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Mud & Snow parameter Testing - 8/31/2021 8:06:01 PM   
governato

 

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In my `Eastern Front 41-45' (EF) scenario I have been using the Mud & Snow (M&S) parameter introduced by TOAW 4, as a way to make weather effects more pronounced (forming mud from snow when it melts) and giving a distinct `pace' to military activity on the East Front. Historically no major offensives could be taken with lots of mud on the ground and one had to wait until the ground was dry enough for tanks to roll.

In version EFv5 I left the snow&mud parameter to its default level of 100. Now I am sharing some quick visuals and some tests for other designers and people curious about the game engine. First of all here is what M&S does:


VII. NEW MUD AND SNOW RULES:

If this advanced rule is optioned, when snow melts, it is converted to mud. Furthermore, mud dries out proportionate to temperature. (Cold: very little; Hot: very fast). This will facilitate the creation of mud seas.



The manual also mentions that higher values of M&S will make mud dry faster with 100 being the default setting.

[edit: this is from Bob Cross thread on M&S. I think balmy=temperate in his post]

This one optionally changes how mud and snow clear. First, snow now thaws to mud - to create the spring mud phase. Second, mud now dries proportional to temperature and turn interval. Cold doesn't dry at all; Cool dries 10% per week; Balmy dries 33% per week; Warm dries 67% per week; and Hot dries 100% per week. This will allow the fall mud phase to happen. Since this is a big change, I've made it optional as a Game Option.


The Eastern Front scenario has weekly turns and there are three weather zones (marked by horizontal lines in the image). I modeled the seasons with several warm/cold front events with a bit of random variability year to year. In EF the peak weeks of the 'Rasputiza' mud season are modeled with shock events that make movement almost impossible, but I want to use the weather engine to have patches of mud linger long enough to match the start of two real offensives that had to wait for 'weather to get good enough' for tank operations.


- Operation Barbarossa in Bielorussia in June 1941 (Turn 1 or turn 52)
- and 2nd Kharkov offensive in Ukraine in May 12th 1942 (turn 48)

(note that also Operation Bagration started in Bielorussia on June 22nd, 1944.

First I run the scenario for a whole year to go through the 41/42 Winter and then check how mud comes and goes.

A M&S parameter set 'too low' will have mud last past those historical dates, a value too high will make mud disappear too quickly and a goldilocks values should remove mud in those two regions just before the offensives started. Either way I love the 'snow turns into mud rather than just disappear' effect.





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Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 8/31/2021 8:12:50 PM   
governato

 

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M&S = 1000

These three images show the map right after snow melts, and then at the start of the two offensives in May and June, Mud forms when snow melts and then clears as turns pass, with warmer/southern zones clearing mud earlier. Nice! I verified that in April the Kharkov region has still plenty of mud and so a version where the M&S parameter is set <1000 will probably have a bit too much mud.






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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 8/31/2021 8:20:35 PM   
governato

 

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Now let's try M&S = 100.

This is the default and one can see how the process of mud drying is the same but mud stays on the ground significantly longer. ...
actually it never really clears up! The rightmost one is an image of Russia in August still covered in mud..

Yes, as reported by pissed off German generals (Hey Guderian!) Summer rains created mud, but it was usually only for a few days and only locally. So M&S=100 is too much for my scenario that uses weekly turns.


I have tried intermediate values as well, but the result of this test is that for the next version of Eastern Front 41-45 I will adopt a M&S value of 1000, I will also extend the Northern weather zone a couple of hexes South.






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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 8/31/2021 8:24:35 PM   
76mm


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I haven't messed with the mud & snow parameter but did note that mud forms and sticks around for awhile even if you set precipitation to "None". Also, two months seems like a long time for mud to dry...what precipitation settings did you use?

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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 8/31/2021 8:31:15 PM   
governato

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: 76mm

I haven't messed with the mud & snow parameter but did note that mud forms and sticks around for awhile even if you set precipitation to "None". Also, two months seems like a long time for mud to dry...what precipitation settings did you use?


For the three weather zones: Heavy, Heavy and moderate. (It's in the top image of the thread) ...and several storm events. Temperature and weather fronts events are set so that super rivers freeze at about the right time (and don't freeze at all down South)

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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 8/31/2021 9:50:52 PM   
76mm


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oops sorry missed that screen shot. I guess with heavy precipitation its not surprising that the mud took two months to dry. Would be curious how it looked if it was set to No precipitation--while you'd expect no mud at all in this case, in my experience quite a bit appears.

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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 8/31/2021 10:04:30 PM   
rhinobones

 

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In an earlier thread the effect of the new mud and snow rule was discussed. The solution proposed was to select New Mud and Snow Rule “OFF” in the Advanced Rules Preset. Unless there is a design requirement, your analysis seems to confirm using this solution as an easy quick fix.

Regards


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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 8/31/2021 10:12:25 PM   
governato

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: rhinobones

In an earlier thread the effect of the new mud and snow rule was discussed. The solution proposed was to select New Mud and Snow Rule “OFF” in the Advanced Rules Preset. Unless there is a design requirement, your analysis seems to confirm using this solution as an easy quick fix.

Regards



For older scenarios turning the new option OFF is the safe thing to do. For new scenario and upgrades I like taking advantage of the 'all the snow turns into mud' feature offered by the M&S parameter. As snow melts at different times in different weather zones it is a neat improvement to modeling weather. Designers just need to play with it and figure out what works best.

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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 9/1/2021 1:33:32 PM   
sPzAbt653


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Also discussed here:
https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=4910900

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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 9/1/2021 7:21:51 PM   
Curtis Lemay


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I reposted a thread from the Development Board about this here:

https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=5070468

May add some clarity.

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Bob Cross's TOAW Site

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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 9/1/2021 8:41:35 PM   
governato

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Curtis Lemay

I reposted a thread from the Development Board about this here:

https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=5070468

May add some clarity.


Tx Bob, this helps a lot, especially that the chance of mud -> dry being per week and not per turn.

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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 9/1/2021 10:12:27 PM   
Curtis Lemay


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One issue that remains with mud is that mud creation is not dependent upon turn interval. That's a problem for short turn interval scenarios - fast creation coupled with very slow drying means those scenarios get overwhelmed with mud in a hurry.

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Bob Cross's TOAW Site

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RE: Mud & Snow parameter Testing M&S=1000 - 9/1/2021 10:46:06 PM   
76mm


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Curtis Lemay
One issue that remains with mud is that mud creation is not dependent upon turn interval. That's a problem for short turn interval scenarios - fast creation coupled with very slow drying means those scenarios get overwhelmed with mud in a hurry.

Yup, especially since there seems to be something wrong with regulating precipitation, as described in the thread Steve linked above (https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=4910900): I was getting lots of rain even when precipitation was set to "Occasional" or "None," and mud would be created after a single turn of light rain (six hour turns).

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