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runyan99
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AACW 101 - Intro to AGEOD's Civil War

Tue Dec 11, 2007 7:08 am

Hello students. Welcome to the class. This is AACW 101. I am your professor Mr. Runyan. In this class we are going to be discussing the fundamentals of AACW, in order to familiarize you with the mechanics of the game, and to highlight some important concepts you need to make you a better player.

Poker players have a saying, which is 'Don't teach at the table'. That is to say, if you are playing cards with an opponent who is obviously weak, and making mistakes, it is not to your advantage to point out those mistakes to your opponent while playing. However, I don't make any money playing AACW, and becoming the world's best AACW player isn't going to make me famous or get me on Oprah, so I don't think that rule applies to this game. I am going to be 'teaching at the table' here, divulging all of my experience, insight and observations.

AACW is a deep and complicated game, and I see my opponents struggling with many of the basics in almost every game. At the risk of losing all of my advantages, I will be trying to point out some of these weaknesses, and giving new and experienced players the tips they need to raise their game in a series of hints and illustrations.

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runyan99
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 7:27 am

Concept #1 - The Tactical Defense is Really Strong

You may not know much about the American Civil War, but you have probably heard of Pickett's Charge, where the rebels advanced across a wide field against the Union soldiers on Cemetary Ridge who were massed behind a stone wall. You may have heard of the battle of Fredericksburg, and the Confederate defense of Marye's Heights, where the Confederates were defending behind a stone wall, and were able to shoot down wave after wave of Union soldiers who tried to advance against their position. You may even have heard of the battle of Cold Harbor in 1864, where Union soldiers tried to make a frontal assault against an entrenched position and took about 7000 casualties in only a few minutes.

Indeed, the overarching lesson of the Civil War is that the defenders had the advantage in most battles. Any time you are lining up hundreds of guys in close order, and telling them to march at an enemy armed with accurate rifles and cannons charged with double canister, you are going to lose a lot of guys marching at the enemy. I know I would rather be behind that wall at Marye's Heights, rather than trying to march up to it while guys shot at me.

AACW does a pretty good job of modeling the supremacy of the defensive in this kind of combat. Defensive fire is stronger that offensive fire, and units that are entrenched are able to dish out heavy casualties on an attacking force.

With this in mind, the best player tries to fight defensive battles in AACW, not offensive battles. The skillful player does not send his digital soldiers to advance up a hill at an entrenched position. The acme of skill is to take up a defensive position that the enemy must attack, and then fight the battle on your ground. You will maneuver armies whenever possible to achive this result, and you will avoid attacking entrenched positions whenever possible, prefering instead to move around or avoid such strong points.

This is the first and most important concept to keep in mind while playing, and several other concepts will derive from this primary idea, which I will flesh out in later topics.

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runyan99
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 7:40 am

Concept #2 - Attack With a Superiority of Force

This will be the first idea that grows out of concept #1, that The Tactical Defense is Really Strong. It is a known maxim among military people and wargamers that an attacker is supposed to have a 3-1 ratio of attackers to defenders in order to conduct a successful attack on a position. Even so, I regularly see players ignore this basic idea, and attack a brigade with a brigade, a division with a division, often with terrible results. In some cases, players will actually attack with a great inferiority, sending two cavalry regiments at three entrenched infantry brigades, or a single division against an enemy corps. These attacks are foolish, and must be avoided.

Consider that AACW is really not a game about battles. You don't control the battles. Your generals fight them for you. You cannot send an equal force at your opponent, and somehow move your joystick faster than he does and outfight him with superior skill. No, the battles are out of your hands. Instead AACW is a game of planning and execution, which is fine, because most battles are won by the movements of the armies before a shot is ever fired.

The key of the game is to get there the firstest with the mostest, to paraprase Bedford Forrest. That's how you win battles. You make the movements which will give your forces local superiority at the point of contact. You put your generals in position to win.

So, attack a regiment with a brigade, a brigade with a division, and a division with a corps. This is especially true if your opponent is entrenched, in which case you should try to bring as much force as possible, and you should expect some casualties.

Don't make an attack with equal or lesser force, unless you have special reasons to believe the defenders are understrength, very low on cohesion points, or perhaps if you have a very good leader and they have no leader or a very poor leader. All things being equal, the defender will always win an even battle, for the reasons stated in topic #1.

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runyan99
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 8:02 am

Concept #3 - The Division

As I said, AACW is a game of planning, organization and execution, and part of that organization is raising troops and forming them into effective fighting formations.

The key to making effective armies is first to create proper divisions. Divisions are important, because they incorporate 4 brigades or more into a single fighting unit, which cost fewer Command Points as a division than they would as seperate brigades in the same stack.

Consider a stack of units with 4 brigades and a one star leader. Each brigade requires, for example, 2 Command Points, so our stack requires a total of 8 command points. With only one leader, this stack will fight at a 30% penalty, because our leader will only be able to provide 2 command points. We are short 6 command points in this stack.

Since we pointed out last topic that AACW is a game about putting your generals in the best situations to win battles and succeed, we obviously want to avoid going into battles with big command penalties.

The most efficient way to cut down on Command Point penalties is to form all the brigades into a single division. Every division costs just 4 command points. If we merge our 4 brigades from the example above into one division, we cut down the Command Point requirement for the stack from 8 to 4, and the combat penalty for the stack going into combat will be cut down from 30% to 10%. This is clearly much better.

So, what does a division look like? Most of the best players will agree that the ideal division looks like this:
(click for larger view)
Image

Here we have a full strength blue division. It consists of
1 Leader
11 Infantry Regiments
1 Sharpshooter Regiment
1 Cavalry Regiment
4 Artillery Batteries

The total is the maximum of 18 elements allowed. You can substitute other specialty regiments such as sailors, marines, etc instead of the regular infantry regiments in some cases. You could use a few more cavalry regiments if you are so inclined.

Pocus has stated that the frontage rules do not allow for more than 4 artillery units to fire in combat at a time, so using more than 4 artillery batteries is not advantageous, and an all artillery division will not fight well.

You can also use cavalry regiments and horse artillery to form cavalry regiments if you wish. Using regluar or light artillery may (or may not) slow down the movement of a cavalry division.

Keep in mind in all cases that the purpose of the division is to cut down on Command Point requirements. You should only contemplate forming a division for stacks with more than 4 Command Points. If a stack only requires 2, 3 or 4 command points, you are BETTER OFF leaving it as a stack of individual brigades/regiments.

Keep in mind also that a few large divisions make more efficient use of Command Points than forming several small divisions. Don't try to form little divisions with all of your leaders. Pick your best leaders, and them form divisions as large as possible around them.

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runyan99
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Concept #4 - The Corps

Tue Dec 11, 2007 8:28 am

So now having introduced the division, a few words about it's parent formation The Corps. I mentioned that reducing or eliminating Command Point penalties was one requisite for success, and the best way to eliminate all Command Point penalties is to form Corps.

A corps moves as a single body, and puts 18 Command Points or more into a single powerful stack. With so many Command Points, you can pack 4 full divisions or more into a single corps. If the stack contains a second in command leader with a high strategic rating, or a signal unit, you can get even more Command Points, allowing you to put maybe 5 divisions into a single stack with no combat penalties. This is how you build large armies.

Find your two star generals. They are very special people because they are the generals who forms corps! Use them in this role. Don't use them as division commanders. That is a waste of their talent. Form a corps with them. Use one star leaders to build divisions around, and put them under the leadership of the corps commander. Your units will get combat bonuses for both the Attack/Defense ratings of the division commander and the corps commander.

Tip- If you are short on one star leaders, but have a few corps commanders around, you can in some cases form a 'loose corps' that consists of independent brigades. With 18 Command Points, you can still pack a lot of brigades into the formation with no penalty. (By the way, I think the Confederate 'corps' of Hardee and Bragg at Shiloh were organized like this) Later, you can reform the brigades into divisions.

Corps are also very powerful in AACW because they are mutually supporting, and allow you to 'March to the Guns'. This feature allows you to spread out over multiple regions and hold territory, knowing that the corps will fight together if attacked. Indeed, a chain of adjacent corps can form a very strong defense for the Confederate player.

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runyan99
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 8:50 am

Concept #5 - Stacks, Leaders, and the Second in Command

So, I've talked a bit about divisions and corps. They are important, but sometimes you don't have an army leader present, such as say in the Transmississippi, or do not have a two star leader to form a proper corps.

There is a lot that can be done just with leaders forming individual stacks. Each one star leader provides two Command Points. Each two star leader provides four command points. This is pretty powerful.

One key thing to remember when stacking leaders is that generally, only the stats of the most senior leader count in combat. He is the senior guy, and he is in command. All the other leaders just provide extra Command Points for the stack. In some cases their traits will apply, but bad traits generally will not as long as the leader in question is not the senior leader in the stack.

Got 2 one star leaders? Use one to form a division. Alone he fights with a 10% penalty (4CP needed, 2CP provided). Give him a 'second in command' another one star leader who is lower in seniority, and you have a 4CP stack which is independent and fights at no penalty.

Got 4 one star leaders? Use the above method twice, and you have an ad hoc 'corps' of two divisions.

Playing as the Confederates and don't have enough divisions allowed to form cavalry divisions for Stuart and Forrest? Form big stacks of cavalry brigades and leaders until you have the equivalent of divisions.

McClellan destroying initiative of your Union corps commanders? Form an independent stack. Use a two star leader in command of two divisions. If each division has a one star leader attached, you have an independent 'corps' of 8 Command Points which will not be penalized by McClellan and will fight as well as the two star leader you assigned to it.

In short, if you have enough leaders, you can form independent 'divisions' and 'corps' that will fight at no penalty and can accomplish quite a lot. The only disadvantage is that unlike official corps, you won't be able to max out the leaders' command point potential (18 CP stack) and the 'corps' so formed will not 'march to the guns', and be mutually supporting of corps in adjacent regions.

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runyan99
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 9:27 am

Concept #6 - Jockey for Position

This is really important, and I hesitate to spell it out because I am really giving away my book here, but it is critical to Jockey for Position.

This is a natural outgrowth of the a few concepts already mentioned, in particular that The Tactical Defense is Really Stong and that corps are mutually supporting. Given those facts, it is critical to deny ground to your opponent by holding it. The Union player must jockey for maneuver room, because if the Confederates are allowed to hold key locations and entrench them, then they can form a powerful line of defense that will be very difficult to break. The Confederate player wants to hold locations to restrict Union movement, and build an entrenched line. Too many novice players don't see the value of position, and allow their opponents to form powerful defensive positions which they cannot later break without devastating casualties.

The AACW map is like a chessboard, in that having pieces in certain locations is very powerful. Let's take the region from Chattanooga to Atlanta, to use Sherman's 1864 campaign as an example.

Let's say the Union armies are around Chattanooga, and they want to advance on Atlanta. There are three more or less direct advance routes, as illustrated by the Red, Blue and Yellow arrows on the map.

click for larger view
Image

Obviously, the Confederate player will want to block that movement. With just one Army stack and two Corps, the Confederate player could form a mutually supporting line of defense three regions wide across the path of advance, as illustrated here by the Orange, Black and Purple lines.

Now, because The Tactical Defense is Really Strong, it is imperative for the Union player to take any of the regions in question whenever possible. Taking and holding them prevents the Confederate player from digging in. This opens up lanes of movement for the Union player, and removes the need for costly assaults against entrenched positions later on.

The novice player sees only that Atlanta is valuable. The expert player knows that all of the regions are valuable.

From the Union perspective, try to take any region which you think you will want to advance on later. Don't let the Confederate player form an unbroken entreched line under any circumstances.

From the Confederate side, the opposite is true.

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runyan99
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 10:51 am

Concept #7 - Have a Plan!

This is especially important for the Union player. The Civil War is a big undertaking, and it does not fight itself. You have to make clear goals, recruit troops to achieve those goals, and then put them into action turn after turn. You cannot just push forces around here and there and keep hitting 'Next Turn' to see what happens next.

You literally have to say to yourself, 'Okay in 1863 I want to occupy all of Arkansas', or whatever, and then take steps to make that happen every turn.

Some players who don't know much about the Civil War clearly have no idea how to go about prosecuting the war. Having a knowledge of history is an advantage here. While the Union made some mistakes historically, they did do a decent job of winning the war, particularly in the west, and the player can use the movements of Grant and Sherman as a blueprint.

The Confederate player has less of a burden in this respect because he only has to defend what he has and not take territory (at least initially). Thus I believe it is much easier to play the CSA side, but even so, the Confederate player will have to plan. The player will need to be able to say to himself, 'Gee the Union looks like it is really making a push for Arkansas. What steps do I need to take to defend that territory?' and then recruit and move troops accordingly.

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runyan99
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 11:00 am

Tip #1 - Recruit in Divisions

I've got seven general concepts out there, and now I begin another category of advice, the Tips, which are things I like to do because I think they help me, but are not necessarily crucial. Your mileage may vary.

The first of these stems from the last Concept #7 - Have a Plan, and that is to try to recruit in divisions. If your plan is again to occupy all of Arkansas, then you may evaluate the forces you have on hand, and then decide you need two new divisions to achieve that goal.

Instead of recruiting a brigade here and a brigade there turn by turn, recruit all of the elements for a new division at one time. Then when they are ready, you will know exactly what they are for and where they are to go.

This is especially handy at the beginning of a year when you call a new draft, for example. Instead of recruiting random brigades, say to yourself, 'Okay I want to recruit two Missouri divisions, one Ohio division, and two New York divisions.' Then purcahse all of the elements you will need to put those divisions together, as best you can at one time. When they are ready, you will remember state by state what you wanted all of the units for.

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Franciscus
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 12:58 pm

Good job, Runyan. This should be sticked, as it is really unvaluable to all of us.

If you allow me, master, i would like for you to expand a little about something that you mentioned in concept 3, namely about artillery. I really do not know yet where it is best to place the artillery, if inside divisions or independetly inside the corps, because I think that inside a division arty only supports the elements of the same divison, and in a corps they attack the most powerful enemy element. Am I correct ? What do you think ?

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arsan
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 5:29 pm

Great work!! :coeurs: :coeurs:

This should be stickyed and wikied!!!
A complex game like AACW needed badly some kind of "strategy guide" like this.

Thanks Runyan! Keep it coming!
I will be reading... and taking notes!

Cheers

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Pocus
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 6:00 pm

Wickified, definitively!
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Hofstadter's Law: "It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's law."

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runyan99
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Tue Dec 11, 2007 6:20 pm

Franciscus wrote:I really do not know yet where it is best to place the artillery, if inside divisions or independetly inside the corps, because I think that inside a division arty only supports the elements of the same divison, and in a corps they attack the most powerful enemy element. Am I correct ? What do you think ?


I believe you are correct. I know Pocus has stated that artillery works that way in Napoleon's Campaigns. I'm not sure, but it probably works the same in AACW.

Personally, I like to put all of my artillery in the divisions, because they cost me zero Command Points there. Consider that 4 independent artillery units require exactly the same number of Command Points in a corps stack as an entire division, and the division will be more powerful. However, if you like to keep a few loose artillery units in a corps that would probably work fine, as long as you are under the 18 CP limit for the stack.

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runyan99
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Wed Dec 12, 2007 7:38 am

Concept #8 - Foreign Intervention

Lots of players dismiss the possibility of foreign intervention in a game of AACW. That is a mistake. It is very possible to gain the entry of England and France into the war, and this should be a primary goal of the Confederate player, and something the Union player tries very hard to prevent.

Foreign Intervention is triggered when the FI score gets to +100, or forever impossible when the score gets down to -100. The most important thing you need to know about foreign intervention is that it can go up or down one point every turn for the side that has the higher morale, and once for the side that has the most victory points.

So this dynamic becomes a game of chicken between the USA and the CSA as to who can stay ahead in the VP and NM standings. The Union has some pressure to take the lead in at least one of these categories, because if they don't, the foreign intervention constantly increases.

The key then from the CSA perspective is to be very careful to keep the lead in both categories, and gain 1 or 2 FI points every turn. Unchecked, this constant accumulation will get the score up to 100 some time late in 1863 or 1864, and can tip the scales of the war.

All of the strategic cities on the map are worth Victory Points, so keep the VP lead by holding strategic cities as long as you can. From the Union perspective, you want to take some Strategic Cities as fast as possible, so that you are gaining more VPs every turn and working towards taking the lead in VPs. Try to gain the lead in National Morale points by winning battles.

Also, be careful not to lose the VP or NM lead by abusing the draft options or the financial options. Maxing out the draft or printing money may cause you to lose the lead in either category.

Don't ignore the political options available to both sides! They can help a great deal in moving the FI score, and giving your side extra VPs or NM points. The Blockade gives the Union VPs and NM points, while the Embargo gives the Confederate side NM points. Both options tend to move the FI score in that side's favor. Use them.

By the way, if Foreign Intervention IS triggered, that isn't the end of the game. The foreign forces available to the CSA player are not terribly large, and amount to only about two or three small corps. It isn't a massive intervention. Depending on how the game is going at that point, and how the CSA player uses them, they may or may not be decisive.

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Pocus
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Wed Dec 12, 2007 9:29 am

Even failing to reach the FI of 100 does not mean it did not serves a purpose: you get regularly a chance, rolled under the FI value, to get secret subsidies for the CSA.
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Hofstadter's Law: "It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's law."

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willgamer
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Wed Dec 12, 2007 4:31 pm

runyan99 wrote:A corps moves as a single body, and puts 18 Command Points or more into a single powerful stack.
...
With 18 Command Points, you can still pack a lot of brigades into the formation with no penalty.
and several other places...

Firstly, great guide! :coeurs:

Minor point: Not sure where you're coming up with 18 CP for a corps stack. In all the documentation I know of, as well as my 1.07h games, it's 16.

Per Hobbe's Quick Ref:

Leaders and HQ
1* 4 CP
2* 8 CP
3* 12 CP

Max CP in single stack: 16 + bonuses.

CP Bonuses:
Signal +2,
Recon +1,
Army Commander (strategic –2),
Aide de Camp (strat 4+) +1,
+ leader bonuses.

Independent force CP (x0.5).

:siffle:

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GShock
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Wed Dec 12, 2007 7:39 pm

Curse the frontage rules that's why that dummy with 6 Arty batteries was being totally unsupportive!!!
Omg Runyan thanks for this class, im putting this url into my fav, I'm printing it and i will read it as i go to sleep! :)
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Thu Dec 13, 2007 8:29 pm

runyan99 wrote:Personally, I like to put all of my artillery in the divisions, because they cost me zero Command Points there. Consider that 4 independent artillery units require exactly the same number of Command Points in a corps stack as an entire division, and the division will be more powerful. However, if you like to keep a few loose artillery units in a corps that would probably work fine, as long as you are under the 18 CP limit for the stack.


I think this is doubly true for the Union. I have found playing Union that the bottleneck is often conscripts, and not money or war supplies. In addition, Union artillery is generally superior to the Confederates. Therefore I think it is important for the Union player to maximize his artillery advantage as much as possible. If that is the way to do it, then thats probably the best way to go.

In fact, a Union player might be better off not topping off their divisionw with infantry, and having more Corps with lots of artillery, when enough two star leaders are avaialable. Because the infantry costs 10 conscripts per regiment, whereas artillery only costs 2.

For the Confederate side, I could imagine putting calvary regiments in those last few CP, when combined with the (numerous) Confederate generals that have the 'Calvarymen' special. (Assuming you are going to fighting on plains, clear or desert terrain)

Also, is infantry generally superior to calvary? Their stats seem to be very close. What about for the Confederate player assuming they have 'Calvarymen' special? (And are fighting on appropriate terrain)

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runyan99
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Fri Dec 14, 2007 7:03 pm

Concept #9 - Cities are Traps

Stay out of the cities. There is, as far as I know, no combat advantage to having your forces inside a city, and there are quite a few disadvantages. I've stressed the advantages of the defensive and the need to block enemy movement by holding key regions, and those advantages are wholly lost when you put your armies inside a city.

If you put your army inside the city, you are inviting a siege. You don't prevent your opponent from entering the region, and an enemy force can move into the region without any combat at all, and put your force under siege. Then the besieging force can get into defensive stance and start digging in. The aggressor becomes the defender, and gets all the advantages of the defense, which I've indicated is the way you want to fight your battles. In order to get out of the siege, the army inside will either have to try to fight it's way out, or get relieved by some other outside force. What's more, the besieged force is cut off from outside supply and reinforcement, and can start taking extra siege hits every turn. This is potentially a disasterous situation for the defender to be in.

So, keep your armies in the field and in their entrenchments. Being in the field blocks the movement of the enemy, or at least forces them to fight a battle to move into the region. Even if the battle is lost, you can retreat rather than have your force besieged and cut off in a city.

This applies in winter too. Don't move into the city in winter, surrendering all of these advantages, just to try to avoid winter weather damage to your troops.

Forts are an exception, because forts provide a strong defensive benefit. Still they are subject to the same problems of siege, so defend the region the fort is in with units in trenches outside, with a smaller force of defenders inside the fort.

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willgamer
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Sat Dec 15, 2007 2:18 am

runyan99 wrote:Concept #9 - Cities are Traps
...
This applies in winter too. Don't move into the city in winter, surrendering all of these advantages, just to try to avoid winter weather damage to your troops.
...



From the ACW manual (p. 49):

Force's in a reasonably loyal region with a friendly structure ignore Attrition due to bad weather. Please note that the Force does not need to be located within the structure to benefit from its protection: the structure provides shelter to all Force's in the region, both within and outside the structure to avoid needliss micro-management.

:siffle:

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Korrigan
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Sat Dec 15, 2007 7:33 am

I missed that point about structures & winter too...
I play to BoA too much...

Excellent work Runyan!
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saintsup
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Sat Dec 15, 2007 9:07 am

runyan99 wrote: There is, as far as I know, no combat advantage to having your forces inside a city


Is there any other advantage besides combat ?

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Pocus
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Sat Dec 15, 2007 10:06 am

there is a terrain matrix associated with City, Runyan. The combat will be different from the one done outside of the city.
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Korrigan
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Sat Dec 15, 2007 10:53 am

Example with BoA:

In the French & Indian war, a small British expedition is sieging Fort Duquesne where several French irregular units are entranched inside (indians and Courreurs des Bois).

If the French waits for the assault, he will be slaugthered by the power of the British regulars and arties.

However, if the French attempts a sortie he will defeat the British corps thanks to the frontage limitation for regulars and artileries in moutainous areas (only 2 reg will fight and the art will suffer sever penalties whereas the French units will not suffer frontage limitation).

Somehow, a gamey use of the two different matrix...
"Never argue with a fool, onlookers may not be able to tell the difference." Mark Twain



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GShock
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Sat Dec 15, 2007 11:17 am

Essentially, cities are only good to provide shelter to troops in harsh weather and basically runyan said it right (at least according to me) you should never be inside a city when the city is at the front line and, since you need the troops to entrench in the region, the best thing to do would be to put the low-cohesion troops inside just for the time it takes them to speed up to cohesion acceptable levels then bring them into the trenches again.

High level entrenchments also provide relative shelter against harsh weather :)
I love so much this 101, carry on Run!
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arsan
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Sat Dec 15, 2007 1:47 pm

Hi!
I think assaults to a city are also done with a big limit on frontage (2 elements at a time??) so... if you only have a small garrison (like a couple militia units and some arty or maybe a brigade), you are better entrenched inside the city because a big army outside will attack you with limited effectiveness for the small frontage.

My "theory" :siffle: is that for big stacks (armies, corps, divisions...) its better to defend outside the city, so they can deploy for battle properly and can retreat to another region if defeated.
With small stacks (garrisons) the are better inside the city: safer from cavalry riders (city terrain should be bad for cav i suppose), and taking advantage of the limited frontage against big units.
A small garrison will lose to a big enemy stack assaulting no matters what but inside the city they can do more damage, maybe survive one extra turn and (more important) delay the enemy stack one turn if (as usual) he is moving on attack posture and have to change to assault for the next turn.
This can give you time to send help or organize a defense.
Just my 2 cents

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Sat Dec 15, 2007 4:08 pm

Great job runyan

:hat: :hat: :hat:

:hat: :hat:

:hat:

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Sat Dec 15, 2007 4:48 pm

arsan wrote:Hi!
I think assaults to a city are also done with a big limit on frontage (2 elements at a time??) so... if you only have a small garrison (like a couple militia units and some arty or maybe a brigade), you are better entrenched inside the city because a big army outside will attack you with limited effectiveness for the small frontage.

My "theory" :siffle: is that for big stacks (armies, corps, divisions...) its better to defend outside the city, so they can deploy for battle properly and can retreat to another region if defeated.
With small stacks (garrisons) the are better inside the city: safer from cavalry riders (city terrain should be bad for cav i suppose), and taking advantage of the limited frontage against big units.
A small garrison will lose to a big enemy stack assaulting no matters what but inside the city they can do more damage, maybe survive one extra turn and (more important) delay the enemy stack one turn if (as usual) he is moving on attack posture and have to change to assault for the next turn.
This can give you time to send help or organize a defense.
Just my 2 cents


Cities are the second strongest defensive terrain in the game and frontage is part of the reason.

Regardless cities are traps because troops are destroyed if they lose a battle against a large force. There are certain special circumstances in which I will keep troops in a city but not many. Rear area militia defending against raids is a good situation for defending within a city.

Mangudai
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Mon Dec 17, 2007 5:36 am

Good job Runyon!

I feel like an idiot because I have formed all artillery divisions :siffle:

Regarding cities. If you have a militia garrison in a city and your main army outside the city, will the main army behave properly and retreat outside the region?

Subordinate commanders: You say their stats matter very little if they are not the commander. I know the traits sometimes don't matter, but what about attack and defense ratings? I have been using some of my best generals to command my biggest divisions within corps and armies. Is that a complete waste of talent?

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GShock
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Joined: Tue Aug 07, 2007 4:30 pm

Mon Dec 17, 2007 9:13 am

Mangudai wrote:Good job Runyon!

I feel like an idiot because I have formed all artillery divisions :siffle:


The same...i'd really love to hear more about the frontage rules. Sometimes i lose the impossible in battles i should win by a lot and i don't understand why...and i suspect it's because of frontage. I'm surprised though about the frontage issue affecting artillery to the limit of 4 as arty should be able to fire above friendly units while infantry and cavalry should be unable to see past the friendly regiments ahead. Besides, on hilly/mountainous, frontage limits should be reduced for the same reason, even though other penalty factors apply.

Can you please explain in detail the frontage rules/limits, Run? :)
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