elxaime
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NM and the Campaign

Mon Aug 29, 2016 8:23 am

I am wondering if any thought has been given to adding some sort of morale balancing mechanisms. The reason I ask is that, in a PBEM I am in, the Nationalists have concentrated a huge force under Franco that is marching relentlessly in the northern area, vaporizing any Republicans unlucky enough to be in the way. These are unequal fights - Franco usually has around 65,000 men to foes with less than a third as many. The Nationalists are getting 4-10 NM each fight, which has created over time a morale edge of 164 to 55 for the Nationalists - very close to auto victory.

Meanwhile, the Republicans have been taking over the rest of the map - core Nationalist areas like Zaragoza, Segovia, Cuidad Rodrigo, etc. The Republicans have cut the Nationalists in half and are about to take Jaen and start reducing the Nationalists completely in the SW area of Spain.

The problem is that, as city after city falls to the Republicans, while it affects loyalty in the cities they hold, it has little NM impact. After the Franco Death Stack began its march, which resulted in a couple of cities falling, the Republicans have taken about six cities themselves, but lost about 40 NM to the battles.

Thinking this over, it makes sense to forget about front lines, forget about cities - forget about everything except forming a huge stack. So long as you are drawing enough supply from somewhere, you will rapidly drive your enemy's morale down. Losing cities may affect the war over the long term, but who cares since every NM you gain, and your enemy loses, is a permanent gain? Something is amiss. The Republicans are about to surrender despite having a 10-7 edge in combat power and control of well over half the map - including 5 of the 8 main objective cities.

I think there are some obvious solutions. First, NM loss from battles needs to be toned down, while there should be some NM impact from taking (and holding) cities. For example, in RUS, holding certain key cities grants NM each turn, usually only under special conditions though. Second, both sides need to have some NM "trigger" events they can use EP for. AJE and RUS have mechanisms like this. For example, in RUS, when the Red side falls below a certain NM, they can spend rubles to gain some back. In AJE scenario of Hannibal Terror of Rome, when Roman morale falls below certain levels, they have access to special options to spend EP raise it.

Here are some ideas how this might work in ESP. The idea is to allow each side to recover, but impose a cost.

Republicans
- Let them choose morale boosting options at the cost of VP, which can represent surrendering more and more control to the Communists and Soviet Union. Each time this happens there is a loyalty check as if they lost a city, to represent discontent from the non-Communist factions. This represents a choice to prolong the war through increased internal represssion, at the cost of ultimate victory
- the Republicans can also choose morale boosting options, this time at the cost of money, to represent giving the Anarchists and other anti-Soviet leftist groups more power. This doesn't have a loyalty impact, but instead taking this course results in a random check of units which are created by Soviet aid (e.g. the international brigades, armor, aircraft) to see if these are removed. This would reflect Stalin's anger at the Republicans aiding his hated ideological rivals

Every time the Republicans take one of the above options, there would be a random chance they would lose the opportunity to ever again choose the rival option.

Nationalists
- the Nationalists can choose to boost morale by spending VP, which represents a deepening of the ties to Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy. Over the long term, while this keeps the Nationalists afloat, it weakens their image among the Western countries and also angers some Spanish nationalists who resent the foreigners
- the Nationalists can also boost morale by spending money, to represents, which represents a decision to decentralize power to the various factions like the Falange and Carlists. While this keeps the regime afloat, it will anger its foreign sponsors, as Hitler and Mussolini call into question the ideological commitment of the Franco regime

As with the Republicans choices above, every time the Nationalists choose an option, there would be a random chance they would lose the opportunity to ever again choose the rival option.

You could also think of tons of other possibilities. Trigger events. The chance of awarding NM each turn you hold each major city of a particular "region." Having the capitals - Madrid and Burgos - act as a "floor" while in friendly hands, adding NM if it falls below a certain level (which would make holding the capitals a big deal). Events related to separatism (Basque, Catalan). Identifying "regional" units that have a malus if they operate outside their region. Adding more meaning to the various factions on each side.

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ERISS
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Mon Aug 29, 2016 9:39 am

At first there should be an increase of NM each turn for 'republican' side, then it stops once the militarization begins (no there won't be a new world), and too the guerillas made into new military units should have even less cohesion (combattants no longer fight for their own liberty) so they're somewhat less efficient.
Durruti words were the people hope for this new world, that's why every sides contrived false words to Durruti once dead, to catch people in their tricky politics.

elxaime
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Mon Aug 29, 2016 12:44 pm

ERISS wrote:At first there should be an increase of NM each turn for 'republican' side, then it stops once the militarization begins (no there won't be a new world), and too the guerillas made into new military units should have even less cohesion (combattants no longer fight for their own liberty) so they're somewhat less efficient.
Durruti words were the people hope for this new world, that's why every sides contrived false words to Durruti once dead, to catch people in their tricky politic.


Not sure what this means, in terms of game mechanics.

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ERISS
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Mon Aug 29, 2016 4:02 pm

elxaime wrote:Not sure what this means, in terms of game mechanics.

Since October 36, the NM of Republican side is doomed to decrease, even (because?) if they are winning. So the result of the exploit of Franco Column Of Death is severe, must be balanced, but not so (if militarization NM effect is not impacted on republican fighters).

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Leibst
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Mon Aug 29, 2016 9:45 pm

This makes sense. I have to change this for sure.
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Leibst
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Tue Aug 30, 2016 7:44 am

But, there is already a RGD to recover NM
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elxaime
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Tue Aug 30, 2016 12:26 pm

Leibstandarte wrote:But, there is already a RGD to recover NM


Yes...it gives 1 NM. Contrast that with the NM balancing events/mechanisms in RUS and AJE, many of which are automatic/don't cost money.

No matter, our PBEM just ended - Nationalist 175 NM, Republicans 35. The Republicans still had more combat power (even with losses) and controlled five of the eight major objective cities and most of the map.

Once a death stack is formed, it racks up constant NM gain of 6-10 each turn. There is no way buying 1 NM a turn can keep up. The Republicans were retaking 1-2 Nationalist cities a turn and couldn't keep up. Once you start losing battles it is a death spiral because the AGEOD mechanism for NM affects cohesion for all troops, meaning the winner keeps winning.

I have no problem if this is the design intent. My main point was that, if that is the case, how it affects strategies. The main goal for both sides will be to forget about front lines and cities. Concentrate forces in a big stack. Avoid the enemy big stack and rack up NM. It ends up like Pac Men.

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ERISS
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Tue Aug 30, 2016 1:06 pm

elxaime wrote:Yes...it gives 1 NM.
our PBEM ended - Nationalist 175 NM, Republicans 35. The Republicans still had more combat power (even with losses) and controlled five of the eight major objective cities and most of the map.
Once a death stack is formed, it racks up constant NM gain of 6-10 each turn.

I think NM should have been about 105 for both (175+35 equalized here!). Nationalists are still confident that they'll win in the end with all the enemy losses (at first they were absolutly sure to take the country within few days, so their morale can't be so high), and people are not so happy being forced in factories and military despite (slowly) being winning the country.
forget about front lines and cities. Concentrate forces in a big stack. Avoid the enemy big stack and rack up NM. It ends up like Pac Men.

lol

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Leibst
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Tue Aug 30, 2016 5:14 pm

It is not good to allow that strategy of the big stack.
The NM loss is due to the Political cost of the each element. I have already change that in the DDBB, its a big change so NM wont change that much in battles. As you say the NM system is very decisive once you start to lose and even make the game going less attractive, not only in España, but in all the Ageod games imo.
Wait for a new patch please, im working on that and we will have it before November.
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BuckTurgidson
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Tue Aug 30, 2016 6:09 pm

Leibstandarte wrote:It is not good to allow that strategy of the big stack.
The NM loss is due to the Political cost of the each element. I have already change that in the DDBB, its a big change so NM wont change that much in battles. As you say the NM system is very decisive once you start to lose and even make the game going less attractive, not only in España, but in all the Ageod games imo.
Wait for a new patch please, im working on that and we will have it before November.


New Patch? I'm salivating!

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ERISS
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Tue Aug 30, 2016 6:25 pm

Leibstandarte wrote:As you say the NM system is very decisive once you start to lose and even make the game going less attractive, not only in España, but in all the Ageod games imo.
Wait for a new patch please, im working on that and we will have it before November.

Andatiep should well advise you, I think he's the dev having the better insight about this, moreover if he played España36 besides behind big dev of RusGold.
Invokation! shazam! (fizzle?)
The patch should be before November 2018 :)

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Leibst
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Tue Aug 30, 2016 6:51 pm

2016 ;)
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elxaime
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Wed Aug 31, 2016 5:52 am

Leibstandarte wrote:Wait for a new patch please, im working on that and we will have it before November.


YAY! This game needs the love, it can be a classic. Can you give a general sense of how extensive the update is? I don't want to force you to reveal before you are ready, but this is great news.

BTW if you do an update you should consider whether to use Picaron's graphics mod. The link doesn't work anymore, but he is still churning out mods for all the AGEOD games so he can probably send it to you.

http://www.ageod-forum.com/showthread.php?38479-Models-Mod

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Leibst
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Fri Sep 02, 2016 11:49 am

I cant use graphics that can be copyrighted. But you can do freely if is just a free mod.
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coach3play4
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Sat Sep 10, 2016 10:01 pm

i keep on coming back to 1936 because i find the game challenging (with some hold back on my part) and i like to try different lines of attack for franco army and defend other cities.
this has turned out to be my favorite ageod game.

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Leibst
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Sun Sep 11, 2016 8:10 pm

Nice to read that coach2play4 :thumbsup:
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elxaime
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Re: NM and the Campaign

Sat Mar 25, 2017 7:34 pm

Yes, one of my faves as well....and another one I hope gets made into ESP 2!

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