ACWGC
* ACWGC     * Dpt. of Records       * CSA HQ    * VMI    * Join CSA    
   * Union HQ    * UMA    * Join Union     ACWGC Memorial
CSA Armies:    ANV    AotW
Union Armies:    AotT     AotC      AotP      AotS     Union Army Forums
     Link Express
American Civil War Books, Magazines and Games for sale (See other items)
Club Forums:     NWC    CCC     Home Pages:     NWC    CCC    ACWGC
It is currently Sun Oct 22, 2017 2:24 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 24 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: ZOC
PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 10:30 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2004 6:49 am
Posts: 522
Location: Black Mountain, NC
What are the arguments for and against Strong ZOC, I see it as leading to unrealistic kills as units are sometimes prevented from moving out of harms way as they would normally do.

_________________
Image
Lt. Gen. D. Groce
3rd Brigade
Second Division
VIII Corps
AotS
"Everything will be alright in the end, if it's not alright, it's not the end"


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 7:41 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:26 pm
Posts: 528
Just my two cents, but I feel that there are far too many constraints against freedom of movement, whether they are optional rules we can add or not, or the 'house rules' which prohibit things like assaults in column. I prefer the weak zone of control.
I recommend that interested members Google "Hardee's Tactics" and read what Hardee's intent was when he revised infantry tactics. We hear about how the rifle did away with Napoleonic tactics, but Hardee's was the nuts and bolts of what changed on the field due to the rifle's increased efficiency. Note the increased march rates as well as the many commands needed to put a unit into action. Believe me, as a reenactor, the commands are hard to master!
J D Ferry
LTC 2/20th


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 7:47 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 4:32 am
Posts: 1639
Location: USA
I prefer the weak ZOC mostly because strong ZOC gives regiments to much frontage. The average strength of a regiment was about 400 men which in two rank line could control a frontage of about 100 yards which is less than the 120 yards represented by a hex. To keep an enemy from penetrating a brigade line made up of such regiments they would have to be adjacent with a brigade frontage of only 4 or 5 hundred yards. Strong ZOC would allow a brigade frontage of twice that.

There is one gotcha though. When troops were in fortified lines they could hold the wider frontage of the strong ZOC. In some of the Peninsula scenarios the fortifications are unholdable unless you use strong ZOC.

Strong ZOC also allow use of the checker board defense which I don't like. The defender can place large stacks (800-1000 men) in every other hex and create a line that can't be taken because the stacks can only be attacked at 1:2 odds by melee.

As for the rifle it had little or no effect on tactics. Most fire fights took place at less than 125 yards just like the musket ones. Hardee's Tactics did little other than codify Napoleonic small unit movements. Only thing added was the quick time developed by later French tactics.

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


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 9:42 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:59 am
Posts: 149
Location: Balgonie, Saskatchewan, Canada
The problem with the game options (Weak ZOC or Strong ZOC) is neither is an ideal choice.

General Whitehead correctly points out - the smaller the defending force the less the threat to an enemy passing by close at hand. A more realistic ZOC rule would make passage dependent upon the strength of the defending unit, or defending units in the case there are units on either side of the penetration. An ideal rule would tie the movement cost through the ZOC to the combined level of enemy resistance. For example: at enemy strength 1,000 where the defender is not disrupted - passage would be impossible (Strong ZOC). At lower enemy strength and consideration of the effect of defender disruption - passage would be permitted but at a movement cost penalty proportional to the level of resistance. The level of enemy resistance might be further modified by a fortification bonus if the defender enjoys that advantage. In addition to a higher movement cost there might also be a chance of disruption by the moving force once they arrive in the new hex - modified by their fatigue and morale. We could call it a 'Modified ZOC' rule.

Given it is too late to change the optional rules, re-program the game engines, and add a 'Modified ZOC' rule, we are left with the choice of Weak ZOC and Strong ZOC. I prefer the Strong ZOC when it is combined with the optional rule that grants a morale bonus to units with flanking support. With flanking support rule in place - the units tend to form lines as was the pattern in the conflict. (Note: this is only possible in HPS.) My logic is officers of the day were leery to say the least to advance their troops in line to a position behind the enemy, where they would be at risk of enfilade or attack from multiple directions.

_________________
Colonel Lane

Commanding Officer
Western Theater
Confederate States of America

Image


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 2:11 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 4:32 am
Posts: 1639
Location: USA
The problem with strong ZOC even with the adjacent friendly modifier is that the check board defense is so much superior to a continuous line no one should use it. If you have say four 400 man regiments to cover a four hex line placing them one to a hex leaves the line vulnerable to melee. The enemy can concentrate a 1000 man stack adjacent to one of the hexes and break the line with a 2.5:1 melee (which works out to be about 1.25:1 odds of winning). But if the player goes with the alternating hex defense then he has two hexes to occupy with two regiments each giving him 800 man stacks. Since strong ZOC prevent enemy units from moving between they must now melee these large stacks. Since melee is limited to 1000 men the best they can do is hit with 1000:800 which works out to be about 0.6:1 odds of winning.

The advantage of being able to reduce attacks from 2.5:1 to 0.6:1 is so great that no one should use a continuous line defense if playing strong ZOC's.

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


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 3:27 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:59 am
Posts: 149
Location: Balgonie, Saskatchewan, Canada
Your analysis assumes the attacker has a 1,000 man stack and is willing to risk a chance of high fatigue in a short time. That is one reason even in short scenarios we don't see too many melees.

The better opponents I have played against will not melee unless they have a clear 3/1 advantage - which is not available to them in your examples above under any conditions. To achieve this they will need extra leverage: all A & B units attacking, a leader, and/or not firing in their turn. Because of the scarcity of leaders and A & B units, melee attacks at good odds might occur once or twice per turn on a front with say 20 units. That means 18 of the battles are firefights and 2 are melees. The morale boost to a defender of being in a continuous line gives an advantage 18 times (90%) in the firefights whereas the disadvantage of weaker hex strengths only occurs twice (10%) in the melees. So, it is to the defender's net advantage is to deploy smaller units in lines - which is what we saw in the conflict. Even if there are only 10 units in the front the net advantage is still attractive 80% versus 20%.

<salute!>

_________________
Colonel Lane

Commanding Officer
Western Theater
Confederate States of America

Image


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 5:13 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:26 pm
Posts: 528
I offered something because I thought I knew what I was talking about, but---guess not!
I stated my opinion and billed it as such, not like some who routinely state their opinion as irrefutable fact. Rubbish!
j Ferry
LTC 2/20th Corps


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 5:43 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:59 am
Posts: 149
Location: Balgonie, Saskatchewan, Canada
With all due respect, Mr. Ferry, your contribution to this discussion so far has been "I feel there are too many constraints to movement". Were you expecting debate to end there? General Whitehead offered an analysis of the effects of the two rules on melee combat. I offered an analysis looking at both melee and firefight combat. If you have a more in depth contribution to the discussion than "rubbish" to our opinions, please do share.

_________________
Colonel Lane

Commanding Officer
Western Theater
Confederate States of America

Image


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 6:39 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:26 pm
Posts: 528
Sorry. I wrote up an extensive reply but lost it. So suffice to say, this time, that my issues are with Kennon, and not with any one else. It is very hard to debate someone who is always right.
John


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 8:08 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:59 am
Posts: 149
Location: Balgonie, Saskatchewan, Canada
John: To a man, I would guess, every single one of us here deeply respects your knowledge and your participation in this club. We are a far far better place with you around on many levels. This is America - feel free to speak your mind Suh!

<salute!>

_________________
Colonel Lane

Commanding Officer
Western Theater
Confederate States of America

Image


Top
 Profile Send private message  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 6:04 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue Feb 05, 2013 12:10 pm
Posts: 30
" This is America - feel free to speak your mind Suh! "

& Great Britain ! :-)

_________________
Maj. Tony Barett

AotM, II Corp, 2nd Division, 3rd Brigade.


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 7:21 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2004 6:49 am
Posts: 522
Location: Black Mountain, NC
Thanks to all that responded, it seems that both on and off have pros and cons. My take away from this is that Weak ZOC has slightly more pros, except in some Peninsula scenarios. Again, thank you.

_________________
Image
Lt. Gen. D. Groce
3rd Brigade
Second Division
VIII Corps
AotS
"Everything will be alright in the end, if it's not alright, it's not the end"


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:14 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 12, 2013 2:38 pm
Posts: 73
Location: Little Rock, AR
I for one prefer Weak ZOC, principally for eliminating checkerboard defense and for what I feel the unrealistic 'lock-down' 1 regiment can project over 3 regiments to its front. 1 regiment would be able to control its immediate front, about 125 yards wide, meanwhile 3 attacking regiments approaching it would have a front of 375 yards (125x3). I feel like flanking would easily occur in this situation, which weak ZOC would allow.

_________________
Lt. Col Joe R. Matthews
6th Brigade/3/III
Army of Northern VA


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:45 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 4:32 am
Posts: 1639
Location: USA
J. Ferry wrote:
Sorry. I wrote up an extensive reply but lost it. So suffice to say, this time, that my issues are with Kennon, and not with any one else. It is very hard to debate someone who is always right.
John


There is no right way to play a HPS game just preferences. It is after all just a game not a true simulation like say Microsoft Flight is intended to be.

I prefer to play the game using options that in my opinion come the closes to simulating real world Civil War combat. The HPS game can't truly simulate regimental tactics because of its scale. After all a lot is happening within a hex when the turn represents 20 minutes of time. Real regiments wouldn't idly watch an enemy regiment move past them. They would respond and in Game Designer terms this is what the ZOC represents. Unfortunately, the Game engine has to simplify things in order for it to work. So both interpretations of ZOC are correct in different circumstances. If a hex contained two or three regiments numbering almost a thousand men, then it is quite capable of projecting a strong ZOC. On the other hand a single regiment beaten down to less than 100 men probably couldn't exert a strong ZOC in its own hex much less the three frontal hexes. Fifty or so men in a 120 yard wide hex is more a skirmish line than a line of battle. But a Game Engine can't handle every possible situation it has to simplify things down to a reasonable situation that it can handle generically. There is a basic assumption in game design that while it might not handle every detail correctly on the average it will reproduce the result in spite of that.

I like the article that appeared years ago in AH General magazine make fun of the push at that time to ever more detail and bigger simulations of war games. I wish I had kept my old game magazines now so I could reference them better. In it they came up with "The Game" which was a simulation of World War II at the individual soldier level. At that time there were no computer games so this was a board game that the fictional player had set up on a vacant lot he had bought for the project. Each counter represent an actual soldier in the war with his stats and real name. However, The Game had side effects including the player's wife had gone insane and he was close behind. :)

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


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: ZOC
PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:53 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:26 pm
Posts: 528
I would have laid this matter to rest except that I realize the Mr Lane thought I was labeling all the discussion in this thread as "rubbish" and that was not the case. If I gave that impression, I apologize. I referred in my initial remarks to the broadly accepted premise that the rifle radically changed warfare and tactics. Kennon's statement that "as for the rifle it had little or no affect on tactics." was incredible, as if a board of military historians had just met and came to that determination, and passed on said determination only to Kennon, as it was presented as fact, not as opinion. There are more than a few historians, even including those who went to Armchair University, who would disagree. For my statement to be dismissed out of hand, I labeled as "rubbish" because I chose to use a word which George Carlin did not say you could not use on TV.
"Little or no affect on tactics?" What say you, boys?

J D Ferry
LTC 2/20th Corps


Top
 Profile Send private message E-mail  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 24 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 15 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to: