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Rabelesius

Russian Civil War - from a historical point of view

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Hi guys,

after my experience with the rather ahistorical Balkans War scenario (it just does not work as simulation and I am sure Bill and his team are working on fixes as we speak), it's the Russian Civil War scenario I am looking at:

1) It is not working as historical

2) The Whites are SERIOUSLY overpowered in this one. Kolchak succumbed in mid of 1919. The Southern Whites lost the war also in autumn of 1919. The big Cavalry Army smashed them then. In the game, it takes too long to maneuver the Cavalry Army to the South. I am also not sure about Wrangel's fight in the Crimea.

3) The Bolsheviks have nothing serious to threaten any of the fronts and large scale concentrations are difficult to pull off.

4) SCWWI's combat system does not work that well in the theatre. I believe that high odds attacks of large forces against superior quality should have equal outcomes. However, in the current engine, there are simply not enough troops for the Bolshevik to make his manpower superiority apparent.

All in all, so far, this scenario needs LOTS of tightening and changes. On the plus side, the historical events and the Allied intervention are depicted very accurately so far.

You can see from the AAR posted above the mentioned problems.

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Hi Rabelesius. I don't entirely agree with the main thesis of your post. RCW is a balanced and playable campaign, spiced with a lot of historical flavour. If we wanted to make it 100% historically acurate, then Whites shouldn't have ANY chances to win and the war should be over by the end of 1919 in each game. Also, the Whites shouldn't be allowed to purchase nor build new units. I'm going to ask a rethorical question here: would that be fun? Let's not forget that RCW is not a simulation but a game and as such, should allow for ahistorical outcomes. Having said this, it doesn't mean that the campaign is inacurate and unrealistic. The Whites are allowed here to grown slightly stronger than in reality but the Reds have a considerable chance to win too. So far, I've played as the Bolshevik twice and managed to win each time. In both cases the games were decided by the end of 1919, allowing for a very historical result. So as always, a lot depends on the gameplay. Admittedly, commanding the Bolsheviks requires a lot of skill, especially in terms of applying the force economy and it's recommended to try various strategies first. May favorite, is to crush the Urals Cossaks first, then the North Western Whites, leaving Denikin for a dessert - so far it has always worked. And yes, I always start with replacing the Bolshevik HQ's with better commanders - it significantly improves the combat performance of the Red Army!

In regards to the combat mechanics, RCW works a little different than the WWI campaigns. Namely, it is more offensive-orientated, which I think feels just right. Again, if you wanted to be 100% accurate, then few consecutive attacks against one enemy unit should be dissalowed, especially on the corps/army level. In reality it was impossible to coordinate the attacks of few operational size units under the conditions of that war. If this rule was to be somehow introduced, then all the fun would be taken from the players, because people just love to fight and destroy enemy units:)

After playing many test games and some discussion with Bill, I can just say that some changes are underway to slightly buff the Bolsheviks - mostly the combat performance of their units, so please stay tunned for this :)

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I agree with Ivanov. Let's not forget it's a computer game. And I'm against extreme historical accuracy if it affects playability of the game. What is the big advantage of Russian Civil War and the majority of SC WW1 campaigns is that they're well balanced for both sides and if they were more historically accurate, then probably one of the sides would always lose.

One of my favorite strategic games of all times, Panzer General 2, is hardly historically accurate. Despite that I keep playing it, even it's been 15 years since it was issued.

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Hi Rabelesius

As Ivanov has suggested, some changes are coming and the most essential thing will be to make the Bolshevik attack on the Ukraine a more attractive option than it is currently.

I also agree that a bit more offensive power to the Bolsheviks, or slightly less for the Whites, especially the Southern Whites, would be a good thing, but without taking it too far.

Bill

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Thanks. That can help a lot. I guess what the game really needs is a harsh victory condition where eliminating the Whites at the historical date is the goal. There is a boardgame called Reds! which simulates that pretty well.

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