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RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 6:58:47 PM   
Lieste

 

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ORIGINAL: Aurelian

quote:

Thus, during the first three months of the Kursk campaign (March to July 1943), three major rail lines averaged about 2,800 cars with military cargo per day, reaching a daily peak of 3,249 in May.


This could be read two ways - and the difference could be significant:

3 lines, each averaging 2800 cars per day.

3 lines, totalling an average per day of 2800 cars.

So which is it?

(in reply to Aurelian)
Post #: 31
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 7:27:17 PM   
Wild


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I think we just need to get the value of cities right. Heavy Industry should be the most important industry, the importance of vehicles could be increased as well. Having the effect of fixing Peltons overrated rail system because people will be trying to evacuate other factories. Also should railyards be able to be bombed to lower the amount of railcap in the next turn.


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Post #: 32
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 8:08:39 PM   
Stoat


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Some very good recent posts, even those against the view that rail cap should be reconsidered. I would raise one more broad point in favour, one that can be considered in abstract terms without heading to the archives.

The argument is economic: in this Greatest of Struggles, both sides were labouring mightily to achieve various things that would help achieve victory. The two railway systems were certainly among these things, and they were huge, costly & significant endeavours.

In the context of the situation both sides endured, when both endured great privations and never enough of so many things, why would both sides choose to pour huge amounts of assets, labour and expertise into the greater enterprise such that the system would have far, far more capacity than needed, and such that the system, even under its time of greatest stress, i.e. at the beginning of the greatest military campaign in history, should not be stressed, but rather should operate with such a great amount of slack capacity.

For this is what we observe in our games & in our AAR's. Does it really make sense, that in the years & decades leading up to war, also times of great hardship, Depression, political upheaval, Five-Year Plans, even in the death of millions of newly-Soviet citizens, that both sides should have allocated such an embarrassment of riches to their respective rail networks, at the expense of all things that were needed, such that they would not only enjoy astounding overcapacity during peacetime, but even huge overcapacity at the Worst of Times?

Some, in other threads on other subjects, have contented themselves with various status quo representations of history, criticising specific production decisions & specific asset allocations as bad or sub-optimal, and in many cases it is fair & correct to do so. I also fully accept the points of those who stress the need for a certain level of abstraction to maintain playability, in particular the posts of Heliodorus (properly heliodorus04, but I already feel "there's only one Heliodorus" in our books), ComradeP & Mehring.

So again restating the case in game terms, I would say not that we need discuss a new game mechanic to represent rail capacity, but only that it is reasonable to consider whether the current levels of rail capacity best model the phenomenon in which we interest ourselves.

The current levels are far too high. It just doesn't make economic sense.

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Post #: 33
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 8:50:14 PM   
vinnie71

 

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Maybe somehow, factory evacuation should be made to depend on the level of danger these factories are in being overrun. Ex factories should only be able to evacuate if the Germans are within 10 hexes. I mean, what's the point of evacuating a factory if there is no danger? Currently a Soviet player can easily start a rolling programme of evacuations which has no relation to the movements in the frontline. The only downside is that ammo doesn't get delivered to Soviet front line units, which is not such a sacrifice for a soviet player because few soviet units hold their ground anyway.

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Post #: 34
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 9:48:45 PM   
Flaviusx


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Offworlder

Maybe somehow, factory evacuation should be made to depend on the level of danger these factories are in being overrun. Ex factories should only be able to evacuate if the Germans are within 10 hexes. I mean, what's the point of evacuating a factory if there is no danger? Currently a Soviet player can easily start a rolling programme of evacuations which has no relation to the movements in the frontline. The only downside is that ammo doesn't get delivered to Soviet front line units, which is not such a sacrifice for a soviet player because few soviet units hold their ground anyway.


And if they don't do that, a German player abusing buildups will trash an incredible amount of industry. And cripple the Soviet for the rest of the war with the new multiplier.

This thread really isn't about the railroad capacity per se. It's about finding a way to enable this ridiculous factory raiding strategy. I think there are better ways to play the game than this on the German side. Why not try something else instead?

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Post #: 35
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 10:02:26 PM   
Stoat


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To correct FlaviusX, which I do in a friendly way, acknowledging him as a senior board member held in high regard by all, who has done much for the game, and also adding that he is one of my favourite posters to read, whose analysis I often greatly enjoy, and whose reasoning I respect, even if I do not always agree with his conclusions:

Actually, I think we were discussing rail capacity, weren't we? "This ridiculous factory raiding strategy", or to paraphrase in more neutral terms, "Axis forces attempting to inflict economic damage upon the Soviet Union" only got inserted into this thread in the last two posts, didn't it?

In fact, there are numerous other threads about, as you say, "raiding". Haven't counted, but pretty sure every other thread in this forum seems to come down to "raiding", at some point. Per se.

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Post #: 36
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 10:11:27 PM   
Flaviusx


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Stoat, the concern here about rail capacity is basically motivated by a desire to catch factories in place. That's the subtext here, don't kid yourself on this score -- as are related suggestions to disallow factory evacuations until they are within 10 hexes of the enemy, which would be seriously open to abuse since a German can contrive to advance just out of that range, do a buildup, and lock down the factory sites and prevent them from getting away. (The Soviet didn't wait to do evacs until the enemy was within 100 miles, either.)

If people were really worried about rail capacity, then they'd be bringing up other issues with regards to rail, namely, logistical ones. There's a couple of folks here who are actually genuinely concerned about that (hi, Mehring) but I'm doubting that Pelton is greatly concerned about that particular aspect of the railroad game.





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Post #: 37
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 10:23:33 PM   
Peltonx


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1. No one can dispute that HVY is 100% broke and needs to be fixed. This alone is an exploit that all Russian players are gaming. We know (AAR's) that russian players are exploiting the crap out this issue.
This is a fact none can refute.

2. I had seen the number of 40% of Russian production was destroyed or captured by the Germans. This article from the BBC claims that 66% was destoryed. http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwtwo/how_the_allies_won_01.shtml
or if you really want some fun numbers buy and read this bad boy. http://www.jstor.org/pss/151494

Ok we look at both numbers I only look at the arm production in the areas of German advances and we will call it 50% captured.

Thats 114 arm pts and I am not including Leningrad so from 45 arm pts to 74 arm pts or 67 arm pts at 50% destoryed.

We will not bother counting HVY becuse it 100% broken, as the German you can never take out enough Hvy to get below resources. Total lack of thinking that out on someones part.

In all the current 1.05 AAR's does anyone know of anyone getting close to historical levels?

I can advance far faster then historical in the north, center and south
http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=2920420&mpage=2

I am at Stalino turn 7 and I still have only bagged 28 arm pts. The advance is so fast because of the general running to east tactics russians now employe. Because they are exploiting the over rated rail sytem and the fact that HVY means NOTHING.

The evacuation of factorys is much much faster then historical.

These are the plain old simple facts backed up by data.

Its amazing how many fish one can catch with one worm.

Pelton

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Post #: 38
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 10:26:34 PM   
Peltonx


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This thread is about the over rated rail system.

If you like to start one on HQ build up feel free

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Post #: 39
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 10:31:24 PM   
Peltonx


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Flaviusx

Stoat, the concern here about rail capacity is basically motivated by a desire to catch factories in place. That's the subtext here, don't kid yourself on this score -- as are related suggestions to disallow factory evacuations until they are within 10 hexes of the enemy, which would be seriously open to abuse since a German can contrive to advance just out of that range, do a buildup, and lock down the factory sites and prevent them from getting away. (The Soviet didn't wait to do evacs until the enemy was within 100 miles, either.)

If people were really worried about rail capacity, then they'd be bringing up other issues with regards to rail, namely, logistical ones. There's a couple of folks here who are actually genuinely concerned about that (hi, Mehring) but I'm doubting that Pelton is greatly concerned about that particular aspect of the railroad game.






This is 100% untrue.

All Russian players see that HVY is broken and are now exploiting the crap out of the rules. This is not something thats being hidden, its out in the open. You are doing it yourself. You evac arm only leaving hvy behind and withdraw to east avoiding and major battles from Tula south.

Its the flavor of the month Russian tactic gaming the rules. Your one of the main testers and your even doing it


Pelton

< Message edited by Pelton -- 10/15/2011 10:32:09 PM >

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Post #: 40
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 10:33:17 PM   
Flaviusx


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I thought we were talking about railroads, not HI.

The way the game deals with HI is a whole other ball of wax, but it has about as much to do with rail cap as the price of fish in Helsinki. This is, properly speaking, a production model issue.

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Post #: 41
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 10:47:41 PM   
Peltonx


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True but it does't change the fact that HVY is nowmeaniingless and poeple are exploting the rules.

Also not even looking at that exploit, its not possible vs an average Russian to even come close to getting historical arm captured even if the German is advancing to Stalino on turn 7.

Which is only happening because all Russians can now game the rail system/HVY screw up and evac and run east from Tula south.

This one exploit is doing the same thing that the 1v1=2v1 did. Its throwing off the game balance.

Sure all russian fanboys are going to fight hard for keeping the current over rated rail system and screwed up hvy systems, just the same way they fight hard to keep the fling pig rule (1v1=2v1)

It is plain as day that the rail system is screwed up the same way that 1v1=2v1 was screwing the game.

You even use it to your advantage.

Ok off to find a new stove and I need a few more worms.

Pelton


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Post #: 42
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 11:10:24 PM   
KenchiSulla


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Again, what are you considering historical production? I can't follow your reasoning.. The soviets relied more and more on heavy weapons and tanks as the war progressed... They had a shortage in manpower...

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Post #: 43
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 11:42:33 PM   
heliodorus04


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Flaviusx

If people were really worried about rail capacity, then they'd be bringing up other issues with regards to rail, namely, logistical ones. There's a couple of folks here who are actually genuinely concerned about that (hi, Mehring) but I'm doubting that Pelton is greatly concerned about that particular aspect of the railroad game.



Speaking only for myself, I want a game that hangs in the balance of victory/defeat for as long as possible.

Pelton, my friend, I think a breath of fresh air would do you good. You're only thinking of the 1.05 game from the perspective of "Armaments = Victory." I know you play a ton of games, but do you think we're seeing enough games in the 1942/43 period in 1.05 to get THIS focused on solely rail capacity+armament evacuation?

In the long run, if the game prioritizes armaments so much that it's the sole factor in determining victory/defeat, I think there's a problem with the game for both sides. I think you have a supra-keen intellect for this game, and I'm going to give you the advice that I've given others: it's time for you to play the other side.

You may very well be right about armament evacuation still being too forgiving for the Soviets. Certainly the issue of heavy industry being unnecessary to evacuate deviates a lot from what we think should be true of the war. If it IS true, the rest of the community clearly needs a lot more data, and that is in conflict with your current level of patience. And whatever solution there may be with the production sub-system, massive re-design of the relatively robust and intuitive rail system might not be the best way to go about it (production multipliers would be so much simpler, along with evacuation damage and repair rates, to ponder a few examples.)



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Post #: 44
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/15/2011 11:53:03 PM   
janh

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Pelton
True but it does't change the fact that HVY is nowmeaniingless and poeple are exploting the rules.
...
This one exploit is doing the same thing that the 1v1=2v1 did. Its throwing off the game balance.


Says the one who loves the fact that the Russians sit still while the Lvov pocket is closed around them on the opening turn, unable to fight back or react as they did in truth? That's not throwing off the course and balance for the Soviet players in the South right at start? Hmmmh, it must lead to side effects, but whatever. I understand people that are genuinely and constructively about getting things right for the correct reasons, though, no matter whom that benefits or disadvantages.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pelton
Also not even looking at that exploit, its not possible vs an average Russian to even come close to getting historical arm captured even if the German is advancing to Stalino on turn 7.


And how about excellent Russian players not able to hold Leningrad against a good Axis player? Maybe hindsight avoids big mistakes in both cases, which made both possible back in time, but won't be repeated by good players today? Just something to ponder about.

Yes, it would be nice if the game would model different track capacities, much the same as it would be with WitP/AE. But honestly, I suppose most people want to play a war game, and not study logistics and micromanagement of transport. And yes, it would also seems important to model air interdiction of rail lines and rolling stock, though with an abstract air model it could probably be only crude. I like Cannonfodders ideas, accounting for replacement transports to the front for both sides, but that sounds really, really complicated.

However, I think neither your case about rail capacity nor unimportance of HVY is a strong one.
HVY is a different discussion, as Flavius points out. Maybe the lack of need of allocating rail capacity for that frees sizable resources for transferring other industry pts, but there are no 1.05 AARs yet in 1944 that could show whether this is going to haunt the Soviets in form of a lack of trucks/vehicles for building mechanized corps later?
Aside, how did the Russians perform evacuations? Did they have a priority list, which would select certain industry branches to be transferred later or not at all? I would guess there was a clear list of priorities, perhaps not as extreme as with arms here, but that would again be the freedom the player has -- much as a player has the freedom to transfer a Panzerkorps to a different Army Group. It just should correctly lead to the corresponding production or shortages, though.

If you are just concerned about that number of 50-66% of industry captured/destroyed, then one could probably easily tune up the industry points again such that you can capture your desired fraction within the cities typically taken by a player before blizzard, and that would leave the Soviet player with roughly the amount that he has left presently -- and that may be needed to achieve a production rate that compares reasonably to historical data. Not that that would gain you anything, except industry that is just set up to be lost, but ca va.

For rail capacities, you would have to determine first how the capacity was used, on a weekly basis, by the Soviets back at that time -- capacity in freight tons and passengers, nothing abstract like "divisions" (which, as pointed out by someone previously, could also mean mere shells). Did the Russians employ it primarily to evacuate industry as most player do here? If that is true and you can support it with good sources, that would be a first step. Then one would need to compare the true freight numbers, and see whether perhaps the rail cost for evacs would be a little underestimated.

If the Soviets didn't use the majority of rail capacity for evacs, then what did the Soviets mainly use it for in the first months of the war: Supplies? Replacements? Reinforcements? My guess is that the latter three probably took up the majority of the rail capacity, i.e. >50%, but that's only a guess. In which case the issue would return again to the question why there is less fighting/forward resistance, and consequently for the Soviet player less sense and opportunity to shuffle reinforcements forward? In this case, it is not the rail cap that is a problem, but reason for the ability of the Soviet player to focus almost solely on industry evac originates elsewhere, and must be solved there.

< Message edited by janh -- 10/16/2011 12:04:33 AM >

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Post #: 45
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 12:27:52 AM   
Klydon


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In the ideal game, the Russian would have to make serious decisions on how he uses his rail cap. Russian rail cap should be under serious strain of having to decide what to move from troops to what type of industry, etc.

Currently it is not.

Russians can move shells into position using very little of their rail cap and drop them off. Essentially, they eat very little Russian rail cap until you put them in refit and they fill up, which does not tax the rail system at all, so there is limited impact troop movement has on rail cap. No challenge of a decision there.

Next, because HI has absolutely no value at all in the current game, the Russians can check that one off.

The only real decision the Russian must make on his rail cap from one turn to the next is what armaments plants should be moved to where. Occasionally, they will need to move another factory that is important (depending on what the Axis are up to). This could include tank and some aircraft factories, but right now as far as the evidence that is available to both sides, armaments is the only thing that matters and until other bottlenecks appear in game (you don't have enough supplies or you are out of manpower), then it is not going to change.

Bottom line is the vast majority of Russian rail cap is used to move as much armaments as possible out of harms way. No brainer choice.

I don't have a solution to the issue (wish I did) except that players having to make choices is usually a good thing and there is no real choice here when it comes to deciding what gets moved, what stays and the fact the Russians can get around most of the issues when it comes to moving troops around, especially new troops.

As far as other matters for those that think the Russians should be able to stuff a reenforced AGS on the border and the discussion about the failure of the Russians being able to stop a determined German attack on Leningrad, all I can tell you is go play another game for awhile and take a break from this one or enjoy beating the German AI to a pulp because there won't be any German players to play against if you got what you wanted.

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Post #: 46
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 12:34:26 AM   
TulliusDetritus


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Pelton
Its amazing how many fish one can catch with one worm.
Pelton


and

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pelton

Ok off to find a new stove and I need a few more worms.

Pelton


You are basically admitting that you were trolling us


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Post #: 47
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 12:51:14 AM   
76mm


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Stoat
The current levels are far too high. It just doesn't make economic sense.

Too high based on what? As mentioned in a previous post, the Sovs DID IN FACT EVAC much of their industry. They produced all the tanks, planes, etc. that they needed, along with help from Lend Lease. Right? Maybe it doesn't make economic sense to you, but it worked pretty well for the Sovs.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Stoat
"This ridiculous factory raiding strategy", or to paraphrase in more neutral terms, "Axis forces attempting to inflict economic damage upon the Soviet Union" only got inserted into this thread in the last two posts, didn't it?

Uh, no, I raised the panzer raiding issue more than twenty posts ago. But this matters why?

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pelton
1. No one can dispute that HVY is 100% broke and needs to be fixed. This alone is an exploit that all Russian players are gaming. We know (AAR's) that russian players are exploiting the crap out this issue.
This is a fact none can refute.

I deny that this is an exploit, please explain why it is? The devs included a resource which the Sovs seem to have plenty of; I guess that you think they should have included some kind of artificial shortage? You might as well say that the Sov population is too large, it should be as small as Belgium's, and heck, Russia is just too darn big, so let's make the map smaller too. Would you then, finally, be happy? Somehow I doubt it...

While we're talking about exploits, gee, let's talk about the fact that the Germans know exactly where every factory is, and whether it has been evacced. I am sure no German players "exploit" that game information, do they?

Bottom line: how about if someone articulates a rationale argument as to why the Germans should expect to be able to cripple Sov industry? It didn't happen, and I don't understand why people think it should happen in the game?

< Message edited by 76mm -- 10/16/2011 12:54:03 AM >

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Post #: 48
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 1:05:59 AM   
Flaviusx


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Klydon, once again, these aren't RR issues as such.

They are production model issues. Right now, the way production is modeled, armaments are very dear, and HI isn't. I get that some people have problems with that. I'm not seeing what on earth that has to do with rail cap. I'm still getting this out of the thread: I WANT MY FACTORY RAID IWIN BUTTON.

Stop raiding factories. There are better ways to beat up the Russians. Even if we changed up the production model to shift the relative importance of HI vs. armaments, there's still going to be an optimum evacuation strategy. It might be somewhat harder to calculate, but I'm confident that we've go enough excel warriors (myself included) around here to come up with the best evac schedule.

If you really want to hurt the Soviets, forget the factories. Look at, oh, I dunno, the freaking Red Army.

Talk to my comrade in arms James. He's figured it out.



< Message edited by Flaviusx -- 10/16/2011 1:07:32 AM >


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Post #: 49
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 1:12:50 AM   
Aurelian

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: janh

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pelton
True but it does't change the fact that HVY is nowmeaniingless and poeple are exploting the rules.
...
This one exploit is doing the same thing that the 1v1=2v1 did. Its throwing off the game balance.


Says the one who loves the fact that the Russians sit still while the Lvov pocket is closed around them on the opening turn, unable to fight back or react as they did in truth? That's not throwing off the course and balance for the Soviet players in the South right at start? Hmmmh, it must lead to side effects, but whatever. I understand people that are genuinely and constructively about getting things right for the correct reasons, though, no matter whom that benefits or disadvantages.



You left out factory raiding. I'm agreeing more and more with Flav on that score.

In my current PBEM, my opponent isn't doing it. Yet. But I'm sticking divisions in the cities. And am creating a mobile reserve, mostly cav, in case he tries it.

(in reply to janh)
Post #: 50
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 1:14:40 AM   
Stoat


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Pelton mein General, there y'are, was wondering when you'd turn up. Say, what is that dense pattern of rifle butt-shaped bruises all over your head, neck, &, wait... well, pretty much all over most o' the rest of you too, I'd guess. Figured you'd be in traction. Schön schön, you have a high pain tolerance, then - that is an outstanding or perhaps rather a necessary characteristic for a competitive Axis GGWitE player!

Lol @ the O/T emoticon, & you may have created a monster as I have just figured out where to find these (the "more smileys.." link of course). Laissez les bon temps roulez, or as they say in this neck o' th' woods down KW way at just this time of year, "O'Zapft is!": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxcRKkuZeLA

Happy O-Fest to all btw! Oh yeah that's right, I "more smileys.."'d the heck out of it!

On the discussion, k fine, you & FlaviusX are both right to focus on factory evac since it is one of the two uses of rail cap. Also well done on raising the important issues of "what percentage of industry did the USSR actually evacuate" and perhaps the inverse, "how much industry did the Axis forces destroy"? Key questions, because they are focused, relevant and quantifiable. Also easily actionable, because if we should form the view that if the fac evacs observed in a good-sized sample of games do not on balance correspond to our understanding of historical reality, then it is only rail cap and perhaps the move costs of the different factory types that need be adjusted to improve this.

Let me introduce one idea on how quantitatively to do this. I know there are diverging views on the desired end goal - to simplify these into two camps, they are "the best game" and "the most realistic historical simulation". I accept these both as worthy goals and also accept the tension between them.

Let us say we'd like to achieve the most realistic historical simulation (as above, with reasonable abstractions such that it remains playable). I think we'd all like the game to be able to produce some range of outcomes, rather than every game producing the same outcome, because that would be pointless and no fun to play.

Some on this forum have in fact expressed this view, and moreover feel that this is in fact the current state of affairs. I do not share this view, but I am sympathetic to it, because over many AARs I think we can observe what to me personally is quite a narrow distributions of outcomes.

So this is my idea:

1) IF we can agree on what historically occurred, then we can assign this a numerical value of 0, representing no deviation from the mean historical outcome.
3) Over a sufficient number of samples, if the game is not hardwired to produce the same result every time, we will observe a distribution of outcomes.
3) Perhaps we can agree that the mean observed (played) out come should more or less equal the historical outcome (0 error or deviation).
4) However, we agree that we would like to permit some range of outcomes (or else it's not a game, is it?)
5) We can now consider game changes (including changes to rules, numerical constants or anything else) that affect play balance in quantitative terms, specifically,
5a) we can consider change that should impact the observed mean result. For example, say the outcome we are analysing is the overall CG result. Say for the sake of simplicity that +1 means the Axis always wins & -1 means the Soviets always win. Say our observed sample has a value of +0.25. Thus, it is clear that the Axis are winning more than we think they ought to be, and we can consider measures that we hope will result in future observations clustered further around the mean.
5b) we can consider changes that will impact the shape of the distribution of results. What I mean is, some changes increase the likelihood of a broader range of outcomes, whereas other changes will decrease the likely range of outcomes. For example, more randomness should in general increase the dispersion (broader distribution of outcomes) of results, whereas less randomness will do the opposite. This is what I wanted to drive at. I really think that if we can more or less understand the impact of rule changes on outcomes, we can measure and consider not just the desired mean outcome but the desired distribution of outcomes. This distribution could be of normal shape or otherwise, and could be narrower or flatter.
6) Note that this same basic process of measurement and analysis can be used, not just to measure the overall outcome of the CG, but to measure any aspect of the game. For instance, as per the current convo, we could measure the observed distribution of the % of say Soviet tank factories/Fabriken/zavodi against the agreed historical value.

If we can do these things (granted, that is probably a big "if"), then we have a simple, actionable framework for measuring whether any aspect of the game is working as desired. The main points of contention on any issue can then be reduced to: a) what do we want to be the mean outcome, & b) what is a desirable distribution of outcomes to us?

I think it is very useful to measure, because if we are unable to do so, all we really have left is going around in circles and arguing, hey? If we can measure what is, and if we can establish any sort of quantitative consensus at all on what the distribution of outcomes should be then I think we have a powerful basis on which to move forward together, whereas if we cannot, I fear we will never do so.

My own assessment of myself, framed in these terms, without trying to articulate or defend the basis for every aspect of my overall view (of the overall game outcome), on the observed outcomes of the AARs on this board vs. my perception of historical is that:

a) I don't yet have a very strong view on whether the mean observed outcome is as desired. Very few games that are started are finished. I find this very troubling. I trust and hope that those who can see all the collected server games have a better sense of things, and that this is useful to them. Lack of finished games to me suggests an issue with b), below.
b) I do have a sense that the dispersion of results is too narrow for me. In general, I find this boring and unpleasant.

I know that others have different views (when expressed in this way) on both a) & b). I can respect someone who desires a different mean outcome as a Historian, who may have different views on some aspect of history than I may do. I can respect someone who desires a broader, narrower or different-shaped distribution of outcomes (on any particular issue) as a Gamer, as it's by all means legitimate to have a different æsthetic sense, or sense of what is fun, than another person may.

Alrighty then, that's what I had to say about that. Thanks for reading, & I know not everybody will groove on what I was trying to get at there (apologies then are also in order to those who just read the above).

But c'mon boys, let's get 'er together, 'cos this game is way, way, WAAYY too awesome to suck. She's really come together not just over the last several months or years, but really over the last 25 years or so through her predecessors. Her Grandma musta been a real piece o' work in '84, & I certainly consider her Mama to have been a masterpiece in '93, & this l'il devojchke's even sweeter still, but she's not quite there yet.

Let's get 'er there.

_____________________________

GGWitE = GröKAZ ("Greatest Wargame of All Time") - thx to GG, Company & Community for continuing to make it even better!

(in reply to KenchiSulla)
Post #: 51
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 1:48:24 AM   
Aurelian

 

Posts: 4016
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in the book 'Absolute War', it is written: "the occupied (by the Axis) area contained 2/5 of the grain, 4/5 of the sugar beet production. 1/4 of the farm animals, tractors, harvesters.

The defenders and invaders between them destroyed 1,710 towns, 70,000 villages, 32,000 industrial plants, 85,000km of track.

Between 1/2-2/3 of basic industrial production capacity was put out of action. Mines that produced 100 million tons of coal and 20 million tons of iron ore were wrecked.

Factories that produced 19 million tons of steel were totally or partially destroyed.....

And yet, they didn't roll over and die. They built new mines/factories/whatever. So really, why complain that one can't cripple Soviet industry.

And I still haven't seen anything that proves that Soviet rail is over powered.

(in reply to Aurelian)
Post #: 52
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 1:56:51 AM   
Stoat


Posts: 37
Joined: 9/20/2011
From: Toronto, Canada
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: 76mm

quote:

ORIGINAL: Stoat
The current levels are far too high. It just doesn't make economic sense.

Too high based on what? As mentioned in a previous post, the Sovs DID IN FACT EVAC much of their industry. They produced all the tanks, planes, etc. that they needed, along with help from Lend Lease. Right? Maybe it doesn't make economic sense to you, but it worked pretty well for the Sovs.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Stoat
"This ridiculous factory raiding strategy", or to paraphrase in more neutral terms, "Axis forces attempting to inflict economic damage upon the Soviet Union" only got inserted into this thread in the last two posts, didn't it?

Uh, no, I raised the panzer raiding issue more than twenty posts ago. But this matters why?

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pelton
1. No one can dispute that HVY is 100% broke and needs to be fixed. This alone is an exploit that all Russian players are gaming. We know (AAR's) that russian players are exploiting the crap out this issue.
This is a fact none can refute.

I deny that this is an exploit, please explain why it is? The devs included a resource which the Sovs seem to have plenty of; I guess that you think they should have included some kind of artificial shortage? You might as well say that the Sov population is too large, it should be as small as Belgium's, and heck, Russia is just too darn big, so let's make the map smaller too. Would you then, finally, be happy? Somehow I doubt it...

While we're talking about exploits, gee, let's talk about the fact that the Germans know exactly where every factory is, and whether it has been evacced. I am sure no German players "exploit" that game information, do they?

Bottom line: how about if someone articulates a rationale argument as to why the Germans should expect to be able to cripple Sov industry? It didn't happen, and I don't understand why people think it should happen in the game?


1) Q: Too high based on what? A: To restate the basic argument, an investment... (sigh). Nah, decided not gonna bother. Forgive me for not repeating myself or expanding on what was a brief and straightforward argument. You did not address my points. Maybe you took the trouble to read them, maybe you didn't. You did instead make a couple broad assertions that we can probably agree are somewhat correct, and are tangentially related to what I said, but I don't find them very useful, so again forgive me for not getting into it.

2) Q: Uh, no, I raised the panzer raiding issue more than twenty posts ago. But this matters why? A: Ah, you're tiring me out here. I found this post insubstantial, argumentative & not otherwise too interesting, so I'll not be making the supreme effort on it, if you don't mind.

_____________________________

GGWitE = GröKAZ ("Greatest Wargame of All Time") - thx to GG, Company & Community for continuing to make it even better!

(in reply to 76mm)
Post #: 53
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 3:38:50 AM   
Peltonx


Posts: 7250
Joined: 4/9/2006
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Its got zero to do with raiding again stop the stuff.

Its clear there is 100% exploiting of the current prodution/rail system going on because your doing it as 100% proof.

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=2908157

You simply evaced arm pts and left hvy. Then ran east to avoid any fighting.

Its not possible under the current system based 100% on historical facts and AAR's that its possible to get close to historical destoryed production.

This is just the way the current rule set is fixed. Its nothing amazingly hard to figure out. Its simple to see and you yourself know this as a fact because you have taken advantage of these current rule set.

Which I would do myself. Its not to hard to figure out.
Its screwed up its not that hard for even a newbie just playing the game for the first time as was the 1v1=2v1 rule.
Its not going to magicly disappear.

Russian players are exploiting it to death and will until its changed as was the 1v1=2v1 rule.

Pelton


(in reply to Flaviusx)
Post #: 54
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 3:51:31 AM   
Klydon


Posts: 2251
Joined: 11/28/2010
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Flaviusx

Klydon, once again, these aren't RR issues as such.

They are production model issues. Right now, the way production is modeled, armaments are very dear, and HI isn't. I get that some people have problems with that. I'm not seeing what on earth that has to do with rail cap. I'm still getting this out of the thread: I WANT MY FACTORY RAID IWIN BUTTON.



Both are affected. I agree it is primarly a production model issue, but because it is an issue, it has an undeniable effect on the rail cap because no Russian has to choose between saving HI or saving armaments at this particular time. They simply ignore everything else and suck out all the armaments.

I don't disagree that you could totally leave the rail cap alone and if the production model issue was fixed in such a way that HI (and other factories) have some meaning over what they currently do, it would force the Russians to make choices on what he saves or figure out he has to at least semi make a stand someplace to give himself time to get industry out.


(in reply to Flaviusx)
Post #: 55
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 4:03:51 AM   
ComradeP

 

Posts: 7192
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People are currently using one flaw in the system to their advantage in order not to be caught unprepared by another flaw in the system.

It would be rather one sided to say that this debate is not about the effectiveness of raiding factories, Pelton, as that's your primary "strategy"/your key way of abusing the system.

I haven't heard you say anything about Axis logistics, namely that what you're doing in basically every game you play wasn't possible historically for very good reasons. You're only complaining about things that bother you when they don't work in your favour/concern the side you're not playing as, not about things you encounter that are also ahistorical but favour you. That's what makes it so difficult to take you seriously. Whenever you find something you don't like, 99 out of 100 times something related to the Soviets or what you view as a "bug" for the Axis side, you get on your soapbox, but you turn a blind eye to everything else.

One thing to keep in mind is that neither side can create new factories, and even though resources were lost, factories could always be built somewhere else. When you're evacuating "factories", you're evacuating tools and personnel, you're generally not literally moving the factory.

< Message edited by ComradeP -- 10/16/2011 3:18:59 PM >


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(in reply to Klydon)
Post #: 56
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 4:45:50 AM   
Aurelian

 

Posts: 4016
Joined: 2/26/2007
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http://thomas-morgan.suite101.com/the-dispersal-of-soviet-industry-in-wwii-a203838

The basic heavy industry, for the most part, was set up to the east of the Urals, deep in the Asian part of the Soviet Union. When the Germans invaded the Soviet Union in 1941 the factories beyond the Urals were way out of range for the German air force.

However, light and more sophisticated industry was located in the European part of the Soviet Union, which meant well within the grasp of the invading German armies. As soon as the Germans invaded in 1941 the Soviet State Defense committee decided to disassemble and evacuate whole factories from the western areas deep into the heart of the country and reassemble the installations there. It was arguably the most important feat the Soviets achieved in the Second World War in the sense that it facilitated their eventual victory over Germany. The factories were re-established in a matter of weeks and immediately began to produce vast quantities of war material.

http://www.ordersofbattle.darkscape.net/site/sturmvogel/SovWarProd.html

While IMHO it's worth a read, these two stood out:

Zavod Nr. 13 in Bryansk was evacuated to Ust-Katav under German fire and began producing 82mm mortars and heavy AA gun mounts. Later it made 76 and 85mm tank guns.

The Arsenal plant at Kiev began evacuation in late June, but the last train left on 9 September, narrowly evading the German encirclement.

http://theminiaturespage.com/boards/msg.mv?id=192302

On June 23rd 41 mobilisation production plans went into force. On June 24th the Evacuation Council was set up and on the 30th the State Defense Committee was organised with Stalin as its head. In July 41 300,000 railway wagons were in operation in August 185,000 in September 140,000 in October 175,000 in November 123,000. In the July November period 1,503 industrial enterprises were evacuated to the east. It took two and a half years to erect a blast furnace before the war but furnaces No. 5 and 8 were erected in eight monthes at Magnitogorsk. In October tank building plant No.183 was working in November it was evacuated and in December it resumed production. Tank production went from 4,177 in the second half of 41 to 11,021 in the first half of 42.

Military production increased 180% in the urals in 1942 compared to 41 200% in the Volga area and 140% in Western Siberia. In 1942 4.4 million industrial workers were trained or re-educated. The number of women operating for example forging and press machines rose from 11% 1941 to 50% end of 42.


http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v06/v06p-91_Sanning.html

During the first five weeks, when German armies pushed hundreds of miles into the Soviet interior, only 577 locomotives, 270 passenger cars and 21,947 rail freight cars were captured. In relative terms, this amounted to just 2.3. 0.8 and 2.5 percent.

http://www.junebarbarossa.com/blog/562314-committee-of-evacuation/

Still don't see why it's claimed that Soviet Rail is over rated.






< Message edited by Aurelian -- 10/16/2011 4:57:28 AM >

(in reply to ComradeP)
Post #: 57
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 5:01:30 AM   
carlkay58

 

Posts: 5041
Joined: 7/25/2010
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Having gone through this entire argument about Soviet rail capacity and its ability to move industry around the Soviet Union many times in the past 20 some years I will share some of my findings/conclusions.

Rail capacity is used for 1) transporting supplies, 2) transporting replacements, 3) transporting combat units, and 4) moving industry. While using this rail capacity, there is attrition as things just plain wear out. So rail, engines, and stock will have to be replaced. This loss can be a straight percentage per turn just like unit attrition. Neither Axis nor Soviet production focused enough resources to maintain the original levels during the war. The Soviets, though, had some major help in that regards through Lend-Lease as mentioned much earlier in this thread.

Transporting supplies consists of supplying not only the combat units but also the industries. Since the game tracks the amount of supply used by both units and industry each turn, it should be easy to have that reflected in the railroad capacity each turn. As the army and industrial plant shrinks/grows this usage should change. As supply lines lengthen, the rail capacity used by transporting supplies will increase. And when the supply lines shorten, the rail capacity usage will shrink.

Transporting replacements should also be easily measured since the number of replacements and their types are already calculated each turn. This could reduce the current rail capacity by a set amount per replacement type (just as its rail usage is used in moving combat units).

Transporting combat units are a player decision during the game and reduces the rail capacity by a calculated amount per unit.

Transporting industrial capacity is also a player decsion during the game and reduces the rail capacity by a calculated amount per unit.

I know that the last two are handled by the game, I am not sure about the first two. I have seen some indications on the Axis side that transporting supplies may have an effect on their rail capacity but I am not sure. I am pretty sure that transporting replacements are not handled for either side. When the Soviets have 400,000+ men added to the front line units and they still have 107,000 rail capacity in July, 1941, I would tend to say no, but, again, I could be wrong.

Now as to moving industry and its planning. The original planning for evacuation of industrial plants to the Urals began in 1923 after the War with Poland. The Soviet government began to fear the ability of the Polish army to capture or destroy the industrial might of the Soviet Union as over 70% of the industry at the time was within 300 miles of the Polish border. Polish cavalry performed several deep raids specifically to destroy industry during the war and were quite successful at damaging some of it. So the Soviets began to plan to move the industry deeper into the Soviet Union. Stalin started to re-emphasis this need in the early 1930s during the rise of the Nazis in Germany. Some movement of industries did occur during the 1930s and much of the new industry were required to be built deeper into the Soviet Union. This is when Stalingrad itself became an industrial center. So the idea of evacuating industry during a war was around in Soviet strategy for almost 20 years by the time the war started. There were many plans already in place for the evacuation of industry by the start of the war. When the war did start, it took less than a week before the plans were dusted off and began to be put into action.

This planning was very complete and complex. In some cases, the exact number of engines, rolling stock, and how to pack each train car were detailed. In other cases, there were just some broad lists of which plants to concentrate on. Some of the captured industry were left behind because they were not detailed in the plans - some because they were overlooked and others that did not exist when the plans were made. Remember also that many reports and analysis of the loss of Soviet industry considers the displacement of the industry capacity as part of being destroyed as these focus on stuff that began the war in areas that were captured by the Axis and does not consider the fact that they were evacuated and setup in the Urals. Some key words to look at for these conclusions is "affected" industry or "captured" areas. Neither points explicitly to capturing or destroying the industry, just the capture of its pre-war location.

Stalingrad was being scheduled for industrial evacuation in April of 1942 when Stalin stepped in and refused to allow it. Everything was in place to evacuate the industrial plants there but were put on hold. Stalin made several decisions to keep the industry in place there because he thought that its presence would be a big boost to morale and stiffen the resistance of the Soviet soldiers fighting to stop the Axis. Sort of a line in the sand as it were. But that shows just how organized the Soviet evacuations were. Moscow had well over 50% of its industry evacuated before mid-September of 1941. Reading the latest figures from Soviet Archives shows that they felt they evacuated over 85% of all vital industry before Axis could capture it, and some reports claim over 95%. Now these reports are reports that were directed for Stalin's attention so they could easily have been exagerations but later production figures from many different sources tend to show that the 85% was probably pretty accurate.

(in reply to Klydon)
Post #: 58
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 6:14:53 AM   
Joel Billings


Posts: 27508
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From: Santa Rosa, CA
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FYI, when development on WitE began in 2000, Gary and Keith discussed and planned to have a system where every item moved down a rail line (supplies, men, factories, etc) would be tracked per hex, and there would be limits on what could be moved. Keith implemented a system but found it either wasn't working or was way too slow (or both). Work was put on hold in 2001 and when Gary restarted his work in 2007 he thought Keith's system was still in the game. He told me recently he spent most of a day looking for the code, only to discover that Keith had gotten rid of it due to the problems he had had with it. At that point we concluded it just wasn't feasible and decided to live with a simpler system. Many have identified this weakness of the game system which allows too much to be concentrated in one area. One advantage that the Soviets had was that they had an extensive rail net to work with (east/west and north/south). The Germans faced the problem that they only had select lines running east/west at first. While eventually I'm sure they repaired/re-gauged additional rail, I'm sure it was quite awhile before they could match the Soviets. In fact at the moment I think the Germans are getting the better deal with rail than the Soviets, at least in the first few years. Recently Pavel has started to experiment with rules that makes HQ's create depots in nearby cities on a rail line, with the idea that eventually limits can be placed on how much can go through any given city. This might allow us to create some density issues without having to track everything going through every hex. However, this could have a radical impact on gameplay and it's likely something that we'll first experiment with fully in WitW. I thought you might be interested in hearing some of the background from the dev side.

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All understanding comes after the fact.
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(in reply to carlkay58)
Post #: 59
RE: Over rated Russian rail system. - 10/16/2011 8:08:43 AM   
76mm


Posts: 3789
Joined: 5/2/2004
From: Washington, DC
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Stoat
Forgive me for not repeating myself or expanding on what was a brief and straightforward argument.


haha, that's pretty funny...

(in reply to Stoat)
Post #: 60
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