1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

Traps and Land Mines

Discussion in 'Civ - Ideas & Suggestions' started by mica8911, Dec 13, 2009.

  1. trickofthehand

    trickofthehand Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Messages:
    310
    I have to disagree, minefields are actually extremely inexpensive. As a force multiplier their cost is drastically lower than the cost of say a tank. When you look at the finances behind defending a large tract of land, a division of armor is much more expensive than a few thousand mines. More importantly they allow for economy of force. If you have 2/3 avenues of approach covered by mines then you only have to dedicate forces to defending the 3rd avenue of approach, and maintain rapid response capability to the other 2.

    As far as minefield maintenance, there's virtually none. Sure you have to go out and replace mines that have been destroyed by the enemy, but you don't go out there and perform maintenance on each individual mine. That's why they are so appealing to field commanders. Also, I think the fact that there are non-profit organizations around the globe still trying to clean up minefields 20-50 years old is proof of this. While in the military I handled Claymores and PDMs, both are extremely easy to use, inexpensive and can be left out for indefinite amounts of time thru all weather.

    For a few decades now we've had the ability to deploy mines via airdrops and artillery, they are in effect the easiest weapon to use in our arsenal.

    Back to civ though, Camikaze is right about the scale of Civilization. 1 square represents a huge amount of land. However 1 square can also be defended by 1 mechanized infantry unit, so unless they increase the depth of maps in Civ 5 we'll just have to suspend reality as we often must with the Civ series.

    He is also right about minefield spamming, which is why there must be negative consequences for deploying large amounts of mines.

    1) The tile they are deployed on would not be work-able until an engineer (or worker) expends a very long amount of time to remove them.

    2)That tile would also hinder allied movement speed, ending any extra movements to friendly units that enter it just like it would to enemy units.

    3) It would also give friendly units stuck inside it the same attack and defense penalties enemy units would have (you can't maneuver well in a minefield).

    4) Minefields would hinder cultural borders. Nobody wants to be part of a civilization that creates huge fields of these terrible weapons, and cultural expansion represents new peoples wanting to be part of your civ. They can either hinder the closest friendly cities cultural output or just 'freeze' your borders in x amount of squares radius around the fields. Positively though they would also halt a nation's borders from expanding to the squares the fields occupy. Yes this could be seen as an exploit since you could box other civilizations in, but see the next point first...

    5) Minefields would cause unhappiness in the closest friendly city they are built to. This is to represent the population's revilement of mines as a weapon. That unhappiness would scale exponentially as more fields are deployed, since more images of children with stumps for limbs would be beamed to their televisions.

    6) Negative political relations. Pretty self-explanatory I think. This could be coupled with a UN ban or limitation on minefields. This would go hand-in-hand with an improved and more in-depth diplomacy system.

    The pros would include:

    1) causing % damage to all units that enter a minefield until the mines are 'expended'. The amount of units a field could damage would be relevant to the amount of time spent deploying, tech level and enemy counter-mine actions. To combat mines units could have promotions (or if they include a unit customizer like they should in civ 5, customized ability) that increase a unit's mine degradation abilities (their ability to degrade a field's strength)

    2) halt cultural border expansion (albeit at the unhappiness cost)

    3) units caught inside a field suffer penalties to attack and defense

    To counter minefields enemies would:

    1) bombard a minefield with artillery (DCM's ranged bombardment) to decrease it's strength, or bomb it for the same effect.

    2) use diplomatic pressure to get you to stop or remove your minefields, much like in the real world.

    Yes minefields would be spamable, but doing so would be at great cost to your diplomatic relations and happiness levels in cities. However like I said before, the current transportation methods in Civ would have to be drastically re-thought in order for minefields to be a viable addition to the game. Transportation avenues and fortified positions must have a greater tactical weight to them. In real life mines are used to deny avenues of approach and to funnel the enemy through desired lanes of fire. This would be extremely difficult to represent in Civ, thus making mines a less viable addition to the game. One option may be to bring back zones of control to units (my memory is a bit foggy, this is from Civ 3 right?), this is just a thought though.
     
  2. CivMyWay

    CivMyWay Warlord

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2009
    Messages:
    218
    Trickofthehand = right on.
     
  3. trickofthehand

    trickofthehand Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Messages:
    310
    Waiting for Camikaze's "too complicated! Next!" stamp lol.
     
  4. Takhisis

    Takhisis Free Hong Kong

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    49,032
    Location:
    up yours!
    Actually, land mines should affect both sides. If I were a soldier who steps on a minefield, there wouldn't be a pause to determine whose side I was on, the mine'd detonate inmediately and I'd be killed or maimed. So they should hit both sides. At least, if you were the one who laid mines, you should be able to see them.
    Also, whenever a bomb squad tries to deactivate a minefield IRL -or any explosive- there's always a chance that it'll go off anyway. So, if a worker tries to defuse a mine in the game, there should be a chance that both mine and worker blow up and be destroyed.

    Bunch of ideas:
    The mines shouldn't be visible (except for radars, detectors, sateites or some other hi-tech thingy), and only their owners'd know who they belong to (optional). So... war wouldn't break out unless you were attacked. You can also mine enemy territory, but it'd be an act of war, unless the guys placing the mines had hidden nationality.
     
  5. Camikaze

    Camikaze Administrator Administrator

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2008
    Messages:
    27,223
    Location:
    Sydney
    As minefields need to be maintained in reality, then it is fairly safe to assume that they would need a unit on the same tile at all times. So, if we are to have minefields, then they would need to be on the same tile as a unit. This would automatically void any movement penalties associated with minefields (because there's a unit in the way of you moving on the tile anyway).

    So we have a unit on the same tile as a minefield in order to maintain it. Let's say that a minefield gives a +25% bonus for the defender on the tile, but it takes a few turns for the minefield to be developed, from when the unit gets on the tile. So let's just let the bonus go up in increments of 5%.

    So you would have a 5% bonus for the defender, and then a 10% bonus, then 15%, 20% and finally 25%.

    Hang on....

    Those numbers sound familiar... :mischief:

    My point being that I think it's safe and sufficient to assume minefields as part of unit fortification on a tile.

    Again, I like complicated. But not overly-complex militaristic game elements. Military is already more than sufficiently covered in the game, and most changes to military features seem to involve making them more tactical, or introducing whole new tactical elements. See Custom User Title.
     
  6. Hail

    Hail Satan's minion

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2009
    Messages:
    746
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Mother Russia
    :eek: -> :lol:

    this unit that maintains minefields by standing on them every turn should be called "The Minefield Maintainer" with 1:strength: and cost 1000:hammers: :lol:
     
  7. CivMyWay

    CivMyWay Warlord

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2009
    Messages:
    218
    Umm correct me if I'm wrong but the maintenance of a land mine field is ONLY required to replenish the detonated mines. It does not need to be maintained "all the time". (So I can discount the rest of your post?)

    I see the whole point of a minefield is that you don't really have to have a unit there! Its a passive defensive tool. (Which is why it doesn't work as a unit fortification). I should be able to stock my harbour area with sea mines (except for a channel I create between them).

    Neither is it realistic to say that all land mines were detonated by a unit passing through (they might go single file :D)... I think a unit passing through should have a % chance of "copping it" that diminishes each time it "goes off". You then only restock the field if you choose to. (Perhaps added it to the automated tasks "Replenish all current minefields when required").
     
  8. trickofthehand

    trickofthehand Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Messages:
    310
    I have to disagree with having a unit in a minefield. That doesn't make sense to me. Mines are 'plant and forget' weapons, their ENTIRE purpose is to free up your soldiers for use elsewhere. In the real world there aren't units assigned to sit next to minefields and monitor them, I don't see why there should be a requirement for a unit to do so in Civ.

    I understand that mines are likely currently represented as a unit's fortify bonus at the moment, however the problem is that land-mines is one of the most revolutionary battlefield technologies ever introduced to war. Their presence can stall a force that would crush several divisions of infantry. Hell they have even shaped country's borders in war and affected politics. Currently they are the only thing that is keeping 1 million north koreans at bay in the korean penninsula. If you think it's the american presence there, you're sadly mistaken. US forces are meant to be speed bumps, to allow follow-on forces to respond to the Korean penninsula in time to drive the Nkoreans out.

    I believe that because of mine's impact on the course of human history, it should be represented in Civilization if it strives to be a true emulation of human civilization.
     
  9. Takhisis

    Takhisis Free Hong Kong

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    49,032
    Location:
    up yours!
    Nope. Mines are left behind. Since you like strategy more than tactics, you must realise that minefields make certain areas impassable.
    Oh, come on! it would be very realistic, not necessarily tactical, to be able to simulate minefields. What if you made a Viet Nam scenario? Or a Balkan one? w/o minefields there's nothing you can do. As I've said before, I don't want this to become Civilization: Total War, but I do want some tactics in. Just enough to make it realistic.
     
  10. Camikaze

    Camikaze Administrator Administrator

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2008
    Messages:
    27,223
    Location:
    Sydney
    I would assume that they are maintained like any other military equipment. i.e. maintained more than just for replacement.

    I wasn't saying thier should be an extra unit type, but just any random unit on the tile.

    Well someone has to look after a minefield. And littering an entire 60 x 60 km tile (IIRC, that is the proportions of a tile in Civ) would be exorbitantly expensive, so it should be represented by something).

    Well, tbh, I wouldn't mind them too much, so long as they are subject to very limited use and don't alter the game play too much; so long as they don't come to dominate warfare. You have yet to come up with a way in which land mine spamming could be stopped, and really, the feature cannot be implemented without a restriction on that.
     
  11. trickofthehand

    trickofthehand Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Messages:
    310
    Camikaze please take a look at my previous post at the top of page 3. Look over those conditions for mines and tell me what you think. You said :

    You have yet to come up with a way in which land mine spamming could be stopped, and really, the feature cannot be implemented without a restriction on that.

    and I kind of feel that you didn't read my post very thoroughly.

    On the note of maintenance, I have not dealt with submerged mines, but have dealt with AP mines such as Claymores and PDFs. I can tell you first-hand that they are extremely easy to use (hell you just drop a PDF on the ground and its g2g) and require absolutely no upkeep or maintenance of any kind. That's what's so appealing to militaries, and tragically why they continue to kill innocent civilians 20+ years after the war is done.

    For a game mechanic, I just don't see the need for maintenance or any other cost. Specially when coupled with the costs I created on my page 3 post for using them.
     
  12. trickofthehand

    trickofthehand Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Messages:
    310
    Oh and I do realize that tiles in Civ are actually huge, but like I've said many times, if 1 infantry unit can cover all that ground then there's no reason a single minefield couldn't. We suspend our belief when it comes to many things that occupy 1 tile, it's unfair for you to ask that we hold minefields accountable to a feature that we've generally accepted as being completely unrealistic for every other aspect of the game.
     
  13. Takhisis

    Takhisis Free Hong Kong

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    49,032
    Location:
    up yours!
    Maybe you could place a special option in the Scenario Properties or Rules tab that limits how many mines can be placed on the same tile. Well, that would be a restriction, but if you're seeking to emulate real life, you have to remember that you can't stack mines one on top of another.
     
  14. trickofthehand

    trickofthehand Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Messages:
    310
    I think the best system for land mine utility would be to simply have a field be 'worked' by a unit (engineer or a worker) with each turn adding a strength value to the field. The strength value directly correlates to how many times a field can damage a unit. Example:

    A field with a strength of 10 can damage a unit 10 times before being 'exhausted'. Therefore a single unit can be damaged 10 times by entering and exiting the field 10 times or a single field can cause damage to 10 units if they enter the field in a stack.

    The damage would be similar to collateral damage in that it is never fatal. A field's damage and strength would increase thru tech, so for example the tech that unlocks mines might enable you to lay down a field with 5 strength and a damage of 10% total unit health, while the last mine tech might enable a field of 15 strength and damage equal to 30% of total unit health.

    Don't freak out yet, these are just examples of the mechanics.
     
  15. Takhisis

    Takhisis Free Hong Kong

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    49,032
    Location:
    up yours!
    No, no, no. Mines kill, mines maim, mines blind. iDamage MUST be fatal. Ever tried stepping on a minefield?
     
  16. Pertsa

    Pertsa Chieftain

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2009
    Messages:
    1
    You're spot on what you said there. Too bad you got bit off in rest of your message. For example the artillery/airplane deployed mines have no real military use. They are terror weapons targetting civilians, mostly farmers, making their land unhabitable for decades. Laos after Vietnam war is a good example of that. Soldiers use roads. You don't use scatter mines in the same areas you're planning to send your own troops.

    In real warfare there are no such things as huge, impassable, minefields blocking all access. They would be inpractical and waste of resources. Determined enemy could still run trough any minefield fairly easy, but for military leaders it's quite hard to find troops who are determined enough to do that. It's the ultimate fear weapon.

    Minefields are usually quite narrow and part of the complete defensive structure, planted just before the front line, designed to block or atleast seriously slow down attacks on some areas and funnel them into strongpoints. In well built minefiled, every single mine is marked in a map. Yes, even with tens of thousands of mines. That comes in use especially if you're planting them inside your own borders (you do want them out after the war) and also to know all the openings for counter attacks and such. In serious war business (borders and such are different thing) minefields are ALWAYS accompanied by atleast some infantry. For organised military, mines on the ground are not (much) more dangerous than swords or rifles on the ground. They're just weapons. Give me a suitable bulldozer and I'll make a highway trough any minefield in no time. Military style mineclearing is fast, easy and fun. That's where the troops get in. Mineclearing under constant enemy fire is NOT fast, easy or fun at all. In Civilization scale, all the units (divisions or such) have the equiptment to clear all the mines they need.

    In my mind the game would need bit more than just minefields.

    Up untill Napoleons time, it was perfectly acceptable to tour around Europe or Russia with your own army, looting and capturing cities on-the-go. Fun lasted untill you bumped into someone with bigger "stack" or the soldiers had their sacks full of gold. This is good fun in Civ too. However, Civilization completely fails to simulate the next era. Machine guns, barbed wire, mines and such revolutionized warfare. Suddenly large mass armies were slaugthered on the fields. Some people on the forums might have heard about first world war (the one without Nazis) and what happened then.


    In modern time it's just not right, that enemies can just cross over your border after declaring war and rush inland. There is no way to stop enemies on the border, because they can just run around your troops. That is what machine guns were designed to stop, but in Civ nothing changes from 16th century. So unless you wan't to counter attack, where
    you lose the advantage you should have while defending, it's most likely best to stay inside city walls. And that's in modern age? I've never heard about military doctrine, which says the best way to defend your capitol is from inside it. In Civ all the battles happen around cities.

    What would I change? With nationalism, players would get serious penalty (production, happiness) from enemies inside the borders. Bit like emancipation anger, but people would say "Ze motherland is in danger" Of course, more enemies and closer to a certain city the bigger the penalty would get. That would encourage people to keep enemies outside. To do that, there should be improved forts or "trenches". My idea is, that you could link three or four adjacent squares into a one trench, so all the units inside that would cover larger area. Trenches wouldn't take place from other terrain improvements. I think it should be unit ability instead of worker upgrade, which would add more flexibility into the defence. Also city defence bonuses should be reduced to discourage big garrisons.

    How would that change strategy? Instead of having garrisons in all your cities, you would like to have your front line to be your main line. Enemy would propably do the same, so you would have clear battle lines and see most enemy troops all the time. Of course you would need reserves and could apply all kind of flexible defence tactics instead of lining everything on front. Anyway, that would add plenty of different new things to combat. Paratroopers would be really useful in many cases. Instead of going from siege to siege with one big army, you would need to have a breach into the line and then some panzers quickly deep inside enemy territory, that's what they should be for! If the enemy doesn't have reserves or fails with counter attack, you could propably pick city or two easily in few turns. Now the defender would have to think fast too. Which cities are lost? Which ones I can save? Where to retreat and how to do it? Bigger and quicker decisive battles in a nutshell.

    The more I think about this, the more I like the idea. Yes, it would be quite radical change to the gameplay and I guess most people disagree with it. Still, it would fix the most annoying things for me. I just hate that long, exhausting mop up game in the end game. On a bad day you need to go trough 30+ cities in same way: two rounds of arty, then tanks and few turns of healing. Repeat until failure. Quite often I plan to go for conquest victory, but I quit my games in 1900's when I realise how boring it will be... one can't enjoy space ship that often.
     
  17. Camikaze

    Camikaze Administrator Administrator

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2008
    Messages:
    27,223
    Location:
    Sydney
    Firstly, welcome to the forums Pertsa. :wavey:

    I don't like arbitrary restrictions.

    Oops. Sorry. When I see big posts, I file them in the 'I'll get back to that' section of my mind, and invariably forget about some of them, and don't realise that I have, as they don't come up as unread posts when I open the thread.

    I have nothing but my anecdotal evidence from an online game to go off, but I trust to a reasonable degree the figures given to me in that game. It was a World 1945 game, and I was Egypt. I was looking to build a minefield that would be roughly one quarter of a Civ tile, and the price quoted for the hardware and for laying the minefield was $500 000 000 (1945 prices used), with my GDP at $16 000 000 000. That's quite a sizable cost. One quarter of a tile's minefield costing 1/32th (?) of the GDP of Egypt.

    These are good restrictions. In fact, they might be too good, and make mines redundant, or unusable.

    Okay, so you came up with some good ways to balance them nicely.

    However, that stills leaves the problem of mines taking on too much importance in the game. The range of penalties you propose would mean that mines have wide ranging effects; too wide ranging. They may seem to have some sort of historical importance in some forms of warfare over some of the previous few centuries, but in the history of warfare, which should only really comprise a part of Civ (as we've established), they really lack the importance to have such wide ranging effects. BTW, I think the same goes for nukes. I mean, this land mine idea, are proposed in your post, would require its own page in the instructions manual. Surely that is way, way too much importance given to such an insignificant thing of land mines (when put next to economic systems and internal stability systems, for instance).
     
  18. trickofthehand

    trickofthehand Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Messages:
    310
    Minefields wont work with current Civ parameters. Neither will Pertsa's idea, although it is at it's core precisely right about the flaws of civ combat. The map system first of all needs radical changes and an increase in depth. I believe the best way to do this and the ONLY way that will give us more realistic combat is to embrace a 3d free-flowing map. As long as we continue using hexes or squares we'll be plauged by civ's current combat systems.

    I'm not going to defend the minefield concept any longer simply because it's unfeasible within Civilization's systems. If Firaxis decides to announce Civ 5 and some radical changes then I'll be back.
     
  19. CivMyWay

    CivMyWay Warlord

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2009
    Messages:
    218
    Pertsa, some excellent ideas.
     
  20. Hail

    Hail Satan's minion

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2009
    Messages:
    746
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Mother Russia
    :wavey:

    mines are cool should definitely be in civ5 :thumbsup:
     

Share This Page