vaalen
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Burma wars

Thu Jun 15, 2017 5:51 pm

When you start a full campaign of PON as Great Britain, you are the greatest power in the world, without a doubt, with vast colonies all over the world, large markets, high prestige, an invincible Navy, all kinds of resources, the best industrial development in the world, an almost complete rail network on Britain itself, ample coal...

And then there is Burma. Burma is an absolutely miserable place to campaign in, with terrain and weather that is so harsh that almost any movement by land can result in a fatigued force that is easy prey for the seemingly ever present Burmese armies. Most of the provinces are inland and cannot be reached by sea. And it is even harder to deal with after the latest patch.

I thought I could turtle up in Rangoon and the other two coastal provinces I started with until I could build some more troops to hold all three, build forts and ports and depots, and just break any Burmese who tried to invade them. In the meantime I would use merchants, treaties, missions, etc, to make the natives a lot more friendly, while building up colonial penetration in the three provinces I held until i could declare a protectorate, and later a colony which would get the Burmese armies to melt away or join my forces. It worked in other games, but is not working so well after the patch.

The Burmese attacked all three of my coastal provinces, besieging and taking two of them, while Rangoon held out only when relieved by a large army from India. Of course, they destroyed all colonial improvements in the provinces they captured. I have retaken one of them by an amphibious assault, but the Burmese are killing my merchants and causing treaty events to fail,,and the whole strategy is in jeopardy.

Quite challenging. If they keep frustrating my attempts to raise colonial penetration in the inland provinces, I will have to send troops there, and that is going to be miserable. For my troops, that is, but great fun for me.

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James D Burns
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Re: Burma wars

Fri Jun 16, 2017 2:57 am

Made it to 1858 in my game and I'm still fighting with Burma. I waited until the event that gives a CB before declaring war though, so for the first few years I was just defending against a hostile Burmese Army with no warscore getting accumulated. But after the declaration I found that it takes 250 warscore to force Burma to give up Rangoon. 100 is the max you can earn, so I've been slowly working my way into the interior to eventually force a colonial victory by turning it into a colony as I don't want to lose Rangoon by signing a peace deal.

I have found two colonial inf brigades and two 2 element British cav brigades combined with a supply wagon is a large enough leaderless force to hold a province with as long as the force has good cohesion. You can't afford to leave any province undefended as occasionally Burma will spawn a bunch of new troops and they pop up in British controlled regions as well as in uncontrolled regions, so you have to defend every region at all times.

One thing I have found is I am unable to build mines and other buildings on regions in Burma. I recently took Mandalay and was allowed to build a depot, but I cannot build resource buildings even though I see two gold and one other resource (think it might be ore, not sure) in the region. So Burma appears to be bugged when it comes to building industrial buildings.

If you haven't declared war yet, I would recommend not doing so. The loss of VP for not using the CB is more than worth it, as going to war is a constant drain on your national morale keeping it near 70-80 for years. Were I able to sign an agreement and keep Rangoon, then declaring war would have been worth it as the conflict would have ended many years ago, as it is I'm forced to go the colonial route and you can do that without the war declaration, so save yourself the grief and ignore the CB.

Jim

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loki100
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Re: Burma wars

Fri Jun 16, 2017 5:51 am

James D Burns wrote:...

One thing I have found is I am unable to build mines and other buildings on regions in Burma. I recently took Mandalay and was allowed to build a depot, but I cannot build resource buildings even though I see two gold and one other resource (think it might be ore, not sure) in the region. So Burma appears to be bugged when it comes to building industrial buildings.

....

Jim


Looking at the structures file I suspect the key issue is that there is a test that there is no enemy presence in the province. For a gold mine as an eg:

Generation = *GOLD3*
BuildLevel = 1
MinControl = 0
MinCP = 0
MinDev = 0
AllowEnemyPresence = 0


By contrast a depot allows:

Attributes = *Is_Depot*
MaxLevel = 5
Generation = 1
BuildLevel = 1
MinControl = 25
MinCP = 0
MinDev = 10
AllowEnemyPresence = 1


One enduring problem in very poor terrain in the early phase is not just detecting the enemy well enough to bring them to battle but detecting them well enough to see if they are there. If the Burmese do spawn fresh rebels every now and then I'd suspect there is a small force in the province that you can't see?

See if you can build and deploy a high detect unit or a general with that trait - but otherwise these annoying units do randomly reveal themselves.

As a short term test, look in the save file for that particular province - it could be there is something there.

If not, then it might be that Burma is one of the regions where the special status for some game events has led to other problems.

Also worth remembering that the British never really exploited the colony. It wasn't till the 1890s that they started rubber production and then built a lot of paddy fields in the Irrawaddy region (ie Rangoon) but that was mostly in the post-WW1 period. Suspect that actual production and extraction of minerals mostly only happened beyond the game time frame.

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James D Burns
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Re: Burma wars

Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:18 am

I used ChangeFaction to look at the Burmese, none of their units are in Mandalay. I have three light cav brigades whose elements have a detection rating of 5 along with many inf brigades rated at 3, so I'd probably have seen anything that was in the province by now as I've held it for about 8 months, so I'm pretty confident this is a bug.

As a short term test, look in the save file for that particular province - it could be there is something there.


Not sure how I would do this.

Jim

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loki100
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Re: Burma wars

Fri Jun 16, 2017 11:18 am

James D Burns wrote:...

As a short term test, look in the save file for that particular province - it could be there is something there.


Not sure how I would do this.

Jim


to be fair its not easy (I think very much by design). You first need to find your saves, it'll be in something like mygames\Pride of Nations\VGN\Saves\1850 GC0. The last bit will vary depending on how many games you have on the go - or if you've deleted old games etc.

Then find the .trn file - I guess for your game the default will be something like 1850 GC~GBR. If you are playing more than one faction it won't matter too much which you open.

You'll also need the province code, easiest way to find this is probably to check...\VGN\GameData\Regions (the exact location of this will depend on where you set up the game on your computer).

Open your trn file (use notepad) and do a search for the province. Depending on the number (and you must use the number), this may throw up a lot of false results as the same number string will be used in different places for different reasons (easier if you are searching for a high numbered province). Sooner or later, you'll open a part of the game file with the buildings etc.

Unfortunately not what you need. Carry on hitting 'find' (did say this wasn't meant to be easy) and finally you will come to the military units in the province. You'll see a listing under either 'unit' or 'group' like this:

Image

The key line is #4 below the unit - that is the province its in.

Now you are not quite finished yet. The first cluster of units that come up will be from one faction - say in your case GBR. Carry on searching till you find the Burmese military units. If you find no more military units in that province its really empty.

In this case, given you say you can build a depot but not a gold mine, I do strongly suspect hidden units. One oddity is they may not be coded as Burmese, they might just be generic rebels, esp if they have spawned in response to your occupation of the province.

edit: as to detection, typically a native unit has a base score of 3, jungle is +2 as are most of the tropical types. Harsh weather can add to this. So its possible they are sat there with an evade score of 5 or 6.

vaalen
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Re: Burma wars

Sat Jun 17, 2017 7:37 am

James D Burns wrote:Made it to 1858 in my game and I'm still fighting with Burma. I waited until the event that gives a CB before declaring war though, so for the first few years I was just defending against a hostile Burmese Army with no warscore getting accumulated. But after the declaration I found that it takes 250 warscore to force Burma to give up Rangoon. 100 is the max you can earn, so I've been slowly working my way into the interior to eventually force a colonial victory by turning it into a colony as I don't want to lose Rangoon by signing a peace deal.

I have found two colonial inf brigades and two 2 element British cav brigades combined with a supply wagon is a large enough leaderless force to hold a province with as long as the force has good cohesion. You can't afford to leave any province undefended as occasionally Burma will spawn a bunch of new troops and they pop up in British controlled regions as well as in uncontrolled regions, so you have to defend every region at all times.

One thing I have found is I am unable to build mines and other buildings on regions in Burma. I recently took Mandalay and was allowed to build a depot, but I cannot build resource buildings even though I see two gold and one other resource (think it might be ore, not sure) in the region. So Burma appears to be bugged when it comes to building industrial buildings.

If you haven't declared war yet, I would recommend not doing so. The loss of VP for not using the CB is more than worth it, as going to war is a constant drain on your national morale keeping it near 70-80 for years. Were I able to sign an agreement and keep Rangoon, then declaring war would have been worth it as the conflict would have ended many years ago, as it is I'm forced to go the colonial route and you can do that without the war declaration, so save yourself the grief and ignore the CB.

Jim


Hi Jim,

This is very useful advice, and I appreciate it. I am going to try your force design, except I will try to make it work with Indian brigades instead of colonial and British brigades.
I generally try to never declare war on a nation that can be colonized, for the exact national morale problem you describe.

I think Loki is write about hidden units being the cause of your being unable to develop resources in those areas. I have run into this situation many times, especially in jungle areas of Africa when playing France. Natives can hide so well in these regions that even your best detection troops, in the early game at least, will rarely find them. I have discovered them on occasion in areas I have been unable to develop resources on, and driving them out enabled me to develop the resource. I have had this happen enough times in remote colonial areas that I do believe it is the cause. it seems to me that increasing the development of the area by building colonial buildings such as outposts, trading posts, missions, and improvements like ports and forts and depots can make these hidden units more likely to be discovered. However, I have found myself unable to build roads in these areas, until the hidden unit is destroyed or leaves.

regards,

Vaalen

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James D Burns
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Re: Burma wars

Sun Jun 18, 2017 3:27 am

loki100 wrote:to be fair its not easy


Thanks Loki, after several failed attempts (Notepad kept crashing and becoming non-responsive when trying to open or manipulate the trn file) I finally got it opened and was able to manipulate the file to do a search. Mandalay is definitely empty of any units other than the British units.

Thanks for taking the time to give such in depth instruction, it was quite an education.

Jim

jokeon
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Re: Burma wars

Thu Jul 20, 2017 5:31 pm

Hi, I usually just slow conquer Burma, mostly I use Indian brigades. Any two will definitely hold a province as long as they have a gun except when facing the big army. I hunt the big army with four brigades/two divisions. Then I just colonise with the cards and wait. As regards Mandalay and the province next to it I just build trade posts. I also build a line of depots from the coast to supply everything.

Make sure every province has a building to hide in as the weather is atrocious. You need reserves to move quickly when your troops are displaced by very harsh weather.

Eventually the Burmese fight or disappear and after a while you can declare a protectorate and then a colony.

Only do this because it is there and gives you a reason to build out the Indian army.

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