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RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/1/2007 5:22:58 PM   
Mike Scholl

 

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Agreed. But as soon as I pick one for the first unit, that's the only choice I seem to be given afterwards. I'll try some more. If you say it is possible, it probably is. Maybe I'm not making the correce "face" or something. Thanks.

(in reply to Hard Sarge)
Post #: 181
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/1/2007 5:50:30 PM   
General Quarters

 

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My experience is like Hard Sarge's. I get a list. And one time, just to see what would happen, my second force picked a different target and, indeed, besieged that.

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Post #: 182
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/1/2007 6:13:48 PM   
Sonny

 

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Yep, I get the list and have besieged more than one fort at a time. There is something about the timing though. Sometimes I get a siege in progress message in the little button and cannot lay siege to other forts. It is rare but it happens. Might have something to do with when the individual commands enter the province.

_____________________________

Quote from Snigbert -

"If you mess with the historical accuracy, you're going to have ahistorical outcomes."

"I'll say it again for Sonny's sake: If you mess with historical accuracy, you're going to have
ahistorical outcomes. "

(in reply to General Quarters)
Post #: 183
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/1/2007 7:11:50 PM   
jimwinsor


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Yeah this is my recollection too; you can siege more than one fort with more than one container, but you need to set up the sieges on the same turn.

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Post #: 184
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/2/2007 12:26:56 AM   
Paper Tiger

 

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Problem with naval torpedoes upgrade, after you or the AI get it every battle, LAND and sea gets a torpedo attack causes 4 or 5 casualties.

(in reply to jimwinsor)
Post #: 185
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/3/2007 8:46:10 PM   
Twinkle


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Dear Western Civilization Software, please read this through even if part of my post is spurned out of anger at a completely nonsense combat result.

I MUST BE ABLE TO SET MY UNITS TO SUPPORT NEARBY AREAS OR NOT as I play pbem games... It is just unacceptable that my army leaves Fredericksburg for Shenandoah in order to support a weak division that is moving towards another area but caught by the whole freaking Army of Potomac. And the result; I (CSA) lose ~17000 men of a total 19000 casualties. And that is not near enough; my army pushed down to Abingdon is hit by disease and loses about another 10000 men and take more morale hits. Talk about no need to finish a from now on lopsided pbem. I sincerely hope that some great changes will be done then it comes to battle casualties.

And how the Union could inflict any pursuit loss on my men as I had about 10k of cavalry in my army is beyond me (this happened on turn 8).

Please read through “Statistical Record of the Armies of the United States” by Frederick Phisterer and study the losses taken in the tabulated engagements. And please, do get some people who read things like the Official Record for the pure joy of reading it to help you with design issues...


 
Regards,
  /twinkle

< Message edited by Twinkle -- 1/4/2007 12:15:22 AM >

(in reply to Paper Tiger)
Post #: 186
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/4/2007 3:34:05 PM   
christof139


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Horses must have been sick from lousy rations. They probably had diahrea. I have seen this happen. Just missed me. Very messy.

Chris

(in reply to Twinkle)
Post #: 187
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/5/2007 8:15:14 PM   
General Quarters

 

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AI "cheats":

Cheats for the AI are a necessity in a game like FOF -- is there a nicer, more neutral word? -- ah, "differential enhancers" sounds better.

Anyway, the question for me is not whether, but what kinds, of enhancers the rebel AI should get? I do not like those that involve excess fortifications, e.g., 3 forts around Memphis, forts in Fredericksburg, a fort in Murfreesboro, etc. These tend to give the game that World War I feel that has spoiled previous strategic Civil War games. There should be a only few well-fortified places such as Richmond, Atlanta, and Vicksburg. I don't mind the terrain advantage to defenders, which represents something real and doesn't require seige artillery and the like. In fact, I would not mind making the terrain advantage larger for the South than the North.

In general, I would prefer enhancers for things like initiative, movement points, surprise, morale, and leadership -- advantages that, arguably, the South did have, and help keep the game from devolving into Sitzkrieg. That should allow the North to have the advantage in men and material.

(in reply to Gil R.)
Post #: 188
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/6/2007 6:24:08 AM   
siRkid


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Ironclad

On the diplomacy front to help balance things out and to give the Union a positive incentive (beyond frustrating the CSA), how about awarding a bonus for the diplomacy levels reached. This could be in terms of extra money, labour and weapons. After all the Union did do a lot of business with European countries - selling grain to Britain and buying arms there and on the continent plus there was the immigration boosting the work force and military age male population.

It could work as follows, the USA receiving:

With Britain: at diplomacy level 2 (10 money), level 3 (15 weapons), level 4 and above (20 weapons). Likewise with France: level 2 (10 money), level 3 (15 weapons), level 4 and above (20 weapons). With other European countries: level 2 (10 labour), level 3 (15 labour), level 4 and above (20 labour).

If that sounds too complicated go for a simpler system - just award 10 labour for each level 2, 15 money for each level 3 and 20 weapons for each level 4 and above - applying to each of the 3 countries.

If it is felt that this may prove too generous to the USA in the later war years some additional conditions could be added eg minimum level of US contribution, sliding scale, or starting at a higher diplomacy level. There would probably have to be an adjustment to deal with the Emancipation outcome.

Edited: values lowered



I think you are on to something here. Both the North and the South should receive gradual benefits as their diplomacy levels increase up to and including Naval and Ground intervention.

< Message edited by Kid -- 1/6/2007 6:34:58 AM >


_____________________________

Former War in the Pacific Test Team Manager and Beta Tester for War in the East.


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Post #: 189
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 4:34:26 AM   
Jaypea

 

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Have played several full games as Union and a few partial games as the rebs. As a pro-historical player here are my changes as I see for a standard historical scenario against the AI set to first seargent vs what we have today-

1) Reduce governor requests by 75% for both sides (as Union you spend all monies resources meeting governor requests vs building army/navy)
2) Reduce siege casualities for the attacker by 50-75%
3) Reduce the time it takes to complete a siege by 50%
4) Increase naval capacity of the North (should be easy for the north to simultaneously build a large navy and a large army but not so for the south - either one or the other for the south)
5) Remove the southern navy except for the runners
6) Reduce foreign aid by 50% and place maximums on R&D help (no more than 10?)
7) Somehow the AI in south builds a rediculous number of forts. Make it much more expensive to build forts
8) equal the number of horses produced by north and south at the start of the game (or have the north outproduce horses vs south)
9) Make camps much more expensive (At least double with iron,labor,$ included)

Through game options and alternate scenarios, the player should be able to create games that are more balanced but I agree with the historical camp here that the base scenarios should be able to created to achieve historical results with moderate competency of the human player vs AI. As a north or south player, I should be looking to beat "history". Either by delaying defeat as the CSA beyond 1865 or by the Union being able to capture cities quicker than history and bringing an end to the rebellion prior to 1865. While I am a fair player, I find it impossible with the current scenarios to come even close to mimicking history.

Also, I would like that both sides should generate the number of troops as history showed were actually done.

Interestingly enough, I just watched the civil war PBS special and one thing of note. "In 1861, the whole value of manufactured goods in the south equalled 1/4 of what was produced in New York alone". Wow, what a difference!

My two cents
jaypea

(in reply to siRkid)
Post #: 190
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 5:51:19 AM   
Berkut

 

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One thing about the Union Navy.

It more than doubled in size the first year - actually, I think the number of ships available to blockade tripled.

Many of these "new" ships however where not new built at all, but purchased and converted civilian craft.

Maybe a new class of "blockade" ship that are relatively inexpensive?

Just thinking out loud here...

(in reply to Jaypea)
Post #: 191
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 7:53:43 AM   
christof139


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Hi J,

Good ideas you have. With the settings I use, the South has a fairly difficult time producing many building, doing research, and building any ships. I had one Blockade runner destroyed by the Union and am replacing it, and that is it so far for the Confed Naval apect.

Someone mentioned that they didn't think that horses should be available through the blockade, I agree. Replace the horses with weapons, supplies, money, and technological research points.

I agree with you that the numbers in the armies are a bit too high, unrealistic, and so are the casualties and the govenors' demands.

A small and weak Southern navy at the beginning of the game would be OK, but it would have to be stationed in Memphis or New Orleans, and the number of ships representing an ironclad Flotilla should be maybe 2 or 3 for the Union, thereby giving a reduced building cost and time, and effectiveness. Even the wooden Gunboat and Ship flotillas could have the number of ships they represent reduced to 5 rather than 10, but 10 is OK, and maybe 7 would be better, and the time and cost to build could be reduced.

I haven't played the Union yet, but what you say about the lack of ability to build both respectable Army and naval forces I agree with. he Union should be able to do both, not overwhelmingly at first, but after 1-year, the Union should be able to build and maintain a Navy along with an Army.

In the early and mid years, the Confeds should have an abundance of supplies coming in through the Blockade, tapering ooff but still significant as time moves on. This is a hard aspect to put in a game, as is the economic system. Battlefield captures of weapons, ordnance and supplies were very important to the Confeds, and this aspect seems to be somewhat represented OK, maybe some tweaking could be done, but I don't know because I haven't played the game enough.

The Confed economy put out a steady stream of weapons, ordnance and suppies but it was as you point out rather limited compared to the Union. Two things the Confeds produced in very respectable amounts was clothing and Arty. pieces. The ragged Confeds were not always ragged, and became ragged while actively campaigning, as did the Union troops. The Confed soldier was generally fairly well suppied with clothing. It was either before or after Chickamagua that the Govenor of NC sent enough uniforms to equip Longstreet's Corps. NC alone had an abundance of uniforms on hand, even at the end of the war. Even the Confed Army in the late war Carolina Campaign was well supplied with clothing. It took a while for the Confed economy to sort itself out, but it did OK. transporting the materials to the Confed military was perhaps the bigger problem. Overall it was a mildly sufficient production when coupled with what came in through the blockade, barely sufficient at times and more than sufficient at other times, and a big problem was transporting the necessities to the troops as the Confed RR sysytem was hard to maintain, and animal drawn wagon production was limited.

If the Confeds had access to more steam engines and RR equipment then this would have made a big difference in some matters.

I set both the presidents power settings to 0 when I have been playing, as I don't know the game well enough to determine if any advantage or disadvantage should be set, but when playing the Confeds with these settings it seems somewhat historical.

Chris





(in reply to Jaypea)
Post #: 192
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 8:46:56 AM   
Twinkle


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Jaypea

1) Reduce governor requests by 75% for both sides (as Union you spend all monies resources meeting governor requests vs building army/navy)
2) Reduce siege casualities for the attacker by 50-75%
3) Reduce the time it takes to complete a siege by 50%
4) Increase naval capacity of the North (should be easy for the north to simultaneously build a large navy and a large army but not so for the south - either one or the other for the south)
5) Remove the southern navy except for the runners
6) Reduce foreign aid by 50% and place maximums on R&D help (no more than 10?)
7) Somehow the AI in south builds a rediculous number of forts. Make it much more expensive to build forts
8) equal the number of horses produced by north and south at the start of the game (or have the north outproduce horses vs south)
9) Make camps much more expensive (At least double with iron,labor,$ included)

I only play pbem and can tell from my gaming experience (both north and south) that it is easy to keep up with the necessary governor request’s and you should have some that are a bit mad at you because they don’t like you at all, either you are Lincon or Davies.

I usually kill between 2500 and 3500 men per turn doing sieges while losing about 5-600 men, and most sieges take just one turn to complete. It is just a matter of being prepared and anyone thinking that sieges take long time does not prepare his armies enough. You are probably trying to attack the south way too early.

The southern navy might hurt you a bit if you do not take care of your own navy (give it some cannon upgrades), but they are basically not a factor at all. You just need to do some things of your own instead of having the victory in your hand as the game starts.

The foreign aid could be increased a bit in order to make its impact more real.

Forts are very expansive as they are, and in case you like the AI strategy that you mention (note that I do not play the AI), use it yourself.

The north should not have an equal number of horses produced at the start, horses do not only represent horses, it represents the ability to build the things that you need horses for in the game. And it is a really terrible Union player that does not manage to increase his number of horses to an acceptable level.

Agreed that camps could be made a bit more expansive, but both sides should start with a couple more. One way to go is that each built camp should forever remove one city manpower (without decreasing the production), and cities should never be able to build more then two camps as well as never be on a zero manpower.

Regards,
/twinkle – expert FoF gamer... and proud SSG beta-tester



< Message edited by Twinkle -- 1/7/2007 8:58:34 AM >

(in reply to Jaypea)
Post #: 193
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 8:49:03 AM   
Twinkle


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All I need is the ability to decide which of my forces that will be supporting other areas during pbem game. And I really, really like to set up the quick combat myself as well as to have turn replays!!!

(in reply to Twinkle)
Post #: 194
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 8:52:54 AM   
chris0827

 

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quote:

  The north should not have an equal number of horses produced at the start, horses do not only represent horses, it represents the ability to build the things that you need horses for in the game. And it is a really terrible Union player that does not manage to increase his number of horses to an acceptable level.


The north had twice as many horses as the south did in 1861. They shouldn't have to increase the number.

(in reply to Twinkle)
Post #: 195
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 8:57:37 AM   
Twinkle


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Point being that "game horses" does not only represent horses, it also represent the ability and willingness to support cavalry units, building camps instead of new units (the union horded units, while the south replaced losses) and so on...

(in reply to chris0827)
Post #: 196
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 9:00:12 AM   
chris0827

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Twinkle

Point being that "game horses" does not only represent horses, it also represent the ability and willingness to support cavalry units, building camps instead of new units (the union horded units, while the south replaced losses) and so on...


Where does it say that in the manual?

(in reply to Twinkle)
Post #: 197
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 9:07:40 AM   
Twinkle


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it does not... but the system they use sort of hint at that, we would otherwise have completely different cost for each unit depending on if it is the south or north that produce it. And that would have created a horrible discussion between the pro-Union and the pro-Conf groups that do their best to assure the victory before they start to play.

(in reply to chris0827)
Post #: 198
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 9:13:48 AM   
chris0827

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Twinkle

it does not... but the system they use sort of hint at that, we would otherwise have completely different cost for each unit depending on if it is the south or north that produce it. And that would have created a horrible discussion between the pro-Union and the pro-Conf groups that do their best to assure the victory before they start to play.


Why would there be different costs? A regiment is a regiment. Why would one side's cost more than the other?

(in reply to Twinkle)
Post #: 199
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 9:22:27 AM   
Twinkle


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Because just maybe, maybe the southern side managed to field more men per USD, do good with less resources and so on...

(in reply to chris0827)
Post #: 200
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 10:32:05 AM   
christof139


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About the actual troop strength the Gunboat and Ship units are supposed to represent, I am way off in suggesting reducing the actual ship representation and perhaps 10 is definitely more appropriate a number to use as it now is in the game. A player would never be able to produce and represent the entire Union navy anyway. Union Ironclad units could represent only 2 - 3 Ironclads, and the Confed Ironclad unit could represent only 1 - 2 ironclads.

Whatever, but it does seem the costs may be high and production time too long. Those people more experienced with this game would have a better handle on the Startegic naval aspects, as I tend to be a bit more grand tactical in viewing the naval aspects, and that will only work to a certain degree when you have a strategic level game.

Chris

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Post #: 201
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 9:53:29 PM   
General Quarters

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Twinkle

Agreed that camps could be made a bit more expansive, but both sides should start with a couple more. One way to go is that each built camp should forever remove one city manpower (without decreasing the production), and cities should never be able to build more then two camps as well as never be on a zero manpower.


I like the second suggestion here. Camps should not be more expensive -- there is nothing about a camp that is expensive per se. But they should be limited by manpower, and so there should be a continuing manpower cost.

(in reply to Twinkle)
Post #: 202
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/7/2007 10:07:59 PM   
General Quarters

 

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More Dramatic Fog of War:

The current fog of war, giving inaccurate info about enemy troop strengths, is very good. However, it does not fully capture the dramatic fog of war that often occurred. Sometimes the enemy army would simply disappear, or would be thought to be in a region where it wasn't, or thought to be present when it had already left (e.g., the Quaker guns).

It would be good for the game to have all these possibilities. The rebel army could move to the Shenandoah and still appear, for one turn perhaps, to be in Fredericksburg. Or it could appear to be in Shen, when it was really in Fred. Or it could simply disappear, so the Union doesn't know where it is. Or it could appear to be in two places simultaneously, representing conflicting reports.

There might be requirements for this ability, such as cavalry superiority or a leader with a certain trait or some kind of research improvement. There might have to be some way to trigger it, such as extra secrecy (which might have a cost or loss of benefit of some kind). Such a change could make the game more dramatic, exciting, and historically realistic.

I make the suggestion in the game balance thread because deception was one of the primary ways the South managed to fend off superior Union forces. The South could be given an enhanced ability to move undetected.

(in reply to General Quarters)
Post #: 203
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/18/2007 10:51:18 PM   
General Quarters

 

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Gunboats and Sieges:

I am playing the Conf. The Union is besieging the forts in Tenn-Miss River. There are two gunboats in river around Cairo, and the Union has never used them in its attacks on the forts. Might want to change that.

(in reply to Mike Scholl)
Post #: 204
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/19/2007 2:27:17 AM   
decaturkev


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quote:

ORIGINAL: chris0827


quote:

ORIGINAL: Mike Scholl


quote:

ORIGINAL: incbob

On the reinforcement issue could it be possible to set it so that the North gets more phsyical reinforcements, but their quality is lower?



Why should their quality be lower? Certainly the South had an advantage in the "initial rush to the colors" in 1861 with their well-developed Militia Tradition. But once those units were mobilized, what basis would there be for one side's "volunteer" Americans to be any better quality than the other side's?



It's part of the same myth that says confederate generals were military geniuses and union leaders were bumbling fools.


I am not sure to which myth concerning CSA generals you are referring. Douglas Freeman in Lee's Lieutenants makes it quite clear there were major problems in both the initial organization of the Army of the Confederacy and the capabilities/talents of the leaders. Which myth makes out the genius of the likes of, for example, G.W. Smith, Beauregard, Magruder, and Heth?

IMO, the loss of the Mississippi and Vicksburg was the high water mark for the CSA. That shut the door on any European intervention as well as splitting the Confederacy. Gettysburg was not as stategically significant, but it made all the news in the East. If Davis and Lee had listened to "Old Pete" and fought a defensive campagin in the East as vigorously as Petersburg was conducted, from the begining, history could have been a lot different. Of course, this would require both; an effective Navy of the Confederacy, and a capable diplomatic effort focused on Washington, not London or Paris.

_____________________________

Private, CSA
Norfolk Light Artillery Blues

(in reply to chris0827)
Post #: 205
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/19/2007 2:29:27 AM   
General Quarters

 

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AI Plundering:

I'm playing the South. Once the AI took Memphis, I expected it to move against other targets. Instead, it has remained there, plundering what are now its own buildings turn after turn -- letting me run out the clock.

Early on, the AI destroyed a Mansion and reduced my National Will. I do not see a benefit to the Union for it to continue plundering -- a hospital, an arsenal I think, and so on. Maybe it could be told not to plunder cities it has already taken or at least to stop once it has destroyed a mansion.

< Message edited by General Quarters -- 1/19/2007 2:42:44 AM >

(in reply to Gil R.)
Post #: 206
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/19/2007 2:32:17 AM   
decaturkev


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quote:

ORIGINAL: chris0827


quote:

ORIGINAL: Twinkle

it does not... but the system they use sort of hint at that, we would otherwise have completely different cost for each unit depending on if it is the south or north that produce it. And that would have created a horrible discussion between the pro-Union and the pro-Conf groups that do their best to assure the victory before they start to play.


Why would there be different costs? A regiment is a regiment. Why would one side's cost more than the other?


The cost would be different due to national economics and the impact to the GNP of the two governments. The ability of the Union to produce the necessary accoutrements for outfitting units was vastly superior to the Confederacy.

_____________________________

Private, CSA
Norfolk Light Artillery Blues

(in reply to chris0827)
Post #: 207
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/19/2007 2:37:04 AM   
chris0827

 

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quote:

[I am not sure to which myth concerning CSA generals you are referring. Douglas Freeman in Lee's Lieutenants makes it quite clear there were major problems in both the initial organization of the Army of the Confederacy and the capabilities/talents of the leaders. Which myth makes out the genius of the likes of, for example, G.W. Smith, Beauregard, Magruder, and Heth?
/quote]

You're one of the few people on this board who have ever heard of Freeman. The majority believe that the South had a large leadership advantage over the North. If they read Freeman they would call it Yankee Propaganda.

(in reply to General Quarters)
Post #: 208
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/19/2007 3:13:02 AM   
decaturkev


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quote:

ORIGINAL: chris0827

quote:

[I am not sure to which myth concerning CSA generals you are referring. Douglas Freeman in Lee's Lieutenants makes it quite clear there were major problems in both the initial organization of the Army of the Confederacy and the capabilities/talents of the leaders. Which myth makes out the genius of the likes of, for example, G.W. Smith, Beauregard, Magruder, and Heth?
/quote]

You're one of the few people on this board who have ever heard of Freeman. The majority believe that the South had a large leadership advantage over the North. If they read Freeman they would call it Yankee Propaganda.

My dear sir, any truly dedicated historiphile or grognard of the Second War for Independence has read all of Douglass Southall Freeman's disertations on the subject. Dr. Freeman only wrote two million words alone concerning the Army of Northern Virginia. One of my favorite sources of reference material on the subject is MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History. I am beginng to appreciate the propaganda effort on the part of the Confederacy on providing an alibi for Washington to rationalize the early failures of its army in the East. Actually, the Pinkerton Service went a long way in providing faulty inteligence to McClellan and other Federal Generals, as well as Pesident Lincoln.

< Message edited by decaturkev -- 1/20/2007 4:15:07 PM >


_____________________________

Private, CSA
Norfolk Light Artillery Blues

(in reply to chris0827)
Post #: 209
RE: Game-Balance Improvements for Upcoming Patch - 1/19/2007 6:09:58 AM   
christof139


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The Pinkerton Service back then = . However, it was once said that Military intelligence can = and Oxymoron sometimes. So, this might just certainly apply to the Pinkertons.

Yet, McClellelan, was an arrogant noodle brain, and sincerely thought he was always outnumbered until the day he died!!!! Including at Antietam/Sharpsburg. What a nut. I have read some of his post war writings and he sticks to the same story of being outnumbered even when people, Southern military commanders as well as Northern, and records positively respectively stated and proved otherwise.

Hmmm, Little Mac just may have made an interesting President afterall. Him, Hillary and Bill would no doubt get along fine, probably also with Pres. Bush and aquaintances.

Is is is, and since is is, then it will become was, therefore, is = was. Yup. no time frame even considered, either literally and linguistically or in reality.

Very similar to Relativity, Special Relativity, the Speed of Light, and etc. Myself, I like wagons and wagon speed and time, where and when one can sit, stretch out and snooze, and carry all sorts of victuals and contraband aka plunder.

Chris



(in reply to decaturkev)
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