Is the French fleet too big, and unlimited India builds

Breaking away from the Second World War and paying a visit and tribute to the First World War. Coming this March, 2013
VonLettowVorbeck1914
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Re: Is the French fleet too big, and unlimited India builds

Post by VonLettowVorbeck1914 » Mon May 06, 2013 1:30 pm

Larry wrote:I'm not interested in tying new unit placement and IPC values together. However, placement into any home territory that the turn player still controls or is contested sounds pretty dynamic. I'm curious about how that would feel.

By the way... I have been playing a "move - 2 game". Rule being: Can only enter a contested or attack a territory that can be reached on a unit's first move. I'm not very excited about how it feels and even less excited about the tempo of the game. Especially after having played ( and really liking) the Strategic Movement system - you remember: Get a last move from anywhere to anywhere.
This is what I was concerned about when the two-move hit the table; that is wasn't ambitious enough relative to your original idea.

Rather than opening a new chapter in A&A, like the long SM would, the two-move is effective and at least a baby-step towards solving (at least Germany's) problems but (no offense to its creator) is just plain boring next to the long move.

In a slight edit of what someone else posted, I think allowing the SM from a controlled capital would allow that big move without allowing the ping-ponging that Krieg was concerned about.

You can move from any capital your side controls to a territory that you control or have units in, as long as the only territories through which you move are controlled by your power, or have at least one of your units present and are controlled by an ally.

This also rewards powers for getting the game moving by taking enemy capitals as they can use capitals as rail hubs.

Striker
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Re: Is the French fleet too big, and unlimited India builds

Post by Striker » Mon May 06, 2013 3:22 pm

I'll add in a post on the 2 move vs. Strategic move debate.

I prefer the two move rule over the SM as it stands, for the reason that it helps a bit without *breaking* anything. It's an improvement over the OOTB rules but doesn't allow for what I consider to be game-breaking or at least "gamey" strategies that are present with strategic movement. These include the German single uberstack ping-pong that Krieg and I pointed out as well as the British/Indian wave of death on the ottomans.

Perhaps if restrictions were added to counter these unwanted side effects of SM it would be worth looking at again.

To summarize: SM is a good concept but the negatives are...
-The singular nature of it encourages armies to huddle in a single huge stack in a game that doesn't need more of that encouragement.
-Ping-ponging one front at a time with a single huge stack.
-Enables a quick bullying/easy walkover of Italy and Turkey by the Austrians and British/Indian respectively, without any apparent drawbacks to those "all in" strategies.

I just feels like SM is such a radical change that you would have to redesign a fair amount of the game around it.

It's been suggested to allow SM only from the capital, I feel that would only fix the ping-ponging problem, and then put us back to square one with the situation that if the Germans win the war in Russia their forces there would take forever to get somewhere useful again. That would feel both ahistorical and "not fun".
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I played another game with my group using the 2 land movement, naval base +1 sea movement ruleset. It played better than the OOTB or SM versions IMO. I'll agree 2 movement restricted from contested territories wasn't as fast paced, however the ebb and flow of the battlelines seems much more natural or "right". Also countries that had multiple fronts tended to have *gasp* TWO stacks, instead of the one that SM encouraged.

Naval base movement of three felt pretty right, America could reinforce it's historical landing on France in one turn but couldn't simultaneously threaten the Ottoman capital and Austrian+German coastlines at the same time.

The German navy was able to survive turn 1 as well, and was able to skirmish with the allies for sometime. I'm interested in trying the suggested reduced french navy setup, it will make for a real battle of the Atlantic I think. The Austrians and Ottomans still didn't get a chance to do anything with theirs, Russia simply has nothing to lose by mutually destroying the ottoman fleet and their own. It's quickly become a standard R1 opening move among our group.

Summary of opinion of 2 land movement, naval base ruleset: A step in the right direction, has a positive effect on the game without harming it. There may likely still be room for adjustments that have further positive effects. Experimenting with allowing movement into contested territories if you had troops already present, or making it 3 move, or combining the 2 move with "placement in any home territory" may be worth considering. Either way, I would gladly adopt 2 move over the OOTB ruleset.

This is all so strange... Kind of funny actually.
First of all let me say that I have seen some stacking while playing this game. The biggest was 25 units. It happens. Actually it happens in all the different systems I’ve been looking at. It even happens in the OOB system On that point let me be clear. The OOB one move system is fine just the way it is. I was interested in seeing if I could find, or stumble into a quicker/better mechanic... Who knows? Nothing ventured nothing gained.

The fact is I may have found something here. That’s kind of why I’m taking the time to write all this...

In any case, what I’m really writing about is what I’m seeing happening here... It’s hilarious. I’m seeing the word(s) “ping-pong” being assigned to Krieghund as if they were his. Actually they were mine. I think I was expressing some concern about this possible phenomena. You know the phenomena I’m talking about. The mystical rogue wave of sacked chips that keep flying back and forth between Moscow and some distant place on the other side of the board.

You stated here on this posting (above)...“Krieg and I pointed out...” It’s very clear to me that in fact Krieghund never pointed this phenomena out... He did, on one post state that he was concerned about this possibility but he never said he actually saw it while playing the game. I think he was responding to your game report.

The fact is Krieghund never posted a game report of his own. He was simply expressing a concerned he had. I haven’t had a chance to talk to him directly about this issue. I pretty much do talk to him about these kinds of things, and I’ve come to greatly value his opinion. I did know that he was concerned about a possible Ping-ponging, and frankly... so was I – no news there. For you to say something like “Krieg and I pointed out...” is misleading at best.

Frankly I’ve been questioning your stated observations since the first one. In fact I had to apologize to you for suggesting that it was BS... You were talking about things and events that I did not witness in any of my game experiments with this Strategic Movement system. I certainly never saw any “Ping-Ponging” going on. I saw Germans, having a game mechanic that permitted them to rapidly leave Russia following the capture of Moscow and head back to the Western Front. It was very interesting to see this and I was delighted. I certainly never saw them Ping pong back to Russia ... there was frankly no reason for them to go back to Russia. That part of the game was history - there were new fish to fry.

No massive back and forth movements where ever necessary in any of the 5 Strategic Movement system type games I played. Sooooo... I found myself questioning the creditability of your report. Which was the first one ever written about strategic movements, so it was kind of important. It could have a great impact on whether this Strategic movement concept lived or died.

The reason I’m even getting into all this is because I don’t want to simply KILL what may be a great game mechanic because of one game report that made no sense to me especially when the author has demonstrated his ability to spin things... ...“Krieg and I pointed out...” That never happened. Sorry

VonLettowVorbeck1914
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Re: Is the French fleet too big, and unlimited India builds

Post by VonLettowVorbeck1914 » Mon May 06, 2013 6:05 pm

Striker wrote: Perhaps if restrictions were added to counter these unwanted side effects of SM it would be worth looking at again.
It's already worth looking at; the question is whether it is worth adopting. I think the long move has the potential to be much better than the 2 move.

Striker
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Re: Is the French fleet too big, and unlimited India builds

Post by Striker » Mon May 06, 2013 10:36 pm

Striker wrote:I'll add in a post on the 2 move vs. Strategic move debate.


...I found myself questioning the creditability of your report.....

The reason I’m even getting into all this is because I don’t want to simply KILL what may be a great game mechanic because of one game report that made no sense to me especially when the author has demonstrated his ability to spin things... ...“Krieg and I pointed out...” That never happened. Sorry
That was a long post to accuse my credibility. Especially one so centered on semantics.

Allow me to defend myself.
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I don't have the same relationship with Krieg you may have, I didn't know if he had or had not played games with the strategic movement mechanic. I took his post at face value that he had worries of the "ping-pong", not thinking my single game report would form the basis of his opinion. In hindsight, I made a poor assumption.

I'm sorry for being ignorant of who "coined the term". I joined this "conversation" for lack of better term after the beginning and saw the term thrown around by multiple people. I was not attributing it to anybody, you read far too much into that statement.

One more sentence about this increasingly ad hominem focused argument. From what you've posted you sound as I I have some malignant objective. Whats my ulterior motive? Why would I make up a game report of BS to influence a change in rules direction? I'd like to think I am just a fan of the series of wants to maximize his enjoyment out of the franchise. When I had an opportunity to playtest possible rules, I took it and gave my report of what happened and opinions based off that game. Nothing more, nothing less.
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Now, I'm going to give one last crack at trying to contribute constructively.

Let's define the "ping pong" here. In the game I wrote up on Germany went from focusing west initially to create a territory buffer, then strategic moved east to focus completely on Moscow, then on turn it guaranteed a Russian revolution it strategic moved back to the french front. I called this a "ping pong" as it involved the near entirety of the German army attacking one front at a time while leaving nothing on the other. Am I looking at this wrong? Is this an unwanted or an expected thing to happen?

If it helps make things more clear, I played Germany the game we tried out SM. As one tends to try out with play-testing, I saw a potential flaw with the SM mechanic and I took it to the extreme, seeing if I could "break the game" by "abusing" the mechanic. That games experience led me to believe that not all was good with the SM mechanic.

BTW, I'm surprised if 25 units is the largest stack you've seen. With three versions of ruleset's that I've played, my group has seen multiple stacks of 50+ units, with the record being an 80 large German stack due to a defensive stalemate/standoff with France+allies.(Good thing I bought an extra bag of chips online!). I have to ask, what is the norm for other people?

To be clear, I'm not trying to "Kill strategic movement". I simply tried to point out flaws in the system, unwanted "side effects" if you will, that I think would be nice to be dealt with. I had nothing against the "experiment"(hence why I tried it), I just expected the results to not be laughed at.

I'm not so arrogant as to think that my one game should direct the flow of rules direction. My gaming group is one "sample". Your playtesters (I have no idea how many you play with) is another "sample". Both of us are at risk of our individual results being skewed due to our gaming groups playstyle. That said, I'd like to see more games from other groups get played to see where the pattern lies before the idea is "officially" accepted or dismissed.

I'd like to see more games from other groups get played to see where the pattern lies before the idea is "officially" accepted or dismissed.
I can certainly join with you in that shared ambition.
Great response by the way...

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Flashman
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Re: Is the French fleet too big, and unlimited India builds

Post by Flashman » Tue May 07, 2013 5:42 am

I still prefer one SM per turn from the capital.

You might still see Germany and Austria empty at the end of round one, but they have to be more cautious about putting all their eggs in one basket and leaving other fronts undefended.

That first round big stack SM can be seen as initial mobilization plans being put into action; thereafter most SM will be used to send out new units only. This solves the problem of new pieces taking too long to reach the action, but limits the ping-pong effect.

Since UK & US usually unload transports on or near the front lines anyway they are not seriously disadvantaged by this rule.

Regarding Central powers troops being stuck in Russia, if the Allies are playing intelligently the CPs will have to defend these conquests against British armies from Karelia and Persia/Mesopotamia anyway.

VonLettowVorbeck1914
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Re: Is the French fleet too big, and unlimited India builds

Post by VonLettowVorbeck1914 » Tue May 07, 2013 6:12 am

Striker wrote: Whats my ulterior motive? Why would I make up a game report of BS to influence a change in rules direction?
In the past, there have been people who have stated a rules proposal, and after that proposal did not get much support, they conveniently stumbled across a balance issue that would conveniently make their past proposal good idea.

I'm not saying that's what you are doing, but whenever a game is open to community input like this, there is always the chance of people, intentionally or not, having their ideas of what they want the game to be get in the way of what they interpret.

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Krieghund
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Re: Is the French fleet too big, and unlimited India builds

Post by Krieghund » Tue May 07, 2013 10:04 am

Striker wrote:I don't have the same relationship with Krieg you may have, I didn't know if he had or had not played games with the strategic movement mechanic. I took his post at face value that he had worries of the "ping-pong", not thinking my single game report would form the basis of his opinion. In hindsight, I made a poor assumption.
I'll repost my original comment here, as this discussion seems to have migrated here from another thread:
Krieghund wrote:This possibility was one of my greatest reservations concerning the strategic movement concept. I was concerned that the "pendulum strategy", as I called it, could be overpowered for the Central Powers.
To be clear, this was a concern that I've had from the time of the proposal. Your assumption was correct, as it did not originate from a single game report. I was simply remarking that your report was evidence supporting the validity of that concern. Sorry if I wasn't clear about that. Obviously, this needs to be explored further.

As it is, I have not had time to play any games with this rule, as I've been busy with another project. I hope to remedy that soon. In the meantime, I can only speculate and rely on the experience of others.
A&A Developer and Playtester

"War is much more fun when you're winning!" - General Martok

VonLettowVorbeck1914
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Re: Is the French fleet too big, and unlimited India builds

Post by VonLettowVorbeck1914 » Tue May 07, 2013 7:50 pm

Larry, in case it has gotten lost in the last several posts, what are your thoughts on allowing SM's from capitals your side controls through territories the moving power controls or has at least one unit present?

I'm not big on allowing strategic moves from only capitals. As much as I myself once liked and actually tried such a system I concluded that not only did it feel contrived in the final analysis, but it also too often failed to provide the movement system or the freedom of choice I was looking for.

I think a 2 territory movement system, with a couple of provisos, I will be listing, can promote the rapid movements and shorter games I'm looking for.

Further more...

3 territory moves don't seem to work. I noticed that with a three territory movement system Germany has the capability of bum-rushing the French lines and ultimately forcing the collapse of that/those lines by their sheer weight of numbers.

currently I am leaning towards a 2 maximum territory movement system that can occur during the movement phase (of course).

Moving units can enter and stop, or pass through a territory that has been controlled or contested by the moving player or one of his ally's since the beginning of the current turn.

Moving units can only enter an enemy controlled territory on the first move of the unit's 2 territory movement.


05/09 changed my mind about passing through contested territories - Current thinking: You must STOP upon entering a contested territory.

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