nijis
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Battle reports - Please make them more interesting!

Mon Oct 26, 2015 3:07 am

This is my biggest complaint with the AGEOD system. You have this beautiful complicated Athena battle resolution system that weights in so many different issues - and the player only gets the slightest hint of what actually happened. Should I have had more artillery? How much did my superior leadership count? Did it matter that I had a cavalry leader?

The icons give very little away - it seems like every cannon benefits from emplacement to have a "devastating" impact on the enemy. The hits and formation damage logs are a little more interesting but it takes some calculating to figure out if a unit is punching above its weight or not, and even then it's rarely clear why.

It's particularly frustrating when you have a lot of specialized scouting troops and leaders with unique skills. Did any of their talents make a difference or would I have been better off with a lump of heavy infantry?

I know from the battle logs that you track everything that happens in a battle. Surely there must be a more dramatic way to collate and present this information? I may have a huge variety of units to build and leaders to employ, but rarely do I have much idea if I should be using one or the other.

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JacquesDeLalaing
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Mon Oct 26, 2015 10:08 am

I'm going to use proper internet-forum-speech here: +100000!
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ess1
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Mon Oct 26, 2015 10:52 am

... and another :)

Duke76
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Mon Oct 26, 2015 5:23 pm

Totally agree!!! Please Devs change your battle report system, we need less but more clear info, I want to know in just a single battle screen how many kills (not hit point!) did my whole artillery/cavalry/ infantry or if the cavalry pursued or "The Guard" got in the battle etc...

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ashandresash
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Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:05 pm

Sure. It would help a lot not just in immersion but in improving your planning.

Wild Boar
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Tue Oct 27, 2015 7:50 pm

Also it would be good if we could get battle histories of each element. if somehow the battles they fought in could be recorded -as then you could have regimental histories.

notti75

Tue Oct 27, 2015 10:10 pm

ROP had a nice little feature during battle, you get e.g. information what each Corps or divison currently does etc.. Specially as it let you know when other corps marched to the sound of the guns or routed from battle.

Duke76
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Tue Oct 27, 2015 11:23 pm

notti75 wrote:ROP had a nice little feature during battle, you get e.g. information what each Corps or divison currently does etc.. Specially as it let you know when other corps marched to the sound of the guns or routed from battle.


True but it's definitely not enough, after so many years I think we need something brand new, more clear and more immersive...

seathom
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Wed Oct 28, 2015 12:28 am

I definitely hope that the battle reports can be more interesting to watch and give the player some more information as to what happened during the battle although I am wary of getting too much information. I am worried that too much information would turn battles into a science rather than an art. If anything, battles are organized confusion and no one really has a God-view of the war, even after the battle. More information is gleened after talking to those who partook in the battle but by then you are in another battle or that information gets a bit changed depending on the superior's intelligence/motivation as it flows up the chain of command. Too much information will entice players to maximize their forces that doesn't really exist in real life - there needs to be some logical mystery/unknown that occurs with every battle, but it would be great if we knew more of what was happening during the battle so we could tweak our forces or tactics.

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H Gilmer3
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Wed Oct 28, 2015 12:31 am

seathom wrote:I definitely hope that the battle reports can be more interesting to watch and give the player some more information as to what happened during the battle although I am wary of getting too much information. I am worried that too much information would turn battles into a science rather than an art. If anything, battles are organized confusion and no one really has a God-view of the war, even after the battle. More information is gleened after talking to those who partook in the battle but by then you are in another battle or that information gets a bit changed depending on the superior's intelligence/motivation as it flows up the chain of command. Too much information will entice players to maximize their forces that doesn't really exist in real life - there needs to be some logical mystery/unknown that occurs with every battle, but it would be great if we knew more of what was happening during the battle so we could tweak our forces or tactics.


And we also don't want to slow down the game too much. Because as we know a lot of people don't like the time it takes to process a turn. Other than Pride of Nations it has never really bothered me, but for some even the smaller scope games take a while to process a turn.
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Duke76
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Thu Oct 29, 2015 6:18 pm

Any words about it from devs? :innocent:

Delaware
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Thu Nov 05, 2015 1:36 pm

Devs: "Ok, phew. That was a lot of work. Now we are almost done with beta testing...... wait.... they want what?????? now????? I mean we already did the box art, for crying out loud! Wait! NELSON HAS BOTH ARMS???????? Auuugh!"

nijis
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Sat Nov 07, 2015 3:39 am

Sure - it is a bit late in the day, and generally end-project feature creep is Bad. But, a new of collating and presenting already existing data is one of the least problematic additions you can make. You don't have to worry about it interacting with other systems, or unbalancing them. It doesn't need new AI. It can even be added as an option or in a patch, if the devs see fit.

Duke76
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Wed Nov 11, 2015 7:23 pm

Still no info or screenshot about it (and about "battle tactics" ) maybe there's a bit chance they enhance "something", at least...

Taillebois
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Sun Nov 29, 2015 1:02 pm

nijis wrote:This is my biggest complaint with the AGEOD system. You have this beautiful complicated Athena battle resolution system that weights in so many different issues - and the player only gets the slightest hint of what actually happened. Should I have had more artillery? How much did my superior leadership count? Did it matter that I had a cavalry leader?

The icons give very little away - it seems like every cannon benefits from emplacement to have a "devastating" impact on the enemy. The hits and formation damage logs are a little more interesting but it takes some calculating to figure out if a unit is punching above its weight or not, and even then it's rarely clear why.

It's particularly frustrating when you have a lot of specialized scouting troops and leaders with unique skills. Did any of their talents make a difference or would I have been better off with a lump of heavy infantry?

I know from the battle logs that you track everything that happens in a battle. Surely there must be a more dramatic way to collate and present this information? I may have a huge variety of units to build and leaders to employ, but rarely do I have much idea if I should be using one or the other.



I agree - I never understand what's happened in a battle.

Many years ago (pre 1990) I used spreadsheet analysis programs "Goal Seeker/What-if" or some such name to analyse financial spreadsheets with 50 or so variables. They would take a spreadsheet and run it many times and produce an analysis to show which were the critical (or most sensitive) variables - e.g. sales year 3, margin on product A. A similar analysis of AGEOD battle results could do something to produce results that would list results like - Most important factors in this battle - terrain effect, or heavy cavalry etc. Do such programs still exist? Maybe they are built in now - they were Lotus 123 add-ins when I used them.

Duke76
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Sun Nov 29, 2015 9:53 pm

There are no thousands of thread in this forum and Ageod devs kindly use to reply everywhere but strangely not in this thread which is also the most participated of WoN...

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Pocus
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Mon Nov 30, 2015 9:56 am

The battle report is basically the one you got in EAW and there are many informations to check in it. There is now also a simplified report, because most players just want the results. If you want to go further, you can read the battle log which is a text file and there you'll get everything. To transform this text file into a pretty, readable and user friendly battle report would probably have eaten the whole time allowance that I had for WON, I would say, given how complex and intricate all the factors are.
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rwenstrup
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Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:55 pm

Looks like an excellent opportunity for the modding community...

vicberg
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Mon Nov 30, 2015 3:04 pm

Use the battle logs if you want more information, assuming one is generated by this game and I'm guessing it is. There's a lot going on under the hood. I was shocked when I looked at a battle log for the first time.

It would be difficult at best to turn all that data into something meaningful and easy to read. Once you read a battle log, you can get an overall feeling about what the engine is doing and then the combat results don't require a lot of information.

gekkoguy82
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Mon Nov 30, 2015 3:19 pm

Wild Boar wrote:Also it would be good if we could get battle histories of each element. if somehow the battles they fought in could be recorded -as then you could have regimental histories.


I know I'm late in the game to this thread, but I LOVE this idea.

Wild Boar
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Mon Nov 30, 2015 4:30 pm

Yes. Another idea - capturing regimental flags like paradox did.

So for the elements
1. Record the battles they fought
2. Any colours of the enemy they captured

maybe there could be some part of the programming where if a unit is destroyed its colour gets allocated to an opposing element in some random way.

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ashandresash
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Mon Nov 30, 2015 9:22 pm

Pocus wrote:The battle report is basically the one you got in EAW and there are many informations to check in it. There is now also a simplified report, because most players just want the results. If you want to go further, you can read the battle log which is a text file and there you'll get everything. To transform this text file into a pretty, readable and user friendly battle report would probably have eaten the whole time allowance that I had for WON, I would say, given how complex and intricate all the factors are.


I really liked the battle report in TEAW, as it included a feature I'm missing now in CWII (knowing how much damage and cohesion loss has made each unit, once you hover over them). Will it be the system implemented in WON? I also wonder if you've planned to update the CWII report.

Duke76
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Mon Nov 30, 2015 9:29 pm

vicberg wrote:Use the battle logs if you want more information, assuming one is generated by this game and I'm guessing it is. There's a lot going on under the hood.


Actually pressing alt-tab and look for and open a text file it's not my idea of "game immersion" :( if you read with attention this thread you'll see that most of users did not ask for such "dramatic changes" to the game engine or something which would require the whole time allowance that devs had for the game... just a couple of more clear info about the battle... what's the sense of having such a complex (hidden) combat engine or such detailed unit stats if after a battle I can't even know if my artillery performed well or if a certain division routed etc...

PS
Thanks a lot Pocus for the reply although a bit disappointing ;)

vicberg
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Mon Nov 30, 2015 11:43 pm

Duke76 wrote:Actually pressing alt-tab and look for and open a text file it's not my idea of "game immersion" :( if you read with attention this thread you'll see that most of users did not ask for such "dramatic changes" to the game engine or something which would require the whole time allowance that devs had for the game... just a couple of more clear info about the battle... what's the sense of having such a complex (hidden) combat engine or such detailed unit stats if after a battle I can't even know if my artillery performed well or if a certain division routed etc...

PS
Thanks a lot Pocus for the reply although a bit disappointing ;)


I totally understand. The battle log is a simple append to a text file. The challenge is to organize the information into a readable format. This means that unless you want an unreadable mess in the battle report, the battle report has to start with the relatively high level information it shows currently with drill to detail, such as clicking on the # of units routed icon and see the units that routed, when and why. Same with high probability of hit icon, click on it and it shows by combat round why the unit had a high probability of hit. Same with leader showing tactical skill, etc..

The challenge is that 1) You can't kick out simple messages to a text file as the combat is progressing, you need to kick out meaningful, categorized information to a database that when an Icon on the battle report is click, displays the relevant information for that icon organized by combat round. It's a lot of work. Probably not going to happen. Use the battle log :)

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Pocus
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Tue Dec 01, 2015 10:05 am

Very very few people want more than the detailed battle report that includes in WON the extra feature of EAW... You get the impression that a decent number want that, but that's because you are the ones speaking in the forum, the 'vocal minority' but an overwhelming number of players stops at the simplified report or no report at all and just want to know if they won or lost... As I said, you can't tame the battlelogs details with only 20 hours of work. Priorities, sorry. The interface is always crying for more clarity for example.
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veji1
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Tue Dec 01, 2015 2:44 pm

Pocus wrote:Very very few people want more than the detailed battle report that includes in WON the extra feature of EAW... You get the impression that a decent number want that, but that's because you are the ones speaking in the forum, the 'vocal minority' but an overwhelming number of players stops at the simplified report or no report at all and just want to know if they won or lost... As I said, you can't tame the battlelogs details with only 20 hours of work. Priorities, sorry. The interface is always crying for more clarity for example.


True, I for one never really liked to see too much behind the curtains : It leads to uberoptimizing behaviors. What I would like to see is more litterary battle reports, ie put in words that the battle was won or lost and how (if many rounds of hardfought battle between two aggressive commanders, or if a few rounds of probing attacks before retreating, or if straightaway your army was surprised piecemeal by the ennemy, etc).

Give me a 5 lines message that explains how the battle went on with something like this :
" Sir as the troops of /2nd Corps of the Grande Armée/ approached /town in the province/, they engaged (or were engaged) an austrian concentration of troops later identified as the Army of Bavaria. In 3 hours of battle, the /2nd Corps of the Grande Armée/ later supported by the /3rd Corps of the Grande Armee/ and the /Garde impériale of the Grande Armée/ managed to repell the ennemy force consisting of more than 50 000 men. Our lossess have been heavy, particularly in the /1st infantry division of the 2nd Corps of the Grande Armée/ and /2nd infantry division of the 2nd Corps of the Grande Armée/ but we the ennemy was forced to retreat (or routed or destroyed, etc) and we have engaged an active pursuit. Sadly general of dvision /x/ was killed in the battle. We await your orders, blah blah..."

I am not saying that I expect this from the game of course, I know it is but chrome, but I have always preferred this type of report than having to look through a very statistics heavy report to see which general might have been killed, if my troops retreated mauled OR started routing, etc.

Duke76
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Tue Dec 01, 2015 5:06 pm

A "textual" approach for the combat report would be really great and very immersive but I woudn't pretend so much....Personally, I would just like a simple report of the total kills of my infantry, cavalry & artillery. Basically, the same thing we have for the losses just add for the kills...

veji1
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Tue Dec 01, 2015 8:04 pm

Duke76 wrote:A "textual" approach for the combat report would be really great and very immersive but I woudn't pretend so much....Personally, I would just like a simple report of the total kills of my infantry, cavalry & artillery. Basically, the same thing we have for the losses just add for the kills...


I can understand, but to me this is statistical information, which encourage optimization. Immersive is what I would be looking for. After all, all those leader portraits, vintage unit drawings, nice map and all, aren't they there to help immersion ? Isn't immersion the goal in the end ?

vaalen
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Tue Dec 01, 2015 8:40 pm

Pocus wrote:Very very few people want more than the detailed battle report that includes in WON the extra feature of EAW... You get the impression that a decent number want that, but that's because you are the ones speaking in the forum, the 'vocal minority' but an overwhelming number of players stops at the simplified report or no report at all and just want to know if they won or lost... As I said, you can't tame the battlelogs details with only 20 hours of work. Priorities, sorry. The interface is always crying for more clarity for example.


Pocus, I am curious on what is the data for your statement that most people just want to know who won, and not look at the results in detail.

I could be wrong, but I had always thought that most people who played Ageod games wanted more immersion and battle details.

Certainly no one would want you to use all your time on this, but more detail would be appreciated, perhaps something that would not take such a heroic effort.

Best,

Vaalen

vicberg
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Tue Dec 01, 2015 10:06 pm

vaalen wrote:Pocus, I am curious on what is the data for your statement that most people just want to know who won, and not look at the results in detail.

I could be wrong, but I had always thought that most people who played Ageod games wanted more immersion and battle details.

Certainly no one would want you to use all your time on this, but more detail would be appreciated, perhaps something that would not take such a heroic effort.

Best,

Vaalen


Immersion is a very broad and subjective term. Within this thread, some people obviously want to maximize the game system and for them, that is immersion. Others want a narrative of the battle which is the hardest of all to program for. So what is "more detail" and "immersion" in the battle reports?

I will bet that if asked for specifics of more detail on this thread, there will be 20 different answers. Some people want this. Some people want that.

Your idea of immersion is different than mine which is different than the 5-10 other people who have posted in this thread and this is what is called in IT as a slippery slope. Start trying to program for nebulous requests and quickly snowballs into a complete and utter mess.

In my opinion, if you want to see odds, percent chances, rolls, damage, that's not immersive at all to me. It's making it into a game and showing the game mechanics, which, again, are already in the battle logs. So my idea of immersion is very different than yours and everyone else.

If I were you, I'd get specific on what you want and then watch 20 other opinions pop up. And then if I were Pocus, I'd politely not do anything. :)

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