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Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this time?

 
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Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this time? - 7/19/2010 10:08:50 PM   
pmiranda

 

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quote:

It is your choice whether to manage every detail of your army, or have the friendly AI manage the war on a lower level while you plan the larger scale maneuvers designed to make short work of your enemy. Just as a historical commander, you can choose where you need to step in and when you need to stand back and let your subordinates do their jobs.


After playing a demo of the last game in the system (i.e. before this one), I gave up, despite its many outstanding features, because of the following key issue, in my opinion:

There was absolutely no incentive for the player to let the AI manage lower level units. The player was encouraged to take direct command of each and every low level unit, because of two key benefits: the ability of getting around order delays, and the ability to control everything in detail.

Sadly however, this also removed all the fun from the game!

My point is that - unless some rule has been introduced to allow the player to ISSUE ORDERS TO A LIMITED NUMBER ONLY of low level units, to correctly simulate the inability of the high level commander (= the player!) to be everywhere at the same time - the game will again fail to adequately put the player in the shoes of the high level commander, and again result in a micro-management nightmare.

That would truly be a shame, because this system is otherwise the best WW2 wargame system I have ever seen.

< Message edited by pmiranda -- 7/19/2010 10:09:09 PM >
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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/20/2010 1:03:43 AM   
simovitch


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Dave can answer this more succinctly but basically any orders delay benefit you gain from micro-managing hoards of individual Companies will eventually be lost as the staff at your Sr. HQ who now commands all the independant Companies becomes overloaded. So yes there is a limit depending on the number of units already under the boss.

Btw did you win the scenario this way?

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/20/2010 2:01:18 AM   
jomni


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Pmiranda is suggesting something implemented in Flashpoint Germany.  There are orders limits per each 30 minuite phase.  NATO can give more orders and Soviets can give less... this becomes an inscentive for more pre-planning.  This simulates both forces' communications bandwidth and doctrine.

It will be interesting if implemented in this game but it will detract and alienate a group of gamers who hates the game because they think that BFTB is a game in "autopilot".



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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/20/2010 8:25:22 AM   
pmiranda

 

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quote:

the staff at your Sr. HQ who now commands all the independant Companies becomes overloaded


How is this translated in game terms? It seemed to me that there was no penalty related to micromanagement.

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/20/2010 8:31:00 AM   
pmiranda

 

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quote:

BFTB is a game in "autopilot"


Good point indeed, but I think that the game should have a clear focus. Either the game simulates high level decision-making, and does NOT allow the player to get involved in low-level decision-making (except perhaps occasionally, but at the cost of having reduced control over the larger picture). In this case, the "autopilot" feeling is normal.
...or the game focuses on low level decision-making, and it should then be at a different scale.

To me, trying to combine both is a big mistake.

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/20/2010 2:01:49 PM   
Arjuna


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Rather than impose a fixed limit on the number of units the player can issue direct orders, we instead impose a staff load on the OnMapBoss. If the staffLoad exceeds the onMapBoss's staffCapacity then it will impose extra delay on all orders issued by the player. In some scenarios with a small number of units, you might not notice the impact. But in larger scenarios with plenty of units you can seriously overload the onMapBoss to the point where it takes twice as long to process orders. Now in such scenarios where the onMapBoss is often a Corps HQ, this can mean it takes many hours for orders to be processed. This can effectively lose the initiative for the player and is definitely not a good thing.

Of course players can avoid all of this by choosing to play with no orders delay. It is up to them.

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/20/2010 2:55:49 PM   
jomni


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Well longer delay by overburdening the staff is good enough incentive not to give too much commands.

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/20/2010 11:48:24 PM   
Agema

 

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I usually find you can usually run your entire force at battalion level, with a few companies/arty/etc. free for direct control. If you've just got a few rear area units holding locations where you don't expect them to see much action, you can also frequently just tie them together (possibly under a regimental HQ lying around not doing much) with Hold in situ, so they'll just hang around and take strain off the big boss HQ.

One game I'm playing, I've got two divisions and an on-map Corps HQ with a command capacity of 46, and my usage varies from about 30-40 depending on how many independent units I need to fiddle with for specific uses. Consequently, if I turn just a handful of battalions into micromanaged companies, I'll overstep my command limit. Then consider I'm controlling probably over 30 battalions (including artillery and counting regimental HQs with attached support units as a single battalion), and there's really not that much room to micromanage at all.

However, as stated, if you turn off order delays, you can micromanage as much as you like.

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/21/2010 1:22:24 AM   
Franklin Nimitz

 

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Playing this game without orders delay isn't playing this game.

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/24/2010 8:52:37 PM   
Chief Rudiger

 

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Well said

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 7/31/2010 8:17:06 AM   
nicwb

 

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I've just had a quick brush through the demo and am seriously considering this game and its predecessors

A question though - how does the AI compare to the earlier games such as Highway to the Reich etc ?


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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 4/1/2011 7:43:33 AM   
El Savior

 

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Some like to micromanage to the details - some want more freedom and AI. I find BFTB to be perfect for my taste. Compared to example WITP, which is extremely good game, but in this game I have to micromanage every unit and this TAKES AWFUL LOT OF TIME. As a father I rarely have more than few hours of play time, usually less than that. I can't find time to play games like WITP.

BFTB have a good AI - thanks to it I can concentrate on big decisions and leave rest for AI. Just like in real life. Of course sometimes AI makes stupid moves, but so does human too. Compared to other games BFTB AI is just awesome. I stopped playing Hearts of Iron III because it's AI sucks big time.

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 4/1/2011 7:44:49 AM   
El Savior

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: nicwb
A question though - how does the AI compare to the earlier games such as Highway to the Reich etc ?


I find AI better than HTTR.


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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 12/1/2011 4:52:17 AM   
brucebro

 

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This game is MADE not to micro-manage. Micromanaging is taking the whole fun out of the game. So what if you can "win" with micromanaging.... If one is so into winning, just stack the parameters in your favor (or go with Charlie Sheen).... The whole reason I bought this game is that it advertised macro-managing. And it's fabulous in my opinion. First off, I don't have the time or patience to order every unit on the darned map. Second, macro-managing requires more forethought. One must decide well ahead of time what to defend and where. Believe me, I've been late on such decisions (because I'm used to being able to with micromanaging in other games), and I've paid dearly for being tardy in this one! Much more forethought and planning is necessary when macromanaging, and to me, that's the whole brilliance of this game. This game might be the finest wargame I ever played, and I go back to the 60's (Avalon Hill's Battle of the Bulge (1966 I believe) was my first!). Congrats to the game's creators on a great one.

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RE: Does the game avoid the micro-management trap this ... - 12/1/2011 10:49:05 AM   
Renato

 

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Avalon Hill's Battle of the Bulge was the first wargame for me too. We come from long ago!

Yes, this AI is better than HTTR, and there are new functions.

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