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Command Range and Couriers

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Command Range and Couriers

Post  kg little mac on Sun Jul 06, 2014 9:12 pm

Anyone,

Forgive me for not being able to find the answer myself.

Is it possible to mod the distance at which a brigade commander's orders to a regiment doesn't send a courier?

Is it possible to increase that distance, perhaps tie it to command radius?
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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Guest on Sun Jul 06, 2014 9:20 pm

I had a very hard time getting the troops in position on a hill side. Having a larger CMD radius would have helped I think. Time to train in some mountainous terrain so that don't happen again.

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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  kg little mac on Sun Jul 06, 2014 9:26 pm

Yeah, those Pipe Creek maps are like Alpine -- STEEP.
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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Uncle Billy on Sun Jul 06, 2014 10:53 pm

The command radius only affects the benefits bestowed on the regiments by a commander. It is largely hardcoded, but does increase slightly with higher commander experience. It does not affect the "shouting distance", where no courier is needed. That is completely hardcoded at 50 ft. I believe.

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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  MajorByrd on Mon Jul 07, 2014 12:11 am

Robinson noticed that most of his regiments fired with some 1830's musket. At least I overheard some talk on the matter. Is that intentional so as to decrease casualties or is it a gcm thing? I think it concerned reload times. If I got it right it took one regiment +60 seconds to reload. Now I haven't used one of those ever but that along with two minutes of constant flank fire resulting in 2 casualties doesn't seem quite right. Not arguing, just asking if it's intended. If it is, I'm cool with it.
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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Mr. Digby on Mon Jul 07, 2014 2:00 pm

Its probably intentional. The KS mod is a lot different from the vanilla game and more than likely a lot different to GCM.

In our KS games a year or so back we were experiencing casualty rates that were so high they were up in fantasy land, so we agreed to dial the lethality of all small arms down quite a lot. IIRC we increased loading times, reduced accuracy, increased morale fragility and increased the morale penalty from flanking fire. This meant troops tend to quit the battle after fewer casualties and gave us games whose casualty rates approached realistic levels. The extra flank penalty tends to encourage players to keep more consistent supported lines as well which we think makes armies in battle appear more realistic.

What we tend to get now after a hard fight is two armies on the field with still strong numbers but which are too exhausted to do any damage to each other or too brittle in morale terms to continue fighting and we think this represents real black powder warfare more appropriately than before where one side would be 90% wiped from the field due to routs.

Don't be put off by blasting away at the target and getting only 1 casualty a minute, it affects both sides and if you think this encourages charges more, we reduced the casualty rates in melee as well, so melees now tend to demoralise units and make them retreat rather than really killing people.

There are many stories of troops blasting away at each other at quite short ranges and hardly hitting anything. Troops firing high was pretty common.

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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  MajorByrd on Mon Jul 07, 2014 2:15 pm

I see.

Works fine for me.
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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Mr. Digby on Mon Jul 07, 2014 5:35 pm

Artillery is more lethal too in KS, canister has longer range (it outranges minie rifles which is correct) and gunfire is more accurate. We wanted to get artillery back from where it was in the vanilla game to being a real troop-killer. It should be dealing out about 25-30% of the losses in any given battle.

We all try our best however not to park guns right behind infantry lines. Guns should be well behind infantry and up a slope, in front of them, or between infantry regiments. This sounds like I'm stating the completely obvious but I heard a comment about gun positioning in a recent battle so thought it worth mentioning again.

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The other Martin - Charles Reille, le dernier Maréchal de France.

"Any hussar who has not got himself killed by the age of 30 is a jackass." - Antoine Charles Louis Lasalle, commander of Napoleon's light cavalry, killed in battle at Wagram 6 July 1809, aged 34.

"I had forgotten there was an objective." - Generallieutenant Mikhail Borozdin I
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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Father General on Tue Jul 08, 2014 12:16 am

1 per minute? That's absurd...

If that happens to be the rate of lethality then I want it changed.

Battles were often quick, sharp engagements. As I understand, at least one battle was fought somewhere during every day of the war. That could be a slight exaggeration, but there were many small skirmishes, picket fights and so on throughout the war. And in the big battles, tens of thousands of casualties could be created in the space of a few hours.

The vast majority of those casualties were wounds, as opposed to deaths, but still the rates were high given the tactics of the time.

Interestingly the original KS tables might provide some insight on casualty rates. If we can mod casualty rates, then why couldn't we mod them to be consistent with the 1862 modified KS rules?

-Neal
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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Uncle Billy on Tue Jul 08, 2014 12:31 am

The casualty rates that we generate are based on historic data. Less than 1% of shots fired resulted in a wound or death in the ACW. In addition, the average casualty rates were higher during the Napoleonic wars than in the ACW. That also shows that rifled muskets were not the big killers they have been made out to be. Sorry to spoil your lust for a bloodbath.  Sad 

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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Father General on Tue Jul 08, 2014 12:54 am

Yeah, but 1/minute?

At that rate if I commanded a brigade in real life, I'd get bored pretty quick. I'd invent a time machine and travel to the future where I could just play the war out in simulation while sitting in the comfort of my air conditioned office. Why bother with wearing wool and getting dirty for 1/minute?

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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Mr. Digby on Tue Jul 08, 2014 12:55 pm

I think we should take another look at this. It's not 1/minute. That might be a rate someone observed during a battle but its a very low rate, very low. Maybe those troops were tired or worse, maybe the target was uphill, shooting over or some other issue like some cover. Those are not our usual rates at which men become casualties. Go fight a quick brigade vs brigade sandbox SP game using the mod and count casualties. They build up fast initially when the troops are fresh. KS mod compensates this by making troops break and fall back sooner.

Also the AI always stops when it gets in range, and begins shooting, so we have musketry duels at extreme ranges where casualty rates are low. Historically troops would close up more. Walk your regiment up to 50 yards and then start shooting. See the difference now? You'll also take serious losses in marching up to that 50 yard line (if the enemy is fresh and on good ground) and probably regret doing it.

Another issue with taking battlefield historical rates is that in most battles a lot of troops, whole divisions sometimes, stood in reserve and didn't fight for hours. This tends to lower the average rate of casualties across entire armies. In wargames however we get the usual problem where we all want a fun experience and standing your brigade in reserve for ninety minutes isn't fun for anyone, so we throw troops in more intensely than happened historically. Its the nature of us playing a game for fun and real commanders fighting battles to win. The wargame always results in much higher losses than historically because of this conundrum (game-for-fun vs real war), thus KS mod attempts to address this by averaging out (and down) the casualty rates when troops are engaged to reach generally historical levels.

Yes, there were instances when point blank vollies fired by fresh skilled troops would lay low dozens if not hundreds of men... but there are also numerous accounts of vollies that killed not a single enemy. We can only apply one rate of fire, loading speed and lethality in SoW so it has to be a set of values that is an average of these two extremes.

In the end, do we still not get exciting games?

I hope this helps explain some of the logic and thinking behind the KS mod.


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The other Martin - Charles Reille, le dernier Maréchal de France.

"Any hussar who has not got himself killed by the age of 30 is a jackass." - Antoine Charles Louis Lasalle, commander of Napoleon's light cavalry, killed in battle at Wagram 6 July 1809, aged 34.

"I had forgotten there was an objective." - Generallieutenant Mikhail Borozdin I
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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Father General on Tue Jul 08, 2014 2:13 pm

Thank you Digby.

BTW, I would be curious to read an account of a battle where volleys were exchanged and everyone missed. That would be astounding in my opinion.
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Re: Command Range and Couriers

Post  Mr. Digby on Tue Jul 08, 2014 2:30 pm

I always thought this set of reports was interesting.

Its from the Napoleonic period when battle statistics show that casualties from musket bullet wounds were higher than in the ACW.

http://www.napolun.com/mirror/napoleonistyka.atspace.com/infantry_tactics_2.htm

Effectiveness of muskets was low due to several factors:
- on windless day, the gun smoke was so dense that the infantrymen could hardly distinguish friend from foe.
- ball was not tightly fitted to the bore of the musket, it came out the muzzle at no generally predictable angle (N/A to Minie rifles)
- misfires consisted of up to 20%. According to Colonel Elting during prolonged firing the soldier had often to clear the vent with a pin carried on his pouch belt, and clean the barrel which fouled after 50 or 60 shots. Cartridges were spoiled by humidity. In wet weather men who failed to keep them dry, or to cap or wrap up their lock plates, were incapable of firing a shot.
- line infantry was not taught to aim, but simply to point their muskets in the general direction of the target. (In the heat of battle the soldier often forgot that in close range it was necessary to point the musket at the feet of a target because the kick of the musket threw the barrel up, causing the ball to arc up, to pass over the target.)
- stress. The experience showed that the niceties of regular volleys were impracticable on the battlefield. Quite often the musketry took place outside of the real killing zone. The sight of enemy continuing his advance was enough for some and they began blasting off as soon as they had loaded their muskets. It was contagious. Once individual soldiers fired their muskets (without the order from their officers) the others began firing too. Within moments the entire battalion was covered with smoke. The fast firing relieved anxiety and occupied troopers' minds and bodies. Some soldiers were so stressed that they loaded their rifles time after time but they never fired. After the battle of Gettysburg the discarded 37,574 rifles were collected and sent to Washington to be inspected and reissued. Approx. 24,000 of them were still loaded, and 75 % of them had 2 to 10 rounds in the barrel. One rifle had been stuffed with 23 rounds.

- According to R. Henegan the British infantry at Vittoria fired on average 459 rounds for 1 French casualty. (Henegan - "Seven Years' Campaigning in the Peninsula and the Netherlands", pp 344-345)
- Napier witnessed volleys fired by British infantry (in Spain) where out of 300 musketballs fired none hit the target.
- Hughes calculated for Albuera, for several volleys at 100 yards the British achieved 5% ratio of casualties.
- During one of the battles of the Revolutionary Wars, General Duhesme found his battalion firing at Austrian battalion at 100 paces. It was a lengthy firefight and Duhesme expected heavy casualties, he was however very surprised, there were only 3-4 men hit.
- In 1813 at Gohrde, 66 French infantrymen fired at 60-80 paces at Germans hiting 27 Hannoverians and Bremen-Verden (40% hits). In this case the count is only for one volley at close range.
- In 1813 at Dennewitz, a single squadron of Prussian Brandenburg Dragoons attacked a French battalion formed in square. The infantry delivered volley at 30 paces killing 23 horses and 7 men, and wounding 18 horses and 21 men. It seems poor accuracy but the horse could take several bullets before falling dead. The number of hits was probably higher than actual casualties. Eighty dragoons were untouched by the musketry. Cavalrymen were smaller targets than horses, and they ducked under fire. It made them smaller targets.
- Mark Adkin calculated the effectiveness of muskets at Waterloo. He wrote that in the prolonged fighting for Hougoumont "it took 224 French musket shots to secure a hit. This is not such a poor performance as it seems. Most defenders (Germans and British) were behind cover of some sort for much of the time, if only a hedge or a tree. The majority were behind brick walls."
- General Gassendi of the French army calculated that only 1 shot in 3,000 resulted in a casualty.
- According to Guibert only 0.2% of all shots hit the target. All shots means all shots, not only the battalion salvos at close range repeatedly described in many memoirs. Up to 15-25% of all shots were misfires, many troops fired at too long distance, some of the lightly wounded went uncounted, part of ammunition nominally fired was thrown away by soldiers, etc.

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The other Martin - Charles Reille, le dernier Maréchal de France.

"Any hussar who has not got himself killed by the age of 30 is a jackass." - Antoine Charles Louis Lasalle, commander of Napoleon's light cavalry, killed in battle at Wagram 6 July 1809, aged 34.

"I had forgotten there was an objective." - Generallieutenant Mikhail Borozdin I
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