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Everything posted by jwilly

  1. Radical new mechanics, map development and a new game concept for time/distance would be required to add movement and occasional fighting in the Atlantic. But the most critical naval supply movement for England's economy was off its east coast, mostly through the North Sea. The moved resource was coal, from the River Tyne mouth to Greater London. Stop those convoys, and England's ability to arm itself and many other economic functions would stop. And, the most critical naval supply movement for Germany's economy was from Narvik, Norway to northwestern Germany. The moved resource was Swedish iron ore. Stop those convoys, and Germany's ability to arm itself would stop. Those coastal convoys, and opportunities to attack and defend them, could be added to the existing game with, by comparison, much less development.
  2. It's fundamental to the game's design that the more lethal a unit is, the more killable it also is, usually by means of visually standing out from its environment.
  3. For the British (T0) and the French (T1, i.e. second part of 1940). But, no HEAT sapper charges for either of them. And everyone's non-HEAT sapper charges have a 25% chance of setting a medium/heavy tank alight if placed on the engine deck, or a 75% chance for a light tank or AC. The Germans get a less capable T0 version of the HEAT sapper charge, and no HEAT RG.
  4. Keep on plugging, Doc. I'm retired, but if I had a job to get done I'd hire you.
  5. How far away do you render other ships/boats? Object classes each have a greatest interaction distance. My understanding is that's the maximum distance at which they render for others that are capable of seeing them at that distance, as well as the distance at which they can render the others if they're capable of doing so. For an interaction between two different classes, the rendering limit-distance is the lesser of the two classes' maximum interaction distances.
  6. I was following the premise of Dre21's OP that the Fairmile's in-game role should be AA protection, i.e. --noting that in real life the WWII US and British navies went away from 20/25mm AA and toward 40mm for AA because it had more-effective stopping power against bombers, and the historical Fairmile B's "gunboat" armament-version and the most comparable armament-versions of the German R-boat and the French "Normandie" class patrol boat similarly were armed with autocannons for AA and anti-coastal-vessel fighting.
  7. The current FMB model already operates at about double its historical capability, or that of the French and German boats of similar capability and size that it presumably represents. Totally agree. The most historically interesting and game-useful version of the FMB had two pounder AA Vickers autocannons bow and stern. CRS doesn't have that gun modeled, so put a dual 20mm at the bow to match the existing stern armament. Or, put a Bofors at the bow and stern, but decrease its muzzle velocity by 25% to make it comparable to the Vickers. The original FMB model had .30 inch caliber class Lewis MMGs at either side of the deckhouse. Such MMGs are pretty useless in-game, though, against attacking aircraft. Realistically operated DDs wouldn't need any protection at all from torpedo bombers dropping realistically modeled torpedoes. When a game builds in unrealisms "to simplify things", more and more unrealisms are needed to keep things from becoming dysfunctional. Just fix the destroyers so they don't stop to fire, and model the torpedoes with realistic limitations, and destroyers will do just fine.
  8. Because you like playing infantry. Other customers like playing armor. Decreasing gameplay availability for the latter customer group would not be a good solution. An alternate approach would be to decrease infantry-armor interactions. Infantry would spawn in a manner that tanks could not camp, and vice versa. Infantry could hide from tanks much more readily. Infantry lethality toward tanks would be cut way back.
  9. Any acknowledgment that supply systems should be improved and offroad mobility made more realistic IMO should be addressed with a multi-part plan including filling-out vehicle-type sets as needed; addition of a secondary road network to the terrain tile set; and enough development time to sort out the inevitable map/terrain issues and the effects on players' accustomed gameplay.
  10. The RN had orders, and plans, and a full expectation of duty and willingness to do that duty, top to bottom, to attack and sink any German invasion and supply activity the first night, every subsequent night, and any time cloud cover or fog provided sufficient protection from air attack for the warships to get to the Channel. It's silly to think that the RN would have valued their own safety over defeating an invasion force. In any case, fast RN ships could sally from forward ports, attack, then get out of escorted-bomber range during the available hours of darkness. German bombers could only survive unescorted at night, and...in the real world, if not this game...bombers at night cannot effectively attack fast moving warships. As after Narvik there was zero chance of the Germans maintaining even contested control of any of the Channel via warship activity, German sea supply could only have happened during daylight and good weather. As noted, the Germans had enough makeshift landing craft for only one wave, and had no experience or plans for how to get those landing craft off beaches where they had been aground and exposed for eleven hours. Supply would have to have occurred via freighters into a harbor. As the British certainly would destroy any harbor equipment about to be captured...they already had placed charges all around the targeted area, and had troops guarding those charges with orders to blow them if in doubt of status or if parachutes were seen...the Germans would have had to land supplies from self unloading ships, i.e. ones equipped with heavy cranes. Even after captures from Denmark, Netherlands, Belgium and France, Germany had an insufficient number of such ships for their requirements. Their plans counted on capturing multiple fully equipped, undamaged ports. At night, the British using bombers and submarines would have mined the bejeebers out of any harbor and its approaches that the Germans were able to capture. The British had a large number of coastal submarines and coastal surface craft that were well suited for such mining and for attacking any German naval activity at night. After Narvik, the Germans had only a minimal capability to conduct anti-submerged-submarine warfare. They also had a far insufficient capability for de-mining. And, daylight and good weather is an ideal setting for submarines to attack slow moving freighters in a tight context like the Channel. The Germans had similar problems trying to supply their North African forces via the constrained harbors at Bengasi and Tobruk, even with help from the Regia Marina. They failed abjectly, and had to rely on landing supplies in Tunis harbor and expensively, laboriously bringing them eastward by truck and rail. Just as in North Africa and at Stalingrad, the Germans probably would have imagined themselves able to supply by air. Just as in North Africa and Stalingrad, certainly that effort would have failed due to far insufficient tonnage capability, even if the British didn't make any effort to contest it. About two thirds of the entire German air transport tonnage capability was destroyed during the attacks on Norway, Netherlands and Belgium, and their production rate was low throughout the war. It's almost certain that the Germans, had they actually gotten forces ashore in southeastern England, would have had to surrender those forces eventually due to insufficient supply.
  11. "Vehicle-impenetrable forest" should mean no supply for all force elements moving through that forest. Including infantry. Supplies move in trucks. Trucks move on roads. Individual ground force elements should not be able to move out of supply range. WWIIOL is most marketable against its bigger competitors when it offers realism they don't. The game's biggest ground unrealism is its supply system for ammo and vehicle fuel.
  12. It's just historically accurate modeling of the until-now secret UK 1940-41 defensive plans. The war was to crash if the Germans invaded. All that bit about Bletchley Park's early computer capabilities being about code breaking...that was just an effective cover story. That was really just the server array for the war. If the Germans got too close to London, Alan Turing's real job was to pull the plug.
  13. Yay for bullets whizzing past. A great effect. I supported and still support area capture. Yes, it would be disruptive and no doubt the mechanics would require lots of evolution to get them right. It however is the way to better realism. The current mechanics are both too gamey and too game-normal for WWIIOL to break out as a commercial success.
  14. I like it. Maybe limit it to subscribers, as a further motivation for that? There of course will be objections that overpop players play to fight other players, not AI...but what they're really saying is they want to fight no one, or at best an inadequate number of underpop players, because it's easier for the overpop side to win that way.
  15. Heh. Two victories at once...beat cancer, and lose that extra weight. OK, that might be marketable. If you're writing a book about losing weight, maybe some of your medical bills and your new wardrobe will be a business expense. Not that you have big income right now to take expenses against, but some tax treatments can reach back to prior years.
  16. I'd guess if you wrote a diet book it wouldn't sell well.
  17. There wouldn't be any sense of accomplishment/"winning" psychological income for the underpop side, having towns handed back to them. Yes, they'd lose slower, but not through any accomplishments of theirs. And, the overpop side would just take the same towns again, over and over...and they'd be unhappy that they were robbed of their accomplishments. I think from a marketing perspective, that might be lose-lose. *** Among ideas that have been proposed before: 1. Scale the degree of difficulty of various accomplishments to the local pop ratio. You're locally down 2:1, it only takes you half as many personnel to accomplish a cap. 2. Give the locally underpop side some fire support i.e. virtual artillery. You're locally down 2:1, you get three artillery missions in the next hour.
  18. Interesting idea. Note though that only the overpop side would get the extra defenders. From a capability-balancing perspective, it's the underpop side that needs more defenders.
  19. Not off topic at all. Fundamentally, CRS created a problem when they designed a game that, to work properly, requires significant amounts of no-gameplay-action defender gameplay. The original term for that kind of gameplay, appearing in these forums from early in the game's existance, was "bunker duty". An alternative to the "bunker duty" design would be to require attackers to pre-announce their attacks, so that defenders could get into place. That could be done with a seamless AI defense that positively keeps out all attackers until the attack jumpoff time. Then there'd be no need for bunker duty gameplay. Consistently over the years, though, any mention of such a design change has resulted in pushback from players who like attacking against an unprepared, unmanned defense...unrealistic though it is to have the defenders arrive after the attackers...because it makes it easier for the attackers to win.
  20. As noted earlier, a significant percentage of customers "want to play not sit and wait" and prefer to play a particular side because that side often is overpop and thus has an enhanced likelihood of winning battles and campaigns...because they play games in order to get the psychological income of feeling like a winner. Most peoples' lives don't include much opportunity to be a winner. Most peoples' work lives involve doing what someone else tells them to do. Their employer's business outcome doesn't particularly feel like a win for them as an individual. In a game, OTOH, you can be a winner. You can cause a small win situation yourself, or be part of a winning team effort. The key to designing a popular solitaire card game--a very stripped-down gaming experience--is to make it a bit difficult, but not too difficult. People play it for the psychological income they get from winning. They need to be able to win a substantial percentage of the time. One of CRS's key marketing problems since Day One has been how to manage the game so that both sides have about an equal occurrence of winning...because that's an essential element of keeping players on both sides of a PvP game-product...while not making the who-wins management obvious. Balanced pop of course is a key factor in equal occurrence of winning.
  21. My understanding is that a substantial % of gamers play for the "psychological income" of being on the dominant side...which in practice means the overpop side...so they can reliably participate in battle and campaign wins. So, forcing close-to-even pop would hit CRS's business viability hard.
  22. Keep up the good work.
  23. What would "historically accurate spawn ratios" even mean? There were 23 (or maybe 21) Matilda IIs (both types combined) in France/Belgium in May...but production was continuous, and if the BEF hadn't been smashed, more tanks could have been sent, if the Western Desert didn't need them more...but then, the changeover process for the six pounder was scheduled to begin in September. So, what tanks would have been sent to the BEF? The S40 was scheduled to supplant the S35 on the production line in late fall. Ditto the B1ter. The R35 already was out of production...the replacement flow for the R35 should be R40s. Production of the P178 would have switched to the 47mm gun at some point in late summer or early fall. Production of the P201 and the S-chassis assault gun, and maybe the G tank, was likely in 1941. How can any of that be accounted for? Surely the Germans would have responded to the six pounder by rushing forward production and tank-installation of the L/60 50mm, abandoning the 37mm guns and the L/42 50mm. For most of this, there are sparse historical records to consult in regard to what would have happened from August through the end of 1940, or in 1941. And, in any case, that history would be of a single set of circumstances. Reality is dynamic. If one allows event-changes in the progression of a war simulation, one must accept that history from that point forward is invalid without resolution of responsive changes, including to weapon development and production.
  24. What's it take in the real world to flatten/scatter a dirt-timbers-and-sandbags fortification? Not small or even large cannon shells. Not enough sustained force. Not aerial bombs, unless they're direct-contact hits with short delay fuzes. There's plenty of force at the slightly buried point of detonation, but that force diminishes very rapidly with distance. In the real world, it takes either trained men with demolition charges and shovels to tunnel them into or under the object, or a bulldozer. So, allowed methods: 1. HE "sapper charges". 2. Bulldozers: Take an available medium tank. Remove the turret, and cover the hull opening with a flat plate. (Or get fancy and make the vehicle look like it's got a stack of square timbers on top, plus other engineering construction materials...rope coils, buckets of waterproofing tar, shovels and picks, etc.) Mount a basic earthmoving blade to the front, with a small ground clearance. No need for an up/down animation or anything fancy. There's no requirement to make such a vehicle an exact copy of anything. Every army had these, but except for the US they all were at least somewhat customized based on what tank chassis was available. For game purposes, just make sure that each nationality has such a vehicle in every tier. In every army but USA, the turretless tank often was a multipurpose vehicle used for earthmoving, snow plowing if needed, mine clearance, vehicle towing, carrying bridge materials, and other heavy support tasks. Drive the dozer into a PPO fortification, and it disappears in a cloud of dust. Mounting plates for an earth moving blade: Front mount for a winch for a lift/lower earthmoving blade...removed while the engineer vehicle is used for tank recovery: