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HITS/GCM Game Basics

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HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  WJPalmer on Sun Dec 30, 2012 4:24 pm

Note: Players new to HITS MEETS GCM games should carefully read the entire briefing below, with special attention to the Player Checklist and A Few Player FYI’s.

HITS MEETS GCM: Game Basics

Location: GCM TeamSpeak site (HITS sub-channel)
Advance sign-Up: http://doodle.com/2bq3q7rcv2vmat8w

Resources:
-GCM Website: http://www.sowmp.com/gcm
-More on Kriegspiel HITS: http://forum.kriegsspiel.org.uk/f32-scourge-of-war
-More on HITS play in SoW: http://www.norbsoftdev.net/forum/hits-headquarters-in-the-saddle
-GCM TeamSpeak Channel (GCM Site): http://www.sowmp.com/gcm/home/teamspeak
-Blaugrana’s Tips on Setting Up TeamSpeak Whisper Channels: http://forum.kriegsspiel.org.uk/t270-teamspeak-whisper-keys
-More on sending couriers: See page 62 of the SoW Game Manual
-Marching Thru Georgia’s “Just Couriers” mod download (an enhanced set of written orders for courier delivery): https://www.dropbox.com/s/lhsoim0115jk89q/JustCouriers.zip



*Section 1*
Overview
HITS/GCM games are designed to recreate the experience of Civil War division command. The format, drawing inspiration from both Kriegspiel HITS and Garnier's Campaign Mod (GCM), is unique in that players primarily command their troops through subordinate AI commanders, taking direct personal control only when very close (within 50 yards). Players operate within a chain of command, with Army CinC’s and corps leaders giving direction and sharing information.

The GCM environment provides a number of enhancements and advantages to the HG format including:
-the ability to create games quickly on the fly without the need for special modding;
-flexibility in OOB and special unit creation. Players may choose to command infantry divisions, independent infantry brigades, stand-alone artillery formations, or even take on overall command responsibility as CinC of an army;
-access to Garnier’s spectacular “Large Random Maps.” The battlefield is different and unfamiliar to all players in every game.

Special Rules:
A few special rules are in effect for all games

a) Players at division or corps level may give the full-range of written courier, command map, point & click*, and button-rock** commands to their infantry formations[/b] (brigades, through brigade leaders; batteries, through battery commanders) at any time. Except for item “b” below, it is up to computer-controlled subordinates to carry out those orders. Courier(s) will deliver all player- orders issued by any method

b) Civil War division and corps commanders did occasionally step in to personally direct individual brigades and regiments. Players may take direct control of (i.e., “TC”) any subordinate infantry formation or leader when within 50 yards. Players must return control of a TC’d unit to the computer when moving more than 50 yards away.

c) Exceptions: Players may freely take control (TC) and maintain indefinite control of the units below:
1) Army CinC’s in command of brigades/regiments in their “reserve” divisions
2) Artillery commanders directing batteries and guns
3) Objective holders
4) Supply wagons
5) Detached regiments necessary to control a victory location

- KS/HITS protocol places some restrictions on the roaming of human player-leaders in game. They may not ride without accompanying combat formations within rifle range (200 yards) of enemy infantry, and if they find themselves alone behind enemy lines, must withdraw by the same route. Non-human leaders in the game (e.g., objective holders, brigade or battery commanders) are not allowed to roam for scouting purposes and are expected to remain within 100 yards of friendly infantry or guns.

-Players may never turn-off foliage using the “T” command.

-Players are encouraged to adjust their GCM Player Settings for random divisions up to 4,000 men and 6 guns to meet their own preferences. Players may bring fewer men and guns if they wish.

-Three objectives (one visible at game launch) will be located in close proximity and together represent complete control of the battlefield. Possession of these at the close of fighting will determine the level of success or failure for the armies. In order of significance, control of:
3 vp’s = Strategic victory
2 vp’s = Minor victory (i.e., 1 vp enemy controlled or neutral)
1 vp = Draw (i.e., 2 vp’s neutral or 1vp enemy controlled)
Finally, a 2,000+ net casualty advantage by either side represents a tactical victory
-a draw is recorded if no side attains strategic, minor or tactical victory.

-Army CinC’s have the choice of entering the game without direct troop command responsibility or to command a “reserve” division.

Army CinC responsibilities include:
1) Developing an initial strategy for victory;
2) Conducting the Council of War meeting at game launch;
3) Assigning responsibilities to corps commanders
4) Directing battlefield operations;
5) Calling the game when, in his opinion, there is no prospect for either strategic or tactical victory for his side;
6) Decisions regarding the handling of troops whose player/leaders drop during the game. These players are considered “wounded” and the game will continue;
7) Enforcing scenario rules among players in their commands.

-Corps Command is assumed by the “senior” (read most veteran) division commander at game launch. Assignment of divisions to corps is random and is first known in SoW Staging

-When players are within 50 yards of each other during the game, there are 2 options for voice communication:
1) TeamSpeak whisper keys. These may be set before the game after the rosters are determined. See Blaugrana’s tips on how to set up whisper keys http://forum.kriegsspiel.org.uk/t270-teamspeak-whisper-keys
2) Whisper Chat Channels. The GCM TeamSpeak HITS Channel offers Whisper Chat sub-channels for this purpose. When players are close, a player utilizing “Windows-mode” or otherwise able to switch players between TS channels in game may make use of these for private discussions. Note: Players not in Windows-mode may NEVER alt-tab out of a game in progress, as this will interrupt the game for everyone.

*”Point & Click movement” means double-clicking on a precise field destination on screen
**”Button-Rock” commands are those issued by clicking on the user-interface area of the lower screen including various advance, wheel, double-quick, road, and formation instructions

*Section 2*
Reminders:
-Since this game will be played above regimental level, players are encouraged to refresh their familiarity with division and brigade-level unit formations
-Much rides on the reliability and performance of computer-controlled brigade commanders in this format. Players will want to take note of the qualities of their brigade commanders during the pre-game Council of War

More Detail on Game Settings:
-Game Length: 120 minutes; in-game from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm)

-Set Up: The OOB will be generated using “GCM Random” units on one of the GCM Large Random Maps;

-Starting locations: will be set to “least scattered” i.e., respective armies will begin grouped together. The starting locations of each army will be unknown to the enemy;

-Objectives: The 3 objectives will be placed in close proximity (10% spread from map center) and are key to victory (see above). The location of the 1st VP will be known to all at the Council of War briefing); These objectives represent symbolic control of the battlefield.

Council of War: Immediately after game launch (i.e., when their own unit placements and map position are available to the armies), Army C.O.’s will each conduct a “Council of War” in separate TeamSpeak channels. Army commanders will decide on and communicate preliminary strategies, answer questions and give initial direction to their corps and division leaders. During this time (expected to be 5-10 minutes, or by agreement of the Army commanders) players may not give any orders to their troops beyond basic preliminary formation changes.

Couriers: For more information on this method of giving orders, see “A Few Player FYI’s” below and page 62 of the SoW Player Manual ("Send Courier Message Screen"). You may also want to download MTG’s enhanced “Just Couriers” mod file (link at the top of this post).

Player communication: After the Councils of War close, player communication is limited to free-text couriers and TeamSpeak whispers when leaders are within 50 yards.

*Section 3*
Players who have not played in a prior HITS Meets GCM game, please read below:

-Note: The HITS (Headquarters in the Saddle) approach developed by the Kriegspiel/HITS group provides the umbrella of governing principles for the game unless otherwise specified. By joining the game, players agree to abide by these rules and guidelines as supplemented by any special rules adopted for the particular game. For more background on KS/HITS visit their forum (see link at the top of this briefing)

-Read the Player Checklist and “A Few Player FYI’s” below

Player Checklist:
-Register on GCM website http://www.sowmp.com/ and create divisions (if you haven’t already)
-Adjust your GCM player settings (on the GCM website) for random divisions up to 4,000 men and up to 6 guns
-Decide whether you want to play for the Yanks, Rebs, or have no preference
-Sign-up with your preferences on “Doodle” at: http://doodle.com/2bq3q7rcv2vmat8w
-Become familiar in advance with SoW’s “Send Courier Message Screen” (See the Player FYI’s below, and page 62 of the Game Manual). Download and activate MTG’s “Just Couriers” mod if you wish
-Run the GCM Launcher before game time
-HITS players confirm that any "Couriers & Maps" mods are disabled and that "GCM GamePlay 2" is activated in the Modifications screen
-Plan to arrive by joining GCM TeamSpeak 15 minutes prior to game time http://www.sowmp.com/gcm/home/teamspeak

Selecting Sides: Players may express preferences for sides in advance by signing up on the Doodle page (http://doodle.com/2bq3q7rcv2vmat8w). Every effort will be made to honor the side preferences of those signing up ahead of time. However, it may be necessary to make game-time switches if the sides are unbalanced.

Walk-ons: Last minute walk-ons are welcome if familiar with the details of this briefing and have previously performed all checklist items. It’s our fervent hope to begin promptly, so there won’t be time to wait for the uninitiated to come up to speed.

A Few Player FYI’s
1) To send written orders via courier
-press “C”
-select recipient of the order
-in the “orders” section, select the combination of movement and other instructions you intend to send
-click “End Message & Signature” when finished
-For more information on how to send orders and communicate using couriers, see “The Send Courier Message Screen” on page 62 of the SoW Manual.

2) To communicate with other players by courier
-Press “C” on the keyboard
-Select “Free Text” from the tab/menu
-Select the recipient
-Type your message
-Hit enter when done or you need to enter a second line of text
-Click “End Message and Signature” to send your courier with the message

-Don’t forget that, depending on the enemy’s position relative to the intended recipient, your courier may not make it – and your message could be intercepted by the enemy!

-When receiving a message, take note of the time it was sent. On a large GCM map with wide troop dispersals, the message may be a bit stale

-Union and Confederate artillery are standardized in GCM (guns of both have the same effectiveness)

Things to know about the GCM environment:
-The most effective battery configuration is solid shot with orders to fire at infantry
-artillery will become fatigued when moving cross-country through woods
-GCM maps have a significant enhanced road movement bonus over stock maps
-Combat bonuses have some slight adjustments from stock and Couriers & Maps:
* Woods and fences carry similar defensive bonuses with a slight edge to woods
* Stone walls still give the best defensive bonus
* Rifle fire elevation bonus extends to the full 200 yard rifle range – the higher the elevation, the greater the bonus
-Units maintain their marching formation over long distances, i.e., they don’t automatically revert to road column formation over extended distances
-Road column is the quickest march formation when not near an enemy
-Within about 300 yards of an enemy, road columns become slow. Battle column then becomes the fastest formation
-Make sure any “Couriers & Maps” mods are deactivated while “GCM Gameplay 2” is turned on

Things to know about the HITS environment:
-Do not use “T” to turn foliage off. Trees, fences, etc. should remain turned on at all times
-Don’t intentionally stack regiments close behind each other for the purpose of obtaining fire superiority
-Don’t intentionally overlap regiments
-Don't place guns immediately behind infantry in the line that would cause them to fire through friendlies
-Limit intentional melees to one regiment per brigade at a given time. Successive single-regiment melees are OK


Last edited by WJPalmer on Wed Feb 13, 2013 5:21 pm; edited 11 times in total (Reason for editing : Changes in Game Basics)
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Uncle Billy on Sun Dec 30, 2012 5:33 pm

This sounds like fun. The use of the 3 objective is something I was also thinking about. In the corps level games that are played by the KS group, the AI orders the units to a boxed area on the map. The 3 objectives might substitute nicely for that.
Can they be reliably placed so that they are close enough to each other so that one of the armies could easily occupy all 3 with a continuous line of troops? In other words, not so widely separated so that we end up with 2 or 3 completely separate battles.

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  kg little mac on Sun Dec 30, 2012 5:41 pm

Well done, Ron.

I, of course, will participate. Hopefully we can get twenty or more players for this one. bounce cheers
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  WJPalmer on Sun Dec 30, 2012 5:53 pm

Uncle Billy wrote:This sounds like fun. The use of the 3 objective is something I was also thinking about. In the corps level games that are played by the KS group, the AI orders the units to a boxed area on the map. The 3 objectives might substitute nicely for that.
Can they be reliably placed so that they are close enough to each other so that one of the armies could easily occupy all 3 with a continuous line of troops? In other words, not so widely separated so that we end up with 2 or 3 completely separate battles.

While the exact location of the vl's is random, they will all be contained within 10% of the center of the map. In our experience, this will be VERY tight. While there's no way of knowing if they'll appear in a line, triangle, or some other configuration, my thought was that requiring control of 3 tightly-clustered objectives would better reflect a strategic victory where one army drives the other from the field. I likewise want to avoid 3 separate battles, but don't mind a sub-plot or two:)
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Guest on Sun Dec 30, 2012 8:53 pm

I expect a list of Division and potential Corps commanders for our Southern Army within a week.

It is all up to Providence now gentlemen.

R E Lee

(it's Ollie - I decided I needed a new persona Smile )

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Uncle Billy on Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:14 pm

(it's Ollie - I decided I needed a new persona Smile )
I'm not sure I would want the persona of someone that just took a bullet to the head. Very Happy Very Happy

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Guest on Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:35 pm

Uncle Billy wrote:
(it's Ollie - I decided I needed a new persona Smile )
I'm not sure I would want the persona of someone that just took a bullet to the head. Very Happy Very Happy

Ah, General Georgia, it is you sir. General, I appreciate your concern, but I would advise that you prepare your army sir. Providence favours he who is prepared. Also, I should mention that your unrelenting hunger for Southern silverware will no longer be tolerated. No more of your wagons shall pass through the Cumberland Gap.

Good day to you sir.

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  MajorByrd on Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:45 pm

Imposter!

How DARE you Sir! I hereby challenge you to a duel. I shall see you at noon infront of the mirror Sir!
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Guest on Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:59 pm

MajorByrd wrote:Imposter!

How DARE you Sir! I hereby challenge you to a duel. I shall see you at noon infront of the mirror Sir!

Ah, General Byrd - I always understood you wore that white and blue badge so that people knew you were not me, just a striking resemblance.

I also heard sir, that you may be retiring your command? That is sad news indeed General.

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Uncle Billy on Mon Dec 31, 2012 12:52 am

Also, I should mention that your unrelenting hunger for Southern silverware will no longer be tolerated. No more of your wagons shall pass through the Cumberland Gap.
My dear General Lee, if that bullet did not prove the thickness of your head, surely your last comment does. Your rag tag rabble is no match for my men. We take what we like, as we like. You sir, should take the opportunity to skedaddle back to Richmond while you can. But please leave the table service. pirat

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Guest on Mon Dec 31, 2012 6:57 pm

Uncle Billy wrote:
Also, I should mention that your unrelenting hunger for Southern silverware will no longer be tolerated. No more of your wagons shall pass through the Cumberland Gap.
My dear General Lee, if that bullet did not prove the thickness of your head, surely your last comment does. Your rag tag rabble is no match for my men. We take what we like, as we like. You sir, should take the opportunity to skedaddle back to Richmond while you can. But please leave the table service. pirat

And yet I was delivered a newspaper article from the Cincinnati Commercial not two weeks ago, declaring you insane, and perhaps you seek your solace in silverware. Our last encounter certainly left me with the impression that this insanity does not impede upon your ability on the field, sir. Providence alone will decide the outcome of this conflict.

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Uncle Billy on Mon Dec 31, 2012 8:13 pm

I hate newspapermen. They come into camp and pick up their camp rumors and print them as facts. I regard them as spies, which, in truth, they are. If I killed them all, there would be news from hell before breakfast.
You can quote me on that. Very Happy

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Corps commanders

Post  Guest on Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:26 pm

General Palmer,

I believe it may be wise to consider the role of Corps commanders, in the magnificent eventuality that these great armies swell in size to contain as many divisions as you indicate. Indeed, the role of Corps command will become not dissimilar to the role of Army command in our early battles containing 3-5 divisions for each army.

But sir, if we are to manage 10 divisions per army, and Corps contain 3 or more divisions each, then the role of the Corps commander must be taken seriously indeed. My point sir, is that, if it is your intention to have divisional commanders act as Corps commanders, it may be prudent to limit the size of the Corps commanders division, at least while he has time to try this role, in such an organisation. Or perhaps he may wish to have an artillery battery only, under his "direct" command, for example?

Of course, if there are players willing to assume Corps command only, with no division under his direct command, (which I would be happy to see), this issue is very nicely resolved.

Do you have any thoughts on these matters, Generals?

Your humble servant,

R E Lee

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  WJPalmer on Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:25 pm

R E Lee wrote:I believe it may be wise to consider the role of Corps commanders, in the magnificent eventuality that these great armies swell in size to contain as many divisions as you indicate. Indeed, the role of Corps command will become not dissimilar to the role of Army command in our early battles containing 3-5 divisions for each army.

But sir, if we are to manage 10 divisions per army, and Corps contain 3 or more divisions each, then the role of the Corps commander must be taken seriously indeed. My point sir, is that, if it is your intention to have divisional commanders act as Corps commanders, it may be prudent to limit the size of the Corps commanders division, at least while he has time to try this role, in such an organisation. Or perhaps he may wish to have an artillery battery only, under his "direct" command, for example?

Of course, if there are players willing to assume Corps command only, with no division under his direct command, (which I would be happy to see), this issue is very nicely resolved.

General Lee, here are a few thoughts...
If the armies are very large, I agree we should have Corps commanders (at least 1 per side) carrying leadership responsibility without the burden of direct command of troops. This would no doubt make it much easier to effect control throughout an army spanning a number of players and a broad expanse of unfamiliar ground. Army commanders would have more realistic lattitude to implement sophisticated planning e.g., "Lee" could more easily assign the divisions under corps commander "Jackson" to plan and execute an independent, remote flank attack. And just as important, as we found out in the last game, such a person might fill a critical role stepping up to army command when the fearless leader takes one in the noggin.

A few minutes before game time, we'll have a better feel for how big the armies will be and side assignments. I suggest the two army commanders agree then on if, and how many, command-less corps leaders they want. Players selected for these assignments would not join the GCM battle queue or bring their own divisions. They simply join the game and select a corp leaders in the OOB. Remember too that not all corps commanders need have the same arrangement. Unless the game gets really huge, it would probably be best to have some corps leaders bring their own divisions. The corps c.o.'s with commands will, of course, have their hands full managing their own troops, so it would be cruel to ask them to exercise full, independent command of the corps itself. Their duties beyond control of their divisions should probably be limited to passing along news and orders from the Army CinC to the other divisions of their corps and, at the outside, some limited intra-corps coordination.

Beyond this there is only limited ability to control the game's OOBs: the GCM randomly assigns players to corps at the time of game creation. As yet, there is no capacity to create specialty divisions or small sub-commands of, say, just batteries for an independent corps leader to control. I agree that when we have that ability, it would be great to give a player, for instance, a corps command and a few guns.


Last edited by WJPalmer on Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:43 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Guest on Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:40 pm

This sounds like a very sensible approach. There may then be more and less "able" Corp commanders! I'm really looking forward to this now!

Broadband engineers are turning up *next* Friday, so unfortunately, the is a possibility that I will be thrown off my horse or something similar in this fight, but hopefully, it will be for the last time.

I am considering going somewhere else to play.

Providence will decide. Wink


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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Uncle Billy on Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:44 pm

Is it possible to have all the guns in the corps placed in a separate division that could be controlled by the corps commander? He could then parcel them out where needed while the division commanders just fight the infantry. If not, a normal division under the corps commander direct control, perhaps without artillery, could be used as a reserve force. It would sit in the rear until the battle lines are established and then used as needed.

Broadband engineers are turning up *next* Friday, so unfortunately, the is a possibility that I will be thrown off my horse or something similar in this fight, but hopefully, it will be for the last time.
Unless you show the white feather before the battle, I cannot vouch for your safety. Laughing

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  WJPalmer on Wed Jan 02, 2013 3:14 pm

Uncle Billy wrote:Is it possible to have all the guns in the corps placed in a separate division that could be controlled by the corps commander? He could then parcel them out where needed while the division commanders just fight the infantry. If not, a normal division under the corps commander direct control, perhaps without artillery, could be used as a reserve force. It would sit in the rear until the battle lines are established and then used as needed.

Unfortunately, not yet. At this point the host can use "sliders" during game creation to give individual divisions more or less infantry, but this capability is not yet in place for guns. Garnier and I discussed this a while back and he certainly is in favor(he may already be working on it) since it opens all sorts of intriguing possibilities.

Once implemented, it would be an easy matter to collect an army's guns in one or more specialized divisions. These could either be placed under the direct control of a corps commander (simply by not assigning a player to that division's command). Or, it would also be possible to have artillery specialists (ala Henry Hunt or Porter Alexander) in command. In fact, I've already heard from a number of players who would prefer to command just guns or just infantry.

To your point about having the guns doled out from an artillery reserve, this could be done either by a player at "artillery division" level or, if we have lots of players, by giving players individual battery assignments. There would be many ways to slice and dice this, I think.
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Grog on Wed Jan 02, 2013 3:34 pm

Perhaps at the beginning of the game it would be possible to detatch batteries from our divisions, then attach them to a designated 'Artillery Chief'. Davinci talks about reallocating inf regs between brigades here:

http://www.norbsoftdev.net/forum/40-discussion/53916-attaching-a-regiment-to-a-different-brigade

I havn't tried this and I suspect in MP (at least with GCM ) this may not be possible??

It might be worth testing. I'm sure having a Pendleton or a Hunt in our games would make interesting games, or at least, there will always be someone to blame when your guns have been taken off to 'frighten the citizenry'.

In the last game I would have been happy for someone to have taken them off my hands once they were out of my sight.
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Baldwin1 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:44 pm

I would like to try this blend of play out at the brigade level with no guns or leave the 2 guns(bare min) behind or let someone else take them. I realize that it's hard to reconcile the fairness given that human brigade commanders have a distinct advantage over AI brigade opponents. Perhaps fitting/rebalancing the OOB to the number of players would fix it where you have however many divisions but filled out with human players at the brigade level thus cutting out the excess AI. You could still have overall army commanders for chain of command play.
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  mitra on Thu Jan 03, 2013 6:14 pm

A superior commander can always give direct orders to AI sub units of a human players, if they are part of same hierarchy. We tested this with Suchet in multi. Of course you are forced to use the couriers interface command for give orders because the graphical gui doens't display the commands but it works. And of course it is better detach the unit\battery for avoid the division commanders orders nullify the corps commander orders.

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  WJPalmer on Thu Jan 03, 2013 7:29 pm

Baldwin1 wrote:I would like to try this blend of play out at the brigade level with no guns or leave the 2 guns(bare min) behind or let someone else take them. I realize that it's hard to reconcile the fairness given that human brigade commanders have a distinct advantage over AI brigade opponents.

Sounds like an approach that we can try in future games, where we're after somewhat smaller contending forces and more refined player control. Saturday's game is intended more to give players the "big" picture of division command.

And hopefully, we'll have the ability to configure divisions in GCM with guns, without guns and only guns soon.
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  WJPalmer on Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:05 pm

Uncle Billy wrote:If not, a normal division under the corps commander direct control, perhaps without artillery, could be used as a reserve force. It would sit in the rear until the battle lines are established and then used as needed.

It would, of course, be possible now to have a "reserve" division in each army, in the sense that a corps commander, otherwise operating as a pure leader without direct troop control, actually brings his own division and parks it in reserve somewhere until the Army CinC orders its commitment. Is this something the army c.o.'s would like to see?

My first thought was, well, this makes our independent corps leader just like any other player bringing a division. However, to get around that there might be special restrictions on the use of the reserve division by the corps leader. For instance, it could never be TC'd, all orders given only by written courier, its size could be manually adjusted at game creation to be smaller than the smallest player-controlled division, etc. -- in other words, as an emergency reserve it would bring signficant limitations and disadvantages compared to regular player-controlled divisions -- all of which would weigh in an army CinC's decision to commit it.

Couldn't do anything at this point to exclude artillery from this unit, but these guns could, by agreement, either be kept out of play or treated in the same way as the reserve division's infantry, if desired.

I'm not advocating either in favor or against such an arrangement -- just tossing it out there for consideration.
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Guest on Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:44 pm

WJPalmer wrote:
It would, of course, be possible now to have a "reserve" division in each army, in the sense that a corps commander, otherwise operating as a pure leader without direct troop control, actually brings his own division and parks it in reserve somewhere until the Army CinC orders its commitment. Is this something the army c.o.'s would like to see?

My first thought was, well, this makes our independent corps leader just like any other player bringing a division. However, to get around that there might be special restrictions on the use of the reserve division by the corps leader. For instance, it could never be TC'd, all orders given only by written courier, its size could be manually adjusted at game creation to be smaller than the smallest player-controlled division, etc. -- in other words, as an emergency reserve it would bring signficant limitations and disadvantages compared to regular player-controlled divisions -- all of which would weigh in an army CinC's decision to commit it.

I've thought about this - and I think really it is up the Corps commander to decide if he "commits" his "reserve" division. Certainly, the CinC may advise that one or more Corps hold back some reserves or commit them, but ultimately, the decision is down to the Corps commander.

I think the rules about TCing an AI division should be the same as you have for brigades - you may only TC *any* commander if you are sufficiently close to do so. If a Corps commander decided to commit his "personal"/"reserve" division, then he could do this either by

1) Sending the AI division commander orders.
2) Riding up to the AI division commander and TCing.
3) as for (1), but could then ride up to one of the brigades and TC this, within the rules you have described.

All this has lead me to another thought. If Corps commanders would generally be bringing their own AI division, then perhaps so too could the Army commander? Again, it could be used as a reserve force, and used in any way the CinC saw fit. It should probably be down to the CinC in question to decide, as should Corps commanders bringing their own divisions be down to those Corps commanders.

Here's a question, let's say Soldier, Palmer and Lee, Mitra and Spoom are playing a HG3 game, and each bring their GCM division, is the following possible:

Army (Lee)
-Corps (Palmer)
--Division (Palmer) (AI unless TC'd within the stated rules)
--Division (Soldier) (human)
--Division (Lee) (AI unless TC'd within the stated rules)
-Corps (Mitra)
--Division (Mitra) (AI unless TC'd within the stated rules)
--Division (Spoom) (human)
?

I think that's possible. In which case, we could potentially be looking at some seriously awesome action this weekend, or on another occasion! Again, the "Chaos" of limited controll would almost be magnified!

I think I need to check on my GCM division!

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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  WJPalmer on Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:37 pm

I think really it is up the Corps commander to decide if he "commits" his "reserve" division.
I believe Kevin's original question was along the lines of creating an army-level reserve, so my response was structured along those lines. Certainly, in any event it would be up to the Corps C.O. (who's division the reserve technically belongs to) to execute the orders.

If Corps commanders would generally be bringing their own AI division, then perhaps so too could the Army commander?

Yep, army commanders could bring their own divisions to act as a reserve. But this would also place a heavier direct command burden on CinC's that, I think, we were trying to avoid. Especially in a big game, this could be a real challenge as army CinC's will undoubtedly be riding all over a very large battlefield and could find themselves a mile away from their reserve. I also think we'd want to be careful not to create so many "reserve" formations that they begin to rival the regular player-controlled units.

Army (Lee)
-Corps (Palmer)
--Division (Palmer) (AI unless TC'd within the stated rules)
--Division (Soldier) (human)
--Division (Lee) (AI unless TC'd within the stated rules)
-Corps (Mitra)
--Division (Mitra) (AI unless TC'd within the stated rules)
--Division (Spoom) (human)

Correct -- this is how it works in regular GCM games. But most GCM games have 5 important distinctions: 1) Army C.O.'s and Corps leaders don't carry over-all game command responsibilities; 2) The OOB's are randomly created within a side, i.e., there's no way to predict what divisions will fall within which corps, etc.; 3) players aren't restricted by a saddle p.o.v.; 4) corps and army leaders are expected to actively control their own divisions and 5) there are no restrictions, distance or otherwise, on TC'ing your own units. In regular GCM games, corps and army leader assignments are only a game convenience that allows the game to continue under human control if someone loses connection.

We may want to be fairly cautious in implementing any concept of a reserve, at least in a first game. We should still, I think, jealously safeguard the primary roles of Army CinC's and independent corps leaders in making high-level decisions, communicating, and coordinating while remaining mostly unburdened by direct troop command. My recommendation for HG3 on Saturday would be to limit a reserve, if any, to a small division under the independent (i.e., otherwise "troop-less") corps commander, to remain uncommitted until/unless released by Army CinC.


Last edited by WJPalmer on Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:57 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: HITS/GCM Game Basics

Post  Guest on Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:56 pm

WJPalmer wrote:My recommendation for HG3 on Saturday would be to limit a reserve, if any, to a small division under the independent (i.e., otherwise "troopless") corps commander, to remain uncommitted until/unless released by Army CinC.

General Palmer, I concur with your recommendations. The battle coming up this weekend will be quite enough of a test of every man's mettle, without adding extra burdens of these experimental thoughts.

We must also consider the unfortunate eventuality that a General must vacate the field through injury (ahem, although the last few nights broadband have been good for me). Having these "reserve" divisions as we have been discussing would produce compound problems should an enemy minie-ball find a Corps or Army Commander!

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