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A concerned war gamer - 10/20/2005 6:36:00 PM   
hyperbob


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From: Varsity Square
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I just finished conceding two pbem games and felt it necessary to post this to try and get the bad taste out of my mouth. Mostly sour grapes on the game results, but take from it what you may.

It looks to me that the experience level achieved by some players has taken the game down the 'gamey' trail. I enjoyed the games I played much more before I or my opponents fully understood or made use of all the intricacies of the game mechanics.

I see many replies in favor of keeping things open ended, thats fine if you like games where an axis player can intentionally kill off his own infantry to reduce its numbers so teching it up is easier. Or the Wallies player can intentionally abandon his transport chains to capture and then abandon 3 territories from the Italians in the first few game turns. I guess I feel that the repercussions for these ahistorical gambits doesn't add up to anything I can reconcile easily. What seems to be missing is the harsh realities the Axis powers faced in real life. ie: the need for specific resources such as rubber or oil or steel. And the political repercussions of tactical moves by the wallies that in reality would have most Western or Russian Generals shot and pissed on by their superiors.

With all the gamey gambits that have been amended away (prussia, bombing the japs early or Axis AV without any sort of global war) I don't understand how people can resist changing things to cause the 'do it or you will lose' effect.

Human nature to take things to the extreme rears its ugly head once again and threatens what I thought was a pretty cool game. I play these types of games to rekindle my passion for an era of history that intrigues me. I guess thats my first mistake, looks like what I'm really hoping for is a game that rewards realistic strategies and punishes those that don't account for the realities of wacky ahistorical approaches.

I'd like to see ideas and changes to the game that still made it interesting after 43' as it is right now the Axis prance till 43' then the Wallies dance on their grave after the thaw if the Axis don't achieve AV! I think the way too broad approach to tech levels is the root of the problem personally. I'd like to see less of an increase in effectivness for tech increases on both sides. This was after all the last conflict where the single soldier was the hero and was what mattered most in taking and holding land.

I'm sure some will counter that my vision of this game would lead to boring repetative game play, maybe so. But the alternative as I see it is a game so far from the actual conflict to be laughable. Sigh! chess with inf and armor instead of pawns and bishops!

Somebody help me understand please!!!



Post #: 1
RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/20/2005 7:08:14 PM   
aletoledo


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quote:

as it is right now the Axis prance till 43' then the Wallies dance on their grave after the thaw if the Axis don't achieve AV

playing the game as a straight historical affair is exactly what causes this to happen. however when history is thrown out the window and the game ceases to be ww2, then the axis have a chance past ww2.

I agree that it would be nice to have a better game to force decisions more closer to reality and still give players a chance to 'break out of the mold' (i.e. allowing the axis a chance to win). However there would have to be drastic changes to the current model to accomplish this.

I wish we could get 2by3 to make a W@W2, then we could make suggestions and do play testing with mods to contribute design ideas. I fear though that our community is too small to justify such an endeavor.

War in the pacific is an amazing game, reality is there and the level of detail is extreme. it still has problems, but none that I can really point to myself (only what others tell me are there). the problem with this level of detail is that it takes months or even years to play a single game and each turn can be a hour on occasions!

< Message edited by aletoledo -- 10/20/2005 7:10:15 PM >

(in reply to hyperbob)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/20/2005 7:13:13 PM   
Forwarn45

 

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I do have one suggestion that I've been thinking about in terms of play balance - but also addresses at least one of hyperbob's concerns - Why not make units involved in amphibious invasions incapable of doing any more strategic movement after the invasion? This has the benefit of being realistic in that normally units involved in combat cannot do strat movement. It also keeps the WA from doing gamey things (which I have to say I do very much enjoy doing on occassion)....... Finally, it might go a good way to further rectifying play balance in the sense of it being too easy and ahistorical for the WA to mess with the German army absent very careful planning.

< Message edited by Forwarn45 -- 10/20/2005 7:17:13 PM >

(in reply to aletoledo)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/20/2005 7:30:54 PM   
toddtreadway

 

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I think you're right about the Winter '43 deadline.

I proposed a few months ago having some sort of tension level between the Axis and the US that would allow the US to more gradually enter into the war. Basically, as the Axis did certain things, the tension would go up, and as the Allies did certain things it would go down. The US production multiple would change accordingly and certain areas would be unfrozen to reflect increased lend-lease, etc. Just an idea (taken liberally from the boardgame Advanced Third Reich).

(in reply to Forwarn45)
Post #: 4
RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/20/2005 7:48:33 PM   
carnifex


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quote:

War in the pacific is an amazing game, reality is there and the level of detail is extreme. it still has problems, but none that I can really point to myself (only what others tell me are there). the problem with this level of detail is that it takes months or even years to play a single game and each turn can be a hour on occasions!


If I had to play the entire WW2 using the WitP engine I would kill myself.

(in reply to toddtreadway)
Post #: 5
RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/20/2005 9:01:20 PM   
hyperbob


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quote:

ORIGINAL: aletoledo

playing the game as a straight historical affair is exactly what causes this to happen. however when history is thrown out the window and the game ceases to be ww2, then the axis have a chance past ww2.




Thats a big reason for my gripe post!

I did think this game had great replayabilty, what spoiled that was witnessing strategies that don't take into account anything more than the shear weight of the less than perfect game mechanics and how effective they can be. Again, Human nature being the culprit here. And again, again, sour grapes on my part.

Manipulating the game mechanics to take the game down roads that would never ever have a chance of succeding in reality spoils the feel for me I guess. Fix that Joel! ....J/K. its a great game and thanks for putting all the post release effort you guys do put in.


(in reply to aletoledo)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/21/2005 2:07:10 PM   
JanSorensen

 

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Hyperbob

Partly because I was one of your recent opponents and partly because I just case about this game I am curious if you could explain in detail what the gameyness you experience was? Feel free to use examples from our game if you wish.

You played a most excellent game btw - and should rightly have won. Only because the current game balance favors the Allies did I have any sort of chance at a comeback.

Anyway, please be more specific if you can about the problems you feel are present apart from the socalled super-soldier - because I am not quite sure what they might be.

< Message edited by JanSorensen -- 10/21/2005 2:09:56 PM >

(in reply to hyperbob)
Post #: 7
RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/21/2005 5:07:27 PM   
aletoledo


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actually Jan, I think he's refering to the game he and I just completed. I'd almost prefer he didn't comment of the strategy, but its really up to him. I have one game possibly in the works where I'd like to use this strategy and it'll give away the plot if he mentions it right now.

I'll say that its been played by yourself "against the AI" when you've played axis before, but I think you felt it wasn't feasible against a human player. well with some adjustments and some "gamey" tactics, its very possible. the resulting game is something that would never remotely happen in real life and possibly was never considered in the design of the game even.

I might add that I've done this against several people and nobody has taken favorably to it. I think even a few people have have stopped playing until the patch presumably would address a few of the concerns (which it won't).

< Message edited by aletoledo -- 10/21/2005 5:10:52 PM >

(in reply to JanSorensen)
Post #: 8
RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/21/2005 6:34:17 PM   
JanSorensen

 

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I see.

(in reply to aletoledo)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/21/2005 6:48:53 PM   
Uncle_Joe


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I fully agree with hyperbob on how some of the 'gamey' strategies ruins the flavor the game. Using ahistorical but plausible strategies are is IMO (like opting for Sea Lion, or making a stronger commitment to taking Africa or deciding to implement the ideas for the 'Z plan' and win naval war). Those are all things that are completely plausible within the framework of WW2.

Things like hyperbob mentions like killing off your own Infantry to take advantage of cheaper research is simply exploiting the game mechanics. Yes it works, but it is beyond silly when considered in any form of realistic framework. Like hyperbob, things like that kill my desire to want to play against other 'skilled' opponents. If I want to look for cheap exploits, I'll play Warcraft, Command and Conquer, or Madden 06 online. When I sit down to play a game like W@W, I want to pit strategy against strategy, not gimmick and gimmick.

Obviously people will disagree on what is an exploit and what is a clever strategy (as people did when the 'Neutral Hunting AV' was all the rage). One man's cash is another man's trash. That makes it even harder to agree on what is 'legal' and what shouldnt be.

I definately applaud 2by3 for trying to remove some of the early gimmicks that have come up (Italian 'gambit', Prussian attack, Japanese bombing etc), but I know that some of these 'strategies' are going to be next to impossible to eradicate. I find that unfortunate.

At one point I was really looking forward to TCP/IP play to 'broaden the horizons' of the opponents I could play. Now that I've seen what occurs in games between 'good' players, I'm less enthused and I'll probably stick to my own little crowd where we play competitively, but within the spirit of the rules, not the letter.

Anyways, that just my own $.02.

(in reply to aletoledo)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/21/2005 7:16:18 PM   
Joel Billings


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Well, we can't deal with them if we don't know about them. Also, there's a think called house rules that I know a lot of you use, and I'm all for players coming up with good house rules to get rid of some of the gamey items. Sometimes it's 1000 times easier to agree to some house rules than it is to try to code a change that fixes the problem with out breaking something else.

(in reply to Uncle_Joe)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/21/2005 7:44:39 PM   
Uncle_Joe


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quote:

Also, there's a think called house rules that I know a lot of you use, and I'm all for players coming up with good house rules to get rid of some of the gamey items.


I definately agree in theory, but as I stated, its tough to get people to agree on what is 'gamey' and what is 'good strategy'. The whole debate before you even play a game can suck the fun right out of it.

Thats why I just prefer to just have the game be the game and we can play. I realize that on a game this open-ended, that is going to be quite difficult. I guess thats the price of doing business...if you want freedom in the game, you gotta pay for it somewhere!

(in reply to Joel Billings)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/21/2005 8:24:33 PM   
Forwarn45

 

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quote:

I see many replies in favor of keeping things open ended, thats fine if you like games where an axis player can intentionally kill off his own infantry to reduce its numbers so teching it up is easier.


BTW - I'm still not convinced this is a good idea unless the allies are prepared to totally leave you alone. It costs supply and sometimes position and can result in units being destroyed rather than damaged if you're not careful. For most of the game, I think the Axis (at least the Germans) need every infantry they have. Anyway, I've never done it.... But actually addressing another gamey thing (the powerful WA transport capacity) may have the odd side effect of making this more viable.

On a side note - I think many exploits can be countered (often in a variety of ways), with the exception of course of some of the actual fundamental game mechanics that have been alluded to.

< Message edited by Forwarn45 -- 10/21/2005 8:29:06 PM >

(in reply to Uncle_Joe)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/21/2005 11:53:17 PM   
toddtreadway

 

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I think Joel's point was that when Atoledo was speaking about the strategy he had come up with that was not being well received by opponents (and that wasn't being fixed by the developers) that it is pretty tough to fix problems that noone will discuss in detail. Maybe this "problem" has been discussed before, I don't know.

Atoledo, want to try another game so I can see your strategy in action?

(in reply to Forwarn45)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/22/2005 12:21:27 AM   
silodhlehan

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: toddtreadway
that it is pretty tough to fix problems that noone will discuss in detail. Maybe this "problem" has been discussed before, I don't know.


After reading my way through the thread I really wonder what is being discussed?



I think the question always shouldn't be was it done but is it plausable.

Would british occupation of prussia draw russia into the war? Possibly.


I have issues with research but I think solving them might make the game far more complex. Is that what this is about?

Because it seems that a new technology would be found then it would spread quickly or slowly throughout the military. Some WA infantry was motorized "higher evasion?", some in brens/halftracks and in normandy the canadians spoiled started riding to battle in tank hulls, 'better armour?' Kangaroos. But none of these went through the whole WA Army. WA soldiers in burma would have loved copious apc's.

While most atlantic transports had degaussing cables to stop magnetic mines. don't think they cared in the pacific.

To make the game more complex I'd have the knowledge researched then have a separate cost to equip units with better attack evasion etc.

Would end not wanting any infantry units til they are 9's silliness.

Or you could pay research points for those in factories.

(in reply to toddtreadway)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/22/2005 5:14:51 AM   
aletoledo


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quote:


Atoledo, want to try another game so I can see your strategy in action?

sure we'll even make it a ladder, so I can have my revenge! :)

quote:

For most of the game, I think the Axis (at least the Germans) need every infantry they have. Anyway, I've never done it....

as far as I know, I'm the only one so far who will destroy his own infantry as germans. I've found thats the only way to match the 9/9 allied infantry. the allies can still get 9/9 a couple turns earlier, but that means 8/8 only comes to a turn apart. its an arms research race. in the end, I'd rather have fewer 9/9 infantry than a lot of 7/7 infantry.

(in reply to silodhlehan)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/23/2005 10:12:38 AM   
Daykeras

 

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How do you kill off units? I've never figured this out. I just played a game against the AI and I had a bunch of carriers without airplanes and 0 research and I wanted to be rid of them.

Is there a way to scrap units for pop points or resources or something?

(in reply to aletoledo)
Post #: 17
RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/23/2005 7:24:32 PM   
aletoledo


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no, you have to suicide attack them. the carriers are relatively easy, but to get germany down to 20 infantry is tough. I've had games where I was at 21 and didn't have any real place to attack with them!

of course the hard part is getting the unit only damaged. that way you get 1 population point back in the pool and you can scrap it for its resources (assuming its a high ticket item like a carrier). to scrap a unit, just click on it in the production queue and it will ask if you "would like to disband".

(in reply to Daykeras)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/24/2005 4:34:10 AM   
Daykeras

 

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Ah... Well then I vote for the ability to really scrap units!

(in reply to aletoledo)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/24/2005 6:41:48 AM   
a511


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agree!

(in reply to Daykeras)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/30/2005 7:47:33 PM   
Harrybanana

 

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OK time for my 2 cents; even though I won't be saying anything new to what I've said in other threads. I think 2By3 is doing a good job of dealing with the so called "gamey" tactics, each new patch is trying to address these, but it is true that people will disagree on what is "gamey" and what is alternate history.

I agree with Forwarn that it would be an improvement if units could not invade/attack and then strategic move out, but this may not be easy to fix.

My biggest concern (as I've said before) is with the Victory Conditions. What I feared would happen is happening. The Allies tend to win more games than the Axis because unless the Axis win the AV Victory it is almost impossible to hold out until F46 to win a Marginal Victory or even a Draw. IMHO opinion this should have not have been corrected by weakening the Allies but instead have been corrected by changing the end game Victory Conditions. Instead the latest patch does in fact handicap the Allies some more. The WA loses 3 transports and has it amphibious transport capacity reduced by 50% (surprisingly the German amphib capacity remains unchanged). As well there is some tweaking to the US industrial multiplier. I have no doubt that these and other changes will help to balance the game in the sense that it will now be easier for the Axis to win an AV Victory, so that the Axis may well now win 1/2 the games (or more). But they do nothing to make the game more "historical".

(in reply to a511)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/30/2005 8:29:36 PM   
aletoledo


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quote:

I have no doubt that these and other changes will help to balance the game in the sense that it will now be easier for the Axis to win an AV Victory, so that the Axis may well now win 1/2 the games (or more). But they do nothing to make the game more "historical".
i agree. the first thing I did after the patch was look at the german transport. I was (pleasantly) surprised to see tyhe germans with a higher level.

I'm sure this will help even things out a lot, but it moves the game further away from historical. reducing and freezing the transports probably would of been enough to help and still maintain history..

(in reply to Harrybanana)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/30/2005 8:41:40 PM   
JanSorensen

 

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I am not at all a historian - but I think something to consider is that transporters represent both merchant shipping AND landing crafts (as they may be in 1940).

So, while the WA obviously have greater invasion capability in total - they also had alot more merchants. As such I am willing to consider that the proportion of landing craft to merchants could be lower for the English than the Germans.

As I said - I dont know if thats true or not - but its something to consider.

(in reply to aletoledo)
Post #: 23
RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/30/2005 10:52:32 PM   
Wise01

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Harrybanana


I agree with Forwarn that it would be an improvement if units could not invade/attack and then strategic move out, but this may not be easy to fix.



That would be realy great!

Units which attacked enemy ones or got shot by enemys are not allowed to strategically flee.
With this new game rule it is still possibly to grab more than one enemy territory with one unit, but when combat with enemy unit occured the invading unit has to rest afterwards.
This should effectivly stop some "gamey" invasions/raidings and removing all units afterwards.
If you decide to invade you have to stay there! (at least for one turn if invading units survive)

(in reply to Harrybanana)
Post #: 24
RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/31/2005 12:28:36 AM   
mcaryf

 

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The Germans did not really have any purpose built landing craft, however, they started to assemble large numbers of Rhine barges to be towed across the Channel. These were variously attacked by the British with relatively ineffective bombing and bombardment raids. The failure to win the Battle of Britain was what stopped the cross channel movement. Thereafter the barges went back to being river transports. Thus it is not unhistoric for the Germans to have a cross channel capability but realistically it should be a temporary thing not a permanent threat as it took a lot of effort to assemble it and the British certainly knew it was being prepared. Thus creating it and being able to disband it again would not be a bad solution.

The Japanese situation was quite different and should be handled in a special way. They actually pioneered the use of specialist landing craft and the Allies took ideas from them. However, the Japanese forces involved were relatively small with Regimental (3,000 men) or smaller units conducting the actual invasions. I am currently developing a mod to simulate reality rather more closely in a number of key areas that help the Axis forces. One of my changes is to treat the Japanese Militia unit as actually a small elite landing force and reduce its need for transport capacity to 2 (as well as reducing its attack capability) but to provide Japan with rather more of them. This facilitates Japan capturing many small islands without giving her too much extra strength. The previous "game" solution of giving Japanese ships an amphibious capacity of 5 was not at all in line with history - another solution might be to allow the normal transport capacity to be used for unopposed landings.

Mike

(in reply to Wise01)
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RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/31/2005 3:09:29 AM   
Fallshirmjager

 

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The only way i think in which to solve the super soldiers or any super unit is in the way their created in the first place. the current method of the tech table is just a way to lump all the units getting researched in one form rather than how it should be. What i dont understand is that certaion units cannot be built in certain contries, yet those same units can be researched IE research points can be produced to up the units attributes in those countries where the ubit itself cant be built.that is where the problem lies. if units were only able to be researched where they are produced it would make a more realistic game making it harder to get the super soldiers. But on the other hand you would also have to allow for the building of troops in conquered countries then also. the waffen ss recruited many foreign volunteers from denmark, norway, finland, sweden (wiking division) and france. one of hitlers biggest mistakes and the downfall of nazism was its racism. if hitler would have recruited the anti-bolshevik ukrainians, belorussians, estonians, latvians, lithuanians he would have 4 million additional troops instead he chose to waste em thru the totenkopf and pointless slave labor.
what i suggest is something along the lines as the system used in medieval total war to up techs and build units.
ie a sub can only be built in e/w germ. and italy so accordingly can only be researched their. to me it doesnt make sense to be able to buy research or research U-571 in kiev. i dont think doenitz wouldve moved the labs to the ukraine.
also then if the game is to offer an alternate timeline i believe the building of militia or infantry should also be allowed in axis or allied conquered countries. hitler and heydrich mighta ordered the killings of the sub-humensch but id recruit if i was at the helm.
also it would be good if italy and rumania had their own identities and icons with their own units that had their own individual attributes. why should militia which can never be researched be allowed only to be built in these countires. were the italians and rumanians the lesser of the troops that came from india. which by the way were mostly comprised of the native peoples of that area. there are the nations flags on the production table why not have the research available also on that nations table?
would it be difficult to ammend this and set up a new production research method say in a world at war 2.
i may be wrong here but i dont recall any new zealanders, aussies or indian regiments hitting the beaches at dieppe it was the brits and canadians. to allow the wallies to build equal units in the uk canada the US and australia is the reason for the allied edge.

(in reply to mcaryf)
Post #: 26
RE: A concerned war gamer - 10/31/2005 12:04:44 PM   
mcaryf

 

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Just a small comment on New Zealanders and Aussies - the standard game way overstates the numbers of infantry available from these countries. Their starting forces are way too high as a GGWAW unit represents around 6 inf/militia Divisions and there just were not that many Anzacs so there should be no NZ unit (sorry guys) and probably only 1 Aussie in the starting forces.

Mike

(in reply to Fallshirmjager)
Post #: 27
RE: A concerned war gamer - 11/1/2005 12:30:42 AM   
Fallshirmjager

 

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hey guys, it was just a thought but if anything is gonna get changed if theirs an expansion it would be cool to see this-

1. that germany is able to produce infantry in italy and rumania (that are not german troops but italian and rumanian and have a different icon) there stats would be lower something like chinas or russias inf.
2. units that are researched have to be researched where they are built. it kind of limits a nations ability to up stats bigtime.
e.g. japan could not use the 3 p.pts in manchuria to research a zero being built in honshu but would have to use a research pt. in honshu or where ever a zero can be built. Like wise with the panzers where ever their built they can only be researched where they are built type deal.
3. units can be repaired in foreign countries where units were repaired historically. there was 1,149 major U-boat overhauls in the French bases during the war, 492 were carried out in the Lorient dockyard. so german subs should be able to get repaired and researched in western france.
4. some type of valor rating like medieval total war, every couple of battles they survive they get a +1 to their attack/defensive rolls. so if a unit survived without being destroyed theyd be pretty formidable, makes more sense than you could discern from which troops are the elite and which ones are not.
Sil you said some canadian units only had 6 weeks training yet units in the game dont ever see combat and their super soldiers. It would kind of make the game more challenging to not be able to just tech your troops with research points from rumania when you cant even build troops there. or tech cags and subs in the mid west or india.
i dotn know but a valor rating would be cool it could be another figure under the movement figure on the units icon.
hyper bobs right. it blows goats that your fallschirmjagers defending the gothic line get crushed by 8/8 yanks who havent seen combat.
limiting where the research points come from and adding a valor system, would mimic what really happened and happens in real life. the yanks that hit the beache sin normandy werent as seasoned as the german troops they were going to face come the battle of the bulge. lookit operation market garden. and dieppe also. the wallies had their super troopers the d-day dodgers they were fightin in italy, africa way before overlord.

(in reply to mcaryf)
Post #: 28
RE: A concerned war gamer - 11/1/2005 7:13:42 PM   
silodhlehan

 

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Yeah I did this as the Japanese in the dutch east indies and took out like 4 places with 1 infantry.


To fix just make the first unit fire a shot if there was no combat, That way when I send 2 light fleets againts transports they wouldn't get burned and not chase the little critters across the ocean if they don't fight.

(in reply to Wise01)
Post #: 29
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