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Early Game Problems as Union

 
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Early Game Problems as Union - 8/28/2014 8:19:38 PM   
Guardsman2

 

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Hey guys, I've only been playing for a short time and have only started a couple of campaign games as the Union. So far I've gotten to about mid-1862 and have done ok in general. My problem is two-fold;

First the massive disparity in the combat power of Confederate units compared to Union. I've noticed that Confederate units are about twice the size of Union so I'm sure that has a lot to with it. Will this disparity lessen as times goes on? Will Union units ever match Confederate in size?

Second, how do you deal with the CS onslaught of partisan and 'raider' units, especially in the West? These units seem to pop up from out of nowhere, are never out of supply, seize and hold cities, and no matter how hard I hit them with larger forces they are never destroyed. They simply retreat to another territory and in a turn or two their combat power returns to normal. I have FoW set to on, so the combat values could be off, but still.
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RE: Early Game Problems as Union - 8/29/2014 2:21:10 PM   
bommerrang


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Yes, in my opinion it is a major design flaw. Expert players will tell you as the union to build many militias, etc. in the beginning to shut them down but I view all of that gamey and not in the spirit of the Civil War. I like my wargames a little closer to historical. The South is way too strong early on and they can just build a huge wall across their border and nothing can be done about it.

(in reply to Guardsman2)
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RE: Early Game Problems as Union - 8/29/2014 4:44:47 PM   
Nimrod 9th


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From: Central MO
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Faced a similar problem in my first Forge of Freedom PBEM game. Huge 1861 CSA armies. I couldn't do anything for all of '61 and all of '62. The guy I was playing was very friendly , understanding, and even tried to give helpful advice. But I found the huge CSA armies so big and it was taking soooo long to slowly build the Union, I gave up. Shoot, it was late '62 and I still couldn't match the size of his forces, and I could tell it was going to be awhile before I could. I got frustrated and gave up. The American Civil War is not the Union sitting around for 2 years building forces to overcome huge early war Confederate armies. I'm starting to wonder if it's a designer problem, how do you balance the CSA and USA in '61 and '62? So far the answer seems to be "give them more."

(in reply to bommerrang)
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RE: Early Game Problems as Union - 8/30/2014 2:11:50 AM   
OldSarge


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It should be pointed out that the number you see on the stack is not the unit's size, but rather its combat effectiveness or PWR. PWR is influenced by a number of factors but, most importantly, by the experience and quality of both leadership and troops. The South starts with a number of top notch commanders, while the top level commanders for the North are largely incompetent.

While using FOW the enemy unit information is hidden from you. You can possibly get a peek into the enemy by employing your cavalry. This may or may not work depending upon the cavalry available to the enemy, but if it does you'll know if you're facing a brigade, a division, a full Corps, or all of the above.

I have played several GC as both USA and CSA and in my last USA GC, Grant and Sherman were able to clear Western Tennesse and make an early Vicksburg campaign possible by mid-1862. The ability to create a powerful Union force is there if the player takes advantage of the choices available to them. There are excellent Union commanders waiting on the wings in subordinate postions and you as the player need to cultivate and raise them up.

As for Militia, they are very low quality troops and should never be deliberatedly placed into a combat unit. If I have to recruit them, I will first attach them to an HQ with some training capability (i.e. a HQ support unit) to get them up to at least an infantry level. Fortunately, the Union has enough resources to be able to recruit line infantry and elite infantry without having to rely upon milita.

(in reply to Nimrod 9th)
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RE: Early Game Problems as Union - 9/2/2014 4:56:26 PM   
Guardsman2

 

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I understand combat power and FoW. In the early game, the CS seems able to generate stacks that are much more powerful than anything the US can create. How is it that the CS can have a stack of close 1500, when the Union can barely manage 600? Even after Corps are enabled, I can hardly get over 800, while the CS has had 1500+ stacks from the beginning.

If I'm doing something wrong I'll accept that, but somebody tell me what it is. ;-)

(in reply to OldSarge)
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RE: Early Game Problems as Union - 9/2/2014 5:09:21 PM   
Hyacinth

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Guardsman2

I understand combat power and FoW. In the early game, the CS seems able to generate stacks that are much more powerful than anything the US can create. How is it that the CS can have a stack of close 1500, when the Union can barely manage 600? Even after Corps are enabled, I can hardly get over 800, while the CS has had 1500+ stacks from the beginning.

If I'm doing something wrong I'll accept that, but somebody tell me what it is. ;-)


I will ask a stupid question, are you over stacking the commands and taking down your power that way?

Other than manpower advantage Union has artillery advantage, CSA should never face that in the clear unless dug in.

But you should just contend to defending or out maneuvering CSA until you get better leaders, this will be even easier if CSA is defending everything.

(in reply to Guardsman2)
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RE: Early Game Problems as Union - 9/2/2014 5:59:41 PM   
Guardsman2

 

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I am keeping my stacks under the CP penalty. In fact, that is part of the problem. My stacks can get to about 500 or so before the CP penalty kicks in, but the CS seem to be able to get to 1100+. Does the AI ignore the CP penalty?

(in reply to Hyacinth)
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RE: Early Game Problems as Union - 9/2/2014 6:13:53 PM   
Hyacinth

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Guardsman2

I am keeping my stacks under the CP penalty. In fact, that is part of the problem. My stacks can get to about 500 or so before the CP penalty kicks in, but the CS seem to be able to get to 1100+. Does the AI ignore the CP penalty?


Actually it does on some settings, it reads where you set the difficulty.

You should get past 500 easy after you get divisions and corps, they are both on different dates if you noticed?

(in reply to Guardsman2)
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RE: Early Game Problems as Union - 9/3/2014 12:27:19 AM   
OldSarge


Posts: 123
Joined: 11/25/2010
From: Albuquerque, NM
Status: offline
I don't have a GC going right now because I'm waiting for 1.04 final to come out. Anyway, I started the Shiloh campaign which gives you a probelm similar to what you're describing. None of the Union units start with anything close to 1000 PWR. Grant has his historical setup with five divisions and Buell has two weak corps under Thomas and Crittenden.



I pick on Thonas, for no good reason, but to show you how to organize your Corps. How you do it is up to you. I decide the since Grant needs at least two Corps to be effective to split Crittenden off from Buell. I move his divisions over to Thomas and reshuffle their brigades. Thomas started with 714 PWR and now after a little reorganizing I have him up to 1220 PWR. After the reorg I now have a free division commander who will travel with Crittenden to Grant.



For Grant, I pulled out Sherman and McClernand to show the starting strength of their divisons. McClernand is a 2* so I'm able to disband his division and reform him as the leader of the XIV Corps. Again, I move divisions and brigades around until I have something close to what I'm looking for.



Try it yourself. I wasn't trying to build an optimal Corps, so it is entirely possible that you can reorganize your forces to be better than what I've done. Enjoy!

< Message edited by OldSarge -- 9/3/2014 1:31:16 AM >

(in reply to Hyacinth)
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