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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Sat Jun 20, 2015 11:19 am 
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How about adding singal corps units and spys. The Singal Corps for both sides was very important in determining enemy positions and troop movements especially for the Union Armies. Maybe making a 10 man cavalry unit or infantry unit and designate them as singal corps. Also more spys like the George Springer unit in the grand scenario in Overland. The Confederates (like the spy in the begining of The Killer Angels relaying info to Lee on Union troop movements etc) relied more on spys than the Union. I know in just a short battle scenario using singal corps units and spys isn't that much help but in long campaign scenarios like in Atlanta and Overland I think singal corps and spy units I think would benefit who ever is commanding either army.


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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Sat Jun 20, 2015 8:10 pm 
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M. Maher wrote:
How about adding singal corps units and spys. The Singal Corps for both sides was very important in determining enemy positions and troop movements especially for the Union Armies. Maybe making a 10 man cavalry unit or infantry unit and designate them as singal corps. Also more spys like the George Springer unit in the grand scenario in Overland. The Confederates (like the spy in the begining of The Killer Angels relaying info to Lee on Union troop movements etc) relied more on spys than the Union. I know in just a short battle scenario using singal corps units and spys isn't that much help but in long campaign scenarios like in Atlanta and Overland I think singal corps and spy units I think would benefit who ever is commanding either army.


This would be super cool & maybe their qualities are they are simply able to see very far distances and maybe even over what would normally be obscured terrain in the LOS system....

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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2015 3:57 am 
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M. Maher wrote:
How about adding singal corps units and spys. The Singal Corps for both sides was very important in determining enemy positions and troop movements especially for the Union Armies. Maybe making a 10 man cavalry unit or infantry unit and designate them as singal corps. Also more spys like the George Springer unit in the grand scenario in Overland. The Confederates (like the spy in the begining of The Killer Angels relaying info to Lee on Union troop movements etc) relied more on spys than the Union. I know in just a short battle scenario using singal corps units and spys isn't that much help but in long campaign scenarios like in Atlanta and Overland I think singal corps and spy units I think would benefit who ever is commanding either army.


Technically you can do that already, all you need to do is add this in to an OOB and deploy them wherever you deem necessary. Freeze them or give them a zero movement allowance if you like -the points would be negligible for these guys in scenario terms so they would sort of be disposable within the context of a scenario.

I think John (Ferry) had something along these lines in Overland (because some fool asked what the heck good a single man in an infantry regiment would do??? -he was using units instead of leaders). I don't know if he left that guy in his title or not - and I am not confirming or denying that said idiot was me. ;) It is interesting conceptually -especially when moving a fair amount of distances to contact opposing forces.

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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2015 6:51 am 
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Frank Stringfellow is still there :D
John Ferry
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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2015 11:28 am 
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What I did in my Gettysburg scenario was decrease a few supply wagons to a value of 1 and placed them around the map. That way they could see question marks, but unless they were captured would have no knowledge of strength of units, only number. This was to reflect reports from sympathetic citizens.

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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Mon Jun 22, 2015 11:18 am 
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Sorry John Ferry, I meant Frank Sringfellow not George Springer. Not sure how I mixed up his name and came up with George Springer. Lol. I stand corrected.

I have read from a couple sources that one of JEB Stuarts objectives during his epic raids ("rides") was capturing Union signal stations. During his Chambersburg Raid of Oct of 1862 a detachment of his raiding force captured a Union signal station at Fairview Heights, Md. During the early stages of the Gettysburg Campaign Confederate Cavalry I believe captured a Union signal station at Aldie (I am not sure tough about this because I can't find the source where I have read this). The day after the Battle of Chickamauga on Sept 21, 1863, Nathan Befored Forrest during his pursuit of the Union Army to Chattanooga captured a makeshift Union signal station also.

But I think incorporating singal stations and spys into, (even in the Cavalry battles/campaigns like Aldie in Gettysburg) and placing them with a high objective/capture point values could benefit and make game play more interesting if game players want too.

Mike Mihalik, that's a great idea regarding using extra suppy units as civilian observers etc. I think using extra Union supply units in say the Gettysburg campaign and placing them fixed in the towns around Gettysburg to represent the shoes and leather (leather was a very important objective for the Confederates which they needed very badly not only to make shoes but for cartridge boxes, holsters, straps, belts etc.) for capture for the Confederates and for the Union to protect or destory so it wouldn't fall into Confederate hands.

But its all to who wants to incorporate these things into game play. Everyone has their own playing style. Me I am a purist at heart and I like to keep things accurate. Not so much executing the exact attack a army made during a battle but having the same objectives like Lee had during the Gettysburg Campaign by requisitioning supplies for the ANV and Grants main objective of wearing down/destroying the ANV during the Overland Campaign for example.


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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Mon Jun 22, 2015 5:21 pm 
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That is the interesting thing, in that in the Musket and Pike engine you can assign vp's to individual units within the OOB files, so it can make things a little more flexible than some of the other engines. Of course that doesn't really do anything for the CWB series at this point, although what I am getting at is this sort of flexibility in coding does exist.

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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 23, 2015 10:27 am 
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There's all kinds of stuff coded into other games that could well be grafted into our ACW titles. Early American wars have engineers with special abilities, for instance; and in the WWII games there are two more command levels, which would be handy for making demi-brigades on the low end, or wing commands such as existed at Fredericksburg, on the high end. I figured out a way to do that in ACW oobs, but the engine does not like it.
J D Ferry
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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2015 9:11 am 
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NB (and MP) has pioneers as well, although I think most of what they can do in that series is limited to repairing bridges ( I'll have to refresh my memory with the user guide to get the full range of their capabilities.).

I don't know if the command range values are customizable by nations in CWB, I think they are probably more general, but you can set ranges in NB and to an extent in MP, and they have Army, Wing, Corps, Division, and Brigade available as slots -which while you can name your command anything you want -you only get that amount of commands in a stratified sense.

One thing that I liked with John's title is the extra commanders that he stuck in Overland, to the point where in effect they can be used as a sort of wild card combat bonus, and that other designers have done something similar in the Napoleonics' series.

While I like that you can assign an armor bonus, and a melee bonus to units in Musket and Pike (including negative values), CWB allows for (I think) fractional values with weapons' effects, and NM/Musket and Pike don't; so that CWB fire values might be able to be a little more finely tuned than the other series, although who knows ... maybe it all works out in the wash.

I know that it got mentioned elsewhere, about fatigue, and I believe that it is one of the least utilized combat modifications. I guess the question basically ends up being: how do you define having no fatigue? Considering the scope and number of values able to be modified (be they actual application of fatigue at the start of a scenario, to setting recovery rates, and maybe wanting to dilute the impact of combat effectiveness to lessen relative losses per side, it is one of those things that lie with a scenario designer. And like anything I guess that is one of those things that should be spelled out in designers' notes -especially when deviating from a norm ( for the record I was not talking about John's work -as I think he applied the fatigue in a fairly standard manner, however my point is that the engines don't dictate this and have potentially a lot more flexibility.). It is all about how one goes about defining their respective combat models.

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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2015 12:27 pm 
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Regarding fatigue, I needed to be smarter in designing Overland. There are ways to lessen the losses, and their importance; and to increase the importance of fatigue. The potential accuracy of such an approach is evident in historical records, where a unit only lost a handful of men in the whole battle, but was fought out by the end of the day.
Specifically, if anyone has suggestions to raise the importance of fatigue, in a way that lowers casualties across the board, I'd love to see the ideas.
John Ferry
Overland co-designer


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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 11:20 am 
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I always thought that Fatigue need to be handle by two parameters. One being physical fatigue resulting from marching to much, not being rested between deployments, not stopping to eat, etc. This one should accumulate rapidly as units are used but recover also quickly if units are withdrawn from the battle line an allowed to rest, particularly at night. The second would be metal fatigue or Battle Fatigue that is only accumulated by being in combat and should be tied to losses. Battle Fatigue is probably the type closest to what we now measure in HPS games. But because we only have one Fatigue parameter it gets used for both. Battle Fatigue should be harder to recover from than physical fatigue.

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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 1:34 pm 
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Well unfortunately we have a lot values that could/should be split.
It's not different with moral that seem to incorporate anything from training to fortitude in battle, just think of some of the Prussian Landwehr battalions in the later stages of the Napoleonic wars, they were poorly trained(some didn't even know how to use there muskets effectively) but highly motivated, so how do I set the moral for them?
I guess often the designers will use something average but that still does not fit as there is a difference in the behavior of such units, being poorly trained leads to bad combat results but that doesn't necessarily mean that they also route easily.

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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Sat Jun 27, 2015 2:42 am 
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For what it is worth, from where I am looking at it (in terms of game impact), it is one way to impact combat effectiveness, and ameliorate losses in an engine. One can read into what it is all that they like, but the bottom line is that more fatigue causes less losses in combat, and more routs/disrupts which in turn also lessens combat impact.

So what if an army becomes so used up that it is incapable of further action. But the point is really about the ability of this mechanism to translate through a variety of periods. I can give you some examples of relatively comparable numbers of men on different sides of a battle where one side had what seemed to be a positional advantage over the other side -yet whose army dissolved in about an hour and a half (it might have been about 20 minutes) of combat. Morale is really only part of the equation as an army can have a dynamic morale... anyway I guess it doesn't matter all that much as I am not writing about this in the CWB sense -but rather in the grand tactical sense of a number of the engines combined that have similar techniques/measurements of effectiveness.

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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Sat Jun 27, 2015 8:15 am 
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The board game Wellington's Victory had one of the most interesting concepts for handling an army's ability to continue fighting. They assigned a total morale value to each army. This total decreased as the Army took loses, had units route, and activated brigades for movement and fighting. When the value dropped below zero then Army wide effects took place. All the morale ratings in the army decreased one each hour that the total morale was below zero until all the Unit morales also reached zero. This had the effect of causing an army to eventually route from the field rather than fight to the last man.

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 Post subject: Re: Improving the JTS/HPS Games!
PostPosted: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:18 am 
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I think it is important to make the distinction between working with what is in an engine (in this case the actual concept of fatigue points exist in multiple engines), and actual engine changes.

Army level morale, and other concepts like BCE (I think Brigade Combat Effectiveness from Terrible Swift Sword), even the 'Seeing the Elephant' table of variable morale from Bloody April (Berg's Shiloh) title are all basically outside of any (Tiller) engine; and the entire engine change thing is one of those open ended discussions that can pretty much go on infinitely. I don't know that they had been proposed as engine changes ever (not privy to that sort of information for most titles), but I would not be surprised if they had been and never made it for whatever reason. Something like that would be outside of my scope of discussing techniques.

I guess what I am saying is along the lines of 'can you do something with an engine as it currently exists?' And if so, then how? I don't think anyone can ever anticipate an engine change; if they happen then great ... work with whatever is available, but one has to be prepared to not have anything further.

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