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Topic of the day

Posted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 1:23 am
by lightbrave
Just started to play this game again. Thought I would give it another try. I have many many questions but I don't want to overload this post with 100's of them at one time. I thought I would pick one topic maybe daily or bi-daily or maybe weekly. I would like to go in depth about small things if I can and if there is someone knowledgeable that could answer my questions that would be great. I'm playing Athena"the computer" right now on the easiest level and I'm still having lots of trouble. I would like to play other people one day but right now I feel like I would get mauled especially since I play CSA. So here it goes. First question.

How does National Morale effect gameplay? I know you get to a certain amount to win or lose but lets say my National Moral is 45. Does it effect the fighting spirit of my troops? Does it make it harder to recruit or get replacements? Also is there sub-morale bonuses or levels? Can a certain unit have more moral under a certain General or because its entrenched or if its fighting in its home state ect... If so, how does the sub-morale average with National morale? Does it mean anything more than just a step toward the "Victory Condition" of 25 or 200.

Thanks all and I hope I get a robust discussion of ideas and input with this and the future questions I put out there. Maybe it will be a good thread for new comers.

Re: Topic of the day

Posted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 5:39 am
by Durk
Mostly just a yes, you have the key concept of NM.

There are not really sub-NM, but some leaders with high values can kind of ignore NM for battle. Otherwise, you NM really matters in battle.

Re: Topic of the day

Posted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 4:35 pm
by Gray Fox
NM affects several things, along with automatic victory/defeat. Subtract 100 from your NM. Half the remaining number is added to or subtracted (if a negative number) from your supply production as a percentage. Sort of the same goes for unit cohesion. If you have a NM of 80, then you lose 10% of your supply production (80-100= -20, half of this is -10) everywhere. Every unit would also take a 10 point hit to its cohesion value. Cohesion is the term used for what you are calling sub-morale. Militia get a 10 point boost to cohesion when fighting in their home state and some Generals have an icon for a further boost to militia cohesion. I'm looking forward to your next question.

Re: Topic of the day

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 6:49 am
by ArmChairGeneral
NM is the single most important stat in the game. It directly affects combat performance and linearly increases or decreases your production of general supply, ammo, War Supply and Money (Conscript production is unaffected, IIRC). According to the documentation a 2% increase in NM will get you a 1% increase in across the board production up to 110 NM. So a 110 NM gives you a 5% boost to everything.

If you have a low NM every fight will be difficult and the resources you have to build replacements will be reduced. Go below 85-90 for extended periods and you can quickly enter a death-spiral where poor combat performance leads to a poor economy, which leads to worse performance, etc.

A high NM gives you more combat effectiveness in the field and DRAMATICALLY increases your production, which is critical for the CSA. Athena is vulnerable to the death spiral and a high NM gives you the ability and resources to keep the pressure on until she cannot stop you from taking her capital.

Typically, when you gain NM your opponent loses NM at least temporarily, making the differential quite large. At 110NM vs 90 NM you get a 5% boost while your opponent gets a 5% reduction. At these levels you can be close enough to parity to negate the Union's production advantages.

Re: Topic of the day

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 6:59 am
by ArmChairGeneral
You gain or lose NM from events, from some RGD's, (the "Cards") from taking strategic cities, and from decisively winning battles.

If you have a NM below 100 you have a random chance each turn to regain some of it until you get back to 100.

Cards and events are limited and typically give the CSA a 2 to 5 more NM during 1861 than the Union will get.

Strategic cities are difficult to take and only get you the bonus once. If you can't hold it you lose NM when it is retaken.

Decisively winning battles is the way most NM is won. The key to winning the game is to win big in your battles. String two or three NM gaining battles together over a month or two and you will gain a huge advantage over your opponent as they must replace the troops you destroyed and have fewer resources to do it with and a reduced ability to fight the next battle because of the NM advantage from your dominance in the field.

Re: Topic of the day

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 5:32 pm
by lightbrave
Thanks Durk, Grey Fox and Armchair General. I figured id give people a little time to respond to each topic I have that's why I haven't been doing questions daily. I think I understand NM a lot better now. Just to clarify one thing that ArmChair said, so after you get 110 NM, anything further than that does not increase supply and economics or "fighting ability"? Is 110NM to 200 NM just a means to an end at that point?

Re: Topic of the day

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 5:52 pm
by lightbrave
Next Topic POW's and Prisoner Exchange.

I know this is an extreme one sided scenario but I was playing Athena and ended up taking like 170,000 prisoners. I'm guessing they took about 10,000 by the time the game is over.

Is keeping prisoners a drain on supply (trying to guard and feed 170,000 prisoners)?
Do any prisoners die at any point? (Starvation/disease exc..)
Where are they kept?
Can they be freed by an army?

I took over the whole east coastline with one Army of 40,000 men all the way up to Boston taking every town on the way up there and all of the state of Massachusetts. (By the way NM for the Union never dipped below 70 after all that). I'm sure I took at least 50,000 prisoners on the way up there. How did my Army deal with them? How did the prisoners get to the "prison camps" down south?

Are all the questions I just asked not part of the game?

When playing a real person opponent, when you do a prisoner exchange does it lower moral for both sides or the one who initiated it? How do you know how many prisoner the opponent has?

If I take 5,000 prisoners and my opponent has 10,000 and we decide to exchange, does the exchange option just do 5,000 each? How does that work?

Had a battle where I had about 17,000 men and the Union had about 9,000. I won with around 2000 casualties and inflicting about 4000 on the Union. NO PRISONERS WHERE TAKED BY EITHER SIDE. How does that even happen?

Thanks guys and I look forward to your responses and thanks for participating.

Re: Topic of the day

Posted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 12:31 am
by ArmChairGeneral
No, you still get increased benefits. I had thought that the rate of increase flattened out after 110, but not sure now.

Re: Topic of the day

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 1:00 am
by Gray Fox
The AGEWiki is apparently broken, so this is what the game manual states:

"Prisoner Exchange
Starting in July 1862, prisoner exchange becomes an option for both sides. Both sides can now ask for a prisoner exchange each turn. If both sides asked for such an exchange, they release 1/3rd of the prisoners of War (POW’s) they hold in their camps and get a small VP or NM bonus. please note that the number of POW’s gradually declines due to poor detention conditions (unless new POW’s are captured, of course).
Design Note: This part may be slightly changed during final beta playtesting in order to better balance the game and respect historical conditions."

I've never used this. Although it may be fair for gentlemen to exchange equal proportions of prisoners, the VP/NM bonus will inevitably push one side closer than the other to ultimate victory.

The whole process of POWs is not part of the game. The prisoners vanish and end up only as a statistic. In the RW, the prisoners would be transported to the rear areas. A stockade might be the final destination for them. However, this is only conjecture.

Re: Topic of the day

Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 1:33 am
by DrPostman
One thing I remember from discussions on Beta was that BOTH sides have to select prisoner
exchange during the same turn for that to go into effect. As others have said I don't ever use
it, especially when playing the Union as they have plenty of manpower at that point and starving
the South is my aim.