View Full Version : SH3 - game or sim?

05-24-2005, 04:50 PM
I was wondering what people here thought about the game after playing it for a few months. The reason I ask is I must admit to being a bit disappointed with the lack of depth in the game after playing it for a while.

The problem is I am finding that I see Silent Hunter 3 as on par with something such as Knights of the Sky or perhaps Red Baron 2 (although even that is more detailed than SH3 in many ways). But certainly SH3 isnt as complex as Falcon 4, MS Flight Sim, or even B17 2 all of which feature quite accurate engine controls etc. And I feel that its this missing complexity that is ruining the whole experience of the game now for me. I feel SH3 is more of a click and travel game with some semi-realistic torpedo plotting features. Theres so many things missing from the game that could have turned it into a full blooded simulation - navigational currents, currents/waves affecting torpedo travel, wind affecting gun trajectory, engine tuning and malfunctions, damage affecting sub use such as damaged periscopes/ cracked glass/ slower turning due to damaged rudders etc. And thats without even mentioning things like food and supplies etc. Then what about tired crews affecting gun reloading, delays in manning guns and the tower to reflect crew travel time. And what about crew movement times between compartments (B17 2 features this). And then theres storms at sea damaging the sub and crew. The thing that has really got me annoyed lately though is how you can just wait on the surface for a ship - which even if it sees you will keep to the same route knowing full well it will get blasted by a gun or torpedo at any moment. Now thats just plain stupid! Whatever happen to realistic ship AI regularly changing course, heading way from your sub, heading towards the nearest airbase or destroyer etc etc?

All of the above would, to me, make SH3 more of an interesting simulation rather than just a rather lame game. But presently I feel that it just isnt very complex in the slightest now Ive learned how to plot torpedos and maneouver the sub - I mean whats left to experience?. And a few tens of missions doing the same things day in day out, staring at a little icon move across a map (which is how most of the missions are spent) is really starting to get me a bit more than a little bored now. I suppose a sub game must be expected to have quite a few boring parts due to the slow travel and long distances but if only they had put some interesting elements in to relieve the boredom.

I have to say I have enjoyed playing the game up till now, maybe Im just burned out. It seems now I spend most of a mission hoping that I meet a destroyer or I get attacked by some planes just to inject some excitement into the game. And that cant be healthy!

05-24-2005, 05:02 PM
I find SH3 more of an arcade game-like experience than simulator. I play at 100% realism, limit deck gun useage to an absolute mimimum and let many contacts sail by unmolested just to keep my tonnage closer to realistic levels. Given the physics of the engine and some of SH3's inconsistencies and historical inaccuracies, I feel compelled to consider it more game than simulator (in the traditional sense of the word) -- though a fine game at that.

That said, I do really enjoy SH3 a lot. It's a fun and immersive game, and I very much look forward to future patches/expansions that will hopefully make the experience even better. Fantastic genre, period!


05-24-2005, 05:13 PM
I have seen better games for sure. It's just an ok game, nothing real special.

05-24-2005, 05:47 PM
I have definately come to the conclusion that SH3 is a game. It has some great features..and I hate to compare apples and oranges..like sub vs. flight sims..but I realy enjoyed sims like Falcon 4 and some Janes titles. I wish that UbiSoft had taken the time to publish a really good manual and not some small pamphlet...I think the game deserved a lot more than that...I have Dangerous waters and it came with a 500+ page manual..not withstanding that there are a lot more "systems" to learn in Dangerous Waters...but even if UbiSoft had included the U-Boat Commanders manual it would have been a great thing..and it probably wouldnt have cost very much..I mean book stores are selling it for $8.95 US so if they bought in volume it would have really made the price drop on the book....just my 2 cents worth...

05-24-2005, 05:50 PM
Badlilmonkey http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/mockface.gif

05-24-2005, 05:54 PM
Its a game from the simulation genre.

The clue is in the fact that most of you bought it from a 'game' store....

05-24-2005, 05:54 PM
It started out as a game for me...very low realism settings. It quickly became a sim with much higher difficulty settings. I am running it at 94% (I think) now and it is MUCH more entertaining!

05-24-2005, 06:10 PM
Game or sim, whatever you want to label it as, I'm just happy it seems to be a hit and selling well. Niche genres like this need to be revived, and if SHIII is the start of such things, I sure won't argue.

05-24-2005, 07:18 PM
it depends.. if you look back at what was considered a 'sim' in the late 80s and take it for a ride, you'll say its 100% arcade. sh3 is a sim, because by today's standards, it tries to emulate reality and that is what a simulation is. 10-20 years from now, people will look back and say sh3 is 100% arcade http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif
in terms of today's standards and machines, i haven't seen any other sim that can simulate reality as well as sh3 has.. that doesn't mean there aren't any, but sh3 certainly pushes the envelope in recreating reality.

05-24-2005, 08:00 PM
Originally posted by blue_76:

sh3 certainly pushes the envelope in recreating reality. lol

No disrespect meant, honestly. I like this game as much as the next sub aficionado, but when I read that statement, I almost sprayed a mouthful of coffee onto my monitor! That was funny. Thanks for that.


05-24-2005, 08:08 PM
Agree with 49.

It really is state- of- the- art for water graphics, and it's one of the few games that could keep me in front of my monitor more than 5 hours a day (like Diablo II LOD, or FFX, or B-17 2).

It also is quite immersive. You learn to take care of your crew, they seem to become real brothers- in- arms for you. And that is something really rare these days. Even your squadmates in Call of Duty are not that close to you.
From this point of view, SH3 is on par with Jagged Alliance 2 in terms of comradeship.

But even if it is a real SIMULATION, it still is just a game. Created to be enjoyed.

05-24-2005, 08:10 PM
hehe well, it that case i take no offense. but i stand with my point of view on the matter. by today's standards, the sim is very demanding of hardware and although it has many bugs that need to be fixed, its still in its infancy and will develop into a very stable and feature rich sim. but thats just my opinion of course, i'm sure there are people who would disagree.

05-24-2005, 08:12 PM
Originally posted by blue_76:
hehe well, it that case i take no offense. but i stand with my point of view on the matter. by today's standards, the sim is very demanding of hardware and although it has many bugs that need to be fixed, its still in its infancy and will develop into a very stable and feature rich sim. but thats just my opinion of course, i'm sure there are people who would disagree.

I wouldn't disagree :P

05-24-2005, 08:13 PM
Originally posted by KorvKpt:

But even if it is a real SIMULATION, it still is just a game. Created to be enjoyed.

certainly, i would think if it was 100% accurate, the sim would not sell. but lets look on it from another perspective.. those who wish to achieve more realism, can add any number of mods created for the game to give it more realism.

05-24-2005, 08:16 PM
It can never be 100% accurate because it's only virtual. The word "simulation" means that it's not the "real thing"

But it has a certain feel of "realism" in it.

05-24-2005, 08:17 PM
ok, lets say 99% http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

05-24-2005, 08:18 PM
The strange thing that I see nowadays is rather than wanting realism, people seem to want more of a challenge. I've seen several sims where experts or first handers note that the sim is harder than the real thing, and yet players still want more.

05-24-2005, 08:22 PM
Well, I can remember the dumb look of that US pilot years ago when I identified virtually everything in his Longbow's cockpit. Especially because I was sweet 14 years at that point... God, I feel old.

Jane's Combat Simulations rock http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif.

05-24-2005, 08:24 PM
Originally posted by blue_76:

although it has many bugs that need to be fixed, its still in its infancy and will develop into a very stable and feature rich sim. Absolutely, blue_76. I'm really looking forward to future patches that address some of the issues as well as introduce new content. That, and I'm hopeful we'll get an expansion and see this franchise grow.

05-25-2005, 02:04 AM
i totaly agree with blue_76 sh3 it is certainly a sim

05-25-2005, 02:31 AM
IMO you have to roleplay a sim to get the most out of it. FS2004 say while a great sim is a bit souless and so you need to inject a touch of roleplaying into the gaming just to give it some sense of purpose. In today's gaming world we are usually force fed storylines and linear missions that we forget much of what made gaming great many years ago.

The best comparison I can think of its Sid Meiers Pirates!! When I played the original all I had to roleplay the game a touch because of the poor quality in graphics and that my mind was trained to do that. So when the game said you had sacked a town I imagined my crew looting the town. In the remake I couldn't get the same mindset as I expected the game to do all that for me, it didn't and as a result I didn't enjoy the experience. But games like Elite also required large amounts of imagination. You accepted it then and enjoyed it all the more for it.

SHIII is a prime example , if you roleplay it just slightly it makes the game 100% better. I seriously limit the camera now and try and play the game as a Uboat commander and for me the experience is second to none. I haven't yet got bored once since doing this. If you take the "Game" element out yourself this game gets better and better.

Also comparing SHIII to a Flight Sim is unfair. Combat Flight Sims are by their nature relatively linear with fixed objectives and clear mission goals. Also flying a plane is intrinsically fun and a test of skill at every moment its more about testing your own reflexes and skills on an immeadiate basis. I could spend hours with IL2 just flipping the plane about without even doing anything, or spend a weekend getting my landings just right etc. You can never ever hope to replicate that experience with a boat that travels at 30 miles an hour max. Even free form flight sims like FS2004 have that skill and fun factor chucked in, the scenery changes every few minutes, and everything is reliant on you as an individual. In SHIII you have to roleplay it as much as you can.

05-25-2005, 09:19 AM

Excellent points, I agree whole heartedly. Games of yester year required more from one's imagination, which wasn't neccessarily a bad thing. Today, we demand more, and rightly so. The technology is there and we want to push it to the limits.

As for SHIII, the question on whether it's a SIM or a game is obviously going to differ from player to player, each one being right because, that is how they feel. For me, it's still a game http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif , but it's a game that I really enjoy playing none the less. I couldn't call a naval "piece of software" a SIM unless it modeled navigation, at least a little. (I'm not saying model the galaxy here, just SOME sort of navigational requirement). SHIII has some SIM aspects. That ocean, now THAT is simulated. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

05-25-2005, 02:00 PM
I agree at least that the sea is 'quite' well simulated although it doesnt show underwater currents, tides or other phenomenon so I cant say it is 'well' simulated.

Similarly the Uboat itself is 'quite' well simulated in that the crew are shown and you have to move them around and most of the sub equipment is usable. However you cant for example look at the engine dials in the engne room, tinker with the engine tuning, visit all of the sub compartments and move around the sub in freestyle so I cant say I think it is 'well' simulated.

But hey its an improvement over most so called sims these days in that it does have some gameplay in it as well and the things it does are done very well. Lets hope the community really starts to get behind this game and develop it properly as it deserves. For me though I think I personally prefer the excitement of flight sims but thats just me.