FOG - 50% Skill, 50% Luck?

PC/Mac : Digital version of the popular tabletop gaming system. Fight battles on your desktop in single and mutiplayer!

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stockwellpete
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Post by stockwellpete » Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:36 am

I was playing TGM in a game last night and my 4 mounted knight units charged his 4 mounted knight units. It was on open ground and all 8 units were at 100% strength. In the first 4 combats I inflicted a glorious combined total of 4% casualties while my heroically naff men suffered a combined loss of 41%. :roll:

Needless to say I lost the battle comprehensively after this, but what did I do wrong? :?

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Post by omarquatar » Tue Sep 06, 2011 10:00 am

stockwellpete wrote:In the first 4 combats I inflicted a glorious combined total of 4% casualties while my heroically naff men suffered a combined loss of 41%. :roll:

Needless to say I lost the battle comprehensively after this, but what did I do wrong? :?
dicethrowing :P

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Post by Morbio » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:50 am

ianiow wrote:
jonno wrote:This might be sacrilege, but why are we so closely tied to the TT game and using 6- sided die to calculate results.
Jon, even writing this sentence is sacrilege. Burn him at the stake!

Actually you can burn me too. I think Slitherine has syphoned off all the TT players who are ever likely to try the PC version. Now is the time to take the PC game to the next level and use the power of the computer to do the stuff that the TT version of the game can't handle
I fully agree.

Ideally, with a PC considering all the factors and doing all the number crunching why limit it to an amendment from dice to percentages or lookup tables? Why not add more granularity regarding the various factors, eg. the varied types of armour and weapons.

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Post by stockwellpete » Fri Sep 09, 2011 6:34 pm

From an internet discussion about the combat system in FOG. Just got to love this one . . .

"it could be a phalanx of bananas attacking a skirmish line of brocoli for all the combat results seem to make sense or hold any consistency from one round to the next."

:lol: :lol: :lol:

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Post by TheGrayMouser » Fri Sep 09, 2011 7:44 pm

stockwellpete wrote:From an internet discussion about the combat system in FOG. Just got to love this one . . .

"it could be a phalanx of bananas attacking a skirmish line of brocoli for all the combat results seem to make sense or hold any consistency from one round to the next."

:lol: :lol: :lol:
I see someone has their hands on the secret expansion: Rise of Fruit Bowl

Clearly though Pete, you have been playing long enough to know the bananas will lose since the broccoli will retain their POA's regardless of being steam , broiled or wilted, where as the bananas will lose a POA once their peeled.

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Post by Ardaeshir » Wed Sep 28, 2011 3:29 pm

I don't think there is too much luck. After all, this is a actical "one-battle" game, not a grand strategy "play the whole 2nd Punic war" game so you naturally ahve less options.

Having said that, skill plays a much lesser element with some types of armies. From what I noticed, most 1100s-1200s FoG armies are almost no-brainers. You rush in with the knights/heavy cavalry and try to avoid melee combat with all other units.
Also, battles between two ancient "undrilled warrior" (Celtic/Germanic/AncientSpanish etc.) armies tend to be straightforward shield-pushing matches with very little room for manouvre.

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Post by 76mm » Sun Oct 23, 2011 7:06 pm

deeter wrote:i wouldn't call this a small thing to add when convenient. It has been a major point of contention for two years and it's a fact that players have stopped playing (and buying expansions) because of it. Fact is, randomness (such as who wins and looses) has its place, but the winner of a melee should NEVER suffer more casualties than the loser.

Deeter
Interesting thread; I haven't played this game or frequented this forum in several months because of these issues, which have been discussed very extensively. If this issue is addressed I would enjoy playing once again.

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Post by Xiggy » Wed Nov 02, 2011 6:10 pm

I have said this in the past and I guess I will repeat it. Certain generals are winning 90+ percent of their games amd others (me ) about 50 percent of their games. It does not matter what army they play. They still win 9/10 or more times. They can play weak armies or strong. The better player wins most of the time. There are an exception or 2 and you will have bad rolls at certain times and great rolls later. Unfortunately later does not always help.

When both players are even, then luck will have an effect. Most of the time it doesn't. This game is fun. It isn't perfect, but no game is. I have been playing ancients since 1980 on the table top. (WRG 5th edition) Every once in a while you roll real well and win. I did it in a semi final of a tournament and beat a better player. That is one of the few times in the 1000's of games I have played where dice not tactics caused me to win or lose.

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Post by Aryaman » Sat Nov 05, 2011 7:16 am

I think everybody admits random is too high in the game.
Some good players will win most of the time, if that wasn´t the case the game would be purely a dice game.
However, when players are even, luck has the last word, that is a fact.
I like the game, I don´t like the random factor, not only because it could decide a match, but also because it is unrealistic.
I know this is not the case with everybody. I love historical wargames, because I love History and to me the more realistic a game the better. If you watch some horse archers charge the Varangian guard in the front and get results 1% vs 20% in their favour, you just lose the historical realism, and to me that is a bigger factor than losing a match because bad dice rolls.
Maybe the designers didn´t mind that, in fact there are other features very unrealistic in the game, so that it looks more like an historically flavoured game rather than a proper wargame. To me that is a shortcoming and that is why I play this game very little, however I reckon it could be fun if you play it just as a little game without historical pretensions, and that could be enough for a lot of people.

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Post by Rosseau » Tue Nov 08, 2011 1:59 am

I think the gauntlet has been thrown down again. Either makes some real changes (that may take some real programming work!), or some of us are not going to keep buying expansions. I have all but two expansions.

Meanwhile, look at BA and Panzer Corps. Not just new sprites, but real improvements in the game system. I will buy everything they throw out there.

At the least, upgrade the dice system a bit....

EDIT: In fairness, I just played both sides of Omar's Sanluri battle and it was well balanced with dice rolls having a small effect. But I'd still like to see more game improvements :)

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Post by Xiggy » Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:08 pm

The only real detailed information on battles that are accurate unfortunately are the ones fought in the last 200 to 300 years. Before that there still is a lot of mythology associated with it. In the ACW we know exactly what orders were given and that many great battles were won or lost due to entire divisions getting lost in the woods, making a wrong turn etc. We do not know this about ancient battles. A lot of that detail has been lost. History isnt chess. There is a lot more random in battle, than we know. I would prefer a 2 x 6 sided dice system (Bell curve) but I can live with the results.

If there was as much luck as you all think, then the best players would win 55 percent of the time. (Backgammon w/l) The best players are winning 90 + percent of the time. There is considerly less real randomness than their appears to be, based on the casualties.

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Post by stockwellpete » Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:34 pm

I think the problem is, Xiggy, that "luck" becomes more of an issue in battles between players of similar skill levels, whereas the really good players will always beat the quite good or just plain average players much more often than not. And given that quite a lot of us search out, cultivate and then keep playing with players of a similar skill level (because we get a more enjoyable game) then that does accentuate the problem with the game somewhat.

And a second very important point for those of us who want a more historically accurate gaming experience, is that the wild swings in combat results just seem very unrealistic to us. BG's of the same capabilities facing each other should not be getting 23-1 results - and there should be a lot more 12-10 and 8-8 type outcomes.

Another important thing that follows, and it is not always recognised, is that if the melee results were more realistic then the players who skilfully place their archers and get shots in before the melee takes place would get a greater reward. Sometimes, two or three turns of patiently whittling down an enemy can count for nothing if you get one of these daft 23-1 results go against you. :wink:

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Post by Xiggy » Wed Nov 16, 2011 9:10 pm

Some of the problem here is that the game is to simple. But most people do not want a steep learning curve. Even on the table top where missile fire is more effective, this is a very basic game. It is easy to get into. Most of the ancient history I have read does not have the detail that reading about recent battle goes. (recent is 200-300 years ago) We know Alexander or Caesar did this or that. We dont know that 50,000 barbarians that were after Caesar and would had hit him in the rear got lost for a week in the woods. This would have changed history. (That is a ficticious example, since we dont have that kind of detail surviving 2000 years of history) In the ACW both Stonewall Jackson, Burnside and many other did get lost in the woods for days literally at a time in various battles.

A lot of battles in history were won by much greater luck, then you are seeing in this game. We would all be speaking Mongolian if the khan had not died when the mongols were just about to conquer Europe and his armies went back home to bury him. Talk about luck.

Most of the issue is we all think we are the greatest general ever and since we are losing when we think we shouldn't it must be the dice. (In my old tabletop days, we gave a friend of mine a Christmas present of a wooden plaque with a half dozen 6 sided dice embedded in it because ever time his ship got sunk or his favorite brigade of confederates got routed it was always blamed on the dice and he would throw literally handfuls of dice down the other end of the room and bounce them off the wall. We still laugh about that)

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Post by Aryaman » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:41 pm

Xiggy
Your point is that luck plays a big role in battles, but your examples are not to the point. Getting lost in the woods, not arriving in time, taking the wrong turn in a road, all those are strategic options that doesn´t pertain to a tactical game like FOG. The kind of "luck" we are discussing here is random results in combat, they don´t represent anything historical, just the way the random factor is implemented in the game, and it is really badly implemented.

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Post by stockwellpete » Thu Nov 17, 2011 3:19 pm

Aryaman wrote:Xiggy
Your point is that luck plays a big role in battles, but your examples are not to the point. Getting lost in the woods, not arriving in time, taking the wrong turn in a road, all those are strategic options that doesn´t pertain to a tactical game like FOG. The kind of "luck" we are discussing here is random results in combat, they don´t represent anything historical, just the way the random factor is implemented in the game, and it is really badly implemented.
Yes, I agree with this. The "Mongolian khan dying" example that Xiggy gave does not relate to tactical battles either. Even if we get the changes that some of us are asking for there will still be a random, or luck, element in the game - it just won't be so big.

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Post by Lysimachos » Thu Nov 17, 2011 6:57 pm

Xiggy
Your point is that luck plays a big role in battles, but your examples are not to the point. Getting lost in the woods, not arriving in time, taking the wrong turn in a road, all those are strategic options that doesn´t pertain to a tactical game like FOG. The kind of "luck" we are discussing here is random results in combat, they don´t represent anything historical, just the way the random factor is implemented in the game, and it is really badly implemented.
Well said, you hit the point!
"Audentis fortuna iuvat"
- Virgilius

(Good luck favours the brave)

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