Changing the supply system has been floated for over a year now. I think everyone is aware of the limitations of the current abstraction...
From what has been said recently, I don't think that it's on the table any more to consider changing this. Understandable given that resources are now going into the next game. Shame really because the game as a result lacks any sense of operational tempo beyond the railhead to HQ limitations, nor any real sense of operations culminating beyond the breaks imposed by the weather. Quirky little features which lack shades of grey. But it is what it is now especially given the hardcoded limitations which permit only the most superficial of mods to be made. Maybe one day a WitE:FM edition? ;)
In the recent patches they tuned supply down a little again:
"V1.05.59 – January 31, 2012 11. Rule Change (section 220.127.116.11) - The formula used to determine the Axis Rail Supply Modifier has been changed. The 168 in the formula has been changed to 165, slightly further reducing German supply deliveries due to this modifier."
I have yet to restart a new Axis campaign to see the effect, but it might go in the right direction. The supply model is a bit crude, like supplying whole Army Groups well past Smolensk on single double-track rail lines just put back in action. My feel is that supplying is still a bit too easy in good weather, and in turn a bit too tough in mud or winter. One of the rather abruptly changing things. But it still kind of works.
Regarding high Op-tempo, I believe the supply situation is not the only thing, and perhas not even the major thing allowing much faster progress for the Axis (and perhaps Soviets later). A lot also may simply come from us "playing game-style", rathepr and following military principles:
For e.g. most Axis players in Barbarossa do not form and keep a sizable reserve of divisions (say 1/4 to 1/3rd!) idle behind the lines and switch them out against front line units for refit or rest (partly because Soviet are quite easy to overrun without heavy own losses early war). In fact, some of the harder pushing players that regularly get very far East by December 41, push everything in line they can lay hands on, especially not leaving any Armor or Mech "idle". And some complain about the frozen units at the GC start, representing intial OKH reserves.
In part this may be due to the hindsight, i.e. lack of FOW or variation on the initial Soviet setup at GC start. They are always in the same spot, there is no "setup turn" in which a Axis/Soviet player could move an extra Army up North or South of Pripjet, and thus would require both players to exert more caution. There is also no variation in the overall strength, no alternative GC where both sides might start with a few extra divisions, or a few less, or maybe have a few more of this type while less of another -- something that adds uncertainty, in contrast to visible, managable risks.
Also the fact that the Soviets are rather weak in 41, and unlike the real war, their exact strengths and weaknesses well-known, doesn't add to the need to be more cautious and stick to keeping reserves. There is rarely a big crisis for the Axis side (while the Soviet tumbles from one to the next, which will naturally be something of the opposite after 44) since presently an Axis players biggest fear in 41 appears to be a tactical ZOC lock or some spearheads cut of from supply, costing MPs and therefore a turn of progress, but no imminent thread of units being counterattacked, or even counteroffensives like Smolensk on a strategic scale.
Thus, a player can push a lot harder in this game, with less backup, since his head is not at stake, and the dangers are quite small. To mimic the other factors in a game would require perhaps something like "plausibly modified historical setups", loss of a game or demotion in case of mess-ups, or some special rules that force keeping reserves and determine when to commit them. I think with a board game, one could come up with a set of houserules to cover some of that, but it still doesn't completly negate hindsight.
The Germans in 41 didn't keep anything like 1/3 to 1/4 in reserve, the odd division here there at most. They were pushing everything forward they could....that's also why they were so burnt out in December.
The supply issue is twofold...not only are the Spearheads getting too many supplies...they are also getting too many replacements. Total replacement pool wise might be appropriate, but units that are far away from the railheads should also be only getting a fraction of the replacements they currently get. The effects of MP distance should scale more strongly for replacements, after all, if you only have very limited capacity to transport stuff forward, you first transport supplies to the forces you have in place.
The Germans in December were in many places at like 40% Infantry strength, at most,...and it wasn't (at that stage) because they didn't theoretically have the manpower.
This would also help to weaken the overpowered offensive dynamic that's currently present. The other would be to make supply level more important when calculating CV, though I don't know what the current modifier is, between various leader rolls, it doesn't seem to influence much.
< Message edited by MechFO -- 2/26/2012 12:48:43 PM >