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Forum » Cossacks II » Gameplay » I Find Cossacks 2 Totally Unplayable. (A newbie to Cossacks 2 and I am lost.)
I Find Cossacks 2 Totally Unplayable.
FtoomshDate: Thursday, 22/August/2013, 1:32 PM | Message # 1
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OK folks, Daddio has convinced me (or maybe I convinced myself) to attempt some games of Cossacks 2. I only play Cossacks 1 OC Mod (Balanced).

I have to say after my first few attempts I find Cossacks 2 totally unplayable and it is driving me insane. No doubt that is because I don't understand it. My first problem is that I don't understand the economy at all. I know I need to gather wood and stone, capture mills for food and capture coal and iron mines. However, I do not know how to go about a starting sequence. Has someone written a build order guide? From now on I call the build order the BO.

By a BO I mean a very detailed starting guide as in something like this (this is only an example and may well not be the best way to start);

1. Build Towncentre and start endless queue peasants to wood gather.
2. Build barracks next to road and start endless queue fusiliers to road.
3. Build gathering shed (if possible at this stage.)
4. Put (say) 5 existing peasants on stone and 5 existing peasants on food.
5. Form first 120 fusiliers and go take next nearest mill.
6. Build a dwelling.
7. Form second 120 fusiliers and go take next nearest coal mine (or iron or gold?)
8. Build a blacksmith (or maybe 2nd Towncentre or first stables comes before this?)
9. And son on and so forth.

As you can see, I want a clear BO so I can make a competent start. Based on the above example, I want something to takes me to at least Step 20. If anyone thinks I am asking for too much detail, well I did write a 60 page players' guide for OC Mod so a starting BO isn't much to ask for. smile

Problems I run into in the game are many. Finding formations and buildings quickly is one major problem. Should I hotkey each formation? Should I hotkey buildings? Can I hotkey buildings?

My population level keeps getting stuck. I want more troops but I can't build more dwellings or town centres; not enough resources you see. I wonder if I am making too many peasants? Should I leave Towncentre 1 and Towncentre 2 on infinite production of peasants for whole game or is that too many? Does anyone ever get a 3rd towncentre? Does anyone get more than about 3 or 4 dwellings? Does anyone get more than 2 stables? And why did my 2nd stable (France) look totally different from the first stable and why couldn't I order any cavalry out of it? What population level should I aim to reach? How many troops should I have and how many peasants should I have at that population level?

I seem to get enough food and far too much wood and stone in the long run. However, I find it impossible to get enough coal, iron and gold. I find it incredibly difficult to build up even say 400 gold or 400 of coal or iron. Why is it so hard to get these resources? Am I supposed to endlessly trade wood, stone and food for these commodities in the market?

Does anyone remember the days when we awaited Cossacks 2 after playing Cossacks 1? I bought Cossacks 2 the week it came out in Australia. A week later the disc was broken and thrown in my trash can. I hated it. Was I too hasty? Is it actually a good and playable game? I am trying it again but so far it is just infurating me all over again. The tutorials are the worst I have ever encountered in any game. The buildings are big, awkward and hard to place. The resource system and the build and growth system just totally baffle me. I cannot make anything work in this game. Finally, there is no easy setting on skirmish so one can never learn. Normal level just throws endless troops at me, far more than I can make. I can hold about 40% of the map for a long time (maybe forever) but I can NEVER make any headway beyond that. In the end I just quit in despair. Why can't they make an easy level for beginners? What a turn off it is to get endlessly flogged by the basic setting.

I can hotkey some units but there seems to be no key to jump back to them quickly?

OK, that's my beef. Can anyone convince me that C2 is actually a good, playable game? I know I am probably over-reacting to a few frustrations but I am totally gnashing my teeth here.
EbelAngelDate: Thursday, 22/August/2013, 5:08 PM | Message # 2
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About a guide, maybe ask Daddio to write down some guidelines. I never really played the vanilla game much, most of my C2 time i played on my modifications .

Perhaps check out the maps on the site here , see if there are any that look like they got an easy start position( read easy to defend, camp) untill you are ready to move on the AI. I used to build a blockhouse near a road the ai would pass, and camp with a formation or 2 untill they were levelled. Its cheap and it quickly gets boring that kind of play.
Or maybe create one in the editor, though its not for the faint of heart, but it's all explained on the site here.

Quote (Ftoomsh)
Does anyone remember the days when we awaited Cossacks 2 after playing Cossacks 1? I bought Cossacks 2 the week it came out in Australia. A week later the disc was broken and thrown in my trash can. I hated it. Was I too hasty? Is it actually a good and playable game?
I do. Exited and all. Ordered it from cdv Germany and all because they werent selling it yet in my city. I played 2 games then. A skirmish map and I was very dissapointed. So i gave the campaign a shot , thinking, I'm gonna play with Napoleon Bonaparte. Himself! It was called Napoleonic Wars after all.
Turns out the campaign was about some english dude called Greg Chaffy trying to rescue a damsel in distress. (
I didnt look at the game for almost 2 years, untill I started modding CI a bit and thought, lets see how they did things in C2. Sorta to learn. And then I did realize it is an engine with huge potential, but the game itself is underdevelopped. Its boring and repetitive.
I did manage to get random maps to work , but there's virtually nobody playing the game anymore, and especially with the need for a gamekey, since cdv is broke, GSC no longer makes games, its kinda a dead road.

I can see why people like the game though, but well the maps are a bit too small and its nothing like Cossacks I.
For every good thing I can say about the game, there's something bad I can say about it.

Carefull though, if Nowy sees this thread, he will frantically defend it. dry


NowyDate: Thursday, 22/August/2013, 10:02 PM | Message # 3
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Quote ("EbelAngel")
Carefull though, if Nowy sees this thread, he will frantically defend it.


Why you were laughing?

Hiowever I cast critical remarks many times, I also can defend C2 game.

There were few threads about Cossacks games comparision, where we can cast our opinions in that matter.
Then you can find more arguments too.

I still think that C2 game was better designed than C1.
C2 include more inteligent features. National units have better balance, better abilities, organization and combats in better way.
Main units types as like infantry, cavalry, artillery and sappers operate in more realistic way. They use more realistic tactics.
All weapons aslo were better designed. Fire ranges, load time, various units speed and behaviours are far better.

Morale, stamina, various units speed, roads, villages, resources transport etc.

Better graphic, better chosen units, detailed maps, smarter AI etc.

What is more C2 is easy to play even on very hard mode.
You can play only with one hand. Hot keys exist, but they are not so necessary.

Ftoomsh, if you got some troubles with C2 game and you need guide to BO, you could read this thread

There you can find some tips and even link to one web site with C2 tactics.
They were  typed in Russian language, but you can use  translator I suppose.

If you will need some more help I can type some tips to BO and gamplay tactics too.

Message edited by Nowy - Thursday, 22/August/2013, 10:16 PM
FtoomshDate: Friday, 23/August/2013, 6:56 AM | Message # 4
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Quote (EbelAngel)
And then I did realize it is an engine with huge potential, but the game itself is underdevelopped. Its boring and repetitive.

I agree with this judgement. I can see the engine is interesting with many more realistic features as Nowy said. However, the actual implementation is boring and repetitive at least versus the AI. But then most game AIs are boring.

If I could sum this game up, at least on the standard maps provided, I would say it is about micro of squad battles. Or perhaps I should say companies if 120 men is a company. The buildings are horribly huge and clunky and hard to place on the maps provided.

One tends to become quite stalemated at certain points. Both sides build up and neither attacks because the attacker always loses if the enemy is on stand ground and has even roughly the same number of man. Thus manouvre is required. But the maps have so many choke-points and so many long winding paths that strategic manouvre (as opposed to tactical manouvre) is slow and almost unworkable. Even tactical manouvre is difficult becaase of chokes, buildings, impassable ground and so on.

Just to clarify, tactical manouvre is local, where for example you fix an enemy comany or companies in line using your own lines and then manouvre another comapny to hit the flank of their line. Or where you get a cavalry group into the rear of an enemy line.

Strategic manouvre is map-wide as it were. You might fix and hold a larger enemy force with a smaller force of your own due to advantges of hills and hold ground. Then you could concenrate a larger force elsewhere on the map and deliver a decisive blow in a more mobile battle. However, the narrowness of fronts due to terrain and building obstacles makes this quite difficult to do. The game tends to stalemate with equal face-offs on major tracks at major villages. Of course it might be just the particular map I am trying and the fault of the AI and my poor playing combined.

But Bill swears by this as a good game and I owe Bill some C2 games since he has tried C1 OC Mod Balanced. I think I could get to like the game if I can only figure out the economy. For example, I find it impossible to get a larger dwelling. How does one ever get enough resources?

Added (23/August/2013, 6:56 AM)
What in heavens name do I need to get a stables? I have got stables in a game with Bill but I don't what I built to allow the stables. It was just luck. In games against the computer I cannot get a stables now even though I have enough resources, a town centre, a barracks, a dwelling, a gathering shed, a blacksmith, a market and a log cabin or fort (I think it's called). How can I have all this and still not be allowed a stables as France? Do I need an academy or a palace or a fortress or a cannon foundry / arsenal or maybe a gilt edged certificate from the Guild of Obscure Game Makers?

aiidiiDate: Friday, 23/August/2013, 9:53 AM | Message # 5
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Academy and Palace.

I drink, therefore I am.
NowyDate: Friday, 23/August/2013, 10:49 AM | Message # 6
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I disagree with such statements.
C2 can boring of course, but it can bore in similar way as C1 do.
Both games are repetitive, but C2 was more realistically designed.

In fact C2 allow use more organized units and play in historical tactics while in C1 you can not do it.
Buildings are horrible big and clunky, but I can build them lot enough to create big army.

In C1 you can bulid many, many buildings which can create quite stupid monster megalopolis.

Supposition that attacker in C2 always lose is quite wrong.
Enemy stand ground position is vulnerable on artillery fire, at last it is motionless target.
Flank and rear attacks also are dangerous in such position.

Then attacker should use proper tactics, frontal attacks only pin up and engage enemy squads even in stand ground position.
Then other attacking squads can deliver destructive blows. These require artillery support and various units squads cooperation.

Choke-points and winding path and other terrain conditions allow exploit main principles of military tactics too.

The game simply require:
1. Identification of objectives
2. Force concentration
3. Economy of force
4. Force protection
5. Fortifications
6. Use and improvement of terrain
7. Multiple axis of movement
8. Reconnaissance
9, Fire attacks.
10. Maintenance of reserves and reinforcements

Gamplay strategy also require proper manouvres and economy growth.
These mean C2 require more complex battle tactics and knowledge how to win.

In C1 crazy crowded masses of attacking clones were enough to kill all enemy units. They always stupidly fought to the last man!
In this game exist many horrible things e.g. tricks in Market, hundreds peasants working in small mines or in yellow wheat fields in the centre of large megalopolis, marching strings of reinforcments and battle tactics looks quite foolish.

Just to clarify, both these games had many glitches and their specific bad things, but I prefer more realistic tactics, than crowded  masses clones attacks.

If you need guide for BO in C2, I cast standard tactics for France there

Try play in that way.

Message edited by Nowy - Friday, 23/August/2013, 11:24 AM
FtoomshDate: Friday, 23/August/2013, 1:34 PM | Message # 7
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Yes, more realistic tactics and morale issues do occur in C2. I do question the firing ranges though. They seem unrealisitically close even for muskets. I also, question the need to always micro the fire of every company every time. Any large game should allow both to occur. A formation left on stand ground should have standing orders, for example hold fire until enemy approaches within x meters, whatever x meters is. The player could also over-ride standing orders to take personal control of a particular clash. Also troops walkign forward who then stop to fire would take longer to raise rifle and aim steady than the troops standing ground waiting yet this engine seems to give stand ground no advantage in this regard.

I also find peasants and soldiers enormously unwilling to obey orders. The peasants will stand around, take their hat off, wipe their brow (before any work at all) and then slouch off as slowly as can be to get to work. It seems to take several attempts to get cavalry to make a formation. When grenadiers are asked to grenade a building maybe two or three of them will throw bombs, the rest will stand there like dummies. Then they stop bombing the building before it collapses and you have to order them again to bomb the building. Cavalry will stand in the middle of broken, routed enemy troops and won't kill any unless you order them over and over again to get killing. Troops show no initiative at all. This is not realistic. In effective real armies junior officers and even troops are capable of showing their own initiative. Standing orders would cover this. Standing orders for cavalry would be to pursue routed enemy troops until coming up against a formation or until getting too exhausted. In this game the troops have zero initiative and the commander has to order almost every little action all over the battle field (except cold steeling loose enemy troops stupid enough to walk into the midst of an enemy formation. No real routed soldier would walk towards an enemy formation or try to walk through it.

But nevertheless, I clearly need to learn it properly to get to see its good points.

Actually you puzzled me with one point, improvement of terrian. How can terrain be improved? Can some units trench, make fleches, level hill tops for fire positions etc.? I am not sure what your mean here.

Message edited by Ftoomsh - Friday, 23/August/2013, 1:36 PM
EbelAngelDate: Friday, 23/August/2013, 1:36 PM | Message # 8
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Quote (Nowy)
Why you were laughing?

I was laughing, because I correctly predicted your answer(s) upfront up

Dont get me wrong here, I like C2 aswell, but not the vanilla game. It would need more work , its a pitty the publishers ( cdv) deadlines made GSC rush their work. It really shows. Its beyond me why they didnt implement random maps, even though the engine is fully capable of hosting them. Me and Daddio tried it once on multiplayer if I remember correctly. It generated the random map just fine.
Playing the same maps over and over gets boring. I did an effort to write down how to make new maps on the site here, and some new maps have been made, but eventually you do get bored with them too, no matter how good they are. And making new maps takes effort and time aswell. I do have tools that can speed up the mapmaking, but I rarely release any modded stuff off my own, you can blaim me on that.At least with random maps, somethings are always different, giving the game a new direction to play in.

Quote (Ftoomsh)
What in heavens name do I need to get a stables?

When in doubt, look in the .NDS file(s). Its just like CI, with the bonus that it's open format. (no fuzz with .gsc, gs1 files)

Quote (Ftoomsh)
But then most game AIs are boring.

Unlike in CI, the AI can be easily edited. The rules.ai is fairly straight forward and there's an inbuild game editor for the AI to set up rules and conditions.

Quote (Ftoomsh)
The buildings are horribly huge and clunky and hard to place on the maps provided.
Yes they are big, but they are beautifull. I dont think the size of the buildings is the issue, they are the same size as the American Conquest buildings. Its the mapsize , combined with a roadsystem and villages taking up a lot of space aswell, that make you have less space to build. Dont think i ever heard anyone complain in AC that the buildings are too big, so it has to be the mapsize.

DaddioDate: Friday, 23/August/2013, 10:47 PM | Message # 9
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Well it is easy to say that both games have issues.

I have the same issues with the maps as most people do. The in game maps are poorly done, especially in the BFE new ones. I have tried to address most of these with my new maps. My maps are for 2 player, and I tried to make room for buildings and to spread out the roads villages to make you use all of the map to give it a much larger feel.

I will work on some build orders, but after you learn the basics they come pretty easy.

Just keep in mind the no battle plan ever survives contact with the enemy. 

If I find myself playing a rusher, my plan changes, as compared to playing a camper.

The game is divided up into 3 sections, start, middle and long game.

Being on stand ground will give you advantages over a frontal attack, especially if you time your shot too early. By you should never think of this game as a stagnate boring game. it is won by maneuver. He who sits and tries only to defend will loose every time. 

I will possibly start a new thread, or just finish up on this one about a build order, I will have to give it some thought since it is just something I do without thinking.

But the main thing to learn is to get familiar with your units and their capability's. It is the same as in C1. each unit the both games have different capability and its up to you to use them to the best of their ability. 

Let me think a little and I will add more later.

FtoomshDate: Saturday, 24/August/2013, 5:27 AM | Message # 10
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I am starting to work on my C2 build orders. Some of my initial negativity and frustration with C2 is starting to ebb now. I can defeat the normal AI.

First though, a simple theoretical discussion is needed about what is required to win in any RTS (Real Time Strategy Game). Putting it very simply you require;

(1) more troops and weapons than the enemy (quantity);
(2) better troops and weapons than the enemy (quality);
(3) better tactics and strategies than the enemy (generalship).

As with all problems, I believe in the divide and conquer principle. Split the problem up into parts and try to solve each part sequentially. Then you can go on to a holistic or complete solution which combines and synthesises the parts.

So, point 1 how do you get more troops than the enemy? The answer in RTS is to find the most efficient build path or growth path (the terms are almost synonymous) for gaining the highest quantity of troops possible in a given time. The limiting factors are resource supply, housing supply and production capacity. Put simply, you want no resource shortages, no hitting of the population cap and as many military production sites (barracks, stables etc.) as soon as possible.

I have been experimenting with build orders. First, I ignore the issue of quality and focus only on quantity. Thus I produce fusiliers and focus on keeping up the resources and housing supply so that fusilier production is continuous and without interruption. I have no trouble getting enough resources to keep fusilier production continuous. However, I do hit the housing supply ceiling no matter what build order I try. This is a bit different to Cossacks 1 OC Mod Balanced where if you pay attention to housing supply you will never get capped until you have well over 5,000 units.

It seems to be harder in C2 to avoid hitting the population cap. While dwellings are not all that hard to get (at least the first 5 anyway), the 2nd Town Centre and 2nd barracks are a lot harder to get than they are in Cossacks 1 OC Mod Balanced. I start hitting a ceiling at about 600 or 700 troops. And it takes me a while to build sdtructures thay take my population capacity beyond that. My first question to experienced players is this. Can you grow your force continuously without hitting a population cap until say at least 2,000 troops?

Hitting a population cap is very bad for force growth. It means essentially you are flat-lining for the duration of the cap. If the enemy is not flat-lining, he will rapidly grow a force much larger than yours. So that is my question. Can you grow your force continuously without hitting a population cap until say at least 2,000 troops? I mean even if there are no battles or clashes to drain numbers through deaths.

I will continue this discussion as further issues and combining quantity, quality and generalship issues gets very complicated.

Added (24/August/2013, 5:27 AM)
Here is a Cossacks 2 BO I have worked out for France. Comments please.

1. Build town centre.
2. Start peons endless to wood.
3. Build barracks.
4. Start fusiliers endless to road.
5. Build dwelling.
6. Build storehouse.
7. Send 5 peons to food.
8. Send 5 peons to stone and hot key to 1.
9. Send 1st Company of 120fusiliers to 2nd MILL. (From now on troop movements not mentioned).
10. Build 2nd dwelling.
11. Capture 2nd MILL. (From now on objective captures not mentioned).
12. Build Academy.
13. Build 3rd dwelling.
14. Build 4th dwelling.
15. Build 1st stables and start cavalry endless to road & move 5 peasants to stone.
16. Build 5th dwelling.
17. Transfer 5 peasants from wood to stone? (Not sure if I need this step now. Need another test.)
18. Build 6th dwelling.
19. Build 2nd Town Centreand endless peasants to stone.
20. Build Blacksmith.
21. Build 7th dwelling.
22. Upgrade 1st mill.
23. Upgrade 1st gold.
24. Upgrade grenades.
25. Build market.
26. Build 1st artillery depot.
27. Build 8th dwelling.
28. Build heavy cavalry stables.

This build grows to a population of 720 before it hits its firstgrowth cap at the level. It also hits a population cap at about 1,200 when the first artillery depot is built. I cannot find a way to avoid hitting these population caps which stop growth for a while each time. Other points of note with this build. The first two companies of fusiliers have no officer / drummer. The third and subsequent companies of fusiliers can have officers and drummers but flag bearers are too expensive in gold at this stage. The gold is needed for other purposes. This build order somewhat delays the arrival of full cavalry formations so the army is infantry heavy and cavalry light for some time. I have not tried any trading to help the build. The market seems to naturally arrive rather late at step 25 anyway. Any comments on this build? I really would love to know if anyone has a build that can grow right through to say 2,500 without hitting a population cap even with no battles and no attrition to drain numbers.

Note: I should double-check this build one more time as my notes were a bit of a scribble in places. But I am going bleary and cross-eyed from checking builds. Need... a... rest....

Message edited by Ftoomsh - Saturday, 24/August/2013, 5:38 AM
Forum » Cossacks II » Gameplay » I Find Cossacks 2 Totally Unplayable. (A newbie to Cossacks 2 and I am lost.)
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