vaalen
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The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Mon Feb 06, 2017 5:20 pm

I am now on turn 225 of an 1850 campaign as France, and I have noticed some substantial improvements since patch 1.04.3.

War.
The invincible doom stack is gone.
The million man doomstack, which the AI used to create in European wars, and which could not be directly defeated, is thankfully gone. There were ways to deal with it, but until it was out of supply for awhile, it could crush anything in its path unless the terrain was heavily restricted. Now, the AI still forms big stacks, but they can be defeated directly, even in open terrain. It is a matter of planning, and organization and taking advantage of your leaders, but it can be done. While I have lost some battles, I have won battles where the AI will commit as many as 350,000 men and I have able to commit 250,000, in some cases inflicting devastating losses on the AI. The AI does a better job of massing troops in the right areas, attacking on different fronts, and the major European wars have been a real challenge. Wonderful stuff.

AI use of navies and amphibious assaults.

i almost never used to see this. But, in my current game, China sent a large army to take Hanoi by sea, which led to a war with France, and continued to use amphibious landings and there navy effectively during the war. In my war with Austria, i cut off several Austrian held provinces in central Italy by taking Venizia. The Austrians loaded reinforcements on their small navy and tried to send them to those cut off areas. Fortunately I was able to detect, intercept, and sink the reinforcements and their escorts in an enjoyable naval battle.

Making peace.
If the AI is losing the war, they will make reasonable peace offers, which often leads to the short wars that often occurred in this period.

More leaders
The shortage of leaders was a horrible problem, as you could increase the size of your army but quickly run out of officers to command them. New leaders would appear once every ten years, or if a leader got killed. Now, the game will generate a couple of new officers as your army grows in size, and this may also be tied into your being at war. This has made the game much more enjoyable,

Diplomacy

This was an area of the game that was an afterthought for me, needed mainly for getting commercial treaties and casus belli. Your actions, other than declaring war, rarely had consequences. The game is much deeper now.

Consequences of promising local support

Prior to the patch, i would just use this action where ever I had an interest without much thought, and it would almost always substantially increase my relationship over time. This allowed me to choose the wars i wanted to fight.
But now, the action is not immediately available, though it does appear after a few years.
But if you fail to back up your promise by declaring war once it gives you a casus belli, their is an immediate prestige penalty. And if you persist in failing to honor your commitment, you can lose ten percent of your entire prestige score at intervals. If you have promised local support to two different nations who go to war with each other, you are in trouble, as you cannot declare war on either, and will continue to accrue large prestige penalties. This happened in my current game, where I promised local support to both Prussia and Russia, and suffered heavy prestige loss when they went to war, a was that ended indecisively after a year. By the same token, if the AI had promised local support to a nation, and you declare war on that nation, there is a substantial danger that the first nation will declare war on you.

Defensive alliances work in a similar manner. This makes it crucial to review the treaties that a potential victim has with the other nations before you attack them, or you could wind up with a much bigger war than you want.

That said, promising local support is the most effective way of getting a nation to like you, but it comes with a big risk.

Warscore and the peace system

This works much better than it used to. It is much easier to get the AI to accept a reasonable peace offer, and the wars between the AI are often resolved within a year or so. If you are at was with a nation and its allies, and you make peace with the nation you are at war with, or your ally does, the allied nations will also make peace, automatically.

There are other improvements, but these are the major ones I have noticed.

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loki100
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Mon Feb 06, 2017 6:16 pm

Really re-assuring. The diplomacy improvements alone are massive - if the AI now takes defensive treaties seriously then a lot of the more 'gamey' stunts I pulled in Manufacturing Italy are not viable. This is good as it forces a player towards alliances to compensate.

Also good that 'promise support' is not just a simple prestige boost. Sounds like you can tie yourself in knots with it if not careful.

The end of the doomstack will make an AI Russia a foe to fear. Previously it would generate a huge army in St Petersburg and be unable to move it so it would show as having huge military potential but would tend to be beaten easily in wars from mid-game onwards.

Deeply impressed.

vaalen
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Mon Feb 06, 2017 9:19 pm

Loki, your prediction about AI Russia becoming a power to fear actually happened in my game.

They declared war on Turkey, and conquered nearly every Ottoman province in Europe, and some in Asia. The game would give me glimpses of some of the battles as they occurred, enough to see the numbers involved, and there were no doomstacks.

Prussia attacked the Russians a few years later, but did not take a single province, and made peace in less than a year.
Russia also fought a war with China, and got a favorable treaty with transfers of territory, again, in less than a year.

Russia is second to Britain in prestige points, probably from winning so many battles.

And I did lose nearly 2000 prestige points for not honoring promises of local support.

And the AI is honoring defensive treaties. In my two declarations of war against Austria, Austria's allies, including Saxony and Bavaria, all declared war on me. And Saxony sent a big army to attack me at Metz near the end of that war. The allies all declared war against Sardinia Piedmont when she declared war on Austria, as well.

And something I should mention is that the time between turns is much faster. I have played over 200 turns, and am involved in a huge war, at the same time that the British are trying to put down the Indian Mutiny, and turns still process in no more than two minutes.

I love this game!

I

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loki100
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:54 pm

some observations.

Turn processing is now excellent. I think that RuS or Civil War2 now are slower - at least early game.

The only state that seems to create 'odd' wars is France. So far in my game its managed to get into wars with the CSA (1850) and California (1851). I ended both by script.

The diplo game is much more nuanced with fewer 'safe' options.

The colonial game has changed - before you had a number of different cards that had essentially similar impact and the choice was which gave the best gain in CP for your current needs. That missionaries now hit revolt risk rather than help with CP (as does the chief bribing) gives the whole thing a new depth.

very very impressed with .04.03.

vaalen
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:26 pm

loki100 wrote:some observations.

Turn processing is now excellent. I think that RuS or Civil War2 now are slower - at least early game.

The only state that seems to create 'odd' wars is France. So far in my game its managed to get into wars with the CSA (1850) and California (1851). I ended both by script.

The diplo game is much more nuanced with fewer 'safe' options.

The colonial game has changed - before you had a number of different cards that had essentially similar impact and the choice was which gave the best gain in CP for your current needs. That missionaries now hit revolt risk rather than help with CP (as does the chief bribing) gives the whole thing a new depth.

very very impressed with .04.03.


Good to have your input, Loki.

Something else I have noticed. The fixes you made for the US Civil war seem to be working. While I am playing France, I often get views of battles all over the world when the turn ends. The US Civil war has been going on for almost two years, though the Union has almost won. I have seen a number of battles, between forces of historical size, which shows the Confederates as having decent armies. The Union eventually overwhelmed them, but it seems to be a substantial improvement over the previous situation.

I too am quite impressed with the current state of the game.

V for Vegas
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Tue Feb 21, 2017 10:43 am

loki100 wrote:some observations.

Turn processing is now excellent. I think that RuS or Civil War2 now are slower - at least early game.

The only state that seems to create 'odd' wars is France. So far in my game its managed to get into wars with the CSA (1850) and California (1851). I ended both by script.

The diplo game is much more nuanced with fewer 'safe' options.

The colonial game has changed - before you had a number of different cards that had essentially similar impact and the choice was which gave the best gain in CP for your current needs. That missionaries now hit revolt risk rather than help with CP (as does the chief bribing) gives the whole thing a new depth.

very very impressed with .04.03.


I don't see the point of missionaries now - 1% revolt reduction over 6 turns? Bribing gives you 10% reduction plus 5% loyalty.

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loki100
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Tue Feb 21, 2017 7:01 pm

Partly agree, I'm having to rethink my colonial strategy, not least I think that getting to 35% is going to be slower.

But missionaries are cheap and anything that reduces the need to deal with constant revolts is to be welcomed.

vaalen
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Tue Feb 21, 2017 8:54 pm

loki100 wrote:Partly agree, I'm having to rethink my colonial strategy, not least I think that getting to 35% is going to be slower.

But missionaries are cheap and anything that reduces the need to deal with constant revolts is to be welcomed.


I find missions invaluable as supply sources for my explorers, or for a single colonial brigade. They are the cheapest way to keep these units from starving.

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Durk
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Wed Feb 22, 2017 5:22 am

So are this the Regional Decisions missionaries or the units you can build. I am still exploring and totally lost.

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loki100
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Wed Feb 22, 2017 9:26 am

Durk wrote:So are this the Regional Decisions missionaries or the units you can build. I am still exploring and totally lost.


These are the regional colonial cards. They are now much more differentiated than before as some give you loyalty/dev but no colonial penetration and so on.

As Vaalen rightly pts out above, an important benefit even of a mission is it generates a bit of supply. Certainly enough for a colonial brigade or similar. So it allows you build your military control - essential if the locals are being unco-operative.

The on map colonial unit - the explorer - is as before (I believe). Move it next to an unexplored region and then play the explorer card on that region. The unit can't move while the card period plays out, so you may want to protect it with a military unit .. which takes us back to the merits of a mission as above (or a trade post). The unit has a second advantage in that it might trigger the discovery of unknown resources.

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Durk
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Re: The latest patch has greatly imporved the game.

Thu Feb 23, 2017 4:12 am

You know, I really like this game and its scope, but I am so lost at time as to the best play. I am learning. I have have some great players who have helped me learn more. This thread has been so useful.

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