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Air "Power"

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by DrPepper836, Dec 29, 2010.

  1. DrPepper836

    DrPepper836 Warlord

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    What in the world did they do to airplanes in this game? There is no recon mission, meaning that planes both cannot be used for scouting, one of their most important strategic uses (cuban missile crisis), and they are reduced to glorified siege. They also cannot perform bombing of improvements, again a very important function, and they lose health even if they are not intercepted.

    To me, it seems that they purposefully put limitations like this on air power to balance the fact that they gave air units unlimited stacking. The problem is, this is stupid. Air units were in fact the only units in Civ IV that had a stack limit, and they are now the only units in Civ V that don't have a stack limit? :crazyeye: If they're worried about that, just put the stack limit back. It's not like it doesn't have precedent...

    I suppose the reason always lose health after every mission is supply, and gradual wear and tear? Then why do artillery units and ships not have this penalty? If anything, planes should have a lower penalty, because they return to a friendly base with supplies and engineers every turn. And really, I don't think muskets are going to do too much damage to my B-2, thank you very much.

    Does anyone with experience in modding know how easy it would be to change these things and be willing to try? As a programmer myself, I would, but Mod Buddy crashes on my computer, so needless to say I cannot.
     
  2. Ahriman

    Ahriman Tyrant

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    There is no recon run because aircraft automatically give 6 range line of sight. They removed recon run because it was boring micromanagement, and with fewer units it wasn't really a sufficiently powerful task for an entire bomber wing.

    They removed the stacking limit because they removed the ability to relocate your aircraft anywhere in the world in a single turn. They needed a stacking limit in Civ4 because otherwise you could jump a massive airforce around instantly, from theater to theater. When relocation range is limited by movement, there's no longer such a need for a stacking limit.

    Personally I'm fine with both these things.

    I'm not so fine that aircraft take what seems like a lot of damage, it makes them seem underpowered, but perhaps thats because in Civ they've always been overpowered, and they wanted to make aircraft into a support weapon rather than a wtfpwn destroy your whole army weapon.
    My guess is that they wanted to give you some reason to still build artillery units, which you have to bring up near the frontlines, and risk getting killed by land units. Aircraft in contrast are safe back at base and have a much larger number of tiles they can attack, so they tried to balance this by making them take damage.
     
  3. LordOmega

    LordOmega Chieftain

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    You are right. They should remove features that make us micromanage. Hopefully during Civ VI we can just press a button at the dawn of time and watch the whole thing play out.

    Moderator Action: Sarcasm is rarely an effective tool in internet forums and typically does not further the actual discussion. Please try to make substantive contributions to the threads in which you participate. Thanks.
     
  4. Doctor Phibes

    Doctor Phibes Prince

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    You know, I wonder. I've won the game several times before building a single air unit, so I'm guessing, but it seems to me (given that air power, with the infliction of massive collateral damage, was the single best counter to the lategame Stack of Doom in Civ4) that on a 1upt system, air power was just too powerful (concentration of fire by multiple distant units on just one unit every time - lovely attrition rate, plus the power of city fire added to that). Plus the AI has never known how to use it (like naval power), though it tried harder in Civ4. So I guess they just didn't know what to do with it, so they totally nerfed it and it's now pointless. Another panicked decision by the Firaxis team.

    Doesn't account for lack of scouting capability, though.

    And I did like those Civ4 airships, even though they were massively OP compared with their historical counterparts. But what's a game without airships?

    But, but..? That takes away all the fun of hitting Next Turn! It makes you feel immersed (in something...).
     
  5. Atwork

    Atwork Immortal

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    When a recon plane spots an incoming invasion fleet that’s not boring – that’s informative and vitally helpful! As to the MM aspect, I advocated for the ability to set way-points so planes would recon automatically at the beginning of each turn (military advisor would ask first).


    Recon isn't powerful – it’s informative. And since the player no longer has stacking limits, the player should have sufficient spare aircraft to serve his/her recon needs without having to devote “an entire bomber wing.”


    I understand this, it certainly disadvantages larger or more spread out civs that have a lot of territory to defend. Smaller civs will be able to maintain “a massive airforce” in a single concentrated area. But a smaller civ probably still won't be able to maintain as large an airforce as a large civ -- so if the larger civ is prepared, then he'll still swarm the smaller civ.


    That’s a bit subjective. A lot of people complained that aircraft in C4 were underpowered. Dale’s combat mod gave aircraft a lot more power and uses, but even then people complained. But, if the issue is these aircraft being overpowered, the easy solution is to make them less powerful. It is a rather silly thing to have aircraft take arbitrary damage from units like musketmen.


    A better way of doing this is to give each unit a specialty. Artillery gain advantages bombarding units. Bombers gain an advantage bombarding city defenses. Encourage combined arms by giving each unit a special battlefield niche.


    That’s the advantage of an airforce! -- they sit away from the front lines, but strike well behind enemy lines. If they want better balance on the battlefield, arbitrary damage is a lame solution to what could be accomplished by giving units narrower roles within which they excel.

    For example, they could make bombers less effective attacking units – give that niche to artillery. They could give fighters predominantly the role of intercepting or escorting bombers – and/or give fighters recon capacities.

    Wanna nerf the combat effectiveness of bombers? Make them vulnerable by buffing the effectiveness of AA and interceptor fighters. Make air combat risky business.

    On the other hand, the player should be able to upgrade their aircraft and build city improvements or discover techs that would provide advantages to air combat – radio, radar, laser, satellite, etc.


    They probably wanted to limit the overwhelming disparity between an advanced nation with a substantial airforce versus a backwards nation without any air defenses. So, they made aircraft take damage no matter what enemy they're facing. But again, I think this is rather dumb. Giving aircraft specialized roles and maintaining a stack limit would probably be a more compelling balancing mechanism.
     
  6. DrPepper836

    DrPepper836 Warlord

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    It might be micro hell on large maps, but recon is very important in modern warfare and its remove constitutes probably the greatest mis-characterization of modern warfare in Civ V; the GDR is more realistic than the current air model.

    Ever since the Pacific front during WW2, the carrier has played the dominant role in naval combat. Everything centers around the carrier. Battleships then and more modern missile based ships exist to protect the carriers of the fleet. Any historical evaluation of the Japanese fleet during WW2 tracks its gradual loss of carriers, fighters, and experienced pilots as the most important statistics. The reason for this is that airplanes could leave the main fleet, strike another fleet or an island that the main fleet couldn't reach for days, and then return safely to the carrier. We're not talking about 6 tiles here; that's likely to be the size of a large convoy in Civ V. We're talking 12 tiles or more; the full range of fighters.

    Furthermore, 21'st century warfare is to be the century of missile and unmanned aircraft combat. Within 50 years, wars will largely constitute countries sending missiles at unimaginable speeds halfway across the globe to knock out opposing strategic positions. The lack of a simple recon mission in Civ V makes modeling this impossible, as it would any of the countless strategic bombing campaigns that have taken place over the last 100 years.

    Furthermore, I would like to point out the stupidity of giving an airplane over 6 tiles of range and not allowing it to act in the full range. I could sit 7 tiles away from my enemies oil, be able to perform a mission in the same direction 13 tiles away, meaning I would fly directly over his oil, and the game would prevent me from bombing it! :mischief:

    Edit: Oh yeah, you can't bomb oil in this game... Again, why not?
     
  7. fcolmenarez

    fcolmenarez Chieftain

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    Awesome Idea... bomb resources (pillaging from the air so to speak). I personally don't mind lack of recon. The air units already have a LOT of sight range.
     
  8. tom2050

    tom2050 Deity

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    Oh, the HORRIBLE micro-management of clicking a button and being able to pick a spot to recon! OMG! It's just so time-consuming and horrible to do. So boring being able to actually choose if you want to do it or not.

    If you find it so dreadful and painfully boring, you do not have to recon you know... Games don't force you to recon or else.

    Although, why do you even play Civ; if you think that a 1 click to do recon is that boring, the whole rest of the game must make blood shoot out of your eyes. Perhaps another game may suit you better.
     
  9. ds61514

    ds61514 Warlord

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    Vanilla Civ 4.
     
  10. DrPepper836

    DrPepper836 Warlord

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    If by "a lot of sight range" you mean a tiny fraction of their operational range, rendering long range bombers useless, then yes. That's the problem with the lack of recon; it's not about comparing them to normal unit's, they're a totally different class of unit.
     
  11. elprofesor

    elprofesor Pluri-editing poster

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    Maybe they could add satellites as a unit to the game. Once a satellite is built, you can, once per turn, reveal a small zone anywhere in the map. That way the attacking role and the recon role of the fighter are split between two different units.
    And I agree that bombers shouldn't take damage from attacking regular infantry. Either AA cannons and the like are buffed (can a bomber even launch its attack if there iss an AA in range, or does he perform the attack anyway and lose some health? ), or make it a promotion for land units.
     
  12. oldskald

    oldskald Warlord

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    IMO Air Power has always been a problem in Civ - from the ridiculously over-powered in Civ II, to the dismal thing it is now. I think that CivIV came closest to an adequate balance, even with the irritating counter-measure that was AI SAM spamming. But at least it was a legitimate counter-measure, rather than a nerf that penalised the player who bothered to build a powerful Air Force.

    And as for Recon... I didn't feel the need to constantly do it, but the option was nice. Perhaps retaining it with a diplo penalty for over-flights of another civ's territory in peace time would be a better balanced approach.

    Lastly, I've always loved the idea of spy satellites...
     
  13. duddyz_dad

    duddyz_dad Chieftain

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    I just find it hard to believe that bombers can take damage from riflemen or even bowmen. Bombers should only take damage from cities, artillary, and fighter planes.
     
  14. Alpedar

    Alpedar Warlord

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    Bombers are strong as they are now, even if they take damage. But that does not make it non ridiulous.

    Esp. if something like trebuchets do that damage.
     
  15. bryanw1995

    bryanw1995 Emperor

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    huh? the only nerf to air power when you're at parity is that the ai will spam AA at you. and nukes are so incredibly OP'd that other units pale in comparison now.

    think about it this way: 1upt keeps defenders from stacking. put 10 bombers in one city, or 20 or 30 or 100 or however many you can support with the amount of oil/aluminum you have. after a couple promotions they suffer 50% less damage and get air repair. if you have a few melee/nukes to wipe out AA you can literally obliterate an entire civ with enough air. In my current game russia beat me to air to halt my implacable advance with 2 bomber and a few fighters. I had nothing to fight back with, no AA yet, and I had to make peace. without his air power I would have steamrollered him. if anything air is more OP'd now that it was before due to 1upt rules.
     
  16. DrPepper836

    DrPepper836 Warlord

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    But remember, bombers in Civ IV did collateral damage. I could take 40 units down in health to the point of not being able to fight with 10 bombers in Civ IV in one turn. In Civ V, I could only do that to 10 units, and they would still probably survive that first turn. As to the recon thing, that scenario doesn't apply to the recon issue. The lack of recon either has no bearing on a case at all, or has total bearing and prevents air power from being used period; the ultimate nerf.

    And air power should be game breaking. The development of airplanes has had more effect on war than any invention in history, even the atomic bomb. A civilization with airplanes should be able to defeat a civilization with no airplanes and no air defense at all as much as a civilization with machine guns should be able to defeat a civilization on horseback. You could argue that that's too much power, but nukes would still have more impact from tech difference than plane would, so you would also have to argue for nerfing those.
     
  17. Giant Dwarf

    Giant Dwarf Chieftain

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    First of all, the mods just warned somebody about sarcasm.

    Secondly, are you saying that you'd an extra click instead of a "passive" recon ability would be an improvement? I personally hated having to recon each turn in civ 4; that's time I could spend doing more fun things.
     
  18. DaveGold

    DaveGold Emperor

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    Giving automatic recon to all planes every turn is a good thing. Let's cheer that improvement from CIV4 as there precious few others.

    Having planes damaged on every mission is a problem. AA units are in the game so make them useful as a specific countermeasure to protect supposedly vulnerable land units.

    There are no buildings that give experience to air and sea units. This is a massive disadvantage compared to artillery, say.
     
  19. Giant Dwarf

    Giant Dwarf Chieftain

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    You would be very surprised how little effectual power campaigns BY THEMSELVES actually have. If you're interested, I suggest "Bombing to Win" by Robert Pape.

    Personally, I like the balance that Civ 5 has with Air: not too strong, not too weak. I like a passive recon ability and I think bombing strategic resources might be a little OP. But that's a great idea to consider. Do I smell a mod?
     
  20. Doctor Phibes

    Doctor Phibes Prince

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    OK, fair enough - as I say, I haven't needed air to win so haven't used it, so I must bow to your experience here. I was thinking along the same lines as Doctor Pepper - tho theoretically in my case:

    Most especially, it was the collateral damage thing I was thinking of. (Of course that is automatically nerfed in a 1upt situation.) And recon sounds not just nerfed but effectively destroyed as an option.

    I would have thought that in the absence of CD, air power should be beefed up, not nerfed. But I am theorising, as I said earlier.
     

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