Moving through a ZOC

Field of Glory II is a turn-based tactical game set during the Rise of Rome from 280 BC to 25 BC.
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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by MVP7 » Tue Oct 15, 2019 1:56 am

That is indeed pretty weird. I would expect A to have similar movement options as C.

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by Cunningcairn » Tue Oct 15, 2019 5:23 am

melm wrote:
Tue Oct 15, 2019 12:34 am
How about an example that unit is in two primary ZOC?
I just had that in a league game. Cavalry facing enemy cavalry directly in front (Primary ZOC'd) with another cavalry primarily ZOCing the same enemy cavalry unit behind and one square to the right. The enemy cavalry just walked passed the frontal cavalry unit. I'm amazed that I can play hundreds upon hundreds of games and not experience this type of thing until recently.

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by hidde » Tue Oct 15, 2019 12:20 pm

I don't want to hijack the thread so shush me away if this is irrelevant.
How can my unit attack the fragmented archers?
Does it relate to what is discussed here or is it something else?
ScreenHunter_20 Oct. 14 09.40.jpg
ScreenHunter_20 Oct. 14 09.40.jpg (193.93 KiB) Viewed 500 times

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by TheGrayMouser » Tue Oct 15, 2019 12:45 pm

hidde wrote:
Tue Oct 15, 2019 12:20 pm
I don't want to hijack the thread so shush me away if this is irrelevant.
How can my unit attack the fragmented archers?
Does it relate to what is discussed here or is it something else?
ScreenHunter_20 Oct. 14 09.40.jpg
This rule:

A unit that is in the primary ZOC of an enemy unit (marked in red) cannot
charge a different enemy unit unless it is also in the primary ZOC of that unit.

Once you move that unit straight forward ( a diagonal move) both the fragged archer and the angled blue shield guy, they both each exert a primary ZOC on your unit, thus it can chose which one to charge

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by Cunningcairn » Tue Oct 15, 2019 5:00 pm

TheGrayMouser wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:16 pm
MikeC_81 wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 4:42 pm
@GrayMouser. The rule change is easy. A move is only allowed by a unit if it does not conflict with any ZoC rules instead of arbitrarily picking one and ignoring the others.

Maybe, Im not so sure its desirable though based on some things I just observed. Its hard to think of "changes" when what we have now is so byzantine,. I will shortly follow with some screenies and maybe someone can confirm which rules are being applied...
Why is it hard to think of changes? Did you test the proposed changes I posted? Don't they solve all the problems we are talking about?

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by MikeC_81 » Tue Oct 15, 2019 6:57 pm

TheGrayMouser wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:16 pm
MikeC_81 wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 4:42 pm
@GrayMouser. The rule change is easy. A move is only allowed by a unit if it does not conflict with any ZoC rules instead of arbitrarily picking one and ignoring the others.

Maybe, Im not so sure its desirable though based on some things I just observed. Its hard to think of "changes" when what we have now is so byzantine,. I will shortly follow with some screenies and maybe someone can confirm which rules are being applied...
It is not byzantine at all. The rule here is simple. If a unit is under 2 ZoCs, it will pick the primary ZoC and give it freedom of movement and ignore the 2nd ZoC. If it is under two or more primary ZoCs, the game arbitrarily picks one and ignores the other. The change is simple, the unit must obey all ZoC rules and if it is immobilized by it, then so be it.
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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by MikeC_81 » Tue Oct 15, 2019 6:57 pm

TheGrayMouser wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:16 pm
MikeC_81 wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 4:42 pm
@GrayMouser. The rule change is easy. A move is only allowed by a unit if it does not conflict with any ZoC rules instead of arbitrarily picking one and ignoring the others.

Maybe, Im not so sure its desirable though based on some things I just observed. Its hard to think of "changes" when what we have now is so byzantine,. I will shortly follow with some screenies and maybe someone can confirm which rules are being applied...
It is not byzantine at all. The rule here is simple. If a unit is under 2 ZoCs, it will pick the primary ZoC and give it freedom of movement and ignore the 2nd ZoC. If it is under two or more primary ZoCs, the game arbitrarily picks one and ignores the other. The change is simple, the unit must obey all ZoC rules and if it is immobilized by it, then so be it.
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https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKmEROEwX2fgjoQLlQULhPg/

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by Cunningcairn » Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:11 pm

MikeC_81 wrote:
Tue Oct 15, 2019 6:57 pm
TheGrayMouser wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:16 pm
MikeC_81 wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 4:42 pm
@GrayMouser. The rule change is easy. A move is only allowed by a unit if it does not conflict with any ZoC rules instead of arbitrarily picking one and ignoring the others.

Maybe, Im not so sure its desirable though based on some things I just observed. Its hard to think of "changes" when what we have now is so byzantine,. I will shortly follow with some screenies and maybe someone can confirm which rules are being applied...
It is not byzantine at all. The rule here is simple. If a unit is under 2 ZoCs, it will pick the primary ZoC and give it freedom of movement and ignore the 2nd ZoC. If it is under two or more primary ZoCs, the game arbitrarily picks one and ignores the other. The change is simple, the unit must obey all ZoC rules and if it is immobilized by it, then so be it.
I think something more flexible would be desirable but agree that your proposal is much, much better than the current situation. The current ZOC rules are definitely Byzantine.

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by TheGrayMouser » Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:15 pm

MikeC_81 wrote:
Tue Oct 15, 2019 6:57 pm
TheGrayMouser wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:16 pm
MikeC_81 wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 4:42 pm
@GrayMouser. The rule change is easy. A move is only allowed by a unit if it does not conflict with any ZoC rules instead of arbitrarily picking one and ignoring the others.

Maybe, Im not so sure its desirable though based on some things I just observed. Its hard to think of "changes" when what we have now is so byzantine,. I will shortly follow with some screenies and maybe someone can confirm which rules are being applied...
It is not byzantine at all. The rule here is simple. If a unit is under 2 ZoCs, it will pick the primary ZoC and give it freedom of movement and ignore the 2nd ZoC. If it is under two or more primary ZoCs, the game arbitrarily picks one and ignores the other. The change is simple, the unit must obey all ZoC rules and if it is immobilized by it, then so be it.
Ok, then please explain what is going in my screen shots in the last page :) . Also, you gotta be aware that the "if the unit is immobilized so be it" is your opinion on what ZOC's should be/ do, there are others just as legit too. Although the "archer" conundrum by the OP is odd and certainly not desirable, its kinda rare... Bluntly, I really don't care that much, but I'm very leary of any suggestion that will make cavalry even less mobile and easier to deflect like where an eager infantry throws itself at it to exert a secondary zoc, forcing the cavalry to ping off like it tried to re-enter the atmosphere at the wrong angle. ( so, have your change but add in new rule that cavalry ignores infantry secondary ZOC's :mrgreen: )

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by SnuggleBunnies » Wed Oct 16, 2019 12:32 am

I would much prefer a unit having to obey all ZoC rules. Of course, if a unit was caught in two separate primary ZoCs, it should be able to charge the unit to its front even if ZoCd from behind.

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by MVP7 » Wed Oct 16, 2019 1:11 pm

SnuggleBunnies wrote:
Wed Oct 16, 2019 12:32 am
I would much prefer a unit having to obey all ZoC rules. Of course, if a unit was caught in two separate primary ZoCs, it should be able to charge the unit to its front even if ZoCd from behind.
I think it would still be good to have an option to squeeze out of the pinch with a high risk of cohesion loss since that's probably what most units would do in such situation.

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by rbodleyscott » Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:10 pm

Cunningcairn wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:58 pm
I think this could be a possible solution to the ZOC issues. Comments, criticism and highlighting of any errors in logic are welcomed.

ZOC Rules

Possible Movement Square Identifiers {Identifies squares that you could move into under normal movement rules w.r.t. ZOC’s}
Z1 – Primary ZOC
Z2 – Secondary ZOC
Z3 – No ZOC

Current Position ZOC Assessment
CPZ1 –Currently in Primary ZOC
CPZ2 – Currently in Secondary ZOC
CPZ3 – Currently in No ZOC

Movement Types {Normal rules for movement apply prior to ZOC modifiers}
Move – Movement into any square that does not initiate combat
Attack – Initiate combat with any enemy unit exerting CPZ1 OR CPZ2 OR any enemy unit in a square directly to the front of the friendly unit in a CPZ1 OR CPZ2 even if this enemy unit is not exerting a CPZ1 OR CPZ2 itself {Prevents gamey ZOCing with angled lines and gamey moves to get units out of trouble by exerting CPZ1 and CPZ2’s.}
Turn – Change facing
Retire – move 1 or 2 directly to rear as allowed by normal movement rules ignoring Z1 OR Z2

If CPZ1 AND CPZ2 then apply CPZ1 rule

If CPZ1
No initial Move into any Z1 OR Z2 OR Z3 unless Z3 one square away from any units exerting CPZ1 OR CPZ2 {Prevents unit moving alongside unit exerting secondary ZOC- see archer example in this thread}
OR
Attack
OR
Turn towards any CPZ1 unit or any square between any 2 units which are both exerting CPZ1
OR
Retire {This can be easily justified and does not need any special ZOC rule to prevent it happening}

If CPZ2
No initial Move into any Z1 + Z2 OR Z3 unless Z3 one square away from any units exerting CPZ1 OR CPZ2 {Prevents unit moving alongside unit exerting secondary ZOC}
OR
Attack
OR
Turn
OR
Retire {This can be easily justified and does not need any special ZOC rule to prevent it happening}

If CPZ3
Move unit until move complete OR unit enters a Z1 or Z2 then apply CPZ1 OR CPZ2 Move rule.
OR
Attack including initiating combat on units that are not directly to the units front. If at anytime during the course of the Attack move the unit enters a Z1 OR Z2 then CPZ1 OR CPZ2 rules immediately come into play.
OR
Turn
OR
Retire {This can be easily justified and does not need any special ZOC rule to prevent it happening}
This might or might not achieve what you want.

However, whether it would or not is largely beside the point. The real issue is whether I (as game designer) want to turn the game into even more of a game of geometry (and invisible but impenetrable force fields) rather than fighting than it is already, by tightening up the ZOC rules.

The only effect that this would have is to increase the advantage the "experts" can achieve by the use of cheesy geometrical manoeuvres.

The "clever" use of the rules' geometrical restrictions poisoned and essentially killed off tournament gaming with DBM once the "experts" fully figured it out. I don't want to repeat the same mistake.

As they say, "Be careful what you wish for...."

Anyway, any change to the ZOC rules will not be part of the next update, which is nearly ready to release, but just needs a couple of weeks of beta testing once the open beta has been updated to v1.5.20. (Probably next week).
Richard Bodley Scott

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by SnuggleBunnies » Thu Oct 17, 2019 12:21 am

Wouldn't my proposed idea create less "clever" use of rules?

Let's say you have two opposing units facing each other, each in the other's primary ZoC. One player has a second unit in move range to his foe's rear. Under the current system, an experienced player will know that it is best to keep that rear unit angled 45 degrees away from the flanked unit, so that the flanked unit can either Fall Back or charge. If the flanking unit also directs its Primary ZoC onto the enemy unit, then that unit has a 50% chance to trundle right past the enemy to it's front.

How is THAT more intuitive or less gamey than my proposed alternative, which is simpler to comprehend? If pinned in to primary ZoC, the pinned unit can either charge the unit to its front, or stand its ground, not have a totally random chance to ignore the ZoC of the unit(s) to its front.

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by melm » Thu Oct 17, 2019 2:10 am

SnuggleBunnies wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 12:21 am
Wouldn't my proposed idea create less "clever" use of rules?

Let's say you have two opposing units facing each other, each in the other's primary ZoC. One player has a second unit in move range to his foe's rear. Under the current system, an experienced player will know that it is best to keep that rear unit angled 45 degrees away from the flanked unit, so that the flanked unit can either Fall Back or charge. If the flanking unit also directs its Primary ZoC onto the enemy unit, then that unit has a 50% chance to trundle right past the enemy to it's front.

How is THAT more intuitive or less gamey than my proposed alternative, which is simpler to comprehend? If pinned in to primary ZoC, the pinned unit can either charge the unit to its front, or stand its ground, not have a totally random chance to ignore the ZoC of the unit(s) to its front.
Not really understand why the unit has 50% chance to pass the enemy if they are face to face and both primary ZOC.

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by MikeC_81 » Thu Oct 17, 2019 3:09 am

rbodleyscott wrote:
Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:10 pm

This might or might not achieve what you want.

However, whether it would or not is largely beside the point. The real issue is whether I (as game designer) want to turn the game into even more of a game of geometry (and invisible but impenetrable force fields) rather than fighting than it is already, by tightening up the ZOC rules.

The only effect that this would have is to increase the advantage the "experts" can achieve by the use of cheesy geometrical manoeuvres.

The "clever" use of the rules' geometrical restrictions poisoned and essentially killed off tournament gaming with DBM once the "experts" fully figured it out. I don't want to repeat the same mistake.

As they say, "Be careful what you wish for...."

Anyway, any change to the ZOC rules will not be part of the next update, which is nearly ready to release, but just needs a couple of weeks of beta testing once the open beta has been updated to v1.5.20. (Probably next week).
Allowing random exemptions from ZoC rules won't save the game if it is degenerate. The game will survive if the design offers meaningful choices to be made by players that affect the outcome. Similarly, if the game is not good, then random exemptions from the rules won't save it. The current system only seeks to obscure the rules and allow instances where things don't behave as they should. Geometry is already a huge part of this game since day one. This would only serve to close up a loophole that allows for absurd moves that make no sense.
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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by melm » Thu Oct 17, 2019 5:39 am

I think the best way that Richard to defend his design logic is to create a scenario or several scenarios to illustrate that if all ZOC exerts their effect the situation is absurd. I believe there are a few in Richard mind when he is talking about the demise of DBM game. Detailed examples may fortify the arguments. :D

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by SnuggleBunnies » Thu Oct 17, 2019 11:11 pm

So this just happened in a League game. The highlighted Superior Warband just waltzed right past the Veteran African Spearmen to their front. I do still feel this is a problem.
ZoC Screen.PNG
ZoC Screen.PNG (445.06 KiB) Viewed 276 times
Had I remembered to only turn the Warband to their rear 45 degrees, they would have been stuck with the choices of standing or falling back. Instead they escape without harm. It's highly unintuitive, and it doesn't really make sense.

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by Cunningcairn » Sat Nov 23, 2019 6:22 pm

SnuggleBunnies wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 11:11 pm
So this just happened in a League game. The highlighted Superior Warband just waltzed right past the Veteran African Spearmen to their front. I do still feel this is a problem.

ZoC Screen.PNG

Had I remembered to only turn the Warband to their rear 45 degrees, they would have been stuck with the choices of standing or falling back. Instead they escape without harm. It's highly unintuitive, and it doesn't really make sense.
Richard in your response to my proposed solution above you say the following, "However, whether it would or not is largely beside the point. The real issue is whether I (as game designer) want to turn the game into even more of a game of geometry (and invisible but impenetrable force fields) rather than fighting than it is already, by tightening up the ZOC rules." The current ZOC rules are doing exactly what you don't want them to do and there are many players that like you and me would prefer that the situation was not one of geometry and invisible force fields. Snugglebunnies' comment above regarding a 45 deg turn is correct. Is a 45 deg turn sufficient to change a situation not proof of the geometry and invisible but impenetrable force fields currently at play? My main ZOC issues are the inability of a unit to charge an enemy unit directly to its front because it is facing an angled line and the random affect of ZOC's which at times allow units to move passed a unit clearly ZOCing it. It would be nice if possible solutions to these problems were tested as I think any improvement on the current ZOC rules would enhance the enjoyment of playing the game.

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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by rbodleyscott » Sat Nov 23, 2019 6:30 pm

Cunningcairn wrote:
Sat Nov 23, 2019 6:22 pm
My main ZOC issues are the inability of a unit to charge an enemy unit directly to its front because it is facing an angled line and the random affect of ZOC's which at times allow units to move passed a unit clearly ZOCing it.
Indeed, but these are two entirely separate issues, which need to be dealt with separately.

Anyway, I will give it some further thought.
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Re: Moving through a ZOC

Post by rbodleyscott » Sat Nov 23, 2019 6:57 pm

With regard to the issue of charging non-ZOCing enemy while in the ZOC1 of another enemy unit, I think I ought to first explain the logic on which ZOCs in FOG2 are based.

FOG is attempting to simulate real-time simultaneous movement as far as is possible in an IGOUGO turn-based system. In reality, nearby enemy would not always stand still while opposing troops were moving.

In the Field of Glory tabletop rules, to mitigate the artificiality of the IGOUGO system, the non-phasing player's unit is actually able to make an "intercept" charge (in the enemy turn) against any enemy unit whose charge passes in front of it within its charge range, and this intercept charge, if it contacts the original chargers' flank or rear, completely cancels their charge.

The computer version does not have intercept charges, because these would break the flow of play in multiplayer games, but instead uses the ZOC1 rules to simulate the deterrent effect of potential intercept charges.

The primary purpose of intercept charges is to allow units to protect the flank of other units without actually being lined up level with them.

ZOC1s are an abstract way of simulating the effect of intercept charges. This is the design logic on which ZOC1s are based. (ZOC2s were added later as a way to prevent it being too easy for mobile units to slip through small gaps in the enemy line.)

Hence, it would be against the game's design principles:

1) To allow a unit to charge the flank or rear of an enemy unit directly to its front while in the primary ZOC of another enemy unit.
2) To allow a unit to charge even the front of a non-ZOCing unit to its front, if it is itself ZOCd by an enemy unit to its flank or rear. In the tabletop version (and in reality), intercept charges would deter the player from charging in these circumstances, and if he did so anyway, the intercept charge would contact his unit's flank/rear and cancel its charge. (If anything, the computer version is more lenient, as it does allow the unit to charge if it can move out of the ZOC first).

However, we might be able to do something about allowing a unit to attack the front of a non-ZOCing unit, even when in the ZOC1 of another enemy unit, provided that a subsequent charge by that enemy unit from its current position would not contact its flank or rear. (As a means of mitigating the artificial effects of angled lines, but without changing the intended design in the cases discussed above).

The main problem with that is that it would be adding an exception to the general rule, and this might be enough to make keeping the current ZOC1 rule simple (and hence unchanged) the preferred option from a game design point of view, even though the angled line thing can be irritating. One of the design goals of FOG2 was to have a simpler (and hence easier to understand) system of priority charge targets than Pike and Shot.
Richard Bodley Scott

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