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pgr
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Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Thu Apr 20, 2017 6:57 pm

Another one of my periodic musings... does it make sense that a stack doing an amphibious landing must win or die (i.e. no retreating)? Why not just retreat back to the transports you came from? I think we all kind of suffer from the "Saving Private Ryan" syndrome that leaves us thinking that in an amphibious assault one either wins or dies on the beach. I'm not sure it really applies to 19th century warfare. (And if you think of the 20th century, it's a bit over simplified. The Gallipoli force was able to evacuate from the beachhead with minimal losses, and even in the Utah Beach case a failed landing would have been called off long before the whole RCT or Division would have been committed.)

In the Civil War, I can't think of an example where a landing force hit a defended beach and was forced to surrender because it couldn't withdraw to its transports. Sherman at Chickasaw Bayou is a nice example of a failed landing in the Civil War. He lands (unopposed), moves to assault the Pemberton's defenses, is repulsed, loads on his transports and leaves. It's not like the blue bellies ate caster as they were leaping off the boats and Sherman and his command were forced to surrender on the beach.

So wouldn't it make more sense to allow a stack to retreat back to its transports following a failed landing rather than making it fight to the end? (I am not saying that anything should do with the combat penalty associated with landings...that seems rather justified.)

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DrPostman
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Thu Apr 20, 2017 7:20 pm

Everything I've read about Fredericksburg made me believe it was an awful crossing. Confederate
snipers took out a lot of engineers as they built their bridge.

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Captain_Orso
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:11 am

First off, I've never seen a stack destroyed while invading, and a while ago I did some extensive testing of just this... well actually I was testing the difference between invading through the Drag-Off™ method (fleet is adjacent to target region at the start of the turn, and you Drag-n-Drop™ your land stack into the target region) and Distant-Unload™.

Maybe if you invaded against a force nearly as strong as yours own, it might be a disaster, but then I would say it's your own fault. Invade where the enemy is weak, or absent, to get your bridgehead. Then move out to fight on even terms.

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Durk
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:20 am

pgr wrote:So wouldn't it make more sense to allow a stack to retreat back to its transports following a failed landing rather than making it fight to the end? (I am not saying that anything should do with the combat penalty associated with landings...that seems rather justified.)


You know, pgr, this was my first initial reaction so long ago to the first time I attempted a naval invasion and was repulsed. I had the same frustration, outrage, and historical complaint. I have since moderated my view of the total loss of a force if you land in a totally hostile region and fail to win the battle.

From a game standpoint, this insures you do the necessary preparation prior to invasion. This also eliminates the ahistorical need for the CSA in this instance, but other factions in other games, to garrison everywhere. This demand for garrisons both overkill and historically abhorrent. The penalty seems just.

I know, it is an outrage, but a sensible outrage.

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Pocus
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Thu May 04, 2017 3:13 pm

These are several reasons about no possible retreat in an opposed landing. One is that the specific code was never fully working so was abandoned. Also, game balance, we don't want the Union to be too bold with opposed landing, as this was not the practice of the time. Opposed landing was, correct me if I'm wrong, extremely rare prior to WW1.

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pgr
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Thu May 04, 2017 4:55 pm

Pocus wrote:These are several reasons about no possible retreat in an opposed landing. One is that the specific code was never fully working so was abandoned. Also, game balance, we don't want the Union to be too bold with opposed landing, as this was not the practice of the time. Opposed landing was, correct me if I'm wrong, extremely rare prior to WW1.


Thanks for the contribution Pocus. The game mechanics justifications make sense. As far as opposed landings go, I don't know if I'd say they were rare as much as less difficult for the invaders. Costal raiding was pretty common (H. Hornblower landing with Royal Marines to blow up some French batteries type stuff). I'd call stuff like Scott landing at Veracruz or Napoleon taking Malta or Alexandria during the Egypt expedition (or Wolfe at Quebec) "opposed landings." Sure, none of those examples involve fighting on the beach, but they do land, form up, and attack the defenders of costal defenses. I think the real difference is that before WWI, the advantage is with the invader to choose a landing spot and dominate it with fire, where as by WWI effective indirect fire could dominate a landing point to such an extent as to make a re-embarkation impossible.

Anyway, I was just trying to get a little discussion going.

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BattleVonWar
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Fri May 05, 2017 12:06 am

In my very first PBEM game my opponent landed upon Memphis and bypassed all the forts on the Mississippi with Grant and the force was the same size as the entrenched force there = complete destruction for him. He wanted to quit and I talked him into continuing and he did the same move pretty much again several times till he learned. Grant was running around the state of Louisiana and Mississippi as low as 15 strength trying to find supply and time. Unfortunately I couldn't kill him and he survived. Later he won that game by bypassing my poor Virginia defense as I admired my repulsing one seaborne invasion after another. *** Generals are tough to kill!

I tried a Seaborne invasion myself as the South upon St. Louis last Summer but my recon was bad and what I thought was a brigade was a 700 strength Division. Totally ate me.

As for history defended beach heads are tough. Watch Saving Private Ryan. Watch any story on Gallipoli. I might call the Norman Invasion of England contested. Though there was luck there. You can land your land forces anywhere you want in CWII. The South would take advantage of the ability if it was too easy?

Interesting topic

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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Fri May 05, 2017 12:23 pm

BattleVonWar wrote:In my very first PBEM game my opponent landed upon Memphis and bypassed all the forts on the Mississippi with Grant and the force was the same size as the entrenched force there = complete destruction for him. He wanted to quit and I talked him into continuing and he did the same move pretty much again several times till he learned. Grant was running around the state of Louisiana and Mississippi as low as 15 strength trying to find supply and time. Unfortunately I couldn't kill him and he survived. Later he won that game by bypassing my poor Virginia defense as I admired my repulsing one seaborne invasion after another. *** Generals are tough to kill!

I tried a Seaborne invasion myself as the South upon St. Louis last Summer but my recon was bad and what I thought was a brigade was a 700 strength Division. Totally ate me.

As for history defended beach heads are tough. Watch Saving Private Ryan. Watch any story on Gallipoli. I might call the Norman Invasion of England contested. Though there was luck there. You can land your land forces anywhere you want in CWII. The South would take advantage of the ability if it was too easy?

Interesting topic


3-star generals cannot be killed, only WIA? It's only 1 and 2-star Generals that can be KIA and WIA.
Or maybe that's only in AACW?

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pgr
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Fri May 05, 2017 12:52 pm

Temgesic wrote:
3-star generals cannot be killed, only WIA? It's only 1 and 2-star Generals that can be KIA and WIA.
Or maybe that's only in AACW?


Thats not completely accurate. Generals can be killed if their divisions are shot out from under them in combat (which does not apply to 3 stars) but there is a seperate roll to see if a leader is killed after a battle and those can get 3 stars (even if the stack retreated before round 1) . it is really rare.

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BattleVonWar
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Fri May 05, 2017 5:22 pm

Yes lost Albert Sidney Johnston in actual combat. I thought they downgraded that in the past patches. Also sent a ** General into a fight once or twice and they were killed.

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pgr
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Fri May 05, 2017 6:46 pm

Temgesic wrote:
3-star generals cannot be killed, only WIA? It's only 1 and 2-star Generals that can be KIA and WIA.
Or maybe that's only in AACW?


Thats not completely accurate. Generals can be killed if their divisions are shot out from under them in combat (which does not apply to 3 stars) but there is a seperate roll to see if a leader is killed after a battle and those can get 3 stars (even if the stack retreated before round 1) . it is really rare.

hanny1
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Sat May 06, 2017 7:39 pm

Pocus wrote:These are several reasons about no possible retreat in an opposed landing. One is that the specific code was never fully working so was abandoned. Also, game balance, we don't want the Union to be too bold with opposed landing, as this was not the practice of the time. Opposed landing was, correct me if I'm wrong, extremely rare prior to WW1.

Try, evolution of joint operations in the civil war, R reed, its a question of scale, the opposed landing at fort fisher, was the largest seaborne invasion till ww1, but there were many amphibious operations on coast and river, combining the army and navy once Lincoln set up this combined arms department to make co ordination happen, was the key to success.

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Cardinal Ape
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Sun May 07, 2017 12:21 am

pgr wrote:Anyway, I was just trying to get a little discussion going.


The penalty doesn't strike me as too harsh. Sure, it would be nice to be able to retreat back to the transports. But, failing that one can always land other units in an adjacent region to setup a place to flee to.

For me the biggest flaw in amphibious landings is how easy it is to supply the landed force. Usually, a Union landing captures enough supply to live off of for years. People regularly bypass the outer forts of New Orleans and Charleston because there is no need to worry about getting supplies to the beachhead.

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Straight Arrow
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Re: Landing Penalities Too Harsh?

Sun May 07, 2017 2:06 am

Cardinal Ape wrote:
pgr wrote:Usually, a Union landing captures enough supply to live off of for years. People regularly bypass the outer forts of New Orleans and Charleston because there is no need to worry about getting supplies to the beachhead.


Here, hear!

A Northern, sea born invasion living off Southern stock piles for the first couple of months is a pet peeve of mine. I don't have a beef with crackers and coffee coming off of ships, but I am bothered by Northern bums getting fat and lazy off corn pone and salt pork they didn't have to work for.

Why should sailors get a free pass when Sherman’s bummers had to work so hard?

Southern cities were not Mecca’s full of food stuffs and munitions. Food was stored were it was produced, in the countryside, and it took real effort to collect and move enough of it to keep the urban populations feed.

There was a good reason for the bread riots in Richmond and rows of empty shops containing only a few high priced goods. Southern cities did not hold or collect the surplus mountains of supplies the game portrays.

Of course having said this, when playing the South, I shamelessly utilize the fact Richmond can generate enough supplies to support the Army of Northern Virginia in a fortress city. Who cares if rail access to the rest of the nation is cut? Scripted Richmond, by its self, generates enough supply to keep a monster army fed and in action.

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