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 Post subject: Constructing Abattis and Trenches
PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2012 5:46 am 
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Since trenches and abattis are present in the game and can be added in the editor, surely it also ought to be possible to construct them mid game, given sufficient time?

So, in addition to constructing breastworks, could units be permitted to construct trenches and abattis as well. This would be a great addition to include with the next title, whenever it's finally released. Thanks.


Maj. Gen. Rich White
2nd (Palmetto Guards) Division III Corps
ANV


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 Post subject: Re: Constructing Abattis and Trenches
PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:15 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2007 1:48 am
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I'm not sure what the reasoning behind the creation of the various defences in-game was but I think there is a real problem with players being able to build trenches or abatis whatever and whenever they like: There would be nothing to stop a defensive minded player from setting a unit to constructing trenches or abatis in every hex it remains stopped in? ...regardless of terrain or the tactical situation.

Abatis & Trenches can be added at scenario creation to represent the significant nature of these features but having the units being able to create them almost randomly is difficult to justify. These games are really a tactical engine and the very long nature of some of them (400+ turns) introduces a whole host of problems like no rail movement, supply levels, replacements and unplanned fog-of-war events, without adding the problems of un-realistic defensive habits.

I see your condition is of *sufficient time*? but for any player in a defensive situation the benefits of creating these features seem to be free of drawbacks? (Physical fatigue not currently represented?).

A further release in this series might see the 1864 Eastern battles where extensive defences are realistic but I think it's always going to be difficult to balance realism and playability by trying to represent too much.

The creation of Breastworks is an attempt to offer a compromise of a difficult subject but I live in horror of a game where my enemy can freely construct Trenches and Abatis like hanging too many baubles on a Christmas Tree?

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Brigadier-General Jim Wilkes.
2nd Brigade, Cavalry Division, XX Corps.
AoC. U.S.A.


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 Post subject: Re: Constructing Abattis and Trenches
PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:28 pm 
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Turns are 20 minutes right? So it would take hours to construct trenches and/or abatis. also in clear areas, trees would have to be nearby and trenches could not be constructed on rocky terrain. And the men would be fatigued so that would have to be added in. It could be done in the game but under the proper conditions and in the proper years: 1864-5.

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Gen. Drex Ringbloom,
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 Post subject: Re: Constructing Abattis and Trenches
PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2012 7:03 pm 
Not to mention it would mean we would need larger maps. By that I mean that on a small map like Shiloh the Union could build trenches around the Landing and hold until Kingdom Come. There would be no way to outflank them. This could be done along any battle that has a small map with an objective that could be defended in such a way as to use the edges.

On a larger map... I'm talking Gettybsurg Campaign 500x500 size maps than I could see it working better. Just like Grant did in 1864... outflank the defenses and move on.


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 Post subject: Re: Constructing Abattis and Trenches
PostPosted: Tue Jul 17, 2012 7:46 am 
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These type constructs are more operational in nature than tactical which is what our game scale is. In Peninsula for example Lee had constructed these extensively to allow a small force to fix the main Union army while a large force made the flank attack. Laying out these lines required weeks of preparation. Having this a tactical choice within a scenario will be very difficult for the current game engine to handle. Right now the handling of Trenches and Abattis is a bit of a kludge. Trenches don't even work properly if you are using optional rules like soft zones. It would pretty much take a complete game rewrite to make them part of the game.

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General Kennon Whitehead
Chatham Grays
AoT II/1/3 (CSA)


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 Post subject: Re: Constructing Abattis and Trenches
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2012 2:48 pm 
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Posts: 564
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I think building entrenchments "in game" would be better handled in a single battle campaign setting. So a player could elect to dig-in, and depending upon what his opponent does the map could change with trench works added.

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 Post subject: Re: Constructing Abattis and Trenches
PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2012 8:10 am 
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Also if building abattis and trenches is added to the game it would have to be balanced by a corresponding penalty. Right now it would have to be accumulating some amount of Fatigue since the game doesn't have anything else to use. Without a penalty almost all players would start throwing up as much fortifications as the rule allows. The current entrenchment rule is typically used this way when its available. You can trace the fighting in most three day Gettysburg games by the lines of entrenchments on the map that tend to pop up at night.

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General Kennon Whitehead
Chatham Grays
AoT II/1/3 (CSA)


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