My apologies in advance for this being a long one! PLEASE NOTE: IF you don't think that the combat system could perhaps use some improvement, please don't flame us here that "this is not needed!!" Let us agreee to disagree, and let those of us here in this thread talk about improving it, as we would like too. It'll enhance OUR game experience. If you don't want to change this aspect of the game, cool. Enjoy it as it currently is instead. ONWARD-> NO!! I am NOT going to be saying what the BEST way to fix the combat system is! I'm going to throw my ideas out there, let me know what you think, but what I really want to do is try to start a thread where people can post their ideas on how to fix it, AND HOW THESE IDEAS HAVE WORKED .... in the "real world" (ie a discussion of the results of actual changes, *in the game*). So please, no discussion of how the programmers COULD change the system ... WE cannot make the changes THEY can, and it's possible that they will NOT put the time and effort (which cost $$) into actually re-writing the code, as in truly changing the combat system. (Wait for CIV 4 for that!) I COULD be wrong ... maybe another patch will "fix" this .. but for the sake of discussion, lets presume they do not. (Not to mention that that would amount to an admission that the way they've done it in CIV 3 is flawed ... don't expect that to happen ... but again I COULD be wrong ...) Instead, lets see what WE can do ourselfs to improve this part of the game. ANYWAY some base assumptions: 1) victory of technologically inferior units CAN happen SOMETIMES, most likely through MASS numbers (ie they have a SLIGHT chance each of causing some damage, so a lot of them statistically will cause some damage, and if a large enouh number attack, they can "eventually" pull the "brute" down. The question is HOW MANY need to be doing this for it to happen (ie the probabalities). KEEP IN MIND that the goal of not having the first civ to get Tanks trounce everyone is not a bad one. But it should be HARD (ie large numbers needed) for a weaker unit to win. AND for BIG differeces (e.g. Galley's aganst battleships, spearman agaisnt tanks etc.) the odds should be really really large against it. For practical purposes, you'll see it- but NOT half the time, or even 1 in 10. IN fact, that rate is debatabe. SHOULD it be 1/10, 1/20, 1/50?? Personally, I vote for about 1/15 (6.7%) to 1/20 (5%). This represents, to me, non-battle casualities. They happen. Some may feel they should be more like 1/12 or 1/10. Part of what I hope happens here is to get a feel for what is wanted in this regard. Maybe there will be a consensus and maybe not. 2) Naval twist on this is a bit different then on land. A frigate or ironclad just doesn't in real life have much of a chance against a battleship or a AEGIS cruser. (OR DD squadarons against battlegroups). WHY? Because the FASTER ships with the LONGER detection range and Greater attack range will simply stand off and blast them to kindling. NOTE one POSSIBLE exception to this: attack on ships in port. SHIPS at dock are vastly more vulnerable then ships on the high seas. NOT SURE HOW TO HANDLE THAT ... OK what are my ideas: Two thoughts seem the most common. (1) increase the hit points of all units- this will help to "smooth out" the stastical anamolys. (2) Increase the A/D (and for more modern naval units, the Movement) strengths of units as they become more modern, say +50% for Middle ages, +100-150% for Industrial, and +200-300% for Modern. (3) DO both 1 & 2 - this way primitive units with more hit points get a few more "rolls of the die" to do some damage. I'm sure many people have tried these approachs. HOW HAVE THEY WORKED and WHAT RANGES OF CHANGES WORKED BEST (ie MORE increases in A/D then those listed, or less or what?) HOW MANY more hit points? SOMEONE said somewhere in a post there was a limit on hitpoints (20?) that only allowed a MAX hit points increase of 4 fold?? IS this true? ONE problem with this is everything in civ 3 (as in life) is interlinked. The relative COSTS of the units and hence the games economics aspect could get frelled by this boosting of unit values. Another problem is that HIt points, or how hard it is to kill a unit, is linked in the game to combat experience. While this has some justification, it means that we CANNOT vary hit points by unit type or more important perhaps, by era. IF we could boost hit points of modern/Industirial/Middle Age units independently, I think that would do the trick better then option (3) abvove. The question of HOW MUCH of a change per era relative to earlier ones would still be open, however. Unfortunely, we CANNOT (I think?) do this ... hit points are set solely by experience (vet/elite/constript etc) levels. Because of the economic aspects, (and the work involved!), I have elected (personally), AT THIS TIME, not to try playing around with LAND units combat values, and have instead decided to stick with just boosting hit points. (My current ideas are +2 each to regular/veteran/Elite, but only a plus 1 to constripts.) I'm open to discussion on hit point levels from those who've tried it, however, and would like to hear anyones thoughts on the consequences in the game of doing this ... and how you might have ALSO changed unit costs as part of it- particulary for naval and air units- see below. NOW, on Naval units ... One can only say Naval units strengths, at least for modern units, are frelled. A BB has ADM of 18/12/5, and a destroyer has 12/8/5??? Same speed, but the BB is only 50% greater in A/D??? whooaaa!! For the time to build, the resources involved, and the power of weapons contained, this is outlandish IMO . A BB's GUN TURRENT weighs as much, ALONE, as the ENTIRE DD! So, ok we boost the BB A/D, increase the DD movement, (maybe decresase the BB movement, but I'd rather leave it alone now, in light of what you see below about older units ...) ALso, boost the cost of the BB (currently less then twice that of a DD, this is equally outlandish ... BB's should be A LOT more $$ OR the DD a LOT less ... see how things are interlinked once you start making changes ... ) AND as for bombardment, A BB main turrent shell leaves an extremely large hole in the ground, they are totally devastating ... OK what did I do? Now using these values: BB = 36/24/5, bombardment 16, keep range 2, let rate of fire -> 3. For others, Destroyer, lower the A/D- 10/7, boost speed to 6. Keep b/op range/rate at 6/1/3 (ok a little faster rate!). AEGIS: 16/14/ A/D, also speed 6, keep b/op rg/rate the same exept for rate now 3 also. ONE other thing on AEGIS *and* Nuc subs; let them carry cruise missles- transport quanity 2. I don't allow AEGIS to carry tac nucs, this could be wrong as probably in real life they do. Open for input on that one, but with the smart move being avoid nuclear war, it coud be a minor point. ON CV's- change capacity to 6, allow helicopters (I like the idea of airborne assualts from carriers, too- not Para but marine via chopter). BUt also, change speed from 4-> 5. Finally, change costs: CV 180 -> 200 (maye not enough) and BB from 200 -> 400. BB are devastating, but also COST A BUNDLE. Kept other cost the same, and kept transports the same (in everything). The Subs: at least in the patch they boosted a Nuc boats speed over a convential sub. NOT ENOUGH. Nuc's can outrun some DD, older BBs, and probalby can hold their own with CV and AEGIS (on speed). I'm trying a speed 5 (identical to BB), some logic exists for a 6 instead. Mike C's comments on Subs about how they "don't work right" hits home- close to target. Subs simply should NOT be attackable by anything other then AEGIS and DD, and DD should not be able to spot them ... easily. IE they don't spot them until they've (the DD) is attacked, then DD can counterattack, but DD cannot spot them normally. ONE SOLUTION: Let only AEGIS spot them (of ships), but let CV base helicpters, and let helicopter be able to spot subs. ( Part of the raising of CV transport capacity to 6 was due to adding helocpters to use). As noted, capacity of Nuc's up 1 from 2. Another idea (implementable??) would be to let DD attack subs when spotted by AEGIS or helicopter ... only. Perhaps boost sub attack strength from the new 8 to a 9. The other question is the middle/Industiral/ancient era naval unts and their strengths. OH, note also for above, hit points changes apply to ships as well, so that may be enough for these "middle era" units. MAYBE not, what do you all think? Air units: I'd like to get a better idea of how the patch has affected and hopefully "fixed" air warfare before I throw out a lot of ideas on that subject (myself). Maybe YOU have some ideas already, beyond the hit points changes that would happen for air units automatically when we change them for land/naval units. Some ideas I have considered are mostly tweeks to the bombardment rate (fighter/jet fighter 1->2, F-15 and stealth figher 2->3, and both types of bombers 3->4), tweeks to cost (fighter 8->11, Jet fighter and F-15 10->13, Stealth fighter 12->15, Stealth Bomber 24->30, and regular bomber increased to 13. F-15 operational range +1 to 7. Cruise missles incrase bombardment rate from 3 ->4. And allow bombers (both types) to now do recon missions. Along with the air units, I'd slightly increase the rate of fire for all ranged weapons (EXCEPT for catapult) by one- 2 for cannon and 3 for artillery and radar artillery. One thing I believe I saw was that "you could set a multiplier to A/D factors BY ERA, independently" (NOT an EXACT quote, but to that effect).. hmmm didn't see that, is it true? I looked at the unit tabs. didn't see this ... IS THIS true? Please le me know if you know how to do that!!!! OK what have youall ACTUALLY changed and HOW did it worK?? The editor is a wonderful tool to let us make the game work better, at least we have the ability to make SOME changes. THIS IS GOOD. LETS *NOT* FRET ABOUT THE FACT THAT WE "have" too. lets just DO IT. PLEASE, LET ME KNOW WHAT you've tried and what has worked ... and what hasn't. Feel free to comment on as little or as much of this post as you want. NOTE that I have NOT talked about any totally NEW UNITS. What with the game problems, and the business of the little activation videos (and because I don't know how to crate or edit them!) I have elected to work with adapting the current units- for its ease of achievement. MOD FOLKS- No disrespect. I'll try your ways out too! But for now, I'd like to keep this simple enough to be done commpletely with the editor. That way those of us less capable then others in a computer sense, can try to achieve these goals too. Maybe the idea of avoiding new units will fall by the wayside down the road! A true scenario editor or the ability to truly and easiely create units would change everything COMPLETELY! Feel free to suggest new units, but personally, I'd like to make what we already have work better first. Good luck and have fun! "And we thank you for your support ..."