Let me see if I can give some answers and ernieschwitz can correct me.
I have been playing this fine game for a couple of years now. While most of my queries have been answered by perusing the rules or by simple trial and error by playing I would like to have some queries about the gameplay to be finally explained with no margin for doubt.
Firstly overstacking. I know there is a penalty for this in both attack and defense but I'm still slightly confused about one point. If I have a hex containing 200 rifle and I want to attack an adjacent hex. Simply attacking from the hex would be a big overstack, but what happens if I split my 200 rifles into two units containing 100 rifle each? I can then attack the adjacent hex with only 100 rifle. However despite the fact that I am attacking with 100 rifle I am attacking from a hex that contains 200 units. So would I still get an overstack penalty despite my splitting up of the units?
This is, as you might expect with a complex wargame, complicated. The overstack penalty also depends on how many hexes you attack from. Rulevar 31 determines the number of stackpoints per hex for overstack penalties, while rulevar 30 determines the maximum stackpoint allowed before overstack penalties. In ANewDawn3 (vanilla) these are 50 and 100, respectively. (edit: Originally, I got this wrong, this is correct) What this means is that the stackpoint limit for an attack is max(N*50,100) where N is the number of hexes you attack from. So, an attack from a single hex can have 100 stackpoints, while if you attack from three hexes, you can attack with a total of 150 stackpoints spread across the three hexes. You can attack with more than 50 stackpoints from a single hex, so long as the sum is under 150. All other units in those hexes that are attacking would contribute to an overstack penalty. There are similar stackpoint values in other rulevars for artillery and air power. Rulevar 859 determines if battlestack is remembered, i.e., a subsequent attack would be subject to overstack penalties. This is set to enabled. So, yes a second attack from the 100 stackpoints would be considered overstacked. Note that a counter to the overstack is to attack from multiple hexes. There are significant bonuses for "concentric attacks" defined in rulevars 132-139. Attacking from three hexes can offset an overstack penalty, especially if one of the attacks is from behind. But, it is true that if you attack the same hex a second time, it will likely do poorly. There are also settings for scenarios where the AP used to attack the hex count as a movement cost for subsequent units to enter the hex, but this is not in vanilla. Sort of in answer to your explicit question, the penalty is determined by the number stackpoints in the attack, and not the number of stackpoints in hex from which the attack originiated.
How exactly is "damage" modeled in this game? If I bomb a hex and my bomber gets reduced to 1 hit point it can still manage to fly back to base. Is this damage "repaired" again fully the next turn at no cost? Or does it require supply to bring it back to full repair? Does the "readiness" value reflect a damage state? I understand the concept of "readiness" as combat effectiveness but I'm still confused as to it's relation to hit points and damage.
Actually, a hit during combat either "kills" or "retreats" the SFType in the unit. If it gets a retreat, it will lose readiness. So, if the SFType in the unit survives combat, it has its readiness reduced, which is "restored" during the next turn at a rate that I am not quite sure (I can't quite find the rulevar that governs this - or it is hard coded), but also consumes supplies. So, to restore units to 100% readiness you need a stock of supplies and time. This supply cost is above the standard supply consumption. Readiness essentially affects the units ability to move, AP reduced, and combat. A loss of readiness decreases the firepower and hitpoints a unit has in combat.
Is there any point in causing structural damage to a city that is below it's "auto repair" value? If I bomb or bombard a city and cause 300 structural damage is this basically a waste of time, as it will be fully repaired next turn.
edit answer. In the standard game, locations can't be destroyed, that is they auto repair a number of structure points per turn. For a city, this is 300 with a total structure point value of 3000. So, yes, every turn, it will build back 300 structure points. So, you have to do more than 300 damage for it to have an impact. In addition rulevar 250 gives the AI 33% free repair each turn (unless it is turned off).
Is there actually any point in having rear area HQs staffed at all? I assumed for a long time that staff would be needed not just to give combat/ morale bonuses but also to transfer supplies. But as an experiment I disbanded all staff in Supreme HQ, and found that it had no effect on actual supply transfer at all. Since then I have only had staff in HQs close to fighting.
Probably they aren't needed. I'm not sure if staff have any effect on supply, etc. There will likely be some units, like engineers that are still assigned to the SHQ, so they might need them if attacked, but they are likely out of range. Note that you might need to set up an HQ chain to keep units in supply for large maps. Also, note that with the TOE system, reinforcements travel through the HQ chain, so nested HQs will take longer to get reinforcements.
Do urban hexes or ports actually give ships an protection? I have read VR Designs War College and it said that urban hexes give subs protection. Yet the stats on screen don't say that ships or subs have any entrenchment bonuses when in a urban hex.
I don't think so, and ships in port likely suffer a penalty during an air attack. I have seen surface ships for the AI attack ships while at port. Frankly, there are aspects about naval combat that I do not like. Concentric attack bonuses apply to naval combat, and it you manage to surround a fleet you can destroy it. For example, attacking with a single fleet and then five small fleets with one submarine each from all six hexes will destroy a fleet if a retreat result is obtained.
And finally what is the best way to give bombers fighter escort? Should you directly put fighters into a bomber division, or create a separate fighter division and send both the bomber and fighter divisions to a bombing raid? Or is there any difference?
Either way will work. You need to make sure fighters fly to the same mission. Combat is determined by a "favorite" target. As the combat is set up, each SFType does an attack that is selected by its favorite. For the most part fighters have fighters for their favorite. So, if your bombing attack is intercepted by fighters, they will prefer to attack the escorting fighters. Thus, escorts can protect bombers in two ways, by attacking the enemy interceptors and by drawing off their attacks. But, the escorts don't have to be in the stack, just in the attack. Be mindfull of stacking limitations for aircraft. If too many aircraft are based at the same location, you'll see a -% value which will affect combat operations.
< Message edited by Ormand -- 6/4/2020 7:35:35 AM >