Natural alliance table (Full Version)

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Marshall Ellis -> Natural alliance table (5/18/2008 5:34:39 PM)

Hey guys:

Are theere any change settings in the natural alliance tables that you think would be more realistic?
I'm specially asking since I am still seeing that AU and PR are still not allying very much in my diplomacy rewrites??? This seems to be because their natual alliance setting is "-1"???!!!

NeverMan -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/18/2008 5:36:41 PM)

In most games I have played, Au and Pr have always had a strong alliance and a strong anti-France war pact. Combined movement has also always been a great way to fight the French.

Given a competent France, Au and Pr have little chance if they stand alone.

Marshall Ellis -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/18/2008 5:39:42 PM)


No doubt that in every game I have seen, PR and AU need each other if they are to have a viable chance at winning which is why I was questioning the natural alliance table setting of "-1" which makes their default stance less than friendly???

NeverMan -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/18/2008 5:41:22 PM)

Maybe the "-1" is a historical indication; however, what does that mean in the game balance?

So, yes, maybe this should be changed to help game balance; otherwise, it's not going to matter how tactically good the AI is, France will take them down one at a time.

Marshall Ellis -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/18/2008 5:50:13 PM)


You're right. It certainly keeps the balance off because they are hesitant to ally with each other which is a must.
I may change this and experiment (BEFORE adding to a release).

ndrose -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/18/2008 7:08:42 PM)

I think the -1 reflects the fact that Prussia and Austria are natural enemies; but in the 1805 campaign the overwhelming strength of France has to drive them together. If France is badly defeated, then I think that -1 is accurate.

So, if it's possible, I'd suggest leaving the -1 intact, but giving a big bonus in the alliance tables to countries near France when France is strong (which will be almost all the time in the 1805 campaign). If you ever add change of dominant status to the game, that could be linked to the alliance tables. (i.e. if France loses dominance, Prussia and Austria revert to -1; but while France is dominant there's a big bonus to their alliance table.)


pzgndr -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/18/2008 8:30:24 PM)

What about integrating the National Variants into the AI diplomacy model? DOWs, alliances, peace treaties, etc. should all have some weighting towards historical national interests. And Nathan's suggestion to factor in the dominant status is good; the natural alliance table could be more flexible. Who's at war with who, or under enforced peace, should also be considerations during AI diplomacy checks. It is all as interesting as it is complicated.

NeverMan -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/18/2008 8:43:33 PM)

Personally, I don't play wargames so that I can continue to make the mistakes of the past, I play them to try and win and usually that means diverting from historical perspectives.

That said, ndrose nad pzgndr have some good ideas that should be considered, I certainly think the AI needs to rely on more than 1 table to make it's decisions. Things should be weighted and they should be dynamic.

Marshall Ellis -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/19/2008 2:56:27 PM)


It's not just one table to make a decison BUT this is a lot of weight!
I am just puzzled at the fact that Prussia's worst enemy is France then Austria per the natural alliance tables!?!?

NeverMan -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/19/2008 3:38:25 PM)

I guess historically they were ruled by inbred idiots?

Marshall Ellis -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/19/2008 4:07:39 PM)

Historically, I think you're right!

Jimmer -> RE: Natural alliance table (5/19/2008 6:11:21 PM)

I think that they really WERE enemies, at least much of the time. In 1805, Russia was an Austrian friend, but after getting spanked for helping them against Napoleon, they adopted a much more hostile attitude. As if it were Austria's fault that Napoleon was bloodthirsty.

They were frequently both an enemy and a friend of Prussia, depending on, well, more or less the phase of the moon (I exaggerate, but not much).

Prussia and Austria hated each other, but were eventually forced to get along to fight the French. But, that didn't happen until von Blucher came out of retirement (1813?).

Even Prussia and GB, for whom it is essential to be allies, were not exactly the best of friends. More of an "enemy of my enemy" kind of thing.

Bottom line: Historical relationships won't work for game purposes if one wants a more balanced game. But, if one wanted a HISTORICAL game, then, well gosh, Prussia and Austria are going to get their collective butts kicked for the first 6-8 years.

So, there really are more than one sets of national modifiers.

I suggest three strategies:

First, have the AI national mods be different depending on whether there is only one human player, or if there are more than one. Historical numbers work if there are, say, two players and five AIs.

Napoleon has to become a lesser leader, or France will crush all opposition through the game. It doesn't seem like much, but making Nappy a 5.4.6 leader has an ENORMOUS impact on the game. Instead of near automatic wins against most enemies, he becomes their equal. He still has higher morale and movement, but he is not the crushingly overpowering leader he is at 5.5.6.

Him becoming a 4.4.6 leader has a similar effect, but not quite as pronounced.

Third, impact the other major powers' decisions partially based upon how well they and their adversaries are doing. For this purpose, only victory points matters. I suggest something like a check done annually or quarterly, where the number changes downward slightly if the potential enemy scored more VP than the deciding nation did. Note that this change should only impact the numbers in one direction.

Finally, there's the ultimate non-change: Bid more. France should be able to defeat the AIs bidding as much as 100+ VP. Against humans his edge is a lot less, but still, 50 VP as a bid should be quite feasible. This is a built-in "handicap" that everybody is required to use. Of course, if everybody bids zero, ...

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