Combat System for Civ VII

Krajzen

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I wanted to carefully think through my own combat system for civ7, but then I have realized that the game has certainly been in design production for years now, and such fundamentals as 'the very basic shape of combat system and map' are designed long time ago and extremely unlikely to change :p What do you think?
 

Gedemon

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You're right, but it's not to late for civ8 :D

Or maybe civ7 combat will be open to modding this time.
 

pineappledan

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That's a big post...

I hew close to @Zaarin 's general critique. This is just a bit too elaborate. It reminds me of the combat system in Endless Space 1, where you selected the loadouts of your combat ships when building them, but then also selected 3 maneuvers for combat, and it basically worked like 3 rounds of rock-paper-scissors. It wasn't very fun.

One thing I will say is that I hope they tie armies to unit types, rather than tying them to tech types. You wouldn't create a massive army of light skirmishers, but you would create a densely packed army of heavy infantry. The heavy infantry unit types like spearmen and heavy cavalry should be designed around an army system, rather than the ability to form armies unlocking in the late game.
 
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That's a big post...

I hew close to @Zaarin 's general critique. This is just a bit too elaborate. It reminds me of the combat system in Endless Space 1, where you selected the loadouts of your combat ships when building them, but then also selected 3 maneuvers for combat, and it basically worked like 3 rounds of rock-paper-scissors. It wasn't very fun.

One thing I will say is that I hope they tie armies to unit types, rather than tying them to tech types. You wouldn't create a massive army of light skirmishers, but you would create a densely packed army of heavy infantry. The heavy infantry unit types like spearmen and heavy cavalry should be designed around an army system, rather than the ability to form armies unlocking in the late game.
Had a lot to cover, even for an introduction. Shucks, Dupuy's original book ran over 300 pages and included multiple lines of equations to calculate combat results, so count your blessings! (Even I am not Mad enough to throw that at the gaming community!)

As I've said before, it's about time we made use of the advantages of a computer instead of harking back to Board Game mechanics. The system as described requires you to build or obtain combat units and build an army - same thing you'd have to do in virtually any game. Then you maneuver/move that army into contact. Then you pick a Posture, and the computer does the rest and feeds you the result.
The complications and elaboration are as much as possible Behind the scene, buried in the computer.

And interestingly, such a system would emphasize unit types rather than pure number of units. An army entirely of heavy (melee) infantry could be the prototypical Greek Classical force of Hoplites. It would be in dense formation (automatically: the hoplon shield demands it) and extremely hard to stop from the front on level ground, but it couldn't pursue anything faster than a three-legged turtle or make a flanking attack unless the opponent is sound asleep: it's a one-shot pony, but it does that one-shot really, really well. A massive army of light skirmishers is also possible, but only works in very rough country where nobody heavier can get at them or if the skirmishers are all armed with composite bows and riding horses - they can pursue like mad, or outflank or surround, they just cannot get close to anyone to finish them off unless they are already stuck full of arrows, and of course they aren't much good against a city wall of any kind.

The interaction between unit types and army types has been sadly lacking in most games, which leads to the inane situations where an entire stack of the biggest-combat-factor units is 'best' in all situations. With the Posture interaction, mixed forces of light and heavy infantry, a light cavalry unit or two if you have the command and control, is likely to be more useful in more situations than the Hoplite-only heavy infantry mass or a Light Cavalry-only Scythian force, or any other Extremely Focused but limited-in-scope 'army'.

As said, it's initial ideas. I generally like to start complex and whittle it down: it should seem too much at first.

On the other hand, the complaints about 'too complex' are not entirely convincing from people currently playing Civ VI, a game that requires you to build, deploy and maneuver myriad individual units over a wide range of game map terrain and individually send each unit into Combat one at a time unless they've been combined into Undifferentiated Corps or Armies. I put it to you that going into battle with a single 'army' of 4 - 6 units in the proposed Posture system requires 2 decisions: where and when to move into combat what posture to use for the entire Army/Stack, and all the combat calculations and results are presented to you for all the individual units and the Army as a whole, something that would require a minimum of 8 - 12 actions in Civ VI: moving and fighting each individual unit.
 

AffineConstant

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An improved combat mechanic would seem straightforward: Instead of a new unit starting out at 100% health and multiple onscreen units, it starts out at 33% health. You can then spend money to re-enforce (actually spending money to repair and re-enforce makes combat much more interesting in general). So now, effectively, you can "stack" up to 3 units of the same type in one hex. Those "3 stack" units balance out by taking more time/money to get up to strength though. (Is it better to have a city make more units, then stack, or for you to reenforc units separately? Maybe both, a city re-enforcing a unit is potentially much faster, but a unit reenforcing by itself is cheaper).

Along with some other fixes to the same system, initial "ranged" units only start out with "first strike" then get up to 1 hex range with trebuchets/longbownan, then 2 with modern long range artillery. Some (classical through early modern) units can repair/reenforce by pillaging areas, others need to be in "your territory" which can be effectively (for repair purposes) expanded by "supply" units that have little defense, but are necessary to keep up a war (now supply lines are simulated!).

For the supply lines, just represent hexes you (the attacker) is supplying but not conquered yet by a striped hex (your color/their color). Now you now where units can repair! Obviously there's a bunch of other balance changes that aren't fundamental to the game. EG cities so hard to take that you can surround a city with siege units and still take forever to actually wear it down bit by bit (I literally can't stack anything more in range and it's barely doing any damage, wtf??)
 
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historix69

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Modern Armies are huge compared to armies of antiquity, but they also cover much more space per warrior/soldier. Dupuy Institute's calculations were that a Classical host of 100,000 men covered about 1 square kilometer. A 100,000 man force in World War Two covered 3000 square kilometers, and even in the Napoleonic Wars (early gunpowder), 100,000 soldiers covered about 20 square kilometers.

So, no matter how you figure it, you cannot cram too many Units into a single tile and still expect them to fight with the weapons they have at the time. This is actually very handy for us gamers, because it means the Stack of Doom is automatically Excluded from discussion: it is impossible after a certain size of Stack, for each given Era.

The number and type of troops used in a certain geographical area usually depend on the terrain as well as the objective.
You need only a few troops to GUARD an area, but you need more troops to DEFEND the area against an attacker. There is a rule of thumb that the ATTACKER needs around 3 times the combat power to overcome a prepared defender which usually is 3 times the infantry, tanks, artillery, aircraft, etc in modern warfare. If the terrain favors the defender, eg rough terrain, forest, mountains, rivers, coast-lines, the attacker may even need more than 3 times the force.

Concentration of Power to break through a defensive line and turn a static war into a war of maneuver is a key principal of modern military strategy. The game should not set artifical limits for troops per hex which make a breakthrough impossible.

To check how many modern troops may fit into a hex, I usually take a look at the Battle of Kursk (WW2 Operation Citadel) in 1943. The Germans there attacked from both North and South with 3 Panzer-Corps each on a front-line of a few (15-45) kilometers.

Spoiler Kursk :




As most of you know in brief in WW1 / WW2 military formations (units) were roughly distinguished as :
(see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_organization )
...
(XXXXX : army group = 2+ armies)
XXXX : army = 2+ corps
XXX : corps = 2+ divisions
XX : division = 2+ brigades
X : brigade = 2+ regiments or several battalions

While smaller formations like regiments or battalions are single type formations like infantry, tanks, artillery, the bigger formations starting with brigade (X) may contain mixed types, eg some infantry, some tanks, some artillery under one command which is similar to a (small) army in many computer games.
Considering the size of hexes in CIV-games, I would allow military formations of brigade size up to corps size per hex, maybe slowly going from brigade to corps over time.
A player who concentrates a corps in one hex (for attack) has the trade-off that his units could defend several hexes of frontline instead.

The costs of military units probably should be adjusted that an average city cannot field several corps to avoid that the military map is flooded with corps.
Using big military formations in difficult terrain should be countered by in general higher logistical costs for these terrains, so that defense (1:3) in difficult terrain is more reasonable than offense.

Spoiler Example WW1 :

see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_Army_order_of_battle_(1914)
In 1914 at start of WW1 the germans had around :

4 x Cavalry Corps (a 2-3 divisions = 10 divisions)

8 x Armies :
- 1st Army (4 corps + 2 res.corps)
- 2nd Army (3 corps + 3 res.corps)
- 3rd Army (3 corps + 1 res.corps)
- 4th Army (3 corps + 2 res.corps)
- 5th Army (3 corps + 2 res.corps + ...)
- 6th Army (4 corps + 1 res.corps + ...)
- 7th Army (2 corps + 1 res.corps + ...)
- 8th Army (3 corps + 2 res.corps + ...)
------------------------------------------
= 25 corps + 14 reserve corps + several single divisions and brigades


Using composed military units (formations) in size of brigades, divisions and corps or even armies however would move the combat mechanics close to strategy games like Hearts of Iron, removing most of the tactical content based on the common Rock-Paper-Scissors system.
 
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The number and type of troops used in a certain geographical area usually depends on the terrain as well as the objective.
You need only a few troops to GUARD an area, but you need more troops to DEFEND the area against an attacker. There is a rule of thumb that the ATTACKER needs around 3 times the combat power to overcome a prepared defender which usually is 3 times the infantry, tanks, artillery, aircraft, etc in modern warfare. If the terrain favors the defender, eg rough terrain, forest, mountains, rivers, coast-lines, the attacker may even need more than 3 times the force.

Concentration of Power to break through a defensive line and turn a static war into a war of maneuver is a key principal of modern military strategy. The game should not set artifical limits for troops per hex which make a breakthrough impossible.

To check how many modern troops may fit into a hex, I usually take a look at the Battle of Kursk (WW2 Operation Citadel) in 1943. The Germans there attacked from both North and South with 3 Panzer-Corps each on a front-line of a few (15-45) kilometers.

Spoiler Kursk :




As most of you know in brief in WW1 / WW2 military formations (units) were roughly distinguished as :
(see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_organization )
...
(XXXXX : army group = 2+ armies)
XXXX : army = 2+ corps
XXX : corps = 2+ divisions
XX : division = 2+ brigades
X : brigade = 2+ regiments or several battalions

While smaller formations like regiments or battalions are single type formations like infantry, tanks, artillery, the bigger formations starting with brigade (X) may contain mixed types, eg some infantry, some tanks, some artillery under one command which is similar to a (small) army in many computer games.
Considering the size of hexes in CIV-games, I would allow military formations of brigade size up to corps size per hex, maybe slowly going from brigade to corps over time.
A player who concentrates a corps in one hex (for attack) has the trade-off that his units could defend several hexes of frontline instead.

The costs of military units probably should be adjusted that an average city cannot field several corps to avoid that the military map is flooded with corps.
Using big military formations in difficult terrain should be countered by in general higher logistical costs for these terrains, so that defense (1:3) in difficult terrain is more reasonable than offense.
Using the official historical titles of units for size comparisons is problematic, because no two armies agreed on sizes and the larger units (above division) were not standardized at all: The German 4th Army in front of Moscow in October 1941 had 23 divisions in it, 2nd Army just to its south had 10 divisions. Army Group Center at the time had 3 armies, 1 Panzer Army and 2 Panzer Groups in it, Army Group North had 2 armies with a single Panzer Corπs. As you stated, terrain makes a difference, also the Operational Mission assigned to the formation.

Kursk is a bit of an anomaly to use to get general figures from: the Soviets were in fortifications laboriously built up over the preceding 3 months and so the battle was more of a siege assault than a field battle and many Soviet formations were in extended formations because hey had the benefit of massive minefields, covered positions, and an enormous amount of non-divisional artillery units, not typical of field engagements even in the Soviet Army until the end of the war.
It's better to use the armies' own standards in their manuals for the concentration they thought it was possible or necessary to fight from. Those are interesting. Virtually all the major armies in WWII thought a single infantry/rifle battalion would normally defend a front 1 kilometer wide, and that remained true from beginning to end of the war. What changed is that that same battalion also deployed by the end of the war 1 kilometer deep - making its defense more of a web than a line, making it harder to target the entire battalion from the start of any action.
At the other extreme, from 1938 a panzer battalion was expected to attack on a front 1 kilometer wide and up to 2 kilometers deep, and a panzer division of 1941, with its infantry arrayed among or behind its 2 panzer battalions, could basically mass the entire division to attack on a front of 2 kilometers. Against 2 rifle battalions, is it any wonder why panzer divisions almost never failed to make the initial breakthrough in the first half of the war?
Following this logic, by 1943 the Soviet Army regularly massed for the attack much more extremely than they had planned before the war. In August 1943, against the German 167th Infantry Division, the entire 4th Guards Army with 8 rifle divisions and 2 artillery divisions massed for an attack, and once they made a breakthrough, the 1st Guards and 5th Guards Tank Armies with 5 tank or mechanized corps drove over the remnants of the 167th. That kind of mass, with the average rifle division attacking on a divisional front of 2 - 3 kilometers with enormous artillery support, was normal for the rest of the war. Such an attacking rifle division, by the way, would be echeloned, with an initial attack by one reinforced regiment on the divisional frontage, followed by a '2nd wave' of another regiment, followed by the divisional reserve of a third regiment with more tank support. The divisional attack formation would be 2 - 3 kilometers wide, and up to 9 kilometers deep, with a mass of emplaced additional artillery among it and behind it.

So, the point remains, that there are limits to how much you can concentrate in a given area and still fight effectively. Terrain that limits visibility so that firing and combat ranges decrease, most obviously Jungle and Urban areas, make it possible to increase 'combat density', but only so much. The extreme urban combat at Stalingrad involved no more than 8 - 10 German divisions at any one time in the urban area, on an urban frontage of over 25 kilometers, so about 3 kilometers per division. This was about twice the concentration for a major attack that would be considered normal in more open terrain.

Dupuy's figures for the concentration densities of historical eras and weapons still holds pretty accurately right up to the present day, with the addition that concentrations that would have been normal in World War Two are proving to be suicidal against modern weapons, as the Russian military is learning in Ukraine: the relationship remains true that more lethality in weapons requires that the target forces spread out more to make smaller targets of themselves, whether that means spreading your line to avoid amassed arrow fire or spreading out your tanks to avoid being targeted by long range precision missiles: the first is a spread of meters, the second of kilometers, but the principle is identical.
 

historix69

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One mayor problem is that CIV is using turns featuring several years down to maybe a month or half a year, but it does not feature day-night cycle, seasons or good-bad weather ... CIV assumes that it is always daytime, good weather and perfect sight, so military units in range cannot hide.

An extreme example of using night time for maneuver I remember is Rommel's flanking move at May 27th 1942 at Gazala, where most of the German African Army troops moved over night around 40 miles to the east through dark empty desert and started a surprise attack against british positions next morning from the "wrong" side.
 
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AffineConstant

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Actually.

"Your units can't repair" anywhere (special units/pillaging excepted) outside of the influence of your cities. Why? Instead, replace it with an (obviously uprageable throughout time) "supply" unit that counts as a civilian. Supply units have X charges like builders that they use to repair/re-enforce your existing units.

Extremely easy to understand for players, and a really dynamic idea of "supply lines", which is obviously the most important part of war Civ hasn't ever really even considered. Logistics has been an overarching concern of armies for millennia, a good deal of The Art of War is logistics. By making "logistics' and supply into units it means enemies can capture supplies, players can consider their "supply lines" tactically, etc. etc.
 
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Using the official historical titles of units for size comparisons is problematic, because no two armies agreed on sizes and the larger units (above division) were not standardized at all: The German 4th Army in front of Moscow in October 1941 had 23 divisions in it, 2nd Army just to its south had 10 divisions. Army Group Center at the time had 3 armies, 1 Panzer Army and 2 Panzer Groups in it, Army Group North had 2 armies with a single Panzer Corπs. As you stated, terrain makes a difference, also the Operational Mission assigned to the formation.

Kursk is a bit of an anomaly to use to get general figures from: the Soviets were in fortifications laboriously built up over the preceding 3 months and so the battle was more of a siege assault than a field battle and many Soviet formations were in extended formations because hey had the benefit of massive minefields, covered positions, and an enormous amount of non-divisional artillery units, not typical of field engagements even in the Soviet Army until the end of the war.
It's better to use the armies' own standards in their manuals for the concentration they thought it was possible or necessary to fight from. Those are interesting. Virtually all the major armies in WWII thought a single infantry/rifle battalion would normally defend a front 1 kilometer wide, and that remained true from beginning to end of the war. What changed is that that same battalion also deployed by the end of the war 1 kilometer deep - making its defense more of a web than a line, making it harder to target the entire battalion from the start of any action.
At the other extreme, from 1938 a panzer battalion was expected to attack on a front 1 kilometer wide and up to 2 kilometers deep, and a panzer division of 1941, with its infantry arrayed among or behind its 2 panzer battalions, could basically mass the entire division to attack on a front of 2 kilometers. Against 2 rifle battalions, is it any wonder why panzer divisions almost never failed to make the initial breakthrough in the first half of the war?
Following this logic, by 1943 the Soviet Army regularly massed for the attack much more extremely than they had planned before the war. In August 1943, against the German 167th Infantry Division, the entire 4th Guards Army with 8 rifle divisions and 2 artillery divisions massed for an attack, and once they made a breakthrough, the 1st Guards and 5th Guards Tank Armies with 5 tank or mechanized corps drove over the remnants of the 167th. That kind of mass, with the average rifle division attacking on a divisional front of 2 - 3 kilometers with enormous artillery support, was normal for the rest of the war. Such an attacking rifle division, by the way, would be echeloned, with an initial attack by one reinforced regiment on the divisional frontage, followed by a '2nd wave' of another regiment, followed by the divisional reserve of a third regiment with more tank support. The divisional attack formation would be 2 - 3 kilometers wide, and up to 9 kilometers deep, with a mass of emplaced additional artillery among it and behind it.

So, the point remains, that there are limits to how much you can concentrate in a given area and still fight effectively. Terrain that limits visibility so that firing and combat ranges decrease, most obviously Jungle and Urban areas, make it possible to increase 'combat density', but only so much. The extreme urban combat at Stalingrad involved no more than 8 - 10 German divisions at any one time in the urban area, on an urban frontage of over 25 kilometers, so about 3 kilometers per division. This was about twice the concentration for a major attack that would be considered normal in more open terrain.

Dupuy's figures for the concentration densities of historical eras and weapons still holds pretty accurately right up to the present day, with the addition that concentrations that would have been normal in World War Two are proving to be suicidal against modern weapons, as the Russian military is learning in Ukraine: the relationship remains true that more lethality in weapons requires that the target forces spread out more to make smaller targets of themselves, whether that means spreading your line to avoid amassed arrow fire or spreading out your tanks to avoid being targeted by long range precision missiles: the first is a spread of meters, the second of kilometers, but the principle is identical.
And so this means some form of stackings has to return?
 
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Actually.

"Your units can't repair" anywhere (special units/pillaging excepted) outside of the influence of your cities. Why? Instead, replace it with an (obviously uprageable throughout time) "supply" unit that counts as a civilian. Supply units have X charges like builders that they use to repair/re-enforce your existing units.

Extremely easy to understand for players, and a really dynamic idea of "supply lines", which is obviously the most important part of war Civ hasn't ever really even considered. Logistics has been an overarching concern of armies for millennia, a good deal of The Art of War is logistics. By making "logistics' and supply into units it means enemies can capture supplies, players can consider their "supply lines" tactically, etc. etc.
'Logistics" - the management of supplies, maintenance, replenishment of units and forces, is a very difficult thing to get right in any game. I've played (and written) rules for 'supply' in board games and miniatures games from the Ancient period to World War Two, and they ALWAYS run the risk of either being too simple-minded or too complex, either ignorable or a major pain in the butt to deal with.

Especially in a game with the scope of Civilization, which would have to deal with everything from ancient/classical armies and fleets to modern mechanized, special forces, naval and air units - each with an entirely different set of 'supply' problems to deal with and attempt to model.

The Supply Unit model can work, but only in certain circumstances. In the old Avalon-Hill game Africa Corps it worked perfectly, because the German side IRL relied on capturing British supplies and equipment for much of the war, and a discreet Supply Counter that could be captured modeled that perfectly - especially when the Axis player got about 1/2 of the Supply Counters he needed so that he had to capture his opponent's counters to do anything in the game.

But that would be a poor model for armies in the Ancient Classical, Medieval or Early Modern periods, because armies back then usually lived off the country and brought very few supplies along with them - and only relied on bringing up supplies from somewhere else if they were moving through areas with nothing for supply in them, like a desert.

Armies, frankly, by their nature represent too great a concentration of hungry men and animals to be supplied for long from any given area. IF supply is necessary - like if they have stopped to besiege a city - then it has to come from somewhere else, and so Supply = Supply Line. That is the better model, covering a wider area in time and space, for Civilization. Think of the supply line in game terms as a Trade Route between a Supply Point and a military Unit(s), with both ends of the Trade Route being potentially Moveable.
The Supply Point would normally be a friendly city - which concentrates food and supplies anyway for its own population, so we can assume that a certain percentage can be siphoned off for an army or fleet. The length of the Supply Route would vary with technology, and would start out being very short indeed on land, since it would be composed of pack animals and so would consume a percentage of the supplies it carries and after a very short distance (historically, less than 200 kilometers) would deliver nothing at all to the other end. Completely supplying an army in pre-Industrial times usually required Water Transport - either by sea or river or a combination of the two, or 'Living off the land', which meant stealing everything that wasn't nailed down in the tiles you pass through, and woe betide the army that tries to sit in one place for any length of time, because the tile and the army will run out of supplies in a very few weeks or days - in game terms, a fraction of 1 turn.

So, here's my 'quick and dirty' Supply Rules for Civ VII (or later)
To avoid penalties (loss of combat strength as a minimum) all military combat units must either Forage as they move through tiles or trace a Supply Line to a Supply Point. (for this rule, Reconnaissance Units are not considered combat units)
A Supply Point is an friendly City not under Siege. (For a stacking type of combat system, a valid supply line must be traced to a city or combination of cities whose population is equal to or greater than the number of combat units tracing supply to them).
The length of the Supply Line varies with terrain - much longer along rivers or Roads, shorter through bad terrain like Tundra, Snow, Desert, Rain Forest, etc.
The length of the Supply Line changes with Technologies like The Wheel, Railroad, Combustion, and upgrading of Roads.
Once Railroads are built, a supply line is the length of the railroad back to a friendly city, regardless of length.
Supply Lines can be cut or interrupted by enemy units, air power, Special Forces actions ("demolition" Spy-type action) and Nuclear strikes.
Supply Lines traced by sea are as long as a Trade Route traced by sea, to a friendly city with a Harbor as a Supply Point. Enemy Naval Units or Weather Disasters (you cannot trace a Supply Line through a Hurricane - let's call it, say, the Divine Wind for certain Civilizations) may interrupt a sea Supply Line.

Every turn that a military unit or force cannot trace a valid Supply Line AND cannot 'Forage' the tile they are in that unit(s) take Damage and their Combat Factor (and, after Combustion, their Movement Factor) will be reduced.

Some units, like Light Cavalry in plains or grassland tiles, are automatically in supply: the terrain in the tiles can feed their horses, and they can hunt effectively while moving through them. Camel Cavalry get the same benefit in desert tiles.

So:
* Surrounding an enemy makes sense, as it does in the real World.
* Scouts and other Reconnaissance Units have a definite purpose throughout the game now - they are virtually Immune to the effects of Supply, and so can be used effectively where 'regular' units cannot go.
* You cannot go marching clear across the map to attack someone without paying attention to Supply Lines, friendly supply sources and the like.
* Diplomacy to ensure supply from friendly or neutral City States and other Civs becomes extremely important to maintain an offensive a long way from Home: Alliance/Coalition Warfare takes on a whole new meaning besides simply having friendly units from another entity: getting Supply from them may be far more important.
 

historix69

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But that would be a poor model for armies in the Ancient Classical, Medieval or Early Modern periods, because armies back then usually lived off the country and brought very few supplies along with them - and only relied on bringing up supplies from somewhere else if they were moving through areas with nothing for supply in them, like a desert.

Ancient and medieval armies often carried a large stash of cash, gold, silver, etc to pay the soldiers or mercenaries who then bought goods from locals and traders (sutlers, marketenders) who accompanied the army (tross). These civilian camp followers often also provided weapons, armor, ammo and repairs as well as other services (prostitution) in exchange for cash or valuables (loot).
 
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Ancient and medieval armies often carried a large stash of cash, gold, silver, etc to pay the soldiers or mercenaries who then bought goods from locals and traders (sutlers, marketenders) who accompanied the army (tross). These civilian camp followers often also provided weapons, armor, ammo and repairs as well as other services (prostitution) in exchange for cash or valuables (loot).
Actually, the Gold Method was used as late as the War of the Spanish Succession, 1702 - 1714 CE: when Marlborough marched his army through Germany in 1704, his Quartermaster-General, Cadogan, rode one day ahead of the army with an escort of dragoons and bags of hard coins, laying out the camping sites for the units following, and stopping by the nearest towns to tell them to bring supplies to the site starting the next day for payment in hard cash. Marlboriugh's army arrived in Bavaria well-fed, healthy, with horses in perfect condition. The French armies marching through the Balck Forest to meet him tried simply 'requisitioning' everything, started up a guerrilla war against them, and arrived with their underfed horses suffering from an outbreak of disease that ultimately dismounted about 15% of their cavalry force at the Battle of Blenheim later that year. A classic example of how Money makes campaigns so much easier.

The camp followers and 'hangers-on' may have helped some of the supply problem, but it also aggravated it: all those extra mouths had to be fed, too, so it placed an extra burden overall on the army and the system. At its worst, this could result in very large 'armies' with very small actual combat forces. The worst I've found in reading was an army of the Tang Dynasty in China which totaled over 80,000 people, of whom less than 20,000 were combat troops and 1000 heavy armored cavalry lancers actually did most of the fighting! The rest were 'camp followers' and 'supply troops' who ate the countryside bare everywhere the army went and resulted in a great deal of anti-government sentiment among the civilian population who could not see a lot of difference between the depredations of an enemy army and that of their own!

Toss in a rule that by paying X Gold per turn in tiles that are within a State Border any pre-Industrial Era military can be automatically supplied as long as they don't spend a second turn in the same tile - which would 'pillage' the tile by eating/buying/stealing everything in it - and the Gold Method is covered.

That method is, by the way, useless for Industrial Era and later armies, where the major supply consideration changes from Food and Fodder for the people and animals to, by weight and bulk, ammunition, spare parts, replacement vehicles, trained troops, fuel and lubricants, most of which are not available 'on the ground' anywhere. By WWII ammunition alone accounted for 90% of the total tonnage of supplies by weight in non-mechanized forces (and the bulk of that artillery ammunition) and over 60% even when gasoline and diesel fuels were added for mechanized forces: as an example, a panzer division in 1941 required 220 cubic meters of fuel per day minimum (roughly, 60 - 70 tons), but also over 200 tons of ammunition and less than 20 tons of food. The supply problem had become almost completely that of establishing, tending and maintaining Supply Lines back to your own sources of production and supply.
 
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Actually, the Gold Method was used as late as the War of the Spanish Succession, 1702 - 1714 CE: when Marlborough marched his army through Germany in 1704, his Quartermaster-General, Cadogan, rode one day ahead of the army with an escort of dragoons and bags of hard coins, laying out the camping sites for the units following, and stopping by the nearest towns to tell them to bring supplies to the site starting the next day for payment in hard cash. Marlboriugh's army arrived in Bavaria well-fed, healthy, with horses in perfect condition. The French armies marching through the Balck Forest to meet him tried simply 'requisitioning' everything, started up a guerrilla war against them, and arrived with their underfed horses suffering from an outbreak of disease that ultimately dismounted about 15% of their cavalry force at the Battle of Blenheim later that year. A classic example of how Money makes campaigns so much easier.
OFF TOPIC.
eh. French relied alot more on simple lootings? and thus every German settlements along the way stung French supply lines with guerrillas and someone as bad as highwaymen?
And what kind of Dragoons Cadogan uses? ones that still Mobile Infantry or one that already becomes Cavalry?
With supply model. should Commercial Hub has any option to extend supply lines by any bit? and how far should continiously flown river extend supply lines along the way?
Your view on Attrition Rules of Napoleon: Total War please
 
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OFF TOPIC.
eh. French relied alot more on simple lootings? and thus every German settlements along the way stung French supply lines with guerrillas and someone as bad as highwaymen?
And what kind of Dragoons Cadogan uses? ones that still Mobile Infantry or one that already becomes Cavalry?
With supply model. should Commercial Hub has any option to extend supply lines by any bit? and how far should continiously flown river extend supply lines along the way?
Your view on Attrition Rules of Napoleon: Total War please
ALL Armies relied on Living Off The Land since before the Thirty Year's War, which was the nadir of the system - too many armies trying to live off Germany mean that very few people, military or civilian, could live off Germany after a decade or more of systemic pillaging and contributed to the desolation of large parts of central Europe during that war.
Marlborough's arrangements with Cadogan and hard coin on hand to the local population were the harbinger of things to come in the rest of the century, where European armies increasingly relied as much as possible on pre-war established 'magazines', Supply Points built within Fortifications to supply armies on campaign. This would be the start of the Industrial Era supply system, which used supplies largely sent from depots and magazines and increasingly, straight from the factory to the armies, which could not simply requisition the bulk of their supplies when those increasingly consisted of ammunition, especially artillery ammunition which is not normally found in the average town or village.
Cadogan used troops detailed from the Irish and Scots Dragoons, the two British Dragoon Regiments in Marlborough's army. Dragoons in general were still not considered 'real' cavalry at that time, but the British dragoon regiments were an exception: they were as well mounted as regular cavalry and at Blenheim charged with the rest of the British cavalry contingent and defeated the French Gendarmes, one of France's elite cavalry brigades.
Commercial Hubs should not affect supply lines at all. In every case, military supplies were something special - weapons, armor, massive amounts of food and fodder for great concentrations of men and beasts. The most important modifier would be the size of the city from which supply originates: the larger the city, the more likely it is already supplying a large concentration of people and beasts all the time, which makes it much easier to extend that to an army.
Riverine, like sea Supply routes, should extend supply lines at least twice as far as anything on land. The actual ratio is more like 10 to 1, but that just does not work game-wise: it makes any combat movement away from a river too restricted.

I haven't bought, downloaded or played any of the Total War series, so can't comment on any rules or systems they use.
 

pineappledan

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ALL Armies relied on Living Off The Land since before the Thirty Year's War, which was the nadir of the system - too many armies trying to live off Germany mean that very few people, military or civilian, could live off Germany after a decade or more of systemic pillaging and contributed to the desolation of large parts of central Europe during that war.
With the notable exception of the Inca/Tawantinsuyu. One of the many advantages of the qullqa system was that it allowed the empire’s militaries to avoid inflicting themselves on the local populace as they passed through to whatever border conflict or rebellion they were putting down. Some military supply bonus would be a great addition for the Inca.
 
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With the notable exception of the Inca/Tawantinsuyu. One of the many advantages of the qullqa system was that it allowed the empire’s militaries to avoid inflicting themselves on the local populace as they passed through to whatever border conflict or rebellion they were putting down. Some military supply bonus would be a great addition for the Inca.
Mea Culpa - I should have specified European armies. Different systems and practices applied in the Americas, East Asia and South Asia both before and after this period.

You are absolutely right, though, that the different 'supply procedures' used by various Civilizations and cultures need to have some inclusion in addition to variations caused by more general terrain and unit types.
 

Chekko

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It's hard to think of something that is more advanced but at the same time won't be hell in late game when your entire map is covered with units. But what if your troops will through eras become more and more clumped together. I want combat to change every era. So it's very basic in the beginning to battle formations to combat with maybe more politics in them.
 
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