Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri & Alien Crossfire > After Action Reports

For newbies: What the heck is an AAR?

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Green1:
What is an AAR?

AAR stands for After Action Report. It is an older term for a Let's Play which became popular on sites like Youtube, However, an AAR has historically been forum based. In a nutshell, someone posts turns of a 4x game. They then post screenshots and comment on it. AARs are still fairly popular because a lot of folks like to see how others play to see different strategies. Also, unlike the more modern Let's Plays on Youtube, you can read a lot faster than watching an extremely long video or have to tolerate someone who may have more enthusiasm than voice talent/video editing skills.

Are there different types of AAR or is all this just some nerd with a beer posting his game?

Sometimes it IS a nerd with a beer just posting a game. While I am loathe to put labels on stuff, there are some basic styles of AARs.

1. Guy with beer posting game. pretty straightforward and can be pretty entertaining. Someone just wants to play a game and share it with everyone. The better ones add a bit of humor and share quips with the audience.

2. War Academy/ Tutorial. Sometimes a local expert will provide a huge service and post example games showing basic and advanced strategy to help novice players out. The "war academy" on CFC forums are great examples of this.

3. Epic story driven AAR. Some folks take it over the top and write epic fan fiction with deep character development patterned after what happens in game. These things can be very deep and steeped in atmosphere where every turn goes for five paragraphs or it can be just short posts that are acted in character. Sometimes story AARs are played in scenario mode so the AAR author caqn switch sides to show a different side of the story.

4. Audience participatory. I have seen a few examples of this. the author plays the turn, but lets the community be involved in different decisions. I have even seen AARs where the OP names units after active forum members.

Of course, an AAR can be all or one of these. It is really hard to qualify.

Hey... that seems cool! How can I post an AAR?

Before you do so, make sure you want the hassle. Having to stop and post when you really just want to game can kind of suck. An AAR also takes about 10 times longer to make than just a regular game so be sure you have the time commitment. Nothing is worse than a dead, abandoned AAR attempt.

That said, there are a few things that newbies need to know about SMAX and AARs I can share that will save some frustration. First off, to make screen shots you are going to need to be sure to open paint BEFORE SMAX. that way the colors do not turn out messed up. Second, if you are using the GOG release, you are going to need to rename your terranx to something else to get around the hard lock on alt-tabbing.

Be sure to update and continue your AAR in a reasonable time frame. That way, your readers will be happy. 

Always try to be in error on the side of too many turn posts instead of not enough. Folks read AARs to see game play. While there are turns where not much goes on, it really is not cool to post an AAR and only show the game at 10 points. the readers want to see everything going on. Not just you reporting every 50 turns. You need comment and post on as many turns as possible. Maybe even talking strategy. Nothing is sexier than 4x strategy to a geek.

ENJOY!

Buster's Uncle:
 ;b;  Good job!  ;b;


--- Quote from: Green1 on September 02, 2013, 02:09:32 AM ---Sometimes it IS a nerd with a beer just posting a game.

--- End quote ---
;rotflmao

NewAgeOfPower:
I mean, even a nerd without a beer posting his game can teach you things.

Crawlers man. They're almost as good as support/food free citizens. Keep Crawling till the screen is covered with crawlers. Then build a few stacks for SP rushing.

Green1:

--- Quote from: NewAgeOfPower on September 02, 2013, 02:57:41 AM ---I mean, even a nerd without a beer posting his game can teach you things.

Crawlers man. They're almost as good as support/food free citizens. Keep Crawling till the screen is covered with crawlers. Then build a few stacks for SP rushing.



--- End quote ---

But even then. I usually stick in a momentum style or hybrid style. I build nowhere near the crawlers some of yall do. But that is the cool thing. you get to see different styles.

NewAgeOfPower:
Even for hybrid play, each crawler is support free-citizen making more minerals for each one of your bases for more offensive units : ] I remember a Santiago game where after I facerolled a Lal I had 4 crawlers per base.

Holy crap the amount of missile rovers that I could pump out... I think crawlers are OP, even for a hybrid player.

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