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Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Uncle Billy on Sun Mar 15, 2015 12:34 am

It was a great game even though my command was wiped out. Everyone refrain from saying anything so the CinCs tomorrow will remain in the dark.

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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  kg little mac on Sun Mar 15, 2015 1:47 am

Would you email me the replay, Kevin, please?
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Mr. Digby on Sun Mar 15, 2015 7:04 am

Sent.

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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Mark87 on Mon Mar 16, 2015 7:31 pm

3-0 as commander in chief. Clearly shades of Bonaparte.
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  SolInvictus202 on Mon Mar 16, 2015 8:19 pm

you were just graced last night with such brilliant divisional commanders....



I am talking about soldier and MTG here of course
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  WJPalmer on Mon Mar 16, 2015 8:48 pm

Mark wrote:3-0 as commander in chief. Clearly shades of Bonaparte.
Sounds like a CinC smackdown challenge to me, for which I'm game. How 'bout we tee it up in Kevin's next Chamber of Horrors design?

To bring some order to side selection, I propose that just before the carnage begins, the CinC's do a quick adjourn to a neutral channel to select players. A few games back Matt suggested that CinC #1 choose first, with CinC #2 choosing the next 2, followed by alternating selections. It's a little NBA Playoff-ish, but does have some appeal: A few of our recent battles have seemed a bit out of balance in terms of experience levels.

I'm sure opinions abound out there about the importance or unimportance of CinC's in our weekend soirees. I'm not quite sure where I come down on this myself, though in those battles I've played the victorious CinC, a nagging suspicion persisted that our good fortune was due to having others out there handling the nitty-gritty of troop control.  Shocked

I'd also like to second MJP's suggestion of including a small reserve command for CinC's: not so big that it's cumbersome to control them, but just enough to have some fun with.
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Mark87 on Mon Mar 16, 2015 8:52 pm

I did have excellent commanders. Also, I think my ability to leave the division commanders to their own devices might help....

oh and Bring it Palmer.

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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  SolInvictus202 on Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:05 pm

wow... EGOS gentlemen.... always funny to watch...

I simply suggest to order a wench to pick the winner affraid cheers
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  WJPalmer on Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:13 pm

Again, I protest the liberal use of the term "gentlemen."

Perhaps interjecting a little spice might make it easier to recruit CinC's in upcoming events?
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  SolInvictus202 on Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:27 pm

I am stunned that noone wants to take that positoin - it is the most relaxed and the most rewarding I can think of - the only thing you need to have is the guts to take the blame if something/everything goes wrong...
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Mr. Digby on Mon Mar 16, 2015 11:21 pm

I'd also like to second MJP's suggestion of including a small reserve command for CinC's: not so big that it's cumbersome to control them, but just enough to have some fun with.
I would like to suggest we don't start making ahistorical OOBs just to suit player taste. I would rather we be constrained to Napoleonic OOBs with all their shortcomings so that we learn to fight better with what we have. If we have a Corps then the only reserve the corps would have would be a couple of artillery batteries. No cavalry or infantry were held at corps level unless we have a very small division, such as a combined grenadier division, or a weak ordinary division of a single brigade and a battery which seemed a common feature of the French peninsular armies.

So these would still be true divisions, but the other division commanders would all take the rest of the divisions.

On the other hand I prefer not to have any troops when I command and I know a couple of other people feel the same. This means we need to agree C-in-Cs before the scenario is built so the C-in-Cs can decide to have a reserve or not.

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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  WJPalmer on Mon Mar 16, 2015 11:57 pm

These are not historical OOB's in the ad hoc battles anyway. I'm only suggesting that the structure be set, where possible, so a viable option exists for CinCs to play with a small command, if so desired. More options are better and appeal to potential CinCs with varied tastes and preferences. From the anecdotal comments surrounding last weekend's battles, it seems players are fairly divided in this preference. The constraints we face have much more to do with player numbers than historic "Napoleonic OOBs" and their shortcomings, IMO. We have options and flexibility, for instance, and still remain "historical" e.g., separate cav divisions, personal guard battalions, etc.
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Uncle Billy on Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:25 am

The only problem I see with creating a small reserve is that we never really know how many people are going to play until right before we start. It's very possible we'll be shorthanded and the CinC will need to take a division command. If there is also a small reserve on the field, the commander will be overwhelmed with troops to move around and he'll not be able to guide the battle. If I know in advance that a CinC wants to control some troops, I can create a small reserve division, (I do that often), that is actually an important factor in the battle. But usually we don't settle on commanders until Friday, long after I've built a scenario.

Most battles, I try to to create a situation where the CinC has the option of commanding troops, so long as we have enough people. There are a few, however, that I deliberately spread over a large portion of the map so that the CinC really has to concentrate on coordinating the divisions. Last week's was like that as was "Premium For Good Ground" which everyone enjoyed. This week's will be one where the CinCs can easily take a division if they choose.

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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Grog on Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:58 am

I like the idea of having a stronger inclusion of the use of reserves in our Napoleonic games. Whether one feels that it is ahistorical much depends on the way you view our games and what we are trying to achieve within the framework of the engine that we have.

For many games I am happy to play a straight engagement between, say 1v1 Corps using historical OOB's, which is what we often play, anyway.

I would also like to play games which attempt to represent some of the bigger battles characteristic of the period which involve several corps and a reserve corps or two. For these battles, we a have to look at our OOB's as more representational with, perhaps, each division being viewed as a corps and also including a reserve division (corps).

In my view, one of the components we are missing in many of our Nap games is the crucial effect of a well placed Grand Battery, well timed Mass Heavy cavalry charge or the cold steel intervention of our Grenadier reserve or Guard infantry units has on the outcome. I know it was not necessarily the norm but , face it, we would all as commanders love to use our reserves in such a battle winning moment Very Happy .

Whether we assign the Reserve to the CinC or to a separate command would depend on the scenario, number of players and the individual CinC's command tastes. I know that the CinC has enough on his plate but I wonder if that, in itself, is a very good reason to give him a reserve command. CinC's often kept the reserve very close to them and would ideally use them under close supervision. The other advantage of assigning the reserve to the CinC player is that it intrinsically deters the situation where, say, the 'Guard' decides to go on an unrealistic flank march or likewise the heavy cavalry division.

Historically, I would also argue that even in smaller battles of Corps size or less, the commanders would break the command structure of the OOB and create a reserve of their own, in whatever form. Even in the more conservative nations, OOB's were not always rigidly adhered to, with temporary reserve formations or artillery parks being created as the need arose.

Perhaps some OOB's with an option for a reserve division, if both CinC's agree?

Mike





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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Iberalc on Tue Mar 17, 2015 11:55 am

Kevin wrote:The only problem I see with creating a small reserve is that we never really know how many people are going to play until right before we start

Yes that’s an issue even when a CinC is planning the battles. You always do your best Kevin and we usually don’t have problems assigning the commands. study

For me, Divisional command is what I enjoy most in the game. But there are not many regular players willing to be CinC, and playing 2 battles a week I will be lucky just taking command once every 2 weeks.

In the battle "Premium For Good Ground" I took a full infantry division and it was too much to be able to perform both roles with such a long line to worry about as CinC, and keeping my troops in the line. But I would had been very happy with the small cavalry brigade and the horse battery of the cavalry division. So I can keep them in reserve and ride to all the units, until I decide when and where to use them.

So maybe a brigade of 4 battalions/squadrons and a battery won’t harm any of the usual CinCs and can fit into the OOB as an ad-hoc formation or part of a division that has other troops detached.
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Iberalc on Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:00 pm



So worthy of praise it can’t remain untold, General Soldier's gallant stand near Bochnia. Just with a handful of battalions and 3 guns he fought an entire French Corps.


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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  SolInvictus202 on Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:01 pm

Again I must stress the fact that giving the CinC some troops under his direct command takes away the difficulties presented to him with the the courier system and him relying on his commanders in the field...

a CinC can see a lot - but is restricted to a certain delay in the execution of his orders, due to the fact that he DOES NOT have any of his own... thus he must wait and hope that the orders he sent out are carried out in time and in the proper way....

giving him a reserve that he can throw at focal points in the battle takes all that uncertainty away - and I think considering from what i have seen so far in this Kriegsspiel community - where realism seems to have top priority - it would be wrong to do something that gives a CinC an edge in-game that he never had in real life...

just my 2 cents from a guy who values realism above all else when it comes to PC gaming!
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  WJPalmer on Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:49 pm

Kevin wrote:The only problem I see with creating a small reserve is that we never really know how many people are going to play until right before we start.

Yep, Doodle signups are not always a reliable indication of ultimate battle size given tendencies for last-minute joins. Mostly, this is a happy problem as it indicates the growing popularity of both the mod and KS HITS format. A few thoughts:
-Most recent battles have seen anywhere from 7 to 12 players, so perhaps battles of either 2 divisions per side or 3 is optimal depending on pre-battle signup traffic. Would it be much additional work to regularly have 2 versions of a battle prepared to cover each eventuality i.e., large & small?;
-I think it's safe to say that most players become frustrated commanding formations that are too large to handle, rather than too small. This is especially true given the format's major defect: the inability of battalions to form square on their own to meet threatening cavalry. When commanding large numbers over any distance at all this makes it nearly impossible for a single human player to effectively command a full division in battle. In my opinion, it's better to err on the side of smaller OOBs rather than larger. Many experienced players, and all newer players, are very happy to command single brigades;

Roland wrote:giving the CinC some troops under his direct command takes away the difficulties presented to him with the the courier system and him relying on his commanders in the field...
Minimally so, IMO. Remember that a CinC has the ability to send courier orders directly to any nearby friendly unit anyway. So the only difference here is between a text courier to a human player and an orders courier to an AI commander. A savvy commander will take personal command in an emergency in this way (as his historical counterpart would also have the power to do) to avoid disaster. In addition, it shouldn't be assumed that a CinC's personal command/reserve would necessarily follow him around the battlefield. Our commanders tend to ride all over at a high rate of speed to see and communicate. A personal command of infantry or artillery couldn't possibly keep up with most of these movements. More often than not, a CinC will park his reserve centrally or at a point where he most fears it will be needed, which seems quite realistic.

It also doesn't have to be an all-or-nothing arrangement with a CinC reserve. It can depend on the scenario and maybe even the preferences of anticipated CinCs, if we know in advance who they are -- and, of course, on Kevin's creative willingness. ;-)
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  SolInvictus202 on Tue Mar 17, 2015 3:19 pm

WJPalmer wrote:
Minimally so, IMO. Remember that a CinC has the ability to send courier orders directly to any nearby friendly unit anyway. So the only difference here is between a text courier to a human player and an orders courier to an AI commander. A savvy commander will take personal command in an emergency in this way (as his historical counterpart would also have the power to do) to avoid disaster. In addition, it shouldn't be assumed that a CinC's personal command/reserve would necessarily follow him around the battlefield. Our commanders tend to ride all over at a high rate of speed to see and communicate. A personal command of infantry or artillery couldn't possibly keep up with most of these movements. More often than not, a CinC will park his reserve centrally or at a point where he most fears it will be needed, which seems quite realistic.


and exactly that delay created with sending the courier AND with getting the commander of those reserve forces to be exactly where the CinC just personally ordered him actually makes the difference... and the CinC cannot be sure that this commander will do as ordered or at least will interprete these orders the correct way!

this step is given up by giving him a direct force to command... especially the worry if the reserve he orders up will do the right thing!


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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Uncle Billy on Tue Mar 17, 2015 3:49 pm

Mike wrote:In my view, one of the components we are missing in many of our Nap games is the crucial effect of a well placed Grand Battery, well timed Mass Heavy cavalry charge or the cold steel intervention of our Grenadier reserve or Guard infantry units has on the outcome. I know it was not necessarily the norm but , face it, we would all as commanders love to use our reserves in such a battle winning moment
This has always been a frustration of mine too when creating these battles. If we had an AI that could be scripted, those ideas would be much easier to implement.
Ron wrote:-I think it's safe to say that most players become frustrated commanding formations that are too large to handle, rather than too small. This is especially true given the format's major defect: the inability of battalions to form square on their own to meet threatening cavalry. When commanding large numbers over any distance at all this makes it nearly impossible for a single human player to effectively command a full division in battle. In my opinion, it's better to err on the side of smaller OOBs rather than larger. Many experienced players, and all newer players, are very happy to command single brigades;
This is the reason why we can't have large Napoleonic battles. Cavalry is an uber weapon in this mod. Let's face it, being able to ride down a bunch of helpless ground pounders is great fun. Unless, of course, you are the one in command of the infantry battalion. The best battles I have been involved in are those where experienced cavalry commanders on each side face off against each other and prevent the wholesale destruction of their infantry comrades. Otherwise, a cavalry commander can easily maneuver a squadron around the field and pick off an unsuspecting battalion here and there with ease.

So like good deeds, good ideas are not going to go unpunished either. We will try an experiment in the next battle. Infantry divisions will be larger than we have had in the recent past. This way each division can create a small reserve to use as needed. It was rare for an entire division to commit itself all at once in defense or attack. Not having a reserve was usually the prelude to a disastrous defeat.

To counter the cavalry issue, the cavalry division will be under the control of the CinC to use as he sees fit. However, none of the squadrons or brigade commanders can be TC'd. They have to remain under AI control. Although the AI is quite formidable in its use of the cavalry, it does not initiate lightning strikes or maneuver a squadron to attack a battalion not under immediate human supervision. Rather it tends to mass its squadrons and then attack. That should give the opposing player plenty of time to get over to his threatened battalions and put them into squares.

Let's try this once and see if it has any merit.

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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  WJPalmer on Tue Mar 17, 2015 4:43 pm

Sounds like an idea worth trying. We'll know more after a battle or two, but some technique that brings cavalry more in balance with the other arms-types would seem a good thing. The way things are now the army with more human players sporting dedicated cavalry commands brings a huge, disproportionate advantage to our battles. If this works well, perhaps it would ultimately pave the way for larger overall OOB's -- because infantry and artillery play would be on a more even footing.

If CinC command of divisional cavalry proves to be too much or otherwise unpopular, another approach might be to require commanders to move cavalry exclusively by courier order (rather than using mouse point-and-click). The additional time required to create the orders would make the horse soldiers somewhat less nimble and less effective swooping down vulture-like on hapless infantry.
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  SolInvictus202 on Tue Mar 17, 2015 4:47 pm

Ron said wrote:If CinC command of divisional cavalry proves to be too much or otherwise unpopular, another approach might be to require commanders to move cavalry exclusively by courier order (rather than using mouse point-and-click). The additional time required to create the orders would make them somewhat less nimble and less effective swooping down vulture-like on hapless infantry.

excellent idea.... I do still hope however that these issues will fix themselves this summer anyway - with SOW Waterloo up and running Wink
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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Uncle Billy on Tue Mar 17, 2015 5:07 pm

Ron wrote:If CinC command of divisional cavalry proves to be too much or otherwise unpopular, another approach might be to require commanders to move cavalry exclusively by courier order (rather than using mouse point-and-click). The additional time required to create the orders would make the horse soldiers somewhat less nimble and less effective swooping down vulture-like on hapless infantry.
Another good idea worthy of punishment. pale

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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Mr. Digby on Tue Mar 17, 2015 5:12 pm

I raised the suggestion weeks ago that our games should have the same number of players commanding cavalry; always either 1 per side, or 2 per side, or whatever, all as agreed. If side A chooses to have only 1 cavalry player then side B must limit themselves to only 1 as well. This could be decided with a 30 second chat between the two C-in-Cs before the sides split to have their briefings.

I am a big fan of point and click command issuing. I would probably give up commanding cavalry if we were to implement command by couriers as a rule since I find it too cumbersome.

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Re: Napoleonic HITS Game March 14-15

Post  Mark87 on Tue Mar 17, 2015 5:18 pm

I'd cheat sorry Palmer. I never learned how to use a courier to do this and have no interest in trying. It's much too cumbersome for me. I like the other thoughts though.
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