cheesy terrain?

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expendablecinc
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Post by expendablecinc » Mon Aug 24, 2009 4:23 am

david53 wrote:It has been a couple of months since the HF brigade had a go about the Steppe terain. Now all you need to do is have an IC and 25 bases of Cavalry and you too can have +4 giving you a chance to pick PBI.

What is it that you don't like the fact LH can't be caught by HF, how unhistorical of the rule writers to allow this to.

BTW when HF armies are stretched across the table I think that should be adjusted in FOG 2.0 HF must be in minimum two ranks, while were at it only armies with BG's of 12 or less please.
I dont think anyone has a problem that HF cant catch LH. Its that roads are a very easy way to ensure at least one open flank - as a parthian wielder myself I'd rather have a road than two picks of open ground - Its better at denying your opponent terrain placement.

I just think they (and rivers) should be able to be slid and pivoted despite this sometimes changing the shape or length of the piece. Given that its a linear piece this should be reasonable. The roads would obviously continue beyond the board. Alternatively they should just overlay other pieces. (a river flowing through a wood) etc...

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Post by expendablecinc » Mon Aug 24, 2009 4:54 am

jlopez wrote:...With regards to the river and road issue, I really can't see why they can't be placed on top of other terrain that subsequently falls against a side edge. Has no one seen a road/river go through a forest or other terrain in real life? OK, you won't see many rivers going over hills but that's probably the only exception. It would resolve this issue nicely and I don't think it would detract from a visual aspect either.

Julian
The justification in game realism terms was that when considering the relative sizes of terrain pieces in FoG, that roads in this period would go around terrain rather thatn through it - I think this is reasonable - although not in the case or rivers. The issue is with the game balance impact.

I personally believe that the mismatch is there but it only matters when: a steppe-loving army without steppe in its options wins initiative. I think its a valid point but a testament that the rules are well developed and thought out when this is all we can come up with to fix.

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Post by DaiSho » Mon Aug 24, 2009 5:03 am

expendablecinc wrote:The justification in game realism terms was that when considering the relative sizes of terrain pieces in FoG, that roads in this period would go around terrain rather thatn through it - I think this is reasonable - although not in the case or rivers. The issue is with the game balance impact.
Not necessarily true. I think anything that is 'rough' would be gone through. Anything Difficult you're probably right. They aren't exactly going to go 'around' an enclosed field - rather the enclosed field would have come into existence due to the road. You're right about a forest though - why cut down a bunch of trees unless it's something like the Black Forest, which wouldn't be represented on a FOG table.
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david53
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Post by david53 » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:18 am

dave_r wrote:so if you need to win the intiative for your army to work then make sure you have a high PBI.

It's not exactly rocket science is it?

No real need to change rules here, if you don't want to spend 80 points on an IC you can't really complain if you don't get the terrian you want. Or can you?

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Post by timurilenk » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:33 am

david53 wrote:No real need to change rules here, if you don't want to spend 80 points on an IC you can't really complain if you don't get the terrian you want. Or can you?
Very often this is precisely the reason not to take an IC - going first can be more of an advantage than picking terrain.
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Post by hammy » Mon Aug 24, 2009 9:20 am

The simple solution is to allow terrain to be places 'over' a road. You might even allow for the definition of a side edge to also be modified to include touching a river.

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Post by jcmedhurst » Mon Aug 24, 2009 9:45 am

And an even simpler solution is the one that Pete mentioned was thought about at playtesting, that roads go down last in the order of terrain placement, after all other terrain is placed. That would also make them more useful for the Roman practice of driving roads through unfavourable terrain.

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Post by davidandlynda » Mon Aug 24, 2009 11:39 am

Lynda has just finished knitting a road and a river,not that shes planning on using them but at least I'll have a scarf to wear when it gets cold :)
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Post by jlopez » Mon Aug 24, 2009 3:39 pm

expendablecinc wrote:
jlopez wrote:...With regards to the river and road issue, I really can't see why they can't be placed on top of other terrain that subsequently falls against a side edge. Has no one seen a road/river go through a forest or other terrain in real life? OK, you won't see many rivers going over hills but that's probably the only exception. It would resolve this issue nicely and I don't think it would detract from a visual aspect either.

Julian
The justification in game realism terms was that when considering the relative sizes of terrain pieces in FoG, that roads in this period would go around terrain rather thatn through it - I think this is reasonable - although not in the case or rivers. The issue is with the game balance impact.

I personally believe that the mismatch is there but it only matters when: a steppe-loving army without steppe in its options wins initiative. I think its a valid point but a testament that the rules are well developed and thought out when this is all we can come up with to fix.
Where roads are concerned they might not originally have been built through terrain but since the imperial highway maintenance system had a tendency to down tools whenever the local travelling roadshow from the steppe turned up, said terrain might actually have grown at a later date with only the track itself being kept open through continued use. Seems equally reasonable given the longevity of most properly built roads. As an aside, Roman engineers tended to ignore most vegetation when planning a road. They were far more concerned by gradient, water and soil erosion (ie. landslides) and other serious obstacles to be concerned with plant life.

Julian

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Post by hazelbark » Mon Aug 24, 2009 3:49 pm

expendablecinc wrote: The justification in game realism terms was that when considering the relative sizes of terrain pieces in FoG, that roads in this period would go around terrain rather thatn through it - I think this is reasonable - although not in the case or rivers.
That assumes the terrain piece is uniform. So no forest has a path through it in the FoG-universe is equally flawed.

What a road means is also quite subjective. Is it a well travelled path or an improved roman road.

People are extrapolating a whole lot on what they perceive the terrain to be. Probably large amounts of "clear" board have some level of clutter to them. The designers did not choose to model (thankfully) every bump and rock.

Roman roads were un-naturally straight regardless of terrain.
Other roads may avoid terrain. But a road through a piece of terrain obviously found a path of least resistance through it.

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Post by david53 » Mon Aug 24, 2009 4:27 pm

timurilenk wrote:
david53 wrote:No real need to change rules here, if you don't want to spend 80 points on an IC you can't really complain if you don't get the terrian you want. Or can you?
Very often this is precisely the reason not to take an IC - going first can be more of an advantage than picking terrain.

By going first you give up the terrian placing can't have it both ways.

Either pick terrian or move first chose one a gamers choice I fear.

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Post by johno » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:18 pm

I've got to admit, I'd rather move first with most of my armies, and happily give up first pick of the terrain for that - if I don't like the choices that are left, I can always choose the minimum, knowing what my opponent has picked. When I've got first choice, I feel bound to take the full allowance, both to deny my opponent the choices, and also to make sure I have at least some terrain on the board.

This is true even with my Khazars and Alans, which are usually all mounted forces. Where the Bosporans, NKE, Kushites and Late Dynastic Egyptians are concerned, moving first is such a positive bonus, that I don't mind not having control of the terrain.

However, since the terrain placement rules are based on a distribution pattern established by rolling against the table, and that distribution pattern must have been deemed to be suitably balanced during play-testing, the existence of an exploit that so easily prevents that distribution operating properly is annoying, especially given the general perception that light horse have been allowed to be too effective, as they were in the initial iterations of DBM.

I must add that I haven't found my own or anyone else's light horse to be too effective, but then I rarely use more than four units in an 800 point army, and have yet to face any of the more excessive examples of massed light horse.

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Post by timurilenk » Mon Aug 24, 2009 9:09 pm

david53 wrote:
timurilenk wrote:Very often this is precisely the reason not to take an IC - going first can be more of an advantage than picking terrain.

By going first you give up the terrian placing can't have it both ways.

Either pick terrian or move first chose one a gamers choice I fear.
Exactly my point Dave! :D
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Post by Blathergut » Mon Aug 24, 2009 9:17 pm

It is nice to have initiative not just for terrain, but plopping BGs down after an opponent. That let me drop 2 sets of elephants and 2 6paks of legionaries opposite deadtorioussss phalanxes and cataphracts and scythies :)

Terrain is a random luck thingie tho...never quite lands where you want it. If roads went down last then they could kinda bend around it all. As for going through terrain, I suppose the +1 MU for column is kinda extra for road/path type movement in rough stuff.

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Post by kal5056 » Tue Aug 25, 2009 12:39 am

My main concern is that we will continue to see only Steppe Armies and Armies designed to fight Steppe Armies and lose some of the abundance of unique choices that make (IMHO) many more armies viable inFOG than were in DBM.

As to "Just take and IC and 25 mounted figures and then your foot army has a plus 4" I say, 25 mounted units does not a foot army make.
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Post by david53 » Tue Aug 25, 2009 6:01 am

johno wrote: especially given the general perception that light horse have been allowed to be too effective, as they were in the initial iterations of DBM.



johno
Whos perception is that then, those people who use HF armies maybe, who can't quite catch Light Horse. The shooting of LH is not excessive IMO so that just leaves movement and back to HF not catching them.

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Post by philqw78 » Tue Aug 25, 2009 6:04 am

Italian Ostrogoth
Dominate Roman
Nikephorian Byzantine
Christian Nubian
Dominate Roman
Parthian
Palmyran
Middle Assyrian
Skythian
Lombard


Top 10 Early Britcon. Where are these dominating Steppe armies? Oh there's a Skythian and a Parthian. But the Parthian had a lot of Pike (wierdo)?

Later Otoman Turk
Norse Irish
Later Serbian
Later Otoman Turk
Wars of the Roses (Yorkist)
Later Serbian
Later Ottoman Turk
Swiss
Timurid
Later Low Countries


Top 10 later Britcon. Oh no the steppe armies have not dominated again. But the Norse Irish were probably hard done to by the terrain system and should have got more.

There was a good mix of armies in both periods, more so the early. So since the steppe armies are not dominating the only reason I can see for your crying is that your favourite toys are not winning.

Can we get back to whinging about armies with too many BG instead. They take too long to kill.

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Post by BlackPrince » Tue Aug 25, 2009 6:57 am

In the later top 10 there three Turk armies and one Timurid army so while not strictly steppe armies they are LH shooty armies.
So LH shooty armies took 40% of the top 10 places what was the percentage of LH shooty armies outside the top 10?


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Post by philqw78 » Tue Aug 25, 2009 7:27 am

The Ottoman armies in the top 10 where all used by top seeds. About 25% of the period were shooty Cav. About 2.5% were swarm of medium foot-Hvy Wpn armies, and 1 of them, it, came second. So that army obviously performs to well. Both later serbian armies finished in the top 6. So obviously another army that gets some sort of unbalanced advantage.

In the early period there were no shooty cav and a couple of shooty LH (depending if you count Parthian with 2 BG pike and 3 or 4 BG Cats shooty) in the top 10. Overall about 25% were shooty Cav/LH. None in the top 5, which were 2 swarms, 2 mixed and one lancer heavy.

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Post by lawrenceg » Tue Aug 25, 2009 7:50 am

philqw78 wrote:Italian Ostrogoth
Dominate Roman
Nikephorian Byzantine
Christian Nubian
Dominate Roman
Parthian
Palmyran
Middle Assyrian
Skythian
Lombard


Top 10 Early Britcon. Where are these dominating Steppe armies? Oh there's a Skythian and a Parthian. But the Parthian had a lot of Pike (wierdo)?

Later Otoman Turk
Norse Irish
Later Serbian
Later Otoman Turk
Wars of the Roses (Yorkist)
Later Serbian
Later Ottoman Turk
Swiss
Timurid
Later Low Countries


Top 10 later Britcon. Oh no the steppe armies have not dominated again. But the Norse Irish were probably hard done to by the terrain system and should have got more.

There was a good mix of armies in both periods, more so the early. So since the steppe armies are not dominating the only reason I can see for your crying is that your favourite toys are not winning.

Can we get back to whinging about armies with too many BG instead. They take too long to kill.
Ostrogoth and Lombard are also cavalry armies, quite happy on steppe terrain. You also need to count the anti-steppe armies, which would be at least one of the Dom Roms and the +Nubians and possibly others in the early period. In the later period (I'm not familiar with all those lists) probably 7 out of the 10 are mainly mounted and/or shooty foot, quite capable of dealing with cavalry/LH opponents.

The bottom line is shooty cavalry armies are known to be effective and popular, so they will be a design driving threat for lists. Similarly many-BG Dom Roms are a design driving threat in the early period. Competitive players will always try to design armies that can cope with all likely threats. Less competitive players that design armies based on other criteria must face the possibility of getting an unfavourable army mismatch. THis is inherent in the "scissors/paper/stone" nature of the game.
Lawrence Greaves

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