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Darvin 02-27-2009 04:55 PM

Decisive Force?
Perhaps it's still somewhat premature, but there's one itching question I have about this game: how is it going to handle decisive force?

In most games, you get exponential returns in combat. If you send 10 of your units to attack 10 enemies (presuming all other things equal) it will come down to the last man. However, send 15 guys to attack the smaller force of 10, and chances are you'll have more than 5 units left over. In fact, in many games you might take only 2 or 3 losses. Putting more units into a single fight gives you a decisive edge.

Now, I've always found this bad for gameplay, and somewhat unrealistic. If World War I taught us anything, charging twice as many soldiers into machine gun fire just gets twice as many soldiers killed. Napoleon's grand strategy was "divide and conquer" not "advance as a single decisive force and conquer". There's also a certain matter of those Spartans at Thermopylae, who certainly weren't too disadvantaged by their numerical situation. Gameplay-wise, it leads to situations where you feel forced to keep your army in one big group, limiting your strategic options to subdivide your forces, and also makes it very hard to make a comeback if you have a numerical disadvantage ("steamroller" effect).

So, I'm wondering if DoF has any ace up its sleeve to deal with the issues of decisiveness? Will there be ways to make smaller forces more effective and less risky propositions, and be able to appropriate match (or at least delay) larger forces without just getting crushed by sheer numerical advantage?

Feweh 02-27-2009 08:04 PM

For some reason i highly doubt it,

but i know exactly what your saying.

Darvin 02-27-2009 09:47 PM


For some reason i highly doubt it,
Same; why do you think I put this topic in the "suggestions" forum?

The_Biz 02-27-2009 10:45 PM

there's nothing unbalanced with having 15vs.10 and having 10 left over.

that's how combat works in almost all games

Darvin 02-28-2009 12:48 AM

This topic isn't about balance whatsoever. This topic is about gameplay mechanics. Just because other games do it that way doesn't mean it should be that way. As I stated in my original post, there are numerous gameplay reasons why this isn't favourable.

First, you have the steamroller effect, where if you lose one major battle it's effectively impossible to recover because the enemy's force is so large that you cannot raise a comparable one that can even slow it down. Secondly, you have the issue that the need for decisive force prevents you from splitting up your army, reducing tactical options (ie, divide and conquer).

Joseph Visscher 02-28-2009 11:23 AM

DOF's combat is quite different, it is more RPG style than any other rts I've seen. If you have 2 v 1 soldiers of the exact same type, rank, research, armor, stance, and ability then those 2 soldiers will take turns attacking the lonely soldier, all he can really do is block the attacks, his chances of attacking back will be reduced as he has to block more attacks.

Out numbering your enemy is a pretty good tactic, but doesn't always work if he uses archers correctly and you don't spread out your troops, well that machine gun tactic will come into play ;) ; you must also take skill level of your units and his.
The rank and skill of your units has a large impact on combat, it could be very easy to recreate a "300" moment with high ranking units blocking a small pathway with hundreds of unranked and unskilled enemies.

fyro11 02-28-2009 12:54 PM

If this is about guerilla and stealth warfare, then I'm all for it. As a lot of us know, BFME2 attempted this with stealth units, the Elves being the major faction. However the game mostly functions on harassment, rushes and largescale assaults. There is little more to it. The stealth just didn't operate effectively, and seemed like a sloppy job.

This game definitely looks more dynamic, and could make good use of guerilla warfare, imo.

Lordadamar 02-28-2009 02:35 PM

I think if you compare this to ME2TW for the mechanics you might be close Its not necessarily the amount of units its the training or upgrades your units have vs your opponents. Assumeing DoF has unit upgrade trees.

I have taken 1200 troops against 2000 and won several times, It takes strategy and a awareness both of which you hope your opponents lacks.

Personally I think stealth should be limit to natural surrounding like trees rocks, etc. in ME2TW you gain a certain amount of stealth by keeping you units in wooded areas...

THYMOLE 09-14-2009 02:49 PM

So soldiers actually think instead of running through an attack animation?


Darathor 09-14-2009 04:15 PM

It's really unique that blocking doesn't let your unit attack nearly as much, it sounds as if it will make it more realistic. If your fighting two people, you will block more often the you attack if around the same skill. It seems like it will give the advantage more often to orcs over elves(and humans to a lesser extent) as they likely outnumber other armies.

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