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AL tweaks


coda
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Here are a couple of ideas to help poor old AL out:

All these are reference to the Elite AL.

1. Use of BBs etc

Whenever an AL country goes down, he always seems to have 3-4 BBs just sitting around somewhere (not helping much). The AL is great at building a strong navy, he just doesn't really use it. To beat him, just avoid his navy and take the cities....

So, what should AL do with the biggest & baddest navy around?

A. Protect his cities / islands. Since AL doesn't seem to need to be in port to upgrade, as long as he doesn't need repair put his ships outside the perimeter of his islands/cities instead of in port.

B. Chase down and attack any enemies within / near owned territory. It is pretty common to be attacking one AL city while 3-4 BBs sit in nearby cities and do nothing.

C. Support AL invasions and escort his transports. He just doesn't do this now. Really the only thing he does now is take sea resources.

2. Use the air force

Been talked about before, so I won't reiterate. However, since AL can already see-all know-all the recon aspect of this isn't helpful. Without that, maybe planes aren't much good to him (other than paratroopers, bombers, missles).

3. War & peace

AL should not let you land troops on his islands without declaring war (and hopefully sinking your transports). Ideally, once he sees a loaded transports within his recon range he may give you a warning (if far enough out), or just shoot to kill. Same is true for landing paratroopers. Other ships can have more leeway, since their absolute position isn't as big a threat.

Just trying to make AL even better. With a game this long (time consuming), he will often be the opponent of choice (he is always there for us:) )

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1. Use of BBs etc

Whenever an AL country goes down, he always seems to have 3-4 BBs just sitting around somewhere (not helping much). The AL is great at building a strong navy, he just doesn't really use it. To beat him, just avoid his navy and take the cities....

So, what should AL do with the biggest & baddest navy around?

A. Protect his cities / islands. Since AL doesn't seem to need to be in port to upgrade, as long as he doesn't need repair put his ships outside the perimeter of his islands/cities instead of in port.

B. Chase down and attack any enemies within / near owned territory. It is pretty common to be attacking one AL city while 3-4 BBs sit in nearby cities and do nothing.

C. Support AL invasions and escort his transports. He just doesn't do this now. Really the only thing he does now is take sea resources.

2. Use the air force

Been talked about before, so I won't reiterate. However, since AL can already see-all know-all the recon aspect of this isn't helpful. Without that, maybe planes aren't much good to him (other than paratroopers, bombers, missles).

3. War & peace

AL should not let you land troops on his islands without declaring war (and hopefully sinking your transports). Ideally, once he sees a loaded transports within his recon range he may give you a warning (if far enough out), or just shoot to kill. Same is true for landing paratroopers. Other ships can have more leeway, since their absolute position isn't as big a threat.

Yup, yup, and yup. The AI needs to be smarter about these things, and a good AI is essential for a good single-player game.

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Here are a couple of ideas to help poor old AL out:

3. War & peace

AL should not let you land troops on his islands without declaring war (and hopefully sinking your transports). Ideally, once he sees a loaded transports within his recon range he may give you a warning (if far enough out), or just shoot to kill. Same is true for landing paratroopers. Other ships can have more leeway, since their absolute position isn't as big a threat.

Just trying to make AL even better. With a game this long (time consuming), he will often be the opponent of choice (he is always there for us:) )

Thats what I do is flood the island surround his resorces on land and sea then declair war. :D

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As others have said it is too easy to transport lots of troops onto another players 'territory' camp them outside an enemy city and then wait for the right moment before attacking with overwhelming force, seizing it, making peace and then repeating ad infinitum. It would be like Russia transporting troops into Kent or East Anglia in the UK and sitting them outside Norwich - I doubt the British government would stand for it any more if the UK landed troops near St Petersburg. I feel that cities and resources (both land and sea) should project a zone of national territory around them into which other forces (unless they are your allies) cannot enter unless they declare war. That would represent the sovereign national territory of that nation and perhaps have it marked out by a border that expands and contracts with your empire.

I also agree that the AI builds up huge armies then doesnt do anything with them. Literally dozens of paras, tanks, infantry, battleships just sit there. The AI does conduct invasions by sea by they are never escorted and a battleship or two guarding the key sea lanes deals with those. It would be nice to see the AI using planes and paratroops, etc.

Also, can you explain (sorry if it is in the manual) the difference between declaring war and a sneak attack. I assume the latter gives you some kind of surprise bonus but I feel it should really hurt your reputation if you do so- look at Pearl Harbour.

I also agree that when you build up an army and give it a name (6th SS Panzer Army or whatever) it would be nice if you could transport the whole army (perhaps with a stack of transports) without losing the name.

I do like the new combat system- the units feel a lot more durable than before when they were like cannon fodder just being chucked into the meat grinder. It is actually possible (and worth it) to retreat a unit from combat and repair its strength. Adding experience would really add to things and enable the creation of crack, battleharded corps and armies at least as long as the AI also repaired its units to keep it fair. Air power is still underpowered but its really moving forward.

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Declaring War means all of the target's units will want to smash your face in as soon as they see you.

Sneak attack means they'll be blind and deaf except those units that you specifically targetted for having their own faces smashed in. Those retaliate. On the next turn you're all in proper war.

The biggest problem for the AI is, I think, the transports - transports take long to build, move slowly and die fast. The AI just can't figure the correct ratio of transports/units_waiting_for_transport and is caught with pants down when someone (e.g. another AI somewhere the player doesn't see) sends the poor lad's handful of loaded ships to the sea floor.

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As others have said it is too easy to transport lots of troops onto another players 'territory' camp them outside an enemy city and then wait for the right moment before attacking with overwhelming force, seizing it, making peace and then repeating ad infinitum. It would be like Russia transporting troops into Kent or East Anglia in the UK and sitting them outside Norwich - I doubt the British government would stand for it any more if the UK landed troops near St Petersburg. I feel that cities and resources (both land and sea) should project a zone of national territory around them into which other forces (unless they are your allies) cannot enter unless they declare war. That would represent the sovereign national territory of that nation and perhaps have it marked out by a border that expands and contracts with your empire.

Sounds like what the game of Civilization did. It's a reasonable system. It gets a little odd when the borders expand and suddenly your units are inside the enemy's territory. In the Civilization games, I've had the AI declare war on me because his borders expanded, and suddenly one of my units was inside his territory, and he acted like I moved into his territory. The other issue is related to the fact that players setup unit-orders to move into unexplored territory. Units (including aircraft) would have to update their course during a turn to avoid crossing those boundaries.

I'm sure I can find some decent solution to this.

Also, can you explain (sorry if it is in the manual) the difference between declaring war and a sneak attack. I assume the latter gives you some kind of surprise bonus but I feel it should really hurt your reputation if you do so- look at Pearl Harbour.

You don't get any bonus for doing sneak attacks. They allow you to attack an enemy player without giving the warning of a declaration of war. So, you get the advantage of not letting the enemy know you're coming, but that enemy will probably dislike you more.

I also agree that when you build up an army and give it a name (6th SS Panzer Army or whatever) it would be nice if you could transport the whole army (perhaps with a stack of transports) without losing the name.

I can understand that, but it gets odd if any of the transports get sunk en-route. For example, if you're moving 3 transports, and they've got 2 infantry and 3 tanks, what happens if one of the transports is sunk? What ground-units are lost? I suppose I could setup a system where some random combination of ground-units gets destroyed. I don't know.

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How about this:

If all cities on an island are controlled by one AI, this island is considered its territory. The island and the neighboring seas up to 30 (or so) units away from the island are considered restricted.

Like this:

territory.jpg

Now:

1. All aircraft and ships (except EMPTY transports) already inside that are not allies to the owner are given 6 turns to leave, or else This means WAR!.

2. Only EMPTY transports may enter this territory. They may also create pick-up points (yellow circles) on that island.

3. All ground units are "frozen" (i.e. can't move - if they do, This means WAR!) with only one exception - they can be given an order to enter a transport. Once on the move to the transport, they cannot cancel this order. If that order is cancelled once the unit moves, for any reason This means WAR!

4. The moment a transports picks up all units that were going to board it (of course, unless it becomes full first), it is subject to the "6 turns to GTFO" rule.

5. Any unit that was not inside this territory and trespasses in is given 2 turns to leave, or This means WAR!. That parole lasts for full two turns (i.e. leaving on the first and reentering on the second means WAR! as well).

6. If a unit (except empty transports) enters the territory while another is on its 2-turn parole (already in effect, issued in one of two previous turns), the owner AI considers this an invasion - This means WAR!

7. Undiscovered "stealth" units are not noticed (i.e. subs that don't sail too close to destroyers/cruisers/cities with Radars & radar-invisible aircraft that don't enter a unit's view range etc.), but all normally visible units (everything else) are given paroles regardless of whether there is anything out there to notice them or not.

------------

PS. all this above can seem sophisticated, but in fact it can be contained in three one-sentence rules (for tutorial/general help purposes):

I. It's our land now - leave as soon as possible.

II. If you're not our ally, you're not welcome back.

III. Do otherwise and This means WAR!

And this is more or less how it would work.

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How about this:

If all cities on an island are controlled by one AI, this island is considered its territory. The island and the neighboring seas up to 30 (or so) units away from the island are considered restricted.

Like this:

territory.jpg

Now:

1. All aircraft and ships (except EMPTY transports) already inside that are not allies to the owner are given 6 turns to leave, or else This means WAR!.

2. Only EMPTY transports may enter this territory. They may also create pick-up points (yellow circles) on that island.

3. All ground units are "frozen" (i.e. can't move - if they do, This means WAR!) with only one exception - they can be given an order to enter a transport. Once on the move to the transport, they cannot cancel this order. If that order is cancelled once the unit moves, for any reason This means WAR!

4. The moment a transports picks up all units that were going to board it (of course, unless it becomes full first), it is subject to the "6 turns to GTFO" rule.

5. Any unit that was not inside this territory and trespasses in is given 2 turns to leave, or This means WAR!. That parole lasts for full two turns (i.e. leaving on the first and reentering on the second means WAR! as well).

6. If a unit (except empty transports) enters the territory while another is on its 2-turn parole (already in effect, issued in one of two previous turns), the owner AI considers this an invasion - This means WAR!

7. Undiscovered "stealth" units are not noticed (i.e. subs that don't sail too close to destroyers/cruisers/cities with Radars & radar-invisible aircraft that don't enter a unit's view range etc.), but all normally visible units (everything else) are given paroles regardless of whether there is anything out there to notice them or not.

------------

PS. all this above can seem sophisticated, but in fact it can be contained in three one-sentence rules (for tutorial/general help purposes):

I. It's our land now - leave as soon as possible.

II. If you're not our ally, you're not welcome back.

III. Do otherwise and This means WAR!

And this is more or less how it would work.

I like it. But it can be added in an update some time down the road unless it was easy :rolleyes:

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How about this:

If all cities on an island are controlled by one AI, this island is considered its territory. The island and the neighboring seas up to 30 (or so) units away from the island are considered restricted.

Like this:

territory.jpg

Now:

1. All aircraft and ships (except EMPTY transports) already inside that are not allies to the owner are given 6 turns to leave, or else This means WAR!.

2. Only EMPTY transports may enter this territory. They may also create pick-up points (yellow circles) on that island.

3. All ground units are "frozen" (i.e. can't move - if they do, This means WAR!) with only one exception - they can be given an order to enter a transport. Once on the move to the transport, they cannot cancel this order. If that order is cancelled once the unit moves, for any reason This means WAR!

4. The moment a transports picks up all units that were going to board it (of course, unless it becomes full first), it is subject to the "6 turns to GTFO" rule.

5. Any unit that was not inside this territory and trespasses in is given 2 turns to leave, or This means WAR!. That parole lasts for full two turns (i.e. leaving on the first and reentering on the second means WAR! as well).

6. If a unit (except empty transports) enters the territory while another is on its 2-turn parole (already in effect, issued in one of two previous turns), the owner AI considers this an invasion - This means WAR!

7. Undiscovered "stealth" units are not noticed (i.e. subs that don't sail too close to destroyers/cruisers/cities with Radars & radar-invisible aircraft that don't enter a unit's view range etc.), but all normally visible units (everything else) are given paroles regardless of whether there is anything out there to notice them or not.

------------

PS. all this above can seem sophisticated, but in fact it can be contained in three one-sentence rules (for tutorial/general help purposes):

I. It's our land now - leave as soon as possible.

II. If you're not our ally, you're not welcome back.

III. Do otherwise and This means WAR!

And this is more or less how it would work.

Yeah, something like that. The AI sends a message telling you to remove your units within a certain number of turns. Also, the AI could detect if your units move towards anything valuable, and get less patient if you do.

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