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Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production

 
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Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/23/2018 9:07:24 PM   
rkr1958


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OK, after venting about how the AI in MWiF "handles" convoys, resource routing, trade and production I thought I start this thread to give specific examples and "headaches" created by the AI. My though is if we wish things to change we need hard data to show why and where our frustrations lie.

To be honest I thought I had a good start on all this but I must admit that the AI passed the first test I gave it, as shown in the following three posts. But I do plan to keep "testing" it in hopes of convincing the "powers to be" to give us the option to control all this as constrained by MWiF enforcing the rules.

If the anyone else finds this thread useful for such an endeavor, I encourage that they post and provide their own examples.

I'll start.

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Ronnie
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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/23/2018 9:15:18 PM   
rkr1958


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Example #1 (1/3)

Situation.
1. It's March/April 1940 and allied impulse 10.
2. The allies saw 3 CP's sunk and 3 CP's aborted from the Bay of Biscay by German u-boats on the first axis impulse #1, resulting in 6 CW factories going idle.
3. The allies were able to replace enough CP's and reroute enough resources on their first impulse (allied impulse #4) to get 3 of the 6 idled factories back in production.
4. Germany DOW and invaded Holland last impulse (axis #7).
5. The current situation, allied naval moves and resulting expectations for CW and French are shown in the attached screen cap.
(PS) 6. I'm running the latest public beta 2.9.4.




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by rkr1958 -- 11/23/2018 9:23:12 PM >


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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/23/2018 9:17:41 PM   
rkr1958


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Example #1 (2/3)

I'd say the AI passed this test. But I do plan to keep testing it and fully expect it to fail a number of these tests. But we'll see and maybe I'm wrong.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/23/2018 9:20:20 PM   
rkr1958


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Example #1 (3/3)

Saved games (pre and post naval moves) attached.

Attachment (1)

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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/25/2018 5:58:27 PM   
rkr1958


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MWiF AI Convoy Routing Test (Example) #2 (1/5).

1. MWiF Public Beta Version 2.9.4

2. May/June 1940. Beginning of Turn.

3. Situation shown is at the beginning of resource lending before any changes were made.




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< Message edited by rkr1958 -- 11/25/2018 6:03:23 PM >


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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/25/2018 6:06:02 PM   
rkr1958


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MWiF AI Convoy Routing Test (Example) #2 (2/5).

4. The CW increases traded (non-oil) resources to France to 3 (from 2).

5. The CW selects Paramaribo, Dutch Guyana for the 3rd Non-Oil RP.

6. France starts a new trade deal of 5 BP's to CW.

7. Shown is the situation just after all this was done.

8. Interesting that only 1 of the 5 traded BP's from France to the CW are accounted for by the MWiF AI.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/25/2018 6:10:52 PM   
rkr1958


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MWiF AI Convoy Routing Test (Example) #2 (3/5).

9. With the expectation of getting the idle British Guyana RP to Leeds, and getting the CW at full production, the CW places 1 CP in each of: Mouths of the Amazon, Central Atlantic, North Atlantic and Bay of Biscay.

10. With the expectation of getting the 4 remaining French BP's to Great Britain the CW places 4 (additional) CP's in the Bay of Biscay.

11. Shown is the situation after these CP's placements, which has the MWiF AI shorting the CW by 2 of the 5 traded French BP's.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/25/2018 6:14:29 PM   
rkr1958


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MWiF AI Convoy Routing Test (Example) #2 (4/5).

12. Hoping that the MWiF AI improves this situation after it gets a chance to re-calculate the CW closes down the production form.

13. Shown is the situation after the production form is re-opened and the MWiF AI has had a chance to re-calculate things.

14. The MWiF AI is still shorting the CW by 2 BP's.

15. MWiF AI fails this test.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/25/2018 6:24:28 PM   
rkr1958


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MWiF AI Convoy Routing Test (Example) #2 (5/5).

16. Game turns for: (a) starting of resource lending, (b) post resource lending/pre CP moves and (3) post CP moves attached.

17. This test (example) #2 illustrates perfectly a major issue I have with being forced to use the MWiF AI for all my production and convoy routing needs.

18. I could spend hours trying to get this to work but likely without much success.

19. As I see it I have three options: (a) accept this sub-optimum routing/production forced onto me by the MWiF AI, (b) keep track of the 2 "lost" BP's and add them to CW during final production or (c) move the 2 spare CP's in the Faeroes Gap and 1 spare CP in the North Atlantic to the Bay of Biscay and hope that fixes the issue.

20. Options (b) and (c) require editing the game file. Option (c) puts more concentration of of CP's in the Bay of Biscay, making it a more attractive target to axis subs and increasing allied risk. And, until the CP's are moved who knows if the MWiF AI gives expected production and lending or not.

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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 11/26/2018 4:08:10 PM   
TeaLeaf


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Great initiative Ronnie!

I'd give you all of my savegames to test with, if only all current GAM files weren't edited. All my saves at this point are modified (mostly to fix resource problems), and could produce false positives/negatives.
My latest problem is lending the Cyprus Resource to Russia in 1942, while Gibraltar and Lisbon are occupied by Germany but the Allies control North Africa. Germany is at war with Russia but Italy is not. France is incompletely conquered (no Vichy).
In 2.7.5 I sent the Cyprus resource to Beiruth (France), and from there into Russia. Loading this game to all newer versions resulted in MWiF idling Cyprus and sending a resource from Canada around Africa to Beiruth into Russia. This cannot be corrected.

Oh and trust me, "the powers that be" (as you so hilariously put it) are well aware of the nightmares caused by the current convoy AI. But it seems to be a very difficult problem to fix.
As in "to get this AI to work properly".
And so I think there are a few explanations as to why this problem has not been actively hunted between 2.7.5 and now.
1. the cynical one:
The powers are trying to cover up that they can't fix it by ignoring it and sometimes even trying to deny its existence.
2. the optimistic one (still my choice):
The powers are afraid to cut their fingers on this very serious bug-with-teeth, so the hunt is procrastinated time and again, sadly with the risk of permanent cancellation.

If only "the powers that be" could communicate to us their future plans regarding the elimination of this...thing.
Then again, I suspect this is a very heavy meal for them to digest. Maybe the powers still don't know what to do with this themselves?

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/9/2018 1:53:37 AM   
rkr1958


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quote:

ORIGINAL: TeaLeaf

Great initiative Ronnie!
Thanks!


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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/9/2018 2:09:17 AM   
rkr1958


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MWiF AI Convoy Routing Test (Example) #3 (1/3).

1. No kidding, the change to CW production that I'm showing I made a half of dozen times between preliminary production and final production and CW production always reverted back to the top production screen in the cap below.

2. It's final production and I once again route the idle Non-oil Res, India[95,110] to an idle factory in Glasgow.

3. The bottom line is that this change increases CW production by 2 BP's from 19 to 21.

4. I hit the "Finalize Production" button safe in the knowledge that since production is FINALIZED that the CW will get 21 BP's for production.

5. By the way, I kept this game up and running all the way through the start of final production to the end of production. That is, there were NO saves and re-loads.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/9/2018 2:12:41 AM   
rkr1958


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MWiF AI Convoy Routing Test (Example) #3 (2/3).

6. It's CW production and this is just not right! MWiF has reverted CW production back to 19 BP's AFTER production for them was finalized.

7. In my opinion this behavior by MWiF is a CRITICAL PRODUCTION BUG that needs to be fixed! As such, I'm going to post this is the tech forum as a bug.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/9/2018 2:14:07 AM   
rkr1958


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MWiF AI Convoy Routing Test (Example) #3 (3/3).

8. Game file (ver 2.9.4 Public Beta).

Attachment (1)

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Ronnie

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Post #: 14
RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/9/2018 5:13:19 PM   
Centuur


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It's strange that you could change this during the final production phase. You should not be able to do so with convoyed resources at that phase. Those should be allocated during the prel. production phase. So what was the situation when you were about to end the prel. production phase?

Also, if I switch maps and ask for unused convoy points, there aren't any convoy points available to send that resource to the UK. Did you mod this game anytime before this appeared?

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Peter

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/9/2018 9:33:16 PM   
rkr1958


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Centuur

It's strange that you could change this during the final production phase. You should not be able to do so with convoyed resources at that phase. Those should be allocated during the prel. production phase. So what was the situation when you were about to end the prel. production phase?

Also, if I switch maps and ask for unused convoy points, there aren't any convoy points available to send that resource to the UK.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Centuur
Did you mod this game anytime before this appeared?
Nope.

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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/9/2018 9:46:38 PM   
rkr1958


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If I'm forced to use MWiF's game engine for convoy routes and production then so be it. But, I find it immensely irritating when MWiF allows me to make changes to production, seemingly accepts those changes and then backs them out without notifying me only to "surprise" me at production.

Working with production and understanding what one will get shouldn't be that hard. There shouldn't be any surprises when one gets to production.

< Message edited by rkr1958 -- 12/9/2018 9:47:14 PM >


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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/23/2018 6:31:53 PM   
rkr1958


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Selecting Trade Resources (Example) #4 (1/3).

1. France was conquered (no Vichy) by Germany two turns back and the allies have (just) selected US entry option 19, "Resources to the USSR."

2. During the trade phase before the start of the current turn, which is Turn 10, March/April 1941, the following trade deals were established: (a) France 2 RP's to CW, (b) France 1 RP to China, (c) France 1 RP to USSR, (d) CW 1 RP to USSR, (e) USA 1 RP to USSR.

3. So my trade intentions were to send the two French RP's at Kayes, Sengal and Bechar, Algeria to the CW to satisfy 2 (a).

4. French RP at New Caledonia to China to satisfy 2 (b).

5. French RP at Hanoi, French Indo-China to USSR to satisfy 2 (c).

6. CW RP at Larut, Malaya to USSR to satisfy 2 (d).

7. USA Oil RP at Fairbanks, Alaska to satisfy 2 (e).

8. Let's start with the USA trade to the USSR (shown in the screen cap below). No matter what I do, MWiF refuses to accept my command to use the Oil RP at Fairbanks to satisfy that deal, instead stubbornly using some other RP. I've spent the last 10-minutes just trying to get the program to accept this command, which should be a non-brainer but for some reason isn't.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/23/2018 6:37:48 PM   
rkr1958


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Selecting Trade Resources (Example) #4 (2/3).

9. I've sent the other trade resources as I wish at least a dozen times and the program continues to ignore had I set them and chooses on its own which RP's to send where.

10. Trade is so important and the unwillingness of MWiF to accept which resources are sent is so frustrating.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/23/2018 6:38:38 PM   
rkr1958


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Selecting Trade Resources (Example) #4 (3/3).

11. Game turn attached.

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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/23/2018 6:56:26 PM   
ssiviour

 

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I am having similar problems and may post something soon looking for help ...

One observation Re USA RP problem though, the Trade Agreement is not set as an Oil Resource so MWIF will not send Alaskan Resource.

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/23/2018 7:18:12 PM   
rkr1958


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ssiviour

One observation Re USA RP problem though, the Trade Agreement is not set as an Oil Resource so MWIF will not send Alaskan Resource.

I guess I made a bad assumption that one could send more oil than the "Minimum Oil" specified. I guess "minimum" on the form below doesn't mean minimum but means the actual number sent.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 12/31/2018 4:53:09 AM   
rkr1958


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For the sake of my sanity PLEASE give us some ability to choose which sea areas resources are routed! At a minimum, please oh please, let us have the ability to move Canadian resources to England through the Faeroes Gap! It's maddening that we aren't allowed to do this!

I'm not sure what good it do but I think I'm going to post this plea in the tech forum.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 3/1/2020 12:36:34 AM   
rkr1958


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So it's a year later since I last start this thread out of sheer frustration. In that time I've learned a couple of tricks on routing resources that has greatly reduced my frustration and which I'd like to pass along.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 3/1/2020 12:37:23 AM   
rkr1958


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But first, take a look at this! I've actually got MWiF routing the Canadian resources through the Faeores Gap.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 3/1/2020 12:39:40 AM   
rkr1958


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Also, I was able to get full CW production at setup with 7 CP's to spare! I challenge any and all to beat that! Note that this setup is using the Food in Flames optional rule so there was incentive to get an Australian, South African and Indian RP to Great Britain factories.




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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 3/1/2020 12:41:40 AM   
rkr1958


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So how did I accomplish this miracle? Well, before I hurt my arm patting myself too much on my back, convoy routing and production in MWiF; especially for the Western Allies, is fragile but I think I've figured out somethings that make it less so. More significantly I think I've figured out somethings that allow me to control to a certain extent which sea areas RP's route through.

Instead of fighting for hours with MWiF to try to get things EXACTLY the way I want them, which I'm usually am unsuccessful and surrender in great frustation, I've come to accept a quicker and more saner way (at least for me) to convoy routing in MWiF.

< Message edited by rkr1958 -- 3/1/2020 12:44:33 AM >


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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 3/1/2020 12:57:53 AM   
rkr1958


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There are four postulates that over time I've developed from working with MWiF convoy routing that guide my convoy routing:

1. There's a certain order to how MWiF routes RP's.

2. Within that order MWiF uses a greedy approach to route RP one by one. And by greedy, I'm using the classical Operations Research/Network Analysis definition.

3. Sometimes when you can't get things exactly the way you want them it's you that's wrong. That is, sometimes you're trying to do something that's not legal or for which you don't have all the needed CP's in place.

4. Good enough is better than perfect. Well, technically it isn't but it's significantly faster and less frustrating that trying to achieve "perfection." So good enough for me it is.

< Message edited by rkr1958 -- 3/1/2020 1:10:23 AM >


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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 3/1/2020 1:09:18 AM   
rkr1958


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How did achieve the miracle of getting MWiF to route the Canadian RP's through the Faeores Gap instead of through the Bay of Biscay, thus preventing RP's from Africa and the Med getting through? One of the my major and time consuming frustrations of the past.

Well it comes from understanding the order that MWiF does things. That's postulate 1 in the previous post. MWiF allocates RP's in group order, which from highest to lowest priority (i.e., first to last) is:

(1) Trade deals between major powers,

(2) RP's that are defaulted, or overridden, to factories or (oil) saved to cities,

(3) RP's that are NOT defaulted, or overridden.

So if you look at post 25 (above), you'll see that the 5 Canadian resources aren't defaulted, or overridden, to any factory. And in post 26 (just below 25), you'll see that the RP's that I wish to, or need to, get to the UK via the Bay of Biscay are defaulted to factories. Since this put these RP's in a higher priority group (i.e., group 2) than the non-defaulted ones (i.e., group 3) they are allocated before the Canadian RP's and since going through the Bay of Biscay is the cheapest way to get them there (i.e., greedy) MWiF use up the CP's there for them, such that when MWiF routes the Canadian RP's to the UK all that are left are CP's in the Faeroes Gap to get them there.

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Ronnie

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RE: Fun with MWiF Convoy Routing, Trade and Production - 3/5/2020 4:26:57 AM   
ashkpa


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Nice insights.

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