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[GS] Why can't Air units form Corp/Army?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by Lily_Lancer, Oct 19, 2019.

  1. Lily_Lancer

    Lily_Lancer Emperor

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    This always annoys me. The air units are so strong as a single unit, however they can't form corp/army. In MP games people just beeline aerodromes and buy a Bomber (and maybe Fighter, since they're at the same reqs), then his enemies surrounder since bomber bombs up all city defense in 1 Turn, while Fighters bomb up any unit in 1 Turn.

    The current situation is: A single air unit is too strong compared with land unit (a bomber costs 560, and it bombs with 110 strength, as strong as a rocket artillery army, which cost 1530), a fighter costs 520, and it attacks with 100 ranged strength, stronger than a machine gun army, which cost 1215. however they cannot combine.

    Shall we reduce combat strength for aircrafts but allow them to form corps/armies? This can also make airports better that we set it to allow you train armies of aircrafts. Currently people just build an aerodrome and buy/ produce aircrafts whatsoever, nobody really care about hanger/airports.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2019
  2. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Deity

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    This is the critical point, I think: the air units are already as strong as Ground Unit Armies/Corps, so to give Air Units the capability of forming Corps of their own would require rebalancing the air unit strengths and costs. Why bother when the effect is already achieved by making air units strong (showing the extreme flexibility of air power) but separate?

    Also, and strictly on a Historical Note: 'combining' Air Units to form Corps-like concentrations is hugely expensive: it requires a major investment in command and control and communications and base infrastructure, air control tactics and coordination. In all of WWII, only the USA and Britain managed it regularly. Germany, and late in the war and only the USSR for close Battlefield Support managed it only partially, and Germany found by the middle of the war that they couldn't afford the infrastructure for it. Again, the game avoids all that messiness by just keeping Air Units separate but very powerful.
     
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  3. Lily_Lancer

    Lily_Lancer Emperor

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    So in our MP games, everyone prioritize bomber and bomber decides everything. Yes they're strong, however they're too cheap to be strong. So in MP games bomber decides everything, assuming everyone has the basic knowledge of defending Renaissance rush like Cossack or Janissaries.

    Maybe reducing the strength of bomber to 75/100(fighter to 90/90) but allows them to form corp with Hanger and Ideology, and form army with Rapid Deployment and Airport is a more balanced idea.
     
  4. Laurana Kanan

    Laurana Kanan Don’t underestimate who I am.

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    I'd call them Squadrons & Wings rather than Corps & Armies. ;)
     
  5. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    would squadrons and wings really help or is the issue here AA and bombers or just bombers?
    Certainly bombers have historically proven not to destroy city defences but alter them. Close support HE has proven quite good in cities (Berlin) where you can target defender clusters but it still has not been easy.

    Why do fighters not get +10 against bombers by default like club men get against spears? For that matter should not jet fighters just rip jet bombers to pieces?

    While AA has some IRL limitations I think it too weak in game and fighters become top predator. Something like bumping support AA to +10 would be better than what we have. It is like to +5 is too weak and AA I only matches aircraft strength while specifically can only be used against it so perhaps should be more.

    Maybe it is designed as end of game material to finish the thing and should not be touched? The game does need a decider unless MP people are happy with draws. Is that decider nukes already but no-one gets there?

    If a bomber decides rather than a jet bomber it does seem early but MP games that go that long must already be quite taxing.

    I am not an MP player but considering the voice of the MP world I think Firaxis does not make these designs without reason. Certainly in SP getting a bomber and winning is easy.

    Limiting a bombers effects on cities seems sensible if you wanted a nerf, and bumping AA, I just question the necessity. How long does it take to play an MP game to bombers?
     
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  6. Lily_Lancer

    Lily_Lancer Emperor

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    Nothing related to AA. The only counter for bombers is quicker bombers.
    Maybe somewhere between T85~90. The real problem is that you cannot counter that. If your enemy have bomber he bombs up all your cities really quickly.
    On the other hand it is really difficult to take down steel cities using land troops.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2019
  7. gcampono

    gcampono Chieftain

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    I’m sorry for the noob question, but I never get to bombers (at least in MP). What’s the best water to beeline bombers, knowing that you need oil? Is it better to first beeline bombers or the technology that reveals oil (and more probably the next one for oil platforms, since I almost never get oil on land)? Or do you rely on city states (like Hattusa?)?
     
  8. Lily_Lancer

    Lily_Lancer Emperor

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    They need aluminum.
     
  9. acluewithout

    acluewithout Deity

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    Thanks all the same, but I’m happy not having another thing to combine into armies or whatever.

    I assume aircraft are end game finishing units. Seems like AA is poorly balanced, but I don’t really play many games where that comes up.
     
  10. gcampono

    gcampono Chieftain

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    Oh, what a noob mistake! So it is better to beeline to bombers rather than ti tanks?
     
  11. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Deity

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    To answer/comment on everybody at once, with the proviso that I always approach Game Problems from the aspect of What Was The Historical Reality and Why Isn't It Happening - or, Is It Happening And We Don't Like It.

    First, the historical counter to Bombers was never AA, it was Intercepting Fighters. A combination of the two was even better, but the bulk of Bomber Losses and the real deterrent to Bomber Attacks were Fighters shooting them down in large numbers. That was true from the "Zeppelin Blitz" of 1917 - 1918 through the "London Blitz" of 1940 and the Luftwaffe attacks on Moscow in 1941 - Moscow had more AA than London, but when the fighters of the 6th Air Defense Fighter Corps began intercepting the bombers, they stopped attacking. The Royal Air Force's Bomber Command and the USAF 8th Air Force both had to stop bombing German cities temporarily in 1943 because the German Fighter Defenses were inflicting too many losses - this even though the Germans invested almost 1,000,000 men and thousands of guns, searchlights, and radars in their AA defenses. The AA made Bomber Attacks exciting, the Fighters made them suicidal.

    Second, Bombers are expensive. To do serious damage to a City - or a military force the size of Units in the game, which we have to assume are at least Divisions (10,000 - 25,000 men each) takes not dozens, but hundreds of bomber aircraft. Each one costs 2 - 5 times more to produce in resources and Gold than a single-engined Fighter, and has an expensively-trained crew of 3 - 12 compared to the single pilot in the Fighter. In other words, a large Bomber Force, even discounting all the extra Command and Control and Infrastructure required to make it effective (see my Post above) is very expensive to Build and to Maintain. The German Luftwaffe tried to do it "on the cheap" by using almost exclusively 2-engined medium bombers for everything and even (in Game Terms) converted Fighter Units (Stukas, Fw-190 Fighter-Bombers) and they were utterly ineffective against Cities and Infrastructure on the scale of the game (that is, they could knock out a Bridge, but not a District-wide Industrial/Commercial Zone or Railroad).

    Third, there is a big difference in effectiveness of Bombers versus Big Fixed Fat Targets like Cities, and Dispersed Hiding Targets like military units. The Luftwaffe's Converted Fighter Units were extremely effective against military units in 1939 - 1942, a waste of their cost against cities. Heavy Bomber units were, by 1944 at least, City Killers: see the effects on Dresden or Berlin before the Red Army even got to them, or the destruction of Tokyo in 1945 by 'Conventional' Bombing that killed more people than both Atomic Bombs combined. On the other hand, it took a concentration of Heavy Bombers over Normandy twice the size of the average force used in a raid on a city to seriously degrade a single Panzer Division. Basically, effectiveness of Bomber Unit against a Ground Unit is half or less the % damage the Bombers can inflict on a City or District - and the District or City can frequently be repaired unless you keep right on bombing it.

    So, I would contend that the answer to the OP Bomber is:
    1. Jack up the Anti-Air Factor of the Fighter versus the Bomber. The +10 suggested might be enough, @Sostratus could undoubtedly tell us precisely what Fator Differential is required to make Fighter versus Bomber attacks virtually suicidal for the Bomber.
    2. Jack up the cost of both building and maintaining Bombers. I might even go so far as to require a regular Aerodrome District to launch the sort of concentrated Bomber attacks required to seriously degrade Cities or Districts.
    3. Change the Promotion Tree of Fighters so that Strafe and Tank Buster came as 1st and 2nd promotions instead of 2nd and 3rd, and get rid of Close Air Support Promotion for Bombers - that really effects All air units and should probably be a Military Civic in the late Modern or early Atomic Eras. Replace Close Air Support with Pathfinders = + Strength against City Center, District tiles or Improvements. That would more effectively show the real power of massed Bombers against the Big Fixed Targets, and the fact that you have to concentrate resources on either attacking Units or Cities, because the same air units cannot do both effectively.
    4. (If necessary) have an 'automatic' Repair of Bomb Damage to City Centers and Districts, which can be increased by Investment, like a Military Civic of Civil Defense in the Atomic Era that gives an extra % recovery every turn.
     
  12. The googles do nothing

    The googles do nothing Prince

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    This alone would do a lot to fix the issue of winning with one bomber because you would have to build infrastructure as you conquer. I like the idea of the where a bomber is launched from determines the strength of it's bombard attack and range. City/Aerodrome/Hanger/Airport/Powered Airport.
     
  13. Sostratus

    Sostratus Emperor

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    I’m happy @Boris Gudenuf has brought my attention to this thread. I haven’t thought about air units in a while.
    So first, I’ll use the Jet aircraft numbers since I cannot recall what a bomber’s melee strength is off the top of my head. I’m assuming they’re all just -10 from Jets anyways.
    Jet fighter: 110/110
    Jet Bomber 120/90
    Mobile SAM: 100
    So what this means is that we have a pair of notable interactions: fighters hit bombers for +20, and AA guns hit for +10. Meanwhile, fighters hit each other evenly and have a +10 advantage over sams.

    What really matters in terms of warplanes is their mission availability. This is key IRL and in civ6: the number of attacks a bomber can deal against a defended target before it has to heal. If we look at the combat formula, we recall that +30 is a one hit kill. +13 will deal just over 50HP, although I forget if there’s random noise, so let’s just say +15 is our two hit kill point.
    Guess what-the AA’s +10 deals about 45HP, but that’s a three hit kill where the fighter does a 2 hit kill. This means bombers going into AA can deal twice as much damage as they can vs fighter defenses before they have to heal up.

    If fighters got another +10 vs bombers they would be making one hits. @Victoria do interceptions happen before the bombers deal damage? Is it like civ5 where you have to deal a damage threshold and then they turn back?

    If we just have to deal enough damage to a bomber then current fighters can deter them either through forcing them back or the fact that a bomber MUST heal after one fighter interception. If you give fighters more attack vs bombers they will mercilessly sweep them from the skies with one shots. On the other hand, current AA is quite weak- it’ll take 3 strikes from SAM batteries to down a bomber, and fighters can roll through and soak up 5 hits before going down. If AA was boosted to 105, then these would become 2 and 4 respectively.
    keeping in mind that AA is the only resourceless guy at this party, we can see that there’s a design element to it. But 2 hits vs 3 to kill is a massive difference in real terms.

    But let’s also recall that AA has 1 range, jet fighters 5 and jet bombers 15. At those numbers, and with SAMs costing about as much as a normal unit (590), it is completely impractical for a player to actually build a competent AA network OR invest in fighter defenses. Even though the fighters are great in combat, their range is awful to justify using in offense (they can fly less distance than a tank can drive on a roads and they must be based from special infrastructure, and regular units compete with them for killing other regular units.) Contrast to bombers, which have amazing damage even to units and can fly across small oceans to hit enemy cities from a safe airbase. It’s just not a contest with where to invest aluminum at the strategic level.
     
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  14. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Deity

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    This is something I hadn't considered, probably because in 2400+ hours of playing, I don't think I've built more than 4 air units of any kind: Resources versus Usefulness.

    So, possibly require 2 (or 3?) Aluminum to Build/Maintain a Bomber instead of 1?
    And/Or: No Resource to Build/Maintain a Fighter, on the premise that some very effective 'Fighter' type aircraft (British Mosquito, Soviet La-5, UA F4U Corsair) had non-metal components.
     
  15. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    Yes so bombers are -x from the interception on their attack but often -9 still puts them ahead. Strategic bombing is stopped at 50% damage but thats against tiles and with nukes.
     
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  16. Sostratus

    Sostratus Emperor

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    With how sparse aluminum is, making bombers cost more would just make them almost unbuildable. If the cost twice the production and maintenance that might be a decent differentiation. Fighters can’t be resource free with how strong they are against units. You would never be able to assault any empire with fighter defenses because they’ll kill all your units and as long as they keep the airbases 5 tiles from the border you can’t even use your fighters to clear theirs.

    Which leads me to the real fix: increasing fighter range to 8-10. The problem with 5 range is that with actual map distances in game, you need airbases on the border to even have a shot of overlapping with their fighters. Dogfights just can’t happen with range 5 because they can’t fly to each other’s territory.
    10 might seem high but it would mean you could defend 4X the area with a fighter than you can now, plus, bombers still cover 2.3x the area as your fighters. 15 range is crazy. I also think 2 range on mobile sams would be a nice change.
     
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  17. Lonecat Nekophrodite

    Lonecat Nekophrodite Prince

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    Also Carriers can be built as a fleet or armada but can't be combined even if the two are empty.

    What's the use of Carrier 'Fleet' and 'Armada' ? I've built a carrier fleet before. but it doesn't have extra aircraft slots.

    And whatchu think of navy organizations as seen in Civ6?

    https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/navy-reform.650637/
     
  18. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Deity

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    Making Bombers "almost unbuildable" is not exactly unrealistic. If we assume, based on the history of WWII, that 1000 4-engined heavy bombers at a time were required to do serious damage to a City (the "1000 plane raids of the Royal Air Force and US Army Air Force over Germany) then we have to also note the fact that only two Civilizations ever managed to do that: Britain and the USA. That means, IRL, 'Bombers' in game terms are "Almost Unbuildable"!

    BUT from a Game Play perspective, I think you're on to something better. Increasing Fighter Range until it at least can attack further away than a Tank can move would both increase potential Defensive Strength of Fighter Defenses and increase the 'Air Support' they can offer by attacks on Units for an attacker or defender.
    That also brings back the real Choice to be made with your air force, the choice that IRL all Civs/Nations made from about 1938 on: build a big Bomber Force to smash enemy cities, or build a big 'Fighter' force to help your army smash the enemy army. Britain and USA went the first way, virtually everybody else chose the second, because the few that dabbled in the first (USSR, Germany) discovered quickly just how difficult and expensive it was.
     
  19. Lonecat Nekophrodite

    Lonecat Nekophrodite Prince

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    But sparse availability of Aluminium also affects ability to build WW2 streamlined fighters as well. These lighter warplanes are more common and used by every combatants in WW2. Fighter requires alu is not really balancing.

    Do you think if there's aviation reform in game or a mod to do so (there is a mod that deals with aviation roster downloadable here). Should Attack Plane or Tactical Bomber (those with one or two engines. the likes of Stuka or Ki30 'Nagoya' http://www.wings-aviation.ch/11-RTAF/2-Aircraft/Mitsubishi-Ki-30/Nagoya.htm ) be included (strong attack against land units and warships, some strengh against city, can't attack aircraft unless landed in airfield or aerodrome but can defend.)
     
  20. Sostratus

    Sostratus Emperor

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    Carrier fleets have more defensive strength, just like normal fleets. Despite having threads about it since at least early 2018, they’ve never adjusted it. At least carriers don’t take oil...

    RE a third air unit type, unless you try to restrict what can go on a carrier (currently you can base bombers on carriers) the aluminum restriction will either force players to specialize between fighters and bombers, or use the middle unit because it’s overtuned (too good at its jobs.) A middle unit that does both roles moderately well doesn’t make much sense if you’ve only got capacity for 6 planes. If you couldn’t have bombers on carriers (in civ5 you couldn’t base stealth bombers on them, but with 20 range you didn’t need to) then I can see where a “joint strike fighter” would make sense.

    Edit: the best way to specialize fighters between Air superiority and ground attack is probably through their promotions tree over anything. The left side currently focuses taking down aircraft while the right offers +17(double damage!!) against all land units. Sadly units can’t start as promoted as they could in civ4 or 5. Opening 2 promos would lead to some devastating fighters - I wonder if strafe applies to Giant Robots...
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019

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