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Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  rschilla on Sat May 27, 2017 6:26 pm

I've often wondered why setting courier to "none" has no effect. They are still all over the place. Another one of those lazy programming decisions I imagine.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Uncle Billy on Sat May 27, 2017 6:34 pm

I have just had a simple but effective idea. Why don't we use one courier sprite for every nation? It may help reduce the MP trick of seeing enemy couriers and deducing where an unseen enemy is. We could use a generic hussar such as the Prussian one.
That's an idea. Unless the courier dies within view, it might make things a little more murky. We'll give it a try in tomorrow's game.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Guest on Sat May 27, 2017 7:50 pm

I like that but those that are still using the radar will still have a way to find you.

Is there a way you can signify who is using Radar and who is not? Where if you have it ticked in your game setting it puts something beside your name in the staging area or somewhere that we can all see.


I have no problem with radar but only if it is allowed in the game.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Sat May 27, 2017 9:00 pm

We SHOULD all have the radar turned off, just like we should always have trees turned on.

I fear it'll have to remain a trust thing.

But generic couriers was just an idea to take out one more little way to know too much of the enemy.

I don't think I have EVER turned the radar on, not even in Gettysburg. What information does it give you and how is it generated?

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"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.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Uncle Billy on Sat May 27, 2017 9:55 pm

A list of enemies is generated for every unit by the game engine. That is the list that is displayed when the radar is turned on. Like the trees, turning it on or off is a personal game option and cannot be monitored or controlled by the host unfortunately.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Martin on Sat May 27, 2017 10:33 pm

Unfortunately the target list is more than just an assist. It reveals the presence of enemy troops whom neither the player, nor any of his/her units, can actually see. In testing the LBH mod I sometimes remove all the vegetation, and there are no enemy troops visible. Yet the radar reveals enemy troops that are behind hills and ridges.

Using it really does confer a significant and unhistorical advantage.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Sun May 28, 2017 1:27 am

A list of enemies is generated for every unit by the game engine. That is the list that is displayed when the radar is turned on. Like the trees, turning it on or off is a personal game option and cannot be monitored or controlled by the host unfortunately.
I realise it is beyond the scope of the host to influence it in MP, but could the game be modded to disable it? Either disable the generation of the data or disable it being displayed?

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"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: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Uncle Billy on Sun May 28, 2017 5:20 am

Nope.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Sun May 28, 2017 2:51 pm

That sucks. We have to rely on trust then. I think we all turn it off although - Phil - do you? I have had messages from some players in MP in the past saying X is XXXX yards away which shows they have it on but guys, PLEASE turn it off.

EDIT: Now, change of subject. Kevin, I am still working through the 1815 OOBs which originally was for the Brits but I have extended adjustments to the French and Prussians as well. These also include things like catching the occasional typo in unit and generals names as well as checking for consistency in layout of names, so the whole xml file for 1815 will be replaced. I have also had to make 5 new unit types in the unitglobal:

PRU_GREN_1_1ST
PRU_MUSK_1_1ST
PRU_MUSK_1_SK
PRU_LANDWEHR_1ST
PRU_LANDWEHR_SK

to cover Prussian 3rd Rank skirmish units and fusilier battalions. So I will be sending you a new unitglobal.csv to release to the players for testing.

Another thing I have noticed - our games are 95% fictional and in those the tiny units (like the little Prussian landwher jagers and the small landwher cavalry) are pretty useless. Should we adjust these unit strengths to make them more robust? These would be shamelessly FICTIONAL changes with strengths going from ~100 men to ~350 or so. Maybe we could have 2 1815 OOB sets, historical and fictional?

I am working on the Peninsular_Full OB in the same way but have started work on an 1808 Peninsular OOB to just include the early French and Spanish armies from our campaign. No Brits or Portuguese involved. This will be a pretty odd OOB with not much artillery and cavalry and raw units on both sides. It should generate some quite different kinds of games.

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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: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Uncle Billy on Sun May 28, 2017 3:18 pm

Rather than have two 1815 OOBs and the overhead that entails, I'd suggest we reapportion the men in the brigades. If a jager unit has only 100 men, let's just take 50-75 men from each of the other battalions in the brigade and add them to the jagers. We could say the unit represents not only the jagers, but a portion of the fusiliers in the brigade.

I think the cavalry is mostly ok. Most regiments seem to be 450-550 saber/lances. The small ones pop up when a regiment was divided up and 2 squadrons were attached to different divisions. It shows that even at this late date, the Prussians still hadn't grasped the role of cavalry on a Napoleonic battlefield. To remedy the problem, we could reassemble the cavalry regiment and place it in a single division. If possible, two of these reassembled regiments could be brigaded together to form a credible cavalry arm for a division, leaving other divisions without any cavalry.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Guest on Sun May 28, 2017 3:24 pm

My new game settings will be. RADAR ON - TREES -150% - MAP TERRAIN Flat as before Columbus or whomever proved it was round.

I shall be king for now on. Suspect Suspect
lol!

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Sun May 28, 2017 5:19 pm

You don't know about my "pool table and enemy heat bloom" mod do you?

Kevin - I think we should leave a pure historical OOB and have a fictional one. I don't like the idea of messing with the historical one if we think we should still represent the penny packets of Prussian cav etc.

The 'fictional' 1815 OOBs are done. Yes, I did shift headcounts to balance unit strengths but kept brigade headcount totals the same.

The 1808 OOBs are looking like they'll be a bit of light relief: French Exp 2 Garde Nationale, Exp 3 Legion de Reserve and Exp 4 Battalions du Marche vs Spanish 1s, 2s and 3s. Artillery mostly 4pdrs and cavalry mostly Exp 4s and 3s in 200 to 400 man regts. Battalions vary widely from 800 to 250 but average about 400 but here and there you get an Exp 5 or 6 French regular regt or Vistula Legion battalion, and some of the Spanish guardia battalions are pretty chunky and reliable. The Legion Irelandais, Legion Portugaise, Westphalians, Neapolitans and Regts de Prusse add colour too. Its a very weird French army and a great example of barrel-scraping.

No guard as well! Hurrah! Just some psycho-killer Polish and Berg Chevaulegers here and there.

I deleted all the miquelets because they never appeared in formal battles and having the scenario generator produce a miquelet brigade in a game would be weird.

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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: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Wed May 31, 2017 5:00 pm

Thoughts on French skirmishers - and skirmishers in general.

As wargamers we like to play to the rules and get any advantage the rules let us use. To me we are using too many skirmishers in our games. I think we need a class of French Leger that CANNOT skirmish and to make at least half our Leger battalions of this class. Our Leger brigades are beginning to attain almost mystical value in that players love having them because they allow a player to skirmish the brains out of any enemy. I think every historical brigade commander would keep a significant part of his command in close order, even if they were trained to skirmish and I feel that at least half is a fair number.

I think we should effectively make Leger and Ligne regts the same. They had the same drill book and technically any French infantry could be put into a skirmish line if the situation demanded it.

I'd like to see the following arrangement if we can:

BRIGADE STRENGTH (BTNS) / NUMBER OF SK BTNS
2 / 1
3 / 1
4 / 2
5 / 2
6 or more / 2

Were converged grenadier brigades allotted skirmishers from the line brigades? What of OG/MD? Did these get allocated some YG skirmishers? Should we look at redesigning our garde brigades to cater for these attachments?

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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: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Uncle Billy on Wed May 31, 2017 6:01 pm

I've been thinking about this too. I've been thinking about using the AI to send out a skirmish battalion and also recall it and have it fight in close formation when the two lines meet. Currently, I'm thinking that the skirmishers go out to harass as normal, but when the enemy infantry/cavalry begins to advance and gets to within 250 yd (?) of the brigade commander, (our coding options are limited here), the skirmishers would be recalled and would fight like any other battalion. The problem I see is there is no way to tell the program that a unit is skirmish capable or not. It assumes that there is a valid formation in the skirmish column of unitglobal. If that happens to be a closed formation, then the AI would send the battalion forward to harass the enemy in line formation. That's not much of an issue for the French, but it is for the 1806/7 Allies.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Wed May 31, 2017 11:20 pm

Can you expand on that? I'm not sure I follow you. Do you mean an 1806-07 Prussian/Russian brigade commander might attempt to "skirmish" with a close order unit?

On a not-quite-related subject can we impose the Prussian 1806 linear restrictions on the Spanish as well please?

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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: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Uncle Billy on Thu Jun 01, 2017 2:30 am

Do you mean an 1806-07 Prussian/Russian brigade commander might attempt to "skirmish" with a close order unit?
Yes.  The program only knows that there is a skirmish formation that is defined in unitglobal, (column AF).  The way we prevent most units from being able to deploy into a skirmish formation is to use a line formation in that cell.  That way when a player presses the skirmish button, it accesses the formation that is written in that cell.

However, the AI doesn't know that.  It only knows that there is something called a skirmish formation and it can use that when it thinks it's appropriate.  I think we can add a new column to the oob.  It would follow Calisthenics.  It would have a value of 1 if the unit could skirmish and a value of 0 otherwise.  The code can be written so the brigade commander would only be able to send the designated units forward to skirmish.

Unfortunately, this can't be interfaced with the gui.  To implement your idea, we'd have to create new legere, jager, etc. classes and place the line formation in column AF.  We could even implement both your idea and mine.  Your's is based on what formation is listed in column AF.  I could base the AI code on column AH and the new oob column.  That way the AI could use all jagers as skirmishers, if it wants to,  before the fighting gets serious.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Thu Jun 01, 2017 2:50 am

Yes, I was thinking of new unit classes. I realise though this makes a lot of work editing all the OOBs. I like the idea of the AI being able to make use of however many sk units it has rather than just one when the time is appropriate.

At what range will sk formations form up in close order? How would this range be determined? Distance of enemy units to the brigade CO... or something else?

There's a few aspects of our games that don't mesh too well with how I think a historical action might develop and I think we players keep our skirmishers tighter in against our main lines because other players like to send out a cavalry regiment to stomp a sk unit that's well forward. I don't feel as though this is a very historical use of cavalry but it is what it is and its why I think our sk screens are held back closer to the main line. What we don't have of course are the close order supports a sk screen should have to better enable it to resist a cavalry attack but I don't really want to start getting into those sorts of formation issues because SoW can't handle them well.

Perhaps we could make sk formations a bit less vulnerable to cavalry?

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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: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Uncle Billy on Thu Jun 01, 2017 2:33 pm

As I said before, currently I'm think that when an enemy closed formation gets within 250 yd of the skirmisher's brigade commander, the skirmishers would be ordered in and the traditional fighting would begin. It wouldn't matter which side was advancing. That number is just a first pass and would be easily adjustable based on play testing.

Although cavalry was used occasionally to drive off skirmishers, it wasn't common, I agree. That could easily be fixed if cavalry could be kept from running through friendly lines. But we know that NSD made the conscious decision to allow unit overlap and we don't have access to that part of the code.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Miko77 on Thu Jun 01, 2017 3:56 pm

It only knows that there is something called a skirmish formation and it can use that when it thinks it's appropriate.

Doesn't the AI take "open order" capability as a possible factor when taking decision about putting a unit into the skirmish order?
I guess setting it low would discourage AI from doing so, and setting it high would encourage it?
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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Thu Jun 01, 2017 4:25 pm

Sometimes brigade commanders ride away to some really weird locations so using his flag as the distance at which skirmishers are recalled might have unwanted results. A player can TC a brigadier as well and inadvertently he can be left miles behind the fighting!

How would your '1' notation in the next OOB column work? That just flags up skirmish capable units, yes? Might we want to identify three classes of infantry:

0=cannot sk always close order
1=always sk never close order
2=can sk but can also close order

Class 1 would probably be limited to true jager units (Prussian and Austrian) and maybe the British 95th, 5/60th and Brunswick Oels.

BTW the excessive numbers of sk troops I'd apply to the Russians as well. I think if there is more than 1 jager btn in a brigade then still only 1 should be sk capable.

The British Light btns were not really sk infantry by this time too, just seen as elite infantry. They had their own drill book which allowed them to march and change formations more rapidly but I think that's about it. The Peninsula Light Division was really a fast response force or a fire brigade, and not necessarily seen as a formation with a superior sk capability.

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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: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Uncle Billy on Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:23 pm

It seems to me that you should be appointed to comb through the OOBs and determine who will and will not be able to skirmish. Twisted Evil

Class 1 would probably be limited to true jager units (Prussian and Austrian) and maybe the British 95th, 5/60th and Brunswick Oels.
That's easy, just make their fighting formation skirmish formation.  Some already have that.

Sometimes brigade commanders ride away to some really weird locations so using his flag as the distance at which skirmishers are recalled might have unwanted results.
Prior to any general engagement, the brigade commander is almost always with his troops.  Once the line troops engage, the commander can go far afield.  That's ok because the skirmishers are already recalled.  They wouldn't go back out until all the battalions in the brigade are no longer fighting, by which time the brigadier should be somewhere near his men.

A player can TC a brigadier as well and inadvertently he can be left miles behind the fighting!
I hope you don't expect this argument to generate any sympathy from me.  Perhaps if it was written in a tear-stained letter... Sad

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Fri Jun 02, 2017 1:09 am

I'm happy to go through the OOBs looking at the sk issue. Lets agree the changes first.

How does your next column notation work?

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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: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Uncle Billy on Fri Jun 02, 2017 1:57 am

Column AI of the oob is named CanSkirmish.
0 = Never skirmish, (just leave the cell blank)
1 = Can skirmish

Units that always skirmish and are never in closed formations would also =1. Since their fighting formation is skirmish, (what the 2nd battalion in brigades currently does), it doesn't need a special designation.

The major piece of the work is changing the classes to designate which battalions can skirmish when ordered to do so by a human player. I'd say 1 battalion for brigades of less than 6 and 2 battalions for 6 or more. I think this is what you proposed.

The AI will be able to deploy more if it wishes, e.g. all jagers, fusiliers, tirailluers, a battalion from each legere regiment in a brigade.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  rschilla on Fri Jun 02, 2017 2:04 am

I go back a long way on this issue. I recall that they had all sorts of special skirmisher rules for the SPI monster board game "Wellington's Victory." Skirmishers couldn't move into the minimum range fire zone of a formed unit, skirmishers more than 5 hexes from a formed friendly unit could not be re-supplied with ammo, skirmishers were considered "disordered" and if routed were eliminated, and probably a whole bunch of others I can't remember because the early 80's were a long time ago. Still, the skirmishers ruled the field.

There were always a lot more French skirmishers than Allied. I found this comment on a miniatures forum on the issue.

We play Empire V. The rules take national characteristics into account. Some nations can only field semi-skirmishers, others can field Jägers or other specialized skirmishing light troops. Even distance ranges/advantages for rifles versus muskets are handled. Quality is factored. Skirmishers, used effectively, can be a real pain, and if a unit is weakened, can cause morale issues for the enemy, so can become a real threat. French can field whole battalions as skirmishers, and of course have voltigeurs that can screen each battalion. It is not unusual in our games to have to face a cloud of French skirmishers larger in numbers comparatively. To repel them, move into firefight with the enemy formed units as quickly as possible, causing the French skirmishers to fall back behind the formed units. Of course, this may only speed your demise : > ) wrote:

Seems to me the easiest way to keep enemy skirmishers under control is to keep some light cavalry close behind your line.

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Re: Set Up for SOWWL NAPOLEON GAMES For Kriegspiel style

Post  Mr. Digby on Fri Jun 02, 2017 4:00 am

In SoW if you're defending and being harassed by enemy skirmishers holding a reserve battalion column behind your firing line and charging it through to drive away the enemy skirmishers then recalling it will give you a temporary respite. Of course your column will get tired and suffer losses but it can usually be parked up again in reserve to rest and get its wits back.

On the defence you can also use your own skirmishers vs the enemy and its usually quite easy to know if you're losing or winning a firefight. Even holding a battalion out front in sk order that is losing a firefight will buy you a fair bit of time and time is critical in our MP games which usually run for 3 hours and have an objective for each side. Buying yourself even ten minutes by holding up an enemy attack with a sk screen helps.

When attacking just send columns forwards close behind your own sk to drive the defending sks back. Its a pretty quick and effective solution.

The fun starts when you're commanding early Prussians or a similar linear army that lacks enough sk units to be useful and cannot attack in columns (latest KS Mod change).

But our discussion is because I think we have too high a %age of troops who can sk and we are looking at ways to reduce that.

@ Kevin - okay, if you want me to add those columns to the OOBs I'm okay to do that if you are okay doing the unitglobal changes.

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"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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