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RE: New normal .13+

 
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RE: New normal .13+ - 2/12/2013 10:37:52 AM   
Von Weber

 

Posts: 140
Joined: 11/30/2012
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When soviet rifle squad change rifles for smg? Is it in the mid of summer 1942? Sorry for offtop.

(in reply to AFV)
Post #: 31
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/12/2013 11:42:25 AM   
Pelton

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: AFV

Would it not be very easy to nerf the power of Soviet SMG?
That would be low budget, easy. It would not "fix" everything, its just a start- a step that is low risk and can be taken.


When I first started questioning the sudden flip in the combat ratios several beta testers told me the issue was the submachine guns being over powered in the combat engine.

So yes AFV that would be a great start.

The same issue will plague witw I am guessing, same combat engine

_____________________________

GHC
22 - 4 - 8

15 games ended in 41 (15-0-0)
7 games ended in 42 (5-0-2)
8 games ended in 43 (2-3-3)
4 games ended in 44 (0-1-3)


General Cheesefinder of WitW

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=afmyypGyfng&list=PLrY4H4gWWBircAjo

(in reply to AFV)
Post #: 32
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/12/2013 3:58:51 PM   
Leber

 

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Joined: 1/5/2013
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I think the problem here is that the unrealistic Soviet blizzard offensive is a response to an incredibly unrealistic Axis advance in 1941. In the game it's suicide for a Soviet player to fight forward against a reasonably skilled Axis player; it just leads to more encirclements for next to no gain. Launching attacks leads to nothing but massive losses. The Axis can keep attacking right up until the last snow turn with little change in combat power.

This is very different from historically where after the initial frontier battles the combat situation changed dramatically. At the Battle of Smolensk the Axis spent weeks trying to close up it's encirclement of Soviet armies west of Smolensk, with the entire battle degenerating into a bloody slog. Soviet losses were still incredibley heavy, but the net effect was that Axis forces were also worn down. In WITE this would never happen against a skilled Axis player.

Throughout 1941 the Soviets launched numerous counterattacks, even Front-wide counteroffensives; they universally failed, and badly, but they wore down and delayed Axis forces, sometimes for weeks! In WITE attempting this against a skilled Axis played would be a horrible strategy.

Historically by November of 1941 Axis forces were worn down to the point where they simply could not advance. At Rostov and Tikhvin in November of 1941 the Soviets launched successful counteroffensives even before the "official" start of the blizzard period. Around Moscow German offensives ran out of steam and ground to a halt, unable to advance further against Soviet resistance. A culmination of months of fighting crippled Axis forces.

The Soviets were also worn down, but they had fresh reserve armies to commit to battle. Thus the winter counteroffensive began; not with massive weather penalties, but the commitment of fresh Soviet reserves against exhausted Axis forces. The result, naturally, was an Axis defeat.

However, as Pelton has said, Soviet capabilities were still limited and they were unable to encircle large Axis formations, and often themselves were overextended and encircled. The "broad front" advance seen in most Blizzard offensives was simply beyond Soviet capabilities.

(in reply to Pelton)
Post #: 33
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/12/2013 4:57:21 PM   
smokindave34


Posts: 624
Joined: 1/15/2008
Status: online
Since I just completed a full server campaign game as axis I'll chime in with my opinion:

1) The blizzard period is not realistic. In my game with Pelton (which is into spring '43) I made the foolish error of deciding to hold my ground in the first week of the blizzard. It seemed reasonable to stay in my level 2 and 3 forts versus retreating to open ground. This was a huge mistake. I spent the rest of the blizzard watching cavalry divisions and armored brigades ZOC lock my units and then have them swallowed up by the Soviets the next turn. I had to committ the last of my armored reserves to save an entire army (yes an army) from encirclement by the end of the blizzard. Would it be possible to reduce the ability of brigades to ZOC lock an entire division? or make a slight increase in the ability of the axis to counterattack during the blizzard (multiple division attacks agains tank brigades routinely failed during January and I learned to avoid them and cut my losses and keep running)

2) I agree with Flavius regarding the fact that this game favors the side on offense. This is certainly an advantage to the axis in '41 and should be dialed back. However the advantage the axis gets from this flaw is not nearly as beneficial as the one the Red army gets come late '43 and 1944. Once Red Army 2.0 gets rolling nothing will stop it; not major rivers, not forts, not panzer divisions etc. A wall of 20+ CV guards rifle corps backed up by tank/mech corps and artillery divisions all fully supplied from one rail line is impossible to stop. In my completed game I was on the Dnepr from Smolensk to D & Z town in June 44 and Berlin was in ashes in late March '45. Certainly this was partly due to my opponents (Von Beanie) excellent play but I essentially started out further east than the June '44 historical start line and Berlin still fell a month early. I think WITW is going to limit the supplies that can be delivered by a single rail line - I'm not sure if that can be done with WITE at this point but something has to give with the operational tempo (for both sides!).

I hope 2X3 can make some changes to help the balance with this game. I've never played a game as much as WITE and still really enjoy it even with it's flaws. However I want to be able to play as the axis and know I have a chance to hold Berlin past May '45 (I'll doubt I'll ever be good enough to knock out a Soviet opponent in '41 or '42) and if I play as Soviets I also want my opponent to have a chance to make it to '45 if we are evenly matched opponents so that I get my chance to push on to Berlin.



< Message edited by smokindave34 -- 2/12/2013 4:59:18 PM >

(in reply to Leber)
Post #: 34
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/12/2013 5:13:54 PM   
timmyab

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: smokindave34
Would it be possible to reduce the ability of brigades to ZOC lock an entire division? or make a slight increase in the ability of the axis to counterattack during the blizzard

Brigade and regiment ZOC needs to be reduced throughout the game.If it can't be lowered to match the unit's strength I'd rather see it taken out of the game altogether.
One possible fix for the unhistoric pockets that are caused by ZOC lock is to allow the Axis a minimum move of two hexes during the first winter.

(in reply to smokindave34)
Post #: 35
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/12/2013 5:28:42 PM   
Seminole


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Joined: 7/28/2011
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quote:

The "broad front" advance seen in most Blizzard offensives was simply beyond Soviet capabilities.


Map of Soviet counterattack: Counteroffensive

quote:

Would it be possible to reduce the ability of brigades to ZOC lock an entire division?


I think there is merit to a sliding scale of costs between the 'friction' generated by a brigade, division, or corps to adjacent hexes MP costs.

quote:

I agree with Flavius regarding the fact that this game favors the side on offense.


In my opinion War tends to favor the offense. Unless like Pelton you are beating your head on bad terrain and the highest concentration of forces (his failed right hook on MT) you are picking where and who fights much more effectively than the defender.

(in reply to smokindave34)
Post #: 36
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/12/2013 6:38:45 PM   
Pelton

 

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We also have the poor replasement system that replased the old one thats a 42-45 game killer.

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3202999&mpage=8

quote:

ORIGINAL: Kamil

Replacements situation (one of many shortcomings of game engine) massively spoils my current game and it fells like WitE should end in summer of '43. I am deeply disappointed, because my struggle against Mike was my most enjoyable encounter so far, but current system will soon take most of the pleasure away by imposing trench warfare and boring passive defence.


At the moment German player is forced abandon attack far to quickly because of designed snowball-effect.

I attack so I suffer loses and they won't properly be replaced. So to maintain momentum I need to weaken other parts of front handing initiative to Soviets everywhere but in area of attack.

My forces on the flanks get beaten so they suffered losses, but obviously they won't be replaced, so either I continue attacking and make situation on flanks even worse or I switch to defence and slowly rebuild forces what won't change anything, because by the time German forces regains strength Red Army will be too strong for any prolonged attempts to create pockets. Once it happens attacking stops being option for Germans, because loses ratio favours Soviet massively.

And it leads to constant withdrawal for one side, and dull grinding for the other.



Game is to be fun and WitE slowly stops providing it.

After removing +1 rule '42 was fun. Not so any more.




Having said that, I don't want to take anything from Mike who is playing better than me, but I need to add that current replacement system is not helping me at all and I feel this is factor that is tipping the scales.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Kamil

Game is good and lively, but I find it irritating when I have 450k manpower in pool and my divisions melt-away.

Imagine situation when all of my divisions were 15 to 20% stronger. It would be the case if replacements were being send properly to the front.


I have lots of 2CV infantry divisions, that have morale in low 70s and I can't do anything to increase number of infantry squads.




_____________________________

GHC
22 - 4 - 8

15 games ended in 41 (15-0-0)
7 games ended in 42 (5-0-2)
8 games ended in 43 (2-3-3)
4 games ended in 44 (0-1-3)


General Cheesefinder of WitW

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=afmyypGyfng&list=PLrY4H4gWWBircAjo

(in reply to Seminole)
Post #: 37
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/13/2013 8:06:00 AM   
loki100


Posts: 638
Joined: 10/20/2012
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Leber

I think the problem here is that the unrealistic Soviet blizzard offensive is a response to an incredibly unrealistic Axis advance in 1941. In the game it's suicide for a Soviet player to fight forward against a reasonably skilled Axis player; it just leads to more encirclements for next to no gain. Launching attacks leads to nothing but massive losses. The Axis can keep attacking right up until the last snow turn with little change in combat power.

This is very different from historically where after the initial frontier battles the combat situation changed dramatically. At the Battle of Smolensk the Axis spent weeks trying to close up it's encirclement of Soviet armies west of Smolensk, with the entire battle degenerating into a bloody slog. Soviet losses were still incredibley heavy, but the net effect was that Axis forces were also worn down. In WITE this would never happen against a skilled Axis player.

Throughout 1941 the Soviets launched numerous counterattacks, even Front-wide counteroffensives; they universally failed, and badly, but they wore down and delayed Axis forces, sometimes for weeks! In WITE attempting this against a skilled Axis played would be a horrible strategy.

Historically by November of 1941 Axis forces were worn down to the point where they simply could not advance. At Rostov and Tikhvin in November of 1941 the Soviets launched successful counteroffensives even before the "official" start of the blizzard period. Around Moscow German offensives ran out of steam and ground to a halt, unable to advance further against Soviet resistance. A culmination of months of fighting crippled Axis forces.

The Soviets were also worn down, but they had fresh reserve armies to commit to battle. Thus the winter counteroffensive began; not with massive weather penalties, but the commitment of fresh Soviet reserves against exhausted Axis forces. The result, naturally, was an Axis defeat.

However, as Pelton has said, Soviet capabilities were still limited and they were unable to encircle large Axis formations, and often themselves were overextended and encircled. The "broad front" advance seen in most Blizzard offensives was simply beyond Soviet capabilities.


This cuts to the essence of what is nearly impossible to simulate. In reality when the Soviets went over to the offensive they had a small advantage in numbers across the front and this concentrated at Moscow. So not surprisingly all they achieved on most sectors was to drive back over-extended advanced units. The only front to make real progress, in addition to those around Moscow, was Koniev's Kalinin. In part because he was exceptionally able and in part as he could make use of the disruption to the German defense caused by the Moscow offensive.

Now the Soviets had got themselves in that position for a mixture of reasons. Major encirclements such as Kiev that were completely avoidable and that, in any simulation, just will not happen (unless hard wired in some way) and heavy losses in localised, and near continual, counterstrokes. These did a lot of damage to the Germans too but in this game are just an easy way to inflict one sided losses on the Soviets. So in-game, say from July-October, the Germans will not gain the secondary massive pockets they historically did, nor will a Soviet player indulge in the constant, ill prepared, localised offensives. So inevitably come the chance to counterattack the Red Army is going to be stronger.

The second bit you can never simulate is mindset. Hitler believed he had a chance to take Moscow in late 41 so gambled, and lost. Equally most German players come 1943 will go over to an active defense and never risk a Kursk if the balance of forces is reasonably historical. But then as a player, you know you can 'win' if you hold Berlin in Autumn 1945. To the German leadership, the Red Army arriving in Berlin at any stage meant they had lost. So on that basis a wild gamble that just might succeed was better than accepting the inevitable?

What is wrong in the blizzard period is two-fold. First, the real relative balance of forces will never occur. So inevitably, the Soviet blow will be that much stronger. Second the mechanism hands too much advantage to the Soviets and overstates their capabilities. Again, in reality, the Winter offensive, as a coherent plan, was over by the end of January, all that was left was a series of localised battles ending in the disaster at Kharkov.

There is another problem that we are players and are looking to win. One reason why the offense often seems so strong is we will never let an advantage slip away, so once we start to dominate we will do all we can to maximise the potential advantage. There's not much that can be done about that except to play with imposed restraint - something that is easy in SP and near impossible in PBEM.

For what its worth, if there is one mechanism I'd like to see changed its the effect of isolation. This happens too fast and is too devasting, making it so much easier to finish off bypassed units. As it was both sides had real problems dealing with stubborn by-passed formations, the Soviets were still defending Brest-Litovsk into July.

(in reply to Leber)
Post #: 38
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/13/2013 11:52:45 AM   
rrbill

 

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Idea to give some life to cutoff units seems to make a lot of sense-realistic and improves game-play.

(in reply to loki100)
Post #: 39
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/13/2013 1:47:08 PM   
Baris

 

Posts: 118
Joined: 8/17/2011
Status: offline
+1
I will be very happy if first winter rules tweaked a bit for Axis. If for "scenario balance" sake tweak isolation rules for Soviet to compensate.
In my pbem game my opponent were in Riga in march 1942, North Army Group totally destroyed and encircled. Luckily at least half of it reinforced and replaced by spring.In fact I'm still not a great player. but nonetheless in my other game with other opponent I had to be over cautious not to attack even need to,wonder how that will turn out in blizzard.


< Message edited by Baris -- 2/13/2013 1:50:16 PM >

(in reply to rrbill)
Post #: 40
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/14/2013 4:59:09 PM   
Pelton

 

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Joined: 4/9/2006
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http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3208517&mpage=13

quote:

ORIGINAL: timmyab

Saper is totally fried in this game.And this is one of the strongest Axis players out there.
1942 is completely out of whack.If the Axis can't make significant gains in 42 then the game becomes boring for both players.Six months of fun followed by three years of WW I style warfare, and we all know how popular WW I games are.
The blizzard needs taming for a start.
I'd also lower the Soviet leader ratings across the board in 41 and 42 by one point for each category and make it more difficult to swap out bad leaders.Maybe only allow leaders to be swapped out after they've reached a certain number of loss results and only allow promotion after they've got a minimum number of win results.
Well done by the way Harry, you must be a strong player to hold Saper comfortably like this.


_____________________________

GHC
22 - 4 - 8

15 games ended in 41 (15-0-0)
7 games ended in 42 (5-0-2)
8 games ended in 43 (2-3-3)
4 games ended in 44 (0-1-3)


General Cheesefinder of WitW

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=afmyypGyfng&list=PLrY4H4gWWBircAjo

(in reply to Baris)
Post #: 41
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/14/2013 5:02:03 PM   
Pelton

 

Posts: 5720
Joined: 4/9/2006
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http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3204059&mpage=12

Bomazz another undefeated GHC easly crushed in 42, all things being equal in 1942.

_____________________________

GHC
22 - 4 - 8

15 games ended in 41 (15-0-0)
7 games ended in 42 (5-0-2)
8 games ended in 43 (2-3-3)
4 games ended in 44 (0-1-3)


General Cheesefinder of WitW

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=afmyypGyfng&list=PLrY4H4gWWBircAjo

(in reply to Pelton)
Post #: 42
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/20/2013 10:57:42 AM   
janh

 

Posts: 1214
Joined: 6/12/2007
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Harrybanana


quote:

ORIGINAL: Seminole

quote:

Good info, but the better players simply stay under 2.8, MT has always been closer to 2.5 and thats vs the better GHC players.


I bet on his third or fourth try Stalin could have held Soviet losses down too.
That's the biggest problem with trying to make comparisons to historical outcomes in these games.
We're like Bill Murray in Ground Hog's Day, constantly getting to replay the same situation over and over and refine our approaches.
How many AARs have we seen where a Stalingrad Pocket is successfully snared by the Soviets? Experienced German players just won't let it happen.
If the developers could somehow reach complete historical fidelity the players are still going to learn from their mistakes and not repeat them. A luxury Stavka and OKH didn't have...


+1


+2

Nice way of putting it. It comes down to the question who historically made bigger mistakes, and which player will this benefit more from hindsight.

A scripted test scenario, in which all units are moved more or less on historical schedule and battles are fought more or less on that (as far as that is at all possible), would be needed to make some sense of the historical figures. Basically replicating all mistakes, from Stalingrad to the isolation of LG, from futile Russian counterattacks in 41 to Feste Plätze or not withdrawing and fighting forward when it was time to chose the ground more wisely, for both sides. Have AI versus AI run that couple dozen times to get a statistics, and see.

< Message edited by janh -- 2/20/2013 10:59:25 AM >

(in reply to Harrybanana)
Post #: 43
RE: New normal .13+ - 2/20/2013 11:27:13 AM   
janh

 

Posts: 1214
Joined: 6/12/2007
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Leber
I think the problem here is that the unrealistic Soviet blizzard offensive is a response to an incredibly unrealistic Axis advance in 1941.

...


Sorry I shorted the quote, your whole post is well worth reading. I must agree, the dynamic of the 41 battles feels very different from what I would have expected it to be based on books and historical sources. Much of what you are mentioning is not represented due to the time resolution being 1 week, or because the I-Go-U-Go is not We-go. New rules and game mechanics would be beautiful for the new games to allow for defender reactions and stuff to make I/U more dynamic, less chess like. I imagine if the German units in Normandy won't be able to react to bypassing etc. in the first turn, Witw will see its first mega-pocket before July.

Initially the blizzard rules seem to have been there as simple representation of the logistic Fubar the Germans made, and as a tuning parameter to adjust such that the German engine gets curtailed after winter, and only can go onto a limited offensive after spring. The devs said that the sophisticated logistics model that would allow to model that break-down as a consequence of real logistic issues will have to wait for WitE2, but I assume once it is grounded properly, it will work a lot better. And perhaps allow for special winterization rules.

I tend to agree that tuning the German blizzard penalties down at this point seems sensible. At least somewhat. GHC is still doing pretty good in many AARs, and a few AARs show that a lot can still be achieved after 42. There is a huge spread, however, since random effects including mud turns can have serious benefits, for both sides.
Quite a few games deviate strongly from the average "historical course" since the random effects are "large". Also the moral thingy Flavius or Pelton referred to add to that: success accelerates itself, and defeat also, i.e. the damping factors (moral caps, morale gain or loss probabilities per battle etc.) to keep the game in the middle course are "weak". This allows for the game to become interesting and not just replicate history, though, but causes some of the "peculiar" games where either side is highly successful, and the other throws the towel well before 43. I guess one has to pick which is the better personal choice, high or low variability.

Another catch that arises from this is that (manpower) replacement rates, production, withdrawals or the AP (costs, or pools) are tuned or represent the historical thing, and do not adjust to different situations. That can make further accelerate a situation to deteriorate when realistically, measures would be stepped up to stall the opponent, or when more units would be withdrawn or less new units be affordable/build due to already being (much) more successful. I believe that's particularly true for SHC as it gets a lot more stuff, and I believe if it had been much more successful to stall Barbarossa, it would have been offered less Lend&Lease support, and Stalin likely also had been slower to go to extreme mobilization or recruitment measures. I believe we should not see 8M SHC Armies by summer 42, that is.

Pelton might be exaggerating a bit, but he is right that the blizzard dynamics is presently as unhistorical on the large scale as the German bowling run in summer 41. Both will hopefully look very different in WitE2.

(in reply to Leber)
Post #: 44
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