3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

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nyczar
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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by nyczar » Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:19 pm

Ah, how simple and elegant....if a unit is blocked from falling back it disengages and simply stays in its square..Are there issue with a fix like this? Is it a major coding challenge?

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by rbodleyscott » Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:28 pm

nyczar wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:19 pm
Ah, how simple and elegant....if a unit is blocked from falling back it disengages and simply stays in its square..Are there issue with a fix like this? Is it a major coding challenge?
It isn't a major coding challenge - in fact I already implemented it before the flaw was pointed out, last time it was discussed.

I am struggling to remember what the flaw was, need to try to find the thread.
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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by Athos1660 » Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:32 pm

rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:28 pm
I am struggling to remember what the flaw was, need to try to find the thread.
Isn't it :
viewtopic.php?f=477&t=97421
?

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by Gaznak » Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:42 pm

Falling back on the spot would nerf pike units for one thing. They would be subject to additional impact rounds throughout the match, and losing a round against hastati/warband/etc and staying in combat is preferable to losing a round and then having to take another impact where you have lost deep pike and don't get the manpower modifier.

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by rbodleyscott » Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:44 pm

Athos1660 wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:32 pm
rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:28 pm
I am struggling to remember what the flaw was, need to try to find the thread.
Isn't it :
viewtopic.php?f=477&t=97421
?
Yes, the second post in the thread. Thanks.
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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by MikeC_81 » Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:45 pm

nyczar wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:19 pm
Ah, how simple and elegant....if a unit is blocked from falling back it disengages and simply stays in its square..Are there issue with a fix like this? Is it a major coding challenge?
The primary concern with that is that Lancers who already are a major obstacle to foot can now just sit in place and ZoC infantry out forever. Hence why I believe the harsher CT penalty should be applied.
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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by rbodleyscott » Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:52 pm

MikeC_81 wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:45 pm
nyczar wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:19 pm
Ah, how simple and elegant....if a unit is blocked from falling back it disengages and simply stays in its square..Are there issue with a fix like this? Is it a major coding challenge?
The primary concern with that is that Lancers who already are a major obstacle to foot can now just sit in place and ZoC infantry out forever. Hence why I believe the harsher CT penalty should be applied.
There is no doubt that that has a certain logic, but similar rules were abused in DBM and Tabletop FOG2. i.e. If you just have to slip a light unit behind the enemy to cause a CT if they attempt to fall back that is too easy to achieve. Especially if enemy light troops don't even need to be facing them! (Although it would mitigate the potential exploit if they did have to be facing them to cause a CT, because it would then be harder to get them into position "on the fly").

----------------------

One possibility would be for a blocked fall back to break off "on the spot" but have to take a cohesion test unless the blockers are enemy troops who are not facing the falling back unit. So friendly troops would cause the CT whichever way they were facing, but enemy only if they are facing within 45 degree of towards the falling back unit.

That would
1) Prevent it being possible to force your cavalry to stay in contact with enemy infantry (to set up a flank charge by another unit of cavalry) by blocking the first unit's recoil with another of your own units. (Usually LH or LF).
2) Prevent such blocks being used to ZOC-lock enemy infantry forever because eventually the cavalry will break.
3) Prevent units that just slipped through the line (but are unable to turn back to face the enemy rear on the same turn) from causing CTs on a blocked enemy recoil.
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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by kronenblatt » Wed Jul 29, 2020 2:05 pm

rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:52 pm
MikeC_81 wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:45 pm
nyczar wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:19 pm
Ah, how simple and elegant....if a unit is blocked from falling back it disengages and simply stays in its square..Are there issue with a fix like this? Is it a major coding challenge?
The primary concern with that is that Lancers who already are a major obstacle to foot can now just sit in place and ZoC infantry out forever. Hence why I believe the harsher CT penalty should be applied.
There is no doubt that that has a certain logic, but similar rules were abused in DBM and Tabletop FOG2. i.e. If you just have to slip a light unit behind the enemy to cause a CT if they attempt to fall back that is too easy to achieve. Especially if enemy light troops don't even need to be facing them! (Although it would mitigate the potential exploit if they did have to be facing them to cause a CT, because it would then be harder to get them into position "on the fly").

----------------------

One possibility would be for a blocked fall back to break off "on the spot" but cause a cohesion test unless the blockers are enemy troops who are not facing the falling back unit. So friendly troops would cause the CT whichever way they were facing, but enemy only if they are facing within 45 degree of towards the falling back unit.

That would reduce the scope for the exploit of blocking your own troops
How about your earlier suggestion in this post (before changed), I.e., CT for fall-back unit if non-light blockers, and if light blockers those blockers get forced back one square (shunt?), and if they can't shunt, fall-back unit suffers CT. In all instances, fall-back unit disengages.
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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by rbodleyscott » Wed Jul 29, 2020 2:07 pm

kronenblatt wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 2:05 pm
rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:52 pm
MikeC_81 wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:45 pm


The primary concern with that is that Lancers who already are a major obstacle to foot can now just sit in place and ZoC infantry out forever. Hence why I believe the harsher CT penalty should be applied.
There is no doubt that that has a certain logic, but similar rules were abused in DBM and Tabletop FOG2. i.e. If you just have to slip a light unit behind the enemy to cause a CT if they attempt to fall back that is too easy to achieve. Especially if enemy light troops don't even need to be facing them! (Although it would mitigate the potential exploit if they did have to be facing them to cause a CT, because it would then be harder to get them into position "on the fly").

----------------------

One possibility would be for a blocked fall back to break off "on the spot" but cause a cohesion test unless the blockers are enemy troops who are not facing the falling back unit. So friendly troops would cause the CT whichever way they were facing, but enemy only if they are facing within 45 degree of towards the falling back unit.

That would reduce the scope for the exploit of blocking your own troops
How about your earlier suggestion in this post (before changed), I.e., CT for fall-back unit if non-light blockers, and if light blockers those blockers get forced back one square (shunt?), and if they can't shunt, fall-back unit suffers CT. In all instances, fall-back unit disengages.
The shunt makes it more complicated to implement and not necessarily better. I would prefer to find a solution that doesn't involve shunting.
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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by MVP7 » Wed Jul 29, 2020 3:25 pm

My suggestion is still making a blocking light units evade out of the way and light unit being locked by friendly heavy passing through the heavy unit.
viewtopic.php?f=477&t=97421&start=40#p836253

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by DanZanzibar » Wed Jul 29, 2020 4:26 pm

I really like the idea that lights would evade away (even if it requires a 2nd evade in a turn). The main reason I see for this is if the enemy charges your lights out in front of your line, they would typically evade behind your line and may end up blocking a subsequent fallback of your infantry. You're basically getting penalized for using lights like you should. I think it should apply to enemy lights as well, no so much because it doesn't make sense that they would cause trouble to a unit attempting a fallback as much as it impacts their utility in game a significant amount - especially light horse. I'd rather see changes that don't impact the overall use of different troops too much. In the unlikely event those lights are entirely blocked in as well and can't make space for the falling back unit, then fallback blocked penalties can apply.

The other suggestion by MVP7 regarding lights passing through friendly troops when attempting a fallback makes sense as well. If they can't (2 deep behind them or they are light horse) they can deal with fallback blocked penalties same as foot.

For foot I would suggest if we virtually limit blocking fallbacks to non-light troops (with the exception mentioned above), then requiring the enemy unit to be facing is unnecessary I think.

As for the CT that is caused, I assume we are talking about one that is in the close combat group (same roll, at most 1 double drop caused by all CC CT's)? As for foot, I believe the only times they would fall back would be when losing CC and taking a CT anyway... so if they immediately took another CT with the same roll and a [-1 due to blocked square] penalty it would make sense to me. If the blocking enemy was also facing it would be -2 with the threatened flank (why I don't think the facing needs to be a requirement for the CT in the first place).

I think we would reserve the fall back in-place mechanism just for cavalry, correct? They would take a CT - same roll as they may have had to use already for a CC CT with either a -1 or -2 modifier - and disengage on the spot. It seems like that would work well to me.

There's probably something I haven't thought through here...

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by Nerzalar » Wed Jul 29, 2020 4:35 pm

Not sure if it could be abused, but maybe the simplest solution would be to have a CT (or maybe even an auto-drop) for the blocking unit, wether it is an enemy or friend.

That way neither player would be very intent on blocking other units in melee, it might also help simulate the "Cannae" effect, where compressed units that have nowhere to go
take moral damage from the front pressure over time.

Edit: And right after I post this I finish reading the other big thread about it, where people seems to have thought of this idea already x)
In any case, still seems like a possibility and I wonder what counter-arguments there are about it.

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by MVP7 » Wed Jul 29, 2020 4:44 pm

Nerzalar wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 4:35 pm
Not sure if it could be abused, but maybe the simplest solution would be to have a CT (or maybe even an auto-drop) for the blocking unit, wether it is an enemy or friend.

That way neither player would be very intent on blocking other units in melee, it might also help simulate the "Cannae" effect, where compressed units that have nowhere to go
take moral damage from the front pressure over time.

Edit: And right after I post this I finish reading the other big thread about it, where people seems to have thought of this idea already x)
In any case, still seems like a possibility and I wonder what counter-arguments there are about it.
This would also cause CT for unit that is preparing to rear flank an enemy that is fighting against another unit and is pushed back.

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by Nerzalar » Wed Jul 29, 2020 8:14 pm

MVP7 wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 4:44 pm
Nerzalar wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 4:35 pm
Not sure if it could be abused, but maybe the simplest solution would be to have a CT (or maybe even an auto-drop) for the blocking unit, wether it is an enemy or friend.

That way neither player would be very intent on blocking other units in melee, it might also help simulate the "Cannae" effect, where compressed units that have nowhere to go
take moral damage from the front pressure over time.

Edit: And right after I post this I finish reading the other big thread about it, where people seems to have thought of this idea already x)
In any case, still seems like a possibility and I wonder what counter-arguments there are about it.
This would also cause CT for unit that is preparing to rear flank an enemy that is fighting against another unit and is pushed back.
Ah! that is very true, i'm afraid in this case i've no idea what else could be done.

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by SnuggleBunnies » Wed Jul 29, 2020 10:21 pm

Another question to consider would be - if units that would Fall Back get cohesion tested, what about units that would be Pushed Back if not for a unit behind them?
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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by SLancaster » Thu Jul 30, 2020 12:58 am

I had a situation today where I was getting overrun on the left and fell back with my medium infantry unit on to the hill. In doing so I was right behind my massed archers and blocking their movement back.

Are we really going to penalise my unit for moving back? In actual fact, I failed my CT anyway and became disordered.

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by MikeC_81 » Thu Jul 30, 2020 1:10 am

rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:52 pm
MikeC_81 wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:45 pm
nyczar wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:19 pm
Ah, how simple and elegant....if a unit is blocked from falling back it disengages and simply stays in its square..Are there issue with a fix like this? Is it a major coding challenge?
The primary concern with that is that Lancers who already are a major obstacle to foot can now just sit in place and ZoC infantry out forever. Hence why I believe the harsher CT penalty should be applied.
There is no doubt that that has a certain logic, but similar rules were abused in DBM and Tabletop FOG2. i.e. If you just have to slip a light unit behind the enemy to cause a CT if they attempt to fall back that is too easy to achieve. Especially if enemy light troops don't even need to be facing them! (Although it would mitigate the potential exploit if they did have to be facing them to cause a CT, because it would then be harder to get them into position "on the fly").
As I said, the threat of LH is IMO overstated. Your opponent has to have LH, you don't have LH to counter, you don't have any other units to protect the square, AND that square has to be a fallback position for a unit that is likely to fall back, to begin with. That is a lot of "ifs". The vast majority of the time, this "mechanic" is being used as I said to strip opposing units of ZoCs in a cost-efficient manner to avoid the sacrificial lamb from "bouncing back".

The few times that it isn't being used in such fashion, it is used to pin down units that are likely to fall back like horse archers or lancers being charged by foot and you block their fallback square to force sustained melee. When this happens because my opponent did it with his own unit, I view it as a play error and I take advantage of it. When I do it to my opponent I feel like I used my units correctly to pin down a slippery unit that I otherwise would have a hard to engaging.

Adding an additional penalty simply reinforces to players that fallbacks and pushbacks need to be accounted for in their battle plans. Unlike nyczar however, this is not a life or death issue for me since I used it a lot myself, but like the ZoC loophole issue, it is something I would like to see dealt with once and for all. I think it is worth at least a beta rollout and we can play games or run a beta tournament and see how everyone feels afterward.


rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:52 pm
----------------------

One possibility would be for a blocked fall back to break off "on the spot" but have to take a cohesion test unless the blockers are enemy troops who are not facing the falling back unit. So friendly troops would cause the CT whichever way they were facing, but enemy only if they are facing within 45 degree of towards the falling back unit.

That would
1) Prevent it being possible to force your cavalry to stay in contact with enemy infantry (to set up a flank charge by another unit of cavalry) by blocking the first unit's recoil with another of your own units. (Usually LH or LF).
2) Prevent such blocks being used to ZOC-lock enemy infantry forever because eventually the cavalry will break.
3) Prevent units that just slipped through the line (but are unable to turn back to face the enemy rear on the same turn) from causing CTs on a blocked enemy recoil.
If you are going to deal with this issue, then the rule should be as simple as possible and this proposed solution has too many "ifs/thens" in it IMO. I would almost rather you leave it alone if the "fix" is something as convoluted as this.
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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by Gaznak » Thu Jul 30, 2020 1:49 am

One could make a distinction between attacks initiated by the player and attacks initiated by the enemy.

If I block my cavalry's line of retreat and to ensure they get stuck in, and give the charge order, then I get a cohesion test when they want to retreat but can't.

If the enemy attacks my horse and they accept the impact, then I don't get a cohesion test if they want to retreat but can't.

Its a little hard to justify, but it would nudge player behaviour.

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by choppinlt » Fri Jul 31, 2020 3:22 am

I don't post much, but I saw this thread and couldn't resist. I encountered fallback blocking over a year ago, and I despised the tactic so much that I responded to this thread http://www.slitherine.com/forum/viewto ... 20#p788916! There are some good ideas on solutions to prevent fallback blocking as you read through the post. Thank you nyczar for bringing this up again and shedding more light on this. As for rbodleyscott's proposed solution, I like it! I think it's a fairly intuitive and straightforward solution to be beta tested. I'll help you if you want it! 8) I am just glad we are talking about a way to address the issue.

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Re: 3218 hours in and my first real game gripe- fall back blocking

Post by ahuyton » Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:39 am

I do not really understand why it needs changing. It is annoying of course when opponents find ways to get an advantage, but that is the nature of a game and I think it is perfectly possible to rationalise what happens. Also I think that there are armies that need this tactic in order to have a chance.

If I did play again against my friendly old adversary, Nyczar, I would be very happy to have a gentleman's agreement not to indulge in such tactics. But I hope we don't have more layers of ifs and buts with an amendment to the system.

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