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Incredible Shrinking Trenches - Still Shrinking 2010


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Hi Folks,

Just wondering if anyone can tell me why the trenches in the scenario I'm trying to design keep breaking into chunks?

They are fine when I'm placing them in the Editor, but during playtesting they start to develop problems after a few turns: spaces start to appear between them, creating areas that are NOT trench, and have no cover....I'm trying to create a continuous trench line with other trenches feeding into it...

While making the map in the Editor, I've used a little cheat familiar to most of you; placing a trench in the Preview 3D map, then switching to the terrain editor to place rubble or rough or another type of terrain prohibited to trenches over that spot, so one has the combination in the final map; e.g trench-in-rubble.

After I noticed Shrinking Trench Syndrome, I went back and changed all that, so that no trench occupies terrain prohibited to it.

I still have the problem.

There is much overlap of trenches on the map, which I've done to get a realistic look.

I still have several bunkers sitting dead on top of trenches, but this is allowable placing, or so I think.

BFC member 'demoss' had the same problem in 2003 and posted a query, without getting a satisfactory answer...

Any advance in 2010?

Grateful for any assistance.


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I already posted one clue in the other thread. Checking one of my old maps I seem to have gotten pretty decent results by being careful with not having the trenches overlap too much when placing them, that way they don't get cut when the battle starts. You can peek into my operation JR 48 at Kuuterselkä, it has continuous trench lines for Finns. It's in the repository in "Sergei's CMBB scenarios" combo pack.

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Thank you, Sergei.

Evidence suggests that you're right: I've eliminated the other possible causes one by one, and still have the problem, AND it's true that the problem got worse as I added more and more overlapping trenches.

I'll check out your operation, and get a few trench tips :)

Thanks again.

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I've checked out your CMBB Operation 'JR 48 at Kuuterselkä', and I see what you mean: there is minimal overlap (if any at all) of trenches.

Now I've just got to re-arrange the trenches in my scenario. All of them :(

Just when it was about finished and ready to go to The Proving Grounds...

Ah well, it's all a labor of love, isn't it???

Thanks again.

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For the sake of posterity (and anyone else who might be interested):

After re-arranging some, but not all of my overlapping trenches and three playtests, I'm fairly confident that one can get away with a little overlapping, but not a lot.

There also seem to be degrees of Shrinking Trench Syndrome, ranging from fine lines laterally across the trench - which do not change it's ability to provide trench-grade cover - right up to fully broken trenches, where the different broken pieces are separated by areas of non-trench that provide no cover.

Research continues into this troubling disease.

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Previous experimental results clearly showed the cause-and-effect relationship between overlapping trenches and Shrinking Trench Syndrome (STS).

Further experiments also show an absolute cause-and-effect relationship between trench-in-rough and STS.

In fact, the quickest and most dramatic outbreak of STS can be observed when the experimenter creates many tiles that are trench-in-rough.

Quickest, in the sense that STS will appear in the very first turn of a playtest, and most dramatic in the sense that at least half of all trenches will be 'broken'.

Additionally, experiments have revealed that while most Overlapping-Related STS takes a few turns to appear (as little as 4, or as many as 10) the lateral fine lines discussed earlier will appear first; and are in fact a reliable indicator of future trench breakup.

Research continues.

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