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BATTLE ENGINE - The most unrealistic aspect of the game.

Discussion in 'Civ4 - General Discussions' started by tutankamon, Nov 1, 2005.

  1. gunnergoz

    gunnergoz Cat Herder

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    I like the game battle engine just fine. Adapt and learn. Why bend the game to your preferences?
     
  2. Krill

    Krill Deity

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    Yeah, luckily only the Designers and the Beta Testers can do this...

    ;)
     
  3. Efexeye

    Efexeye Silly Donkey

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    Hey, go ahead and bend it, I say. You bought it, do what you want with it.

    However, I prefer to play it the way it shipped- otherwise, all HOF stats are invalid (IMHO).
     
  4. MDraper

    MDraper Chieftain

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    How many decades were the Americans at war with the native americans? How many infantry divisions did it take to eliminate the resistance of the Sioux for instance?

    What about the English versus the east Indians? Or the French against the Vietnamese? Often times, history has shown that even the most barbaric of cultures can produce viable resistance to a technologically superior invader. While it has also shown that technology will ultimate decide their Fate, it does not demonstrate that it will take less time to overtake their foes.

    The units in Civ represent abstracts of a large scale effort, these are not 'platoons' or 'armies' they are 'units of millitary force' that are specified by abstract game concepts, not by the limitations of one's idea of what the size of an army should be.

    War is not a game of rock-paper-scissors.
     
  5. Jonathan

    Jonathan Prince

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    I've been playing Civ since it started, but I've always disliked the silly combat system, and said so.

    Sorry, I dislike RTS games even more than I dislike Civ's battle system.

    I've already proposed a solution: battles should be resolved as whole battles, not as a series of single combats. When you attack a square, the game should take into account all the attacking units and all the defending units, resolve the battle according to some formula, and give you an outcome. This is the way wargames have been played for a long time, and it's a better way.

    Why better? Because it's quicker, it's easier, and it's more realistic.
     
  6. Pvblivs

    Pvblivs Scriptor

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    Jonathan,

    no it's not! For turnbased games where one player follows the other it is vital for strategic decision that you control every single unit. Only that way you can decide "how" the battle is finished. If you have the initiative (it's your turn) you can choose how you attack, if not (it's another one's turn) you can only counter with the strongest available unit.
    An example (city promotions): The enemy has 2 archers, one unpromoted as defenders and you 3 swordsmen, one unpromoted. You know that your promoted swordsmen are too weak to kill the promoted archer, so you take the unpromoted first for a lucky hit to do some damage or even but more unlikely get a new promoted unit :).
    If both enemy archers are unpromoted, you may, of course, take your elite swordsmen because the odds are for you and you do not want to loose your unpromoted swordsman if you can do it without losses.

    The warfare in Civ is about deciding what units you take with you and how you use them. That you took the swordsmans sacrifice in the first example is a decision that is risky but it is a decision to be made. If you would decide to take the elite swordsman, it is much more likely to be your loss. But how can a formular decide this?
    Putting them all into a stack-vs-stack formular would eliminate this decision. Therefore combined arms, different unit types and promotions would just be a flavour. As you could not decide how you use them they would be just numbers in a formular. In consequence you would not need all this but just could count your overall strength.
    Viola! You have eliminated the warfare game element completely.

    Ask yourself: What is a game about? A game and game fun is always about deciding. Should I move the king or the queen? What can I expect in doing one or the other thing? When I succeed, I succeeded because of the decisions I made and that's hell a lot of fun :)
    With your suggestion all fun would be about "how much soldiers do I take with me?". A single poor decision that you will mostly answer with "all that I can spare concerning the other battlefields". This is a completely different concept and has nothing to do with a detailed warfare game concept that is fitting to a detailed managing-a-city concept. That is what is this game about: Cities and units. Two equal abstraction levels.
    What you want to play is "Risk", I am sure. It is turnbased, you have numbers and you just dice everything out. I want to continue to play Civilization because I want to decide more than just "where do I send my armies and how do I split my force on them?". Risk I do only play on a board with my friends, but on a computer it is boring even or because it is a lot easier and quicker, as the computer dices everything out ;)

    Additionally it would be not more realistic at all, of course not! Never in history were battles fought by formulars. A formular can not consider the number of decisions made by a good general (a player) compared to a bad general that may even have a good day (another player). When do I send the cavalry? Where do I put my defenders? How do I disturb the enemies advance?
    With units you have this power to decide what to do. You can choose the battlefield if you are a good general. You can decide how you attack and surprise your opponent. And wether you retreat after some losses or not, you may as well decide.

    A formular can not provide such decisions that decide about life and death. A general, that is more realistic, can. You are the general. And therefore you want to control what your units do and let it be done not by some formular.

    If you want to stick to quick and easy: Feel free to switch on "stack attack" in the game options dialog. It should eliminate your need for a quicker and easier solution to battle other players. But not always the best...

    Yours,

    Publius
     
  7. KingAl

    KingAl RHPS Criminologist

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    Eh? Collateral damage is just meant to be a cure for the 'Stack of Doom'. Just forget that they're catapults and view them as a gameplay device. So just don't use stacks. And if units with low strength values could never win, they would be completely useless, so it makes sense that they win sometimes, especially against weakened enemies.
     
  8. Ravinhood

    Ravinhood Warlord

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    The origional poster is just some old grog who's used to playing OLD wargames with OLD game engines and can't accept the NEW CHANGE to the way combat systems can and do work. I like the combat system and I'm an old grog from the 60's. But, some just can't conform and so they gripe, hence why they are called grogs. (G)riping (R)ediculous (O)ld (G)easers. ;)
     
  9. Tholomeo

    Tholomeo Chieftain

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    The combat system has let me down so many times.
    Example:
    I have five Modern Armors (all with city raider 3 upgrades, plus two of them have collateral 2 upgrades) and 3 mech.infantries (all with combat 1 and anti-gunpowder upgrades). The AI attacks my stack with bomber, doing some collateral damage, and then subsequently by two mech.infantries, destroying two my elite Armors. I can't understand this!!!

    After the bomber raid, my MI's have 28-29 hit points, and my MA's have 34-35 hit points.
    Finally, MI combat strength = 28*1.1(combat 1)*1.25(anti-gunpowder)*1.25(hills)=48.1
    MA strength = 34

    Why the heck do I lose my beautiful armors in such a situation? Armors are obviuusly not intended to be defenders!

    Is it a bug, AI cheat, or my negligence?
     
  10. CyberChrist

    CyberChrist You caught my attention

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    ...

    Poor examples, all of the peoples you use as examples had far better military capability and equipment than that of a club wielding warrior.

    Calling either of them barbaric is both ignorant and rude.
     
  11. GIDS888

    GIDS888 King

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    I had real problems with the combat system in Civ4 until I got a handle on the UPGRADES.

    No spearman or bowman or Grenadier for that matter can stand up to a properly upgraded infantry or tank. Air power is causal in battle - if you don't want your stacks battered before they even attack, don't declare war on a civ with bombers!

    See guys? realism AND a game.

    It's like Lincoln said about having 1 hour to chop down a tree - he'd spend 45 minutes of it sharpening his ax!!

    CIV ON!!
     
  12. Pvblivs

    Pvblivs Scriptor

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    It is a RTFM Problem, not a bug. See http://www.civfanatics.com/civ4/info/units/! As you see under "modern armor", armors as cavalry, as horse archers, as chariots or as gunships or any "cavalry/armor type unit" in general do not receive any defensive boni! (from hills etc.) If that is also valid for gunpowder boni in defence etc. I do not know. Refer to the manual for further information.

    To conclude: Fast offensive units never receive defensive boni. Neither of cities, nor of woods or hills. They are simply there for attack. So you should always let your armors be accompanied by some mech infs for defense purpose, then you will be safe :)

    Publius
     
  13. MattJek

    MattJek King

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    you've dont like one of the most pivital aspects of the game and you've still been playing it for 15 years???? :confused: :confused:

    You dont like RTS, you dont like turn based..... so what kind of war/strategy game do you like.... maybe you should try another genre
     
  14. MattJek

    MattJek King

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    This would make the battles so quick and borning that it would take the whole fun out of warmongering. You would just create huge stacked armies and move them around the map ala RISK. This is CIV not RISK
     
  15. DrPep

    DrPep Chieftain

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    I'd love to see Total War -type of combat in civ :lol: would be fun to actually see my modern armor take out some cavalry or axeman units :cool:
     
  16. werttrew

    werttrew Professor

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    Preface: This comment is not directed at anyone in specific but rather is a general response to this thread.

    In general, when it comes to game programming, what is more realistic is better than what is less realistic. However, sometimes what is most realistic doesn't work best with the game system. Sometimes being more realistic would make a game less fun. Imagine playing a version of Mario Brothers where, if your avatar "died," the game would shut off and you could never play that character again. Reloading is certainly not realistic.

    So, while the Civ programming isn't always realistic--especially when taking into account things like the time to move units, creating buildings, unit strength, or combat AI--it doesn't necessarily follow that by making it more realistic you'd have a better game.

    To use a silly analogy, imagine a role-playing game where the GM insisted that each player's character had to stop to defecate/urinate at least twice a day. This is certainly realistic, but wouldn't, in my opinion, make the game more fun. Can you imagine if Tolkien described Frodo stopping at the privy twice a day?

    There has to be a kind of a "gloss"--a place where the system of the gaming intelligence simplifies, eliminates, or changes realistic aspects for the benefit of the game playing experience. Granted, the programmers don't necessarily make the best choices, but this gloss is inevitable and necessary in any gaming system. No game (as of yet) can encapsulate entirely realistic aspects. Unless you consider that the entirety of life IS a game, in which case...well, that's a topic for another thread.

    To sum up:
    1. Realistic > Unrealistic
    but
    2. A good game (or any game, for that matter) can't always be realistic to the nth degree.
     
  17. Tholomeo

    Tholomeo Chieftain

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    I know this! Look at my calculations! I did not add hills bonus to Modern Armors in my calculations!
    I moved my MA's towards an enemy city, and three MI's were for escort!
    The question is: If I am not able to select what units in the stack will be defenders, why does the game engine decide to select not the strongest unit in a stack for this purpose?
     
  18. Pvblivs

    Pvblivs Scriptor

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    My fault. I see now that I recognize your abbreviation "MI" what I have ignored before ... :)

    It does, indeed, do so. What could be is, that it makes some errors. I have not checked this. You could try to build such a scenario with the world builder. E.g. put an enemy MA and three MI on a hill square and check what defender is chosen if you attack them and what are your odds.

    There, eventually, you will see why the MA is chosen in favour of the MI...
     
  19. Draconian

    Draconian Templar of Doom

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    I assume the attacking MI had bonus vs gunpowder.
    Combat promotions on the attacker apply against both defenders so i'll ignore them.

    your MI=28*(1+0,1+0,25-0,25)=30,8 vs 32/(1+0,25)=25,6 -> 1,203
    your MA=35,1 or whatever vs 32/(1+0,1)=29,1 -> 1,206

    In this case your MA had the better odds
    1. city raider 3 gives 10% vs gunpowder
    2. x% bonus vs x are not added to your strength, they are substracted from your enemies strength
     
  20. GIDS888

    GIDS888 King

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    I think Werttrew has very lucidly hit the nail on the head here. Good Post!

    Don't bombers ignore defensive/offensive capability and damage everything in a stack? Collateral Damage?

    CIV ON!
     

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