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Penalty for Surprise Attack

Discussion in 'Civ - Ideas & Suggestions' started by TheDS, Aug 25, 2008.

  1. TheDS

    TheDS Regular Riot

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    A Surprise Attack should be defined as one in which you enter your opponent's territory or attack him on the same turn you declare a war. A civilized leader will give his opponent a modestly sporting chance to gather his forces (probably to have one large battle and crush him), while a dastardly leader will begin a war by attacking.

    In this game, surprise attacks seem extremely powerful. Gather forces near cities with shortened borders, declare war, attack, take 2-5 cities at once, and in that amount of time, they want to capitulate. I have had wars last 2 turns, including the turn I declared it, and losing 2-5 cities the first 2 turns of a war seems frightfully disadvantageous.

    While there is already a diplo-penalty for "attacking my friend", this doesn't seem to go far enough. An extra diplo-penalty if the DoW included surprise attacks, with further penalties for each city you attack or take on the first 2-3 turns of the war. Extra war weariness for any units you kill or lose in those opening turns, since diplo-penalties seem out of proportion for such. Alternately, WW could be accrued even from battles on home turf, since a surprise attack was a surprise to everyone.

    The diplo-penalties might begin, or become bigger once Nationalism is researched, or against a Civ using it.

    Alternately, instead of a diplo-penalty, your power rating might be significantly diminished (-20%?), making you a more attractive target for opportunistic civs, and even dogpiles if you do enough Surprise Attacks, or your relations suck enough, though this would function more as a retribution attack than a "all your troops are gone" attack.

    Naturally, such surprise attacks won't affect civs who've never heard of you, so you can probably still get away with it in the early game, and in the late game when you're already powerful enough to take on the world, it won't matter much then anyway.
     
  2. TheDS

    TheDS Regular Riot

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    Wow, NO ONE had anything to say about this?
     
  3. rysmiel

    rysmiel Chieftain

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    "You are identifying something as a problem that I think is a virtue" did not seem to be a particularly constructive thing to say.

    Or to put it another way, if somebody makes the logistical investment and has the tactical smarts to win a war decisively in one turn, I'm inclined to think the game ought to reward that. Bogging down in a war that drags on and one without either side getting anywhere, otoh, would appear to be sufficiently much its own penalty.
     
  4. nbcman

    nbcman Chieftain

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    So you are proposing that you have to declare war and then wait one turn before attacking? That means you are allowing your opponent to attack you in their turn before you are allowed to attack. Sounds like a suicidal recipe to me-and completely ahistorical.
     
  5. uk53

    uk53 Chieftain

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    I agree suprise attacks work becasue they are a suprise, back in the Civ II days when you could put you troops on partial alert it was a clear advantage.... if anything they should get an advantage in attacks and suffer in the field of diplomacy like they do, espicaly if they dont make a formal declaration first (not going through the diplomatic screen but clicking the go head declare war when prompted.).
     
  6. TheDS

    TheDS Regular Riot

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    And by itself, it's not.

    And yet, that's the way it used to be done for quite a long time. Anyone who made a surprise attack was considered rather dastardly, not unlike people who attack civilian targets are maligned today.

    But no one is saying you CAN'T make a surprise attack, just that there's a penalty for being unsporting about it. You don't have to care if you don't want to. If you're really strong, then who cares what everyone else thinks? And if everyone you care about already loves you, then it won't matter that way either.

    It is neither. There are lots of people who play this game, and that is how they choose to prosecute their wars, particularly when they've got the Great Wall and Statue of Zeus built, because those things make enemy losses on your own territory count for a lot more than otherwise. I think the Imperialistic Trait works/worked that way too.

    It is most definitely NOT ahistorical. Consider Japan's actions in the 1930's and 40's. The only people they didn't simply attack, they delivered a declaration of war 30 minutes before the attack was scheduled. They were pretty well demonized for it, and rightfully so, but it wasn't until they attacked the US (and botched getting the declaration made in time) that someone stood up and made them stop doing that, because no one else was strong enough to.

    Why would anyone demonize Japan for the way they declared war on their enemies? Could it be because it was a rather ungentlemanly way to do things? Most of Europe observed a formal declaration system throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, and the "modern" practice of dueling was born from that, in which one party declares he is going to duel the other, and there are typically many days of negotiation between their Seconds. Read a good account of Aaron Burr vs Alexander Hamilton, and you will see what I mean.

    And it's not suicidal either. Yes, it's tougher, but if you've got your advantage already, your troops are positioned, and your factories are cranking out more troops, then you're still going to win, but it will take a few turns longer.

    "Fair warning" is called for in virtually every kind of engagement where someone could get hurt or killed. I'm sure you've heard of it, and this is the same thing.

    I've definitely slept since then, but I don't recall this. Perhaps this was in the Call to Power games?

    - - - - -

    The whole point of this is to add "fair warning" as an option. NOT a requirement, but an option. Early in the game, when you're rushing, and haven't met many other civs, it's irrelevant. Late in the game when you're strong enough, it's irrelevant again. It makes itself relevant and then obsolete automatically, no techs to research.

    And the goal is to reduce the insta-backstabs. All you have to do now is pile a bunch of troops on the border, declare war, and attack, and the next turn, the AI is willing to capitulate without ever having had the chance to defend itself. Woo hoo, how strategic and masterful, you won without much of a fight, because he who fires first wins. Where's the real incentive for an AI to not attack you the moment it has a force advantage, or vice versa?
     
  7. uk53

    uk53 Chieftain

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    [quote/]
    Originally Posted by uk53
    I agree suprise attacks work becasue they are a suprise, back in the Civ II days when you could put you troops on partial alert it was a clear advantage.... if anything they should get an advantage in attacks and suffer in the field of diplomacy like they do, espicaly if they dont make a formal declaration first (not going through the diplomatic screen but clicking the go head declare war when prompted.).

    I've definitely slept since then, but I don't recall this. Perhaps this was in the Call to Power games?.[/QUOTE]

    the alert system was in Civ II but was rarly used you could put your units on full 2/3rd and 1/3rd alert and they lost health based on it the only real advantage you got out of it was that military up keep was less, how ever if war was declared it would take the regular healing time for the unit to recover.
    as for the attacking with out the diplomacy menu simply take a unit put it next to a border you dont have open borders with then use the number pad to try and enter you will get a prompt are you sure you want to enter it will cause war or you can enter via an open borders agreement, all you do is then click declare war with out having to go in diplomacy, i think this should give you a advantage in that first attack and that turn but hurt you more diplomaticly. simmilar to the pearl harbor.
     
  8. nbcman

    nbcman Chieftain

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    From the European standards of warfare, attacking before a formal DOW is not preferred-although not unheard of. But the Asian standards of warfare as expressed by Sun Tzu emphasize the importance of deception and surprise. Note that there was not an eruption of outrage in Europe when Japan surprise attacked Russia at Port Arthur in 1904. So why should we enforce a European model of gentlemanly warfare over a game that is supposed to reflect the world?
     
  9. jsweeney

    jsweeney American

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    well, say if an empire suprises, then close friends to the attacked will have one of those option events where like it says "the chinese have suprised attack our aztec allies" and you have like three choices, one not to get involved, two to send startegic resources, or three to spend like 150 gold to send your friend whatever attack unit is major at that time. I think the last one kinda represents the lend-lease act, but just different a bit.
     
  10. TheDS

    TheDS Regular Riot

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    Why should we enforce a utopian model of religion, when religion has caused more bloodshed than pretty much every other cause in recorded history? Why should War Elephants be a unit in the game, when hardly anyone in history used them, yet even the USA used camels, but only one civ gets to use them as a UU? And why are Stealth units in the game at all, when only one real nation has ever developed them? Sounds like a UU to me, but it's not.

    These things were all done because they made sense, and they added something to the game to make it a lot more interesting. Each of them can be ignored to a certain degree.

    If you want, you can ignore this too, especially when there aren't very many other civs known (whether because it's early or late), but how realistic is it to bushwhack someone, and NOT have everyone else's estimation of you change because of it? And how much fun is it to cripple your target the opening 2 turns of the war, simply because you outweigh him and he never had a chance?

    Experiment time. You and your buddy go find two deserving jerks. One of you jumps one of them without any warning at all, the other one tosses his target a weapon with which he can defend himself, and then attacks. When you're both hauled in front of the judge, see which one of you gets the harsher sentence.

    This is of course a THOUGHT EXPERIMENT. Don't actually perform it.
     
  11. rysmiel

    rysmiel Chieftain

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    Not at all, but how often is that actually the case ? unless of course you are going for "kill this civilisation early enough that they have not met anyone else", which should be workable, and is workable in Civ III.

    lots. Lots and lots, because for me that's usually the climax of lots of turns focused build-up to doing exactly that. I love it when a plan like that comes together, because it means I have to do a minimum of boring fighting and can quickly go back to the part of the game that's really satisfying, which is developing my newly-conquered territory and making everyone's lives there happy and productive.
     
  12. uk53

    uk53 Chieftain

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    Well i think this could be resloved by haveing different cultures preciived differnt ways by differnt places possibly predetermined by leader prefrence or possibly have it determined through out the game, maybe for leaders who also do this would not affect thier opinion and allies wouldnt effect the opinion but nutral opisistion leader and the victim would disaprove.
     
  13. Onionsoilder

    Onionsoilder Reaver

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    Maybe it could be made so you can issue a Declaration of War that goes into effect on your next turn. So at the end of your turn, you declare war, then during the A.I. turn, your still not at war - but they know you will be DoW soon, so they move their units intio defensive positions. Then the following turn you actually start attacking.
     
  14. uk53

    uk53 Chieftain

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    i like that idea
     
  15. TheDS

    TheDS Regular Riot

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    You obviously didn't perform my thought-experiment, or you would know it's ALWAYS the case, at least in Western culture.

    But like I said, it's ignorable. Why should you care what the world thinks of you? You've already got the OBs, and you've got the ability to fend off attacks, so who cares if they get upset?
     
  16. rysmiel

    rysmiel Chieftain

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    Oh, you meant in reality.

    I don't know. I've not played sufficient Civ IV to be sure I have a statistically significant handle on this. But surprising people with dishonorable declarations of war in Civ III (which I have been playing for a lot longer) reliably loses you diplomatic kudos for good, in ways that seem entirely satisfactory in terms of gameplay. Not being able to just bribe them back to loving you again is one of the biggest things Civ III does better than Civ II.

    I am actually inclined to think it should be more complex than this. If the Germans and the Aztecs hate each other, and you and the Aztecs ally to make a sneak attack on the Germans, there is no way this should damage your reputation with the Aztecs. And whether it damages your reputation with anyone else should entirely depend on how honourable a player they are themselves; this is somewhere I'd very much like to see more distinction in personalities between the AI leaders.

    You know, just because I think your position is a long way away from an optimal range of gameplay in one direction, is no reason to caricature mine as being equally far from that range in the other. The game should support both the option to be a sneaky ba*d and the option to recover from that position if you put enough effort into it, no ? Particularly if you have whatever the game's equivalent of a major change of government is since the sneak attack.
     
  17. sqdtnz

    sqdtnz Chieftain

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    You could just make it so that all other civs like you a littlebit less for doing surprise attacks.

    In the real world this is also the case, for example Pearl Harbor. People find it even worse than it already is for it was unannounced. I think civ aims at being like the real world?
     
  18. TheDS

    TheDS Regular Riot

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    :rotfl:
    (You did mean that hypocrisy to be funny, right?)

    So even if your ally snuck up on your enemy, you wouldn't perceive your ally as dishonorable, in the event that you would eventually have to fight him?

    I'm sure different people will see things differently, and maybe some people are just so close that their friends can do no wrong, and never consider that their friends might backstab them, and this can just as easily be reflected in some AI leaders' characteristics. Some might overlook your dastardliness if they're your friend, some might not care at all, and some might not forgive you ever. Some people are more forgiving than others.

    If you've ever played a boardgame in which some players can ally together against others, you will find some people honor their agreements and some people maintain them only long enough to lull you into stripping the border bare and then attack you without warning. When someone backstabs you, doesn't that color your perception of them for all future games?

    Just because Shaka goes into Representation doesn't mean he's not still Shaka.

    BTW: I'm stealing "ba*d" from you.
     
  19. rysmiel

    rysmiel Chieftain

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    I've been trying to react seriously to your serious suggestion, which I disagree with; your "why should you think what the world cares of you ?" para felt like mocking rather than engaging with my position, an that is what I was objecting to. If that wasn't your intent, I apologise for twitching, but objecting to being mocked was the point, and I don't consider that hypocritical.

    Depends.

    Put it this way. If I, playing as a liberal democrat builder sort of person, and Churchill, also playing as a liberal democrat sort of person, make a military alliance against Isabella, playing as a vicious warmongering maniac who is a clear and present danger to both of us, and Churchill and I agree (assuming for a moment the diplomacy mechanism is in place to do so in detail) to a complicated joint surprise attach on Isabella, and we carry out that attack, and it succeeds, and Churchill lives up to his end of it and I live up to mine, should that make Churchill trust me more, or less ? Should it make me trust him more or less ? I'm inclined to think the answer is "more".

    The more I think about it, the more I think diplomacy would better be modelled by a combination of two different factors. A reputation factor, based on your general behaviour throughout the game (as far as the other civilisation knows; if they've not met you or heard of you, they should start off neutral, if they have contact with people who have contact with you that should modify that) and which might be something you could modify positively by building Wonders, and by culture (with "culture" serving as an in-game shorthand for "look how awesome I am"). And a trust factor, based primarily on how you had dealt with that specific civilisation. It would be possible to be very trusted and have a lousy reputation, then, if you were a fairly small and unimpressive civ with a small neighbouring ally with whom you had worked together since the start of the game, even if that involved joint missions of piracy and plunder and general misbehaviour; whereas you could have a great reputation but lousy trust with someone if you were a worldwide power who had made lots of deals with most others and generally kept them but there was one particular nation you did not get on with and were in a state of wanting to destroy by any means necessary. I don't think these two numbers should be combined into one figure, because I can easily see wanting them to have different effects on different kinds of interaction.

    That would still support the behaviour where, if the capital of Persia happens to be right next to you and you archer-rush it, conquer it, and exterminate the Persians stupidly early in the game before they get the chance to meet anyone else, their opinion of you does not get transmitted and everyone else starts off neutral to you, so it encourages quick and nasty dirty deeds early on in the game and starting to care about reputation only once you have expanded a bit; I do, myself, think this is not a bad thing.
     
  20. Turquoiside

    Turquoiside Chieftain

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    That would still support the behaviour where, if the capital of Persia happens to be right next to you and you archer-rush it, conquer it, and exterminate the Persians stupidly early in the game before they get the chance to meet anyone else, their opinion of you does not get transmitted and everyone else starts off neutral to you, so it encourages quick and nasty dirty deeds early on in the game and starting to care about reputation only once you have expanded a bit; I do, myself, think this is not a bad thing.
    -x-
    Plus, it is historically accurate: ancient civilizatons didn;t care if you destroyed some civilization they only knew of akwardly.
     

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