deeter wrote:I don't think fixing the combat system would be that monumental unless you're talking about doing away with the whole POA thing. The problem is with the range of possible casualties caused by the POA-inflicted hits. Hexwar made tit too broad. It shouldn't take much to make it less broad.
I'm talking about completely re-doing it (wishful thinking, I know).
The problem IMO isn't the casualty-spread, although that can be a little annoying.
The problem lies in the POA system itself, or rather in the limitations inherent in a D6 system. There simply isn't enough spread available to properly differentiate the combat situations that can occur, nor does a single die offer up a bell-curve making each combat something of a roll of the dice (pun definitely intended).
Granted, I haven't touched FoG in a long while but IIRC Impact Inf will have no added benefits of charging into the rear of a unit (aside from the cohesion drop) since they're already at +2. Nor does it matter for the attackers casualties whether he's at +1 or +2, the defender still hits on 5,6. And of course there's the infamous situation where skirmishers already locked in melee with two other units can theoretically be charged in the rear by cataphracts, and still turn back the charge!
Admittedly an extreme situation, but it's possible. And this is where I got off the bus, so to speak.
Far as I can figure there's been a design-decision made that no combat should be a certainty, which is fine.
Heavily armored men bashing each other with sharp, metal implements is hardly an exact science, so there should be some random element included.
However, given the limited range of a D6 system, and you already use either end for guaranteed victories/defeats, you paint yourself into a corner where the possible number of outcomes are seriously depleted, leaving very little wiggle-room. So you end up with odds jumping from 50/50 to 70/30 due to one POA shift.
And with only 6 possible outcomes, you're limited to a +-2 POA if you want to keep the no-guaranteed-victories clause, so there can only be so many modifiers available. You can't have flank-attack mods, no mods for MF in open ground, no separate mods for crossing streams according to troop-type (why would warbands be penalized the same as a phalanx?), and so on and so forth.
Now, as I've said in earlier posts, I can understand the need for a D6 system in TT, since there are only so many dice a person can throw in one go. Same goes for the POA system. You have to keep things simple to keep the game running at a steady pace.
But this isn't TT, nor has it got very much in common with the TT game except the name.
It's hex-based, no multi-unit battlegroups, different DAG lists, fog of war, no 'reserve movement', no ambushes, attritional combat instead of base kill-rolls, etc etc.
So my point is seeing that this is already a different game, why on gods green earth would you refrain from using the computer for what it does best, number-crunching?
You could easily substitute the D6 with a 2D6, or for that matter a percentage-system, and still have the odds presented in a clear, concise manner on the screen for the players to use in their decision-making.
You could still get the no-guaranteed-victories, only you'd lower the odds to such a degree that these very peculiar things we've all seen happen wouldn't happen with the same annoying frequency as it does now.
Which is why I stated it would be a monumental task. Not only would every unit-stats have to be recalculated, their point-costs would have to be changed, and the whole bloody thing would have to be play-tested again.
So I'm not holding my breath here.
But I do know that I'm out of the FoG business due to the above-mentioned problems. Every time I re-install it, that comes with a serious risk of me throwing my laptop through the apartment in disgust.
Which can get a wee bit expensive.
PS: if the luck-factor really does even out during the course of a game, why not take the potential whining out of the equation?
Here's what they did with SSG's Kharkov: Disaster on the Donets:
(haven't attacked anyone yet, so the numbers are obviously blank)
That screen can be called up at any time during the game.
I'm admittedly no programmer, but it can't be an insurmountable task to incorporate something like this in FoG.