Terrain "Cover" Variable

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Rudankort
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Re: Terrain "Cover" Variable

Post by Rudankort » Mon Apr 01, 2013 5:59 pm

deducter wrote: The defending unit becomes completely irrelevant at this point. I could garrison a 1-strength Panzer I in the city and the attack is worthless, since it is completely broken up by the defending artillery.
Thanks for detailed explanation. I see what you are saying. The question I ask myself though - is it really a problem? Defensive artillery was kinda designed this way: it cannot just be ignored, you must do something about it. You can bypass the defenders and attack it, or suppress it with your own artillery, or attack it from the air, or force it out of ammo, but you must do something. Also, you are right that for this particular attack defending unit is irrelevant. But there is a big difference between 10-snt infantry and 1-strength Panther after you have dealt with artillery. So, the first option still gives you double defense, while the second - only single defense.

It can be argued that artillery in general is too strong against infantry, both on offense and defense. From all the evidence we have accumulated, it might well be the case. But then, shall not we try to solve this problem? Even if we have cover, the attacking unit is in the open terrain, and so according to general rule it should not be subject to cover? Or do you suggest to assume that the attacker enters defender's hex first, and then artillery shoots at both units (but somehow damages only attacker)?

deducter wrote: That's a very good point. However, entrenchment does serve another purpose in the game: surrender/retreat mechanics. If you completely change the entrenchment system, you'll also have to tweak surrender/retreat. Adding a new variable has the advantage of being an easily tweaked independent variable. But it does have the disadvantage of added complexity. Changing an existing variable is fine too, but I imagine it'd take quite a bit more work, and you'd have to carefully adjust all other values which depend upon this variable.
This is true. With base entrenchment removed, units will retreat/surrender more often. It can be argued though that a unit which has just entered a hex must be made to retreat from there relatively easy too. So, this change might actually benefit gameplay.

Anyway, the change which you propose is clearly safer, so this is a good point.

deducter
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Re: Terrain "Cover" Variable

Post by deducter » Mon Apr 01, 2013 6:16 pm

Just as a quick experiment, let's see what happens if we effectively halve the ROF of defensive artillery in city hexes. This is done by halving the strength of the defending artillery.

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The Panther defends much better here with artillery support than without, also there is no case where it is completely invulnerable.

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Image

As you can see, infantry backed by even limited artillery support is very, very good in close terrain.

The most critical difference is that the defending unit matters a lot more now, whereas in the previous case it was mostly irrelevant. Infantry, backed by artillery, is now truly the king of close terrain. But then again, never is the infantry completely invincible. An assault by say 2-3 Soviet Guards will result in tremendous casualties to the Soviets, but not inconsiderable losses to the Germans either, which is realistic according to the accounts of the Eastern Front I've read.

To prevent gaming the system by simply stacking two artillery instead of one, defensive artillery fire must be limited to 1 per unit per attack, regardless of how many artillery is adjacent to a unit.

Currently the game mechanic always works by having combat take place in the defender's hex. It's a very simple, and very common, rule of war games. I don't think any change to this combat logic is needed.

Zhivago
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Re: Terrain "Cover" Variable

Post by Zhivago » Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:30 pm

I still do not see the problem. I would also not be in favor of limiting a defending unit to one defensive artillery shot, even if there were additional adjacent units. If someone is dense enough to take a city with a tank when enemy infantry are (or very well could be) close by and not wheel up supporting artillery, the tank should be decimated. Artillery...whether in the form of arrows, thrown spears, catapults, or modern cannon/howitzers do what they should do to an attacking soft target infantry. If you have a hex that you know the enemy is going to swarm attack, why not roll up a couple of artillery pieces behind it in anticipation? Personally, I am a fan of the double stug or double brumbar defense in situations like this.

I don't think a handicap is needed in the game to make up for ineffective tactics or AI play. One thing I have noticed about the AI is that it will almost never attack a unit that has an arty piece behind it. If the AI could be tweaked to be more effective at draining defending artillery or suppressing defending artillery, I think this would suffice.

soldier
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Re: Terrain "Cover" Variable

Post by soldier » Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:55 pm

It can be argued that artillery in general is too strong against infantry, both on offense and defense.
I do believe offensive artillery at least is too powerful against soft units. It rarely misses its target and is almost always very effective, like something from the cold war era. Even tough Grenadiers in city defenses are suppressed to half strength by one artillery strike and far too often go completely red and take casualties to boot. Entrenchment or finding cover is the only thing a soft unit can use to defend itself against shellfire but it hardly seems to help. A couple of guns is usually quite adequate to nullify the most dug in defenders, often in one day. I'd be in favour of a more effective entrenchment system.

I guess i just like a more gritty tougher fight when going up against strong defenses, not guys that can't shoot back

bebro
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Re: Terrain "Cover" Variable

Post by bebro » Tue Apr 02, 2013 9:44 am

I agree, often it's just too easy to completely supress defenders which gives you a risk-free attack. IIRC even concentrated bombardments incl. heavy naval arty were sometimes rather ineffective vs. well entrenched/fortified forces. So maybe entrenchment should just offer a lot more protection from suppression the higher it goes...

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