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"Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 5:42:54 AM   
Suhiir

 

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Joined: 10/9/2012
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I have to wonder if the following is intentional to discourage non-aerial combat in the game.

I'm attempting to play the long campaign as the Allies vs the Japanese.

PT Boats
Massed Dutch PTs at Merak where the presence of a base actually allows them to be able to combat any Japanese ships attempting to pass thru that hex.
Well, the Japanese did attempt such a passage.
The Japanese were supposedly surprised at night and outmaneuvered by the PT Squadron commander.
After 3-4 PT's were blown out of the water at 20K yards the squadron refused to even close to torpedo range, preferring to stay out of the effective range of their own weapons and allowing the Japanese to destroy them at will.

Subs
Allied torpedoes flat out miss at least 50% of the time, the Japanese miss rate is closer to 5%.
Nothing smaller then a CA survives one Japanese torpedo, and even larger ships are usually so badly damaged they sink usually from fires/flotation hits before making a port.
Allied torpedoes rarely sink even an xAKL in one hit, 2-3 torpedo hits seems to be the average number needed to sink a merchant/tanker.
When Allied sub skippers get fed up with missing and duds they sometimes surface and attempt to engage their targets...
Sinking a Japanese Landing Barge (LB) can take up to 9 hits by a 3in/50 deck gun, 3-4 being the average.
Japanese merchant/tanker ships frequently win surface engagements with Allied subs, requiring the sub to make a long trip back to a shipyard.

Surface Action
Having "Crossed the T" a couple times I've noticed this venerable naval tactic results in one whole round where up to 25% of allied Allied ships will fire on one Japanese ship. After that it's it typical surface battle.
Allied ships rarely seem to fire more than one weapon in surface engagements, whereas the Japanese fire every weapon they have aboard that's in range.
Allied gunfire seems to hit Japanese armor 25-50% of the time, whereas Japanese gunfire never, ever, hits armor ... and in fact seems to hit Allied weapons 25-50% of the time.
It takes 15-30 Allied hits to sink the average Japanese Destroyer...whereas the Japanese sink allied Destroyers in 3-5 hits.
The combined British/Dutch navies managed to engage the Akagi task force at night, 49 hits by gunfire and 5 torpedoes didn't even damage the Akagi enough to prevent it launching it's full complement of aircraft the next morning and blowing most of the surviving British/Dutch ships away.
Whereas 1-3 hits (at most) prevent Allied carriers from launching aircraft.

Air-to-Ship
3-5 1000# bomb hits are needed to sink the average Japanese merchant ship, Allied ships rarely survive 1-2 250# bomb hits.
No clue what it takes to sink a Japanese Battleship, I one hit (hit, didn't bounce off it's armor) one with 12 bombs and 3 torpedoes and it sailed onward.
I'm clueless as to how Allied Dive Bombers even manage to hit Japanese Belt Armor.

What I've come to call the "Magic Betty's and their Nuclear Torpedoes" are truly amazing.
No matter how large your CAP (in one instance 42:8) at least 1 to 3 Bettys make it thru, and hit a minimum of 50% of the time.
I've yet to see any ship survive a single torpedo hit from a Betty.
At Bataan Japanese Betty's frequently torpedoed American PT boats.

I'd like, LOVE, to be able to fight the Japanese ... instead I seem to be fighting the AI's "game balance code".
Post #: 1
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 8:01:20 AM   
JocMeister

 

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Oh, I hope you have a flack jacket and helmet nearby because you are certainly going to receive some fire for your post! Venting frustration on this forum is not looked kindly on I´m afraid!

I´ll try to respond to the best of my limited knowledge.

PT boats:
Have you checked the aggressiveness rating of the PT TF commander?

Subs:
About the hit rate its tied to the skill and experience of the commander. Early war the Japanese have high experience while the Allied doesn´t. It will get better as your sub captains gain experience. I have not experienced the rest. On the contrary I usually need only one torpedo to sink a Japanese merchant due to their low damage control. Remember that ships take time to sink! Usually they sink during the following night.

Surface Action.
Again this is directly tied to the experience of the participants. Early war the Japanese have better ships and much higher experience. Regarding the damage my experience is the opposite. Your experience with Akagi sounds highly unlikely. With that kind of damage I would say that there is 0% chance for Akagi to launch aircraft. She most likely sunk outright and the planes were launched from another CV!

Air to Ship.
Again my experience are the opposite. Getting a hit doesn´t mean a penetrating hit. Sinking BBs with bombs is hard work.

About the Betties and their torps. Get used to it I´m afraid. That goes for getting through CAP as well. I had very similar experiences recently with CAP. I suggest you read this thread regarding CAP. Even following the advice given by Lo Baron in the thread bombers will get through most of the time regardless of numbers and settings. But at least it will help you set up your CAP as best as possible.

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3212553

Good luck!

(in reply to Suhiir)
Post #: 2
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 8:48:54 AM   
Oberst_Klink

 

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Well, it's 1941, the Tenno lads were generally a tough bunch. And yes, like the Schwede said:

PT/Subs/G4M: Excellent equipment with confused, inexperienced and perhaps overcautious operators is worse than mediocre equipped with somebody who knows how to use it properly, who got drilled how to do so for months...

Now, about the bombs or torpedoes. The Japanese 250kg had a better AP rating than 500lbs the Allies used. Again, don't get confused by the number, weight. E.g. a 1,000kg HE bomb is useless in penetrating armour, a proper 500kg AP can. The Japanese type 95 were some proper 'fishes', the Allies were plagued until 43 I recall with quite a dud rate (same story for early war German torps btw).

Don't feel discouraged; after all you're not Adm. Sir Tom Philips who experienced a devastating attack of Betty's on his BB and BC... and died. Sooner or later the Japanese will have trouble keeping the Eastern Asian 'Blitzkrieg' machine well oiled and running; than it's time for your skippers to excel.

Klink, Oberst
(not discouraged)






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(in reply to JocMeister)
Post #: 3
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 9:06:14 AM   
LoBaron


Posts: 4598
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From: Vienna, Austria
Status: offline
JocMeister covered it pretty well.

With regards to Netties, yes they are more accurate ingame than they were historical. If you don´t like it play DaBabes mod, where the accuracy is
tuned down. OTOH there are enough ways to cope with em. But not in spring ´42.

With regards to the ability of ships to sustain battle damage and keep on ticking: No there is no IJN bias. In fact it is the opposite. The Allied ships
in general have a much better chance to sustain damage and survive, as long as you have flagged "Allied damae control" in the game settings.

"Crossing the T" decides on the ability of the formation to put guns on target (full broadside for the TF crossing the T, only bow facing guns for the other).
It does not tell you about which ships are visible, it doesn´t show you the skills of the skippers, and so on.
In addition to that, Akagi was a converted battlecruiser. If you attempted to dent her with 5in guns this is absolutely plausable. You only would have scratched some
paint. I don´t believe the 5 torps though. At least not if they all hit and exploded.

With regards to "massed Dutch PTs at Merak": there is no such thing as "massed Dutch PTs", and certainly nothing to stop any Japanese fleet from doing
what it wants.


With regards to subs: There has been extended discussions on that topic simply read em, again, there is no bias. Just the dud rate of the MK14 being simulated,
which is historical.
If your ships sink very fast due to battle damage, check if your TFs are set to cruise speed instead of mission speed. DD or smaller is usually (but not always)
dead when hit by a Japanese sub, large AKs allready have a pretty good chance to survive a single hit. CL and larger should not be in danger.


In general, according to what you are complaining about, I assume you are engaging the advancing Japanese in pitched battles much too early, with
inadequate forces, under enemy air superiority. I would be surprized if what you describe is taking place later than early-mid 42.

Reassess, pull back, harrass, don´t rely on staying power, fight to delay and not to stop, and prepare your logistics backbone for the counteroffensives of the future.


Ah, and welcome to WitP AE, it is all a bit more complicated than you might think...

_____________________________

S**t happens in war.

All hail the superior ones!

(in reply to Suhiir)
Post #: 4
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 9:08:03 AM   
jmalter

 

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PT boats: moonlight & weather are big factors for any night surface action - 0% moon & low visibility (rain) are key factors in getting the PTs into fighting range, 100% moon & high visibility gets them killed. early-war PTs need a radar upgrade for best effects.

almost all Allied ships begin the war w/ lower day/night experience than the Japanese, Allied warships can slowly increase their exp by surviving combat & spending time at sea. i've read here that just putting the ships into TFs and leaving them in the port works for gaining sea-time, they don't have to actually travel anywhere. but don't neglect to protect them against Japanese subs, they like to run into harbors & lay mines.

wrt Allied subs, it's the USN fleet-boats that have the awful torpedoes, torps from USN S-boats & Dutch boats are much more effective. again, most subs will need an early upgrade to get radar.

(in reply to Oberst_Klink)
Post #: 5
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 9:22:09 AM   
SenToku

 

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The rant sounds like real life captain of USS Sargo. Launched first war patrol from Cavite Bay, Manila to target rich enviroment and made attacks against 12 targets. First attack was premature explosions as the Mk 14's blew up as soon as they armed themselves. After that captain turned the magnetic detonator off.

That didn't help, since the Mk 14 had so many faults that they masked each other; They also ran 15 feet deep and thus all other attacks missed by running bellow the targets.... The captain of Sargo actually got so mad that he made comments about the reliability of Mk 14 on open radio circuit.

Oh; The dutch PT boats have crew experience around 25. Most damage they are ever likely to do is by collision and even then only to themselves.

(in reply to jmalter)
Post #: 6
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 9:22:51 AM   
janh

 

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Yip, the air will taste like metal... Sounds like someone had a very bad day with his game. Happens, even AI can whoop ass now and then...

What difficulty level are you playing one? I assume historical or hard?

PT Boats
Can't share your troubles. Most of the time, with a surface CG preceeding any other TF, and in case PT have to be expected in strength with another TB oder DD TF preceeding everyone, you can brush PTs and MGBs out of the water. That doesn't mean that with a bad dice roll the weather and engagement range won't occasionally offer the PTs a field day, but that's fine. Remember the dice, they abstract a lot of the unknowns -- up to your fantasy to interpret them. And remember that you can also use the PTs to your advantage -- AI won't form proper lead-TFs for each purpose, so mostly you can use them more efficiently if you want so.

Subs
I often have tears in my eyes if I get messages like "I-Xx fires 6 torpedoes at..." a single target, and 1 hits, sometimes none. That's more like 16-25% hit rate of IJN in my games, perhaps less. Never tracked it. Whatever your hit rate in your game, it seems your dice rolls are always peculiar. On the contrary I only two days ago nearly had a heart attack when SS Stingray send 4 fish at CV Akagi, fortunately a dud. But I had already two CV and one BB in the yards within one "1942 w/ duds" year, plus a couple of sunk merchants. In return I always struggle to deal with Allied subs in 42, best I can do is keep them busy with ASW patrols and planes, but hardly even damage any.
Beyond that, Allied torpedoes are not Japanese ones, and the game depicts that as it should be. Duds were a big theme, so it be. Japanese seemed to be the leading nation in torpedo development, so what a surprise their fish work. I don't now the explosive types and payloads, but I would bet on Japanese also being ahead there as with many other torpedo types. Use the Dutch subs to your advantage as long as the US ones are struggling with duds... Lastly, Allied subs are not Japanese subs, and Allied skipper not Japanese ones. That certainly explains some of your results, but ultimately there is again this little factors named dice...

Surface Action
"Crossing the T" means one column is heading into the broadside of the other one, so the game simulates the enemy lead ship being targeted by pretty much all of the broadside columns ships. Sounds fine to me?!
Hitting (belt) armor or superstructures isn't a purely Allied thing neither, but oftentimes IJN CA hit more accurately, and penetrate more often than US/OZ CA -- that isn't a surprise either if you look at the experience of the crews, and remember that most of the Japanese CA are very good designs. That will change in 43, or with the presence of CL Honolulu and her friends, my personal demons. Making best use of the British CA, which are somewhat better experienced and suited, you can parry the Japanese. However, initially the Japanese will come ahead out of most night fights, also thanks to the Long Lance torpedoes, to which the Allies never developed a counterpart. Best pick your battles carefully, or wait for the late 42 and 43 upgrades and fast BB to engage with better chances.

"The combined British/Dutch navies managed to engage the Akagi task force at night, 49 hits by gunfire and 5 torpedoes didn't even damage the Akagi enough to prevent it launching it's full complement of aircraft the next morning and blowing most of the surviving British/Dutch ships away."
I would guess Akagi already slipped under the waves after 5 torpedo hits (49 gunfire hits don't mean a thing unless you tell the caliber, yet 5 torpedoes), but likely you missed the presence of another CV that returned your favors...


Air-to-Ship
"3-5 1000# bomb hits are needed to sink the average Japanese merchant ship, Allied ships rarely survive 1-2 250# bomb hits."

Can I borrow your merchants???? I wish I was that lucky. It usually only takes a lucky 1000lbs hit from the always present B-17 or B-24, or a 500 lbs from the Mitchels and Marauders, and I watch any (x)AK, (x)AKL or AP struggle. Most of them will be engulfed in flames after a day and sink. Some holds unfortunately true when playing Allies, though my gut feeling says I saved more ships on that side, perhaps thanks to the smaller Japanese aerial bombs.
Sinking BB with bombs can take a while, unless it is the older types, although in any case the choice weapon is torpedoes. Therefore you can use BBs to absorb coastal f(g)unfire or aerial bombing. Except for IJN CV/L/E, the Japanese capital ships seems to be "more" survivable regarding fire and damage control.
The Betties and Netties are among the Japanese early war ace cards in that game. You remember PoW and Repulse. Even in later war, you may want to have your surface TFs well CAPped, and even then think twice whether to start toying with a Betty-stacked base. Chances are that local weather, communication issues, pilots misunderstanding each other, jammed guns or whatever will allow one or three Betties to slip through and even survive AAA, and since they often come with good pilots, their torpedoes are going to hurt as you learned.

Sounds like you'll still have a lot of fun with this game as many challenges remain...

(in reply to JocMeister)
Post #: 7
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 9:23:29 AM   
wdolson

 

Posts: 8182
Joined: 6/28/2006
From: Near Portland, OR
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Early war most Allied units have poor morale, poor leadership, and low experience. This is what allows the Japanese to run amok in game and it also was a major factor in the real war.

The basic strategy should be to identify where you think you can hold the line, then draw back to that line and try to hold on until the Allies get strong enough to fight back. Trying to contest every base is most likely going to result in your forces being carved up piecemeal by a superior force.

For an Allied player, the early game is full of heartbreak. Mid to late game, it's Japanese heartbreak.

I don't know what level you have the AI set to, but some players like being pushed to the wall even when learning while others like a more relaxed game until they learn the ropes. You could try bumping the AI difficulty down a notch if you have it set high.

Bill

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Post #: 8
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 9:35:34 AM   
wdolson

 

Posts: 8182
Joined: 6/28/2006
From: Near Portland, OR
Status: online
One advantage of playing the Babes scenarios is they split the torpedo tubes in the database so subs don't fire such large spreads at small targets. The base game files were not updated to take advantage of the smaller spreads. I believe Babes A is pretty much the stock game with a few fixes like this.

Bill

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Post #: 9
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/8/2012 10:19:59 AM   
LargeSlowTarget


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From: The deepest, darkest pit of hell
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Suhiir

Allied torpedoes flat out miss at least 50% of the time, the Japanese miss rate is closer to 5%.
Nothing smaller then a CA survives one Japanese torpedo, and even larger ships are usually so badly damaged they sink usually from fires/flotation hits before making a port.
Allied torpedoes rarely sink even an xAKL in one hit, 2-3 torpedo hits seems to be the average number needed to sink a merchant/tanker.


From http://www.combinedfleet.com/ss.htm:

"Japanese submarines employed the best torpedoes available during the Second World War. The Type 95 torpedo used pure oxygen to burn kerosene, instead of the compressed air and alcohol used in other nation's torpedoes. This gave them about three times the range of their Allied counterparts, and also reduced their wake, making them harder to notice and avoid. The Type 95 also had by far the largest warhead of any submarine torpedo, initially 893 pounds (405 kg), increased to 1210 pounds (550 kg) late in the war. All Japanese torpedoes made during the war used Japanese Type 97 explosive, a mixture of 60% TNT and 40% hexanitrodiphenylamine. Most importantly, the Type 95 used a simple contact exploder, and was therefore far more reliable than its American counterpart, the Mark 14, until the latter was improved in late-1943."

For comparison - explosive charge of the USN Mark XIV was 643 lb (292 kg), of the RN Mark VIII** originally 722 lbs. (327 kg).

< Message edited by LargeSlowTarget -- 12/8/2012 10:30:12 AM >


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WitP AAR "Six Years of War"

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Post #: 10
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/10/2012 11:20:55 PM   
Suhiir

 

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Thank you all for your replies/input.

It's NOT that it's early-war and I don't expect the AI-Japanese to be able to do pretty much whatever they want wherever they want...it's that I'me seein a definate and unmistakable bias for the AI.

PT Boats
OK, my bad, I stuck a VERY agressive commander in charge and they actually do something useful.

Subs
It's not the Allied dud rate I'm complaining about, it's flat out "miss", I know Allied trops have a horrible dud rate. I thought, in fact the game manual says, unlike Allied suface commanders Allied sub commanders were competent in the early war.
Not like I have the Polical Point to change them (even if there were better commander available, which there usually aren't...but that's another story...with a 1 to 100 scale one assumes 50 is the average commanders rating...HA!)

Ship-to-Ship
Over the course of several surface enguagements of British/Dutch CLs and DDs vs AI-Japanese ships I've seen the following:
CL - (already damaged by bombs) 46 hits to sink
DD - 22 hits to sink
DD - 12 hits (unsunk)
SC - 10 hits to sink
AS - 9 hits and 4 torpedos to sink
xAP - 13 hits (unsunk) - later sunk by 11 more hits and 1 torpedo
xAK - 32 hits to sink
xAK 26 hits to sink
xAK - 1 hit and 2 torpedos to sink
XAKL 23 hits to sink
xAKL 19 hits to sink

And yes it was ONLY Akagi and yes it took 49 hits (from 5in to 14in guns) and 5 torp HITS (not belt armor) and launched a full airstrike the following morning.
I finally sunk the #&^%@ thing with another 3 torpedos the following day.

Is there perhaps some setting/flag someplace I need to change?

Believe me I'm NOT trying to stop the AI-Japanese advance, I'm trying to harass and selay it. I'm hoping to maybe...possibly...if I'm lucky...hold Java.

One bright point however...
VJ-10 Det A (7x SOC-1 Seagulls) has sucessfully bombed (not sunk) at over a dozen Japanese ships ranging from xAKLs to CLs...those guys are AMAZING!

(in reply to LargeSlowTarget)
Post #: 11
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/11/2012 1:30:24 AM   
n01487477


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Suhiir

Thank you all for your replies/input.

It's NOT that it's early-war and I don't expect the AI-Japanese to be able to do pretty much whatever they want wherever they want...it's that I'me seein a definate and unmistakable bias for the AI.

PT Boats
OK, my bad, I stuck a VERY agressive commander in charge and they actually do something useful.

Subs
It's not the Allied dud rate I'm complaining about, it's flat out "miss", I know Allied trops have a horrible dud rate. I thought, in fact the game manual says, unlike Allied suface commanders Allied sub commanders were competent in the early war.
Not like I have the Polical Point to change them (even if there were better commander available, which there usually aren't...but that's another story...with a 1 to 100 scale one assumes 50 is the average commanders rating...HA!)

Ship-to-Ship
Over the course of several surface enguagements of British/Dutch CLs and DDs vs AI-Japanese ships I've seen the following:
CL - (already damaged by bombs) 46 hits to sink
DD - 22 hits to sink
DD - 12 hits (unsunk)
SC - 10 hits to sink
AS - 9 hits and 4 torpedos to sink
xAP - 13 hits (unsunk) - later sunk by 11 more hits and 1 torpedo
xAK - 32 hits to sink
xAK 26 hits to sink
xAK - 1 hit and 2 torpedos to sink
XAKL 23 hits to sink
xAKL 19 hits to sink

And yes it was ONLY Akagi and yes it took 49 hits (from 5in to 14in guns) and 5 torp HITS (not belt armor) and launched a full airstrike the following morning.
I finally sunk the #&^%@ thing with another 3 torpedos the following day.

Is there perhaps some setting/flag someplace I need to change?

Believe me I'm NOT trying to stop the AI-Japanese advance, I'm trying to harass and selay it. I'm hoping to maybe...possibly...if I'm lucky...hold Java.

One bright point however...
VJ-10 Det A (7x SOC-1 Seagulls) has sucessfully bombed (not sunk) at over a dozen Japanese ships ranging from xAKLs to CLs...those guys are AMAZING!

Suhiir - welcome to the winds of war. You are new to the game and so your first play will be seen by the majority of long term forumites as suspicious; esp. for the results you supply.

So far in your 11 posts(forum etiquette note - pls. don't double post in multi-forums), you've given snippets of information without once showing a screenshot, giving combat reports, details of game date, TF composition, leaders, weather, situational reports, detections levels, AI settings or anything else which impinges on the outcome.

So, please take this in the spirit it is intended...I (like most) like discussing problems with the game, finding solutions; even when they are pitched in negative terminology. But I'm sorry I just think there is little to discuss here without seeing the specifics and taking each thing you discuss one situation at a time.

The AI does cheat in a number of ways, but this doesn't include combat outcomes AFAIK. But poor play will help in giving that impression, give us the information to help improve your performance. This forum is quick to give help and won't look kindly on even novices not following a scientific rationale when giving their negative impressions.

Ranting/hystrionics/crying borked is not something you want to do here without a good data set or a flak jacket ready.

Don't give up on this game, maybe you are experiencing poor results at present, but sh$t happens. And we're here to explain that sh$t ... but (to continue the analogy) we need the texture, smell, feel and dare I say the taste

_____________________________

-Damian-
EconDoc
TrackerAE
Tutes&Java

(in reply to Suhiir)
Post #: 12
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/11/2012 3:20:55 AM   
Commander Cody


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Pretty soon you'll be thinking the AI is a pushover and you'll fire up an Ironman scenario, which will allow you to take on half the Kriegsmarine as well. Anyway, enjoy the challenge while it lasts.

Cheers,
CC

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Post #: 13
RE: "Game Balance" - 12/11/2012 3:26:26 AM   
Bullwinkle58


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Suhiir

Subs
It's not the Allied dud rate I'm complaining about, it's flat out "miss", I know Allied trops have a horrible dud rate. I thought, in fact the game manual says, unlike Allied suface commanders Allied sub commanders were competent in the early war.


There is FOW involved in the miss/dud reports. But the miss rate may be too high.

But more to the point--why do you care? Either way the weapon is gone and there was no damage to the target.

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The Moose

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Post #: 14
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