dialoge over it. It was rather distracting.
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#15
Red_9

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Kill the voice actors, for the love of god kill them all. Made me feel like I was watching a kid's show...

I agree about lack of originality on superweapons as well. We've seen flying fortresses more than enough already; they were in ACZ, AC6, ACJA, and AC5 if you count Arkbird.
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#16
Hornet

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I don't have it just yet * its being shipped from amazon ^.^* but what I will say is I do wish it were in the SR universe, as after all, its one of the big things that makes Ace Combat, Ace Combat. Kinda nice though that you did add some of the old stuff in like the emblems and whatnot. Also, I do agree we could use some new Superweapons. Perhaps something on the water maybe ( AC5 had both 'faxis but they weren't rly like, super super weapons like Megalith, Chandellier etc etc) or something.
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#17
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After beating JA all I can say is thank you Namco for delivering another console quality game to the psp.
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#18
Homuhomu

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This post contains significant amount of spoilers, read it at your own risk:

I have been an avid Ace Combat player, and this is the first Ace Combat game that just outright disappoints me.

I would like to categorize my reasons to a several aspects:

1. World setting/characterization
People have been complaining about the loss of the fictional universe. For this reason, I will keep this brief. A fictional universe allows a lot of room for creativity without breaking a world's coherence significantly.

Putting this aside, I will try my best to speak objectively about the real world setting.
I am sure that Namco wants to give players more connection and emotional attachment by setting the stage in our world. However, I think they missed the main point. There is no way to tell an engaging story without any connectible character. I cannot relate to any of the character in this game.

Take Rigel 1, Sulejmani, for example: There is no sign of character development before his defection. The impact of his defection was therefore, almost negligible. Afterward, the whole concept of "I am doing it for the money", just makes him a cliche'd and forgettable villain.

There is a reason why I am so fixated on a good rival. Rivalry/antagonist, is a striking contrast for the protagonist in a work of art. A story needs a worthy rival to accentuate the heroism of the protagonist. When you have a cookie-cutter character as an antagonist, how special can you make the player/protagonist feel about himself?

This is what makes Ace Combat 4's Yellow 13 work. Yellow 13 is not a typical video game villain. Instead, he's a rival pilot who upholds his honor. The atmosphere surrounding this antagonist, is what makes the game's ace battle feel significant. The very same mechanic is also up-played by the designer of Ace Combat Zero: "The story of an ace being told through the eyes of enemy aces". I find it confusing how this concept that was mastered by the earlier development team got lost in Joint Assault's development.

Similar criticism can also be applied to the Oliveri Life Insurance:
The past Ace Combat rival armies such as the Belkan forces, Yuktobanian forces, or Erusean forces all feel like a formidable threat. This is because they are all modelled off from some of the deadliest real life armies in term of behaviors and motivations. Now lets look at Oliveri Life Insurance. The whole goal of their military operation can be summarized by the phrase "Global Insurance Scam". When this is compared to the threats from the past AC games, it is easy to see how far they have been downgraded.

To sum it up, weak opponent/enemy nation will belittle a player's sense of accomplishment and thus lessen the experience of the game.

2. Cutscenes:
Photorealistic CG mixed with "cut and pasted" images create an incredibly jarring and inconsistent presentation. The cut and paste images work in Ace Combat 4 because the images were hand drawn, and thus, the slide-like presentation style blends right into the cutscenes. Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker also used a lot of cut and paste presentation. The MGS team got through because they were using hand-drawn illustrations as well.

When photorealistic CG is used, viewers will start to expect a smooth and coherent presentation style. Combining the realistic CG with the slide-like presentation ended creating an incoherent end product.


3. Music Direction:
Mr. Shiina did a very good job for orchestrated individual tracks. However, a lack of solid soundtrack direction lessened the impact of individual tracks. Tracks such as Zero, the Unsung War, Megalith, and the Liberation of Gracemaria work because they are songs used in the absolute crescendo moments of the game. The tracks are not used anywhere else. For Joint Assault campaigns, songs were re-used in different missions and in different context. There is no longer a crescendo moment to speak of anymore as far as music goes. The placement of tracks essentially lessened the impact of the mission and the tracks themselves.


4. Gameplay/rewards:
First off, I understand the need for checkpoints, and I fully support it. However, I do not understand why there is a need to teleport the player into a specified location at the start of a new phase. The teleportation breaks the pacing of the game and is very invasive.

Airborne fortresses/boss fights:
Boss fights are usually some of the best parts from an Ace Combat game. Unfortunately, these fights feel incredibly underwhelming in Joint Assault.
A part of it has to do with the pacing. There are at least a good 4 missions in the game that involve the destruction of airborne fortresses. This downgraded the experience of taking down an airborne fortress by removing the tension and the sense of accomplishment.
Taking down the behemoth no longer feel like a significant blow to the enemy, since they probably have bought two dozens more with the insurance scam money. Boss fight eventually feels like a chore rather than a treat.

Player reward:

Why do people constantly spend their token in the slot machines? Why do people love loot games such as Diablo? Why do people love Modern Warfare 2? Why do people enjoy Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker?
There is a single word answer: "reward".
Take Diablo 2 or MGS PW for example, every raid/mission rewards players handsomely with either weapons or other perks. Joint Assault's missions rewards pale in comparison.
Sure, there may be emblems, better planes, or more sophisticated plane parts. However, these rewards are far and sparse. Sometime it is difficult to feel as though you have accomplished anything after a mission.

Let's look at Peace Walker for example. After finishing a mission, I am greeted by multiple messages:
"X number of high ranked recruit has joined my army"
"Rocket launcher level 3 development has completed"
"oversea military operation by mercenaries squad is a success"
"The base is now upgraded to operation level 4"

Modern Warfare 2:
"You have unlocked challenge ________"
"You have completed the challenge ______"
"You have the least death compared to every player in this round"
"Heartbeat sensor attachment for rifle x is now available"

Now lets take a look at Ace Combat JA:
"You have earned $50,000 credits, and emblem and maybe a weapon system"

When the other top titles on the market are going for this route, there isn't any reason why Joint Assault could not offer the same.

Edited by Drawfag, 02 September 2010 - 03:33 PM.

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#19
Homuhomu

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Question:
Are staff like Hiroyuki Ichiyanagi and Naoto Maeda still employed by Namco Bandai?
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#20
Valk

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I feel like I need to throw in my two cents on something else now too - the A.I. Ace Combat Zero had, in my opinion, the best AI in the series. The ace fights in Zero all felt challenging without being cheap, and Pixy's battle is still my favorite boss fight in video games because it's a perfect storm - it's the climax of the game, everything is on the line, you KNOW the enemy, and he's damn good with his plane, has a bunch of attacks, and pushes your skills as an AC pilot to the max. Half the time you have to be in just the right angle to hit him with missiles or else he'll dodge them not with a ridiculous manuever like Pasternak or Varcolac do, but by doing a high-G turn the same way you dodge missiles the whole game. Pixy was a challenge because his piloting was good and well within reason; he played by the same rules you did in the fight. I want more of that in my Ace battles. The first few Varcolac engagements felt that way the way they'd outrun or dodge your missiles, but then we get to the final battle and everything goes out the window.

Please, PLEASE make the AI in future titles more like Pixy's AI or even base it off the Round Table squadrons, and do less of the Ilya Pasternak-style physics defying manuevers. I want to be challenged as a dogfighter, not an AI exploiter.
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