OIL

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peterjfrigate
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OIL

Post by peterjfrigate » Fri Dec 09, 2011 4:41 am

This is not really a bug but a balance issue -- It is May 1941 and I am about to DOW Russia and I have more than 1000 barrels of oil. Since it's so easy to do, my worry is that it becomes standard and then the Axis don't really suffer shortages when they should, or have as much reason to go for the Caucasus.

I played fairly normally -- took Norway and Yugoslavia, I have 5 subs roaming around killing convoys, and I've been Strat bombing London. I did skip Greece and an African campaign. The trick is to DOW Yugoslavia as soon as Russia takes Bessarabia, since then Romania immediately joins the Axis. Yugoslavia still goes down and the UK can't really intervene so I don't see much of a downside to this technique.

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rkr1958
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Post by rkr1958 » Fri Dec 09, 2011 5:35 am

Yeah ... we need to do something about this. As I type this I'm in the process of uploading the Release Candidate for the group. Well, I guess there will be at least one change before we release to Iain. Maybe more after you guys get your hands on it. :(

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Post by Peter Stauffenberg » Fri Dec 09, 2011 1:04 pm

Remember that we altered the production from minor power resources to be using the war effort of their controlling major power. That means Ploesti and Nagykanitsa will use the German war effort and not the Romanian/Hungarian war effort.

I guess this increased production in 1940-1941 before these countries get to max war effort will make a change. German gets 5 oil resources and it will produce 20 oil if war effort is 100. Germany will easily get to war effort 120 by the start of Barbarossa. That means 5*4*1.2 = 24. So Germany will get 4 extra oil per turn. That is 18*4 = 72 extra oil per year.

By the spring of 1941 Germany wouldn't have had that many turns to accumulate the extra oil so maybe we have to consider increasing the oil consumption of some units.

Any suggestions to how to deal with this without making it too hard in the end game.

I also know that some people seem to save oil better than before and that can also give such results. I've seen 800-900 oil at the start of Barbarossa before we made the latest changes that affected oil.

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Post by Diplomaticus » Fri Dec 09, 2011 1:31 pm

Stauffenberg wrote:Remember that we altered the production from minor power resources to be using the war effort of their controlling major power. That means Ploesti and Nagykanitsa will use the German war effort and not the Romanian/Hungarian war effort.

I guess this increased production in 1940-1941 before these countries get to max war effort will make a change. German gets 5 oil resources and it will produce 20 oil if war effort is 100. Germany will easily get to war effort 120 by the start of Barbarossa. That means 5*4*1.2 = 24. So Germany will get 4 extra oil per turn. That is 18*4 = 72 extra oil per year.

By the spring of 1941 Germany wouldn't have had that many turns to accumulate the extra oil so maybe we have to consider increasing the oil consumption of some units.

Any suggestions to how to deal with this without making it too hard in the end game.

I also know that some people seem to save oil better than before and that can also give such results. I've seen 800-900 oil at the start of Barbarossa before we made the latest changes that affected oil.
When adjusting oil production/consumption, we've been using WWII historical results as a touchstone, but as with everything else in this game, the Axis player has the option to play differently than the Germans really did. I wonder how much of what we're seeing is a result of Axis players making a lot of 'green' choices? (e.g. only moving oil-consuming units when really necessary, railing them when possible, choosing mechs over panzers, etc.) I think this should be taken into account, as players shouldn't be penalized for this.

For example, how much oil did Hitler and Mussolini waste in their stupid attack on Greece?

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Post by Kragdob » Fri Dec 09, 2011 1:56 pm

Diplomaticus wrote:
When adjusting oil production/consumption, we've been using WWII historical results as a touchstone, but as with everything else in this game, the Axis player has the option to play differently than the Germans really did. I wonder how much of what we're seeing is a result of Axis players making a lot of 'green' choices? (e.g. only moving oil-consuming units when really necessary, railing them when possible, choosing mechs over panzers, etc.) I think this should be taken into account, as players shouldn't be penalized for this.

For example, how much oil did Hitler and Mussolini waste in their stupid attack on Greece?
I agree. Allied Players can on the contrary use oil-depleting tactics that will target this 'problem' (I think in reality Allied didn't care about German oil levels that much).
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Post by leridano » Fri Dec 09, 2011 2:45 pm

We could reduce the starting Germany oil level. Let´s think that USSR with much more oil resources than Germany starts with only 100 PP´s. We could reduce Germany starting oil from 300 to 200.


    rkr1958
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    Post by rkr1958 » Fri Dec 09, 2011 7:21 pm

    Stauffenberg wrote:Remember that we altered the production from minor power resources to be using the war effort of their controlling major power. That means Ploesti and Nagykanitsa will use the German war effort and not the Romanian/Hungarian war effort.
    Please refresh my memory ... what was the reason for doing this? Should we go back to using the axis minors war effort? Or, transition to German war effort say in May/June 1941. This would represent the time it took German personnel to modernize axis minor factories and oil facilities to German standards.

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    Post by Diplomaticus » Fri Dec 09, 2011 7:53 pm

    Kragdob wrote:
    Diplomaticus wrote:
    When adjusting oil production/consumption, we've been using WWII historical results as a touchstone, but as with everything else in this game, the Axis player has the option to play differently than the Germans really did. I wonder how much of what we're seeing is a result of Axis players making a lot of 'green' choices? (e.g. only moving oil-consuming units when really necessary, railing them when possible, choosing mechs over panzers, etc.) I think this should be taken into account, as players shouldn't be penalized for this.

    For example, how much oil did Hitler and Mussolini waste in their stupid attack on Greece?
    I agree. Allied Players can on the contrary use oil-depleting tactics that will target this 'problem' (I think in reality Allied didn't care about German oil levels that much).
    A follow-up:

    Let's be very careful before we move to reduce oil for Axis.

    1) A lot of Axis players nowadays are foregoing a North African campaign, in part because it's so oil-costly.
    2) The Battle of Britain, if waged at historical levels, is also very oil-intensive, but most Axis players either skip BoB entirely or do so at a reduced rate--again, in no small part motivated by oil-conservation.
    3) How about the actions of the Allies here? Are they strategically bombing? This can affect oil both by hitting the German oil resources and by drawing fighters into dogfights.
    4) A lot of Axis players are going for a 'greener' Barbarossa: not driving so far into the Russian interior, resting and railing panzers to conserve fuel, swapping mechs for tanks when possible, etc. And, going farther, some Axis players are taking a much more defensive stance, saving a ton of oil in the process.
    5) Consider the famous Moriss vs. Supermax AAR. In that game oil was hugely important--it could possibly have determined victory, as Max was severely limited due to his oil shortage.

    In brief, I caution the Betas to not leap to conclusions just because oil seems high in some AARs or seems higher than the historical levels. Are we really sure that the higher oil reserves are because the game's out of whack, or is it rather because of considerations like these?

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    Post by rkr1958 » Fri Dec 09, 2011 8:18 pm

    The axis having 700 oil points at the start of a May 1941 Barbarossa doesn't concern assuming the axis player has been very frugal using oil. However; having over 1000 oil points does cause me to pause.

    Whether or not we need to do something I agree that if we decide we do we need to be careful and only make a minor adjustment.

    With that said, I think there's a point folks overlook when considering or analyzing axis oil. Oil does constrain the axis player even if they never come close to running out. For example; it affects the units that they build, when they start and stop offensive operations and what operations they undertake. I agree that we shouldn't penalize axis players who have experience managing their oil so they don't run out. To manage it so they've had to limit (or self constrain) their offensive firepower and operations. The inexperience axis player who builds a big armor force supported by several TACs will soon learn the hard way that the offensive firepower of this force is significantly crippled when they run out of oil.

    I also agree that the allied player can do things to force the axis player to use more oil than they like. However; this isn't until mid to late game. In early game (i.e., 1939/1940) I don't think allied strategic bombing of German sync oil plants is realistic.

    Diplomaticus
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    Post by Diplomaticus » Wed Dec 14, 2011 4:44 pm

    rkr1958 wrote:The axis having 700 oil points at the start of a May 1941 Barbarossa doesn't concern assuming the axis player has been very frugal using oil. However; having over 1000 oil points does cause me to pause.
    I agree with most of what you write in the above post, but I want to respond to this portion.

    Before we set in our minds a potentially arbitrary number of what Axis 'ought' to have at a given point, such as the start of Barbarossa, I think we should take very seriously the sometimes dramatic differences between what happened in history and what players are really doing.

    A major reason why a number of Axis players are giving up on a North African campaign is due to the fact that any gain of oil wells in Iraq or Persia comes too little, too late to reimburse for the hundreds of barrels expended to reach those wells. So if a player simply goes on the defensive in Libya, how much oil should that add to Axis stockpiles, regardless of what's going on in other fronts? The difference, IMO, ought to be pretty huge. Not only was there the natural drain of petroleum to run all those trucks, tanks and planes, but there's the fact that a lot of oil earmarked for Rommel ended up at the bottom of the Mediterranean or else blown up. I think the existing game rules work just fine in letting the Axis stockpile large amounts of oil as a consolation prize for no Afrika Korps operations. If that, combined with other oil-saving methods mentioned in the thread above, means that the Axis starts with more than 700 barrels of oil, why should we change that? At least the current rules allow the Axis the option to act as Hitler did, and run down his oil reserves. If we restrict it further, we may actually make it impossible for the Axis player to follow the historical line.

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    Post by Cybvep » Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:41 pm

    Balance is important. If we end up with 1000+ Axis oil in 1941 in most games, then it becomes a serious game balance issue no matter what the Axis has been doing.

    Also, I wouldn't overestimate the importance of the NA Theatre. Yes, it tied up resources from both sides, but it was a tiny amount when compared to the Eastern Front. It was a theatre of secondary importance, although a successful Axis campaign could potentially hamper the Allies (even if the Axis only reached Suez it would mean that all Allied convoys would have to go around the whole Africa).

    Still, I don't like the fact that most players seem to be ignoring Africa. Don't know if anything will be changed in that regard now, though.

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    Post by schwerpunkt » Thu Dec 15, 2011 2:29 am

    Diplomaticus wrote:
    Kragdob wrote:
    Diplomaticus wrote:
    When adjusting oil production/consumption, we've been using WWII historical results as a touchstone, but as with everything else in this game, the Axis player has the option to play differently than the Germans really did. I wonder how much of what we're seeing is a result of Axis players making a lot of 'green' choices? (e.g. only moving oil-consuming units when really necessary, railing them when possible, choosing mechs over panzers, etc.) I think this should be taken into account, as players shouldn't be penalized for this.

    For example, how much oil did Hitler and Mussolini waste in their stupid attack on Greece?
    I agree. Allied Players can on the contrary use oil-depleting tactics that will target this 'problem' (I think in reality Allied didn't care about German oil levels that much).
    A follow-up:

    Let's be very careful before we move to reduce oil for Axis.

    1) A lot of Axis players nowadays are foregoing a North African campaign, in part because it's so oil-costly.
    2) The Battle of Britain, if waged at historical levels, is also very oil-intensive, but most Axis players either skip BoB entirely or do so at a reduced rate--again, in no small part motivated by oil-conservation.
    3) How about the actions of the Allies here? Are they strategically bombing? This can affect oil both by hitting the German oil resources and by drawing fighters into dogfights.
    4) A lot of Axis players are going for a 'greener' Barbarossa: not driving so far into the Russian interior, resting and railing panzers to conserve fuel, swapping mechs for tanks when possible, etc. And, going farther, some Axis players are taking a much more defensive stance, saving a ton of oil in the process.
    5) Consider the famous Moriss vs. Supermax AAR. In that game oil was hugely important--it could possibly have determined victory, as Max was severely limited due to his oil shortage.

    In brief, I caution the Betas to not leap to conclusions just because oil seems high in some AARs or seems higher than the historical levels. Are we really sure that the higher oil reserves are because the game's out of whack, or is it rather because of considerations like these?
    I agree - if we reduce axis oil too much, we risk eliminating the North African and Sea Lion campaigns as serious options for players. As usual, I think this is a case of players getting to know the game constraints and coming up with strategies to limit their impact whilst still having a shot at victory. If we add new constraints, we'll set off another round of oil optimisation strategy development. This is one of the reasons why I've taken a break from CEAW as the game keeps changing requiring players to come up with new ways to "beat" the new constraints. I think there is a bit of chasing ones tail happening now. Also, we have to remember the impact on players new to GS. Without knowing all of the various oil minimsation tactics and key strategies, we risk them never wanting to play the axis player.
    An option might be to include an oil handicap option in the options screen where the axis player can select a 100, 300 point etc oil handicap - experienced players could select this to manage the balance of their game.

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    Post by rkr1958 » Thu Dec 15, 2011 3:12 am

    schwerpunkt wrote:I think there is a bit of chasing ones tail happening now.
    No wonder I'm getting dizzy. :D

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    Post by richardsd » Thu Dec 15, 2011 3:20 am

    I don't think we need to play with the oil at the moment.

    As someone who tries Sealion and NAfrica quite a bit, I can tell you that this mean's you only have enough oil for a very limited ARM attack in Russia.

    I don't think we have anywhere enough info to know that the oil level is broken.

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