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Rick
21 May 06, 09:26
I'm playing a PEBM Quatre-Bras scenario and I've notice a couple of things that should be looked into.

First, I'm playing the Allies and I have a Belgian Bn in line formation sitting in the Basso (sp?) wood for most of the day getting shot at front and both flanks. The French have melee'd that same unit with overwhelming numbers with no success. Granted, I have a leader in the hex with the unit, but isn't this historically inaccurate? Should this Bn (a Belgian Bn) be standing after the punishment it's been taking?

Second, and this has been brought up several time in the forum, skirmishers. Skirmishers should automatically retreat into its parent unit when an enemy unit moves into and occupies it's hex. They should be allowed a parting defensive shot, but other than that they need to vacate the hex. If you still still think I'm wrong, than you should at least modify the event so that a formed unit meleeing against unformed skirmishers not be disrupted.

Third, how long does it take to get a unit undistrupted? Granted, if the fatigue number of a unit are up there it probably should take a while to recover. But in some cases, I have "A" class disrupted units with offices in the hex and stand there with a thumb up their butt.

Rick

Sol Invictus
21 May 06, 09:48
I'd like to add my voice to these issues, as I'm the other player in this email game. I would have expected that Belgian Bn to have routed a few turns ago as it is also taking flanking artillery fire. I have mentioned this before as well, but Skirmishers really do need to retreat toward friendly lines and preferably toward the parent unit, not away from friendlies and toward the enemy. I have also noticed that a fresh battalion of Cuirassiers, when attacking an Infantry Bn from the rear that is in Column, still takes a sizeable amount of casualties. This increases greatly if the cavalry continues its charge. This just doesn't seem correct as the infantry unit would almost certainly have routed after the initial contact. Finally, if infantry units for the defender could be made to have an attempt to form square when charged by cavalry; based on quality and disruption of course. This would much better represent the constant interplay of the differing arms and formations of this era. I realize that the engine might not easily accomplish these thing, but it is certainly worth looking into imo. Really good engine that could be made close to perfect with a few changes. It would be perfect if it were WEGO, but I know that won't happen.

Mike Cox
22 May 06, 20:22
Not the designer, but...

1. Should this Bn (a Belgian Bn) be standing after the punishment it's been taking?

Probaby not, but better lucky than good. Were the French disordered when the melees. Is the Belgian in command?

2. formed unit meleeing against unformed skirmishers not be disrupted.

This was done a while back. However, when you move into the hex you may disrupt depending on terrain and formation. Melee a skirmisher in any formation in the open and you will not disrupt. (Unless you outright lose the melee.) Into a covered terrain or across a hexside/stream melee in column. Better yet, throw out skirmishers of your own to throw them back. Also, with multiple infantry melees, you can push back the skirmisher on it's formed support and then melee the formed unit.

3. Depends if it is dirruptive terrain. If you have a unit in line in a village, it will never recover good order. A good quality unit, in command, and in open terrain will almost certainly recover good order in a turn or two.

4. but Skirmishers really do need to retreat toward friendly lines and preferably toward the parent unit, not away from friendlies and toward the enemy

Agreed, but it is a bit random, and a routed unit can not move closer to a known enemy unit. So the AI may have tried to move toward friendly lines, but saw an enemy unit closer and moved away. Sometimes screwy, but if your lines are mixed up with his, it happens.

5. I have also noticed that a fresh battalion of Cuirassiers, when attacking an Infantry Bn from the rear that is in Column, still takes a sizeable amount of casualties.

Were the Cuirassiers Charging, or just meleeing? What were the relatiove stengths? It is odd that a regiment taken in the flank stood. However, if you tried the melee a second time, you meleed at 1/3 strength to his 2/3. Also, since you were disordered, I think you lose the charge bonus. (Could be wrong.)

6. for the defender could be made to have an attempt to form square when charged by cavalry; based on quality and disruption of course.

I think they tried this out, but found that a charge could fake a Bn into square then not attack while cannon and infantry in line blasted away at the vulnerable square. Likely the square would disorder and fall prey to the support infantry. Same reason they never did the Defensive AI counter charge - to easy to exploit. But in HPS you can see the charge coming and so should be able to form up before he comes for you. Unlike in BG Waterloo where the enemy could move up 6 hexes from an unseen location and then charge 6 more...

rahamy
22 May 06, 21:53
Mike did a good job answering, but I'll througha few comments in too...


Not the designer, but...

1. Should this Bn (a Belgian Bn) be standing after the punishment it's been taking?

Probaby not, but better lucky than good. Were the French disordered when the melees. Is the Belgian in command?


Would have to see the game file to form a accurate response (send to Support at hpssims.com) but I'm currently wrapping up a scenario of this same action and I cleaned the Allies out pretty quickly. You'll see an AAR on it before too long, once my opponent returns.




2. formed unit meleeing against unformed skirmishers not be disrupted.

This was done a while back. However, when you move into the hex you may disrupt depending on terrain and formation. Melee a skirmisher in any formation in the open and you will not disrupt. (Unless you outright lose the melee.) Into a covered terrain or across a hexside/stream melee in column. Better yet, throw out skirmishers of your own to throw them back. Also, with multiple infantry melees, you can push back the skirmisher on it's formed support and then melee the formed unit.


Exactly..and don't forget the ability to overrun skirmishers with cavalry charges. Always a nice way to clear the field a bit...if your opponent is foolish enough to leave them deployed in the face of your horse.



3. Depends if it is dirruptive terrain. If you have a unit in line in a village, it will never recover good order. A good quality unit, in command, and in open terrain will almost certainly recover good order in a turn or two.


A skirmisher must be within 5 hexes of its parent unit to regain good order...so if you leave them way behind your lines youa re right, they are never going to recover. There is also a bug in the rally routine for the Prussian skirmishers in the game thata re coded into the OOB as skirmishers, instead of part of a paretn unit. We've addressed that and the fix will be issued in the 1.02 patch that due out in the not to distant future.



4. but Skirmishers really do need to retreat toward friendly lines and preferably toward the parent unit, not away from friendlies and toward the enemy

Agreed, but it is a bit random, and a routed unit can not move closer to a known enemy unit. So the AI may have tried to move toward friendly lines, but saw an enemy unit closer and moved away. Sometimes screwy, but if your lines are mixed up with his, it happens.


Nothing much to add here...




5. I have also noticed that a fresh battalion of Cuirassiers, when attacking an Infantry Bn from the rear that is in Column, still takes a sizeable amount of casualties.

Were the Cuirassiers Charging, or just meleeing? What were the relatiove stengths? It is odd that a regiment taken in the flank stood. However, if you tried the melee a second time, you meleed at 1/3 strength to his 2/3. Also, since you were disordered, I think you lose the charge bonus. (Could be wrong.)


The charge bouns is retianed, but essentialy negated since youa re attacking at 1/3 strength when disordered.




6. for the defender could be made to have an attempt to form square when charged by cavalry; based on quality and disruption of course.

I think they tried this out, but found that a charge could fake a Bn into square then not attack while cannon and infantry in line blasted away at the vulnerable square. Likely the square would disorder and fall prey to the support infantry. Same reason they never did the Defensive AI counter charge - to easy to exploit. But in HPS you can see the charge coming and so should be able to form up before he comes for you. Unlike in BG Waterloo where the enemy could move up 6 hexes from an unseen location and then charge 6 more...

Mike nailed this as well. Auto square is not a feature we will be implementing.

Regards,
Rich

Sol Invictus
23 May 06, 09:29
Thanks for the responses, though I trust your judgement, I don't see the problem of a Cavalry Charge faking an Infantry Battalion into Square, only to fall prey to Artillery/Infantry. This was/is a valid tactic. One more thing, is there a way to easily tell which Skirmisher belongs to which Parent? It becomes very difficult to find who belongs to whom after many units are broken down. Thanks.

rahamy
23 May 06, 09:51
The easiest way is to use the "Highlight Organization" feature in the game, then select the brigade. This wont tell you which battalion they are part of, but it will get you in the right formation. After that you use the hex info area info. I usually try to avoid using large amounts of skirmishers, especially once contact is made - if possible.

Also note that skirmishers no longer prevent retreats, so they can get eliminated if attempted to be used for ZOC's.

Gary McClellan
23 May 06, 10:37
Cav can still fake infantry into square easily enough, it's just not something that would be done by the AI.

For instance, I set up a full regiment of Cav 7 hexes from you (clear terrain). You'll at least have to consider going into square. Do you or don't you? That's the tactical choice.

On the other hand, if the AI does it, you'll have silliness like full 1100 man Austrian battalions being "chased" into Square by 70 man squadrons or the like.

Sol Invictus
23 May 06, 12:23
Could it not be made so that a unit only automaticly checks the attempt to assume Square if the enemy Cavalry unit charges and is adjacent and able to Melee? H@M2 does it this way and there are no problems. In that game, the player can't even voluntarily order a unit into Square, the attempt is all automatic if a unit is actually charged.

Reiryc
31 May 06, 22:58
I miss the counter-cavalry charge optional rule from napoleon in russia (talonsoft), any chance this optional rule could make it back?

Gary McClellan
01 Jun 06, 00:26
Countercharge is pretty unlikely. There's just no way to pull it off in the current 1-phase system without making it an AI thing, and that creates even worse problems than the autosquare.

rahamy
01 Jun 06, 06:56
I have asked John (By the request of others) to add it back in for those that wish to play in phases, rather than single turns. Personally I can't stand phases, but I know some people still play that way. Anyhow, we'll see if it does eventually make it back in...

Reiryc
01 Jun 06, 10:11
Great... thanks.

I don't necessarily love phases either, but I sure did like counter cavalry charge!

Sgt_Rock
03 Jun 06, 10:26
I have asked John (By the request of others) to add it back in for those that wish to play in phases, rather than single turns. Personally I can't stand phases, but I know some people still play that way. Anyhow, we'll see if it does eventually make it back in...

I also have been asking for this over the last few years. The reason is simple: while we cant give the customer everything due to time constraints and some disagreement over rationale, this IS one of the favored methods of play and if the guys like to play this way then why should we shoot ourselves in the foot and not give it to them?

Yes, it means SIX files per game turn but why even have the phased format of play at all if its going to be half baked as it stands at present?

I am in agreement with John Tiller on the counter charge thing - I personally do not believe that its historical for two squadrons to be tossed out there to disorder a huge stack of enemy cavalry ...

BUT

allowing the player to square up in his defense phase OR limber up his artillery IS very historical and not allowed currently in the one phase format.

We have talked of a Auto-Square feature but frankly I dont believe that even the BEST AI could carry this out properly. I believe that even in games where the players are not using gamey tactics to draw a unit into square so that they could use their artillery to blow it away that you would see units react incorrectly to a threat.

However, if such a feature were an OPTION I dont see a problem with it.

How many of you would like to see a Auto-Square OPTION added to the game for the Single Phase form of play?

My vote is to get the Defense Phase back to the way it was in Battleground but without the Cavalry Counter Charge option. I agree with John Tiller - a counter charge was almost ALWAYS done AFTER the enemy cavalry had charged. Not to intercept it. If you can find historical proof to deny my statement email it to me or post it here but please I wont argue this point. Lets talk history - not pride of research.;)

KG_RangerBooBoo
03 Jun 06, 11:52
I think you could make the auto square work if you had to select the target of the charge before hand. Then have the unit undergo a morale check to see if it formed square in time or not. Of course you could still take advantage of this but you would at least force the cavalry to committ to a charge and be disrupted if they didn't carry it out.