Niclas Fredriksson wrote:
> Like I said earlier, voice communication is a good idea. It would give 
> people a chance to chat and give the game a more social feel. But it will 
> never be able to replace written communication in netrek, and the game 
> play situations where voice communication is helpful (and slightly 
> superior to written dito) can be counted on the fingers of your right 
> hand.
Firstly, I don't think voice should replace written communication in 
Netrek.  There's no reason to do so.

But I very much disagree that it -couldn't-.  I've played many games, 
both FPS and MMO, in PvP settings, and in all cases voice chat was 
superior.  In fact, the majority of the people I played with insisted 
you have voice chat for communication-- it is just so much faster.  I 
think the only reason some netrek players believe macros are better is 
because they're so used to them and trained to read them. 

I think the kind of plays we've been able to set up and implement have 
been limited by our macros.  Think about this.  Say you wanted an escort 
to Org, but you wanted F3 to fake to bet on your mark, F2 and F5 to come 
with you, and the scout bomber at El to get in the way of that clue 
ressing at ORI.  You're beaming up armies now.  There is just no way to 
communicate on that level, so you don't even worry about it.  But this 
is 5 seconds of voice chat:

"Ok, I'm going to org in 5.  2 and 5 come with, and 3, could you fake 
bet?  John, watch for 9 ressing at ORI." Done.  Far superior.  2 isn't 
listening?  You have no way of making him read.  But you can make him 
listen.  "2, where are you, come with me now 2, now 2, now now now."  
It's just far more effective at getting people moving in my experience. 

A leader will emerge for each team.  I think it will also have the side 
effect of reducing the learning curve for newbies.

I really can't think of any situation where voice chat would not be 
superior.  A lot of the scenarios you quoted ("people talking over, guy 
not recognizing leader's voice") just don't happen in practice.  It's 
worth remembering that nowadays, pretty much everyone who plays games 
on-line uses voice chat to do so.  I can't think of a single competitive 
FPS or MMO PvP game that doesn't.