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Micro landings. - 12/2/2019 2:51:29 PM   
stormbringer3

 

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There's a discussion about micro landings being a problem on p3-4 of the beta AAR. Any developer thoughts about this?
Thanks.
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RE: Micro landings. - 12/2/2019 6:59:41 PM   
BillRunacre

 

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Hi

Leaving aside Gallipoli, during the war there were similar small operations launched by the Germans in the Baltic and the Russians in the Black Sea, while the British had plans for a landing in Flanders, but the failure of their 1917 offensive meant that they were never implemented.

Early in the war the Armenians were also calling on the British to land a small force in Cilicia where they promised to rise up and join the British if they were provided with arms, and if it had been attempted then it could have been a major headache to the Ottomans given that such a landing would have cut the railway line running down to Palestine. The British were too busy elsewhere and therefore did not give it the consideration it probably deserved.

So to ban such landings seems ahistorical.

Additionally, all the feedback that I'd seen so far from the beta team about a British landing behind Ottoman lines has been favourable to it.

In terms of launching a landing, Amphibious Transport build limits start very low, at just 1 per Major, so to launch more than one landing at a time requires researching Amphibious Warfare.

Unless Amphibious Warfare has been researched, the unit cannot move in the turn it embarks, and it will only be able to move 4 hexes in the subsequent turn.

Placing a unit in an Amphibious Transport is expensive. For instance, it costs 75 MPPs for a Detachment, and placing it in an Amphibious Transport costs a further 43 MPPs, so 118 MPPs in total.

That is pretty much the same price as to rebuild a destroyed Corps, and the Detachment will ultimately be lost, particularly as the much harsher supply rules we have in the game now compared to our older WWI Breakthrough game mean that it will almost certainly be destroyed in very low supply, and therefore cannot be bought back cheaply.

Given that the feedback so far has been positive about this I wouldn't want to rush to judgement, but if we find it an issue in the long run then we will certainly consider changing some settings/prices to inhibit such actions further. For example, in the past it was shown that using Garrisons to launch such invasions was gamey, so we removed the ability for Garrisons to embark in Amphibious Transports.

Bill

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/2/2019 7:40:19 PM   
The Land

 

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I see Bill's mentioned the planned 1917 British amphibious attack on Flanders - if the attack at Passchendaele succeeded, then the idea was to land on the coast around Ostend and Zeebrugge, seize those ports and put guns overlooking the Schelde estuary so submarines could no longer operate out of Antwerp.

There was also a study of a plan for the British to land on Heligoland or somewhere nearby to bottle up the German navy.

And the Royal Navy entered the war with an assumption that the Germans were going to try to invade - the Navy's official view was that they could not prevent a landing of up to 70,000 men, and that they needed the Army to retain enough troops in England to be able to deal with that scale of attack. The RN did promise to stop this hypothetical German invasion force from getting back out of the country again, but were genuinely worried they would land somewhere like Tyneside and blow up the dockyards there.

None of these was a particularly good idea in military and/or naval terms, which is why they didn't happen. But they would all have been possible from a logistical point of view. So amphibious warfare has its role in the game.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/2/2019 8:16:14 PM   
Sugar

 

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It`s different talking about logistical possibilities of large invasions or using the smallest available unit to cause havoc.

Fact is, there haven't been major invasions except Gallipoli and even the smaller german ones hardly had strategical impact, while ingame it`s far too easy possible to cripple the Ottomans with coordinated attacks, especially including granular invasions.

While this is also an issue in all the other title of the series, it really should be fixed now. The Ottoman Empire did not collapse prior to the other CPs, even without major military support from the CPs.

I guess it's far easier to fix than overthrowing major mechanics, like NM-Objectives losing their effect on NM immediately after being occupied by the enemy, and even if recovered the following turn doesn't help anything.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/3/2019 9:09:25 AM   
Cfant

 

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I don't know the new supply rules yet, but this may improve the situation. Still true, what Sugar says: due to the scale of the map, a detachment is able to cut off half a continent. That is what overpowers it so much.
But we have to see it in the released game, how devastating it really is.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/3/2019 9:58:32 AM   
Sugar

 

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The new supply rules allow 2 units to inflict a siege, thereby reducing the supply of the source the unit occupies. When the supply hits 0 after 3 turns (now ressources like towns are limitied to 3 supply instead of previously 5), the unit will begin to starve and lose health points.

While this ensures to get rid of the enemy sooner or later even without major effort, the effect of the unit still applies through sheer existence. But you probably won't be able to besiege the ressource right after operating, and still need to prevent the unit from moving on.

In any case you'll need several units to limit the damage, and the effect on the ottoman supply at the frontline in Palestine is devastating.

There are 6 NM-Objectives located in Palestine/Arabia/Syria, the loss of 4 of them will probably be enough to end the Ottos. The inevitable loss of Bazra right at the start alone causes a loss of 12% NM.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/3/2019 11:14:17 AM   
HvS


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To me it appears the easiest consensus is to do the same thing to detachments as to garrisons in WaW: do not allow them to do amphib landings.
This should solve the worst problems.. and if a player decides to let a corps drop in the Levante, he has to pay the full price.


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RE: Micro landings. - 12/3/2019 12:55:32 PM   
Kardinalinfant81

 

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In my opinion this last proposal by HvS would be the best solution. Little change in the game mechanics i belive. Micro landings by detachmenet would not longer be possible, while big landing operations with several corpses are not affected by this solution in any way, which is both historical in my eyes. Medium landing operations by just one corps would still be possible and could still hit - for example - Turkey hard, as landings with a detachmen did, but the price the invader has to pay in return would be big enough...

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/3/2019 10:06:32 PM   
sol_invictus


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Kardinalinfant81

In my opinion this last proposal by HvS would be the best solution. Little change in the game mechanics i belive. Micro landings by detachmenet would not longer be possible, while big landing operations with several corpses are not affected by this solution in any way, which is both historical in my eyes. Medium landing operations by just one corps would still be possible and could still hit - for example - Turkey hard, as landings with a detachmen did, but the price the invader has to pay in return would be big enough...

I agree. Even a small amphibious invasion requires many resources and much planning. We as players can of course thoughtlessly throw a few thousand soldiers onto an isolated beach to cause mayhem without worrying about the cost in lives and political blowback so this should be greatly discouraged in the game. having to pay for a corps landing and paying the possible cost of it getting destroyed should discourage these micro-invasion quite a bit.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/7/2019 12:38:57 PM   
John B.


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I agree with Bill that the fact that amphibious operations were used or planned would make it ahistorical to ban them from the game. The Russians used two amphibious landings to help them capture Trabzon from the Ottomans and the French landed a regiment at Kum Kale as a diversion in Gallipoli. The fact that the English did not pull the trigger on a 1917 assault across the channel does not mean that it could not happen. Perhaps another fix would be to increase the loss of national morale if an amphibious landing does not work (e.g. Churchill gets sacked because Gallipoli fails). Or have specifically designated hexes that can be invaded so you know what you have to garrison and if you don't that's your problem. :)

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/7/2019 1:49:44 PM   
ivanov


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In our AAR game, Dan launched a Russian detachment against an unoccupied port. After two turns, the Russian unit was on it's way back to Sevastopol, with 60% loses. Even the Ottoman Empire, with it's long coastal line and limited resources, can garrison all the coastal towns. You can also leave some of them unoccupied and keep an anti-invasion reserve, that's what I did in our game. Launching the small invasions isn't very cost effective and they are easy to defeat. They may cause a headache to unexperienced players, who forget to maintain the reserves and garrison the towns, but who said that learning should be painless?

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/7/2019 6:43:29 PM   
ArtDen

 

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In my opinion microlandigs are not problem. Average town is just 2-3 MPP / turn. Count how much money you need to buy a detachment and make a landing against this town.

But I think game mechanics has even better solution. I can propose to extend unit pool with garrison units for every nations (for example - 10/12 per nation). Now we can see this unit in Gibraltar and in some other points. But it's a solution against microlandings. 50 MPP per unit if you want to create primary sea-defence and buy time for maneuvre of your reserve corps. It is not enough against invasion with corps but not bad against detachment.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/7/2019 8:00:33 PM   
BillRunacre

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: ivanov

In our AAR game, Dan launched a Russian detachment against an unoccupied port. After two turns, the Russian unit was on it's way back to Sevastopol, with 60% loses. Even the Ottoman Empire, with it's long coastal line and limited resources, can garrison all the coastal towns. You can also leave some of them unoccupied and keep an anti-invasion reserve, that's what I did in our game. Launching the small invasions isn't very cost effective and they are easy to defeat. They may cause a headache to unexperienced players, who forget to maintain the reserves and garrison the towns, but who said that learning should be painless?


Additionally, if I recollect correctly, the Multiplayer AAR was started before we added an Ottoman Detachment at Zonguldak, and the Ottoman Detachment Build Limit was also increased to help them prepare for enemy landings.

I have to say that both the Beta AARs have helped contribute to improvements to the game, not only on this subject but also on many others. Watching an AAR, just like playing the game, is very useful for us as developers too because we get to see various strategies in action, and it helps us to decide whether to encourage or discourage these strategies.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/7/2019 8:32:56 PM   
ivanov


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quote:

ORIGINAL: BillRunacre

I have to say that both the Beta AARs have helped contribute to improvements to the game, not only on this subject but also on many others. Watching an AAR, just like playing the game, is very useful for us as developers too because we get to see various strategies in action, and it helps us to decide whether to encourage or discourage these strategies.


While we are at the subject of diffenent strategies, I'd say that compared to the Italian decision of Austro-Hungary, the Zonguldak landing was rather a small event during our AAR game


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RE: Micro landings. - 12/7/2019 9:28:37 PM   
Sugar

 

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Boys, what kind of strategists are you?

I'm talking about strategical impact to the supply and income situation in the whole Middle East. While the income isn't much of an issue (since the production of cities is limited to 6 now), the supply surely is. A combined operation lead by a single det. leads to the drop of supply by 2 points. Your opponent will know where your HQ is located, and guess what will be the target for his strat. bombers or shore bombardements.

And how many det.s do you need to prevent a single det. from invading? Now that's a cost-benefit ratio! You also can't just ignore any landings, with all those nice NM-Objectives in the second row. I'd prefer to research trenches with the Ottos instead of buying all the available det.s just for garrison purposes for the rest of the game, sadly I'm forced to do so, in PbEM at least.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/7/2019 10:11:56 PM   
ivanov


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Having to maintain the garrisons is not cost effective, but that's the benefit of the side who has maritime superiority. How many divisions at the end of WW2 Germans kept in Norway, Denmark or in the Balkans? All because they were afraid of potential invasions there, in a situation when there were not enough troops to face the Allies in France and Soviets in the East. During WW1 even the Brits were considering a possibility of German invasion of the Isles. In the game it works both ways - the Germans having a naval superiority in the Baltic can land somewhere in Lithuania or Latvia for example. If you are prepared to face a possible invasion, it can't hurt you much when it happens. But it forces you to take appropriate measures, that drain some part of your resources, which is totally valid and realistic trade off IMO. BTW in my game as Ottomans, I garrisoned all the towns on the Mediterranean coast and researched trench tech 3 by mid 1915. In my game against the AI, I don't invest more than one chit per tech category as Ottomans and AH, just to keep them historically vulnerable.

< Message edited by ivanov -- 12/7/2019 10:12:43 PM >


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RE: Micro landings. - 12/7/2019 10:30:25 PM   
ivanov


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One more point - what is called "detachment" in the game, in real life would be probably an equivalent of a division ( given the combat values of corps and detachments in the game ). So landing a division on a front with low troop density ( like the Ottoman Front for example ), would have pretty serious implications in the real life. Given the fact that the landing force may be destroyed with a low supply and permanently removed from the game, is a pretty serious thing to consider, before embarking on any potential small invasions.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/8/2019 1:50:25 PM   
Mithrilotter

 

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I am fond of using Detachments in the game to take unoccupied towns. In my opinion, it is the only cost effective way of amphibiously invading in the game. I don't see a historical problem with it at all.

If I were to have an issue with amphibious landings, it would be with Gallipoli. There is simply no reasonable way of taking that peninsula (if occupied) by amphibious invasion in this game. Invading is horribly expensive and there is no supply. During early beta testing, the Ottoman AI vacated Sedd E Bahr. I invaded Sedd E Bahr with one UK Marine. I reinforced with a second UK Marine. Those two Marines still didn't have the firepower to take Gallipoli. Hubert quickly fixed the Sedd E Bahr vacation AI flaw.

Ironically, it is much more successful to invade at Chanak. Chanak tends to be vacant and there are lots of nearby towns to capture. A UK Marine can run rampant in that area. The bad part is that towns only have supply 3. So if the Detachment is caught and destroyed, it is a complete destruction of the unit. But that invasion is a major nuisance and can cut the rail line to Palestine.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/8/2019 2:02:37 PM   
Sugar

 

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Did I miss something, or is the destruction of a unit on low supply not only more expensive, like 60% of the original costs within supply vs 100% on low supply?

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/8/2019 3:51:36 PM   
BillRunacre

 

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Rebuilding it is indeed more expensive, full cost rather than discounted cost.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/8/2019 10:13:14 PM   
gamer78

 

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Related to Ottoman morale I don't think Anatolian population care much about Levante. They care more about Enver Pasha food requisition.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/10/2019 5:05:26 AM   
shri

 

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The ottomans badly need a micro detachment, maybe 5 strength nearly immobile troops which move only 1 HEX, 1 attack and maybe 3 defense with entrenchment abilities so that the coast is protected. On that enormous coastline with a crappy navy its impossible to protect the coasts. That single railway line is so lonely that if cut and Aleppo falls its doomsday.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/11/2019 5:03:30 PM   
Markiss


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Playing my first game against the AI, and the AI led British engage in a micro landing against the Ottomans.

Is there no escape from this BS tactic, even against the AI? I am tremendously disappointed. Micro landings have ruined War in Europe PBEM, but it didn't happen right away and you could still play the AI and get a historical simulation.

It looks like it has been purposely written into this games AI. You leave me no way to enjoy playing this game. Whatever happened to history? Why does the AI have to go so far off the rails? Just to make it tougher to play against?

Maybe it would be possible to have the AI have 2 modes, "historical" and "tournament". I don't think I need to explain how the modes would differ. That way a player could get the experience they wanted without having to deal with things they don't.

Just an idea to try and make everyone happy.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/11/2019 8:59:28 PM   
The Land

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Markiss

Playing my first game against the AI, and the AI led British engage in a micro landing against the Ottomans.


I'd be interested to hear what happened after that!

I had the AI do a one-detachment landing on the Turkish coast, not near a port. I had two detachments fairly nearby, they ended up surrounding the town the British landed on, and eventually the British detachment was lost while out of supply with little loss to myself.

The MPP cost to the British was the cost of the detachment, plus the cost of transporting it. Mine was maybe 20% of that. Plus I ended up with a national morale bonus from destroying the detachment while out of supply.

My feeling was that it was an interesting thing for the AI to do, but not a successful one.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/11/2019 10:45:42 PM   
Markiss


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Nothing has happened yet, it just landed. I am sure I will kill it eventually, but only after I strip my other sorely stretched fronts of badly needed troops.

And then a turn later, the AI will land somewhere else, or at least it should. I have to bring 3-4 units to kill every one it lands. My units do not die, but they are dead to me for the duration of the operation. And the rail network in Turkey is far from complete, meaning that I am going to have to operate likely several turns march away, giving it plenty of time to grab additional cities, costing me more money and time.

Even if I win, I lose. And as soon as I get it all back, the AI will land somewhere else. Just like Italy in War in Europe, the Ottomans can't possibly cover every city. So it becomes a game of whack-a-mole.

Maybe the AI will not take it to that extent, but there is nothing to stop it from doing so, except maybe Hubert's kind heart. You will find no such kindness in PBEM.

I have thought about it, and one small thing that could be done to help the situation would be to reduce the land spotting of ships to 0 from 1. ZERO. This would prevent a player(or the AI) from using ships to cruise up and down an enemies shoreline looking for empty cities. And does it make sense that ships can spot units on land hexes anyway? What exactly can you see from a mile offshore? Between cliffs, buildings, vegetation, and ridges, you likely can't see more than a couple of hundred meters beyond the coast. How can you determine what is miles inland? It never made any sense.

Without knowing where the empty cities are, these landings become much more risky. Is there an army in that hex? If you want to be sure to take the city, you now have to bring more than one unit, and WA-LA, no more micro landings.

This would not stop it all, but it would at least be a step in the right direction, easy to implement, and make perfect sense.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/11/2019 10:54:57 PM   
Sugar

 

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To deal with the AI is easy, as you mentioned it will probably destroy itself not landing in a town with a port under the "new" supply rules. At least you'll have to recognize the opportunity costs of occuppying a huge number of coastal towns, cities, NM-Objectives and mines; and of 2 corps in reserve. You can also add Jerusalem to the account against a human opponent.

And don't expect the AI to stop invading: (I'll upload the image of two more landings, as soon as the service is available again)

quote:

Micro landings have ruined War in Europe PBEM, but it didn't happen right away and you could still play the AI and get a historical simulation.


I did expect this development and quit playing before it finally happened. That's really sad, the PbEM has so much more to offer than playing the AI.

We're talking about a grand strategy title, and you'll have to micromanage never changing coastal defenses at first.



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RE: Micro landings. - 12/12/2019 3:13:59 AM   
Tanaka


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quote:

ORIGINAL: The Land


quote:

ORIGINAL: Markiss

Playing my first game against the AI, and the AI led British engage in a micro landing against the Ottomans.


I'd be interested to hear what happened after that!

I had the AI do a one-detachment landing on the Turkish coast, not near a port. I had two detachments fairly nearby, they ended up surrounding the town the British landed on, and eventually the British detachment was lost while out of supply with little loss to myself.

The MPP cost to the British was the cost of the detachment, plus the cost of transporting it. Mine was maybe 20% of that. Plus I ended up with a national morale bonus from destroying the detachment while out of supply.

My feeling was that it was an interesting thing for the AI to do, but not a successful one.


Same. It was really easy to deal with.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/12/2019 7:54:00 AM   
sn0wball

 

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As others, I found the one single British landing in the Levante quite interesting. It was easy to deal with militarily, although the troops nescessary to destroy the British unit in Aleppo required some shuffling on the Caucausus and Palestine fronts.

To me, it felt neither ahistorical (I must admit, that I even looked up whether there was a British landing in the Levante or not - given the bizarre folly that Gallipolli was, there might as well have been one), nor somehow detrimental to gameplay. Au contraire - it reminded me, that I cannot just place guards in Istanbul and wait for Gallipolli. Also, I later replied in Kind when the Bulgarians and Ottomans landed beyond the Black Sea in Russia.

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RE: Micro landings. - 12/12/2019 12:06:08 PM   
Markiss


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I too looked it up first to see if there was a historical landing that I was unaware of. It turns out that sending a few troops to land in random locations in Anatolia didn't sound like a good idea, even to Churchill. And it makes no sense. What would you gain but a headache? The supply line of such a force would be highly vulnerable to interdiction. The local troops in the area would simply seal it off and starve it out, and it would turn into a disaster.

The effect in the game is quite different, however. It MUST be countered with major forces. As long as the landing force is in a city, its supplies spontaneously generate. There are no supply lines to interdict. A game of this scale does not consider forces of less than a division in size, so the landing force gets a free pass until the opposing player operates in major units.

It is simply a hole in the game. A hole that is being exploited by a few to the detriment of many, and now even the AI has become part of the problem, adding legitimacy to this awful practice.

And the point is not that it is impossible to deal with, but that I have no option but to deal with it. Historical game play is not possible, even with the AI.

And that is a shame.

Last thing, when countries like Britain and Germany get invaded, they immediately get a windfall of home guard troops. If by invading the Ottomans you gave them 600-700 points worth of free troops, it might change someone's mind about invading.



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RE: Micro landings. - 12/12/2019 2:07:27 PM   
BillRunacre

 

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Hi Markiss

It was suggested a number of times to the British that they land in the area of southern Anatolia/northern Syria to a) cut the railroad to Palestine and Medina and b) that thousands of Armenians would rise up and join the invaders.

That this wasn't done is not necessarily a reflection of the impracticality of the project, more one of a lack of available resources coupled with the failure in the Dardanelles putting everyone off attempting further amphibious landings (and Churchill was very much out of favour after that).

Arguably, a landing in this area might have been more effective than the one at Gallipoli, and if the Armenians had lived up to their promises then it wouldn't have required a large force of troops to cause the Ottomans a major headache.

To help counter it the Ottomans do have forces in this region. Keep them here and the invasion should be fairly easy to contain, but if they are moved away then the consequences could be severe.

In answer to your question about free units, the Ottomans do have four events scripted for units to mobilize to defend key places in what is now Turkey should Entente units approach them, but not for the areas further south. These areas were hotbeds of sedition, for not only were the Armenians conspiring but also many Arabs (the Ottomans clamped down on Arab activists in Syria early in the war, executing many leading figures). So really any units to defend these areas would have to come from elsewhere rather than being raised locally.

This isn't to say that changes can't/won't be made in this area.

Additionally, your suggestion that ships shouldn't be able to spot previously unseen land units makes sense to me, so it's something I'll think about further.

Bill



< Message edited by BillRunacre -- 12/13/2019 1:07:47 PM >


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