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Subject: Twilight Struggle on ANDROID and Turn Zero DLC available on Steam rss

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Michael Cabral
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PlayDek finally released Twilight Struggle on Android devices yesterday. I am waiting for some reviews to show up before I plunk down and buy this app for my phone. I remember it not being available on iOS phones just for tablets. I wonder if that is the same situation here.

They also released the Turn Zero with promo cards on Steam. Anyone with physical collector's edition boardgame comment on how Turn Zero plays?
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Paul M
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I have played Turn Zero. I really like Turn Zero for the variety. It can, however, be extremely swingy. I would never use it unless the game went like this:

-Pick sides
-Play turn zero
-THEN bid for sides based on results of turn zero

It is possible as a result of turn zero that the USA goes first in all early war turns, or that Socialist Govt goes to the mid war deck and Suez has no effect permanently. Let's say both of those things happen and everything else from turn zero is neutral. If you are USA +2, your chances of winning are gigantic, and if you are USSR, you are about to waste time playing a game that is stacked against you big time. But now change that, now both players know USA has those advantages. Then let's say you can bid for sides now. The USA player will gladly give up the +2 to keep his side, and the USSR player might say I'll give you USSR +1 and I will take the USA side, then the USA player has to decide if he wants to take USSR +1 or offer USSR +2 to the other player. That would be a fascinating auction.

Without that bidding component, Turn Zero is a potentially unbalanced novelty. I noticed this the one time I played in person with it. I was lucky that the Turn Zero results were balanced, a bit of positive for both sides, so the game was fair. The results of Turn Zero are a lot more about the die rolls than about the decisions you make with the cards.
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Mark J
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I've been part of the beta testing throughout the PC and Android builds. They've done a great job. Interface is well done and the rule implementation is on par for the most part.

Something I kept asking for during the beta testing and they just never implemented is history step through buttons. There are none. You can read logs of what happened in past turns but you can't click through them and see the state of the game change accordingly. You also can't click any of the card text listed in the log file. So if you don't have the cards memorized you then have to hunt for them in the discard or removed tabs to read the text. Many times the events of a card will cycle through and I'm left wondering what just happened and why. I have to hunt that card out of the discard/removed tab to figure it out.

The AI has improved but I haven't played it in awhile. Last time it certainly was capable of giving a beginner a big challenge.

Lastly, this new release also came with new in-game music. Just awful awful music. It's basically a Russian choir with snare drums and Tubas playing. The ambient sound music, which I really liked, found in the lobby used to also be the in-game music. Poor poor decision on their part to change it.

Get the game though. It's on sale so you really can't go wrong giving it a try.
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Max DuBoff
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I see that it's currently $5 on mobile and I'm very tempted, but Im concerned by the mention of in-app purchases. Do the $5 upfront give access to online play, or does that cost extra? I'm not really interested in playing the AI.
 
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Rick Thompson
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MD1616 wrote:
I see that it's currently $5 on mobile and I'm very tempted, but Im concerned by the mention of in-app purchases. Do the $5 upfront give access to online play, or does that cost extra? I'm not really interested in playing the AI.

The In-app purchases are for the Turn Zero and promos. Online is, and always has been, no extra cost.
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DiploGuy wrote:
They've done a great job. Interface is well done and the rule implementation is on par for the most part.

i agree. it's been lots of fun trying to wrap heads around the various starting position alterations--to say nothing of the strategy of how you approach playing your cards during turn zero itself.

i've had my own crotchety/grumpy reactions to some starts, but with time and patience i think i am just being resistant to anything that isn't the game i already know.

as i've mentioned in another thread, having this extra content digitally is going to give us the ability to generate reps much faster than ever before, so hopefully the community's comfort with the new starts, new cards, new reshuffles, etc., will increase quickly as well.

one question i do have: does anyone know for sure how the OS handles the inclusion of the promo cards? are they simply added to the existing deck (which is what i presume)?
 
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Michael Cabral
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What the hell happened to the background music of the Steam PlayDek game?!
 
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Paul M
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Dunno. I muted that crap.
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Michael Cabral
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The music is pretty awful now. I really hope that they include an option to switch between the two soundtracks. The music even cuts out for a few minutes then starts up again.

There is a weird synthesized MIDI horn in what I think is a poor attempt of an air raid siren. But sounds like a demented elephant.

I also noticed some glitching with the click and dragging of cards. It would get stuck and not animate the card. A second attempt would work. Also the missing military Ops at the end of the round looks like it is adding the +1 or +2 twice with two animations...
 
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Paul M
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The new materials are quite buggy. The AI has no clue what to do with First Lightning. My ipad freezes every time it has that card and has to play it. And Socialist Govts wasn't supposed to work on turns 1 or 2 in one game with turn zero. AI played it on turn 2 and as USSR I still got to use it. I know they will fix all this, they just need some time is all.
 
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Max DuBoff
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I must admit, I'm very impressed with how well it plays on an Android phone. The screen doesn't feel too small at all.
 
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Michael Cabral
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ipgyst wrote:
The new materials are quite buggy. The AI has no clue what to do with First Lightning. My ipad freezes every time it has that card and has to play it. And Socialist Govts wasn't supposed to work on turns 1 or 2 in one game with turn zero. AI played it on turn 2 and as USSR I still got to use it. I know they will fix all this, they just need some time is all.

Yeah hopefully they will iron out the kinks soon.

MD1616 wrote:
I must admit, I'm very impressed with how well it plays on an Android phone. The screen doesn't feel too small at all.

That's good to know. I have a OnePlus One which has a pretty big screen. I think I will take the plunge and purchase it tonight for Android.
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