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Balance analysis - 6/28/2017 3:33:44 PM   
vonik

 

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This post is an analysis of balance issues and tries especially to focus on the pre 1.05 and post 1.05 differences .
In everything below the game is played with hard caps on the number of units . All screen shots come from my PBEMs .

Against the AI it is simple – a human player always wins regardless whether he plays Axis or Allied.
Playing Allied is extremely easy, playing Axis is more difficult but an early Sealion is almost always feasible leading to a win .
The reason is that the AI doesn't play well the naval war and doesn't seem to have a strategy in production and research .

The victory conditions for Axis being to control Cairo, London and the large Soviet cities we shall look at these 3 theaters as they presented themselves pre 1.05 .

1. Cairo (pre 1.05)
This one is easiest for Axis and basically impossible to keep for the Allied .
This theater is very difficult to be reinforced for the Allied while Axis can and will reinforce via Italy .
Even when France is defeated, Italy still cannot beat the RN in Mediterranean but the RN cannot wipe out the RM either .
From this naval draw follows that an Axis player will always be able to take Cairo if he decides to do so .
The Allied player is in front of an impossible choice – on one hand his forces cannot resist the Italians and the DAK but on the other hand he cannot reinforce Egypt as long as he doesn't know if the Germans are going for Sealion or not .
One can note anyway that even if the UK player succeeds to reinforce Egypt massively, he still won't stop the Panzers because of the large difference in research (see also the screenshot below) .

As this is obviously ahistorical, why is it so ?
The main reason are the wildly irrealistic Italian forces and wildly different research levels .
Historically Italy fielded 1 army of dubious quality at El Alamein .
In the game the German player has in Libya at least 2 Italian armies and 3 infantery corps all well supplied and of good quality .
They alone are able to stop the UK if they stay in defensive at Bardia so that when the DAK arrives with eventually 1 PzD more and with the Stukas, the deal is sealed .
If the Axis player gets Spain on his side than the situation for UK in Mediterranean is even worse than hopeless .

The following screenshot from one of my ore 1.05 PBEM nicely illustrates the analysis above .

In fall 1941, UK has a crushing naval superiority (RM is basically wiped out), air superiority (3 carriers in Mediterranean) and has more units than Axis .
However :
the BB strikes on Axis units just scratch their paint while the BBs get damage here and there
the carriers can not reinforce air above 8 and if they attack, they do no damage and get slaughtered
UK has Inf 1 and tanks 1 . Germany has tanks 3 and Inf 2 . The sceenshot shows the kind of odds one gets if trying to attack the Pz :)
They cannot be stopped and will simply slice through the UK units regardless how many there are . Time to evacuate and save what can be saved .

For the purpose of victory conditions, an Allied player has to consider Cairo lost and the best he can do is to try to drain some Italian and German MPP as long as it lasts .
Most important task is to evacuate when it is still possible otherwise all units in Egypt are lost .




2. USSR (Pre 1.05)

I would start by saying that Russia is almost as lost a cause as Egypt .
Here the main reason is the very low technical research, 0 experience and a dramatical lack of HQs for the Red Army in 1941 .
When those units are hit by the experienced German Panzers, mechanized infantery and bombers they simply evaporate at a much faster rate than they can be reconstructed .
The Russian theater nicely illustrates the engine which decides about loss and win in SC : cumulated losses versus cumulated MPP .
The Reds loose more than they can replace, their army and territory shrinks .
The German loose less than they can replace, their army and territory grows .
Game over for Russia .

The screenshots below from one of my PBEM shows how fast the Soviet units evaporate .
We are only start September 41 and the Soviets have whole 12 combat units on the entire map !!
Out of these, 6 (e.g the half !) will be destroyed this turn .
That means that the next turn will start for the Russian with 6 units on the whole Ostfront !
Leningrad falls this turn and Moscow has only 1 unit in defence :)
There is nothing between Moscow and Rostov and the German can just advance full speed without fighting .
Yet the German player didn't do anything special – he just advanced his Pz and Mech inf at maximum range every turn and took care that the supply of the Russian units is reduced below 5 before destroying them so that the Russian player doesn't benefit of the fast return .





The following screen shot shows a typical Barbarossa opening – half of the Red Army is under supply 5 and will be lost next turn .
This means that by turn 2, the Russian looses 15 units only in the Bialystok and Lvov pockets with among others 1 HQ, 4 Mech inf, 3 air and 7 infantery .
This represents 2200 MPP which the Russian player will never catch up .





Every German player will stay focused on the main 1941 targets – Leningrad and Moscow so that the Russian player can only hope to slow them down .
Leningrad cannot be saved especially as the Finnish units are strong with good moral and readiness and keep the pressure from the North . A good suggestion to the Allied player is NOT to start the Winter War as this forces the German player to use diplomacy to get Finland on his side and Lenigrad needs to be defended only against south .

Moscow beneficiates from a few choke points – Smolensk, Tula, Kaluga and Orel as well as the forests along the Volga so that there is a chance to contain the German advance before winter and then the Siberian reserves arrive .
Of course this "slowing down of the Germans" happens only under the condition that the Russian player has some units to put in but as we have seen on the screenshots, he doesn't .

Finally as synthesis, Leningrad gets lost in 1941 and Moscow is reached end 1941 .
Whether Moscow falls in 1942 or already in 1941 is quite irrelevant .

The South of Russia is expendable by necessity – the Russian player must leave it open .
Kertch and Rostov may be defended if units are available but it is mainly the General Weather who will slightly slow down the Axis advance in the South .


In any case regardless how well the German player advances in 1941, he will need to continue the Campaign in 1942 as soon as the good weather returns but the the Red Army will still be extremely weak (Inf 1, Tanks 1), with no air force and will continue to evaporate as it was the case in 1941 even if at a slightly lower rate .



3. London (Pre 1.05)

As we have seen that Cairo and even Russia are largely in the reach of the Wehrmacht, this leaves only London to achieve victory for Axis .
There are 2 ways to do so .

Either early Sealion or an invasion when Moscow and Leningrad are taken and the invasion force with Luftwaffe can gather in France what puts us earliest to mid 1942 .

With Sealion the conclusion is easy . If successful, Germany has won before even starting the attack of Russia . There is nothing that can save Russia timely and there is too little time to try to reinvade the UK before Stalingard is taken . The game is basically finished with the fall of London
That's why the Allied player has only one strategical goal in from september 1939 to may 1941 .
Avoid at all costs a successful Sealion and here the cost means to let Egypt go .
That means to sacrify everything and anything but to have a sufficient coast control in UK so that the German cannot land their Panzers with an HQ before june 1941 .
This task is impossible if the German player is ready to invade already in summer 1940 .

Once an Allied player sees that the German Panzers start to gather in Poland or lead a Yougoslavia/Greece Campaign he can take a deep breath because he has now 1 year to prepare his forces and to research the necessary techniques .





4. And what about post 1.05 ?

If Cairo, Leningrad and Moscow are lost end 1941 , the result of the game boils down to only one question – will Germany successfully invade England 1942/1943 or will US&UK be able to stop the invasion and eventually stage an invasion of their own ?
A hint for the answer may be given by the fact that 1942/1943 Germany has 9 experienced tanks level 3, 8 + experienced bombers level 3 (depending on how the Italian MPP were managed) and 11 experienced U boats level 3 too .
Germany&Italy also outproduce US&UK&URSS combined and at that stage the German player has already built everything that was available with hard cap so that he has more MPP than he can spend .

4.1 Egypt and North Africa

The change is important . The Axis forces struggle with supply so that the Allied player can hold against Italians and the DAK alone .
If the German sends bombers and additionnal tanks to Egypt, he'll pay it in Russia where his advance will be much slower and even then the victory is no more automatic like it was pre 1.05 .
Malta impact on supply is relatively irrelevant because Malta is easily destroyed in 1940 when France surrenders and the whole Luftwaffe can be sent to Sicily .
Then it takes 2 turns to destroy Malta by massive air strikes and occupy it .
The difference is that pre 1.05 Malta destruction was an option while post 1.05 it is mandatory if the Axis want to have a chance at victory .

4.2 Russia

Here the change is massive . Not only the German advances much slower but the Russians have more MPP and as they don't loose more than they can replace, the Red army GROWS
Comparing the situation on 9.9.1941 to the screen shot above one sees the huge difference .
The Allied still hold Egypt and have a good perspective to keep it .
More importantly the German advance is slow and the Russians can quite massively occupy and fortify all important towns .

The following screen shot shows the situation at start summer 1942 . The German units are weak, often badly supplied and it appears obvious that neither Leningrad nor Moscow will be taken in 1942 .
Despite the tank concentration in front of Moscow, the German player has already lost 2 tanks and 1 mech infantery to russian tank counters .
The Russian are already also countering in the North and Finland is cut in 2 . The Finns can no more press on Leningrad but must try to stop the Red hordes with a slim chance at success .
In the South Zaporozhe and Nikolaevo still hold .
Last but not least, the Russian can now afford to research advanced aircraft what decreases farther the German air superiority which was key to the advance pre 1.05 .


I think that here the balancing went overboard . In the situation shown in the screen shot the German will soon need to go defensive both in Africa and in Russia what means that the game is lost for Axis without even needing US intervention .


4.3 France, UK and USA

Pre 1.05 the Allied player could not compete in Egypt and Russia, his only hope to win the Campaign was to keep UK and build a US force with high techs able to invade Axis held territories .

Prerequisite being of course that Sealion must be extremely risky and have a very low probability of successs else the game is over in 1940 .
Prior to 1.05 Sealion was too easy .

For example here is how France looked in june 40 (note units already set up for Sealion)



And here is how UK looks already end August 1940 . Game over .




Finally pre 1.05 everything depended on the US (if no Sealion happened) . Will they be able to both have caught up with Germany technically AND to build a large enough navye&air force to SUCCESSFULLY invade Axis territories in 1943 ?


With a correct research strategy and focus on air force, US has however in my experience the capacity to prevent a German invasion of UK in 1943 and catch up with the German techs in 1944 .

The following screen shot shows why I have not lost a single game playing Allied even if this doesn't mean that I had won them all :)
The screen shot shows that despite Egypt and Russia lost, the UK&US air/navy are largely superior to the German and on a par in techs .The forces stationned in GB are more than enoug to defeat any attempt at invasion so that the game ends in a draw .
The huge Wehrmacht has a megaton of MPP, can compensate any losses and immediately operate Pz&bombers to defeat any Allied attempt at invasion .
But on the other hand UK&US have enough MPPs and forces to defeat any German landing attempt and can focus on wiping out the KM or to lock it up in the Baltic Sea .



The fact that 2 equally skilled players finished by a draw in a large majority of cases is a proof that the game was quite well balanced in pre 1.05 provided that the Allied player didn't despair during 1939-1943 and patiently built up his US techs and army .
The 1.05 made the life for Germany (much) more difficult in Russia so that the balance might have been broken and the Allied could win every game now .
A smalller enhancement of Russia was proabbly in order to avoid a walk in the park but the observed enhancement is probably too much .

As for me, I think that after some 2 dozens of PBEMs I have seen and tried more or less everything so that the SC replayability value reached 0 .
I wish you all fun and my respects to Bill and Hubert who listen and discuss with the player basis in an open and frequent way that is seldom (never ?) seen in other games .
I might have again a look at SC if/when SC4 releases one day and in the meantime Vonik over and out .

< Message edited by vonik -- 6/28/2017 3:39:09 PM >
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RE: Balance analysis - 6/28/2017 4:30:19 PM   
Isnogud

 

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Is it not possible to capture London with parachutes and air force?
I thought it would be sufficient to get all cities then the game ends (at least this was the case in previous SCs)
Do you need now to hold it for one turn?

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RE: Balance analysis - 6/28/2017 6:47:26 PM   
crispy131313


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It seems the Allies should have conceded, isn't there an event for this?

The Axis would have won if the clock ran out in Jan 1947 or whenever the end date is. It is up to the Allies to win. A "Draw" should be Axis Major Victory as they completed all objectives.

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RE: Balance analysis - 6/29/2017 3:38:21 AM   
Hubert Cater

 

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Thanks for the analysis Vonik and definitely some things to consider for possible further balance updates.

I find one thing interesting which was that the concentration of Axis air in North Africa seemed to have an effect on the Axis in your game, in terms of slower gains in the USSR. I wonder then if there is indeed a sufficient pro versus con balance when players decide to concentrate their air units.

For example, while a-historical, it does leave you possibly thin in other key areas so there is seemingly a tradeoff, and not necessarily a matter of a one size fit all guaranteed path to victory.

Anyone else?

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RE: Balance analysis - 6/29/2017 7:44:58 AM   
Sugar

 

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I´d like to beat in the same score as Isnogud (glad to meet you here by the way):

[image][URL=http://www.bild.me][/URL][/image]

As you might see, Gemany can have 8 fighters, 9 tac. or med. bombers (could be 9 and 10 if they manage to buy them before the DAK occurs amd never loose any); all in line, and the Italians are building a competitive Air Force as well with 5 fighters and several bombers. Britain and the US can buy 6 fighters both, but there`s not enough space to put them in line, and they`re outnumbered anyway.

Of course It will be no problem to bomb any defender out of London, so Isnoguds question is relevant; further more german paras are able to reach Manchester, and together with Kairo if the game continues after the fall of London, Britain will surrender if London and Manchester fall in the same turn.

Anyway, how could an Allied player keep sea superiority against these Air Forces, if Kriegsmarine and Regia Marina just have to close the channel for the turns when Germany begins to load into amphibs?

And here a link to german forum, where I posted the situation already:

http://www.si-games.com/forum/showthread.php?t=29364

< Message edited by Sugar -- 6/29/2017 7:54:12 AM >

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RE: Balance analysis - 6/30/2017 3:11:05 PM   
BillRunacre

 

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quote:

I wish you all fun and my respects to Bill and Hubert who listen and discuss with the player basis in an open and frequent way that is seldom (never ?) seen in other games .


Hi vonik

Thanks very much for taking the time to type this all up and post it, it's very interesting and this kind of feedback is very useful.

My understanding from this is that the most significant change affecting balance that we might wish to reconsider involves the greater ability the USSR now has to defend itself, given that the Axis now face greater supply issues the further they advance into the country. This buys the USSR more time to build up its armed forces.

Bill



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RE: Balance analysis - 6/30/2017 3:19:30 PM   
BillRunacre

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Sugar

I´d like to beat in the same score as Isnogud (glad to meet you here by the way):


As you might see, Gemany can have 8 fighters, 9 tac. or med. bombers (could be 9 and 10 if they manage to buy them before the DAK occurs amd never loose any); all in line, and the Italians are building a competitive Air Force as well with 5 fighters and several bombers. Britain and the US can buy 6 fighters both, but there`s not enough space to put them in line, and they`re outnumbered anyway.

Of course It will be no problem to bomb any defender out of London, so Isnoguds question is relevant; further more german paras are able to reach Manchester, and together with Kairo if the game continues after the fall of London, Britain will surrender if London and Manchester fall in the same turn.

Anyway, how could an Allied player keep sea superiority against these Air Forces, if Kriegsmarine and Regia Marina just have to close the channel for the turns when Germany begins to load into amphibs?

And here a link to german forum, where I posted the situation already:

http://www.si-games.com/forum/showthread.php?t=29364


Thanks Sugar, I've just had a read of that thread, it was rather interesting. Particularly the Red Army's very low Tank casualties.

Looking at the Build Limits for Fighters, we could perhaps adjust these slightly. I am also working on some changes to Ground Attack capabilities for Tactical and Medium Bombers with the intention of moderating their ability to inflict unit casualties, while increasing the former's potential to inflict morale losses.

If you, vonik, and anyone else reading this, has further contributions on this subject we really welcome them, as everyone's experience can be useful in building up a bigger picture of the whole. This should hopefully assist us in deciding what further changes may be necessary.

Bill


< Message edited by Bill Runacre -- 6/30/2017 3:23:43 PM >


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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 12:55:52 AM   
Sugar

 

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Dear Bill,

some things to mention: the PbEM started with V 1.03, the changes in 1.06 wouldn`t allow to buy all possible fighters, tanks and bombers.

The low tank losses of the SU had maybe 2 reasons: the soviet counterattack at Novgorod allowed me to cut off the railway to Moskau and Volchow, bombing the HQs down to a minimum reduced supply, and I`ve been able to destroy 2 armygroups (Siberians + reinforcements) on low supply, with tanks and HQs at last so that they couldn`t be bought back soon; and my opponent decided to diminish the SU-convoys to be able to launch an invasion in 42, leaving the SU with less income to buy tanks.

Britain can buy 1 additional canadian fighter.

Crucial point for the Axis income is the joining of Spain (beside the fact that the Spanyards are able to provide a really strong armygroup with 1 tank, 1 light tank, 1 fighter, 1 tac. bomber, 3 inf.-armies). This can be achieved without any diplo-investment by taking the Vichy-Event, then occupying Tunesia and Algeria. With Algier in Axis hands and Spain at 30% pro Axis leaning you`ll be able to invite them, no matter if Casablanca or Oran is in Allied hands (proved this several times). Gibraltar and Portugal will follow soon.

With Egypt under heavy threat, the Brits won`t be able to defend one of those cities anyway on their own. I guess that's the point to be corrected; if the Axis-player wants to get Spain, he should have to take the option to conquer whole France, and not to take the plunder immediately and then move on to Algeria.

Not a major issue, but annoying: the range of the plunder of France is too wide imho, from 1000 up to nearly 1400 MPP.

The last question I couldn`t figure out yet is, if the war ends immediately with the occupation of London, like it did in Breakthrough SoE. Maybe that`s even not a very happy solution, the Axis should have to hold and defend it 1 turn at min.

Imho the fat passages are the things to be corrected/clarified; I don`t think the balance is that clearly in favour of the Axis in total; I managed to win all PbEMs even with the Allies.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 2:48:05 AM   
Leadwieght

 

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Hi Bill, Hubert

My strong preference would be to leave the capacities of bombers as they are. If you weaken them, I fear the Axis will lose any chance to win a quick victory.

I've played about 20 PBEM games at this point, winning a few more than I've lost. In my experience, the Axis player MUST win quickly, or he loses almost inevitably (I've only played one game where the Axis--not me--"came from behind" and won in 1945. And that was before the new, tougher, supply rules).

Players who lose as the Allies by 1942 (as I have done once or twice!) are bound to feel a bit unhappy at such an ahistorical outcome and may be tempted to ask for too much in the way of re-balancing. It can also be hard for people to accept a game, even a historical simulation like this, in which winning on different sides in a game requires radically asymmetrical strategies. So again, the temptation may be to ask for changes that force both sides' optimal strategies to converge.

SO, IMO strong Tac air is essential to allow the Axis the chance (and it IS only a chance, not a certainty) to try for an early win by playing a "fast, hard, and risky" strategy.

Just my opinion, of course.

LW


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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 4:01:33 AM   
johanssb

 

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Agree with Leadwieght.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 10:50:40 AM   
BillRunacre

 

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Yes, I think that airpower needs to remain pretty much as it is early in the war, but later on it seems it can get a bit too powerful.

This is what I'm thinking of, as it will moderate unit casualties at the higher tech levels:






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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 11:58:32 AM   
crispy131313


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Hi Bill, I fully agree with the proposed changes to Tac/Medium Bombers. It's very close to what I've personally been using, though I have extended the upgrade to 4 levels (increasing attack increments by 0.5 rather than boosting starting value by 0.5) and slowed research progression slightly, but the end goal is the same; to max out Tac/Medium attack values at the equivalent of what was Level 2. I have liked the results and this is very similar.






Attachment (1)

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 11:59:15 AM   
crispy131313


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Screenshot #2




Attachment (1)

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 1:38:43 PM   
sPzAbt653


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Another aspect for consideration is the inability of units to defend against bombers early in the war. Poland, France and USSR all suffered Stuka Terror because they had insufficient air defenses and training. So, lowering AAA Defense for some units might seem appropriate.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 2:26:18 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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How many entirely 1.05+ vs. AI and PBEM games was that analysis based on, Vonik?

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 3:16:54 PM   
VigaBrand

 

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+1 for Bills Idea and an idea for late war.
Bring a tech in with +1 to built limit of tank, fighter, medium bomber. This could be usefull, because I had the impression, that at some point german couldn't buy any interesting stuff. This tech could be research after 1943 or so, so it will only influence the late game.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 6:35:54 PM   
Leadwieght

 

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Thanks for sharing your proposal, Bill.

I wonder if it wouldn't be simpler to just raise the allowable AA upgrade for units to 3, instead of the current limit of 2.

This would have same effect of making Tac Air less devastating in the later part of the war, if players chose to invest in AA research and upgrades. One outstanding feature of the SC series is the way the player must make strategic choices and then live with the consequences. Making Tac Air upgrades incrementally less effective beyond 2 would have the effect of channeling player choices; letting them upgrade AA defense beyond the current limits keeps options open.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 8:35:41 PM   
Guderian1940

 

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IMHO I personally believe the issue with Air (and ground) is it's ability to concentrate and eliminate a unit. Perhaps a restriction on the number of air attacks on a unit could be in order, As mentioned it is rare that Air power would eliminate a unit. Usually it create rubble that a defender can use once they recover. Similar to Artillery effects.

Air power should affect more readiness than actual casualties. IMHO. Let the ground attack finish them off, if it is strong enough.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/1/2017 9:23:58 PM   
Icier


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

How many entirely 1.05+ vs. AI and PBEM games was that analysis based on, Vonik?


Although I agree with the thread, I was wondering the same...I get the same results against the AI.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/2/2017 7:40:42 AM   
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I would like to point that historically the evolution of bombers during the war was not to became more powerful but to improve survival

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/2/2017 5:24:02 PM   
MemoryLeak


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Good discussion.

I was wondering if another aspect of the air war should be reconsidered and perhaps it would help limit the gamey,
all-powerful air units.

Am I the only one who thinks it is totally unreasonable to believe that 10 or more air bases can be constructed
anywhere on the map every two weeks? Buildings, barracks, maintenance shops, mess halls, fuel dumps, ammo dumps, support personnel
housing...the list goes on. There should engineering units required on the hex ahead of time and construction time.
This would be one means to keep the units from always being on the front lines and always within range of targets.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/2/2017 7:23:51 PM   
Guderian1940

 

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I Think there should be some restriction as well. Swamps, Mountains, forest are certainly challenges to building airfields. Perhaps a restriction as to a hexes supply level. A slight delay based on supply, before an air OP, as supply increases to a hex then Air Op is possible might be a compromised solution. I fully understand that WWII aircraft could operate from grassy fields but there was still a restriction to logistics.

This is less of an issue in Europe, but elsewhere there should be something to prevent air from deploying anywhere they like.

I do think that with less ability to deploy anywhere and have sufficient supply for unlimited air Operations the overall ability to destroy units should be mitigated. Back to an issue I have with deploying a dozen air units to North Africa, because you can, create these kinds of issues with Air Power.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/2/2017 7:52:08 PM   
crispy131313


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I am not a fan of the idea of limiting hexes that Air units can enter. It creates a level of complexity that does not fit anywhere else in the game. Creating a catch all rule would also be extremely difficult through the different theatres.

There are other less complicated ideas which have not been discussed.

Would an increase to the cost of operating air units help, especially if they could not "fly" across the Mediterranean due to reduced free movement rule (which will result in more operating costs). Could operated air units receive a morale/readiness penalty and receive higher losses against cities? Basically these changes, coupled with reduced bomber attack capibilties could have an impact, or maybe not but they could be discussed.



< Message edited by crispy131313 -- 7/2/2017 7:57:13 PM >


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RE: Balance analysis - 7/3/2017 11:14:26 AM   
Benedict151

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: crispy131313

I am not a fan of the idea of limiting hexes that Air units can enter. It creates a level of complexity that does not fit anywhere else in the game. Creating a catch all rule would also be extremely difficult through the different theatres.

There are other less complicated ideas which have not been discussed.

Would an increase to the cost of operating air units help, especially if they could not "fly" across the Mediterranean due to reduced free movement rule (which will result in more operating costs). Could operated air units receive a morale/readiness penalty and receive higher losses against cities? Basically these changes, coupled with reduced bomber attack capibilties could have an impact, or maybe not but they could be discussed.




This is a very interesting discussion. Thank you to everyone involved

Whilst I can't say I have sufficient experience yet to sensibly contribute on whether air units become overpowered I would certainly agree with Crispy about avoiding introducing a new level of complexity in order to try and resolve it

regards
Ben Wilkins

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/3/2017 1:45:44 PM   
rocketman71

 

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When I first started playing the game, the way that air units could move to any hex and be just as efficient bothered me a bit since it takes away the strategic importance of key airfields, either destroy the opponents or take them over. Could one solution be to turn some hexes with key airfields (like Carpiquet i Normandy) into resources? Also maybe make mountain, marsh and forest hexes no go for air units?

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/3/2017 2:05:09 PM   
TheBattlefield


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Benedict151

This is a very interesting discussion. Thank you to everyone involved

Whilst I can't say I have sufficient experience yet to sensibly contribute on whether air units become overpowered I would certainly agree with Crispy about avoiding introducing a new level of complexity in order to try and resolve it

regards
Ben Wilkins



I would not in any case associate the term "complexity" with a negative efect. The decision to build a fortification by engineers and not to program as an automatic command for land units that are more than four rounds in a hex is also more of a strategic expansion than an exaggerated micromanagement. I do not believe that all problems can be solved by variations of the attack values alone. Possible costs of a relocation and also the possibility of a logistical restriction (e.g. preparation of a target hex field) should be tested.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/3/2017 2:29:33 PM   
Leadwieght

 

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Hi all,

Fascinating discussion! I agree that the ability of air units to "teleport" in unlimited numbers is a big factor giving them a lot of power, but I would still be hesitant to limit it too much. I would say the place where this game feature has the biggest effect is North Africa--particularly for the Axis. Not sure that's such a bad thing. The post-1.05 supply rules have made it MUCH tougher for the Axis there and in Russia.

Maybe air units should only be allowed to Operate into the actual hex of a City/Town/Settlement, and not into adjacent hexes. That would nicely limit the ability to quickly build huge aerodrome complexes in the desert or the remoter parts of Russia without, on the other hand, totally hamstringing Axis offensives. And it would have relatively little negative effect on the Allies in the later years, I think.

Or maybe limit Operational movement by air units to Resource hexes that have a supply level of 5 or higher, instead of 3 (which I think is the current limit).

But I'd like to argue against overly strict limits on air units' flexibility. I know it seems weird to have air units popping up all over the map via Operational movement, but the fact is that functioning airfields were constructed in some pretty remote, inhospitable places. My great-grandfather was with the Seabees in the Pacific and they hacked landing strips out of the jungle!

LW


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RE: Balance analysis - 7/3/2017 3:29:09 PM   
TheBattlefield


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Leadwieght

My great-grandfather was with the Seabees in the Pacific and they hacked landing strips out of the jungle!




This is, of course, true. But probably on a battalion level, and less so when a whole air division or an air fleet is relocated. There should be some more logistics required, right?

(in reply to Leadwieght)
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RE: Balance analysis - 7/3/2017 3:37:09 PM   
Leadwieght

 

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"This is, of course, true. But probably on a battalion level, and less so when a whole air division or an air fleet is relocated. There should be some more logistics required, right?"

True, but I thought that's what the MPP expenditure represented, in part. Perhaps there's something to be said for simply upping the cost of OMing Air units.

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RE: Balance analysis - 7/4/2017 3:33:59 PM   
James Taylor

 

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I'm seeing this as a non-issue. Why? Since at the SC scale, I would think that every hex has some degree of ability to operate air units, perhaps not at the scale the SC air units represent, but at least a small contingent there of.

So reflecting the supply and readiness of that contingent in making them less combat effective does a decent job of representing the limitation of deployment.

It's a player controlled issue, you are free to select the hex of deployment knowing that lower supply and readiness will reduce the unit's effectiveness.

The proximity of an HQ helps in that it provides the necessary commitment of assets to operate a larger aircraft contingent.

It all makes perfect sense.

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