I REALLY want to like this game but (Full Version)

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Numdydar -> I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 4:04:13 AM)

I cannot.

I updateed to the latest version in hopes some of the major issues I had before with the game were addressed. A few were but most still exist. Below is some comments about the game after the 1.02 patch.

Game stats
Grand campain, Germany on VH. All else on Normal and AI control

Naval
Is just FUBAR. Beyond belief. Once again (like I did in a previous game) bought LC after the Fall of France with my new gotten wealth and invaded England with a Armor and Inf Corp. This was bigger than DDay folks. In a week.

So I get ashore, capture Southhampton, and setup a convoy route. Put the entire German navy in the English channel and awaited it's distruction. NOTHING HAPPENED. No air attacks, no Home Fleet, just nothing.

So what were the British air doing while my cargo ships merrily sailed across the Channel? Attacked my airplanes of course. Makes perfect sense for the planes to attack airfields in France versus unarmed cargo vessels in the Channel.

Reinforced the invasion, and proceeded to wipe out the English. Three options were given, Fight On, Puppet, and Make Peace. Absoultely NO information is given the player to determine what each of these mean. The last game I Puppeted (which makes NO sense in a historical view point. Really English fighting for the Nazis?) so I already knew how that worked out. So I picked Fight On which is what they would have done anyway imho.

In early 43 the US declares war (Russia already when to war with Germany in Oct 42). Well after England fell and London captured. So the US sends over this massive fleet and starts pounding my garriaions in England. Lands a few units which proceed to wander around England until I can wipe them out. Meanwhile my fleet is in the same square and again nothing happens to the German navy. The US invades a few more times with the same result.

The US fleet then sails to the Westen Med, I assume to try and invade NA. pounds a unit in Olen down to 0 but do not invade. Turn after turn this happens. Finally I get fustrated and reset Italy to human control. What do I find? Almost the entire Italian navy is in single ship fleets. WTF? No lie, it takes me about 20 mins to set them all up in a more resonable fashion. The AI had even put subs and cruisers togeather in the same fleet in some cases.

Send the newly configured Italian fleet over to visit the US fleet in the Med and thought finally here we go, a real naval battle. Considering the US had six CV's 10 BB's and a whole lot of crusiers, I did not expect this to turn out well for the Italians [:(]. I even turned auto naval combats off just to watch what happened. What a disappointment.

The US proceeded to continue to bomb the poor unit in Olen and completely ignored the Italian fleet. The only good news is that the newly formed Italian fleet did NOT ignore the US fleet and proceeded to pound the crap out of it, turn after turn, after turn, etc. The US fleet NEVER left [&:]. The Italians NEVER lost a single ship while the US fleet went down to 4 CVs and a cruser before they finally left. From the combats I observed, it appeared that the US fleet had also been broken up into single ship fleets. Obviously this is no way to run a navy lol.

While all this was going on, I had managed to get all of NA and got Iran on the German side. So I had German units on the southern border of Russia. So I had a convoy set up to go from Athens through the Red Sea into the Persian Gulf. This convoy was never bothered?? Really? The British still own India right? They still have the Indian fleet (plus could easily add what is left from the Atlantic to it) and yet my convoy sails along completely immune from any interdiction. Amazing to say the least. Even after the US enters the war too.

Sorry for the long post about the naval issues, but these issues are beyond the pale.

Land
Improved for the most part. logistics is still an issue.

I had units sitting on a railhead (about 10 hexes away from a city) and were serverly effected by supply issues. Why? Trains can only travel between cities? Can't stop off inbetween to supply troops? WWII would be so different if that was the case [:)]. If I have units on a functional rail line, they should be able to get full supply, regardless how far from a city they are. So when you run up to an emeny city that is outside of your units city supply radius, good luck on taking that city. of course if you did, you instantly have full supply whether the rail line functioned or not (or even no rail connection). It a good thing these enemy cities agreed to stock all these German parts and ammo in advance lol. Of course the reverse is also as absurd when the city is recaptured.

The patch notes indicated that unit Experience was toned down and it looks like that is true to some extent. Plus it is harder to take cities with just armor versus before. In my pre-patch game I had several armored corps that had a strengh of 60+ and a few more were over 50. It is Feb 43 and I have two AC that are both over 40. So it did take longer to get that high, but still seems to be excessive.

AI Production
When Russia declared war on me, there were no Russian units on the front lines. Really? A country goes to war and the front is not packed with troops? So I load up as Russia to see what the hell is going on with them. Would you believe over 40 cruisers, 10 BBs, and several CVs? I could see this on the Pacific side but most in Riga? No wonder the front looked weak lol. And yet they delacred war? All these ships were also in single ship fleets too execpt for a few subs.

Other notes
After Denmark is captured, how can Allied Surf fleets sail around in the Baltic? This should not be allowed but yet I constantly saw Allied fleets in the Baltic for most of the game. Of course even if the entire German navy was sitting at the entrance to the Baltic, as long as the enemy ship did not stop in that sea zone, nothing would happen and it could sail wherever it wanted [&:].


Final thoughts are this. I am NOT looking for an accurate WWII recreation with this game. What I do want is REASONALE outcomes to my actions versus what the game does now. Crossing the Channel should cause the Allies to react with everything they have and attempt to sink every ship in sight, regardless of cost. As that is a reasonable reaction to that event instead of what happens now which is nothing.

I think it is reasonable for units to have full supply when on (or near) working rail lines. I do not think it reasonable to be able to invade England one week after the fall of France with two corps. matter of fact, i do not think it reasonable to invade England at all within one week of the fall of France. Not sure how long, but a week is not it lol.

As bad as the naval system is in this game, the whole thing should be scrapped and abstracted somehow. Maybe have a pool of naval points you could put production in (like research) and you need so many 'points' as Germany to invade England with a division. More points could allow more units to invade. England could use points for anti sub, anti invasion, etc. this way each nation could use their production to determine the best place for their limit PPs for naval operations. Or some other system. As far as I am concerned ANYTHING is better than what we have now.

Which is a shame because so many of the other aspects of the game are really really good. Which is why I said I really want to like the game. But with the naval such an important piece, it ruins everything else for me.

To me the ONLY way to play this game is multiplayer. With that all this naval issues are reduced. Obviously being able to sail through enemy fleets at will would still be a major issue, but it would have a huge impact on the rest. But as most play against the AI, this is not a good solution to the issues that are still in the game.

Obviously other views may be different [:)] Thanks for reading.




Grimnirsson -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 9:26:07 AM)

quote:

Which is a shame because so many of the other aspects of the game are really really good.


Frustrating to read, really. I was hoping that this game is now at least playable but your experience seems to say 'broken game'. Tell me, after all the core stuff doesn't seem to work, at least that is my impression after reading your post, what are 'really, really good' aspects of the game? Neither naval, nor land, nor AI do work as you say, so what's left that's 'really good'?




doomtrader -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 9:59:47 AM)

quote:

Land
Improved for the most part. logistics is still an issue.

I had units sitting on a railhead (about 10 hexes away from a city) and were serverly effected by supply issues. Why? Trains can only travel between cities? Can't stop off inbetween to supply troops? WWII would be so different if that was the case . If I have units on a functional rail line, they should be able to get full supply, regardless how far from a city they are. So when you run up to an emeny city that is outside of your units city supply radius, good luck on taking that city. of course if you did, you instantly have full supply whether the rail line functioned or not (or even no rail connection). It a good thing these enemy cities agreed to stock all these German parts and ammo in advance lol. Of course the reverse is also as absurd when the city is recaptured.

The patch notes indicated that unit Experience was toned down and it looks like that is true to some extent. Plus it is harder to take cities with just armor versus before. In my pre-patch game I had several armored corps that had a strengh of 60+ and a few more were over 50. It is Feb 43 and I have two AC that are both over 40. So it did take longer to get that high, but still seems to be excessive.

Any historical examples where units were supplying straight from the train?




Rasputitsa -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 10:12:38 AM)

There is no doubt that the game system has many problems, but as always it's a matter of balance. With some games, which have tight controls on what is historically possible, with the aim of complete accuracy, you find yourself in a straight-jacket with the results inevitable. If you know your history, you will know what happens next.

For the people who experienced the war, they didn't always know what was going to happen next, even though with hindsight you can say that these events were inevitable, it didn't look that way at the time. What this game does, is put the unexpected back in the mix, but to be unexpected it is likely that it can't be exactly historical, your'e expecting that. We know that an Allied invasion of France was probably not possible before 1944, but Hitler didn't and he worried and prepared for invasion much earlier, he also worried about an invasion of Norway and keep significant forces there until the end.

If you remove all possibilities deemed, with hindsight, as not practical, then you won't be acting under the pressures that the historical characters experienced.

The cost of this flexibility is that sometimes it becomes way out of line, so how do you keep it reasonable. The AI is never going to be good enough the replicate a sensible game, in both attack and defence, so I would play Axis for the early war years, the historical performance of the Allies in those years up to 1943 would make any AI blush. Later war years play the Allies, again reality can be stranger than an Axis AI, like leave 250,000 men to rot in Stalingrad, then do it again in Tunisia, etc..

The same applies to the naval war, the Axis was able to sink 100,000s of tons of shipping in the early years, until the Allies were able to organise and equip, when the situation reversed literally within a month, in April/May 1943. An unbelievable switch in fortunes, which in a game might make you think it's broken, but it happened for real.

Self imposed controls to keep some reality can help, so I think Sea Lion was not possible and don't launch it. The game allows you to rail troops deep into Russia in the depths of winter, so I don't do it (also experimenting with the files to slow down the rail repair). Organised an Army hierarchy with units attached to command HQs (commanders in separate low tech divisional sized HQ units - use renaming feature so organisation shows on the map and in unit lists), so you don't just send any unit, anywhere, any time. If the AI is more chaotic, well weren't the Allies at the beginning and the Axis at the end.

I've had 6 Corps and several divisions apparently well supplied by air when encircled, so experimenting with the files to tone air supply down, but beware of overall game balance. The game system does give the player access to much of the inner workings and experimentation is possible, more realistic scenarios mods are already available.

Is this game a highly realistic representation of WW2, no, but it can be very enjoyable in what it can throw at you and I look on it as a work in progress, with a lot of potential. [:)]





doomtrader -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 10:29:50 AM)

When we have designed this game, we obviously wanted to make a WW2 game, but with a lot of possibilities for the players to try the game on their own.

Every game has got its strong and weak points, and the more possibilities the game gives, the more unexpected outcomes it offers.

On the other hand if you are keep trying to play this game means you have to enjoy it somehow.
You see, I'm purchasing like 50 games in a year, but I'm still playing the Civilization V. It doesn't matter that the AI cheats as hell, and at some point the game becomes too easy. It doesn't matter there are some strategies which allow you to win in 80% of the games, doesn't matter which civ you are playing. Also it doesn't matter that I'm not finishing 80% of the plays, because I made wrong decisions or the neighbor AI gets two settlers in ruins during the first 30 turns.


BTW: Very Easy setting for AI is boosting AI more than Very Hard is crippling you.




Rasputitsa -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 10:50:50 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: doomtrader

quote:

Land
Improved for the most part. logistics is still an issue.

I had units sitting on a railhead (about 10 hexes away from a city) and were serverly effected by supply issues. Why? Trains can only travel between cities? Can't stop off inbetween to supply troops? WWII would be so different if that was the case . If I have units on a functional rail line, they should be able to get full supply, regardless how far from a city they are. So when you run up to an emeny city that is outside of your units city supply radius, good luck on taking that city. of course if you did, you instantly have full supply whether the rail line functioned or not (or even no rail connection). It a good thing these enemy cities agreed to stock all these German parts and ammo in advance lol. Of course the reverse is also as absurd when the city is recaptured.

The patch notes indicated that unit Experience was toned down and it looks like that is true to some extent. Plus it is harder to take cities with just armor versus before. In my pre-patch game I had several armored corps that had a strengh of 60+ and a few more were over 50. It is Feb 43 and I have two AC that are both over 40. So it did take longer to get that high, but still seems to be excessive.

Any historical examples where units were supplying straight from the train?


It's not just a railway, it's a railway system, staff, locomotives, the right kind of rolling stack (transport wagons - you can't put a tank in a passenger carriage), when the fighting passes by, it could take months to get the railway working again.

I thought ToF allows you to use rail too quickly in captured areas, during Barbarossa some German units were sending trucks all the way back to Germany to get supplies, the existing Axis rail and captured Soviet lines could not cope, or were not available.

I am sure that you can unload a train at the front, but without sidings, lifting gear, and all the other equipment of a rail depot, it's not going to be very efficient. More trains coming up the line will clog the rail halt, if it's single track, controlling trains in and out is difficult without sidings to shunt waiting trains into. Which is why the capturing of cities, as rail hubs, was so important historically.

Trains don't arrive with a neat package of supplies, you want fuel, but spare parts arrive, you need A/T ammunition and it's loaded with mortar rounds. In a strange way the game is representing the realism and 'friction' of war.

The important thing is the scale of the game, which is Strategic and Operational, at this scale it's not just unloading one train, it's 100s of trains.




Peter123 -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 11:04:45 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Numdydar

To me the ONLY way to play this game is multiplayer. With that all this naval issues are reduced. Obviously being able to sail through enemy fleets at will would still be a major issue, but it would have a huge impact on the rest. But as most play against the AI, this is not a good solution to the issues that are still in the game.



The system also is very friendly to a sort of human supported AI play.
From time to time, you can just redeploy, buy some AI units or make some choices for the AI. It may seem sacrilegious, but in fact is a very good thing that I wish every wargame game had.




Rasputitsa -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 11:58:02 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Peter123


quote:

ORIGINAL: Numdydar

To me the ONLY way to play this game is multiplayer. With that all this naval issues are reduced. Obviously being able to sail through enemy fleets at will would still be a major issue, but it would have a huge impact on the rest. But as most play against the AI, this is not a good solution to the issues that are still in the game.



The system also is very friendly to a sort of human supported AI play.
From time to time, you can just redeploy, buy some AI units or make some choices for the AI. It may seem sacrilegious, but in fact is a very good thing that I wish every wargame game had.


The way you can dip in and out of the AI for different nations, during a turn, is brilliant. You can make strategic actions and builds for minor allies, do some critical moves, or ensure hexes are held (by freezing a unit), then let the country get on with the rest of it's move. It might do something you didn't want, but that's what coalition war is like.[:)]






Rasputitsa -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 12:23:09 PM)

You can make things more realistic by imposing you're own house rules. You should not be able to launch a seaborne invasion just like that, it needs planning. So designate a landing beach, but don't launch the attack until after a some turns delay. The delay could be, 3/4 turns for each Inf strength point to be landed, 4/5 for each mech strength point, 5/6 for each armoured strength point.

This is just guessing, because I haven't got near that point yet, but you get the idea, chose the limits so that a major landing will need several months delay and you must land on the designated beach/beaches, or impose the delay again (or at least perhaps 50%).

The AI will not be working under these limitations, but it needs the help.

I have printed a calendar for 1939-46, to keep track of these items, it's also useful for noting when unit upgrades are coming and long term builds will be available, to add into the planning for future events.

I see the basic game as a starting point, there is a lot more to be made of it.[:)]




Borsook -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 12:36:10 PM)

I own both ToW and ToF and I must say I prefered the naval system in ToF. It was more abstract, with a lot less choice, but the AI did not do so many stupid things there... That said in every other respect ToF is a great improvement. I do not know if it is possible, but tweaking the AI devs could arrive at a great game.




Rasputitsa -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 1:27:28 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Numdydar
While all this was going on, I had managed to get all of NA and got Iran on the German side. So I had German units on the southern border of Russia. So I had a convoy set up to go from Athens through the Red Sea into the Persian Gulf. This convoy was never bothered?? Really? The British still own India right? They still have the Indian fleet (plus could easily add what is left from the Atlantic to it) and yet my convoy sails along completely immune from any interdiction.


You have made many important points, which is a lot to answer, so I did not intend just to pick out one item, but the British forces in India in the early war period were mainly equipped with obsolete equipment and not much of that. It was a force for colonial frontier defence, not modern war.

I would not be surprised if British forces could not meaningfully interdict Axis convoys in the Red Sea, if Egypt and Iran have fallen, any more than they could resist the Japanese later. How much of the British Mediterranean Fleet survived your Axis victory in the Middle East and, with the UK gone, there are few bases able to do major repair on damaged ships outside the US and Canada.[:)]




gravyface_ -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 2:28:55 PM)

I bought the game when it was on sale a few weeks (months?) ago. Have barely played a turn or two, but have been reading/staying up to date with patches, etc. I like supporting small game devs; I like knowing that turn-based wargames will live on; I like knowing that there's an alternative to the EA blockbusters that still exist.

I will play this game, eventually, but am preoccupied with others at the moment, and don't mind coughing up a meagre amount of dough to keep the improvements rolling.




Numdydar -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 3:14:09 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: doomtrader

[Any historical examples where units were supplying straight from the train?


quote:

ORIGINAL: Rasputitsa

I am sure that you can unload a train at the front, but without sidings, lifting gear, and all the other equipment of a rail depot, it's not going to be very efficient. More trains coming up the line will clog the rail halt, if it's single track, controlling trains in and out is difficult without sidings to shunt waiting trains into. Which is why the capturing of cities, as rail hubs, was so important historically.


The issue is that at the scale of this game that are many smaller towns not on the map that did have the capability tor offloading trains. Plus exixting rail yards that could be expanded/upgraded with a small amout of effort. So there should be a better level of supply along a rail line than currently exists in the game. We can argue about what level of supply, but to expect only major cities to provide full supply is not historical either. Otherwise, why repair rail at all other than for movement?




Numdydar -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 3:22:44 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Rasputitsa

The cost of this flexibility is that sometimes it becomes way out of line, so how do you keep it reasonable. The AI is never going to be good enough the replicate a sensible game, in both attack and defence, so I would play Axis for the early war years, the historical performance of the Allies in those years up to 1943 would make any AI blush. Later war years play the Allies, again reality can be stranger than an Axis AI, like leave 250,000 men to rot in Stalingrad, then do it again in Tunisia, etc..

Self imposed controls to keep some reality can help, so I think Sea Lion was not possible and don't launch it. The game allows you to rail troops deep into Russia in the depths of winter, so I don't do it (also experimenting with the files to slow down the rail repair). Organised an Army hierarchy with units attached to command HQs (commanders in separate low tech divisional sized HQ units - use renaming feature so organisation shows on the map and in unit lists), so you don't just send any unit, anywhere, any time. If the AI is more chaotic, well weren't the Allies at the beginning and the Axis at the end.



You prove my point in that only multiplayer (even if it yourself [:)]) will really work well with the game in its present state. I sincerely hope that you are not suggesting that this is the perment fix for the isuues I brought up in the OP. The AI placing ships in single ship TFs is a huge issue imho that needs to be addressed at some point, not asking the players to switch sides just to make the game systems to work.




Numdydar -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 3:48:32 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Grimnirsson

quote:

Which is a shame because so many of the other aspects of the game are really really good.


Frustrating to read, really. I was hoping that this game is now at least playable but your experience seems to say 'broken game'. Tell me, after all the core stuff doesn't seem to work, at least that is my impression after reading your post, what are 'really, really good' aspects of the game? Neither naval, nor land, nor AI do work as you say, so what's left that's 'really good'?


The land and air system works great (with the execption of air versus naval as noted in the OP). I think the game would be awesome if you played as a non-naval country, i.e. Russia, Hungary, etc. Research works better than I thought it would. I would like a little more details in it and/or a few more choices, but it does the job and is very streamlined.

Plus I am a sucker for turn based games so that is a huge plus for me [:)]

The main fustration I have is that there have been many games developed covering this scale and time period since the 1980s, both board and computer ones. Some of them had what I considered a pretty good naval system, War in Europe as an example. So I am surprised, not by the level of detail with the naval system, but the implementation of it considering how well the rest of the game works and the historical body of knowledge to draw from on making it work well.




Rasputitsa -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 6:58:44 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Numdydar
quote:

ORIGINAL: Rasputitsa
The cost of this flexibility is that sometimes it becomes way out of line, so how do you keep it reasonable. The AI is never going to be good enough the replicate a sensible game, in both attack and defence, so I would play Axis for the early war years, the historical performance of the Allies in those years up to 1943 would make any AI blush. Later war years play the Allies, again reality can be stranger than an Axis AI, like leave 250,000 men to rot in Stalingrad, then do it again in Tunisia, etc..

Self imposed controls to keep some reality can help, so I think Sea Lion was not possible and don't launch it. The game allows you to rail troops deep into Russia in the depths of winter, so I don't do it (also experimenting with the files to slow down the rail repair). Organised an Army hierarchy with units attached to command HQs (commanders in separate low tech divisional sized HQ units - use renaming feature so organisation shows on the map and in unit lists), so you don't just send any unit, anywhere, any time. If the AI is more chaotic, well weren't the Allies at the beginning and the Axis at the end.



You prove my point in that only multiplayer (even if it yourself [:)]) will really work well with the game in its present state. I sincerely hope that you are not suggesting that this is the perment fix for the isuues I brought up in the OP. The AI placing ships in single ship TFs is a huge issue imho that needs to be addressed at some point, not asking the players to switch sides just to make the game systems to work.


I am not contesting your points, merely stating how I make more of the game for my own use, as to any fixes permanent, or otherwise, that lies with the devs. I have been able to make the game work for me and enjoyed playing it, none of which has required switching sides. The methods that I have adopted, including switching in and out of AI control are for allies on the same side.

The game has many good features and I hope and expect that it will develop and improve.[:)]




Rasputitsa -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 7:12:26 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Numdydar
quote:

ORIGINAL: doomtrader
[Any historical examples where units were supplying straight from the train?

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rasputitsa
I am sure that you can unload a train at the front, but without sidings, lifting gear, and all the other equipment of a rail depot, it's not going to be very efficient. More trains coming up the line will clog the rail halt, if it's single track, controlling trains in and out is difficult without sidings to shunt waiting trains into. Which is why the capturing of cities, as rail hubs, was so important historically.


The issue is that at the scale of this game that are many smaller towns not on the map that did have the capability tor offloading trains. Plus exixting rail yards that could be expanded/upgraded with a small amout of effort. So there should be a better level of supply along a rail line than currently exists in the game. We can argue about what level of supply, but to expect only major cities to provide full supply is not historical either. Otherwise, why repair rail at all other than for movement?


The Germans in Russia found that expanding and upgrading the rail net, in fact getting it working at all, took a lot more than a small amount of effort. They were reliant on truck supply for most of Barbarossa, because the rail system had been trashed and rolling stock and locomotives destroyed. I am not saying that rail should not be used, only that I think it becomes available too soon after capturing territory.

Again, on the scale of the game, I need to check the sources, but I think a German Army Group need something like 700 trains a week and going into 'Typhoon' they never got any where near that number. Strategically, the capture of major cites, Minsk, Smolensk, Kiev, Kharkov, etc. were significant ojectives, which the game reproduces. [:)]




gravyface_ -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/21/2012 9:58:19 PM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rasputitsa


quote:

ORIGINAL: Numdydar
quote:

ORIGINAL: doomtrader
[Any historical examples where units were supplying straight from the train?

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rasputitsa
I am sure that you can unload a train at the front, but without sidings, lifting gear, and all the other equipment of a rail depot, it's not going to be very efficient. More trains coming up the line will clog the rail halt, if it's single track, controlling trains in and out is difficult without sidings to shunt waiting trains into. Which is why the capturing of cities, as rail hubs, was so important historically.


The issue is that at the scale of this game that are many smaller towns not on the map that did have the capability tor offloading trains. Plus exixting rail yards that could be expanded/upgraded with a small amout of effort. So there should be a better level of supply along a rail line than currently exists in the game. We can argue about what level of supply, but to expect only major cities to provide full supply is not historical either. Otherwise, why repair rail at all other than for movement?


The Germans in Russia found that expanding and upgrading the rail net, in fact getting it working at all, took a lot more than a small amount of effort. They were reliant on truck supply for most of Barbarossa, because the rail system had been trashed and rolling stock and locomotives destroyed. I am not saying that rail should not be used, only that I think it becomes available too soon after capturing territory.

Again, on the scale of the game, I need to check the sources, but I think a German Army Group need something like 700 trains a week and going into 'Typhoon' they never got any where near that number. Strategically, the capture of major cites, Minsk, Smolensk, Kiev, Kharkov, etc. were significant ojectives, which the game reproduces. [:)]



And the fact that the rail gauge was completely different so after blowing up all the Russian rolling stock, they found that theirs wouldn't work. Add partisans, the vastness of the Steppe itself, and the rail system of supply was no mean feat.

As for large cities, well, they have the infrastructure to properly unload massive cargos (like panzers, artillery pieces, etc.). You're not going to manhandle a Pz IV off the side of a flatbed with a hand crane or a truck cart.




RandomAttack -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/22/2012 2:35:23 AM)

Personally, I feel like I can mod just about anything (supply, uber-panzers, etc) to my satisfaction EXCEPT the naval game. It was the same issue I had with Time of Wrath. So for me, I play the "West Front" game up until the war with Russia kicks off. Then I just basically ignore everything but the Eastern Front by putting the Brits on Human and just leaving them. By the time the U.S. does anything significant, the war with Russia is effectively over one way or the other. Let's face it, you whip Russia, you win the war.

I find anything to do with the Naval game so frustrating, along with the invasion of England, etc., that it just sours me on the game. So, I just ignore it and have a nice little War in the East. Have to have a few house rules of course (garrisoning the West "as if" , etc.), and it's a little bothersome that I only have "half" a game-- but hey, half is better than none.

One comment on the RR discussion: I think some folks are overthinking it. The bottom line is having a RR is always better than NOT having a RR, and it should always convey some kind of advantage. Just the potential to transport fuel alone (barrels, tankers, whatever) is significant. RR management had been mastered before WWI. It wasn't "simple", but nearly everyone in Europe was proficient at it.




Numdydar -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/22/2012 7:40:20 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: RandomAttack

Personally, I feel like I can mod just about anything (supply, uber-panzers, etc) to my satisfaction EXCEPT the naval game. It was the same issue I had with Time of Wrath. So for me, I play the "West Front" game up until the war with Russia kicks off. Then I just basically ignore everything but the Eastern Front by putting the Brits on Human and just leaving them. By the time the U.S. does anything significant, the war with Russia is effectively over one way or the other. Let's face it, you whip Russia, you win the war.

I find anything to do with the Naval game so frustrating, along with the invasion of England, etc., that it just sours me on the game. So, I just ignore it and have a nice little War in the East. Have to have a few house rules of course (garrisoning the West "as if" , etc.), and it's a little bothersome that I only have "half" a game-- but hey, half is better than none.

One comment on the RR discussion: I think some folks are overthinking it. The bottom line is having a RR is always better than NOT having a RR, and it should always convey some kind of advantage. Just the potential to transport fuel alone (barrels, tankers, whatever) is significant. RR management had been mastered before WWI. It wasn't "simple", but nearly everyone in Europe was proficient at it.



That is a really cool solution to the issues with the naval system. Of course I agree it is playing half a game, but it is the half that works the best [:)].

As far as the RRs go you do not have to have any to see how bad the supply system really works. There is Russian cities on the far East edge of the map that are near Iraq that have no RRs to them. I sent a Panzer division from the Iraq border up to capture one. Several turns before I got there, I am down to a strenght of 1 with being allowed to move 1 or 2 hexes per turn (I guess the tank crews can only push those tanks so far in a week [:D]).

I finally capture the city and vola, my strenght is now magicly back to 6 AND I can suddenly move 6 - 7 hexs. It is a really good thing that this city in the backwater of Russia (without ANY RR conection at all btw) had all those tank parts and supplies handy for the Germans [X(]. All within just seven days too. And I get push back for wanting RRs to be able to supply units if connected to a supply source? I can see how RRs should not have any impact on supply levels when you have magical cities all over the map.

Seriously, every game I have played on this scale has had RRs to be a major source of supply for units. So I am a little stunned that this game at this scale treats RRs as nothing more than a super transport system. Also, if people are going to claim that RRs could not supply the number of troops involved due to rail capacity, loading/unloading capabilities, etc. then please explain how an entire tank corps can be transfered from the end of France to the bowels of Russia in a week and then be fully combat ready at the start of the next week. Of course that is soooo much more realistic than, what, transporting supplies from the nearest city to the rail head? Really? Give me a break.




doomtrader -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/22/2012 10:35:42 AM)

We have designed the RR supply system that way as we think this works best.
Luckily the game gives you the possibility to change those rules if you don't like the original design




gravyface_ -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/22/2012 2:24:34 PM)

For everyone complaining about the AI, I've yet to play a strategic "sandbox" WW2 game (including Strategic Command 1, 2, and all the spin-offs; Commander: Europe at War) where England, the US, etc. get their timing right or make a concerted amphibious assault. It's either sporadic "raids" or they leave all their transports vulnerable without air superiority and they're easy pickings for a handful of fighter units in France.

What I would like to see is a form of "strategy scripts": basically (whether done by text editing or a UI-led macro recording over a map) game users all over can essentially craft strategic/operational plans as a particular country at a high level, export this strategy script, and share it with the community. Basically give you the best of both worlds: "human inspired" AI, while being able to play solo.

So for instance, you'd load up the game into a "strategy script mode": just an empty map, but you can select objectives for your forces and also influence or control the production of units and specify the year (some production projections would be useful so you know how long it would take to build/buy a dozen landing craft, etc.) that you'd like this to happen. Kind of like planning Overlord: they had a time table to work with, knew what they'd need as "conditionals" (air superiority, landing craft, fuel stocks, ammo stocks, etc.), and then chose a date when the weather/tide/current was ideal. You could even have diplomatic conditionals (i.e. if Hungary is not axis by X date, declare war and invade with x armoured, y infantry) too.

Obviously the AI would still have to make tactical choices but if the strategic/operational plan was a useful "crutch" or "nudge" in the right direction, could really help focus the AI's efforts, while providing new challenges for solo play, with unlimited scripted options.




Grimnirsson -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/22/2012 3:26:19 PM)

quote:

What I would like to see is a form of "strategy scripts"


Isn't that how 'Elmer' works in TOAW?
Called PO (Programmed Opponent) and not AI for that reason?




gravyface_ -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/22/2012 7:15:21 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Grimnirsson

quote:

What I would like to see is a form of "strategy scripts"


Isn't that how 'Elmer' works in TOAW?
Called PO (Programmed Opponent) and not AI for that reason?


Could be. Could never get that game to install on my Windows ME (*shudder*) box back in the day. Sounds about right though: was it any good?




Rasputitsa -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/22/2012 10:36:00 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: NumdydarSeriously, every game I have played on this scale has had RRs to be a major source of supply for units. So I am a little stunned that this game at this scale treats RRs as nothing more than a super transport system. Also, if people are going to claim that RRs could not supply the number of troops involved due to rail capacity, loading/unloading capabilities, etc. then please explain how an entire tank corps can be transfered from the end of France to the bowels of Russia in a week and then be fully combat ready at the start of the next week. Of course that is soooo much more realistic than, what, transporting supplies from the nearest city to the rail head? Really? Give me a break.


Please read the points being made, the lack of rail capacity examples in previous posts refer to recently captured territory, where in the game, rail suffers little damage on capture and repair is too quick. You questioned the realism of the game and one item that would make it more realistic, is a longer delay before captured rail can be used, and more damage on change of control, particularly in the USSR.

The Germans could and did move large numbers of units on their established rail net from East to West and back, throughout the war (whether the game allows this too quickly is another question), what they could not easily do was establish a rail based supply system into recently captured areas, relying heavily on truck and even horse carts. Even the allies in France 1944 were dependent on truck transport, the US running the 'Red Ball' express truck supply all the way from the coast to the German border, in late 1944.[:)]





gravyface_ -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/22/2012 11:39:09 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Rasputitsa


quote:

ORIGINAL: NumdydarSeriously, every game I have played on this scale has had RRs to be a major source of supply for units. So I am a little stunned that this game at this scale treats RRs as nothing more than a super transport system. Also, if people are going to claim that RRs could not supply the number of troops involved due to rail capacity, loading/unloading capabilities, etc. then please explain how an entire tank corps can be transfered from the end of France to the bowels of Russia in a week and then be fully combat ready at the start of the next week. Of course that is soooo much more realistic than, what, transporting supplies from the nearest city to the rail head? Really? Give me a break.


Please read the points being made, the lack of rail capacity examples in previous posts refer to recently captured territory, where in the game, rail suffers little damage on capture and repair is too quick. You questioned the realism of the game and one item that would make it more realistic, is a longer delay before captured rail can be used, and more damage on change of control, particularly in the USSR.

The Germans could and did move large numbers of units on their established rail net from East to West and back, throughout the war (whether the game allows this too quickly is another question), what they could not easily do was establish a rail based supply system into recently captured areas, relying heavily on truck and even horse carts. Even the allies in France 1944 were dependent on truck transport, the US running the 'Red Ball' express truck supply all the way from the coast to the German border, in late 1944.[:)]




As for the Red Ball Express, this was primarily because all the rail interdiction performed in the spring leading up to D-Day pretty much wiped out all the locomotives, railheads, and switching stations in Normandy and beyond; took a while for ports large enough to hold ships capable of transporting new rolling stock and repair the infrastructure.

I would suspect scorched earth policies on both sides would've severely hampered rail nets in recently captured areas.




Numdydar -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/23/2012 12:08:18 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Rasputitsa


quote:

ORIGINAL: NumdydarSeriously, every game I have played on this scale has had RRs to be a major source of supply for units. So I am a little stunned that this game at this scale treats RRs as nothing more than a super transport system. Also, if people are going to claim that RRs could not supply the number of troops involved due to rail capacity, loading/unloading capabilities, etc. then please explain how an entire tank corps can be transfered from the end of France to the bowels of Russia in a week and then be fully combat ready at the start of the next week. Of course that is soooo much more realistic than, what, transporting supplies from the nearest city to the rail head? Really? Give me a break.


Please read the points being made, the lack of rail capacity examples in previous posts refer to recently captured territory, where in the game, rail suffers little damage on capture and repair is too quick. You questioned the realism of the game and one item that would make it more realistic, is a longer delay before captured rail can be used, and more damage on change of control, particularly in the USSR.

The Germans could and did move large numbers of units on their established rail net from East to West and back, throughout the war (whether the game allows this too quickly is another question), what they could not easily do was establish a rail based supply system into recently captured areas, relying heavily on truck and even horse carts. Even the allies in France 1944 were dependent on truck transport, the US running the 'Red Ball' express truck supply all the way from the coast to the German border, in late 1944.[:)]




To help move matters along. Here is several articles about rail capacity on the German side. To quote one,

The columns continued to run from the border in decreasing numbers until finally stopped on 5 August 1941.{9} By then, the rail lines were completed beyond Minsk, and the Germans would be operating from rail heads approaching Smolensk.

Please note that the article is discussing railheads as they approch a city, not that they are currently at a city.

http://militera.lib.ru/h/stolfi/11.html

Here is the other aeticle

http://www.feldgrau.com/dreichsbahn.html

In neither of these does there seem to be any lack of rail capacity for supplies, especially after 1941 for the Germans by rail.

In response to doomtrader, how exactly will the editor allow RRs to provide supply versus cities. I would not want to have eaxh rail hex to be changed to a major supply source by itself, but rather require the rail hex to have to trace to a major city and then it could be a major suppy source.




gravyface_ -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/23/2012 1:45:06 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: Numdydar


quote:

ORIGINAL: Rasputitsa


quote:

ORIGINAL: NumdydarSeriously, every game I have played on this scale has had RRs to be a major source of supply for units. So I am a little stunned that this game at this scale treats RRs as nothing more than a super transport system. Also, if people are going to claim that RRs could not supply the number of troops involved due to rail capacity, loading/unloading capabilities, etc. then please explain how an entire tank corps can be transfered from the end of France to the bowels of Russia in a week and then be fully combat ready at the start of the next week. Of course that is soooo much more realistic than, what, transporting supplies from the nearest city to the rail head? Really? Give me a break.


Please read the points being made, the lack of rail capacity examples in previous posts refer to recently captured territory, where in the game, rail suffers little damage on capture and repair is too quick. You questioned the realism of the game and one item that would make it more realistic, is a longer delay before captured rail can be used, and more damage on change of control, particularly in the USSR.

The Germans could and did move large numbers of units on their established rail net from East to West and back, throughout the war (whether the game allows this too quickly is another question), what they could not easily do was establish a rail based supply system into recently captured areas, relying heavily on truck and even horse carts. Even the allies in France 1944 were dependent on truck transport, the US running the 'Red Ball' express truck supply all the way from the coast to the German border, in late 1944.[:)]




To help move matters along. Here is several articles about rail capacity on the German side. To quote one,

The columns continued to run from the border in decreasing numbers until finally stopped on 5 August 1941.{9} By then, the rail lines were completed beyond Minsk, and the Germans would be operating from rail heads approaching Smolensk.

Please note that the article is discussing railheads as they approch a city, not that they are currently at a city.

http://militera.lib.ru/h/stolfi/11.html

Here is the other aeticle

http://www.feldgrau.com/dreichsbahn.html

In neither of these does there seem to be any lack of rail capacity for supplies, especially after 1941 for the Germans by rail.

In response to doomtrader, how exactly will the editor allow RRs to provide supply versus cities. I would not want to have eaxh rail hex to be changed to a major supply source by itself, but rather require the rail hex to have to trace to a major city and then it could be a major suppy source.


From When Titans Clashed: How the Red Army Stopped Hitler (by David M. Glantz and Jonathan House; excellent book by the way).

quote:

Much of the Soviet self-destruction focused on transportation and electrical power. Railroad locomotives and locomotive repair shops that could not be moved were frequently sabotaged, a fact that proved important in the winter weather, when German-built locomotives lacked sufficient insulation to maintain steam pressure... Moreover, the successful evacuation of the Soviet railroads forced the Germans to commit 2,500 locomotives and 200,000 railcars to support the troops in the East. This, in turn, meant that the Germans had to convert large portions of the captured rail network to their own, narrower gauge, instead of using the existing, broader Russian gauge.


That, my friend, is a lot of work. So for every city you capture, you can count on having to essentially rebuild the entire stretch of railroad from point A to point B, not to mention procure additional German locomotives and railcars, which could take a considerable amount of time in and of itself. See, once the gauge is converted to German gauge, any Russian trains are effectively useless unless they in turn are converted. So places like Kharkov that changed hands several times would see the same amount of rail work completed multiple times on multiple occasions.

Now factor in Partisans and air interdiction and you can see how/why rail supply wasn't always a sure thing.




Rasputitsa -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/23/2012 11:28:42 AM)

I don't want to get into a quoting war, mainly because I am on a campsite and don't have access to the books and limited access to the internet, the memory alone is not up to it. Supply in the game has always been an issue for me, but I think that it is glaringly obvious that the Germans lacked full supply (they had to choose between ammuntion and winter clothing) as they moved deeper into Russia and the game makes it too easy to capture cities and rail supply into the depths of Russia in the middle of winter.

To return to the main thread 'wanting to like the game', remembering that the game is covering WW2 from Northern Norway to North Africa, from the Atlantic to the Mid East. To get a game system to handle these extremes is a huge challenge.

I can't speak for others on what's to like about the game, but the game has many options in settings and mods to provide for most needs.

I like the game, because of its flexibility and the uncertainty that it throws up, are these things always highly accurate and completely historically correct, maybe not, but it can be very enjoyable to be faced with situations that you don't encounter in other games (accepted that they have to be reasonble alternatives).

The scale is Strategic and Operational, at a high command level, the detail is not so impotant, as the decisions are more to do with - should I attack Spain, or Turkey, land in Normandy, or Calais, or Norway, or Corsica, will I attack in 1941, or 1942 and so on. Will I concentrate on Air builds, Armour, how much sea transport will I need in 6 month time.

On this scale the game has to work on generalisations and some of the detail is going to be lost, how much that ruins your enjoyment of the game is up to personal taste. Personally I get more out of the game than I lose and the more I learn about the working of the game, the more I can adjust it to my needs. My modding skills are limited, but I have been able to change the look and working of the game, others have been able to create full scenarios and I am sure that there is more to come.

Combat becomes a way to resolve your strategic decisions, obviously you want this combat model to be a accurate as possible for ground, air and naval combat and still get an AI that can keep up. The more complicated you make it, the harder it is for the AI to function credibily. Put too many detailed changes into the game and the system will collapse.

The AI can be made to understand and react to the importance of cities on the map, it's much more difficult for it to come up with a strategy to cope with railheads, which may appear anywhere on the map. Not ideal, but I can accept that, as many historical events were based on the need to hold, or capture, certain city rail hubs, Kharkov, Rhzev, Stalingrad and Moscow itself.

There are the needs of solo players (needing a competent AI) and those using PBEM, who need a more detailed game, making the balance even more difficult.

We can continue the discussion on Rail, etc., but I am experimenting with adjustments to all aspects of supply (rail/air/sea/city), looking for the right balance, as I see it, but that will probabily not satisfy others with different views. The main point is the game allows me to do this, which is a big plus over many other titles.

Even though it is far fom perfect, I really like this game.[:)]




gravyface_ -> RE: I REALLY want to like this game but (8/23/2012 1:15:36 PM)

Dude, go enjoy the outdoors! Put away the Internet. [:-]




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