1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (Full Version)

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notenome -> 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 3:11:19 PM)

Me and ComradeP have been discussing Soviet counterattacking in 1941 for a few turns now, and I'd like to amplify the discussion a bit. The idea here is to have constructive criticism and to back up our comments with some factual base, and not to simply complain (or complain about complaining, etc).

I've beeng giving the 1:1 combat odds retreat 'advantage' of the Soviets some thought. The average Soviet rifle division in 1941 will have a CV of 1 or 2. The average Axis division will have a defensive CV ranging from let's say 8 to 20, with these numbers going down as the war progresses. That means that with 'normal' rules and all things being equal (aka leader checks and support units) it would take roughly in between 11 to 26 divisions to achieve 2:1 odds, if we average CV strength at 1.5.

However almost all counterattacks will involve some movement of units, with the better divisions used, so its probably better to estimate an average CV of 2 for soviet divisions. That means that an average counterattack would require in between 8 and 20 divisions, all things being equal, in a 2:1 CV scenario.

With the 1:1 CV bonus the Soviets get, the number gets cut down to 4 and 10. If we remember the 3 unit per hex rule, that's in between 2 and 4 stacks of units.

However, the attacker can always concentrate support assets (especially artillery), whilst the defender can't (it's not their turn), which adds a large bonus to the attacking CV, and since soviet divisions have low CV values, this bonus can quickly become worth a couple divisions worth.

Personally I think the problem some have with Soviet counterattacks is that they are too predictable in terms of sucess, I understand the idea of 1:1 CV because 2:1 odds may make it almost impossible for the Soviets to sucessfully counterattack except in extreme situations. Maybe upping the needed CV to 1.5:1 could add a little more unpredictability to the mix, which I think is desirable, after all the Soviets conducted dozens of uncussesful counterattacks before achieving a tactical victory at Yelnya (this in terms of 100 square miles of course, there were many succesful counterattacks on a smaller scale).

Speaking of Yelnya another thing me and ComradeP have discussed is that Soviet casualties still seem a bit low. If we take the example of Yelnya, out of 103,000 men there were 10,700 KIA or MIA and 21,152 wounded, about 1/3 of the total force. Considering the offensive lasted from August 20th to September 8th, it fits well within the game timeframe.

Lastly there is the issue with casualties suffered by motorized/panzer units in counterattacks, which Comradep finds to be quite high (and they probably are). Personally I think that the game doesn't model well enough the impact of mobility on defense. If we look at the rather dramatic example of the Korsun Pocket (not a typical 41 situation to be sure) there were an estimated 19,000 MIA/captured/KIA plus 11,000 wounded evacuate with 28,000 Axis and auxiliary units brekaing out of about 60,000 initially in the pocket, plus 156 tanks lost. By contrast Soviet casualties were 728 tanks and 24,286 MIA/KIA and about 55,000 wounded out of initially 336,700 men, 924 tanks and some 1000 aircraft. Now generally the numbers of wounded in Soviet attacks is roughly equal to KIA, whilst at Yelnya it was twice that and at Korsun 3 times as many. So maybe Soviet disabled losses from combat should be increased somewhat.




ComradeP -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 4:16:54 PM)

With preparation and planning, the Soviets can have numerous units with CV's of 3 and 4 in July/August. Both Flavio and myself have made more than enough attacks at 2:1 (uncorrected) or higher in our vs AI games to conclude that the odds modifier might not be necessary.

notenome has made a number of those attacks himself, including against multiple divisions. The Soviets also get more variability with their CV's. I'm still waiting for an explanation on the tester forum on exactly how that's possible if the modifiers are multipliers/dividers (and what that variability amounts to as a percentage of the starting CV).

The +1 odds modifier also ignores the massive C&C screwups that made sure the vast majority of Soviet counterattacks in 1941 were failures even if they had a good chance of succeeding with more capable leadership. For example, even though the counterattacks in the AGN area were often made by units of the same army, they still faced significant C&C problems according to Glantz. In the game, units of the same army always attack at 100% command modifier, with no penalties if you attack with, say, 10 divisions instead of a more manageable 4 or 5. This is one of the reasons why I feel even the worst Soviet leaders in terms of skill ratings are too competent in 1941.

As such, I'd say that the +1 odds modifier is unnecessary.

One important thing to keep in mind is that the Axis have no such hard coded bonus, of any kind. The things that make Axis divisions good (morale, experience, good leaders) are all things the Soviets can achieve or approximate currently, although with upcoming changes to Soviet experience gains, their experience might be lower.

However, as examples like notenome's counterattack against two of my best mobile divisions have shown, even ~40-50 morale/experience units can successfully attack ~80-90 experience/99 morale German units and inflict a, by German standards, large amount of losses.

I am not convinced that the goal should be to allow the Soviets to attack a stack without trained units. I can't currently think of any example where the Soviets successfully attacked 2 German divisions located in a 10 mile area pre-autumn 1941. There might be an example or two, but I doubt the attacks were as plentiful as they can be in the game. The majority of the successful Soviet counterattacks pre-autumn were conducted against overstretched divisions.

Single German divisions have a defensive CV of 8 to 15 or so, and it's perfectly possible to attack the weaker ones as the Soviets with a more limited amount of forces than an entire army.

A part of the problem is that there's no flanking, or a direct benefit for having protected flanks aside from the enemy not being able to attack from the flank. There is, as such, no difference in losses between an attack from 1,2,3,4 or 5 hexsides as far as I know. As such, retreat losses from a situation where a retreat would've been easy (an attack from one or two hexsides next to eachother) are identical to a situation where a retreat would've been more costly (an attack from 5 hexsides, with only 1 open hexside).

I find it highly doubtful that any head-on attacks against mobile divisions caused 3000 losses pre-autumn 1941.

As such, I am of the opinion that Axis retreat losses are too high. The units are highly experienced, yet take fairly high losses. Keep in mind that when the Soviets would make, say, 5 attacks like notenome made each turn, which is certainly a possibility later on and is actually a conservative estimate, the Axis would essentially lose a mobile division each turn in terms of casualties, something they can't deal with no matter how good the strategic situation is.

As notenome mentioned, another problem is the fairly low Soviet losses for retreats or routs. Divisions seem to take at most 2500-3000 losses as single divisions and around 2000-2500 losses as part of a stack. A clever Soviet player can put the units he expects to rout on refit, which will mean that their combat effectiveness is completely restored in the Soviet part of the turn. As such, there's little benefit for routing a division aside from it moving out of the way.

My best divisions also cause less losses than they take when they're attacked, as 40-50 experience/morale units, when massed, can fairly easily cause similar losses to my 80-90 experience/99 morale units.

The "ceiling" for losses for routing units seems much too low. If an individual Soviet division routs, it takes around 2500-3000 losses, when a stack of three divisions routs it takes about 5000-5500 losses. As such, one division essentially takes no casualties compared to how many casualties the divisions would take if they're individually routed.

Historically, there were initially a substantial number of cases where Soviet forces lost cohesion after an attack and were overran before recovering it. That is not possible in the game, as divisions rarely shatter, suffer fairly low losses when routing, always rout to their HQ, and often can't be targeted again in the same turn.

The way routing works currently also means that it's in some ways better for a unit to rout than to retreat. As Axis divisions tend to retreat, they can in some cases be attacked twice on the same turn. When a unit routs, it often can't be touched again on the same turn. As such, the Axis face the weird situation that their higher morale is a liability on the defence in some cases as it allows the Soviets to hit them harder.

As there's no "chase phase" after combat for mobile unit, or any direct advantage for engaging non-mobile units with mobile units, mobile units are underpowered in my opinion. They might have impressive CV's on their counter, but those get reduced to very little with hasty attacks and deliberate attacks are too costly in terms of MP's.

Mobile units also face the problems that fatique and fuel consumption are linked to MP's, so even if you move only 20 miles a week due to enemy units/ZOC hindering movement, your divisions will be out of fuel and quite fatiqued, even though they've advanced less than 3 miles a day, in some cases without actually attacking. As such, ZOC is a really powerful way to stop mobile units currently.

The odds of a battle also mostly have no effect aside from determining whether the defenders are scouted, hold, retreat or rout. This is one of the few case where there's no real direct link between odds and casualties, as casualties are caused by interaction between attacker and defender ground and air elements.

Concluding, the problems I face (I'm speaking solely based on my own experience here) as the Axis are:

-even the weakest Soviet units can stop my mobile units in difficult terrain. A problem with the fort level calculations/defender CV multiplier was discovered this week, so there'll be less of a problem for games that start after they're patched when the patch becomes available.

-my mobile units cause fairly few losses when they're attacking, but take high losses when defending.

-it is more or less impossible to wreck a Soviet unit's combat effectiveness for more than your own turn phase. As a result, the pattern tends to be:

1)I rout units, they take fairly low losses.
2)They rally 9 out 10 times in the Soviet phase.
3)notenome can attack with them on his part of the turn or place them in a carpet/line again.
4)Repeat every turn, making my advance extremely slow in some areas.

This might be the primary thing slowing me down, that I can't really put the hurt on the Soviets for more than my own turn phase with even the best of attacks.




squatter -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 4:23:08 PM)

Why does the Sov odds modifier exist in the first place?

Because in reality German troops were more likely to retreat than Soviey? No. So presumably it is there because the system does not simulate Soviet ability to counterattack without it - at least in the early game.

Now that's fine, only that I think that coupled with the punishing retreat attrition suffered by German mobile units, it's a little too tipped in the Soviet's favour.

I think a potential balancing tweak would be to reduce retreat attrition losses for Axis mobile units somewhat. Especially if the attacker has no mobile units of his own in the attack.

I think this is logically justified by better Axis C2, all tanks having radios etc, thus better able to maneuver/withdraw on a tactical scale.

I also think that AV losses are slightly too high when being attacked by infantry only. Is there much evidence of (highly succesful) Russian mass infantry attacks against armoured spearheads in 41? I thought counterattacking was mainly carried out by armour, mech, cav and motorised, ie around Smolensk? In WitE the Sov player's best counterattacking units are INF, with mech and armour better served to mobile defence. I dont find this realistic. Does prepared attack CV useage for armoured units need to be looked at?





Flaviusx -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 4:28:03 PM)

It's allegedly representing Soviet doctrine, and supposed to offset the firepower doctrinal advantage of the Germans.

Personally, I've never cared for it. Pieter feels much more strongly about this than I do, but I don't think it's particularly necessary.




ComradeP -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 4:30:48 PM)

I believe only Gary knows why the modifier is there, I have yet to see anyone explain its presence on the tester forum aside from the short statement Flavio mentioned.

Overall losses were increased pre-release, but retreat attrition was supposedly lowered a bit for experienced units. I'm not seeing that, though. I'm even taking more losses than the Soviets.




JAMiAM -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 5:49:13 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP

This might be the primary thing slowing me down, that I can't really put the hurt on the Soviets for more than my own turn phase with even the best of attacks.

Pieter,

With all due respect, I think that your main problem is that you approach your Axis play, by playing with your assets, like a Soviet. I believe that you are misusing your forces, and losing out on the advantages that they do have. Whenever you're ready to start that game, let me know, because I'd really like to prove many of your complaints wrong on the field of battle.




wosung -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 6:03:10 PM)

What about lowering the probability of Soviet SU's getting involved?

Regards




notenome -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 6:34:43 PM)

I was contemplating what ComradeP has stated and contemplated alot of the Soviet counterattacks of the early war, which typically suffered from poor C&C and coordination. As such I think that maybe a more reasonable model would be to allow the Soviets to make hasty attacks with multiple stacks. These uncordinated mass attacks characterised a good part of the fighting in AGS as well as other frontier battles. Alternatively one could limit the maximum amount of coordination between units to the experience/and or morale of the army HQ, so for example two divisions attacking/defending the same hex and same army would have a maximum C&C be equal to the HHQ's experience level.

I've attached a map of the Battle of Brody, where 5 soviet mechanized corps attacked elements of 1st Panzergroup (I belive it was 2 panzerdivisions). 8th Mechanized alone lost 800 tanks, and the Germans lost some 200 tanks (but held the field) iirc. One thing that is important to note is that the Luftwaffe destroyed over 200 tanks in the battle, which is far less then what is currently modeled in game. This is a 'hidden' issue that may be influencing these combat results, how much does Lufwaffe air superiority affect the outcome of battles? They blew up HQs, separated infantry from tanks, prevented ressuply, a lot more than blow up tanks.

[image]local://upfiles/33636/2B4E3B6D16D64A13B7003799BB75FBFD.jpg[/image]




ComradeP -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 7:06:27 PM)

quote:

With all due respect, I think that your main problem is that you approach your Axis play, by playing with your assets, like a Soviet. I believe that you are misusing your forces, and losing out on the advantages that they do have. Whenever you're ready to start that game, let me know, because I'd really like to prove many of your complaints wrong on the field of battle.


A thing like that is easy to say, do you have proof?




Smirfy -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 7:23:33 PM)



Just one thing to note about morale, the better units especially SS units perversely suffered more casaulties. Quite logical when you think about though.




notenome -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 7:28:12 PM)

On the other hand SS and Guards units were generally assigned to the most dangerous engagements. So its hard to compare casualties without comparing how other units in similar situations fared. In other words if you substute Das Reich at Kursk with 7th Panzer, would the casualties have been lower? If you substitute Wiking with a panzergrenadier division at Korsun?




JAMiAM -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 7:29:27 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP

quote:

With all due respect, I think that your main problem is that you approach your Axis play, by playing with your assets, like a Soviet. I believe that you are misusing your forces, and losing out on the advantages that they do have. Whenever you're ready to start that game, let me know, because I'd really like to prove many of your complaints wrong on the field of battle.


A thing like that is easy to say, do you have proof?

I've been observing and analysing yours and notenome's AAR threads, seeing from both sides how the game has progressed, forces available to each, the strategies employed, and tactics used. Your play of the Axis seems to be too colored by your experience as the Soviets, and your method emulates what might be successful for them. However, it does not play to the strengths of the Axis at this stage of the war, and that is where I see you failing.

The "proof" will be in a game between us. If you've changed your mind and no longer wish to face the challenge, or don't have the time, then let me know, and I'll stop pursuing one between us. Maybe I could find another highly competent Soviet player to further develop my proof upon. Notenome, or Flaviusx, perhaps? Another player with tester level experience?




Smirfy -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 7:54:06 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: notenome

On the other hand SS and Guards units were generally assigned to the most dangerous engagements. So its hard to compare casualties without comparing how other units in similar situations fared. In other words if you substute Das Reich at Kursk with 7th Panzer, would the casualties have been lower? If you substitute Wiking with a panzergrenadier division at Korsun?


That kinda makes the point other units would have given way whilst elite units particulary the SS kept at it. Early in the war Heer officers were critical of the casaulties SS units took taking objectives.




ComradeP -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 8:29:30 PM)

quote:

I've been observing and analysing yours and notenome's AAR threads, seeing from both sides how the game has progressed, forces available to each, the strategies employed, and tactics used. Your play of the Axis seems to be too colored by your experience as the Soviets, and your method emulates what might be successful for them. However, it does not play to the strengths of the Axis at this stage of the war, and that is where I see you failing.

The "proof" will be in a game between us. If you've changed your mind and no longer wish to face the challenge, or don't have the time, then let me know, and I'll stop pursuing one between us. Maybe I could find another highly competent Soviet player to further develop my proof upon. Notenome, or Flaviusx, perhaps? Another player with tester level experience?


If notenomes defence instead of the system would be causing the things I'm describing, that might be the case, but it isn't as the system is causing me more damage than notenome's actions. His defence, with a line on the Dnepr, is actually quite passive.

I'm stopped by the terrain, major rivers, ZOC costs, causing low losses, and routed units being combat ready the next turn. I am not stopped by the depth of Soviet defences (there is no depth along large parts of the line), the quality of the Soviets defenders (mostly divisions with 1 or 2 offensive CV), or counterattacks (there are barely any).

I'll setup a multiplayer game now.




raizer -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 8:53:34 PM)

comrade I know its a lot but please be so kind as to post aars.  I want to see how you fight as sovs




randallw -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 9:01:25 PM)

We should remember that the CV number on a unit is just sort of an estimate, and is also rounded down; a number showing as 1 might be barely 1, or could be a 1.8 or 1.9.




squatter -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 9:07:42 PM)

I believe notmenome deserves at least a little credit, ComP.

He's played a good game if you ask me, passive, active or otherwise.




cookie monster -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 9:13:14 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: randallw

We should remember that the CV number on a unit is just sort of an estimate, and is also rounded down; a number showing as 1 might be barely 1, or could be a 1.8 or 1.9.


It's the enemies second CV number you wanna watch out for.

It has the defensive CV modifiers added in.




notenome -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 9:17:13 PM)

I believe it was Roger Dangerfield who once said: I get no respect.

But this thread isn't about me or ComradeP, it's about Soviet offensive performance vs Axis units in 41.




cookie monster -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 9:42:51 PM)

Maybe its the IGOUGO one week turns system

Plus six sides to a hex that can allow this gang-bang which is the problem

A whole turn to mass divisions across a 2 or 3 maybe more hex attack will lead to these kind of problems

Perhaps leaving some brigades/regiments on RESERVE will blunt these attacks

I cant see any other way of protecting exposed spearheads from a concentrated counter-attack

I think it's more a quirk of the game as you say the system




PMCN -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 9:47:14 PM)

The soviets suffer signficantly higher casaulties to "buy" that +1 bonus. My AAR is full of the data if you want to see it. Attacking with the soviets I will in general suffer 10% casaulties or better to force an attacker back. So if I attack with 40,000 men to 17,000 I will loose at least 4000-5000 men on that attack. The axis forces will general pull out once they suffer 1700 men and their retreat losses will be small so they will end up loosing 2200-2500 men to my 4000-5000.

Although it is not hard coded the fact they have have much better generals (and generals that good up the whole chain of command) means they are far more likely to double their final CV, and for that to happen a lot. This means they can be almost guarrenteed to negate the effect of halving their CV when making hasty attacks and they can win a lot of otherwise marginal battles.

Watching a battle you see the difference. I finally today got a good result with an attack. I hit a lone german infantry division in essential no entrenchement level with 2 Tank Corps, 3 Guards infantry, 1 Guards Mnt and 1 Regular Infantry division...80,000 men, 1200 guns and 270 tanks to 17,500 men and 200-ish guns. add in I got air support and my fighters broke through to drive his off. I actually never had higher losses then he did at any time in the attack, between my air strikes and my massive amount of long range artillery, I managed to close to bayonet and SMG range and suffer less casaulties then I inflicted. In the end the infantry division retreated with nearly 3000 casualties to my 600 or so. But then I hit them with 7:1 just about.

Even in the blizzard I don't think a single attack I launched suffered less casaulties then I delt. I basically got used to taking 110%+. And that assumes you move the unit. That is the key point here. The +1 gives you a better chance to move the enemy which is the only thing that even comes close to equalizing the losses. If you don't move them then in general you suffered 4000 casaulties and they took only 500-600. Your level of casualties are pretty much a given. I attacked a cut off for 3 weeks (in the third week) Pz division with 100,000 men and 1000+ guns and 250 tanks. My losses and theirs including the surrender were about the same. They had 6000 men, 100 guns and 60 tanks or something like that. I lost 5000 men, 50 guns and 70 tanks or something like that.

CV as printed on the counter is pretty much meaningless unless the TOE of the two units is the same otherwise it is a crap shoot what it means. The formula in the manual makes that clear enough. CV = ((tanks*9)+(infantry*3)+(support+MGs))/1000 and that multiplied by some factor to do with current experience levels. Throw in some further modifications for SPGs and AC etc. But in that calculation a tank is a tank be it BT2 or KV1, and no where does it include artillery which causes at least 50% of the losses in a fight. It has nothing to do with how much damage a unit can dish out or sustain since a high CV from BT2 tanks will evaporate either defensively or offensively as the tanks can be killed by anything upwards of a HMG. It is calculated at the start of the battle (where it is divide by 100 not 1000) and once again at the end of the battle using only the surviving squads, and tanks. This is then doubled or halved or remains the same depending on leader rolls. Then you calculate the odds based on that. In the soviet case you can maybe add in a +1. The leader rolls are generally speaking much more significant. I've seen in the last turn two battles that should have been defeats turned into victories for the axis because their final CV was doubled.

I judge by men, and size. Also german infantry divisions are typically 2x as large as Soviet one so 3 soviet divisions doesn't really outnumber one of them a lot. And early war pushing back a german infantry division would be very hard, and costly. Counter attacks that failed against Rumanian and Italian divisons again cost me 4000 men each time. Shoving back a single security division never cost much less than 1000 men.

Now when your units gain experience this will change since it won't be "shoot at long range", "watch your men drop like flies", "finally get to shoot back at point blank range." Now I see a lot more back and forth though the "forth" is often overshadowed by the german firepower. German fire power is extreme, you need a lot of firepower on your side to neutralize it. But on the other hand this is historically correct, even modern soviet doctrin calls for massing of 7:1 on the breakthru point, and that comes from their WW2 experience. Three to one (and here I mean men, and guns) is the absolute minimum you should consider for an attack that isn't a hail mary charge.

I don't tend to win a lot of battles at 2.1:1 when it comes down to it. I pushed hard in the blizzard and won a few that way but mostly either you have a lot more than 2:1 or else you loose. But given the losses you take, you buy your +1 it isn't a free bonus. I don't see it as an issue for that very reason.




JAMiAM -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 9:49:58 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: notenome

But this thread isn't about me or ComradeP, it's about Soviet offensive performance vs Axis units in 41.

Indeed. However, it should be remembered that the opportunities that the Soviets get for 'offensive' action during the pre-winter months depends greatly on the Axis player's use of his units. What Soviet offensive actions generally occur, are in the context of relatively limited counterattacks - for relieving pockets, driving back bridgeheads, and the occasional trouncing of overextended spearheads. In my opinion, it is the doctrine used, and execution, by the Axis player that causes these opportunities to exist in the first place.

I greatly admire both you, and ComradeP, for doing the series of AARs that you both did, since there was a lot to be learned from them. Some of those lessons were what a player should do, while others were what a player should not do. Both of you are to be commended for putting it on the line, in the public, so that others could benefit from your experiences. The fact that I disagree with some of your conclusions, does not lessen, in any degree, my respect for you both in helping out the greater community...[&o]

That said, ComradeP has set up a game for us to play. I hope that our mutual endeavors to prove each other wrong will be helpful to others, as well.




karonagames -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 10:03:58 PM)

quote:

I don't tend to win a lot of battles at 2.1:1 when it comes down to it. I pushed hard in the blizzard and won a few that way but mostly either you have a lot more than 2:1 or else you loose. But given the losses you take, you buy your +1 it isn't a free bonus. I don't see it as an issue for that very reason.


Very well reasoned Paul.As a tester I try to remain neutral and just analyse results. I have been on the end of plenty of "+1" beatings, and I can understand how Pieter feels, receiving his baptism of fire, but the more analysis I do of relative combat effectiveness and CVs in 1942, the more I feel the SU needs the +1 to stand any chance of taking back the territory they lose in 1942, particularly as their artillery force is under-developed compared to mid-1943 onwards, when Artillery becomes a real force-multiplier for the Soviets.




Smirfy -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 10:18:50 PM)

Dunno if this helps but in my testing game I have beat up on the AI since the Blizzard and it is now 1944 I have destroyed some 220 Axis divisions. They have lost 2,300,000 to my 4,300,000 killed (14,000 AFV v 33,000 (and 8,000 of them are T-34's) AFV and I have destroyed 35 armoured divisions). I would say that the Russians definaty take their lumps. I think people see the casaulty figures nearing parity during that first winter and think the game is out of whack but once that is over and normal combat resumes the ratio gets back to normal. Off course if i was playing a human the loss ratio would be even higher.




ComradeP -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 10:21:20 PM)

quote:

I believe notmenome deserves at least a little credit, ComP.

He's played a good game if you ask me, passive, active or otherwise.


Certainly, he's staging a competent defence, I was just discussing that the things I posted about are due to the system, and not the defence, as JaMiAM is of the opinion that I'm seeing problems where there are none and that the problems see are caused by how I play.

-

It can be difficult to walk a line between historical accuracy, balance and playability.

It's one thing to take a distanced view, but it's quite the other to say that the problems I mention don't exist, or are solely due to my play style.

I am personally not convinced that the +1 is necessary. Keep in mind that I've played a handful of games as the Soviets (mostly only for 10 or so turns) against the AI using recent versions, and that I base my conclusions on that. Even with a fairly inefficient (due to a very spread out defence) concentration of force, notenome can achieve "natural" 2:1 odds. It's not impossible.

As to the casualties: there might be a problem with those in a way. If a Soviet attack fails, they take brutal losses. There was a, I believe, 5000 or so casualty difference between notenome's attack that ended at 1:1.1 and was held and the attack that worked at 1.3(=2.3):1, which caused nearly 1:1 losses.

I'm, at the moment, not concerned that Soviet casualties are too high. At best, I cause about a 5:1 loss ratio to notenome. He gets around 6 times as much manpower as me, so in the end I'll lose.

A Soviet corps in 1942 can fairly easily get a CV of 15. Two of those corps should be perfectly capable of attacking a German infantry division and achieving 2:1 odds (you'd be at around 30 to ~8 CV without forts).

To me, the problems I see are very real, as I'm experiencing them every turn and have been experiencing them since turn 7 or so.




notenome -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/30/2011 10:49:05 PM)

More than anything I think that the Soviets should be enticed to counterattack, but have a large amount of variability in those results, which is why maybe a +.5 instead of a +1 bonus could help, or at least limit that bonus to 41, as when the corps get rolling it just seems like overkill.

And JAMiAN, every axis player can get counterattacked and routed unless he plays hyper conservatively. Why? Because soviet cavalry divisions can very quickly get up to 22 MP and thus move through 2 ZOCs. The opportunities for counterattacks do not rise solely out of Axis negligence, but a combination of factors including luck of disposition. A minority of soviet units near the front will probably be offensively relevant once the panzers begin pushing (unless the Axis is really driving them hard) which means that a sucesful counterattack depends on having enough decent units to achieve the correct situation. So the same disposition that worked in previous turns can lead to an encirclement and rout because the opportunity arrises. The soviet player must recognize these oportunities and operationally juggle his units to capitalize on the situation. A good example is the routing of the panzer division on turn 5 (6?) near Vitebsk in my and ComradeP's game. He was not careless, he simply did exactly what he had done in previous turns, but I happened to have a cavalry division nearby that was capable of moving through 2 ZOCs, and as such routed the panzer div.

As for the +1 bonus modelling soviet combat doctrine, I have serious, serious qualms with that (if it indeed is the justification). Soviet combat doctrine in 41 was extraordinarily rigid, and this led to the failure of most counterattacks. Units would advance to their initial objectives and await further orders. The Germans would then counterattack and isolate the breakthrough elements, capitalizing on the lack of Soviet initiative on a tactical scale (which is not a criticism of Soviet officers or soldiers per say, Soviet doctrine preached tactical rigidity to maximize operational and strategic flexibility, opposed to the German moto of seizing the initiative). The massed echelon attacks the Soviets became famous for required strong offensive reserves, so if the idea is to model human wave doctrines then there should be a requirement of having units in reserve mode for the +1 bonus to come into effect.




abulbulian -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/31/2011 2:07:54 AM)

quote:

part of the problem is that there's no flanking, or a direct benefit for having protected flanks aside from the enemy not being able to attack from the flank. There is, as such, no difference in losses between an attack from 1,2,3,4 or 5 hexsides as far as I know. As such, retreat losses from a situation where a retreat would've been easy (an attack from one or two hexsides next to eachother) are identical to a situation where a retreat would've been more costly (an attack from 5 hexsides, with only 1 open hexside).

I find it highly doubtful that any head-on attacks against mobile divisions caused 3000 losses pre-autumn 1941.



Yes, to me this is a HUGE issue in the game as having units attacking the flanks was a very real and important consideration. The fact this WitE gives no mod or penalties regarding flanks is a mystery to me.

I think if a unit has not friendly units on it's flanks and it getting attack on flanks there should be a penalty. I've seen many such hex games factor in this flank concept very well.





bwheatley -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/31/2011 2:12:12 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP

With preparation and planning, the Soviets can have numerous units with CV's of 3 and 4 in July/August. Both Flavio and myself have made more than enough attacks at 2:1 (uncorrected) or higher in our vs AI games to conclude that the odds modifier might not be necessary.




Can you elaborate on the "preperation and planning" if more folks like myself knew how to make this possible then yea we might not need to help the soviets have the chance to do realistic damage they did do to the germans before winter.





abulbulian -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/31/2011 2:13:17 AM)

ComradeP,

Welcome to the hell and sheer fantasy of plying the axis in the blizzard. It's all that and more as far as craziness. My opponent did all that and more .. as far as attacking. Like I had post before .. it seemed like once blizzard starts all soviet units become elite Siberians and all German units are transformed into an inexperienced rabble. Even when your units might have great exp, moral, entrenchment, and supplies... they just melt away from sov 41 attacks.

I knew things would change after I played.. I think more people playing axis with a voice in forums would have to experience it first hand. I knew I couldn't count on the soviet only players that would prefer no changes motivated by a selfish cause rather than for the good of the game.

Great post!

+1




abulbulian -> RE: 1:1 odds, counterattack casualties etc (1/31/2011 2:19:35 AM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: ComradeP

Concluding, the problems I face (I'm speaking solely based on my own experience here) as the Axis are:

-even the weakest Soviet units can stop my mobile units in difficult terrain. A problem with the fort level calculations/defender CV multiplier was discovered this week, so there'll be less of a problem for games that start after they're patched when the patch becomes available.


I tried to post this and a bunch of rabbit vultures did all they could to refute this and make comments that were insulting to anybody that has done research into the east front conflict. Other less intelligent replies would have nothing to do with the issue trying to be discussed and resolved. Ignoring these people is a nice feature.

It would be rude of me to say 'NOW WHAT YOU GOT TO SAY' to all these haters, so I will refrain.
Doesn't matter because my post about German elite Pz units vs sov 42 inf was right on the money. So I'll just let it go and be happy changes are on the way.
[8D]





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