Farcical Combat Results

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Belis4rius
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Farcical Combat Results

Post by Belis4rius » Thu Aug 26, 2010 8:40 am

Before I am equated with the hated British cat-woman, let me just say I kinda like the game.

Now with that out of the way, I am a wargamer of 40+ years and for the life of me I cannot understand some of the results which pop up in my battles, I can have heavy gendarmes bowl into some pressganged town militia with spoons and get hit with 183 casualties while hardly bending a spoon! How can I be expected to pull off that unexpected heavy flank attack when my aristocracy get held up with pickaxes and trowels?

Any wargamer worth their salt must question the workings of these melee's.

76mm
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Post by 76mm » Thu Aug 26, 2010 9:04 am

hahaha, this topic has been discussed ad nauseum on this forum, but of course you couldn't know that because there is no search function for this site! There is a very long thread called "the power of dices" [sic] or some such on this topic, but I cannot find it...

Anyway, the bottom line is that many people share your opinion, and many consider the combat resolution system a "realistic" representation of the vagaries of combat. To each his own, clearly.

ianiow
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Post by ianiow » Thu Aug 26, 2010 9:12 am

Maybe Kevin Costner trained the peasants up and booby trapped the village against your poor unsuspecting nobles?

You are right ofcourse about the lack of realism, but it can be argued that if most combats were forgone conclusions, the game would be less fun. Always try to plan for the unexpected! :wink:


Ps Never underestimate spoons.

Sheriff of Nottingham: Locksley! I'll cut your heart out with a spoon!
Guy of Gisborne: Why a spoon, cousin? Why not an axe?
Sheriff of Nottingham: Because it's DULL, you twit. It'll hurt more.

Gersen
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Post by Gersen » Thu Aug 26, 2010 9:46 am

They are wierd, but it all averages out fine I find, and provides sufficient tactical surprises to keep combat from being dull. I've grown to like it.

...

Sheriff of Nottingham: [to a wench] You. My room. 10:30 tonight.
Sheriff of Nottingham: [to another wench] You. 10:45... And bring a friend.

Belis4rius
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Post by Belis4rius » Thu Aug 26, 2010 10:37 am

I just had a look back in the forums and I see what you mean, from day one it has been a bone of contention.

I don't have a problem that some fights are not foregone conclusions and I take notice that there are extenuating circumstances in combat which may favour one side or the other. But it is not rocket science to assume that Gendarmes will stomp peasant militia 99 times out of 100, but not in this game. And if that is a factor then how can I possibly plan for that, if I manage to get my knights or whatever into an advantageous spot on the battlefield where they should wipe away the opposition and then appear on a flank or rear of more solid opposition, why should all this be put at naught by some crazy combat results.

Anyway, it is obvious the system will not change so I put my white flag up and will continue in MP until perhaps I cannot go on anymore, a few more battles will decide one way or the other.

Glad I do not need police protection like cat-woman.

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Post by frankpowerful » Thu Aug 26, 2010 11:02 am

Gersen wrote:They are wierd, but it all averages out fine I find, ... I've grown to like it.
i still dislike them strongly, but after 9 months of playing, one grows accustomed to them, as the game is too fun to stop playing it

76mm
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Post by 76mm » Thu Aug 26, 2010 11:36 am

One last bit of advice is to play larger battles (800 pts and up), in which it is more likely for the luck to average out.

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Post by deadtorius » Thu Aug 26, 2010 2:40 pm

The game uses dice, in this case virtual dice, to determine combat results. The final POA tally will determine who needs what score to gain a hit on your opponent. Not sure if its listed in the help but it works out like this:
No POA advantage = 4 to hit
+POA= score 4 to hit, - POA score 5 to hit
++ POA = score 3 to hit, -- POA score 5 to hit

I play the table top rules as well and have had the dubious honour of charging Roman LF with my pikes, the Romans decide to stand and take it, pass their cohesion test. I go in with more dice and a + POA and lose the impact, now I am stuck there with the Roman unit I actually wanted to hit standing behind the lights smirking away at the crappy luck my pikes just had. Now to add more humiliation to it all, I fail my post impact cohesion test and go disrupted to boot :oops:
Dice are a part of all wargames TT wargames I have played and I am certain are part of most PC games too as the devs need some way to work out a random battle resolution thing. sometimes the best laid plans go amok once the troops start to move and the results are sharpened spoons that you thought were going to be dull and an unnoticed shallow gully protecting those spoons that your noble knights just discovered. Or something along those lines to make excuses for poor die rolls.

deeter
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Post by deeter » Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:03 pm

But the thing that annoys many of us is, taking the above example, when the PC take an additional random roll for each hit and the pikes roll low inflicting no hits but the LF roll high inflicting 20% casualties. That's just too random.

Deeter

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Post by jamespcrowley » Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:08 pm

Personally, I don't hold with the 'luck averages out over time' mantra unless you have a very large number of occurences. Even in a largish game I doubt if there are more than 20 clashes per turn, on average, and with most games no more than 15 turns. Thats 300 clashes, which would not be anywhere near enough a sample size to guarantee even luck. So if your bad resuts happen at key times in the battle, you may very well be unlucky.

Not withstanding that, I doubt that anyone wants pre-determined combat results and, I for one, definately want to have the possibility of 'anything can happen' results. Just not with the same frequency as they seem to occur. Perhaps the percentage loss results can be narrowed down a little or some way found to limit outlier results?

The final POA tally will determine who needs what score to gain a hit on your opponent. Not sure if its listed in the help but it works out like this:
No POA advantage = 4 to hit
+POA= score 4 to hit, - POA score 5 to hit
++ POA = score 3 to hit, -- POA score 5 to hit


And, unsuprisingly given the shoddy state of the help, this vital fact is not given anywhere in it! Rather surprising for a game whose combat calculations are based on virtual dice.

76mm
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Post by 76mm » Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:57 pm

jimcrowley wrote:Perhaps the percentage loss results can be narrowed down a little or some way found to limit outlier results?
Yeah, this is what I've been saying for a while.

And one thing that has really started to bug me: when one of my BGs charges an enemy BG, and suffers a major loss. I then have a second BG charge the same enemy BG, and suffer an even bigger loss! Finally, I have a third BG charge the same unit--on a flank nonetheless--and take another major loss...its like the enemy is not engaged already, and units attacking three on one do not seem to get any advantage, it is like flipping a coin three times and seeing who wins.

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Post by jamespcrowley » Thu Aug 26, 2010 4:41 pm

76mm wrote:And one thing that has really started to bug me: when one of my BGs charges an enemy BG, and suffers a major loss. I then have a second BG charge the same enemy BG, and suffer an even bigger loss! Finally, I have a third BG charge the same unit--on a flank nonetheless--and take another major loss...its like the enemy is not engaged already, and units attacking three on one do not seem to get any advantage, it is like flipping a coin three times and seeing who wins.
Totally agree with you on that.

TheGrayMouser
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Post by TheGrayMouser » Thu Aug 26, 2010 4:49 pm

Hmm, I could be wrong 76MM but what you are seeing is that the target unit retains the dice they rolled from the first impact encounter for all subsequent impact comabts

If you did real bad on the ist roll, throwing additional troops into the fray can be bad.....

Realistic? dont know, all turn based games suffer from sequence of events distortion...
It does give a semblance of a series of attacks vs one unit happening simultanioulsy, but nothing is perfect....


BTW, i dont know if you should lump all players whom are ok w the casualties ranges as in the game as people who are saying the game mechanics are a perfect representaion of reality for any and all things that happen within the game......

I mean, is it worth creating a seperate casualty chart for every unit vs unit type encounter? I would ratehr see the effort going into other things, like making all list be able to puchse up to 1000 ap's , for one
Cheers

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Post by TheGrayMouser » Thu Aug 26, 2010 4:56 pm

Belis4rius wrote:I just had a look back in the forums and I see what you mean, from day one it has been a bone of contention.

I don't have a problem that some fights are not foregone conclusions and I take notice that there are extenuating circumstances in combat which may favour one side or the other. But it is not rocket science to assume that Gendarmes will stomp peasant militia 99 times out of 100, but not in this game. And if that is a factor then how can I possibly plan for that, if I manage to get my knights or whatever into an advantageous spot on the battlefield where they should wipe away the opposition and then appear on a flank or rear of more solid opposition, why should all this be put at naught by some crazy combat results.

Anyway, it is obvious the system will not change so I put my white flag up and will continue in MP until perhaps I cannot go on anymore, a few more battles will decide one way or the other.

Glad I do not need police protection like cat-woman.

There are no spoon armed peasant miltia units in any of the lists that i am awre of :D

what units were you attacking? Even the 'worst units" poor protected defensive spears can be effective if used en masse and on the defensive...... They can hold some knights off relatively easily, at least for a few turns (just dont try to attack with them!)

Also, are your gendarmes superior or average? that can make a difference

Aslo not sure about the 99/100 times figure..... I find many issues people have with the game mechanics are they are assuming one on one ecnounters with no other factors thrown in.....

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Post by deeter » Thu Aug 26, 2010 5:03 pm

If I think about it and watch the black box for the first attack and see a big dice roll from the defender, I'll move on to other targets.

Deeter

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Post by cothyso » Thu Aug 26, 2010 5:05 pm

This is the thread you were talking about: The Power of Dices.

Now, getting back at beating that dead horse, a little statistical math..

An observation I've made during my games is that, the randomness of the results has much to do in the way the number of dices/the to-hit needed number are taken into consideration.

Let's consider 2 BGs fighting each other, no POA (there fore a 4 is needed to hit), BG A with 1 dice, and BG B with 3 dices. As a 4 is being needed to hit, means than on a dice throw, 1,2 and 3 won't score a squat, while 4,5 and 6 will score a hit. Which means a 50% - 50% percent to score a hit on a dice throw.

For the A BG is therefore simple, it has a 50% - 50% chance to score 1 hit.

Now for the BG B, things gets interesting: the total number of possible combinations is 8 [the possible combinations being (0,0,0) (1,0,0) (0,1,0) (0,0,1) (1,1,0) (1,0,1) (0,1,1) (1,1,1)], each of them having the same chance to happen (as the chances of 1 dice being thrown 0/1 are 50% - 50%), which means that:
- there's a 12.5% chance to not score anything (1/8 )
- there's a 37.5% chance to score 1 hit (3/8 )
- there's a 37.5% chance to score 2 hits (3/8 )
- there's a 12.5% chance to score 3 hits (1/8 )

What this means? That BG B, throwing 3 dices, has a 50% percent chance to score 1 hit or less, and a 50% percent chance to score at least 2 hits

Now, when considering both BG's in the same fight (as in fighting each other), the possible combinations are:
- BG A scores nothing, BG B scores 1 - 25%
- BG A scores 1, BG B scores 1 - 25%
- BG A scores 1, BG B scores 2 - 25%
- BG A scores nothing, BG B scores 2 - 25%

So, a 3 dices BG fighting against a 1 dice BG will score nothing in 25%, only 1 extra hit in 50% and 2 extra hits in 25%. Roughly.

Seems a little bit too less, don't you think, to only score at most 1 extra hit in 75% of the cases?

I think a solution would be to have the less than the needed to hit dices added up, so a BG with 3 dices needing a 4 to hit and throwing a 2,2,2 would at least score a hit (compared to nothing as it is right now).

Definitely a solution comparing the total sum of all thrown dices of both BGs would lead to much better results than the current system.

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Post by TheGrayMouser » Thu Aug 26, 2010 5:44 pm

I dont doudt your statistics but methinks that this aproach would be more suited for opertaional level games
Think of the old counter board games where there was a clear, although abstract , differnce between attacker /defender. The over all combat power of the Attacker was compared to the defender, ie 3-1 odds.

However you still needed to roll a dice to see the effect, on some kind of chart or matrix
So roll a 6 the defender (with those odds), is overrun, counter removed from game, 3-5 and "no effect" , roll a 2, attacker retreats or loses a "step" or whatever....

In a tactical game I dont mind a wider range band of effects...

Also , what would summing up dice do for 2 units of like kind and quality that each roll 4 dice?
It sounds like you are looking for ways for a badly "damaged unit" to collapse/rout with almost zero chance of hanging on

76mm
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Post by 76mm » Thu Aug 26, 2010 6:55 pm

TheGrayMouser wrote: Hmm, I could be wrong 76MM but what you are seeing is that the target unit retains the dice they rolled from the first impact encounter for all subsequent impact comabts
You are probably right, I guess I didn't realize that this is how it works...
TheGrayMouser wrote:It does give a semblance of a series of attacks vs one unit happening simultanioulsy, but nothing is perfect....
I don't think it is realistic--if one unit was attacked by three unit simultaneously, including on the flank, I think it is more probable that the defender would break, where it might not if it were only going to be attacked by one unit.
TheGrayMouser wrote:BTW, i dont know if you should lump all players whom are ok w the casualties ranges as in the game as people who are saying the game mechanics are a perfect representaion of reality for any and all things that happen within the game......
? I don't follow, I don't think I've done this?

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Post by batesmotel » Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:07 pm

TheGrayMouser wrote:Hmm, I could be wrong 76MM but what you are seeing is that the target unit retains the dice they rolled from the first impact encounter for all subsequent impact comabts

If you did real bad on the ist roll, throwing additional troops into the fray can be bad.....

Realistic? dont know, all turn based games suffer from sequence of events distortion...
It does give a semblance of a series of attacks vs one unit happening simultanioulsy, but nothing is perfect....


BTW, i dont know if you should lump all players whom are ok w the casualties ranges as in the game as people who are saying the game mechanics are a perfect representaion of reality for any and all things that happen within the game......

I mean, is it worth creating a seperate casualty chart for every unit vs unit type encounter? I would ratehr see the effort going into other things, like making all list be able to puchse up to 1000 ap's , for one
Cheers
The only dice that are retained between combats (impact, melee, etc) within a turn are cohesion test rolls, not combat rolls. So just because your first impact fared poorly doesn't mean that a subsequent one with another BG will. It probably does mean that if your first impact did not cause the target to drop a cohesion level, your subsequent ones probably will not do so either unless some additional modifier applies that would shift the result of the initial cohesion test, e.g. an additional -1 for losing to lancers or for going below 75% strength. A cohesion die roll is only retained for that type of combat, so after losing an impact, a BG would get a new roll if it then failed lost a melee combat in the same turn.

Chris
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TheGrayMouser
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Post by TheGrayMouser » Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:23 pm

Really?, I know that this has come up before and that was the answere provided, oh well, only taken me 10 months to learn a new rule :oops:

I guess when it happens the old adage 'when it rains , it pours" must apply!


All right , I never jumped in on the " the manual stinks" bandwagon, but now i must say , it stinks!!!

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