Hammer of the North v2.9 PBEM

Discussion in 'Civ2 - PBEM Games' started by Morten Blaabjerg, Mar 10, 2005.

  1. Duke of Marlbrough

    Duke of Marlbrough The Quiet Moderator Retired Moderator

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    Royal Guards, or Kings, even Thegns would be a problem.

    But, that's all part of how the game is suppose to be. Once the Vikings try to start pushing inland is where they are suppose to start having a much harder time with it. The Christians needed to protect key points and just write off the rest. They can't hope to protect everything. I was surprised at how many city improvements were still in cities when I took them. I expected the cities to have been stripped.
     
  2. Peaster

    Peaster Emperor

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    The advice about giving up coastal cities + patience is not very convincing from this game. If the Vikings take a big enough chunk of land (eg France) then the game is over. With a few Hammers, they can virtually destroy any civ they choose (eg Germany). Also, if a major Christian power joins the Vikings, the game is over. It seemed impossible for a Christian King to
    exert any control over this game.

    I'd like to hear more from the Viking players about whether the scenario is balanced. AFAIK the Norse cracked 4-5 civs without losing a battle (except for the one-turn German counterattack). Is that correct ? If so, was that from luck/skill/units/other ? The Danes seemed to lose a little more often, but it is hard to tell.

    Would the players be willing to share passwords now that the game is over, so the other players can see what happened ? I would go first, except that I didn't use a password.
     
  3. Patient English

    Patient English Designer

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    My password was "carolingian".

    Yes but, Duke, the Christians have only one King (IF they get one crowned, I never did) and they can build no more Thegns or Royal Guard. And even they are damn all use against a nuke.

    And abandoning the coastal cities entirely, and stripping them of improvements is neither historically accurate nor very satisfying to play. It will be months of realtime (in a PBEM) before you can realistically counterattack...
     
  4. Duke of Marlbrough

    Duke of Marlbrough The Quiet Moderator Retired Moderator

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    The Vikings have to play with a double edged sword. On one hand they can build Hammers, but on the other if they take enough cities they lose that ability. If Morten hadn't built the Wonder for Hammers there wouldn't have been any during the game since shortly after that both Vikings had to accept christianity and expire the Hammer tech.

    As for stripping the cities:
    I think if anyone tries to play the game and not be stripping their cities for gold they will lose. I was stripping my cities of improvements almost every turn just to get more gold to RB what I needed. I also consider disbanding Monks to be be part of the 'stripping' process. Gold was the only thing that let the Norse do what they did how they did it. 80% of that gold came from Monks.

    As for if this game is balanced, no. I think the changes that were suggested before of not giving the Vikings Heirs (and making the Christian ones NONE units) and removing the internal Barbs for thr Chritians could balance it as it seems it was meant to be. The other thing I thought would help the Christians is if Missionaries could see out two squares, thus letting be of more use and be able to avoid Barbs easier.

    The things that tipped this game so far to one side was the poor playing by the Franks and Scots (sorry John). The Scots should, and can, delay the Norse quite a bit to give more time to the other players. The Franks were the victims of trying to protect too much with too little. Moving a badly needed Royal Guard out to try and cover a couple fringe cities cost them everything. If that unit had stayed in the city the Vikings would still be trying to take it out these many turns later.

    I'm not saying they have to abondon every coastal city, but they need to pick specific ones to protect and focus on them. They simply don't have the resources to protect them all.

    The main benefit the Norse had was units, lots of them ships. I planned from the beginning to only have certain ships attack while others were to act as transports. I set up shipchains early on and had most of my Norse units flowing down to the Franks from the beginning. I had planned on a couple minor attacks on the Scots just to keep them from mounting any counter-attack/ making it look like I was focusing on them and then bypassing them. My target from the first turn was the Franks. I had studied them and knew where thier potential weaknesses were in anticipation of playing them.

    My ships were moving troops forward every turn. When I realized that the Scots were simply sitting in their cities I figured a little more effort could break them early on. This would then allow me to not have to leave troops behind to cover that flank.

    The thing that paniced me the most was that I was able to take the Franks capital but I had no troops there. That's why I went the bribe route even though I would have preferred to use the gold elsewhere. My decision to finish off the Scots worried me at that point since it disrupted my ship chain and pulled units out of the pipeline. It almost cost me all of the Frankish cities when the Germans flowed in. Luckily my anal retentive practicies gave me a warning they were coming and I was able to get a couple units in their way to slow them down. It bought me a couple turns and saved everything.

    The Germans were a victim of their own doing since they didn't have any 'stop gaps' in their ruins lines. With 19 Monks available I think I would have pillaged at least one square of ruins behind my current advance just so the Norse couldn't have pushed all the way down them like they did.
     
  5. la fayette

    la fayette King

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    Latest news!

    "The Frankish leader had a secret alliance with the Norse leader.
    He received 2000g per city given to the Norse.
    Now retired on the Riviera, he spends his gold playing poker with high members of the Russian Mafia."

    (watch out!: this post is not supposed to be more serious than the vast majority of the latest news we watch on TV or read in the newspapers).
     
  6. Peaster

    Peaster Emperor

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    Duke - Thanks for the overview. I figured that gold was a big part of it, and that when one Christian civ cracks, the others are in trouble too. That's one reason I tried so hard to help France. Actually, I thought the game was over several turns ago, well before you got into the German runes, so I don't have any regrets about building them. IIRC, the 3 nukes managed to take out 4 of my super-units (basically, all of them), so IMO that's when it was all over - at least for Germany.

    I am still curious to see more details of the attack, though. I have almost no idea how many giants, kings, boats, etc you had at various places and times (after 793AD, of course). So, it's hard to decide for myself whether a Viking victory was inevitable or not. Would you mind sharing your password?
     
  7. Duke of Marlbrough

    Duke of Marlbrough The Quiet Moderator Retired Moderator

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    I think in this game a Viking victory was inevitable, but not soon forthcoming. I had nothing that could crack well defended cities, so I could have beat everyone down, but not finished them off. After that it would have just been a matter of time before taking them out fully.

    Also, with all the activity that the Danes had I could have probably taken them out as well. But, being the good Ally that I am I gave them control of troops that could have been used to instead attack them.

    Here are my last 5 turns with the password removed. The 808 save is where the biggest surprise happened and I saw German units pushing towards Rheims. Although, I won't share the excel file I used to track my battle plans and try to keep track of everything that was happening in the game. ;)

    BTW, the use of the Hammers was discussed very heavily between the Viking players. I ultimately decided to use them where I thought they would kill the most monks and hopefully take some defenders with them. I'm happy to hear they accomplished more than I had hoped. :)
     

    Attached Files:

  8. Morten Blaabjerg

    Morten Blaabjerg Settler

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    Yes, although I included a lot of incentive to go pirating and such. The scenario opens with the Spanish conquests in the Netherlands, and I could imagine there would be a lot of sneaky diplomacy going on before the Armada is ready to sail.

    Yes, I included several of your suggestions :) I started working on a v1.5 version with a new concept of fireships, as well including 'hero' units such as Drake and Farnese, the Duke of Parma etc. But I didn't get around to finishing it. The 1.4 version plays well, I think - I played it several times mp, but just with 2 players.

    I never played Bonaparte - will certainly try it out! :) - Sounds like fun! It would be fun to play an industrial age scenario, especially one I haven't played before. I prefer that to BMB.

    Yes sure! I would probably have to port forward or something though, as I am behind a router. I used to play mp games a lot on my old computer, but haven't yet tried it out with my new setup. I will see if I can it working. Any tips?

    (By any chance, anyone of you who knows why Civ doesn't play sounds from the default sound folder, when playing scens on XP?)
     
  9. SlowThinker

    SlowThinker Prince

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    I must own up I visited this thread, though sparsely.

    :) Nice to hear there is more PBEM players that take the game seriously.

    Concerning the password disclosure / looking at the saves: IMHO players should be always enabled to analyze the game turn by turn (by revealing all passwords or by other means ;) ), not only because of a post-game study but also because of a 'fear from cheating' that I noticed at some PBEMers. A cheater (for me a hypothetic person, :) I don't believe there is anyone) would hardly dare to cheat if he expected the game would be studied.
     
  10. Arthedain

    Arthedain - Celestial Being - SLeague Staff

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    Obviously I didn't cheat considering the poor results of my armies. I must say though, that i don't have any of the files left, since my old computer crashed, and I started a temporary hammer map on my sisters computer. :(
    I would give my password away, but dumb me used a password that I use in other PBEMS and to other stuffs. :rolleyes:
     
  11. la fayette

    la fayette King

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    I vote for Bonaparte 2.
     
  12. la fayette

    la fayette King

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    ... and my "Hammer" game is not passworded.
     
  13. Arthedain

    Arthedain - Celestial Being - SLeague Staff

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    Well, my civ is probably not password protected anymore anyways since I didn't play the last turn(s).
     
  14. Peaster

    Peaster Emperor

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    I just spent an hour or so looking over some saves from this game.

    1) The game was over by 811AD (probably earlier - but I didn't go further back than that). By then, the Norse had 54 super-units: 2 Kings, 24 Draks, 12VC, 5REs and 11 Giants ! (plus 3 Hammers due next turn, 22VR and many other minor units). I assume Germany was the strongest allied civ, but we had only 4 supers (+4 RGs). I doubt even inland cities were safe against such an army.

    I guess the Giants came from huts, but I haven't tried to check how many huts were popped, or what popped them.

    2) The Vikings reported dropping 3 nukes on Germany in 814AD. They actually dropped 4 (but who's counting?). The Oldenburg nuke (Norse) and the Hamburg one (Danish) were fairly close together.

    3) The Norse only lost 1 unit the whole game (a VR), except for the 4 units the Germans killed in their counterattack in France.

    4) I studied the Danes less carefully, but I guess they were a distant second in terms of power. They lost roughly a dozen units, and about half of those were on the Danish-German border.

    5) By 814AD, the Norse had fairly complete knowledge of the German map. Maybe this was gained from a treacherous ally ? or from using Hammers as scouts ?

    @Arthedain: I guess if you want your old saves, they are all posted here in this thread. If not, maybe Patient or Duke still have copies.
     
  15. Duke of Marlbrough

    Duke of Marlbrough The Quiet Moderator Retired Moderator

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    I only had 10 Giants when the game ended so I couldn't have had 11 by 811AD. Early on I was popping huts at the rate of about 5-7 a turn. Most came from villages, the rest I bought. If I got my count right I visited every village on the upper half of the map (except one or two that were about to be visited) from the left side of the board to about 85% to the right.

    The main problem I had is that all but two of my Giants were way the hell away in the rear. There was no way for them to be of any use but to try and explore, which was all but useless at this point in the game. Most of the rest of my army was the pretty much the same way. Out of the 111 units the game states me as having at the end only about 20 of them were land units that were actually close enough for actual use against anyone. Even after 4 solid turns of pushing every available unit into the Franks lands I only had 2 Kings, 1 Giant, 2 VC, 2 Raiders, and 2 Royal Guards to face the Germans. I even had to bribe a barb spearmen just to give one of my defensive points a second unit to avoid being bribed. The nine cities I took away from the Germans was the result of only 3 combats. As I took an empty city it would empty another city around it of its garrison. I think the Germans were having unit support issues of some sort. Without that the nine lost cities would have only been about 3 or 4.

    I only reported 3 Hammers so that it may help the Danes appear stronger than they were. :) I was hoping the Danes would have used their Hammer against the Frisians at Dorestad and then used that city as an entry point onto the German ruins and, hopefully, their less defended cities. We couldn't work out the logistics of it because of the possibility of German counter-attacks. And, yes every one of my Hammers scouted as much land as possible before being used. I can't tell you how much 'fun' it was to try and count out 99 squares only to miss where you were and have to start over. Or finding the path that you were trying for was 100 squares and having to start over.

    That one loss still irritates me. If I'm in a power situation I like to choose my battles. If I don't like the odds of a fight I wait until I do like the odds. The Scottish city of Dunkeld is a prime example. I had 2 Raiders right next to the city that, together, probably could have killed the Thegn in the city. But, instead of losing a Raider in the process I waited a couple turns until I could get a Chief up there to lead the attack. I'm somewhat of a 'perfectionist player'. I like to pick my battles and fight them on my terms whenever possible.
     
  16. Patient English

    Patient English Designer

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    Morten, La Fayette...

    I am glad you fancy a Bonaparte II game (ver III is in the works at the moment). Over at Evolution games we have a game ready to start, but need one or two more players...Would you be interested? I can vouch for both other players as good, and honourable.

    The thread is at: http://www.evo-games.net/Home/viewtopic.php?t=263&start=435&sid=d72a3226ea3b6c0c9e6395a95bff1c1f

    If you fancy it, let me know here, there, or by email. I hear no other voices, and the Evolution game would really be best with only 5 players (for speed reasons), b ut if the rest of you want to get involved in such a game, please let me know...
     
  17. Patient English

    Patient English Designer

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    BTW, on the first page of that thread is the zipped scenario, so you can have a look at my latest changes (there aren't many)....
     
  18. Morten Blaabjerg

    Morten Blaabjerg Settler

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    I think I'll pass this one, as it seems you're set to go. I just downloaded the scenario and will probably need some time to familiarize myself with it beforehand.
     
  19. Patient English

    Patient English Designer

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    OK. La Fayette, are you in? We still need one more player....
     
  20. la fayette

    la fayette King

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    I said yes.
    Count me in if there's room for me.
     

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